Mike Glennon

AFC West Notes: Chiefs, Raiders, Leary

Let’s take a quick look at the AFC West, beginning with the division’s three-time reigning champion on the eve of a rather important game.

  • The Chiefs‘ New England visits over the past two seasons have included monster stat lines from their running back corps. While the player responsible for most of that production (Kareem Hunt) is long gone, the Chiefs will also be without starter Damien Williams for Sunday’s Patriots game. Kansas City’s Hunt successor remains out due to a rib injury, set to miss a second straight game. The Chiefs placed Darrel Williams on IR earlier this week and will take a LeSean McCoySpencer WareDarwin Thompson contingent to Foxborough.
  • Set for perhaps a do-or-die game, regarding their playoff aspirations, the Raiders will do so without their largest player. Trent Brown will miss Sunday’s game against the Titans with a pectoral injury. Second-year player Brandon Parker will start at right tackle. A second-round pick, Parker made 12 starts as a rookie but was replaced when the Raiders doled out a record contract for Brown.
  • When Jon Gruden pulled Derek Carr during a blowout loss against the Jets, Mike Glennon took the snaps. Should Carr go down or be benched again this season, that would not be the case. The Raiders promoted DeShone Kizer to their backup spot, Scott Bair of NBC Sports Bay Area Notes. Kizer has been Oakland’s QB3 this season, inactive each game. He will suit up as a Raider for the first time, displacing Glennon in that role. The Raiders claimed Kizer, the Browns’ primary 2017 starter and a Packers backup last season, shortly after roster cutdown day.
  • Ronald Leary‘s 12 games this season represent his most with the Broncos, but Denver will have a new right guard Sunday. A concussion will sideline Leary and move Austin Schlottman into the starting lineup, per Mike Klis of 9News. A UDFA out of TCU, Schlottman spent last season on Denver’s practice squad and has played 10 NFL snaps. Leary will exit Week 14 having missed 16 games during his three-year Broncos tenure and looms as a cap-casualty candidate next year. The Broncos can save nearly $9MM by cutting the soon-to-be 31-year-old blocker, who has one season remaining on his contract.

Contract Details: RG3, Glennon, McCarron

Some assorted contract notes from around the NFL…

Raiders Sign Mike Glennon

The Raiders have signed quarterback Mike Glennon, per a club announcement. Terms of the deal are not yet known, but Glennon now appears primed to serve as the backup to starter Derek Carr

There has been a lot of talk about the Raiders targeting a top quarterback in the draft, but they now have a pretty full room with Derek Carr, Glennon, and Nathan Peterman on the depth chart. Now, perhaps, the Raiders will shift their attention to Day 3 QBs.

Glennon, entering his seventh year in the league, was originally a third-round selection of the Bucs in 2013. After signing a lucrative, yet ill-fated, free agent deal with the Bears in 2017, he hooked on with the Cardinals in 2018. For his career, Glennon owns a 6-16 record as a starter and was not a first-stringer for any of his appearances last year. Still, coaches have always had a soft spot for the 29-year-old, in part due to his 6’6″ frame.

So, for now, Glennon is set to be the No. 2 QB in Oakland. Of course, much can change between now and September, and some remain unconvinced that Carr will be the team’s starter in Week 1.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Cardinals Cut Antoine Bethea, Mike Glennon

The Cardinals will part with two players Friday, releasing Mike Glennon and Antoine Bethea, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets.

Glennon’s Arizona stay lasted one year; Bethea was a Cardinal for two seasons but will not have the chance to play for a third Cardinals regime. The veteran safety signed a three-year deal with the then-Bruce Arians-led Cards and stuck around for Steve Wilks‘ lone season. Kliff Kingsbury‘s team will go in a different direction.

These transactions will create nearly $6MM in cap space for the Cards, ballooning their figure north of $43MM.

This represents the second straight offseason the once-coveted Mike Glennon has been released. The Bears cut him after a one-season stay, and that led to him joining the Cards. Glennon played in two games last season, working behind Sam Bradford and then Josh Rosen, but only threw 21 passes. The former third-round pick is now back on the backup-QB market.

Linked to a possible Rosen trade, in advance of a Kyler Murray draft pick, the Cards have one less quarterback on their roster.

Bethea’s career has now lasted 13 years. He will be 35 by the time training camps begin. Despite his age, Bethea was a full-time Cards starter in 2018. After starting for the 2006 Super Bowl champion Colts as a rookie, the former sixth-round pick has played for three teams — a three-year stint with the 49ers coming in between Indianapolis and Arizona stays — and made three Pro Bowls, the most recent one coming in 2014 with San Francisco. But with so many safeties available this year, it is fair to wonder if Bethea has played his final game.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFC Notes: Thomas, Bradford, Eagles, Reid

The Seahawks have indeed fined safety Earl Thomas, who missed practice for non-injury reasons for the second consecutive week. Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets that the Seahawks — who were considering imposing a substantial fine on Thomas last Sunday — fined the star defender for missing practice and for “other things.” Rapoport adds that “communication should increase going forward,” but it is presently unclear as to whether he is referring to communication between Thomas and Seattle or between Seattle and other clubs who may want to trade for Thomas. We heard earlier today that the Steelers were interested in Thomas, but there has been no communication between Seattle and Pittsburgh at this point.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter adds that the Seahawks are still asking for a second-round pick for Thomas, and that the Chiefs remain interested (though Kansas City does not want to give up a second-rounder). The Cowboys, of course, offered a second-round pick to Seattle earlier this year, but the Seahawks wanted more from Dallas at the time since the two teams were set to play each other last week. Now that the Cowboys-Seahawks matchup has taken place, perhaps the Seahawks will be more willing to consider the Cowboys’ offer, but Rapoport indicates (video link) that the Seahawks want two second round picks in exchange for Thomas, which seems like an especially lofty asking price.

Now for more from the NFC:

  • Sam Bradford is now the Cardinals‘ No. 3 quarterback, per Schefter, who says that going forward, rookie Josh Rosen will be the starter and will be backed up by Mike Glennon (Twitter link). That means that Bradford will generally be inactive on game days and will miss out on his active roster bonuses of $312,500 per game, a situation we explored in more detail last week.
  • Another tough blow for Rams outside linebacker Dominique Easley. Per the team’s official website, Easley, who has suffered three torn ACLs since 2011, may be heading for his fourth surgery in the last seven years. Head coach Sean McVay said that Easley, who converted to outside linebacker during training camp, is suffering complications from his previous injuries.
  • Prior to signing him a few days ago, the Panthers did not ask new safety Eric Reid about his anthem protests or his collusion case against the league, per Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports. GM Marty Hurney said team ownership was not involved in the signing, and that it was a purely football move.
  • Eagles WR Alshon Jeffery will make his 2018 debut today, per ESPN’s Chris Mortensen (via Twitter). Rapoport (video link) reports that Jeffery’s status for this week was up in the air because of a virus that made him seriously ill, but that his shoulder is good to go.
  • As Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer observes, the Eagles have four prominent starters playing out the final year of their respective contracts: Jordan Hicks, Ronald Darby, Jay Ajayi, and Brandon Graham. Even if the Eagles wait until after the 2019 season to give quarterback Carson Wentz what will surely be a massive extension, Philadelphia has to plan for that contract now, which means the club will have some difficult decisions to make with respect to its impending free agents. McLane posits that Hicks is the most likely of the above-named players to be retained, and he examines the futures of all four players in detail.
  • Jane Slater of the NFL Network reports that Cowboys WR Terrance Williams will be inactive today, and that the recently re-signed Brice Butler will be leaned upon more heavily as a result (Twitter link). Williams, the most expensive receiver on Dallas’ roster, may be facing a suspension stemming from his May arrest and recently missed practice, though that absence was reportedly an excused one and was unrelated to the possible suspension. Williams, though, has just two catches for 18 yards this season, and the team wants to give someone else a shot.

Cardinals Won’t Trade QB Mike Glennon

Cardinals are going with three quarterbacks to begin 2018, which means that Mike Glennon will stay with the team, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. Glennon and rookie Josh Rosen will serve as the backups behind Week 1 starter Sam Bradford.

Glennon staying in Arizona means there’s one potential backup QB off of the trade market, which may raise the asking price for other quality understudies around the league. Between now and Saturday afternoon, teams will wrestle with the decision to keep two or three quarterbacks on the roster. Meanwhile, there are plenty of teams with doubts about their present No. 2 QB. Some of the players to keep an eye on include Tom Savage (Saints), Joshua Dobbs (Steelers), and maybe even A.J. McCarron (Bills).

The Bills inked McCarron to a two-year, $8.1MM deal this offseason, but rookie Josh Allen may be their Week 1 starter. McCarron’s only relevant NFL work came as a replacement to an injured Andy Dalton during the 2015 campaign, but he has long been regarded as one of the best backup types in the league. In eleven career games (three starts), the soon-to-be 28-year-old has completed 64.7% of his passes for 920 yards, six touchdowns, and two interceptions. He also started the Bengals’ 2015 playoff loss to the Steelers, throwing a touchdown and a pick.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Glennon, Other QBs Drawing Trade Interest

On Wednesday morning, the Packers traded Brett Hundley to the Seahawks. That deal is unlikely to be the last trade involving a backup quarterback, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter). Mike Glennon of the Cardinals, Tom Savage of the Saints, and Joshua Dobbs are the Steelers are among the QBs being discussed by teams of need, Rapoport hears. 

The Cardinals signed both Sam Bradford and Glennon in March, but the QB room changed dramatically in April when they drafted UCLA star Josh Rosen. Rosen may not be ready for primetime, but the Cardinals may feel that he is ready to be a capable No. 2 QB. Glennon flamed out in his one month as the Bears’ starter last year, but he would represent a QB2 upgrade for many teams around the league.

Savage has been long rumored to be on the bubble, but he is now firmly on the trade block following the Saints’ acquisition of Teddy Bridgewater. The Saints project to move ahead with Bridgewater and Taysom Hill as the backups to Drew Brees, leaving Savage without a spot in New Orleans. Savage, a former fourth-round pick out of Pittsburgh, entered the 2017 season as Houston’s starter, but he lost the job to rookie Deshaun Watson rather quickly. He finished the year with 1,412 yards and five touchdowns against six interceptions.

The writing has been on the wall for Dobbs ever since the Steelers used a third-round pick on Mason Rudolph in this year’s draft. Landry Jones is locked in as the backup quarterback and Rudolph is locked in as the No. 3, so Dobbs is clearly on the block.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Cardinals’ Starting QB Job ‘Sam Bradford’s To Lose’

Despite Sam Bradford having not participated in as much of the Cardinals’ offseason program, Steve Wilks has determined the injury-prone veteran is his starter, barring something unexpected. The first-year coach said the Cards’ QB1 job is Bradford’s to lose, per Kyle Odegard of AZCardinals.com, then indicating Josh Rosen and Mike Glennon will compete for the backup position.

The Cardinals brought the ninth-year quarterback along slowly this offseason. Bradford has not played extensively since the 2016 season. He started twice for the 2017 Vikings but made it through just one game healthy.

This is the time where he needs to step it up,” Wilks said of Bradford’s return to action. “He understands and knows that. We’ve got to proceed forward with our timing. He’s ready.”

During Arizona’s offseason program, Wilks labeled this an open competition with the caveat Bradford was signed to start this season. He’s not wavering from that stance at this point. Bradford is expected to practice fully during camp. Wilks said he feels “great” about where Bradford’s at in his return from his latest bout of significant knee trouble.

I didn’t play a ton of football last year, so being able to get back in the flow of things, get back in rhythm and play again, and see how my knee reacts, see how my mind reacts out there on the field in practice,” Bradford said. “I think it’s important in these next couple of weeks to re-establish that rhythm.”

Contract Details: Jordy, Glennon, Incognito

Let’s take a look at the most recent new contracts and restructures around the NFL:

New Contracts

  • Jordy Nelson, WR (Raiders): Two years, $14.2MM. $13MM guaranteed (Twitter link via Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com).
  • Mike Glennon, QB (Cardinals): Two-year, $8MM deal contains void years in 2020 and 2021. $4MM signing bonus (Twitter link via Josh Weinfuss of ESPN.com).
  • Spencer Long, C (Jets): Four years, $27.5MM. $6MM guaranteed (link via Jason Fitzgerald of Over the Cap).
  • Jaron Brown, WR (Seahawks): Two years, $5.5MM. $2.75MM guaranteed. $1.95MM signing bonus. $750K available annually via receptions, yards, and touchdowns incentives (Twitter link via Brady Henderson of ESPN.com).
  • Christian Jones, LB (Lions): Two years, $6.35MM. $2.8MM guaranteed. $1.75MM signing bonus (Twitter link via Michael Rothstein of ESPN.com).
  • Kyle Wilber, LB (Raiders): Two years, $2.75MM. $1.4MM guaranteed (Twitter link via Adam Caplan of SiriusXM).
  • Billy Turner, OL (Broncos): One year, $2MM. $750K guaranteed. $500K signing bonus (Twitter link via Mike Klis of 9News).

Restructures

  • Richie Incognito, G (Bills): 2018 base salary reduced from $6.325MM to $3.65MM. Earned $1MM bonus. Bills created $1.675MM in cap space (Twitter link via Yates).
  • John Jerry, G (Giants): 2019 contract season eliminated. 2018 base salary reduced from $3.05MM to $1.075MM, $525K of which is guaranteed. $400K roster bonus added and paid on 3/21. Per-game roster bonuses increased from $250K to $500K (all Twitter links via Dan Duggan of NJ.com). Giants created $525K in cap space.

Cardinals Sign Mike Glennon

The Cardinals have signed Mike Glennon, according to NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport (via Twitter). Peter Schrager of NFL.com (on Twitter) had first reported that the organization was going to sign the quarterback. The deal is worth $8MM over two years.

[RELATED: Cardinals Sign Sam Bradford]

Glennon now projects to be the No. 2 quarterback on the Cardinals’ depth chart, behind the newly-signed Sam Bradford. Bradford played in just two games for the Vikings last season, so the Cardinals placed considerable value on their backup QB spot. Glennon flamed out in his one month as the Bears’ starter last year, but he was still among the best available QB2 types in this year’s market.

Last year, Glennon inked a three-year, $45MM free agent contract with the Bears after receiving interest from multiple teams. This year, the Cardinals were the only team linked to the 6’7″ signal caller.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.