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ESPN Spends All Monday Ripping John Harbaugh

“It was the second time this season the Ravens went for a 2-pointer with the game on the line and came up short.”

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The Baltimore Ravens nearly pulled off one of the NFL’s biggest upsets of the week on Sunday evening, coming back from down 14 points to the Green Bay Packers and scoring a touchdown on a short Tyler Huntley run late in regulation to make it a one-point game.

Ravens head coach John Harbaugh decided not to play for overtime by kicking the tying PAT, and instead listened to his players who wanted to attempt a 2-point conversion that would’ve won the game for Baltimore.

The 2-point attempt failed, and the Packers ended up winning the game. It was the second time this season the Ravens went for a 2-pointer with the game on the line and came up short.

Over on ESPN on Monday, there were plenty of hosts that questioned that decision.

Former New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan said of the play, “I hated the play.” He added, “The play was God awful.”

Ryan Clark chimed in agreeing with Ryan.

“This was a team that had no chance of winning this game at the beginning,” Clark said. “It was the wrong decision to go for two, and it was also the wrong play call.”

Meanwhile Dan Orlovsky flipped the script and said he was a fan of the decision to go for the victory.

“It is 100 percent the right decision to try and go win that football game,” Orlovsky said. “Because you had no business of winning that football game.”

The Keyshawn, JWill and Max fill-in crew also debated the merits of playing for overtime, with the discussion focusing on the potential that if the game goes into OT, there’s no way to know for sure whether the Ravens would’ve even gotten the ball back.

But ultimately, the crew did make it seem like going for the win was the call to make.

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NFL Likely To Launch NFL+ Streaming Service This Summer

“A source tells Fischer that a $5 per month price has been discussed for NFL+.”

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According to the Sports Business Journal, consumers could be downloading NFL+ by July. Now, just what NFL+ will be is still yet to be finalized.

Ben Fischer of Sports Business Journal reported in the site’s newsletter that live games will certainly be at the center of the league-owned streaming service. It is likely to only be available on phones and tablets with no option to stream to a larger monitor.

The viewing options would be limited. No out of market games would be available on the app. It is meant to replace the deals that recently expired with Yahoo and mobile phone carriers that recently expired.

The app could also include other content. Radio calls, team-created digital content, and league-owned podcasts are all options. 

NFL+ would make NFL Media more valuable. The league is trying to sell an equity stake in its linear TV and digital media properties. Amazon and Apple are considered the most likely to make a deal. 

A source tells Fischer that a $5 per month price has been discussed for NFL+. The pricing structure can and likely will change before the app hits the market.

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Stephen A. Smith To Charles Barkley: ‘I Worry Because You’re Big’

“You’ve always been big. But now you’re bigger.”

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ESPN host Stephen A. Smith is concerned about his friend Charles Barkley.

Barkley, while in Dallas with TNT for Games 3 and 4 of the Western Conference Finals between the Mavericks and Golden State Warriors, Barkley hopped on a horse. The clip Stephen A. used in his ESPN+ show Stephen A’s World showed Barkley needing assistance by handlers to get off the horse.

Stephen A. was astounded.

“Ain’t no way Charles Barkley needs that much help getting off the horse,” Smith said. “But he did – he did!”

Smith then used the closing seconds to express his concern about Barkley’s size.

“I worry about you cause you’re a big boy,” he said. “You’ve always been big. But now you’re bigger.”

Barkley hasn’t had any publicized major health incidents stemming from his weight, but still Stephen A. was hopeful his friend might take some time and initiative to work on cutting a few pounds.

“Let’s address that, because I need you around,” Smith said. “I love you bro.”

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NFL Considers Ending Pro Bowl Amidst Low Ratings

“Mark Maske of The Washington Post reports the future of the Pro Bowl was discussed on Tuesday during the owners’ meetings in Atlanta.”

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The NFL is obsessed with TV ratings. It isn’t a surprise that the league may not be willing to tolerate the Pro Bowl underperforming for much longer. 

In 2022, the NFL’s all-star game produced it’s lowest ratings in 16 years. Fewer that 7 million people tuned in to watch the game across ABC, ESPN and DisneyXD. 

“The (Pro Bowl) game doesn’t work,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said Tuesday after the owners’ meeting in Atlanta. “We need to find another way to celebrate the players.”

There are two proposed alternatives that have been reported. The Washington Post says the league is considering launching a seven-on-seven competition. It would not include tackling or full clocks. The other report comes from Ian Rapport of the NFL Network. He says the league is considering hosting a series of skills competitions over the course of what would be branded an all-star week. The NFL has partnered with DirecTV in the past to present similar events during Super Bowl Week. 

No details have emerged or final decisions made. Mark Maske of The Washington Post reports the future of the Pro Bowl was discussed on Tuesday during the owners’ meetings in Atlanta.

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