Fox Sports goes to Naval Academy for military salute


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FILE – Buffalo Bills’ Tyler Bass (2) looks on after scoring a goal during an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins on October 31, 2021, in Orchard Park, NY Since 1950, he has become the third player of the NFL to score 212 or more points in 23 games. And Bass’s booming and precise leg was once again evident in a 26-11 win over Miami. (AP Photo / Matt Durisko, File)

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Fox Sports could have had one of the most intriguing games of the week with Green Bay visiting Kansas City – until Aaron Rodgers enters the NFL’s COVID-19 protocol, ending a potential shootout with Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes.

Fox is taking his pre-game show on the road, however, for his annual tribute to the military on Veterans Day.

This year’s salute will take place from the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md., Marking the second time in three years that the show has taken place from a military academy. Fox visited the US Military Academy at West Point in 2019.

“I think there’s something special when it’s in front of the students. They have such tough days, and it’s just kind of a day off for them to have fun with guys and be a part of it, ”said Bill Richards, Fox NFL Sunday producer.

One feature of Sunday’s two-hour pre-game show is New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick and his family’s history with the academy. Belichick’s father Steve worked there as an assistant and scout for over 30 years, and the Belichick Library at the Academy’s football complex is said to have one of the largest collections of football books outside of the Temple of the fame of professional football.

The “Fox NFL Sunday” team of Terry Bradshaw, Curt Menefee, Howie Long, Michael Strahan, Jimmy Johnson and Jay Glazer will experience many aspects of Academy life and interact with contenders during the day.

Besides the pre-match show, the half-time and post-match shows will also be from the Academy.

“For our group and all of the people who do our Sunday show, this is their favorite activity,” Long said. “I think this is a great reminder of all the sacrifices that many have made in the history of our country.”

YOUNG TOM BRADY

Panthers linebacker Haason Reddick said what New England Patriots fans have been quietly hoping to hear for months on Thursday.

Reddick said Patriots rookie quarterback Mac Jones reminded him of… you guessed it, a “young Tom Brady”.

“For me personally just the offensive style, and I say that very lightly because I know he’s nowhere near as smart a player as Tom Brady, but man, sometimes he looks like a young Tom Brady , “Said Reddick, a five-year NFL veteran.” Take that for whatever you want, but he’s definitely a solid football player.

Jones got the Patriots at 4-4 heading into Sunday’s game against Carolina.

The No. 15 pick in the overall draft leads all rookie quarterbacks in terms of passes completed (192), success rate (68.1%), passing yards (1997), touchdown passes ( new) and QB rating (90.1).

Of course, Jones still has a bit of a way to go before he can match Brady’s seven Super Bowl Championships and five Super Bowl MVP awards.

STUDENT DEBT

Second-year Bills kicker Tyler Bass, who was selected as an AFC special teams player on Thursday, said he was wondering how to pay off his student loans after attending Georgia Southern before the Bills selected him to the sixth round of the 2020 draft.

Bass said the debt kept him on the ground and motivated him to be a part of the squad, which he did by supplanting Stephen Hauschka to start his rookie season.

“It is a constant reminder of the sacrifice I have devoted to it,” Bass told The Associated Press. He ranks second in the NFL with 71 points, having made 16 of 17 field goal attempts this season, and 44 of 51 overall.

Bass now has a four-year contract worth $ 3.475 million.

When asked if he needed to have a conversation with Bills General Manager Brandon Beane to cover his expenses, Bass replied, “No. I’m happy with what I have. I’ll manage. “

CHOICE DON’T WORRY EARTH

Cincinnati quarterback Joe Burrow has learned that not all interceptions in the NFL are created equal.

The sophomore star threw nine picks, tying him to three other players for the NFL’s second-highest number. He’s pitched at least one of the Bengals’ six games this season.

And he’s not all worried about it.

“You go back and look at the tape, and some of them can be controlled and some of them can’t,” he said. “It’s playing the quarterback in this league. It is not linear. Sometimes guys give up on interceptions, sometimes guys make really good plays on something that shouldn’t be an interception. I think overall, the last few weeks I’ve done a good job taking care of the ball.

Now, Burrow said, this isn’t the time to dwell on exactly how they all turned out.

“It’s kind of a post-season film study where you go back and look at sack tapes and intercept tapes and really comb it all over at the end of the year,” he said. -he declares.

Burrow is also third in the league with 20 touchdown passes.

The Bengals (5-3) host the Cleveland Browns (4-4) in a crucial clash with AFC North on Sunday.

POSITIVE VIBES

Bret Michaels, frontman of rock band Poison, will join four-time Super Bowl champion Rocky Bleier in honoring active duty members and veterans in the Steelers’ Salute to Service game against the Chicago Bears on Monday night.

Michaels is originally from Pittsburgh and the son of a veteran. Bleier lost part of his right foot in Vietnam War service after his rookie season with the Steelers. He returned to the team in 1970 and was absent for a year due to his injuries. He played 10 more seasons and ran for 1,036 yards in 1976.

Salute to Service is an annual NFL initiative that honors military personnel, veterans and their families. Prior to the game, Michaels, Bleier and Steelers Fan of the Year, Army veteran Nelson E. Lowes, will lead the “Terrible Towel” ceremony. The Steelers and Bleier will also honor Michaels’ late father, veteran Wally Sychak, with dedication and donation to his VFW Hall.

“I couldn’t be more honored to be on ‘Monday Night Football’ at Heinz Field alongside Rocky Bleier and Nelson Lowes, saluting our veterans and military personnel around the world,”

Michaels, who is currently on his “Nothin but a Good Vibe” tour, often invites the military and first responders to be recognized on stage during his performances. He also meets with active duty members and veterans before his shows and at military events such as the Military Child of the Year event.

A NEW PURSUIT

Matt Birk, six-time Pro Bowl center in a 15-year career with the Minnesota Vikings and Baltimore Ravens, has assembled a team of educators, professionals and entrepreneurs through his HIKE Foundation. to create Pursuit Academy, a unique program for fourth-grade students.

“Kids these days are stressed, depressed, obsessed with exams and possessed by social media,” Birk said on the AP Pro Football podcast. “And so what Pursuit Academy does is it really teaches kids how to be entrepreneurs with their own lives. Life isn’t going in a straight line. There are going to be all kinds of things, turning points on the road. road, adversity. Education is designed to help children have a good life, not just to enter college. Of course, they have to learn basic skills, but Pursuit Academy, we have skills that we believe every child should learn. ”

The program teaches six essential skills to enable children to create a path that enables them to pursue their best lives.

Pursuit Academy has already been tested at Deephaven Elementary School in Wayzata, Minnesota. The program is delivered through a learning management system of five minutes per day. It is available free of charge in all schools.

GO OUT

Roy Sommerhof is retiring as vice president of stadium operations for the Baltimore Ravens.

Sommerhof started working for the team in its inaugural 1996 season. He manages all aspects of the M&T Bank stadium, including parking and transportation, security, customer services, catering, medical services and maintenance of the stadium.

“Roy’s contributions to the Ravens are immense,” said team president Dick Cass. “Leading with professionalism, dedication and forward thinking, he has played a vital role in all aspects of our stadium operations. “

Prior to joining the Ravens, Sommerhof spent 16 years working in ticket sales and stadium operations for the Baltimore Orioles, and he was instrumental in the 1992 opening of Oriole Park in Camden Yards.

Sommerhof’s retirement is scheduled for the end of this season.

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AP Pro Football writers Barry Wilner, Mark Long and Rob Maaddi, and sports writers Noah Trister, John Wawrow, Joe Reedy, Mitch Stacy and Steve Reed contributed.


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