Browns DE Garrett’s suspension upheld

(AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

CLEVELAND (AP) Myles Garrett’s goal was to be NFL’s top defensive player this season. He won’t finish it.

Garrett’s indefinite suspension for smashing Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph over the head with a helmet was upheld Thursday by an appeals officer who decided the severe penalty on the Cleveland Browns star defensive end is fair.

One of the league’s most dominant edge rushers, Garrett is banned for the final six regular-season games and playoffs - if Cleveland qualifies - for pulling off Rudolph’s helmet and cracking him with it in the closing seconds of the Browns’ 21-7 win over their AFC North rival last week.

Rudolph denies report he used slur

PITTSBURGH (AP) Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph is denying an anonymous report alleging he used a racial slur shortly before his confrontation with Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett.

ESPN, citing anonymous sources, reported Garrett told the NFL during the appeal of his indefinite suspension Rudolph used the slur just before a confrontation between the two players that included Garrett ripping off Rudolph's helmet and then hitting the quarterback in the head with it. The NFL upheld Garrett's indefinite suspension on Thursday, though the accusation added another complex layer to an already emotionally charged rivalry. (MORE)

MLB widens investigation of Astros

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) Major League Baseball has widened its investigation of alleged sign stealing by the Houston Astros and will probe activity by the team over the past three seasons.

After the conclusion of owners meetings Thursday, baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred said MLB will "investigate the Astros situation as thoroughly as humanly possible." The probe includes the team's firing of an assistant general manager during the World Series for clubhouse comments directed at female reporters, behavior the club at first accused Sports Illustrated of fabricating. (MORE)

Texans host Colts for AFC South lead

HOUSTON (AP) Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson learned from a high school coach that no matter how good or bad a game was, he had to move on to the next one quickly, or "snap and clear," as his old coach used to say.

That mantra will be perhaps more important than usual this week as Watson and the Texans look to bounce back from an embarrassing loss to Baltimore when they host Indianapolis on Thursday night with the AFC South lead on the line. (MORE)

Grandal, ChiSox reach 4-year, $73M deal

CHICAGO (AP) No longer burdened by draft-pick compensation, Yasmani Grandal found the multiyear contract he failed to get last offseason.

The All-Star catcher agreed Thursday to a $73 million, four-year contract with the Chicago White Sox. (MORE)

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