Giorgio Tavecchio

Raiders To Place Sebastian Janikowski On IR

The Raiders will open the season with a kicker other than Sebastian Janikowski for the first time since the 20th century on Sunday, because the team placed the 18th-year veteran on IR Saturday, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets.

Janikowski’s struggled with a back injury during the preseason. In Janikowski’s place, Giorgio Tavecchio is in line to make his NFL debut Sunday against the Titans, Michael Gehlken of the Las Vegas Review-Journal tweets. The Raiders signed Tavecchio to their practice squad on Friday after taking him to training camp the past two years.

Schefter notes (via Twitter) the Raiders promoted Tavecchio from the practice squad. The Raiders were concerned about Janikowski’s back for some time, with Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reporting (on Twitter) the kicker hadn’t felt right in weeks.

A disc injury will shelve Janikowski for at least half the season, but the situation could be complicated. The Raiders are planning to make rookie safety Obi Melifonwu one of their IR-DTR players, and teams only have two such spots. So it’s possible this injury ends Janikowski’s season, depending on what transpires on the Oakland injury front during the first half of the season. The Raiders waited until December of last year to recall defensive end Mario Edwards, but it would certainly be interesting if they held a spot for a kicker.

This has been quite the newsworthy week involving the longest-tenured player in Raiders history. Oakland worked out three recently released kickers — Josh Lambo, Mike Nugent and Marshall Koehn — and a pay-cut agreement commenced, reducing Janikowski’s 2017 salary from $4MM to $3MM. This followed an initial impasse that involved the longtime specialist refusing to accept a pay reduction. That $3MM figure is guaranteed in this the last season of Janikowski’s latest Raiders contract.

The 2000 first-round pick has only missed four games with the Raiders, and his 268 are the most any Raider’s ever played.

Lambo, Nugent and Koehn will be names to monitor, since it’s unlikely Tavecchio will have surefire job security. He’ll have to perform to stave off a potential veteran add. Also a left-footed kicker, Tavecchio kicked for Cal from 2008-11.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFL Practice Squad Updates: 9/8/17

Today’s practice squad moves:

Cleveland Browns

Detroit Lions

Houston Texans

  • Signed: CB Dee Virgin
  • Released: DE Daniel Ross

Los Angeles Chargers

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

Oakland Raiders

  • Signed: K Giorgio Tavecchio
  • Released: LB Max Valles

Seattle Seahawks

Tennessee Titans

Raiders Cut Down To 53-Man Roster

The Raiders were among the teams to drag their feet on announcing their 53-man roster. Now that we can see their initial roster in full, we have to say that they’re looking a little thin at linebacker. Here’s the full rundown of their moves:

Waived:

Released:

Waived/Injured

Waived/NFI:

Minor NFL Transactions: 4/19/17

Wednesday’s minor NFL moves:

  • Restricted free agent offensive linemen James Hurst and Ryan Jensen have signed their tenders with the Ravens, as has exclusive rights free agent wide receiver Chris Matthews. The Ravens tendered both Hurst and Jensen at the lowest level last month, meaning they wouldn’t have been entitled to compensation had either headed elsewhere by way of an unmatched offer sheet. Hurst, a tackle, is the more experienced of the two, having appeared in all 48 regular-season games and totaled 16 starts during his three-year career. Jensen has also been in the NFL for three years, but the interior blocker only has 19 appearances and nine starts to his name.
  • The Raiders have announced the signing of kicker Giorgio Tavecchio, who was with the team in each of the previous three training camps. The Italy native, undrafted from Cal in 2012, has also spent time with San Francisco, Green Bay and Detroit, but he hasn’t seen any regular-season action yet.
  • The Rams have waived defensive back Kevin Short, who spent time on their practice squad last year and then signed a reserve/futures contract in January. Interestingly, Short came to the pros directly from the JUCO level, having played at Fort Scott Community College (Kansas). He went undrafted in 2015, unsurprisingly, and suited up for the Chiefs’, Seahawks’ and Jets’ practice squads prior to joining LA’s taxi squad.

Raiders Make Cuts, Down To 75

The Raiders have cut down to 75 with roughly 24 hours to spare. The following players have been waived by Oakland:

  • Chris Edwards
  • S Chris Hackett
  • S Jimmy Hall
  • WR Joe Hanley
  • WR Max McCaffrey
  • WR Nathan Palmer
  • DT Leon Orr
  • K Giorgio Tavecchio
  • TE Colton Underwood
  • DB Tramain Jacobs
  • LS Andrew East
  • LB Lenny Jones
  • OL Terran Vaughn
  • OL Ross Burbank

In addition, the Raiders also formally placed tight end Gabe Holmes on IR.

McCaffrey, of course, is the son of former Denver wide receiver Ed McCaffrey. Max, a Duke product, turned heads when he posted a 4.46 second 40-yard dash at his pro day earlier this year.

NFL Reserve/Futures Contracts: 1/5/16

Here are today’s reserve/futures contract signings from around the league. These deals will go into effect on the first day of the 2016 league year, with players joining their respective clubs’ 90-man rosters.

Arizona Cardinals

  • Taylor Boggs, C (Twitter link via Darren Urban of AZCardinals.com)
  • Valerian Ume-Ezeoke, C
  • Mike Reilly, OLB
  • Tyrequek Zimmerman, S

Baltimore Ravens

  • Jerod Johnson, QB (Twitter link via Aaron Wilson of The Houston Chronicle)

Cincinnati Bengals

Green Bay Packers

Indianapolis Colts

  • Burton Pierce, OT
  • Ben Heenan, G
  • Edwin Jackson, LB
  • Kitt O’Brien, G
  • Dezmen Southward, DB
  • Joshua Stangby. WR

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

Miami Dolphins

New Orleans Saints

New York Jets

Oakland Raiders

  • Garrett Gilbert, QB (Twitter link via Aaron Wilson of The Houston Chronicle)
  • Giorgio Tavecchio, K

San Diego Chargers

San Francisco 49ers

  • Corey Acosta, K (link via Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle)

St. Louis Rams

Workout Notes: Jets, Giants, Pats, Colts

Wednesday’s workouts from around the NFL:

AFC Notes: Texans, Richardson, Bowe

With Randy Bullock looking shaky, the Texans will audition a number of kickers this week, according to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle. Houston will take a look at Nick Novak, Connor Barth, Kai Forbath, Chris Boswell, and Giorgio Tavecchio as potential replacements, though it’s not a lock that they’ll sign one of those players.

Here’s more from the AFC..

  • The Jets haven’t heard from the league about more possible discipline for Sheldon Richardson and as of right now, coach Todd Bowles is operating under the assumption that he’ll be back on Monday, Rich Cimini of ESPN.com tweets.
  • Despite the fact that he has yet to make his mark in Cleveland, Browns coach Mike Pettine says the team has not discussed cutting wide receiver Dwayne Bowe, Mary Kay Cabot of The Plain Dealer tweets.  Bowe had a $9MM guarantee on his deal and the team expects him to play this season.
  • Jets guard Willie Colon suffered a sprained knee on Sunday, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets.  Colon will likely be out this week and may miss more time beyond that.
  • Bengals offensive tackle Andrew Whitworth told reporterss, including Coley Harvey of ESPN.com, that length wasn’t the most important factor for him when it came to his extension. Whitworth only wanted to be in Cincinnati again and the length of the deal was apparently secondary.  He admitted that his family and other factors could influence decisions on future deals.  “I want Andy Dalton, A.J. Green, Adam Jones and all these guys to know what it’s like to win a Super Bowl,” Whitworth said (link).

Minor Moves: Monday

Let’s round up today’s minor moves, with any new transactions being added to the top of the list:

  • The Raiders have signed kicker Giorgio Tavecchio, according to Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press (Twitter link). Oakland originally claimed Tavecchio off waivers from Detroit on August 26 of last year, but waived him just four days later as it moved down to a 53-man roster.
  • The Vikings have added linebacker Brian Peters, the club announced in a press release. Peters, a Northwestern alum, has spent the past two years with the CFL’s Saskatchewan Roughriders, leading the team in tackles in 2014.

Raiders Release Greg Little, 21 Others

Two (now) former Raiders, defensive end Jack Crawford and tight end Jake Murphy, revealed last night that they didn’t make the 53-man roster. It took up until now to discover the rest of the team’s moves, as the Raiders officially announced their transactions in a press release this evening.

Perhaps the most surprising move was the release of wide receiver Greg Little. The 25-year-old was claimed from the Browns, where he spent his first three seasons, in May. The former second-rounder has seen at least 90 targets per season since entering the league, but has never finished with more than 61 receptions.

The rest of the team’s moves are below:

Released: