Dan Bailey

NFC North Notes: Rodgers, Vikings, Lions

The Vikings were not the first team that sought Dan Bailey‘s services this season. Although he’s in Minnesota now, other franchises wanted to sign the second-most accurate kicker in NFL history. Bailey agreed to terms with the Vikings on a one-year, $2MM deal, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports (on Twitter). However, the 30-year-old specialist also turned down offers worth double that on multiyear deals, Rapoport adds. The Jets brought in Bailey to work out just after the Cowboys cut him, but nothing came to fruition. Gang Green may have been one of the teams that presented a better offer, but that’s not known. Nevertheless, Bailey will replace Daniel Carlson, whom Mike Zimmer said it was not difficult to cut after his performance in Minnesota’s Week 2 tie in Green Bay.

Here’s the latest out of the NFC North:

  • Aaron Rodgers did not exit the Packers‘ Week 2 game with any new discomfort on his injured left knee, Mike McCarthy said (via Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com). Rodgers is “obviously sore,” and McCarthy does not have a read on whether his quarterback’s condition is better or worse than at this point last week. But it’s encouraging for the Packers that Rodgers didn’t sustain any additional damage while clearly playing hurt.
  • Carlson’s cut will save the Vikings $200K, though the Bailey addition will negate those savings. Only Carlson’s signing bonus ($248K), plus his base salary through two games, will count against Minnesota’s cap, per Ben Goessling of the Minneapolis Star Tribune (on Twitter). The Vikings are up against the cap but managed to add Bailey, Aldrick Robinson and Tom Johnson in the past two days.
  • Robinson will only make the league minimum, and no guarantees exist in the soon-to-be 30-year-old wide receiver’s Vikings pact, Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press tweets. The former Redskins, Falcons and 49ers pass-catcher now comprises part of the Vikes’ receiving corps. Minnesota currently has five receivers on its roster, the same amount it did prior to the Robinson signing. Stacy Coley, a 2017 seventh-rounder, was cut to make room.
  • On a busy day for workouts, the Lions brought in two veteran edge rushers who would slot in as defensive ends in their 4-3 scheme. John Simon and David Bass trekked to Detroit for Tuesday workouts, Adam Caplan of Sirius XM reports (on Twitter). A recent Colts cut, Simon already met with the 49ers and Jets since being released. A six-year veteran, Bass led Jets edge rushers in sacks last season with 3.5. Former Packers fullback Aaron Ripkowski also worked out for the Lions today, NFL reporter Howard Balzer tweets. Also among the workout contingent: linebacker Tyrone Holmes, fullbacks Jalston Fowler and Jay Prosch, and tight end Donnie Ernsberger, per Balzer. Wide receiver Keon Hatcher visited with the Lions.
  • Former Jets wideout Chad Hansen was among those who auditioned for the Packers today, with Balzer tweeting Shay Fields, Korey Robertson, Taj Williams and quarterback Brogan Roback — of Hard Knocks fame — joined him.

Vikings To Waive Daniel Carlson, Sign Dan Bailey

Zane Gonzalez isn’t the only young kicker whose rough Week 2 will cause a relocation. The Vikings are cutting ties with fifth-round rookie Daniel Carlson, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com tweets.

In Carlson’s place, the Vikings will go with experience by signing Dan Bailey, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. Bailey figured to draw interest from multiple teams after kicking issues impacted multiple games on Sunday, and he’ll join up with a Super Bowl contender.

While interest came Bailey’s way, it appears he was willing to wait for the right opportunity. Four teams offered Bailey a contract, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com reports (on Twitter). A dome team coming off an NFC championship cameo piqued his interest.

The second-most accurate kicker in NFL history, Bailey did not make the Cowboys’ active roster. Salary concerns helped lead him out of Dallas. He’ll be in Minneapolis in time for Week 3 and can be expected to provide more consistency than Carlson gave the veteran-laden Vikings roster.

That said, the Vikings are cutting the cord on a young kicker quite early. Minnesota drafted Carlson to lead to a Kai Forbath cut. The Vikings had just re-signed Forbath this offseason but jettisoned him for Carlson this summer. Carlson will be an interesting waiver item for a team keen on seeing if the coveted Auburn prospect can quickly rebound.

Carlson missed three field goals in Minnesota’s 29-29 tie in Green Bay, the last of which coming from just 35 yards out. Two misses occurred in overtime.

The 30-year-old Bailey made the 2015 Pro Bowl and has 27 career 50-plus-yard field goal makes. Missing four games due to injury last season, Bailey made 15 of 20 attempts and 26 of 28 PATs. He’s made 88.2 percent of his career field goal tries (second only to Justin Tucker‘s 90.3 percent) and closed three seasons — 2012, ’13 and ’15 — with a 90 percent-plus conversion rate.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Browns Expected To Replace K Zane Gonzalez

Zane Gonzalez had a performance to forget against the Saints on Sunday, so the Browns are now auditioning free agent kickers Blair Walsh and Cairo Santos, according to Mike Garafolo of NFL.com (Twitter link). Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (Twitter link) was the first to report Cleveland was expected to change kickers.

Gonzalez was dreadful in Week 2, as he missed two field goals, including a 53-yarder that would have sent the game to overtime, and two extra points, including one that would have given the Browns a one-point lead with less than 90 seconds remaining. Cleveland, of course, was searching for its first victory since the 2016 season. A seventh-round pick in 2017, Gonzalez converted 75% of his field goal attempts and 25-of-26 of his extra points during his rookie campaign.

Both Walsh and Santos come with their own problems. Walsh has dealt with accuracy issues throughout his career, and was cut by the Seahawks after hitting only 72.4% of his field goals in 2017. Santos has historically been the better kicker, but he’s dealt with a nagging groin injury for more than a year.

One name who has yet to be linked to the Browns is veteran Dan Bailey, who was released by the Cowboys at final cutdowns. Per Darren Wolfson of KSTP (Twitter link), Bailey has recently turned down offers from four clubs as he waits for the “right opportunity,” one that may include suiting up for a contender.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Workout Notes: Giants, Jets, Raiders, Colts

As Week 1 practices are underway, here’s the latest from the workout circuit:

  • The Giants appear to envy the Raiders’ roster depth. After adding Mario Edwards and cornerback Antonio Hamilton, Big Blue will work out Raiders 2017 fourth-round tackle David Sharpe, Michael Gehlken of the Las Vegas Review-Journal tweets. Sharpe’s shed 30 pounds this offseason, per Gehlken. He played in five games and started two as a rookie. The Giants will also audition former Broncos cornerback Michael Hunter, per Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle (on Twitter). These workouts will take place Tuesday.
  • Hunter was part of a four-cornerback contingent that auditioned for the Texans on Labor Day, with veteran NFL reporter Howard Balzer tweeting Hunter, Breon Borders, Chris Campbell and Jalen Myrick took part in the Monday showcase. Of this quartet, only Myrick has NFL experience. He played five games as a Texan last season.
  • Dan Bailey appears to have a good chance to be the Jets‘ next kicker, but in the event the team doesn’t sign him, an insurance option is coming to the Big Apple for a workout. Matt McCrane will kick for Jets brass on Wednesday, Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News tweets. The Cardinals cut McCrane last week. Jason Myers currently sits as Gang Green’s kicker, but he may not have a good grip on the job.
  • Prior to the Raiders signing Brandon LaFell, they worked out one of their former wideouts. Brice Butler trekked back to Oakland for a Monday workout, Vic Tafur of The Athletic tweets. Although most of Reggie McKenzie‘s draft picks aren’t too popular with Jon Gruden right now, Butler joined the Raiders as a 2013 seventh-round and played sparingly in 2013 and ’14. The Raiders traded him to the Cowboys prior to the 2015 season. Butler did not impress the Cardinals in camp, despite signing a two-year deal this spring.
  • The Patriots worked out tight end Stephen Anderson, tackle Eric Smith and wide receiver Jace Billingsley on Monday, Balzer tweets. New England will sign Smith to its practice squad.
  • Thinner at wide receiver after losing Marqise Lee, the Jaguars will work out former Giants wideout Kalif Raymond on Tuesday, Ryan Dunleavy of NJ.com tweets. The former UDFA mostly served as a Giants return man last season.
  • Multiyear Steelers backup Fitzgerald Toussaint visited the Colts on Monday, per Pro Football Talk (on Twitter). The Steelers cut the 28-year-old running back last week after what ended up being a three-year stay.
  • Linebacker Jonathan Celestin will work out for the Browns on Tuesday, per NFL Draft Diamonds (Twitter link). The Falcons axed Celestin after the preseason.
  • Lastly, the Chiefs auditioned tackle Pace Murphy on Monday, per Balzer.

East Notes: Cowboys, Bills, Jets, Giants

The biggest surprise of cut-down day may have been kicking related. There was a collective shock around the league when out of nowhere the Cowboys released longtime kicker Dan Bailey. Bailey, who appears to possibly be on the verge of signing with the Jets, is the second most accurate kicker in NFL history in terms of field goal percentage.

At a press conference today Cowboys coach Jason Garrett opened up about the decision to move on from Bailey. Garrett indicated that the decision was primarily financially related, according to Clarence Hill Jr. (Twitter link). Bailey was set to make $3.4MM this year, and Garrett also said that injuries played a role. Garrett reportedly spent the first six minutes of his presser talking about the kicking situation, as there were a ton of questions about Bailey.

While we await word on where Bailey will sign, here’s more from the league’s eastern divisions:

  • Former second round pick Nate Orchard was cut by the Browns on Saturday, and is wasting no time setting up visits. The defensive lineman will visit with the Bills and Jets this week, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network (Twitter link).
  • It had previously been announced that former first round pick Breshad Perriman would be visiting the Jets, and if he doesn’t sign with them he’ll then visit other teams including the nearby Giants and Bills, Rapoport tweets. Wherever the pass-catcher lands, it seems likely he’ll be heading east.
  • The Giants kept four quarterbacks initially, then waived Davis Webb, and still might not be done addressing their quarterback room. Rapsheet also tweets that Matt McGloin will work out for the Giants tomorrow. Giants coach Pat Shurmur has said he wants to have a veteran backup, and it’s possible the team will see him as an upgrade over Alex Tanney.

Jets Likely To Sign Dan Bailey

Yesterday it was announced that recently released kicker Dan Bailey would be traveling to New York for a workout with the Jets, and now it appears likely that the team will sign the former Cowboy.

“Barring an unexpected poor workout, NYJ will offer Bailey a deal to sign and replace Jason Myers” sources to Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News (Twitter link). Bailey, the second most accurate kicker in NFL history in terms of field goal percentage, was shockingly released by Dallas at final cuts.

Bailey had been with the Cowboys since 2011, and besides an injury plagued 2017, had been one of the best kickers in the league. Myers appeared to have won the battle to be the Jets’ kicker but looks like he’ll now find himself out of a job once again.

The Jets have cycled through kickers since Nick Folk left after the 2016 season, and could finally find some stability with Bailey. Whatever Bailey signs for, it will likely pay him top of the kicker market type money. It would be a nice upgrade this late in the proceedings for the Jets, and if New York fails to sign him several other teams will surely come calling.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Jets To Work Out K Dan Bailey

Dan Bailey will receive an opportunity to catch on with another team after the Cowboys released him this weekend. The Jets will observe an audition from the veteran kicker on Monday, Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets.

The Cowboys made Bailey a surprise cut this weekend. Bailey resides as the second-most accurate kicker in NFL history, making 88.2 percent of his tries. The 30-year-old specialist has only kicked for the Cowboys in his career.

Groin trouble limited Bailey to 12 games last season; they were the first the seven-year veteran missed as an NFLer. Bailey made 15 of 20 field goal tries last season and 26 of 28 PAT attempts.

The Jets are on their third kicker since 2016. The since-departed Chandler Catanzaro replaced Nick Folk last season, and Gang Green’s shuttled in a few kickers this offseason. New York added both Cairo Santos and Nick Rose this year but parted ways with each specialist. Claimed off waivers from Seattle, Jason Myers resides as the Jets’ current kicker.

Cowboys Announce Roster Cuts

In addition to releasing veteran kicker Dan Bailey, the Cowboys have made several other moves in order to move their roster to 53 players:

Cut:

Green, a former third-round pick, has struggled mightily in his effort to become Dallas’ third offensive tackle. Ward, for his part, was acquired in exchange for wide receiver Ryan Switzer earlier this year.

Cowboys Cut K Dan Bailey

The Cowboys have released kicker Dan Bailey, tweets Tom Pelissero of NFL.com. Bailey has been the Cowboys’ kicker for the last seven years, so the move is a stunner.

With Bailey out of the picture, the Cowboys will move forward with Nebraska product Brett Maher as their place kicker. Maher nailed a 57-yard field goal against the Texans the other night, and that moment may have influenced the Cowboys’ final decision.

Bailey, 30, nailed just 75% of his field goal tries last year, a career low. On the whole, however, he’s been outstanding for Dallas. In 2015, he led the league with a 93.8% field goal completion percentage. He’s also nailed 276 of 278 career extra point tries.

As a vested veteran, Bailey will hit the open market immediately without having to go through waivers.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFC Notes: Redskins, Cowboys, Eagles

The Redskins placed linebacker Mason Foster on the injured reserve yesterday, and the veteran certainly isn’t happy with the move. In a series of tweets earlier this morning, Foster noted that he had been “done dirty” by the organization.

“All I know is [former GM] Scot [McCloughan] wouldn’t have done me like that,” Foster wrote (via Michael David Smith of ProFootballTalk.com). “I have played 3 weeks with a completely torn labrum. Lay everything on the line for someone just to have that same person slap you in the face. Business is business tho right. They don’t care about us.”

As the writer notes, Foster is set to be a free agent following the season, and it sounds like the veteran could be looking for a new home. In five games this season, the former third-rounder compiled 31 tackles. 0.5 sacks, and one interception.

Let’s take a look at some more notes from around the NFC…

  • The Cowboys promoted tight end Blake Jarwin from the practice squad earlier this week. ESPN.com’s Todd Archer writes that part of the organization’s motivation for making the move had to do with the interest Jarwin was garnering from around the NFL, particularly from the Eagles.
  • The Eagles may be in the hunt for some offensive line help, but Eliot Shorr-Parks of NJ.com warns (via Twitter) that the team might not want to acquire an expensive player. After all, the writer believes the team is focused on rolling their current cap space over to the offseason, and trading for a pricey lineman could compromise that future financial flexibility.
  • Dan Bailey may be out for a while. Cowboys Director of Player Personnel Stephen Jones told Clarence Hill Jr. of the Star-Telegram that the veteran kicker is expected to miss at least four games (Twitter link). The 29-year-old was perfect on field goal and extra point attempts this season.
  • Speaking of kickers, Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press has details on Matt Prater‘s three-year extension with the Lions. The deal includes a $3.6MM signing bonus and $5MM in guaranteed money, raising his 2017 cap hit to $5.225MM. The contract hits a $2.7MM base salary in 2020.