Lawrence Timmons

Extra Points: Timmons, Fuller, Redskins

The Dolphins made Lawrence Timmons‘ suspension shortlived, reinstating the linebacker earlier this week. Timmons addressed his status, albeit vaguely. Adam Gase also said there’s a possibility Timmons could make his Dolphins debut Sunday against the Saints in London.

To all the fans of the Miami Dolphins and to everyone, I’m just happy to be back here,” Timmons said, via James Walker of ESPN.com. “Sorry to the organization. I’m just happy to be a Miami Dolphin. I just want to play football and be the best I can.”

Timmons declined to say why he went AWOL from the team before Week 2. Gase said he and Timmons “worked through a couple of things,” adding he feels confident the linebacker will be able to contribute to the team. The former Steelers linebacker was said to have visited his old team’s facility during the Dolphins’ Hurricane Irma-induced bye in Week 1. Timmons would be a welcome addition to a Dolphins team that remains thin at linebacker, even after the Stephone Anthony acquisition.

Here’s the latest from around the league.

  • Will Fuller looks set to return Sunday for the Texans, Bill O’Brien said (via Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle). The 2016 first-round pick broke his collarbone during training camp and was expected to be out up to three months. This would put the Texans‘ No. 2 wideout on the front end of that timetable. Fuller will be working with another new quarterback, with Deshaun Watson having taken the reins since the former Notre Dame speedster was last healthy.
  • Kelvin Benjamin also figures to be ready for his team in Week 4. After suffering a knee injury in the Panthers’ Week 3 loss, their top receiver avoided a serious setback. And Ron Rivera, via David Newton of ESPN.com, said barring a setback Benjamin will suit up against the Patriots.
  • Redskins backup offensive lineman Ty Nsekhe will miss three to six games with a core muscle injury that required surgery, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets. The 31-year-old has functioned as a part-time player in Washington since 2015, stepping in for left tackle Trent Williams during his four-game suspension last season and working as a reserve so far this year.
  • Linebacker Eric Pinkins worked out for the Cowboys on Thursday, Wilson tweets. Pinkins played in 11 games between 2015-16, for the Seahawks and Giants, before failing to make the Giants out of training camp. The Cowboys have two linebackers on their injury report, Sean Lee and Anthony Hitchens. Neither got in a full practice Thursday.
  • Quarterback Nate Sudfeld may have landed on the Eagles‘ practice squad after failing to make the Redskins out of the preseason, but Philadelphia sweetened the deal for the second-year quarterback. Sudfeld’s practice squad salary is $540K, Joel Corry of CBS Sports tweets. That’s nearly $32K per week, a rather notable increase from the league minimum squad pay ($7,200 per week). He’ll earn more than some of the players on Philly’s 53-man roster. Sudfeld spent his rookie season on Washington’s active roster.

Dolphins Reinstate LB Lawrence Timmons

Dolphins linebacker Lawrence Timmons has been reinstated by the team, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (Twitter link) has learned. With his suspension lifted, he will play on Sunday versus the Saints. Lawrence Timmons (vertical)

Timmons went AWOL prior to Miami’s Week 2 contest and was suspended indefinitely for conduct detrimental to the team. At the time of the ban, the Dolphins gave little indication as to whether Timmons would ever be able to rejoin the squad. We later learned that Timmons left the team in L.A. to visit the mother of his child in Pennsylvania. He did not notify the team of his plans beforehand.

Timmons reportedly visited the Steelers (his former team) during Miami’s Week 1 bye and watched the club practice. We don’t know exactly what is going on with the veteran, but it sounds like homesickness is at least part of it.

The Dolphins managed to beat the Chargers without Timmons in Week 2, but they lost to the Jets on Sunday. Miami will look to get back on the right track this weekend against the Saints in London, England.

Miami signed Timmons to a two-year, $12MM deal in the offseason. In 2016, he racked up 114 tackles, 2.5 sacks, and two interceptions for the Steelers. When he went AWOL in Week 2, he missed his first game since 2009.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

East Notes: Eagles, Dolphins, Timmons, Pats

Now that Darren Sproles is out for the rest of the season with a broken arm/torn ACL, the Eagles will add another running back in the coming days, head coach Doug Pederson told reporters, including Eliot Shorr-Parks of NJ.com (Twitter link). Byron Marshall, who’s spent most of the past year-plus on Philadelphia’s practice squad, is presumably one option to join an Eagles backfield that currently consists of LeGarrette Blount, Wendell Smallwood, and Corey Clement. If Philadelphia wants to scour the free agent market, the club will find options such as Shaun Draughn, C.J. Spiller, Travaris Cadet, and former Eagle Kenjon Barner, all of whom could help replace the pass-catching prowess of Sproles.

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

  • Lawrence Timmons is now in limbo after going AWOL and being suspended by the Dolphins, but his agent Drew Rosenhaus is “cautiously optimistic” the veteran linebacker will be able to return to Miami, according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. Dolphins head coach Adam Gase seemingly opened the window for Timmons last week, indicating that his situation could be forgiven. Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com reported Sunday that Timmons visited his former club — the Steelers — during Miami’s Week 1 bye and expressed regret for signing with the Dolphins this spring.
  • The Patriots worked out offensive linemen Gino Gradkowski, Nate Theaker, and Earl Watford, plus defensive back Harold Jones-Quartey, on Monday, tweets Mike Reiss of ESPN.com. The auditions of Gradkowski and Watford are particularly notable, as both offer plenty of experience and would given New England depth on the offensive line interior. The Patriots only listed tackle Marcus Cannon on last week’s injury report, however, so instead of searching for injury replacements, New England was likely just updating its emergency list of free agents.
  • In case you missed it, the Redskins worked out free agent safety Shamarko Thomas today. Thomas, who has spent his entire career with the Steelers, has 48 games of experience under his belt.

Latest On Dolphins LB Lawrence Timmons

In what amounts to a bizarre twist in an already odd story, Dolphins linebacker Lawrence Timmons visited his former team — the Steelers — during Miami’s Week 1 bye and watched the club practice, reports Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com.Lawrence Timmons (vertical)

Timmons, of course, went AWOL prior to Miami’s Week 2 contest and has subsequently been suspended indefinitely. But prior to that episode, Timmons ventured to Pittsburgh (his professional home from 2007-16) and was allowed into the Steelers’ facility. Most players and team officials were unaware Timmons planned to attend practice, although head coach Mike Tomlin had some idea of the visit, per La Canfora.

Timmons reportedly told his former Steelers teammates that he wanted to return to Pittsburgh, and essentially called his decision to sign with the Dolphins this offseason a mistake. The 31-year-old Timmons inked a two-year, $12MM deal with Miami in March that included $11MM in full guarantees.

Clearly, an under-contract player attending the practice of another NFL team is extremely peculiar event, but it’s unclear if that incident will affect Timmons’ status with the Dolphins. Head coach Adam Gase seemingly opened the window for a Timmons return last week, but La Canfora reports the veteran linebacker may never play a down for the club.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC East Notes: Fins, Anthony, Timmons, Jets

The Dolphins discussed acquiring linebacker Stephone Anthony from the Saints even before the club suspended veteran Lawrence Timmons, head coach Adam Gase told reporters, including Adam Beasley of the Miami Herald (Twitter link). That’s not entirely surprising, given that Miami had been short on linebackers even before the Timmons saga began. Rookie Raekwon McMillan, pegged to start at middle linebacker for the Dolphins, tore his ACL before the season began, so adding a former first-round talent such as Anthony for the cost of a fifth-round pick makes some sense.

Here’s more from the AFC East:

  • While Timmons is suspended indefinitely, it’s not out of the question that he returns to the Dolphins at some point, as Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald writes. Expected to be an integral part of Miami’s defense after agreeing to a two-year contract this spring, Timmons would likely ingratiate himself to teammates with an apology, opines Salguero. “I think every situation is different,” Gase said of Timmons. “And I would say you can be forgiven if the right steps are taken.”
  • Despite a seemingly gaping hole at left guard, the Dolphins did not express interest in Alex Boone after he was released by the Vikings earlier this month, according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. Instead, Miami is content to rotate Anthony Steen and Jesse Davis on the interior, with Steen handling roughly two-thirds of the club’s offensive snaps. Boone went on to sign a one-year, $1.4MM deal with the Cardinals.
  • New Jets owner Christopher Johnson says his brother — newly sworn-in UK ambassador Woody Johnson — will have no role with the club while serving in his new capacity, tweets Mike Garafolo of NFL.com. Meanwhile, Christopher Johnson also indicated New York is “definitely” not tanking, and that general manager Mike Maccagnan and head coach Todd Bowles won’t be based on wins and losses alone, per Darryl Slater of NJ.com. Instead, the Jets’ decision-makers will be judged on the team’s gradual improvement and development.
  • Based on early-season performance, the Jets‘ decision to part with veterans such as Nick Mangold, Darrelle Revis, Ryan Clady, and Brandon Marshall has turned out well, opines Brian Costello of the New York Post. Mangold and Revis have yet to land a contract, Clady is retired, and Marshall hasn’t performed through two games with the Giants.

Dolphins Suspend LB Lawrence Timmons

The Dolphins announced they have suspended linebacker Lawrence Timmons indefinitely. Timmons went AWOL on the team prior to the Week 2 game against the Chargers. Lawrence Timmons (vertical)

It’s not immediately clear whether the team will work with Timmons to facilitate a return. Per the terms of the CBA, Miami can suspend him for up to four games for conduct detrimental to the team. If that happens, the remaining guarantees in the veteran’s contract will void. That would free the Dolphins from the rest of the two-year, $12MM deal he inked in the offseason.

Timmons apparently skipped town to visit the mother of his child in Pennsylvania. He did not notify the team of his plans beforehand, causing the club to file a missing persons report with police.

Until Sunday, Timmons had not missed a game since 2009. It sounds like he’ll be missing several more, unless he can make good with team brass.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

East Notes: Dolphins, Patriots, Jets, Eagles

The Dolphins have limited options with linebacker Lawrence Timmons, who left the team on Sunday and forced Miami to file am missing person report, but one avenue could be the left squad list, tweets Adam Beasley of the Miami Herald. That mechanism would force Timmons’ contract to toll, but only if he doesn’t return to the club within five days of notice, per Beasley. The Dolphins could also suspend Timmons for up to four games for conduct detrimental, a move that would void the remaining guarantees in the veteran defender’s deal, as Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk writes.

  • Rob Gronkowski left the Patriots‘ win with a groin injury on Sunday, but the superstar tight end says the issue is “nothing serious,” according to Mike Reiss of ESPN.com“Super relieved,” Gronkowski said. “I knew there was nothing really wrong from the beginning, so I’m good.” Despite not playing the fourth quarter, Gronk managed six receptions for 116 yards and one touchdown against the Saints. If Gronkowski does miss time, New England would turn to Dwayne Allen and Jacob Hollister at tight end.
  • Third-year pro Bryce Petty will be the Jets‘ No. 2 quarterback for the “foreseeable future,” head coach Todd Bowles told reporters, including Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News (Twitter link). Petty, who drew trade interest over the summer, was inactive in Week 1 as he recovered from a MCL sprain, but he’s now healthy and set as Josh McCown‘s backup. New York has given no indication that it’s comfortable putting 2016 second-round pick Christian Hackenbergh on the field.
  • The Eagles won’t see rookie running back Donnel Pumphrey again this season, as head coach Doug Pederson said Pumphrey’s hamstring tear is a season-ending injury, reports Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer (Twitter link). Pumphrey was originally thought to be dealing with a four-to-six week issue, meaning he could have been a candidate to return from injured reserve after an eight-week absence. Instead, Philadelphia will go forward with Darren Sproles, LeGarrette BlountWendell Smallwood, and Corey Clement in the backfield.

Extra Points: Vikings, Bradford, Dolphins

Depending on how rehab on his knee goes, the Vikings believe Sam Bradford can return next week, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com hears (on Twitter). The quarterback is believed to have a bone bruise, a source tells NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero (Twitter link). The plan for right now is to see how his knee responds to an injection this week and then take from there.

On Sunday, the Case Keenum-led Vikings lost badly in Pittsburgh, so the team is hoping to get its best QB back on the field in time for the home contest against Tampa Bay.

Here’s more from around the NFL:

  • The Dolphins filed a missing persons report on linebacker Lawrence Timmons when he went AWOL on Saturday, according to TMZ. The police found Timmons at LAX on early Sunday morning as he was looking to board a flight to Pennsylvania. At that point, a team employee met him at the airport and traveled with him. TMZ hears that Timmons was going to Pennsylvania to meet with a child of his and her mother.
  • Patriots linebacker Dont’a Hightower’s MCL injury was diagnosed as the 2-3 week variety by two different doctors, Rapoport tweets. The key Pats defender should be back either this week or next based on that timeframe. Problems with his right knee forced Hightower to start training camp on the PUP list and he was forced out of the season opener after aggravating it. Hightower earned his first Pro Bowl nod in 2016 and re-upped with the Pats this offseason on a four-year deal that could pay him as much as $43.5MM.
  • Bengals tight end Tyler Eifert is battling back and knee injuries and his status for Sunday’s game against Green Bay is uncertain, a source tells Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (on Twitter). For now, it doesn’t seem like a long-term issue, but it’s a situation worth monitoring given Eifert’s previous health troubles.
  • Punter Matt Darr worked out for the Bills and agent Brett Tessler (on Twitter) claims that it went very well. Darr had a 46-yard career average before his release from Miami earlier this month.

Dolphins’ Lawrence Timmons Wants To Resume Playing

Lawrence Timmons threw everyone for a loop on Sunday when he left the Dolphins for unknown reasons prior to their game against the Chargers. The good news is that he may be back in action for next week’s contest against the Jets. Timmons is “doing much better today and wants to resume playing immediately” with hope that he will practice this week, ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter (on Twitter) hears. Lawrence Timmons (vertical)

We still don’t know what prompted Timmons to bail on the team, but he’ll meet with doctors on Monday to suss that out, Schefter hears (Twitter link). In a scheduled appearance on a local Miami station Sunday night, agent Drew Rosenhaus declined to shed light on the issue and did not say whether Timmons would be available next Sunday (Twitter link via Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald).

Timmons joined the Dolphins on a two-year, $12MM deal this offseason. Last year with the Steelers, he piled up 114 tackles, 2.5 sacks, two picks and a forced fumble. For what it’s worth, the advanced metrics at Pro Football Focus weren’t impressed with his work. He placed 70th in overall performance among 87 qualified linebackers.

Sunday’s absence marked Timmons’ first missed game since 2009.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Lawrence Timmons Leaves Dolphins

Dolphins linebacker Lawrence Timmons left the team for unknown reasons and is not expected to play today, as Barry Jackson and Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald report.

Aug 24, 2017; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Miami Dolphins linebacker Lawrence Timmons (94) runs off the field at halftime against the Philadelphia Eagles during the second half at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

According to the Herald’s source, something “angered” Timmons and compelled him to leave the team, though the Dolphins do know where he is (Salgeuro tweets that a personal matter is likely at the source of Timmons’ frustration, and not something team-related). The team has declined to comment on the matter for the time being, and Timmons’ agent, Drew Rosenhaus, said he had no information to provide.

Miami signed Timmons to a two-year, $12MM deal this offseason. Timmons had been with the Steelers since being selected by Pittsburgh in the first round of the 2007 draft, and he earned a Pro Bowl bid in 2014. He turned in another solid season in 2016, compiling 114 tackles, 2.5 sacks, and two interceptions. The veteran had started every regular season game for the Steelers since 2011, and he hasn’t missed a game since 2009, but that streak will come to an end today.

Timmons’ absence will further deplete a linebacker corps that has already lost Koa Misi and Raekwon McMillan for the season, and, to make matters worse, Rey Maualuga will miss today’s game with a hamstring injury. Justin March-Lillard, who was claimed off waivers on Sept. 3, could get the start in Timmons’ place alongside Kiko Alonso and Mike Hull (who will make just his second career start).

We will provide more details as they become available.

Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports was the first to report that Timmons was not at the team hotel in California

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.