They were closing in on rookie quarterback Matt McGloin and he had no place to run, no place to hide. He was not going to dance his way out of this one.
The game ended five minutes earlier, the Raiders beating the Texans 28-23. McGloin, who came to camp as a non-drafted fourth-stringer, threw three touchdown passes and led the team beautifully.
He was the last player off the field, having been horse-collared to do a TV interview.
“A bunch of guys jumped on him, gave him a hug,” center Stefen Wisniewski said. “Coach gave him the game ball. It was pretty cool. … He played his butt off and won his first NFL game. His story’s unbelievable. I’m really happy for the kid, really.”
Wisniewski was at Penn State when McGloin arrived, playing his way from walk-on to starter, and here we go again. Head coach Dennis Allen didn’t make an announcement Sunday, but McGloin has a really good chance to go on scholarship.
Start next Sunday? Book it.
Allen would not commit to that, but McGloin all but guaranteed himself at least one more shot, and some insiders will tell you it’s now his job to lose.
–Scott Ostler, San Francisco Chronicle
Where was a power outage when you needed one?
The 49ers returned Sunday to the scene of their Super Bowl disappointment nine months earlier and received just what they didn’t need:
On an afternoon where the 49ers did many good things, a bad thing helped set up the Saints’ winning score in a 23-20 New Orleans victory.
It happened after a field goal by New Orleans tied the score with 2:11 remaining and a 49er offensive drive stalled after the ensuing kickoff. This led to a punt. This led to punt coverage man Kassim Osgood failed to see Saints returner Darren Sproles signal for a fair catch.
That’s when the 49ers needed a power outage, needed the lights to go out before what happened next: Osgood tackled Sproles after his catch and was assessed a 15-yard penalty that set up the Saints in good field position at their own 40-yard line. Saints quarterback Drew Brees then drove the team downfield for a winning 31-yard field goal by Garrett Hartley.
And thus ended one of the weirder games of the entire NFL season. The first half featured a series of instant replay reviews that required a physicist to explain. There were also a series of ugly injuries, including one wince-inducing leg-bender to Saints safety Jabari Greer. The artificial turf inside the Mercedes-Benz Superdome may not have been the culprit. But it sure seemed to be reaching up and grabbing feet or knees.
–Mark Purdy, San Jose Mercury News
Mark Jackson is at it again with the bold predictions, and Klay Thompson is the subject.
“He’s a top-five (shooting) guard in this league,” Jackson says, “and I’m being respectful.”
Read: The Warriors coach believes Thompson is in the top of that small company but doesn’t want to disrespect the bigger names. Sounds crazy, right? Thompson in the elite class with All-Stars Kobe Bryant, Dwyane Wade, James Harden and Joe Johnson. But judging by the data, and by the eye test, Jackson doesn’t seem off base.
Thompson, who leads the league in 3-pointers made, has been the Warriors’ most explosive and consistent player. He ranks in the top 20 in scoring (20.9) and field-goal percentage (.552), and only three other players — LeBron James, Blake Griffin and Brook Lopez — can make that claim. When Thompson is on the court, the Warriors produce 130.8 points every 100 possessions. That’s higher offensive production than James, Chris Paul, Kevin Durant and Kevin Love.
Thompson no longer is just a spot-up shooter but arguably the Warriors’ most potent weapon. He has developed a few go-to moves, including the one-foot fadeaway. He’s more adept at getting to the basket and is finishing at a rate (73.9 percent) that’s eliminated the term #klayups.
His teammates say it is a sign of maturity.
“He’s playing smarter this year,” Stephen Curry said. “He’s taking good shots and working through the offense. When he does that, he’s great. We know how great of a shooter he is. He’s underrated with his playmaking. … It’s fun to watch, and I feel like its going to be around all year.”
– Marcus Thompson II, San Jose Mercury News