Joplo Bartu

NFL Workout Updates: 12/19/16

The Falcons worked out several safeties today, including veteran Dashon Goldson, according to Adam Caplan of ESPN.com (Twitter link). Goldson has already spent time with Atlanta this season, appearing in four games for the club earlier in the year. The Falcons also took at look defensive backs Earl Wolff and Floyd Raven as they seek to replace Kemal Ishmael, who was placed on IR last week.

Here’s more from the workout circuit:

  • Veteran linebacker Joplo Bartu met with the Dolphins today, per Caplan (Twitter link). Bartu has been in the league since 2013, and has 48 games of experience — including 28 starts — under his belt during time with Atlanta and Jacksonville. However, the 26-year-old Bartu hasn’t started a contest since 2014.
  • The Bears worked out a slew of players on Monday, reports Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune (Twitter links). Chicago met with the following players today: defensive ends Jeoffrey Pagan and Mike Rose; linebackers Taiwan Jones and Frank Beltre; and defensive backs V’Angelo Bentley, Forrest Hightower, Dwayne Hollis, Rashaad Reynolds, and Mitchell White.
  • The Seahawks visited with free agent running back George Winn, tweets Caplan. Winn, who has bounced on and off the Lions and Giants practice squads this season, could add depth on a Seattle roster that has already lost C.J. Prosise and Troymaine Pope for the year.
  • Running back Terrell Watson tried out for the Eagles today, according to Caplan (Twitter link). Philadelphia recently placed RB Wendell Smallwood on injured reserve, meaning Watson — a former Bengals and Browns preseason star — could be a fit.

Cardinals Sign Sio Moore

The Cardinals announced (via Twitter) that they have signed linebacker Sio Moore. In a related move, the team cut fellow linebacker Joplo Bartu with an injury settlement (hamstring).

Sio Moore (vertical)Moore, a 2013 third-round pick, will be joining his third team of the season. The linebacker started the season with the Colts, compiling 30 tackles in four games. However, Moore was waived in early October. The 26-year-old soon caught on with the Chiefs, but he was released in early November without making a single appearance with the squad. The three-year veteran also got an audition with the Lions in early November.

The defender showed plenty of promise during his first two seasons in the league, as he averaged 70 tackles and nearly four sacks with the Raiders. Moore’s tenure with Oakland ended when he was traded to the Colts for a sixth-round pick. Moore will be joining a Cardinals linebacker corps that already features Alex Okafor, Kareem Martin, and Zaviar Gooden in reserve roles.

Bartu, 27, played seven games for the Cardinals this season. He hasn’t made a significant NFL contribution since 2014, when he collected 82 tackles in 14 starts for the Falcons.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Cardinals To Sign Joplo Bartu

The Cardinals have agreed to sign linebacker Joplo Bartu, according to a source who spoke with Aaron Wilson of The Houston Chronicle (on Twitter). It’s not immediately clear if it’s a 53-man deal or a practice squad contract, though Bartu already has plenty of in-game experience and it would stand to reason that he will be joining the varsity team. Joplo Bartu (vertical)

[RELATED: Cardinals Sign LS Aaron Brewer]

Bartu, who turns 26 on Oct. 3, auditioned for the Cardinals on Tuesday along with fellow linebackers Nate Irving and James-Michael Johnson. Last year, Bartu split his time between the Falcons and the Jaguars. This offseason, Bartu was let go by Jacksonville before the 75-man deadline.

The bulk of Bartu’s NFL experience came with the Falcons in 2013 and 2014 where he appeared in every regular season game and amassed 167 tackles, 4.5 sacks, and two fumble recoveries. Last year, he totaled just eleven tackles. He’s ostensibly hoping to get the kind of burn that he had in the early part of his career.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Cardinals Sign LS Aaron Brewer

The Cardinals have signed veteran long snapper Aaron Brewer, according to Josh Weinfuss of ESPN.com. Rookie snapper Kameron Canaday struggled during the first three games of the season, and was waived earlier today. Brewer, 26, is a four-year NFL veteran, having spent the past several seasons with the Broncos.Aaron Brewer (Vertical)

[RELATED: Cardinals Place Troy Niklas On IR]

Brewer was just one of several specialists that Arizona worked out today. Fellow long snapper Tyler Ott was also on hand, as were punters Michael Palardy, Ryan Quigley, and Tim Masthay, reports Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk. The Cardinals will need a new punter for at least a few games, as incumbent Drew Butler will be sidelined for awhile with an ankle/Achilles injury.

Arizona completed a busy day by auditioning a trifecta of linebackers, as they took a look at Nate Irving, James-Michael Johnson, and Joplo Bartu, tweets Adam Caplan of ESPN.com. Irving, 28, has 62 career appearances to his name, but was released by the Colts at final cutdowns despite being in the midst of a multi-year contract.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Jaguars Waive Eight Players

The Jaguars took a big step towards getting to tomorrow’s 75-man roster max. The team announced that the following players have been waived:

In addition to those cuts, offensive lineman Jeff Linkenbach has been placed on IR, safety Earl Wolff has been waived/injured, and offensive lineman Luke Bowanko (hip) and defensive end Jonathan Woodard (Achilles) have been moved to the PUP list.

McCray is a former starting cornerback and was a member of GM David Caldwell’s first draft class. Evans is a former fourth-round pick of the Jets, one of many underwhelming draft choices by former GM John Idzik.

The Jaguars are now down to 78 players.

Jaguars Sign Joplo Bartu; Bernard Pierce To IR

A former Falcons starting linebacker, Joplo Bartu signed with the Jaguars after working out for the team earlier today, Michael DiRocco of ESPN.com reports (on Twitter).

Bartu will fill Bernard Pierce‘s roster spot, with the fourth-year running back heading to season-ending injured reserve with a calf injury.

Signed due to uncertainty surrounding Paul Posluszny‘s hand injury (per the Houston Chronicle’s Aaron Wilson, on Twitter), Bartu could see defensive snaps soon. Dan Skuta‘s missed three straight games, and the Jags started rookie UDFA Thurston Armbrister against the Titans.

The Falcons cut the 25-year-old Bartu, who started 28 games in Atlanta despite arriving as an undrafted free agent, in November to make room for kicker Shayne Graham.

A third-year outside linebacker out of Division I-FCS Texas State, Bartu’s made 178 career tackles and 4.5 sacks in 28 career games.

Pierce only received six carries, gaining 11 yards, this season.

Ray Rice‘s former backup with the Ravens played in seven games this season, serving almost exclusively as a special teams cog. He rushed for a career-high 532 yards, averaging 4.9 per carry, as a rookie for the 2012 Super Bowl champions but hasn’t averaged more than four yards per tote since.

AFC East Notes: McDaniels, Jets, Tannehill

Going back to the turn of the century, NFL teams have fired an average of 6.9 head coaches per season. So, based on recent history, we should see plenty of head coaching positions open up in the offseason. On Thursday, Adam Schefter and Chris Mortensen of ESPN.com rounded up a list of ten candidates who will likely be on the list of any team seeking a new coach, based on conversations with NFL officials.

Two AFC East coaches made the unranked list: Bills assistant head coach Anthony Lynn and Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels. Lynn interviewed well with the Jets last season but ultimately lost out on the job to Todd Bowles. McDaniels, meanwhile, could be the top candidate available given his success in New England.

Here’s more out of the AFC East:

  • The Jets have proven that they won’t hesitate to cut the cord on high draft picks from the old regime, like Quinton Coples, but it would be bad business not to bring back cornerback Dee Milliner, Manish Mehta of the Daily News opines. Milliner, who is guaranteed $2.1MM in 2016 in the final year of his rookie deal, has not played much this season because he apparently has not earned the trust of head coach Todd Bowles. Still, Milliner’s work habits don’t appear to be a problem and the potential is there – Milliner was almost universally rated as the best cornerback in the 2013 draft.
  • Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill obviously didn’t gloat over the firing of offensive coordinator Bill Lazor, but he sounds glad to be moving on from him. “I’m just excited about being part of the game plan,” Tannehill said, according to James Walker of ESPN.com. “Working with the coaches Monday and [Tuesday], just being a part of the game-plan process and having my thoughts heard and kind of putting our heads together to create some of the things we want to do, it’s been fun so far.”
  • Linebacker Joplo Bartu will work out for the Jets today, according to a source who spoke with Aaron Wilson of The Houston Chronicle (on Twitter). Bartu, a former starter, made one start in 2015 and appeared in six games total before being released by Atlanta late last month. Between 2013 and 2014, Bartu appeared in all 32 regular season contests for te Falcons with 27 starts. In total, Bartu notched 167 tackles and 4.5 sacks during that span. This year, he has recorded just eleven tackles.

Workout Notes: Raiders, Colts, Packers

Today’s workouts from around the league:

Falcons To Sign Shayne Graham, Cut Joplo Bartu

9:50am: To make room for Graham, the Falcons will cut linebacker Joplo Bartu, as D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution writes.

Bartu, a former starter, has only made one start in 2015 and appeared in six games total. Between 2013 and 2014, Bartu appeared in all 32 regular season contests with 27 starts. In total, Bartu notched 167 tackles and 4.5 sacks during that span. This year, he has recorded just eleven tackles.

9:36am: The Falcons are planning to sign former Saints and Bengals kicker Shayne Graham, a source tells Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (via Twitter). Graham will give Atlanta an extra leg Matt Bryant nurses a quad injury.

Graham is a 15-year NFL veteran who first joined New Orleans as a UDFA in 2000. The 37-year-old (38 in December), who has played for nine clubs in total, ranks seventh in NFL record books in field goal accuracy (85.5%), having nailed 266-of-311 career attempts. Overall, in 173 games, he has scored 1,219 points, tied for 35th in NFL history. Last year, Graham connected on 19-of-22 field goal attempts and finished as the club’s leading scorer with 103 points.

Extra Points: Brees, Cowboys, Rice

Drew Brees has said that he wants to play football until he is 45, but he admits that goal is a little bit unrealistic. “45 is a long way away,” the Saints quarterback said on ESPN’s SVP and Russillo, according to Joel A. Erickson of The Advocate. “I’m 36 right now, and I know I got maybe a little overzealous last year when I threw out the number 45.” Warren Moon, Vinny Testaverde, and Steve Deberg hung in there until they were 44, but those final years were mostly spent playing in reserve roles. Here’s more from around the NFL..

  • Along with free agent running backs Daniel Thomas, Ben Tate, and Felix Jones, Ronnie Wingo also worked out for the Cowboys today, as Clarence Hill of the Star Telegram tweets. Wingo was released by the Falcons earlier this month to help make room on the roster for incoming rookies.
  • A judge dismissed domestic violence charges against former Ravens running back Ray Rice, as The Associated Press writes. Rice completed the terms of his pretrial intervention, which included $125 in fines and anger management counseling.
  • Joe Barksdale, who signed a minimum-salary deal with the Chargers, was offered more from the Rams earlier in the offseason, Jim Thomas of the Post Dispatch tweets. Back in March, Barksdale looked like a decent bet to land a deal similar to the $6MM-per-year pacts signed by Austin Howard and Anthony Collins in 2014. However, that kind of market never materialized for the veteran. Pro Football Focus (subscription required) ranked the former Ram just 48th out of 84 qualified tackles last season.
  • Falcons linebacker Joplo Bartu was fined $50,000 for an alcohol-related offense, but only after his two-game suspension was rescinded, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com. Bartu, who had 83 tackles in 2014, was handed a two-game suspension in March for his DUI arrest. Earlier this month, the linebacker brought new information to the league and his punishment was altered. However, future violations of the law will carry more significant discipline for him.
  • Ravens rookie lineman Leon Brown hopes to land a roster spot with his hometown team, Aaron Wilson of The Baltimore Sun writes. The 6-foot-5, 332-pound former junior college All-American also had an invite to try out for the Jaguars, but he chose the Ravens instead. Brown, an Alabama product, went undrafted this year.