Jalen Collins

Colts Sign Jalen Collins To Practice Squad

The Colts signed cornerback Jalen Collins to the practice squad, per a team announcement. To make room, they released quarterback Phillip Walker from the 10-man unit. 

Collins, a 6’1″ cornerback, was a second-round pick of the Falcons in 2015. Red flags kept him from being a first-round pick that year and assorted issues kept him from realizing his potential at the pro level.

After completing his latest ban – a 10-game suspension of unknown origin – Collins auditioned for Indianapolis on Wednesday. The Colts apparently liked what they saw and jumped at the low-risk/high-reward move to stash him. In 24 career games (eight starts) with the Falcons, Collins tallied 43 tackles (40 solo), two tackles for loss, two interceptions, and ten passes defensed.

Walker, meanwhile, has been doing the Grandpa Simpson all year. This marks the end of his fourth stint on the Colts’ practice squad this year and it remains to be seen whether he’ll get a fifth shot.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Colts Audition Jalen Collins, Dontae Johnson

Free agent cornerback Jalen Collins was reinstated by the NFL earlier today after serving a 10-game suspension, and he’s already landed an audition. Collins worked out for the Colts on Wednesday, tweets Field Yates of ESPN.com. Indianapolis also looked at fellow defensive back Dontae Johnson, per Howard Balzer (Twitter link).

Collins has already faced multiple league-imposed bans during his brief NFL career, and his most recent 10-game suspension was actually his second of that length. While Collins’ previous bans were reportedly due to performance-enhancing drug use, it’s unclear what caused his latest suspension. However, as Matt Miller of Bleacher Report notes (via Twitter), Colts general manager Chris Ballard has never been afraid to target players with off-field issues.

Still only 25 years old, Collins flashed potential in parts of two seasons with the Falcons (2015-16). A former second-round pick, Collins started eight games for the Falcons and played in 24. He also started all three of Atlanta’s games in the 2016 playoffs, including Super Bowl LI.

Johnson, 26, spent four seasons (including one as a starter) with the 49ers before latching on with the Bills earlier this year. He played in only one game with Buffalo before being cut, but he’s hit the workout circuit since, auditioning for the Lions, Browns, and Dolphins.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFL Reinstates Jalen Collins, Darius Latham

The NFL has reinstated former Falcons cornerback Jalen Collins and former Raiders defensive tackle Darius Latham, the league announced. Both of their suspensions wrapped up on Tuesday, clearing the free agents to sign with an NFL team.

Collins, a former second-round pick, flashed potential in his time with Atlanta. Unfortunately, multiple suspensions have derailed his career, including his most recent 10-game ban. Collins started eight games for the Falcons and played in 24. He also started all three of Atlanta’s games in the 2016 playoffs, including Super Bowl LI.

If not for his red flags, the 25-year-old likely would have been a first-round choice in 2015. He also might be a starting cornerback in Atlanta today.

Latham made a bigger impression for the 2016 Raiders, playing in 14 games and starting two, than he did last season. Thanks in part to his four-game suspension, Latham ended up playing in just three contests last year. He made 17 tackles as a rookie and has yet to record a sack. This year, the Raiders cut him just before Day 1 of the draft.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Jalen Collins Facing Another 10-Game Ban

Jalen Collins has not played in a regular-season game since the 2016 season, and he’s now without a team. He was reported to be facing another suspension, and now some clarity has emerged on that front.

The NFL suspended the free agent cornerback 10 games, Field Yates of ESPN.com reports (on Twitter). This will mark the second straight season that’s involved a 10-game Collins ban.

Following the conclusion of Collins’ most recent 10-game suspension, the Falcons did not activate him and ended up waiving him. He went unclaimed in November, and this figures to decrease his chances of landing with a team in the near future. A 2015 second-round pick, Collins started eight games for the Falcons and played in 24. He started all three of Atlanta’s games in the 2016 playoffs, including Super Bowl LI.

Collins incurred a four-game suspension in 2016. Both of his previous two bans were for performance-enhancing drug use. It hasn’t been specified what caused this latest suspension, but were it for PEDs, the penalty would be longer than 10 games.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFL Suspends Free Agent CB Jalen Collins

Cornerback Jalen Collins has gone unsigned since hitting the free agent market in November. Now, we know why. The former Falcon has been suspended for additional games by the NFL, according to Field Yates of ESPN.com (on Twitter). Jalen Collins

This marks the second ban of the year for Collins, who served a ten-game suspension to start the season. It’s not immediately clear what Collins’ latest suspension is for, but it may be a substance abuse violation. If this were a third ban for performance-enhancing drugs, it would be longer than four games.

Collins appeared in eight games (six starts) for the Falcons last year. The 2015 second-round pick is viewed as a highly-talented player, but his off-the-field issues have hampered him thus far in the NFL. If not for his red flags, he likely would have been a first-round choice in 2015. He also might be a starting cornerback in Atlanta today.

Once Collins is clear to play, he may draw interest from contenders looking to beef up the secondary. Then again, teams might be wary of bringing him into the locker room given his checkered past.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Falcons Waive CB Jalen Collins

The Falcons have waived cornerback Jalen Collins, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. Collins will be subject to waivers, meaning that the league’s other 31 teams will have an opportunity to add him to the roster on Wednesday afternoon. Jalen Collins

Collins was set to return from a 10-game suspension this week. The former second-round pick is undeniably talented, but the Falcons are fed up after the 24-year-old’s second ban for performance enhancing drugs as a pro.

Collins’ off-the-field issues date back to his days at LSU. In 2015, he was on course to be a first-round selection, but teams moved him down the board because of his red flags. After the draft, he admitted to failing at least three drug tests at LSU.

Thanks to the aforementioned suspensions and injury, Collins has appeared in just 24 games since entering the league in 2015. Last year, Collins started in six of his eight games and hauled in two interceptions and 31 total tackles.

His latest slip-up was unfortunate, but the Falcons were already planning to start a healthy Desmond Trufant and Robert Alford at cornerback. Over the summer, Collins found himself working with Atlanta’s third string CBs.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Falcons Reduce Roster To 53

The Falcons have moved their roster to 53 players by making the following transactions:

Placed on commissioner exempt list:

Placed on reserve/suspended list:

Waived: 

Waived/injured:

Released with injury settlement:

Placed on IR:

South Notes: Falcons, Saints, Colts, Titans

The Falcons don’t intend to waive recently suspended cornerback Jalen Collins in the very near future, but it appears the club is still assessing its options, as D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution writes. “The disappointment for having a second, repeat offense is stronger,” head coach Dan Quinn said Monday. “This just came through yesterday. Some trust has been broken. We’ll take all the time that we need to make the best decision for the team.” Atlanta now has the secondary depth to withstand a Collins release, per Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com, who identifies C.J. Goodwin and Deji Olatoye as valuable reserve pieces. Collins is suspended through late November, so the Falcons don’t have to make a decision on his status for some time.

Let’s check in on the latest from the NFL’s two South divisions:

  • Chase Daniel will almost assuredly serve as the Saints‘ backup quarterback during the upcoming season, meaning the battle for New Orleans’ third signal-caller job will come down to Garrett Grayson and Ryan Nassib, as Nick Underhill of the Advocate details. Grayson, a third-round pick just two years ago, currently has the upper hand, per Underhill, as Nassib — a free agent addition who spent his first four NFL seasons with the Giants — is considered a “long shot” to earn a roster spot. Of course, the Saints could opt to keep only two quarterbacks, at which the team would likely attempt to sneak Grayson onto their practice squad.
  • Colts wide receiver Chester Rogers has changed representation, hiring Rosenhaus Sports to replace Warren and Simpson, tweets Liz Mullen of SportsBusiness Journal. As a former undrafted free agent, Rogers is eligible to renegotiate his contract after only two seasons (in his case, following the 2017 season). Thus far, Rogers hasn’t done enough to earn an extension, as he managed only 19 receptions for 273 yards during his rookie campaign. However, the 23-year-old Rogers has been working as the Colts’ No. 3 receiver during training camp, ahead of Kamar Aiken and Phillip Dorsett, reports Zak Keefer of the Indianapolis Star (Twitter link).
  • If the stress fracture in his right foot continues to act up, Titans wide receiver Tajae Sharpe could begin the season on the physically unable to perform list, which would force him to miss the first six games of the year, Cameron Wolfe of ESPN.com writes. Sharpe, a fifth-round selection in 2016, reportedly has a tenuous grasp on a roster spot, but placing him on PUP could give Tennessee more time to make a decision on his fate. Currently being sued after an alleged assault, Sharpe is countersuing his accuser.

Falcons’ Jalen Collins Suspended 10 Games

For the second straight year, Falcons cornerback Jalen Collins will be suspended without pay for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs.

The Falcons announced the suspension. It’s a 10-game ban because Collins was suspended four games in 2016 for a PED violation.

We are extremely disappointed that for the second straight season we are dealing with a suspension for Jalen,” Falcons GM Thomas Dimitroff said. “Such are the consequences when certain choices are made. Our decisions going forward will be based on what Dan and I feel is best for the team.”

A second-round pick in 2015, Collins returned from suspension and started six games for Atlanta after opening with the Falcons’ first unit in two games as a rookie. Collins started all three Falcons playoff games. He intercepted two passes and made 31 tackles during the regular season. The Falcons now have Desmond Trufant back healthy, along with well-compensated No. 2 corner Robert Alford.

Although he’s eligible to stay with the team throughout the preseason, Collins won’t be eligible to return to the Falcons until November 21. The 24-year-old defender has been working with Atlanta’s third team thus far during camp. The Falcons did not make any high-profile outside additions at corner this offseason.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Coaching Notes: Quinn, Belichick, Bradley

Every team in the league could zero in on a specific position that needs an upgrade. However, most coaches, including Falcons head coach Dan Quinn, would prefer to roll with their own guys. With the Falcons sitting at 4-3, fans could surely find areas of the team to nitpick. Nonetheless, Quinn is content on moving forward with his current squad.

“I feel like we have a very competitive group,” Quinn told ESPN.com’s Vaughn McClure. “So, for us, we love the guys we have. Fortunately for us, the thing that I’m excited [about] — you guys know this, but I don’t get a chance to talk about it enough — is our practice squad. I feel like this is a group in waiting that we’ve got some guys that are anxious to go. We’ve moved some of them up already… There’s a number of guys, if called upon, would be ready. That’s why maybe I feel like I love the depth that we have with some of the guys. We’re already developing some guys right through it. That’s the preferred way.”

Let’s take a look at some more coaching notes from around the NFL…

  • McClure wonders if the Falcons may be inclined to change their opinion if Dwight Freeney‘s injury proves to be more serious than originally thought. Meanwhile, the writer suggests the team could look to deal some of their players, including cornerback Jalen Collins, for future draft picks.
  • Patriots coach Bill Belichick is typically active on the trade front, and the team even managed to pull off a pair of deals earlier this week. However, the head coach acknowledged that it’s becoming increasingly difficult to pull off these swaps. “I mean, you know, there are a lot of teams that don’t … they seem kind of reluctant to trade — this time of year, especially,” Belichick told Phil Perry of CSNNE.com.
  • Jaguars coach Gus Bradley provided an emphatic “no” when asked if his team’s 2-5 start could lead to changes on the coaching staff. However, Ryan O’Halloran of Jacksonville.com notes that the head coach didn’t necessarily endorse any of his fellow coaches, including offensive coordinator Greg Olson.
  • Some Jaguars players recognize that their coaches may be on the hot seat following a slow start to the season. “Gus will always take the blame as the coach,” wideout Allen Hurns told O’Halloran. “We’ve got to win. I’m worried [about him]. Everybody feels strongly about Gus. You try not to listen to it or let it get to you, but it is kind of impossible now. Hopefully, they’ll stick it out with him but we’ve got to find something to get this going.”