West Rumors: Broncos, Seahawks, Raiders

Although Broncos linebacker Shaquil Barrett won’t require surgery for his ailing hip, he’s still expected to miss a good deal of time leading up to the 2017 campaign, and could potentially be sidelined for the beginning of the regular season, according to Mike Klis of 9News. Additionally, because Barrett injured his hip doing a plyometric exercise outside the Broncos’ purview, Denver could choose to place the 24-year-old edge rusher on the non-football injury list. If the Broncos opt for that course of action, they would have the right to rescind a portion of Barrett’s $615K base salary, per Klis. A former undrafted free agent with two accrued seasons under his belt, Barrett is scheduled to become a restricted free agent in 2018.

Here’s more from the NFL’s two West divisions:

  • Earl Thomas was taking “nearly every rep” during Seahawks practice sessions today, an excellent sign as the veteran safety recovers from a broken leg, tweets Ian Rapoport of NFL.com. The news surrounding Thomas and his rehabilitation has been nearly all positive since his December injury, as Seattle head coach Pete Carroll said Thomas was “way ahead of schedule” in March before indicating earlier this month that Thomas will be ready for the 2017 season opener.¬†Seattle has added reinforcements in the defensive backfield this offseason, so the club should be well-prepared if Thomas is¬†forced to miss any time. In addition to making a value signing in Bradley McDougald, the Seahawks used a third-round pick to draft Michigan safety Delano Hill.
  • Now that a new regime is running the 49ers, players signed or drafted by the previous decision-making group aren’t assured of playing time or roster spots, as Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee details. Tight end Vance McDonald and linebacker NaVorro Bowman, notably, have been mentioned in trade rumors, and Bowman is now expected to be forced to compete for snaps with Reuben Foster and Malcolm Smith. Fellow linebacker Ray-Ray Armstong, signed to an extension last year, could fall from a potential starting gig to a third-string role, per Barrows, while 2016 first-round pick Joshua Garnett isn’t a lock to be a starter, either.
  • Derek Carr has already indicated he won’t discuss an extension once the regular season begins, but Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk opines that the Raiders quarterback may not want to negotiate a new deal until the campaign concludes. At that point, Carr would be able to exert enormous leverage over Oakland, as the club would be forced to deploy the exclusive franchise tag to ward off potential suitors. Thanks to the extraordinary value of the quarterback franchise tag, Carr could demand north of $90MM in three-year cash flow, and could also extract concessions such as having his future salaries tied to a percentage of the salary cap, per Florio.
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