Jason Trusnik

Saints Place Terron Armstead On IR

The Saints have placed left tackle Terron Armstead on injured reserve, according to Nick Underhill of the New Orleans Advocate. To take Armstead’s roster spot, the club signed linebacker Jason Trusnik.

Terron ArmsteadArmstead inked a five-year, $64.5MM extension with the Saints last May, but knee and quad injuries limited him to just seven appearances this season. The 25-year-old was once again a bright spot for the Saints when on the field, as he’s currently Pro Football Focus’ 15th-ranked tackle out of 78 qualifiers. Armstead will ultimately miss nine games this year, running his career total up to 25 in four seasons.

The 32-year-old Trusnik hasn’t played this season, though he previously garnered vast experience as primarily a reserve with the Jets, Dolphins, Browns and Vikings from 2007-15. Trusnik has 117 appearances and 25 starts on his NFL résumé.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFC Notes: Romo, Cousins, Eagles, Saints

Tony Romo ran the scout team for 11-on-11 and 7-on-7 drills during today’s Cowboys practice, and Ian Rapoport of NFL.com says (via Twitter) this a clear indication that the quarterback won’t be active this weekend. However, there is optimism for Romo’s return, as the 36-year-old was listed as a full participant in practice for the first time this year.

For what it’s worth, Romo’s teammates were excited for his return.

“He looks great,” linebacker Sean Lee told ESPN.com’s Todd Archer. “I mean he looks like he hasn’t missed a beat. His ability to throw the ball, I always say I’ve been here seven years and I haven’t been near a football when he goes against us just because of how great he is with this eyes, how quick he is with his release. It’s amazing taking the time off, he looks fantastic, like he hasn’t missed any time.”

Let’s take a look at some other notes from the NFC…

  • As the Eagles look to fill their final roster spot, coach Doug Pederson told Eliot Shorr-Parks of NJ.com that wideout Paul Turner or cornerback Aaron Grymes could be possible candidates for the opening (Twitter link). Grymes, a former CFL standout, has been on the Eagles’ practice squad since late October. Turner, an undrafted free agent out of Louisiana Tech, has been on the practice squad all season.
  • Before signing linebacker Sam Barrington earlier today, the Saints looked at a handful of defenders. According to Nick Underhill of The Advocate (via Twitter), the team worked out linebackers James-Michael Johnson, John Lotulelei, Casey Matthews, and Jason Trusnik.
  • The Redskins final eight games will not only determine their playoff fate, but they’ll also determine quarterback Kirk Cousins‘ future in Washington, writes ESPN.com’s John Keim. Since the team is seeking consistency from their signal-callers, Keim takes a look at Cousins’ potential performances against his upcoming opponents.

NFC FA Rumors: Vikings, Cowboys, Long, Conte

Andre Smith is expected to visit the Vikings on Sunday, Darren Wolfson of KSTP tweets. The 38th-ranked player in PFR’s top 50 free agents list, Smith’s market has been slower to materialize than Mitchell Schwartz, the other top right tackle in this year’s class. The veteran right-edge player rated as Pro Football Focus’ No. 58 tackle last season and doesn’t have much left tackle experience.

The Vikings restructured the recently injury-prone Phil Loadholt‘s contract earlier this week, seemingly clearing up some of their uncertainty up front. But Loadholt’s sustained two season-ending injuries over the past two seasons and has just one year left on his contract, so it makes sense that Minnesota would have interest in adding some insurance.

Here’s more on free agents from around the NFC:

  • Chris Long‘s previously-reported visit with the Cowboys is now expected to happen next week, writes David Moore of the Dallas Morning News. According to Moore, no firm date has been set yet, but Dallas has interest in the veteran defensive end.
  • It’s a three-team race for free agent safety Chris Conte, according to Rand Getlin of the NFL Network, who tweets that the Buccaneers, Saints, and Giants are in the hunt. Having played for the Bucs last season, it sounds like Conte is drawing interest from his former team even though Lovie Smith is no longer the head coach — the safety played under Smith in Chicago as well.
  • The Vikings aren’t looking to bring back linebacker Jason Trusnik, Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports (on Twitter). A 32-year-old edge player, Trusnik played in eight games for the Vikings last season and in order to continue his nine-year career, Trusnik, who started six games for the Dolphins in 2014, will have to search for a fifth NFL destination.
  • Linebacker Terence Garvin will visit Washington, Rand Getlin of NFL.com tweets. The Steelers backup sat behind the myriad ex-first-rounders in Pittsburgh, starting one game in three seasons. Garvin totaled 21 special teams tackles during his time with the Steelers. Washington recently lost Keenan Robinson to the Giants, creating a need for additional cogs on its second level.
  • Previously reported to have visited Washington, Andre Branch has additional meetings lined up and won’t make his decision yet, John Keim of ESPN.com tweets.

Luke Adams contributed to this post.

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/10/15

Here are Tuesday’s minor signings, cuts, and other moves from around the NFL:

  • The Saints have signed linebacker James Anderson, as Katherine Terrell of The Times-Picayune tweets. The Saints have been thin at linebacker recently, with injuries to strongside linebacker Hau’oli Kikaha (ankle), weakside linebacker Dannell Ellerbe (hip/groin), and backup Ramon Humber, so Anderson will provide additional depth for New Orleans. To make room for Anderson, the Saints have cut fellow linebacker Mike Mohamed, as Mike Triplett of ESPN.com tweets.
  • The Vikings announced that they have signed linebacker Jason Trusnik while placing fellow linebacker Audie Cole on IR. Trusnik, a former Division-III standout, was cut by the Panthers before the final trim down to a 53-man roster. He first broke into the league as a UDFA with the Jets in 2007. The Ohio native has played in 109 career games with 24 starts, tallying 146 total tackles, 4 PDs, 4 FRs and 1 FF in his first eight NFL seasons. Cole wasn’t a factor on the Vikings’ defense, but he was playing more than half of the club’s special teams snaps before fracturing his ankle.
  • The Giants announced that they have added defensive tackle Montori Hughes to the active roster while placing defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins on IR. Hankins suffered a torn pectoral muscle over the weekend, ending his 2015 season prematurely. Hughes, who stands at 6’4″ and weighs 350 pounds, played in 16 games for the Colts between 2013 and 2014.
  • The Browns announced that they have activated defensive back Charles Gaines and running back Glenn Winston. Both players were previously sidelined with injuries.
  • The Buccaneers announced that they have signed safety Kimario McFadden, who played with them in the preseason. To make room for McFadden on the 53-man roster, the Buccaneers waived defensive end Lawrence Sidbury.
  • The Chargers announced that they have signed tight end Sean McGrath while waiving guard Craig Watts. McGrath briefly retired following his second season in 2013, a season in which he caught 26 balls for 302 yards and two touchdowns.
  • The Chiefs will promote safety Saalim Hakim from the practice squad, Aaron Wilson of The Houston Chronicle tweets.
  • The Bears will promote wide receiver Deonte Thompson to the 53-man roster from the taxi squad, Brad Biggs of The Chicago Tribune tweets.

Panthers Organize Regular-Season Roster

The Panthers cut 22 players to officially reduce their roster to 53, reports Max Henson of Panthers.com.

In addition to placing rookie defensive end Arthur Miley on injured reserve and reaching an injury settlement with offensive lineman Brian Folkerts, the Panthers cut Jordan Todman. This leaves Fozzy Whittaker and Cameron Artis-Payne as Jonathan Stewart‘s primary backups.

The remaining Carolina cuts are as follows:

  • Chas Alecxih, DT
  • Marcus Ball, S
  • Brenton Bersin, WR
  • Brian Blechen, LB
  • Mike Brown, WR
  • Carrington Byndom, CB
  • Damiere Byrd, WR
  • Rakim Cox, DE
  • David Foucault, T
  • Adarius Glanton, LB
  • T.J. Heath, CB
  • Ricky Henry, G
  • Marcus Lucas, TE
  • Jordan McCray, G
  • Terry Redden, DT
  • Scott Simonson, TE
  • Jason Trusnik, LB
  • Martin Wallace, T
  • Lou Young, CB

South Notes: Panthers, Williams, Bucs, Jaguars

The Panthers have added several role players to one-year deals recently, and David Newton of ESPN.com provides the contract details. Linebacker Jason Trusnik will earn $950K ($80K guaranteed), running back Jordan Todman will get $765K ($20K guaranteed), and receiver Jarrett Boykin will receive $700K ($20K guaranteed). All three will earn slightly more than the minimum required for their respective years of service time.

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

  • Receiver/return man Chris Williams has worked out for the Colts, Buccaneers, and Bengals, league sources tell Aaron Wilson of the National Football Post. The 27-year-old Williams spent the 2014 season with the Bears, appearing in six games, and returned one kickoff for a touchdown.
  • In his latest draft diary entry for the Baltimore Sun, Penn State safety Adrian Amos reveals that he worked out for Buccaneers safeties coach Mikal Smith, and also notes that he worked out for an AFC team, though that club asked Amos not to mention them by name in the piece.
  • The Buccaneers picked up the $4MM guaranteed in Dashon Goldson‘s 2015 base salary when they traded him to Washington on Friday, and the Jaguars could employ a similar tactic if they want to deal tight end Marcedes Lewis, suggests Ryan O’Halloran of the Florida Times-Union. If Jacksonville converts some of Lewis’ 2015 base salary into a signing bonus, O’Halloran writes, the market for the tight end could grow. We heard last month that the 30-year-old was drawing trade interest.

Dolphins Notes: Thomas, Draft, Trusnik

Dolphins safety and special-teamer Michael Thomas met with coaches and formally signed his contract tender with the team this morning, according to Adam Beasley of the Miami Herald (via Twitter). There was no doubt that Thomas would be back, since he was an exclusive rights free agent and couldn’t negotiate with other teams, but he’s now officially under contract, and the club expects “big things” from him in 2015, says Beasley.

Here’s more on the Dolphins, courtesy of Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald:

  • A team source tells Jackson that Auburn receiver Sammie Coates and USC wideout George Farmer are among the prospects being flown in to meet with Dolphins coaches and executives this month. Miami acquired Kenny Stills in a trade with the Saints last month, but Stills alone won’t replace Mike Wallace, Brian Hartline, and Brandon Gibson, so the team remains in the market for receiving help.
  • Clemson outside linebacker Vic Beasley doesn’t look like a good bet to fall to the No. 14 pick, but the Dolphins have scheduled a visit with him anyway, says Jackson.
  • Miami’s Phillip Dorsett and Florida State’s Rashad Greene are among the receivers the Dolphins have invited to audition for them on their local day on April 10. According to Jackson, FSU tight end Nick O’Leary won’t be in attendance that day due to a scheduling conflict, but he’ll meet with team execs and coaches on April 9 instead.
  • Louisville cornerback Charles Gaines and Minnesota safety Cedric Thompson are among the defensive backs slated to visit the Dolphins, per Jackson. The club also intends to audition Miami middle linebacker Denzel Perryman, and sent linebackers coach Mark Duffner to Clemson to work out potential second-round pick Stephone Anthony.
  • According to Jackson, the Dolphins didn’t show any interest in retaining linebacker and special-teamer Jason Trusnik, who signed yesterday with the Panthers.

Panthers Sign Jason Trusnik

The Panthers have inked outside linebacker Jason Trusnik to a contract, the team announced today (via Twitter). It’s a one-year deal for the former Dolphin.

Trusnik, who is entering his age-31 season, spent his last four seasons in Miami, serving mostly as a special-teamer and a part-time player on defense. He saw his most action this past year, logging nearly 400 defensive snaps for the club and contributing on special teams as well. In total, Trusnik had 50 tackles, adding an interception and a pair of fumble recoveries for good measure.

Before signing with the Panthers, Trusnik paid a visit to the Jets.

East Notes: Bills, Dez, Washington, Jets

When Terry Pegula and Kim Pegula were bidding for the Bills last year, one key factor that gave them an advantage of other potential suitors was the Pegulas’ desire to keep the franchise in Buffalo, rather than moving it somewhere like Toronto. However, Terry Pegula told John Kryk of the Toronto Sun at the owners’ meetings this week that he isn’t totally opposed to the idea of an NFL team in Ontario.

“I don’t think I would have a problem with it if they could support the team,” Pegula said. “It’s a big enough market. I don’t know how that works with the CFL, though.”

For now, the NFL is far more focused on getting franchises in Los Angeles and perhaps even London, so nothing is at all imminent for Toronto. But if the possibility arose down the line, it doesn’t sound as if Pegula would be opposed.

Here’s more from around the NFL’s two East divisions:

  • Pegula also discussed the Bills‘ offseason, including the recruitment of Percy Harvin, with Vic Carucci of The Buffalo News.
  • Speaking to David Helman of DallasCowboys.com, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones indicated he doesn’t believe Dez Bryant would hold out for a long-term deal this year. “There’s no doubt in my mind that – without being presumptuous, without doing anything – that Dez will be on the field and a Dallas Cowboy under either of the circumstances — long-term or franchise agreement,” Jones said. “I’m not worried about [a holdout] at all, and it’s because of how much he loves the game, how much he knows that preparation, practice, all of that improves him.”
  • Washington general manager Scot McCloughan intends to continue adding pieces to the team’s offensive line, and left the door open to making additions via either free agency or the draft, writes Mike Jones of the Washington Post.
  • Veteran DE/OLB Jason Trusnik was among the latest free agents to visit the Jets, tweets Adam Caplan of ESPN.com. Trusnik has spent the last four seasons with the division-rival Dolphins.
  • Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie made the right call in giving Chip Kelly complete decision-making power in Philadelphia, but Lurie’s decision to keep former GM Howie Roseman in the front office “lacked conviction,” says Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer.