Jets Rumors

Extra Points: 49ers, Hurts, Gase

The 49ers picked up a huge win over the Rams on Sunday, but they were dealt an unexpected blow earlier this week when Santa Clara County officials suddenly announced they wouldn’t be allowed to practice or play in their stadium moving forward. That’s left the 49ers reeling, with little time to formulate a backup plan. Speaking after the game, head coach Kyle Shanahan said it was “extremely disappointing” that the team wasn’t given any advanced notice, and said “we’re working our tail off” to find new accommodations. As of right now the “most likely” option is for the 49ers to play their remaining home games at the Cardinals’ stadium, sources told Ian Rapoport of NFL.com.

Their division rivals are apparently willing to lend a helping hand to the 49ers. Rapoport also writes that a stadium in Texas is another option, although the NFL would prefer them to play at an NFL arena. The question would then turn into what the team will do for a living situation. Rapoport writes that it’s possible the team just stays in Arizona and lives out of hotels in the area, forming a bubble of sorts. It’s a tough situation that will put 5-6 San Fran at a competitive disadvantage for the rest of the year. We’ll update whenever a plan is officially ironed out.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • Eagles fans that have been clamoring for more Jalen Hurts are about to get their wish. Philly is expected to give Hurts his most extensive playing time of the season, including plays where Carson Wentz isn’t on the field, for their Monday night game against the Seahawks, Rapoport writes. Rapsheet says it’s unlikely he’ll get a full series, but to expect to see him for two or three plays at a time. Philly inflicted this quarterback controversy upon themselves by drafting Hurts in the second-round back in April. Wentz, of course, has been mostly awful this season. He’s still owed over $50MM in guaranteed money over the next two seasons, but it sounds like things could finally be trending toward a benching if he doesn’t get things turned around soon. Either way, it’ll be very interesting to see how Hurts looks on MNF.
  •  The Jets continued their march toward a potential winless season with a defeat at the hands of the Dolphins. 0-11 aside, there’s now a minor controversy over who is calling the plays in New York. Before the game, Chris Mortensen of ESPN.com tweeted that Adam Gase would re-take play calling duties from offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains. But after the game, Gase insisted he wasn’t calling the plays. Reporters pressed Gase on it, claiming Loggains looked like he was doing nothing on the sidelines and that Gase was the one talking. Gase then claimed Loggains would talk to him before the drive about what plays to call, then conceded he was calling the plays for third downs and two-minute drills. Sam Darnold said after the game that it was Gase’s voice in his helmet telling him the plays. It’s another bizarre situation, but one that is pretty much par for the course for this 2020 Jets campaign.

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/28/20

Here are Saturday’s minor moves:

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

Green Bay Packers

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

Los Angeles Chargers

Miami Dolphins

  • Promoted: QB Reid Sinnett

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

New York Jets

Philadelphia Eagles

  • Placed on IR: G Sua Opeta

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

NFL Practice Squad Updates: 11/24/20

We’ll keep track of today’s practice squad moves here:

Arizona Cardinals

Carolina Panthers

Houston Texans

  • Signed: C Cohl Cabral
  • Released: DE Kendal Futrell

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

New York Giants

New York Jets

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

  • Signed LB/LS Christian Kuntz

San Francisco 49ers

Tennessee Titans

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/24/20

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

Arizona Cardinals

Baltimore Ravens

Buffalo Bills

Chicago Bears

Cleveland Browns

Denver Broncos

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

Los Angeles Rams

New Orleans Saints

New York Jets

Pittsburgh Steelers

  • Activated from reserve/COVID-19 list: TE Vance McDonald
  • Promoted: TE Kevin Rader

Tennessee Titans

The Jets’ addition of Adams makes a lot of sense after rookie running back La’Mical Perine suffered a high ankle sprain that is expected to sideline him for at least a couple games. A 2018 UDFA out of Notre Dame, Adams played a significant role with the Eagles as a rookie, when he started five of 14 games and carries the ball 120 times for 511 yards and three touchdowns. Despite the reasonably productive first season, he was waived at final cuts last year.

Jets Place K Sam Ficken, RB La’Mical Perine On IR

The Jets are sending a couple of important players to injured reserve, they announced Tuesday. Kicker Sam Ficken and running back La’Mical Perine will both be hitting the shelf for at least the next three games.

Ficken opened the year as the team’s kicker but got hurt during Week 6 and missed the next handful of games. He just returned this past week but seems to have rushed himself back, as he missed two of his four extra point attempts against the Chargers and apparently re-aggravated his groin injury. Sergio Castillo, who filled in recently, will now take over the kicking duties once again. Ficken is a Penn State product who spent parts of 2017-18 with the Rams before landing the Jets’ job last season.

Perine is a promising rookie who many Jets fans were hoping would blossom into the running back of the future after the Le’Veon Bell saga. He suffered a high ankle sprain against Los Angeles that will knock him out, but hopefully the fourth-rounder from Florida will be able to return for the last couple games to make his case.

For now ageless wonder Frank Gore will take on an even more prominent role, and the team already signed former Eagles running back Josh Adams off the practice squad to replace Perine. They also announced they were signing tight end Ross Travis off the practice squad to take Ficken’s place.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Some In Jets Building Believe Team Actively Tanking

Another week, more drama with the Jets. While tanking is often talked about in the NFL in terms of roster construction and letting young guys play, it’s very rare for a team to be accused of actively trying to lose games. But that’s exactly what’s happening in New York, Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News writes. The latest dustup surrounds starting cornerback Bless Austin, and a neck injury that just landed him on injured reserve. Head coach Adam Gase had previously expressed optimism that Austin would play this past Sunday, then suddenly pivoted and said the team’s doctors told him Austin didn’t feel good.

Mehta writes that Jets employees “vehemently disagreed with the head coach’s characterization of the situation.” He reports that Austin told teammates the neck issue would only require a couple of days of rest, and that the medical staff shared that opinion. After that, “people at all levels of the organization have started to wonder whether Jets brass actually care about winning any of their remaining games.” Mehta says some within the building have concluded “the powers that be want to tank for Trevor Lawrence.” The Jets just cut starting cornerback Pierre Desir and placed fellow corner Brian Poole on injured reserve, making Austin’s absence all the more significant in their now extremely young secondary. It’s not unusual for a team to strip down its roster of veterans, but it would be unusual for a team to purposely sideline a healthy player in order to field a less competitive product. This will be an interesting situation to keep an eye on as the season winds down.

AFC East Notes: Patriots, Newton, Jets

Midway through an up-and-down year with the Patriots, does Cam Newton want to return in 2021? The quarterback claims that he hasn’t given it much thought.

Man, I have interest in winning the Arizona Cardinals game. How about that?” Newton told WEEI (via NBC Sports). “There are so many things that — I don’t want to even harp, dwell, or even think – as the Bible says, my cup runneth over. Just trying to focus on the near future rather than the far future.”

Newton has led the Pats to wins over the Dolphins, Raiders, and Ravens this year, but he also has seven interceptions across nine games. All in all, he’s 4-5 as the Patriots’ starter. The Patriots haven’t missed the playoffs since 2008, and they’ll be in rough shape if Newton can’t deliver against the Cardinals this weekend.

Here’s more from the AFC East:

  • The Patriots had Stephon Gilmore back on the field against the Texans. The reason for his three-game absence? Gilmore says his knee injury occurred was caused by a collision in practice (via ESPN.com’s Mike Reiss). Fortunately, it looks like he’s healed up significantly, though his presence wasn’t enough for the Pats to win on Sunday.
  • The Jets are expected to do some defensive demolition this offseason, according to ESPN.com’s Rich Cimini. In fact, GM Joe Douglas could wind up with seven new starters — safeties Marcus Maye and Bradley McDougald; cornerbacks Pierre Desir and Brian Poole; and linebackers Tarell Basham, Jordan Jenkins, and Neville Hewitt are all ticketed for free agency. Maye is the best of the bunch, but the Jets have flirted with trading him in the past. Defensive lineman Henry Anderson is also on the chopping block, thanks to his $9.5MM cap figure for 2021.
  • Douglas will be in charge of the roster, but it’s not clear whether owner Woody Johnson or CEO Christopher Johnson will be running the show. As Cimini notes, Woody may be free to return from his ambassador role in January.
  • The Dolphins benched Tua Tagovailoa against the Broncos, but the star rookie will continue to start ahead of Ryan Fitzpatrick.

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/21/20

Here is Saturday’s usual flood of minor moves:

Atlanta Falcons

Carolina Panthers

Cleveland Browns

Dallas Cowboys

Denver Broncos

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Jacksonville Jaguars

Indianapolis Colts

Kansas City Chiefs

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Rams

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Jets

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

Washington Football Team

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/20/20

Here are Friday’s minor moves:

Baltimore Ravens

Chicago Bears

  • Activated from reserve/COVID-19 list: OL Lachavious Simmons

Indianapolis Colts

Las Vegas Raiders

New York Jets

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

  • Placed on reserve/COVID-19 list: RB T.J. Logan; Logan remains on IR

Jets’ Adam Gase: No Talk About Tanking

The Jets are doing a tremendous job of losing their way to the No. 1 overall pick, where they could select Clemson star Trevor Lawrence. And, they’re not even trying to tank, according to head coach Adam Gase

[RELATED: Latest On Jets’ Sam Darnold]

“That’s something that — nobody’s talked about that,” Gase said (via Brian Costello of the New York Post). “We can’t worry about what anybody else thinks. We know we’re trying to get guys better that are here and we’re trying to figure out ways to win games.”

So far, the Jets are 0-9, and they’re without four of the key vets they started with. Running back Le’Veon Bell, defensive lineman Steve McLendon, linebacker Avery Williamson, and cornerback Pierre Desir have all been dropped, leaving Gase with an inexperienced group that can’t seem to stay competitive.

Some of these guys that are really young, they’re fun to coach because these guys, they’re all ears, they’re trying to do everything possible to put themselves and the team in the best position possible,” Gase said. “Last year was a good example of having success with some of these guys that a lot of people didn’t think were very good, and we were able to win some games because of it. We’ve just got to keep getting these guys better and find a way to win it at the end of game. When we get to the fourth quarter and it’s a close game, let’s go win one of these things.”

The Jets, coming off of their bye, will try to win one of these things against the Chargers this weekend. Not only will they be without Desir, they’ll also be without fellow starting cornerback Brian Poole, who was placed on injured reserve this week.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.