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qq Sep 12 '17
INDIANAPOLIS -- Jeff Gordon always expected to be at this weekends Brickyard 400. Nike Air Vapormax Triple Black .The tricky part was figuring out his role.One week after Gordon asked his publicist to delay a long-planned announcement that he would drive the pace car before a race he won five times, the four-time Cup champion returned to the 2.5-mile oval as Dale Earnhardt Jr.s replacement and the top attraction in Sundays race.When (team owner) Rick (Hendrick) said to me, `Are you coming to Indianapolis? I said `Yes I am. I am coming on Saturday, Gordon said. He said, `Well, you better bring your uniform.The improbable comeback takes place just a short drive away from his childhood home of Pittsboro, Indiana, and eight months after his official retirement.Hes back for only one reason: Earnhardt continues to battle concussion-like symptoms and has not yet been cleared by doctors to climb back into the car.When Earnhardt took himself out of the No. 88 last weekend, Hendrick contacted his long-time star who was vacationing in France. Gordon agreed to pinch-hit when he returned. Gordon then texted publicist Jon Edwards, who contacted the speedway 15 minutes before the scheduled announcement.For the Rainbow Warrior, this weeks pace has been every bit as frantic.He flew to New York on Tuesday, then hopped on Hendricks plane, bound for North Carolina as Earnhardt was seeing doctors in Pittsburgh.After landing in Charlotte, Gordon was whisked to team headquarters for a seat fitting. On Wednesday, the day it was announced Earnhardt would miss two more races, Gordon had a physical, applied for drivers credentials and met with crew chief Greg Ives. Gordon spent the rest of the week watching Go-Pro videos, researching data and working in the simulator before practicing Friday. Qualifying will be held Saturday.When he arrived at the track Friday, throngs of fans lined up to catch one more glimpse of Gordon.This is certainly the last thing I thought was going to happen, but I knew it was Indianapolis, Gordon said. I didnt think about it. I felt like if there was one place that I was capable of doing it, it would be here.How much can be expected from a 44-year-old driver who will make his season debut at one of the series fastest tracks and on one of the seasons hottest weekends? The heat index is expected to hit triple digits Sunday.All I can tell you is that I have done everything I possibly can over the last three days to get ready for this race the best way that I can, he said.Gordon is the only five-time Brickyard winner and can become the first driver to ever win six times at Indy.Hes not eligible to make the Chase -- even with a win -- because he hasnt competed in enough races. But if the No. 88 car makes NASCARs playoffs and Earnhardt is not cleared to drive, Hendrick could keep Gordon, who kept the door open to running more races if needed.Earnhardts recovery appears to be progressing, though.Today is the 1st day in many that I sensed improvement, he wrote Friday on Twitter. Seen small gains during my physical therapy as well. Light at the end of the tunnel.Earnhardt also missed two races in 2012 with a concussion, causing some concern about the future plans of the series most popular driver. Hendrick said he has discussed a contract extension beyond next season but would rather see Earnhardt focus on getting healthy right now.Until then, other drivers expect Gordon to be an immediate factor.He could win it (Sunday) and surprise us, defending winner Kyle Busch said. I think realistically, hell be top 10.Its not the first time Gordon was approached this season about making a return, either.He also said he was asked to fill in for the injured Tony Stewart in February at Daytona. Gordon, who was with Stewart when he was injured riding an off-road vehicle, declined the invite because of his commitment to work on Fox Sports broadcast.I would have been all for it, Stewart said with a smile. I mean the least he could have done is, he broke my back, the least he could have done is drive for me.Gordon also acknowledged it will be strange to race against Chase Elliott, who took over in Gordons familiar No. 24 car after the 2015 season finale at Homestead.But for now, hell put the pace-car driving duties on hold as he tries to win for the 94th time in his career.Really, this is just me helping out the organization, Gordon said. We will see what happens on Sunday. Vapormax Triple Black Mens . LOUIS -- The New Orleans Saints looked like a team playing out the string. Nike Air Vapormax Sale . "I wrote 36 on my sheet at the beginning of the game," the Cincinnati coach said, referring the yard line the ball would need to be snapped from. http://www.vapormaxshoesforsale.com/ . After Martin Skrtel put the Reds in front from close range at Stamford Bridge after only four minutes, Hazard hit back in the 17th with a superb strike. Etoo gave Jose Mourinhos team a decisive lead from Oscars back pass in the 34th.IRVING, Texas -- Tony Romo pointed here and there, showing receiver Dez Bryant the best way to use a block on the first day of off-season practice. Thats about what he can do for now. The new $100 million quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys cant participate in workouts because of a procedure last month to remove a cyst on his back. So he had a chance Tuesday to show a little bit of what owner Jerry Jones made everyone believe would be an expanded role when he said Romo would be putting in "Peyton Manning-type time" to try to make Dallas a Super Bowl contender again. Romo looked a lot like a coach, even though hes loathe to acknowledge that his presence is anything more than the natural progression of a quarterback getting ready for his seventh full season as the starter. And he certainly rejects the conclusion drawn by many after Jones comments that his dedication has something to do with Dallas missing the playoffs three straight years and him having a 1-6 record in elimination games. "Im here. Im always at the facility," said Romo, speaking publicly for the first time since signing a six-year, $108 million extension with more guaranteed money ($55 million) than Super Bowl winner Joe Flacco of Baltimore. "If you talk to any of the coaches or anybody Im around, Ive been a gym rat since Ive been here." The question of golf always comes up with Romo this time of year, and, well, he hasnt been playing as much because hes been recovering from what he said was a minor outpatient procedure for a cyst that was "kind of annoying" but not cancerous. The procedure was first reported by The Dallas Morning News. The 33-year-old Romo will miss three weeks of practice but could participate in minicamp starting June 11. He will be ready for training camp in July. "Nobody was real concerned about it," coach Jason Garrett said. "We felt like it was better to get it taken care of sooner rather than later. He was doing everything in our off-season program. Hes back to doing a lot of that stuff right now as hes getting better." Backup Kyle Orton will take most of the snaps in Romos absence. He signed as a free agent last year but played in just one game, a blowout loss to Chicago. The Cowboys also have second-year player Nick Stephens and undrafted rookie Dalton Williams on the roster. A healthyy Romo, now the highest-paid player in franchise history, will be a huge factor for Garrett, who is unlikely to return if Dallas doesnt make the playoffs in 2013. Nike Air Vapormax Mens. The last time Romo missed significant playing time, former coach Wade Phillips was fired and replaced by Garrett in the middle of a 6-10 season in 2010. Romo was out 10 games with a broken collarbone. Romo played through a broken rib early in the 2011 season and stayed healthy last year. Both seasons ended with losses to NFC East rivals in finales with playoff berths on the line. "Weve always been very cautious this time of year with our players, making sure theyre 100 per cent healthy and get them back when theyre ready to go," Garrett said. "Theres going to be plenty of work once he comes back, a lot of training camp work prior to that first game." The Cowboys and Romo could have done what the Ravens and Flacco did -- play out the final season of a contract and see how it goes. Baltimore had to pay plenty, giving Flacco $120.6 million over six years with $52 million guaranteed. While the total value of Romos deal is lower, he and the Cowboys were heavily criticized for a comparable deal with more guaranteed money despite Flacco having eight more playoff wins, in five straight trips to the post-season. "We were 8-8 the last couple of years," Romo said. "That doesnt sit well with me. I dont think Im an 8-8 quarterback. I dont think this organization is comfortable being 8-8. Were going to do everything we can as coaches, players and in this building to change that." Romos interpretation of his owners line about Peyton Manning is that Denvers quarterback, a former Super Bowl winner with Indianapolis, has always had an unusually direct relationship with coaches. Its not that Romo and Garrett havent worked closely the six seasons theyve been together. But Romo figures its natural that hell have more to say about the game plan rather than just waiting around Monday and Tuesday for it to show up. "The older you get, you develop that a little bit as a quarterback," Romo said. "If you do some good things in the past that allow you to show, then you can have a little more of that. Thats part of the growth that takes shape." He was showing some of that during his idle time on the practice field. 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