NASCAR star suspended for one weekend

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NASCAR star suspended for one weekend

From Comcast SportsNet
CHARLOTTE, North Carolina (AP) -- NASCAR on Monday suspended Kurt Busch one week for verbally abusing a media member. NASCAR said Busch's behavior after Saturday's Nationwide Series race at Dover was in violation of the probation he was placed on after an incident last month at Darlington. Busch was fined 50,000 by NASCAR and placed on probation through July 25 for reckless driving on pit road, and a post-race altercation with Ryan Newman's crew members. That probation has now been extended through the end of the year. Busch's latest penalty stems from a confrontation with a Sporting News reporter after Saturday's race.

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Report: Patriots trade C Bryan Stork to Redskins

Report: Patriots trade C Bryan Stork to Redskins

The Patroits have traded center Bryan Stork to the Redskins, according to NFL.com's Ian Rapoport. 

The news is unexpected following reports earlier in the day that Stork had been released. 

In fact, Redskins Insider J.P. Finlay explored whether Washington should sign the former first-round pick a few hours ago. 

The Patriots selected Stork in the fourth round of the 2014 draft from Florida State, and in two seasons with New England he has started 17 games. Stork has also dealt with concussion issues, last year playing just eight games and starting six.

Listed at 6-foot-4 and 315 lbs., Stork is big for a center. Current Redskins starter Kory Lichtensteiger lists at 6-foot-2 and 295 lbs., and was limited to five regular season games last season.

The Redskins have Lichtensteiger, Spencer Long and Josh LeRibeus competing at the center position, but none have the high-end potential that a Stork could bring to the position. 

Unfortunately, in addition to concussion issues, Stork has been kicked out of practices for fighting and can cross the line separating legal and dirty play on the field, according to CSNNE.com Patriots beat writer Phil Perry

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Ravens kick return job still up in the air

Ravens kick return job still up in the air

With two preseason games left, the Ravens appear to have little clarity in their efforts to find a kick return specialist, and although Michael Campanaro had all three punt return chances against the Colts last weekend, the Ravens aren't ready yet to declare the job his.

Last year's leading returners — Kaelin Clay and Jeremy Ross — are no longer with the team.

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Coach John Harbaugh, the former special teams coach that he is, blasted the Ravens special teams play against the Colts, both in kick returns and in kick coverage.

"We kicked the ball to them, and they kicked the ball to us, and we got our butts kicked," Harbaugh said after the game. "That's unacceptable."

Harbaugh seemed particularly agitated about the Ravens kickoff coverage; the Colts averaged 28.0 yards per kick return, nearly 10 yards better than the Ravens (18.8).

Earlier this week, Harbaugh declared, "We have not found our punt returner or our kick returner yet."

As for kick returns, three running backs — Kenneth Dixon, Terrance West and Stephen Houston — returned kicks at Indianapolis last week with unimpressive results. West had the longest return at 23 yards, and two returns left the Ravens inside their 20-yard line.

The Ravens are giving both West and Dixon a long look as kick returner — Houston is a longshot to make the team — with the idea that a fourth running back could also contribute in the return game. Rookie Tavon Young has also been given reps as a kick returner, though he missed the Colts game with a hamstring injury.

Campanaro headlines a group of punt return candidates that includes former Navy quarterback Keenan Reynolds. Campanaro had all three punt return chances against the Colts, with one fair catch and one 21-yard return. Reynolds, who has had an inconsistent camp as a returner, served on the punt coverage team and had a tackle against the Colts but was not back as the return man at all.

Special teams coordinator Jerry Rosburg said Campanaro "showed some real positive things" against the Colts, but Rosburg was not ready to hand him the job yet.

"Michael's out there trying to win the job," Rosburg said after practice on Wednesday. "It's really not his job, it's the returner. The job belongs to the team, and he's trying to get that job."

Expect the auditions for both jobs to continue Saturday night against the Lions.

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RB Chris Thompson unlikely to play in Bills game, says Jay Gruden

RB Chris Thompson unlikely to play in Bills game, says Jay Gruden

Redskins fans know that Presumed starting running back Matt Jones will not play Friday night against the Bills.

But on Wednesday, Jay Gruden said that Chris Thompson is also unlikely to play. 

Gruden said that Thompson is nursing a sore knee and shoulder and that the team would rather not "have him get banged around."

The coach pointed out it also lets rookies Keith Marshall and Robert Kelley get more snaps as the 'Skins try to determine what they have in the young runners. 

In his fourth season out of Florida State, Thompson is a known quantity for Washington.

A skilled receiver out of the backfield, Thompson emerged as a quality third down back for Gruden last year and a trustworthy target for Kirk Cousins out of the backfield. 

Gruden also announced that Chris Baker might sit out Friday's game against buffalo. The defensive tackle is batting soreness in his quad. 

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