Michael Brockers

Lions, Michael Brockers Agree To New Deal

Michael Brockers agreed to two contracts in free agency last year, coming to terms with both the Ravens and Rams. The veteran defensive lineman now has another new deal, this time with the Lions.

After acquiring Brockers for just a seventh-round pick, the Lions agreed to a new contract with the nine-year vet. Brockers is now attached to a three-year, $24MM contract with the Lions, Mike Garafolo of NFL.com tweets.

This deal will benefit Brockers in guarantees. After no guarantees remained on his latest Rams extension — also a three-year, $24MM pact — the Lions have included $11MM in guarantees for their newly acquired interior defender. This should move Brockers from being signed through 2022 to being under Lions control through 2023.

After Brockers’ Ravens three-year, $30MM Ravens agreement fell through, the Rams swooped in and re-signed him last March. Aaron Donald‘s longtime D-line sidekick registered five sacks and matched his career high with 10 QB hits in 2020.

Brockers joins Jared Goff in heading from Los Angeles to Detroit, with new GM Brad Holmes bringing in some familiar players to start a rebuild in Detroit. Brockers, 30, has been an ultra-reliable player over the course of his career. He has missed just six games in nine seasons, and one of those came because he landed on the Rams’ reserve/COVID-19 list late last season.

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Rams Trade Michael Brockers To Lions For Seventh-Round Pick

Early Wednesday, the Lions acquired defensive lineman Michael Brockers from the Rams. The cost? A 2023 seventh-round pick, according to NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport (on Twitter). 

Lions GM Brad Holmes kicked off his new responsibilities by shipping Matthew Stafford to Los Angeles in a blockbuster trade. This week, he went back to the Rams’ well for Brockers, a 2012 first-round pick who was a bit too pricey for L.A., even though he’s been productive. Last year, Brockers notched five sacks and 51 total stops in 15 games (all stars).

The Rams re-upped Brockers last year on a three-year, $24MM deal after his would-be Ravens agreement fell through. Brockers was a good bet to get cut, saving $6.17MM against the cap with $3.67MM in dead money. Instead, they got something in exchange for him — even if it’s not all that much.

Brockers will join Trey Flowers and newly re-signed edge rusher Romeo Okwara in the Lions’ front seven. Meanwhile, last year’s top nose tackle Danny Shelton is out of the picture following his release.

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Minor NFL Transactions: 1/8/21

We’ll keep track of today’s minor moves right here:

Buffalo Bills

Cleveland Browns

Denver Broncos

Indianapolis Colts

Los Angeles Rams

New Orleans Saints

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Washington Football Team

Andrew Whitworth, Cooper Kupp, Michael Brockers Expected Back This Week

The Rams do not yet know who their starting quarterback will be in their Saturday wild-card game, but they are expecting a few critical reinforcements.

Out since mid-November, Andrew Whitworth remains on Los Angeles’ IR-DTR list. But the Rams expect their left tackle to return against the Seahawks, Sean McVay said Tuesday (via The Athletic’s Jourdan Rodrigue, on Twitter). McVay also anticipates Cooper Kupp and Michael Brockers, who landed on the team’s reserve/COVID-19 list last week, to return to practice Wednesday, Lindsey Thiry of ESPN.com tweets.

Whitworth missed the past seven games, having suffered MCL and PCL tears during the Rams’ first Seahawks meeting. The 39-year-old blocker returned to practice last week and has long been reported to have progressed quicker than expected. A return for Rams-Seahawks III would certainly boost the visitors’ chances.

Kupp and Brockers were not confirmed to have tested positive for the coronavirus, ut the Rams placed the longtime starters on the COVID list last week. Each missed the team’s regular-season finale. Had they contracted the virus, neither would be eligible to return to practice Wednesday.

Jared Goff has resumed throwing, per McVay, but the Rams have not yet determined whether he or backup John Wolford will start in Round 1. Despite having never thrown an NFL pass, Wolford accounted for nearly 300 yards in the Rams’ win over the Cardinals last week. Goff, who is recovering from thumb surgery, had never previously missed a start due to injury.

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Rams Place Michael Brockers On Reserve/COVID-19 List

The Rams continue to run into obstacles in the leadup to their Week 17 game against the Cardinals. While most of them have been on offense, Los Angeles’ defense may be set to be without a key player.

Michael Brockers now resides on the Rams’ reserve/COVID-19 list. It is not yet known if the veteran defensive lineman tested positive or is classified as one of the two types of close contacts. This classification will determine if Brockers is eligible to suit up Sunday in a game that may determine if the Rams make the playoffs.

This move comes after the Rams ruled out Jared Goff for Week 17, placed Darrell Henderson on IR and placed Cooper Kupp on the COVID list. Cam Akers did not practice Wednesday and, considering he is dealing with a high ankle sprain, must be considered iffy at best for Sunday’s game. The Rams moved Micah Kiser off IR this week but did so in a procedural move. The inside linebacker is not expected to play. Although Andrew Whitworth returned to practice, it is not certain if the longtime left tackle will be back this week either.

Aaron Donald‘s longtime sidekick up front, Brockers opted to return to the Rams after his Ravens agreement fell through. He has again delivered, registering five sacks — a half-sack shy of his career high — and a career-most 10 QB hits. The 30-year-old defender has been a key player for the Rams since being selected in the 2012 first round and has obviously been central to the team’s defensive resurgence this season.

The Rams can make the playoffs with a win over the Cardinals or a Bears loss to the Packers. Given their expanding list of unavailable or potentially unavailable players, the latter route is becoming increasingly more relevant.

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Michael Brockers Re-Signs With Rams; Ravens Deal Nixed

APRIL 4, 3:03pm: Brockers’ deal with the Rams is now official. This marks his third contract with the team that drafted him.

MARCH 27, 1:48pm: Brockers’ three-year deal carries a base value of $24MM and could be worth up to $31.5MM via incentives, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. A good chunk of the incentive package – $4.5MM – is based on realistic playing time milestones that he should bank, so long as he stays healthy. Brockers, as Rapoport notes, has not missed a game in the last three years.

MARCH 27, 9:24am: Michael Brockers isn’t going to the Ravens after all. On Friday, the Ravens announced that the deal is off. Then, Brockers did a U-Turn – he’ll return to the Rams on a three-year deal worth up to $31.5MM, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets

It’s a similar deal to his would-be Ravens contract, which was reported to be worth $30MM over the course of three years. However, it’s worth noting that the Ravens were set to give him $21MM fully guaranteed and the locked-in dollar amount of Brockers’ new Rams deal is not yet known.

Brockers was set to join forces with newcomer Calais Campbell and incumbent interior force Brandon Williams in Baltimore. Then, earlier this week, the Ravens got skittish about his medical situation. Unable to examine him with their own team doctors due to the coronavirus epidemic, they had Brockers examined by an outside doctor. The exam raised potential issues with Brockers’ ankle, the same one he injured late last year.

Even though he doesn’t have gaudy sack totals, Brockers has been a solid defender against the run for L.A. For the Rams, it’s a significant item crossed off their to-do list. The Ravens, meanwhile, are in a bit of a tough spot. Before deciding on Brockers, the Ravens were in the mix for Ndamukong Suh and other notable D-Lineman, but Suh and most of this year’s impact free agents are already spoken for.

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Ravens Concerned About Michael Brockers’ Medicals

The Ravens made a couple of major additions to their defensive front this month, trading for Calais Campbell and agreeing to a three-year contract with free agent Michael Brockers. But according to Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic, Baltimore has some concerns about Brockers’ medicals.

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, teams cannot have free agents examined by their own doctors. Instead, physicals must be conducted by independent doctors in the player’s geographic area. As Zrebiec tweets, the independent evaluation turned up potential issues with Brockers’ ankle, which he injured late last season.

Baltimore is still expected to sign Brockers, but the club is considering its options (one of which, presumably, is backing out of the deal altogether). Zrebiec says the team — which has formally announced all of its other acquisitions — was also interested in Ndamukong Suh, but Suh re-signed with the Buccaneers earlier today (Twitter links).

Brockers is not the type of elite pass rusher the Ravens may have been hoping for when free agency opened, but he is capable of getting to the QB, and his versatility and run-stopping ability would serve as an excellent complement to Campbell and Brandon Williams. His presence would also help to free things up for edge rushers Matt Judon and Jaylon Ferguson, so Baltimore clearly wants to get him in the fold.

The free agent market has been mostly picked over at this point, and the Ravens recently traded Chris Wormley and saw Michael Pierce sign with the Vikings, so if the Brockers deal falls through, Baltimore may turn its attention to the draft for DL reinforcements.

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Ravens To Sign Michael Brockers

The Ravens are bolstering their defensive front. Baltimore is signing free agent defensive lineman Michael Brockers, his agent told Mike Garafolo of NFL Network (Twitter link).

It’s a big deal for Brockers, as Ian Rapoport of NFL Network tweets that he’ll be getting $30MM over three years. $21MM of it is fully guaranteed, Garafolo noted in a follow-up tweet. The Ravens will now have one of the most imposing defensive lines in the league, as they just landed Calais Campbell in a trade with the Jaguars on Sunday. They’ve already got Brandon Williams on the interior, so this is a unit that’s going to be hard to block in 2020.

The Rams drafted Brockers in the first-round all the way back in 2012, and he’s been with them his entire career until now. He’s been very sturdy and reliable, starting all 16 games in six of his eight seasons. In the other two, he appeared in at least 13 games. He’s never quite been an elite player, but he’s always been solid.

This past season playing next to Aaron Donald he had 63 tackles and three sacks. The Rams are stretched pretty thin financially, so it would’ve been very hard for them to match an offer like this. The Ravens were one of the league’s breakout teams last season, and they’ve been very bold this offseason after their disappointing divisional round exit in the playoffs. They also added a second-round pick by shipping out tight end Hayden Hurst earlier today.

 

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Extra Points: Cowboys, Rams, Brockers, Lions, Dunlap

After much speculation, Cowboys defender Byron Jones confirmed on Monday that he will be switching from safety to cornerback in 2018, the Dallas Morning News’ Jon Machota writes.

Viewed as a versatile defender coming out of college, Jones played cornerback as a rookie in 2015 and a safety the past two seasons. New defensive backs coach Kris Richard preferred him at the former.

“I think it will be a good move for me and the team. I’m always open to making position changes, as long as I’m in the best position to succeed. If [Richard] believes my best position is corner, then I’m down.”

Richard knows a thing or two about getting the best from bigger cornerbacks. With the Seahawks, Richard oversaw Richard Sherman’s ascent to one of the premier corners in the league. What remains to be seen is if the team prefers him on the boundary or in the slot. In 2017, rookies Chidobe Awuzie and Jourdan Lewis showed plenty of promise on the outside.

Here’s more from around the NFL:

  • In a press conference on Monday, Rams defensive lineman Michael Brockers told reporters he tore his MCL in the team’s playoff loss to the Falcons in January, ESPN’s Alden Gonzalez tweets. During that game, the sixth-year defender sat out the second half. The good news for Los Angeles is that Brockers took part in team activities on Monday, but they’re not in pads until training camp.
  • If any Lions players are moved in draft-day deals, some of the names that make sense include Ameer Abdullah, Theo Riddick and Jake Rudock, ESPN’s Michael Rothstein writes. Those names all come to mind after the team added veterans in LeGarrette Blount and Matt Cassel in the offseason.
  • The goal is for the Bengals to sign both Carlos Dunlap and get a new deal with Geno AtkinsBengals.com writer Geoff Hobson notes in a mailbag. Both Dunlap’s and Atkins’ deals run through the 2018 campaign.
  • NFL commissioner Roger Goodell is expected to be deposed in the next two weeks in Colin Kaeperncik‘s collusion case against the league, USA Today’s A.J. Perez writes. Seahawks general manager John Schneider and head coach Pete Carroll are also on the docket to be deposed.

Rams, Michael Brockers Agree To Extension

The Rams and defensive tackle Michael Brockers have agreed to a contract extension, according to Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch (on Twitter). Prior to this deal, Brockers was scheduled to earn a salary of $6.146MM (per the terms of his fifth-year option) before potentially hitting the open market after the season. Brockers’ extension is for three years and will take him through 2019, Josina Anderson of ESPN.com tweets.Michael Brockers (vertical)

[RELATED – Offseason In Review: Los Angeles Rams]

Brockers, 25, has been a starter for the Rams ever since he was selected with the No. 14 overall pick in the 2012 draft. For his career, Brockers has racked up 155 tackles and 14.5 sacks. Last year, the defensive tackle logged 3.0 sacks and 44 tackles.

This offseason, the Rams were unwilling to shell out big bucks to retain top cornerback Janoris Jenkins. With other pending free agents to take care of, it wasn’t clear whether Los Angeles would offer the necessary money to lock down Brockers. However, the Rams managed to get a deal done and they’ll now hold on to one of the most important pieces of their fearsome defensive line. Along with fellow interior lineman Aaron Donald and bookends William Hayes and Robert Quinn, Brockers helps to form one of the most talented defensive line units in the league.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.