Brian Winters

Jets Notes: Enunwa, Gase, Winters

Jets wide receiver Quincy Enunwa was fined $27,900 by the team for missing two days of treatment, according to ESPN’s Rich Cimini. The wideout later took to Twitter to blast the team for the punishment.

“I normally chill on putting issues on twitter, but this doesnt sit right with me,” Enunwa wrote. “Given everything that’s going on around the team I thought this could’ve been handled so many different ways…I missed those two days, because I took my VETERAN wife out for Veterans Day lunch and because I had to handle an emergency in my house. I let the team know this after the fact, and yes, I should have told them beforehand, but I feel like this was excessive…I’m on IR trying to get back to play so I never thought that they’d be worried about me missing, but obviously I was wrong.”

Enunwa, who’s currently on the injured reserve with a neck injury, revealed that there’s only a 50% chance he ever sees the field again.

Let’s take a look at more notes out of New York…

  • Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News uses Enunwa’s outburst as an example for how players don’t respect head coach Adam Gase. Following the receiver’s comments, Mehta observed that Gase “displayed poor leadership for unofficially the 1,969th time Friday with an arrogance and defiance that simply reinforced that he hasn’t learned a damn thing.” Gase was quick to dismiss the story, telling reporters that they generally settle these types of grievances in-house. As Mehta writes, this type of logic has led to three players taking action against the organization in the past four weeks.
  • Jets offensive lineman Brian Winters was recently placed on the injured reserve, and Matt Stypulkoski of NJ.com wonders if the veteran has played his final game for the organization. The 28-year-old is the team’s longest-tenured lineman, as he joined the organization back in 2013. Winters will be entering the final year of his contract in 2020, and Stypulkoski opines that it may be in the Jets’ best interest to move on from the veteran as they look to revamp the entire unit (the Jets would save around $7MM by cutting Winters). The writer also explored the pros and cons of making such a move.
  • Winters’ recent injury emphasizes that general manager Joe Douglas needs to focus on improving the offensive line this offseason, writes Mehta. As the writer notes, four of the team’s five starting offensive linemen to begin the season have missed time thanks to injury, and the team has had to rely on six different groupings this year. While injuries are obviously unavoidable, Mehta believes Douglas needs to invest resources into building a reliable offensive line in front of Sam Darnold.

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/13/19

Today’s minor moves:

Arizona Cardinals

Cleveland Browns

Detroit Lions

Houston Texans

Los Angeles Rams

  • Promoted from practice squad: T Chandler Brewer, DB Donte Deayon

New York Jets

San Francisco 49ers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Chris Herndon, Brian Winters To Miss Time

Chris Herndon‘s second NFL season may end up including just one game. Adam Gase said Monday the promising tight end suffered a fractured rib in his Week 10 debut, per Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News (on Twitter).

Guard Brian Winters‘ season is also in jeopardy. The seventh-year blocker is unlikely to play again in 2019 after he suffered a dislocated shoulder, Gase said (via ESPN.com’s Rich Cimini, on Twitter). Surgery is in play for Winters, Cimini tweets. Shoulder trouble sidelined Winters over the summer, and Mehta notes (via Twitter) he has been playing through pain all season and was told to have surgery earlier. But Winters started all nine Jets games this season.

Herndon began his season with a four-game suspension but did not debut until Week 10 because of a hamstring injury. He may have 10 months before he can rebound. Two seasons remain on Herndon’s rookie deal. Winters, however, has a non-guaranteed $7MM remaining on his Jets pact. Considering how new GM Joe Douglas has proceeded with Mike Maccagnan offensive line investments, Winters may have played his final down as a Jet.

Winters is the longest-tenured Jets offensive lineman, beginning his career when Nick Mangold and D’Brickashaw Ferguson anchored the group. He’s made 79 starts for the Jets since joining the team as a third-round pick in 2013. Gang Green has already experienced issues across their O-line this season. They have shuffled players at left tackle, right tackle and left guard. Tom Compton took Winters’ place at right guard Sunday and figures to start in Week 11.

The Jets added Ryan Griffin as a Herndon stopgap this offseason, and the veteran will continue to play a key role in New York’s passing game. He’s caught 20 passes for 160 yards and three touchdowns. Herndon snared one pass Sunday. His 502 yards last season were the third-most most by a Jets rookie tight end.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Jets Rumors: Johnson, Maye, OL, Griffin

While it was once thought this would be the offseason the Jets overhauled their offensive line, that could well happen in 2020. The Jets, who ranked 32nd in adjusted line yards last season, will return three starters from last season’s group. But when new GM Joe Douglas begins his first free agency period next year, Adam Gase expects him to be aggressive in bolstering the front.

I think the fact that our GM is a former offensive lineman, I’m pretty sure you guys know that he’s going to be looking for those type of guys,” Gase said, via Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News. “His type of linemen: tough, physical, smart guys that can play multiple positions and play both sides of the line. I think that’s what he’s going to be combing the Earth for.”

Starters Kelvin Beachum and Brandon Shell are playing on expiring contracts, and recent Douglas acquisition Ryan Kalil is certainly a year-to-year player at this point in his career. The Jets drafted tackle Chuma Edoga in Round 3, but that pick came under Mike Maccagnan‘s watch (and largely not Gase’s). So, next year figures to be telling about Douglas’ blueprint up front.

Here is the from the AFC’s Big Apple franchise:

  • Trumaine Johnson has run into more injury trouble. The high-priced cornerback is now dealing with a hamstring injury, and Rich Cimini of ESPN.com notes the eighth-year defender will be sidelined “indefinitely.” Johnson leads a thin Jets corner group and stands as their unquestioned CB1. Johnson missed six games due to injury last season. Douglas has been searching for veterans for weeks, with Cimini noting the rookie GM is still on that hunt. The Jets opted not to bring back Morris Claiborne, a two-year Gang Green starter. He instead signed with the Chiefs.
  • There is better news elsewhere in the Jets’ secondary. Marcus Maye is off the team’s active/PUP list, Ralph Vacchiano of SNY notes (on Twitter). The third-year safety had offseason shoulder surgery, with Gase indicating one of the Jets’ two safety starters was dealing with nerve damage. Maye ended last season on IR with the shoulder trouble.
  • Concluding the look at the Jets’ injury front, Brian Winters is also dealing with shoulder trouble. Gase called his right guard starter “week-to-week” but expects him to be ready for Week 1 (Twitter link via Mehta). It sounds like Winters will be shelved for the rest of the team’s preseason slate. This will be Winters’ seventh season as a Jets O-line starter. He’s by far their longest-tenured lineman.
  • In addressing some of the Jets’ position battles, Cimini notes recently added tight end Ryan Griffin is running ahead of backups Eric Tomlinson and Daniel Brown. This is rather important because of starter Chris Herndon‘s four-game suspension. Griffin started 36 games for the Texans, before being released after an arrest this offseason, but has never been too much of a receiving threat.

AFC East Notes: Dolphins, Bills, McCoy, Jets

The Dolphins are desperate for cornerback help, so much so that they’re working usual slot corner Bobby McCain on the outside, as Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald writes. During this week’s practices, Miami used McCain opposite No. 1 corner Xavien Howard, with versatile first-round defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick in the slot. McCain became of the NFL’s highest-paid slot corners after agreeing to a four-year, $27MM extension earlier this year, but if he can stick on the outside, the 25-year-old would become a bargain. The Dolphins could conceivably look to the trade or free agent market in search of a new cornerback, but one of their recent visitors — former Redskins defender Bashaud Breeland — is reportedly unlikely to sign with Miami.

Here’s more from the AFC East:

  • While a few more details have emerged regarding Bills running back LeSean McCoy and the pending lawsuit against him (which alleges McCoy was responsible for a recent physical attack on his ex-girlfriend, Buffalo general manager Brandon Beane said “nothing’s changed” with regard to McCoy’s status with the club. “You take all allegations seriously, but until the police say there’s something there, we’re not going to act on anything without them saying there’s legit evidence,” Beane told Kate Brumback and John Wawrow of the Associated Press. “It’s an open investigation. Nothing has come forward that said any of these things are true. So until that would happen, I don’t think anything will ever change.” McCoy could potentially be placed on the commissioner’s exempt list depending on the state of the NFL’s investigation, but at this point, it appears he’ll be on the Bills’ active roster for Week 1, barring any further developments.
  • Bills punter Cory Carter suffered a torn ACL in Friday night’s preseason game, tweets Ian Rapoport of NFL.com. Carter, who went undrafted out of Texas Southern in 2016, spent training camp with the Texans last summer but has never appeared in an NFL contest. While he was unlikely to unseat starting punter Colton Schmidt in Buffalo, Carter was one of only two punters on the Bills’ roster, so the team could conceivably add another specialist in the coming days. Carter, meanwhile, will likely be waived/injured and subsequently moved to injured reserve, where he’ll spend the 2018 campaign.
  • Speaking of injuries, the Jets will be cautious with guard Brian Winters as he continues to recover from the abdomen issue he dealt with in 2017, per Rapoport (Twitter link). Winters played through the ailment last season, but New York has no interest of rushing him back this year, and he’s not expected to play in any preseason games. The 26-year-old Winters has made 56 starts for the Jets over the past five seasons, and last year graded as the league’s No. 59 guard among 78 qualifiers, per Pro Football Focus.

AFC Notes: Patriots, Allen, Chiefs, Beal, Supplemental Draft, Jets, Winters

Tight end Dwayne Allen is entering the third year of a four-year $29.4MM deal he signed back in 2016. He signed the deal as a member of the Colts before he was traded to the Patriots before last season. Despite being an elite redzone threat with Indianapolis, combining for 14 touchdowns in 2014 and 2016, Allen played sparingly last season with New England.

Now even with Rob Gronkowski‘s injury concerns, Allen could be cut from the team, according to Mike Reiss of ESPN.com. Reiss said Allen is in the “roster-cut conversation” due to a salary that’s disproportionate to his role with the team. Reiss thinks that because the Patriots use Allen almost exclusively as a blocking tight end, the team may deem him too expensive and decide to move on. The only thing that could save Allen is the lack of experience of the Patriots’ other backup tight ends, but if one of them emerges this summer, Allen could very easily be a goner.

Here’s more from the AFC:

  • Matt Miller of Bleacher Report “could see the Chiefs making a bid on Sam Beal in the Supplemental Draft” (Twitter link). Miller thinks Beal “could fill a huge hole” and that the Chiefs would probably have to bid a second round pick to get him. Miller added that he keeps hearing that Beal is “pro ready” and that he thinks Chiefs GM Brett Veach will be aggressive enough to make the move.
  • Jets guard Brian Winters signed a four-year $29MM deal with the team before last season, but 2018 could be his last with the team if he doesn’t improve his play, according to Brian Costello of the New York Post. Costello notes that there is no more guaranteed money in his deal after this year and that the Jets will “make a decision” on the lineman after this year. He’s struggled with injuries the past two years and if he isn’t able to return to form he’ll be “looking for a new team” writes Costello.
  • In case you missed it, Zach Links took a look back at the Colts’ decision two years ago today to make Andrew Luck the highest paid player in football.

AFC East Notes: Patriots, Jets, Pouncey

James Harrison fired back at the Steelers regarding his 2017 tactics, saying he repeatedly asked for a release this season. The Patriots linebacker said he asked for a release at the beginning of the season when it was clear his role was not what he thought it was going to be, but the team didn’t grant the request, he said on Instagram (via NESN’s Doug Kyed, on Twitter). The 39-year-old edge defender, who did have an extensive role in 2016, said the Steelers continued to tell him he would play only to deactivate him on Sundays or dress him and not deploy him. Harrison has played just 40 snaps across five games this season.

The new Patriots defender — who said he may not have “handled his frustration” well, seeming to confirm some of the accounts of ex-Steelers teammates — said he asked to be released (well, waived, since the trade deadline has passed) early last week before finally seeing the team do so. Harrison said Pittsburgh did not assure him he would be brought back, but the team also didn’t close the door on that possibility prior to his Patriots signing. He described the signing with New England as a “business decision.”

Here’s more from the AFC East.

  • Harrison said no other teams made offers to sign him, Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald notes. Unsurprisingly, Harrison’s Patriots deal is for the prorated veteran minimum. He will earn $58K for his work this week plus playoff shares depending on how far New England advances, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com tweets. The Steelers signed Harrison to a two-year contract in March and paid him $2.13MM this season.
  • The JetsTodd Bowles extension talks may have begun as recently as late December, with Rich Cimini of ESPN.com reporting Jets CEO Christopher Johnson opting to be proactive instead of letting Bowles enter a walk year and opening the door to other teams’ overtures. Specifically, Cimini writes that speculation about a Bowles/Cardinals reunion swirled for months. Bruce Arians will make a decision about his future in the offseason, but Bowles excelled as Arizona’s DC before coming to New York. Cimini also notes the Buccaneers, who are keeping Dirk Koetter for 2018, were a team the Jets knew would’ve been interested.
  • One of the reasons the Jets kept Bowles was the team’s surprisingly competitive season with several little-known players thrust to the forefront because of the offseason veteran purge. Ian Rapoport of NFL.com notes (video link) Bowles doing more with less was not lost on ownership.
  • The Patriots‘ decision to unload Jimmy Garoppolo at the trade deadline hasn’t been fully embraced within the organization, with Tom Curran of NBC Sports Boston reporting some felt the team should have pushed the situation as far as it could go — possibly into 2018. While trading Tom Brady was not a broached subject, Curran notes, his age and Garoppolo’s talent made some in Foxborough want to keep Garoppolo as an insurance policy. While that would have been a tricky process, given the $23MM franchise tag’s involvement, Garoppolo is likely going to be tagged after a breakout showing with the 49ers.
  • Mike Pouncey‘s severe hip injury — one that he’s said will induce a hip replacement at some point in the not-too-distant future — prompted one doctor say his career was over, the seventh-year center said (via Adam Beasley of the Miami Herald). However, the Dolphins center made it through 15 games this season. Despite Pro Football Focus grading Pouncey as the league’s No. 25 center this season, Beasley notes the snapper is one of Adam Gase‘s favorites and can expect to be back in 2018.
  • PFF graded Jets guard Brian Winters as one of its worst offensive linemen this season, and the fifth-year player revealed why that might have been the case on Saturday. Winters said (via Twitter) he tore two midsection muscles in Week 2 and tried to play through the maladies the rest of the way. The recently extended lineman will undergo surgery. The Jets placed him on IR earlier this week.

Jets Place G Brian Winters On IR

Brian Winters will miss the Jets’ Week 17 game against the Patriots because of abdominal injury that induced an IR trip, Brian Costello of the New York Post tweets. The Jets ended their starting right guard’s season with this move.

The Jets promoted defensive lineman Deon Simon from the practice squad to take Winters’ roster spot. Winters missed the Jets’ Week 16 game because of injury and will have additional time to recover from it.

Winters is now the longest-tenured Jets offensive line starter. During an offseason that featured rampant cuts, the Jets took care of their fifth-year guard, re-signing him through 2020 for $29MM. He started 13 games up front for New York this season, just as he did last year. Only this year, he operated as the O-line’s centerpiece after Nick Mangold‘s offseason release.

The 26-year-old interior blocker’s first season on this second contract did not go especially well, per Pro Football Focus, which graded the former third-round pick as a bottom-10 guard among full-time qualifiers.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC Notes: Colts, Ravens, Broncos, Jets

A quick look around the AFC…

  • While announcing Andrew Luck‘s right shoulder surgery Thursday, Colts owner Jim Irsay declared that the quarterback will be ready for the season. Here’s a clearer timeline, courtesy of Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter): Luck will start throwing again in three months and should be ready for a full return in six months, which puts him on track for mid-July.
  • After four seasons, the Ravens are likely to part with pass rusher Elvis Dumervil this winter, writes Clifton Brown of CSNMidAtlantic.com. By releasing Dumervil, who has one year left on his contract, the Ravens would open up $6MM in cap space. Baltimore could use those savings to find a cover corner or offensive weapon, Brown suggests. Dumervil, who’s celebrating his 33rd birthday today, is coming off an eight-game, three-sack season. He missed just one contest out of 48 from 2013-15 and combined for 32.5 sacks, including a lofty 17.5 in 2014.
  • The Broncos will hire Brock Olivo as their new special teams coach, reports Mike Klis of 9News (Twitter link). Olivo spent the past three years as the assistant special teams coach with the AFC West rival Chiefs.
  • Jets guard Brian Winters will receive all $15MM of the guaranteed money on his four-year, $29MM contract in the first two seasons of the deal, per Darryl Slater of NJ.com. The pact also contains per-game roster bonuses of $500K in both 2019 and ’20.

Jets, Brian Winters Agree To Extension

The Jets have re-signed one of their key impending free agents. Brian Costello of the New York Post reports (via Twitter) that the team has inked offensive guard Brian Winters to a four-year extension. The deal is worth $29MM and includes $15MM in guarantees, according to ESPN’s Dan Graziano (Twitter link via Rich Cimini). Winters now ranks 10th among guards in guaranteed money.

Brian Winters (Vertical)Winters had spent the past four years with the Jets after being selected as a third-rounder in the 2013 draft. The Kent State product immediately made an impact on the New York offense, as Winters started 12 games that season. An ACL injury limited the lineman to only six games (six starts) in 2014, but he rebounded by appearing in all 16 games (10 starts) during the 2015 campaign.

Winters started the first 13 games in 2016, but his season ended early when he was placed on the injured reserve with a torn rotator cuff. The offensive guard established himself as the Jets’ top offensive lineman during his three months on the field. In fact, by most metrics, Winters ranked as one of the top run blockers in the league, playing a significant role in the hot starts for running backs Matt Forte and Bilal Powell. Winters predictably fell in those rankings, but many still thought that re-signing the lineman would be a top offseason priority for the Jets.

The Jets are surely eyeing some changes to their offensive line this offseason. Tight tackle Breno Giacomini and left tackle Ryan Clady appear to be on their way out of the organization, and the team could also cut veteran center Nick Mangold. Releasing the veteran center would free up more than $9MM in salary cap space.

Winters was just one of many Jets ready to hit free agency. Other impending free agents include quarterbacks Ryan Fitzpatrick and Geno Smith, offensive tackle Ben Ijalana, safety Antonio Allen, linebacker Bruce Carter, and long snapper Tanner Purdum.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.