Jordan Howard

East Notes: Jets, Eagles, Washington

Teams around the league have been announcing that many if not all of their players would skip voluntary offseason workouts, including the Jets a couple of days ago. Things are now up in the air between the NFL and NFLPA, and one of the biggest sticking points is what to do about players with workout bonuses in their contracts. As of right now those players would stand to lose out on those bonuses, and collectively many millions of dollars, which is why some teams have said that some of their players will still be showing up.

Fortunately for Jets players, nobody on the roster has a workout bonus in their deal, according to Overthecap.com, via Rich Cimini of ESPN.com. Cimini notes the Jets had doled out lots of workout bonuses in past years, but “the current regime” led by GM Joe Douglas “has moved away from them.” He also points out that New York is “one of only five teams with no workout bonuses.”

Here’s more from the East, shifting to the NFC now:

  • Jordan Howard recently signed back with the Eagles on a one-year deal, and he apparently didn’t have too many other options. Speaking to the media in a press conference this past week, Howard revealed he thought he might’ve been done in the NFL this offseason. “My market was just pretty dry,” Howard said, via Tim McManus of ESPN.com (Twitter link). “I was having thoughts like, I might be done,” he admitted candidly. “Teams weren’t really calling,” he added. Given the apparent lack of other interest, it probably won’t surprise you to learn that Howard’s one-year deal is for the vet minimum and contains no guaranteed money, Dave Zangaro of NBC Sports reports. Howard made the Pro Bowl as a rookie in 2016 with the Bears, but his stock has fallen rapidly since. He started last year with the Dolphins before getting cut and ending up back in Philly. He was also with the Eagles in 2019, when he carried the ball 119 times for 525 yards and six touchdowns in ten games.
  • Washington made an interesting developmental signing this past week when they added former basketball player Sammis Reyes, who is hoping to become an NFL tight end. It was a cool story, and it turns out Washington views Reyes as something more than just a dart throw. His contract comes with $392K in guaranteed money, with a $20K signing bonus and $372K in guaranteed salary, Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets. That’s more than some established veterans are getting on this open market. That’s also way more than any old undrafted free agent would get, so Ron Rivera and co. clearly think Reyes has some real potential to contribute. After they watched Logan Thomas go from quarterback to very productive tight end for them last year, it’s not hard to understand why they’d try to catch lightning in a bottle twice.

Eagles To Re-Sign RB Jordan Howard

Jordan Howard is returning to Philly. The veteran running back is re-signing with the Eagles, reports ESPN’s Adam Schefter (via Twitter). It’s a one-year deal for the 26-year-old.

Howard inked a two-year deal with the Dolphins last offseason, but he waived in November after averaging 1.7 yards per carry. He eventually caught on with the Eagles for his second stint with the organization, although he had to settle for a practice squad gig. He was ultimately elevated for a pair of games, rushing for 27 yards on only seven carries. Howard’s first stint with the organization came in 2019, when he was traded from the Bears for a sixth-rounder. The running back finished that season with 584 yards from scrimmage.

The 2016 fifth-rounder has had a tough time matching the numbers from his rookie campaign, when he rushed for more than 1,300 yards en route to a Pro Bowl appearance. While his yards per carry continued to drop, Howard still put up decent numbers between the 2017 and 2018 seasons, averaging 1,163.5 yards from scrimmage and nine touchdowns per year.

Miles Sanders and Boston Scott will likely be slotted in as the top two running backs on Philly’s depth chart next season. Howard will compete with the likes of Jason Huntley, Elijah Holyfield, Adrian Killins, and (presumably) rookies for the third spot on the depth chart.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Minor NFL Transactions: 12/26/20

Here are Saturday’s minor moves:

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

  • Promoted: C Javon Patterson

Dallas Cowboys

Denver Broncos

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Rams

New England Patriots

New York Jets

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

Seattle Seahawks

Tennessee Titans

Washington Football Team

Eagles Promote RB Jordan Howard

When the Eagles take the field tomorrow against the Packers, they’ll be joined by a familiar face. Philadelphia has promoted veteran running back Jordan Howard from the practice squad, the team announced on Twitter. The Eagles have also promoted defensive tackle Raequan Williams.

Howard appeared in 10 games for the Eagles during the 2019 campaign, starting four of those contests. He ultimately finished the season having compiled 525 rushing yards and six touchdowns on 119 carries (good for 4.4 yards per carry), and that included an 87-yard, two-touchdown performance in a victory over Green Bay.

Howard signed a two-year, $9.75MM deal with the Dolphins this past offseason, but his brief stint in Miami proved to be underwhelming. The 26-year-old appeared in five games (three starts) for the Dolphins, running for 33 yards and four touchdowns on 28 carries. He was released by the Dolphins in mid-November, and he quickly caught on with the Eagles practice squad.

Now, Howard will have an opportunity to reinsert himself into an inconsistent running back corps. The Eagles have turned to three running backs this season, including Miles Sanders, Boston Scott, and Corey Clement.

Williams joined the Eagles this offseason as an undrafted free agent out of Michigan State. The 23-year-old made his NFL debut after being promoted to the active roster in Week 8.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Eagles Add Jordan Howard To Practice Squad

The Eagles have signed Jordan Howard to the practice squad, per a club announcement. This was the expected move after Howard auditioned for Philly late last week.

[RELATED: Eagles Activate G Isaac Seumalo From IR]

Howard was traded from the Bears to the Eagles last year and parlayed his performance into a two-year deal with the Dolphins. Things didn’t go according to plan in Miami — after averaging just 1.2 yards per tote, Howard was left off of the active roster, taking a backseat to Myles Gaskin and Matt Breida. Then, he was dropped from the roster altogether. No one picked up Howard (and his contract) on the waiver wire, leading him back to the Eagles.

Howard topped 1,100 rushing yards in his first two Bears seasons but was less effective in Matt Nagy‘s scheme in 2018. With the Eagles, Howard bounced back by averaging 4.4 yards per carry and rushing for six touchdowns in ten games. He’ll look to reprise that type of production, if and when he’s given the opportunity. The Eagles could give him a chance to get back on the field next week, when they face the Seahawks in a Monday night matchup.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Eagles Expected To Sign Jordan Howard

Shortly after the Dolphins cut Jordan Howard, the veteran running back secured an Eagles visit. Howard is meeting with Eagles brass Thursday, Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets.

This will lead to an agreement. Howard is expected to sign with the Eagles on a practice squad agreement, according to NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport (on Twitter). Should he navigate COVID-19 protocols, he will be eligible to practice with the Eagles next week. Given Howard’s history with the team, he should not have an issue reacclimating.

Howard landed an ultimately unsuccessful (for the Dolphins) two-year deal based somewhat on his 2019 performance as an Eagle. The Eagles acquired Howard from the Bears last year and used him as a starter. The fifth-year back, however, has experienced a brutally ineffective 2020.

Howard’s Dolphins stay ended with a 1.2 yards-per-carry average (33 yards on 28 totes). The Dolphins made him a healthy scratch at one point and moved on in the form of a Monday cut. As expected, no team claimed Howard’s contract.

The Eagles have a recent history of circling back to running backs. They signed Jay Ajayi a year after an injury ended his first Eagles tenure and re-signed Corey Clement after non-tendering him as a restricted free agent this year. Clement is currently on Philly’s reserve/COVID-19 list.

Howard surpassed 1,100 rushing yards in his first two Bears seasons but was less effective in Matt Nagy‘s scheme in 2018, prompting the Bears to trade him in the ’19 offseason. With the Eagles, Howard bounced back by averaging 4.4 yards per carry and rushing for six touchdowns in 10 games.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Dolphins Release RB Jordan Howard

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Jordan Howard‘s time in Miami has come to an end. The Dolphins have cut the running back, head coach Brian Flores announced during his press conference on Monday.

Interestingly, Flores deemed it a “mutual parting,” which likely has something to do with Howard being frustrated with his limited role. Even though he’s a vested veteran since it’s this late in the season, Howard will be subjected to waivers. We heard a couple of weeks ago that Howard might be available in a trade, but clearly there weren’t any takers. Still, he could be a target of some contending teams looking for running back help.

Howard signed a two-year, $9.75MM deal with Miami back in March, and they proved to regret it almost immediately. He started the first two games but only carried the ball 13 times for 11 yards, and quickly took a backseat to Myles Gaskin and Matt Breida. He’s mostly been inactive recently. All told, he’ll finish his Dolphins tenure with a pitiful 33 yards on 28 attempts through five games, although he did score four touchdowns.

A fifth-round pick of the Bears in 2016, Howard became Chicago’s starter as a rookie and spent his first three seasons as their lead back. The Indiana product slowly fell out of favor with Matt Nagy, and was shipped out to Philadelphia before the 2019 season. Last year with the Eagles he was relatively productive, rushing the ball 119 for 525 yards and six scores. Howard’s salary isn’t guaranteed for 2021 and he’s only owed around $721K for the rest of this year (per this tweet from Field Yates of ESPN.com), so it’s certainly not inconceivable that a team will claim him.

Trade Rumors: Thomas, Njoku, Watt, Jets

Saints head coach Sean Payton has said his team has no interest in trading star receiver Michael Thomas, though Thomas’ camp was recently said to be looking for potential deals. There has been no movement towards a Thomas trade, and whether that’s because New Orleans has no interest in dealing him or because the club has not received an offer it likes, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com says Thomas will stay put.

With the trade deadline two days away, let’s round up a few more rumors on players who could be on the move:

  • The Browns don’t want to trade tight end David Njoku, but Njoku has renewed his request to be dealt, and Rapoport says Cleveland has been fielding calls on the former first-rounder. It may take at least a fourth-round pick to get a deal done, but with Austin Hooper set to return and with the emergence of rookie Harrison Bryant, the Browns may elect to move Njoku.
  • Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports writes that the Texans are at the center of the trade market, with one executive saying Houston could move as many as five players if it wants to. Rapoport expects the Packersinterest in Will Fuller — which dates back to the summer — to ramp up, but it will likely take a high pick to convince the Texans to move Fuller. Fellow WR Kenny Stills has also drawn some interest, though rival clubs see the contracts for Stills and Randall Cobb as prohibitive. DE J.J. Watt may be receptive to a trade, but considering his contract and age, other teams probably don’t value him like the Texans do.
  • The Jets have received calls on LB Avery Williamson, OTs George Fant and Chuma Edoga, and CB Quincy Wilson, per Albert Breer of SI.com. Rich Cimini of ESPN.com says the Steelers — who recently lost Devin Bush for the season — could be in the market for Williamson, and Edoga also seems like a good bet to be dealt since he does not look like a fit with the current regime.
  • La Canfora says teams have also called the Jets about WR Breshad Perriman and TE Chris Herndon, though Breer notes that safety Marcus Maye has not drawn much interest.
  • Rapoport names Dolphins RB Jordan Howard and Seahawks TE Jacob Hollister as two other players who could be moved. And though the Bengals are shopping disgruntled wideout John Ross, Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com says there hasn’t been interest in Ross (Twitter link).

AFC East Notes: Lawson, Dolphins, Jets

Despite Shaq Lawson being in trade rumors for much of his tenure with the Bills, the current regime was interested in bringing him back. However, it does not appear Buffalo’s interest in retaining the former Doug Whaley first-round pick was extensive. The Bills were open to re-signing Lawson, but Joe Buscaglia of The Athletic notes such interest was contingent on Lawson returning at a certain price (subscription required). But once the Dolphins guaranteed two years of Lawson’s $10MM-AAV contract, the Bills let him walk. Buffalo signed both Mario Addison and versatile D-lineman Quinton Jefferson to cover for Lawson’s exit.

Here is the latest from the AFC East:

  • Shifting to Lawson’s new team, the Dolphins received good news on the health statuses of two of their recent free agent additions. Emmanuel Ogbah said he has been cleared for football work for around a month but has yet to partake in workouts because of COVID-19 concerns, Cameron Wolfe of ESPN.com tweets. Ogbah will receive a Chiefs Super Bowl ring, but the defensive end’s contributions ended midseason because of a torn pectoral muscle.
  • Jordan Howard also will be full-go when the Dolphins reconvene, Wolfe adds. After a strong start to his Eagles season, Howard suffered a shoulder injury that derailed his momentum. He played in just one game after Week 9 but did not log any carries. Howard was inactive for Philadelphia’s playoff game. The Dolphins gave him a two-year, $9.75MM contract.
  • Sam Martin ended up signing with the Broncos, but the Jets were interested in adding the former Lions punter, Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News notes. The Broncos gave Martin a three-year, $7.05MM deal; Mehta adds the Jets were not budgeting that much for their punter position. Martin’s $2.35MM salary ranks 15th among punters. The Jets have opted not to re-sign incumbent punter Lac Edwards, their four-year punter, and Mehta adds they have remained in contact with former Dolphins and Bills punter Matt Darr. Ian Berryman, a 2019 Steelers UDFA, is the only punter on the Jets’ roster. The team remains interested in another addition here. Bringing considerable punter news to the table, Mehta adds that the Jets are doing their homework on Texas A&M’s Braden Mann — the 2018 Ray Guy award winner.
  • While things could certainly change in the coming months, the Patriots appear set to make Jarrett Stidham the favorite to be their first non-Tom Brady Week 1 starter since 2001.

Dolphins To Sign RB Jordan Howard

Jordan Howard will play for a third team in three years. The former Bears and Eagles running back reached an agreement with the Dolphins, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets.

The former fifth-round pick will land a two-year deal worth more than $10MM, Schefter notes. This continues a busy tampering period for the Dolphins.

Miami has added Byron Jones, Kyle Van Noy, Shaq Lawson, Ereck Flowers, Kamu Grugier-Hill and Emmanuel Ogbah since the tampering period began Monday afternoon. Howard will likely serve as the top veteran presence in the Fins’ backfield, with the team surely set to augment the position group in the draft.

Howard bounced back, to some degree, after a down 2018, posting a 4.4 yards-per-carry average. However, after a strong start upon being traded from Chicago to Philadelphia, Howard suffered a shoulder injury and was barely a factor down the stretch. In four seasons, Howard has totaled 979 touches. He posted two 1,000-yard seasons with the Bears — in 2016-17 — and has scored 32 touchdowns.

He will join a Dolphins backfield that lost Kenyan Drake and Mark Walton midway through last season, making Miami’s offense a largely one-dimensional unit. Howard will attempt to help Ryan Fitzpatrick or his to-be-determined successor in 2020.