Dakota Dozier

North Notes: Joseph, Callaway, Dozier, Bears QB

The Vikings nose tackle Linval Joseph underwent surgery on his meniscus, according to Ben Goessling and Andrew Krammer of the Star Tribune. Joseph, who did not play in Minnesota’s 28-24 victory against the Cowboys, has been on the team’s injury report since Week 7 with a knee injury, but had yet to miss any practice until last Thursday.

On a positive note, Joseph has not been placed on injured reserve and Goessling and Krammer cite sources within the organization that are optimistic he will return soon. With their bye coming in Week 12, Goessling and Krammer note the Vikings Week 13 matchup with the Broncos as a possible target date for Joseph’s return.

Here’s more updates from the teams in the AFC and NFC North:

  • Browns wide receiver Antonio Callaway was benched shortly before the team’s game against the Bills for tardiness on Sunday, according to Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com. Cleveland still managed to pull out the 19-16 victory without Callaway, but the offense surely could have benefited from another dynamic receiver on the field. In Cabot’s report, a source told her that Callaway parked in a different lot than usual and arrived a few minutes late.
  • The Vikings plan to move forward with Dakota Dozier at right guard if starter Josh Kline has to miss more games with a concussion, according to Ben Goessling and Andrew Krammer of the Star Tribune. Dozier replaced Kline after he left Sunday’s matchup against the Cowboys with concussion like symptoms. Kline was diagnosed with a concussion and is now in the NFL’s concussion protocol. Dozier has already started three games this season along Minnesota’s offensive front.
  • If the Bears decide to move on from quarterback Mitchell Trubisky this offseason there will be a plethora of strong veteran options, according to Dan Pompei of The Athletic. Pompei details ten signalcallers with varying degrees of past success. While free-agency seems poised to offer more viable options than usual, the play of young quarterbacks around the league has potentially pushed some other established veterans onto the trade market as well. Sitting at 4-5 and in third place in the NFC North, Chicago’s playoff hopes are dwindling by the week. Trubisky, in his third NFL season, has garnered the brunt of the criticism for the team’s underwhelming performance.

Injury Roundup: Hilton, Lions, Bolts, Rams

It’s looking like the Colts‘ passing attack will have to operate without its top weapon Sunday. T.Y. Hilton drew a doubtful designation on Indianapolis’ Friday injury report. He did not practice all week. The eighth-year wideout left the Colts’ Week 3 win with a quadriceps injury, and although the Raiders enter Week 4 ranked 30th in pass defense DVOA, the Colts went 0-2 without Hilton last season. They are already down previous starter Devin Funchess, who sits on IR. The Colts also ruled Darius Leonard out for a second straight week. The All-Pro linebacker remains in concussion protocol.

Here is the latest from the Week 4 injury front:

  • Matthew Stafford popped up on the Lions‘ injury report Friday; he’s listed as questionable with a hip malady. While Stafford should be expected to play, given that he’s played through injuries in recent years and holds the league’s third-longest active start streak among QBs with 131, this is a less-than-ideal scenario going into a key inter-conference matchup with the Chiefs. Rookie UDFA David Blough has been Stafford’s backup this season, though Jeff Driskel is now on Detroit’s 53-man roster.
  • That matchup will not include Chiefs starting running back Damien Williams, who will miss a second straight game with a knee ailment. LeSean McCoy put together two full practices this week and will likely team up with Darrel Williams, as he did last week, in Detroit.
  • Good news for the Rams‘ offense. Sean McVay said both Austin Blythe and Tyler Higbee will be available against the Buccaneers on Sunday, per Lindsey Thiry of ESPN.com (on Twitter). Blythe missed Los Angeles’ Week 3 game with a sprained ankle, while Higbee has been sidelined with a lung contusion.
  • Another Chargers game will unfold without their primary kicker option. The Bolts ruled out Michael Badgley for a fourth straight contest. Punter Ty Long‘s multipurpose afternoons will continue. Long made both of his field goal tries last week after missing two in Week 2.
  • Additionally for the Bolts, they will be without Mike Williams. He’s been declared out with a back injury. Travis Benjamin will head to Miami as doubtful to play, meaning Dontrelle Inman and Geremy Davis stand as the Chargers’ only two healthy auxiliary wideouts. This marks Williams’ second injury of the season. A knee problem plagued the third-year target earlier this month but did not force him to miss any time.
  • The Vikings‘ No. 2-ranked rushing attack will be tested in Chicago this week, and right guard starter Josh Kline will not play a part in the NFC North contest. The free agent acquisition will miss Sunday’s game with a concussion that kept him out of practice this week. This will end Kline’s 49-start streak. Veteran Dakota Dozier will start, per Mark Craig of the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Dozier has started eight games in his six-season career, which included a Week 2 start in place of Pat Elflein.

Jets Notes: Rosen, Johnson, Minter, Dozier

If the Jets are looking to play it safe at quarterback, Josh Rosen would be the smart choice, Rich Cimini of ESPN.com argues. Of course, that’s assuming that Rosen will be on the board for Gang Green at No. 3 overall, and that’s far from a certainty.

That’s also not to say that Rosen is a slam dunk. Although Rosen has great mechanics, the Jets do have concerns about his accuracy. Conversely, Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield has been lauded for his precision. The UCLA star also doesn’t have the arm strength of Wyoming product Josh Allen.

Currently, all signs are pointing to the Browns selecting Sam Darnold at No. 1 overall and there are rumblings that the Giants are not particularly interested in Rosen at No. 2. Assuming the Browns take Darnold and the Giants go with a non-QB, the Jets will get to choose between three of this year’s top four QB prospects.

Here’s more on the Jets:

  • Wide receiver Charles Johnson‘s contract with the Jets is a one-year, $1.5MM pact, Cimini tweets. The deal includes a $250K signing bonus, a $250K workout bonus, and a $1MM base. Johnson spent the 2017 season on the Panthers’ IR after a summer injury. He made some noise in Minnesota, but has not made a noticeable impact since 2014.
  • Linebacker Kevin Minter‘s contract with the Jets is a one-year, $880K deal with a $90K signing bonus, Cimini tweets. Same goes for guard Dakota Dozier.

Draft Signings: Chargers, Colts, Packers, Jets

Here’s a recap of the latest 2014 draft picks reaching contract agreements with their respective teams:

  • The Chargers have agreed to terms with third-round guard Chris Watt on a deal that includes a $419K bonus and a $2.691MM overall value, says Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun (via Twitter). Both of those contract figures are lower than what Jason Fitzgerald of Over The Cap projected for Watt’s draft slot.
  • The Colts have signed their fifth-round pick, Ball State’s Jonathan Newsome, according to Craig Kelley of Colts.com (via Twitter).
  • Fifth-round receiver Jared Abbrederis has signed a contract with the Packers that includes a signing bonus of about $145K, reports Wilson (via Twitter).
  • The Jets have signed a pair of draftees, according to the team, who announced today that fourth-round pick Dakota Dozier and seventh-rounder Trevor Reilly have both been locked up.
  • Seventh-rounder Michael Campanaro has signed his contract with the Ravens, which includes a $67.5K signing bonus tweets Wilson.
  • Running back Lache Seastrunk, a sixth-round pick, has agreed to sign with the Redskins on a deal that features a $110.5K signing bonus, says Wilson (via Twitter).
  • Field Yates of ESPN.com has a couple more draft pick signings, reporting that the Texans have locked up sixth-round running back Alfred Blue and seventh-round safety Lonnie Ballentine (Twitter links).