Danny Amendola

Contract Details: Smith, Amendola, Trufant

Here are the latest details on some of the notable contracts recently signed around the NFL:

  • Harrison Smith, S (Vikings): Four years, $64MM. The deal includes $14.2MM fully guaranteed, but Courtney Cronin of ESPN.com notes $26.4MM will be guaranteed by March 22 (Twitter link). Smith’s 2021 cap hit only comes in at $6.99MM. However, the veteran safety’s salary spikes from $2.95MM in 2022 to $14.7MM in 2023. His 2024 and ’25 base salaries ($14.45MM, $17MM) are not guaranteed.
  • Danny Amendola, WR (Texans): One year, $2.5MM. Deal includes a $1.25MM base salary and a $250K signing bonus, Sports Talk 790’s Aaron Wilson tweets. Amendola’s pact features $300K in per-game roster bonuses, with an additional $700K available through incentives.
  • Desmond Trufant, CB (Saints): One year, $1.075MM, Nick Underhill of NewOrleans.football tweets. Trufant’s deal qualifies for the minimum-salary benefit, putting his cap hit at just $850K.

Texans To Sign WR Danny Amendola

Danny Amendola has found his next gig. After working out for the Texans earlier today, the veteran wideout is signing with the organization, reports NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero (via Twitter). It’s a one-year deal worth $2.5MM.

The move is a bit of a homecoming for the 35-year-old; Amendola grew up in The Woodlands and went to college at Texas Tech. The move also reunited the receiver with general manager Nick Caserio, who was a former executive in New England. Thanks to the New England connection, the Texans are also rostering former ex-Patriots like Rex Burkhead and Marcus Cannon.

Following the departures of Will Fuller, Randall Cobb, and Keke Coutee, Brandin Cooks is the only holdover from last season’s receivers corps. The Texans added Chris Conley and return man Andre Roberts in free agency, traded for Anthony Miller, and drafted Nico Collins in Round 3, and Amendola will be competing with that grouping for reps.

Following a five-year stint with the Patriots that saw him earn a pair of Super Bowl rings, Amendola spent the 2018 season with the Dolphins before spending the past two campaigns with the Lions. The wideout had two solid seasons in Detroit, finishing with 108 receptions for 1,280 yards in 29 games (15 starts).

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Texans Work Out WR Danny Amendola

The Texans’ new regime added numerous veterans on short-term deals this offseason, and GM Nick Caserio will look to a familiar name to potentially continue doing so. Danny Amendola worked out for the Texans on Tuesday, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com tweets.

A five-year Patriot who contributed heavily on two of the team’s three 2010s Super Bowl-winning teams, Amendola spent the past two seasons in Detroit under ex-New England staffers Bob Quinn and Matt Patricia.

Another reunion could be on tap for the veteran wide receiver, though the Texans would mark an interesting fit given their low expectations this season. Of course, the team has signed a host of midlevel vets this offseason. Ex-Patriots Rex Burkhead and Marcus Cannon are part of that mix. Amendola is also a Houston-area native and played collegiately at Texas Tech.

Caserio let Will Fuller walk in free agency and traded Randall Cobb back to the Packers this year. Keke Coutee, another wideout investment by a previous Houston regime, is also elsewhere. Only Brandin Cooks remains from last season’s Texans receiving corps. The Texans added Chris Conley and return man Andre Roberts in free agency, traded for Anthony Miller and drafted Nico Collins in Round 3.

Amendola, 35, exceeded 600 receiving yards in both Lions seasons. Last season, he caught 46 passes for 602 yards in 14 games. He spent the 2018 season with the Dolphins. Should Amendola catch on this season, he will be the NFL’s oldest active wide receiver. Larry Fitzgerald held that title for a bit, but the future Hall of Famer is unsigned and has not expressed an immediate desire to play in 2021.

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Lions To Promote Mohamed Sanu

After two weeks on the Lions’ practice squad, Mohamed Sanu is set to return to game action. The Lions are promoting the veteran wide receiver, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com tweets.

Sanu played in three games for the injury-depleted 49ers this season but did not make much of an impact. He may have another chance to play a key role Sunday, with the Lions down both Kenny Golladay and Danny Amendola. This will be Golladay’s third straight absence.

Prior to the Patriots sending a second-round pick to the Falcons for Sanu, he had enjoyed a solid run of production in Cincinnati and Atlanta. Sanu fared well as a Julio Jones supporting-caster, but after the Falcons drafted Calvin Ridley, they moved on from their previous WR2. Sanu did not fare as well in New England and wound up a cap casualty this offseason.

The 31-year-old receiver will interestingly reunite with Marvin Jones, with the former Bengal teammates now doubling as by far Matthew Stafford‘s most accomplished wideouts. Jones and Sanu played together from 2012-15, but A.J. Green‘s sidekicks parted ways in the ’16 offseason when Jones signed with Detroit and Sanu landed in Atlanta.

The Lions also promoted defensive lineman Frank Herron from their practice squad.

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Danny Amendola Re-Signs With Lions

Danny Amendola will be sticking around Detroit. FOX Sports’ Peter Schrager reports (via Twitter) that the veteran wideout is re-signing with the Lions. It’ll be a one-year deal.

Amendola was released by the Dolphins last March, and he ended up inking a one-year, $4.5MM deal with the Lions. The 34-year-old ultimately put up some of the best numbers of his career, hauling in 62 receptions for 678 receiving yards and one touchdown. He also continued to contribute on special teams, returning 10 punts.

The new one-year deal is worth $5MM with $4.5MM guaranteed, according to NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero (on Twitter). He can max out at $6MM with incentives and he’ll cash in at around ~$5.5MM if he matches last year’s work.

In parts of 11 seasons, Amendola has spent time with the Rams, Patriots, Dolphins, and Lions. He earned a pair of Super Bowl rings during his time in New England.

With Amendola back in the fold, Matthew Stafford will be plenty familiar with his targets next season. Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones will continue to lead the depth chart in 2020.

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North Notes: OBJ, Meyer, Roman

Browns WR Odell Beckham Jr. recently shot down rumors of a trade demand, but the team never had any intention of trading him anyway, as Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com tweets. Cleveland gave up a great deal to acquire OBJ last offseason, and the club fully intends to keep the mercurial wideout on board for what it hopes will be a rebound campaign in 2020.

With respect to Beckham’s potential sports hernia surgery, he has scheduled a January 13 consultation with a core specialist, and that is one of several opinions he’ll gather before deciding whether to go under the knife (Twitter link via ESPN’s Josina Anderson).

Now for more from the leagues’ north divisions:

  • Urban Meyer has been connected to the Cowboys’ and Redskins’ head coaching vacancies in recent weeks, and you can add the Browns to that list. It’s still unclear whether Cleveland will part with first-year HC Freddie Kitchens, but if it does, Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports expects Meyer to get heavy consideration. Browns owner Jimmy Haslam and Meyer enjoy a strong relationship, and despite what he has said publicly, Meyer is reportedly interested in returning to the sidelines.
  • Ravens offensive coordinator Greg Roman has engineered one of the league’s best and most exciting offenses around MVP candidate Lamar Jackson, and La Canfora says Roman is, unsurprisingly, expected to have several head coaching interviews. Though Jackson is a transcendent talent, teams will be looking to replicate Baltimore’s approach, and Roman’s success with Jackson and other athletic QBs like Colin Kaepernick and Tyrod Taylor will have him in high demand.
  • Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press takes a look at each of the Lions‘ 16 pending UFAs and offers his take as to whether Detroit will attempt to retain them. He believes wide receiver Danny Amendola is a near-lock to return, and he thinks OL Graham Glasgow may prefer to go elsewhere.
  • We took another swing around the north yesterday, including a look at Mitchell Trubisky‘s future with the Bears.

Contract Details: Collins, Morse, Graham

Let’s take a look at the details of a few recently-signed contracts from around the NFL:

  • Landon Collins, S (Redskins): Six years, $84MM deal, $45MM guaranteed. $15MM signing bonus, $6MM option bonus for 2024 (exercised between first and fifth of 2020). Deal includes $32MM guaranteed over the first two seasons. $5MM of his 2021 salary is guaranteed at signing. Salaries: $1MM (2019), $10MM (2020), $12.5MM (2021), $11.5MM (2022), $12.5MM (2023), $13.5MM (2024). All Twitter links via Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle, Mike Garafolo of NFL Network, and ESPN’s Dan Graziano.
  • Mitch Morse, C (Bills): Four years, $44.5MM, $26.5MM guaranteed (original story). Receives $19.5MM in 2019, $28.375MM in 2020. Twitter link via NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero.
  • Brandon Graham, DE (Eagles): Three years, $40MM. $23.5MM guaranteed. $12.5MM signing bonus. Salary: $1MM (2019), $10MM (2020). Team option for 2021: $13MM salary and $3.5MM option bonus. Twitter link via Sheil Kapadia of The Athletic.
  • Danny Amendola, WR (Lions): One year, $4.5MM. $4.25MM fully guaranteed. $250K in per-game roster bonuses, $1.25MM in incentives. Twitter link via Ben Volin of the Boston Globe.
  • Tyler Kroft, TE (Bills): Three years, $18.75MM. $8.3MM guaranteed, $2.4MM signing bonus. Will earn $1.8MM salary in 2019, $4.45MM in 2020. Roster bonuses include $2.1MM (2019), $750K (2020), $750K (2021). Twitter links via Wilson and ESPN’s Mike Rodak.

Lions Sign Danny Amendola

The Lions have signed free agent wide receiver Danny Amendola, the team announced. Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets that it will be a one-year pact with a guaranteed base salary of $4.5MM. The deal also includes incentives that could push Amendola’s earnings up to $5.75MM.

Amendola, 33, was released by the Dolphins a few days ago after one year in South Beach. He posted 579 yards and one touchdown for the Fins, and he should be a solid addition to a strong group of skill players in Detroit. Although there was some mutual interest in a reunion between Amendola and Patriots, Amendola will be reuniting with several familiar faces from his days in New England in head coach Matt Patricia and GM Bob Quinn.

Amendola offers a reliable slot target to complement Marvin Jones and Kenny Golladay on the outside, and he comes at a lower price than other free agent options like Adam Humphries and Jamison Crowder. He is also considerably older and may not have as much upside as either of those players, but the Lions are expected to be very active in free agency and wanted to get out in front of the receiver market, which is expected to once again be quite robust.

Indeed, Jordan Raanan of ESPN.com tweets that the Lions will be players at the top of the pass rush market, which is what they may now focus on after securing a serviceable replacement for Golden Tate, who was traded to Philadelphia last season.

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Patriots Interested In Amendola Reunion?

Danny Amendola‘s Dolphins tenure lasted one season, and a report indicated the veteran wide receiver was interested in rejoining the Patriots. It appears the defending Super Bowl champions are open to that.

The Patriots have interest in bringing Amendola back, per Jeff Howe of The Athletic (on Twitter).

New England’s wideout situation features extensive uncertainty. Chris Hogan and Phillip Dorsett are free agents, and Josh Gordon — an RFA, were he to be reinstated again — cannot be counted on to come back at this point. Julian Edelman delivered another productive season, culminating in a dominant playoff stretch, but will be 33 next season.

The Patriots would be interested in a Dorsett return, according to Mike Reiss of ESPN.com, but the team does not appear to be eyeing a bigger role for the former first-round pick. Should another team view Dorsett in a better light, Reiss expects the four-year veteran to leave New England.

Amendola will turn 34 this year and was not especially consistent for the Patriots. But he came up big in some key moments, including in his final playoff run with the Pats.

Last season, Amendola caught 59 passes for 575 yards and one touchdown. The Dolphins gave him a two-year, $12MM deal, which they scrubbed from their books earlier this week. Another Patriots contract would not be for that much, but given Amendola’s experience with the team, it would be logical the Pats could pursue him to fill in as an auxiliary weapon on a lower-end deal.

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Dolphins To Release Danny Amendola

Another veteran will be departing the Dolphins. They are releasing Danny Amendola, according to NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport (on Twitter).

Parting ways with the veteran wide receiver will create $6MM in cap room for Miami, which will be hit with no dead-money charges. The 33-year-old target is the latest Dolphins veteran to receive his walking papers.

Amendola also has interest in rejoining the Patriots, per The Athletic’s Jeff Howe (on Twitter). The Dolphins and Amendola’s agent went through discussions about keeping him in Miami, per Rapoport (via Twitter), but a release will take place anyway.

Amendola signed a two-year, $12MM deal with the Dolphins in 2018. He functioned as an every-week starter for a Dolphins team riddled with receiver injuries, posting 579 receiving yards and catching one touchdown pass. But even as former Patriots assistant Brian Flores takes over, along with former Pats wideouts coach-turned-Fins OC Chad O’Shea, the longtime New England wideout will head for free agency.

This cut will bump the Dolphins’ salary cap space north of $23MM, but they plan on adding significantly to that figure before free agency opens.

The 10-year veteran was rumored to be one of the players the rebuilding Dolphins were targeting for release, along with Ryan Tannehill‘s lofty salary. They have already cut Andre Branch and Ted Larsen. Miami is rumored to be set to release Josh Sitton and DeVante Parker as well, also dangling Robert Quinn in trade offers.

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