Deonte Thompson

Minor NFL Transactions: 10/17/17

Today’s minor moves:

Buffalo Bills

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

New York Jets

NFL Workout Updates: 10/16/17

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

Arizona Cardinals

Baltimore Ravens

Detroit Lions

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

San Francisco 49ers

Minor NFL Transactions: 10/11/17

Today’s minor moves:

Chicago Bears

Dallas Cowboys

Houston Texans

Bears Host RB Benny Cunningham

The Bears are meeting with free agent running back Benny Cunningham on Tuesday, tweets Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com, and have also re-signed wide receiver Deonte Thompson, per Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press (Twitter link).Benny Cunningham (Vertical)

Given that clear-cut starter Jordan Howard is backed up by both Jeremy Langford and Ka’Deem Carey in Chicago, Cunningham would take on a purely special teams role with the Bears. The 26-year-old Cunningham didn’t play much on offense in 2016, anyway, as he managed only 21 carries for the Rams. His role as a returner, though, was far more clear.

On 22 kick returns, Cunningham ranked third in the NFL with 27.2 yards per return. Thompson, meanwhile, was Chicago’s kick returner last season, but only averaged 23 yards per return. The Bears lost 1.1 yards of field position on kick returns in 2016, according to Football Outsiders, so adding Cunningham could theoretically offer an improvement over Thompson.

Thompson is now under contract, however, which could lead the Bears to rethink a Cunningham acquisition. In contrast to Cunningham, Thompson played a bit of an offensive role last year, as he reeled in 22 of 36 targets for 249 yards and two touchdowns.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

FA Rumors: Dolphins, Broncos, Hillman, Bills

The Dolphins haven’t been linked to cornerback Leon Hall since the league year opened, despite the fact that defensive coordinator Vance Joseph coached Hall in Cincinnati. Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald explains that Hall’s asking price has precluded the Dolphins from getting involved so far, but if that price tag eventually comes down, the veteran corner should see his market heat up, and Miami could get involved.

Here are a few more free agency updates from around the NFL:

  • The Broncos have reached out and expressed interest in bringing back free agent running back Ronnie Hillman, writes Mike Klis of 9NEWS. However, according to Klis, Denver is one of a few teams showing interest, and Hillman’s other suitors have more cap room than the Broncos.
  • The Bills continue to weigh their options on defense, bringing in a pair of defensive free agents for visits today. The club announced (via Twitter) that linebacker Zach Brown and defensive back Corey White arrived at One Bills Drive on Monday morning to meet with the team. Brown, who started 33 games for the Titans over the last four years and had 77 tackles in 2015, is one of the more intriguing free agents still available.
  • Tim Lelito, who received a low-end RFA tender from the Saints, garnered some interest from the Cowboys but opted not to sign an offer sheet with Dallas and sounds prepared to return to New Orleans for 2016, as Lyons Yellin of WWL outlines. Lelito technically remains a free agent until he formally signs his one-year, $1.671MM RFA tender.
  • Veteran guard Chris Chester, who underwent surgery to repair a torn rotator cuff, likely won’t be ready to go until sometime in June, which is why he remains unsigned, per Adam Caplan of ESPN.com (Twitter links). The free agent lineman, who spent last season in Atlanta, has a decent chance to start somewhere once he eventually gets healthy and signs.
  • Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune provides the details on a handful of recently-signed Bears contracts, reporting that offensive lineman Manny Ramirez, linebacker Sam Acho, wide receiver Deonte Thompson, and safety Chris Prosinski all received one-year, minimum salary benefit deals, with $80K signing bonuses.

Minor NFL Transactions: 3/24/16

Here are today’s minor roster moves from around the NFL:

  • Bills offensive lineman Jordan Mills has inked his low-round tender, according to Rand Getlin of NFL.com (on Twitter). Mills will earn $1.671MM for 2016.

Earlier Updates:

  • Defensive tackle Brandon Thompson has re-signed with the Bengals, according to his representatives at Element Sports Group (Twitter link). Thompson, who visited the Seahawks earlier in free agency, figures to join Pat Sims in a rotational role behind starting defensive tackles Geno Atkins and Domata Peko. Rand Getlin of the NFL Network tweets that it’s a one-year deal, while Ian Rapoport of NFL.com suggests (via Twitter) that there will be playing-time bonuses or incentives for Thompson, who tore his ACL near the end of the 2015 season.
  • The Bears have re-signed receiver and return man Deonte Thompson on a one-year contract, the club announced today (via Twitter). Thompson, who didn’t play much of a role on Chicago’s offense last season, did post an impressive 29.2 yard average on kickoff returns, though he got just 14 attempts.
  • Ravens tight end Chase Ford has signed his restricted free agent tender, officially taking him off the market, the team announced today (via Twitter). Baltimore signed Ford off the Vikings’ practice squad last year, but placed him on IR with a season-ending shoulder injury shortly thereafter. He got the low-end RFA tender, worth $1.671MM.
  • The Seahawks have released snapper Andrew East, as Bob Condotta of The Seattle Times tweets.

FA Rumors: Dunbar, Bears, Givens, Bills

Free agent running back Lance Dunbar is continuing his NFC tour today, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN.com, who tweets that Dunbar is visiting the Bears. The veteran back, who has spent his first four seasons in Dallas, has also paid visits to the Seahawks and 49ers since free agency began.

Dunbar, 26, was on the verge of becoming a legit weapon out of the backfield for the Cowboys last season, racking up 21 receptions in just three full games, including 10 catches for 100 yards in Week 3 against the Falcons. However, in his fourth game, Dunbar suffered a torn ACL that sidelined him for the remainder of the season. While his upside will appeal to teams seeking a receiving option at running back, Dunbar will have to convince those clubs that he’ll be back to full health for the 2016 season.

Here’s more on free agency from around the NFL:

  • After visiting the Jets on Tuesday, wide receiver Chris Givens is meeting with the Eagles today, according to Schefter (via Twitter). Givens, who was traded from the Rams to the Ravens last October, was targeted 53 times in Baltimore, but only hauled in 19 of them for 346 yards and a touchdown.
  • In addition to confirming a pair of previously-reported visits, the Bills also announced today (via Twitter) that they’re hosting tight end Jim Dray for a Wednesday visit, and brought in wide receiver Deonte Thompson on Tuesday.
  • The Seahawks hosted free agent guard Amini Silatolu for a visit on Tuesday, tweets Adam Caplan of ESPN.com.The former-second pick, who also met with the Cardinals, hasn’t been a full-time starter since his rookie season in 2012, but he’s only 26 years old and could appeal to a Seattle team that doesn’t seem interested in spending a ton on its offensive line.
  • Free agent linebacker Sean Spence, having already visited the Dolphins and Jaguars, is meeting with the Titans on Wednesday, a source tells Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com (Twitter link). A third-round pick in 2012, Spence was limited to just 31 games during his four years with the Steelers due to injuries.
  • The Jets and Texans are both making an effort to sign free agent safety Antonio Allen, tweets Newsday’s Kimberley Martin. Allen, who visited Houston this week, missed the entire 2015 campaign with an Achilles injury.

RFA Tender Decisions: 3/9/16

Unrestricted free agent news will obviously dominate the day, but several clubs also had to make decisions on whether to offer tenders to restricted free agents. We’ll round up those decisions here:

Tendered

Non-Tendered

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/10/15

Here are Tuesday’s minor signings, cuts, and other moves from around the NFL:

  • The Saints have signed linebacker James Anderson, as Katherine Terrell of The Times-Picayune tweets. The Saints have been thin at linebacker recently, with injuries to strongside linebacker Hau’oli Kikaha (ankle), weakside linebacker Dannell Ellerbe (hip/groin), and backup Ramon Humber, so Anderson will provide additional depth for New Orleans. To make room for Anderson, the Saints have cut fellow linebacker Mike Mohamed, as Mike Triplett of ESPN.com tweets.
  • The Vikings announced that they have signed linebacker Jason Trusnik while placing fellow linebacker Audie Cole on IR. Trusnik, a former Division-III standout, was cut by the Panthers before the final trim down to a 53-man roster. He first broke into the league as a UDFA with the Jets in 2007. The Ohio native has played in 109 career games with 24 starts, tallying 146 total tackles, 4 PDs, 4 FRs and 1 FF in his first eight NFL seasons. Cole wasn’t a factor on the Vikings’ defense, but he was playing more than half of the club’s special teams snaps before fracturing his ankle.
  • The Giants announced that they have added defensive tackle Montori Hughes to the active roster while placing defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins on IR. Hankins suffered a torn pectoral muscle over the weekend, ending his 2015 season prematurely. Hughes, who stands at 6’4″ and weighs 350 pounds, played in 16 games for the Colts between 2013 and 2014.
  • The Browns announced that they have activated defensive back Charles Gaines and running back Glenn Winston. Both players were previously sidelined with injuries.
  • The Buccaneers announced that they have signed safety Kimario McFadden, who played with them in the preseason. To make room for McFadden on the 53-man roster, the Buccaneers waived defensive end Lawrence Sidbury.
  • The Chargers announced that they have signed tight end Sean McGrath while waiving guard Craig Watts. McGrath briefly retired following his second season in 2013, a season in which he caught 26 balls for 302 yards and two touchdowns.
  • The Chiefs will promote safety Saalim Hakim from the practice squad, Aaron Wilson of The Houston Chronicle tweets.
  • The Bears will promote wide receiver Deonte Thompson to the 53-man roster from the taxi squad, Brad Biggs of The Chicago Tribune tweets.

NFL Practice Squad Updates: 9/22/15

Here are Tuesday’s practice squad signings and cuts from around the NFL:

Arizona Cardinals

Carolina Panthers

  • Signed: WR Damiere Byrd (Twitter link via David Newton of ESPN.com)
  • Cut: LB Brian Blechen

Chicago Bears

Cleveland Browns

Dallas Cowboys

  • Signed: RB Gus Johnson (Twitter link via Charean Williams of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram)

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

  • Signed: T Tyrus Thompson (Twitter link via agent Ken Sarnoff)

Oakland Raiders

Philadelphia Eagles

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

  • Cut: WR Rannell Hall (Twitter link via Jenna Laine of Sports Talk Florida)