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Shutdown Corner
  • If you wanted to get that top-of-the-line jersey of your favorite NFL player before next season starts, hopefully you did so before April 1.

    ESPN.com reported Nike raised the prices on the two highest tiers of the NFL jerseys it sells at the beginning of this month, although no announcement was made. The price of the Elite jersey, as close to what the players actually wear as you can get, went up from $250 to $295. The Limited jersey, the second tier, went up from $135 to $150. The Game jersey, the lowest tier, stayed at $100.

    The league put all the blame on Nike, with a league spokesman telling ESPN.com that Nike and retailers determine the prices. That's dubious, at best. If the NFL struck their big-money exclusive deal with Nike and relinquished all say in how much jerseys could be sold for, that's not really looking out for its fans very well.

    The story said 75 percent of jerseys sold are the Game jerseys, so maybe it won't have an enormous impact on NFL consumers. But still, $295

    Read More »from Nike raises NFL jersey prices, now $295 for its top offering
  • Oregon State receiver Brandin Cooks is a breath of fresh air in an NFL world where hitting is frowned upon, celebrations are discouraged and trash talk can leave a player labeled a thug.

    Cooks is a throwback to an era when boasting was not a problem if you could back it up. He is not shy about describing his athletic ability. If there is a receiver better than Cooks in the upcoming NFL draft, he has never heard of that person. When Cooks (5-foot-10, 189 pounds) is asked to compare himself to Washington Redskins receiver DeSean Jackson, he does not mind telling you he can do it better than the veteran.

    Cooks might be able to back up his bravado.

    Cooks, who ran the 40-yard dash in 4.33 seconds at the NFL scouting combine, was the Biletnikoff Award winner as the nation's top receiver last season. He finished with 1,730 receiving yards and 16 touchdowns. He decided to skip his senior season to enter the NFL draft.

    He also spoke with Shutdown Corner about everything NFL related:

    Shutdown

    Read More »from NFL draft: Q&A with Oregon State receiver Brandin Cooks
  • Erin Henderson had a young son, a wife, and two DUI arrests in less than two months.

    He also had a NFL career, but that was on the edge of falling apart. After the second arrest he was out of a job. Even though he was coming off his best season as the Vikings' middle linebacker, with 112 tackle, four sacks and two interceptions (all career highs), the team cut him after the arrests. He had a problem with drinking and marijuana.

    Here's where the story turns good, hopefully. Henderson checked into rehab, and told USA Today's Tom Pelissero in a great piece that he has turned his life around and wants a second NFL chance. Henderson told TMZ he "cannot be more grateful" for the arrests, and from the sounds of it, it was probably a blessing in disguise.

    "There would be times where I would come to practice hung over," Henderson told USA Today. "Never just fresh off of drinking coming into practice. But I might have had a rough night the night before, and I'd be in front of the huddle calling

    Read More »from Erin Henderson, out of rehab, says turned life around and wants another NFL shot
  • Leading up to the NFL draft on May 8-10, Shutdown Corner will examine some of the most interesting prospects in the class, breaking down their strengths and weaknesses.

    Marqise Lee
    Wide receiver
    Southern California
    6-0, 192 pounds
    2013 stats: 57 catches, 791 yards, 4 TDs
    40-yard dash: 4.52 seconds

    The good: See those stats above? Definitely not befitting a guy who is considered a first-round prospect. They don't tell the whole story. In 2012, Lee was phenomenal and it seemed like he would be considered the can't-miss top-10 receiver in this class, a role Sammy Watkins has assumed.

    In 2012, with Matt Barkley at quarterback, Lee had 118 catches, 1,721 yards and 14 touchdowns. Yes, more than double his output last season. He was dominant, and a 16-catch, 345-yard game against Arizona went in the history books and clinched the Biletnikoff Award, given to the nation's best receiver. He looked fluid, athletic, caught the ball well and did great things after the catch. But, because of the NFL's

    Read More »from NFL Draft Under the Microscope: USC receiver Marqise Lee
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Mike Glennon must wake up each day wondering what he did wrong.

    Glennon was a third-round draft pick who was forced to start after three games last season because of a rift between former coach Greg Schiano and quarterback Josh Freeman. The rookie finished with 2,608 passing yards, 19 touchdowns and nine interceptions. He was the quarterback on just about anyone's all-rookie team from last season. With one season under his belt, Glennon could have improved this offseason.

    Bucs coach Lovie Smith had other plans.

    Smith signed former Bears quarterback Josh McCown during free agency, and immediately announced his new acquisition would start in 2014. As if getting demoted was not bad enough, Louisville quarterback Teddy Bridgewater had a pre-draft visit with Tampa Bay on Monday, and Smith previously attended the pro day workout of UCF quarterback Blake Bortles. If Tampa Bay selects a quarterback, Glennon could find himself battling to remain on the roster

    Read More »from Bucs quarterback Mike Glennon staying positive despite losing job to Josh McCown

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