John Simon

Titans Sign John Simon

The Titans have signed outside linebacker John Simon, per a club announcement. Fellow pass rusher Tuzar Skipper has been cut in a corresponding move.

Simon has been with the Patriots for the last three years. In 2020, he started in all 16 games and registered 53 stops with two sacks. All in all, he’s got 97 appearances and 52 career starts to his credit for the Ravens, Texans, Colts, and Patriots.

Simon is perhaps best known for the three-year, $14MM deal he signed with the Colts in 2017. That deal didn’t make it to Year Two, but he’s quietly put together a solid career in the NFL. Few know Simon’s ability better than Titans head coach Mike Vrabel, who’s coached the veteran at two different stops.

Skipper, meanwhile, will go to the waiver wire. Teams will have 24 hours to enter claims on him before he reaches unfettered free agency.

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Contract Details: Vaccaro, Callahan, Okafor

Let’s take a look at the details of a few recently-signed NFL contracts, with all links going to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle’s Twitter account:

Patriots To Re-Sign John Simon, Sign Brandon Bolden

The Patriots are set to re-sign John Simon on a brand new deal, Ian Rapoport of tweets. It’s a two-year contract, Adam Caplan of Sirius XM tweets.

Meanwhile, the Pats are also reuniting with another familiar face. Running back Branden Bolden, lauded for his special teams work, will return to New England on a two-year deal, Rapoport tweets. Bolden spent last season with the rival Dolphins but will return to the place where he made his name. Bolden logged just eight carries for 91 yards and three catches for 13 yards with Miami last year, but appeared in 66% of the Fins’ special teams plays.

Simon signed a three-year, $14MM deal with the Colts in 2017, but he was cut just prior to the 2018 season. A few weeks later, he found a new home with the Patriots. In eleven games, Simon tallied two sacks and 17 tackles, playing mostly in a reserve role.

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Extra Points: Dolphins, Wake, Patriots, Simon, Cowboys, Williams

Cameron Wake is 36-years-old, and as such the Dolphins were hoping to conserve him early on this season to preserve his body for later in the year. Wake, the five-time Pro Bowler from Penn State, was being used in an even rotation early on this year, but now may be forced to take on a bigger role. The Dolphins’ plan for Wake “might have lasted all of three games” according to Adam Beasley of The Miami Herald, due to injuries on Miami’s defensive line.

William Hayes tore his ACL on a controversial play where he was trying to avoid a roughing the passer penalty, and fellow defensive lineman Andre Branch also went down. The Dolphins now have only three healthy defensive ends, and Wake will now likely be forced to play nearly the entire game. It’s a big ask for a player of Wake’s age, and the Dolphins can’t afford anymore injuries to their defensive front.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • The Patriots recently signed pass-rusher John Simon, and now the details are in on his contract. He’ll receive a base salary of $800K, with another $412K available in incentives and roster bonuses according to Ben Volin of The Boston Globe (Twitter link). The Patriots have been unable to generate any pressure through three games, so it wouldn’t be surprising if Simon ends up playing a large role.
  • Terrance Williams recently missed practice, and rumors began circulating online that the Cowboys wideout was facing a suspension, but those rumors are untrue according to Calvin Watkins of The Athletic (Twitter link). Watkins reports that Williams, who has been lightly used this year despite recently signing an extension, was given an excused absence from practice.
  • In case you missed it, another weak area for the Patriots has been their receiving corp, and they continued to look for help by working out former first round pick Breshad Perriman.

Patriots To Place RB Rex Burhhead On IR

The Patriots will place running back Rex Burkhead on injured reserve with a neck injury, according to Jim McBride of The Boston Globe (on Twitter). The Pats will also place rookie linebacker Ja’Whaun Bentley on IR with an unknown ailment. To fill Bentley’s place on the roster, the Pats have signed outside linebacker John Simon, Field Yates of tweets

Burkhead, 28, had to be cleared from concussion protocol prior to the Patriots’ Week 3 game against the Lions. Unfortuantely, he was forced out of that game with a neck injury, putting the rest of his season in jeopardy. It’s currently unknown whether Burkhead is a candidate to return from IR later this year or if this is a definite season-ender.

In three games, Burkhead failed to get going on the ground with 24 rushes for 86 yards. Last year, he averaged 4.1 yards per carry in a limited sample.

Burkhead’s injury should mean a larger workload for rookie Sony Michel and more carries for James WhiteKenjon Barner is back in the fold, so the club may opt to stand pat with those three active running backs plus fullback James Develin.

Bentley, meanwhile, is the just the latest Patriots 2018 draft pick to be placed on IR this season, joining first round tackle/guard Isaiah Wynn, second-round cornerback, sixth-round wide receiver Braxton Berrios, and others.

Simon spent one season with the Colts, but in their new 4-3 defense, he was not viewed as an ideal fit. He spent the prior five seasons of his career with 3-4 teams — the Ravens and Texans — and has worked in a starting role for the past three years.

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NFL Workout Updates: 9/25/18

Here’s the latest from the workout circuit, all links going to NFL reporter Howard Balzer’s Twitter account unless otherwise noted.

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

Chicago Bears

Cleveland Browns

Detroit Lions

Houston Texans

Jacksonville Jaguars

Los Angeles Chargers

New England Patriots

San Francisco 49ers

Seattle Seahawks

  • C Dillon Day, T Gerhard de Beer, T Christian DiLauro, DT David Parry (link)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

  • T Christian DiLauro (link)

Tennessee Titans

NFC North Notes: Rodgers, Vikings, Lions

The Vikings were not the first team that sought Dan Bailey‘s services this season. Although he’s in Minnesota now, other franchises wanted to sign the second-most accurate kicker in NFL history. Bailey agreed to terms with the Vikings on a one-year, $2MM deal, Ian Rapoport of reports (on Twitter). However, the 30-year-old specialist also turned down offers worth double that on multiyear deals, Rapoport adds. The Jets brought in Bailey to work out just after the Cowboys cut him, but nothing came to fruition. Gang Green may have been one of the teams that presented a better offer, but that’s not known. Nevertheless, Bailey will replace Daniel Carlson, whom Mike Zimmer said it was not difficult to cut after his performance in Minnesota’s Week 2 tie in Green Bay.

Here’s the latest out of the NFC North:

  • Aaron Rodgers did not exit the Packers‘ Week 2 game with any new discomfort on his injured left knee, Mike McCarthy said (via Rob Demovsky of Rodgers is “obviously sore,” and McCarthy does not have a read on whether his quarterback’s condition is better or worse than at this point last week. But it’s encouraging for the Packers that Rodgers didn’t sustain any additional damage while clearly playing hurt.
  • Carlson’s cut will save the Vikings $200K, though the Bailey addition will negate those savings. Only Carlson’s signing bonus ($248K), plus his base salary through two games, will count against Minnesota’s cap, per Ben Goessling of the Minneapolis Star Tribune (on Twitter). The Vikings are up against the cap but managed to add Bailey, Aldrick Robinson and Tom Johnson in the past two days.
  • Robinson will only make the league minimum, and no guarantees exist in the soon-to-be 30-year-old wide receiver’s Vikings pact, Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press tweets. The former Redskins, Falcons and 49ers pass-catcher now comprises part of the Vikes’ receiving corps. Minnesota currently has five receivers on its roster, the same amount it did prior to the Robinson signing. Stacy Coley, a 2017 seventh-rounder, was cut to make room.
  • On a busy day for workouts, the Lions brought in two veteran edge rushers who would slot in as defensive ends in their 4-3 scheme. John Simon and David Bass trekked to Detroit for Tuesday workouts, Adam Caplan of Sirius XM reports (on Twitter). A recent Colts cut, Simon already met with the 49ers and Jets since being released. A six-year veteran, Bass led Jets edge rushers in sacks last season with 3.5. Former Packers fullback Aaron Ripkowski also worked out for the Lions today, NFL reporter Howard Balzer tweets. Also among the workout contingent: linebacker Tyrone Holmes, fullbacks Jalston Fowler and Jay Prosch, and tight end Donnie Ernsberger, per Balzer. Wide receiver Keon Hatcher visited with the Lions.
  • Former Jets wideout Chad Hansen was among those who auditioned for the Packers today, with Balzer tweeting Shay Fields, Korey Robertson, Taj Williams and quarterback Brogan Roback — of Hard Knocks fame — joined him.

NFL Workout Updates: 9/12/18

Today’s workout updates, with all links going to Adam Caplan of SiriusXM’s Twitter account:

Houston Texans

Jacksonville Jaguars

Oakland Raiders

San Francisco 49ers

Tennessee Titans

John Simon Visits Jets

The Jets’ search for additional outside linebacker help will now include John Simon. The edge defender made the Jets his first free agent visit since being released by the Colts, Field Yates of reports (on Twitter).

Simon spent one season with the Colts, but in their new 4-3 defense, he was not viewed as an ideal fit. He spent the prior five seasons of his career with 3-4 teams — the Ravens and Texans — and has worked in a starting role for the past three years.

Gang Green’s outside-rush situation has been mentioned as one of the most glaring weak spots any team’s facing. The Jets do not return a player who registered more than three sacks last season. Projected outside linebacker starters Josh Martin and Jordan Jenkins combined for 4.5 sacks in 2017.

The second-place finishers in the Khalil Mack sweepstakes, the Jets did sign Jeremiah Attaochu after the 49ers cut him. A Simon route to New York would be a similar addition. The 27-year-old defender started all nine Colts games he played. His single-season sack high is five, set with the 2015 Texans — for whom he worked as a part-time starter.


Colts Cut John Simon

The Colts have released veteran edge rusher John Simon, according to Ian Rapoport of (Twitter link).

New defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus planned to play Simon at defensive end rather than middle or strongside linebacker. At 6’2″ and 260 pounds, that was perhaps too tall of an order for the veteran. Simon played well during the preseason after being listed as a potential roster cut during the summer, but Indy still decided to move on.

Simon signed a three-year, $14MM deal with the Colts just last year, but he had no guaranteed money remaining on his deal. The Colts will save $3.28MM against the cap by releasing Simon.

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