D.J. Reader

2019 Proven Performance Escalators

According to the NFL’s contractual bargaining agreement, players drafted in rounds three though seven are entitled to raises during the fourth year of their respective rookie contracts. The pay bumps are tied to playing time — a player must have played in 35% of his team’s offensive or defensive snaps in two of his first three seasons, or averaged 35% playing time cumulatively during that period.

If one of these thresholds is met, the player’s salary is elevated to the level of that year’s lowest restricted free agent tender — that figure should be around $2MM in 2019. Players selected in the first or second round, undrafted free agents, and kickers/punters are ineligible for the proven performance escalator.

Here are the players who will see their salary rise in 2019 courtesy of the proven performance escalator:

Bears: RB Jordan Howard, LB Nick Kwiatkoski

Bengals: LB Nick Vigil

Broncos: G Connor McGovern, S Will Parks, S Justin Simmons

Browns: S Derrick Kindred, LB Joe Schobert

Buccaneers: G Caleb Benenoch, DE Carl Nassib, CB Ryan Smith

Chargers: LB Jatavis Brown

Chiefs: CB Kendall Fuller, WR Tyreek Hill, S Eric Murray, WR Demarcus Robinson

Colts: QB Jacoby Brissett, T Joe Haeg

Cowboys: CB Anthony Brown, DT Maliek Collins, QB Dak Prescott

Dolphins: RB Kenyan Drake

Eagles: CB Jalen Mills, T Halapoulivaati Vaitai

Falcons: LB De’Vondre Campbell, TE Austin Hooper, G Wes Schweitzer

Jaguars: DE Yannick Ngakoue

Jets: LB Jordan Jenkins, CB Rashard Robinson, T Brandon Shell

Lions: C Graham Glasgow

Packers: LB Kyler Fackrell, DE Dean Lowry, LB Blake Martinez, LB Antonio Morrison

Patriots: G Joe Thuney, LB Elandon Roberts

Rams: G Austin Blythe, TE Tyler Higbee

Ravens: DE Matt Judon, OL Alex Lewis, CB Tavon Young

Saints: DT David Onyemata

Steelers: DT Javon Hargrave

Texans: DT D.J. Reader

Titans: S Kevin Byard, WR Tajae Sharpe

OverTheCap.com was essential in the creation of this post. Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images. 

Texans Activate OL David Quessenberry

In one of the more inspiring stories of the NFL season, the Texans have promoted offensive tackle and cancer survivor David Quessenberry from their practice squad to their active roster. In a series of other moves, Houston also promoted safety Ibraheim Campbell and defensive tackle Jarrod Clements while placing center Nick Martin, tight end MyCole Pruitt, and defensive tackle D.J. Reader on injured reserve.David Quessenberry (Vertical)

Quessenberry, 27, spent more than three years on the Texans’ non-football injury list after being diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in June 2014. After an amazing battle that was recently well-documented by Robert Klemko of TheMMQB.com, Quessenberry completed his treatment earlier this year. He’s spent the entirety of the 2017 campaign on Houston’s practice squad.

Although he has yet to appear in an NFL game, Quessenberry could potentially see action for the Texans during the final two games of the regular season. Houston currently has just two offensive tackles on its roster, and neither Kendall Lamm nor Breno Giacomini has been impressive. Theoretically, the Texans could give Quessenberry — a 2013 sixth-round pick out of San Jose State — a two-game audition to close the year.

Martin, meanwhile, will close his second NFL campaign after suffering a “serious” ankle injury, as Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle. A second-round pick in 2016, Martin also missed his entire rookie season after breaking his ankle. This year, Martin played nearly 1,000 offensive snaps in the middle of the Texans’ line but graded as a bottom-10 center, per Pro Football Focus.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC Draft Signings: Chiefs, Texans, Jaguars

The Chiefs have signed second-round pick Chris Jones, a source tells PFT (Twitter link). The defensive lineman out of Mississippi State becomes KC’s first rookie to sign. Jones’ stock rose in the weeks leading up to the draft as more and more teams zeroed in on interior pass rushers.

Here are the rest of today’s draft signings from the AFC:

  • The Texans signed fifth-round nose tackle D.J. Reader, according to Mark Berman of FOX 26 (via Twitter).
  • The Jaguars sign sixth-round quarterback Brandon Allen, as Ryan O’Halloran of the Florida Times-Union tweets.
  • The Jaguars signed sixth-round linebacker/defensive end Tyrone Holmes, as Aaron Wilson of The Houston Chronicle tweets.
  • Linebacker Jatavis Brown inked his rookie contract with the Chargers, Rand Getlin of NFL.com tweets. The Akron product was taken in the fifth-round.
  • The Jets signed seventh-round punter Lachlan Edwards, according to his agency on Twitter.
  • The Patriots signed sixth-round linebacker Kamu Grugier-Hill to a $2.44MM deal, including a $100K signing bonus, as his slot dictates, Wilson tweets.
  • The Steelers announced the signing of seventh round draft picks Demarcus Ayers and Tyler Matakevich. Ayers, a wide receiver/returner from the University of Houston, and Matakevich, a linebacker from Temple, are now the first two Pittsburgh rookies to sign from this year’s class.
  • The Ravens signed fifth-round defensive end Matt Judon, Jeff Zrebiec of The Baltimore Sun tweets.
  • The Texans signed fifth-round safety K.J. Dillon, as Mark Berman of FOX 26 tweets.

AFC South Notes: Watt, Jaguars, Titans, Draft

Will Texans defensive lineman J.J. Watt retire sooner rather than later? It’s probably too early to make any assumptions about how many years the perennial All-Pro has left, but as James Palmer of the NFL Network tweets, Watt did tell SportsRadio 610 in Houston that he won’t be one of those players who attempts to extend his career as long as possible.

Here are several more items from out of the AFC South…