Cooper Rush

Giants Add Alfred Morris To Practice Squad

Alfred Morris has resurfaced on the NFL radar. The eight-year veteran running back agreed to join the Giants’ practice squad, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle tweets.

The Giants added Morris and quarterback Clayton Thorson to its taxi squad. Morris has been out of the NFL since the Cardinals released him in November 2019. To make room on their 16-man P-squad, the Giants cut running back Rod Smith and quarterback Cooper Rush.

This will bring a former Jason Garrett charge to New York. The Giants OC coached the former Pro Bowler in two seasons in Dallas. Morris served as Ezekiel Elliott‘s backup/suspension fill-in from 2016-17 but is certainly best known for his time in Washington.

Morris, now 31, strung together three straight 1,000-yard seasons with Washington and made the Pro Bowl in 2013 and ’14. He averaged 4.8 yards per carry with the 2017 Cowboys and gained 428 yards as a 49er in 2018. He played in one Cardinals game.

The Giants are down Saquon Barkley for the season, leaving them with Wayne Gallman, offseason addition Dion Lewis and recent signing Devonta Freeman. They rank last in the NFL in rushing, having gained just 170 yards (3.2 per carry) in three games.

Thorson spent time on the Cowboys’ practice squad in Garrett’s final season, playing behind Rush — who resided on Dallas’ active roster. The Giants brought Smith back earlier this month.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Giants Cut Jon Halapio, Slash Roster To 53

The Giants revealed the moves they made to pare their roster down to 53 players. Here are the cuts Big Blue made Saturday:

Waived:

Waived/injured:

The two quarterback cuts will leave Daniel Jones and Colt McCoy as the Giants’ only two quarterbacks to start their post-Eli Manning era, though Rush certainly would profile as a practice squad candidate. He played for new OC Jason Garrett in Dallas for three seasons.
Connelly’s cut is somewhat surprising, given the linebacker’s three starts last season. But an injury cut short his rookie season. The Giants can place 16 players on their practice squad this season. If Connelly clears waivers, it is likely he will be part of that group.
The Giants re-signed Halapio days ago. He has been Big Blue’s starting center in each of their past two Week 1 games, and the former Patriots draft pick started 15 games in 2019. The Giants did not tender Halapio as an RFA this offseason and kept Nick Gates, whom they extended this year, and Spencer Pulley on the roster over him.

Contract Details: 5/13/20

We will round up the contract details of recent signings/restructures right here as they come in today:

  • Ted Ginn Jr, WR (Bears): One year. Veteran salary benefit worth $1.187MM. $137.5K signing bonus, $1.05MM salary ($750K guaranteed). Cap charge of $887,500 (Twitter link via Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle).
  • Cooper Rush, QB (Giants): Restructure. One-year, $1.25MM. $100K signing bonus. $900K salary ($50K guaranteed). Up to $250K in per game active roster bonuses (Twitter link via Wilson).

Clearly, while Rush got some guaranteed cash through his restructure — as opposed to the non-guaranteed $2.113MM tender he was scheduled to play on — it “only” amounts to $150K. So that may not tell us too much about Big Blue’s plans for him.

Giants Renegotiate Cooper Rush’s Deal

Cooper Rush has a new team and a new contract. On Friday, the Giants reworked the quarterback’s deal to reduce his overall price while providing him with some guaranteed dollars (Twitter link via Field Yates of ESPN.com). 

[RELATED: Giants Sign Mr. Irrelevant]

Rush’s original deal called for $2.113MM in 2020, but that sum was completely non-guaranteed. Now, Rush will see a base value of $1.25MM, with some portion of that being guaranteed. That could bode well for Rush’s chances of making the final cut.

The Giants have Daniel Jones locked in as their starter with Colt McCoy slated to serve as the QB2. Alex Tanney and undrafted rookie Case Cookus are also in the mix, meaning that Rush will be vying with four other quarterbacks for two spots – or potentially just one. Rush has a few things working in his favor. First, there’s the guaranteed chunk of his deal. Second, there’s his longstanding relationship with new Giants offensive coordinator Jason Garrett. The same can’t be said for Tanney, a favorite of former head coach Pat Shurmur who has no guaranteed dollars on his contract.

Rush, 26, has appeared in just two NFL games since entering the league with the Cowboys in 2017.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Giants Claim QB Cooper Rush Off Waivers From Cowboys

The Giants have claimed Cooper Rush off waivers, as Tom Pelissero of NFL.com tweets. The quarterback was cut by Dallas earlier this week, giving all 31 of the NFL’s other teams an opportunity to grab him.

The move brings Rush back together with Jason Garrett, the Cowboys’ former head coach and the Giants’ current offensive coordinator. Their relationship won’t necessarily guarantee him a spot on the final roster, however.

The Giants have Daniel Jones locked in as their starter with Colt McCoy slated to serve as his primary backup. There’s also Alex Tanney and undrafted rookie Case Cookus on board, making Rush the fifth QB on the offseason roster. For what it’s worth, the Giants have flexibility in this space – Cookus’ UDFA deal is dirt cheap and Tanney’s contract can be dropped without any fiscal penalty between now and the start of the year.

Rush, 26, has appeared in just two NFL games since going pro out of Central Michigan.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Cowboys Waive QB Cooper Rush

The Cowboys have waived quarterback Cooper Rush, as Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets. With that, they’ve carved out a place on the QB depth chart for Dak Prescott‘s new backup, Andy Dalton.

[RELATED: Five Teams Pursued Andy Dalton]

Rush, a Central Michigan product, joined the Cowboys as an undrafted free agent prior to the 2017 season. Strangely enough, he got his opportunity when the Cowboys cut Kellen Moore, who now serves as the team’s offensive coordinator. Rush was set for restricted free agency this offseason, but the Cowboys cuffed him in March using the inexpensive original round tender. Now, he’ll move on in search of his next opportunity.

Over the last three seasons, Rush has appeared in five games for the Cowboys with zero starts and just three passes thrown. Dalton, meanwhile, joins with 133 career appearances – all starts – and ample experience to hold down the fort in case of a Prescott injury. He’s also equipped to run practices for the Cowboys later this year, in case the Prescott saga drags on.

Dalton was in high demand – four other teams wanted Dalton, but none of the five clubs in pursuit were offering him an opportunity to start. Ultimately, he settled on the Cowboys, who have given him a one-year, $3MM deal that can reach up to $7MM through performance bonuses.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

RFA/ERFA Tender Decisions: 3/12/20

Today’s restricted free agent and exclusive rights free agent tender decisions will be posted below:

RFAs

Tendered:

ERFAs

Tendered:

Cowboys To Cut Kellen Moore

Months after agreeing to re-sign Kellen Moore, the Cowboys will move on from the backup quarterback. Dallas will cut Moore, per Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter).

However, Rapoport adds the sixth-year backup could return to the team at some point. A year after carrying one of the most accomplished backups in NFL history in Tony Romo, the Cowboys are not exactly deep at this position. They signed Luke McCown in late July, but Rapoport tweets rookie UDFA Cooper Rush is set to be the backup quarterback for now (Twitter link). Rush played at Central Michigan.

The 29-year-old Moore did not play last season, spending it on IR after suffering a summer injury that opened the door to Dak Prescott‘s remarkable rise. He was brought in on a one-year, $775K in March but did not play well during the preseason. Moore last played in 2015, filling in for an injured Romo.

The Cowboys could remain in the market for a backup quarterback. Although Romo said he would only consider coming out of the broadcast booth and suiting up for his former team, Dallas is now somewhat vulnerable if Prescott goes down.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFC Notes: Seahawks, Redskins, Rush

During Friday’s preseason game, Austin Davis outplayed Trevone Boykin as the pair of Seahawks quarterbacks battled for the backup gig behind Russell Wilson. While Davis finished with a perfect quarterback rating, Boykin went 0-for-6 while tossing an interception. Despite the clear disparity in their performance, coach Pete Carroll was adamant that the organization won’t be basing their final decision on one game.

“I really think that we were just out of sync so much for the first 10, 12 plays there that Boykin just couldn’t get rolling,” Carroll said (via Stefanie Loh of the Seattle Times). “It just felt like we were out of whack for a bit. Austin came right in we kind of fit together very nicely.

“Trevone has had a really good preseason so far. I don’t think five to six passes he threw in this game should be in the final decision. I think he’s done very well.”

Of course, the team could decide to hang on to three quarterbacks, and Carroll seemingly left that possibility open.

“It’s a good idea if you can do it,” Carroll said. “They’re so important. It just depends on the rest of the roster.”

Let’s take a look at some more notes from around the NFC…
  • The Redskins could potentially trade a tight end before the regular season gets underway, opines John Keim of ESPN.com. Rookie fifth-round pick Jeremy Sprinkle looks poised to serve as Washington’s third tight end behind Jordan Reed and Vernon Davis, meaning the club’s final slot at the position will be filled by either Derek Carrier or Niles Paul. The one who doesn’t earn a roster spot could be dealt for either a reserve offensive lineman or a draft choice, per Keim, who adds that both Carrier and Paul would “hold value” to other NFL teams.
  • Cooper Rush will earn a place on the Cowboys‘ roster as a backup quarterback, as owner Jerry Jones says Dallas will not try to sneak Rush through waivers in order to stash him on the practice squad (link via Rob Phillips of DallasCowboys.com). Rush, an undrafted rookie out of Central Michigan, is still in contention for the Cowboys’ No. 2 quarterback job behind Dak Prescott, although he’s competing with veteran Kellen Moore for that role. While Rush has completed 75% of his preseason passes for six touchdowns and no interceptions, Moore has posted a 54% completion rate, one touchdown, and one pick.
  • Just months after being selected in the fifth round of the draft, running back Jeremy McNichols is not a roster lock for the Buccaneers, according to Jenna Laine of ESPN.com“He’s gonna get one final chance to show what he can do,” said head coach Dirk Koetter, referring to Tampa Bay’s final preseason game on Thursday. McNichols, who’s been shown having a hard time grasping the Buccaneers’ offense on Hard Knocks, only saw two plays on Saturday (including a failed blitz pickup) before being yanked, per Laine. While Doug Martin will miss the first three games of the season while on suspension, Tampa Bay has other backs to replace him, including Jacquizz RodgersCharles Sims, and Peyton Barber.
  • 49ers defensive end Tank Carradine has played sparingly since being selected in the second-round of the 2013 draft. With only 36 games and 57 tackles over four seasons, some wondered whether Carradine could be looking for a new gig following the preseason. However, based on an evaluation from defensive coordinator Robert Saleh, it sounds like the 28-year-old is a lock to make the roster. “With Tank, when I say ‘elite,’ I’m talking as a run-down, six-technique, someone who just can really dominate his edge and own the line of scrimmage,” Saleh said on NBC Sports Bay Area (via Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com).

Dallas Robinson contributed to this post.

Cowboys Notes: Elliott, Moore, Rush

Here’s a look at the Cowboys:

  • A delayed suspension for Ezekiel Elliott is not out of the question, Mike Florio of PFT writes. Elliott could turn to the court system for a preliminary injunction, like former Vikings Pat Williams and Kevin Williams once did, which would bar the league from suspending him until the case ends. The Cowboys star might not be able to get his ban overturned in court, but there’s a chance that he could push the suspension to the 2018 season, if he goes that route. Elliott has indicated that he will sue the NFL if necessary, but he will first go through the league’s appeal process to see if he can have his six-game suspension overturned or reduced.
  • Cowboys offensive coordinator Scott Linehan says he won’t rule out Cooper Rush for the team’s backup quarterback role just because of his lack of experience, as Brandon George of the Dallas Morning News writes. Linehan also has a longstanding relationship with Kellen Moore, but he says that will not be a factor either. Rush has yet to take a snap in a real NFL game, but he has completed 69% of his passes in three preseason games with four touchdowns and no interceptions. His emergence could impact the Cowboys’ final 53-man roster as Dallas may look to carry three QBs. Dallas could try to sneak Rush through waivers and on to the practice squad, but that’s a dicey proposition after his strong showing in the exhibition games.
  • It’s possible that last year’s Josh Brown saga could impact Elliott in his appeal.