Leonard Johnson

Josh Norman Tests Positive For COVID-19

Nov. 15: Luckily for Norman, he is asymptomatic, as Ed Werder of ESPN.com reports (via Twitter). Norman understands that he cannot play today due to league protocols, but he says he feels well enough to do so. The team hopes to have him back shortly.

Nov. 14: The Bills have run into a COVID-19 issue ahead of their trip to Arizona. Josh Norman tested positive for the coronavirus, according to the team, and this will result in at least four Bills not traveling for their Week 10 game.

Norman, cornerback Levi Wallace, safety Dean Marlowe and tight end Tyler Kroft landed on Buffalo’s reserve/COVID-19 list. The latter three players — deemed as high-risk close contacts — must isolate for five days.

As of now, Sunday’s Bills-Cardinals game remains on as scheduled. The team is set to travel to Arizona later this afternoon. Defensive assistant Leonard Johnson will join the aforementioned quartet of players in not making the trip to the desert.

This is not the first time Saturday news of a Bills positive test emerged to weaken one of their position groups. Dawson Knox tested positive for COVID-19 late last month, and the Bills placed two other tight ends on their COVID list that day. The NFL did not adjust the game time of the Bills’ rematch with the Jets. The league has not changed a game time because of COVID-19 since Week 7. With virus numbers skyrocketing around the country, similar challenges to the one that prompted the NFL to move a Bills-Titans game to a Tuesday night appear on the horizon.

Norman signed a one-year, $6MM deal with the Bills — one of several ex-Panthers to rejoin Sean McDermott and Brandon Beane in Buffalo this offseason — but began the season on IR. He returned for three games but has missed the past three due to a hamstring injury. He had practiced all week and was expected to return against Arizona, however. The Bills also recalled Wallace from IR earlier this season.

They will face the Cardinals’ No. 1-ranked offense with a depleted secondary. The team will promote some reinforcements, however. The Bills elevated Daryl Worley, Darron Lee, cornerback Dane Jackson, wide receiver Jake Kumerow and safety Josh Thomas from their practice squad.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Minor NFL Transactions: 12/28/18

Here are Friday’s minor moves:

Arizona Cardinals

Carolina Panthers

  • Promoted from practice squad: G Dorian Johnson
  • Placed on IR: RB Kenjon Barner

Cleveland Browns

  • Promoted from practice squad: WR Blake Jackson
  • Placed on IR: LB Tanner Vallejo

Detroit Lions

Indianapolis Colts

  • Waived: S Rolan Milligan

Jacksonville Jaguars

Washington Redskins

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/14/18

Today’s minor moves:

Arizona Cardinals

Los Angeles Chargers

  • Signed: LB Tre’Von Johnson

New England Patriots

Oakland Raiders

Washington Redskins

NFL Workout Updates: 11/13/18

Here’s the latest from the workout circuit. All links go to NFL reporter Howard Balzer’s Twitter account, unless otherwise noted.

Arizona Cardinals

Detroit Lions

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

New Orleans Saints

New York Jets

Oakland Raiders

Tennessee Titans

NFL Workout Updates: 9/5/18

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

Carolina Panthers

Cleveland Browns

Detroit Lions

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Tennessee Titans

Minnesota Vikings

Philadelphia Eagles

Giants Lock In 53-Man Roster

The Giants will head into the 2018 season without one of their longest-tenured players and one of their 2017 starting safeties, with both Mark Herzlich and Darian Thompson failing to make the team.

A 2017 fifth-round pick, edge defender Avery Moss missed out as well. As did Roger Lewis, a wideout who became needed when the Giants became decimated at receiver last season.

The Giants also released recently signed cornerback Leonard Johnson, who was trying to make a fifth NFL franchise’s 53-man roster. The former Buccaneer, Patriot, Panther and Bill started seven games with Buffalo last season.

Here’s the full list of Giants cuts:

Released:

Waived:

Waived with an injury designation

Placed on IR:

Placed on Reserve/NFI list:

  • DL R.J. McIntosh

Suspended:

Giants To Sign CB Leonard Johnson

The Giants are signing cornerback Leonard Johnson, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. The move comes hours after the team auditioned fellow corners Alterraun Verner and Zack Sanchez

Johnson played for the Panthers during GM Dave Gettleman’s time in Carolina, which might explain the move. Johnson didn’t fill up the stat sheet in that 2016 season, but he did appear in ten games. Last year, he recorded 51 tackles and seven passes defensed with the Bills. He appeared in 15 games in 2017 and started in seven of those contests. Johnson graded out as just the 99th best corner in the NFL out of Pro Football Focus’ 120+ qualified players, but that likely doesn’t faze Gettleman, who isn’t big on analytics.

Johnson doesn’t profile as a starter, but he could sneak in as a reserve behind starters Eli Apple and Janoris Jenkins and bench corners William Gay and Teddy Williams.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Minor NFL Transactions: 3/17/17

The latest minor moves:

  • The Bills have signed three free agents – cornerback Leonard Johnson, running back Joe Banyard and wide receiver Corey Washington. Johnson easily possesses the most experience of the trio, having appeared in 62 games and started 20 with the Buccaneers, Patriots and Panthers since entering the NFL in 2012. He also has five career interceptions, though none since 2014, and connections to the Bills’ coaching staff. Johnson played under defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier in Tampa Bay in 2014 and head coach Sean McDermott in Carolina last season. Banyard, a five-year veteran of the Vikings and Jaguars, has collected 23 career rushes – 21 of which came in 2014. Washington, meanwhile, hasn’t played in a game since 2014, when the then-Giant totaled the only 14 appearances and five catches of his career. He had a brief stint on the Bills’ practice squad last year.
  • The Chargers have re-signed reserve offensive lineman Kenny Wiggins to a one-year deal, per Michael Gehlken (Twitter link). Wiggins, who had stints with the Ravens and 49ers from 2011-13, is now in line to play a fourth year with the Bolts. He debuted in 2014 and has since racked up 29 appearances and nine starts. Wiggins totaled a career-high eight starts in 2015, while the other came last year.
  • The Bengals have re-signed restricted free agent center T.J. Johnson, tweets James Palmer of NFL Network. The three-year veteran is coming off his first 16-game season, in which he logged the lone start of his career.

Panthers Place CB Teddy Williams On IR

The Panthers announced that cornerback Teddy Williams has been placed on injured reserve. In a related move, fellow corner Leonard Johnson has been officially activated from the reserve/non-football injury list. Teddy Williams (vertical)

The specifics of Williams’ injury are not yet known, but we do know that he left practice with a trainer on Thursday after hurting his left knee. Williams spent last season with the Jaguars and even though he was a restricted free agent, the team declined to extend him a tender. This offseason, Carolina scooped him up on a two-year deal worth up to $2.3MM. Williams ends his season after appearing in three games for the Panthers this year. His highlight came a couple of weeks ago against the Saints when he logged his first career interception.

Johnson, meanwhile, has been working his way back from Achilles surgery.

I think Leonard can bring a little energy to what we’re trying to do,” Rivera said in a press release. “He’s a guy that excels at playing the nickel position. That’s why we brought him here. It was just a matter of time before we had a chance to see who he is on the football field. We as coaches like what we saw. We were willing to take the chance on having this guy around on (NFI), and hopefully he can develop, as he gets more and more opportunities in our scheme.”

Johnson played in four games with three starts at nickel back for the New England in 2015.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Panthers Make Cuts, Down To 74

The Panthers have made some roster moves on Tuesday and they are now under the 75-man limit with about four hours to go. Cornerback Leonard Johnson has been placed on the PUP list while the following players have been released:

Scifres became a likely roster casualty yesterday when the Panthers acquired fellow punter Andy Lee from the Browns. Scifres has been dealing with a knee injury this offseason, putting his status in question for the coming season.

Robinson joined Carolina on a one-year deal in March. The safety started a career-high seven games in 2015 before his season was cut short due to a hamstring injury. In December, Washington waived Robinson and later released him from IR with an injury settlement. In total, Robinson has played in 38 career games and recorded 88 tackles, two interceptions, and four passes defensed for the 49ers and Washington.