Josh Doctson

Vikings Activate Josh Doctson

The Vikings have activated wide receiver Josh Doctson, per a club announcement. The former first-round pick could be in line to make his season debut on Sunday with Adam Thielen out for yet another week. 

The Vikings signed Doctson towards the end of August, shortly after cutting Laquon Treadwell, who was taken one spot behind him in the 2016 draft. Treadwell has since returned to Minnesota, meaning that the two may actually take the field together.

Doctson’s next game with Minnesota will be his first in purple – at least, his first in Vikings purple. Before joining the Vikings, Doctson started 26 games across the previous two years for the Redskins, but registered just 79 total catches for 1,034 yards and eight touchdowns. Last year, he placed 96th out of 107 qualifying wideouts in yards per route run last season, according to Pro Football Focus.

Those numbers aren’t great, but the potential is still there. His history with quarterback Kirk Cousins may also help.

Besides Doctson, Treadwell, and the injured Thielen, the Vikings also currently have wide receivers Stefon Diggs and Olabisi Johnson in the mix.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Vikings Designate Josh Doctson For Return

On Wednesday, the Vikings designated wide receiver Josh Doctson for return. He’ll practice for the first time since suffering his hamstring injury and will be eligible to play as soon as Week 10. 

The Vikings signed Doctson towards the end of August, shortly after cutting Laquon Treadwell, who was taken one spot behind him in the 2016 draft. Treadwell has since returned to Minnesota, meaning that the two may actually take the field together.

Doctson’s next game with Minnesota will be his first in purple – at least, his first in Vikings purple. Before joining the Vikings, Doctson started 26 games across the previous two years for the Redskins, but registered just 79 total catches for 1,034 yards and eight touchdowns. Last year, he placed 96th out of 107 qualifying wideouts in yards per route run last season, according to Pro Football Focus.

Those numbers aren’t great, but the potential is still there. His history with quarterback Kirk Cousins may also help matters.

Besides Doctson and Treadwell, the Vikings also currently have wide receivers Adam Thielen, Stefon Diggs, Olabisi Johnson, and Davion Davis in the mix.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Injury Notes: Ryan, Darnold, Dickson, Doctson

It doesn’t sound like Matt Ryan will be out for long. Falcons coach Dan Quinn said the veteran quarterback will start when the team returns from a bye in Week 10 (via Michael David Smith of ProFootballTalk.com). The coach also said Ryan would likely play this weekend if the team had a game.

Ryan suffered an ankle injury that forced him to miss Sunday’s game, the first time he’s been forced out of the lineup in a decade. The quarterback missed a pair of games during the 2009 season due to turf toe.

With the Falcons sitting at 1-7, it wouldn’t be shocking if the Falcons were a bit cautious with Ryan. On the flip side, the organization gave the quarterback more than $100MM in guaranteed money last year, and the veteran has still been plenty productive this season.

Let’s check out some more injury notes from around the NFL…

  • We heard earlier today that Sam Darnold was set to play through his thumb injury, and the Jets quarterback elaborated on the issue. Darnold referred to the ailment as a “pain-tolerance thing … I should be fine,” according to ESPN’s Rich Cimini. Coach Adam Gase previously said that this is an injury Darnold will have to play through for the rest of the season.
  • Seahawks tight end Ed Dickson will practice this week, coach Pete Carroll told reporters (via ESPN’s Brady Henderson). Carroll added that Dickson is unlikely to make his season debut on Sunday The veteran has missed the first half of the season as he’s recovered from a knee injury. With Will Dissly out for the season, the offense will surely welcome back the tight end.
  • Vikings wideout Josh Doctson is set to return from injury this week, he told Darren Wolfson of 5Eyewitness News in Minny (via Twitter). The Redskins released the former first-rounder back in September, and he caught on with the Vikings soon after. The 26-year-old didn’t get into a game with Minnesota before landing on the IR with a hamstring injury.
  • Ravens cornerback Tavon Young underwent neck surgery, according to coach John Harbaugh (via Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic on Twitter). Young suffered a neck injury prior to the season and was placed on IR. The 25-year-old signed a three-year, $25.8MM extension with Baltimore back in February. Meanwhile, rookie cornerback Iman Marshall returned to practice on Monday.

NFC Notes: JPP, Keenum, Seahawks, Vikings

Jason Pierre-Paul restructured his contract with the Buccaneers yesterday, and now we have the details. Originally scheduled to make $13.65MM in 2019, his new base salary will be just $3MM, according to Greg Auman of The Athletic. He’s eligible to come off the NFI list and return for the final ten games of the season, and he’ll receive a $200K bonus for each of those games that he plays in. He’ll get an additional $200K for every game he plays at least 50 percent of the defensive snaps and another $200K for each game he plays 75 percent of the defensive snaps. If he’s able to hit eight sacks he’ll get a $500K bonus and another $1MM if he reaches ten sacks, pushing the maximum value to $10.5MM.

Those sack goals are pretty lofty for only ten games, and it’s unlikely he makes the max value. Because JPP suffered a non-football injury, the Buccaneers weren’t obligated to pay his 2019 salary at all and could’ve voided his guarantees. But as Auman writes, “the team wouldn’t look good not paying a player whose injury came in a car accident in which he wasn’t even cited,” so the two sides came to an agreement. It’s unclear if he’ll actually be ready to go in Week 8 after the Bucs’ bye, as we haven’t gotten an update on his neck in a while.

Here’s more from the NFC:

  • Case Keenum didn’t practice yesterday, sparking some excitement that the start of the Dwayne Haskins era might be right around the corner. That appears to have been false hope, as Keenum was back on the practice field working with the team during the portion open to the media Thursday. As of right now, the expectations is that he’ll be under center for the team’s Week 4 game against the Giants. Colt McCoy was also on the practice field today, and it looks like he’s close to returning from the leg injury that has sidelined him up until this point. Redskins head coach Jay Gruden has been tight-lipped about the situation, but it seems possible that Haskins will be demoted to third-string upon McCoy’s return.
  • It appears Seahawks tight end Ed Dickson‘s recovery isn’t going as planned. Pete Carroll is “concerned” Dickson won’t be ready to come off injured reserve when first eligible, according to Bob Condotta of The Seattle Times (Twitter link). When Dickson first had knee surgery back in early August, Carroll said the team was hoping he’d be out 4-5 weeks. That would’ve put him on track for an early September return, but now he apparently might not be ready for the Week 9 game in early November. Seattle is notoriously overly-optimistic about injuries, but that’s unusual even by their standards. The veteran’s first year with the Seahawks was last season, where he was mostly used as a blocker. Seattle just traded away Nick Vannett, and it looks like Will Dissly will be their only real option at tight end for the foreseeable future.
  • On the flip side, Vikings receiver Josh Doctson‘s recovery appears to be going quite smoothly. Doctson was placed on injured reserve with a hamstring injury shortly after being signed, and he thinks he’ll be ready to go when first eligible after eight games. “For sure, absolutely,’’ he said Wednesday, per Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. “That’s the target and that’s the plan.’’ Minnesota was recently forced to re-sign Laquon Treadwell because of how thin they were at receiver, so they could surely use Doctson. A former first-round pick of the Redskins, Doctson was released at final cuts. He was quickly scooped up by the Vikings, but suffered his injury a week later.

Vikings Place Josh Doctson On IR

This could be a wrap on Josh Doctson‘s time with the Vikings. On Thursday, the Vikings placed the wide receiver on injured reserve.

[RELATED: Vikings Sign Josh Doctson]

The good news is that Doctson could heal up from his leg injury in time to return later this season. Of course, even if he does bounce back, it’s not a given that he’ll be activated during the season. Per league rules, teams can only bring two players back from IR each season. If there are more central players in the IR-DTR mix, Doctson could be left behind.

Doctson joined the Vikings last week after being cut by the Redskins at the end of August. He was inactive for last week’s win over Atlanta, so he may never get the chance to take the field for Minnesota.

Without Doctson, the Vikings’ WR group consists of Adam Thielen, Stefon Diggs, Chad Beebe, and Olabisi Johnson. They will likely add a fifth WR this week.

Restructured Contract Details: Flacco, Solder, Panthers

With the majority of the NFL beginning their 2019 campaigns tomorrow, a number of teams have slightly tweaked contracts in an effort to open some extra cap space. We’ve compiled some of the notable restructured contracts from this morning, along with some details on some recently-completed deals.

  •  The Broncos converted $17MM of Joe Flacco‘s base salary into a signing bonus, reports NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero (via Twitter). The front office also added a pair of voidable years to the contract, thus opening around $13.6MM in 2019 cap space. The veteran quarterback is still on the books for $20.25MM in 2020 and $24.25MM in 2021.
  • The Giants made a similar move with offensive tackle Nate Solder, according to Pelissero (on Twitter). The front office converted $7.5MM of the veteran’s base salary to a fully-guaranteed roster bonus, opening up $5MM in cap space. Solder will still earn the same amount of money over the next two years ($13MM in 2019, $14MM in 2020).
  • One more from Pelissero (via Twitter): the Panthers restructured the contracts of defensive tackle Kawann Short and offensive lineman Trai Turner, opening $13MM in cap space. While the team could use that open money for extensions, Joe Person of The Athletic tweets that the transaction is “more about taking cap space into next year.” Linebacker Shaq Thompson and cornerback James Bradberry are impending free agents, while running back Christian McCaffrey and quarterback Cam Newton could be eyeing lucrative extensions.
  • The Rams converted $2.25MM of punter Johnny Hekker‘s base salary into a bonus, reports ESPN’s Field Yates (via Twitter). The move opens up around $1.69MM in cap space, allowing the team is better accommodate the recent extensions for quarterback Jared Goff and tight end Tyler Higbee.
  • Center Mike Pouncey‘s one-year, $9MM extension with the Chargers will guarantee him $5MM in new money, tweets ESPN’s Dan Graziano (via Twitter). The guarantees include a $2.5MM signing bonus and $2.5MM guaranteed salary in 2020 (the full base salary is $6MM). The veteran’s cap number is now $10MM in 2019 and $7.75MM in 2020.
  • Jacoby Brissett‘s two-year, $30MM extension with the Colts includes an $11MM signing bonus, reports Ben Volin of the Boston Globe (on Twitter). The quarterback has a $2MM salary for 2019, $2MM in per-game roster bonuses (for both years), and a $7MM roster bonus that’s guaranteed in March. As Volin notes, the 26-year-old will likely earn around $13MM to $15MM this season before renegotiating next offseason.
  • Josh Doctson‘s deal with the Vikings is for one year at the league minimum of $720K, reports Ben Goessling of the Star Tribune (via Twitter). The deal includes no guaranteed money. Following the signing of the wideout and punter Britton Colquitt, Minnesota is now sitting with around $1.17MM in cap space.

Vikings To Sign Josh Doctson

The Vikings have agreed to sign Josh Doctson, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (on Twitter). The Vikings initially elected to keep four receivers on their roster, but Doctson will occupy the fifth spot to support Stefon Diggs, Adam Thielen, Chad Beebe, and Olabisi Johnson.

Fun fact: Doctson was selected one spot ahead of Laquon Treadwell in the 2016 draft. The Vikings dropped Treadwell over the weekend and, effectively, swapped him for Doctson.

Doctson has history with Kirk Cousins, which suggests that he could be in line for more targets than your average WR5. On the other hand, they didn’t exactly set the world on fire either – in 18 games with Cousins at QB, Doctson caught just 37 balls for 568 yards and six scores.

Doctson has started 26 games over the past two years for Washington, but this has only resulted in 79 total catches for 1,034 yards and eight touchdowns. Last year, he placed 96th out of 107 qualifying wideouts in yards per route run last season, according to Pro Football Focus.

In a corresponding move, Minnesota released center Brett Jones, though Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press tweets that the Vikings could end up re-signing Jones at some point if he is not signed by another club.

Redskins To Release Josh Doctson

The Redskins will release wide receiver Josh Doctson after failing to broker a suitable trade, according to Mike Jones of USA Today (on Twitter). Doctson, a former first-round pick, has yet to prove himself at the NFL level, so the lack of overall interest is not shocking.

Doctson has been a rumored trade candidate for some time. The Redskins have shopped him to at least a couple of different teams, but they couldn’t pawn off the 26-year-old or his $3.19MM cap charge.

Doctson has started 26 games over the past two years for Washington, but this has only resulted in 79 total catches for 1,034 yards and eight touchdowns. Last year, he placed 96th out of 107 qualifying wideouts in yards per route run last season, according to Pro Football Focus.

The organization declined the receiver’s fifth-year option this past offseason. Had the Redskins picked up his option, Docston would have been due $10.162MM for the 2020 campaign.

Even without Doctson, the Redskins have a good deal of offensive options, including tight end Jordan Reed (if healthy), running backs Chris ThompsonAdrian Peterson, and Derrius Guice, and receivers Paul RichardsonTrey Quinn, and Terry McLaurin.

Redskins Shopping WR Josh Doctson

Back in July, Redskins wideout Josh Doctson insinuated that he’d be playing elsewhere in 2020. Well, it sounds like that the divorce may be happening sooner than later.

NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport reports (via Twitter) that the Redskins have shopped Doctson to “a couple different teams” as the 26-year-old sits “firmly on the roster bubble.” While trade talks could merely be due diligence, the team would presumably rather trade Docton than be left with a $3.19MM cap charge.

Doctson has only show brief glimpses of intrigue since Washington selected him in the first round of the 2016 draft. Doctson has started 26 games over the past two years, but this has only resulted in 79 receptions for 1,034 yards and eight touchdowns. Efficiency has continued to plague the receiver, as he ranked 96th out of 107 qualifying wideouts in yards per route run last season, per Pro Football Focus.

The organization declined the receiver’s fifth-year option this past offseason. Had the Redskins picked up his option, Docston would have been due $10.162MM for the 2020 campaign. There was an opportunity for the receiver to improve his value considering the Redskins’ lack of depth at the position. With tight end Jordan Reed and running backs Chris Thompson, Adrian Peterson, and Derrius Guice vying for targets, the wideout corps of Paul Richardson, Trey Quinn, and rookie Terry McLaurin are left to scrounge for leftover targets.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Josh Doctson Expects To Leave Redskins?

After the Redskins declined Josh Doctson‘s option, the wide receiver is on course for free agency following the ’19 campaign. From the sound of it, he expects to be elsewhere in 2020. 

I think I’m hitting free agency next year. I won’t be the first, won’t be the last,” Doctson said (via ESPN.com’s John Keim). “It’s nothing to be sad about, be mad about. Someone wants you there, so it’s all love.”

Had the Redskins picked up his option, Docston would have been due $10.162MM for the 2020 campaign, an untenable figure given his lack of NFL production. Doctson appeared in only two games in his rookie season due to injury, and he averaged just 40 receptions, 517 yards, and four touchdowns in each of the past two years. Efficiency was a problem for the 26-year-old in 2018, as he ranked 96th out of 107 qualifying receivers in yards per route run, per Pro Football Focus.

The Redskins’ offense features a heavy focus on tight ends, including Jordan Reed, so a change of scenery (and a clean bill of health) could lead to big things for Doctson elsewhere. For what it’s worth, teammates like cornerback Josh Norman still believe in his ability.

He goes after the ball like no other. I’m talking about a jump ball,” Norman said. “He has his strengths and abilities to where he can be one of the top guys in this league if he wants it. … We have had a couple quarterback changes since he’s been here. You have to take that into consideration.”

The 26-year-old will have to fight for opportunities alongside rookies Terry McLaurin (third round) and Kelvin Harmon (sixth). Meanwhile, Paul Richardson will aim to erase his injury-shortened 2018 and Trey Quinn will return to man the slot.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.