Month: September 2017

Saints Release FB John Kuhn

No, this is not a repost. For the second time this month, the Saints have released fullback John Kuhn, according to Nick Underhill of The Advocate (on Twitter). John Kuhn (vertical)

The Saints dropped Kuhn from the roster after roster cutdowns took place on Sept. 2. On Sept. 6, Kuhn was re-signed only to get another pink slip two weeks later.

Kuhn, 35, has made a name for himself as a tough, durable fullback. However, not every team in the league employs a lead blocker, so employment opportunities for Kuhn are somewhat limited. If history is any indication, he might be back on the Saints’ roster before long.

Last year, Kuhn graded out as Pro Football Focus’ ninth-best fullback. The veteran’s 79.7 score was roughly in line with his career average. In addition to blocking, he also got some touches including four rushing touchdowns and 16 catches for 70 yards and one passing TD.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Packers Place OL Jason Spriggs On IR

The Packers have placed offensive lineman Jason Spriggs on injured reserve, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. Spriggs, a swing tackle, was held out of the Week 2 game with an injured hamstring. Apparently, that hammy is going to keep him out anywhere from eight weeks to the remainder of the season. Jason Spriggs (vertical)

The Packers made Spriggs a second-round pick in 2016 in part because of his versatility. The Indiana product allowed only one sack in his last three seasons on campus and also held his own at guard during Senior Bowl practices. His injury comes at an unfortunate time for Green Bay as starting tackles David Bakhtiari and Bryan Bulaga are both listed as questionable with injuries of their own.

Putting Spriggs on IR will create room for the addition of Ricky Jean-Francois.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Jets Sign Kalif Raymond To Practice Squad

Kalif Raymond‘s muffed punt cost him a spot on the Jets’ roster earlier this week. On Thursday, he was welcomed back, but this time he’ll be on the practice squad. Kalif Raymond (vertical)

I’m not going to give any excuses,” Raymond said of his costly error in Week 2 against the Raiders (via ESPN.com). “You’ve got to catch the ball. On a punt return, you got to do it. That’s one of the easier kicks of the game that I took for granted.”

Raymond is technically listed as a wide receiver, but he has yet to catch a pass in his two NFL seasons. He earned his spot on the 53-man roster exclusively for his return skills, but the Jets felt they could no longer stick with him after he muffed two punts in Week 1 (both recovered by the Jets) and muffed another in Week 2.

The Jets are expected to put Jeremy Kerley on punt return duty in Week 3 against Miami.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Packers’ Nick Perry To Have Hand Surgery

Packers linebacker Nick Perry is set to undergo hand surgery, coach Mike McCarthy told reporters on Thursday. The timetable for his recovery is not clear at this time. Nick Perry (Vertical)

Violent football player. He plays physical,” McCarthy said of Perry. “You look at his play style, that’s really part of his game, the violence he plays with, with his hands.”

Perry has been through this before. Last season, he underwent hand surgery and missed only two games before returning for the end of the regular season and postseason. Last year, he was able to play through the pain with a club on his surgically-repaired hand. It’s not yet known if he’ll go that route this time. After the operation, McCarthy says the team should have a better handle on his treatment plan.

Last year, Perry notched career highs in starts (12), sacks (11) and tackles (52). Prior to 2016, he had only 16 career starts and 12.5 sacks to his credit. The Falcons, Colts, and Jets all expressed interest in him this offseason, but the Packers retained him with a five-year, $60MM deal, making hm one of the league’s highest-paid 3-4 outside linebackers.

While Perry is out, the Packers will be relying more on August pickup Ahmad Brooks. Brooks missed the Week 2 game with a concussion, but he is expected to play on Sunday against the Bengals.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Jets To Sign DE David Bass

The Jets have signed defensive end David Bass, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter). To make room, the team has waived outside linebacker Freddie BishopDavid Bass (vertical)

Bass spent the last two seasons with the Titans. In 2015, he set career highs in games (16) and starts (seven) and recorded 1.5 sacks and on interception. His production dipped last year as he appeared in 13 games and played in just over 20 percent of the Titans’ snaps. The Titans opted to use him more on special teams, employing him on 45 percent of those snaps. Bass joined the Seahawks in May and appeared in each of their first two games, but he was cut loose earlier this week.

The 0-2 Jets will take on the Dolphins at home on Sunday in search of their first win.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Saints To Sign DL Kendall Langford

Defensive lineman Kendall Langford has signed a one-year deal with the Saints, as Jim Trotter of ESPN.com tweets. He’ll be eligible to play on Sunday when the Saints face the Panthers in Charlotte, North Carolina. Kendall Langford

[RELATED: Which 0-2 Team Is Likeliest To Rebound?]

Langford, 31, spent the last two seasons with the Colts and was slated for a third until he was released in August. Unfortunately, he has been plagued by knee problems in recent years. He underwent arthroscopic surgery after the 2015 season and lasted only seven games last year before landing on injured reserve. All in all, he played in 301 snaps in 2016 made only ten tackles. He also had zero sacks – a major drop off from his 7.0 sacks in the previous year.

If he’s healthy, Langford can be a difference maker for the Saints. That’s what the Saints – who rank in the bottom two of defensive DVOA through two games – are hoping for.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Ravens’ Jeremy Langford To P-Squad IR

The Ravens placed running back Jeremy Langford on practice squad Injured Reserve, according to a team announcement. In his place, the team has signed running back John CrockettJeremy Langford (vertical)

Langford, once the top ball carrier in Chicago, was released in early September. Somewhat surprisingly, he was not claimed on waivers by any of the league’s other 31 teams, making him a free agent. He joined the Ravens’ taxi squad before the start of the season and even spent one game on the roster before being cut and re-signed to the practice squad.

Langford, 25, has 28 games of NFL experience to his credit. Between 2015 and 2016, Langford accumulated 737 career rushing yards and ten career rushing touchdowns with an underwhelming 3.5-yards-per-carry average.\

Crockett, also 25, has only two NFL appearances on his resume, both coming with the Packers in 2015.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Extra Points: Browns, Saints, Packers, Eagles

Now playing in his contract season, Browns running back Isaiah Crowell indicated he thinks about a new deal “during the game, after the game, before the game, right now, all the time,” as Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com tweets. A restricted free agent, Crowell is earning $2.746MM after Cleveland tendered him at the second-round level. The Browns reportedly discussed an extension with the 24-year-old back during the summer, but no pact was ever signed. Thus far in 2017, Crowell is averaging just 2.6 yards per carry on 27 rushes.

  • Saints cornerback Sterling Moore suffered a pectoral injury against the Patriots on Sunday, a source tells Nick Underhill of the Adovcate, but it’s not a season-ending issue, tweets Ian Rapoport of NFL.com, who adds Moore should miss “just a few weeks.” Moore, who re-signed with New Orelans this spring on a one-year, $900K pact, played 36 defensive snaps as the Saints’ nickel corner in Week 2. Perhaps with Moore’s injury in mind, the Saints worked out two cornerbacks on Tuesday and signed another — defensive back Bradley Sylve — to their practice squad.
  • Ahmad Brooks will have to post an excellent season in order to collect the entirety of his $1.5MM incentive-based pay attached to his one-year Packers contract, as Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com reports the veteran linebacker must reach 11 sacks to earn that total. However, Brooks can also bring in money for 6.5 sacks ($250K), 7.5 sacks ($500K), 8.5 sacks ($750K), 9.5 sacks ($1MM), or 10.5 sacks ($1.25MM). For what it’s worth, Brooks has never recorded an 11-sack season, and he managed only six quarterback takedowns a season ago.
  • Offensive lineman Jah Reid‘s one-year deal with the Texans is worth the veteran’s minimum of $775K, reports Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle (Twitter link). While the contract doesn’t qualify as a minimum salary benefit deal, Houston will only owe Reid a 14-game prorated portion of the minimum salary (~$684K). Reid should be able to immediately help a ramshackle Texans offensive line that is missing stalwart left tackle Duane Brown and ranks dead last in adjusted sack rate.
  • The Eagles attempted to sign defensive back DeAndre Houston-Carson off the Bears‘ practice squad, but Chicago promoted Houston-Carson to its active roster instead, reports Rich Campbell of the Chicago Tribune (Twitter link). Houston-Carson, 24, appeared in eight games for the Bears a season ago, but rarely played on defense (just eight snaps). Instead, he spent most of his time on special teams, where he played on a quarter of Chicago’s snaps.

AFC East Notes: Fins, Anthony, Timmons, Jets

The Dolphins discussed acquiring linebacker Stephone Anthony from the Saints even before the club suspended veteran Lawrence Timmons, head coach Adam Gase told reporters, including Adam Beasley of the Miami Herald (Twitter link). That’s not entirely surprising, given that Miami had been short on linebackers even before the Timmons saga began. Rookie Raekwon McMillan, pegged to start at middle linebacker for the Dolphins, tore his ACL before the season began, so adding a former first-round talent such as Anthony for the cost of a fifth-round pick makes some sense.

Here’s more from the AFC East:

  • While Timmons is suspended indefinitely, it’s not out of the question that he returns to the Dolphins at some point, as Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald writes. Expected to be an integral part of Miami’s defense after agreeing to a two-year contract this spring, Timmons would likely ingratiate himself to teammates with an apology, opines Salguero. “I think every situation is different,” Gase said of Timmons. “And I would say you can be forgiven if the right steps are taken.”
  • Despite a seemingly gaping hole at left guard, the Dolphins did not express interest in Alex Boone after he was released by the Vikings earlier this month, according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. Instead, Miami is content to rotate Anthony Steen and Jesse Davis on the interior, with Steen handling roughly two-thirds of the club’s offensive snaps. Boone went on to sign a one-year, $1.4MM deal with the Cardinals.
  • New Jets owner Christopher Johnson says his brother — newly sworn-in UK ambassador Woody Johnson — will have no role with the club while serving in his new capacity, tweets Mike Garafolo of NFL.com. Meanwhile, Christopher Johnson also indicated New York is “definitely” not tanking, and that general manager Mike Maccagnan and head coach Todd Bowles won’t be based on wins and losses alone, per Darryl Slater of NJ.com. Instead, the Jets’ decision-makers will be judged on the team’s gradual improvement and development.
  • Based on early-season performance, the Jets‘ decision to part with veterans such as Nick Mangold, Darrelle Revis, Ryan Clady, and Brandon Marshall has turned out well, opines Brian Costello of the New York Post. Mangold and Revis have yet to land a contract, Clady is retired, and Marshall hasn’t performed through two games with the Giants.

NFL Practice Squad Updates: 9/20/17

Today’s practice squad moves:

Baltimore Ravens

  • Signed: CB Josh Thornton

Chicago Bears

Dallas Cowboys

Jacksonville Jaguars

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New York Giants

  • Signed: WR Ed Eagan

Pittsburgh Steelers

Tennessee Titans