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      === News Summaries from The Sports Network - Saturday, August 30 ===
                       === Sam among Rams' final cuts ===
 St.  Louis, MO  ( -  If Michael  Sam does  open the  regular
 season on an NFL roster, it will have to be on another team.
 The league's first openly gay active player was among 21 players waived by the
 St.  Louis  Rams as the club  whittled down its  roster to the 53-man limit on
 Sam,  a seventh-round  pick in  this year's  draft who  publicly declared  his
 homosexuality  prior to  February's scouting combine, was beaten out by rookie
 free  agent Ethan  Westbrooks for the last  of nine defensive ends kept by the
 The  2013 SEC  Defensive Player of the  Year can still be claimed by any other
 team over the next 24 hours, and appears to stand a good chance of remaining a
 member  of  the Rams if  he does pass  through waivers. ESPN reported Saturday
 that  Sam is likely to be part of St. Louis' 10-man practice squad if he's not
 picked up by another organization.
 Sam stated his case to make the Rams' active roster with a strong preseason in
 which  he compiled  11  tackles and  three  sacks in  four  games. The  former
 Missouri  standout led  St. Louis  with  six tackles  in Thursday's  preseason
 finale against Miami.
 Sam  headlined  a St. Louis cut  list that also included defensive tackle Matt
 Conrath, quarterback Garrett Gilbert and safety Christian Bryant. In addition,
 the Rams placed wide receiver Stedman Bailey on the reserve/suspended list.
 Bailey  will sit out  the first four games of the regular season for violating
 the NFL's policy on performance-enhancing substances.
 Gilbert  was a  sixth-round pick  in this  year's draft,  while the  Rams took
 Bryant  eight spots ahead of Sam at No. 241 overall. Conrath had seven tackles
 and a sack in eight games for St. Louis last season.
 Also  waived on  Saturday were wide receivers Emory Blake, Austin Franklin and
 Justin  Veltung, guards  Travis  Bond and  Brandon  Washington, defensive  end
 Kourtnei  Brown, safety  Avery  Cunningham, defensive  tackle Deantre  Harlan,
 linebackers  Aaron Hill,  Etienne Sabino, Phillip Steward and Lawrence Wilson,
 offensive  tackles Sean  Hooey and Mitchell Van Dyk, defensive back Greg Reid,
 tight end Brad Smelley and cornerback Darren Woodard.
                    === James Harrison calls it a career ===
 (   -  Former  Pittsburgh  Steelers  star  linebacker  James
 Harrison has decided to retire.
 Harrison,  who spent  10  seasons  in Pittsburgh  and  played  last year  with
 Cincinnati, made the announcement Saturday on his Facebook page.
 "I  have  made the difficult decision  to retire as of today," Harrison wrote.
 "My  love for my  family and the need to be there for them outweighs my desire
 to  play  the game.  I have  missed too  many experiences  with them because I
 devoted SO much time to my career.
 "My  love  for the game  isn't strong  enough to make  up for missing one more
 birthday  or first day of school. I am retiring as a man who is truly grateful
 for  all  of his  blessings. I  am sincerely  thankful to  the people who have
 supported  me over  the years, first and foremost my family, the Rooney family
 and  my Steeler family, also Mr. Brown, the Bengals organization and fans, and
 last but FAR from least, Steeler Nation. Thank you."
 Signed  by the Steelers as an undrafted rookie free agent in 2002 and released
 the following year, Harrison became one of the team's leaders when he returned
 in  2004  and helped the  franchise to a  pair of Super  Bowl titles in his 10
 Harrison  started  95 of the  131 games he played  with the Steelers and ranks
 fourth  in franchise history with 64 sacks. He was the NFL Defensive Player of
 the  Year in 2008, earned five straight trips to the Pro Bowl from 2007-11 and
 was named First-Team All-Pro twice.
 The  36-year-old  Kent State product also  played 12 postseason games with the
 Steelers  and registered the longest interception return in Super Bowl history
 with a 100-yard touchdown against the Arizona Cardinals in Super Bowl XLIII.
 Harrison  joined division-rival  Cincinnati last season and helped the Bengals
 to the AFC North crown, amassing 30 tackles with two sacks and an interception
 in 15 games.
 The Bengals released him in March.
              === 49ers' Smith offers apology after suspension ===
 (  -  San Francisco 49ers  linebacker Aldon Smith released a
 statement  Saturday  and apologized  for his  actions that  led to a nine-game
 The  NFL penalized Smith for violations of both the substance-abuse policy and
 personal  conduct policy. In  July, Smith was sentenced to 11 days in jail and
 three years' probation on weapons and DUI charges.
 "I apologize to my teammates, coaches, the entire 49ers organization and 49ers
 fans  for not  being able  to contribute  on the  field for  the next  several
 weeks," Smith said in a statement released by the NFL Players Association.
 "Over the last year, I have learned a lot and I'm working hard to grow from my
 experiences. I want to thank my family and friends, my teammates, my union and
 the  49ers for  supporting me during this  process. I will be at work daily to
 participate  in  all permitted  work activities, and  to support my teammates,
 just as they have supported me."
 Smith  can return for a Week 11 game against the New York Giants, as the 49ers
 have a Week 8 bye.
 Since  being  selected with the seventh  overall pick of the 2011 draft, Smith
 has been one of the league's elite pass rushers. He has 42 sacks in just three
 seasons, but has also had numerous run-ins with the law.
 Smith  voluntarily  took a leave  of absence from the  49ers last year to seek
 help for a substance-abuse problem, missing five games.
            === Eagles release veteran K Henery, get down to 53 ===
 Philadelphia, PA ( - Veteran kicker Alex Henery was released
 by  the Philadelphia  Eagles, along with 18 other roster hopefuls, as the team
 reduced its roster to the 53-man limit on Saturday.
 Henery,  Philadelphia's kicker  for the past three seasons, lost out to rookie
 Cody Parkey, who was acquired in a trade with the Indianapolis Colts last week
 and  subsequently booted  two  field goals  of 50-plus  yards  in the  Eagles'
 preseason finale against the New York Jets on Thursday night.
 A  fourth-round  draft pick out  of the University  of Florida in 2011, Henery
 was  one of college football's all-time great kickers and generally successful
 during  his  time in Philadelphia,  finishing his  Eagles career by making 74-
 of-86  field  goals. A lack of  leg strength and recent inconsistency problems
 opened the door for Parkey, however.
 Philadelphia also cut ties linebackers Emmanuel Acho and Josh Kaddu, offensive
 lineman  Josh  Andrews and  Kevin Graf, cornerbacks  Roc Carmichael and Curtis
 Marsh, wide receiver Damaris Johnson, safeties Ed Reynolds and Keelan Johnson,
 running  backs Matthew Tucker and Henry Josey, defensive tackles Damion Square
 and  Wade Keliikipi,  quarterback G.J. Kinne and wide receivers Ifeanyi Momah,
 Will Murphy and Quron Pratt.
 Reynolds was the team's fifth-round pick out of Stanford in May.
 In  other moves,  RB/returner  Kenjon Barner  was  waived/injured and  veteran
 receiver Arrelious Benn (lower back) as well as LB Travis Long (torn ACL) were
 placed on injured reserve.
 The  Eagles  will open  their regular  season on  Sept. 7,  when they host the
 Jacksonville Jaguars.
                    === 'Champ' gets KO'd in New Orleans ===
 Metairie, LA ( - Future Hall of Fame cornerback Champ Bailey
 is  unemployed again  after the New Orleans Saints released him on Saturday en
 route to getting to the NFL's 53-man roster limit.
 It  could be the  end of the line for the 36-year-old, seven-time All-Pro, who
 performed poorly last year in Denver.
 The  Saints also  terminated the  contracts  of veteran  wide receiver  Robert
 Meachem,  linebacker  Keyunta Dawson,  kicker Shayne  Graham and tackle Thomas
 New Orleans also waived center Matt Armstrong, cornerback Derrius Brooks, wide
 receiver   Brandon   Coleman,  linebacker  Todd  Davis,  kicker  Derek  Dimke,
 cornerback  Terrence  Frederick, wide receiver  Charles Hawkins, tight end Nic
 Jacobs,  guard Marcel  Jones, wide  receiver Seantavious  Jones, tackle  Tavon
 Rooks,  running back Derrick Strozier, nose tackle Lawrence Virgil, cornerback
 Trevin Wade, safety Pierre Warren and guard Jason Weaver.
 The  Saints currently have no placekicker on their 53-man roster so expect the
 team to be active on the waiver wire in the coming days.
              === Few surprises as Steelers reach roster limit ===
 Pittsburgh,  PA (  - The  Pittsburgh Steelers  trimmed their
 roster to the league-mandated 53 on Saturday, releasing 22 players.
 Mike  Tomlin's club waived goodbye to tight ends Rob Blanchflower, Bryce Davis
 and  David  Paulson, defensive  backs Isaiah  Green, Dayonne Nunley, Shaquille
 Richardson  and Ross  Ventrone,  and  running backs  Josh  Harris and  Stephen
 Also  released were  defensive linemen Ethan Hemer, Josh Mauro, Roy Philon and
 Nick   Williams,  linebackers  Chris  Carter,  Howard  Jones  and  Dan  Molls,
 quarterback  Brendon  Kay, wide  receivers Derek Moye  and Lanear Sampson, and
 offensive linemen Graham Pocic, Will Simmons and Guy Whimper.
 Whimper,  a nine-year  veteran out of East Carolina, may have been the biggest
 surprise.  The Honolulu  native appeared in 27 games and started eight for the
 Steelers  over  the past two  seasons and was  expected to be  in the mix as a
 swing tackle behind starters Marcus Gilbert and Kelvin Beachum.
 Richardson,  a  fifth-round selection  out  of  Arizona, and  Blanchflower,  a
 seventh-rounder out of UMass, were 2014 draft picks.
 The  Steelers  will open their  regular season on Sept.  7, when they host the
 Cleveland Browns.
                        === Jets cut Patterson, Hill ===
 Florham Park, NJ ( - Dimitri Patterson went from AWOL to cut
 from the New York Jets.
 The  embattled cornerback  was among 21 players jettisoned as New York reached
 the NFL's 53-man roster limit.
 The  move came  just days after Patterson released a statement saying the Jets
 were  dishonest in saying they didn't know where he was when he failed to show
 up  for  the team's  Week 3  preseason affair  against the  New York Giants, a
 disappearing  act thought be tied to the fact that Patterson was not scheduled
 to be in the starting lineup for that game.
 Patterson  denied that  but  the  Jets clearly  had  enough  of the  enigmatic
 defensive back with six previous NFL stops.
 New  York also  reached the  end  of its  rope with  former second-round  pick
 Stephen Hill, a talented wide receiver who never translated his athleticism to
 success on the field.
 Hill  amassed  just 45 receptions with  four touchdowns in 23 career games but
 his  agent  took aim at Jets  general manager John  Idzik as well as coach Rex
 "I'm  disappointed  in Idzik  and Rex with  the way the  whole thing went down
 there,"  Alan  Herman told  USA  Today  Sports. "Two  years  in  that kind  of
 situation is disheartening.
 "He  didn't have  a chance  that  first year  with that  whole Tim  Tebow-Mark
 Sanchez  fiasco. ...  His second  year, Geno  Smith was  learning how  to play
 quarterback. So they never threw the ball deep because they wanted to simplify
 things for Geno."
 The  Jets  also released  quarterbacks Tajh  Boyd and  Matt Simms, guards Will
 Campbell  and Caleb Schlauderaff, linebackers Troy Davis, Garrett McIntyre and
 A.J.  Edds,  cornerbacks Brandon  Dixon,  Jeremy  Reeves and  Johnny  Patrick,
 defensive  tackle Tevita  Finau, wide receiver Clyde Gates, running backs Alex
 Green  and Daryl  Richardson, defensive linemen Kerry Hyder and Zach Thompson,
 safety Rontez Miles, tight end Chris Pantale and offensive tackle Brent Qvale.
 Also, the Jets placed veteran LB Antwan Barnes on the PUP list as he continues
 to recover from a knee injury.
                === Veteran Shipley among Ravens final cuts ===
 Owings  Mills, MD ( - Veteran offensive lineman A.Q. Shipley
 was  among 13 players released by the Baltimore Ravens on Saturday as the team
 scrambled to reach the NFL's mandated 53-man roster limit.
 Shipley  started  nine  games  for  Baltimore a  season  ago  but  was  deemed
 expendable  largely due  to  the  acquisition of  new  starting center  Jeremy
 Baltimore  is  also parting ways  with cornerback  Derek Cox, although that is
 believed  to be a  procedural move and the veteran is expected to re-sign with
 the team as soon as Sunday, according to the Baltimore Sun.
 Players  who will be moving on and were waived include offensive tackle Parker
 Graham,  cornerbacks Tramain Jacobs and Sammy Seamster, offensive lineman Ryan
 Jensen,  defensive  tackles Jamie  Meder and  A.J. Pataiali'i, linebacker John
 Simon,  tight end  Phillip  Supernaw, running  back  Fitzgerald Toussaint  and
 quarterback Keith Wenning.
 Meanwhile veteran CB Dominique Franks was released.
 The  Ravens  also placed wide receiver  Jimmy Butler on injured reserve with a
 shoulder problem, and put defensive tackle Terrence Cody on the PUP list as he
 continues to recover from a hip injury.
                      === Patriots keep QB Mallett ===
 Foxboro,  MA  ( - Ryan Mallett  is still a member of the New
 England Patriots.
 Mallett wasn't among the 19 players waived or released as the Patriots reduced
 their roster to the 53-man limit on Saturday.
 One of the most intriguing battles this summer was the one between Mallett and
 rookie  Jimmy Garoppolo to be Tom Brady's backup. As of right now, New England
 will go with three quarterbacks on its active roster.
 Defensive  lineman Jerel  Worthy and  wide  receiver Josh  Boyce were  notable
 players to be cut by the club.
 The Patriots acquired Worthy, a former second-round draft pick, from Green Bay
 earlier  this month.  He played in only  two games last season as he recovered
 from a torn ACL.
 Boyce was drafted by New England in the fourth round last year.
 The  Patriots also  waived defensive linemen Jake Bequette, Eathyn Manumaleuna
 and  L.T. Tuipulotu,  linebackers Steve Beauharnais, Ja'Gared Davis and Taylor
 McCuller,  safeties Kanorris  Davis and Shamiel Gary, running backs Jonas Gray
 and  Roy Finch, offensive linemen Braxston Cave, Jon Halapio and Chris Martin,
 tight  end  Steve Maneri,  wide receiver Jeremy  Gallon, defensive back Daxton
 Swanson and long snapper Danny Aiken.
 Rookie linebacker James Morris was placed on injured reserve.
                === Browns move on from Burleson, Ogbonnaya ===
 Berea,  OH ( - The Cleveland Browns reached the NFL's 53-man
 roster  limit  on Saturday by making  a series of moves, including terminating
 the contracts of four veteran players.
 Wide  receiver  Nate Burleson, a 12-year  NFL vet who struggled with a nagging
 hamstring  strain throughout  camp, linebackers Zac Diles and Jamal Westerman,
 and  running  back Chris Ogbonnaya  were among  the familiar names released by
 "Nate  is a true  professional and it was a difficult decision for us." Browns
 first-year  head coach  Mike Pettine said. "Ultimately, his availability was a
 concern  with  all the time  he missed and  we liked what  we saw in the other
 players at that position."
 The  Browns also  waived  15 players:  defensive backs  Josh  Aubrey and  Leon
 McFadden,  defensive  linemen  Calvin  Barnett, Jacobbi  McDaniel  and  Justin
 Staples,  offensive linemen  Reid Fragel, Garrett Gilkey, Donald Hawkins, Alex
 Parsons and Abasi Salimu, quarterback Connor Shaw, tight end/fullback MarQueis
 Gray,  running back  Dion Lewis, tight end Emmanuel Ogbuehi, and wide receiver
 Willie Snead.
 Meanwhile  cornerback Isaiah Trufant was placed on injured reserve with a knee
 problem  that forced him to miss three of the Browns' four preseason games.
               === Texans cut former second-round pick Harris ===
 Houston, TX ( -  The Houston Texans reached the NFL's 53-man
 roster  limit on  Saturday by releasing 22 players, including a former second-
 round pick, cornerback Brandon Harris.
 The  disappointing Harris, the 60th overall pick in 2011 out of the University
 of Miami, never even started a game during his three years in south Texas.
 Houston also released kicker Chris Boswell, tight ends Zach Potter and Anthony
 Denham,  safety Jawanza  Starling, fullback Toben Opurum, wide receiver Travis
 Labhart,  offensive tackles  Mike Farrell and Matt Feiler, outside linebackers
 Quentin  Groves  and  Chris  McAllister, wide  receivers  E.Z.  Nwachukwu  and
 Lacoltan  Bester, guards  Alex Kupper and Bronson Irwin, center James Ferentz,
 nose  tackle Ricardo Mathews, inside linebackers Max Bullough and Chris Young,
 cornerback  Marcus  Williams  and  defensive ends  Keith  Browner  and  Julius
 Meanwhile,  the  team reached an  injury settlement with linebacker Paul Hazel
 and released him off injured reserve.
                   === Royster among Redskins' final cuts ===
 Loudoun  County, VA ( - The Washington Redskins waived three
 running backs on Saturday, including three-year veteran Evan Royster.
 Royster  had played in  32 games for Washington the last two seasons but was a
 casualty to this year's final cut, along with fellow backs Lache Seastrunk and
 Chris Thompson.
 Kicker   Zach   Hocker,  offensive  lineman  Maurice  Hurt,  cornerback  Chase
 Minnifield,  safety Phillip Thomas, wide receiver Nick Williams and linebacker
 Everette Brown were also let go.
 Two players -- defensive end Stephen Bowen and wide receiver Leonard Hankerson
 --  were  placed on the  physically unable to  perform list, while nose tackle
 Chris  Neild and linebacker Darryl Sharpton were placed on the reserve/injured
                     === Falcons finalize 53-man roster ===
 Flowery  Branch,  GA (  -  Fifth  round draft  pick  Ricardo
 Allen was among the final roster cuts made by the Atlanta Falcons on Saturday.
 Allen,  a cornerback  out of Purdue, was selected 147th overall by the Falcons
 in  May but  failed to impress enough to  make the final roster. He was one of
 two  2014 draft picks left off the final roster, with seventh round linebacker
 Yawin Smallwood getting released on Friday.
 Also  waived  were wide  receivers Jeremy  Ebert and  Bernard Reedy, tight end
 Mickey  Shuler, guard  Harland  Gunn, tackle  Terren  Jones, defensive  tackle
 Travian Robinson and linebacker Jacques Smith.
 Atlanta   also  reached  an  injury  settlement  with  wide  receiver  Geraldo
                === Niners gut special teams in roster cuts ===
 Santa Clara, CA ( - The San Francisco 49ers pared down their
 roster  to the NFL-mandated limit of 53 players by releasing a host of veteran
 special-teams players.
 Among  the casualties  for the  Niners were  wide receiver  Kassim Osgood  and
 safeties  Bubba  Ventrone and C.J.  Spillman, core special-teamers from a 2013
 unit which was regarded as one of the league's best.
 Also  released  was veteran  guard Adam  Snyder as well  as running back Glenn
 Winston,  offensive tackle  Carter Bykowski, linebacker Shayne Skov, tight end
 Asante  Cleveland,  long snapper  Kevin McDermott,  guard Al Netter, offensive
 tackle  Michael  Philipp, guard  Ryan  Seymour,  running back  Alfonso  Smith,
 defensive  tackle Lawrence  Okoye, wide  receiver Lance  Lewis, wide  receiver
 L'Damian  Washington, linebacker  Chase Thomas,  cornerback Darryl  Morris and
 nose tackle Mike Purcell.
 The  49ers also  placed fullback  Will Tukuafu  and rookie  cornerback Kenneth
 Acker  on  injured reserve  while star  linebacker Aldon Smith  was put on the
 reserve/suspended  list,  a result  of his  nine-game punishment for violating
 both the NFL's substance-abuse and personal-conduct policies.
 In  July, Smith was sentenced to 11 days in jail and three years' probation on
 weapons and DUI charges, leading to this most recent suspension.
 Smith  voluntarily  took a leave  of absence from the  49ers last year to seek
 help for a substance abuse problem, missing five games.
 He  has  been one of  the NFL's  elite pass rushers  since being drafted No. 7
 overall  by the 49ers  in 2011. He has 42 sacks in just three seasons, but has
 had numerous run-ins with the law.
                     === Panthers release G Chris Scott ===
 Charlotte,  NC  ( - The Carolina Panthers released offensive
 guard Chris Scott, who started eight games for them last season.
 Scott,  who started  the last two preseason  games, was one of 22 roster moves
 the Panthers made Saturday to get down to 53 players before the deadline.
 They  made  17 cuts, including  wide receiver  Tavarres King and safety Robert
 The  Panthers  also waived/injured  tackle  Kevin  Hughes and  reached  injury
 settlements with tight end Mike McNeill and safety Anderson Russell.
            === Jags put finishing touches on roster, waive four ===
 Jacksonville,  FL  ( -  The Jacksonville Jaguars waived four
 players  on  Saturday and  received  a  roster  exemption for  suspended  wide
 receiver Ace Sanders to reach the NFL's mandated 53-man roster limit.
 The  Jags released  safety  Sherrod Martin,  cornerback  Jamell Fleming,  wide
 receiver Kerry Taylor and linebacker Nate Stupar.
 Sanders,  meanwhile, will be sidelined for the first four games of the regular
 season  for  violating the league's  substance-abuse policy. He was the team's
 second-leading  receiver last season as a rookie with 51 catches for 484 yards
 and one touchdown.
 Other  players previously  released on Friday were center Mike Brewster, guard
 Drew Nowak, defensive end Gerald Rivers, quarterbacks Ricky Stanzi and Stephen
 Morris,  wide  receiver Chad Bumphis,  fullback Eric Kettani, offensive tackle
 Cody  Booth, defensive lineman DeAndre Coleman, defensive tackle Ricky Havili-
 Heimuli,  safety Craig  Loston, kicker/punter  Kasey Redfern.  tight end  D.J.
 Tialavea and linebacker Marcus Whitfield.
 Veteran  wide  receiver Tandon  Doss  (ankle)  and rookie  cornerback  Rashaad
 Reynolds (hand) were placed on injured reserve after suffering injuries in the
 club's preseason finale against Atlanta.
 Meanwhile, first-year tight Brandon Barden (groin) was waived/injured
 Jacksonville also announced that rookie guard Tyler Shatley, who was set to be
 waived, remains on the current roster.
 The  Jaguars  will open their  regular season on Sept.  7, when they visit the
 Philadelphia Eagles.
                        === Colts cut ex-starter Sheppard ===
 Indianapolis,  IN (  -  The Indianapolis  Colts reached  the
 NFL's  53-man roster  limit on  Saturday  by releasing  17 players,  including
 linebacker Kelvin Sheppard, who started seven regular-season games and both of
 the team's postseason affairs a year ago.
 A third-round pick by Buffalo in 2011, Sheppard started 15 games for the Bills
 in  the 2012  season and was eventually traded to Indianapolis for edge rusher
 Jerry Hughes.
 Also  waived were  defensive ends Gannon Conway and Tyler Hoover, running back
 David Fluellen, quarterback Chandler Harnish, linebackers Phillip Hunt, Andrew
 Jackson  and Rob  Ruggiero, wide receivers Ryan Lankford and Josh Lenz, center
 FN  Lutz, safety  Dewey McDonald, defensive tackle Nnamdi Obukwelu, cornerback
 Sheldon  Price, tight  ends Weslye  Saunders and  Erik Swoope  and guard  Josh
 Jackson was the team's sixth-round pick out of Western Kentucky in May.
 The  Colts also  released  nose tackle  Brandon  McKinney, and  waived-injured
 offensive tackle Matt Hall as well as safety Delano Howell.
 Meanwhile,  star  pass rusher Robert  Mathis, who  was suspended for the first
 four games by the NFL for violating the league's PED policy, was placed on the
 reserve/suspended list.
 The  Colts  will open  their regular  season on  Sept. 7,  when they visit the
 Denver Broncos.
                     === Lions release Leshoure, Durham ===
 Allen  Park, MI  ( - The Detroit Lions released running back
 Mikel Leshoure on Saturday as part of their final roster cuts.
 Leshoure,  24, was  a second-round  pick in  2011 by  Detroit, but  missed his
 rookie season after tearing his Achilles during a practice session.
 He  started  14 games  in  2012  after missing  the  first  two games  with  a
 suspension  and finished  the season with 798 yards and nine touchdowns on 215
 However,  the  team acquired  Reggie Bush in  free agency in  2013, and he was
 relegated  to a  backup  role,  appearing in  just  three  games with  limited
 touches last season.
 The  Lions  also released wide receiver  Kris Durham, a three-year veteran who
 filled  in admirably  when Nate Burleson went down with a season-ending injury
 in  2013. Matt Stafford's college roommate finished the season with 38 catches
 for 490 yards and two touchdowns over 16 games.
 Also  included in the final cuts were guard Rodney Austin, linebackers Shamari
 Benton,  Brandon  Hepburn and Julian  Stanford, wide receivers Patrick Edwards
 and  Andrew Peacock,  tight ends  Michael Egnew  and Jordan  Thompson, running
 backs  Emil Igwengu  and George Winn, cornerbacks Chris Greenwood and Mohammed
 Seisay,  center Darren  Keyton,  defensive tackles  Xavier  Proctor and  Jimmy
 Saddler-McQueen and tackle Michael Williams
 In  addition, the  team terminated  the  contracts of  defensive tackle  Andre
 Fluellen,  safety  Nate Ness, guard  Garrett Reynolds and defensive end Darryl
                 === Little headlines Raiders' roster purge ===
 Alameda,  CA (  - Wide  receiver  Greg Little  was among  22
 players  waived by  the Oakland Raiders as  the team reduced its roster to the
 required 53-man limit on Saturday.
 Little  caught 61  passes  as a  rookie  with  Cleveland in  2011  and had  41
 receptions for 465 yards and two scores for the Browns last season. The former
 second-round  pick was  waived by Cleveland in May and subsequently claimed by
 the Raiders, but managed just five grabs for 65 yards during the preseason.
 Also cut by Oakland on Saturday was safety Brandian Ross, who started 13 games
 in place of an injured Tyvon Branch in 2013 and recorded 75 tackles, two sacks
 and a forced fumble last season.
 The  Raiders also  waived running  backs George  Atkinson and  Jeremy Stewart,
 defensive  ends Denico  Autry,  Jack Crawford  and  Ryan Robinson,  cornerback
 Chance  Casey,  offensive tackles  Jack Cornell, Dan  Kistler and Erie Ladson,
 linebackers  Carlos Fields, Bojay Filimoeatu and Spencer Hadley, wide receiver
 Seth  Roberts,  defensive tackle  Ricky Lumpkin, guard  Lamar Mady, tight ends
 Jake  Murphy and Scott Simonson, offensive lineman Jarrod Shaw, kicker Giorgio
 Tavecchio and fullback Karl Williams.
 Crawford,  a  fifth-round selection in  2012, had 15  tackles in 15 games last
          === Bengals release S Manning, move McCarron to NFI list ===
 Cincinnati,  OH  ( - The Cincinnati Bengals released veteran
 safety  Danieal Manning and moved rookie quarterback A.J. McCarron to the non-
 football  injury list as part of a series of moves to reach the NFL's mandated
 53-man roster limit.
 McCarron,  the  Bengals fifth-round  pick out of  Alabama, arrived at training
 camp  with a sore  shoulder and will now be allowed to rehab with the team and
 go  to  meetings. In  turn the Bengals  will have a  window of eligibility for
 McCarron  to  return to practice  under a roster exemption  after Week 6 if he
 medically cleared.
 Cincinnati  also released  veteran offensive lineman Will Svitek and waived 13
 players:  h-back  Orson Charles,  offensive tackle  Dan France, wide receivers
 Cobi  Hamilton  and Colin  Lockett,  cornerbacks  Victor Hampton  and  Onterio
 McCalebb,  defensive tackles David King and Devon Still, defensive ends Dontay
 Moch  and Sam Montgomery, center Trevor Robinson, fullback Nikita Whitlock and
 running back James Wilder Jr.
 In  addition  the Bengals  placed guard  Trey Hopkins  on injured reserve, and
 cornerback  Chris Lewis-Harris,  who was suspended two games for violating the
 NFL's substance-abuse policy, was placed on the reserve/suspended list.
 On Friday Cincinnati released running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis.
 Green-Ellis  started all 16 games for the Bengals last season, rushing for 756
 yards  and  seven touchdowns.  In two  seasons with  Cincinnati, he rushed for
 1,850  yards  and 13 scores, starting  all 31 regular-season games in which he
 Over six NFL seasons, Green-Ellis has 3,914 yards and 42 TDs rushing. He spent
 his first four seasons in the league with the New England Patriots.
 The Bengals also waived linebacker Brandon Joiner, defensive tackle LaKendrick
 Ross and quarterback Tyler Wilson on Friday.
                  === Bears waive Hayden, finalize roster ===
 Lake  Forest, IL  ( -  The Chicago  Bears waived  cornerback
 Kelvin Hayden when setting their 53-man roster on Saturday.
 Hayden  was also a training camp  casualty last  summer, tearing his hamstring
 and spending the season on injured reserve.
 The  31-year-old joined the  Bears in 2012 and played in all 16 games with two
 starts. He recorded 40 tackles with an interception that season.
 Hayden  has compiled 345 tackles and 12 interceptions in 101 career games with
 Chicago, Atlanta and Indianapolis.
 Veteran offensive lineman Eben Britton, who played 13 games for the Bears last
 season,  as well  as Austen Lane. who has  played 30 games in the NFL the past
 four years, were also released.
 The  club  also waived  wide  receivers  Josh  Bellamy,  Dale Moss  and  Chris
 Williams,  center Taylor Boggs, defensive tackles Brandon Dunn, Lee Pegues and
 Tracy  Robertson, safety  Marcus Trice, cornerbacks C. J. Wilson and Al Louis-
 Jean, linebackers Jerry Franklin and DeDe Lattimore and guard Ryan Groy.
 Safety M. D. Jennings was waived with an injury settlement.
                        === Cowboys get Spencer back ===
 Arlington,  TX (  - There hasn't been a lot of positive news
 surrounding the Dallas Cowboys defense this summer, but the much-maligned unit
 got  a bit of  a boost Saturday when veteran defensive end Anthony Spencer was
 activated off the PUP list.
 The  veteran pass  rusher, who is attempting to return from microfracture knee
 surgery, passed his physical in time to be a part of Dallas' 53-man roster.
 The same can't be said of 19 others who were jettisoned as the Cowboys reached
 the mandated limit.
 Dallas  released wide receiver Desmon Briscoe and offensive guard Uche Nwaneri
 while  the  team waived running  backs Phillip  Tanner, Ryan Williams and D.J.
 Adams,  offensive tackle  Josh Aladenoye,  defensive ends  Caesar Rayford  and
 Kenneth  Boatright,  defensive tackle Dartwan  Bush, wide receivers LaRon Byrd
 and  Jamar Newsome, guard Stephen Goodin, cornerback Terrance Mitchell, center
 Ronald  Patrick, linebackers Dontavis Sapp, Will Smith and Keith Smith, safety
 Ryan Smith and tight end Asa Watson.
 The  Cowboys  also waived-injured  linebacker Orie  Lemon and defensive tackle
 Zach   Minter  and  placed  cornerback  Orlando  Scandrick  and  safety  Jakar
 Hamilton on the suspended list to begin the season.
 Finally,  Dallas  acquired defensive  end Lavar Edwards  from Tennessee for an
 undisclosed 2015 draft pick.
                     === Succop released by Kansas City ===
 Kansas  City, MO  ( - Kicker Ryan Succop and linebacker Nico
 Johnson  were  among the  final  roster  cuts by  the  Kansas  City Chiefs  on
 Succop,  the final selection  of the 2009 draft, had been the kicker in Kansas
 City  the past  five  seasons, connecting  on  81 percent  of  his field  goal
 attempts and all 160 of his extra-point tries during that time.
 The  release  of Succop means that  undrafted rookie Cairo Santos, a Brazilian
 native out of Tulane, will handle kicking duties.
 Johnson  was a  fourth-round selection by Kansas City in 2013, but was injured
 during training camp last season and had limited playing time as a rookie.
 Also,  the team  placed quarterback Tyler Bray and wide receiver Kyle Williams
 on  injured reserve,  while wide  receiver Dwayne  Bowe and  offensive lineman
 Donald Stephenson were placed on the reserve/suspended list.
 Bowe  will miss  Kansas  City's regular-season  opener  against Tennessee  for
 violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy.
 Kansas  City  also cut  safeties Jonathon Amaya  and Malcolm Bronson, fullback
 Jordan  Campbell, defensive linemen Dominique Hamilton and Kona Schwenke, wide
 receivers  Mark Harrison  and Fred  Williams, guard  Ricky Henry,  linebackers
 Alonzo  Highsmith  and Devan  Walker, defensive  tackle Kyle Love, cornerbacks
 Justin  Rogers and  DeMarcus  Van  Dyke, offensive  tackle  J'Marcus Webb  and
 running  back Charcandrick West. Additionally, defensive end Mike Catapano was
 placed on the non-football injury list.
               === Orton joins Bills as Tuel among final cuts ===
 Orchard  Park,  NY (  - Quarterback Jeff  Tuel was among the
 final  cuts Saturday by the Buffalo Bills, who signed veteran Kyle Orton to be
 the backup for E.J. Manuel.
 Tuel  appeared in  two games  for  the Bills  last season,  starting one,  and
 completed  just 26-of-59  passes  for 309  yards with  a  touchdown and  three
 interceptions  in those  outings --  a Week  5 loss  to Cleveland  and Week  9
 setback against Kansas City.
 The  Bills  decided on another option  Saturday with the signing of Orton, who
 was released by Dallas in July after threatening to retire and failing to show
 up for the Cowboys' minicamp.
 Orton,  an eight-year veteran, has compiled a record of 35-35 as a starter and
 has  thrown  for 15,019  yards with  83 touchdowns and  59 interceptions in 75
 games overall with Chicago, Denver, Kansas City and Dallas.
 Buffalo  also  released wide receivers  T.J. Graham and Caleb Holley, safeties
 Deon  Broomfield  and Kenny Ladler,  defensive linemen Ike Igbinosun and Bryan
 Johnson,  offensive linemen  Doug Legursky and Antoine McClain, and linebacker
 Jimmy Gaines.
 In  addition, the  Bills  signed punter  Colton Schmidt,  who  spent the  2014
 preseason with San Francisco, after releasing Brian Moorman on Friday.
                 === Giants put Manningham, Holliday on IR ===
 East  Rutherford, NJ ( - Wide receiver Mario Manningham, one
 of  the heroes of  the New York Giants' most recent Super Bowl win, will begin
 his  second tour duty with the team on injured reserve due to a calf strain he
 sustained in Thursday's preseason finale.
 Manningham,  whose  acrobatic 38-yard catch  down the sideline ignited a game-
 winning  fourth-quarter drive in the Giants' 21-17 victory over New England in
 Super  Bowl  XLVI, rejoined New  York in the  offseason after a two-year stint
 with  San Francisco. The  seventh-year pro was in danger of not making the 53-
 man  roster due  to strong preseasons by undrafted rookie Corey Washington and
 free agent Preston Parker, both of whom survived Saturday's final cuts.
 Return  specialist Trindon Holliday, who took both a kickoff and punt back for
 a touchdown in a playoff game for the Denver Broncos two seasons ago, was also
 put on IR with a hamstring issue.
 The  Giants' 16  cuts on Saturday included four vested veterans in quarterback
 Curtis Painter, fullback John Conner, tight end Kellen Davis and defensive end
 Israel Idonije.
 Painter  lost out to 2013 draft pick Ryan Nassib in the battle to serve as Eli
 Manning's  backup.  Davis has 50  catches and  12 touchdowns over a seven-year
 career,  while  Idonije --  an 11-year  vet --  had been  signed by the Giants
 during the preseason.
 New  York also  waived running  backs Michael  Cox and  Kendall Gaskins,  wide
 receiver  Julian  Talley, offensive  tackles Mark Asper  and Adam Gress, guard
 Jamal  Johnson-Webb, linebackers  Terrell Manning and Dan Fox, defensive backs
 Chandler  Fenner  and  Thomas  Gordon,  defensive  tackle  Kelcy  Quarles  and
 defensive end Jordan Stanton.
 Additionally,  guard  Eric Herman and  cornerback Jayron Hosley were placed on
 the  reserve/suspended  list.  Both  were handed  four-game  bans  for  policy
 infractions,   with   Herman  testing  positive  for  a  performance-enhancing
 substance and Hosley violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy.
           === Dolphins part ways with Thomas, Pouncey on roster ===
 Davie,  FL  ( - The Miami  Dolphins have finally given up on
 running back Daniel Thomas, but kept center Mike Pouncey on the active roster.
 Thomas,  a  2011 second-round draft pick,  was among Saturday's final cuts. He
 wasn't  going to figure in the team's plans with the emergence of Lamar Miller
 and the offseason signing of free agent Knowshon Moreno.
 The  Kansas State product finished his Miami career with just a 3.6 yards-per-
 carry average and eight touchdowns in 40 games.
 Pouncey  was on the physically unable to perform list throughout training camp
 after  surgery in June to repair a torn hip labrum he suffered during OTAs. It
 was  believed  he could  be  sidelined  for up  to  three  months, but  a  PUP
 designation to start the season would have kept him out for at least the first
 six games. He can now return when healthy.
 The  Dolphins also  released kick returner Marcus Thigpen, the first player in
 franchise  history  with touchdowns on  a kickoff and  punt return in the same
 In  addition,  Miami also released  wide receivers  Kevin Cone and Matt Hazel,
 tight ends Kyle Miller and Evan Wilson, defensive linemen Isaako Aaitui, Tevin
 Mims,  D'Aundre Reed and Garrison Smith, kicker Jake Rogers, offensive linemen
 David  Arkin, Sam  Brenner and Evan Finkenburg, defensive backs Kevin Fogg and
 Jordan Kovacs, quarterback Seth Lobato and linebacker Andrew Wilson.
 Defensive tackle Kamal Johnson was placed on injured reserve and veteran guard
 Tony Hills had his contract terminated.
 Defensive  end Dion  Jordan and safety Reshad Jones will not count against the
 53-man roster while they serve four-game league suspensions.
              === WR Brown fails to make Chargers roster ===
 San  Diego, CA  ( - The San Diego Chargers reached the NFL's
 53-man  roster limit  on Saturday  by releasing  22 players  including veteran
 wide receiver Vincent Brown, who was waived-injured with a calf problem.
 The  25-year-old  Brown caught 41  passes for 472 yards  and a touchdown in 16
 games for the Chargers in 2013. San Diego originally selected him in the third
 round of the 2011 draft.
 The  Chargers also  released the following players: linebackers Victor Aiyewa,
 Thomas  Keiser,  Cordarro Law  and  Colton  Underwood, defensive  tackle  Chas
 Alecxih,  wide receivers  Torrence Allen,  Javontee Herndon  and Tevin  Reese,
 cornerbacks  Crezdon  Butler, Greg  Ducre,  safeties  Alden Darby  and  Adrian
 Phillips,  tight  end Michael Flacco,  offensive tackles Mike Harris, Jeremiah
 Sirles  and Kenny  Wiggins, defensive linemen Joe Kruger and Doug Worthington,
 quarterback Brad Sorensen, guard Craig Watts and center Khalil Wilkes.
              === Buccaneers release S Wright among final cuts ===
 Tampa,  FL ( - The Tampa Bay Buccaneers made its final eight
 roster  moves  on Saturday to reach  the 53-man roster limit by cutting safety
 Major Wright and wide receiver Solomon Patton among others.
 Wright  had  100 tackles,  two  interceptions  and  two forced  fumbles  while
 starting  all 15  games he  played last  season, his  fourth with  the Chicago
 Patton  was a rookie return specialist out of Florida. He averaged 27 yards in
 eight kickoff returns during the preseason.
 Tampa Bay also released defensive tackle Ronald Talley and waived running back
 Jeff Demps, linebacker Brandon Magee, defensive tackle Matthew Masifilo, tight
 end Cameron Brate and quarterback Mike Kafka.
                 === Veteran Vickerson released by Broncos ===
 Englewood, CO ( - Defensive tackle Kevin Vickerson was among
 Saturday's final cuts by the Denver Broncos.
 Vickerson  started 41  of the 47 games  he played over the last four years for
 the Broncos, though a dislocated hip limited him to 11 games last season.
 The  other  vested veterans who  were cut include  tight ends Jameson Konz and
 Cameron Morrah, cornerback Jerome Murphy and defensive lineman Brian Sanford.
 Wide  receivers  Bennie Fowler  and  Nathan  Palmer, quarterback  Zac  Dysert,
 safeties  John Boyett and Duke Ihenacho, running back Kapri Bibbs, linebackers
 Shaquil  Barrett and  L.J. Fort, defensive tackles Sione Fua, tight end Gerell
 Robinson,  guards  Ryan Miller and  Vinston Painter, cornerbacks Jordan Sullen
 and Louis Young, and center Matt Paradis were all waived.
 Ihenacho started 14 games and had 73 tackles for Denver last season.
 The  club  also placed  defensive end  Kenny Anunike  onto the injured reserve
 list,  while  kicker Matt Prater  was marked as reserve/suspended. Prater will
 miss  the  season's first  four games  for a violation  of the NFL's substance
 abuse policy.
                 === Rangers recall Ross, activate Holland ===
 Houston,  TX  ( - The  Texas Rangers recalled pitcher Robbie
 Ross  Jr.  from  Triple-A  Round  Rock to  start  Saturday's  contest  against
 the Houston Astros.
 Ross  has bounced back  and forth between the majors and minors in 2014, going
 2-5 with a 6.06 earned run average in 19 appearances (10 starts) with Texas.
 In  addition, the  Rangers activated  pitcher  Derek Holland  from the  60-day
 disabled  list, optioned  pitcher Nick  Tepesch to  Round Rock  and designated
 first baseman/outfielder Mike Carp for assignment.
 Holland has gone a combined 2-1 with a 4.43 ERA in six starts between Double-A
 Frisco and Round Rock as he finished up his rehabilitation from a knee injury.
 The  left-hander  went 10-9 with a  3.42 ERA in  33 starts with the Rangers in
 Tepesch, who can be recalled when the Triple-A season is through, has gone 4-8
 with a 4.44 ERA in 18 games this year.
 Carp  hit  .125 (5-for-40)  with four RBI  in 17 games  with Texas since being
 picked  up  from the  Boston Red Sox  off waivers. Over  59 overall games this
 season, the 28-year-old California native is hitting an anemic .175.
             === Knost grabs lead at Hotel Fitness Championship ===
 Fort  Wayne, IN  ( - Colt Knost carded his third straight 67
 on  Saturday and  moved into the lead  after three rounds of the Hotel Fitness
 Knost,  a two-time  winner on the Tour, finished 54 holes at 15-under-
 par 201 at Sycamore Hills Golf Club.
 Second-round  leader  Sam Saunders managed a  2-under 70 and he dropped into a
 tie  for second at  minus-14. Saunders was joined there by Greg Owen, who shot
 4-under 68 on Saturday.
 John  Peterson  (64) and Bud  Cauley (67) share  fourth place at 13-under 203,
 while Tyrone Van Aswegen is one stroke back at minus-12 after shooting 3-under
 69 in round three.
 Knost,  who played in  the final group with Saunders on Saturday, got off to a
 quick start with birdies on one and two to join Saunders at 12-under. Saunders
 answered with a birdie on the par-4 third to regain the lead.
 After five pars in a row, Knost moved to minus-13 with a birdie on the eighth.
 Saunders,  who  parred six  consecutive holes  from the  fourth, stumbled to a
 bogey on the 10th to fall one behind.
 Saunders bounced right back with a birdie on the par-3 11th and made it two in
 a  row at No.  12. However, he remained one back as Knost made a 15-foot eagle
 putt on the 12th.
 "I hit such a good shot in there. To get a three there was really nice," Knost
 Knost  finished his bogey-free round with six straight pars to grab the third-
 round lead.
 "I  grinded well  out there. I'm obviously happy with where I'm sitting," said
 Knost, who has gone 29 straight holes without a bogey. "
 Saunders  slipped two  behind as he stumbled  to a bogey on the par-5 15th. He
 bounced  back with a birdie on the 16th to get back within one. Saunders ended
 there as he parred the final two holes.
 Owen,  who won  the United Leasing Championship earlier this year, rounded out
 the final group in round three. He birdied the second, but after six pars in a
 row gave that shot back as he faltered to a bogey on the ninth.
 Around  the turn, Owen  started to move up the leaderboard with birdies at the
 10th  and 12th. He  climbed into a tie for second thanks to birdies on Nos. 15
 and 17.
 "If  you ask anyone,  they say I don't have any patience. You got to out here,
 there's so many good players, every shot matters," Owen said.
 NOTES:  Knost owned  the 54-hole lead for  the second time in his Tour
 career  ...  Knost went wire-to-wire  to win the last  time he had the 54-hole
 lead  ... Defending  champion Trevor Immelman stumbled to a 4-over 76 and fell
 into a tie for 68th at 1-over 217.
                      === Otto maintains lead in Italy ===
 Turin,  Italy  ( - Hennie Otto carded a third-round, 1-under
 71  on Saturday  and he maintained his  lead heading into the final day at the
 Italian Open.
 Otto, who entered the day with a 3-stroke lead over Bernd Wiesberger, finished
 54  holes at 16-under-par  200 and he now holds a 2-shot advantage over Richie
 Ramsay at Circolo Golf Torino.
 Seeking  his third win on the European Tour, Otto won this event back in 2008.
 His  last  victory came at the  2011 South African Open Championship, an event
 that Otto finished tied for second in earlier this season.
 Ramsay  fired  a solid, bogey-free  66 to vault  into second place at 14-under
 202. Wiesberger, who shared the first-round lead with Francesco Molinari, also
 shot a 71 and he remains three shots back at minus-13.
 Lee  Slattery (67)  and Ross Fisher (70)  are tied for fourth at 11-under 205,
 while  Stephen Gallacher,  the only player who can secure an automatic spot on
 the  European Ryder Cup team this week with a win or second-place finish, shot
 a 69 and is at minus-10.
 Molinari,  the 2006 winner at this event, shot a 3-under 69 and he is tied for
 seventh  at  9-under with S.S.P.  Chowrasia (66),  David Howell (67) and Joost
 Luiten (70).
 Otto's  third round  was full  of ups  and downs  as he  battled a  stiff back
 throughout  most  of the day. He  started on a good  note at the first when he
 rolled  in a birdie  putt to extend his lead even further. Otto gave that shot
 back two holes later, however, as he tripped to a bogey on No. 3.
 After  back-to-back pars,  Otto drained another birdie at six to get back into
 red  numbers for the day. Otto lost a lot of momentum as he made a mess of the
 par-5 ninth and he had to settle for a double-bogey.
 Otto  got one of those shots back right away with a birdie on 10. He poured in
 another  gain at  12 to get back  to minus-1 for his round. Following two more
 pars, Otto made his fifth birdie on 15, but he tripped to another bogey at 16.
 He finished his day with back-to-back pars to end at 1-under.
 "It  was  a rough day  to be  honest," Otto said.  "My back started to tighten
 after  eight holes, but I managed to get it round even though I couldn't swing
 it  properly. I got a little lucky at times as well, but you need that in this
 game if you are going to win a tournament."
 Beginning the day seven shots behind Otto, Ramsay coasted out of the gate with
 two  straight pars.  He followed with three  birdies in four holes from No. 3,
 with the par coming at No. 5.
 Ramsay made the turn with another gain at nine, putting him at 4-under for the
 round.  After another pair of pars, Ramsay drained his fifth birdie at No. 12.
 He  finished things off with five straight pars before making his sixth birdie
 at the last to end his bogey-free day at 6-under.
 Wiesberger had a quiet front nine with just one birdie at No. 8. He played the
 back  nine at even-par, making birdies at 15 and 18 to go along with his first
 two bogeys of the week at 10 and 16.
 Gallacher,  who  made four birdies  and one bogey in  his third round, is just
 happy to have a shot at a first- or second-place finish heading into the final
 "It  keeps me  in touching distance," Gallacher said. "The worst thing I could
 have  done was open  up a big gap which was insurmountable. I've not done that
 so  a good day on  Sunday and I am still right in there. I had about four lip-
 outs  today, but they  went in on Friday and I holed a couple of good putts at
 the end so it evens itself out."
 NOTES:  Ramsay is  a two-time winner on  tour, with his last win coming at the
 2012  European Masters  ... Otto won the 2008 Italian Open at 25-under-par 263
 ... Gallacher entered this week 11th in Ryder Cup world points and 12th on the
 European points list.
           === Panzeri grabs 2-shot lead at Wildfire Invitational ===
 Peterborough,  ON (  - Joe  Panzeri carded  a 4-under  68 on
 Saturday   and  grabbed   a  2-shot  lead  after  54  holes  of  The  Wildfire
 Panzeri  ended three rounds at 16-under-par 200 at Wildfire Golf Club. He will
 go for his third PGA Tour Canada win on Sunday.
 Max Gilbert fired the low round of the day, a 7-under 65, to soar into a share
 of  second  place at  minus-14. He was  joined there by  Jeff Corr (68), Brock
 Mackenzie  (71),  second-round leader  Adam Cornelson  (72), Justin Shin (68),
 Chris Hemmerich (68) and Jay Vandeventer (69).
 Brady Schnell (68) and Michael Gligic (66) are tied for ninth at 13-under 203,
 while  Randall Hutchison  (72) and  Nate  McCoy (67)  are one  stroke back  at
 Panzeri  opened with a birdie at the first. After a pair of pars, he converted
 back-to-back  birdie chances  at four and five. Panzeri stumbled to a bogey on
 the sixth.
 The  28-year-old got  that shot right back as he birdied the seventh. However,
 Panzeri tripped to another bogey on No. 8 to slip back to minus-14.
 Panzeri  took the lead for good with a birdie on the 11th. He parred five in a
 row before making birdie on the par-3 17th. Panzeri parred the last to lead by
 two after three rounds.
 Gilbert  faltered to a  bogey on the second, but came right back with a birdie
 on  the third. He made eagle at the fourth and followed with another birdie on
 the par-5 fifth.
 Around the turn, Gilbert tripped to a bogey on No. 10. He shot into contention
 with  an  eagle on the par-5  12th. He moved to  12-under with a birdie on the
 13th.  Gilbert holed another eagle at the short par-4 14th to jump into second
 place. He ended there as he parred the last four holes.
 Corr  and Shin  had five birdies and  a bogey in their rounds of 68. Mackenzie
 mixed five birdies, two bogeys and one double-bogey in his 71, while Hemmerich
 had  six  birdies and two bogeys  for his 68.  Cornelson had two birdies and a
 double-bogey,  while Vandeventer posted four birdies, an eagle, a double-bogey
 and a bogey in his 69.
 NOTES:  Panzeri's two  wins were at the  2011 Dakota Dunes Casino Open and the
 2013  ATB Financial Classic ... With inclement weather expected on Sunday, tee
 times were moved up and players will go off split tees in threesomes.
                === Wise Dan hangs on to win Bernard Baruch ===
 Saratoga  Springs,  NY (  - Wise  Dan, the reigning two-time
 Horse  of  the Year,  held  off  a  surging  Optimizer to  capture  Saturday's
 $250,000 Bernard Baruch Stakes at Saratoga in his first race since surgery.
 Owned  by Morton  Fink, Wise Dan was  making his first start since winning the
 Woodford  Reserve Turf Classic at Churchill Downs on May 3. He underwent colic
 surgery  nearly  two weeks  later and  has been training  at Saratoga for this
 comeback effort.
 The  7-year-old gelding, trained by Charlie LoPresti. broke from post 5 in the
 1 1/16-mile turf stakes versus eight rivals, including a coupled entry. Ridden
 by  Hall  of Fame jockey John  Velazquez, the 4-5 favorite settled into fourth
 behind  pacesetter  Five  Iron.  Just  before the  start  the  champion  threw
 Velazquez delaying the race.
 Wise  Dan  moved wide  around the final  turn and gained  the lead nearing the
 final  furlong. Longshot  Optimizer, ridden by Alan Garcia, came charging down
 the  middle of  the grass course to  engage the favorite. Wise Dan was able to
 hold off the 29-1 longshot and post a nose victory in his first race in nearly
 five months.
 "He  showed he has the heart of a champion," Velazquez said. "(He carried) 127
 pounds  coming  from a long  layoff. When  I got to  the eighth pole, I didn't
 think I got it. When I got past the sixteenth pole he was giving me everything
 he had and the other horse was coming from the outside. There was a little bit
 of  doubt;  he was getting  tired. (I'm)  incredibly proud. It's incredible to
 have this horse coming back."
 Five Iron  held on  for third  with Sayaad  getting fourth.  Rounding out  the
 finish were  Bio Pro, North  Star Boy,  Sky Blazer, Boisterous and Paris Vegas
 Lea and Red Rifle, both entered for the main track, were scratched.
 The time for the Bernard Baruch was 1:39.08 on a firm turf course.
 "He  knows  how to win races.  Johnny said he was  tired. I can tell you, he's
 just  an amazing horse.  That's the way he wins," LoPresti said. "We wanted to
 run  here. I came here to run. I came here to train, and I came here to run. I
 really wanted to do it, and I'm really glad that we did."
 The  six-time Eclipse  Award winner remained perfect in three starts this year
 and  picked  up $150,000.  The gelding  inched closer to  $7 million in career
 earnings as he notched his 22nd victory in 30 lifetime starts.
 Wise  Dan  began 2014  with a  second straight win  in the  Maker's 46 Mile at
 Keeneland  on April  11 and  also claimed  a second  straight Turf  Classic at
 Churchill on Kentucky Derby Day.
 Wise Dan returned $3.60, $3.10 and $2.20. Optimizer paid $14.60 and $8.20, and
 Five Iron paid $4.70 to show.
             === Itsmyluckyday edges Moreno in Woodward Stakes ===
 Saratoga  Springs,  NY (  - Four weeks  after meeting in the
 Whitney  Handicap, Itsmyluckyday  turned  the tables  on  Moreno and  captured
 Saturday's  60th running  of the  $600,000  Woodward Stakes  at Saratoga  Race
 In the Whitney, Moreno set the pace and held off Itsmyluckyday to win by 1 1/4
 lengths.   For  the  1  1/8-mile  Woodward,  same  distance  as  the  Whitney,
 Itsmyluckyday  and  jockey Paco Lopez  stalked pacesetter Moreno and his rider
 Junior Alvarado. The two 4-year-olds went off as 5-2 co-favorites.
 Moreno  took the lead as the field went under the wire for the first time with
 Itsmyluckyday  running  second in  the  nine-horse  field with  eight  betting
 Itsmyluckyday,  who  broke from the inside  post, drew along side of Moreno on
 the  final turn.  Moreno had  a short  lead  at the  top of  the stretch,  but
 Itsmyluckyday,  trained by  Eddie Plesa  for Trilogy  Stable and  wife Laurie,
 doggedly stuck with his rival and was able to post a half-length victory.
 The  two  bumped approaching  the finish  with Alvarado  appearing to stand up
 before the wire. The stewards posted the "Inquiry" sign and Alvarado lodged an
 objection, but the stewards found no reason to change the order of finish.
 "He deserved it,"  Plesa said waiting for the stewards' decision. "He won this
 race.  They're going to  leave him up, there's nothing he did wrong other than
 win and I couldn't be anymore proud of him."
 Itsmyluckyday  stopped the timer at 1:48.84 on a fast track, just short of the
 Whitney's 1:48.05.
 "I think he took the game to Moreno today," Plesa said on national television.
 "He  didn't back up. Needless to say Moreno ran a fantastic race. And they ran
 down  there like two  champions would run down with each other. We were on the
 winning end and that's what it's all about."
 Finishing  third was  24-1 longshot Prayer for Relief with 3-1 third pick Zivo
 getting  fourth.  Completing the  order  of  finish were  Stephanoatsee,  Last
 Gunfighter,  Long  River, Romansh and  Norumbega. Micromanage was scratched to
 race Monday.
 Itsmyluckyday recorded his largest payday with the Woodward victory. The colt,
 who  was  second in last  year's Preakness, pocketed  $360,000 and won for the
 fourth  time in  six starts this season. The 4-year-old has career earnings of
 $1,662,600 with nine wins from 19 starts.
 Itsmyluckyday  began the  year with a fourth-place finish behind Palace Malice
 in the Gulfstream Park Handicap. He put together  a three-race  win streak  of
 Gulfstream's Best of the Rest Stakes along with Monmouth Park's Majestic Light
 Stakes and Salvator Mile.
 As  a  3-year-old, Itsmyluckyday won  the Gulfstream  Park Derby and Holy Bull
 Stakes  with seconds  in the Florida Derby and Preakness Stakes. He finished a
 disappointing 15th in last year's Kentucky Derby.
 Itsmyluckyday  paid  $7.70, $3.70 and  $3.00. Moreno returned $4.20 and $3.00,
 and Prayer for Relief paid $6.00 to show.
           === Huck beats Larghetti to retain cruiserweight crown ===
 Halle,  Germany  ( - In the  end, Marco Huck will retain his
 WBO  cruiserweight  crown, although there  was some  controversy as to how his
 bout against Mirko Larghetti ended.
 Huck  (38-2-1) battered  Larghetti with a barrage of punches at the conclusion
 of the 12th and final round. Although referee Jack Reiss ruled that a knockout
 punch  floored Larghetti  before the round was over, the challenger didn't hit
 the canvas until after the bell sounded to end the fight.
 The  decision was placed  in the hands of the judges, who ruled unanimously in
 Huck's favor: 116-112, 116-112, 118-110.
 Larghetti  (21-1)  suffered his first-ever  defeat to the man who successfully
 defended  the  cruiserweight crown for  the 13th time, tying Englishman Johnny
 Nelson's record.
 08/30 20:02:17 ET

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