Denzel Mims

Jets Place WR Denzel Mims On IR

Denzel Mims‘ Jets debut will not happen until at least October. The Jets placed their second-round pick on IR Tuesday.

The Baylor product suffered a hamstring injury during training camp and missed Week 1. He will not be eligible to return until Week 5. The Jets placed Le’Veon Bell on IR as well and are signing running back Kalen Ballage.

Mims came to New York as one of the many highly coveted wideouts in this year’s historically deep receiver draft. But he has missed extensive time due to injury after the pandemic-altered offseason. Tuesday’s move will further delay Mims’ progress in his initial Jets campaign.

Ballage will rejoin Adam Gase, doing so after a rare Dolphins-Jets trade was nixed in late August. Ballage failed his physical due to a hamstring malady, leading to the Dolphins waiving the 2018 draftee. Ballage will join a Jets backfield that is down Bell and fourth-round rookie La’Mical Perine.

The Jets also placed linebacker Blake Cashman on IR. Cashman left Sunday’s game with an injury and will also be out until at least October.

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AFC East Rumors: Williams, Jets, Dolphins

The Patriots appear to be putting their cornerback depth to good use. One of the Pats’ corners, Joejuan Williams, is now attending meetings exclusively as a safety, Michael Giardi of NFL.com tweets. New England’s 2019 second-round pick, Williams only played 80 defensive snaps as a rookie. But the Vanderbilt product was stuck behind the likes of Stephon Gilmore, Jason McCourty and Jonathan Jones. Those three are back in 2020, but the Pats’ safety group looks considerably different.

The team’s longtime Devin McCourtyPatrick ChungDuron Harmon trio is down to just McCourty, though the Pats did sign former Charger Adrian Phillips and drafted Kyle Dugger in Round 2. Dugger, however, played at a Division II school and has not had much time this offseason for on-field work. At 6-foot-3, 212 pounds, Williams has the size to transition to safety. The Pats frequently used three safeties in coverage over the past several years.

Here is the latest from the AFC East:

  • Le’Veon Bell has not enjoyed a quality training camp, with Brian Costello of the New York Post rating the Jets‘ starting running back as the team’s third-most impressive back in camp — behind Frank Gore and rookie fourth-rounder La’Mical Perine. Bell enjoyed his worst season in 2019, but the Jets featured a bottom-tier offensive line. They have since made several upgrade attempts. The Jets have Bell under contract for three more seasons, but just one of them features guaranteed money. Bell, 28, is set to count $15.5MM against the Jets’ cap this season.
  • More than a week after bringing Donte Moncrief in for a workout, the Jets again summoned the wideout to their facility. Moncrief visited the Jets on Friday. This comes after the former third-round pick and veteran auxiliary wide receiver met with the 49ers. San Francisco went in a different direction, however. The 6-4 target amassed 668 receiving yards with the 2018 Jaguars but did not make an impact with the Steelers or Panthers last season.
  • The Jets’ wideout interest stems partially from being without Denzel Mims. The second-round rookie has missed all of the team’s work in pads, with The Athletic’s Connor Hughes noting Mims is not yet doing individual drills (subscription required). Mims suffered the injury during the team’s ramp-up period earlier this month. With 2020 already presenting unfavorable circumstances for rookies, Mims may well face an uphill battle to be an early-season contributor.
  • Dolphins first-round pick Noah Igbinoghene is competing with Jakeem Grant and recent addition Chester Rogers for return jobs, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald notes. A cornerback out of Auburn, Igbinoghene notched two kick-return touchdowns in college. He did not return any punts at Auburn, however, so this would seemingly leave the punt-return competition to the two veterans. The elusive Grant has four NFL return TDs, including two on punt returns.
  • Fellow Dolphins rookie Solomon Kindley still has a chance to be one of the team’s starting guards, with Jackson noting that the fourth-round rookie may be a bit ahead of second-round O-lineman Robert Hunt. The Dolphins still view Hunt as a player who could contribute at both guard and tackle, while Kindley — the No. 111 overall pick out of Georgia — is showing well at right guard. The Dolphins signed Ereck Flowers to play left guard this offseason, and guard-tackle hybrid Jesse Davis may be set to again open as the team’s right tackle.

Jets Sign WR Chris Hogan

The Jets are adding a veteran to their WR corps. Per Tom Pelissero of the NFL Network, Gang Green is signing 32-year-old wideout Chris Hogan (Twitter link).

New York is quite familiar with Hogan, who started seeing regular playing time with the division-rival Bills in 2014 and who became a key piece of the Patriots’ offense after New England signed him away from Buffalo in 2016 as a restricted free agent.

During his three-year tenure with the Pats — which included two Super Bowl wins — Hogan averaged a regular-season slash of 36/550/4 and averaged over 15 yards per catch (including a league-best 17.9 figure in 2016). He was equally valuable in the playoffs, recording 34 catches for 542 yards and four TDs in nine postseason games.

He hooked on with the Panthers last offseason, and while his 2019 campaign was largely ruined by injury, he could still be an important contributor for the Jets. As Rich Cimini of ESPN.com writes, promising but raw second-round rookie Denzel Mims is battling a hamstring injury, and beyond Breshad Perriman and slot man Jamison Crowder, the team’s receiver depth chart is incredibly thin.

This will sort of complete Hogan’s tour of the AFC East. In addition to his stints with the Bills and Patriots, Hogan, a 2011 UDFA out of Monmouth, spent some time on the Dolphins’ practice squad in the early part of his career.

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Jets Sign Denzel Mims

The Jets have formally signed second-round pick Denzel Mims, according to Manish Mehta of the Daily News (on Twitter). In accordance with his slot, the Baylor product will receive a four-year, $5.4MM deal with $3MM guaranteed. 

Mims was widely considered to be a first-round talent, but this year’s talent-rich WR crop pushed him down the board. The Jets were delighted to stop his mini-slide near the back of the second round, at No. 59 overall.

You won’t find many receivers at 6’3″ that move like Mims. Drops have been an issue for him in the past, but his fluidity, speed, and blocking skills made evaluators drool throughout draft season.

Last year, Mims cracked 1,000 yards receiving for the second time in his career, even though he was playing with a broken hand. The Jets had first crack at every receiver with the No. 11 overall pick, but they opted for tackle Mekhi Becton instead. At that moment, taking Becton over the likes of CeeDee Lamb and Henry Ruggs III was a head-scratcher to some. But, ultimately, their patience paid off – they got Mims and extra capital by trading down.

Now, Mims will look to make his mark alongside fellow newcomer Breshad Perriman and the returning Jamison Crowder.

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Jets Land Denzel Mims

No one thought Denzel Mims would last this long, but the Jets aren’t complaining. With the No. 59 pick they acquired from Seattle earlier tonight, the Jets landed the star wide receiver out of Baylor. 

Mims was considered a potential first-round talent and a possibility for the Bengals to open up the second round. Instead, he slipped as WR-needy teams went in different directions.

You won’t find many receivers at 6’3″ that move like Mims. Drops have been an issue for him in the past, but his fluidity, speed, and blocking skills made evaluators drool throughout draft season.

Last year, Mims cracked 1,000 yards receiving for the second time in his career, even though he was playing with a broken hand. The Jets had first crack at every receiver with the No. 11 overall pick last night, but they opted for tackle Mekhi Becton instead. Not everyone agreed with that call, but their patience paid off.

The Jets recently signed deep threat Breshad Perriman to replace Robby Anderson and have slot cog Jamison Crowder under contract. With Mims in the fold and Becton to protect him up front, Sam Darnold is probably pleased with how the Jets’ draft is going so far.

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NFL Draft Rumors: Bengals, Colts, Bucs, Colts

The Bengals (No. 33) and Colts (No. 34) will kick off the second round and the belief is that they’re both targeting offensive help, Jonathan Jones of CBSSports.com tweets. Beyond that, he gets the sense that defensive tackle Ross Blacklock could be the first defensive player selected in the second round. Earlier today, we heard Blacklock mentioned as a possibility for the Bengals, but they might be more focused on providing help for Joe Burrow instead. That could lead them to Baylor wide receiver Denzel Mims, one of the most intriguing talents left on the board.

Here’s the latest as we get set for the second night of the NFL Draft:

  • More from Jones (on Twitter), who says “everyone” he’s talked to around the league believes that the Panthers will go after Mims. As previously reported, they’ve been getting calls on wide receiver Curtis Samuel, though they’re not shopping him. Mims, or another wide receiver, could wind up taking Samuel’s spot on the depth chart. The Panthers’ currently sit at No. 38 overall (the sixth pick in the second round), which might not be good enough to get Mims.
  • Over the last two months, the Buccaneers and Colts have both been high on Washington quarterback Jacob Eason, Albert Breer of The MMQB hears. Eason remains available heading into Day 2 of the draft and both clubs profile as potential fits. Before the night is through, Eason could be tapped as the heir to Tom Brady or Philip Rivers, a perfect scenario for a QB easing into the pro game.
  • There weren’t a ton of trades in the first round, but it wasn’t for a lack of trying. The Falcons pushed hard to trade up for cornerback C.J. Henderson and the Raiders wanted to move back from No. 12 before taking Alabama wideout Henry Ruggs.

Bengals Eyeing Mims, Blacklock At No. 33?

The Bengals, who hold the first pick in the second round, are high on wide receiver Denzel Mims and defensive tackle Ross Blacklock, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter) hears.

Rapoport also notes several teams looking to move up/down in the order. The Jets, Jaguars, and Falcons are among the clubs interested in making a leap. Potential trade partners include the Colts (No. 34) and Dolphins (No. 39), who are willing to listen on offers to move back.

Cincinnati doesn’t necessarily need any immediate help at wide receiver, as the club boasts A.J. Green, Tyler Boyd, and John Ross as its top three options. However, Green and Ross haven’t been able to stay healthy, and each has just one year remaining on his respective contract (the Bengals hold a 2021 option on Ross that they’ve yet to exercise). Mims would add an explosive option for new quarterback Joe Burrow, and give Cincinnati a long-term asset.

Blacklock, meanwhile, was a draft riser in recent months and was viewed as a potential Day 1 pick. Instead, he’s likely to come off the board at the top of Round 2. The Bengals already have Geno Atkins and free agent acquisition D.J. Reader on the interior of their defensive line, but Blacklock would give them ample depth.

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Latest On Dolphins’ Draft Plans

We heard earlier this morning that the Dolphins and Lions are expecting to execute a trade that will allow Miami to jump up to the No. 3 overall selection while shipping the No. 5 pick to Detroit. The ‘Fins had hoped to keep their No. 5 pick and trade from their other draft assets, but Lions GM Bob Quinn isn’t biting on that.

So if the trade is consummated, it’s unclear what other draft picks will be heading to Motown. Though recent buzz has suggested that the Dolphins will take Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa with their No.5 selection if they don’t engineer a trade-up, the team will likely grab a left tackle if it lands the No. 3 pick. After all, the Giants, who hold the No. 4 overall selection, are also in the LT market, and a move to No. 3 would allow the Dolphins to select the player of their choice at that position.

But that would leave the club with a notable vacancy at QB. Per Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, there are still execs and scouts within the Dolphins’ front office that like Oregon passer Justin Herbert, so if Miami stays put at No. 5, Herbert can’t be ruled out. And if he is still on the board when the Dolphins are on the clock with the No. 18 overall pick — and if they haven’t picked a different QB by then — Herbert obviously becomes even more of a possibility.

In addition to QB and LT, the Dolphins have plenty of other needs to fill. And while WR is not necessarily the most pressing of those needs, a young receiving talent can’t be ruled out in the bottom of the first round. Baylor wideout Denzel Mims could still be available when the team makes its No. 26 overall selection — assuming, of course, it hasn’t been traded — and a Baylor football official tells Jackson that the Dolphins “really like” the raw but talented prospect.

Per Jackson, Miami has also shown interest in UVA wide receiver Hasise Dubois, Auburn safety Daniel Thomas, and Florida edge defender Jonathan Greenard.

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Eagles Interested In Baylor WR Denzel Mims

It’s not surprising that the Eagles, whose need for young wide receiver talent is obvious, have been connected to a number of the best pass catcher’s in this year’s draft class. Just yesterday, we learned that Philadelphia is taking a look at Arizona State’s Brandon Aiyuk and TCU’s Jalen Reagor, and we already knew that the club is interested in LSU’s Justin Jefferson.

You can now add Baylor wideout Denzel Mims to that list. Mims himself tells Jon Marks and Ike Reese of 94 WIP that the Eagles have expressed more interest in him than any other club, and that he chatted with Philly four or five times last week.

“I actually have talked to the Eagles a lot,” Mims said. “I felt like I killed the interview.”

While Jefferson may be gone by the time the Eagles are on the clock with the No. 21 overall pick, Mims should be available. He offers an intriguing blend of size and speed, and he is a willing blocker in the run game. He did struggle with drops at times, but in 2019, he managed to post over 1,000 yards for the second time in his collegiate career despite playing with a broken hand.

Of course, Eagles GM Howie Roseman is one of the most aggressive execs in the game, and he could try to move up the board to land one of this year’s consensus top WRs like Jerry Jeudy or CeeDee Lamb, as Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com writes (subscription required). But the Eagles are also staring down the barrel of a bleak salary cap situation in 2021, so it would make sense for them to try and load up on as much cheap talent as possible. Given the depth of this year’s WR class, the team could trade down from No. 21 if all of the top-tier receivers are gone, and it could pick up a defensive playmaker in the process while still securing an impact wideout.

Depending on how far down the board Roseman moves in this hypothetical scenario, he may still be able to land Mims or Aiyuk. Reagor, meanwhile, could last until the end of the second round, though he’s also generating buzz as a potential first-round talent.

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WR Rumors: Jets, Ruggs, Cowboys, Mims

Buzz about the Jets‘ first-round decision has pointed to a tackle-or-wide receiver dilemma. While the former scenario thus far has been the predicted route GM Joe Douglas will take in his first Jets draft, the team is high on Henry Ruggs, Ralph Vacchiano of SNY notes (video link). The Jets have eyed Ruggs throughout the pre-draft process. Smokescreens are common at this time, but it might not make much sense in this case. The Jets may not be able to afford to trade down from No. 11 overall, considering the draft’s top four tackles may all be gone by the middle of the first round.

Should Gang Green opt for a wide receiver, Ruggs has generally rated behind former Alabama teammate Jerry Jeudy and Oklahoma standout CeeDee Lamb in mock drafts. The Jets are believe to be Lamb fans as well. The 5-foot-11 Ruggs, however, has both easily beat in the speed department. The Jets recently signed deep threat Breshad Perriman to replace Robby Anderson and have slot cog Jamison Crowder under contract.

Here is the latest from the league’s wide receiver landscape:

  • On the subject of Ruggs, the Cowboys recently went through a video conference with the first-round talent, Clarence Hill of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram tweets. Perhaps as an indication of the board the Cowboys expect to see when they pick at No. 17, Hill adds the team has not spoken with Lamb yet (Twitter link). It would certainly be interesting to see the Cowboys choose a wideout in Round 1, considering they just authorized a $20MM-per-year Amari Cooper pact.
  • One of this draft’s many receivers who figure to be off the board by the time the third round begins, Denzel Mims produced two 1,000-yard seasons while at Baylor. However, the 6-3 standout struggled with drops with the Bears. Mims played with a broken hand last season, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets, adding that he has discussed this issue with teams. With the NCAA not forcing teams to provide injury reports, players’ maladies can slip under radars far easier than they can in the NFL. After blazing to a 4.38-second 40-yard dash at the Combine, Mims will likely not have to wait too long Friday night — if indeed he escapes Round 1.
  • The Cardinals now have Larry Fitzgerald, DeAndre Hopkins and recent second-round picks Christian Kirk and Andy Isabella on their team. Kyler Murray has also lobbied for the team to draft Lamb — his college teammate — at No. 8 overall. It would be a surprise to see Arizona devote a high pick to a wideout this year, but Steve Keim did not rule out such a move. “You want to look at the long-term contracts you have in place, whether guys can play inside or outside,” Keim said. “If there is a player at the right spot, someone we are high on, we will certainly take advantage of that. Just because it seems on the surface we’re not as needy at wide receiver, that could change pretty quickly.”