Sticky situation as NFL investigates Chargers
SAN DIEGO – If coming off consecutive tough losses wasn’t bad enough, the San Diego Chargers returned to work Monday with another distraction.
NFL said Sunday it is investigating whether the Chargers used a banned sticky substance during last Monday night’s loss to the Denver Broncos.
If the league determines the Chargers used the substance, they could be fined or lose a draft pick.
Fox Sports first reported the investigation Sunday.
“We have been looking into it,” NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said.
During the game, an equipment manager came onto the field with an illegal substance on hand towels, Fox Sports reported. Line judge Jeff Bergman saw the towels and tried to confiscate the substance. When the equipment manager wouldn’t give it up, the officials made him empty his pockets and found a skin-colored or clear type of tape, Fox Sports reported.
The Chargers blew a 24-0 halftime lead and lost 35-24, their second consecutive loss in which they blew a double-digit second-half lead.
In 1981, the NFL banned the product Stickum and other sticky substances. Raiders cornerback Lester Hayes was renowned for using the substance before it was banned.
Struggling Panthers fire GM after 1-5 start
CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Marty Hurney was fired Monday as general manager of the Carolina Panthers, who are off to a 1-5 start and have not made the playoffs since 2008.
Brandon Beane, the team’s director of football operations, will handle day-to-day football matters until a new GM is hired, a person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press. The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the move has not been announced.
The Panthers have the worst record in the NFC in a season that began with big expectations. The dismissal came a day after a 19-14 loss to Dallas.
Hurney had been the GM since 2002.
Quinn replaces Cassel as Kansas City starter
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The new starting quarterback of the Kansas City Chiefs is a former first-round draft pick on a one-year deal whose career thus far has been a disappointment.
His backup is a team captain whose long-term contract made him the face of the franchise.
Chiefs coach Romeo Crennel announced Monday that Brady Quinn will be under center when the Chiefs play Oakland on Sunday, and Matt Cassel will serve as the backup for the foreseeable future after struggling mightily through the first five games of the season.
Longhorns coach dismayed by Longhorn Network
AUSTIN, Texas – Texas coach Mack Brown once welcomed the Longhorn Network. Now he sounds as though it’s become a headache and a window for opposing coaches to get an unfair peek into his program.
“I didn’t ask for it,” Brown said Monday, noting he’s worried that the six hours a week he spends taping three television shows and the network’s access to the first 30 minutes of daily practice may tip opposing coaches to player injuries, tendencies and schemes.
Brown said he and Baylor coach Art Briles discussed it before Texas (5-2) beat Baylor 56-50 on Saturday.
“It’s in Waco. Baylor sees every practice,” Brown said. “We’re a little overexposed.”
It’s not the first time Brown has expressed frustration about living with the cameras and crews that come with the school’s 20-year, $300 million partnership with ESPN. But his comments at his weekly news conference were the harshest yet.
Texas and ESPN unveiled the contract for the Longhorn Network in January 2011, promising fans unparalleled reporting with behind-the-scenes coverage of one of the wealthiest and most prominent athletic programs in the country.