The Bears have swapped one offensive lineman for another. Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune reports (via Twitter) that the team has signed guard/center KalebJohnson. To make room on the roster, the Bears have waived center Jack Allen.
It’s a bit surprising that the Bears have parted ways with Allen, especially since they added the 25-year-old just last week. Despite just a week of practice, the former undrafted free agent out of Michigan State was one of the team’s standouts during their preseason opener. With CodyWhitehair, James Daniels, and HronissGrasu sitting out, Allen went on to play 48 snaps for the Bears.
Head coach MattNagy even lauded Allen’s contributions following the game.
Taking Allen’s spot on the team is Johnson, who will ultimately provide Chicago with a bit more versatility. The 25-year-old has yet to play in a regular-season NFL game since going undrafted out of Rutgers in 2015, but he’s managed to catch on with several teams’ practice squads. Johnson has had stints with the Ravens, Browns, Cardinals, and Chiefs.
The Saints made a series of moves Wednesday, bringing in three new players – fullback Zach Line, linebacker Bryan Braman and undrafted rookie defensive back Elijah Mitchell – and parting with offensive lineman Jack Allen, whom they waived/injured.
The most notable addition may be Line, who spent the first four years of his career with the Vikings and is coming off back-to-back 16-game seasons. Line totaled 339 snaps in Minnesota last year (210 on offense, 129 on special teams), but offseason hip surgery and a lack of demand for fullbacks likely combined to make it difficult for him to find employment. Before joining the Saints, who deployed fullback John Kuhn on 397 snaps last year (278 on offense, 119 via special teams), Line’s only known interest came from the Jets. It’s unclear whether Kuhn is now on the hot seat as a result of the Line signing.
Braman, meanwhile, has posted five 16-game seasons during his six-year career. His only missed time (two games) came as a member of the Texans in 2012, his second NFL season. Braman spent his first three years in Houston and the previous three in Philadelphia, where he functioned as a leading special teamer. The 30-year-old posted upward of 1,100 special teams snaps during his tenure with the Eagles and paced the unit in playing time in each of the previous two seasons. Thanks in part to Braman, the Eagles’ ST unit ranked as the NFL’s No. 2 group in 2016, per Football Outsiders. The Saints finished just 27th, on the other hand, so picking up Line and Braman could be the latest moves that improve the unit under new coordinator Bradford Banta.
To fill Kenny Vaccaro‘s roster spot made available by the safety dropping his appeal of a suspension this week, the Saints promoted center Jack Allen from their practice squad, Christopher Dabe of NOLA.com reports. The Saints initially signed Allen as a UDFA this May out of Michigan State. Max Unger, who has played in all 28 games in New Orleans since being acquired in the Jimmy Graham deal, is questionable with a foot injury.
Brandon Marshall‘s hamstring injury and impending Week 14 absence induced the Broncos to make depth arrangements at linebacker, and the defending Super Bowl champions did so by adding Quentin Gause off the practice squad, Mike Klis of 9News reports. To make room, the Broncos placed recently re-signed wide receiver Marlon Brown on IR. An undrafted rookie who spent time with the Eagles and Patriots, Gause landed on Denver’s practice squad in mid-October. A back injury caused the Broncos to cut Brown in August, and since re-signing the former Ravens target in November, the team did not deploy Brown in a game.
The Bills promoted outside linebacker Bryson Albright from the practice squad, Joe Buscaglia of WKBW reports (on Twitter). A UDFA from Miami (Ohio) University, Albright has spent the season on Buffalo’s taxi squad and has yet to play in an NFL game.
September 4th, 2016 at 9:50pm CST by Dallas Robinson
Listed below are the Sunday roster moves for the four NFC South teams. Following the 53-man roster cutdown deadline yesterday, many teams will make slight tweaks to their rosters, claiming players off waivers or signing guys who clear waivers. Those transactions for the Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers are noted below.
Additionally, as of 12:00pm CT today, teams can begin constructing their 10-man practice squads. You can check out our glossary entry on practice squads to brush up on those changes, as well as all the other guidelines that govern the 10-man units, whose players practice with the team but aren’t eligible to suit up on Sundays.
Here are Sunday’s NFC South transactions, which will continue to be updated throughout the day. All links go to Twitter unless otherwise noted:
Barnes signed with the Saints last Sunday, meaning his stay in New Orleans lasted less than a week. In 11 NFL seasons, the 34-year-old has seen action in more than 150 games (117 starts) with the Jaguars and Raiders. Barnes lost his starting job in Oakland last season, but still appeared in 14 games.