Jordan Phillips

Cardinals Move Gonzalez, Phillips To IR

Mike Nugent looks set to continue as Arizona’s kicker for the foreseeable future. The Cardinals placed Zane Gonzalez on IR on Saturday and promoted Nugent from their practice squad.

The Cardinals gave Nugent a chance to kick in a 16th NFL season last week, calling on him to replace an injured Gonzalez. With Saturday’s transaction sidelining Gonzalez for the rest of the regular season, the 38-year-old Nugent will receive more opportunities to help the Cards into the playoffs for the first time in five years.

Gonzalez has struggled this season, having seen a game-tying field goal from inside 50 yards fall short against the Dolphins and having missed five other field goals (16-for-22) in his third Cardinals campaign. The former Browns kicker, down because of a back injury, will be eligible to return for Arizona’s playoff game — should the Cards qualify. Nugent made 4 of 4 field goals in the Cards’ win over the Giants last week.

Joining Gonzalez on IR for the next three weeks: Jordan Phillips. The pricey free agent acquisition will head to IR for the second time this season. Because this is Phillips’ second time on IR, his season is over.

Phillips has dealt with a balky hamstring this season. He returned from IR last week to play against the Giants, but a setback will sideline a key Cards defender for the team’s most critical stretch of games in years. The Cardinals now have D-linemen Phillips, Corey Peters and Josh Mauro on IR.

Arizona also activated tight end Darrell Daniels off IR and promoted running back D.J. Foster and linebacker Terrance Smith.

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Cardinals Activate DL Jordan Phillips, Promote K Mike Nugent

The Cardinals announced a list of transactions this afternoon, including the activation of defensive lineman Jordan Phillips from injured reserve. The team also activated cornerback Kevin Peterson from IR, placed cornerback Johnathan Joseph on IR, released defensive lineman Trevon Coley, and promoted tight end Seth DeValve and kicker Mike Nugent from the practice squad.

Following a 9.5-sack campaign with the Bills in 2019, Phillips got a three-year deal from Arizona this offseason. While he started eight games for the Cardinals, his production took a dip, as he had only 10 tackles and a pair of sacks through the first two-plus months of the season. With his playing time already diminished, Phillips landed on injured reserve back in November with a hamstring injury.

Joseph, 36, was released by the Titans back in November. He quickly caught on with the Cardinals, and he’s collected three tackles and one pass defended through four games. The veteran hadn’t appeared in more than 20 percent of his team’s defensive snaps in any of his four games, and he was added to the injury report this week with a neck ailment. Peterson, 26, will be taking Joseph’s spot on the roster, with the Oklahoma State product having appeared in 22 games for the Cardinals over the past two seasons.

With starting kicker Zane Gonzalez ruled out for tomorrow’s game against the Giants with a back injury, Arizona is turning to Nugent. The 38-year-old joined the Cardinals practice squad back in September, and with Gonzalez connecting on only 72.7 percent of his field goals this season, Nugent could be auditioning for the full-time gig. Nugent got into four games with the Patriots last season, connecting on five of his eight field goal attempts and 15 of his 16 extra point tries.

DeValve, a 2016 fourth-round pick, joined the Cardinals practice squad last month and was promoted to the active roster last week. In 54 career games (16 starts), DeValve’s hauled in 60 receptions for 736 yards and four touchdowns. Coley, 26, started 29 games for the Browns between the 2017 and 2018 seasons. He’s appeared in 13 games since that time, compiling 20 tackles and one sack.

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Cardinals Move Jordan Phillips To IR

More trouble for Arizona’s defensive line. The Cardinals placed big-ticket free agency addition Jordan Phillips on IR on Thursday. He will join Corey Peters as D-linemen on the Cards’ injured list.

Phillips is battling a hamstring injury that caused him to miss Week 9. He will be out until Week 14 because of Thursday’s transaction, and the Cards are certainly set to be thin on their defensive front against the Seahawks. Peters is out for the season.

The Cards promoted defensive lineman Michael Dogbe from their practice squad but are still down Peters, Phillips and Zach Allen up front. Five Cards D-linemen in total are on IR. Considering Chandler Jones is also out, the Cardinals are down most of the players they intended to have rush quarterbacks at the season’s outset. They have turned to former off-ball linebacker Haason Reddick as an edge player as a result, and the team reacquired Markus Golden from the Giants to help out.

Phillips signed a three-year, $30MM deal to come over from Buffalo in March. He has not quite flashed his contract-year form, registering two sacks and three QB hits this season. In 2019, Phillips posted a Bills-best 9.5 sacks and 16 QB hits.

The Cardinals also promoted D.J. Foster. The veteran running back has seen action as a practice squad promotion a few times this season. Tight end Evan Baylis and linebacker Reggie Walker will rise to the active roster as well.

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Cardinals To Sign Jordan Phillips

The Cardinals have signed defensive tackle Jordan Phillips, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. The former Bills defender has inked a three-year deal worth $40MM with $18.5MM guaranteed, according to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle (on Twitter). Technically, it’s a four-year deal, but Phillips is really only ticketed for three since the 2023 season will be voided if he is on the roster five days after the 2022 season’s Super Bowl is played.

The incumbent Bills didn’t make a major play to keep Phillips. They drafted Ed Oliver at No. 9 overall last year, they have promising 2018 third-rounder Harrison Phillips coming back from injury, and they’re set to retain Star Lotulelei for a third season. Other clubs would have considered Phillips as a franchise tag candidate, but the Bills were in a unique position and allowed him to walk.

Phillips enjoyed a remarkable turnaround in Buffalo. The Bills claimed former second-round pick off waivers from the Dolphins in 2018, and he went on to become a key component of the Bills’ elite pass D. Last year, he tallied 9.5 sacks – nearly double the amount he totaled between all of 2016, 2017, and 2018. He also had 16 quarterback hits. The advanced metrics weren’t fond of his work (Phillips ranked just No. 103 out of 113 qualified interior defenders) but NFL evaluators, especially those in Arizona, didn’t mind.

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Franchise Tag In Play For Jordan Phillips?

An interesting name has surfaced as a possible franchise tag candidate — one that appeared on the waiver wire during the 2018 season.

The Bills drafted Ed Oliver at No. 9 overall last year, have promising 2018 third-rounder Harrison Phillips coming back from injury and are set to retain Star Lotulelei for a third season. Nevertheless, teams are expecting the Bills to tag defensive tackle Jordan Phillips, according to CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora.

That scenario would represent a remarkable rise for the elder of the Bills’ two D-line Phillipses. Buffalo claimed the former second-round pick off waivers from Miami in 2018. A key cog in the Bills’ top-tier pass defense, Jordan Phillips registered 9.5 sacks last season — nearly twice as many as he collected from 2016-18. Phillips also recorded 16 quarterback hits but graded as Pro Football Focus’ No. 103 interior defenders (out of 113 full-time players).

The 6-foot-6, 341-pound defender would collect approximately $16.7MM on a franchise tag in advance of his age-28 season. That would be a significant raise for the part-time starter, who signed a one-year, $4.5MM deal in March 2019 to stay with the Bills.

While the Bills have several notable investments at defensive tackle, they do possess plenty of cap space to afford a tag. Buffalo is projected to hold more than $82MM in space — third-most in the league. Should the Bills tag Phillips, it would give them a deep stable of interior defenders and further illuminate the need for an outside pass rusher. Shaq Lawson is a free agent, and Trent Murphy has not exceeded 10 QB hits in either of his two Bills seasons.

It would still be interesting to see Phillips’ name included with the likes of Chris Jones, Matt Judon or Yannick Ngakoue — all potential tag recipients. Those pass rushers will carry much greater name recognition going into the tag window. Teams can apply tags from Feb. 25-March 10.

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Bills Sign Jordan Phillips To Extension

The Bills signed defensive tackle Jordan Phillips to a one-year contract extension worth $4.5MM, a source tells Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter). The new deal will give Phillips a sizable bump over his $1.029MM base salary from one year ago. 

Phillips, 27 in September, managed to get his career back on track after an ugly exit from Miami. The Dolphins cut Phillips on in October, days after he blew up on the sidelines due to his lack of playing time. They first attempted to trade Phillips first, but they were unable to find a suitable deal. The Bills used their waiver priority to snag him, beating out the Steelers, Patriots, and Saints.

The former second-round pick started most of his games in 2016 and 2017, but was relegated to a reserve role last year in Miami. Upon joining the Bills, Phillips managed 19 tackles and three passes defensed, though he graded out as the 108th ranked defensive tackle in the NFL on the entire year out of 112 qualified players, per Pro Football Focus.

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Steelers, Patriots, Saints Wanted Jordan Phillips

Defensive tackle Jordan Phillips is the newest member of the Bills, but a trio of contenders also tried to land him. The Steelers, Patriots, and Saints all put waiver claims in on the former Dolphin, as Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets, but the Bills won out thanks to their higher waiver priority. 

The former second-round pick has struggled with consistency over the last four years, but several teams still believe in his potential. The Patriots’ claim shows that they are less-than-thrilled about their current group of DTs, which consists of Lawrence Guy, Malcom Brown, Danny Shelton, and Adam Butler. Butler likely would have been the odd man out, and Phillips might have had an opportunity to eventually leapfrog Shelton and Brown in the pecking order. Through four weeks, Guy has 19 total tackles and is rated as Pro Football Focus’ No. 4 overall ranked defensive tackle, but the other DTs have something to be desired.

Phillips started most of his games in 2016 and 2017, but was relegated to a reserve role this year in Miami. That didn’t sit well with him – as evidenced by his sideline blowup on Sunday – and that proved to be the last straw for him with the Dolphins. The 1-3 Bills may have a larger role in mind for the 26-year-old.

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Bills Claim DT Jordan Phillips

The Bills have claimed defensive tackle Jordan Phillips off waivers from the Dolphins, according to a club announcement. To make room, the Bills released defensive tackle Robert Thomas

The Dolphins cut Phillips on Tuesday, days after he blew up on the sidelines due to his lack of playing time. The Dolphins attempted to trade Phillips first, but they were unable to find a suitable deal.

Former Dolphins GM Dennis Hickey, who drafted Phillips in 2015, works for the Bills now, so he is familiar with the former second-round pick’s potential. At 6’6″ and 341 pounds, Phillips has the size to disrupt quarterbacks and stuff opposing running backs. He hasn’t really blossomed at the pro level, but a change of scenery could be just what the doctor ordered.

Phillips’ most productive season came in 2016 when he had 23 tackles, three pass breakups, an interception, and a half sack. Over the last three seasons and change, the defensive tackle has 5.5 sacks to his credit.

With two games on the remaining schedule against the Dolphins (12/2 and 12/30), Phillips will have the opportunity to exact revenge on his former team. Phillips won’t be a starter for the Bills, but he should be in the rotation behind first-stringers Kyle Williams and Star Lotulelei.

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East Rumors: Cowboys, Giants, Fins, Pats

Tony Romo was never going to play for a club other than the Cowboys before retiring last spring, owner Jerry Jones told reporters, including Clarence Hill of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram (Twitter link). At one point, teams such as the Broncos and Texans discussed a trade for Romo, but ultimately decided to wait and see if he was released by Dallas. Romo also later admitted that he considered the Jets before hanging up his cleats, but it sounds as though it was Cowboys-or-bust for the veteran signal-caller. Indeed, at least one report last fall indicated Romo would only come out of retirement to play for the Cowboys, but Dak Prescott never suffered any injury that forced Dallas to call its longtime quarterback.

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

  • Running back Jonathan Stewart is now on injured reserve after suffering a foot injury, but the veteran could conceivably return to the Giants this season, tweets Jordan Raanan of ESPN.com. New York head coach Pat Shurmur said Stewart will be sidelined for eight weeks, the exact amount of time he’d be forced to miss due to the NFL’s IR/return rules. Stewart, who signed a two-year, $6.9MM deal with the Giants earlier this year, had received just six carries in three games, amassing only 17 rushing yards for his new team. With Stewart, New York will use Wayne Gallman as the top backup to Saquon Barkley.
  • The Dolphins attempted to trade defensive tackle Jordan Phillips before cutting him earlier today, reports Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link). The news isn’t all that surprising, as most clubs try to deal players before releasing them and receiving no value. However, Phillips has never lived up to his second-round draft status and also had a sideline disagreement with Miami coaches on Sunday, so the trade market for his services wasn’t large. Though four games, Phillips saw action on 124 defensive snaps. He had a season-high 46 snaps in Week 3 against the Raiders, but his usage dropped back down to 25 snaps in Sunday’s blowout loss to the Pats.
  • The Patriots will need to make a roster move before activating Julian Edelman off suspension this week, leading Doug Kyed of NESN to look at candidates to be moved off New England’s active roster. The two most obvious players who could be cut are offensive lineman Cole Croston and defensive end Keionta Davis, both of whom were healthy scratches on Sunday. Elsewhere on the roster, defender Geneo Grissom would likely pass through waivers, so the Patriots could waive him and hope to bring him back to their practice squad.
  • With their 2018 campaign looking like a lost cause, the Bills should consider trade offers for running back LeSean McCoy and wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin, argues Mike Rodak of ESPN.com. McCoy, of course, still has an investigation hanging over his head, so it’s unclear if there’d be any market for him. Benjamin, meanwhile, hasn’t been effective since joining Buffalo in 2017, and has posted just seven catches in through four games this year. McCoy is signed through 2019, while Benjamin’s contract expires next spring.

Dolphins Cut DT Jordan Phillips

The Dolphins are cutting defensive tackle Jordan Phillips, a source tells Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald (on Twitter). Phillips was visibly upset on the sidelines Sunday due to his playing time and his release is likely related. Clearly, there’s no love lost for the former second-round pick. 

Free at last, free at last,” Phillips wrote on Instagram (Twitter link via Cameron Wolfe of ESPN.com). “[I’m] no longer a Miami Dolphin. Good luck to my brothers on the team. I’ll miss y’all but I couldn’t be happier to be out of there.I’m in my bag, don’t take it personal. Sometimes [you’ve] got to put your future in your own hands and live with it.”

Though four games, Phillips saw action on 124 defensive snaps. He had a season-high 46 snaps in Week 3 against the Raiders, but his usage dropped back down to 25 snaps in Sunday’s blowout loss to the Pats.

Head coach Adam Gase may be sending a message to his team, not unlike last year when he traded talented running back Jay Ajayi to the Eagles. Phillips might not be as much of a game-changer as Ajayi, but he does have 5.5 sacks over the last three years and change. It’s likely that Phillips will be picked up quickly by a club that is in need of interior defensive line help.

The Dolphins already lost William Hayes for the season and fellow defensive end Andre Branch is sidelined with a knee injury, so they’re not exactly working with a surplus on the defensive line. Akeem Spence, Davon Godchaux, and Vincent Taylor will be charged with keeping things afloat in the middle for now, but the Dolphins will surely sign a defensive tackle this week.

With Phillips out of the picture, wide receiver DeVante Parker and cornerback Bobby McCain stand as the last remaining Dolphins from the 2015 draft class. Phillips (2nd round), Jamil Douglas (4th), Ajayi (5th), Cedric Thompson (5th), and Tony Lippett (5th) are no longer with the club.

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