Tyrann Mathieu Joe Burrow Won't Spurn Bengals ... In 2020 NFL Draft

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GRIDIRON GAB
TMZSports.com

Breathe easy, Bengals fans ... Tyrann Mathieu says Joe Burrow will NOT spurn Cincy at the 2020 NFL Draft, and will happily play for the team if it picks him No. 1 overall in April!!

"Me just knowing him for the last couple years," the Honey Badger tells TMZ Sports, "He's super competitive ... he knows he can be the guy."

There are A LOT of rumors surrounding Burrow and the Bengals ... with some indicating the Heisman Trophy winner might refuse to play in Cincy if it picks him at the top of the draft.

In fact, ex-Bengals star Carson Palmer seemed to advise Joe to do exactly that in an interview with CBS Sports last month ... saying he doesn't believe Bengals ownership truly wants to win a Super Bowl.

Of course, the move wouldn't be unprecedented ... Eli Manning famously balked when the San Diego Chargers picked him in 2004 -- leading to an eventual trade to the NY Giants.

But, when we got Tyrann -- a former LSU superstar who's become bros with Burrow the past couple years -- at Mr. Chow in L.A. this week ... he told us don't bet on Joe pulling the same trick.

"I think he'll have a great opportunity to kind of help, hopefully, Cincinnati change things around as a franchise," Mathieu says.

There's more ... the Chiefs superstar also spoke with us about who his favorite non-Patrick Mahomes QB is -- and his answer might surprise you.

And, Mathieu even talked about LSU's stacked secondary ... and which Tigers prospect he thinks will be the next big NFL star.

New England Patriots SpyGate II Video Released And Its Bad for the Pats

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4:13 PM PT -- Longtime Patriots videographer David Mondillo -- who has reportedly been suspended as a result of the allegations -- released a statement explaining his side of things and says he had NO intentions of handing the footage over to the team.

Mondillo adds he has fully cooperated with the investigation and gave all the recordings to the NFL.

Here it is ... a KEY piece of the video at the center of the Patriots SpyGate II scandal -- and it's reallllllly bad for the Pats.

The footage, obtained by "NFL on FOX" reporter Jay Glazer, shows the moments the Patriots video crew is confronted by Cincinnati Bengals' security last weekend over concerns the crew was illegally shooting video of their sidelines.

During the exchange, you can hear Bengals security express major concerns over the video -- since it REALLY looks like the videographer was SPYING!!

Remember, the Patriots say the video team was tasked to shoot a behind-the-scenes segment on an advanced scout for a show on the Pats website called "Do Your Job."

But, as the Bengals security official points out to the video crew, there's a large chunk of the video where you don't see the scout ... only the Bengals sidelines.

Here's an exchange from the video ...

Bengals Security: "And, this is a piece your filming on your advanced scout?

Pat's video crew: "Yeah."

Bengals Security: "Yeah? C'mon guys! I don't see the advanced scout in this footage!"

Patriots video crew: "No, that's not. We were trying to get some field perspective. That's my bad."

The Patriots crew offered to delete the video but the Bengals security told him, "The damage is done my friend!"

The Bengals immediately referred the matter to NFL security and the league has launched an investigation.

The Patriots have admitted the video team broke league rules -- but they insist the video team was NOT tasked to spy, claiming the whole thing was an accident.

For his part, Glazer says there WILL be a punishment -- but it's unclear what it will be at this point.

Bill Belichick has denied involvement -- claiming the video team does not report to him.

During the "NFL On FOX" pregame show on Sunday, both Michael Strahan and Curt Menefee expressed how BAD of a look it is on the team.

Especially since the Patriots were caught in a video cheating scandal back in 2007 and were punished heavily for it.

The Patriots actually play the Bengals SUNDAY -- a team they're expected to murder, with or without spy video.

New England Patriots Admit Violating NFL Policy But Deny Spying On Bengals

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7:28 PM PT -- The Patriots have issued a statement admitting their crew violated NFL policy by "filming the field and sideline from the press box" ... but insist it was an honest mistake.

The team claims the footage was ONLY supposed to be used for the "Do Your Job" behind the scenes production  -- claiming, "There was no intention of using the footage for any other purpose."

The Patriots also admit they did not inform the league about plans to shoot the episode -- calling it an "unintended oversight."

"When questioned, the crew immediately turned over all footage to the league and cooperated fully," the team says.

Even though the Patriots insist the production crew is "independent of our football operation" the team says it accepts "full responsibility for the actions of our production crew at the Browns vs. Bengals game."

And, now we wait to see if/how the NFL punishes the Pats for this ...

3:31 PM PT -- Bill Belichick is speaking out about the allegations ... saying his staff has ZERO involvement with the videographer being at the game.

"I heard about this and evidently this is our production people on the TV show that were there and I have absolutely nothing to do, we have absolutely nothing to do with anything that they produce or direct or shoot," BB said on WEEI.

"I have never even seen any of their tapes or anything else. This is something that we 100 percent have zero involvement with."

"This is something you'd have to talk to the production people about and what they were doing, or whatever it was. We have never seen anything that they've shot, other than what has come down on TV."

The NFL has launched an investigation into the New England Patriots over allegations a team staffer illegally recorded the Cincinnati Bengals sidelines during Sunday's game.

Of course, the Patriots were at home playing the Chiefs on Sunday -- but the team claims they sent a video crew to FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland to shoot a behind-the-scenes segment on a team scout during the Browns vs. the Bengals game.

FYI, the Patriots are playing the Bengals next week ... which is why the scout was there in the first place.

But, a Bengals team official believes there may have something fishy going on -- and reported a possible incident to the NFL, which is now investigating.

ESPN's Adam Schefter says the Patriots were credentialed by the Browns (the home team) to shoot that day for a segment called "Do Your Job" which spotlights key Patriots staffers behind the scenes.

Schefter says a team official for the Bengals saw the videographer -- who was wearing a Pats shirt -- and reported it to the league.

The NFL confiscated the video, according to Schefter and they're currently reviewing the footage to see if there was an attempt to spy.

Earlier today, a reporter asked Bengals head coach Zac Taylor about the incident -- and while he didn't say much, Taylor confirmed a league probe into the matter.

Bengals' Zac Taylor confirms probe

"I'm aware that there was an incident but the league is investigating it, so I've got no comment," Taylor explained.

The Patriots, for their part, tell Schefter there was nothing scandalous about the incident -- suggesting it was just a misunderstanding.

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport says the Patriots got pre-game permission from the Browns to shoot but they didn't inform the NFL until after the segment was in the can. That could be why the Bengals weren't in the loop and may have suspected other intentions.

Of course, the Patriots have gotten in HUGE trouble in the past for videotaping another NFL team -- remember SpyGate?

That took place in 2007 when the Patriots illegally recorded NY Jets defensive coaches during a Sept. 2007 game.

Bill Belichick was fined $500k, the Pats were fined $250k and the team was docked a 1st round pick in the 2008 NFL Draft.

Originally Published -- 12:52 PM PT

Cris Collinsworth Hopes the Bengals Sign Kap ... 'He'll Fix 'Em'

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WHO DEY
TMZSports.com

Cris Collinsworth is publicly lobbying for his old team to sign Colin Kaepernick -- telling TMZ Sports the 32-year-old can help the Cincinnati Bengals turn things around.

Of course, Cris was a star WR for the Bengals in the '80s and now he's one of the most powerful broadcasters in sports ... so what he says matters.

And, on his way into Craig's in L.A., we asked if he thinks a team will sign Kaepernick after his workout in Atlanta on Saturday.

"I hope so. He's a good player. That would be great."

And, where would Kap be the best fit?

"The Bengals hopefully. He'll fix 'em!"

It's BAD in Cinci right now -- the Bengals have the worst record in pro football, 0-9. Winless. Sad. Pathetic.

The team benched starter Andy Dalton earlier this season in place of rookie Ryan Finley, but it hasn't gone much better.

TMZ Sports

Meanwhile, Kaepernick touched down in Atlanta on Thursday and is expected to hit the field on Saturday. He hasn't taken an NFL snap in 3 years, but let's face it -- couldn't do worse than what the Bengals have right now, right?

NFL's Mark Walton Tased In Crazy Arrest Video ... 'Get On The F*cking Ground!!!'

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TASED & CONFUSED
TMZSports.com

TMZ Sports has obtained video of ex-Cincinnati Bengals RB Mark Walton's arrest earlier this year ... and it's wild -- showing the NFL player getting tased ... and getting up and running away!!

The former Miami Hurricanes star was arrested last month stemming from a March 12 incident where cops say he led them on a crazy high-speed chase in his rented BMW.

Cops say Walton -- a 4th-round draft pick last year out of the Univ. of Miami -- was speeding and weaving through traffic in the Miami area when he came to an abrupt stop in the front yard of somebody's home.

You can see in the video what happens next ... cops order the running back to the ground -- but he gets up and runs away.

While the officers are chasing him -- they hit him with a taser ... but he pulls out the prongs and keeps going!!!

Walton shockingly loses the cops ... but when the officers search his car ... they say they found weed, a carbine rifle and ammunition.

Walton later surrendered on April 4.

Walton -- who was cut by Cincinnati after the incident -- is now facing a felony and 3 misdemeanor charges ... and could spend at least 5 years behind bars if convicted.

It's the third time the running back has been arrested in the last few months -- he was busted for weed back in January, and was also hit with a battery charge after he allegedly snatched a phone from a neighbor at his condo in February.

Walton rushed for 34 yards on 14 carries in his rookie season with the Bengals last year.

Pacman Jones Claims Arrest Video Vindicates Him ... In Casino Incident

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CALM IN CUFFS
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TMZ Sports has obtained footage of Adam "Pacman" Jones being arrested at an Indiana casino -- footage the NFL star believes will prove officials overreacted that day.

The footage was shot by Pacman's wife around 3 AM on Feb. 27 -- after he had been placed in handcuffs at the Rising Star Casino Resort.

Authorities accused Pacman of cheating at a table game -- but in the footage, you can see the NFL star adamantly denying the allegations ... and demanding cops let him go.

"Who said I was cheating?" Jones says ... "Let the handcuffs go!"

The footage appears to be shot in the bowels of the casino after Jones had been removed from the gaming area. There are two officers attempting to walk him to another section in the building.

As we previously reported, authorities say Jones was adding chips to his stack after he knew the outcomes of the games ... which is obviously illegal.

Officials say the former Cincinnati Bengals star got aggressive -- cussing out law enforcement and threatening to kill one of the responding law enforcement agents.

Jones believes the video will show he was NOT out of control but rather restrained considering he was being taken into custody in front of his wife and other people who recognized him.

During the video, you can hear Pacman's wife telling police that he had spent $20,000 at the casino that night -- and there's no reason he would have to cheat.

She can also be heard saying, "He didn't put his hands on nobody."

Both Pacman and his wife repeatedly tell cops they can say whatever they want because of "freedom of speech."

At one point during the incident, Pacman turns to one of the arresting officers and calls him a "bitch ass n***a."

We spoke with Pacman's agent, Peter Schaffer, who tells us, "Adam was very controlled. We think the authorities overreacted, they love the attention ... Adam showed great restraint."

Pacman was eventually taken to a nearby station where he was booked. He's since been hit with 8 criminal charges stemming from the incident ... though we've now learned he's pled not guilty and plans to fight the case.

NFL's Tyler Eifert Flaunts Surgically Repaired Ankle After Bone-Snapping Injury

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BACK IN THE MIX

Remember that disgusting bone-snapping injury Bengals tight end Tyler Eifert suffered in 2018???

Dude's doing MUCH better now ... crushing foot drills with a big smile on his face as he preps for his big comeback in 2019!!!

TE suffered a gruesome injury on Sept. 30 against the Falcons, when he got pummeled by linebacker De'Vondre Campbell, who awkwardly fell on Tyler's right ankle and snapped it sideways.

Relive the experience below (or don't. We wouldn't blame you one bit. It's so nasty).

Eifert appears to have put the horrific experience behind him ... rippin' through a set of drills in a workout vid he posted Thursday.

"Looks a lot better than the last time you saw my ankle! #LETSGO," Eifert says.

Tyler's been dealing with injuries every season since 2014. Here's hoping he ends the streak in 2019!!!

Devon Still Goes to Bat for Marvin Lewis 'He Did a Lot for My Family'

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HE HAD MY BACK
TMZSports.com

Devon Still says he's rooting hard for Marvin Lewis to get another shot to coach in the NFL -- telling TMZ Sports he'll always be grateful to Lewis for helping to save his daughter's life.

Remember, it was Lewis who kept Still on the Cincinnati Bengals roster back in 2014 when his daughter Leah was battling cancer ... so she could keep the team health insurance coverage.

The story made national news -- and people from all over the country bought Still's Bengals jersey to show their support for Devon, Leah and the Bengals organization. It was an amazing thing.

The good news ... we got Still out in New York with 8-year-old Leah -- who's been cancer-free for 4 YEARS! It's an amazing story and Devon tells us he'll always be grateful for his former coach.

"He did a lot for me and my family during a time where I really couldn't do nothing for that organization," Still says ... "So, I definitely want to see him fall on his feet."

Lewis got the ax in Cinci last month after 16 years with the organization. The 60-year-old has suggested that he wants to continue coaching.

Still has chronicled Leah's battle in his new book "Still In the Game" -- in which he describes how he handled the pain and stress of watching his daughter fight for her life.

"I basically wanted to share my playbook that I taught my daughter how to beat cancer with, so people can overcome the struggles they're facing in their life."

Still retired from the NFL in Dec. 2017 -- and now focuses on helping other families going through a similar struggle.

Jim Brown Defends Hue Jackson ... He Made A Good Move

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HE DESERVES A JOB
TMZSports.com

Jim Brown is going to bat for Hue Jackson ... telling TMZ Sports the bitterness toward Cleveland's ex-head coach needs to end.

Of course, Hue took only a few days to join up with the Browns' rivals -- the Bengals -- after he got canned in Cleveland ... and dudes like Baker Mayfield were REALLY upset about it.

But, Jim tells us the QB and others shouldn't be ... saying Hue made "a good move."

"No bitterness with him. He's got a job right away. It tells you that he had a value. But, it didn't work out with him and the Browns. That's it."

As for Baker's snub of the coach after Cleveland beat Cincinnati on Sunday ... Jim sees no controversy there, saying Mayfield just got caught up in the moment of competition.

"When you're getting ready for a game, you're getting ready for a game. You're not trying to make friends."

As for the Browns themselves ... Jim can see a playoff game in their future this season -- IF they do just one unlikely thing.

The Browns are 4-6-1 and sitting at the bottom of the AFC North -- but they're definitely NOT mathematically eliminated ... only 3 games out of 1st place.

They've got 5 games left -- facing the Texans, Panthers, Bengals, Broncos and Ravens.

Could they win out and clinch a post-season berth? Hey, stranger things have happened ...

NFL's Rey Maualuga Gets Anger Management In Nightclub Battery Case

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NFL linebacker Rey Maualuga dodged a bullet ... 'cause he ain't gonna spend a single minute behind bars for allegedly grabbing a club employee by the throat -- as long as he stays outta trouble.

As we previously reported, Maualuga -- who spent 9 seasons in the NFL with the Bengals and Dolphins -- was arrested in Miami in Nov. 2017 after officials say he got into a physical altercation over a $40 bar tab. He's accused of shoving and grabbing a bar employee by the throat.

31-year-old Maualuga was initially charged with misdemeanor battery and faced up to a year in jail if convicted.

But, TMZ Sports learned, the former USC Trojan cut a deal with prosecutors in which he agreed to complete a pretrial diversion program and, in exchange, the charge will be dropped.

The program requires Rey to attend two 6-hour anger management courses -- designed to teach conflict resolution and impulse control ... and he's gotta stay away from the club.

Seems like a good deal to us.

Rey -- who was cut by the Dolphins after his arrest -- is currently a free agent.

Mike Vick I Would Have Won A Super Bowl ... If I Had Chad Ochocinco

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NOT SWEATING IT
TMZSports.com

Mike Vick would be rockin' a Super Bowl ring on his finger these days if somehow one of his teams had managed to trade for Chad Ochocinco ... so says the legendary QB himself.

We got Vick and Chad promoting WinView out in Bev Hills when we asked the two what would've happened if they were on the same team ... and Vick couldn't help but dream.

"Man, I mean, to have him, I would have probably had a ring for sure," Mike says.

Chad seemed to agree, saying, "That woulda been dope."

So, why'd it never go down?? Chad was locked in with the Bengals and Vick was entrenched with the Falcons during their primes.

"He woulda never got traded and I woulda never got traded, so we woulda had to have been drafted at the same time," Vick says.

As for how their careers went without each other and if they warrant busts in the NFL's Hall of Fame ... both surprisingly didn't seem too worried about that just yet.

"I'm not one that really needed validation," Ochocinco tells us.

Added Vick, "You leave that up to the people."

What coulda been ...

Tyler Eifert All Smiles After Ankle Surgery ... 'I'll Be Back!!'

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Great news for Tyler Eifert -- who had his ankle snapped in half on Sunday -- 'cause the Cincinnati Bengals TE is in good spirits after going under the knife ... and vows to be back better than ever!!

ICYMI -- Eifert suffered a nasty right ankle injury in the 3rd quarter of the Falcons game this week ... after De'Vondre Campbell accidentally fell on him while making a tackle.

It was a disgusting sight ... and if you haven't already seen it, DON'T CLICK ON IT.

Eifert shared a post-surgery pic with a thumbs-up on Monday night ... saying "At least my end zone celebration was fun! Thanks to everyone for the kind words. I’m all fixed, Dr. Anderson is the best. I’ll be back!"

Eifert has had his fair share of injuries since he was drafted in 2013 ... a dislocated elbow in 2014, stinger injuries in 2013 and 2015, back injury in 2016 and 2017. But, he's clearly not fazed by his history.

Get well soon, Tyler!!

Bengals Star Tyler Eifert Suffers Nasty Ankle Injury ... Carted Off the Field

Those who are quick to get queasy should look away-- Bengals star Tyler Eifert's ankle went in a direction it definitely shouldn't have during a game against the Falcons ... and his season is likely over.

Cincinnati's starting tight end suffered a gruesome injury Sunday against Atlanta, where he was attempting to run the ball downfield ... but got pummeled by linebacker De'Vondre Campbell, who awkwardly fell on Tyler's right ankle, and snapped it sideways.

Tyler was eventually carted off the field, and he appeared to be in sheer agony as they drove him away. It's almost certainly a season-ending break, which sucks for the dude since he's had a series of injuries over the last few years that have kept him from playing.

He missed the entire 2014 season to an elbow injury, hurt his other ankle in 2015 and had both his 2016 and 2017 seasons delayed due to back issues. Tyler's 2017 season ended after just two games due to another injury as well. He's never played a full 16-game season.

2018 will be no different after this. Get well soon.

Chad Ochocinco I'm Training To Be MLS Goalie ... 'Dead Ass Serious'

EXCLUSIVE
I GOT THE GOODS!
TMZSports.com

Chad Ochocinco's first go-around with the MLS didn't go so well ... but he's got a new plan to make the futbol league -- telling TMZ Sports he's coming back as a keeper!!

And, yeah, he says he's "dead ass" serious.

Remember ... Chad once tried out for Sporting Kansas City during the NFL lockout in 2011 -- and actually got in a reserve game ... but the MLS told him "thanks, but no thanks" afterward.

Now ... Chad's telling us he's got a new way to revive that soccer dream ... getting set to return to the pitch as a goalie for David Beckham's Miami club -- which kicks off its inaugural season in 2020.

"I really think I can be exceptional at goalie with the proper training for the next two years," Chad says.

"So, when Beckham has his team, I'm going to go try out for goalie. Period."

It makes sense ... dude is a freak athlete who caught everything that came his way as an NFL wideout for 11 seasons -- so why not?!

As for those doubting him ... Chad didn't give the haters a definitive "Kiss The Baby" -- but he did further explain to us why he's confident it'll all work out.

A.J. Green Supports Julio Jones' Holdout ... Here's Why!

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PLAYIN' IT SAFE
TMZSports.com

A.J. Green says he's not mad at Julio Jones for holding out in his contract dispute with the ATL Falcons -- telling TMZ Sports, "He gotta do what he gotta do, man."

The Bengals superstar WR was out shopping in Bev Hills -- and explained that when it comes to getting paid at the pro level, you gotta strike while ya can.

"The NFL stands for 'Not For Long,' so you gotta get it while it lasts."

Green knows what he's talking about -- he signed a 4-year $60 MILLION contract extension in 2015.

But, if things don't work out for Julio in ATL, Green says he's down to share some of the pass-catching workload in Cinci.

Could you imagine Green and Julio on the same offense?! Good luck with that, Joe Haden.

Terrell Owens To Hall Of Fame: I'm Not Coming to My Induction!

Breaking News

Shocking statement from Terrell Owens ... who says he has officially TURNED DOWN his invitation to attend his Pro Football Hall of Fame induction ceremony.

Owens says he will NOT go to Canton, Ohio for the ceremony in August -- instead, he will "celebrate what will be one of the most memorable days of my life, elsewhere."

T.O. did not explain the reason behind his decision -- he did, however, praise the NFL and the H.O.F.

"While I am incredibly appreciative of this opportunity, I have made the decision to publicly decline my invitation to attend the induction ceremony in Canton."

"I have already shared this information with the Hall. After visiting Canton earlier this year, I came to the realization that I wish to celebrate what will be one of the most memorable days of my life, elsewhere. At a later date, I will announce where and when I will celebrate my induction."

"I would also like to thank the San Francisco 49ers, the Philadelphia Eagles, the Dallas Cowboys, the Buffalo Bills and the Cincinnati Bengals for the time I was granted with each organization. I am thankful for the relationships forged and the lessons learned while part of each team."

"I wish to congratulate all past, current and future inductees. It is quite an honor to be part of such elite company. This honor is something that I will cherish forever."

Story developing ...

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