Daniel Carlson

Raiders Cut K Matt McCrane

The Raiders waived kicker Matt McCrane, according to Matt Schneidman of the San Jose Mercury News (on Twitter). To replace him, the Raiders signed Daniel Carlson.

The Raiders signed McCrane after losing Mike Nugent to a hip injury, but he didn’t kick like Nugent in his three games with the team. He went 5-for-9 on field goal tries, and just 2-for-6 when subtracting chip shots from 20-29 yards out.

Carlson has had his own struggles this year. The fifth-round pick of the Vikings missed three field goals in Week 2, and was quickly dropped by Minnesota.

Carlson will make his Raiders debut on Sunday when the Colts travel to Oakland.

NFL Workout Updates: 10/15/18

Today’s workout updates:

Cleveland Browns

  • LB Manase Hungalu (Twitter link via Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle)

Houston Texans

Los Angeles Chargers

New York Jets

NFL Workout Updates: 10/9/18

Here’s the latest from the workout circuit, courtesy of veteran NFL reporter Howard Balzer:

Arizona Cardinals

Baltimore Ravens

Buffalo Bills

Carolina Panthers

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

New Orleans Saints

Oakland Raiders

San Francisco 49ers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

NFL Workout Updates: 10/2/18

Today’s workout updates, with all links going to veteran Howard Balzer’s Twitter account unless otherwise noted:

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

Cleveland Browns

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Jacksonville Jaguars

Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Rams

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

  • T Andrew Nelson (link)

New Orleans Saints

New York Jets

Oakland Raiders

Pittsburgh Steelers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

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.

Vikings Release K Kai Forbath

The Vikings’ kicking competition is over. The club has released Kai Forbath, according to a team announcement. The Vikings will now turn to rookie Daniel Carlson as their kicker. 

The Vikings traded up into the fifth round to draft Carlson in the spring, an indicator that a kicking change was in the cards. After months of impressive performances, the Vikings feel that the youngster is ready for the job.

Last year, Forbath converted 32 of his 38 field goal attempts and he nailed 34 of his 39 extra point tries. He was re-signed in March, but it was a low-cost deal with little or no guaranteed money, so the release won’t have any real effect on the Vikings’ cap.

Carlson, an Auburn product, converted 92 of 114 field goal tries (80.7%) over the course of his four-year collegiate career. He also nailed all 198 of his extra point tries.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

North Rumors: Rodgers, Vikings, Browns

Amid a months-long negotiating process with the Packers, Aaron Rodgers confirmed several types of contracts have surfaced during these talks. The two-time MVP has been linked to wanting a deal structure that provides more freedom for him, and the Packers may not be on board with that just yet. But Rodgers remains intent on spending his entire career in Green Bay.

We’ve talked about a number of different types of deals. There’s obviously mutual interest on both sides in keeping me in Green Bay for the duration,” Rodgers said, via Albert Breer of SI.com.That’s definitely what you want as a player. You see the rarity of it in sports, and you think about guys like Kobe (Bryant), guys like Tim Duncan, Dirk Nowitzki, who spent entire career with one organization, Tommy (Brady) in New England. It’s very rare. That would be the goal.”

The 14th-year quarterback broached the subject of his contract being a trend-setting agreement.

As far as setting a trend or breaking down things, it’s great for the game and its players, for sure, when Kirk (Cousins) does a deal like he did,” Rodgers said of Cousins’ fully guaranteed Vikings deal. “The reality is, there’s not many teams that would do that, first of all. And there aren’t many teams that would do it for more than three years. So at some point, there are going to be contracts that will continue to extend that, and there’s been guys who’ve done it over the years, who’ve done monumental things, whether it’s Reggie White in free agency, that make a difference for the next generation. That’s something you can have as part of your legacy.”

  • Brian Gutekunst made a more concerted effort to bring in veterans to help the Rodgers-centered team win now, but Breer doesn’t get the sense the Packers believe time is running out to maximize this rare window. “I’d say this: He’s a young 34,” Mike McCarthy told Breer. “He had the first three years to sit behind Brett (Favre), and if you look at him physically, the last three, four years, he’s clearly in the best shape of his career.” Rodgers reiterated playing until he’s 40 is the “minimum” in terms of longevity he’s seeking, and he specified the baseline (as of now) he’d consider as his last year would be 2024 — when he’d turn 41 late that season.
  • Don’t expect the Vikings‘ kicker battle to end early. Minnesota will put incumbent Kai Forbath and fifth-round rookie Daniel Carlson in pressure situations during camp and will assess their standing during the early portion of preseason play, per Tom Pelissero of NFL.com (on Twitter), before considering jettisoning one of them.
  • Giovani Bernard profiles as an under-the-radar extension candidate, Jim Owczarski of the Cincinnati Enquirer writes. The Bengals already have their passing-down back signed through 2019 and drafted Joe Mixon in Round 2 last year, but Owczarski could see the Bengals approaching the 27-year-old Bernard with an extension proposal before the running back market reshapes after the Todd Gurley re-up.
  • The Browns worked out offensive lineman Jordan McCray over the weekend, Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com tweets. Jordan is the twin brother of Packers lineman Justin McCray.

Vikings Notes: Robison, Hughes, Carlson

Last month, it was announced that Vikings defensive end Brian Robison was taking a pay cut to stay with the team in the final year of his contract. The longtime Viking was scheduled to make $3.5MM initially, but his pay cut reduced his base salary to $1.015MM plus a $90K workout bonus.

Now Robison, who has been with the Vikings since being drafted by the team in the fourth round back in 2007, appears ready to hang up his cleats. He recently told Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press that he’ll “more than likely” retire after the 2018 season.

If the 2018 season is indeed Robison’s last in the NFL, it will be the end to an unusually long run with a single team for a role player. Normally only a star player would wind up playing for the same team for 12 seasons, but Robison has carved out a similar situational pass-rushing role with the Vikings year after year through multiple coaching staffs and front offices. He has 60 sacks, 19 passes defended, and 13 forced fumbles throughout his career, only missing three of a possible 176 games since entering the league.

Here’s more on the Vikings:

  • Vikings first-round cornerback Mike Hughes is “pretty close” to signing his rookie deal, Hughes told Tomasson. Hughes, the only Vikings draft pick yet to sign, was taken with the 30th overall pick in April’s draft out of Central Florida.
  • Tomasson reports that rookie kicker Daniel Carlson “has looked better than Kai Forbath in the battle to be Minnesota’s kicker.” Since the Vikings used a fifth-rounder on Carlson, they likely have every intention of having him be their kicker. Forbath, the incumbent, was underwhelming last year and appears likely to be cut.
  • Pro Bowl tight end Kyle Rudolph is working his way back from offseason ankle surgery, and recently returned to the field. Tomasson notes that Rudolph is ahead of schedule in his recovery and wasn’t supposed to get back to work for a few more weeks.

Vikings Sign Four Draft Picks

With their rookie minicamp on tap for this weekend, the Vikings have gotten to work on signing their draft class. Minnesota signed four members of its eight-man class on Thursday, agreeing to terms with the final four players in the group.

Carlson signed for four years and $2.708MM, Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press tweets, adding the kicker prospect received a $248K signing bonus. Gossett and Aruna both signed $2.578MM deals with $118,408 bonuses. Downs’ deal is worth $2.554MM. The Cal product received a $94K signing bonus, Tomasson reports.

Carlson will come in and compete with Kai Forbath, whom the Vikings re-signed earlier this offseason. Carlson made just 21 of his 31 field goal tries but made four of eight from beyond 50 yards. Minnesota’s selection of Carlson does not necessarily mean he’ll be kicking in the Twin Cities come September. Both the Bengals and Panthers saw their 2017 draftees, Jake Elliott and Harrison Butker, poached by other teams off their respective practice squads early last year.

Gossett was one of two offensive linemen in the Vikings’ class, joining second-round tackle Brian O’Neill. Aruna and Downs figure to be in line to compete for spots as backups and on special teams or on Minnesota’s practice squad.