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Eagles Waive WR Jordan Matthews

Jordan Matthews‘ third stint with the Eagles is over. Philadelphia made the decision to waive its on-again, off-again wide receiver on Monday.

An Eagle from 2014-16, Matthews caught on with his original NFL team in 2018 and again this season. This reunion did not produce much statistically. The sixth-year veteran caught four passes for 33 yards, serving as insurance for an injury-battered Philly wideout corps.

DeSean Jackson has missed most of this season, and Alshon Jeffery missed another game on Sunday. The Eagles lost to the Seahawks, dropping to 5-6. They did so with a wideout skeleton crew. This latest Matthews departure could point to Jeffery being ready for Week 13.

The 27-year-old wideout has not recaptured the form he showed during his first Philadelphia stay, when he surpassed 800 yards in three straight seasons. He also failed to make an impact in Buffalo, following a 2017 trade, or San Francisco. Given Matthews’ history with the Eagles, it cannot be assumed he’s done with the franchise. But Philly’s Week 13 crew against Miami is not set to include him.

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Jets Waive Rashard Robinson

On Friday, the Jets waived cornerback Rashard Robinson. Pink slips were also handed to wide receiver Stacy Coley and defensive lineman Charles Tapper

[RELATED: Jets Sign 16 Undrafted Free Agents]

The Jets acquired Robinson prior to the trade deadline in 2017 and gave up a 2018 fifth-round choice in the deal. Robinson went on to appear in 16 games for the Jets between ’17 and ’19, but tallied just nine tackles in total.

The Jets still need veteran help at the cornerback position, but they were unwilling to keep Robinson around at a paltry $2MM cap hit. By cutting him, the Jets will take that entire obligation off of the books.

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Browns’ Rashard Higgins Wants Extension

Browns wide receiver Rashard Higgins could receive some significant interest on the open market this offseason, but the young wideout is making it clear he wants to stay in Cleveland. “I want to be in Cleveland, no other team. Tell (John) Dorsey, Tell Lonzo (Alonso Highsmith) to get it done”, Higgins said this week at the Super Bowl, according to Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com.

Dorsey, the Browns’ GM, said last week that the team had talked to Higgins’ representatives about a new contract, and it sounds like the interest is definitely mutual. Higgins is only scheduled to be a restricted free agent anyway so the Browns could match any offer he receives from another team, but it doesn’t seem like it’ll get to that point.

Higgins’ agent Michael Swensen told Kay Cabot “we’re getting there”, meaning a deal could be close. The Browns drafted Higgins in the fifth round out of Colorado State back in 2016. They cut him before the 2017 season, but quickly re-signed him. He didn’t do much as a rookie, but showed signs of progress last season before breaking out in 2018.

This past year he caught 39 passes for 572 yards and four touchdowns in only 13 games, and showed a nice rapport with rookie quarterback Baker Mayfield. With Jarvis Landry entrenched in the slot, Higgins should have an opportunity to start outside next year. Higgins sounded excited to help turn around the Browns, raving about Mayfield, new coach Freddie Kitchens, and the organization in his comments to Kay Cabot. At this point it would be surprising if he’s not locked up by the time free agency rolls around in March.

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Browns To Tender Rashard Higgins

The Browns will tender restricted free agent Rashard Higgins, according to GM John Dorsey (via Mary Kay Cabot of The Plain Dealer). However, Dorsey did not indicate whether the Browns will employ the first- or second-round tender to cuff the wide receiver. 

[RELATED: Teams Interested In Browns’ Duke Johnson]

The first- or second-round tender will determine what pick a team would have to give the Browns if they were sign him. The first-round tender in 2019 is worth $4.407MM and the second-round tender is worth $3.095MM. It stands to reason that the second-round tender would be enough to scare away interested teams, even though this year’s wide receiver group in both free agency and the draft is underwhelming.

Higgins caught 39 passes for 572 yards and four touchdowns in 13 games. More importantly, he developed a nice rapport with rookie quarterback Baker Mayfield in the second half of the season. With Jarvis Landry entrenched in the slot, Higgins should have an opportunity to start outside next year.

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Eagles To Sign WR Jordan Matthews

The Eagles have agreed to sign wide receiver Jordan Matthews after working him out on Tuesday, a source tells Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link).

Matthews began his career in Philadelphia after entering the league as a second-round pick in 2014. The Vanderbilt product went on to post the best three seasons of his NFL tenure, averaging 75 receptions, 891 yards, and six scores per year. The Eagles shipped Matthews to the Bills as part of the Ronald Darby trade in advance of the 2017 campaign, and he’s bounced around ever since.

Matthews landed with the Patriots in 2018, but he was released with a settlement after suffering a knee injury. The now-27-year-old then started his second stint in Philadelphia, but played sparingly and managed only 20 receptions for 300 yards. This year, Matthews has already had two stints with the 49ers, and was most recently released in late October.

The Eagles’ offense has struggled since losing DeSean Jackson in Week 1; Jackson was just placed on injured reserve, so he won’t be returning this season. Matthews certainly isn’t a like-for-like replacement, as he’s hardly a downfield threat like Jackson. But Matthews can offer a familiarity with Philadelphia’s offense while likely seeing time in the slot.

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49ers Cut Jordan Matthews

Veteran receiver Jordan Matthews is looking for a new team yet again. Matthews was released by the 49ers earlier today, the team announced. San Francisco needed the roster spot for LS Kyle Nelson, who they activated from his suspension. 

Matthews signed a one-year, $1.8MM deal with a $300K signing bonus earlier this offseason, but was released at final cuts. After Jalen Hurd was placed on injured reserve a few weeks ago, the 49ers re-signed Matthews. The Vanderbilt product is approaching journeyman status, as he’s been with four team in just the past three years. Originally drafted by Philly in the second-round back in 2014, Matthews had some very productive years with the Eagles. He got traded to the Bills, and then injuries started to pile up.

After getting released by San Fran right before the start of the season he had workouts with the Vikings and Saints, so maybe he can latch on with one of those teams. Still only 27, he should be able to resurface at some point soon and he could get brought back by the 49ers.

After rejoining the Eagles last year, he had 20 catches for 300 yards and two touchdowns in 15 games. Nelson was suspended ten games for PEDs toward the end of last season, but the team clearly never lost confidence in their long-snapper. Back in March, they signed him to a four-year extension.

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Jordan Matthews Worked Out For Eagles

The Eagles’ search for a new wide receiver could lead them to a familiar face. On Tuesday, the Eagles brought in Jordan Matthews for a work out, according to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle (via Twitter).

Matthews had a pair of stints with the 49ers this season, appearing in a single game (Week 7 vs. the Redskins). He’s also had workouts with the Vikings and Saints, and at only 27-years-old, there’s apparently some hope that the receiver can emerge from his current journeyman status.

Matthews had his best three seasons with Philly between 2014 and 2016, hauling in 225 receptions, 2,673 yards, and 19 touchdowns. However, since suffering a knee injury with Buffalo in 2017, he hasn’t had the same production.

The former second-rounder spent the 2018 season with Philly, hauling in 20 catches for 300 yards and two scores. With DeSean Jackson ailing, the Eagles are predictably in the market for some receiver help. Matthews’ familiarity with the offense could make him a somewhat reliable target for Carson Wentz down the stretch.

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49ers Sign CB Dontae Johnson, WR Jordan Matthews

With Richard Sherman likely to miss multiple games, the 49ers have made a move to bolster their CB depth. NFL Insider Adam Caplan reports that San Francisco is re-signing veteran corner Dontae Johnson (Twitter link).

Johnson and the 49ers are quite familiar with each other at this point. The Niners selected the NC State product in the fourth round of the 2014 draft, and he was a full-time starter for the club as recently as 2017. But he has become something of a nomad, and in 2019 alone, he’s spent time with the Chiefs, Chargers, and 49ers. He played in two games for the Chargers before being cut, and San Francisco promptly scooped him up. He primarily served as a special teams contributor in his five games with the 49ers before they cut him last month.

He may see a little more action on the defensive side of the ball for the next couple of weeks, but it would still be surprising to see him get a ton of snaps. Meanwhile, fellow corner Jason Verrett, who has been on IR since Week 4, is eligible to return if the 49ers want to open his practice window.

After the Johnson signing was reported, we learned that the 49ers are also reuniting with WR Jordan Matthews, per Matt Barrows of The Athletic (via Twitter). Matthews signed a one-year, $1.8MM contract with the team this offseason, though he did not survive final cuts. He was brought back to San Francisco in early October but played in just one game and did not record a catch. He then caught on with Philadelphia and played in two games for the WR-needy Eagles before they parted ways with him.

The 49ers put Marquise Goodwin on IR yesterday, so Matthews will take his roster spot, but as the sixth WR on the roster, he’s unlikely to see much playing time. Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets that the team formally placed Weston Richburg on IR, opening up space for Johnson.

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FA CB Rashard Robinson Banned 10 Games

The Jets cut Rashard Robinson in May, and a clearer picture as to the possible reason for that move emerged two months later. The NFL suspended the free agent cornerback 10 games on Wednesday, Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets.

This marks Robinson’s second suspension. He began his 2018 season in October because of a four-game substance-abuse ban to start it. The former fourth-round 49ers pick has not participated in a visit or a workout since the Jets waived him.

I would like to to take this opportunity to apologize and take full responsibility for the 10-game suspension I have received from the National Football League. I have no one to blame for my actions,” Robinson said in a statement (Twitter link). “I will work during my time away to better myself and be ready to contribute when I am eligible this coming season.”

The Jets gave up a fifth-round pick at the 2017 trade deadline to acquire Robinson from the 49ers, and the LSU alum played in 16 games for the franchise over the next two seasons. Robinson has started 15 games, but 13 of those came as a 49er. He registered eight tackles in 10 2018 contests, playing mostly special teams.

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Jets CB Rashard Robinson Facing Charges

Jets cornerback Rashard Robinson was charged with drug possession following a December arrest, as Manish Mehta of the Daily News writes. Robinson no-showed his court date on Monday, Darryl Slater of NJ.com hears, and he is now scheduled to appear in front of a judge on Jan 29. If he does not show up at the end of the month, an arrest warrant will be issued. Rashard Robinson (vertical)

The Jets acquired Robinson in a pre-deadline trade this year, giving up a 2018 fifth-round choice in exchange for the former fourth-round pick. Robinson appeared in six games but recorded just two tackles.

Police say that they found a marijuana-laced candy in Robinson’s possession after pulling him over for careless driving. Apparently, this is not the cornerback’s first off-the-field incident. Mehta hears that the 22-year-old (23 in July) had an “embarrassing and troubling incident” on a Niners team flight in 2017. He also had words with SF coaches, an outburst that prompted the team to ship him east.

Mike Maccagnan‘s Jets have rolled the dice on players with iffy track records in the past, but they might not have patience with Robinson given his lack of on-field performance.

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Rashard Mendenhall Retires

Free agent running back Rashard Mendenhall is retiring, reports ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter.

Mendenhall, 26, spent his first five seasons with the Steelers, then started 13 games last year for the Cardinals, rushing for 687 yards and eight touchdowns.

A first-round draft pick from Illinois in 2008, Mendenhall totaled 4,236 yards and 39 touchdowns in his six-year career. He surpassed 1,000 yards rushing in the 2009 and 2010 seasons.

Mendenhall hinted at retirement in a February 25 column for Huffington Post: “And as I write this, today is the day that the journey is over and I am fully at peace. Eagerly looking to a new way, which lies ahead.”

PFR’s Luke Adams ranked Mendenhall in the second tier of free agent running backs.

NFL Suspends Jets’ Rashard Robinson

Jets cornerback Rashard Robinson has been suspended without pay for the first four games of the regular season for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy. He’ll be eligible to return to the active roster on October 1 after the team’s Week 4 contest against the Jaguars. In the interim, he’ll be allowed to participate in all preseason practices and games.

The Jets acquired Robinson in a pre-deadline trade in 2017, giving up a 2018 fifth-round choice in exchange for the former fourth-round pick. Robinson appeared in six games but recorded just two tackles.

Robinson’s suspension stems from a December incident in which he was pulled over by cops and found to have marijuana-laced candy in his possession. Apparently, that was not the cornerback’s first instance of off-the-field trouble. The 23-year-old reportedly also had an “embarrassing and troubling incident” on a Niners team flight in 2017. He had words with SF coaches in the midst of that outburst, and that prompted the team to ship him to New Jersey.

Robinson’s first game with the Jets in 2018 – if he sticks on the roster – will be against the Broncos on October 7.

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Vikings Work Out Jordan Matthews

After falling short of making the 49ers’ 53-man roster, Jordan Matthews is attempting to catch on elsewhere. The veteran wideout auditioned for two NFC teams this week, with the Vikings giving him a look Friday after a Tuesday Saints tryout, Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets.

The Vikings, who recently placed Josh Doctson on IR, also worked out receivers Deontay Burnett and Tanner Gentry, per ESPN.com’s Courtney Cronin (on Twitter).

Only four receivers reside on Minnesota’s active roster. The two backups are currently Chad Beebe and seventh-round rookie Olabisi Johnson. It would be logical for the Vikes to make a move at receiver before the Saturday afternoon transaction deadline.

Matthews, who topped 800 yards in each of his first three seasons, has not been able to replicate the production of his first Eagles stay. He failed to surpass 300 yards during his Bills season in 2017 and finished with exactly 300 in 14 Eagles games last season. Were Matthews to find a gig this season, it would only be his age-27 campaign.

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Extra Points: Chiefs, Gase, Matthews, Texans

The Chiefs announced today that they signed team president Mark Donovan to a long-term extension.

“I’d like to congratulate Mark and his family on this well-deserved recognition,” Chiefs Chairman and CEO Clark Hunt said. “Because of Mark’s leadership over the past decade, the business operations of the Chiefs are among the best in professional sports, and he and his team have worked tirelessly to create the best fan experience in the National Football League. Mark is an innovative leader and a talented executive who is widely respected in our industry and in the Kansas City community. I am thrilled that he will continue to be a key part of the leadership of the Chiefs for many years to come.”

Donovan joined the organization as their COO back in 2009, and he earned the promotion to his current role in 2011. The press release notes that he’s played a major role in helping to “re-establish Arrowhead Stadium as an elite venue for not only sports, but other forms of entertainment.” Donovan started working for the NFL back in 1999, and he’s also spent time with the Eagles organization.

Here are more NFL notes as we wrap up this Tuesday night:

  • Bill O’Brien said wide receiver Will Fuller is progressing from his hamstring injury (via Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle on Twitter). The wideout hasn’t played since suffering the injury during the Texans‘ Week 7 loss to the Colts. Meanwhile, Keke Coutee‘s absence shouldn’t be attributed to injury; O’Brien said the wideout hasn’t played due to his lack of “attention to detail” (via Wilson). The head coach made it clear that it wasn’t an effort issue, noting that the former fourth-rounder is a “great guy.”
  • The Jets fell to 1-7 after losing to the rebuilding Dolphins, meaning Adam Gase has naturally found himself on the hot seat. However, the head coach told reporters that he isn’t focused on his job security. “It’s just something that I don’t really focus on,” Gase said (via Brian Costello of the New York Post). “My job is to try to get the team prepared every week, get them ready to go, get them focused on the game that we have to play. One and seven is not fun to go through. Things haven’t gone the way that we wanted to. It’s just that’s what happens in the NFL sometimes and unfortunately, we’re going through it right now.” Gase joined the organization back in January on a four-year contract that’s rumored to be worth upwards of $20MM.
  • It was barely a month ago that Clay Matthews broke his jaw, but the Rams linebacker is set to return to practice. Coach Sean McVay told reporters that the veteran will return to the practice field this week, and the coaching staff will evaluate his progress as they determine his availability for this weekend. “Everything’s checked out in a positive manner up to this point, so I think it’s just kind of progressing back to, ‘How comfortable do you feel putting a helmet on?’” McVay told the team’s website. “Some of the collisions that naturally would occur and just kind of trusting that you’re nice and secure in that absence of some of that stuff that kind of kept it in place and helped it heal over the last couple weeks.” Matthews has six sacks in five games with his new squad.
  • Long snapper Kevin McDermott underwent elbow surgery back in August, and the free agent has been cleared by doctors to resume snapping, tweets NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero. The 29-year-old had spent the previous four seasons with the Vikings before getting cut by the team this past August. The UCLA product has appeared in 86 career games.

49ers To Re-Sign Jordan Matthews

Jordan Matthews will head back to San Francisco. The recently released wide receiver will re-sign with the team and take Jalen Hurd‘s roster spot, per Mike Garafolo of NFL.com (on Twitter). The 49ers are placing Hurd on IR.

Hurd has been dealing with a back stress fracture, suffered in San Francisco’s first preseason game, and will now be out until at least December. He will join wideout Trent Taylor on the 49ers’ IR list. The 49ers used a third-round pick on Hurd this year, but he’s yet to debut.

Matthews signed with the 49ers early in the offseason but did not make the team. He participated in multiple workouts during the regular season’s audition circuit but did not sign anywhere.

The sixth-year wideout has not been able to re-establish his previously promising career track since being traded from Philadelphia to Buffalo in 2017 but stands to join former Bills teammate Marquise Goodwin, along with Dante Pettis and rookie Deebo Samuel, as notable 49ers receivers. A former second-round pick, Matthews is still just 27. He eclipsed 800 yards in a a season from 2014-16, doing so in both Chip Kelly and Doug Pederson‘s offenses.

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Rishard Matthews Retires From NFL

This is the end of the line for longtime NFL wide receiver Rishard Matthews. On Monday, the veteran announced his retirement from football. 

It was cool being a professional football player and getting to play a kids game for work,” Matthews wrote on Instagram. “I will always be a fan of the best sport in the world but for me that kids game no longer exist [sic].

Matthews, a Dolphins seventh-round pick in 2012, spent four years with Miami before moving on to the Titans. After making some noise with the Fins in 2015, he enjoyed a breakout campaign with the Titans in ’16, leading the team in receptions (65), yards (945) and receiving touchdowns. He once again paced Tennessee the following campaign before being released in 2018.

Matthews leave the game with 230 receptions for 3,160 yards and 21 touchdowns.

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Saints Release WR Rishard Matthews

Rishard Matthews‘ Saints tenure will end shortly after it began. After signing the former Dolphins, Titans and Jets wideout in June, the Saints released Matthews on Saturday, Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets.

The team used the reserve/left squad designation to make the move. Matthews has not been able to land on his feet since a 2018 injury sidetracked his career. He managed just five receptions for 24 yards last season, splitting time with the Titans and Jets.

A seventh-round pick by Miami in 2012, Matthews enjoyed a breakout campaign with the Titans in 2016, leading the team in receptions (65), yards (945) and receiving touchdowns. He again paced Tennessee the following campaign before being released in 2018.

 

Rams’ Clay Matthews Suffers Broken Jaw

Rams linebacker Clay Matthews suffered a broken jaw last night against the Seahawks, head coach Sean McVay told reporters. He’ll miss 4-6 weeks of action, leaving L.A. without one of its defensive stars. 

[RELATED: Rams Sign Jachai Polite To Practice Squad]

Matthews, 33, was bumped by younger players in Green Bay, but the Rams happily scooped him up with a two-year deal worth up to $16.75MM. Through five games this year, Matthews has rewarded their confidence with six sacks, including one takedown against Seattle.

It’s an undoubtedly frustrating situation for Matthews, who has been largely durable throughout his eleven-year NFL career. That’s part of what helped Matthews earned six Pro Bowl nods through his ten seasons in Green Bay and he seemed on pace for a seventh before this setback.

The Rams, at minimum, will be without Matthews for games against the 49ers, Falcons, and Bengals. After that, they have a bye week, so Matthews could theoretically return for Week 10 and miss only three games. If his estimated worst case scenario is accurate – and if he’s not placed on IR – Matthews should be back no later than the team’s Week 12 game against the Ravens.

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Saints Sign Rishard Matthews

The Saints have signed wide receiver Rishard Matthews, according to the NFL’s transactions wire. To make room, the team waived fellow wide receiver Travin Dural

The Titans granted Matthews’ request for release in late September after he grew frustrated with his lack of playing time. He hooked on with the Jets in October, but posted just two catches for 13 yards before landing on injured reserve.

Prior to that, Matthews was the Titans’ leading receiver for two seasons. And, prior to that, he had something of a breakout season with the Dolphins in 2015.

Matthews isn’t the only ex-Jet to join the Saints’ WR group. The Saints also added Chad Hansen earlier this week, giving them a baker’s dozen of receivers on the 90-man roster.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Injury Updates: Rams, Matthews, Giants, Engram

There’s still no official word on when Rams outside linebacker Clay Matthews will return to action, but a realistic return date for him would be after the team’s bye week, head coach Sean McVay told reporters. That would line the veteran up for a Week 10 return on Nov. 10 against the Steelers, restoring one of the Rams’ defensive stars for a second-half push.

While Matthews’ busted jaw heals up, the Rams will face the 49ers in an intrastate matchup on Sunday.

Here’s more on some notable injuries from around the NFL:

  • Giants tight end Evan Engram is dealing with a sprained MCL, a source tells ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter (on Twitter). It’ll be a challenge for Engram to play against the Patriots on Thursday, Schefter hears, which would leave the club with Rhett Ellison, Garrett Dickerson, and Kaden Smith at TE. Meanwhile, wide receiver Sterling Shepard is out and running back Saquon Barkley is considered unlikely to play.
  • 49ers fullback Kyle Juszczyk suffered an MCL injury on Monday night against the Browns, a source tells NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero (on Twitter). The team should know more after an MRI on Tuesday. Juszczyk may not be a household name, but he’s a key part of SF’s offense.
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