Austin Collie

Extra Points: Paul, 49ers, Texans, Playoffs

Here’s the latest from around the league.

  • Niles Paul relayed some information from a recent medical visit, noting Dr. Robert Anderson told the Washington tight end his ankle injury that caused him to miss the entire 2015 season was “the worst he’d ever seen,” via Tarik El-Bashir of Although Paul said he’s only scheduled to see Andrews one more time, Jay Gruden said the backup tight end could be held out until training camp to be safe. The statuses of Paul and Derek Carrier, the latter of whom could miss regular-season time due to a knee injury suffered late last season, likely led Washington to sign Vernon Davis. Paul signed a three-year, $6MM deal to stay in Washington last March but has recovered. There is $666K worth of dead money left on the deal, making the sixth-year veteran easy to move on from in the event he can’t sufficiently recover.
  • The 49ers plan to work out Myles Jack this weekend, Ian Rapoport of tweets. The UCLA linebacker visited the Jaguars, Falcons and Ravens this week. San Francisco plans to observe a Mackensie Alexander workout today as well.
  • Former Colts and Patriots receiver Austin Collie told the CFL team he played for last season, the British Columbia Lions, he intends to retire, the Salt Lake Tribune’s Jay Drew reports. The 30-year-old receiver joined the Western Canada-stationed franchise last year and caught 43 passes for 439 yards. He finished with 1,908 yards and 16 touchdowns in five NFL seasons from 2009-13. The concussion-plagued receiver plans to work with a Provo, Utah-based company that focuses on concussion research and rehabilitation.
  • Authorities searched defensive end prospect Shawn Oakman‘s home in connection with a sexual assault investigation, USA Today’s A.J. Perez reports. A projected middle-round pick after setting Baylor’s single-season sack record as a junior in 2014, Oakman is cooperating with the investigation. This allegation could further damage Oakman’s stock after his senior season began with a suspension and didn’t end with the kind of numbers — at least from a sack standpoint, with Oakman only collecting 4.5 in 2015 — that his prior campaign produced.
  • The NFL hasn’t contacted the NFLPA regarding a potential expansion of the playoffs, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk reports. “Until there’s a written proposal from the league that’s when we know they’re at least serious about it and then we can start bargaining over that working-condition change,” NFLPA boss Eric Winston told Florio. “That’s a working-condition change that has to be bargained. It’s not something that the owners can unilaterally implement.” The NFL expanded its playoff brackets twice in a 12-year span, moving from four to five teams per conference in 1978 and five to six in 1990, but has thus far held on off moving to the anticipated seven-team fields.
  • Rice wideout Dennis Parks, Houston offensive tackle Damien Parris and defensive lineman Melvin Holland, and Midwestern State defensive back Marqui Christian attended the Texans‘ local prospect showcase today (Twitter links via Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle).

Extra Points: Carroll, Rice, Manning

Vikings Hall of Fame coach Bud Grant hired Pete Carroll as the team’s defensive backs coach in 1985, a position he served in for five years. Way back then, he recognized that Carroll had something special writes Sid Hartman of the Star Tribune. “I remember interviewing him, and he was enthusiastic, which he always is,” Grant said. “He knew a lot about football. He was primarily on defense, you know we talked about that, and he related good to the players.” Turns out, that Carroll kid turned out to be a pretty decent coach. More from around the NFL..

  • NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith says that the union’s parallel report to the Mueller Report on the Ray Rice situation is done, according to Tom Pelissero of USA Today (on Twitter). The report on the former Ravens running back will be given to the executive committee later today.
  • Former NFL quarterback Archie Manning said Thursday that he expects his son, Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning, to decide on whether he plays in 2015 “maybe in the next week or two.” “He’s given a lot of thought to it,” Archie Manning said, according to Jeff Legwold of “My advice for him is to go through the process, get away a little bit, let your leg heal, give it a lot of throught and decide what you’re going to do … [I] think he’s taken a good evaluation of where he is physically.”
  • Former Colts wide receiver Austin Collie is heading to the CFL, but not to the team previously reported. Collie will join up with the BC Lions, according to Arash Madani of Sportsnet (on Twitter).
  • Executive director DeMaurice Smith says the NFLPA will issue its own salary cap projections for the first time, according to Tom Pelissero of USA Today Sports (on Twitter). The purpose, he says, is to counter the “inaccurate” projections of the NFL.

Minor Moves: Wednesday

Here are Wednesday’s minor transactions, including not just NFL moves but an update on a former NFL player who is headed north….

  • Former Colts wide receiver Austin Collie, who averaged over 57 receptions during three seasons in Indianapolis from 2009 to 2011, has agreed to terms with the CFL’s Montreal Alouettes, according to Arash Madani of Because Collie was born in Hamilton, Ontario and spent enough time in Canada, he’ll be classified as a Canadian player on Montreal’s roster rather than as an import. For the Alouettes, it’s a solid addition to a receiving corps that is on the verge of losing Duron Carter to the Colts.
  • The Broncos have agreed to sign former Monmouth cornerback Tevrin Brandon, tweets Jeff Legwold of We heard back in early December that Denver had brought in Brandon for a workout with an eye toward the offseason.

East Rumors: CJ2K, Pats, Redskins, Bills

Free agent running back Chris Johnson could be very useful for a team that’s very close to contending, but the Cowboys aren’t and therefore wouldn’t have much use for him, writes Kevin Sherrington of the Dallas Morning News. We heard earlier today that there hasn’t been a ton of movement on Johnson, partially because NFL teams and Johnson himself appear to be divided on his market value. More out of the AFC and NFC East..

  • In his latest mailbag, Erik Frenz of the Boston Globe opines that Dominique Easley has the look of a future Patriots defensive tackle. The 6-foot-2, 288 pound Florida product boasts a quick burst off the snap which allows him to make plays in the backfield. The only problem with Easley, Frenz explains, is that he is primarily a one-gap defensive tackle, not the two-gap, read-and-react style of lineman the Patriots have targeted in the past.
  • Anthony Armstrong left Washington D.C. without a deal after his workout today with the Redskins, tweets John Keim of The wide receiver, who hasn’t suited up for the Redskins since the 2011 season, did not appear in an NFL game last season.
  • Meanwhile, former Colts and Patriots wide receiver Austin Collie had a tryout with the Redskins, tweets Howard Balzer of USA Today Sports. Towards the end of March we heard that a return to New England was still in the cards for Collie.
  • Bills GM Doug Whaley and coach Doug Marrone are not only open to keeping two kickers, but they also might already be leaning that way, writes Tim Graham of the Buffalo News. “If Dustin [Hopkins] can put the ball back there consistently, and if we can take that return play away,” Marrone said, “and Dan [Carpenter]‘s not at that higher percentage, then I have no problem with [keeping two kickers].”

AFC Notes: Jones-Drew, Blount, Collie

As new Raiders running back Maurice Jones-Drew restarts his career in Oakland, he won’t be handed the starting job. Jones-Drew told Vic Tafur of the San Francisco Chronicle that it’s a “wide-open” competition at running back (Twitter link), presumably between himself and incumbent Darren McFadden, who was re-signed to a one-year deal earlier this month.

Neither runner did much of anything in 2013, with McFadden rushing for 379 yards in 10 games, while Jones-Drew totaled 803 yards rushing in 15 games, averaging 3.4 yards per carry, just 0.1 yards better than McFadden. Behind McFadden and MJD are Latavius Murray, Kory Sheets and Jeremy Stewart, none of whom have starting experience.

Jones-Drew said on his conference call today that he’s looking forward to playing for an organization that he has loved since he was a little kid, and that he feels he was done wrong by the Jaguars (Twitter links).

Catch more AFC notes in the links below:

  • The Patriots were interested in re-signing running back LeGarrette Blount, but only for one year, reports Boston Globe writer Ben Volin (via Twitter). Blount ended up signing a two-year deal with the Steelers worth $3.85MM.
  • Looking to add weapons to a somewhat depleted receiving corps, Boston Herald beat reporter Jeff Howe tweets that the Patriots could re-sign Austin Collie and add a “Miles Austin-type” in the future.
  • The Texans are still almost $9MM under the salary cap after signing safety Chris Clemons to a two-year deal worth $2.7MM, reports John McClain of the Houston Chronicle (via Twitter).

Patriots Notes: Wendell, Talib, Daly

The Patriots have already started their offseason process of improving their roster, and Zuri Berry of ranked the team’s top 12 players set for free agency. The list is of course highlighted at the top with Aqib Talib and LeGarrette Blount. However, he has center Ryan Wendell as the Patriots’ third priority, ahead of bigger names such as Brandon Spikes and Julian Edelman. Wendell was far from an All-Pro center this past year, but Berry notes that the success the offensive line had as a group only raises the importance of bringing back their center at what is likely only to be a small raise. Other notes from the Patriots’ offseason:

  • The list of Patriots’ free agents also includes both Michael Hoomanawanui and Matthew Mulligan, the tight ends who were pushed into starting roles due to the losses of Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez, noting that neither’s presence on the roster is guaranteed next year. The surprise thought from Berry is that the team could opt to pass on Edelman in favor of the much cheaper Austin Collie, who despite difficulty staying on the field, made a few big plays this season.
  • Count Devin McCourty as someone who wants Talib back in New England, writes Jeff Howe of“He’s been a key part,” McCourty said.“I hope he is back. That doesn’t just go for him. I hope a lot of our guys stay where we’re at, especially in the secondary. We have a good core, and I hope we can stay together as long as possible.”
  • Brendan Daly was hired as a Patriots’ defensive assistant, according to Daly has been a defensive line coachin the NFL since 2005, most recently for last year’s Vikings under Leslie Frazier.

Pats Notes: Blount, Wilfork, Mallett

The Patriots fell in the AFC Championship Game for the second year in a row, in part because the offense was outgunned, as evidenced by the targeting of the likes of Austin Collie, Matt Slater and Matthew Mulligan. An NFC scout gave his take on the Pats’ anticipated plan of action when he spoke with Christopher Price of The highlights:

  • The scout credited the offense’s adaptability, but questioned its sustainability, citing a lack of high-caliber talent at the skill positions.
  • The team would like LeGarrette Blount back, but will not overpay.
  • When healthy, the offense has versatile, productive elements with the glaring exception of an outside speed threat to stretch the field vertically.
  • The time is now to begin preparing for life without Vince Wilfork, who is 32 and ended the season on IR. Price posits the team could seek young, versatile interior players to facilitate hybrid flexibility.
  • A “joker” type, pass-catching tight end could be sought in the draft.
  • Backup QB Ryan Mallett is a wild card. Aside from his inexperience, it’s unknown to what extent the team trusts him, though he could hold trade value.