Chicago Bears

Bears ink Jeffery to 4-year deal

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Bears ink Jeffery to 4-year deal

The Bears have been one of the NFL leaders in getting draft picks signed quickly during the tenure of finance head Cliff Stein. But this is fast even for Stein and the Bears.Wide receiver and second-round selection Alshon Jeffery became the first pick to sign when he agreed to a four-year contract Wednesday.The Bears selected Jeffery with the 45th overall pick of the draft out of South Carolina. Jeffery started 33 of 40 games in three seasons (2009-11) at wide receiver for the Gamecocks, setting a school record with 3,042 receiving yards on 183 receptions (16.6 yards per catch) with 23 touchdowns.The 6-foot-3, 216-pound receiver tied Sidney Rice for South Carolinas career touchdown reception record and his 183 catches are topped only by Kenny McKinleys 207. Jeffery also gathered a school-record 12 100-yard receiving performances during his collegiate career.In 2010 Jeffery established school single-season records with 88 receptions for 1,517 yards. His 763 yards receiving in 2009 and 762 in 2011 rank tenth and eleventh, respectively, on the season-record chart.

Report: Steelers won't participate in National Anthem at Soldier Field

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USA TODAY

Report: Steelers won't participate in National Anthem at Soldier Field

The Pittsburgh Steelers will not participate in the National Anthem on Sunday at Soldier Field, according to Jamie Erdahl. 

The decision follows Donald Trump's recent comments on NFL protests at a rally in Huntsville, Alabama.

"Wouldn't you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, 'Get that son of a bitch off the field right now. Out. He's fired. He's fired," Trump said. 

No word on what the Bears will do yet, but the Steelers will be in the locker room. 

 

Five Things from Blackhawks-Blue Jackets: Shots and slashes

Five Things from Blackhawks-Blue Jackets: Shots and slashes

It’s preseason: you don’t need a lot of build-up. Let’s just delve right in, shall we?

1. Lots of shots, but…

The same Joonas Korpisalo that the Blackhawks’ youngsters scored five goals against on Tuesday was on top of his game on Saturday. The Blackhawks peppered him with 54 shots but only two got through, and the second was a 6-on-4 power-play goal in the final two minutes.

“I thought we could have gotten a little more traffic in front of him," Nick Schmaltz said. "I thought we were playing along the outside. I mean we had some great looks. He made some big saves. Some nights you get the bounces and some nights you don’t.”

2. Bérubé’s Blackhawks debut.

Jean-François Bérubé had a tough sequence early in the second period, when he gave up two goals in a 28-second span. This was against a Columbus team that didn’t send many of their top players. He also didn’t see a ton of action in this one; the Blue Jackets fired just 21 shots his way.

3. Growing pains.

Alex DeBrincat had his up and down moments on Saturday night. His turnover led to Columbus’ first goal, he took a slashing penalty and he fought the puck quite a bit. You still saw glimpses of that skill, though, especially with his quick release. Hey, he’s a 19-year-old guy getting his first taste of the NHL. Nights like this are going to happen.

“We all make mistakes,” coach Joel Quenneville said. “You gotta be safe in certain areas and you learn from that.”

4. Slash-o-meter.

Four more were called on Saturday night. Don’t be surprised if that number starts dwindling sooner rather than later, though, because the edict has apparently changed already. Sportsnet’s John Shannon reported earlier on Saturday that the league told officials to ease up on slashing and faceoff violations. But we all figure that’s going to happen once the regular season begins anyway, right?

5. Notre Dame bound.

The destination is familiar but the Blackhawks threw it into their second week of camp this season. It’ll be bonding time for the Blackhawks, who will send a smaller group for several practices there this week. Quenneville figures it’ll be a productive time. “We’ll get some bonding in, play golf together, have a nice outing, couple of road games and a nice campus.”