Month: November 2018

Zac Stacy Requests Trade; Rams Open To Deal

The Rams made perhaps the most surprising pick of the top 10 earlier tonight, drafting Georgia running back Todd Gurley with the 10th overall selection. The pick prompted Rams running back Zac Stacy to publish a tweet that simply read “Yikes,” before he later deleted it. And according to Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (via Twitter), the Gurley selection also pushed Stacy to request a trade, an idea the Rams are open to.

Stacy, 24, had a strong rookie season in 2013, racking up 973 rushing yards and eight total touchdowns, as he spent most of the year as the primary back in St. Louis. However, he ceded playing time and touches to Tre Mason last season, totaling just 293 yards and a TD on 76 carries.

Gurley may not be ready to play in Week 1 of the 2015 campaign, but with Mason’s stock on the rise, and Benny Cunningham and Isaiah Pead also still in the mix, the Rams’ depth chart is getting crowded at the running back spot. If the team can get anything of value for Stacy, it may make sense to move on.

A fifth-round pick in 2013, Stacy’s contract makes him a viable trade chip — he’s currently in line for salaries worth just $585K in 2015 and $675K in 2014, and he’d only leave about $88K in dead money on St. Louis’ cap if the club traded him.

With a number of intriguing running back prospects available on day two of the draft, I wouldn’t expect any team to rush to give up a pick for Stacy, but perhaps a club that misses out on its top targets or opts to fill other holes would kick the tires on the Vanderbilt product before the end of the weekend.

NFC Notes: Lions, Saints, 49ers, Cowboys

Earlier tonight, we rounded up a few leftover draft-related items out of the AFC. Now let’s shift our focus to the other conference and pass along some NFC notes….

  • The Lions had three offers to trade back, GM Martin Mayhew tells Michael Rothstein of ESPN.com (Twitter link), but the Broncos’ decision to offer Manny Ramirez helped Detroit make its decision.
  • Had Andrus Peat not been available to the Saints, they would have been fine with choosing Danny Shelton, says head coach Sean Payton (Twitter link via Sean Fazende of FOX 8).
  • The 49ers had several options in the first round, as GM Trent Baalke tells Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle (via Twitter) that there were still five or six prospects the team “coveted” when the No. 15 pick rolled around. As such, it made sense for the Niners to move back a little.
  • The Cowboys would’ve thought hard about trading down had Byron Jones not been available, says Dallas exec Stephen Jones (Twitter link via Todd Archer of ESPN.com). Jones says the club had a couple other players who were in play at the back end of the first round.
  • Texas defensive tackle Malcom Brown was still on the board when the Patriots grabbed him with the last pick of the first round, and it sounds like Brown himself thought he’d be picked sooner — according to Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald (Twitter link), the newest Pat was told he could have gone as high as No. 7 to the Bears.

Luke Adams contributed to this post.

AFC Notes: Chargers, Ravens, Broncos, Fins

Asked about the Chargers‘ trade up for Melvin Gordon, general manager Tom Telesco said his club had seven “impact” players targeted in the first round, and the Wisconsin back was the last one available (Twitter link via Michael Gehlken of the San Diego Union-Tribune). The Chargers were motivated to move up two spots to snag Gordon since they felt the Texans might be interested, and recognized that another team might try to move ahead of them.

Telesco added that the Chargers feel like Gordon is the best pass-protecting running back in the draft, which helps make up for not selecting an offensive lineman (Twitter link via Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune).

  • The Ravens selected wide receiver Breshad Perriman with the 26th overall pick, but if Perriman hadn’t been available, Baltimore likely would’ve tried to trade out of that spot, per GM Ozzie Newsome (Twitter link via Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun).
  • According to GM John Elway, Missouri pass rusher Shane Ray was a top-10 player on the Broncos‘ draft board, so it’s not surprising that the team was willing to move up a few spots to No. 23 overall to grab him (Twitter link via Troy Renck of the Denver Post).
  • After taking a receiver in the first round, the Dolphins figure to target cornerbacks, guards, linebackers, or even defensive tackles with their second round pick, writes Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, providing a few names to watch. Having sent their third-rounder to the Saints earlier in the offseason, the Dolphins will only pick once tomorrow unless they make another move.

Poll: Most Surprising Non-First-Rounder?

32 prospects came off the board tonight, but there are quite a few talented players still available following the conclusion of Round One. Because this draft was seemingly loaded with mid-tier talent, it’s not surprising that there doesn’t seem to be much of a difference between the players selected in the middle of the first round and some of the prospects still on the board.

Most of the top available players reside on the defensive side of the ball, where Randy Gregory, once a possible top-five pick, is still on the board due to off-the-field concerns. Fellow front seven players Eddie Goldman and Eric Kendricks were also candidates to hear their name called in the first round, while back end players Landon Collins and Jalen Collins are also surprisingly still available.

On offense, receiver Jaelen Strong wasn’t one of the six pass-catchers picked in the first, while offensive lineman T.J. Clemmings might have been considered too raw to be a Day One pick. We didn’t include LSU tackle/guard La’El Collins on this list, as his omission from the first round is related to his involvement in a murder investigation, an unforeseeable occurrence.

What do you think? Who’s the best talent left on the board after the first round? Vote below!

Pats Keep Pick, Draft Malcom Brown

10:05pm: Despite reports that the Patriots had traded the No. 32 pick to the Texans, New England has kept the pick and drafted Texas defensive lineman Malcom Brown, according to Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald (Twitter link). Brown was considered by some as the best prospect left on the board.

The Patriots have a history of trading down, so it’s a little surprising that they did keep the pick. Brown will add another dimension to their offensive line, however, joining 2014 first-rounder Dominique Easley to attempt to make up for the loss of Vince Wilfork.

9:50pm: The Texans have acquired the No. 32 pick from the Patriots, according to Shalise Manza Young of the Boston Globe (Twitter links).

Draft Rumors: DGB, Ray, Bradford, Falcons

Troubled receiver Dorial Green-Beckham received a lot of interest from teams in the middle of round one, but none selected him, per Charles Robinson of Yahoo! Sports (Twitter link), who suggests that in 2014 (before the NFL dealt with numerous high-profile off-the-field incidents) DGB would have been selected already.

More from the draft…

  • Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff says he’s not opposed to trading back into the first round, according to Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com (Twitter link).
  • Another NFC GM — Rick Spielman of the Vikings — doesn’t think his club will be able to get back into Round One, given that they didn’t acquire any extra ammunition by trading back from No. 11 (Twitter link via Matt Vensel of the Minneapolis Star Tribune).
  • The Broncos thought they needed to move ahead of the Ravens to get Shane Ray, justifying their trade with the Lions, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter).
  • Browns GM Ray Farmer says he never officially made an offer for the No. 2 pick, tweets Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
  • Eagles head coach Chip Kelly says he’s still interested in an extension with Sam Bradford (Twitter link via Les Bowen of the Philadelphia Daily News), and added that he offered no players to either the Titans or the Buccaneers (Twitter link via Geoff Mosher of CSNPhilly.com).

Chargers Acquire No. 15 Pick From 49ers

The Chargers have acquired the 15th overall pick from the 49ers, according to Matt Miller of Bleacher Report (Twitter link). The 49ers will get pick No. 17, a 2015 fourth-round pick (No. 117), and a 2016 fifth-round pick, per Alex Marvez of FOX Sports (Twitter link).

San Diego will use their newly-acquired pick to select Wisconsin running back Melvin Gordon, per Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald (Twitter link). The NCAA’s leading rusher last season, Gordon will fill the void left by Ryan Mathews, who left for the Eagles in free agency. The Chargers were a rumored destination for Todd Gurley, but since he went 10th overall, the Bolts will settle for the draft’s second-rated back.

Extra Points: Mariota, Welker, Forte, Gurley

The Titans will not trade Marcus Mariota after selecting him second overall, GM Ruston Webster said, per Paul Kuharksy of ESPN.com (Twitter link). Moreover, he’ll be the Week 1 starter, says head coach Ken Whisenhunt (Twitter link via Jim Wyatt of the Tennessean). Additionally, despite reports that Zach Mettenberger wants to be traded, Webster says he think the incumbent QB will come to embrace his new backup role, adding that Mettenberger won’t be traded (link).

  • Free agent receiver Wes Welker has been cleared to play by a top concussion expert, according to Mike Klis of 9 News, who writes that Dr. Stanley Herring (a member of the NFL’s Head, Neck, and Spine Committee) has given Welker the green light. The 33-year-old Welker indicated in February that he intends to play in 2015 despite a myriad of health concerns.
  • Despite the fact that he wasn’t present at voluntary workouts, Bears running back Matt Forte doesn’t intend to stage a training camp holdout as he angles for a new contract, per Jeff Dickerson of ESPN.com. Though Forte admits he wants an extension, and says he and GM Ryan Pace discussed such a deal earlier this offseason, Forte realizes he has little to no leverage in the situation.
  • Todd Gurley was the No. 1 player on the Rams’ board, so choosing him at No. 10 was an easy call, per Albert Breer of NFL.com (Twitter link).
  • The Eagles apparently aren’t interested in players with character concerns, as neither Marcus Peters nor Dorial Green-Beckham is on their board, reports Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer (Twitter link).

Latest On Muhammad Wilkerson

The Jets just selected USC defensive lineman Leonard Williams, meaning their D-line is now crowded. What does this mean for Muhammad Wilkerson, who is still without a new contract? The latest…

  • Jets GM Mike Maccagnan says his club is not actively shopping Wilkerson, tweets Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News. Of course, that doesn’t mean New York isn’t listening to offers.
  • Multiple teams called the Jets today regarding Wilkerson and were “shut down,” according to Jay Glazer of FOX Sports (Twitter link).
  • The Browns and Raiders are among the teams with interest in Wilkerson, and more could get involved, tweets Dianna Marie Russini of NBC 4.
  • Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com (Twitter link) believes it would take multiple first-round picks to acquire Wilkerson.
  • A league source tells Rich Cimini of ESPN.com (Twitter link) that it wouldn’t be surprising for the Jets to shop Wilkerson, adding that there was interest before the draft.

Draft Rumors: K. Johnson, Hundley, Peters

The latest draft notes…

  • The ceiling for Wake Forest corner Kevin Johnson is the Dolphins at pick No. 14, while his floor is the Steelers with the 22nd pick, according to Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun (Twitter link).
  • With the Browns considered likely to select a quarterback at some point in the draft, Pat McManamon of ESPN.com tweets that the club showed “absolutely zero interest” in UCLA quarterback Brett Hundley.
  • The Saints have been trying to trade up for a pass rusher, and might have Vic Beasley in mind, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter).
  • Marcus Peters is not on the Cowboys’ draft board, per Todd Archer of ESPN.com (Twitter link).