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WAMC Sports Report 9/13/23: Jets QB Rodgers has torn left Achilles tendon, to miss rest of season

New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers (8) is tended to on the field during the first quarter of an NFL football game against the Buffalo Bills, Monday, Sept. 11, 2023, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
Seth Wenig/AP
New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers (8) is tended to on the field during the first quarter of an NFL football game against the Buffalo Bills, Monday, Sept. 11, 2023, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)


It’s official, New York Jets coach Robert Saleh says Aaron Rodgers has torn his left Achilles tendon and the 39-year-old quarterback will miss the rest of the season. An MRI revealed the severity of the four-time NFL MVP’s injury, confirming what the Jets feared after their 22-16 overtime win over Buffalo. Saleh said Rodgers will have season-ending surgery but he wasn’t certain when that would occur. Rodgers was injured on his fourth regular-season snap in a Jets uniform. Zach Wilson replaced him in Monday night's game. Saleh said the Jets will look at bringing in other quarterbacks to back up Zach Wilson.

Former NFL receiver Mike Williams, who was injured in a construction accident two weeks ago and later put on a ventilator, has died at the age of 36. Agent Hadley Engelhard says Williams died Tuesday at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Tampa, Florida. The Tampa Bay Times reported that Williams was injured at a construction site in Hillsborough County and removed from life support on Thursday. He played for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Buffalo Bills from 2010 to 2014. Williams was a fourth-round draft pick of the Bucs following a standout college career at Syracuse. He had 65 receptions for 964 yards and 11 touchdowns as a rookie. The Buffalo native spent four seasons with the Bucs before playing one year with his hometown Bills.

A former NFL Media journalist is accusing the league of refusing to address what he calls long-standing institutional discrimination and says his contract was not renewed because he repeatedly voiced concerns regarding equity and racial injustice. The allegations were made by Jim Trotter in a discrimination and retaliation lawsuit filed in federal court in New York City. Trotter also cited Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and Buffalo Bills owner Terry Pegula as making racially insensitive comments and says his concerns fell on deaf ears when he raised them with league executives, including NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. The NFL issued a statement disputing Trotter’s allegations. So did Pegula and Jones.


Gleyber Torres keyed the Yankees to their first doubleheader sweep at Fenway Park since 2006, leading New York over the Boston Red Sox 3-2 and 4-1 to get manager Aaron Boone his 500th career win. Torres had a go-ahead, two-run single in the sixth inning and started a game-ending double play with the bases loaded in the opener of a day-night doubleheader opener. Then in the night game, Torres scored the go-ahead run on a bases-loaded grounder in the sixth and added an RBI single in the ninth. The Yankees matched Boston at 73-72.

Ronny Mauricio hit his first major league homer, Pete Alonso launched his 44th of the season and the New York Mets beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 7-4. Francisco Álvarez also went deep and José Butto earned his first career win as New York handed the Diamondbacks a costly defeat. Arizona holds a slim lead in a crowded race for the final National League wild card. The Mets won hours after David Stearns agreed to become the team’s president of baseball operations, according to several reports — filling a spot that’s been vacant since Steve Cohen bought the team following the 2020 season.

David Stearns has agreed to become president of baseball operations for the underperforming New York Mets, according to several reports. The 38-year-old will serve under owner Steve Cohen and above general manager Billy Eppler, the reports said Tuesday. Stearns led the Milwaukee Brewers’ baseball operations department from September of 2015 through the 2022 season before stepping down and moving into an advisory role. Stearns is a New York City native and a Harvard graduate who interned with the Mets in 2007. There had long been speculation that he might one day return to Queens.

Matt Olson tied the Braves’ season home run record with 51 and Atlanta moved to the cusp of the NL East title, beating the Philadelphia Phillies 7-6 in 10 innings Tuesday night.

Marcell Ozuna hit a three-run shot, Ronald Acuña Jr. had a two-run homer for the Braves. After blowing a 6-1 lead, they won on Eddie Rosario’s RBI single off Craig Kimbrel (7-6) that scored the automatic runner.

The Braves can wrap up their sixth straight division crown with a win today over the Phillies.

Matt Olson has tied the Braves’ single-season home run record with 51. He matched the mark set by Andruw Jones in 2005. Olson connected for a solo shot against the Philadelphia Phillies on Tuesday night. He hit the first pitch he saw from starter Zack Wheeler in the fourth inning into the left-field seats. The fan who caught the ball threw it back onto the field. Olson hit two homers a night earlier against the Phillies, and the milestone 50th had to be retrieved from a fan.


The WNBA Playoffs start tonight with Minnesota facing Connecticut at 8 p.m. and Chicago at Las Vegas at 10 p.m.       

Meanwhile, Breanna Stewart of New York has won the AP Player of the Year award for the second straight season. It's the third time she's won the award since the AP first started voting on awards in 2016. She narrowly edged Las Vegas' A'ja Wilson, who captured AP Defensive Player of the Year honors. Connecticut's Stephanie White takes home the AP Coach of the Year award. Indiana's Aliyah Boston is the AP Rookie of the Year.


Prosecutors say Houston Rockets guard Kevin Porter Jr.’s alleged attack on his girlfriend at a New York City hotel left the woman with a fractured neck vertebra and a cut above her right eye. Prosecutors revealed details of the alleged assault at Porter's arraignment Tuesday. The 23-year-old pleaded not guilty to felony assault and strangulation charges in connection with the incident Monday at the Millennium Hilton near the United Nations in Manhattan. He was not required to enter a plea during his brief court appearance. Porter is due back in court in Manhattan on Oct. 16. A message seeking comment was left with Porter’s lawyer.


Kevin Kisner is getting back to work after finding himself at a crossroads on the PGA Tour. He was No. 31 in the world ranking going into the year. But his golf was bad, and it felt even worse when he was traveling alone and knowing he was missing out on family activities. He stepped away in June and returns this week at the Fortinet Championship. Along with getting back to his coach John Tillery, Kisner found another source of help. That would be Steve Stricker, who also battled a bad slump when he had young kids at home some 20 years ago.


New Columbus Blue Jackets coach Mike Babcock says he did nothing wrong in asking players to show him photos off their phone. A former NHL player Paul Bissonnette says he heard from the Blue Jackets that the coach was invading players' privacy. Babcock called that a gross representation of his meetings with players and staff. He says he asked for family photos as a way of getting to know people around the team better. Team captain Boone Jenner expressed disappointment at the situation being blown out of proportion.


Michigan State has stumbled from scandal to scandal, including the sexual abuse attacks by sports doctor Larry Nassar. After a female Michigan State graduate filed a complaint about Nassar’s abuse in 2014, a school investigation said he didn’t violate school policy and it took years before he was held accountable and incarcerated. Michigan State has another mess. There are questions about what school leaders knew and when before football coach Mel Tucker was suspended without pay after sexual misconduct allegations against him.


The Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority released a report Tuesday detailing circumstances surrounding a dozen horse deaths at Churchill Downs in Kentucky this spring. The report found there was no single factor leading to the fatalities, but that some training histories indicated increased risk due to “the frequency and cadence” of horses’ exercise and racing schedules.

The new federal authority overseeing racing is also probing more than a dozen horse fatalities this year at Saratoga Race Course. The meet ended on Labor Day with new safety protocols and HISA officials on site — work that the New York Racing Association says it supports.

One area of focus is the racing surfaces at New York tracks.

© 2023 Associated Press. All rights reserved.

A 2022 Siena College graduate, Alexander began his journalism career as a sports writer for Siena College's student paper The Promethean, and as a host for Siena's school radio station, WVCR-FM "The Saint." A Cubs fan, Alexander hosts the morning Sports Report in addition to producing Morning Edition. You can hear the sports reports over-the-air at 6:19 and 7:19 AM, and online on WAMC.org. He also speaks Spanish as a second language. To reach him, email ababbie@wamc.org, or call (518)-465-5233 x 190. You can also find him on Twitter/X: @ABabbieWAMC.