y be right, but we cant overturn it. So, why shoul | Forum

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ATLANTA - Coach Ron Rivera and the Carolina Panthers are headed back to the playoffs. Danny Woodhead Jersey .Owner Arthur Blank and the Atlanta Falcons could be preparing to hire a new head coach.In a winner-take-all regular season finale, the Panthers easily beat the Falcons 34-3 to win the weak NFC South on Sunday.The victory gave Carolina (7-8-1) a division title for a second straight year, a first-time achievement for the franchise, as the Panthers prepare to host Arizona in a wild-card playoff game on Saturday.Atlanta (6-10) has collapsed since nearly winning the NFC title game two years ago. The Falcons, losers in 22 of their last 32 games, could have different leadership in the next few days if Blank fires Smith in the next day or so.Though Smith won two division titles and made four playoff appearances in his first five years, those achievements werent enough to prevent Atlantas collapse over the last two seasons.If he is fired, Smith will leave as the winningest coach in the Falcons 49-year history.Smith said he never saw Sundays horrible performance coming after what he thought was a good week of practice and game-planning.It sends a signal to me that I didnt get the job done, Smith said. Im the one thats held responsible for it.A few things to consider for both teams:WHATS NEXT: While Blank decides what to do with Smith, Rivera will have his team back at work preparing for Arizona.Despite being 3-8-1 following a lopsided loss at Minnesota on Nov. 30, Carolina rallied while division rivals Atlanta and New Orleans fell apart.Our guys are the kind of guys that we want, Rivera said, and I just felt if we kept playing and kept taking care of our business that we would get that opportunity.EVEN KEEL: To avoid a letdown against the Cardinals, linebacker Thomas Davis wants everyone in the Carolina locker room to remember how empty it felt to lose at home in the playoffs last year to San Francisco.We hosted a playoff game last year and didnt fare well, Davis said. We understand that as a team. Were going to remain focused, and we have to make sure we do a good job of making sure that we take care of business at home.MIX EM UP: Falcons receiver Roddy White said the offence was surprised by the zone coverage Carolina deployed and was disappointed that Atlanta never seemed to adjust.They mixed up a bunch of different coverages and didnt play a whole lot of man coverages, White said. They dropped eight, they dropped seven and they rallied to the ball. They did a good job of that and kind of confused us early in the game that we werent prepared for.YOUNG AND TOUGH: The Panthers, who started a franchise-record seven rookies on both sides of the line in last Sundays home win over Cleveland, got a boost defensively from rookie starters Bene Benwikere and Tre Boston and reserves Adarius Glanton and Kony Ealy.The foursome combined for 10 solo tackles, one sack, one interception, one forced fumble and one pass breakup.Said Boston, who picked off Matt Ryans pass to Harry Douglas and returned it 84 yards for a touchdown on the last play of the third quarter, I think it was our best overall defensive game that we played this season. From seven, back seven, we just all did our jobs. Were coached to play to our potential.LONG, HARD FALL: Ryan wanted to win the game and the division, not just for Smith, but for everybody on the team.I think it was about everyone in our organization, Ryan said. I think when we came into this game, it wasnt just about Mike. It was about us as a team. We wanted to continue to play and we felt like we had the right team to do that.BY THE NUMBERS: Rivera improved his career December record to 15-3 since 2011. ... The Falcons dropped to 5-1 against the NFC South. They went 1-9 outside the division. ... Panthers QB Cam Newton has averaged 7.7 yards per carry in 60 career rushing attempts against Atlanta. Newton was Carolinas leading rusher with 51 yards. The team finished with 194 to just 63 for Atlanta.___AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP_NFL ;Austin Howard Jersey . Olsen, who is 6-foot-3 and 305 pounds, can play either centre or guard. The 25-year-old Olsen played 16 games and made four starts in 2012 with the New Orleans Saints. Lardarius Webb Jersey . Patty Mills scored 15 points, Tim Duncan had 10 points and 11 rebounds in limited minutes, and San Antonio trailed for only 11 seconds late in the first quarter of a 103-90 victory over Portland on Wednesday night.ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Thanks in part to pinch-hitter Jerry Sands, the Tampa Bay Rays are feeling a little better about themselves. The reserve utility man came off the bench to provide the game-winning hit for the second straight game, delivering a two-run homer that helped the Rays beat the Baltimore Orioles 5-4 on Monday night. Sands first homer since Sept. 20, 2011, when he was with the Los Angeles Dodgers, came off Brian Matusz and snapped a 3-3 tie. Yunel Escobar hit a solo homer in the first and Ryan Hanigan added a two-run drive in the fourth for a 3-0 lead against Orioles starter Wei-Yin Chen. "Its big," Sands after the Rays won for the fourth time in five games following a stretch in which they dropped 14 of 15 and fell to last place in the AL East with the worst record in the majors. "Obviously this team has been struggling to get some wins lately, so its fun to be the guy that does it for the team." Adam Jones homered for the second straight day for Baltimore, hitting a two-run shot in the sixth off rookie Jake Odorizzi, who allowed two runs and three hits over 5 1-3 innings. Delmon Young had a pinch-hit homer in the ninth off Juan Carlos Oviedo, who got the last three outs for his first save. Sands, who broke three bats while singling in the eighth inning to drive home the winning run in a victory at Houston on Sunday, went deep on a 2-0 pitch after Matusz replaced Darren ODay (2-1), who departed with a runner on and two outs. The 26-year-old, who has five career homers, was 1 for 9 as a pinch-hitter with Tampa Bay before the past two at-bats. "This guys done a nice job off the bench," Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "I know hes going to be aggressive ... and I know hes not going to be intimidated by the situation." The Orioles had just tied it in the top of the eighth with a run charged to Grant Balfour, loading the bases with two singles and a walk before Nelson Cruz delivered an RBI infield single. Baltimore nearly took the lead when pinch-hitter Steve Pearce lined a pitch down the left field line, but the ball landed foul. Two pitches later, he grounded into a force play, letting Jake McGee (3-0) off the hook. "Its such a fine line. Stevies ball barely misses the chalk line there," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. Breshad Perriman Jersey. "Of course McGee is one the better relief pitchers in the league. Our guys have been doing a good job out the pen, too. Its frustrating." The Orioles announced before the game that two-time All-Star catcher Matt Wieters, who hasnt played since May 10, will have season-ending surgery on his right elbow. Showalter said the team is hopeful Wieters, who was examined Monday by Dr. James Andrews, will be ready for opening day next year. The Rays nearly wasted the second straight solid start for Odorizzi, who held St. Louis hitless until two outs of the fifth inning of a 1-0 loss last Tuesday. Matt Holliday homered for the only run of the game, Tampa Bays third consecutive shutout loss during a stretch in which they went 31 straight innings without scoring. Since ending the streak, the Rays have scored 24 runs in five games. "We won a really tough game (Sunday), we won a really tough game here tonight," Madden said. "When you start believing youre going to win games late, thats a good feeling to get. Thats when you start getting good again, and we did." Odorizzi allowed Hardys single and a walk with two outs in the second, escaping the jam by fanning Ryan Flaherty. The 24-year-old right-hander retired eight straight after walking Nick Markakis in the third, with the Orioles right fielder interrupting the string with a double leading off the sixth. Jones hit his 12th homer one out later, ending Odorizzis night and trimming Baltimores deficit to 3-2. NOTES: A moment of silence was observed before the game in honour of Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn, who died Monday. ... The Orioles plan to activate RHP Miguel Gonzalez (strained right oblique) from the 15-day DL to start Tuesday nights game against Tampa Bay LHP Erik Bedard. Both are 3-4 this season. ... Showalter agrees with Maddon that a team shouldnt lose a replay challenge when the contested call stands instead of being confirmed. "A great idea," Showalter said. "Hes right. A lot of times they just say theres nothing conclusive. You may be right, but we cant overturn it. So, why should you be penalized for that?" ... Rays RHP Jeremy Hellickson (right elbow surgery) is scheduled to make his third minor league rehab start Tuesday, when Triple-A Durham visits Louisville. Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys China Cheap Jerseys From China Cheap NFL Jerseys Authentic Wholesale Jerseys China Cheap NFL Jerseys ChinaNFL Cheap Jerseys ' ' '
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