Extra Points: Collins, Bears, Cowboys, Jags

With Eugene Monroe, Branden Albert, and Jared Veldheer all seemingly on the verge of reaching unrestricted free agency, it’ll be an active market for left tackles and the teams seeking them. But the Bengals are hoping to stay out of the mix by locking up Anthony Collins before free agency begins, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link). Collins should draw a good deal of interest if he becomes available, as Rapoport suggests.

Here’s more from around the NFL on a Friday afternoon:

  • The Bears haven’t asked wide receiver Earl Bennett to take a pay cut, according to Jeff Dickerson of ESPNChicago.com (Twitter link), and fellow ESPN scribe Michael C. Wright says (via Twitter) that’s the case for defensive end Julius Peppers as well. Of course, there’s still some time for Chicago to approach both players, if the team needs to create some flexibility.
  • By officially releasing Phil Costa and restructuring Mackenzy Bernadeau‘s contract, the Cowboys are now about $2MM under the cap with free agency around the corner, tweets ESPN.com’s Todd Archer. That doesn’t necessarily mean the team is done cutting costs though — I’d still expect DeMarcus Ware‘s deal to be addressed in some form.
  • As for Costa, Calvin Watkins of ESPNDallas.com tweets that the Cowboys asked if the veteran center would take a pay cut. Costa declined, as he feels he’ll garner interest elsewhere.
  • After re-signing with the Jaguars today, Chad Henne spoke to the media and admitted that he wanted to talk to other teams, but Jacksonville was his No. 1 choice and he decided to forgo the open market when the club made an offer he liked. Meanwhile, head coach Gus Bradley indicated that re-signing Henne doesn’t mean the Jaguars won’t draft a quarterback in May (Twitter links via Michael DiRocco of ESPN.com).
  • Punter Pat McAfee told reporters, including Craig Kelley of Colts.com (Twitter link), that he “didn’t really want” to hit free agency and is happy to have re-signed with the Colts.

Zach Links contributed to this post.

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