The Denver Broncos have agreed in principle a trade to acquire Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, according to multiple reports.

Aaron Rodgers has agreed to terms on a four-year, $200million contract extension with the Green Bay Packers to make him the highest-paid player in NFL history.

The quarterback's future had been the subject of much speculation, with the four-time MVP non-committal on whether he would return to Green Bay for the 2022 season having entered the 2021 campaign in the wake of a stand-off with the Packers after his desire to leave was reported on the opening night of last year's draft.

A move elsewhere and retirement both seemed to be options on the table for Rodgers, who won a second successive MVP by leading the Packers to a NFL-best 13-4 record last season.

But relations between Rodgers and the Packers at the end of the season appeared more amiable than they were back in April of 2021.

Rodgers told The Pat McAfee show of his conversations with the franchise after the Packers' playoff loss to the San Francisco 49ers: "I would say the meetings were much different than they've been in the past, in a positive way, and that there were some real, honest conversations that I appreciated."

Green Bay's hiring of Tom Clements, who worked with Rodgers and the Packers from 2006 to 2016, as their quarterbacks coach for 2022 pointed towards him staying at Lambeau Field.

And Rodgers will now likely end his career where it started after agreeing to a deal worth $50m annually that keeps him under contract with the team for the next five seasons.

 

With the burning issue of the offseason resolved, Green Bay's attention will likely turn to keeping Rodgers' favourite target, wide receiver Davante Adams, on the roster and preventing him testing unrestricted free agency as the Packers plot a way to get over the hump after coming up short in the postseason yet again.

Having ended his staring contest with the Packers and reported for training camp, Rodgers' 2021 campaign was partly defined by controversy after a positive coronavirus test revealed previous misleading statements about his vaccination status, while his spread of misinformation regarding vaccines has unquestionably damaged his reputation.

On the field, he did not quite reach the heights of his magical 2020, but he still finished the regular season with 37 passing touchdowns to just four interceptions, giving him the best touchdown to interception ratio in the NFL. 

Among quarterbacks with 200 passing attempts, only Justin Herbert (2.30) threw a lower percentage of interceptable passes than Rodgers (2.36).

No quarterback delivered a higher ratio of throws that resulted in a first down than Rodgers, who did so on 40.1 per cent of his attempts, while he was second in passer rating on third down (112.2) behind Kyler Murray (118.5) among quarterbacks with at least 50 attempts in that situation.

However, Rodgers was shackled by the 49ers' defense in the playoffs as the Packers went one and done, losing 13-10 in the Divisional Round in an all too familiar tale for Green Bay.

Since Rodgers led the Packers to glory in Super Bowl XLV at the end of the 2010 season, they have reached the Divisional Round of the playoffs eight times but have never returned to the Super Bowl.

Now, the 38-year-old has until the end fo the 2026 season to change that fact.

Aaron Rodgers has agreed to terms on a four-year, $200million deal with the Green Bay Packers to make him the highest-paid player in NFL history.

Max Verstappen has signed a five-year contract extension with Red Bull ahead of the 2022 season.

The Formula One world champion's previous deal was due to expire next year, but his team on Thursday announced that the 24-year-old will stay on until at least the end of the 2028 season.

Verstappen claimed his first F1 title in 2021 by pipping Lewis Hamilton in controversial circumstances in Abu Dhabi.

The Dutchman said: "I really enjoy being part of Red Bull Racing, so choosing to stay to the 2028 season was an easy decision. I love this team and last year was simply incredible.

"Our goal since we came together in 2016 was to win the championship and we have done that, so now it's about keeping the number one on the car long-term."

Hamilton had seemingly won a record-breaking eighth crown last year, but Williams driver Nicholas Latifi crashed with four laps to go in Abu Dhabi, leading to the safety car coming out.

When the race restarted there was only one lap remaining and Verstappen was able to start just behind his rival despite Hamilton previously having a significant lead over him. Verstappen’s car had been fitted with new tyres, enabling him to overtake the Mercedes driver and sensationally dethrone his rival.

Verstappen would have likely been in line for a new deal regardless of that incredible outcome at the Yas Marina Circuit, with Mercedes generally seen as the only team that could compete with Red Bull from a financial perspective.

Tension between the two teams in the 2021 campaign – not to mention Mercedes already paying Hamilton a fortune – made a switch to their rivals in the near future highly unlikely.

According to reports, Verstappen's new deal puts his earnings in a similar bracket to Hamilton, with the world champion apparently set to be paid €40-50million (£33-42m) per year – the seven-time champion is said to earn €48m (£40m).

Red Bull and Verstappen will be relieved to have such formalities out of the way in plenty of time ahead of the new season, which is due to begin with the Bahrain Grand Prix on March 20, the weekend after a second round of pre-season testing.

Max Verstappen has signed a five-year contract extension with Red Bull ahead of the 2022 season.

The Formula One world champion's previous deal was due to expire next year, but his team on Thursday announced that the 24-year-old will stay on until at least the end of the 2028 season.

Verstappen claimed his first F1 title in 2021 by pipping Lewis Hamilton in controversial circumstances in Abu Dhabi.

The Dutchman said: "I really enjoy being part of Red Bull Racing, so choosing to stay to the 2028 season was an easy decision. I love this team and last year was simply incredible.

"Our goal since we came together in 2016 was to win the championship and we have done that, so now it's about keeping the number one on the car long-term."

Roman Abramovich has announced he is to sell Chelsea, saying the decision is "in the best interest of the club".

The Russian also confirmed he is setting up a charitable foundation to benefit "all victims of the war in Ukraine", to which he will donate all net proceeds of the sale of the Premier League club.

In a statement published via Chelsea's website, Abramovich confirmed the sale "will not be fast-tracked but will follow due process", adding he will not be asking for loans to be repaid by the club.

"This has never been about business nor money for me, but about pure passion for the game and club," he said.

"Please know that this has been an incredibly difficult decision to make, and it pains me to part with the club in this manner. However, I do believe this is in the best interest of the club.

"I hope that I will be able to visit Stamford Bridge one last time to say goodbye to all of you in person. It has been a privilege of a lifetime to be part of Chelsea FC and I am proud of all our joint achievements. Chelsea Football Club and its supporters will always be in my heart."

Abramovich, who bought Chelsea in 2003, has come under intense scrutiny in the past week following Russia's invasion of neighbouring Ukraine.

The 55-year-old oligarch has been photographed with Russian president Vladimir Putin in the past, and while it was claimed last week that Abramovich has no involvement in politics, a spokesperson for the Blues' owner suggested to the Press Association on Monday that he was "trying to help" achieve a peaceful resolution to the conflict.

Russian businesses and high-profile individuals have been hit with crippling financial sanctions by nations all over the world since the attack began last Thursday.

It is unclear if Abramovich has been impacted directly yet, but on Saturday he announced he was giving "trustees of Chelsea's charitable foundation the stewardship and care of Chelsea", a move that shocked English football despite there being very little clarity as to what exactly it actually meant.

Swiss billionaire Hansjorg Wyss told Blick he had received an offer to bid for Chelsea this week but would only be interested in buying the club as part of a group of "six to seven investors".

Roman Abramovich has announced he is to sell Chelsea, saying the decision is "in the best interest of the club".

The Russian also confirmed he is setting up a charitable foundation to benefit "all victims of the war in Ukraine", to which he will donate all net proceeds of the sale of the Premier League club.

FIFA and UEFA have banned Russian teams from club and international competitions, denying them entry to the 2022 World Cup and Women's Euro 2022.

The decision means Spartak Moscow will be removed from the Europa League last 16, where they were due to face RB Leipzig.

UEFA has also ended its relationship with Gazprom, the Russian state-owned energy giant that was a major sponsor of the Champions League.

A joint statement from FIFA and UEFA read: "Football is fully united here and in full solidarity with all the people affected in Ukraine.

"Both presidents [Gianni Infantino and Aleksander Ceferin] hope that the situation in Ukraine will improve significantly and rapidly so that football can again be a vector for unity and peace amongst people."

The sporting world has called for sanctions to be imposed on Russia following Vladimir Putin's invasion of Ukraine last week.

Poland, Sweden and the Czech Republic – Russia's World Cup play-off opponents – all announced an intention to boycott their fixtures, although FIFA's initial sanctions allowed the Russian Football Union to put forward a team playing under a different name and flag in a neutral location.

But this FIFA decision was widely criticised, including by players' union FIFPro, which wanted more than "the lightest of sanctions" and said Russia's continued involvement in international competition was "not a possibility".

That was a view shared on Monday by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), which said Russian and Belarusian athletes should be excluded from sporting events to "protect the integrity of global sports competitions".

FIFA subsequently changed its stance in a joint-announcement with UEFA, ruling Russia – hosts of the 2018 World Cup – out of tournaments including this year's two showpiece events in Qatar and England.

Russia were set to face Poland and then either Sweden or the Czech Republic in World Cup qualifying, while they had already reached the Women's Euros, drawn into a group with Sweden, the Netherlands and Switzerland.

FIFA and UEFA have banned Russian teams from club and international competitions, denying them entry to the 2022 World Cup and Women's Euro 2022.

Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich announced on Saturday he is handing over the "stewardship and care" of the club to the trustees of its charitable foundation.

The 2022 Champions League final will be held in Paris after UEFA stripped St Petersburg of the right to stage the game.

The decision came after European football's governing body condemned Russia's invasion of Ukraine and called an emergency meeting of the executive committee to discuss the situation.

It is understood UEFA agreed to relocate the final on Thursday, the first day of Russia's military assault on neighbouring Ukraine, which continued on Friday. An announcement was delayed while a suitable new venue was selected.

The match will now be held at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis at the original time of 20:00 GMT (21:00 CET) on May 28.

UEFA also ordered that all Russian and Ukrainian club sides, as well as the national teams, must play their home matches at neutral venues "until further notice".

Spartak Moscow will be in the draw for the Europa League round of 16, which takes place on Friday, while Russia are due to face Poland in a World Cup play-off tie next month, the winner of which would play Sweden or the Czech Republic for a place at the finals in Qatar.

The football associations of Poland, Sweden and the Czech Republic had all previously warned they would not consider travelling to Russia for matches following president Vladimir Putin's decision to launch the Ukraine offensive.

"The signatories to this appeal do not consider travelling to Russia and playing football matches there. The military escalation that we are observing entails serious consequences and considerably lower safety for our national football teams and official delegations," they said.

"Therefore, we expect FIFA and UEFA to react immediately and to present alternative solutions regarding places where these approaching playoff matches could be played."

UEFA's executive committee has agreed to remain on standby for further extraordinary meetings "to reassess the legal and factual situation as it evolves and adopt further decisions as necessary".

 

The 2022 Champions League final will be held in Paris after UEFA stripped St Petersburg of the right to stage the game.

The decision came after European football's governing body condemned Russia's invasion of Ukraine and called an emergency meeting of the executive committee to discuss the situation.

It is understood UEFA agreed to relocate the final on Thursday, the first day of Russia's military assault on neighbouring Ukraine, which continued on Friday. An announcement was delayed while a suitable new venue was selected.

The match will now be held at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis at the original time of 20:00 GMT (21:00 CET) on May 28.

 

Cooper Kupp led the injury-hit Los Angeles Rams in a late recovery to beat the Cincinnati Bengals 24-20 in Super Bowl LVI at their SoFi Stadium home.

James Harden is leaving the Brooklyn Nets to join the Philadelphia 76ers, according to reports.

The teams have agreed a trade that will see Harden move to Philadelphia, while Ben Simmons, Seth Curry and Andre Drummond head the other way, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski said.

The deal reportedly also includes the Sixers sending the Nets an unprotected 2022 first-round pick as well as a protected 2027 first-round pick. The Nets will also include Paul Millsap in the deal.

Simmons was the subject of trade rumours in January 2021 when the Sixers pursued Harden from the Houston Rockets. Harden instead headed for the Nets, and Simmons saw out the season in Philadelphia, only for speculation to ramp up again after a deeply dissatisfying playoff exit.

Simmons has not played since June when Joel Embiid and Doc Rivers appeared to blame the former first overall pick for a Game 7 loss to the Atlanta Hawks.

The 25-year-old Simmons averaged 14.3 points per game last season from his 58 appearances, plus 7.2 rebounds and 6.9 assists.

Harden, 32, has failed to settle in Brooklyn since arriving from Houston last January, averaging just 22.5 points per game this season, his lowest average since the 2011-12 season with the Oklahoma City Thunder, as well as 8.0 rebounds and 10.2 assists.

Curry has been enjoying the best season of his career in Philadelphia, averaging 15.5 points, 3.4 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game, while Drummond has managed just 6.1 points, 8.8 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game, the worst return of his career.

James Harden is leaving the Brooklyn Nets to join the Philadelphia 76ers, according to reports.

The teams have agreed a trade that will see Harden move to Philadelphia, while Ben Simmons, Seth Curry and Andre Drummond head the other way, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski said.

The deal reportedly also includes the Sixers sending the Nets an unprotected 2022 first-round pick as well as a protected 2027 first-round pick. The Nets will also include Paul Millsap in the deal.

Simmons was the subject of trade rumours in January 2021 when the Sixers pursued Harden from the Houston Rockets. Harden instead headed for the Nets, and Simmons saw out the season in Philadelphia, only for speculation to ramp up again after a deeply dissatisfying playoff exit.

Simmons has not played since June when Joel Embiid and Doc Rivers appeared to blame the former first overall pick for a Game 7 loss to the Atlanta Hawks.

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