NJ TRANSIT Monitoring Rail Repairs, Says Amtrak ‘Doing Everything Necessary’

ELMWOOD PARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — As Amtrak continues to fix the power problems blamed for several recent delays on the rails, NJ TRANSIT Executive Director Ronnie Hakim says her agency is watching the work “very carefully.”

“They’re doing everything necessary,” Hakim told WCBS 880’s Jim Smith. “That’s our engineering judgment.”

She added she hopes to “never see that kind of a repeat again.”

NJ TRANSIT Monitoring Rail Repairs, Says Amtrak 'Doing Everything Necessary'

nj transit train 1222 NJ TRANSIT Monitoring Rail Repairs, Says Amtrak Doing Everything Necessary
Jim Smith reports

The New York Times reported that Amtrak had finished repairs Friday on one of two damaged power cables that had caused delays.

With the focus shifting to longer-term solutions, such as new tunnels under the Hudson River, U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell, D-N.J., said it’s a fight on Capitol Hill to secure the investment needed to improve transit infrastructure. He said this Congress is the first since the 1970s that can’t pass a bipartisan transportation bill.

“This Congress is stuck in the mud,” Pascrell said.

“Are we ready for another bridge to fall down on somebody’s head?”

Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx sent a letter last week to New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo urging them to meet with him in the next two weeks to put together a strategy for building new tunnels.

Christie said he has spoken to Cuomo and that the two were trying to coordinate their schedules. Both have said the federal government needs to contribute more to the project.

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Apple Denies Rumors of Plans to Launch MVNO Carrier Services

iphone6-stockApple this morning directly responded to a recent rumor that the company would begin planning to launch its own MVNO service in both the United States and Europe, stating that it has “not discussed and is not planning” to become its own cellular carrier in the future.

The MVNO service would allow Apple to become its own carrier, leasing space from existing network carriers and building SIM cards that switch from network-to-network as need be. Rumors about such a service have been around for a while now, and today marks the first time that Apple has directly denied the existence of any such feature being built by the company.

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Jimmy Graham’s Fantasy Predictions After Comments on Blocking Role with Seahawks

Jimmy Graham has been one of the most dynamic and productive tight ends in the NFL both in real and fantasy terms over the past four seasons, but his value in the latter category could take a hit in 2015.

The 28-year-old Pro Bowler was surprisingly dealt from the New Orleans Saints to the Seattle Seahawks during the offseason, which is a move that should help Graham in terms of pursuing a championship, but it isn’t likely to do him any favors as a fantasy football asset. 

Even Graham himself seems to realize that his offensive production could be down during the upcoming season. According to Tim Booth of The Associated Press (h/t KOMONews.com), the former Miami (Fla.) basketball player expects his role as a blocker to increase significantly this year:

“It’s very important for me to be a part of (run blocking) here because that’s about 75 percent of the offense here and if you have a back like (Marshawn Lynch), you want to be in there on those explosive runs and you want to be part of that,” Graham said.

While Graham is ready and willing to contribute heavily to the running game, Pete Prisco of CBSSports.com questions if that is the most effective way to utilize a player of his caliber:

Graham wasn’t asked to block much in New Orleans’ pass-heavy offense, but according to NFL.com’s Kevin Patra, he was respectable in that regard last season as Pro Football Focus rated him as the No. 15 blocking tight end in the league.

While Graham refining his blocking skills could help Seattle’s offense as a whole, it won’t do his fantasy owners any favors.

He reeled in 85 passes for 889 yards and 10 touchdowns last year, and he averaged nearly 89 receptions for 1,099 yards and 11.5 touchdowns per season during his past four campaigns with the Saints.

For comparison’s sake, the Seahawks’ top pass-catching tight end has averaged just under 30 catches for nearly 345 yards and 2.75 touchdowns per season during that same time frame.

Also, as seen in this table, the Saints have been far more committed to the pass in recent years than the Seahawks, who have ranked near the bottom in that regard since quarterback Russell Wilson entered the league in 2012:

Despite the Seahawks’ obvious lack of focus on the tight end position and passing game in general over the past three years, ESPN.com’s Saints reporter Mike Triplett is still bullish on Graham from a fantasy perspective:

In terms of pure talent, only New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski can compare to Graham in terms of tight ends. Fantasy success relies on a lot more than talent, though.

One can only assume that head coach Pete Carroll and the Seahawks will be wise enough to integrate the tight end more heavily into the offense in 2015 now that they have an elite option at the position, but expecting Graham to reach his usual level of production is unrealistic.

Wide receiver Doug Baldwin led the team in receiving last year with 66 catches for 825 yards and three touchdowns, so look for Graham to post similar numbers with a bit more success in the touchdown department since his size gives him an advantage near the goal line.

Graham remains the No. 2 fantasy tight end behind Gronk, however, the separation is massive, and it wouldn’t be advisable to take Graham any earlier than the fourth round in standard leagues.


Projected 2015 stats: 70 receptions for 850 yards and seven touchdowns


Follow @MikeChiari on Twitter.

Nicki Minaj Donates to Amber Rose’s Slut Walk



Nicki Minaj is one of the biggest pop stars in the world and, though she’s consistently overlooked in such discussions, one of the best rappers in New York. Still, because this is the world we live in, her name has graced headlines the last two weeks almost exclusively because of the feud between her label mate, Toronto-bred superstar Drake, and her boyfriend, the former battle rapper from Philadelphia, Meek Mill. Today (August 4), however, she’s coming out of left field with a couple of racks: The Pinkprint songstress is donating $5,000 to the GoFundMe campaign for the Amber Rose Slut Walk. Rose was understandably excited:

Young fathers face raised health risks in middle age: study

By Patricia Reaney NEW YORK (Reuters) – First-time dads in their early 20s may have the energy and agility to keep up with their young children, but a new study shows early fatherhood can pose perils later in life. “Men who have a child before the age of 22 have a very clear higher midlife mortality than men who have children later, at an average age of 25 to 26,” said Dr. Elina Einio of the University of Helsinki. Although the study did not look into the possible causes of the higher risk of death for young fathers, Einio suggests that unplanned pregnancy, early marriage and the psychological and economic stress of fatherhood could play a part.

A Closer Look at the Full Gosha Rubchinskiy x Vans Sk8-Hi Collection

Reprising his project with Vans, Russian designer Gosha Rubchinskiy is back with three new makeups of the classic Vans Sk8-Hi. While initial previews showed two colorways of the Sk8-Hi, more recent updates show the collaborative sneaker has arrived in three color schemes, featuring suede uppers, a contrasting stitched Vans stripe logo, and old-school rubber reinforcements on the upper.

You can cop the trio of kicks over at UK-based END; make sure to peep the store’s recent Gosha Rubchinskiy editorial.

BUY NOW / $257


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