EAST RUTHERFORD Hakeem Butler Jersey , N.J. (AP)lines up with the first-team units.One of the surprises for the New York Giants was seeing Josh Mauro at defensive end during the first practice at organized team activities this week.Mauro knows the 3-4 system that is being installed by new defensive coordinator James Bettcher. The drawback is that the five-year veteran is not going to be on the field when new coach Pat Shurmur and the Giants open the season at home against the Jacksonville Jaguars. He will be starting a four-game suspension for violating the league’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs.The NFL handed down the suspension days after the 27-year-old Mauro signed a one-year contract with the Giants. The team knew it was coming before signing him.”They have confidence in me,” Mauro said. ”They are giving me an opportunity here. I just want to give them everything I have to return that favor. It means a lot to me and I want to give them everything I have.”Mauro has accepted responsibility for using the drug. He purchased an over-the-counter supplement and didn’t know it contained a banned substance. A trace amount of it was found in a test. It was not present in a test a week later.Mauro, who released a statement after the suspension explaining what happened, wants everyone to know that he is not a cheater.”Once you step away from this game all you have is your name,” Mauro said. ”You can have your accomplishments, your stats, whatever else, individual or team successes you’ve had, but it’s just important for me to let everyone know the circumstances beyond that.”Mauro could be a key player for Bettcher Chris Lindstrom Jersey , who coached him for three seasons with the Arizona Cardinals. Along with linebacker Kareem Martin, he can explain the new system to his teammates.He also doesn’t see a team that was 3-13 last season.”There are a lot of positives up here,” the former Stanford product said. ”This is probably the toughest division (NFC East) in the NFL, so there are a lot of opportunities to play great teams. And just this city, it’s the ultimate football city.”Mauro may train with the Giants and participate in training camp. Once his suspension starts, he cannot be with the team unless he is getting treatment for an injury.Mauro, who started 26 games for the Cardinals with 75 tackles and two sacks, plans to meet with the staff before the suspension starts to get a workout routine.While they traded Jason Pierre-Paul in the offseason, the Giants have depth at the end spot with Olivier Vernon, Kerry Wynn http://www.lionsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-jahlani-tavai-jersey , Romeo Okwara and Avery Moss. They are heavy at the tackle spots with Damon Harrison, Dalvin Thompson, Robert Thomas and rookie draft picks RJ McIntosh and B.J. Hill.NOTES: The Giants signed veteran receiver Russell Shepard, who has played five seasons in the NFL. He was released by the Carolina Panthers last week. To make room on the 90-man roster, first year cornerback Tim Scott was released. He played in one game last season.—
ATLANTA — Atlanta Braves left-hander Sean Newcomb hadn’t lost since his opening start of the season until falling to the Dodgers in Los Angeles last Sunday, ending a six-game winning streak.
Now Newcomb gets a chance to bounce back against one of the teams he blanked during the streak as the Braves face the San Diego Padres on Saturday in the third game of their four-game series at SunTrust Park.
The Padres ended an eight-game losing streak in Atlanta on Friday night, beating the National League East-leading Braves 7-3 for their 12th victory in the past 17 games.
Newcomb (7-2, 2.92 ERA) held the Padres (34-38) to three singles in six scoreless innings at San Diego on June 5 in a 14-1 rout that was the only victory for the Braves (40-29) in that three-game series.
Newcomb’s performance was a near duplicate of his first major league victory last June in San Diego and gave him a 1.31 ERA during a seven-start stretch.
“Every time he goes on the mound you’re pretty confident we are going to get the win that day,” Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman said after going 4-for-4 with a homer. “He’s been lights-out for a long time.”
Newcomb hit a speed bump against the Dodgers in Los Angeles, though.
The 24-year-old native of Massachusetts gave up two first-pitch home runs Kyler Murray Jersey , one on a three-run shot in the third inning, and allowed five runs in 5 1/3 innings of a 7-2 loss.
“I’ll do everything I can to not let it happen again,” Newcomb said. “I’ll take away the positives and move forward.”
Padres starter Jordan Lyles (2-3, 4.83 ERA) gave up eight runs in 4 1/3 innings as the Braves made things easy for Newcomb in San Diego and the 27-year-old right-hander took another loss in his most recent start.
Lyles again allowed 11 hits and this time four runs in six innings against the Cardinals in St. Louis, getting just three swings and misses on 102 pitches.
Lyles’ rough stretch followed some impressive work in May after he was moved into the rotation from the bullpen. He took a perfect game into the eighth inning against the Colorado Rockies in his second start and ended up allowing a hit and a walk while striking out 10 in 7 1/3 innings.
The Padres are the only major league team to never throw a no-hitter and Lyles was pitching against the team that released him last August.
“It would have been sweet regardless,” Lyles said afterward.
Lyles has a 6.35 ERA in four games (three starts) against the Braves, with the loss in San Diego last week his only decision.
Both Newcomb and Lyles are former first-round draft choices.
Newcomb, acquired from the Los Angeles Angels in the Andrelton Simmons trade after the 2015 season, was the 15th overall pick in 2014.
Lyles was drafted by Houston as the 38th overall pick in 2008 and traded to Colorado after the 2013 season.
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