Michael Jordan is teaming up with Denny Hamlin to start a NASCAR Cup Series team, and their first hire is a notable one.
The team hired Bubba Wallace as its first driver. Wallace, the Cup Series' only Black driver, had been the behind the wheel of the No. 43 Chevrolet car with Richard Petty Motorsports, but he announced earlier this month that he’d be leaving the team.
The Cup Series charter will be called, “His Airness."
Hamlin has six wins this season as a member of Joe Gibbs racing, where he has been since 2005. He has no plans of leaving his No. 11 Toyota.
Jordan will assume majority ownership. Hamlin and Jordan’s relationship was long established when Hamlin became the first NASCAR driver endorsed by the Jordan brand.
Choosing a first driver was “easy,” according to Hamlin. “It had to be Bubba,” he said.
Wallace’s profile grew this season as he spoke out against social injustices in NASCAR and America. There was also an incident in Wallace’s garage, where his team thought it located a noose but an FBI investigation determined that it was a garage pull rope.
Is Cam Newton an upgrade over Tom Brady?
Could Cam Newton be an upgrade over Tom Brady in New England? A case can be made for this season.
Emphasis on this season. There is no career comparison between the two, but through two games with their new teams, Newton has arguably been the better quarterback.
“Let me also go on record right now as believing the Patriots upgraded at quarterback this year,” Boston Globe writer Chad Finn said in his story on Newton. “Brady looks the same in Tampa Bay — with better weapons, as they like to say — as he did in New England last year. He’s the greatest player of all time, but his style of play right now is methodically joyless.”
Both quarterbacks are 1-1 this season. Brady has completed 64.8% of his passes for 456 yards, three touchdowns and three interceptions. Newton has completed 71.4% of his throws for 552 yards, one touchdown and one interception. It’s important to add that Newton leads the NFL with four rushing touchdowns, and Brady has one rushing score, too.
The stats are in Newton’s favor, and the numbers may make it closer than it really is. Newton’s biggest target is former Super Bowl MVP Julian Edelman, but the rest of his receivers are players making names for themselves. Brady on the other hand has two Pro Bowl wide receivers and arguably the best group of tight ends in the NFL.
It has only been two games, but it looks like the genius Bill Belichick has struck gold again.
Blake Bortles signs with Broncos
A shoulder injury to Drew Lock has opened a door for the Broncos to sign former Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles.
The “BOAT,” as Bortles' fan base calls him, spent five years in Jacksonville and last season with the Los Angeles Rams.
Bortles is mostly remembered for the Jaguars' unlikely run to the AFC Championship game in 2017. He had a combined 11-34 record through three seasons before leading the Jaguars to a 10-6 finish. Bortles went 3-9 the next season and didn’t return to Jacksonville.
Bortles is a decent option to hold the fort while Lock is injured, or he could be an addition for depth. Jeff Driskel replaced Lock last Sunday and gave them a chance to win against the ferocious Steelers defense.
Now an intriguing quarterback battle that dates to high school is underway.