Antonio Allen

Jets Waive Antonio Allen

Just more than three months after reacquiring Antonio Allen, the Jets waived the fifth-year safety with an injury designation, Brian Costello of the New York Post tweets. Allen suffered a concussion this season and was set to be out for Week 14.

The fifth-year player had served as a backup in his latest stint with the team. To fill Allen’s roster spot, the Jets signed outside linebacker Freddie Bishop off their practice squad.

Gang Green previously deployed Allen as a starter during the final two years of the Rex Ryan era, with the former seventh-round selection starting in 17 games for the Jets from 2013-14. However, a torn Achilles’ tendon sidelined him in 2015, leading to a tepid free agent market. The Texans signed Allen in March to a one-year deal worth $800K but cut him out of training camp.

Surpassing the 40-tackle mark in both 2013-14 while playing both safety and cornerback, Allen’s made just one stop this season despite playing in all 12 Jets games serving as a backup to Marcus Gilchrist and Calvin Pryor.

The 26-year-old Bishop has spent this season on the Jets’ practice squad after signing with the team in February. He’s yet to play in an NFL game.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Jets Sign Antonio Allen

The Jets announced that they’ve reached an agreement with free agent safety Antonio Allen.Antonio Allen (vertical)

Allen missed the entire 2015 campaign with an Achilles injury. Prior to that, the 27-year-old (28 later this month) made 18 starts in the Jets’ secondary from 2012 to 2014. The former seventh-round pick assumed a major role for the team in 2013, starting nine games at safety and accumulating 60 tackles. In 2014, he saw some time at cornerback when New York’s depth chart at the position thinned out.

Allen signed a one-year deal with the Texans earlier this offseason, but was released this weekend during final cuts. Back in New York, he’ll add depth at safety behind starters Marcus Gilchrist and Calvin Pryor, joining Rontez Miles among the Jets’ defensive back reserves. Allen will likely also contribute on special teams.

Allen was the last Jets draft pick from 2012 to still be on Gang Green’s roster.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Texans Make Cuts, Close To 53

No one can accuse the Texans of procrastinating. Today, Houston dropped a number of players from the roster in advance of Saturday’s 53-man deadline. Here’s the full list of reported moves thus far: Texans Helmet (Featured)

Mitchell, a former member of the Cowboys, hooked on with the Texans after he was waived in June. Jason Garrett spoke highly of Mitchell in the spring, but Dallas bounced him in the summer.

Allen, 27, is a former Jet, having spent the past three seasons in New York, where he appeared in 38 games and started 18. He signed a one-year deal that included $80K guaranteed this spring.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC South Notes: Titans, Free Agents, Texans

Addressing a couple of the free agents the Titans brought in for visits earlier this month, general manager Jon Robinson confirmed that the team met with offensive lineman Louis Vasquez and safety Rashad Johnson, and didn’t rule out the possibility of working out a deal with either player (Twitter links via Jim Wyatt of TitansOnline.com).

According to Robinson, he’s still in communication with Vasquez’s agent. As for Johnson, the GM suggested that the two sides are in something of a holding pattern — I’m speculating, but that makes it sound as if the Titans haven’t been willing to increase their offer to the veteran safety, and he has yet to receive a better offer from another team.

As we wait to see if Tennessee lands either Vasquez or Johnson, let’s check in on some other notes from out of the AFC South…

  • Titans head coach Mike Mularkey said that quarterback Marcus Mariota has been a solid recruiter so far in free agency, reaching out to players himself and acting as a part of the “welcome committee” (Twitter link via Wyatt). The team has been pretty active so far in free agency, having signed or re-signed Rishard Matthews, Ben Jones, Byron Bell, Antwon Blake, Al Woods, Brice McCain, and Sean Spence, among others.
  • The Titans are in the market for a new director of player development, according to Paul Kuharsky of ESPN.com, who notes that Tre’ Stallings is no longer with the club.
  • Antonio Allen‘s one-year deal with the Texans is worth just $800K and doesn’t feature a significant bonus, but it didn’t qualify for the minimum salary benefit, so the full $800K will count against Houston’s cap, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle clarifies (via Twitter).
  • In a piece for the Chronicle, Wilson examines Arian Foster‘s comeback from a torn Achilles, writing that the longtime Texans running back remains “passionate” about football and aims to be back on the field in 2016. Having been released by Houston, Foster will be looking for a new team.

Texans Sign Antonio Allen

7:02pm: Allen will get $800K, including an $80K signing bonus, per John McClain of the Houston Chronicle (Twitter link).

4:27pm: The Texans officially announced the deal, as Aaron Wilson of The Houston Chronicle tweets.

2:16pm: Free agent safety Antonio Allen is signing with the Texans, according to Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com (on Twitter). Aaron Wilson of The Houston Chronicle (Twitter link) first reported that the two sides were working towards a deal. It’s a one-year deal, per Manish Mehta of the Daily News (on Twitter)."<strong

Allen missed the entire 2015 campaign with an Achilles injury. Prior to that, the 27-year-old (28 in September) made 18 starts in the Jets’ secondary from 2012 to 2014. The former seventh-round pick assumed a major role for the team in 2013, starting nine games at safety and accumulating 60 tackles. In 2014, he saw some time at cornerback when New York’s depth chart at the position thinned out.

Allen was the last Jets draft pick from 2012 to still be on Gang Green’s roster. Now that he has signed with Houston, there are no more players left from that year’s class with the Jets.

In other Texans news, new quarterback Brock Osweiler was reportedly instructed by his agent not to take any calls from Denver brass until he reached agreement with either the Broncos or Texans. Ultimately, Osweiler left the Broncos for a four-year, $72MM deal in Houston.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

FA Rumors: Dunbar, Bears, Givens, Bills

Free agent running back Lance Dunbar is continuing his NFC tour today, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN.com, who tweets that Dunbar is visiting the Bears. The veteran back, who has spent his first four seasons in Dallas, has also paid visits to the Seahawks and 49ers since free agency began.

Dunbar, 26, was on the verge of becoming a legit weapon out of the backfield for the Cowboys last season, racking up 21 receptions in just three full games, including 10 catches for 100 yards in Week 3 against the Falcons. However, in his fourth game, Dunbar suffered a torn ACL that sidelined him for the remainder of the season. While his upside will appeal to teams seeking a receiving option at running back, Dunbar will have to convince those clubs that he’ll be back to full health for the 2016 season.

Here’s more on free agency from around the NFL:

  • After visiting the Jets on Tuesday, wide receiver Chris Givens is meeting with the Eagles today, according to Schefter (via Twitter). Givens, who was traded from the Rams to the Ravens last October, was targeted 53 times in Baltimore, but only hauled in 19 of them for 346 yards and a touchdown.
  • In addition to confirming a pair of previously-reported visits, the Bills also announced today (via Twitter) that they’re hosting tight end Jim Dray for a Wednesday visit, and brought in wide receiver Deonte Thompson on Tuesday.
  • The Seahawks hosted free agent guard Amini Silatolu for a visit on Tuesday, tweets Adam Caplan of ESPN.com.The former-second pick, who also met with the Cardinals, hasn’t been a full-time starter since his rookie season in 2012, but he’s only 26 years old and could appeal to a Seattle team that doesn’t seem interested in spending a ton on its offensive line.
  • Free agent linebacker Sean Spence, having already visited the Dolphins and Jaguars, is meeting with the Titans on Wednesday, a source tells Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com (Twitter link). A third-round pick in 2012, Spence was limited to just 31 games during his four years with the Steelers due to injuries.
  • The Jets and Texans are both making an effort to sign free agent safety Antonio Allen, tweets Newsday’s Kimberley Martin. Allen, who visited Houston this week, missed the entire 2015 campaign with an Achilles injury.

FA Rumors: Okung, Kerley, Bruton, Allen

Now that they’ve agreed to sign offensive tackle Ryan Harris, the Steelers are out of the running for free agent tackle Russell Okung, a source tells Pro Football Talk (Twitter link). It’s not clear if the Steelers are also out on Kelvin Beachum – since he’s their own free agent, they may be more willing to bring him back – but it seems clear that they’re willing to let him walk if he gets a better offer elsewhere.

With the Steelers no longer in contention for Okung, that likely reduces the field of suitors for the former first-round pick to three teams — the Seahawks, Lions, and Giants. Harris almost certainly won’t earn as much on his new deal as guys like Okung and Beachum will on theirs, but his signing may have given the tackle market the push it needs to get other players signed. Stay tuned.

Let’s round up a few more free agent rumors and updates from across the league….

  • After losing one of their wideouts – Chris Hogan – to the division-rival Patriots, the Bills are taking a look at another free agent receiver from the AFC East. Adam Caplan of ESPN.com reports (via Twitter) that Buffalo is bringing in ex-Jet Jeremy Kerley for a visit. Having recently been cut by New York, Kerley would likely compete for the No. 3 receiver spot and punt-return duties if he were to sign with the Bills.
  • Washington hosted safety David Bruton on a free agent visit on Tuesday, a source tells John Keim of ESPN.com. Bruton, a special-teamer who held his own when forced into action on defense for the Broncos, recently told Arran Anderson of KMGH-TV (Twitter link) that Denver had expressed interest in re-signing him, but he wanted to explore the market if the price wasn’t right.
  • Free agent defensive back Antonio Allen, who missed the 2015 season due to an Achilles injury, is visiting the Texans, tweets John McClain of the Houston Chronicle. Allen made 18 starts in the Jets’ secondary from 2012 to 2014.
  • Linebacker Shea McClellin is making a visit with the Seahawks, per Caplan (via Twitter). The Bears recently signed Jerrell Freeman and Danny Trevathan, signaling that McClellin’s time in Chicago has likely come to an end.
  • Clarence Hill of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram confirms (via Twitter) that the Cowboys‘ previously-reported visits with cornerback Leon Hall and defensive end Chris Long will both take place on Wednesday.

Antonio Allen Injures Achilles, Waived By Jets

A day after he went down in practice with an Achilles injury, defensive back Antonio Allen has been waived by the Jets with an injury designation, the team announced today in a press release. The club signed cornerback Keon Lyn to replace Allen on its roster.

As Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News reported last night, the Jets feared that Allen tore his right Achilles when he went down with an injury yesterday. The 26-year-old underwent an MRI today, and it appears the Jets confirmed that diagnosis, which means Allen will be out for the year.

Because he was cut with an injured designation, Allen will revert to the Jets’ injured reserve list if he goes unclaimed on waivers. A team could decide to claim him, but the defensive back is entering the final year of his contract, so if he’s out for the year, it wouldn’t really benefit another club to add him.

Allen, who joined the Jets as a seventh-round pick in 2012, assumed a major role for the team in 2013, starting nine games at safety and accumulating 60 tackles. Last season, he saw some time at cornerback when New York’s depth chart at the position thinned out. Assuming he recovers from his torn Achilles, he should draw some interest on the free agent market next year, once his rookie contract expires.

2015 Proven Performance Escalator Raises

According to the NFL’s contractual bargaining agreement, players drafted in rounds three though seven are entitled to raises during the fourth year of their respective rookie contracts. The pay bumps are tied to playing time — a player must have played in 35% of his team’s offensive or defensive snaps in two of his first three seasons, or averaged 35% playing time in said snaps for the duration of his first three years in the league. If one of these thresholds is met, the player’s salary is elevated to the level of that year’s restricted free agent qualifying offer — that figure was $1.431MM last year, and will inflate commensurate with the salary cap increase. Players selected in the first or second round, undrafted free agents, and kickers/punters are ineligible for the proven performance escalator.

Here are the players who will see their 2015 salary rise due to the PPE, courtesy of Jason Fitzgerald of Over the Cap.

Bengals: George Iloka, S; Mohamed Sanu, WR

Bills: Nigel Bradham, LB

Broncos: Malik Jackson, DL; Danny Trevathan, LB;

Browns: Billy Winn, DL

Cardinals: Bobby Massie, T

Chargers: Johnnie Troutman, G

Colts: Dwayne Allen, TE; T.Y. Hilton, WR

Dolphins: Lamar Miller, RB; Olivier Vernon, DE

Eagles: Brandon Boykin, CB; Nick Foles; QB

Falcons: Lamar Holmes, T

Jets: Demario Davis, LB; Antonio Allen, DB

Packers: Mike Daniels, DL

Panthers: Josh Norman, CB

Patriots: Alfonzo Dennard, CB

Raiders: Miles Burris, LB

Rams: Chris Givens, WR; Trumaine Johnson, CB

Ravens: Gino Gradkowski, C

Saints: Akiem Hicks, DT; Corey White, CB

Seahawks: J.R. Sweezy, G; Russell Wilson, QB

Steelers: Kelvin Beachum, T

Texans: Brandon Brooks, G; Jared Crick, DL; Ben Jones, G

Titans: Coty Sensabaugh, CB

Vikings: Robert Blanton, S: Rhett Ellison, TE; Josh Robinson, CB; Jarius Wright, WR

Washington: Alfred Morris, RB

Friday Night Game Notes: East Edition

Patriots third-year pass rusher Chandler Jones, who is being used as a stand-up rusher this season, had six tackles and two sacks in a win over Carolina last night, earning praise from Bill Belichick: “Chandler’s worked really hard at whatever we’ve asked him to do since he’s been here. Last year, he also played some inside over the guard. He’s played outside over the tackle or the tight end, up, down. He’s a versatile player and he’s very conscientious to try to do whatever we ask him to do and playing in all those different spots. He’s a very athletic player with good length, good playing strength so he has a lot of versatility athletically, he has a lot of versatility mentally.” CSNNE’s Greg Bedard believes Jones is poised to become an elite defender.

Here’s some more news and notes produced after Friday night’s batch of preseason games: