Related topics

Update on the latest in sports:

December 30, 2018


Patriots beat Jets 38-3, clinch another 1st-round bye

UNDATED (AP) — Tom Brady threw for three first-half touchdowns and the New England Patriots clinched their ninth straight first-round bye in the playoffs with a 38-3 victory over the New York Jets.

The Patriots finished the season undefeated at home, and they guaranteed themselves at least one playoff game in Foxborough.

New England could still earn the No. 1 seed in the AFC if both Kansas City and the Los Angeles Chargers lose later.

Elsewhere around the league:

— Deshaun Watson threw for 234 yards and ran for a touchdown, DeAndre Hopkins had 147 yards receiving and the Houston Texans clinched the AFC South title with a 20-3 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Texans (11-5) won nine in a row after starting 0-3 to save their season and will make their fifth playoff appearance after winning the division for the fifth time in franchise history.

— Matthew Stafford threw for 266 yards and two scores to T.J. Jones, kicker Matt Prater tossed a touchdown pass after faking a field-goal try and the Detroit Lions ended a beleaguered season with a 31-0 win over the Green Bay Packers. With Green Bay trailing 21-0 at the half, quarterback Aaron Rodgers never returned after walking to the locker room early in the second quarter, having suffered a concussion. Both teams ended their season today.

— Bills rookie Josh Allen had a career-best three touchdown passes and scored two more rushing, and defensive tackle Kyle Williams closed his 13-year career in Buffalo with a win, 42-17 over the Miami Dolphins. Williams had a tackle for a loss and was part of a defense that forced four turnovers, including three by Miami quarterback Ryan Tannehill, in a game between two AFC East teams already eliminated from playoff contention.


Miami coach Richt retires after Hurricanes finish season 7-6

UNDATED (AP) —Mark Richt stepped down as Miami coach on Sunday, an announcement that caught the school off-guard and comes just days after the end of an underachieving season.

Richt, 58, said he was not forced out, and that the decision to retire was his.

Miami struggled to a 7-6 record this season, falling to Wisconsin in the Pinstripe Bowl on Thursday night. The Hurricanes have lost nine of their last 16 games going back to a 10-0 start last season, were horrendous on offense at times in 2018 — totaling just 100 passing yards in their last two games — and saw several recruits who were committed decide to either sign elsewhere or re-open their college decisions.

Richt was 26-13 at Miami, and 171-64 in 18 seasons between Georgia and the Hurricanes.

In other college football news:

— Houston fired coach Major Applewhite on Sunday after two seasons. The school announced the move a little more than a week after the Cougars were trounced in a 70-14 loss to Army in the Armed Forces Bowl . Houston, which is 8-5, lost four of its last five games after starting 7-1 and earning a ranking in the AP Top 25 for one week in late October. Applewhite had been at Houston since January 2015 when he was hired as offensive coordinator.

— Florida offensive tackle Jawaan Taylor is forgoing his final year of college eligibility and entering the NFL draft. The 6-foot-5, 330-pound junior announced his decision via social media Saturday night after the Gators beat Michigan 41-15 in the Peach Bowl . Taylor also signed with agent Drew Rosenhaus.


No. 2 Michigan pulls away for 74-52 win over Binghamton

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — Iggy Brazdeikis scored 14 of his 21 points in the second half, and No. 2 Michigan eventually pulled away for a 74-52 victory over Binghamton on Sunday.

The Wolverines led just 46-43 before a 19-4 run put the game away. Jordan Poole scored 18 points, and Zavier Simpson had two points, nine rebounds and a career-high 10 assists.

Chancellor Barnard led the Bearcats with 14 points. This was the highest-ranked opponent in the history of the Binghamton program.

The Wolverines finished the game 19 of 45 from inside the arc but went 11 of 18 from 3-point range. Poole made a career-high six shots from long distance, and Brazdeikis made all three of his attempts.

Isaiah Livers scored 17 points on 8-of-10 shooting for the Wolverines. Michigan has won 27 of its last 28 games, with the only loss coming in last season’s national title game against Villanova.


Jets coach: Byfuglien “out a while” with lower-body injury

UNDATED (AP) — Winnipeg Jets coach Paul Maurice says defenseman Dustin Byfuglien will be “out for a while” after leaving Saturday’s game with a lower-body injury in the third period.

Maurice, speaking to reporters on Sunday, said Byfuglien will not need surgery, but likely will not play until after the All-Star break at the end of January.

Byfuglien went to the dressing room midway through the third period of Winnipeg’s 3-1 home loss against the Minnesota Wild on Saturday. The 33-year-old appeared to hurt his leg when he and Wild forward Luke Kunin collided along the boards.

Maurice wouldn’t specify if the injury was to Byfuglien’s ankle or knee, instead calling it a “lower-body” injury.

Byfuglien leads all Jets defensemen with 29 points, including four goals.

Maurice said Joe Morrow, who hasn’t played since Nov. 27, will slide back into the lineup against Edmonton on Monday night.

In other NHL news:

— The Edmonton Oilers acquired defenseman Alexander Petrovic from the Florida Panthers on Sunday for defenseman Chris Wideman and a conditional third-round pick in the 2019 draft. Petrovic, 26, has one assist in 26 games with Florida this season. Petrovic has appeared in 254 games over his five-year career, with 49 points (five goals, 44 assists). Wideman, 28, has two assists through five games with the Oilers this season since he was traded to Edmonton from the Ottawa Senators last month. Wideman has 16 goals and 27 assists in 175 NHL games, mostly with Ottawa.


ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — The Los Angeles Angels have secured a veteran backstop.

Catcher Jonathan Lucroy has finalized a one-year contract and Yahoo Sports reported the deal is for $3.35 million.

To make room on the roster, right-hander Austin Brice was designated for assignment.

A two-time All-Star, the 32-year-old Lucroy batted .241 with four homers, 51 RBIs and a .617 OPS in 126 games this year during his only season with the Oakland Athletics. Though he struggled at the plate, he received praise for his management of the A’s pitching staff.

Before signing Lucroy, the Angels did not have an accomplished major league catcher on their 40-man roster. Jose Briceno made his debut last season, and the team claimed Kevan Smith off waivers from the Chicago White Sox two months ago.

Update hourly