Cyrus Kouandjio

Buccaneers Audition Five Players

The Buccaneers are hosting a group of free agents at their minicamp this week, according to Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times (Twitter link). Tampa Bay is working out offensive linemen Cyrus Kouandjio and Josh LeRibeus and wide receivers Malachi Dupre, Nehari Crawford, and Jamarius Way.

Of the group, LeRibeus has played in the most total NFL games (50). An 11-game starter at center for the 2015 Redskins, LeRibeus appeared in 19 games (three starts) for the Saints over the past two seasons. LeRibeus, 29, earned positive grades from Pro Football Focus earlier in his career, but that wasn’t the case in 2018. Among the 153 interior linemen who played at least 100 offensive snaps a season ago, LeRibeus ranked dead last in PFF grade.

Kouandjio, 25, has the highest draft pedigree of any player working out for the Bucs, as he was chosen in the second round (44th overall) of the 2014 draft. The Alabama product has had trouble staying healthy throughout his NFL career, and thus has only appeared in 30 games over five years. Kouandjio has spent the past two years bouncing on-and-off the Broncos’ roster, playing only 80 offensive snaps during that time.

Dupre was once considered the best high school wide receiver recruit in the country, and was — at one point — viewed as a potential first-round pick. Heading into the 2017 draft, Lance Zierlein of NFL.com listed Dupre as a third- or fourth-round selection, but the LSU alum ultimately fell to the Packers in the seventh round. He’s already spent time with five teams in his brief NFL career.

NFL Workout Updates: 12/27/18

Today’s workouts, all courtesy of veteran NFL reporter Howard Balzer (on Twitter):

Cincinnati Bengals

New Orleans Saints

New York Jets

Oakland Raiders

NFL Workout Updates: 12/25/18

Today’s workouts, all courtesy of veteran NFL reporter Howard Balzer (on Twitter):

Green Bay Packers

  • TE: Evan Bayliss

Houston Texans

  • LB: Cory James

San Francisco 49ers

  • DE: Damontre Moore

Seattle Seahawks

  • CB: Quinten Rollins; SS’s: Keith Tandy, Shamarko Thomas

Tennessee Titans

  • DEs: Christian LaCouture, Kendall Vickers; DT: Dee Liner

Washington Redskins

  • TE: Jace Amaro; Ts: Isaiah Battle, Cyrus Kouandjio, Darius James; DL: Kwaku Boateng (EDM CFL); QBs: Max Browne, Joe Callahan; LBs: Marquis Flowers, Hau’oli Kikaha, Corey Nelson, John Timu; WRs: Carlos Henderson, ArDarius Stewart, Tre McBride, Devin Smith.

NFL Workout Updates: 12/24/18

Today’s workouts, all courtesy of veteran NFL reporter Howard Balzer (on Twitter):

Cincinnati Bengals:

  • K’s Ty Long (BC CFL), Tristan Vizcaino

Detroit Lions:

Indianapolis Colts:

Kansas City Chiefs:

New York Giants:

  • DEs Tobi Antigha (SASK), Jake Ceresna (EDM); QB Bo Levi Mitchell (CALG); WRs Bryant Mitchell (EDM), Jordan Williams-Lambert (SASK); RB Terry Williams

Philadelphia Eagles:

  • WRs Carlton Agudosi, Marken Michel (CALG), Devin Smith; DB Mercy Maston (EDM); LBs Alex Singleton (CALG), Jameer Thurman (CALG)

Pittsburgh Steelers:

  • QB Max Browne; LB Sam Eguavoen (SASK); DE Avery Ellis (OTT); WR Dominique Rhymes (OTT

Tennessee Titans:

Washington Redskins:

This time of year, a lot of teams are auditioning guys for potential reserve/futures deals to be a part of their 90-man rosters for 2019. It’s also common to see a lot of CFL guys getting looks this time of year, because players participating in the 2018 CFL season aren’t eligible to sign NFL contracts until after the regular season is over.

Minor NFL Transactions: 12/4/18

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

Atlanta Falcons

Arizona Cardinals

Buffalo Bills

Denver Broncos

Green Bay Packers

Miami Dolphins

Oakland Raiders

Pittsburgh Steelers

Washington Redskins

Broncos To Sign OT Cyrus Kouandjio

The Broncos have agreed to sign offensive tackle Cyrus Kouandjio, as Mike Klis of 9News tweets. Kouandjio was with the Broncos last year and started their final game at right tackle, so the team is familiar with what he has to offer. 

Kouandjio worked out alongside several other offensive lineman on Tuesday and looked sharper than the rest of the pack. He’ll bolster the offensive line after the loss of Max Garcia, who is done for the year with a torn ACL.

Denver’s offensive line has been decimated by injury this year and the loss of Garcia was just the latest blow. Before that, guard Ronald Leary went down with a Achilles tear in mid-October and starting center Matt Paradis suffered a fractured fibula in early November.

Kouandjio showed some promise with the Bills, but he was waived in 2017 after an odd off-field incident in which he was found partially undressed in a field near the scene of a car accident. The former second-round pick now has an opportunity to showcase himself ahead of free agency in the spring and restore his stock.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Jets Work Out 5 Tackles

The Jets’ Tuesday workout schedule proved to be quite specific. Only one position was brought through for Jets brass in advance of the team’s Thursday-night game against the Browns.

Five tackles auditioned for Gang Green today, with Field Yates of ESPN.com tweeting Menelik Watson, Will Beatty, Cyrus Kouandjio, Cornelius Lucas and Chaz Green comprised the quintet.

New York already has Ben Ijalana on IR, and Kelvin Beachum entered the week with a foot injury. So did guard James Carpenter. However, both upgraded to full practices by Tuesday.

Watson and Kouandjio both went to camp with the Broncos. Neither former second-round pick made Denver’s 53-man roster, although Watson pocketed some additional money thanks to guarantees in his 2017 free agent contract with the team. He made seven starts with the 2017 Broncos.

Beatty is now 33 and hasn’t been an NFL regular since his run as the Giants’ left tackle ended after the 2014 season. He did play in one game for the Eagles last season and in six for the 2016 Giants, however, and is trying his hand at latching on with a team for another season.

A third-round Cowboys pick in 2015, Green started four games last season but experienced consistent trouble blocking Adrian Clayborn during the then-Falcons defensive end’s six-sack day. A four-year veteran, Lucas started one game for the Rams last season and worked out for the Texans last week.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Broncos Make Roster Moves

The Broncos have trimmed their roster to 53 players by making the following moves:

Waived:

Waived/injured:

Released:

Placed on injured reserve:

Placed on PUP:

Broncos Place OT Menelik Watson On IR

The Broncos announced that they have placed right tackle Menelik Watson on injured reserve with a foot injury. To take his place, they have signed Cyrus KouandjioMenelik Watson (vertical)

Watson came to Denver on a three-year, $18.75MM contract this offseason. Although he is talented, he is no stranger to missing time. Heading into 2017, Watson had already missed 37 of a possible 64 regular-season games due to various injuries over the course of four seasons, including an entirely lost 2015. With his 2017 over, the tally is now up to 48 missed games out of 80 possible appearances.

Watson lost a significant amount of weight in the offseason in an attempt to stay healthy, but he is still in search of his first complete season. The former second round pick of the Raiders has yet to play in more than 12 games in any given campaign.

The Broncos have first-round pick Garett Bolles starting at left tackle with Donald Stephenson and Elijah Wilkinson in reserve. Stephenson has been sidelined thanks to a calf injury he suffered prior to Week 7, so Wilkinson or Kouandjio could conceivably draw the next start at RT.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Giants Audition OL Orlando Franklin

The Giants auditioned or met with a host of free agents today, according to Field Yates and Jordan Raanan of ESPN.com (Twitter links), and the club specifically focused on the offensive line. Here’s the entire list:

Workouts

Visits

Franklin, 29, has already been released twice this calendar year, first by the Chargers — who employed Franklin for the past two seasons — and then by the Saints, with whom Franklin lasted less than a week. A knee injury reportedly led to New Orleans cutting ties, and though there was some thought that Franklin could re-sign with the Saints, a new deal never came to fruition.Orlando Franklin (vertical)

A guard by trade, Franklin has also played tackle (the area of most need on the Giants’ roster), but it’s not clear that he’d be an improvement over Ereck Flowers or Bobby Hart. To be sure, Flowers and Hart have struggled mightily this season, but Franklin graded as one of the seven worst guards in the NFL a year ago, per Pro Football Focus. As far as reserves go, however, New York could do worse, as Franklin boasts 89 starts worth of pro experience.

Kouandjio offers several intriguing traits, as well, and chief among them is his youth, as he’s still only 24 years old. The former second-round pick was waived by the Bills earlier this year following an odd off-field incident, and then failed to beat out draft bust Greg Robinson for the Lions’ fill-in left tackle job. He’s only started 12 games in three NFL seasons.