Panthers Sign RB Travaris Cadet

After waiving C.J. Anderson earlier today, the Panthers decided to add some backfield help by signing veteran Travaris Cadet, a source told Jourdan Rodrigue of the Charlotte Observer (Twitter link). 

Christian McCaffrey has completely monopolized the backfield touches for the Panthers, so there wasn’t much of a need for Anderson anymore. The moves today signal that the team has complete confidence in McCaffrey, and will continue feeding him a large volume of touches. Anderson had reportedly been expecting a larger role, so the team released him when he wasn’t getting much playing time. There will be no such expectation from Cadet, and he should slide in immediately as the number two.

Cameron Artis-Payne was the only running back left behind McCaffrey after the waiving of Anderson, so it makes sense why they’d be looking for help. Cadet spent the first five seasons of his career with the Saints, before latching on with the Bills in 2017. The Bills released him at final cuts this year, and he recently worked out for the Raiders.

Cadet is more of a passing-downs back than a between the tackles runner, and he had a couple of productive seasons catching the ball in New Orleans. In 2016 he caught 40 passes for 281 yards and four touchdowns, and also contributes on special teams.

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Raiders’ Eddie Vanderdoes To Finish Year On IR

Eddie Vanderdoes won’t suit up for the Raiders this year after all. The Raiders hoped to activate the defensive tackle from the PUP list, but will not be cleared before the expiration of the three-week window, coach Jon Gruden told reporters. 

[RELATED: Raiders Owner On Mack Trade, Gruden]

Vanderdoes, the 88th overall selection in the 2017 draft, fell to the Raiders largely because of his injury history. The UCLA product tore his ACL in the 2015 season opener, but kept himself on the NFL radar with his clean technique, including quick hands and consistently low pad level.

Vanderdoes started 13 of his 16 games as a rookie and finished out with 18 total tackles. Unfortunately, he’ll have to wait until next year to see the field again and reassert himself at the pro level.

The 1-8 Raiders now have three defensive tackles on IR in Vanderdoes, Ahtyba Rubin, and Justin Ellis.

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Jaguars C Brandon Linder Out For Season

Brandon Linder‘s season is over. The Jaguars’ center will undergo surgery on his right knee, ruling him out for the remainder of the year, head coach Doug Marrone announced.

The Jaguars have dropped five straight and the loss of Linder will not help in their quest to get out of the hole. The 26-year-old ranks as one of the league’s better centers and his importance to the team was underscored by the six-year, $54MM extension he inked in 2017.

Even before the Linder injury, the Jags’ offensive line was weakened by the loss of left tackle Cam Robinson. The Jaguars were hoping to turn things around after getting Leonard Fournette back in the lineup, but he won’t get far if the club’s reserves cannot step up. Tyler Shatley figures to slide into the starting lineup in Linder’s place as the team hopes to get more than the 2.2 yards per carry Fournette averaged against the Colts.

Linder, a former third round pick, missed the majority of the 2015 season due to a shoulder injury and had to sit out for five games between 2016 and 2017. He’s been starting for Jacksonville since entering the league in 2014, but after five years he’ll have missed 26 out of a possible 80 regular season games.

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Chargers’ Denzel Perryman Done For Year

Chargers star linebacker Denzel Perryman suffered an injury to his LCL and probably needs hamstring surgery as well, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter) hears. The double whammy will land him on injured reserve, ending his season. 

The Chargers have been one of the league’s surprise successes this season and Perryman deserves serious credit for their 7-2 start. Through nine games, the 25-year-old (26 in December) tallied 51 total tackles and an interception. The inside linebacker doesn’t have any sacks, but he is ranked as Pro Football Focus’ 23rd best linebacker on the strength of his pass rush pressure.

Perryman, a second-round pick in 2015, is no stranger to injury. Last year, Perryman started the year on IR and went right back after seven games.

Without Perryman, the Chargers will likely turn to Korey Toomer or Nick Dzubnar in the middle. It also stands to reason that they’ll add a linebacker, especially since Kyzir White is on IR and Chris Landrum is healing up from a hip injury.

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Panthers Waive RB C.J. Anderson

The Panthers waived running back C.J. Anderson, according to a team announcement. Anderson was signed in May, but he was used far less than anticipated this season.

When we signed C.J. in the spring he saw a bigger role than he has had, and honestly, at the time so did we,” general manager Marty Hurney said in a statement. “But Christian McCaffrey has taken so much of the offense and so much of the plays, we just made the decision that this was the best thing for all parties involved.”

Anderson, 27, was a surprise cut by the Broncos after he ran for more than 1,000 yards in 2017. The 27-year-old wanted to reassert himself in Carolina, but he wound up with just 24 carries in nine games. On the plus side, he was efficient in that limited sample as he averaged 4.3 yards per tote.

Anderson is a vested veteran, but he’ll be subject to waivers now that the trade deadline has passed. With a reasonable $1.75MM cap figure on an expiring deal, it stands to reason that several teams will consider placing a claim on him. If not, he won’t last long as a free agent.

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Redskins’ Geron Christian Out For Year

Redskins tackle Geron Christian tore his MCL and is out for the season, head coach Jay Gruden announced. Thanks to injuries, the third-round rookie dressed for only two games in his first pro campaign. 

The Redskins’ offensive line has taken a beating this year. Recently, the team was also forced to shut down guards Brandon Scherff and Shawn Lauvao for the season and star tackle Trent Williams is at least a couple of weeks away from returning after a thumb injury. The Redskins will use new addition Austin Howard at offensive tackle, but another signing could be on the way as they look to strengthen the front five.

Despite their setbacks, the Redskins lead the NFC East with a 6-3 record. Fresh off of a road victory over the Bucs, they’ll look for another W against the Texans on Sunday.

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Buccaneers Cut K Chandler Catanzaro

The Buccaneers have cut kicker Chandler Catanzaro, according to Jenna Laine of ESPN.com (on Twitter). The move comes one day after Catanzaro missed two of his three field goal attempts in a loss to the Redskins. 

I’m trying to find (the reason for the misses),” Catanzaro said after sending two of his tries wide right in the 16-3 loss. “The ball is just not going through the yellow poles right now. It’s got to do that. I’m not sure (what’s wrong). I just try to take it one kick at a time. … Something’s wrong, and I’ve done my best to fix it, and up until now, it hasn’t been fixed.”

Mired in a three-game losing streak, the Bucs were not interested in waiting for Catanzaro to fix the problem. Catanzaro’s rough day against Washington left him with a subpar 73.3% conversion rate on field goal tries and his previous four misses extra point attempts surely did not help matters.

The Bucs do not have a kicker on the practice squad, so they’ll have to sign someone new before Sunday’s game against the Giants.

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Jaguars C Brandon Linder To Miss Time

The Jaguars will be without center Brandon Linder against the Steelers on Sunday, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter). The issue could sideline him for multiple games and subsequently deal a serious blow to the Jaguars’ running game. 

The Jaguars finally got star rusher Leonard Fournette back in the lineup on Sunday, but his effectiveness would be limited without the presence of Linder in the middle of the line. The 26-year-old is currently ranked as the league’s ninth-best center, according to Pro Football Focus’ advanced metrics.

After losing Linder in the third quarter, the Jaguars’ offense failed to close the gap against the Colts and ultimately lost by a field goal. At 3-6, the Jaguars’ playoff hopes are rapidly dwindling, and a sixth-straight loss may take them out of the postseason mix.

For however long Linder is out, the Jaguars will likely use Tyler Shatley as their starting center.

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Raiders Owner On Mack Trade, Gruden

Raiders owner Mark Davis is taking responsibility for the team’s 1-8 start, even though many are pointing fingers at head coach Jon Gruden

I always look in the mirror, and the buck stops with me,” Davis told ESPN.com’s Paul Gutierrez. “Where this team is right now is my fault. We haven’t been able to build a 22-man roster. We haven’t been able to give this team a chance to win because the reconstruction failed. We failed from 2014 on to have a roster right now.”

Over the course of a 45-minute interview, Davis discussed Gruden, GM Reggie McKenzie, the team’s widely panned trade of defensive star Khalil Mack, and much more. Here’s a look at the highlights:

On Gruden’s role in the Mack trade:

Jon wanted him. Everybody thinks that Jon’s the one who wanted to get rid of him. Jon wanted him badly. Why wouldn’t you want this guy? Reggie wanted him badly. And I wanted him badly, too. But, if in fact we were going to give the type of money that we were going to give to him, and we had Derek on that type of a (contract), how were we going to go ahead and build this football team, with all the holes that we had?

On what prompted the team to send Mack to the Bears: 

My thought was, “Listen, he signed a five-year contract, if he’s the type of guy that I think he is, he’s going to honor that contract.” And he’s going to come in and play for the $13MM for this year and then we’ll work for him during the year and get it. Word came back through certain players that know him and talk to him and know me as well, that he wasn’t going to come in. He was going to do the Le’Veon Bell (holdout). At that point, I said, F’ it. The guy hasn’t talked to anybody. We’ve got to do something.

On Mack’s agent, Joel Segal:

It might not have been the right decision, but the other point to this whole thing is that Segal is also the agent for Amari Cooper. And we knew the same situation was coming up the next year. It wasn’t just one layer of chess; it was two layers of chess. But to blame Jon, for Khalil Mack not being here, is absolutely not the truth. It was a decision that was made and it wasn’t made easily … I don’t have any bad feelings toward (Mack). I wish he would have talked to Jon and Reggie and wanted to at least honor the fifth year of his contract.

On the future of quarterback Derek Carr:

Derek is taking a lot of s— right now. He is the franchise quarterback right now. He doesn’t have Amari Cooper. He lost (Martavis) Bryant to a knee injury today. Guys have been getting hurt. Who’s he throwing to? Jordy Nelson and Seth Roberts, which are good guys. But they’re not putting the fear of God in anybody. The tight end (Jared Cook) is playing his ass off. You look at the quarterback and he’s playing behind a battered offensive line … so I don’t know what you can put on Derek and I don’t think it’s fair to put all the blame on him.

On McKenzie’s future:

Reggie and I need to sit down and talk and figure out how we are going to go about the future. We’ve got to look in the mirror and figure out, where the hell did we go wrong in trying to build this thing? We failed. I have failed. But at the same time, we wouldn’t have been in the great position we were in without Reggie McKenzie being here.

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Jets Unlikely To Fire Bowles During Season

Jets head coach Todd Bowles is on the hot seat, but he’s unlikely to lose his job before the end of the calendar year. If a change is made, it will likely come after the season, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter) hears. 

Bowles and CEO Christopher Johnson met on Monday morning to discuss the future, which invited speculation of a coaching change during the team’s bye week. Even after the Jets made Bills quarterback Matt Barkley look like Jim Kelly, the Jets plan to keep their embattled head coach for at least the next couple of months.

Jets owner Woody Johnson generally does not believe in firing head coaches during the season. In 2014, Johnson ignored calls to fire Rex Ryan after a 1-8 start to the year and did not dismiss him until after the season when the Jets finished 4-12.

It’s also likely that the Johnsons do not see a logical replacement for Bowles on the coaching staff. The team has struggled on both sides of the ball, so neither offensive coordinator Jeremy Bates nor defensive coordinator Kacy Rodgers would make sense as a temporary solution. And, even if Rodgers was viewed as an interim candidate, his health situation would complicate matters.

The locker room is said to still hold Bowles in high regard, but he’s as good as gone if the team cannot rally over the final six games of the season. After the bye, the 3-7 Jets will face the Patriots on Nov. 25.

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