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Laremy Tunsil trade still paying off for Miami Dolphins

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You can thank Laremy Tunsil for the Dolphins’ current roster.

You can thank Laremy Tunsil for the Dolphins’ current roster.
Image: Getty Images

Yesterday, the Miami Dolphins sent five draft picks to the Kansas City Chiefs in exchange for star receiver Tyreek Hill. While the Dolphins may not have any draft picks in the first two rounds of the 2022 draft, they still have an extra first-round and third-round pick in 2023, courtesy of the San Francisco 49ers. They have one of the most complete rosters in the NFL, several talented players under contract for the next several years, a rookie head coach with tons of potential, and the team is a franchise quarterback away from being perennial Super Bowl contenders. Can Tua Tagovailoa still develop into a franchise quarterback? I don’t know, but regardless, the Dolphins have set themselves up perfectly for the near future.

How did they get to this point though? It clearly wasn’t the tanking efforts put forth by owner Stephen Ross. The Dolphins had five first-round picks over the last two drafts, including three in 2020. None of those 2020 selections have panned out. Tagovailoa has been mediocre at best. Austin Jackson has been subpar on the Dolphins’ offensive line, only posting six career games with a PFF pass blocking grade over 70.0 and only four career games with a PFF run blocking grade in the same range. And don’t even get me started on Noah Igbinoghene.

Jaylen Waddle was outstanding last year, but Jaelan Phillips underwhelmed. If you go 1-for-5 on first-round draft picks with four of them being in the top-20 overall, that’s not good. And still, the Dolphins have built one of the best rosters in the NFL and still have extra draft capital in 2023. That’s all thanks to one Laremy Tunsil.

In 2016, Laremy Tunsil was widely regarded as one of the best tackle prospects in the draft. He dominated the SEC while at the University of Mississippi and even recorded a rushing touchdown during his junior season. Many draft analysts projected Tunsil to hear his name called within the first 10 selections. However, due to a leaked photo of Tunsil smoking marijuana in a gas mask, Tunsil plummeted down big boards. The Dolphins were willing to take a shot on Tunsil and it paid out big time.

After three years of stellar tackle performance, Miami realized they needed to rebuild and traded Tunsil, as well as some other pieces, to the Houston Texans in exchange for two first-round picks and a second-round pick. While that 2020 first-round pick turned into Igbinoghene, the 2021 selections are what really solidify this trade’s greatness. By trading away Houston’s first-round pick in 2021, the Dolphins acquired two future first-round picks and a future third. They traded down to pick 12 and, after trading back up to pick number 6, were able to acquire Jaylen Waddle, who is bound to be a pivotal part of Miami’s offense for years to come. Sure, they had to give up a 2022 first-rounder for it, but based on how Waddle turned out, I think it’s safe to say it was well worth it. The other 2022 first the Dolphins had ended up being used as part of the deal for Hill.

That’s an absolute masterclass of value that Dolphins’ GM Chris Grier displayed. After all that, the Dolphins still have two first-round picks in 2023. You’d expect to see this type of value in a Madden simulation, not real life, yet it was played beautifully by the Miami front office. This isn’t the greatest trade of all-time. That still belongs to the Dallas Cowboys and Herschel Walker, but I’ll be damned if this isn’t the best trade since the turn of the century.



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Women’s League Cup round-up: Birmingham City upset Brighton, West Ham held by London City Lionesses | Football News

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Birmingham City caused an upset in the Women’s League Cup by beating top-tier Brighton in the first round.

Libby Smith scored the opener before Jade Pennock then made it two shortly after the break.

Brighton pulled a goal back through Lee Geum-Min but Lucy Quinn extended Birmingham’s lead once again.

Danielle Carter added an 89th-minute penalty but it proved to be only a consultation as the Championship side picked up the three points.

Brynjarsdottir spares West Ham’s blushes

Meanwhile, West Ham picked up two points after beating London City Lionesses in a penalty shootout

West Ham had looked on course for defeat but a last-minute equaliser from Dagny Brynjarsdottir spared their blushes and salvaged a draw.

And after the 2-2 draw, the Hammers secured an additional point with a 10-9 penalty shootout win.

Wins for Spurs and Liverpool

In an all-WSL affair, Tottenham beat Reading 2-1 thanks to goals from Ashleigh Neville and Nikola Karczewska.

Elsewhere, Leicester beat Blackburn 3-0 and Liverpool secured a 1-0 win against Sunderland.

Durham and Sheffield United shared the spoils after a thrilling 3-3 draw with Durham picking up the additional point, winning the penalty shootout.

In Sunday’s other games, Lewes beat Charlton, Bristol City secured a 4-0 win at home to Crystal Palace and Coventry United defeated Southampton.





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Cardinals’ J.J. Watt plans to play just days after having his heart shocked back into rhythm

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JJ Watt says he’s playing Sunday, just days after having his heart shocked back into rhythm.

JJ Watt says he’s playing Sunday, just days after having his heart shocked back into rhythm.
Image: Getty Images

Arizona Cardinals’ defensive end J.J. Watt posted an alarming Tweet Sunday morning just hours before kickoff of the team’s game on the east coast against the Carolina Panthers. Watt stated that some news about him had been leaked and was going to be reported today. Immediately, most who caught this tweet were probably racking their brains and thinking, ok, what happened? From there, Watt went on to explain the following.

“I went into A-Fib on Wednesday, had my heart shocked back into rhythm on Thursday, and I’m playing today. That’s it.”

Wow! I don’t think anyone expected to hear that about Watt. Everyone is relieved that Watt is out of the hospital and seemingly “alright,” but the fact that he plans to play in this game today only four days after having his heart shocked back into rhythm is scary.

If the Cardinals won’t do it, someone from the league office or the NFLPA needs to step in and force him to sit this game out. After what we’ve seen in the past week, with Tua Tagovailoa suffering two concussions in less than five days, Watt needs to be held out of Arizona’s game today.

No, Watt didn’t sustain an injury to his head, but his heart was shocked so it would work properly. Even if Watt was cleared by his own independent doctor, precautions should be taken just in case. Yes, it’s football, we know that, and everybody is tough. You have to be tough to make it in the NFL, but these players also need protection from themselves regarding their health. It doesn’t matter if atrial fibrillation isn’t “considered” too serious. Take extra precautionary measures and be careful.

Last week, during coverage of the Tua incidents, multiple former NFL players were asked about head injuries along with others and if they’d ever lied to get back into a game. The answer was a resounding YES. Former Patriots and Chargers All-Pro safety Rodney Harrison went on Dan Patrick’s show and admitted to lying about head injuries and others. Harrison says he lied every time he had an injury to continue playing.

Rodney Harrison Discusses Tua’s Injury, Shares How Often He Lied About Injuries | 09/30/22

Patrick also told a story about Steelers legend Hines Ward grabbing his ankle after getting his “bell rung” because he didn’t want to come out of a game. It doesn’t matter if it’s the head or the heart. If it involves either, that player should be further evaluated and forced to sit out a game. We can’t continue to gamble with these guys’ lives.

If Watt ends up playing at 4:05 p.m., it could be the biggest story of the day on the heels of what happened with Tagovailoa over the last week. Left up to them, NFL players will choose to play virtually every time. The league doesn’t want bad PR, yet they continue to invite it at every turn.

The NFL is too concerned about trivial matters like players celebrating or not wearing the “correct” socks. The league fined Lions running back Jamaal Williams for a touchdown dance last week that may have been a little too provocative for their liking. A player can be put in harm’s way after clearly looking concussed and allowed to play a few days later, but heavens forbid a black player offends their audience by swiveling his hips after scoring, à la Ravishing Rick Rude. The NFL needs to be more concerned with the well-being of its players and protecting them as they claim.

Hopefully, someone steps in and talks some sense into Watt or takes the decision out of his hands.





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F1: Sergio Perez wins hectic Singapore Grand Prix as Max Verstappen misses first chance to seal title

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A heavy downpour 30 minutes before the scheduled start time led to an hour-long delay and the first wet start in Singapore since 2017 – when a first corner crash wiped out a Red Bull and two Ferraris, including title contender Sebastian Vettel.

There was no such flying debris at the start this time around but still drama aplenty as Perez leapt past pole-sitter Charles Leclerc and Lewis Hamilton lost out to Carlos Sainz for third.

Verstappen, starting eighth, found himself bogged down off the line and had only recovered to ninth when a safety car was required on lap eight.

Nicholas Latifi, recently confirmed to not be staying in F1 next season, squeezed Guanyu Zhou, who is, into the wall at Turn 5 and both were forced to retire.

Verstappen was quickly up to seventh at the restart before Fernando Alonso, in his record-breaking 350th start, put up stout resistance for his next overtake.

Alas, the Spanish veteran’s Alpine could not match its driver’s longevity and his engine blew on lap 21. A string of virtual safety cars was then began with Alex Albon hitting the wall shortly after the green flag and Esteban Ocon’s engine popping once racing had resumed once more.

The prime time to swap to slick tyres began to dominate thinking as the second hour began on the two-hour limit, with 61 laps a far too ambitious total (perhaps even in the dry).

Hamilton, pushing Sainz for third, came in too hot at Turn 7 and headed straight into the barrier. Fortunately for the Brit, the damage was merely a broken front wing and he clambered out between the sparring Lando Norris and Verstappen.

Moments later, the trigger was pulled by the remaining cars (George Russell aside, who while struggling from a pit-lane start leapt for slicks far too early) and Hamilton was left in ninth place.

Yuki Tsunoda became the sixth retiree after sticking his AlphaTauri in the barrier fresh on Medium tyres, prompting a second full safety car and the fifth interruption to an already-delayed race.

Verstappen, who could have won the title in Singapore had a series of events gone drastically different, locked up lunging at Norris for fourth place and darted down the escape road. Having to pit, he was last for a brief moment before Russell suffered a puncture when giving Mick Schumacher a bump as he overtook the German.

Finally, with half an hour to go, a proper race for the lead broke out. Now on slicks, Leclerc dragged Perez into his crosshairs.

Singapore’s propensity for being a tough circuit to overtake at helped the Mexican survive an onslaught from the Ferrari but Leclerc began to make errors and Perez broke DRS to build out a comfortable lead.

Red Bull came into the weekend with some hope of crowning Verstappen as champion at the chequered flag but it instead heralded a second win of the season for Perez, with a lowly finish of seventh for the championship leader reducing his chances of getting the job done in Japan next week, too.



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