• By BEN WALKER AP Baseball Writer
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Major League Baseball umpires wore white wristbands during games Saturday, protesting "abusive player behavior" after Detroit second baseman Ian Kinsler was fined but not suspended for his recent verbal tirade against ump Angel Hernandez.

  • By JOSH DUBOW AP Pro Football Writer
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OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Derek Carr, Marshawn Lynch and the rest of Oakland's first-team offense looked sharp in their first action of the preseason. The starting defense once again was plagued by the same issues that doomed the Raiders last year.

  • By GEORGE KURTZ Fantasy Sports Network
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When it comes to fantasy football we all hear several pieces of advice. Don't draft quarterbacks early as that position is deep. Make sure to get at least one top running back in the first couple of rounds as that pool will dry up quickly. Don't ever take a kicker or defense/special teams un…

  • By KURT VOIGT AP Sports Writer
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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) — Frank Broyles was remembered as a championship coach, father, mentor, athletic director and guide for caregivers of those suffering from Alzheimer's disease during a memorial celebration Saturday at Arkansas' Bud Walton Arena.

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NEW YORK (AP) — A former New York City police officer, whose claims of police corruption in the 1970s were chronicled in an Al Pacino movie, joined dozens of current and former officers Saturday at a rally in support of getting quarterback Colin Kaepernick a job in the National Football League.

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SWANSEA, Wales (AP) — Manchester United swept to its second straight 4-0 win to start the Premier League season by thrashing Swansea on Saturday, with Romelu Lukaku, Paul Pogba and Anthony Martial all scoring again for Jose Mourinho's side.

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BELTON — For the 15th straight year, Mary Hardin-Baylor is the preseason pick to win the American Southwest Conference title. And this year’s selection might be the biggest no-brainer of them all.

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DETROIT (AP) — Adrian Gonzalez went on the disabled list in the middle of June, when the Los Angeles Dodgers were just beginning this torrid stretch that has helped them all but wrap up the NL West.

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  • By PAUL NEWBERRY AP Sports Writer
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ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia Tech star Dedrick Mills was kicked off the team Friday, having violated athletic department rules in what was essentially a third strike for the dynamic but troubled running back.

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If there is one spot on the depth chart Bears fans can feel good about it’s running back.

The naysayers will immediately accuse me of damning with faint praise based on the question marks almost everywhere else on the roster, but they’d be wrong.

Starter Jordan Howard is much more than a 2016 Pro Bowl replacement player. He was second in the NFL last year in rushing with 1,313 yards including three games in which he got only six, nine and seven carries, second in the league averaging 5.2 yards a carry and with last year’s fellow rookie and league rushing leader Ezekiel Elliott set to sit out the first six games of the season, one could argue Howard opens the season as the best in the NFL.

Before spraining his ankle in Week 3 last year, Jeremy Langford was the starter, and then after being Wally Pipped by Howard and having offseason surgery to repair his ankle, Langford missed all of Bourbonnais this summer.

But Langford returned to practice Wednesday in Lake Forest and he’s very impressed with the depth he sees at his position.

“Running back is always a competitive room. It’s very competitive.

“We’ve got some good players in there.”

What does Langford hope to show between now and opening day?

“Just the reason why I’m here, same thing I did in college.

“I’m a playmaker, and be that playmaker and be versatile.”

While Langford has yet to fulfill the promise he showed when the Bears drafted him in the fourth round out of Michigan State two seasons ago, he is capable of starting in the league and having two starters is a real luxury.

Of course Howard was even more than that last year and hopes to take even a bigger leap this year.

“I don’t really feel like it’s daunting, because you want to get better each year – every year you’re playing the game. I feel like once your first year in something – first year in college, first year in the NFL – you can only improve from there.

“I feel like I can only get better. But I also got to put the time in and not change anything, stay humble. I’m definitely looking forward to the challenge. It’s definitely a challenge to surpass those goals. But I’m definitely looking forward to it.”

Langford, a receiver at one point in college was drafted to be a factor in the passing game and Howard plans to improve in that area as well.

Then there is this year’s fourth-round pick, Tarik Cohen who has made the biggest splash of any of this year’s newcomers.

It has been clear from Day 1 that the Bears have plans to feature Cohen in the third-down offense, if not more, and he looks up to the task.

“I feel like it’s my will to want to be better and to want to be a good player for my team. I’m not going to let anything stop me, any obstacle,” Cohen said.

How can the little man from the FCS be so confident and relaxed?

“I feel like it came from growing up with my twin brother and younger brother, just being around competition 24-7, just clashing every day.

“So you’ve got to bring your A game every day when you’ve got a twin brother.”

While Howard, Langford and Cohen appear locked at one, two, three the depth chart is still deeper than that.

Ka’Deem Carey appeared to be a dead man walking strolling into training camp but nobody told him. Carey was having a great camp and a really nice game against the Broncos, particularly on special teams before tweaking a leg and free agent Benny Cunningham is making himself difficult to waive as well.

The best thing the Bears could do for Mike Glennon and/or Mitch Trubisky is give them a running game defenses have to stack to stop and it certainly appears that piece of the plan is in place.

• Hub Arkush is executive editor of Pro Football Weekly. Write to him at harkush@profootballweekly.com, and follow him on Twitter @Hub_Arkush.

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LAKE FOREST – There are two players who – more than any others on the Bears’ roster – hold the key to whether the Bears can take a significant step forward this year.

If they both come through and reach their full potential, the Bears conceivably could take a big step forward this year.

If they don’t, another 3-13 campaign is not off the menu.

I believe the defense has an excellent chance to finish the season ranked somewhere between eighth and 12th in the NFL.

The offense on the other hand is much harder to get our arms around, and we honestly don’t yet know whether the coordinator can coach.

But offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains isn’t a player and neither Mike Glennon nor Mitch Trubisky is one of the players I’m talking about.

It would be great if Glennon took hold of the No. 1 quarterback job and refused to let go, or Trubisky just proved to be so good you can’t keep him off the field, but neither can change the Bears’ fortunes on his own.

The players in question are Kyle Long and Kevin White.

Long has proved he can be one of the best offensive linemen in football when healthy and in the right position.

Will he be healthy, and is left guard the right spot?

Long was clearly frustrated throughout the Bears’ time in Bourbonnais by his slow progress returning from ankle surgery, and that finally boiled over when he started two fights and was thrown out of practice on the final day at Olivet Nazarene University.

When he was nowhere to be seen Wednesday at Halas Hall, alarms started going off everywhere, but coach John Fox explained, “He’s at a doctor’s appointment. It’s his ankle, that’s what he’s been kind of working on.”

Pushed on whether the fights were an issue, his coach assured everyone, “Our guys, we’ve got a bond, and he’s one of our family, and he’ll be treated as such, like any kind of thing that happens in a family. Guys adapt and respond, and I think everything’s fine.”

I don’t doubt Fox, but here’s what is becoming an issue: Long is looking more and more like a long shot to be ready for the opener against the Falcons.

The assumption throughout the offseason has been that Long, Cody Whitehair and Josh Sitton give the Bears one of the best interior lines in football.

But the weak link in the offensive line is left tackle Charles Leno, and if Long is out with No. 3 guard Eric Kush already on injured reserve for the year, suddenly the line becomes very iffy.

Then there is White, who so far in training camp would be easy to miss if everyone wasn’t so focused on him.

Loggains said of White, “He’s missed a lot. The growing experience, he might have got it mentally, but he needs to go out there and experience that and feel what it’s like to go against a press corner.

“We got to figure out, ‘Hey, this is what Kev does well.’ And maybe it’s everything. Maybe, it’s seven or eight routes. Maybe, it’s three or four, but we have to figure what that is.”

Fair enough, but here’s the problem: Cam Meredith proved last year he could be a solid second option when teams were focused on Alshon Jeffery, but he is not a No. 1 receiver.

If White isn’t that guy, then Meredith could be a problem, too.

Victor Cruz appears to have something left in the tank but strictly as a No. 3 in the slot, and no other pass catcher other than undrafted rookie free agent Tanner Gentry has really shown anything. And nobody is scheduling Gentry’s party to celebrate him making the team yet.

If White can be the No. 1, the whole group might be good enough. But if White can’t get it done, the whole receiver unit could render the question of Glennon or Trubisky moot.

• Hub Arkush is executive editor of Pro Football Weekly. Write to him at harkush@profootballweekly.com, and follow him on Twitter @Hub_Arkush.

  • By Thomas Huitt-Johnson News-Press Now
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Kansas City Chiefs Chairman and CEO Clark Hunt made his first public appearance at training camp Tuesday. He expressed a desire to return to St. Joseph as the team's summer training camp winds down this year at Missouri Western.

  • Courtesy: Dallas Cowboys
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Perhaps the Cowboys offense was still trying to recover from the whirlwind trip to the Hall of Fame the weekend before. Or maybe they were in shock from the Ezekiel Elliott suspension that was handed down on Friday.