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Former NFL star Ahman Green is becoming an esports coach

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Four-time Pro Bowl running back and Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame inductee Ahman Green has a new job: esports coach at Wisconsin’s Lakeland University.

While this may come as a surprise to those only familiar with his professional football career, Green has been a long-time advocate of gaming and esports, building on a love of video games he had since he was a child playing Madden and Tecmo Bowl. Currently, Green’s personal game of choice is Halo 5: Guardians, and he is eagerly anticipating the release of Halo Infinite.

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“The tournaments and competition have always been there,” Green said through email of esports’ recent growth. “In the last decade, big business has learned enough about esports to understand how to make money in different ways and with that interest, the growth has multiplied exponentially.”

After his retirement from the NFL, Green hosted an esports talk show, True Game Fans Network. His favorite professional esports to watch are Counterstrike: Global Offensive and Madden. The industry has ballooned since Green began talking about it on the radio, with many traditional sports athletes and teams becoming investors or more directly involved in esports, particularly in franchised leagues like the League of Legends Championship Series or the Overwatch League.

“More people and places are talking about esports and making it a focus of discussion and making more content about esports everywhere,” Green said. “The NFL, NBA and other business industries are paying attention to the popularity of esports and with that attention esports will continue to grow.”

Lakeland University is a liberal arts school in Plymouth, Wisconsin. Their esports program will cover several competitive games, including League of Legends, Overwatch, Paladins, Rocket League, Smite, Fortnite, CS:GO and Super Smash Brothers Ultimate. As coach of the entire esports program, Green hopes to instill some of the values and infrastructure he learned through his years in the NFL.

“As a former NFL Pro I can bring the skills like preparation, leadership and sportsmanship, which all can help you get better at your craft,” Green said. “Also, skills like practicing and reviewing game film and learning from your mistakes and getting better. We’ll also focus on becoming better at communication amongst the teams that we have at Lakeland University, and learning proper sportsmanship as an esports athlete.”

As for skills that translate from traditional sports to esports, Green echoed the sentiments of other professional athletes that have moved into the esports space: hard work, dedication, and accountability are all key factors to success.

“Hard work in football and esports mirror each other,” Green said. “Out-working your opponent can help win more games overall. Dedication is a skill that means you will do anything and everything to help your team win in a positive way. Hold yourself to be accountable. Individuals don’t win games … teams do. You must learn how to be accountable to the people around you.”

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Dez and Dak back together again and more NFL social media rumors

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Could Dez be back once the NFL is back? The former Dallas Cowboys star has been doing work with Cowboys starting quarterback Dak Prescott.


March 27

Does the trade of DeAndre Hopkins to the Arizona Cardinals have Houston Texans star quarterback Deshaun Watson evaluating his options? A few cryptic updates in the aftermath of the trade of his All-Pro receiver have to make Houston fans wonder.

Watson isn’t the only NFL player making waves on Twitter. Recently released quarterback Cam Newton is practicing with (at the moment) Los Angeles Chargers starting QB Tyrod Taylor. Could this be the future of the Chargers’ quarterback room?

Also, could Philadelphia become a “Shady” city again? It seems like LeSean McCoy wouldn’t mind.



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Tony Boselli recalls hospital stay — ‘I don’t want to die here’

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Even when his symptoms worsened and he started having trouble breathing, Tony Boselli still thought he’d be treated with IV fluids and given some medicine when he arrived at a hospital here.

It wasn’t until doctors told him he needed to be in the intensive care unit that he realized his condition was serious.

The former Jacksonville Jaguars left tackle ended up spending five days in Mayo Clinic while he fought COVID-19. About half of his stay was in the ICU, and he said it was shortly after he arrived there that he discovered he could be in even deeper trouble.

“It was kind of fuzzy, but I remember [the pulmonologist] saying, ‘If we don’t get your oxygen stabilized we’re going to have to go to the next level,'” Boselli said. “I remember laying there thinking, ‘What do you mean, if this doesn’t work?’ He says, ‘We don’t know what direction this is going to go.’

“I don’t know if I ever was like I thought I was going to die, but I remember having the conversation with myself: I don’t want to die here.”

Boselli, a Pro Football Hall of Fame finalist the past four years, said his oxygen level improved enough over the next 24 hours that he didn’t have to find out what that next level would have been. That was the beginning of his recovery process, and he improved enough daily that he was discharged Tuesday without needing additional oxygen at home.

Boselli said he first started feeling ill March 16, but he thought he had a cold or allergies. Then he felt much worse two days later. That’s also the day he said he got a call and was told he had been around someone who had tested positive for COVID-19. He phoned his doctor and got tested that day. Two days later he received the test results that revealed he had COVID-19.

He said his symptoms worsened over the next four days, and after a rough night in which he couldn’t sleep and was wheezing heavily, his doctor sent him to Mayo Clinic. His family was in self-quarantine because of his diagnosis — he said his wife, Angie, was also diagnosed with COVID-19 but had only mild symptoms — so the only way to communicate over the five days he was hospitalized was via text messages whenever he had the energy.

“The only people who could come in were health-care workers, and they had to be in their full protective equipment,” Boselli said. “They were great, though. Those doctors and PAs and nurses and techs, everyone, they’re amazing. These people were absolutely amazing. Superstars.”

He said he’s still weak and battling fatigue, and hasn’t quite shaken his cough. He still doesn’t have an appetite, either — “I had an egg for breakfast. An egg,” he said jokingly — and has lost 20 pounds over the past two weeks.

He tested negative for the virus Wednesday, and is awaiting the result of an additional test taken Thursday, but he said his doctor expects that test to be negative, too. Once he gets those results, Boselli said he’s planning on getting back on his bicycle and slowly gaining back his strength.

“I’m not going to be running any marathons any time soon,” he said.

“It’s been quite a few weeks but I’m feeling better. I’m home from the hospital and I’m on the right side of this thing now.”

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Eli Apple remains free agent after deal with Raiders falls through

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The Las Vegas Raiders and free-agent cornerback Eli Apple were unable to finalize a contract, sources told ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Apple, who played last season with the New Orleans Saints, remains a free agent.

Apple had agreed to a one-year contract with the Raiders on March 18, sources told Schefter, and he had posted to Instagram that he was “excited to start a new journey as a Raider.”

Apple, 24, has shown both great potential and inconsistency while starting 51 games over his four-year career with the New York Giants and Saints. He has three interceptions and 33 passes defensed.

He immediately became a starter for the Saints, who acquired him in a 2018 trade with the Giants, and held the job throughout 2019 until his season ended early because of a Week 16 ankle injury. His size and length make him an asset in man coverage, and he helped steady the Saints defense as the team finished 13-3 in both 2018 and 2019.

He was a positive locker room fit in New Orleans, where he was reunited with former Ohio State teammates such as cornerback Marshon Lattimore, safety Vonn Bell and receiver Michael Thomas. But he did battle inconsistency on the field — particularly in a 48-46 loss to the San Francisco 49ers in December — and he led the team with 11 called penalties in 2019 and 10 called penalties in 2018 (after joining the team in Week 8). He was also flagged 11 times for pass interference over that span.

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