Baseball, Apple Pie and Meth

Nothing says America’s Favorite Past Time like doing some meth:

Justin Woodall, who played safety on Alabama’s 2009 BCS national championship team, is one of three minor-leaguers in the Tampa Bay Rays organization who have been suspended by Major League Baseball after testing positive for methamphetamine,according to MLB.com.

This is so sad.

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Juuulio

Julio showed out last night for the Falcons:

In all, Ryan looked good. Jones looked, not to put too fine a point on it, great. Beyond the touchdown, he made a leaping catch over the middle and a tough grab down the sideline, and he even turned a screen pass into a 19-yard gain, at which point every Falcons fan exclaimed, “At last a screen! Dirk Koetter is a genius!”

Jones’ numbers: Seven passes thrown his way, six caught for 109 yards and six points. That’ll do.

Falcons Looking for Big Things from a Healthy Julio

From the AJC.com:

We’re probably going to find out this season just how great Julio Jones is. He had a tremendous rookie season: 54 catches, 959 yards, eight touchdowns. Those are impressive numbers, even before considering this backdrop: 1) He was coming off pre-draft foot surgery that affected his offseason conditioning; 2) He was limited in work with the playbook and quarterback Matt Ryan because of the lockout; 3) He played much of the season with a hamstring injury that forced him to miss three full games and parts of others; 4) He was subjected to the play-calling of Mike Mularkey, who never utilized him in screens or designed nearly enough plays to get Jones the ball in open spaces.

Those are four pretty good reasons why Julio would have a better season, though the fourth is somewhat subjective.  And those stats aren’t bad, despite the time he missed.  Julio is such a physical receiver that it’s getting harder to imagine him going through a full season uninjured.

Barron Already Leading for the Bucs

This news isn’t surprising:

But here’s the twist: Barber, the five-time Pro Bowl selection at cornerback who holds the franchise’s interception record, said the learning goes both ways.

“There are definitely some things that I learn about the position from him,” Barber said. “I’ve seen a lot over the years, and I’ve played with some great safeties. So I’m not worried about my confidence level back there. But it’s good being out there with Mark [Barron]. I’m figuring out what to do, and he’s figuring out the defense. I’m trying to teach him to be a professional. There are definitely things that are beneficial.”

It’s an ideal relationship for the Bucs. They have the consummate professional in Barber — a player who has surprised even the team’s first-year coaching staff with his uncompromising work ethic — teaming with a businesslike rookie they believe can be great.

 

One of the Last Dudes I’d Want to Fight

Apparently, Buccaneer rookie Mark Barron got into it with a teammate:

In June, there were reports of a fight in a players meeting between Buccaneers defensive tackle Brian Price and rookie safety Mark Barron.

Bucs coch Greg Schiano didn’t deny the fight happened when asked Thursday, but didn’t comment specifically about it.

But when asked about Price’s status, his words seemed to point toward something having happened.

Barron Set to Sign with Bucs

Sounds like Mark Barron may be ready to sign with the Buccaneers:

Based on some of the rumblings on the NFL grapevine, the next one could be Bucs safety Mark Barron.

Barron, the seventh overall selection, is represented by CAA, which also represents Griffin. And Browns running back Trent Richardson (the third overall pick). And Vikings tackle Matt Kalil (the fourth overall pick).

Barron falls in a potential wasteland of holdouts, behind Jags receiver Justin Blackmon at No. 5, Cowboys cornerback Morris Claiborne at No. 6, and Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill at No. 8. Last year, the Bucs were willing to overdo things at bit at No. 20, fully guaranteeing defensive end Adrian Clayborn’s deal even though the slot ultimately didn’t justify it.