NFLPA President Eric Winston tweeted Thursday night that the deadline for nominations for Executive Director of the NFLPA had passed. Along with incumbent DeMaurice Smith, Winston listed Jim Acho, Sean Gilbert, Robert Griffith, Rob London, Art McAfee, John Stufflebeam, Andrew Smith and Jason Belser as candidates. The election for the position is scheduled for March 15.
According to Jason Cole of Bleacher Report, NFLPA executives are concerned about the internal lack of confidence in DeMaurice Smith. Cole reported that those execs are unsure how Smith will be able to lead going forward if he keeps the job, which he has held since 2009.
Here’s more from around the league:
- Albert Breer of NFL.com tweets that, in the aftermath of the Brandon Marshall trade, “chances are” the Bears will keep Jay Cutler for at least another year. According to Breer, Chicago hasn’t brought up the possibility of a Cutler trade with other teams this offseason. Breer notes that the Bears have a “Cutler-friendly staff” with new offensive coordinator Adam Gase and quarterbacks coach Dowell Logains. Breer’s report runs contrary to one released Thursday by NFL.com colleague Ian Rapoport, who said that “teams certainly know that Cutler is available.”
- The Raiders’ possible relocation to Carson, Calif., has been a major topic in recent weeks, and team owner Mark Davis said in a radio interview Friday that “other cities are possible relocation places,” Howard Balzer tweeted. Davis went on to state that he “wouldn’t say St. Louis is one of them.” Like the Raiders and Chargers, the Rams have been linked to the Los Angeles area. All three teams can terminate their leases and move after next season. If the Rams relocate, there have been rumblings about another NFL team playing in St. Louis in the future. If you’re to believe Davis, the Raiders won’t be that team.
- Speaking of the Rams, Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported Friday that the team and right tackle Joe Barksdale are “too far apart” on a new deal. Thus, the 26-year-old will hit free agency when the market opens March 10. The four-year veteran has started 29 games over the last two seasons for St. Louis. Out of 84 qualifying tackles, Pro Football Focus (subscription required) rated Barksdale as the 48th best in the league in 2014.