Pro Football RumorsPro Football Rumors https://www.profootballrumors.com NFL Rumors: Trades, Free Agency, Draft Sat, 20 Apr 2019 02:57:16 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8.9 Extra Points: Wilson, Vikings, McLeod, AAF https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/extra-points-seahawks-wilson-vikings-reiff-elflein-eagles-mcleod-aaf https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/extra-points-seahawks-wilson-vikings-reiff-elflein-eagles-mcleod-aaf#respond Sat, 20 Apr 2019 02:49:48 +0000 https://www.profootballrumors.com/?p=140040 More details of Russell Wilson‘s landmark extension are emerging. Wilson’s 2020 and ’21 base salaries — $19MM apiece — will become fully guaranteed if he is on the Seahawks roster five days after Super Bowls LIV and LV, respectively. With that a near-certainty, Wilson’s $107MM in total guarantees are practically full guarantees. Wilson will earn a $19MM base salary in 2022 and ’23, according to OverTheCap. This deal leaves Wilson with cap numbers of $26.29MM (2019), $31MM (2020), $32MM (’21), $37MM (’22) and $39MM (’23). The eighth-year quarterback’s base salary was slated to be $17MM this year; the new deal converted much of that money into a signing bonus, with Wilson now attached to a $5MM base in 2019. The new contract raised Wilson’s 2019 cap number by just $1MM. Additionally, the contract includes a $6MM escalator clause — which would bring the total dollar figure up to $146MM — for Wilson’s 2023 salary, per CBS Sports’ Joel Corry (on Twitter). Unspecified performance-based incentives from 2020-22 can bump the Pro Bowler’s $21MM salary in 2023 to $27MM.

Here is the latest from around the American football landscape:

  • The Vikings are considering moving left tackle Riley Reiff to left guard, but it appears that is contingent on how the draft goes. Reiff will likely only move inside if Minnesota selects a first-round tackle, per Dave Campbell of the Associated Press. Reiff has only played tackle in the NFL. The Vikings “wouldn’t hesitate” to move center Pat Elflein to guard, Campbell adds, but that will also be contingent on the draft. Minnesota failing to add a center worth relocating Elflein would presumably nix that move. Either way, the Vikings’ embattled line will likely look a bit different post-draft.
  • Rodney McLeod will not participate in the Eagles‘ offseason program. The veteran safety, who tore his ACL in Week 3 of last season, is aiming for a training camp return, the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Les Bowen notes. McLeod took a major pay cut this offseason, slashing his 2019 salary from $7.5MM to $1.5MM. That can become $4MM, should McLeod play in all 16 Eagles games, Bowen adds. He played in 16 games in each season from 2012-16 and had missed just two in his career prior to the 2018 injury. McLeod signed a five-year deal in 2016, but the contract is now a four-year pact. The restructure voided the 2020 season.
  • No last-ditch effort will save the Alliance of American Football. The league filed for bankruptcy this week. “Pursuant to the bankruptcy laws, a trustee will be empowered to resolve all matters related to the AAF’s remaining assets and liabilities, including ongoing matters related to player contracts,” the league said in a statement. The AAF abruptly halted operations earlier this month, leaving a messy trail of financial turmoil after an eight-game season.
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Antonio Brown’s Contract Demands Nixed Offer Of First-Round Pick? https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/antonio-browns-contract-demands-nixed-offer-of-first-round-pick https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/antonio-browns-contract-demands-nixed-offer-of-first-round-pick#respond Sat, 20 Apr 2019 02:13:13 +0000 https://www.profootballrumors.com/?p=140041 Antonio Brown‘s offseason has produced numerous headlines, that spree continuing after his arrival in Oakland. But not a ton of clarity emerged on what other offers the Steelers received for their perennial All-Pro wide receiver.

The Raiders swooped in after the Bills’ brief talks regarding Brown ended without a deal, landing a player on course for the Hall of Fame for third- and fifth-round picks. Interested teams had issues with Brown’s demand for a new contract, one of which apparently was ready to submit a much better proposal to the Steelers.

Brown’s financial demands stopped at least one team from offering a first-round pick, Jeremy Fowler and Paul Gutierrez of ESPN.com report. Had the 30-year-old wideout been available without seeking another new contract, the ESPN duo notes Pittsburgh may well have acquired an extra first-round pick — presumably in 2019. However, teams knew a month prior to the trade that acquiring the mercurial wideout meant negotiating a new contract.

A slew of suitors emerged for Brown, in addition to the Bills, the Eagles, Saints, Titans and Redskins among them. The Bills were believed to be ready to swap first-rounders with the Steelers and part with two mid-round picks. That is the best known offer for Brown, and Fowler reports the Steelers felt strongly about the Bills’ proposal. The Patriots were indeed interested as well but the Steelers held firm on their stance not to do a deal with them.

After some convincing, the Raiders agreed to amend Brown’s contract. The Steelers dropped their asking price to those third- and fifth-rounders, with Kevin Colbert optimistic about the teams trying again — after some failed early talks on March 8 — to get a deal done. Brown ended up with $30MM in additional guarantees. The Steelers hold the Raiders’ No. 66 and No. 141 overall picks.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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Draft Notes: Jones, Brown, Bills, Raiders https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/draft-notes-jones-brown-qbs-gary-bills-oliver-fant-raiders-49ers https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/draft-notes-jones-brown-qbs-gary-bills-oliver-fant-raiders-49ers#comments Sat, 20 Apr 2019 00:50:44 +0000 https://www.profootballrumors.com/?p=140036 Beyond Kyler Murray‘s long-rumored Cardinals fit, landing spots for this draft’s other top quarterbacks are difficult to determine. But Daniel Jones, despite not exactly having impressive college statistics, has gained more steam as a first-round pick. One team has the Duke prospect as the top quarterback on its board, according to Yahoo.com’s Charles Robinson (on Twitter). The Giants are believed to be high on him. So are the Patriots. While one scout wondered (via Ryan Dunleavy of NJ.com) if the former Blue Devils signal-caller would slip to the third round had he not played under David Cutcliffe, who coached both Manning brothers when they were college passers, another scout and a former GM said (via NBC Sports Washington’s Ben Standig) they each would take Jones over Drew Lock. It certainly looks Jones will land in the first round next week.

Here is the latest from the 2019 draft talent pool:

  • Another first-round hopeful, Marquise Brown, also looks like a lock to hear his name called Thursday. The Oklahoma-honed speedster may be the only guaranteed wideout to go off the board in Round 1, Matt Miller of Bleacher Report notes, after speaking with NFL staffers. Said execs then place Ole Miss alums D.K. Metcalf and A.J. Brown as possible first-rounders, per Miller. That would stand to make the second round potentially filled with receiver investments. The 49ers have some names in mind.
  • On the subject of the 49ers, they visited with tight end Noah Fant recently, per Sirius XM Radio’s Alex Marvez (on Twitter). This profiles as an interesting use of a visit, with the 49ers closely connected to Nick Bosa at No. 2 and not needing a tight end. But San Francisco did do well with its past Iowa investment at this position, with George Kittle breaking out in a major way in 2018.
  • Despite Rashan Gary‘s past as a top-10 national recruit and his Combine performance, another report has indicated his stock has dipped a bit. After a Thursday report pointed to the Michigan defensive lineman dropping, Miller adds teams are concerned about how little his athleticism translated to production (9.5 sacks in three seasons). Additionally, Miller doubles down on the medical concerns surrounding Gary. Some scouts believe there will be issues on that front, potentially with Gary’s shoulder, which was a trouble spot during his Wolverines run.
  • Ed Oliver‘s stock has risen a bit in the days leading up to the draft, and the Bills are in play for the interior defender at No. 9, Miller writes, adding Buffalo wants to add a bona fide interior pass-rushing presence to complement the space-eating defensive tackles it currently employs.
  • The Raiders ditched their scouting staff going into the draft and are expected to overhaul the department under new GM Mike Mayock. On draft weekend, Oakland’s non-Mayock/Jon Gruden staffers involved in the three-day event will be assistant director of player personnel Trey Scott and director of football administration Tom Delaney, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com tweets. Delaney has been with the Raiders dating back to the first Gruden era; Scott rose to his current position under Reggie McKenzie‘s watch two years ago.
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Several Teams Interested In Frank Clark https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/several-teams-interested-in-frank-clark https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/several-teams-interested-in-frank-clark#comments Fri, 19 Apr 2019 23:32:46 +0000 https://www.profootballrumors.com/?p=140031 While it would appear Frank Clark would be a critical part of the Seahawks’ core going forward, being by far the franchise’s top edge rusher, he continues to be mentioned as a trade candidate.

Several teams are interested in Clark, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports (video link). This will-they/won’t-they saga will “definitely” be settled by draft time, Rapoport adds.

Pete Carroll said the standout defensive end will be part of the 2019 Seahawks, and the team used its franchise tag for the first time in nine years in order to retain Clark. Negotiations began on a new deal earlier this offseason, and the sides made progress in early March. But it’s not certain if they’ve closed the gap since. It’s possible the Cowboys’ subsequent $21MM-AAV deal for DeMarcus Lawrence has complicated the Clark talks. Like Lawrence did before his extension, Clark has said he will not report to training camp without a new deal.

Clark may be able to fetch a first-round pick. At 25, he is two years younger than Dee Ford — who netted the Chiefs a 2020 second-rounder in a tag-and-trade swap with the 49ers — and has been more consistent. Although Clark became a Week 1 starter for the first time last season, he registered 19 sacks between the 2016-17 slates prior to his 13-sack 2018. But his departure would obviously leave a major hole on Seattle’s depth chart, especially considering the team does not have a surefire starter opposite Clark.

Teams were interested in a Clark tag-and-trade transaction at free agency’s outset, but the Seahawks are believed to only be motivated to move the fifth-year player if they are blown away by an offer. The Seahawks just authorized a record-breaking Russell Wilson contract, but John Schneider said the quarterback’s deal will not impact Clark’s situation. Following the Wilson re-up, the Seahawks hold just more than $9MM in cap space.

Schneider said recently he would like to acquire additional draft capital this year. No team holds fewer than the Seahawks’ six picks. Although Seattle often gains draft picks by trading back in the first round, trading Clark would obviously be a way to procure at least one high-value choice.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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Giants Zeroing In On Dwayne Haskins? https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/giants-zeroing-in-on-dwayne-haskins https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/giants-zeroing-in-on-dwayne-haskins#comments Fri, 19 Apr 2019 22:12:43 +0000 https://www.profootballrumors.com/?p=140024 Plenty has come out of the Giants’ building about their No. 6 overall pick. For the most part, recent weeks have placed them in a defense-first camp at that spot. It is possible the team had smokescreen intentions.

Dwayne Haskins‘ stock may or may not have dropped, with reports he now may be the fourth quarterback selected. But the Giants may remain high on him. Sources in other teams’ front offices are convinced the Giants have “always” wanted Haskins at No. 6, Matt Miller of Bleacher Report notes, adding Big Blue has researched the Ohio State product more than any other team.

Haskins visited the Giants this month, joining Kyler Murray and the other top passer prospects in this year’s draft in doing so. A report surfaced about the Giants cooling a bit on Haskins, but this is not exactly a point on the NFL calendar where teams are forthright about their intentions.

The Giants obviously need a long-term option at quarterback, with this possibly being Eli Manning‘s last season, and Dave Gettleman has said the Chiefs’ model — which featured Patrick Mahomes sitting behind Alex Smith as a rookie — is a setup he would be interested in using. But New York also has major needs on defense, which could be addressed at No. 6 in a defense-heavy first round.

Gettleman said this week the Giants would not force a quarterback pick. They have obviously proven this to be the case, having made the scrutinized Saquon Barkley-over-Sam Darnold selection last year. Haskins did not receive the steady buzz Darnold did, instead breaking out as a sophomore and entering the draft.

I’m just telling you, we’re not going to force a pick,” Gettleman said, via the New York Post’s Paul Schwartz. “You can’t draft for need, you’ll get screwed every time. You’ll make a mistake.”

While passing on one of the defenders will leave the Giants possibly without a blue-chip Week 1 starter in this draft, they also have possessed top-six picks in each of the past two years. Not addressing their biggest big-picture need with either of those choices would look a bit strange. But they remain open to extending Manning into 2020, pointing to a possible scenario where the team again passes on a quarterback and attempts to have Manning tutor one next year.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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Montez Sweat Off Some Teams’ Draft Boards https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/montez-sweat-off-some-teams-draft-boards https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/montez-sweat-off-some-teams-draft-boards#comments Fri, 19 Apr 2019 20:53:34 +0000 https://www.profootballrumors.com/?p=140018 The heart issue that surfaced for Montez Sweat at the Combine did not impede the Mississippi State product from participating in drills in Indianapolis. Nor did it keep him off the field during his time with the Bulldogs, with the defensive end playing in 26 games the past two seasons.

But it may have major ramifications on his draft stock. Some teams have taken Sweat off their draft boards, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com reports (video link).

Sweat has an enlarged heart, Pelissero reports, adding some teams’ doctors have told their scouts no example of a player dealing with this issue exists in the current NFL. However, athletes in other sports have been able to participate despite this condition.

A sense exists that more progressive teams are willing to take the risk of adding the dynamic pass rusher. Some have spoken to cardiologists who have indicated Sweat would be able to have an NFL career, per Pelissero. Other teams, however, are not comfortable taking him and have taken him off their boards.

The 22-year-old prospect registered 22.5 sacks the past two seasons. He blazed to a 4.41-second 40-yard dash time. His known visits were with the Texans, Bengals, 49ers, Bills, Raiders, Packers and Buccaneers.

Were his heart not a concern, it would appear Sweat would be a lock to go early in the first round. He still may. But it should be noted Maurice Hurst, viewed by some as a first-round prospect last year, fell to the fifth round last year because of a different heart condition. It would not be surprising to see Sweat drop next week as a result of his enlarged heart diagnosis.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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AFC Notes: Raiders, Jets, Draft https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/afc-notes-raiders-gruden-mayock-jets-draft-clark https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/afc-notes-raiders-gruden-mayock-jets-draft-clark#comments Fri, 19 Apr 2019 18:57:57 +0000 https://www.profootballrumors.com/?p=140013 Another day, more drama with the Raiders. With only six days to go until the draft, a major stir was caused when Ian Rapoport of NFL Network tweeted that Raiders coach Jon Gruden and general manager Mike Mayock “sent their scouts home for the weekend and they are not expected to return by draft time. The belief is they don’t know who to trust and wanted to clear the room.” The tweet, of course, sparked a lot of panic among Raider fans and allegations of dysfunction within the organization. While Rapoport’s initial tweet was a little vague, it appears not to be as bad as it first seemed.

Albert Breer of SI.com tweeted in response that the “expectation has been that much of the scouting department would be turned over post-draft,” so this apparently wasn’t anything too sudden. Mayock was brought on to replace old GM Reggie McKenzie, and it’s not surprising that he would want to bring in his own guys. Teams usually wait until after the draft though, and the fact the Raiders are making this sudden move suggests there’s a level of paranoia in the building.

Here’s more from around the AFC:

  • We’ve heard murmurs for a while now that the Jets could consider trading down from the third overall pick, and we now have more confirmation of that. Multiple sources told Ralph Vacchiano of SNY that the Jets are “determined” to trade down from their top pick. One source told Vacchiano that Jets GM Mike Maccagnan is looking to “recoup the second-round pick he gave up last year when the Jets moved up in the draft to get quarterback Sam Darnold.” The Jets already have their franchise quarterback in Darnold, so it makes sense why they’d be looking to move down and stockpile extra picks. Maccagnan had indicated he was open to the idea of moving down in the past, but this is the most concrete confirmation we’ve gotten of that.
  • Speaking of the Jets, don’t expect them to be in on Seahawks pass-rusher Frank Clark if he really is being shopped, according to Richi Cimini of ESPN.com (Twitter link). Cimini writes that the Jets did have interest in Clark at the start of free agency, but that a trade “seems unlikely under the current circumstances.” The Jets are desperate for pass-rush help, as Cimini points out they haven’t had a player with double-digit sacks since 2015, but it sounds like they won’t be getting it through a trade. If the Jets don’t trade down from the third spot, they’re very likely to draft an edge rusher, like Josh Allen from Kentucky or Nick Bosa from Ohio State if he fell to them.
  • In case you missed it, Browns general manager John Dorsey dished on his team’s offseason.
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Draft Notes: Giants, QBs, Broncos, Tillery, Dolphins, Savage, Bryce Love https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/draft-notes-giants-qbs-broncos-tillery-dolphins-savage-bryce-love https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/draft-notes-giants-qbs-broncos-tillery-dolphins-savage-bryce-love#comments Fri, 19 Apr 2019 17:31:35 +0000 https://www.profootballrumors.com/?p=140008 The Giants have been one of the most heavily scrutinized teams leading up to the 2019 NFL Draft. Many observers thought they were going to take a quarterback with the second overall pick, but they passed on signal-callers like Sam Darnold, Josh Allen, and Josh Rosen to take Saquon Barkley. After Eli Manning had another disappointing season, it seemed like his time as New York’s quarterback was coming to an end, and that the Giants would almost certainly take on early this year. Instead, the Giants have more or less doubled down. They’ve already declared Manning will be the starter in 2019, and they’re reportedly even open to him starting in 2020 and beyond. As the draft got closer, the idea of the Giants passing on a quarterback began to pick up more and more steam.

But now we’re finally getting some pushback on that, and momentum appears to be heading the other way with the draft less than a week away. “Several smart people around the NFL are convinced” the Giants will use the sixth overall pick on a passer, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network hears (Twitter link). We heard yesterday that the Giants are doing their homework on West Virginia quarterback Will Grier, who could be a target on Day 2. Overall, the Giants have done a pretty good job keeping us all in the dark about their intentions, and we won’t know for sure what they’re doing until draft day.

Here’s more draft buzz from around the league with just six days until the draft kicks off:

  • “One of Broncos final pre-draft visits was with Notre Dame DE Jerry Tillery,” a source told Mike Klis of Denver 9 News (Twitter link). Many analysts are very high on Tillery’s upside, and he’s currently projected by most to go sometime in the second round. Tillery played defensive tackle at Notre Dame, and could fit nicely as an end in Denver’s 3-4 defense. Last year with the Fighting Irish, Tillery had 8.5 tackles for loss and seven sacks. With Von Miller and Bradley Chubb already in place, the Broncos would have a very talented pass-rush if they added someone like Tillery.
  • The “odds remain in favor of the Dolphins addressing their defensive line with their first-round choice,” writes Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. A lot of Dolphins fans have been hoping Miami would take a quarterback with the 13th pick, but the team appears set to punt on the position for now and take a bigger swing at it in 2020. The Dolphins appear set to roll with Ryan Fitzpatrick as the starter for the duration of the 2019 season, and as much as they want to deny it, are tanking.
  • Darnell Savage Jr., the Maryland safety, has been shooting up draft boards. Savage has had a meteoric rise, and could go as high as the late first round. He’s been busy recently, visiting with the “Cardinals, Bucs, Steelers, Colts, Seahawks, Lions, Titans, Falcons, Chargers, Rams, Patriots, Panthers, Browns, Eagles and Steelers,” according to Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic (Twitter link). Last season, Savage had 52 tackles, including 5.5 for a loss, and had four interceptions.
  • If he had left after his junior season, Stanford running back Bryce Love likely would’ve been an early draft pick. The 2017 Heisman runner-up opted to return to school for his senior year, and ended up tearing his ACL last season. Love’s stock took a hit, and it could be tumbling even further. Teams are very concerned that his knee, the same one where the ACL was torn, remains very stiff, according to Tom Pelissero of NFL Network (Twitter link). Love attended the combine’s recent medical re-check, and some teams are apparently concerned he might not get back to 100 percent. Pelissero does note that the stiffness is an issue that can be treated, and it could require another surgery. Here’s to hoping Love makes a full recovery.

 

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Jeff Fisher Talked To XFL? https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/jeff-fisher-talked-to-xfl https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/jeff-fisher-talked-to-xfl#comments Fri, 19 Apr 2019 15:53:26 +0000 https://www.profootballrumors.com/?p=140006 Buckle up everybody, Jeff Fisher could be back on a sideline soon. A mini Twitter controversy erupted when Fisher himself chimed in to refute a report that he says jumped the gun. It all started when Jason La Canfora tweeted he was “hearing Jeff Fisher is in line to coach Houston of the XFL.”

Fisher then responded with a tweet of his own, saying “false news that I am headed to XFL Houston. Maybe get better sources?” La Canfora stood by his reporting, saying in a second tweet that Fisher “absolutely talked to XFL about the Houston opening, he remains their top choice for that job and the job is still vacant.”

Fisher had previously been consulting for the now-defunct Alliance of American Football, so he clearly is open to the idea of working with an alternative pro league. Fisher has been the butt of many jokes from NFL fans, and has struggled to get back into the league since the Rams fired him toward the end of the 2016 season. Recently, Fisher indicated he would only come back to be a head coach and wasn’t interested in being a coordinator.

At 173-165-1 for his career, Fisher has the 12th-most wins in NFL history. That being said, Fisher hasn’t taken a team to the playoffs since the 2008 season when he was with the Titans. He’s also explored broadcasting opportunities the past couple of seasons, and was rumored to be joining FOX last July. Fisher specifically said “XFL Houston” in his tweet, so it’s possible he’s hinting that he could be joining the XFL in a different city.

In other XFL news, the league has hired Jonathan Hayes to coach its St. Louis franchise, according to Michael David Smith of ProFootballTalk.com. The St. Louis team will play in the same stadium the Rams used to play in, so Hayes will be coaching in Fisher’s old stomping grounds. Hayes spent the past 16 seasons on Marvin Lewis’ staff coaching the tight ends with the Bengals, but was swept out when Lewis was fired after this past season.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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Falcons Sign DT Ra’Shede Hageman https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/falcons-sign-dt-rashede-hageman https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/falcons-sign-dt-rashede-hageman#comments Fri, 19 Apr 2019 14:39:20 +0000 https://www.profootballrumors.com/?p=140002 Ra’Shede Hageman is back in the NFL, and right back where it all started. Hageman is signing with the Falcons, the team that drafted him in the second round back in 2014, according to Darren Wolfson of KSTP TV (Twitter link). It’s a one-year deal, tweets Tom Pelissero of NFL Network.

Hageman met with the Falcons last week, so we knew they were interested in a reunion. He’s been out of the league for a couple of years now but drew some legit interest, as the Vikings apparently kicked the tires. Hageman was the 37th overall pick of the 2014 draft, and his career got off to a decent start. But following a domestic violence incident, Hageman was placed on the commissioner’s exempt list in September of 2017 and released not long after.

He was ultimately suspended by the league for six games. He spent the entire 2017 season out of football, and drew interest from the Patriots and Seahawks last offseason but didn’t sign. He was then arrested for a DWI last June. At the time we heard of the Vikings’ interest, the former Minnesota Gopher talked about the need to prove he’d changed off the field.

“It’s been one heck of a two years sitting out and just watching my fellow teammates play, but it’s definitely a learning experience,” Hageman said. “The whole process is just getting back in everybody’s ear (with NFL teams) about me staying out of trouble. You can’t beat around the bush. They obviously want to see consistency with me. I’m letting everybody know that my past is my past.”

Hageman was hit with a two-game suspension for his DWI arrest, so he won’t be eligible to play for the first two games of the 2019 season. He appeared in 44 games with 16 starts during his three years in Atlanta.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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Complete 2019 NFL International Pathway Program https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/moritz-boehringer-assigned-to-bengals-completing-2019-nfl-international-pathway-program https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/moritz-boehringer-assigned-to-bengals-completing-2019-nfl-international-pathway-program#comments Fri, 19 Apr 2019 14:11:49 +0000 https://www.profootballrumors.com/?p=139999 Moritz Boehringer is back in the NFL. The German tight end, who became the first European player ever to be drafted without playing American college football back in 2016, has been allocated to the Bengals as part of the league’s international pathway program, per Darin Gantt of ProFootballTalk.com.

Boehringer’s assignment to the Bengals completes this year’s program. Each season, teams in two divisions get a roster exemption to develop a player from another country. The player can be the 91st man on offseason rosters, and can be an 11th player on practice squads during the regular season. Boehringer was drafted by the Vikings, but spent his rookie season on the practice squad without ever appearing in a game. He came into the league as a receiver, but has since transitioned to tight end. He was with the Bengals as part of this program last year, and will be back in Cincy in 2019.

Here’s a list of the rest of the players selected to participate:

Baltimore Ravens

  • FB Christopher Ezeala

Buffalo Bills

  • RB Christian Wade

Cleveland Browns 

  • DB Tigie Sankoh

Miami Dolphins

  • DT Durval Neto

New England Patriots

  • TE/FB Jakob Johnson

New York Jets

  • RB/WR/KR Valentine Holmes

Pittsburgh Steelers

  • TE Christian Scotland-Williamson

The AFC North participated last year, but this year the AFC East is taking the place of the NFC South. Notably, Efe Obada was a participant in the program with the Panthers last year, and he went on to make Carolina’s 53-man roster last season. He was re-signed this offseason.

Each of the players assigned to the AFC North were with those teams last year. Scotland-Williamson is a former rugby player, while Boehringer, Sankoh, and Ezeala all played American football overseas before making the leap.

All of the AFC East players are new to the program. Given the Patriots’ track record of finding hidden gems, Johnson will likely end up leading the league in receiving yards at some point. Johnson was signed from the German football league. Neto was playing football in Brazil before being added to the Dolphins. Wade and Holmes are both former prominent rugby players.

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2020 Fifth-Year Option Decision Tracker https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/2020-fifth-year-option-decision-tracker https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/2020-fifth-year-option-decision-tracker#comments Fri, 19 Apr 2019 02:59:49 +0000 https://www.profootballrumors.com/?p=139996 Teams across the NFL have until May 2 to officially pick up their 2020 options on players who are entering the final year of their rookie contracts. These fifth-year options can only be exercised on first-round picks, and the salaries are determined by where players were drafted and what position they play.

If a player has his option exercised, his rookie contract will be extended by one year and he’ll be eligible for unrestricted free agency in 2021, after the conclusion of the 2020 season. If a player’s option is declined, he’ll be eligible to hit the open market a year earlier. Of course, if a 2016 first-rounder is no longer on his rookie contract, there will be no option to exercise or decline. We explained the intricacies of the fifth-year option in a PFR Glossary post, so you can read up on the specific details there.

Soon, we’ll learn the official salary figures for all 2020 fifth-year options. What we do know is that the option salaries for top 10 picks is equal to the transition tender at the player’s position during his fourth season. So, because the transition tag for quarterbacks this year was $22.783MM, we already know that Jared Goff and Carson Wentz‘s fifth-year option will be worth that amount.

With next month’s deadline looming, we’ll use the space below to track all the option decisions from around the league based on various reports and official announcements. Here are this season’s fifth-year option decisions so far:

  1. Jared Goff, QB, $22.783MM (Rams):
  2. Carson Wentz, QB, $22.783MM (Eagles):
  3. Joey Bosa, DE, $14.360MM (Chargers):
  4. Ezekiel Elliott, RB, $9.099MM (Cowboys): To be exercised
  5. Jalen Ramsey, CB, $13.703MM (Jaguars): To be exercised
  6. Ronnie Stanley, T, $12.866MM (Ravens):
  7. DeForest Buckner, DT, $12.378MM (49ers):
  8. Jack Conklin, T, $12.866MM (Titans):
  9. Leonard Floyd, LB, $13.222MM (Bears): To be exercised
  10. Eli Apple, CB, $13.703MM (Saints):
  11. Vernon Hargreaves, CB (Buccaneers):
  12. Sheldon Rankins, DT (Saints):
  13. Laremy Tunsil, T (Dolphins):Exercised
  14. Karl Joseph, S (Raiders): Likely to be exercised
  15. Corey Coleman, WR (Giants): Not applicable due to release
  16. Taylor Decker, T (Lions):
  17. Keanu Neal, S (Falcons): To be exercised
  18. Ryan Kelly, C (Colts):
  19. Shaq Lawson, DE (Bills):
  20. Darron Lee, LB (Jets):
  21. Will Fuller, WR (Texans):
  22. Josh Doctson, WR (Redskins):
  23. Laquon Treadwell, WR (Vikings):
  24. William Jackson, CB (Bengals):
  25. Artie Burns, CB (Steelers):
  26. Paxton Lynch, QB (Seahawks): Not applicable due to release
  27. Kenny Clark, DT (Packers):
  28. Joshua Garnett, G (49ers):
  29. Patriots forfeited pick as result of Deflategate scandal
  30. Robert Nkemdiche, DT (Cardinals):
  31. Vernon Butler, DT (Panthers):
  32. Germain Ifedi, T (Seahawks):
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Broncos Worked Out Ex-Packers CB Quinten Rollins https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/broncos-worked-out-ex-packers-cb-quinten-rollins https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/broncos-worked-out-ex-packers-cb-quinten-rollins#respond Fri, 19 Apr 2019 02:20:46 +0000 https://www.profootballrumors.com/?p=139990 Former Packers second-round corner Quinten Rollins took part in the Broncos’ minicamp on a tryout basis, according to Ryan O’Halloran of the Denver Post (Twitter link). Also in attendance were defensive linemen Mike Purcell and Marcus Hardison, offensive linemen Jake Brendel and Jake Rodgers, and cornerback Trey Johnson. Brendel and Johnson were signed following the audition.

Green Bay used the 62nd overall selection on Rollins in the 2015 draft, but the Miami (OH) product struggled over three seasons and 33 games with the club. A torn Achilles ended his 2017 campaign prematurely, and he was waived during final cutdowns the following September. Rollins hit the workout circuit and eventually latched on with the Cardinals’ practice squad, but was cut loose in December.

Rollins clearly hasn’t posted NFL-caliber performances thus far in his career. In 2016, the only year in which he saw enough snaps to qualify, Football Outsiders ranked Rollins dead last among 84 corners in success rate and second-to-last in yards allowed per pass. In Denver, Rollins would be working with an experienced defensive staff that includes Vic Fangio and Ed Donatell, but also facing an uphill climb on a cornerback depth chart that already includes Chris Harris, Kareem Jackson, and Bryce Callahan.

Before he was released by the Packers, Green Bay coaches expressed an interest in playing Rollins at safety, something he was open to even before entering the NFL. But the Broncos have depth at safety, as well, with Will Parks, Justin Simmons, and Su’a Cravens all on the club’s depth chart.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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West Notes: Seahawks, Chiefs, Broncos https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/west-notes-seahawks-wilson-clark-chiefs-hill-broncos-jackson https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/west-notes-seahawks-wilson-clark-chiefs-hill-broncos-jackson#comments Fri, 19 Apr 2019 01:52:25 +0000 https://www.profootballrumors.com/?p=139986 Speaking to the media on Thursday, Seahawks general manager John Schneider indicated Russell Wilson‘s four-year, $140MM extension won’t impact the status of franchise-tagged defensive end Frank Clark, tweets Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times. Seattle had already accounted for a new Wilson deal when it decided to tag Clark at a one-year rate of $17.128MM. Schneider also admitted the Seahawks haven’t made a decision on offensive tackle Germain Ifedi‘s fifth-year option for 2020, and singled out linebacker Bobby Wagner and defensive tackle Jarran Reed as extension candidates (Twitter links via Brady Henderson of ESPN.com and Condotta).

Here’s more from the NFL’s two West divisions:

  • Wilson received an NFL-record $65MM signing bonus as part of his new Seahawks contract, but he won’t actually collect all that money immediately. He’ll earn $30MM of the bonus this year with the rest deferred until 2020, per Joel Corry of CBSSports.com (Twitter links), who notes this mechanism is common in most quarterback deals. The deferral won’t affect Wilson’s cap charges, as the $65MM will still be prorated over the next five seasons. Corry adds Wilson received better cash flows on his current extension than on his previous four-year, $87.6MM pact.
  • Authorities have recently removed Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill‘s three-year-old son from Hill and his fiancee’s custody, according to Laura Bauer, Brooke Pryor, and Steve Vockrodt of the Kansas City Star. Hill is under investigation for a pair of incidents involving child abuse, but still showed up for workouts earlier this week. The NFL is expected to allow the investigation to unfold before considering discipline for Hill.
  • Broncos free agent signee Kareem Jackson played safety at Denver’s minicamp this week, reports Mike Klis of 9News. Jackson, who can also play corner, spent time at both positions for the Texans in 2018 before inking a three-year, $33MM deal with the Broncos in March. “[T]here’s more to learn at safety than there is at corner,” said Broncos head coach Vic Fangio. “He’s played much more corner in his career, so I wanted him to get more work in this camp – all of his work – at the safety position, to feel comfortable there.”
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South Rumors: Texans, Falcons, Saints https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/south-rumors-texans-kalil-fuller-falcons-howard-davison-saints-crawley https://www.profootballrumors.com/2019/04/south-rumors-texans-kalil-fuller-falcons-howard-davison-saints-crawley#respond Fri, 19 Apr 2019 00:51:14 +0000 https://www.profootballrumors.com/?p=139987 The Texans have received positive health news on two offensive players, as both receiver Will Fuller and left tackle Matt Kalil are expected to be ready for the regular season after sustaining injuries in 2018, per Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle (all Twitter links). Fuller averaged a career-high 15.7 yards per reception in seven games before suffering a torn ACL, but he’s now recovering nicely. Kalil, who inked a one-year deal with Houston after being released by Carolina, missed all of last year while dealing with a knee issue, but general manager Brian Gaine says Kalil is expected to compete with Julien Davenport to start on Deshaun Watson‘s blindside.

Here’s more from the NFL’s two South divisions:

  • Alabama State offensive tackle Tytus Howard is a second-round target of the Falcons, tweets Tony Pauline of DraftAnalyst.net. Daniel Jeremiah of NFL.com lauds Howard’s size (6’2′”, 322) and ability to “explode out of his stance,” but notes potential concerns about Howard’s level of competition in the FCS. Atlanta owns the 45th pick, so Howard could certainly be available when the Falcons make their second-round selection. Although Atlanta recently extended incumbent right tackle Ty Sambrailo, his new contract is essentially a one-year deal with multiple team options. Howard has also met with the Jets during the pre-draft process.
  • Defensive tackle Tyeler Davison‘s one-year deal with the Falcons will qualify as a minimum salary benefit contract, according to D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal Constitution. Davison will collect an $895K base salary ($110K guaranteed) and a $90K signing bonus, but he’ll only carry the salary cap charge of a second-year veteran plus his signing bonus — a total of $660K. A fifth-round pick in the 2015 draft, Davison started 48 games over the past four seasons in New Orleans, and will now give Atlanta a run-stuffing option alongside fellow defensive tackle Grady Jarrett.
  • Saints cornerback Ken Crawley is planning to sign his original round restricted free agent tender when New Orleans begins its offseason program on Monday, as Josh Katzenstein of NOLA.com writes. As of yet, Crawley has not received any interest from any rival clubs, and isn’t expected to until Friday’s deadline for RFAs to sign offer sheets. Crawley is now scheduled to earn $2.025MM for the 2019 campaign, but none of that total is guaranteed, an important distinction given that Crawley isn’t a lock to make the Saints’ roster after finishing as a bottom-three cornerback last season, per Pro Football Focus.
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