CLEVELAND — Everyone should have somebody who looks at troubling stories about them and spins it on their behalf the way Jarvis Landry did for Odell Beckham Jr. this week.
“I think he wants to be here,'' Landry said Thursday about his good friend. "I know he wants to be here. It’s not even about trying to go somewhere else.…
“He has responsibility to himself, to all of us to go out there and compete each and every Sunday. And he does that. So I don’t think — he doesn’t want to leave, and he’s not trying to leave.”
Landry said Beckham has a “voice” in the organization. But the question is whether he’s using that voice to tell opposing players he’d like to join them, as Jay Glazer’s Sunday Fox Sports report claimed and an October video of Beckham talking with Niners QB Jimmy Garoppolo might suggest.
Four out of five audiologists believe that’s a terrible look.
Glossed over by his friend, Landry, whose words are only comforting in the absence of Beckham being so bothered by the reports that he denies them himself.
- Is this when Baker Mayfield speaks up and says, “You’re either on this train or you’re not, it’s moving. You can get out of the way or you can join us.”
Not this time.
“I trust him wholeheartedly,” Mayfield said of Beckham.
Or at least more than he trusted another Junior, Duke Johnson.
- The Cavs showed up in San Antonio on the second night of a back-to-back and beat the Spurs in overtime. Nothing could ruin that kind of night, right?
Down the stretch, they did it without Tristan Thompson who argued with head coach John Beilein during a timeout and spent the rest of the game on the bench, Larry Nance Jr. replacing him.
“Larry came in and did a really good job,” Beilein said when asked about the exchange with Thompson. “We thought last night that Larry should have played more. So we decided to go with Larry. And that group did a really good job together. Larry was giving us everything that Tristan gives us.”
Translation: I’m still the head coach. I control playing time and, with this being the NBA, not much else.
- Reports say the Indians are talking to the Dodgers about Francisco Lindor and the Angels about Corey Kluber.
That would sound ominous if this wasn’t the case involving good players and big markets pretty much every December and January.
If I were the Dodgers I’d ask about Lindor, too. And if I were the Indians looking at the Dodgers talented farm system I’d ask for its top three prospects and the moon, too.
- The Pats have signed trick shot artist Josh Gable, who can apparently make crazy kicks from long distance while shooting video of the opponent’s sidelines.
- Patriots owner Bob Kraft, in answering questions about the team’s latest video controversy, told the media “You know everything you should know.”
That’s not nearly as powerful as “You know everything there is to know” but I’m sure that’s what he meant, right?
- If you’re shooting several minutes of video of a NFL sideline, that’s not documentary “B” roll.
That’s closer to a MRI.
- And if you’re shooting video of a 1-12 team, what technology would you use for the 12-2 Ravens? The Hubble telescope?
- Pats QB Tom Brady jokingly used social media to challenge Lamar Jackson to a 40-yard dash, provided they do it on grass and — Brady said — with Jackson wear roller blades.
1) I still like Jackson.
2) Imagine the Patriots trying to get an edge by any means necessary.
- Jackson broke Michael Vick’s rushing record in a 42-21 win over the Jets Thursday.
Per The Athletic’s Mike Sando, it was the fifth time this season the Ravens have scored 40-plus points after managing it only 14 times previously.
Beginning in 1996, as every single Browns fan might remember.
- The Jets kept Le’Veon Bell from coming to the team hotel last Saturday and playing Sunday against the Dolphins because he was contagious with the flu.
Bell, who missed practice Thursday and Friday, instead went bowling with family and friends Saturday.
Thanks a lot, said everybody in the bowling alley who decided to wear a sweatshirt and jeans instead of their Haz Mat suits.
- When asked about a decision that some including head coach Adam Gase found surprising, Bell said it was more surprising he bowled a 251.
Hopefully with his own ball.
- Saints head coach Sean Payton says he heard from New Orleans fans after failing on an early two-point conversion try during his 48-46 loss to San Francisco last weekend.
“I certainly understand fans asking questions,” Payton said on his weekly WWL radio appearance. “I got the guy at freaking Whole Foods asking me about the two-point play.
"The guy from the meat section. I looked at him and said, ‘Hey, your steaks don’t look too good right now. Worry about your meat.’ Driving me crazy.’”
Le’Veon Bell is surprised he rolled a 251 coming off the flu.
I’m surprised I got to transcribe the line “worry about your meat” in a NFL story before I quit the business.
Also, that the exchange didn’t happen in Cleveland.
With Freddie Kitchens wearing a PETA t-shirt to the deli counter.
- The Eagles rallied from 17-3 Monday night to keep hopes alive of winning the mediocre NFL East.
According to reports, quarterback Carson Wentz told his offense to “keep believing” in the 23-17 overtime victory.
An unnecessary thing to say when you’re playing the Giants.
- In Dallas, head coach Jason Garrett is putting together a highlight reel in hopes of getting his talented team back on track.
A suggestion: the highlight reel probably shouldn’t include owner Jerry Jones talking to the media on a weekly basis about whether he’s going to fire Jason Garrett.
- Pistons guard Derrick Rose made a game-winning shot with one second remaining to beat the Pelicans, then said in a courtside TV interview, “I’m born to do this s@%^.”
In case you didn’t remember, and you likely didn’t.
- The World Anti-Doping Association issued a four-year ban on Russia competing in international competition but allows for individual Russian athletes meeting IOC criteria to still participate in events including the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.
- A couple final thoughts on the Patriots:
Their loss to Kansas City ended a 21-game home winning streak.
They have clinched their 17th consecutive season with a winning record.
If ever there was a team that should be boo proof, it’s the Pats.
I mean that’s impressive even while cheating.
- Browns 24, Cardinals 17.
- Have a weekend.