2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Jaguars WR Blackmon credits suspension for success

By MARK LONG - AP Sports Writer
    2013-10-16 17:17

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) - Justin Blackmon has been arrested, criticized, suspended and vilified during his two seasons in the NFL.

Maybe he was long overdue for something positive.

Coming off a four-game suspension for violating the league's substance-abuse policy, Blackmon has been the best receiver in the league over the last two weeks.

The former Oklahoma State star has caught 19 passes for 326 yards and a touchdown, becoming one of the lone bright spots on a team that has lost every game by double digits. His two-game totals are tops in the league in receptions, first downs and yards from scrimmage.

''He's got that `it' factor,'' fellow receiver Cecil Shorts III said. ''Some people just got it. Some people are just blessed with it, and he's one of them guys. There's a select few of them guys, and he's definitely one of them.''

Blackmon credits his suspension for his recent success, saying he used the time away from the field to get in better shape. Blackmon missed part of the organized team activities and training camp following groin surgery.

''Everything I did in the offseason was pretty much gone when I came back, so I got time to build up my legs back to where I wanted them to be, build up my upper body to how I wanted it to be, get my weight back,'' Blackmon said Wednesday. ''After surgery, I had some eating problems and I was sick a lot and I was dropping weight.

''So it gave me time to really get my body the way I wanted it to be for the season.''

His reputation is still a work in progress.

Blackmon has been involved in three substance-related incidents in three years. He was arrested on a misdemeanor DUI charge in Texas in 2010 after officers caught him speeding on a suburban Dallas highway. The charge was later reduced to an underage alcohol possession charge. A little more than a month after the Jaguars traded up to select Blackmon with the fifth overall pick in the 2012 draft, he was arrested during a traffic stop in Stillwater, Okla., after a breath test allegedly showed his blood alcohol content to be three times the legal limit.

His next violation, the reason for which remains unknown, landed him the suspension.

He's been widely ripped since, with some people questioning whether he has a substance-abuse problem and others wondering how long until he fails another test.

''I just don't really care about people on the outside,'' Blackmon said. ''I don't care what they got to say. I don't really care how they view me because they don't try to know me. They won't ever know me, so that's not important to me. They can feel however they want to feel. I don't really care about that.

''All I can do is control what I can control, and that's showing up here, trying to get better every day and carrying that out there on the field.''

Teammates and coaches have gotten to see another side of Blackmon, who routinely gives away tickets to random people who work on his route home and allowed former teammate Matt Veldman to live rent free in his house all of last season and through part of the offseason.

''I'm a very good person, I would say,'' Blackmon said. ''I'm a very good person. Like I said, not everybody's going to view me how I want them to. I'm not going to try to force them or make them view me that way, either. If they want to get to know me, they can get to know me. If not, I could care less about them.''

One thing the Jaguars (0-6) do know is that Blackmon is the team's top playmaker.

He caught 14 passes for 190 yards, both career highs, against Denver and again will be the No. 1 target against San Diego (3-3). And he did it despite straining hamstring and groin muscles - an injury that kept him out of practice Wednesday.

''He just fought through it,'' coach Gus Bradley said. ''Wow, huh? Isn't that something? His competitive spirit is unbelievable. He was in that zone and he was competing. Fortunately for us, it wasn't a bad pull. He was in some pain I'm sure. Any time you have that strain, to fight through it and still perform at the level he did, does say something.''

---

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Patrick PetersonJul 28 04:01p

Arizona Cardinals CB Patrick Peterson will be used strictly on defense this season and will not see time in any offensive situations. The Cardinals have excess capacity at wide [ More ]

Kelvin BenjaminJul 28 03:42p

Carolina Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin (knee) has a bone bruise, according to head coach Ron Rivera. There is swelling in the knee but nothing is structurally damaged.

Lamar MillerJul 28 03:37p

Miami Dolphins RB Lamar Miller will be used much like Philadelphia Eagles RB LeSean McCoy was last season. That means he should see quite a few passes headed his [ More ]

Ndamukong SuhJul 28 03:32p

Detroit Lions DT Ndamukong Suh's contract extension discussion will be put on hold until the end of the season, according to a source.

Odell Beckham Jr.Jul 28 03:12p

New York Giants WR Odell Beckham Jr. (hamstring) missed practice Monday, July 28, to receive treatment for his injured hamstring. Head coach Tom Coughlin said Beckham probably has some tests scheduled for the hamstring.

Ryan WilliamsJul 28 03:02p

Dallas Cowboys RB Ryan Williams looks to be a longshot for the final roster, because he is not a good special teams player and would have to help on [ More ]

M. BernadeauJul 28 02:43p

Dallas Cowboys OG Mackenzy Bernadeau has been working at left guard with the first-team offense, because OG Ronald Leary (hamstring) has been dealing with a hamstring injury. Bernadeau and [ More ]

Dan WilliamsJul 28 02:22p

Arizona Cardinals DT Dan Williams (knee) is not expected to participate in practice Monday, July 28, but the team does not believe his knee injury is serious.

Everette BrownJul 28 02:22p

The Washington Redskins have signed free-agent LB Everette Brown (Cowboys). Terms of the contract were not disclosed.

B. RoethlisbergerJul 28 02:02p

The Pittsburgh Steelers are confident that they will be able sign QB Ben Roethlisberger before his current contract expires, according to general manager Kevin Colbert. Colbert said he expects [ More ]

Anthony GaitorJul 28 01:42p

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have signed free-agent CB Anthony Gaitor (Dolphins) and undrafted free-agent DT Jibreel Black (Michigan). Terms of the contracts were not disclosed, but all contracts signed [ More ]

Alshon JefferyJul 28 01:32p

Updating a previous report, Chicago Bears WR Alshon Jeffery (foot) left practice early Monday, July 28, because of a sore foot.

Matt CasselJul 28 01:23p

Minnesota Vikings QBs Matt Cassel, Teddy Bridgewater and Christian Ponder have been evenly splitting reps during the early part of training camp, according to offensive coordinator Norv Turner. Turner [ More ]

Kelvin BenjaminJul 28 01:23p

Carolina Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin's (knee) left knee injury isn't expected to be serious, and head coach Ron Rivera is optimistic that Benjamin won't miss much time. Benjamin is [ More ]

Adrian PetersonJul 28 01:12p

Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson does not need to play in the preseason to show something to the coaching staff, according to head coach Mike Zimmer. Zimmer said Peterson [ More ]

Golden TateJul 28 01:12p

Detroit Lions WR Golden Tate (shoulder) was removed from the Physically Unable to Perform list Monday, July 28, and he is expected to take part in the team's first [ More ]

Frank GoreJul 28 12:53p

San Francisco 49ers RB Frank Gore is unlikely to play in the preseason this year. RBs Carlos Hyde and Jewel Hampton have both looked good so far during training [ More ]

Trent ColeJul 28 12:42p

Philadelphia Eagles RB LeSean McCoy and LB Trent Cole squared off in a fight during training camp Sunday, July 27. 'Next thing you know, they're on the ground scuffling,' [ More ]

Charles JohnsonJul 28 10:13a

Cleveland Browns WRs Charles X. Johnson (knee) and Travis Benjamin (knee) are riding the stationary bike and working on the side Monday, July 28.

Micah HydeJul 28 10:03a

Green Bay Packers FS Micah Hyde has the edge over S Ha Ha Clinton-Dix for the starting free safety spot.

Ray RiceJul 28 09:52a

Baltimore Ravens RB Ray Rice did not appeal his two-game suspension.

Kenny StillsJul 28 09:32a

New Orleans Saints WR Robert Meachem (back) and WR Kenny Stills (quadriceps) are out of practice Monday, July 28.

Chris RaineyJul 28 08:52a

The Indianapolis Colts released RB Chris Rainey.

Mike IupatiJul 28 04:02a

The San Francisco 49ers plan to re-sign RG Mike Iupati at some point. Originally the team thought it would not be able to keep him due to a higher [ More ]

Tim HightowerJul 28 03:22a

Former Washington Redskins RB Tim Hightower, who suffered a torn ACL in 2011 and a subsequent infection, was spotted at Washington Redskins camp in the past few days. Hightower [ More ]

Alan BonnerJul 28 12:52a

The Houston Texans have waived injured WR Alan Bonner (foot). Bonner suffered a broken foot during practice Saturday, July 26.

Russell OkungJul 28 12:22a

Seattle Seahawks OT Russell Okung (foot) is about two weeks away from returning to practice, according to head coach Pete Carroll.

Terrell McClainJul 28 12:02a

Dallas Cowboys DT Terrell McClain (ankle), LB DeVonte Holloman (dehydration) and FS Matt Johnson (hamstring) left practice early Sunday, July 27, because of injuries.

Koa MisiJul 27 11:52p

Miami Dolphins LB Koa Misi (foot) left practice early Sunday, July 27, because of a foot injury. He has told people that someone stepped on his foot and that he will be fine.

Dre KirkpatrickJul 27 11:02p

Cincinnati Bengals CB Dre Kirkpatrick (hamstring) did not participate in practice Sunday, July 27, because of an apparent hamstring injury. The injury is not expected to keep him out for long.

D.J. HaydenJul 27 10:32p

Oakland Raiders CB D.J. Hayden (foot) still has no definite timetable for his return, but the team is optimistic that he will be ready for the start of the [ More ]

Kyle RudolphJul 27 10:32p

The Minnesota Vikings have signed TE Kyle Rudolph to a five-year extension worth $36.5 million.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group