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Brett Favre says Packers should use Jordan Love like Saints QB Taysom Hill

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June 30 (UPI) — Brett Favre says the Green Bay Packers should use rookie quarterback Jordan Love and Aaron Rodgers like the New Orleans Saints use starter Drew Brees and backup Taysom Hill.

“There’s ways to incorporate it much like Taysom Hill with the Saints,” Favre told TMZ Sports. “Use him [Love] as a halfback, a halfback pass, but occasionally let him run it just to show that you’ll do that. Something like that.”

The Packers had one of the shock selections of the 2020 NFL Draft when they chose Love with the No. 26 overall pick despite Rodgers’ presence as one of the premier quarterbacks in the league.

Hill has been one of the Saints’ most dynamic players for the past two seasons. Saints coach Sean Payton — known as an offensive guru — uses Hill at quarterback, wide receiver, running back and elsewhere. Hill joined the team as an undrafted free agent out of Brigham Young University in 2017.

Hill had 2,815 rushing yards and 32 rushing touchdowns in college. He also had 6,929 passing yards and 43 passing scores. Love was not as much of a runner at Utah State. He had 403 yards and nine scores on the ground in three seasons before he entered the NFL. Love passed for 8,600 yards and 60 touchdowns at Utah State.

Rodgers told reporters in May that he “wasn’t thrilled by the pick” of Love.

“It was more the surprise of the pick, based on my own feelings of wanting to play into my 40s, and really the realization that it does change the controllables a little bit,” Rodgers said. “Because as much as I feel confident in my abilities and what I can accomplish and what we can accomplish, there are some new factors that are out of my control.”

Favre is in a unique position to address the Love and Rodgers dynamic in Green Bay. The Hall of Fame quarterback was the Packers’ starter from 1992 through 2007. The Packers selected Rodgers with the No. 24 overall pick in the 2005 NFL Draft. They traded Favre to the New York Jets before the 2008 season.

Favre was 36 when the Packers drafted Rodgers, the same age Rodgers was when the team selected Love. Favre and Rodgers had won Super Bowls with the Packers before the franchise drafted their potential replacements.

The 11-time Pro Bowl selection, three-time NFL MVP and Super Bowl champion told the Rich Eisen Show in April that Rodgers was “surprised” by the team’s decision to draft Love. Favre also said he believes Rodgers will play somewhere else before he retires.

Rodgers is signed through 2023 but the Packers can opt out of his contract before the 2022 season.

Favre told TMZ Sports he “never got the sense” Rodgers was upset the Packers drafted a quarterback but he was more upset the team didn’t upgrade at positions that could help them improve immediately.

The Packers are scheduled to face the Arizona Cardinals in a preseason game at 1 p.m. EDT Aug. 15 in Green Bay, Wis. They have a Week 1 match scheduled against the Minnesota Vikings at 1 p.m. EDT Sept. 13 in Minneapolis.



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College football: Notre Dame-Wake Forest postponed due to COVID-19

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Sept. 22 (UPI) — Saturday’s game between Notre Dame and Wake Forest has been postponed after the Fighting Irish announced 13 players are currently in isolation.

Notre Dame said in a statement Tuesday that seven student-athletes tested positive for the coronavirus out of 94 tests administered Monday. Combined with testing results from last week, 13 players are isolated — with 10 in quarantine.

Due to the positive results over the past two weeks, Notre Dame has paused all football-related activities until further testing is completed. Both schools are working on rescheduling the matchup.

“With student-athlete health and safety our primary focus, we will continue to follow our prevention protocols and ongoing testing procedures,” Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly said in a statement. “We managed an increase in positivity rates in August, and the players handled it wonderfully.

“We knew COVID-19 would present challenges throughout the season, and we’ll always put student-athlete health and safety at the forefront of our decision making. We look forward to resuming team activities and getting back on the playing field.”

Wake Forest athletic director John Currie said the programs are attempting to reschedule the game for Oct. 3 — an open date that both schools share.

“I know everyone involved is saddened to be unable to play this weekend, but based on the circumstances it is the right decision,” Currie said in a statement Tuesday. “We are already discussing options for rescheduling with the ACC and our future opponents, including the possibility of playing on the October 3rd weekend.”

Notre Dame beat South Florida 52-0 at home last week and opened the 2020 season with a victory over Duke.

Wake Forest began the season with a blowout loss to top-ranked Clemson in Week 1 and a 45-42 setback to North Carolina State in Week 2.

This is now the fourth ACC contest impacted because of coronavirus issues.



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Atlanta Falcons to allow limited number of fans at games starting Oct. 11

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Sept. 22 (UPI) — The Atlanta Falcons will allow a limited number of fans to attend games at Mercedes-Benz Stadium beginning Oct. 11 against the Carolina Panthers, the team announced Tuesday.

The team said in August that no fans would be allowed at the stadium through the month of September due to the coronavirus pandemic. The latest decision to welcome fans back was based on the decline in COVID-19 cases in Georgia.

MLS club Atlanta United, who shares Mercedes-Benz Stadium with the Falcons, also will compete in front of a small number of fans. All fans will be required to wear masks.

“We are thrilled to invite fans of both the Falcons and Atlanta United back to Mercedes-Benz Stadium,” Steve Cannon, CEO of AMB Sports and Entertainment, said in a statement Tuesday. “Having fans watch from alternative locations was a difficult, but important, decision.

“It’s been challenging for both teams to play without fans, but their well-being as well as the safety of our associates and fans was paramount.”

The Falcons said they will host about 500 friends, family and associates for their Week 3 home game against the Chicago Bears on Sunday to test stadium operations and protocols.

Mercedes-Benz Stadium initially planned to host between 10,000 and 20,000 fans at the 71,000-seat stadium until the coronavirus disrupted those plans. Officials haven’t determined how many fans will be allowed to attend games come Oct. 11.

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The Los Angeles Rams’ Jared Goff celebrates after a first down in the final minutes of the fourth quarter in Philadelphia on Sunday. The Rams defeated the Eagles 37-19. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo



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Ex-Falcons RB Devonta Freeman signing 1-year deal with Giants

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Sept. 22 (UPI) — The New York Giants are signing former Atlanta Falcons running back Devonta Freeman to a short-term contract after losing Saquon Barkley to a season-ending knee injury.

League sources told ESPN and NFL Media on Tuesday that Freeman agreed to a one-year deal worth up to $3 million with the Giants. According to ESPN, the two-time Pro Bowl tailback is expected to officially sign the pact Wednesday morning and could play as soon as Sunday against the San Francisco 49ers.

“Devonta turned down more money from other teams because he likes the opportunity with the Giants best,” Freeman’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, told ESPN.

Barkley tore the ACL in his right knee during Sunday’s 17-13 loss to the Chicago Bears. In his absence, veteran running back Dion Lewis saw a larger workload in the game.

Freeman, 28, will become the top candidate to replace Barkley on early downs, with Lewis serving as a pass-catching back. The Giants also have Wayne Gallman on the active roster, and veteran Rod Smith is on the practice squad.

The Falcons selected Freeman in the fourth round of the 2014 NFL Draft out of Florida State. He spent his first six seasons with the Falcons before the team let him walk in free agency this past off-season in favor of All-Pro tailback Todd Gurley.

In 77 career games with the Falcons, Freeman recorded 3,977 rushing yards and 32 touchdowns on 950 carries. He added 257 receptions for 2,015 yards and 11 receiving scores on 323 targets.

Earlier Tuesday, the Giants placed Barkley on injured reserve. Cornerback Ryan Lewis was added to the active roster in his place.

This week in the National Football League

The Los Angeles Rams’ Jared Goff celebrates after a first down in the final minutes of the fourth quarter in Philadelphia on Sunday. The Rams defeated the Eagles 37-19. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo



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