Around the NFL: Talib Steps Away From TNF After Shooting, Brady Returns Following Mysterious Absence, Baker Gets the Nod in Carolina, More

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Around the NFL: Talib Steps Away From TNF After Shooting, Brady Returns Following Mysterious Absence, Baker Gets the Nod in Carolina, More

Chicago Bears

Amazon’s Thursday Night Football crew will be short one member after Aqib Talib stepped away from the new project this morning in the wake of his presence at a fatal shooting at a youth football game earlier this month.

Talib Leaves TNF After Brother Charged With Murder

After murder charges for his brother Yakub were filed in relation to an August 13 shooting of a youth football coach, former NFL player turned broadcaster Aqib Talib has stepped away from his new job with Amazon as part of their Thursday Night Football broadcast team.

According to The Athletic, Talib and his younger brother, Yakub, are both North Dallas United Bobcats youth football team coaches. After an argument over calls on the field occurred, Yakub is accused of shooting 43-year-old Michael Hickman, the Dragons Elite Academy coach. Yakub was arrested on August 15.

A statement from Aqib Talib’s lawyer on the incident confirmed that Aqib was present during the time of the fatal shooting.

“Aqib Talib was present when this unfortunate incident occurred and is very distraught and devastated over this terrible loss of life. He would like to convey his condolences to the family of the victim and to everyone who witnessed this unfortunate tragedy,” Aqib Talib’s lawyer Frank Perez said in a statement.

The former NFL cornerback was set to contribute to Amazon’s TNF broadcast this season after being hired earlier this summer.

You can read more on the shooting here.

Tom Brady Returns to Bucs Camp

Tom Brady returned to Buccaneers camp on Monday after an 11-day absence to deal with personal matters. There was plenty of speculation on the web about why Brady would go on hiatus during camp. Some were funny (the Masked Singer theory), some were less (the impending divorce chatter), but either way, Brady is back.

Brady’s absence caused him to miss two preseason games against the Dolphins and Titans, and Todd Bowles said Sunday he wasn’t sure if Brady would play in the team’s preseason finale Saturday against the Colts. Tampa Bay has one more practice between today and Thursday when the team heads to Indy for their final preseason matchup. So, it’s probably unlikely that Brady plays in that one, but I’m sure he’ll be fine without.

Aside from Brady not needing the preseason reps, the Bucs likely don’t want to run him out behind a depleted offensive line more than they have to. Tampa Bay lost starting left guard Aaron Stinnie for the season due to a torn ACL and MCL. Ryan Jensen is out indefinitely with a knee injury, and right tackle Tristan Wirfs is day-to-day as he deals with a strained oblique.

Tom Brady is going to Tom Brady when the real thing rolls around, so I’m less interested in knowing why he took his 11-day hiatus and more interested in learning more about the juicy nugget dropped by UFC president Dana White recently.

As Luis effectively summarized: In the offseason in which Brady left the Patriots to sign with the Buccaneers, it was the Raiders that almost stuck the landing. And they didn’t, ultimately, because Jon Gruden squashed the deal at the last minute. And it’s not like the Raiders’ interest came out of nowhere, as there was reporting that Vegas had interest in bringing Brady aboard.

You can read more on that here if you missed it this weekend:

Baker Mayfield Wins QB Battle That Never Was

We discussed the nonsensical “quarterback battle” that the Panthers were holding in their camp last week, and now we have a decision from Carolina. Baker Mayfield will start for the Panthers in Week 1 (duh) when they take on Mayfield’s former team, the Cleveland Browns.

Here’s what Matt Rhule had to say on his decision to start Mayfield over Darnold in Week 1 against Cleveland:

“When we started this process, we were looking at three things,” Matt Rhule said in a release. “Number one, mastery of the offense, number two, situational football excellence, and number three, moving the ball and getting guys involved. That’s been our focus all along…Baker has made a lot of improvement, a lot of growth in all three areas in a short amount of time.”

Mayfield played just one series against the Commanders, but his resume in Cleveland made him the favorite to win the job despite Rhule’s odd desire to drum up drama around a non-contest QB battle in camp. Mayfield played 14 games during the 2021 season, throwing for 3,010 yards, 17 touchdowns, and 13 interceptions.

The Panthers also lost rookie QB Matt Corral to a Lisfranc injury suffered in Friday night’s preseason game. The injury is likely a season-ender, and the injury was confirmed via MRI results on Saturday. So, Carolina will begin the season as the starter, with Darnold backing him up.

Kayvon Thibodeaux Injured in Preseason Contest

The fifth pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux suffered an MCL sprain during Sunday’s preseason game against the Cincinnati Bengals. The Giants confirmed the injury on Monday, and Giants’ Brian Daboll told reporters that Thibodeaux is considered day to day.

Thibodeaux was cut blocked by Bengals’ tight end Thaddeus Moss during the second quarter of the 25-22 win and was ruled out for the remainder of the game.

Adam Schefter reported this afternoon that the sprained MCL is expected to sideline the top pick for 3-4 weeks. Still, Schefter reports that the Giants are hopeful that Thibodeaux will be ready for New York’s season-opener vs. the Titans.

Extra Points

  • Pancakes for everyone!
  • Derek Carr and big brother David Carr rank their top brother duos in the NFL these days:
  • I saw this video making the rounds this morning, and people were dunking on Mitch Trubisky, but he escaped the sack and hit his receiver in the hands … the result was on the receiver for not hauling the catch in, in my opinion.
  • The Steelers make a change on their offensive line:
  • Old Friend Alert 🚨:
  • The Vikings dealt for a new backup quarterback this morning. Luis has you covered on that front:
  • 17 👏 more 👏 days 👏!


Author: Patrick K. Flowers

Patrick is a Staff Writer at Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @PatrickKFlowers.