Rejoice, Texas A&M fans. The Cowboys will sign Jerrod Johnson to serve as Jameill Showers‘ emergency backup for tonight’s preseason finale against the Texans, Clarence Hill of the Star-Telegram tweets.
Johnson, 28, has yet to appear in a regular season game for an NFL team, but he has had stints with five different teams, including practice squad tours. Since going undrafted in 2011, Johnson has signed deals with the Eagles, Steelers, Seahawks, Bears, and Ravens. However, with the rash of injuries in Dallas, Johnson could have an opportunity to hook on with the Cowboys as their No. 3 QB behind Showers and Week 1 starter Dak Prescott.
In four years at Texas A&M, Johnson completed 650 of his 1,109 total passes, totaling a 58.6% percentage. He threw 67 touchdowns against 27 interceptions.
The Ravens took a big step towards getting their roster down to 75 today. The Ravens announced that they have placed veteran tight end Ben Watson and cornerback Kyle Arrington on injured reserve. Meanwhile, the team has also waived eight other players and cut one.
Both Watson and Arrington suffered their season-ending injuries during preseason. In the Ravens’ preseason opener against the Panthers, Arrington suffered a concussion that he has yet to recover from. Watson, meanwhile, tore his Achilles on Saturday night against the Lions.
The Ravens cut linebacker Kavell Conner and he’ll immediately hit the free agent market as a vested veteran. Meanwhile, the following eight players have been waived:
January 8th, 2016 at 8:23pm CST by Dallas Robinson
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.
The Bears have signed former Rutgers defensive lineman Jamil Merrell who was in on a tryout during minicamp, tweets Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune. The Bears will also sign Wisconsin linebacker Conor O’Neill to a contract, Biggs tweets. To make room for the duo, the Bears released defensive lineman Israel Idonije and quarterback Jerrod Johnson (link).
The release of Idonije, 33, is probably the most notable of all the moves. The 6’7″ defensive tackle has spent nine of his ten career seasons playing for the Bears, save for a one-year tour with the Lions last season. Idonije has 149 games of NFL experience to his credit, including 50 starts for Chicago. His best season came in 2010 when he lined up at left defensive end for the Bears and racked up eight sacks and 33 tackles.
Johnson, 25, was fighting for a spot on the depth chart to backup starter Jay Cutler. His odds got a little bit tougher, however, when the club signed Jimmy Clausen earlier this month.
When Josh McCownsigned a two-year, $10MM deal with the Buccaneers in March, the position of Bears backup quarterback swung wide open. And when the team added San Jose State’s David Fales with a sixth-round pick two months later, the competition got that much juicier.
Three men are competing for the No. 2 spot on the QB depth chart: Jordan Palmer (brother of Carson), Jerrod Johnson and the aforementioned Fales. Palmer is the leader in the clubhouse, according to Dan Wiederer of the Chicago Tribune, a spot he’s earned with experience. A sixth-round pick in 2007, 2014 will mark his eighth season of professional football.
Johnson spent 18 days on the practice squad in September, Wiederer notes, and has yet to throw a pass in the NFL after entering the league in 2011 as an undrafted free agent from Texas A&M.
Whoever wins the spot has big shoes to fill — McCown shined bright last season filling in for an injured Jay Cutler, leading the league in fewest interceptions per throw and winning three of five starts. The biggest reason for his success, per quarterbacks coach Matt Cavanaugh, was the relationship he shared with Cutler.
“Josh was a great example of a guy where, although he knew he was going to be backing up Jay, he truly approached every day like he was going to be getting all the reps,” Cavanaugh said. “He worked very hard. And not only that, he was selfless enough to know that although I’m competing, I want to be able to help Jay too.
“Those guys had a unique relationship that Jay really counted on. Josh was his sounding board a lot. Sometimes when coaches speak to you, it’s coach-speak. You want to hear one of your buddies say, ‘Hey, they’re right.’ Or, ‘Let’s talk it through and then we’ll approach them about it.’ So there’s a role to be played there.”