Pro Football RumorsPro Football Rumors NFL Rumors: Trades, Free Agency, Draft Sun, 18 Aug 2019 23:09:40 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Latest On Raiders, Antonio Brown Sun, 18 Aug 2019 22:01:29 +0000 Antonio Brown missed another Raiders practice on Sunday. While Brown is still dealing with feet issues, Mike Mayock confirmed this latest absence was related to his helmet. The Raiders’ supportive tone has shifted.

He’s upset about the helmet issue. We have supported that; we appreciate that,” Mayock said, via Vic Tafur of The Athletic (video link). “At this point, we’ve pretty much exhausted all avenues of relief. From our perspective, it’s time for him to be all-in or all-out.”

The first-year GM reiterated hope Brown will be a major part of this new Raider regime’s attempt at a bounce-back season, but the team is clearly frustrated with its trade acquisition’s recent antics. An arbitrator ruled in favor of the NFL regarding Brown’s helmet grievance, and despite the four-time All-Pro finding a slightly newer model of his since-discontinued helmet, he’s been informed it failed an NOCSAE test.

Mayock’s comments run counter to Jon Gruden‘s last weekend. Oakland’s HC expressed support for Brown on both the helmet and foot fronts. A week later, it appears the 31-year-old superstar is testing the limits of another franchise.

The ball will be in Brown’s court. Mayock’s comment comes after the 10th-year wideout said the report of him again threatening to retire was false. We’re back in a holding pattern with Brown, whose holding pattern in Pittsburgh earlier this year led to his Bay Area relocation.

I don’t know where they got that from, or who made that up, either,” Brown said, via NBC Sports Bay Area’s Scott Bair. “Why would I retire, man? I have a beautiful career. I’m healthy. I love to play the game.”

Brown reported back to the Raiders after his helmet grievance failed. But he has not given up in his interesting quest at headgear continuity. Brown’s camp said this week the Raiders informed Brown if he found a newer model (made since 2010) of the helmet he’s worn throughout his career it could be certified by the NOCSAE, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk reports. It was not. The camp also believes the NFL moved to keep the receiver from wearing a newer model of the helmet, with a 2011 Schutt AiR Advantage model only failing to pass the league’s new safety-based guidelines once Brown caused this stir. Nevertheless, the Schutt AiR Advantage helmet is banned, Bair tweets.

However, the NFL and NFLPA worked together in the process that led to Brown’s latest helmet solution being tested (and failing), Tom Pelissero of reports (on Twitter). The sides jointly said earlier this week the helmet would be tested in the same lab as the other league-approved helmets. Both the league and the union concurred Brown will not be allowed to wear that helmet in games.

While Brown is losing this battle, and is the only player waging it, he is clearly not going down without a fight.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Eagles Release LB Paul Worrilow Sun, 18 Aug 2019 20:59:46 +0000 Paul Worrilow‘s bid to shake off his 2018 injury and be part of this latest Eagles edition will come up short, with Field Yates of reporting (via Twitter) the team released the veteran linebacker.

Despite Worrilow’s initial Eagles pact preceding a season-nullifying injury, the team re-signed him this offseason. Being a vested veteran, Worrilow will venture back to free agency.

The former Falcons and Lions linebacker suffered a torn ACL early in the 2018 Eagles’ offseason program and has yet to fully recover. He suited up for 13 Lions games in 2017, starting eight. A team will surely need to see the 29-year-old defender show he is healthy before signing him going forward.

A Falcons UDFA, Worrilow became an immediate NFL success story by being a full-time Atlanta starter for three seasons. The team used him as a depth player during its NFC championship 2016 season and let him walk during the 2017 free agency period.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Patriots Release Dontrelle Inman, Place Josh Gordon On NFI List Sun, 18 Aug 2019 20:54:35 +0000 Dontrelle Inman‘s run with the Patriots will end before the regular season. The Patriots are releasing the veteran wideout, Nick Underhill of The Athletic tweets. The veteran wideout requested this move, and the team will oblige, per Mike Reiss of (on Twitter).

This move will clear a path for Josh Gordon to make his way back onto New England’s roster. The Pats placed Gordon on their active/NFI list, Field Yates of tweets. Gordon’s return indeed prompted Inman’s agent to seek a release for his client, per Ian Rapoport of (on Twitter).

Inman joins a slew of notable veteran receivers the Patriots have parted ways with over the past two offseasons, following the likes of Kenny Britt, Eric Decker, Jordan Matthews and Bruce Ellington. Inman, 30, has produced fairly consistently when given the opportunity. He caught eight passes for 108 yards in the Colts’ two playoff games last season, and his abbreviated 2018 regular-season work graded well, per Football Outsiders. But the former Chargers auxiliary cog has not been able to stick around anywhere for long since leaving southern California.

Despite arriving in Indianapolis midseason, Inman recorded 28 receptions for 304 yards and three touchdowns. His best season, which featured 810 yards and four TDs, came with the 2016 Chargers. While teams have not viewed him as more than a stopgap, Inman nevertheless profiles as someone who could be an intriguing depth target for another team.

The NFL reinstated Gordon on Friday. The former All-Pro would be eligible for Week 1, once he comes off the Pats’ NFI list by August 31, and would then be in line to again be a key Patriots weapon. Bill Belichick did not commit to Gordon, but the Patriots tendering him as a restricted free agent this offseason provides a fairly clear indicator they are interested in a second Gordon season.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Browns Eyeing Free Agent Kickers Sun, 18 Aug 2019 19:57:32 +0000 Both Browns kickers — incumbent Greg Joseph and fifth-round rookie Austin Seibert — missed their only field goal tries Saturday night. Although each came from beyond 50 yards, the Browns are now considering bringing in additional competition.

Freddie Kitchens said he and John Dorsey have discussed adding another kicker to their mix, Mary Kay Cabot of notes.

While it would certainly be odd for the Browns to go elsewhere, after spending a mid-Day 3 pick on one of the nation’s best college kickers, teams are quicker to give up on kicker draft picks than they are at nearly every other position. The Browns did this just last year, cutting 2017 seventh-rounder Zane Gonzalez two games into last season.

To me, those critical errors are just as important as the missed field goals themselves because we’ve got to put them in a better position to make them. But are they expected to make a 53-yard field goal? Yes they are,” Kitchens said, via Cabot. “Am I concerned about it? No, because we’re not playing for real yet, but I will be.”

Joseph made 17 of 20 field goal attempts last season and went 1-for-2 from beyond 50 yards. Seibert was 17-for-19 as an Oklahoma senior and kicked for the Sooners for four years. Joseph made a 43-yarder in Cleveland’s preseason opener but missed an extra point. Seibert has yet to miss a PAT in his brief time as a pro.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Colt McCoy To Miss Regular-Season Time? Sun, 18 Aug 2019 19:42:50 +0000 Signs are pointing toward Case Keenum piloting the Redskins’ offense when the season begins. With Dwayne Haskins still in developmental mode, Colt McCoy‘s injury setback will point Keenum toward taking a fourth team’s snaps in four years.

Listed as the Redskins’ starter on their first depth chart this year, McCoy missed the team’s second preseason game and now is without a firm return timetable. Jay Gruden acknowledged (via’s Adam Schefter, on Twitter) Sunday his longtime backup may miss multiple games this season. At the very least, it appears McCoy is a ways away from coming back.

The broken leg he suffered took most of the offseason to surmount, and McCoy has yet to completely clear the final hurdles of this journey. McCoy visited foot specialist Dr. Robert Anderson recently about his right leg, with John Keim of tweeting the issue continues to be McCoy’s inability to push off of that foot without pain. Gruden said he will not put the veteran passer back out there until he is absolutely ready.

Keenum took the Week 1 snaps for the 2016 Rams and 2018 Broncos and played most of the way for the 2017 Vikings in what was easily his most successful season. McCoy has been with the Redskins since Robert Griffin III was ahead of Kirk Cousins on the depth chart. The former Texas standout received one start last season, following Alex Smith‘s injury, but broke his leg during that game. One season, at $3MM, remains on McCoy’s contract.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC South Rumors: Texans, Colts, Lee, Titans Sun, 18 Aug 2019 19:23:45 +0000 Drafted to be the Texans‘ hopeful left tackle of the future, Tytus Howard has since been relocated to left guard (with Matt Kalil winning the left-edge job) and has now broken a finger. The rookie blocker suffered the break in Houston’s preseason game against Detroit on Saturday night, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle tweets. Coming from a Division I-FCS program, and tasked with learning one of the most difficult positions at which to acclimate in the NFL, Howard needs all the reps he can get early on in his career. But this malady is not expected to keep him out of the Texans’ Week 1 game against the Saints, Wilson adds. Howard is in line to be the team’s starting left guard. This injury, in theory, could force the team to adjust those plans.

Here is the latest from the AFC South, shifting to perhaps the division’s most important player:

  • Frank Reich does not want to wait much longer on Andrew Luck‘s recovery. The second-year Colts coach wants to name his Week 1 starter shortly after the team’s third preseason game, and while Luck doing pregame drills before Indianapolis’ second August contest was a positive development, this saga may not wrap up in a week. It’s been the side-to-side movements that have bothered Luck’s ankle and calf injuries most, Mike Wells of notes. But Luck not only did some lateral-movement work before Saturday’s game, Wells adds the 29-year-old passer has done workouts like that in private in recent days. The Colts, who will re-evaluate Luck midweek, are cautiously optimistic he will be available for Week 1.
  • Another AFC South talent is uncertain for Week 1, but Marqise Lee returned to Jaguars practice this week. This obviously increases the sixth-year wideout’s chances for being available come September. Doug Marrone expressed doubt about this recently, but Lee — sidelined throughout 2018 due to ACL damage — returned to work Saturday.
  • The Colts‘ injury situation at receiver has helped one of their incumbents. Once thought to be a bubble player, Chester Rogers is headed back to Indy’s 53-man roster. The former Ryan Grigson-era draft choice is the Colts’ top return man, Reich said (via the Indianapolis Star’s Joel Erickson, on Twitter). Parris Campbell remains sidelined because of a hamstring injury, Erickson tweets.
  • Indianapolis’ revamped receiving corps will not include Reece Fountain. Reich confirmed the 2018 fifth-rounder underwent ankle surgery Friday and will miss the season (Twitter links via CBS4’s Mike Chappell).
  • The Titans are still deciding on their right guard. While veteran utility man Kevin Pamphile would seemingly have the inside track to start opposite Rodger Saffold next month, the team drafted Nate Davis in Round 3 and has 2017 sixth-rounder Corey Levin. Although Pamphile started opposite Saffold on Saturday, each of these players are in the mix. Former Dolphins draftee Jamil Douglas may be in the running as well. Mike Vrabel does not plan to name a starter until after the Titans’ dress-rehearsal preseason game next weekend, Jim Wyatt of notes. Douglas has not played in a game since 2016; Levin suited up for all 16 Titan games last season. An injury limited Pamphile to three 2018 contests (two starts).
Bears Waive K Elliott Fry Sun, 18 Aug 2019 17:15:36 +0000 The Bears have waived kicker Elliott Fry, the team announced. That leaves Eddy Pineiro as the only kicker on the roster at the moment.

However, Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune cautions that the decision to waive Fry, an AAF alumnus whom the the Bears signed in April, does not mean that Pineiro has won the team’s much-discussed kicking competition (Twitter link). Indeed, Biggs suggests that a to-be-released player from another organization is likely to open the season as the Bears’ kicker, and Ian Rapoport of confirms (via Twitter) that Chicago remains in the market for kicking help.

The Bears’ kicking game issues in 2018, which ended in heartbreak in the wildcard round of the NFC playoffs, led the team to cast a wide net for answers. Chicago acquired Pineiro in a trade with the Raiders in May, and the club also signed Chris BlewittJohn Baron II, and Redford Jones since their playoff loss to the Eagles. All candidates but Pineiro have been waived.

Fry missed his only FG attempt in the team’s preseason loss to the Giants on Friday. Adam Jahns of The Athletic notes that both Fry and Pineiro have struggled with accuracy and consistency in spring practices and training camp, though Pineiro clearly has the stronger leg (Twitter link).

The Bears were reportedly interested in Kaare Vedvik, but he was traded to the division-rival Vikings last week.

Former NFL RB Cedric Benson Passes Away At 36 Sun, 18 Aug 2019 16:47:43 +0000 Former NFL running back Cedric Benson was killed in a motorcycle crash on Saturday, per Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune (citing reports from multiple outlets). Benson’s passenger was also killed, and two others were injured. Benson was just 36.

After a stellar collegiate career at Texas — he rushed for over 1,000 yards in all four years with the Longhorns, including an 1,834-yard effort in his senior season — Benson was selected by the Bears in the first round (No. 4 overall) of the 2005 draft. As Biggs reminds us, Chicago already had Thomas Jones on the roster when Benson was drafted, so the latter’s career never really took off in the Windy City.

The Bears traded Jones to the Jets in 2007, but Benson struggled in his first year as the Bears’ No. 1 RB, and he was cut in June 2008 after his second alcohol-related arrest in five weeks. He was not indicted on either incident, though, and he caught on with the Bengals in September 2008. He posted 747 yards on 214 totes for a mediocre 3.5 YPC in his first year in Cincy before finally showing off his first-round credentials in 2009. From 2009-11, Benson averaged 1,143 rushing yards and over six touchdowns per season.

He signed with the Packers in August 2012 but played in only five games for Green Bay before suffering a foot injury that landed him on IR. That would be his last year in the NFL, and he ended his career with 6,017 rushing yards and 32 TDs on 1,600 carries to go along with 833 receiving yards and a receiving score.

Benson also dealt with legal troubles stemming from DUI/DWI arrests over the past couple of years, though it is presently unclear whether the accident that claimed his life was alcohol-related.

We at PFR offer our condolences to Benson’s friends and family, as well as to the friends and family of his passenger.

NFC East Notes: McCown, Treadwell, Cowboys Sun, 18 Aug 2019 16:23:45 +0000 The Eagles made a surprising decision to sign Josh McCown out of retirement on Saturday, and the fact that they gave McCown a $2MM guarantee suggests that he is a lock to make the roster. Indeed, Eliot Shorr-Parks of 94 WIP reports that Philadelphia was trying to sign McCown even before presumptive QB2 Nate Sudfeld was sidelined with a wrist injury (Twitter link). Shorr-Parks notes in a separate tweet that HC Doug Pederson declined to say whether Sudfeld will remain the primary backup. Pederson said he will figure that out when Sudfeld heals.

Let’s round up a few more NFC East items:

  • Former first-round pick Laquon Treadwell is on the trade block, and Matt Lombardo of believes the Giants could make a play for him. Treadwell played under New York head coach Pat Shurmur when the latter served as the Vikings’ offensive coordinator, and Shurmur held the Ole Miss product in high regard not that long ago. Given the current state of the Giants’ WR depth chart, Lombardo suggests it would be reasonable for Big Blue to send a sixth- or seventh-round pick to Minnesota to see if a change of scenery can unlock some of Treadwell’s potential.
  • Cowboys owner Jerry Jones may not want to meet QB Dak Prescott‘s asking price — said to be at least $35MM per year — but he confirmed that Prescott’s eventual contract will put him in the top tier of quarterbacks. Jones said, “[a] lot of people question whether Dak is one of those guys that need to be in the top tier. I’ve never questioned that. I don’t think there’s any doubt that he’s in the top level of paid quarterbacks…Now, how do we make this all fit and what can we do to have the best team around him? That’s what we’re trying to work on” (Twitter link via Jon Machota of The Athletic).
  • Tony Pollard‘s performance in training camp and the preseason may be giving the Cowboys a little leverage in their contract talks with Ezekiel Elliott, and Jones said “Zeke who?” when asked if Pollard is becoming the team’s best negotiator with Elliott (Twitter link via Machota). Jones made it clear he was joking and said he believes Pollard will be an excellent complement to, and not a replacement for, Elliott (in case you missed it, we heard this morning that Elliott will not face criminal charges for the altercation between him and a security guard in May).
  • Despite spending the entire 2018 season out of football, Cowboys WR Devin Smith has a legitimate chance of cracking the team’s roster, as Machota tweets. Smith caught a TD pass in Dallas’ preseason contest on Saturday, and his play has been very strong over the past week. The former Jets second-rounder signed a reserve/futures deal with the Cowboys in January.
AFC North Notes: Burns, Young, Browns Sun, 18 Aug 2019 15:22:22 +0000 Steelers CB Artie Burns, a 2016 first-round pick, was widely considered to be on the club’s roster bubble this summer, and even after he earned an $800K roster bonus at the end of July, there was still some chatter that he could be sent packing. But as Mark Kaboly of The Athletic writes, Burns has quieted those rumors with a strong training camp, and he excelled in Pittsburgh’s preseason contest against the Chiefs on Saturday. He is eligible for unrestricted free agency in 2020 since the Steelers declined his fifth-year option, and his contract year has gotten off to a great start. He now has a legitimate chance to be the team’s No. 3 corner.

Now for more from the AFC North:

  • Kaboly notes in a separate piece that the Steelers may be on the lookout for a veteran TE and/or punter on the free agent market.
  • Ravens slot corner Tavon Young may miss the entire 2019 campaign due to a serious neck injury, but Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic says Young is still weighing his options with respect to surgery (Twitter link). Initial reports suggested that Baltimore believes Young should get surgery, which would likely allow him to return at full-strength for the 2020 season, but Young remains undecided. If he doesn’t get surgery and allows the injury to heal on its own, he could potentially return in 2019, but if the injury doesn’t heal, he may miss some of 2020. Either way, he will almost certainly open this season on IR.
  • Ravens guard Marshal Yanda is dealing with an ankle/foot injury and will not play in either of the club’s remaining preseason games, as Jamison Hensley of tweets. However, HC John Harbaugh expects the seven-time Pro Bowler to be ready to go for Week 1.
  • Garrett Gilbert played well in the Browns‘ preseason victory over the Colts on Saturday, but head coach Freddie Kitchens foreclosed any potential chatter of a QB2 battle by declaring that Drew Stanton will be the club’s backup QB (via Mary Kay Cabot of Still, Cabot writes that Gilbert’s performance likely earned the AAF alumnus a spot on the roster.
  • Jaelen Strong was signed by the Browns in February, and he has played well over the past several weeks. He found the endzone in Saturday’s game, and Tony Grossi of suggests that the former Texans’ third-rounder is closing in on a roster spot (Twitter link).
Matt Kalil Named Texans’ Starting LT Sun, 18 Aug 2019 14:05:49 +0000 Earlier this month, it was reported that Matt Kalil was the frontrunner to open the season as the Texans’ starting LT. However, the fact that Roderick Johnson started in Kalil’s place in Saturday’s preseason contest led some to wonder whether there was still an open competition for the job.

Head coach Bill O’Brien unequivocally shot down that notion, telling reporters that Kalil will be Houston’s starting left tackle, as Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle writes. Kalil did not practice on Thursday after getting his foot stepped on during practice on Wednesday, but O’Brien said that did not have anything to do with his decision to keep Kalil on the sidelines. Rather, the Texans’ HC said Kalil would play in the team’s third preseason contest and that he is simply trying to manage the 30-year-old’s snaps.

Indeed, Kalil missed all of last season with a knee injury and he played just two games in 2016, so it’s understandable that the Texans would want to be cautious with him. The team’s O-line was its biggest weakness in 2018, and while Houston also added tackle Tytus Howard in the first round of this year’s draft, Howard is expected to begin his pro career at left guard.

Kalil’s injury history and Howard’s status as a small school rookie make it fair to wonder whether the Texans’ offensive front will actually be improved this year, but the club appears to be confident in that regard. Their performance will go a long way in determining Houston’s 2019 fate.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

No Criminal Charges For Ezekiel Elliott Sun, 18 Aug 2019 13:33:33 +0000 We learned back in July that Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott would not be suspended for an altercation between him and a security guard in Las Vegas in May. However, that security guard did elect to file charges against Elliott, so the running back was not completely out of the woods.

Until now. A source tells Clarence E. Hill Jr. of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram that Elliott will not be charged in connection with the alleged assault. Hill reports that members of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department met with prosecutors at the end of July, and prosecutors determined they could not move forward with the case.

Hill adds that Elliott, who has been working out in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, as he continues to hold out for a new contract, has returned to Dallas for a “brief respite.” However, there has been no progress on a new deal between Zeke and the Cowboys, and the star RB is expected to return to Cabo shortly.

In the meantime, rookie fourth-rounder Tony Pollard continues to impress in preseason action, which may or may not give Dallas a little more leverage in their negotiations with Elliott.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Raiders Notes: Brown, Peterman, Good Sun, 18 Aug 2019 00:38:56 +0000 We’ve got a new twist in the seemingly never-ending Antonio Brown saga. The last we had heard, the NFL had given the Raiders receiver the go-ahead to find a helmet of his usual model that was less than ten years old. The league had told him he would be able to play in it if he could find one less than ten years old, but they apparently changed course and told him the new helmet would still need to be tested, a source told Mike Florio of Brown was able to find “several” of the Schutt AiR Advantage helmets made in the last ten years, but “earlier today, Brown was informed that the helmet failed the test,” Florio writes.

Brown has already reported back to the Raiders, so hopefully this doesn’t cause too much new drama. He had appeared to have gotten over the helmet issue, before this potential loophole came to light. Unfortunately, this doesn’t appear to be the final word on the helmet. The same source told Florio that “we haven’t heard the last of Brown on this issue,” so we should all buckle up. It’s hard to see what his next move would be, although he apparently has at least one more trick up his sleeve. We’ll keep you posted when we find out what it is.

Here’s more from Oakland:

  • Speaking of Brown, he at least seems to be headed in the right direction health-wise. Brown appears to be almost over his foot issue, and Raiders coach Jon Gruden said “I think so, yeah,” when asked earlier today if Brown would be a full participant in practice soon, per Paul Gutierrez of Gruden added that “he took all the reps today in our walkthrough.” Raiders quarterback Derek Carr said “you can tell Antonio’s been studying because he came out and didn’t miss a beat,” and that Brown “was a part of everything we did today.” While the helmet issue doesn’t seem to be going away, it looks like Brown’s frostbitten feet won’t be a story moving forward.
  • There’s been a lot of talk about Oakland’s backup quarterbacks this offseason, mostly due to the infamy of Nathan Peterman. Gruden caused quite the uproar a few weeks ago when he heaped praise on Peterman, leading many to believe he had a legitimate shot to become Carr’s primary clipboard holder. That being said, Vic Tafur of The Athletic predicts he’ll end up getting cut in his new 53-man roster projection. Mike Glennon has been impressive during the preseason, so this isn’t too surprising. There’s also a chance the Raiders decide to keep three quarterbacks because of Gruden’s affinity for Peterman. Notably, Tafur also projects veteran receiver Ryan Grant and defensive tackle Justin Ellis, who just got a $15MM extension last offseason, to miss the cut.
  • More good injury news for the Raiders, as guard Denzelle Good has been activated off the PUP list and will return to practice, Tafur tweets. “That’s huge for us,” Gruden said. He’s not wrong, as the Raiders are very thin at guard at the moment. Gabe Jackson is currently sidelined with a knee injury and Richie Incognito is suspended for the first two games of the season, so Oakland will be without both of their starting guards in Week 1. Good started three games at guard for the Raiders last season after being claimed off waivers from the Colts. He’ll now presumably join the competition to fill in for Jackson and Incognito. The Raiders are also said to be exploring the trade market for veteran guards.
Minor NFL Transactions: 8/17/19 Sat, 17 Aug 2019 23:40:15 +0000 Today’s minor moves:

Baltimore Ravens

  • Waived/injured: Mike Onuoha

Oakland Raiders

  • Signed: OL Cameron Hunt
  • Waived: WR Jordan Lasley

Philadelphia Eagles

Washington Redskins

  • Signed: LB Gary Johnson
  • Placed on IR: LB Myles Humphrey
Jets Sign LB Albert McClellan Sat, 17 Aug 2019 22:41:37 +0000 In the wake of Avery Williamson‘s unfortunate ACL tear, the Jets are making a move. The team is signing linebacker Albert McClellan, a source told Ian Rapoport of NFL Network (Twitter link).

Williamson’s injury left the Jets thin at linebacker, so this move makes some sense. McClellan spent the first nine seasons of his career with Baltimore, but was cut by the Ravens early on last season. He latched on with the Patriots and spent the last couple months of the year with New England, ultimately earning his second Super Bowl ring in the process.

McClellan has always been known as an elite special teamer, but he’s also capable of playing defense. He missed the entire 2017 campaign with an ACL tear, but he started 11 games in 2016. For his career, McClellan has appeared in 103 games and made 24 starts. He played almost exclusively on special teams for the Pats, making only four tackles in seven games.

McClellan certainly won’t be able to replace Williamson, who was supposed to be the Jets’ defensive signal-caller, by himself. But he is a decent cheap depth piece to add this late in the process, and can contribute in a pinch. That being said Williamson was Pro Football Focus’ No. 18 traditional linebacker last season, so this move doesn’t come close to making them whole.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.