Vick KO'd as Eagles' skid hits 5


Vick KO'd as Eagles' skid hits 5

From Comcast SportsNetPHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Nick Foles couldn't end the Eagles' worst losing streak in 15 years. He'll get another chance at a win if Michael Vick can't return from a concussion.Foles filled in for Vick and briefly rallied the Eagles until the Cowboys capitalized on turnovers and dominated the fourth quarter. The Eagles' 38-23 loss to Dallas on Sunday was their fifth straight, the longest losing streak in coach Andy Reid's 14 seasons.Reid might not make it to Year 15. Vick might not make it to Sunday in Washington.With a 3-6 record, it's likely too late for the Eagles, no matter who the quarterback is, to save their season."Not good enough to win," Foles said. "I made some mistakes and I can't turn the ball over. That's the most important thing to win games."Foles hit the field in the second quarter and was greeted by a loud ovation from a crowd that had become fed up with Vick's erratic play.Vick was knocked on his back by linebacker Ernie Sims on an incomplete pass and was slow to get up. He headed for the locker room and Foles started warming up. Vick, however, may have been injured on the previous play when he was driven from behind headfirst into the ground by tackle Jay Ratliff.Vick did not talk to reporters but appeared groggy in the locker room.The loss could speed up the countdown clock on Vick and Reid's time in Philadelphia.In the final minutes, fans behind Dallas' bench unrolled a banner that read, "Andy, Quit, Your Team Has!"Angry Eagles fans brought "Fire Andy!" and "This Is Not Acceptable" signs with them as they tailgated in the parking lots. There was at least one mobile billboard that read "Fire Andy Reid Now!!!" and "No Mas" with a pair of red Xs near the embattled coach's photo.The 1998 Eagles lost their first five games of the season under Ray Rhodes.Reid said he'd determine the starter for Sunday's game at Washington based on Vick's health"I was hoping he'd make it through without having a concussion, but that's where we sit right now with him," Reid said.Foles, a fan favorite without ever throwing a regular-season pass, looked like an instant hit and woke up a sleepy crowd in the third quarter when he hit Jeremy Maclin for a 44-yard TD and a 14-10 lead. Alex Henery's 40-yard field goal made it 17-10.Foles was rolling, the Eagles were scoring, and the good times were back at Lincoln Financial Field.But in a season unraveling with each bumbling defeat, the Eagles were knocked down to reality.Tony Romo threw two touchdown passes, Dwayne Harris had a 78-yard punt return TD, and Brandon Carr returned an interception 47 yards for a score for the Cowboys.The Cowboys (4-5) and are second in the NFC East, 1 games behind the New York Giants, who lost to Cincinnati earlier Sunday.The win, and a break in the schedule, could propel the Cowboys back in the thick of the division race. They will play five of their next six games at home, starting Sunday against Cleveland."Don't use words like desperate," Romo said. "The importance was at its highest level. I don't know if we are thinking anything more than we need another win."Romo, who finished 19 of 26 for 209 yards, tied it with that TD pass to Bryant.Dallas coach Jason Garrett had insisted the Cowboys weren't desperate after losing four of five. And they were dominant in the fourth period. The Cowboys need to keep playing like they did late on Sunday for a shot at catching the Giants.Owner Jerry Jones refused to call the win a season saver."I don't want to do that," he said. "You can, but I don't want to do it. I know how important the game is to us."Early in the final quarter, Foles had an interception return for a touchdown wiped out on a holding penalty. No worries, Dallas. Harris returned a punt 78 yards for a 24-17 lead that silenced the crowd.On the next drive, Foles had an interception returned for a score that counted, by Carr, returned 47 yards for a 31-17 lead. Foles was 22 of 32 for 219 yards.That was it for the fans in green, who fled for the exits. Stanley Havili had a 1-yard TD run with 1:55 left, but Henery missed the extra point.Then Foles fumbled after he was sacked and Mike Jenkins recovered for a touchdown."Critical win for us," Garrett said. "I thought the effort was there. I thought we were focused the whole game. When you have success, you have to play through it, you have adversity, you have to play through it, and today was a good example of that."The Eagles could have used some of that tenacity this season.Vick, the four-time Pro Bowl quarterback, has struggled this season and entered with 10 touchdowns and nine interceptions.He looked like his old self on the first drive, finishing it by connecting with Riley Cooper for a 2-yard TD. Cooper's sensational one-handed grab on a fade route gave the Eagles their first points on their opening drive all season.The fun was short-lived when Romo hit Felix Jones on an 11-yard TD pass. Dan Bailey kicked a 30-yard field goal to send the Cowboys into halftime with a 10-7 lead.NOTES:Foles was the first Eagles rookie QB to throw a TD pass since AJ Feely in 2001. Brian Westbrook, a running back, threw one in 2002. ... The Eagles had won six straight division games, including a sweep of the Cowboys. ... Eagles WR Jason Avant left with a hamstring injury. ... Sims started 15 games for the Eagles in 2010 and had two sacks.

Young understands work isn't done after claiming Celtics final roster spot

Young understands work isn't done after claiming Celtics final roster spot

WALTHAM, Mass. – For so many years the game of basketball came easy – almost too easy – for James Young.

He stood out on a young Kentucky team that played at the highest levels, delivering the kind of performances as an 18-year-old college freshman that catapulted him into the first round of the NBA draft.

To be so young and already having achieved a childhood dream, to be in the NBA, Young was too young to realize how quickly the dream could become a nightmare if he didn't put in the necessary work.

The past couple of weeks have not been easy for Young, aware that the Celtics were torn as to whether they should keep him around this season or waive him.

They choose the former and instead waived his now-ex teammate R.J. Hunter, on Hunter’s 23rd birthday no less.

One of the first acts Young said he planned to do following Monday's practice was to reach out to Hunter, offer words of encouragement to a player he looked upon as a brother, a brother who is in a state of basketball limbo right now which could have easily been the latest chapter in James Young’s basketball narrative.

And that’s why as happy as Young is to still be donning the Green and White, his work towards proving himself to this team, to this franchise is far from done.

You listen to veterans like Jae Crowder, a second-round pick who has come up the hard way in the NBA, they speak of how Young now takes the game more serious.

Even Young acknowledged that he didn’t take the NBA game and the need to work at staying in the league as serious as he should have initially.

“I wasn’t playing as hard (early on),” Young admitted. “I just was satisfied being where I was, being too comfortable. My confidence was down. I have to change that around.”

Crowder, a straight-no-chaser kind of fellow, said as much when I asked him about the changes he has seen in Young.

“He’s taking stuff a little more serious,” Crowder said. “It’s growing up. He came in as a first-round draft pick and was on the borderline of getting cut. I don’t know what else is going to wake you up.”

That’s part of what made this decision so difficult and on some levels, left players with mixed emotions about the decision.

For those of us who followed this team through training camp, there was no question that Young had the better camp.

But the one thing that was never questioned with Hunter, was his work ethic. He made his share of mistakes and missed more shots than a player with a sharpshooter's reputation should, but you never got a sense it had anything to do with him not working as hard as he needed to.

That was among the more notable issues with Young who came into the league as an 18-year-old. That youth probably worked for him as opposed to Hunter who played three years of college basketball and was expected to be seemingly more NBA-ready.

Even though Hunter’s NBA future is on uncertain ground now, he’s too young and too talented to not get at least one more crack with an NBA team.

And by Boston waiving him, he really does become a low-risk, high-reward prospect that an NBA team might want to take a closer look at with their club. 

And Young remains a Celtic, doing all that he can to climb up the pecking order which now has him as the clear-cut 15th man on the roster.

He might see more minutes than rookie Demetrius Jackson and possibly second-year forward Jordan Mickey, but Young’s future with the Boston Celtics is still on relatively thin ice.

“I told him this morning, this might be the first time he’s earned anything in his life,” said Danny Ainge, Boston’s president of basketball operations.  “He earned this by his play, day-in and day-out. He was given a lot as a young kid with a lot of promise, a lot of potential. We talked about earlier this summer, he had to come out and win a spot with some good competition and he did. He needs to keep doing what he’s doing.”

More than anything else, Young has been consistent in his effort, overall energy and attention to detail. But it remains to be seen if Young has done all that to just secure a roster spot, or has he truly grown up and figured out what has to be done in order to be an NBA player.