#1 s that wed like him to stop doing, but hes becom von carrie201918 23.05.2019 05:28

DENVER -- Champ Bailey spent a decade with the Denver Broncos, making eight Pro Bowls and picking off 34 passes even with quarterbacks only reluctantly glancing his way. This number was hard to overlook: $10 million. In a cost-cutting move Thursday, the Broncos released Bailey, the teams defensive leader whos been a fan favourite since he was acquired in a trade with Washington in 2004. Theres simply no room for loyalty in the NFL, especially with free agency about to start and with holes needing to be filled, something that became apparent to the Broncos after a 43-8 loss to the Seattle Seahawks in the Super Bowl last month. Broncos boss John Elway called the decision to release Bailey a "difficult" one given all that the perennial Pro Bowl cornerback has brought to the team over his 10 seasons in the Mile High City. "Without question, hes among the best cornerbacks to ever play the game and one of the finest players in the history of the Broncos," Elway said in a statement. "You couldnt ask for more in a player than what Champ brought to this team. His combination of elite talent, class, leadership and competitiveness made him one of the all-time greats." But age and injuries had begun to catch up with one of the best shutdown cornerbacks to play the game. Bailey, a 12-time Pro Bowler overall, is scheduled to make around $10 million next season, which is a lot of money for a cornerback who may be asked to switch to safety or possibly inside to the slot position. This was a hard season for the 35-year-old Bailey as he missed 11 games because of a nagging left foot sprain originally suffered in the preseason on Aug. 17 in Seattle. Only later did Bailey reveal he sustained a Lisfranc injury. He returned late in the season to help the Broncos advance to the Super Bowl, but wasnt back to his old form -- the form that had QBs scanning everywhere but his direction. In his prime, Bailey wasnt always very busy because opponents simply picked on his counterpart. And yet he still has 52 career interceptions, the most among active cornerbacks. "I consider it a privilege to have coached Champ these last three years," Broncos coach John Fox said. "Theres no doubt he played an integral role in establishing a culture of winning here. "Aside from his natural ability, Champ set a great example with his hard work and relentless commitment to mastering his craft." The 15-year veteran mentored many teammates, teaching them the tricks of the cornerback trade. Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, an impending free agent, once said he used to study film of Bailey simply because, "If youre a cornerback, you have to be a fan of Champ Bailey. Anytime a guy does that for a period of time he did it, 14 or 15 years, youve got to watch him." Rodgers-Cromartie and Bailey were supposed to be a lockdown tandem in 2013. Until Bailey got hurt. So in stepped Chris Harris Jr., an undrafted player out of Kansas who soaked up all of Baileys suggestions as he waited his turn. Once he got on the field, Harris became almost a copy of Bailey -- or as much as anyone can be. Harris blew out a knee against San Diego in the divisional round, leading to Baileys return to his usual spot at left corner. On his Twitter account, Harris thanked Bailey for his help, saying he was blessed to be able to "lineup opposite Champ and learn from a Great." Harris wasnt alone in his praise, with linebacker Danny Trevathan posting on Twitter: "Champ. You taught me a lot!" Although quarterbacks didnt always pick on him, Bailey still found a way to get involved. He prided himself on his tackling and frequently crept up to the line of scrimmage to help out. In 215 regular-season games, Bailey has 983 tackles, three sacks, nine forced fumbles and five fumble recoveries. His best statistical season was 2006, when he had a career-high 10 interceptions and finished as runner-up for The Associated Press Defensive Player of the Year. About the only thing that eluded Bailey in his time with Denver was that Super Bowl ring. But Elway said there is a "ring" in Baileys future because Elway said hes going to have a place in the teams Ring of Fame once his career is finished. Maybe down the road there will be a spot in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, too, which would make him the first Denver defensive player to be enshrined. "On behalf of everyone with the Broncos, I wish Champ all the best and thank him for everything he did for this franchise," Elway said. "Champ will always be a Bronco." Lucas Digne Jersey .Brazil midfielder Ricardo Goulart scored the winner in the 50th minute to give the defending champion a four-point advantage in the standings over second-place Sao Paulo, which beat rival Palmeiras 2-0. Paulinho Jersey . Jamies number grades given are out of five, with five being the best mark. 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The 31-year-old dangerman set up two goals and scored two himself as Toronto FC rallied from a 2-0 deficit to defeat the slumping Houston Dynamo 4-2 on Saturday night.TORONTO -- The Maple Leafs boast a predominantly Canadian roster with 20 players holding Canadian passports; however, many are struggling when it comes to deciding who to cheer for come Fridays semifinal of mens hockey at the Olympics, which features Leafs teammates Phil Kessel and James van Reimsdyk against the Canadians. The Leafs were back on the ice Wednesday following an 10-day break. It apparently wasnt long enough, as Team Canadas 2-1 win over Latvia didnt conclude before the Leafs began practice. "I was thinking we might get a little delay, but it was nice to get out there," said Tyler Bozak of watching Wednesdays game." Bozak, a native of Regina, Sask., centres a line of Kessel and van Riemsdyk. He also shares an apartment with Kessel in Toronto. He has been in touch with his linemates during the break. "Theyre enjoying it, they said everythings great," said Bozak. "The village is nice, theyre meeting lots of new people and having fun. Theyre winning lots of games and playing really well." When asked who hed be cheering for in Fridays rematch of the 2010 gold medal game, Bozak appeared on the fence. "Its going to be an exciting game to watch for sure. I really cant make any predictions," he said. "I dont knowa the U.S. has been playing great. Canadas kind of snuck by with a few wins, but every games different and it should be a fun one to watch. "I just hope Phil and JVR play really well and maybe Canada wins, I dont know." Nazem Kadri, who spent his break along with Bozak and Frazer McLaren in the Caribbean, isnt sure of Canadas chances. "I want to say Canada, but to be honest, I think the U.S. looks a little bit better," said the London, Ont. native. "In tournaments like these, its all about one game, one period swing where that could be the difference." Sudbury, Ont. native, Randy Carlyle admitted cheering for Canada isnt as easy as it may appear. "I wish our players all the success in the world and I think its important for us to never lose sight of the fact that youre part of a team, but agaain, I am Canadian," said Carlyle, who spent his break in California.dddddddddddd "There is things pulling at your heart strings in different directions thats for sure." Kessel has been the talk of the tournament leading the way with five goals and eight points heading in to Fridays game. He was also the topic de jour at the Leafs practice facility in Etobicoke Wednesday. When asked if Kessel, who is second behind just Alexander Ovechkin in regular season scoring with 31 goals, has put himself amongst the best players in the NHL, Carlyle was quick to pump the breaks. "Thats a big statement for anybody to come out and proclaim on any player. It takes a longer period of time than just five years (or) six years," Carlyle said. "Hes not a one-dimensional player as people described him previously. Hes a guy who still has some things that wed like him to stop doing, but hes become more of a two-way player." Kadri, who according to Carlyle returned with the best-looking tan on the team, isnt surprised at Kessels success in Sochi. "I think we all knew Phil was going to achieve more especially on that big ice," he said. "Not too many players in the league can skate with him so. Phil does a great job finding areas to get open." Carlyle admitted one player he is concerned about is Nikolai Kulemin. Kulemin was part of the Russian team, which fell 3-1 to Finland in the quarter-finals. "Nobody asks questions about how youre going to feel about Nikolai Kulemin coming back and thats a tough one," said Carlyle. "Host country and the way their tournament unravelled. "Hes part of our hockey club and weve got to find a way to build him back up and get him going again." Notes: Injured forwards David Bolland (foot), Peter Holland (lace bite), Carter Ashton (hand) and Trevor Smith (undisclosed) were all participants in Wednesdays 50 minute skate at the MasterCard Centre. Once Bolland, Smith and Ashton return from injured reserved, the Leafs will have 25 players on their active roster and will require some moves. 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