Daily Jolt, January 7: Rangers see Winston as a two-sport athlete
Now that Jameis Winston has played in and won a national title game, what's next? [Winston] as a Rangers outfielder sounds far-fetched but is not outside the realm of possibility. "Our scouts raved about his personality and the winning feeling he has," assistant general manager A.J. Preller said. "Jameis is the kind of guy that whatever he wants to do, run for political office or play pro baseball or whatever, he's going to do." The Rangers developed a good relationship with Winston, [who turned] 20 on Monday, after selecting him in the 15th round in the 2012 draft out of Hueytown, Ala. ... Johns attended an FSU game last fall as Winston's guest. That has fanned Winston's desire to play in Major League Baseball and the NFL. It is not an idle thought. (The Dallas Morning News) Comment
With Cincinnati's season over, Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden is free to interview with teams that have head coaching vacancies. CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora reports that the Redskins, Vikings, Lions and Titans have all requested permission to do just that. More from La Canfora: "He is one of the most in-demand coordinators and has passed up opportunities in the past but is very much interested in becoming a head coach now, sources said. Many of these jobs would interest him, and all are likely to hire an offensive-minded coach, with correcting, or finding, a quarterback the paramount chore for these organizations. While Gruden's offense has struggled in the playoffs the last three years, he has helped Andy Dalton -- a limited quarterback in some regards -- put up some record regular-season numbers." (CBS) Comment
Perhaps Luol Deng didn't have to move from the Windy City, after all. Within days of the Chicago Bulls unloading [Deng] for salary-cap relief and a first-round draft pick, the All-Star forward rejected a three-year, $30 million contact extension, a league source told Yahoo Sports. Deng, who will be an unrestricted free agent this summer, turned down the deal on Friday, clearing the way for Bulls management to complete a deal with Cleveland for broken-down center Andrew Bynum and a package of draft picks on Monday night. The Bulls and Deng's representatives had informal talks about an extension over the summer, but Chicago never made a formal offer. The Bulls were unwilling to pay Deng, 28, market value in the $12 million-to-$13 million-a-year range over four or five seasons. (Yahoo! Sports) Comment
Kelvin Benjamin catches the game-winning touchdown pass from quarterback Jameis Winston in the closing seconds of the BCS Championship. (Robert Beck/Sports Illustrated)
Giving Auburn a taste of its own medicine, FSU freshman Kermit Whitfield returned a kickoff 100 yards to put the Seminoles up 27-24 late in the fourth quarter.