Kamalei Correa

Titans Re-Sign Kamalei Correa

The Titans are bringing back linebacker Kamalei Correa, as Correa’s agency, DEC Management, announced via Twitter. Tom Pelissero of the NFL Network says it will be a one-year deal worth up to $3.5MM (Twitter link).

The Ravens selected Correa in the second round of the 2016 draft with the hopes that he could become a fearsome edge rusher. Although he showed some flashes of that ability here and there, he was never able to put it together in Baltimore, and he was traded to the Titans before the 2018 season in exchange for a sixth-round pick.

In Tennessee, Correa continued to work with Dean Pees, who had served as the Ravens’ defensive coordinator for the prior six seasons and who agreed to join the Titans’ staff in the same capacity in 2018. Pees announced his retirement in January, so Correa has lost one obvious supporter, but the team clearly saw enough from him to re-sign him.

The Boise State product saw the most action of his career in 2019, appearing in all 16 games and starting five of them. He played in about 40% of the Titans’ defensive snaps and continued to be a major special teams contributor. Although Pro Football Focus’ advanced metrics considered him an average pass rusher, he did pick up a career-high five sacks. He has also been lauded for his coverage abilities.

Per Terry McCormick of TitanInsider.com, Correa has had an offer from the Titans for a couple of weeks (Twitter link). Clearly, he did not get a more attractive proposal on the open market.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC Notes: Bowlen, Shazier, Titans

The family of late Broncos owner Pat Bowlen will receive Bowlen’s Gold Jacket and Hall of Fame ring, as Mike Klis of 9News.com writes. Bowlen was elected to the Hall of Fame in February but passed away in June, making him the first HOFer to die between his election and his induction. Typically, the HOF doesn’t present the jacket and the ring to those enshrined posthumously because it doesn’t want the family to fight over the artifacts or sell them, but the production of the artifacts had already begun before Bowlen passed.

The family will display the items in the front lobby of the Broncos’ UCHealth Center headquarters so that they can be enjoyed by fans.

Now for more from the AFC:

  • David Furones of the South Florida Sun Sentinel explores the relationship between Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier and his high school teammate, trainer, and close friend, Jerome Howard. Howard has been with Shazier throughout his recovery and has assisted him in his efforts to get back to the playing field. The piece is well-worth a read, especially for Steelers fans, as it also details the remarkable progress that Shazier has made. A return to football is still a long way off, but he has already overcome tremendous odds just to be walking again, let alone exercising the way he is.
  • We heard in May that Colts WR Deon Cain was expected to be a full participant in training camp, but Charean Williams of Pro Football Talk says that Cain’s status is still unclear. However, she does hear that Cain should be ready to go at least by the regular season opener, which could a huge boon to Indianapolis’ aerial attack. Cain, a 2018 sixth-rounder, generated a lot of hype before tearing his ACL last August and is highly-regarded by the coaching staff. He is currently the fourth WR on the depth chart.
  • Jim Wyatt of TitansOnline.com believes linebacker Kamalei Correa will make the Titans‘ roster and will have an impact in 2019, but he is on the bubble and will need to fight for a spot on the club. In the same piece, Wyatt says that he does not expect Tennessee to bring back safety Johnathan Cyprien, although the team said after releasing Cyprien in March that it would like to re-sign him at a cheaper rate.
  • Bills RB Christian Wade was assigned to Buffalo’s roster as part of the league’s international pathway program, which means he is eligible to be the 11th man on the club’s practice squad. But as Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk writes, Wade believes he can crack the 53-man roster. That will be a tall order given that veterans LeSean McCoy, Frank Gore, and T.J. Yeldon, along with third-round rookie Devin Singletary, are ahead of him on the depth chart. But McCoy and Gore will be free agents after the season, and Yeldon could be a cap casualty by that time, so if Wade impresses, he could be a roster candidate in 2020.

Ravens Trade LB Kamalei Correa To Titans

The Ravens have left traded linebacker Kamalei Correa to the Titans, accoridng to Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic (on Twitter). The Ravens will receive a 2019 sixth-round pick in return. 

Correa was a second round pick of the Ravens in the 2016 draft. Although the Ravens had high hopes for him at the time, Correa hasn’t done much at the NFL level. In 25 games over the last two years, Correa has totaled just eleven tackles.

This summer, Correa was given an opportunity to play at his preferred outside linebacker position as well as inside linebacker. Although he flashed at times, the Ravens still had Terrell Suggs, Matthew Judon, Za’Darius Smith, Tim Williams, Tyus Bowser ahead of him on the LB depth chart.

Titans defensive coordinator Dean Pees is obviously a fan of Correa, so he should be in for an uptick in playing time now that the two are reunited. In Tennessee, Correa will have an opportunity to back up Brian Orakpo and Derrick Morgan and he may get even more chances to play if Harold Landry misses time with his ankle injury.

In his three-year career at Boise State, Correa totaled 110 tackles, 20 sacks, 31.5 tackles for loss and five forced fumbles.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC North Rumors: Steelers, Ravens, Browns

With Le’Veon Bell demanding $17MM per year, less than three weeks could remain for Steelers fans to view the All-Pro running back as a long-term asset. Following the July 16 franchise tag deadline, Bell could be headed toward rental status this season and 2019 free agency. The Steelers are not about to authorize a $17MM-AAV deal for Bell, Paul Zeise of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette writes, adding that the only chance of an extension being hammered out is if Bell comes off that price. Judging by the lack of communication between the parties since their pre-draft re-up talks, Zeise notes it’s clear the Steelers are going to hold their line. Bell is optimistic about a deal, but Zeise notes he appears to be the only one. The Steelers may not be able to replace Bell, but the gap between he and either James Conner (or a future successor) may not translate to Pittsburgh paying its running back what he wants. Bell’s $17MM-per-year price is more than twice what current running back salary leader Devonta Freeman makes.

Here’s the latest from Pittsburgh and other AFC North cities.

  • The Steelers do not believe Morgan Burnett is the same player he was at his Packers apex, and they don’t plan on asking him to perform like it, according to Tim Benz of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Keith Butler is planning for the 29-year-old safety to assume some of the responsibility Ryan Shazier used to, working as a quality run-stopper and patrolling the middle of the field on passing downs. However, the plan is for Burnett to play strong safety and for the likes of Sean Davis and Terrell Edmunds to have deep-middle responsibilities at free safety, per Benz. Edmunds played a hybrid-type role late in his Virginia Tech career, which would appear to overlap with Burnett’s job description, but it appears the Steelers are confident the first-rounder will be able to grow into a true free safety.
  • It’s going to take a sizable Browns improvement for Hue Jackson to keep his job, Mary Kay Cabot of cleveland.com said (video link), adding that the third-year HC knows this. Cabot envisions a major Browns step forward this season and does expect Jackson, 1-31 Cleveland record notwithstanding, to keep his job for 2019. She estimates six wins may be enough to convince John Dorsey to retain Jackson. The Browns have won six games just once in the past 10 years.
  • The Ravens have moved 2016 second-round pick Kamalei Correa around a bit since he entered the league. Beginning his career at outside linebacker, the Boise State product was shuttled to an inside spot in 2017. However, Mike Preston of the Baltimore Sun notes Correa’s been moved back to the outside this offseason. Correa recorded 19 sacks during his final two college seasons but has yet to register one as a pro. He’ll be in the mix as one of Terrell Suggs‘ supporting-casters this year, it appears.

Minor NFL Transactions: 12/24/16

Here are the minor moves coming on Christmas Eve.

  • The Steelers made several moves in advance of their Week 16 clash with the Ravens, signing defensive lineman Johnny Maxey and cornerback Al-Hajj Shabazz, Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette tweets. To make room, Pittsburgh cut running back Daryl Richardson and moved cornerback Shamarko Thomas to IR.
  • With Darius Slay‘s status murky for Monday night’s Lions-Cowboys game, Detroit promoted second-year cornerback Alex Carter from its practice squad, Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press reports (on Twitter). Carter came to the Motor City as a third-round pick in 2015 but saw an injury scrap his rookie season and did not make the 2016 team out of training camp. Carter, who will take Corey Lemonier‘s roster spot, has yet to play in an NFL game despite the Day 2 draft pedigree.
  • The Ravens placed second-round rookie Kamalei Correa on IR with a rib injury and promoted Brennen Beyer from their practice squad to take his place, Jamison Hensley of ESPN.com reports. Correa finishes the season with three tackles and a fumble forced in nine games (one start).

Ravens Sign Seven Draftees, 11 UDFAs

Like a number of other teams around the league, the Ravens made an effort to get plenty of contracts done before their rookie minicamp got underway, securing seven of their 11 draftees, and adding another 11 undrafted free agents to their roster.

The Ravens confirmed today that they’ve signed fifth-round defensive end Matt Judon, whose agreement was reported earlier this week, and announced that they’ve locked up six other draft picks, writes Ryan Mink of BaltimoreRavens.com. Sixth overall pick Ronnie Stanley remains unsigned, as do Bronson KaufusiTavon Young, and Keenan Reynolds. However, the following Baltimore draftees are now under contract, having signed their four-year rookie deals:

In a separate press release on their website, the Ravens also listed their 11-man UDFA class, complete with a scouting report for each player. Here are Baltimore’s UDFA additions:

Pauline’s Latest: Dolphins, Cowboys, Chiefs, Giants

Here’s the latest from Tony Pauline of WalterFootball.com entering the second day of the draft:

  • After the Dolphins used the 13th pick on Laremy Tunsil, they called veteran left tackle Branden Albert and assured him he’ll remain at his current position and Tunsil will play left guard.
  • The Cowboys “covet” Oklahoma State defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah going into the second round, per Pauline, who dismisses the idea that they’re instead after Boise State linebacker Kamalei Correa or Eastern Kentucky edge rusher Noah Spence. Dallas holds the 34th selection but could end up moving down, according to executive vice president Stephen Jones (link via ESPN’s Todd Archer).
  • Clemson cornerback Mackensie Alexander is unlikely to get past the Chiefs at No. 37, reports Pauline.
  • The Giants are targeting offensive linemen and safeties entering Day 2, meaning Clemson safety T.J. Green could be a fit for the team at No. 40. Like Big Blue, the Steelers and Vikings are also eyeing safeties.

Jets Rumors: Wilkerson, WRs, Lynch, Hackenberg

Ever since he received the franchise tag from the Jets nearly two months ago, defensive lineman Muhammad Wilkerson has been considered a trade candidate, but with the draft right around the corner, there’s still no momentum toward a deal. According to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link), the club has fielded calls on Wilkerson, but there hasn’t been much action on that front.

At this point, a Wilkerson trade is considered unlikely, per Rapoport. That could always change — if a team misses out on its top defensive line target(s) on Thursday, perhaps that club puts a Friday pick on the table as part of a trade package for Wilkerson and the Jets like the offer. For now though, Gang Green is content to move forward with a very talented defender on the roster, says Rapoport.

Let’s check in on a few other draft-related Jets notes…

  • The Jets may be targeting a wide receiver in the first round, according to Rapoport, who tweets that TCU’s Josh Doctson and Notre Dame’s Will Fuller are among the names to watch. That would be a surprising direction for New York, since the club already has a solid receiving corps and has more significant question marks elsewhere.
  • Rich Cimini of ESPN.com is hearing that the Jets have cooled on Memphis quarterback Paxton Lynch, suggesting that Lynch is “too boom-or-bust to take a chance in the first round.” Cimini believes it’s more likely that the club will target Penn State’s Christian Hackenberg on day two of the draft.
  • While the Jets would like to add an edge rusher, they may have to wait until the second round to address that spot, tweets Cimini, adding that Boise State’s Kamalei Correa is on the team’s radar.

Draft Rumors: Treadwell, Ragland, Correa, Jets

The Jets have been eyeing linebackers Reggie Ragland (Alabama) and Kamalei Correa (Boise State) in recent days, according to Tony Pauline of WalterFootball.com. Ragland, specifically, would act as a future replacement for veteran David Harris, but he could be in play as high as pick No. 13 to the Dolphins. However, Washington and the Packers are seen as the most likely landing spots for Ragland, per Pauline.

Let’s take a look at some more draft rumors, all courtesy of Pauline…

  • The Giants have been linked to wide receiver Laquon Treadwell, but Pauline speculates that New York could trade down from the No. 10 pick before selecting him. The Titans (pick No. 15) would make for an ideal trade partner, and they could move up with their sights set on offensive tackle Jack Conklin.
  • Conklin is a popular name in the top half of Round 1, as Pauline reports that the Browns are interested in the Michigan State product with the eighth pick. Conklin would act as a replacement for Mitchell Schwartz, who departed via free agency, at right tackle.
  • The Panthers lost Josh Norman after rescinding his franchise tag, but they have their eye on another corner in the draft, as Pauline says Carolina could select Southeastern Louisiana defensive back Harlan Miller at the end of the third round. Miller had a private workout with the Panthers earlier this month.
  • Some general managers think Ohio State’s Nick Vannett is the only true three-down tight end available in the draft, which could help his stock. The Chargers and Falcons will consider taking Vannett in Round 2 or 3, per Pauline.

Pauline’s Latest: Browns, Top 5, Alexander, Bears

The Browns are shopping the No. 2 pick, but if they aren’t able to move it, they could end up selecting Ole Miss left tackle Laremy Tunsil and then trading nine-time Pro Bowler Joe Thomas, several general managers have told Tony Pauline of WalterFootball.com. If Tunsil to Cleveland happens, those GMs expect Florida State defensive back Jalen Ramsey to land with the Chargers at No. 3, North Dakota State quarterback Carson Wentz to become the newest member of the Cowboys at No. 4, and UCLA linebacker Myles Jack to go fifth to the Jaguars.

Here are more early round draft rumors from Pauline:

  • Despite possessing first-round-caliber talent, Clemson cornerback Mackensie Alexander could drop to the second round because of his attitude. Some of Alexander’s Clemson coaches have given him unfavorable reviews to inquiring NFL teams, and clubs are weighing whether he’d be worth a first-rounder as a result.
  • The Bears, who hold the 11th pick, are giving serious consideration to Alabama defensive tackle Jarran Reed.
  • Boise State linebacker Kamalei Correa is a possibility for both the Colts and Saints in the first round. Indy could turn to Correa at No. 18 if Georgia’s Leonard Floyd is off the board and it deems Eastern Kentucky’s Noah Spence as too risky. The Saints, meanwhile, might move down from 12th to grab Correa.
  • Utah State linebacker Kyler Fackrell could head to the Jets in the second round if they don’t grab an LB with their first selection.