Louis Murphy

49ers Sign WR Louis Murphy

The 49ers have signed veteran wide receiver Louis Murphy, according to his reps at Universal Sports Management (Twitter link). Murphy was with the Niners over the summer but missed the pre-Week 1 cut when he was released in early September. Louis Murphy (vertical)

Murphy has spent time with four clubs during his pro tenure, with his last stop coming in Tampa Bay. The 30-year-old’s best season came in 2010, when he posted 41 receptions and 609 yards for the Raiders. Unfortunately, he’s been held back by injuries and off-field issues ever since. In 2015, he tore his ACL and suffered a setback while trying to rehab the injury. He also was arrested on gun charges earlier this year.

The veteran will help to provide depth for San Francisco following Pierre Garcon‘s season-ending injury.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

49ers Reduce Roster To 71

The 49ers parted with 15 players on Friday to bring their roster to 71, per a team announcement.

Waived:

Released outright (vested veterans who are not subject to waivers):

49ers Sign WR Louis Murphy

The 49ers have signed veteran wide receiver Louis Murphy to a one-year deal, the club announced today. In order to create a roster spot, San Francisco waived/injured linebacker Jimmie Gilbert."<strong

Murphy, a seven-year NFL veteran, has spent time with four clubs during his pro tenure, with his last stop coming in Tampa Bay. The former fourth-round pick’s best season came in 2010, when he posted 41 receptions and 609 yards for the Raiders. Health questions (a torn ACL in 2015 followed by a setback during rehab) and off-field concerns (an arrest on gun charges earlier this year) have limited Murphy’s market, but he should have a chance to compete for time in San Francisco.

While the 49ers have some intriguing options among their current receiver crop, the club lacks established players aside from Pierre Garcon and Jeremy Kerley. While Marquise Goodwin, Aldrick Robinson, Bruce Ellington, Trent Taylor, and others each have interesting attributes, Murphy is more experienced than any of them.

Gilbert, meanwhile, is expected to miss the 2017 campaign after suffering a torn ACL, as the 49ers announced earlier today. Gilbert is a rookie undrafted free agent out of Colorado.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Extra Points: Beane, Lions, Eagles, Saints

As reports indicated earlier this week, new Bills GM Brandon Beane will indeed have control over the 53-man roster. Terry Pegula confirmed as much Friday. “Brandon’s gonna have the 53,” the owner said, via Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk. “Him and Sean (McDermott) will obviously collaborate on any decisions.” The 39-year-old first-time GM, though, plans to work extensively alongside McDermott, with whom he obviously functioned alongside with the Panthers.

It’s going to be similar to what Sean and I had in Carolina. There’s no czar here, every decision is going to be collaborative,” Beane said, via WGRZ.com. “The unique thing Sean and I had was a respect, I knew his roots and how he worked his way up.”

Beane and McDermott have worked together since 2011, save for a near-four-month period when McDermott took the Bills job and Beane stayed in Charlotte. The former Panthers assistant GM will still have the final say, even though the new Bills HC arrived in Buffalo first.

Here’s more from Buffalo and the latest from around the league.

  • A slew of Bills free agency moves shouldn’t be expected, Beane said today, per Joe Buscaglia of WKBW (on Twitter). In a statement not exactly contrary to most new GMs’ philosophies, Beane plans to build the Bills through the draft (Twitter link, via Buscaglia).
  • The Lions announced a handful of new titles in their front office following Brian Xanders‘ departure. Among them: Kyle O’Brien now has the title of Vice President of Player Personnel and Lance Newmark is now Director of Player Personnel (Twitter link via Michael Rothstein of ESPN.com).
  • Doug Pederson isn’t worried about a potential holdout from Brandon Graham, the Eagles coach said today, per Eliot Shorr-Parks of NJ.com (on Twitter). A report earlier this week linked the burgeoning-star edge defender to a holdout. Graham is signed to a four-year deal worth $26.5MM. He’s set to carry cap numbers of $7.5MM apiece in 2017 and ’18. The 29-year-old ranked as the No. 2 overall edge defender in the opinion of Pro Football Focus last season. Among 4-3 defensive ends, Graham’s deal places him just 16th in terms of average annual value. Less accomplished teammate Vinny Curry is making nearly $3MM per year more than Graham due to his 2016 extension.
  • The Saints invited some familiar names to their rookie minicamp/tryout venue today. Former Jets, Bills and Falcons passer Matt Simms received an invite, as did former Raiders and Buccaneers wideout Louis Murphy and veteran tight end Clay Harbor (all Twitter links via Nick Underhill of The Advocate). Murphy spent the past two seasons with the Bucs but saw injuries limit him to just six games.

Zach Links contributed to this report.

Extra Points: Cutler, Lynch, 49ers, Eagles

Free agent quarterback Jay Cutler continues to mull retirement, reports Adam Caplan of ESPN.com. The Jets have been the only team to show real interest in the 34-year-old since the Bears released him in March, and Gang Green went on to sign a different veteran, one of Cutler’s former backups in Josh McCown. It seems the Jets would have added Cutler had he been willing to sign with them, as Caplan writes that he wasn’t gung-ho on joining a rebuilding club. As a playoff-caliber team without an obvious answer under center, the Texans and Cutler could theoretically be a match, but they’re uninterested in signing him. Cutler has started in all 139 of his appearances, so it would be understandable if he’d rather walk away from football than continue as a backup.

More from around the game:

  • Retired running back Marshawn Lynch, who’s considering returning to the league, was involved in an unflattering incident at Los Angeles International Airport on Monday, video of which is available courtesy of TMZ. Lynch smacked a cellphone out of the hand of an autograph seeker, cracking the screen, and that person is now considering filing a police report for assault. The league declined to comment on the run-in, per Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk.
  • Contrary to a report from Tuesday, the 49ers aren’t ready to give up on running back Carlos Hyde, according to general manager John Lynch. They’re actually “really high on” Hyde, who’s “a very talented young man,” per Lynch (via Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle). It wouldn’t necessarily be wise to take Lynch’s comments at face value here, though Hyde did make his case to continue as San Francisco’s No. 1 back when he posted a 4.6 yards-per-carry average on 217 attempts and combined for nine touchdowns last season.
  • The Eagles have worked out Missouri defensive end Charles Harris, writes Tim McManus of ESPN.com. The potential first-rounder totaled nine sacks last season during his final year with the Tigers. Harris is part of what some executives and coaches are calling the best defensive draft class of the past two decades, tweets Dianna Russini of ESPN.
  • Free agent wide receiver Louis Murphy was arrested Wednesday at Tampa International Airport on a felony count of carrying a concealed weapon, per Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times. Murphy, 29, played with the Raiders, Panthers, Giants and Buccaneers from 2009-15. He missed all of last season with a torn ACL, becoming a free agent after the Bucs waived him off injured reserve in November.

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/29/16

Today’s minor moves:

  • The Buccaneers have waived wide receiver Louis Murphy from the Reserve/PUP list, the club announced today. Murphy is recovering from an ACL tear suffered in October 2015, and wasn’t going to get on the field for Tampa Bay after being kept on PUP. However, the fact that he’s been released likely indicates that the two sides have agreed to some sort of settlement, allowing Murphy to hit the open market. He had been scheduled to earn a $2MM base salary in 2017.
  • The Redskins announced that they have promoted defensive tackle A.J. Francis from the practice squad. To create a roster spot, long snapper Rick Lovato was waived, likely signalling that fellow LS Nick Sundberg is once again healthy.

Bucs Place Louis Murphy On Reserve PUP

The Buccaneers were eager to get Louis Murphy back into the lineup this year, particularly after Vincent Jackson went down with injury. Unfortunately, after suffering another setback, that won’t be happening. The Bucs announced today that Murphy has been placed on the Physically Unable to Perform/reserve list, which ends his season. Louis Murphy (vertical)

[RELATED: Bucs Sign WR Josh Huff To Practice Squad]

Murphy returned to practice last month and was making strides in his recovery from ACL surgery. Unfortunately, he wound up with an unrelated injury and has been sidelined ever since. Today was the last day on Murphy’s three-week practice window and the Bucs were forced to make their decision.

Murphy joined Tampa Bay before the 2014 season and has managed 41 receptions since. The Bucs still have him under contract through the 2017 season at a reasonable $2.087MM cap number. The Bucs could also cut him before June 1st and save $2MM while being left with just ~$87K in dead money.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Extra Points: Trades, Jets, Hawks, Bucs, Jags

The NFL trade deadline is on Tuesday, and we’ve already seen a pair of minor moves in the past week, as the Patriots acquired linebacker Kyle Van Noy from the Lions, and then shipped tight end A.J. Derby to the Broncos. More high-profile names could be on the move in the next few days, leading both Joel Corry of CBSSports.com and Albert Breer of TheMMQB.com to examine candidates to be traded before the deadline. Jets wide receiver Brandon Marshall — who appeared on Breer’s list — is unlikely to be dealt, according to Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News, especially because two general managers predicted New York would only garner a fifth- or sixth-round pick for the veteran pass-catcher.

Here’s more from around the NFL:

  • Russell Wilson has never missed a game during his NFL career, but a knee injury threatened to knock him out earlier this season, as Sheil Kapadia of ESPN.com details. Wilson told reporters today that he was originally told his knee issue would sideline him for as many as four weeks, but the Seahawks quarterback has opted to play through the injury. He’ll continue to do so, and will also battle a pectoral ailment as Seattle faces New Orleans on Sunday.
  • Buccaneers wide receiver Louis Murphy suffered a setback in his recovery from a November 2015 knee injury, and his timetable for return is currently unknown, writes Roy Cummings of Today’s Pigskin. Murphy, who joined Tampa Bay before the 2014 season and has managed 41 receptions since, has been on the PUP list the entire year. The Bucs could use a boost at receiver after placing veteran Vincent Jackson on injured reserve last week. They auditioned Nate Washington on Tuesday, and are reportedly willing to trade for a pass-catcher.
  • Although the Jaguars were interested in running back DeMarco Murray when he became a free agent in 2015, his price tag proved too costly for Jacksonville and Murray ended up signing with Philadelphia, as Hays Carlyon of Jacksonville.com recalls. “It was great,” Murray said of meeting with the Jags. “To this day, I always look back and wonder if I would’ve been a Jaguar because of Gus [Bradley]. I got a chance to basically meet him and learn about him in a week span. It was so hard for me to tell him no.”

Minor NFL Transactions: 8/31/16

We’ve had quite a busy day as teams worked feverishly to get under the 75-man roster maximum before the afternoon deadline. Here are the rest of the roster moves made so far:

  • The Packers have released punter Tim Masthay to make room for fellow punter Jacob Schum, whom they claimed on waivers from the Buccaneers, Tom Silverstein of the Journal-Sentinel tweets.
  • The Browns have signed punter Michael Palardy and waived free safety Tim Scott, Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon-Journal tweets. Palardy will battle it out with new acquisition Kasey Redfern.
  • The Eagles announced that they have claimed defensive tackle Bruce Gaston off waivers from the Chargers. The Purdue product has played with five teams to date. Philadelphia also signed defensive end Jake Metz, according to a team announcement. Metz previously played with the Arena League’s Philadelphia Soul.
  • The Buccaneers moved guard J.R. Sweezy and receiver Louis Murphy to the PUP list, Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times tweets. In related moves, linebacker Jeremiah George and safety Kimario McFadden have been re-signed.
  • Contrary to previous reports, the Saints are not cutting linebacker Jeff Schoettmer (Twitter link via Josh Katzenstein of The Times-Picayune).
  • The Steelers have moved their roster to 75 men by waiving safety Jacob Hagen, defensive tackle Devaunte Sigler and cornerback Kevin White, the club announced.
  • The Colts had one open roster spot, and they’ve filled by signing safety Alden Darby, per a team announcement.
  • The Bears have waived rookie cornerback Kevin Peterson, tweets Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune.

Louis Murphy Has Torn ACL, Out For Year

TUESDAY, 3:23pm: The Buccaneers have officially placed Murphy on IR, ending his season, the team announced in a press release. No corresponding move was announced, so the Bucs figure to fill the roster opening later this week.

MONDAY, 2:40pm: Murphy has confirmed to ESPN’s Josina Anderson (Twitter link) that he has a torn ACL, calling it a “minor setback for a major comeback.”

2:24pm: The Buccaneers fear that wide receiver Louis Murphy has suffered a torn ACL, which would sideline him for the remainder of the 2015 season, reports Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times (via Twitter). The club has yet to officially make an announcement on Murphy, but it sounds like it could just be a matter of time until an MRI confirms the team’s initial diagnosis.

Murphy, 28, has bounced around from team to team over the course of his seven-year NFL career, spending time with the Raiders, Panthers, and Giants before catching on with the Buccaneers last season. After catching 31 balls for 380 yards and two touchdowns in 2014, Murphy had totaled 10 receptions for 198 yards in six games this season.

Assuming Murphy is done for the year, the Bucs will likely need to make a roster move to replace him, since the team only has four other active wide receivers. An outside free agent is a possibility, but the club is currently carrying three receivers – Rannell Hall, Adam Humphries, and Evan Spencer – on its practice squad, so one of those players could receive a promotion.