Benardrick McKinney

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/17/21

Today’s minor moves:

Carolina Panthers

Jacksonville Jaguars

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Chargers

Miami Dolphins

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

New York Jets

San Francisco 49ers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Washington Football Team

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/4/21

Today’s minor moves:

Houston Texans

Las Vegas Raiders

  • Promoted: WR Dillon Stoner

New York Giants

New York Jets

Washington Football Team

Giants Promote LB Benardrick McKinney

Days after joining the Giants’ practice squad, Benardrick McKinney has been promoted to the game-day roster. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reports (via Twitter) that the veteran linebacker has been elevated to the active roster and will play on Sunday.

McKinney was traded from the Texans to the Dolphins back in March, but he didn’t end up making it to the 53-man roster. It took a few months, but McKinney finally found his next gig in mid-October when he joined the Giants practice squad.

Now, he’ll have a chance to play after spending less than a week with the organization. Linebacker Tae Crowder, who has started each of New York’s first six games this season, landed on the injury report with a thigh issue. At the very least, McKinney will provide the squad with another option at the position.

When McKinney was at his best, he formed one of the league’s best run-stuffing tandems with Zach Cunningham. He earned Pro Bowl nod in 2018 and racked up 100+ tackles again in 2019. Last year, however, a shoulder injury limited him to just four games.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Giants Add Benardrick McKinney To P-Squad

The Giants are set to add Benardrick McKinney to the practice squad (Twitter link via NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport). RapSheet hears that the linebacker had interest from multiple teams, but chose the Giants because he saw them as the best fit.

McKinney was traded from the Texans to the Dolphins this year but didn’t make their final cut. When McKinney was at his best, he formed one of the league’s best run-stuffing tandems with Zach Cunningham. He earned Pro Bowl nod in 2018 and racked up 100+ tackles again in 2019. Last year, however, a shoulder injury limited him to just four games.

The 28-year-old (29 in November) was set to play for about $3MM this year following a restructure. The Giants will have him on call for a fraction of the price, providing insurance for their current group of ‘backers.

The Giants may give McKinney the best path to the field, but they won’t give him a great opportunity to see the postseason. Yesterday’s 38-11 showing against the Rams has dropped them to 1-5 with the Panthers on the horizon.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Dolphins Release LB Benardrick McKinney

Benardrick McKinney‘s stint with the Dolphins has already come to an end. After getting traded to Miami earlier this offseason, the veteran linebacker will be released, reports NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport (via Twitter).

Back in March, the Dolphins acquired McKinney and a 2021 seventh-round pick from the Texans for a 2021 sixth-round pick and Shaq Lawson (who, ironically, was traded by Houston earlier today). McKinney subsequently reworked his contract; the 28-year-old was originally set to make $27.5MM over the next three years, including a $7.75M salary in 2021, but he took a major cut by ripping up the final two years of the deal while earning $3MM this year (plus $200K in playtime incentives).

When McKinney was at his best, he formed one of the league’s best run-stuffing tandems with Zach Cunningham. He earned Pro Bowl nod in 2018 and racked up 100+ tackles again in 2019. Last year, however, a shoulder injury limited him to just four games.

In Miami, McKinney was expected to start alongside Jerome Baker. However, as reporter Armando Salguero observed, the veteran struggled in pass coverage, limiting his playing time. Plus, Elandon Roberts seemed to jump McKinney on the depth chart after the former was activated from PUP.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Dolphins, Benardrick McKinney Rework Contract

Benardrick McKinney has agreed to revise his existing contract, as Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets. The veteran linebacker is now on course for free agency in the spring of 2022, rather than 2024. He was originally set to make $27.5MM over the next three years, including a $7.75M salary in 2021. Now, he’ll make $3MM this year plus $200K in playtime incentives. 

The Dolphins acquired McKinney from the Texans earlier this year in exchange for edge rusher Shaq Lawson. In cap terms, the deal was pretty much a wash. But, from a football perspective, the Dolphins preferred McKinney’s run-stuffing ability.

When McKinney was at his best, he formed one of the league’s best run-stuffing tandems with Zach Cunningham. Now, McKinney is set to start alongside Jerome Baker, and the Miami duo could be even better, if McKinney can match Baker’s strides in pass coverage.

McKinney earned Pro Bowl nod in 2018 and racked up 100+ tackles again in 2019. Last year, however, a shoulder injury limited him to just four games.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

This Date In Transactions History: Texans Extend Benardrick McKinney

Today marks the three-year anniversary of Benardrick McKinney‘s five-year, $50MM extension with the Texans. If you forgot to get the inside linebacker a gift, that’s alright. He probably doesn’t need much in the way of gadgets and home furnishings for his new Miami-area pad. 

McKinney, a 2015 second-round pick out of Mississippi State, emerged as one of the Texans’ top defenders in his sophomore NFL season. He was solid as a rookie, but as a second-team All-Pro nod in 2016, he finished out with 129 tackles, five sacks, and a forced fumble, ensuring that he would see a sizable pay bump in the offseason. His 2017 stat sheet wasn’t quite as gaudy – 95 tackles and three sacks – but he was still impressive and placed as Pro Football Focus’ No. 24 ranked linebacker in the NFL.

Because he was a second-round pick, the Texans didn’t have the fifth-year option as a safety net. By 2018, McKinney was set to enter his walk year, when he could potentially send his sticker price through the roof. McKinney, meanwhile, was 25 and wanted the security of a multi-year deal. It was the right time for both parties to come to the table and the Texans were happy to oblige. The deal also gave them a clearer picture of their budget as they considered an extension for Jadeveon Clowney (though they ultimately couldn’t make it work).

McKinney went on to earn a Pro Bowl nod in 2018 and racked up 100+ tackles again in 2019. Last year, however, a shoulder injury limited him to just four games. Then, the Texans were in a bit of a pickle as they had to replace franchise icon J.J. Watt. Earlier this year, they shipped McKinney to the Dolphins for edge rusher Shaq Lawson. In cap terms, the deal was pretty much a wash. But, on the field, the Texans effectively swapped Watt and McKinney for Lawson and newcomer Christian Kirksey.

Now, McKinney is set to start alongside Jerome Baker, who just landed a sizable extension of his own. When McKinney was at his best, he formed one of the league’s best run-stuffing tandems with Zach Cunningham. This Dolphins duo has the potential to be even better, if McKinney can match Baker’s strides in pass coverage.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Dolphins Trade Shaq Lawson To Texans For Benardrick McKinney

The Dolphins and Texans are in agreement on a trade that will send inside linebacker Benardrick McKinney to Miami in exchange for outside linebacker Shaq Lawson, as Adam Schefter of ESPN.com was first to report (via Twitter). Cameron Wolfe of ESPN.com reports that the Dolphins will send their 2021 sixth-round pick to Houston and will get the Texans’ 2021 seventh-rounder in return (Twitter link).

Lawson is the second player from Miami’s 2020 front-seven spending spree to be jettisoned over the last few days. After the ‘Fins failed to find a trade partner for Kyle Van Noy, they cut him loose after just one season in South Beach. Now, Lawson will try to build on a solid, if unspectacular, 2020 season with his third pro team.

The Texans, who parted ways with franchise icon J.J. Watt this offseason, were in desperate need of pass rush help, and Lawson graded out as Pro Football Focus’ 28th-best edge defender out of 109 qualified players (incidentally, new teammate Whitney Mercilus was at the very bottom of that list). Lawson’s four sacks and 25 QB pressures won’t make headlines, but he will be a welcome addition to the club’s pass rushing corps just the same. He will likely shift back to defensive end in new DC Lovie Smith‘s scheme.

Miami, meanwhile, adds a starting-caliber ILB to line up next to Jerome Baker. McKinney played in just four games in 2020 due to a shoulder injury, but he had been pretty durable up to that point. A full-time starter since he entered the league as a second-round pick in 2015, the Mississippi State product averaged 107.5 tackles per season from 2016-2019 and earned a Pro Bowl nod in 2018. But the Texans recently brought in Christian Kirksey on a one-year pact, and they had given McKinney permission to seek a trade, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter).

Per Wolfe, the Dolphins have been eyeing McKinney for awhile, and he gives them a worthy replacement for Van Noy. The team is now expected to pursue pass rush help in free agency to complement Emmanuel Ogbah and Andrew Van Ginkel (Twitter link via Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com).

From a salary cap standpoint, the trade is mostly a wash for both clubs. Lawson is due an $8.4MM salary in 2021 and $8.9MM in 2022, while McKinney is under club control through 2023 with salaries of $7MM, $8.75MM, and $9.5MM coming his way over the next three seasons. The Dolphins will have to absorb $2.7MM in dead money as a result of the deal, but all of McKinney’s guarantees have been paid out, so it will be easy for Miami to move on from him prior to the expiration of his current contract if he underperforms.

Now that these two teams have one notable trade in the books, one wonders if another deal involving a quarterback or two could be in the offing.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Texans LB Benardrick McKinney Done For Season

Benardrick McKinney‘s season has come to an end. Mark Berman of Fox 26 reports (via Twitter) that the Texans linebacker has to undergo shoulder surgery and is done for the year. The team is expected to place McKinney on injured reserve.

It’s uncertain when McKinney initially suffered the injury, but the ailment sidelined him for this past weekend’s win over the Jaguars. Through the first four games of the season, the 27-year-old had compiled 37 tackles and one pass defended. He had also played at least 80-percent of his team’s defensive snaps through those four contests.

The 2015 second-round pick has spent his entire career in Houston, including a 2016 campaign where he earned a second-team All-Pro nod after compiling 129 tackles and five sacks. After inking a five-year, $50MM extension with Houston in 2018, he garnered his first and only Pro Bowl appearance.

It’s never easy losing a player of McKinney’s caliber, but the team does have some solid depth at linebacker. Tyrell Adams earned the start in McKinney’s stead this past weekend, and he responded by compiling a career-high 13 tackles.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.