– Lewis’ team actually looked the best of the bunch before bungling one away in Chicago, 24-21, with personal fouls, wasted timeouts and turnovers. AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org “I know that’s kind of a bad answer, but it’s the truth. All of a sudden, we find ourselves tied for first place. We also find ourselves tied for last place. That’s where we’re at.” Not just them. They’re all feeling the blues this week in the AFC North. All four teams in the NFL’s most successful division over the last five years have started the season at 0-1. It’s only the second time that’s happened, according to STATS LLC. The other time? Way back in 2002, when the league went to the current division format. “Yeah, it helps ease it a little bit,” defensive end Carlos Dunlap said. “But you can look at it the other way, too, and say we could’ve been one up.” – The defending Super Bowl-champion Baltimore Ravens went back to Denver, the scene of their improbable playoff comeback last season, and had their revamped defense get taken apart for a record-seven touchdown passes by Peyton Manning in a 49-27 route. And it’s not just that all four lost, it’s how they lost: In the last five years, no division has sent more teams to the playoffs than the AFC North – 11 overall. It’s the only division that has sent at least two each season, including three in 2011. None of them looked like a playoff-caliber team for very long. Worse, Pro Bowl center Maurkice Pouncey tore ligaments in his right knee and linebacker Larry Foote ruptured his right biceps, ending their seasons. The Ravens opened the season on Thursday night, so they’ve had a little extra time to sort out their problems on defense. On Sunday, they host the Browns, who have a new coach in Rob Chudzinski but played like they were ready to hold up the bottom of the division for yet another year. There were plenty of SINS in a division with the league’s best playoff pedigree. AP Sports Writers David Ginsburg in Baltimore, Tom Withers in Cleveland and Will Graves in Pittsburgh contributed to this report. So, there’s that recent history to fall back on after those dismal debuts. The Bengals looked good in the first half at Chicago before reverting to their old Bungles ways. The final flub was linebacker Rey Mauaulga – a team captain last season – throwing down a Bears defender after the whistle for a penalty that allowed Chicago to run out the clock. – Over in Pittsburgh, the towel-waving crowd at Heinz Field put those towels away and filed out quietly near the end of a shocking 16-9 loss to the Titans that was in most ways the worst of the division’s opening flops. CINCINNATI (AP) – Bengals coach Marvin Lewis watched a little video of Pittsburgh’s season-opening disaster and felt a kinship with the failure. “We’ve got a lot of work to do,” Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said. “Nobody cares about our problems. They’re glad we’ve got them. We need to understand that. We need to stick together and persevere.” Up next: a Monday night game in Cincinnati against the Bengals and former Steelers linebacker James Harrison. Pittsburgh hasn’t opened a season 0-2 since 2002. And that wasn’t all of it. Twice, the Bengals had to call a timeout because they had the wrong number of players on the field on defense, leaving them with no way to stop the clock in the closing minutes. At least everyone else lost. A North team has reached the Super Bowl three times in the last five years, winning two titles. The Ravens have reached the playoffs each of the last five seasons; the Steelers have reached the Super Bowl twice during that span. ___ ___ “The great thing about it is – and we all know this – it’s week-to-week in this league,” Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. “If we take care of our business, we’re going to be in the hunt and make it interesting. And if we don’t, we’re not. “I just watched the first half of their game and I’m sure they feel the same way we do,” Lewis said. Cincinnati Bengals coach Marvin Lewis yells out to his team during the first half of an NFL football game against the Chicago Bears, Sunday, Sept. 8, 2013, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)by Joe KayAP Sports Writer “A lot of we call it SINS – self-inflicted negatives,” receiver Davone Bess said. “A lot of times when you’re backed against the wall, you need to be able to execute from assignment and alignment standpoint. If you don’t do that, you’re killing yourself before the play even starts.” – In Cleveland, the Browns did their annual looking-a-little-better tease before falling apart and losing to the Dolphins 23-10, dropping their ninth straight opener and their 14th in the last 15 years. The Steelers might have the toughest go of it. They missed out on the playoffs last season by finishing 8-8, unable to run the ball consistently or protect quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. They drafted Le’Veon Bell to boost the running game, but he got hurt during camp. Pittsburgh ran for only 32 yards in the opener and Roethlisberger was sacked five times.
Serena Williams twirls after defeating Carina Witthoeft, of Germany, during the second round of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2018, in New York. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)NEW YORK (AP) — It’s all about the tutu for Serena Williams at the U.S. Open.Just days after French Tennis Federation President Bernard Giudicelli said her black catsuit with clot-preventing compression tights “will no longer be accepted,” Williams chose a one-armed black tutu-style dress by Off-White’s Virgil Abloh to take on Magda Linette at the Open. She won.Perhaps her sparkly shoes emblazoned with her name and “queen” also helped.On Wednesday night, playing against Carina Witthoeft, Williams was in another tutu dress that’s part of her new collaboration with Nike and Abloh, who is also men’s artistic director for Louis Vuitton. Anna Wintour looked pleased as she watched Williams beat Witthoeft.The Queen Collection is inspired by Williams’ love of dance. She paired the black look with a leather biker jacket. The dresses have sheer panels on one shoulder and long sleeves on the other. Williams tugged hard on the sleeve as her Wednesday match began.Serena Williams, of the United States, reaches for a shot from Carina Witthoeft, of Germany, during the second round of the U.S. Open tennis tournament Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2018, in New York. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)The 23-time Grand Slam winner wore compression fishnets with her tutu looks to guard against blood clots, a problem she battled soon after giving birth last September.Retail, prices range from $130 to $900 for various pieces in the new collab.