Pierre Desir

AFC Notes: Colts, Browns, Jets, Ravens

Pierre Desir was having a breakout season for the Colts through nine games last year. The former fourth-rounder had already established a career-high in passes defended with seven, and he also compiled 32 tackles and one interception.

However, after forcing his way into the starting lineup, the 27-year-old suffered a season-ending pectoral injury in Week 13. Despite the injury, the organization still brought Desir back on a one-year deal, with the team expecting him to be ready for training camp. The cornerback is also confident he’ll be back, and he believes he can continue to build off his productive 2017 season.

“I think I’m going to be able to use my size and my length to my ability,” Desir told Jake Arthur of Colts.com. “It’s going to allow me to mess up the timing of the receivers, because the front seven — they are going to get some pressure. So that’s going to allow me to create opportunities to make some plays, so I think I fit well.

“I look at this year being a big year for me. Last year, the season didn’t end the way I wanted it to. I feel like I have a lot of upside, a lot of good football to play, and I’m definitely excited and looking forward to playing in this scheme and playing for these coaches.”

Let’s take a look at some more notes from around the AFC…
  • Nate Ulrich of Ohio.com takes a look at some of the most intriguing position battles for the Browns offense as they head into training camp. With Joe Thomas retiring this offseason, the writer first points to left tackle as an intriguing position to watch. While Shon Coleman appeared to be atop the depth chart during spring practices, he didn’t do much to impress coaches, leading to the team adding free agent Greg Robinson to the mix. The team could also turn to second-round rookie Austin Corbett. Ulrich also points to wide receiver (where the depth chart is questionable behind Josh Gordon and Jarvis Landry) and running back (where any of Carlos Hyde, Duke Johnson, or Nick Chubb could earn the starting role) as interesting position battles.
  • Darryl Slater of NJ.com explored which Jets players are currently on the roster bubble. Cornerback Rashard Robinson led the list, with the writer pointing to the player’s lack of production and offseason arrest. Cornerback Juston Burris, fullback Lawrence Thomas, offensive lineman Jonotthan Harrison, running back Thomas Rawls, tight end Clive Walford, receivers Charone Peake and Devin Smith, and linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin were listed as other potential roster casualties. Ultimately, Slater believes Burris has the best chance of sticking around, as coach Todd Bowles tends to carry “a bunch” of cornerbacks.
  • Receiver Janarion Grant may have gone undrafted out of Rutgers, but Ryan Mink of BaltimoreRavens.com says the rookie still has a good chance of making the Ravens‘ roster. Following the loss of Michael Campanaro, the team is now searching for a new returner, and the speedy Grant seems to have the edge over Tim White. “Janarion Grant is a young man that I thought had exceptional college tape,” said special teams coordinator Jerry Rosburg. “He came in as a tryout player in our rookie minicamp and earned a roster spot because of those things and his skills as a receiver.”

Colts Re-Sign CB Pierre Desir

Cornerback Pierre Desir has agreed to a new one-year deal with the Colts, a league source tells Stephen Holder of the Indy Star (on Twitter). 

Desir was claimed by the Colts in September of 2017 after he missed the Seahawks’ initial 53-man cut. The 27-year-old (28 in September) quickly impressed coaches and found himself with a prominent role behind top corners Nate Hairston and Rashaan Melvin. He appeared in nine games (six starts) for Indianapolis, finishing out with career highs in passes defensed (7) and total tackles (32) before landing on IR in December with a pectoral injury.

Now that Melvin has signed with the Raiders, Desir figures to be in for serious playing time right off the bat in 2018. The Colts likely will continue to look for cornerback help with Quincy Wilson, Kenny Moore, and Nate Hairston amongst their top CBs under contract. Darius Butler, who spent time at cornerback before playing primarily at safety in ’17, is in free agency limbo.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Colts Place Pierre Desir On IR

The Colts have placed starting cornerback Pierre Desir on injured reserve. He suffered a muscle tear in his shoulder over the weekend that will require several weeks of recovery. The team has also announced that they have signed running back Matt Jones to fill the open spot on the roster.PIerre Desir (vertical)

Desir was claimed by the Colts in September after he missed the Seahawks’ initial 53-man cut. The 27-year-old quickly impressed coaches and found himself with a prominent role behind top corners Nate Hairston and Rashaan Melvin. Melvin is dealing with a hand injury of his own, so the Colts will have to dig deep at the cornerback position the rest of the way.

Desir appeared in nine games (six starts) for the Colts, finishing out with career highs in passes defensed (7) and total tackles (32).

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Sunday NFL Transactions: AFC South

Listed below are the Sunday roster moves for the four AFC South teams. Following the 53-man roster cutdown deadline yesterday, many teams will make slight tweaks to their rosters, claiming players off waivers or signing guys who clear waivers. Those transactions for the Texans, Colts, Jaguars, and Titans are noted below.

Additionally, as of 12:00pm CT today, teams can begin constructing their 10-man practice squads. You can check out our glossary entry on practice squads to brush up on those changes, as well as all the other guidelines that govern the 10-man units, whose players practice with the team but aren’t eligible to suit up on Sundays.

Here are Sunday’s AFC South transactions, which will continue to be updated throughout the day:

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Tennessee Titans

Seahawks Now At 53

The Seahawks made some moves to get down to 53, including the release of last year’s backup quarterback. Here’s the full rundown:

Waived:

Waived/Injured:

Released:

Boykin has lost the backup QB job to Austin Davis and that’s not a huge surprise after Davis’ performance in the preseason. Coach Pete Carroll indicated recently that he would have liked to keep three signal callers, but it just wasn’t realistic.

“It’s a good idea if you can do it,” Carroll said. “They’re so important. It just depends on the rest of the roster.”

West Notes: Broncos, Raiders, Chiefs, Hawks

The Broncos want to bring in a third quarterback, but that player is likely to be either a young veteran or a draft pick, head coach Vance Joseph tells Mike Klis of 9News (Twitter links). Denver is apparently content to allow Trevor Siemian and Paxton Lynch battle it out for the starting QB job, meaning any new addition would be a third-stringer. Tony Romo, meanwhile, is looking like less of an option, as the Broncos are reportedly backing off their pursuit of the Cowboys signal-caller.

Here’s more from the NFL’s two West divisions:

  • After losing defensive tackle Stacy McGee in free agency, Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie admits his team may bring in another piece up front, as Vic Tafur of the San Francisco Chronicle tweets. Currently, Oakland boasts Khalil Mack, Jihad Ward, Dan Williams, Mario Edwards, restricted free agent Denico Autry, and others along the defensive line. Johnathan Hankins, Jared Odrick, and Vance Walker rank as PFR’s best remaining interior defenders.
  • The Chiefs‘ decision to decline their option on backup quarterback Nick Foles was purely cap-related, head coach Andy Reid tells Terez A. Paylor of the Kansas City Star. Foles’ 2017 option was worth $6.75MM, an untenable figure for the Chiefs given that even now they only have $3MM in cap space. While Foles has since signed a two-year, $11MM with the Eagles, Kansas City currently has Tyler Bray behind starting quarterback Alex Smith.
  • Although Seahawks corner Pierre Desir had an opportunity to sign with the Lions last season, he opted to stick on Seattle’s practice squad and has since been re-signed on a futures deal, according to Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times (all Twitter links). Seahawks general manager John Schneider pointed to Desir, Neiko Thorpe, and Tampa Bay import Bradley McDougald as key depth pieces that can fill out the secondary.
  • Free agent signee Oday Aboushi will begin his Seahawks tenure at right guard, which means Seattle is set to try 2016 first-round pick Germain Ifedii at right tackle, tweets Condotta. Ifedi played tackle at Texas A&M, but shifted to right guard during his rookie campaign. The results were near disastrous, as Ifedi graded as the single worst guard in the NFL, per Pro Football Focus.

NFL Reserve/Futures Contracts: 1/16/17

Here are the latest reserve/futures contract signings from around the NFL. These deals will go into effect on the first day of the 2017 league year, with players joining their respective clubs’ offseason 90-man rosters.

Dallas Cowboys

Houston Texans

Seattle Seahawks

Tennessee Titans

Washington Redskins

NFL Workout Updates: 11/1/16

Tuesday is workout day in the NFL, and today was no different. Due to the sheer volume of today’s auditions, we’ll split up the reports by conference:

AFC

NFC

Chargers Promote WR Isaiah Burse

The Chargers announced today that they’ve promoted wide receiver Isaiah Burse from the practice squad in advance of Sunday’s game against the Broncos. Cornerback Pierre Desir has been waived in a corresponding move.Isaiah Burse

[RELATED: San Diego Chargers Depth Chart]

Before the addition of Burse, San Diego had only four wide receivers on its depth chart, with Tyrell Williams, Travis Benjamin, Dontrelle Inman, and Griff Whalen making up the club’s pass-catching unit. Two of those receivers are listed as questionable for Sunday’s contest, as both Williams and Benjamin are battling knee injuries. However, both players appear “on track” to play in Week 8, according to Eric D. Williams of ESPN.com.

Burse, 24, has 13 games of NFL experience under his belt — he played in one contest with the Chargers last season, and spent 12 games on Denver’s roster the year prior. He’s never caught an NFL pass, and has mostly contributed as a special teams player. Burse was the Broncos’ primary punt returner in 2014, averaging 7.3 yards per return on 29 chances.

Desir, 26, was waived by the Chargers last Saturday before being brought back into the fold the following Monday. He’s appeared in five games for San Diego this season, but has played on only 22 defensive snaps — he’s managed another 37 on special teams. With Desir out of the picture, the Chargers will head into their divisional matchup with Brandon Flowers, Casey Hayward, Craig Mager, Steve Williams, and Trevor Williams in the defensive backfield.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.