Cameron Wake

Contract Details: Smith, James, Wake

The latest details on deals from around the NFL:

Titans To Sign Cameron Wake

Cameron Wake is finally changing teams. The longtime Dolphins sack artist has a deal in place with the Titans, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets.

Wake will sign a three-year, $23MM deal to help anchor Tennessee’s pass rush. We learned last week that Wake would not be re-signing with the Dolphins, the only team he has ever known, and he predictably had multiple clubs interested in his services.

Wake posted just six sacks last season after back-to-back double-digit campaigns, and he is 37. But he still offers plenty of ability, even if Tennessee may need to limit his snap count to keep him fresh. Pro Football Focus was especially bullish on his 2018 performance, ranking him as the 16th-best edge defender out of 113 eligible players.

Plus, he is a capable edge setter against the run, so it’s not as though the Titans will be forced to deploy him only in passing situations. The five-time Pro Bowler, who has one First Team All-Pro bid to his credit, also has a reputation as a sure tackler, making him a pretty complete all-around player.

However, he has just one career playoff appearance in his 10 years in the league, so one would think he could have chosen a club that profiled as a more legitimate contender. The Titans narrowly missed the playoffs last season, but they do not look like an outfit that is especially well-equipped to make a deep postseason run at the moment.

Wake has 98 sacks in his career, good for 33rd all-time, and he could climb into the top-25 with a quality season in Nashville.

Rory Parks contributed to this post.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Dolphins Unlikely To Re-Sign Cameron Wake

It sounds like Cameron Wake will be playing for a new team in 2019. The Dolphins have not made an effort to re-sign the impending free agent defensive end, according to Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald

[RELATED: Dolphins Shopping Robert Quinn]

Wake, meanwhile, has already received interest from multiple teams, so the veteran figures to stick around for an eleventh pro season. The 37-year-old hasn’t earned a Pro Bowl nod since 2016, but he’s still playing at a fairly high level. Last year, Wake recorded six sacks and 36 total tackles across 14 games.

Back in December, Wake expressed a desire to remain in Miami, but also made it clear that he was willing to continue with another club.

“Another jersey?” Wake said. “Ideally, no. But I mean, again, if option number one is not in my favor and they don’t want me but I can still play and I can still provide and still enjoy it whatever needs to happen. If it makes sense then I’ll do it. If it doesn’t then I won’t.”

So far, the Dolphins are the only NFL team that Wake has ever known. He has 98 career sacks to his credit, but only one career playoff appearance.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Cameron Wake Wants To Re-Sign With Dolphins

Cameron Wake has spent the majority of his professional career with the Dolphins, and the impending free agent told Joe Schad of the Palm Beach Post that he’s hoping to stick around Miami. However, Wake also cautioned that he wouldn’t be afraid to sign elsewhere.

“Another jersey?” Wake said. “Ideally, no. But I mean, again, if option number one is not in my favor and they don’t want me but I can still play and I can still provide and still enjoy it whatever needs to happen. If it makes sense then I’ll do it. If it doesn’t then I won’t.”

We heard earlier this month that the Dolphins wanted to extend their veteran defensive end last offseason, but nothing ever materialized. That sentiment probably hasn’t changed, as Wake has plenty productive in 2018. While Miami initially intended to limit the 36-year-old’s snaps, Wake has still been plenty productive, compiling 30 tackles, 4.5 sacks, and one forced fumble in 12 games. Pro Football Focus also ranks Wake 15th among 106 eligible edge defenders.

After going undrafted out of Penn State in 2005, Wake briefly caught on with the Giants before landing in the Canadian Football League. He earned a roster spot with the Dolphins in 2009, and he’s proceeded to play the past 10 seasons in Miami. Wake has earned five Pro Bowl selections, one First-Team All-Pro nod, and three Second-Team All-Pro selections during his career, and his 96.5 sacks rank second in franchise history (behind Jason Taylor).

Wake also acknowledged that he’s considered retirement, but his production in 2018 makes him think he could still be productive in 2019.

“You think about it all the time,” Wake said. “That’s the unfortunate part of the game. Whether it be physical or mental, it’s tough. It’s a tough gig. But at the end of the day, today, I still feel good, and I still feel like I can help. Will that be the case in April? I’d like to think so.”

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC East Notes: McCoy, Bills, Wake, Pats

Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports says the odds of the Bills trading any veterans — like RB LeSean McCoy, whose name has recently surfaced in trade rumors — are very slim. La Canfora writes that it would take a “bounty” to pry McCoy or Jerry Hughes away from Buffalo, as the team considers both players, who are both signed beyond this season to club-friendly deals, to be vital veteran components of its rebuild. Ian Rapoport of NFL.com agrees, saying it could take as much as a second-round draft pick to land McCoy.

Now let’s round up a few more notes from the AFC East, starting with more from Orchard Park:

  • This doesn’t come as much of a surprise, but Rapoport tweets that the Bills have no intention of playing newly-acquired signal-caller Derek Anderson, barring injury. Anderson is with the club to tutor rookie QB Josh Allen, not to take any of his playing time.
  • From the “something to keep an eye on” department, Jenna Cottrell of 13 WHAM tweets that Allen asked wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin if he wanted to work on routes during pregame warm-ups today, and Benjamin told him no. The Bills acquired Benjamin at the trade deadline last year but have not gotten much production out of him, and he does not appear especially motivated to perform well in his platform year.
  • Dolphins DE Cameron Wake recently underwent arthroscopic knee surgery but could be back as soon as next week, per Adam Schefter of ESPN.com. Normally such a procedure would require a four-week recovery period, but Wake is such a quick healer that he may make it back in a fraction of that time.
  • Mike Reiss of ESPN.com observes that Patriots cornerback Jason McCourty is on pace to recoup the money that he lost when he agreed to a pay cut before the regular season. New England gave him the opportunity to make up the difference via incentives, and McCourty is well on his way to hitting those incentives. The same cannot be said for Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski, however.
  • Reiss also notes that Kenjon Barner, who has been shuttled on and off of the Patriots‘ roster several times since September 12, may have a little more job security right now. Barner’s former club, the Eagles, are very much in need of RB help, and the Pats know that if they cut Barner again, they may not get him back.
  • Darryl Slater of NJ.com tweets that Jets defensive coordinator Kacy Rodgers, who is dealing with a serious illness, is on the sidelines for the team’s game against the Colts today. It does not sound as if he has resumed his coordinator responsibilities yet, but it is a good sign nonetheless.

East Notes: Cowboys, Manning, Wake, Jets

Terrance Williams landed on IR after not being listed on the Cowboys‘ injury report going into Week 4. The veteran wide receiver appeared on Dallas’ Week 5 injury list, however, after a personal issue kept him out of the Cowboys-Lions game. Now, both he and Travis Frederick — also placed on IR Saturday — are out until at least the Dec. 9 game against the Eagles. As for Williams’ status with the Cowboys, it’s possible he’s played his last game with the team considering his diminished role (39 snaps in three games). For now, the team is sticking by the embattled receiver, who may face a suspension for his offseason car accident. Williams is under contract through the 2020 season. It would cost the Cowboys ($2.5MM in dead money) more to cut him than it would save them by shedding that contract in 2019, however.

With him, there’s a suspension looming out there that might or might not happen,” Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones said Friday during an appearance on 105.3 The Fan (via Pro Football Talk). “He does have some things after coming off that foot injury, which happens. When you have a foot injury, sometimes you rush it back, and you’re not quite there. And then just personal and general, some things that maybe are holding him back right now. I just think it’s a work in progress with him. We think a lot of him. He’s a fighter and competitor, we just got to get him right.”

Here’s the latest from the East divisions, shifting to a Dallas rival:

  • Eli Manning‘s play has apparently drawn scrutiny from Giants decision-makers. The 15th-year starter has not had much success down the field this season, frequently checking the ball down. “Growing frustration” has emerged with Manning’s issues in this area, Pat Leonard of the New York Daily News notes. Odell Beckham Jr., during a recent interview with ESPN’s Josina Anderson (via Leonard), also questioned why Manning isn’t making more downfield throws. “How come we can’t throw the ball for more than 20 yards?” Beckham asked Anderson, rhetorically. “How come we don’t attempt or try to throw the ball for more than 20 yards? Those are questions that we have to figure out.” Manning’s only completed nine 20-plus-yard passes this season, and just six of those traveled 20-plus yards through the air. Manning is completing 74 percent of his passes.
  • Josh Doctson suffered a heel injury during practice earlier in the week and is questionable for the Redskins‘ game against the Saints, per ESPN.com’s John Keim (on Twitter). He did not practice Saturday, which doesn’t bode well for the third-year wideout’s status for Monday night. Maurice Harris will start in Doctson’s place if he’s unable to go, Jay Gruden said.
  • Trumaine Johnson managed a limited practice on Thursday but did not participate Friday because of a quadriceps injury. The Jets‘ top cornerback is out for their Week 5 tilt against the Broncos. Johnson was available and in the starting lineup for each of Gang Green’s first four games, so this will be an adjustment for the 1-3 Jets.
  • The Dolphins will be without Cameron Wake on Sunday. Wake’s knee-related absence will bring second-year defensive end Charles Harris into the lineup opposite Robert Quinn, Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald writes. Miami entered the season quite deep at end but will be without Wake, William Hayes (IR) and Andre Branch this week. Wake did not travel with the team to Cincinnati.

Extra Points: Dolphins, Wake, Patriots, Simon, Cowboys, Williams

Cameron Wake is 36-years-old, and as such the Dolphins were hoping to conserve him early on this season to preserve his body for later in the year. Wake, the five-time Pro Bowler from Penn State, was being used in an even rotation early on this year, but now may be forced to take on a bigger role. The Dolphins’ plan for Wake “might have lasted all of three games” according to Adam Beasley of The Miami Herald, due to injuries on Miami’s defensive line.

William Hayes tore his ACL on a controversial play where he was trying to avoid a roughing the passer penalty, and fellow defensive lineman Andre Branch also went down. The Dolphins now have only three healthy defensive ends, and Wake will now likely be forced to play nearly the entire game. It’s a big ask for a player of Wake’s age, and the Dolphins can’t afford anymore injuries to their defensive front.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • The Patriots recently signed pass-rusher John Simon, and now the details are in on his contract. He’ll receive a base salary of $800K, with another $412K available in incentives and roster bonuses according to Ben Volin of The Boston Globe (Twitter link). The Patriots have been unable to generate any pressure through three games, so it wouldn’t be surprising if Simon ends up playing a large role.
  • Terrance Williams recently missed practice, and rumors began circulating online that the Cowboys wideout was facing a suspension, but those rumors are untrue according to Calvin Watkins of The Athletic (Twitter link). Watkins reports that Williams, who has been lightly used this year despite recently signing an extension, was given an excused absence from practice.
  • In case you missed it, another weak area for the Patriots has been their receiving corp, and they continued to look for help by working out former first round pick Breshad Perriman.

East Notes: Beal, Wake, Giants

Sam Beal is widely considered to be the best prospect in this year’s supplemental draft, and most NFL talent evaluators think he will fall somewhere in the first three rounds of the draft. A tall corner who has the fluidity and speed of a smaller DB, some believe Beal has first-round talent, so he has generated plenty of discussion since he declared for the supplemental draft last month. Gil Brandt of SiriusXM says the Bills, who have an extra fourth-round pick in the 2019 draft, could be a fit for Beal (Twitter link). Meanwhile, John Keim of ESPN.com says the Redskins have interest in Beal as well as fellow supplemental draft prospects Adonis Alexander and Brandon Bryant, but Mike Reiss of ESPN.com says the Patriots are unlikely to select one of those players even though they have the 2019 draft capital to do so.

Now let’s round up a few more notes from the league’s east divisions:

  • Reiss believes that the Patriots, who selected OL Isaiah Wynn with their No. 23 overall selection in this year’s draft, also considered Alabama WR Calvin Ridley in that spot. Although New England’s need for a quality offensive lineman may have swung the pendulum in Wynn’s favor, Reiss also believes the team is more comfortable projecting an offensive lineman to the NFL than a receiver, which made Wynn an easier choice.
  • Though he is 36 years old, Dolphins DE Cameron Wake is still a highly-productive pass rusher, having posted 10.5 sacks last season. Despite that, and despite the fact that he is entering a contract year, Wake has no issues with the team’s decision to use a rotation that it hopes will keep him fresh in 2018. Per Hal Habib of the Palm Beach Post, Wake said, “I want to do whatever is going to help the entirety of the team, the entirety of the defense. So, if it means me being a third-down guy, let’s do it. If it means I have to start and play every down, I’ll take that role on, too.”
  • Matt Lombardo of NJ.com does not think the Giants will be players in the supplemental draft, and he says that, while UDFA wide receiver Amba Etta-Tawo has looked good in spring practices, even a strong training camp and preseason will likely only get him another chance on Big Blue’s taxi squad, where he finished the 2017 campaign. Of course, a good showing could get the former Maryland and Syracuse product a shot on a different club.
  • Many expected Chad Wheeler to push Ereck Flowers for the Giants‘ starting right tackle job this year, but as Ryan Dunleavy of NJ.com writes, Flowers has gotten all of the first-team reps at RT thus far. Dunleavy says Wheeler’s job as the team’s swing tackle is safe, but barring injury, it looks like Flowers will be the right tackle in 2018. However, Flowers is entering a contract year, so Wheeler may get a chance to start in 2019 if he performs well in the swing tackle role.
  • Earlier today, we heard that Redskins HC Jay Gruden may be looking for a new job in 2019 if his club turns in another so-so performance in 2018.

AFC East Rumors: Patriots, Dolphins, Jets

If Tom Brady continues his run of success in his age-39 campaign, the Patriots will likely be forced to use the franchise tag on backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo in 2018, as Mike Reiss of ESPN.com writes. New England would probably deploy the tag with the intention trading Garoppolo, but dealing away the talented reserve signal-caller would depend on a number of factors, per Reiss. Aside from Brady’s excellent play and his intention to play for several more seasons, the Patriots would need to feel secure with current third-stringer Jacoby Brissett. The 23-year-old Brissett posted a record of 1-1 last season while completing 28 of 46 passes for more than 300 yards, and while he didn’t throw any touchdowns, he did score on the ground.

Let’s take a look at more from the AFC East:

  • Given that he was coming off an Achilles injury, the Dolphins attempted to limit defensive end Cameron Wake‘s snaps at the beginning of the 2016 season, but head coach Adam Gase now admits that strategy was an oversight. “I made a mistake. I should have been playing him more early,” Gase tells Adam Walker of ESPN.com. “We were trying to think long term. … We thought we were being smart and it backfired on us. What we should have done was just let him play.” Wake, 35, ended up playing on roughly half of Miami’s snaps, compiling 11.5 sacks and grading as the league’s No. 10 edge defender, according to Pro Football Focus. In February, Wake agreed to an extension that will keep him with the Dolphins through 2018.
  • Although the Patriots handed him a $100K base salary guarantee and a $15K signing bonus, Harvey Langi might have trouble earning a spot on New England’s roster given the club’s depth at linebacker, as Phil Perry of CSNNE.com details in his latest Patriots roster projection. Langi was a highly-touted undrafted free agent out of BYU, but New England’s recent addition of veteran David Harris could throw his status into flux. The Pats could attempt to pass him through waivers to the practice squad, but another team could be ready to pounce with a claim.
  • The Jets have promoted director of pro personnel Matt Bazirgan to college scouting director, sources tell Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News. He replaces Rex Hogan, who left New York last month to become the Colts’ co-director of player personnel. Bazirgan had been working as Gang Green’s pro personnel director since 2015, and had worked as an area scout prior to that. A Jets staffer since 2004, Bazirgan has worked under four different New York general managers.

AFC Notes: Broncos, Browns, Raiders, Fins

Broncos general manager John Elway issued an update Wednesday regarding the status of impending free agent linebacker DeMarcus Ware, per Nicki Jhabvala of the Denver Post. “I haven’t talked to DeMarcus,” Elway said “He’s been around, but I haven’t had a chance to sit down with DeMarcus, so as we get through this and get back to Denver, I’m sure I’ll sit down with DeMarcus and we’ll talk about it.”

On the other hand, rookie head coach Vance Joseph has talked to the future Hall of Fame pass rusher “four or five” times over the past couple months. The soon-to-be 35-year-old Ware has made it no secret that he’d like to return to Denver for a fourth season, but his previous employer, the Cowboys, could pursue him if he reaches free agency. Between Dallas and Denver, Ware has amassed 138.5 sacks in 12 years. Four of those sacks came last season for Ware, who appeared in a career-low 10 games on account of back and forearm injuries.

Elway, meanwhile, could become a free agent executive after next season. It doesn’t look as if that will happen, however, as contract extension talks between Elway and the Broncos “going fine,” the Hall of Fame quarterback said (via Cameron Wolfe of the Denver Post). “I don’t anticipate any problems,” he added. The 56-year-old Elway has been resoundingly successful as an executive, having helped the Broncos to a 67-29 record, five playoff berths, two AFC championships and a Super Bowl in six seasons in their front office.

More from three other AFC cities:

  • Speaking to reporters in January, Browns head coach Hue Jackson didn’t dismiss the possibility of trading the No. 1 pick in this year’s draft. GM Sashi Brown backed up Jackson on Wednesday, saying (via Mary Kay Cabot of cleveland.com): “We’re going to responsibly listen to any opportunities that are out there. I think we have to do that. It’s not a design of ours. We would have to wait and see what might come, and what player might be available there as we get through this process.”
  • Looking to keep the Raiders in Oakland, the Ronnie Lott-led Fortress Investment Group has submitted a formal stadium plan to the NFL within the past 10 days, reports the Associated Press. However, it’s “not moving the needle much,” according to Jason Cole of Bleacher Report. Even after losing financial backing from businessman Sheldon Adelson and Goldman Sachs, the Raiders are eyeing Las Vegas relocation, though two owners told Cole they’re concerned with the amount of debt the franchise would take on in such a scenario (Twitter links).
  • Despite suffering what could have been a career-threatening neck injury last year, Dolphins linebacker Koa Misi expects to be ready for next season, writes Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. Cutting Misi would save the Dolphins $4.2MM against just $578K in dead money in 2017, but they haven’t ruled out retaining him, notes Jackson.
  • Jackson also has further details on defensive end Cameron Wake‘s two-year, $19MM contract with the Dolphins. Wake will get a renegotiated signing bonus of $1MM in 2017 and a $125K workout bonus in each season.