Dwayne Harris

Raiders Sign WR/KR Dwayne Harris

The Raiders may have located Cordarrelle Patterson‘s replacement on Monday night. They signed veteran return man Dwayne Harris.

Released by the Giants late last month, Harris spent most of the past three seasons as Big Blue’s primary kick returner. Oakland trading Patterson to New England vacated the team’s kick-return job, and Harris will bring extensive experience to that role.

Harris has a notable connection to the Raiders. The former Cowboys return man will be reunited with new Silver and Black special teams coordinator Rich Bisaccia, Dallas’ ST boss from 2012-17. Harris spent two seasons playing for Bisaccia before signing with the Giants as a free agent in 2015.

While Patterson is a more accomplished return man, with two first-team All-Pro honors on his resume, Harris has extensive seasoning as a dual-threat returner whereas Patterson only returns kickoffs. Harris worked as the Giants’ kick and punt returner for the past three seasons, doing so en route to a Pro Bowl nod in 2016. Harris, who signed a five-year contract to head to New York three years ago, spent most of last season on IR with a broken foot.

Set for his age-31 season, Harris stands to be one of the game’s older return men. He’s notched four career return touchdowns — three on punts, one via kickoff — and has sporadic experience as a wide receiver. Most of that work came for the 2016 Giants, who saw him catch 36 passes for 396 yards and four TDs. The Raiders relied on Patterson as a receiver off the bench last season. He caught 31 passes in his lone Raider season. Harris almost certainly won’t be expected to do that.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Giants Cut WR/KR Dwayne Harris

The Giants announced that they have released wide receiver/return specialist Dwayne Harris. Harris was set to begin his fourth season with the G-Men.

Harris broke out in 2016 with a kick return average of 28.7 yards and one kickoff returned 100 yards for a touchdown. He also returned 34 punts for an average of 10.0 yards per try and caught 36 passes for 396 yards and four TDs. He earned a Pro Bowl nod in 2016, but he was one of several Giants wide receivers to suffer a season-ending injury in the fall. The new regime apparently felt that Harris was not worth the money given his age and susceptibility to injuring his foot once more.

By releasing Harris, the Giants will save $2.45MM while eating $1.6MM in dead money. He’ll find a market in free agency, but it will be somewhat limited with his 31st birthday coming up in September.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Minor NFL Transactions: 10/9/17

Today’s minor moves:

Chicago Bears

Jacksonville Jaguars

Indianapolis Colts

  • Promoted to active roster: LB Darnell Sankey
  • Placed on IR: WR Krishawn Hogan

New York Giants

San Francisco 49ers

Dwayne Harris To Miss Rest Of Season

The Giants’ wide receivers endured one of the more brutal injury days to affect one position group in NFL history on Sunday, with four players leaving the game due to injury. Two of those players suffered severe injuries.

In addition to Odell Beckham Jr. fracturing a fibula, Dwayne Harris broke his foot and will miss the rest of the season, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets.

Harris has functioned as Big Blue’s kick returner since the 2015 season, when he signed with the Giants after a Cowboys tenure. He’s also served as a backup wide receiver for the Giants, who are suddenly in desperate need of those after both Brandon Marshall and Sterling Shepard left the team’s Week 5 outing. Roger Lewis was the only pure wideout left, and with the Giants only carrying five wide receivers, a slew of roster moves may be required to field a receiving corps next week against the Broncos.

The 30-year-old Harris finished as a Pro Bowl return man for the Giants last season. He’s returned both kicks and punts for the team since arriving, taking a kick and a punt back for touchdowns in 2015.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Contract Details: Folk, Hawley, Sensabaugh

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

Giants’ Dwayne Harris Takes Pay Cut

Giants wide receiver/kick returner Dwayne Harris had his contract restructured, according to NFLPA records obtained by ESPN.com’s Jordan Raanan. The Giants were reportedly thinking about cutting Harris if he did not agree to a pay cut. Dwayne Harris (vertical)

Harris had three years left on his contract and was due a $2.975MM base salary plus a $25K workout bonus this year. Now, he’ll have a more modest base salary of $2.475MM for 2017, giving the Giants $500K in savings. This was the logical outcome for both parties since a release would have saved the G-Men just $1.4MM against the cap with $2.4MM left in dead money.

Last year, Harris returned 29 punts for 170 yards (5.9 average) and took back 22 kickoffs for 533 yards (24.2 average), leading to his first career Pro Bowl nod. He’ll turn 30 in September.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Giants May Cut WR Dwayne Harris

The Giants seeking to restructure the deal of wide receiver Dwayne Harris, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets. If the Pro Bowl special teamer and the Giants cannot come to terms on a new deal, he could be released, according to a source close to the situation. Dwayne Harris (vertical)

[RELATED: Giants Sign WR Brandon Marshall]

The Giants gave Harris a sizable deal (by special teams standards) prior to the 2015 season in order to pry him away from the Cowboys. Harris is now slated to enter the third season of his five-year, $17.5MM contract ($7.1MM guaranteed), and it makes sense that the Giants would want to shave down that number. Harris will now have to weigh his potential market before making a call on a proposed pay cut. On one hand, he’s coming off of his first career Pro Bowl selection. On the other hand, he’s going to turn 30 in September, so he’s unlikely to fetch anything with significant long-term guarantees.

Last year, Harris returned 29 punts for 170 yards (5.9 average) and took back 22 kickoffs for 533 yards (24.2 average).

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFC East Notes: Bradford, Cox, Harris, Giants

For all of the Eagles’ fans who are getting excited about the team’s outlook heading into the season with Sam Bradford at the helm, Eliot Shorr-Parks of NJ.com is here to sober that optimism. He more or less tells the Philadelphia faithful to pump the breaks, pointing to the former first-overall pick’s poor record as a starter as well as his low completion percentage through this stage of his career. He doesn’t bury the fans for believing he will be good in Eagles green, but notes that they should be aware that they are rooting for him to dramatically turn his career around in a new city.

Here are some other notes from around the NFC East:

  • With Corey Liuget, Cameron Jordan, and Cameron Heyward all signing new and lucrative extensions this offseason, Eagles‘ 3-4 defensive end Fletcher Cox is becoming an overlooked commodity in Philadelphia, writes Joe Soriano of FanSided. Although Cox has been one of the best at his position according to Pro Football Focus since entering the league in 2012 (subscription required), he was dangled as trade bait in potential Marcus Mariota deals during the draft while his contemporaries are getting long-term commitments.
  • The Giants broke the bank in a move to sign return specialist Dwayne Harris away from the Cowboys offseason, and while the move was met with curiosity, Ryan Disdier writes that the team should see a great deal of value despite the high price tag, considering the inconsistency in their special teams recently.
  • The Giants also have a number of questions along their offensive line, including who should start at right tackle and center. Chris Schisler projects Justin Pugh at right tackle, although he believes Pugh would move to guard if they had a viable alternative, and picks Weston Richburg to start at center.

NFC Notes: Guion, Seahawks, Rams, Falcons

With Letroy Guion‘s legal case now resolved, the Packers continue to explore a potential reunion with the free agent defensive lineman, but it sounds like he’s drawing interest from the team that knocked Green Bay out of the postseason earlier this year. According to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter), Guion visited the Seahawks today.

More than other most other teams in the NFL, Seattle has shown a willingness to bring in players for visits without necessarily pushing hard to sign him, so there’s certainly no guarantee Guion will become a Seahawk, but it appears the Packers aren’t his only suitor.

Let’s check in on a few more Friday items from across the NFC….

  • Despite acquiring Nick Foles from the Eagles, the Rams still intend to draft a quarterback, according to head coach Jeff Fisher (link via Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch). Foles is entering the final year of his rookie contract, so St. Louis figures to use the 2015 season to determine whether or not the ex-Eagle can be the Rams’ QB of the future.
  • For now, T.J. Yates appears to be the favorite to back up starting quarterback Matt Ryan in Atlanta, but Falcons head coach Dan Quinn hasn’t ruled out the possibility of signing a veteran like Matt Schaub, writes Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com. “Schaub is certainly somebody that we could [add],” Quinn said. “As we get through it, we’ll let you know if we go down that road.”
  • The Giants‘ five-year, $17.5MM contract for Dwayne Harris, which includes $7.1MM in guaranteed money, has taken its share of criticism over the last couple weeks. However, agent Chad Speck tells Jordan Raanan of NJ.com that 14 teams reached out to him about Harris, and the Giants “weren’t the only team involved in the numbers that Dwayne ultimately signed for.”
  • A pair of prospects who were dismissed from their respective college teams will visit the Vikings, according to Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities, who reports (via Twitter) that the team is scheduled to host cornerback Marcus Peters and wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham.

Giants Sign Dwayne Harris

WEDNESDAY, 9:41pm: The Giants announced that Harris’ signing is official, Ralph Vacchiano of the New York Daily News tweets.

TUESDAY, 3:46pm: The Giants have signed former Cowboys receiver and kick returner Dwayne Harris, according to Charles Davis of Fox Sports. Rand Getlin of Yahoo Sports! reports that Harris’ deal is for five years at $3.5MM per season. It includes $7.1MM in guarantees.

Dallas chose Harris in the sixth round of the 2011 draft and he ultimately appeared in 45 games for the club, all since 2012. The 27-year-old caught 33 passes during his time with the Cowboys and finished ninth in the NFL in both kick and punt return yardage in 2014. He was second in the league in both kick return yardage and yards per return in 2013.