Karl Klug

NFL Workout Updates: 10/2/18

Today’s workout updates, with all links going to veteran Howard Balzer’s Twitter account unless otherwise noted:

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

Cleveland Browns

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Jacksonville Jaguars

Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Rams

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

  • T Andrew Nelson (link)

New Orleans Saints

New York Jets

Oakland Raiders

Pittsburgh Steelers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Titans Release DL Karl Klug

The Titans announced that they have released defensive lineman Karl Klug. Klug, one of the longest tenured players on the Titans’ roster, had been with the team since entering the league as a fifth-round pick in 2011. 

I really appreciate all that Karl gave to this team in his seven seasons with the Titans. He is a tireless worker, and his passion for football showed in how he prepared for and played the game. I know all of us who worked with him here wish him and his family the best moving forward,” Titans GM Jon Robinson said in a press release.

Klug’s NFL career started strong with seven sacks in his rookie campaign. The production didn’t stay at that level, however, and his role on the team has fluctuated over the years. In the last four seasons, Klug has started just two games.

This year, Klug was slated to count for $2.484MM against the Titans’ cap. None of that money was guaranteed, however, so there will be no dead money for Tennessee. Klug will turn 30 on Mar. 31.

This week, the Titans re-signed a pair of their own defensive linemen in DaQuan Jones and David King. They’re also interested in signing Ndamukong Suh.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Titans To Re-Sign Karl Klug

The Titans have agreed to re-sign defensive lineman Karl Klug, per Jim Wyatt of TitansOnline.com. Details of the deal aren’t yet available.

Karl Klug

Klug’s new accord means the soon-to-be 29-year-old will continue with his only NFL employer to date. Tennesee chose Klug in the fifth round of the 2011 draft, and he has since appeared in 94 of a possible 96 games during his six-year career. Klug has worked almost exclusively as a reserve, having picked up just seven starts, though he has managed 20 sacks and five forced fumbles. He burst on the scene with seven sacks as a rookie.

Last season was Klug’s first campaign in which he didn’t total 16 appearances. In 14 contests, he chipped in 1.5 sacks and drew praise from Pro Football Focus, which ranked his performance an outstanding 22nd among 127 qualified interior D-linemen. All told, Klug accumulated 397 snaps on defense and another 155 on special teams in 2016.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Top 2017 Free Agents By Position 2.0: Defense

NFL free agency gets underway on Thursday and while the list of free agents will change between now and then, we do have some idea of who will be available when free agency kicks off. Here is our updated outlook for each defensive and special teams position.

Listed below are our rankings for the top 15 free agents at each defensive position. These rankings aren’t necessarily determined by the value of the contracts – or the amount of guaranteed money – that each player is expected to land in free agency. These are simply the players we like the most at each position, with both short- and long-term value taken into account.

Restricted and exclusive-rights free agents, as well as franchised players aren’t listed here, since the roadblocks in place to hinder another team from actually acquiring most of those players prevent them from being true free agents.

We’ll almost certainly be higher or lower on some free agents than you are, so feel free to weigh in below in our comments section to let us know which players we’ve got wrong.

Here’s our breakdown of the current top 15 free agents by defensive position for this offseason:

Edge defender:

  1. Nick Perry
  2. Jabaal Sheard
  3. John Simon
  4. DeMarcus Ware
  5. Lorenzo Alexander
  6. Andre Branch
  7. Julius Peppers
  8. Charles Johnson
  9. Datone Jones
  10. Dwight Freeney
  11. Chris Long
  12. Mario Williams
  13. Paul Kruger
  14. Courtney Upshaw
  15. Jarvis Jones

Now that Chandler Jones, Melvin Ingram, and Jason Pierre-Paul have all been assigned the franchise tag, Nick Perry stands as the top edge defender on the free agent market, and is now in a position to cash in. The Packers opted against the franchise tender for the 26-year-old Perry, so he’ll hit the open market following a career year which saw him post 11 sacks."<strong

The rest of this year’s crop of free agent pass rushers is a blend of young defenders searching for their first payday and veterans on the hunt for one last contract. Among players with youth still on their side, Datone Jones figures to interest clubs thanks to his versatility, as he can vacillate between end and linebacker, while fellow former first-round pick Jarvis Jones is solid against the run. John Simon has been overlooked while playing alongside the likes of J.J. Watt, Jadeveon Clowney, and Whitney Mercilus but could represent a hidden gem, while the Dolphins are reportedly prioritizing Andre Branch.

After managing nine sacks over the first nine years of his NFL tenure, Lorenzo Alexander busted out with 12.5 quarterback takedowns in 2016, and now could be looking for a double-digit annual salary. Charles Johnson, meanwhile, looks like a good bet to return to the Panthers, but DeMarcus Ware could be something of a wild card — after missing 11 games in the past two seasons, does the 34-year-old have enough left in the tank? The same could be asked of Dwight Freeney, who at age-37 posted three sacks in a rotational role for the Falcons.

Interior defensive line:

  1. Calais Campbell
  2. Johnathan Hankins
  3. Brandon Williams
  4. Dontari Poe
  5. Chris Baker
  6. Bennie Logan
  7. Nick Fairley
  8. Alan Branch
  9. Jared Odrick
  10. Karl Klug
  11. Terrell McClain
  12. Lawrence Guy
  13. Stacy McGee
  14. Stephen Paea
  15. Sylvester Williams
    Honorable mention: Paul Soliai

Calais Campbell is the best overall player among interior defenders, and though he’s entering his age-31 season and may not cost as much as Johnathan Hankins, Brandon Williams, and Dontari Poe, Campbell will still be highly-sought after as he searches for his last substantial payday Campbell’s agent met with the Cardinals last week, but other speculative fits for the veteran defender include the Broncos, Raiders, Ravens, Colts, and Titans."<strong

Hankins is only 24 years old, and though the Giants are trying to retain him along with the rest of their defensive core, the 6’3″, 320-pound mauler should represent an attractive option to a number of clubs this offseason. Williams, too, offers a massive presence on the inside, while Poe could intrigue clubs based on his first-round pedigree and athleticism (though his play hasn’t always matched his potential). The Redskins’ Chris Baker is a solid, well-rounded defensive tackle, and could constitute a consolation prize for teams that miss out on their top targets.

The rest of the class offers an interesting mix of nose tackles (Bennie Logan), interior pass rushers (Nick Fairley, Karl Klug), and run stoppers (Alan Branch), so clubs hoping to bolster their defensive line should find no shortage of options. Jared Odrick recently hit free agency after being released by the Jaguars, while Terrell McClain, Lawrence Guy, and Stacy McGee could be underrated finds for the right team. McClain, for what it’s worth, has already been linked to the Falcons.

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Top 2017 Free Agents By Position: Defense

NFL free agency will get underway on Thursday, March 9th, and while the list of free agents will change between now and then, we do have some idea of who will be available when free agency kicks off. The frenzy is right around the corner and it’s time for us to break down the outlook for each position. After looking at offense, we’ll tackle defense and special teams today.

[RELATED: Top 2017 NFL Free Agents By Position: Offense]

Listed below are our rankings for the top 15 free agents at each defensive position. These rankings aren’t necessarily determined by the value of the contracts – or the amount of guaranteed money – that each player is expected to land in free agency. These are simply the players we like the most at each position, with both short- and long-term value taken into account.

Restricted and exclusive-rights free agents, as well as players who received the franchise tag, aren’t listed here, since the roadblocks in place to hinder another team from actually acquiring most of those players prevent them from being true free agents.

We’ll almost certainly be higher or lower on some free agents than you are, so feel free to weigh in below in our comments section to let us know which players we’ve got wrong.

Here’s our breakdown of the current top 15 free agents by defensive position for 2017:

Edge defender:

  1. Chandler Jones
  2. Melvin Ingram
  3. Jason Pierre-Paul
  4. Nick Perry
  5. Jabaal Sheard
  6. James Harrison
  7. John Simon
  8. DeMarcus Ware
  9. Lorenzo Alexander
  10. Andre Branch
  11. Julius Peppers
  12. Charles Johnson
  13. Datone Jones
  14. Mario Addison
  15. Dwight Freeney

The Cardinals have already made it abundantly clear that Chandler Jones will see the franchise tag this offseason, and Melvin Ingram and Jason Pierre-Paul are also candidates to be tagged by the Chargers and Giants, respectively. If the latter two are able to hit the open market unfettered, however, they both figure to break the bank. Ingram, Pro Football Focus’ No. 6 edge defender, could be a fit for both 3-4 and 4-3 schemes, while JPP will be looking for a long-term commitment after signing consecutive one-year deals.Chandler Jones (vertical)

The rest of this year’s crop of free agent pass rushers is a blend of young defenders searching for their first payday and veterans on the hunt for one last contract. Among the players with youth still on their side, Packers edge defenders Nick Perry and Datone Jones figure to interest different clubs, as Perry is a better match for a 3-4 defense while Jones needs to restart his career as a 4-3 defensive end. John Simon has been overlooked while playing alongside the likes of J.J. Watt, Jadeveon Clowney, and Whitney Mercilus but could represent a hidden gem, while the Dolphins are reportedly prioritizing Andre Branch.

After managing nine sacks over the first nine years of his NFL tenure, Lorenzo Alexander busted out with 12.5 quarterback takedowns in 2016, and now could be looking for a double-digit annual salary. James Harrison and Charles Johnson, meanwhile, look like good bets to return to Steelers and Panthers, respectively, but DeMarcus Ware could be something of a wild card — after missing 11 games in the past two seasons, does the 34-year-old have enough left in the tank? The same could be asked of Dwight Freeney, who at age-37 posted three sacks in a rotational role for the Falcons.

Interior defensive line:

  1. Kawann Short
  2. Calais Campbell
  3. Johnathan Hankins
  4. Brandon Williams
  5. Dontari Poe
  6. Chris Baker
  7. Bennie Logan
  8. Nick Fairley
  9. Alan Branch
  10. Jared Odrick
  11. Karl Klug
  12. Terrell McClain
  13. Lawrence Guy
  14. Earl Mitchell
  15. Stacy McGee

Unlike the edge defender market, the 2017 cadre of interior defensive lineman shouldn’t be overly affected by the franchise tender. Head coach Ron Rivera recently confessed the Panthers will “probably” have to use the tag on Kawann Short, but the rest of the defensive tackles listed here should be able to hit the open market. Of the remaining defenders, Campbell is the best overall player, but given that he’s entering his age-31 season, he may not cost as much as Johnathan Hankins, Brandon Williams, and Dontari Poe.Johnathan Hankins (Vertical)

Hankins is only 24 years old, and though the Giants are trying to retain him along with the rest of their defensive core, the 6’3″, 320-pound mauler should represent an attractive option to a number of clubs this offseason. Williams, too, offers a massive presence on the inside, while Poe could intrigue clubs based on his first-round pedigree and athleticism (though his play hasn’t always matched his potential). The Redskins’ Chris Baker is a solid, well-rounded defensive tackle, and could constitute a consolation prize for teams that miss out on their top targets.

The rest of the class offers an interesting mix of nose tackles (Bennie Logan), interior pass rushers (Nick Fairley, Earl Mitchell), and run stoppers (Karl Klug, Alan Branch), so clubs hoping to bolster their defensive line should find no shortage of options. Jared Odrick recently hit free agency after being released by the Jaguars, while Terrell McClain, Lawrence Guy, and Stacy McGee could be underrated finds for the right team. McClain, for what it’s worth, has already been linked to the Falcons.

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Titans To Place DT Karl Klug On IR

The Titans will place defensive tackle Karl Klug on season-ending injured reserve following a torn Achilles, head coach Mike Mularkey told reporters today."<strong

[RELATED: Tennessee Titans Roster Resource]

Klug, 28, was in the midst of an extremely successful campaign in his sixth season with the Titans, as he’d racked up 1.5 sacks and a pass defensed while grading as the league’s No. 22 interior defender, according to Pro Football Focus. Klug has never been a full-time starter with Tennessee, but he’s acted as a valuable depth option behind Jurrell Casey and DaQuan Jones. In 2016, he’d played on roughly 44% of the club’s defensive snaps. Klug is set to become an unrestricted free agent at season’s end.

With Klug sidelined, the Titans will look farther down their depth chart for help, and defensive tackles Angelo Blackson and Austin Johnson could be in line for larger roles, as Paul Kuharsky of ESPN.com writes. Additionally, defensive lineman Antwaun Woods, currently on Tennessee’s practice squad, could be a candidate for promotion.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Contract Details: Clay, Cromartie, Webb, Britt

Here are some specific details on a number of contracts agreed to and/or signed recently. One-year minimum salary benefit deals aren’t included.

AFC deals:

  • Charles Clay, TE (Bills): Five years, $38MM base value. $24.5MM fully guaranteed. $10MM signing bonus. $10MM roster bonus in 2016. No-trade clause for first three years (three Twitter links via Mike Rodak of ESPN.com and Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun).
  • Antonio Cromartie, CB (Jets): Four years, $32MM base value. $7MM guaranteed. $2MM roster bonus. No signing bonus (link via Brian Costello of the New York Post).
  • Lardarius Webb, CB (Ravens): Restructured contract. Three years, $18MM base value. $5.25MM guaranteed. $3MM roster bonus in 2015 (link via Wilson).
  • Nate Irving, LB (Colts): Three years, $7.25MM base value. $1.5MM guaranteed. $750K signing bonus. Escalators in 2016, 2017 (Twitter link via Wilson).
  • Karl Klug, DL (Titans): Two years, $3.75MM base value. $1MM signing bonus. $200K roster bonus in 2016. Up to $625K in annual incentives (Twitter link via Wilson).
  • James Harrison, OLB (Steelers): Two years, $2.75MM base value. $500K signing bonus (Twitter link via Wilson).
  • Byron Stingily, T (Titans): Two years, $2.5MM base value. $250K signing bonus. $800K playing-time escalator (Twitter link via Wilson).
  • Louis Delmas, S (Dolphins): One year, $2.25MM base value. Up to $1.25MM in incentives (Twitter link via Wilson).
  • Mitch Unrein, DT (Chargers): Two years, $1.9MM base value. $250K signing bonus (Twitter link via Wilson).

NFC deals:

  • Kenny Britt, WR (Rams): Two years, $9.15MM base value. $4.05MM guaranteed. $1.5MM roster bonus in 2015. Potential void in 2016 based on 2015 escalator (link via Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch).
  • Jacob Tamme, TE (Falcons): Two years, $3.2MM base value. $400K signing bonus. $250K roster bonus in 2016. $1MM escalator based on performance, playing time (Twitter links via Wilson).
  • Clint Gresham, LS (Seahawks): Three years, $2.705MM base value. $300K signing bonus (Twitter link via Wilson).
  • Ahtyba Rubin, DL (Seahawks): One year, $2.5MM base value. $1MM signing bonus. Up to $500K in playing-time incentives (Twitter link via Wilson).
  • Kenrick Ellis, DT (Giants): One year, $1.475MM base value. $500K guaranteed. $300K signing bonus (Twitter link via Rich Cimini of ESPNNewYork.com).
  • George Selvie, DE (Giants): One year, $1.2MM base value. $200K signing bonus. Up to $200K in incentives (Twitter link via Wilson).

Titans Re-Sign Karl Klug

11:32am: It’s a two-year deal for Klug, tweets Wyatt.

9:30am: A busy morning in Tennessee continues, as the Titans have reached their fourth contract agreement of the day, reports Jim Wyatt of the Tennessean. According to Wyatt (via Twitter), the team has reached a long-term deal to re-sign defensive lineman Karl Klug.

Klug, who turns 27 at the end of the month, has been a rotational player on the Titans’ defensive line since being drafted by the team in the fifth round in 2011. Although he recorded seven sacks in his rookie season, Klug’s sack totals have been more modest since then — he’s combined for just 7.5 in the three seasons since. In 2014, Klug played 338 defensive snaps for the Titans, earning a slightly above-average +1.9 grade for his play from Pro Football Focus (subscription required).

The Titans also reached contract agreements with their own free agents Derrick Morgan and Ryan Succop today, as well as landing former Washington pass rusher Brian Orakpo.