MLS Week 1 preview and fixtures: Timbers vs. Minnesota opens a great week of games

Check out our big MLS season preview here!

Week 1 of the MLS season has finally arrived. You can expect goals in the season opener, where two teams that have very good attackers and questionable defenses face off. Things get a bit more organized after that — we think.

Here’s everything you need to know about the first week of the season, what to watch for and how to watch it.

If you’re new to MLS, all non-national TV, out of market games can be seen online at MLS Live. It costs $80 for the whole season and features archives, highlights, and a really nice 10-minute extended highlights cut for all of the games. In-market and national TV games become available after 48 hours.

The 40-yard dash is an overblown endeavor, but if there is a player who needs a good one, it is Smith-Schuster. At 6’2 and 220 pounds, Smith-Schuster is obviously a well-built wide receiver. One of his flaws, however, is his speed. He can help himself if he can break into the range of 4.5 seconds. Teams will closely be watching the junior’s footwork as well because he tends to be a little awkward at the top of his routes.

Dupre has first-round talent, but in 2016 he had mid-round production. Until pulling in seven catches for 139 yards, he had just 34 receptions for 454 yards and three touchdowns on the season. It wasn’t much fault of his own, however. As a team last season LSU threw less than 300 passes on the season, and the team’s quarterback play was often spotty. At the combine, Dupre will need a good week showing off his measurables and ability to catch the ball.4

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Ravens attempt to disassemble ESPN report, point by point

The Baltimore Ravens have released statements from various employees refuting the ESPN Outside the Lines report that the team was aware of the security footage that showed Ray Rice knocking his then-fiancee Janay Palmer unconscious in an elevator in February.

In the statement released through the team’s website, owner Steve Bisciotti has claimed that ESPN’s sources for the report were members of Rice’s legal team attempting to clear the running back’s name before he makes his case for reinstatement into the NFL. ESPN claims that isn’t true.

The Outside the Lines report claimed that it “found a pattern of misinformation and misdirection employed by the Ravens and the NFL” since Rice’s arrest in February. The report alleges that the team had full knowledge of what occurred within the elevator before a second tape was leaked by TMZ that showed Rice punching his fiancee.

However, under new offensive coordinator Bill Lazor, Tannehill has regressed. Lazor came over this offseason from Chip Kelly’s offensive machine in Philadelphia. But outside of a 33-point Week 1 showing against the lackluster New England Patriots defense, Miami’s offense has sputtered out, producing only 25 points in its last two games combined. Tannehill, a Texas A&M product, is on pace to set career lows in completion percentage (56.5), and yards per pass attempt (5.0). Tannehill’s struggles on deep passes have been a source of considerable frustration for Miami, especially when considering the resources the team has poured into its wide receivers.

Meanwhile, the Bears’ defense is nearly being stripped away completely, and it’s something a better offense is going to exploit sooner or later. Right?

Example: Smith threw an interception that was returned for a touchdown on the Jets’ first drive.4

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