Johnny Manziel Back In Business ... Hired By DAZN

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TMZ.com

Johnny Manziel has a job in pro sports again!

TMZ Sports has learned the former QB inked a promotional deal with DAZN to promote the big Anthony Joshua vs. Andy Ruiz rematch this weekend ... which is going down at the same time as the SEC Championship.

We're told the deal with Manziel is a "one-time partnership" with DAZN ... but it could lead to something bigger. We're told DAZN made a similar deal with Saquon Barkley.

One source tells us the streaming service is trying to find creative ways to promote their content and tapping Manziel, who has a large and loyal following, could pay off big.

The hook for DAZN is that the fight starts at 12:30 PM PT and will overlap with the LSU vs. Georgia game on CBS.

Manziel's selling point is that fans don't have to choose one or the other -- they can watch the game on TV and the fight on any device.

As for Manziel's other career ... you know, the football thing ... still unclear if he plans to play again. He's only 26 and still flashed some of the Heisman talent during his short stint in the CFL last year.

Antonio Brown Begs For Another NFL Shot Apologizes for 'Inexcusable' Behavior

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IMAGN

11:19 AM PT -- That didn't take long ... Tom Brady has already liked AB's apology post on Instagram.

Oh, and sources close to AB tell us the apology is mostly geared toward things he's said and done on social media ... not the sexual assault allegations.

Our source also says AB desperately wants to play football again and is willing to do whatever it takes to convince owners he's worth taking a chance on.

Antonio Brown just issued a massive apology for his off-the-field behavior -- but there's one huge problem with his mea culpa ... it's unclear what he's specifically apologizing for.

"First and foremost, I’d like to apologize to my family, friends and anyone who I offended," Brown said on IG.

"I never once meant to make anyone feel like I wasn’t thankful and appreciative of the opportunity that I was afforded to play the game I love."

Here's where things get even murkier ... AB references "inexcusable" behavior -- but doesn't specify if he's talking about serious allegations like rape or stupid incidents like farting on his trainer.

"While my behavior was inexcusable, sometimes when people are coming at you with false information and allegations, we handle ourselves in ways that we sometimes regret."

Our takeaway from that line is that AB is referencing the menacing text messages he sent to a woman who had accused him of sexual misconduct.

The Patriots cut AB after they learned about AB's texts and the NFL has launched an investigation.

"I do take full responsibility for my actions and I’m working everyday to repair what I broke."

Brown then turns his focus on getting another shot in the NFL ...

"I do know that if I’m ever given the opportunity to play the game that I love, I’m going to work extremely hard to show the world how much I appreciate another chance."

"To the organizations that I offended, I offer my sincere apology to you and my hope is that you forgive me and help me move on from this minor setback."

Those organizations could be anyone from the Patriots to the Oakland Raiders to the Pittsburgh Steelers ... maybe even the Buffalo Bills.

As we previously reported, the Raiders had signed AB to a 3-year, $50 mil contract ... but he had drama with his helmet, his feet and had public spats with the GM and coach Jon Gruden.

The Patriots picked him up ... only to dump him right after the text message incident. Brown later bashed the Pats on social media and referenced owner Robert Kraft's prostitution scandal.

The Steelers couldn't wait to dump AB after he live-streamed a private locker room conversation ... and he went after QB Ben Roethlisberger in the media.

As for the Bills, there was interest in signing AB ... but he reportedly refused to play there and a potential trade never went through.

For his part, AB has been training like a maniac over the past few months -- and you gotta wonder if there's real interest from an NFL team looking to beef up the WR position before the playoffs.

Originally published -- 11:17 AM PT

Jerry Jones Big Mad On Radio After Cowboys Loss 'Get Your Damn Act Together'

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FIRED UP
105.3 THE FAN

Jerry Jones dropped a "BS" bomb during a live radio interview -- and was DROPPED from the air -- after chewing out the hosts over Cowboys questions.

The Dallas Cowboys owner appeared on 105.3 The Fan for his weekly radio call -- but it was clear from the jump he was in a BAAAAD mood following the loss to the Chicago Bears.

The hosts asked Jones if he was embarrassed about the loss -- to which he shot back, "Get your damn act together!"

"We're going to have a good visit this morning, but settle down just a little bit."

As the hosts continued to ask questions, Jones warned them -- "I don't like your attitude to come in. I've been traveling all night and I don't have the patience to jack with you today."

Both sides settled down and talked about the Cowboys problems -- from the kicking game to the defense -- and at one point, Jerry used an expletive ON THE AIR!

FOUL LANGUAGE
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The show dropped Jones from the air -- and explained that they panicked when he used the curse word. They had tried to just drop the audio, but they accidentally hung up on him instead.

Don't worry, Jones got back on the air and continued the interview ... but yeah, talk about a tough Friday.

'Thursday Night Football' Bears Fans Beat Up Cowboys Fans ... At Soldier Field

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BEAR DOWN
@blakeheisman

8:09 AM PT -- A Chicago PD spokesperson tells TMZ Sports they can't find any records showing an arrest connected to the fight.

"Thursday Night Football" sucked for the Cowboys ... on the field and in the stands.

While the Chicago Bears players put a beating on Dak Prescott and company, the Bears fans were lumping up a bunch of Cowboys fans in the bowels of Soldier Field.

Check out the footage obtained by Barstool Sports, showing a group of Bears fans going all Mike Tyson on a couple of guys in Cowboys jerseys at some point during the game.

It doesn't appear anyone was seriously injured -- we're working on finding out if anyone was arrested.

Of course, the actual game went terribly for Jerry Jones and his Cowboys ... Dallas lost 31 to 24 ... but the game wasn't as close as the final score makes it seem.

Despite the ass-kicking, Jerry Jones insists he'll stick with Jason Garrett as the Cowboys head coach until the season is over.

Oh, and somehow the 6-7 Cowboys are still in 1st place in the NFC East and have a real shot at the playoffs. The Eagles are 5-7.

Originally published -- 6:01 AM PT

Shawn Oakman Gunning For Hall Of Fame Career ... After Bogus Rape Claim

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BACK AT IT AGAIN
TMZSports.com

Shawn Oakman is officially back on the gridiron ... and he tells TMZ Sports despite being sidelined while fighting for his freedom, he's ready to kick start a Hall of Fame career.

Oakman -- once projected as a top NFL draft pick -- had his football career derailed when a fellow Baylor student claimed the football star raped her in 2016.

The case went to trial ... and Shawn was found NOT GUILTY (the jury only needed 45 minutes to deliberate) earlier this year. Still, the allegation caused him to go undrafted ... costing him time in the NFL and millions of dollars in salary.

Now, Oakman -- who's 27 years old -- is getting a new opportunity to play big-time football with the XFL's Los Angeles Wildcats.

We talked to Oakman ... and it's clear he's not content just collecting a paycheck -- he wants to go down as literally one of the greatest players of all-time.

"It only takes one great year," Oakman says. "A year here, a year there, next thing you know, they're gonna be talking about gold jackets."

"In 5 years I'll be 32? Why not?"

If you're not familiar with the 6'9, 280 lb. Oakman -- aside from destroying dudes on the field -- he also shot to internet superstardom a few years back when a photo of Shawn in his Baylor uni went viral ... sparking endless hilarious memes.

He was a beast then ... and Oakman says he's gonna be even BETTER now.

"I'm definitely ready to show the world that I got a lot more to give to the game than I did before."

As for how it feels to finally put the pads back on ... Oakman says "It's definitely surreal. It's a surreal feeling that you really can't explain. It's like, Cinderella with her glass slipper, you just turn into a beautiful princess. Something like that."

"I'm definitely back in my environment. It feels great."

Oakman and the Wildcats take the field February 8.

Heads up, quarterbacks.

Chris Webber Defends Harbaugh After OSU Debacle ... Don't Fire Him!!!

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PATIENCE IS KEY
TMZSports.com

Chris Webber is going to bat for Jim Harbaugh ... telling TMZ Sports Michigan should NOT fire the head coach -- this despite his FIFTH STRAIGHT loss to Ohio State on Saturday.

"To throw the baby out with the bathwater or to blow it up just because of that really doesn't make sense," Webber says.

Don't get it twisted ... the Fab Five legend is still pretty pissed over the Wolverines' L -- but he says Harbaugh should get more chances to try to turn the tide.

In fact, C-Webb even offered up a little pump-up speech for Jim ... saying, "Just keep going and figuring it out!"

The biggest reason Webber wants to see Harbaugh stick around? Chris tells us Jim's squads are actually pretty damn good -- and says it'll all come together for a championship, eventually.

As for if Webber will get his wish of Harbaugh staying ... it seems pretty likely -- 'cause despite the Ohio State losing skid, the dude is still 47-17 in five years in Ann Arbor.

And, hey ... Justin Fields and Chase Young could be off to the NFL after this season -- so maybe there's hope for Jim for next year after all?

Johnny Manziel Bre Tiesi Files For Divorce

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It's officially Splitsville for Johnny Manziel and Bre Tiesi -- the model has filed for divorce, TMZ Sports has learned.

We knew this was coming for months ... Bre and Johnny initially broke up earlier in 2019 after only a year of marriage.

Tiesi had previously called Manziel out for allegedly cheating on her ... saying, "vows were broken."

Bre filed docs Wednesday morning in Los Angeles ... which starts the process of officially ending the marriage.

The 2012 Heisman Trophy winner and Bre started dating in 2016 and got married shortly after.

The star quarterback previously credited Tiesi with saving his life ... while he worked to beat off the field demons.

Of course, Johnny has been fighting to get back to football after the Cleveland Browns cut him in March 2016. He had a brief stint in the Canadian Football League before getting kicked out for breaking his contract agreement.

Manziel also played 2 games in Alliance of American Football before the league suspended football operations this past April.

Tiesi kick-started the Manziel cleanse back in August when she had all her Johnny-related tattoos removed ... saying there was a ZERO percent chance for reconciliation.

Shortly after they broke up, Manziel spoke with TMZ Sports about the split, saying ... "This is all very, very personal and very sad."

"I appreciate everyone who has been so supportive of both of us and I would just ask that everyone respect our privacy at this difficult time."

"My hope is to put my head down and be allowed to focus on work and what is required of me on the football field."

Saquon Barkley Emotional Meeting With 11-Year-Old ... Who Was Snubbed By Cowboys Star

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SAQUON COMES THROUGH
TMZSports.com

Here's a video that'll hit ya in the feels ...

A little Saquon Barkley fan who was snubbed by a Dallas Cowboys superstar a couple months ago finally got to meet his NY Giants idol -- and the hangout brought the kid to tears!

If you missed it ... back on Sept. 8, 11-year-old Kamil Bautista tried to ask Demarcus Lawrence for an autograph after the Giants-Cowboys game in Dallas.

RIVALRY RUNS DEEP

But, D-Law wasn't having any of it 'cause of the Barkley jersey Kamil was wearing ... and the Cowboys star straight-up told the kid as he was walking away, "Get the right jersey, son!"

The video immediately went viral ... and when Barkley saw the snub -- he flew Kamil and his family out from Texas to New York for a game!!

The Bautistas got the VIP treatment -- sideline passes, autographs and all the hook-ups -- but the best moment was clearly Kamil's first time hanging with Barkley.

Watch the vid, Saquon is SUPER nice ... and it actually makes Kamil cry!!

After the game, the two linked up again ... with Barkley signing a few things for the kid and taking a cool picture.

TMZSports

As for the outcome of the night, the Giants ended up losing to the Jets ... but Kamil's father tells TMZ Sports, "Our Giants are not doing that great this year but we support them 100000% all the time from South Texas!"

#Awesome

Todd Gurley Courtside Seats For Bronny James Game ... Sees Sick Alley-Oop!!!

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HOW AWESOME IS THIS?!?!?

LeBron James' son is such a superstar already that L.A. Rams running back Todd Gurley had courtside seats to watch him play in his high school game Tuesday night!!

And, get this, the kid didn't disappoint -- throwing down a MONSTER alley-oop!!!!

Bronny James got his first-ever start for Sierra Canyon against Granada Hills Charter in Chatsworth, Calif. ... and it didn't take him long to flash his insane potential.

Just a few minutes into the game ... LBJ's 15-year-old kid caught a lob and threw it down with authority!!!

And, eventually, Bronny's squad ran away with it ... routing GHC, 87-35.

Gurley seemed impressed with the King's kid ... and even posted a few highlights from his night on the hardwood to his social media page!!

As for LeBron, he couldn't make the game ... the Lakers were in Colorado to play the Nuggets -- but something tells us Gurley will be more than happy to fill him in on what he missed!

Ole Miss QB Plays Piano & Slays 'Drops Of Jupiter' ... At Award Ceremony

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Forget the Heisman Trophy ... get Ole Miss QB John Rhys Plumlee a Grammy -- 'cause the dude can SAAAAAAAAAANNNGGG!!!

Here's video of the Rebels star at the 2019 C Spire Conerly Award ceremony Tuesday in Mississippi ... taking ALL of the shine away from the other award finalists.

It's unclear why JRP stepped up to the piano ... but we're all sure as hell glad he did -- 'cause the 18-year-old tickled the keys and belted out "Drops Of Jupiter."

And, yeah, we're all swooning!!!

As for what went down after Plumlee's impromptu concert ... the freshman didn't end up winning the coveted honor that goes to the best college football player in Mississippi (Miss. State's Kylin Hill did).

But , JRP sure gained a bunch of new fans anyway!!!

By the way, if you haven't heard of Plumlee ... you should get to know the guy -- he's got SUPERSTAR potential, rushing for 1,023 yards and throwing for 910 more in just 9 games this season.

Some dudes just have it all!!!

Terrelle Pryor Full-Body Shot Of Stabbing Injury Says He Almost Died Twice

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3:17 PM PT -- Pryor just posted a full-body shot showing the area affected by the stabbing ... and you can see the guy required some serious work to close the wounds.

Terrelle Pryor was just wheeled out of the Intensive Care Unit -- SMILING -- with a bandage over the wound where he was stabbed in his chest ... and it's all on video.

"Thanks for all the support," the NFL player said on his way out of ICU ... "I'mma be aite."

LUCKY TO BE ALIVE

Pryor notes that he "had to be coded twice" -- which is usually hospital slang for an emergency effort to resuscitate someone having a life-threatening medical episode.

You can see a bandage on Pryor's right chest area.

As we previously reported, Pryor underwent emergency surgery on Nov. 30 after he was stabbed in the chest in a domestic dispute with his girlfriend, Shalaya Briston.

Seems Pryor got along with the nurses and staff in the ICU -- writing, "Left trauma ICU for the first time. Had to say by to my girls."

In the footage, Pryor invites the staff to come visit him "upstairs" -- which we assume means he's being moved to a different part of the hospital while he continues to recover.

Once Pryor is healthy enough to leave the hospital, cops tell TMZ Sports he'll have to surrender to police to be booked for misdemeanor assault for his alleged role in the incident with his GF.

As for Briston, she's been charged with aggravated assault and attempted homicide, and is currently behind bars.

Originally Published -- 12:03 PM PT

Brandon Marshall DON'T FIRE FREDDIE KITCHENS YET ... Here's Why

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DAWG POUND DIALOGUE
TMZSports.com

Brandon Marshall is calling for MERCY for Browns head coach Freddie Kitchens -- telling TMZ Sports the guy should get another shot in Year 2 ... with one serious caveat.

Of course, calling the Browns underachievers under Kitchens is a massive understatement ... they've got an insanely talented roster but have only managed to get 5 wins.

And, after Kitchen rocked a "Pittsburgh Started It" shirt -- making light of the Myles Garrett helmet attack days before the Steelers rematch -- many are calling for the ax.

But, not Marshall ... at least, not yet.

"I didn't like him wearing that shirt. It made no sense for him to do that. Nothing that justifies that," Marshall said ... "But, I hate letting a coach go in the first year."

Marshall suggested keeping Kitchens around for a Prove-It year 2 ... but "he's gotta turn it around" -- explaining there's a serious problem with the culture in Cleveland.

"There are some cultural things he's gotta fix."

As for Baker Mayfield, Marshall's optimistic about him too ... saying it appears the QB has turned a corner and is starting to show he can be the guy in CLE.

Then again, isn't that what they said about Brandon Weeden, Brian Hoyer, Tim Couch, Cody Kessler, Johnny Manziel ... you get the point.

George Atkinson III Ex-Notre Dame RB Dead At 27 ... 1 Year After Twin Brother's Suicide

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Ex-Notre Dame RB George Atkinson III -- son of former Super Bowl champ George Atkinson II -- died on Monday ... less than 1 year after his twin brother committed suicide.

It's unclear how the 27-year-old passed ... but the former NFL player said losing his brother, Josh, last December took a serious toll on him.

In a letter penned by Atkinson III in October ... he said Josh's death put him "on an emotional roller coaster and in a real dark place."

Atkinson III admitted he attempted to "harm himself" shortly after the death and had to be institutionalized ... but said his 2-year-old daughter was keeping him going.

"Without my daughter," Atkinson III wrote, "I don’t know where I would be right now. She gave me that second wind of motivation."

Atkinson III was a top recruit in the country coming out of high school in 2011 ... and was a stud for Notre Dame from '11 to '13 -- scoring 10 career TDs.

He went on to play two seasons in the NFL, one for the Raiders and one for the Browns ... and scored a memorable preseason TD in 2016.

Atkinson III's father was a star returner and defensive back for the Raiders, making two Pro Bowls and helping Oakland win Super Bowl XI over the Minnesota Vikings.

RIP

If you or someone you know is suffering from depression, please get help. Here's a link to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

NFL's Antonio Callaway Witness In Tragic Miami Shooting ... Disturbing Video Shows

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PUNCHES THEN GUNSHOTS

NFL wide receiver Antonio Callaway was mere FEET from gunfire in Miami in which a woman was shot ... and the whole incident was captured on video.

22-year-old Callaway -- who was cut by the Browns in Nov. after failing a drug test -- was part of a large crowd of people watching a street fight between two women Sunday night when shots rang out.

Unclear why the women were fighting or why Callaway was there ... but people in the crowd seemed excited about the brawl with one woman live streaming the incident on Facebook.

But, after the fight, as people were leaving, multiple shots rang out and the woman who was live streaming drops her phone.

We've confirmed the woman recording is being hospitalized in the ICU at Jackson Memorial Hospital.

The Miami Police Dept. is investigating the shooting -- but so far, no arrests have been made and no suspects have been identified.

As for Callaway's involvement, we've reached out to his reps for comment and we're waiting to hear back.

Callaway was a stud WR during his freshman year at the University of Florida -- but was suspended in 2016 and 2017 for various reasons including an allegation of sexual assault (though school investigators found him "not responsible" for the incident and was allowed back on the team).

Callaway left UF in 2017 and was drafted by the Cleveland Browns in the 4th round of the 2018 NFL Draft.

Rob Gronkowski Unretirement Deadline Passes ... Officially Out For 2019

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Sorry, Tom Brady ... reinforcements are NOT on the way -- Rob Gronkowski's unretirement deadline has passed -- officially closing the door on a possible return for the TE this season.

Gronk has been rumored to be considering a comeback almost since the day he made his surprising retirement announcement last spring ... with the future Hall of Famer even joking about coming back to the Patriots around playoff time this year.

But, the NFL deadline for a possible return was Saturday ... and with Gronk choosing to remain retired -- he is now DONE for the 2019 season.

It's a bummer for Brady and the Pats ... their offense hasn't done much this season, and TB12 was seen openly screaming at his receivers during their loss to the Texans on Sunday.

Of course, Rob can come back to the Pats NEXT year ... and New England will have the first crack at signing him then if he chooses to do so.

But, Gronk sure as hell seems to be enjoying life away from the gridiron ... he's got a job analyzing football on FOX -- and he's spending others nights partying his face off!

GRONK GONNA GRONK
TMZSports.com

TMZ Sports obtained video of the 30-year-old dancing in Dallas last week ... and he doesn't appear to be missing in-season practices that much.

Gronk was also spotted hunting for Christmas trees with his girlfriend, Camille Kostek, over the weekend ... and she seems to be enjoying his time away from football too!

"Family tradition with my favorite addition this year," she wrote.

Yeah ... good luck, Bill Belichick, on convincing him to come back.

UW's Chris Petersen Resigns ... I Need To Recharge

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Shocking news in the college football world ... Chris Petersen just resigned as Washington Huskies head coach, saying he needs "recharge."

"I'll be a Husky for life," 55-year-old Petersen said Monday, "but now is the right time for me to step away from my head coaching duties, and recharge."

Petersen has been widely regarded as a top 10 coach in the NCAA since he took over at UDub in 2014 ... and NOBODY expected him to leave the program this soon.

But, Petersen -- who's piled up a 54-26 record the past 6 years at Washington -- says he's ready to transition into an advisory role with the school.

Washington officials announced Petersen's defensive coordinator, Jimmy Lake, will take over the head coaching duties after this season concludes.

"It has been a privilege and a professional dream fulfilled to be part of this world-class institution," Petersen said. "I will forever be grateful, honored and humbled to have had the opportunity to coach our fine young men on Montlake for these past six seasons."

Petersen will finish out the year as Washington's coach ... and is slated to step aside after the team's soon-to-be-announced bowl game.

Of course, Petersen gained fame for turning Boise State into a powerhouse ... going 92-12 from 2006-2013.

He had just recently inked a contract extension with the Huskies that was going to pay him roughly $5 MILLION per year through the 2023 season.