Veteran backup Luke McCown is set to undergo season ending back surgery, per Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter), so Flynn will help to provide depth behind starter Drew Brees from here on out. Flynn, 30, spent time in training camp with the Patriots and Jets this past season but was not able to stick on either AFC East roster. The former Packers draft pick has bounced around a bit since leaving Green Bay in 2011, having also spent time with the Seahawks, Raiders and Bills.
Speaking to reporters today, including Brian Costello of the New York Post (Twitter links), Jets head coach Todd Bowles provided updates on his injured quarterbacks, indicating that Geno Smith has a bruised shoulder and is day to day, while Ryan Fitzpatrick is also day to day with ligament damage in his thumb. Fitzpatrick will require surgery eventually, but may be able to play through the injury for now.
Still, with their top two quarterbacks uncertain for Week 9, the Jets are considering outside options, eyeing both the free agent market and the trade market, Bowles confirmed (Twitter links). The head coach identified Matt Flynn as one option the club is mulling, and added that if the Jets bring in a new QB, the newcomer could start or back up Bryce Petty, depending on Smith’s and Fitzpatrick’s availability (Twitter links).
Let’s round up a few more items from out of the NFL’s East divisions…
- As Rand Getlin of the NFL Network tweets, Bills wide receiver Percy Harvin is back with the team and has met with the doctors, who are evaluating his hip injury. Reports in October suggested Harvin was contemplating the idea of retiring, but head coach Rex Ryan said today that Harvin wants to play and is committed to the Bills, per Tyler Dunne of the Buffalo News. “That’s the least of our concern with him,” Ryan said. “I know he wants to play. He desperately wants to contribute to this team.”
- Ryan also told reporters today that Bills cornerback Leodis McKelvin, who began the season on the non-football injury list, will be activated and placed on the 53-man roster this week (Twitter link via Joe Buscaglia of WKBW).
- A team source tells John Keim of ESPN.com that Washington isn’t expected to be active at the trade deadline on Tuesday. Keim cautions that things could change if the club gets desperate, but it appears unlikely Scot McCloughan and company will make a deal.
- With an eye on keeping their special teams emergency lists fresh, the Patriots worked out a handful of players today, including long snapper Tyler Ott and punter Cody Mandell, tweets Mike Reiss of ESPN.com.
8:30pm: In addition to Johnson, the Cowboys will also audition Christian Ponder, sources tell Charean Williams of the Star-Telegram (on Twitter). Matt Flynn will also audition on Tuesday, per Josina Anderson of ESPN.com (on Twitter).
5:05pm: The Cowboys have reached out to a few veteran quarterbacks, according to CBSSports.com’s Jason La Canfora (on Twitter). Dallas called reps for both Jason Campbell and Josh Johnson, among others, per La Canfora. Johnson will work out for Dallas, but Campbell will remain in his state of quasi-retirement for now.
While Dallas scopes out the market for signal callers, La Canfora (link) hears that the Saints do not plan to do the same at this time. Of course, that could change with starter Drew Brees potentially out for several games.
In related news, coach Jason Garrett says they’ll consider putting Tony Romo on IR-DTR as the week goes on, James Palmer of NFL.com tweets. Nothing is decided on that front yet, however, and the upside right now is that Romo’s tests revealed zero ligament damage. Romo fractured his clavicle on Sunday, the same injury that caused him to miss the final 10 games of the season in 2010.
The Jets have released a pair of quarterbacks this afternoon, parting ways with Matt Flynn (via player’s tweet, confirmed by NFL Network’s Albert Breer) and Josh Johnson (via Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News on Twitter). That leaves the team with three quarterbacks on their roster: veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick, rookie Bryce Petty, and Geno Smith, who is recovering from a broken jaw.
The Jets inked Flynn to a deal in August following his release from the Patriots. The 30-year-old never saw the field with New England, but he did throw for 136 yards and two scores during Thursday night’s preseason game. The former Packers draft pick has bounced around a bit since leaving Green Bay in 2011, having also spent time with the Seahawks, Raiders and Bills.
The team also added Johnson in late August following his release from the Bengals. The 29-year-old made an appearance during the Jets’ final preseason game, passing for 82 yards while adding 76 yards on the ground. Johnson has only appeared in three games since 2012.
ESPN.com’s Rich Cimini tweets that Flynn’s entire salary would not have been guaranteed had he been on the roster for Week 1, noting the previously claimed termination pay. The reporter notes that this wasn’t the case for Johnson.
Jason Fitzgerald of OverTheCap.com wonders (via Twitter) if the Jets may take a week-by-week approach for their veteran third-stringer. By taking this approach, they could avoid paying guaranteed money to a player who will likely be gone once Smith returns.
Bills defensive tackle Marcell Dareus , frustrated with contract negotiations, is “delusional” if he thinks he’ll get an extension similar to Ndamukong Suh‘s deal with the Dolphins, tweets former agent Joel Corry. Jason Fitzgerald of Over the Cap essentially agrees with that assessment, suggesting that Suh’s contract is one of the biggest outliers in the NFL, made possible by the fact that Suh reached the open market when the Lions were too cap-strapped to franchise him.
As Corry tweets, Dareus may have a hard time topping Mario Williams‘s contract with the Bills – which was worth $16MM per year – since pass-rushing edge defenders are typically paid more than even the best interior defensive linemen. On the other hand, Fitzgerald argues that the fact the Bills were willing to make Williams the highest-paid player on their team with that massive deal three years ago means that Dareus could be right to assume they’ll do it again. In Fitzgerald’s view, the team may not “have a leg to stand on” in offering the star defensive tackle less than $16MM annually.
As we wait to see if the Bills and Dareus can reach a compromise before the season begins, let’s check out some other items from around the AFC East….
- The one-year deal Matt Flynn got from the Jets is a minimum-salary pact that includes a guaranteed $60K signing bonus, according to Tom Pelissero of USA Today (via Twitter).
- Pelissero also provides some details on Red Bryant‘s new one-year contract with the Bills, tweeting that the veteran defensive lineman got $80K to sign, and can earn up to $100K in playing-time incentives on top of his minimum salary.
- As Brian Costello of the New York Post details, Dan Quinn and Todd Bowles were viewed as the consensus top coaching candidates among assistants at the end of the 2014 season, and the Jets and Falcons each had interest in both coaches. Bowles had been scheduled for a second interview in Atlanta following his second meeting with the Jets, but New York came away so impressed that the team decided not to wait on Quinn, hiring Bowles instead.
The Dolphins confirmed today that safety Louis Delmas has torn his ACL for the second time in nine months, and the injury leaves the team scrambling to find a new starter at free safety. While it’s possible that Miami will promote an in-house option to the starting lineup, Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald (Twitter link) hears that the team will “definitely” look around the league for a possible upgrade, either via trade or a waiver claim later in the preseason.
Despite the fact that Eric Weddle ‘s agent David Canter promoted the idea of a trade that would send his client to the Dolphins, Canter himself acknowledged that such a deal won’t happen, and Miami is unlikely to make a major splash to add a safety. Still, as Salguero suggests, the team is in win-now mode, so if the Dolphins’ backups can’t get the job done, it’s imperative that the club finds someone who can.
Here’s more from out of the NFL’s two East divisions:
- According to head coach Todd Bowles, the Jets considered waiting to sign a quarterback in order to see what other QBs might become available within the next few weeks. However, the club decided to sign Matt Flynn to give him a head start on getting comfortable with the team’s system, and because there was no guarantee he’d still be available in a couple weeks, as Brian Costello of the New York Post details.
- The only scenario in which Eli Manning and the Giants don’t eventually work out a new contract is if the team decides to rebuild around a younger, cheaper quarterback, but barring a major injury or a disastrous season, the team is much more likely to stay the course with Manning, says Dan Graziano of ESPN.com.
- Nearly seven weeks after the fireworks accident that cost him a finger on his right hand, Jason Pierre-Paul has yet to inform the Giants when he’ll report to the club and when he might return to action, writes Ebenezer Samuel of the New York Daily News.
Adam Jones will probably go down as one of those “what-if” history stories in sports and the Bengals cornerback is well aware of that. “If I would have never gotten suspended, I would have $100 million right now,” Jones said, according to Coley Harvey of ESPN.com. Still, Jones says that he tries not to live with regrets and that he hopes to make the most of the remainder of his career. Here’s more from around the NFL..
- Eric Weddle‘s agent David Canter confirmed (via Twitter links) that he would like to see the Chargers safety land with the Dolphins. However, he made it clear that he and Weddle “have never and will never ask for a trade from San Diego.” Teams typically don’t trade their best players, Canter notes, and he says that Bolts fans can rest assured that he won’t be going anywhere, at least in 2015.
- Agent Alvin Keels told ESPN.com’s Josina Anderson (on Twitter) that everything is status quo with his client, Seahawks safety Kam Chancellor. “Nothing has changed. He will not report without his contract being addressed this season. The team and I have been in contact, but we haven’t been able to agree on any compromise,” Keels said.
- Right now, there are no more settlement talks planned between the NFL and NFLPA until the August 31st court appearance, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets.
- Brandon Meriweather‘s deal with the Giants is a one-year pact worth $870K and no guaranteed cash, Adam Caplan of ESPN.com tweets.
- During practice Sunday, Raiders‘ WR Andre Holmes fractured his hand and now is expected to be out 3-4 weeks, sources tell ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter (on Twitter).
- New Jets quarterback Matt Flynn says that there’s no timetable on when he’ll recover from his hamstring issue and added that he is not guaranteed a roster spot with Gang Green, Rich Cimini of ESPN.com tweets.
- Guard-center Josh Samuda, former Dolphin and Viking, worked out today for the Chiefs, according to a source who spoke with Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle (on Twitter).
WEDNESDAY, 10:58am: The Jets have officially confirmed the signing of Flynn, announcing that they’ve waived wide receiver Arthur Williams to make room on the roster.
TUESDAY, 6:27pm: The Jets are going to sign Matt Flynn to a one-year contract, sources tell ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter (on Twitter). Flynn became a free agent earlier this month when the Pats released him and signed Ryan Lindley.
Due to injury, Flynn never took the field while in camp with the Patriots. The 30-year-old has spent most of his career with the Packers, parlaying a huge Week 17 game in 2011 into a three-year contract with the Seahawks in free agency. After never starting a game in Seattle, Flynn bounced around the league a little, joining the Bills and Raiders before returning to Green Bay. Now, he’ll look to stick with Gang Green.
The Jets, of course, are in need of QB reinforcements with Geno Smith recovering from jaw surgery. The Jets say they expect Smith to be sidelined for the first four games of the regular season. The Jets were also linked to quarterbacks like Rex Grossman and Tyler Thigpen, but it seems that they’ve settled on another veteran of note.
Over the course of his six year career, Flynn has appeared in 53 games and made seven starts.
12:40pm: Flynn visited the Jets today and took a physical, but didn’t work out for the team as he continues to deal with his hamstring issue, tweets Rich Cimini of ESPNNewYork.com.
8:41am: Following their preseason loss to the Lions on Thursday night, the Jets continue to consider free agent quarterbacks, according to Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News, who reports (via Twitter) that the team has expressed interest in Matt Flynn, among other veteran options. The Jets have discussed bringing in Flynn for a visit, but haven’t scheduled anything yet, tweets Mehta, though Ian Rapoport of NFL.com says (via Twitter) that the ex-Packer will work out for New York today.
Flynn, 30, signed with the Patriots in June, but didn’t see much time on the practice field before he was cut by New England. The veteran quarterback was placed on the non-football injury list last month before Pats veterans reported to training camp and never took the field, due to a hamstring injury.
Flynn has spent most of his career with the Packers, parlaying a huge Week 17 game in 2011 into a three-year contract with the Seahawks in free agency. After never starting a game in Seattle, the former seventh-round pick bounced around the league a little, joining the Bills and Raiders before returning to Green Bay. Now, he’s a candidate to sign with the Jets as veteran insurance following Geno Smith‘s jaw surgery.
Still, even if the Jets bring Flynn in for a workout, the team isn’t in a hurry to make a move, tweets Mehta. New York wants to make sure rookie Bryce Petty sees plenty of quality preseason reps, and Flynn is still rehabbing his hamstring injury. The Jets were also linked to Rex Grossman, who is rehabbing an injury of his own, which suggests that the club isn’t targeting immediate help.
If the Jets do want to work out Flynn today, it should be easy enough — as Mehta tweets, the free agent signal-caller has family in New York, and is in the area already.
9:55am: It’s a one-year deal for Lindley, Josina Anderson of ESPN.com tweets.
8:45am: The Patriots made a change at quarterback early Monday morning as they notified Matt Flynn of his release, according to Dianna Marie Russini of ESPN.com tweets. Taking his place as the No. 3 quarterback in New England will be Ryan Lindley, according to a source who spoke with ESPN.com’s Field Yates (on Twitter).
Flynn joined the Pats in June but he didn’t see much time on the practice field. The quarterback was placed on the non-football injury list last month before Patriots veterans reported to training camp and he never took the field before his release. The 30-year-old has spent most of his career with the Packers, parlaying a huge Week 17 game in 2011 into a three-year contract with the Seahawks in free agency. After never starting a game in Seattle, Flynn bounced around the league a little, joining the Bills and Raiders before returning to Green Bay. Now, he’ll look to join up with yet another team.
Lindley now joins Tom Brady and Jimmy Garoppolo on the Pats’ quarterback depth chart. Of course, with Brady currently facing a four-game suspension, the role of No. 3 QB in New England now carries extra importance. Lindley’s presence will also ensure that Brady won’t have to spend any unnecessary time on the field in Thursday’s preseason opener. Garoppolo, presumably, will take the bulk of the offensive snaps with Brady on the sideline for much of the game.