Browns Rumors

NFL Practice Squad Updates: 9/22/20

We’ll keep track of today’s taxi squad moves here:

Arizona Cardinals

  • Signed: OL Rick Leonard

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

Chicago Bears

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

Denver Broncos

  • Signed: LB Deyon Sizer

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

  • Released: LB Greg Roberts

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Los Angeles Chargers

Minnesota Vikings

New York Giants

New York Jets

San Francisco 49ers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Browns (Still) Have No Plans To Trade OBJ

Once again, trade rumors surrounding Browns wideout Odell Beckham Jr. have surfaced. And once again, the team has shut down those rumors.

“It’s totally not true,” a source close to the situation told Adam Schefter of ESPN.com. “No idea where anyone would have gotten that.”

Towards the end of his disappointing first season in Cleveland in 2019, it was reported that Beckham wanted out and that he had approached opposing players and coaches before (and even during) games and told them, “come get me.” His name cropped up in trade speculation again in the spring, but, just as they did today, team sources refuted the notion that OBJ could be on the move.

Indeed, the 27-year-old attended Cleveland’s virtual offseason meetings this year after skipping most of the team’s on-site OTAs in 2019, so the Browns were hopeful that a more engaged and healthier player — Beckham battled core muscle and hip injuries much of last season — would look more like the All-Pro they thought they were getting when they consummated their blockbuster trade with the Giants. But after he recorded just three catches on 10 targets in the team’s Week 1 loss to the Ravens, a game in which Beckham dropped a critical third-down pass, rumors started to swirl anew.

OBJ and quarterback Baker Mayfield showed some rapport during Cleveland’s Week 2 victory over the Bengals on Thursday night, as Beckham posted four catches (on six targets) for 74 yards and a touchdown. It was just one game against an uninspiring Cincinnati defense, but it’s a start.

The 1-1 Browns still boast a roster that, on paper, looks like a playoff contender. Getting the most out of Beckham will be key to a postseason push.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFL Practice Squad Updates: 9/19/20

Recent practice squad notes from around the league:

Buffalo Bills

Carolina Panthers

  • Signed: WR Hakeem Butler
  • Released: S T.J. Green, T Aaron Monteiro

Chicago Bears

Cleveland Browns

Jacksonville Jaguars

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Chargers

Miami Dolphins

New Orleans Saints

Pittsburgh Steelers

  • Signed: OL Brandon Walton

Of course, the big news here surrounds Callaway. Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports (via Twitter) that the wideout has earned an additional four-game suspension for violating the league’s substance-abuse policy. This means he’ll be eligible to return to the field in Week 8.

Callaway will continue to sit on the Dolphins’ practice squad suspended list, per Charean Williams of ProFootballTalk.com. The 23-year-old will still be allowed to attend meetings, but he can’t practice with the squad until his suspension ends.

The talented wideout out of Florida fell to the Browns in the fourth round of the 2018 draft thanks in part to a 2016 four-game suspension from former head coach Jim McElwain. Callaway immediately contributed in Cleveland, hauling in 43 receptions for 586 and five scores during his rookie campaign. However, the receiver was suspended for the first four games of the 2019 season after violating the substance-abuse policy, and he underwhelmed in the four games following his return (eight receptions, 89 yards).

He was slapped with a 10-game ban late last year, and the suspension was supposed to last through the third week of the 2020 season. Thanks to the latest suspension, Callaway won’t see the field through the first seven weeks of the season.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

2020 NFL Cap Space, By Team

Cap management has been extra complicated in the NFL this year. After ~70 NFL players opted out of the 2020 season, teams were left with holes and plenty of available dollars to fill the gaps. At first, the ongoing uncertainty over next year’s salary cap had teams nervous about large-scale commitments. Now, it seems like we’re getting back to business as usual.

Recent deals for Saints star Alvin Kamara, Vikings running back Dalvin Cook, Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey, and others demonstrate the league’s long-term confidence. In turn, we’ve seen cap figures change dramatically in September.

Here’s the rundown of each team’s estimated cap space for the 2020 season, via Over The Cap:

  1. Cleveland Browns – $33.4MM
  2. New York Jets – $28.6MM
  3. Dallas Cowboys — $27.5MM
  4. New England Patriots – $26.3MM
  5. Washington Football Team – $25.8MM
  6. Denver Broncos – $25.7MM
  7. Jacksonville Jaguars – $25.2MM
  8. Philadelphia Eagles – $20MM
  9. Detroit Lions – $18MM
  10. Miami Dolphins – $16.7MM
  11. Baltimore Ravens – $14.2MM
  12. Los Angeles Chargers – $11.8MM
  13. Cincinnati Bengals – $11.6MM
  14. Arizona Cardinals – $11.4MM
  15. Indianapolis Colts – $11.3MM
  16. San Francisco 49ers – $11.2MM
  17. Pittsburgh Steelers – $10.9MM
  18. Chicago Bears – $9.9MM
  19. New York Giants – $9.6MM
  20. Houston Texans – $9.6MM
  21. Tennessee Titans – $9.4MM
  22. New Orleans Saints – $8.8MM
  23. Green Bay Packers – $8.7MM
  24. Los Angeles Rams – $7.7MM
  25. Las Vegas Raiders – $7.4MM
  26. Carolina Panthers – $6.9MM
  27. Kansas City Chiefs – $6.6MM
  28. Buffalo Bills – $6.5MM
  29. Seattle Seahawks – $6.2MM
  30. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – $3.7MM
  31. Atlanta Falcons – $3.3MM
  32. Minnesota Vikings – $2MM

AFC North Notes: Bullock, Hunt, Browns

The Bengals claimed K Austin Seibert off waivers from the Browns, and when that happened, most assumed that incumbent Randy Bullock would be placed on IR, or perhaps even released. However, head coach Zac Taylor said he expects Bullock to stay right where he is. “Randy’s our kicker,” Taylor said. (Twitter link via Ben Baby of ESPN.com).

Cincinnati suffered a difficult Week 1 loss against the Chargers, and Bullock shanked a 31-yard field goal try that would have sent the game to overtime. He also appeared to injure his left calf on the kick — though some are skeptical — but Tom Pelissero of the NFL Network reported that the injury isn’t serious (Twitter link). In fairness to Bullock, he did make a 50-yarder and a 43-yarder earlier in the game, and he converted his only PAT.

The Bengals take on Seibert’s former employer in a divisional battle tomorrow night.

Now for more from the AFC North:

  • The Browns recently handed running back Kareem Hunt a two-year extension, and Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com has a few details. As previously reported, the new money can max out at $13.25MM, and Hunt will take home base salaries of $4MM, $1.3MM, and $1.35MM over the next three seasons. The remaining money will come via roster bonuses designed to make sure that Hunt keeps himself out of trouble. One is tied to his making it to training camp without incident, one is tied to his making it to Week 1 without incident, and one is tied to his making it to the end of the season without incident. He will also receive weekly 53-man roster bonuses.
  • In the same piece linked above, Cabot reports that the Browns were indeed the team that would have been involved in a Jadeveon Clowney sign-and-trade with the Saints. In the proposed deal, which the NFL nixed, Cleveland would have signed Clowney to a one-year, $15MM contract, including a $5MM signing bonus. The team would have then shipped Clowney to New Orleans in exchange for a second-round pick and a player.
  • Cabot further notes that the Browns should be getting CB Greedy Williams back soon. Williams missed the team’s Week 1 loss to the Ravens with a shoulder injury but is not expected to land on IR.
  • The Steelers placed right tackle Zach Banner on IR yesterday.

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/16/20

We’ll keep track of today’s minor moves here:

Arizona Cardinals

  • Signed: S Curtis Riley (off Steelers‘ practice squad)

Cleveland Browns

  • Promoted: LB Montrel Meander

Indianapolis Colts

Las Vegas Raiders

New England Patriots

San Francisco 49ers

Tennessee Titans

Bengals Claim Austin Seibert Off Waivers

The Bengals have claimed kicker Austin Seibert off waivers from the Browns, as Tom Pelissero of NFL.com tweets. The move won’t become officially official until 4pm ET/3pm CT, but the Bengals are guaranteed to get Seibert thanks to their No. 1 priority on the waiver wire.

[RELATED: Bengals Place Trae Waynes On IR]

The Browns dropped Seibert earlier this week and it now appears that they’ll be facing him on Thursday night for their intrastate showdown. The Bengals grabbed Seibert as insurance for Randy Bullock, who may be out with a calf injury. Injury aside, Bullock also missed a 31-yard field goal down the stretch of their Week 1 loss to the Chargers.

Seibert’s last straw in Cleveland came after a blowout loss to the Ravens. The young kicker missed a field goal and an extra point attempt in the 38-6 defeat, though there was plenty of blame to go around. As a rookie last year, Seibert nailed 86.2% of his field goal tries, though he missed five of his XPs.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Browns Place David Njoku On IR

The Browns have placed tight end David Njoku on the injured reserve list, per a club announcement. The good news is that Njoku is expected to miss only three weeks with a with a sprained MCL, according to a source who spoke with ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter (on Twitter). 

[RELATED: Browns Promote K Cody Parkey]

Njoku reeled in three catches for 50 yards before exiting Sunday’s loss to the Ravens. His one-yard touchdown catch represented their only score in the 38-6 drumming. The Browns will now lean even more on No. 1 TE Austin Hooper, with support from fourth-round rookie Harrison Bryant and Stephen Carlson.

Njoku missed more than half of the 2019 season with a broken wrist. Now, he’s out for at least the next few games against the Bengals, the Washington Football Team, and the Cowboys. He’ll be eligible to return on Oct. 11, when the Browns face the Colts in Cleveland.

The 24-year-old requested a trade in July, only to rescind it in early August. With a backseat to Hooper, Njoku is under contract through 2021, with manageable salaries of $1.76MM this season and $6MM next year. When he returns, he’ll look to get back to the form he exhibited in 2018 when he tallied 56 grabs for 639 yards and four scores.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Browns Promote K Cody Parkey

The Browns have called Cody Parkey up from the practice squad, according to NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport (on Twitter). Parkey, presumably, will replace kicker Austin Seibert who had a rough outing on Sunday.

This marks a return to Cleveland’s active roster for Parkey, who kicked in 14 Browns games in 2016. Parkey, a 2014 Pro Bowler with the Eagles, made 80% of his field goals that year.

The Browns watched Seibert miss a 41-yard field goal try and an extra point in their 38-6 blowout loss to the Ravens. His two kickoff tries left much to be desired, as well. The Browns used a fifth-round pick on the Oklahoma product just one year ago, but they’re leaving nothing to chance as they try to turn things around in 2020. As a rookie, Seibert nailed 86.2% of his field goal tries and was perfect inside of the 40. His XP completion rate was spotty, however – the youngster missed five of his 35 attempts.

The Browns and Parkey will try to get to .500 on Thursday night when they face the Bengals in Cincinnati.

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/12/20

Here are Saturday’s minor moves. Many of these roster decisions involve practice squad promotions. Under the new CBA, teams are permitted to promote two P-squad players without corresponding roster moves per week. Teams can carry 55 players on their rosters for game days and can have up to 48 active.

Arizona Cardinals

Baltimore Ravens

Chicago Bears

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Jacksonville Jaguars

  • Promoted: RB Nathan Cottrell, TE Ben Ellefson

Los Angeles Chargers

Miami Dolphins

  • Released from IR via injury settlement: DB Nate Brooks

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Jets

Philadelphia Eagles

San Francisco 49ers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Washington Football Team