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Preseason Concludes with Two National TV Games and Final Roster Cuts

August 27, 2014
INDIANA SPORTS PAGE



All 32 teams in action on Thursday

Jets at Eagles and Seahawks at Raiders will air live on NFL Network

Final roster cut-down to 53 players set for Saturday at 4 PM ET

 

It’s the final week of the preseason and young players around the league know this is their time to shine.

 

With final NFL roster cuts to 53 players looming this Saturday, this week’s games are a last chance for many players to make the roster. 

 

“Every single play from scrimmage is an opportunity to prove to the coaches that you’re not only good enough to play in the NFL, but you’re an indispensable part of the team,” says New York Giants wide receiver VICTOR CRUZ, who made the team as an undrafted free agent in 2010.

 

For many of these young players, they know this is their last opportunity to make the final 53. 

 

DATE

ROSTER CUT-DOWN

Tuesday, August 26

Roster cut-down to maximum of 75 players on Active List by 4 PM ET

Saturday, August 30

Roster cut-down to maximum of 53 players on Active/Inactive List by 4 PM ET

 

All 32 teams will be in action on Thursday as the preseason concludes. Two games will be featured on national TV on NFL Network. Visit NFL.com/Tickets for tickets to NFL preseason games.

 

 

DATE

GAME

TIME (ET)

NETWORK

Thursday, August 28

New York Jets at Philadelphia

7:00 PM

NFLN

 

Seattle at Oakland

10:00 PM

NFLN

                       

Some of the highlight games in Week 4 of the NFL preseason:

 

NEW YORK JETS at PHILADELPHIA EAGLES (Thursday, NFLN, 7:00 PM ET)                

 

This preseason, Jets quarterback GENO SMITH has completed 23 of 33 passes (69.7 percent) for 268 yards with one touchdown and has also rushed for one score. After his performance against the Giants last week, in which he completed nine of 14 passes (64.3 percent) for 137 yards with one touchdown and no interceptions for a 120.2 passer rating, Smith was named the team’s starting quarterback for Kickoff Weekend by head coach REX RYAN.

 

“He’s done everything that we’ve asked,” says Ryan about Smith.

 

“It’s a big deal,” says Smith about being named the team’s starting quarterback. “But nothing’s going to change for me. I think I did some good things, but I’ve got work to do.”

 

For the Eagles, starting quarterback NICK FOLES led the team to three first-half scores last week in a 31-21 win over Pittsburgh. The Pro Bowl quarterback enters the 2014 regular season looking to build on last season’s breakout performance in which he led the NFL with a 119.2 passer rating, the third-highest single-season mark in NFL history.

 

“I feel like we’re improving every week,” says Foles about the Eagles’ offense. “We have to keep moving forward.”

 

KANSAS CITY CHIEFS at GREEN BAY PACKERS (Thursday, 7:00 PM ET)                

 

Chiefs second-year tight end TRAVIS KELCE ranks second in the NFL – and leads all tight ends – this preseason with 185 receiving yards. He has hauled in 10 receptions with two touchdowns and is averaging 18.5 yards per catch. Last week against Minnesota, he had a team-high 49 yards (four receptions) and has led the club in receiving yards in all three preseason contests.

 

“He’s going to add another element to the tight end position,” says Chiefs quarterback ALEX SMITH about Kelce. “He’ll stretch some defenses and do some things with the ball in his hands. It’s exciting to see.”

 

AARON RODGERS and the Green Bay offense look ready for the regular season. Rodgers has completed 20 of 33 passes (60.6 percent) for 267 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions for a 116.6 passer rating in the preseason. Last week in a win against Oakland, Rodgers threw for two scores and Pro Bowl running back EDDIE LACY, who was the 2013 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year, rushed for one TD.

 

“I think we’re ready,” says Rodgers. “It’s been a good preseason. We’ve scored points and moved the ball.”

 

BALTIMORE RAVENS at NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (Thursday, 8:00 PM ET)                

 

Ravens quarterback JOE FLACCO has completed 29 of 45 passes (64.4 percent) for 345 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions for a 102.5 passer rating in three preseason games under new offensive coordinator GARY KUBIAK. In last week’s win over Washington, Flacco completed 16 of 23 passes (69.6 percent) for 180 yards with one touchdown and no interceptions for a 107.2 passer rating. He connected with wide receiver STEVE SMITH on a 24-yard touchdown pass right before halftime.

 

“I’m ready,” says Flacco about the start of the regular season. “Everybody is ready for real live games. Get out there and go.”

 

DREW BREES saw his first action of the preseason last week and the Pro Bowl quarterback was sharp for the Saints. He completed nine of 15 passes (60 percent) for 128 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions for a 127.2 passer rating as New Orleans improved to 3-0.

 

“I feel like it was a progression throughout the week, just getting the feel and timing back,” says Brees, who led two touchdown drives in his three series on the field. “I don’t think I’m 100 percent yet, but I feel like the tempo and rhythm and those things are coming back.”

 

SEATTLE SEAHAWKS at OAKLAND RAIDERS (Thursday, NFLN, 10:00 PM ET)                

 

The Seahawks are gearing up for a chance to repeat as Super Bowl champions. Over the past two games, the first-team offense led by RUSSELL WILSON has been nearly unstoppable.

 

A week after racking up 260 yards and 24 points in the first half against San Diego, Seattle gained 250 yards and scored 31 points last week versus Chicago. The Seahawks scored touchdowns on their first four possessions against the Bears and Wilson had a string of nine consecutive scoring drives over the past two games.

 

“The entire offensive group is just executing at a good clip right now,” says Seattle head coach PETE CARROLL. “Russell is really committed to what is happening. We’re hitting a pretty good clip right now. Hopefully we can keep it going.”

 

Running back MAURICE JONES-DREW, who joined the Raiders this offseason, had a 40-yard touchdown run last week and wide receiver BRICE BUTLER added two touchdown receptions against Green Bay. As the regular season draws closer, veteran safety CHARLES WOODSON sees improvement in the Raiders.

 

“I think we’re ready to take a jump,” says Woodson about the team. “I feel really good about what we did (in Week 3). And I’m very confident that we’ll get better.”

 

************************************************************************************************************************************

WINNING IS A HABIT: Thirty-seven of the 48 Super Bowl champions (77.1 percent) finished the preseason with a winning percentage of at least .500.

 

Since 2000, the 14 Super Bowl champions have combined for a 36-20 (.643) preseason record during their championship seasons.

 

Last year, the Seattle Seahawks posted a 4-0 preseason record en route to a victory in Super Bowl XLVIII.

************************************************************************************************************************************


LAST WEEK’S RESULTS, AUGUST 21-24

 

 

Thursday, August 21

Saturday, August 23 (cont’d)

PHILADELPHIA 31, Pittsburgh 21

Tennessee 24, ATLANTA 17

 

MIAMI 25, Dallas 20

Friday, August 22

BALTIMORE 23, Washington 17

DETROIT 13, Jacksonville 12

St. Louis 33, CLEVELAND 14

NEW ENGLAND 30, Carolina 7

New Orleans 23, INDIANAPOLIS 17

New York Giants 35, NEW YORK JETS 24

Minnesota 30, KANSAS CITY 12

GREEN BAY 31, Oakland 21

Houston 18, DENVER 17

SEATTLE 34, Chicago 6

 

 

Sunday, August 24

Saturday, August 23

SAN FRANCISCO 21, San Diego 7

Tampa Bay 27, BUFFALO 14

Cincinnati 19, ARIZONA 13

 

2014 PRESEASON WEEK 4 SCHEDULE

THURSDAY, AUGUST 28

(All times local)

 

Thursday, August 28

Thursday, August 28 (cont’d)

Atlanta at Jacksonville, 6:00 PM

Washington at Tampa Bay, 7:30 PM

Detroit at Buffalo, 7:00 PM

Chicago at Cleveland, 8:00 PM

Indianapolis at Cincinnati, 7:00 PM

Denver at Dallas 7:00 PM

Kansas City at Green Bay, 6:00 PM

San Francisco at Houston, 7:00 PM

St. Louis at Miami, 7:00 PM

Baltimore at New Orleans, 7:00 PM

New York Jets at Philadelphia, 7:00 PM (NFLN)

Minnesota at Tennessee, 7:00 PM

New England at New York Giants, 7:30 PM

Seattle at Oakland, 7:00 PM (NFLN)

Carolina at Pittsburgh, 7:30 PM

Arizona at San Diego, 7:00 PM


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