Barkevious Mingo

Grand Jury Clears Barkevious Mingo

Linebacker Barkevious Mingo signed a one-year, $1.25MM contract with the Falcons in March, but Atlanta released him a few months later, after he was charged with “indecency with a child–sexual contact.” As Ian Rapoport of reported last month, the Texas grand jury that was convened in the matter determined there was no probable cause to move forward, so Mingo will not be prosecuted (Twitter link).

Mingo, 31, has never lived up to his status as the No. 6 overall pick of the 2013 draft. His rookie season tally of five sacks still represents a career-high, as he managed only 7.5 sacks in total across the next seven years. Still, he has carved out a lengthy career as a rotational defender and special teams contributor, and in his 2020 season with Chicago — in which he appeared in 36% of the Bears’ defensive snaps and 82% of their special teams snaps — Pro Football Focus’ metrics considered him a league-average performer.

He has also proven himself to be durable, as he has never appeared in less than 15 games in a single season. Now that his legal situation has been resolved, he will presumably have a chance to continue his playing career in 2022, though any contract he gets will likely be for the veteran minimum or slightly higher.

Mingo’s attorney, Chris Lewis, issued a statement (Twitter link), which reads in part as follows:

“Today’s decision is the first step in restoring Keke’s good name and successfully brings to a close what has been a painful and uncertain chapter in his life. We appreciate the hard work and thoughtful consideration that the District Attorney’s Office and the Grand Jury dedicated to this matter.”

Latest On Barkevious Mingo

Linebacker Barkevious Mingo was arrested for an alleged child sex offense over the weekend. The Falcons released him less than 24 hours later, a decision that his lead attorney Chris Lewis disagrees with. 

[RELATED: Falcons Release Barkevious Mingo]

We are extremely disappointed in the Atlanta Falcons’ rush to judgment in terminating Barkevious Mingo’s contract before gathering all of the relevant facts and prior to my client having his day in court,” Lewis said (Twitter link via’s Adam Schefter). “The accusation against Mr. Mingo is a lie. Barkevious knows it — so does his accuser.”

Mingo cooperated with law enforcement upon learning of the warrant and immediately traveled to Texas to turn himself in, according to Lewis. Now, the attorney says, “he is ready to prove his innocence.”

Mingo never lived up to his first-round draft status, but he’s managed a lengthy career in the NFL as a special teamer with the Browns, Patriots, Colts, Seahawks, Texans, and Bears. Last year, he saw some time as a rotational ‘backer with the Bears and notched 2.5 sacks, leading to a one-year, $1.25MM deal earlier this year.

Mr. Mingo understands the seriousness of an accusation like this and the immediate negative impact it can have on a person’s reputation, even when there is zero evidence,” Mingo’s lawyer said. “But, he also knows that he will be fully vindicated when the truth comes to light. When that happens, the true motivation of the accuser will be clear and unambiguous.”

Falcons Release Barkevious Mingo

In light of Barkevious Mingo’s arrest on the charge of “indecency with a child–sexual contact,” the Falcons have elected to release the veteran linebacker. In a statement announcing the move, the team said, “After being made aware today of allegations involving Barkevious Mingo and gathering information on the matter, the Atlanta Falcons have terminated his contract.”

We now have a few more details on the matter, courtesy of Jon Wertheim of Wertheim reports that the alleged incident took place during the Fourth of July weekend in 2019, when Mingo treated a teenage family member and the boy’s friend (also a teenager) to a trip to an amusement park and a go-kart complex. Mingo also took the boys to dinner at a local steakhouse and paid for an online shopping spree at

The boys spent the evening of July 4, 2019, at the hotel where Mingo was staying. The alleged victim said the boys were supposed to sleep in a different room from Mingo, but at around 3am, he woke up to find Mingo lying in bed with him. At this point, we will direct you to Wertheim’s article for the rest of the details, which are disturbing.

The alleged victim’s mother filed a complaint with police in January 2021, and the investigation — which included a search warrant for Nike’s sales records — culminated in a felony charge against Mingo. The No. 6 overall pick of the 2013 draft faces up to 20 years in prison.

Mingo’s attorney, Lukas Garcia, issued the following statement: “At this stage, our side has very limited information. What we do know is these allegations are from over two years ago and are completely untrue. Mr. Mingo is the victim of a false claim, and we believe this is motivated by money or some other ulterior motive.”

Barkevious Mingo Arrested On Felony Charge

4:31pm: The attorney representing Mingo, Lukas Garcia, said this allegation is from over two years ago and is “completely baseless,” via’s Ian Rapoport (on Twitter). Garcia adds he does not have much information on the nature of the allegation, which led to a second-degree felony charge.

2:02pm: Falcons linebacker Barkevious Mingo is facing a second-degree felony charge in a child sex offense case. The Arlington Police Department arrested Mingo on July 8 for indecency with child sexual contact, according to TMZ.

The 30-year-old defender turned himself in and posted a $25,000 bond. He faces up to 20 years in prison. A former No. 6 overall pick, Mingo signed with the Falcons in March. This week’s development certainly puts his NFL career in jeopardy.

Our organization became aware of the allegations involving Barkevious Mingo today and are currently gathering information on this incident,” the Falcons said in a statement. “The Falcons take the allegations very seriously and will continue to monitor the situation.”

Mingo did not pan out as an impact defender out of the 2013 draft and has bounced around the league since being a top-flight prospect at LSU. The Louisiana native has played for six teams in the past six years — the Browns, Patriots, Colts, Seahawks, Texans and Bears — but suited up for all 16 games in each of those seasons.

He registered 2.5 sacks as a Bears rotational defender in 2020. The Falcons agreed to add Mingo on a one-year, $1.25MM deal March 23.

Falcons To Sign Barkevious Mingo

The Falcons have agreed to sign linebacker Barkevious Mingo (Twitter link via’s Ian Rapoport). His one-year deal is worth $1.25MM with $1.1MM guaranteed, according to’s Michael Rothstein

[RELATED: Falcons To Sign Mike Davis]

Mingo, a 6’5″, 235-pound ‘backer, spent last year with the Bears. He appeared in 36% of the team’s snaps but played a much larger role on special teams. On defense, he finished with a total of 35 stops and 2.5 sacks while appearing in all 16 games.

The LSU product entered the league with lofty expectations as the No. 6 overall pick in the 2013 draft. That pick didn’t exactly work out for the Browns, but Mingo has enjoyed a solid career over the last eight years. His 2016 stop in New England yielded a Super Bowl ring and he’s now signed for his ninth season in the league.

Mingo will be joined by lots of fellow fresh faces in Atlanta, including the newly-signed Mike Davis.

Bears To Sign LB Barkevious Mingo

Barkevious Mingo is set to suit up for a sixth NFL team. The Bears are adding the well-traveled former first-round pick, Ian Rapoport of reports (on Twitter).

The Bears and the veteran edge defender agreed on a one-year, $1.2MM deal, Rapoport tweets. Mingo will receive $900K guaranteed. This will be the former No. 6 overall pick’s fifth team in five seasons.

After acquiring him in the Jadeveon Clowney trade last season, the Texans deployed Mingo on just 7% of their defensive snaps. He saw action on 74% of Houston’s special teams snaps, however. While Mingo’s defensive usage has fluctuated since the Browns traded him to the Patriots in 2016, he has been a key special-teamer for most of his career.

The LSU product did not pan out as a pass rusher, topping out at two sacks in a season since a five-sack rookie slate with the 2013 Browns. But he’s consistently found work. Mingo has been twice traded; this marks his third free agency agreement.

He signed with the Colts in 2017 and the Seahawks in 2018. The Bears are adding him at a cheaper rate than the Seahawks did, however. That 2018 Seattle pact was a two-year, $6.8MM deal. Mingo will reunite with Bears DC Chuck Pagano and provides some depth behind Khalil Mack and the recently acquired Robert Quinn.

Latest On Texans Free Agents

The Texans have a number of notable players hitting free agency, but it sounds like the front office has made re-signing Bradley Roby a priority. Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports (via Twitter) that Houston will “do what they can” to keep many of their free agents, a grouping that’s “especially” led by the 28-year-old cornerback.

Roby inked a one-year, $10MM deal with the Texans last offseason, but he was limited to only 10 games (10 starts) during his first season in Houston. Roby finished the campaign having compiled 38 tackles, eight passes defended, two interceptions (including a pick-six), and one forced fumble.

On the other side of the ball, it sounds like the organization is hoping to retain veteran running back Carlos Hyde. However, as Wilson passes along, Hyde declined a contract offer from the organization and is set to hit free agency. The 29-year-old started 14 games and had his first career 1,000-yard season in 2019. Fellow running back Lamar Miller, who was sidelined with a torn ACL last year, will also be heading to free agency.

Wilson passes along updates on a number of other Texans free agents. The organization is hoping to re-sign running back/special teamer Taiwan Jones and linebackers Tyrell Adams, Dylan Cole and Barkevious Mingo. On the flip side, the organization isn’t expected to bring back safety Jahleel Addae.

West Notes: Seahawks, Broncos, Breida

Although the Seahawks traded Frank Clark, have L.J. Collier sidelined for a while and Ziggy Ansah still yet to fully participate in training camp, they feature an additional pass rusher in Barkevious Mingo. The former first-round pick is now a full-time defensive end, Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times notes. The 28-year-old defender worked as an outside linebacker in Seattle’s 4-3 scheme last season but came into the league as a 3-4 edge. That has never translated to sack production (10 in six seasons), but it looks like the Seahawks will attempt to see if Mingo’s first NFL work as a full-time lineman can.

That’s what I came into this league to do,’’ said Mingo, who played 545 snaps last season with Seattle. “I came into this league to rush the passer. And teams I’ve been on before, they’ve had a different idea of what they wanted me to do. And that’s OK. … But looking back at it, I’m happy I get to go back and do it (rush the passer now). I wish it would have been a little earlier in my career. But still, I’m just excited for the opportunity to go out there and just help the team.”

Moving first to some backfield situations, here is the latest from some of the NFL’s Mountain and Pacific Time Zone teams.

  • While Pete Carroll said 2018 first-rounder Rashaad Penny had a “great” offseason, the Seahawks still appear to be leaning toward keeping 2017 seventh-rounder Chris Carson as their starting running back. Penny is not playing on the same level Carson is during camp, per The Athletic’s Michael-Shawn Dugar (subscription required). Penny, though, will be a bigger part of Seattle’s offense than he was as a rookie. Mike Davis‘ Chicago relocation will ensure the San Diego State alum sees more time.
  • Theo Riddick visited the Broncos and Saints before deciding on Denver, but the six-year Lions back said (via Mike Klis of 9News) 10 teams reached out after Detroit released him. Riddick, 28, signed a one-year, $2.5MM deal to join Phillip Lindsay and Royce Freeman in the Broncos’ backfield equation. The longtime pass-catching back took reps with the Broncos’ first-string offense in his initial practice with the team.
  • As for where that leaves Devontae Booker: Klis notes there is a chance the team keeps four halfbacks and fullback Andy Janovich. However, Booker may now be a trade candidate. The Broncos used former California high school sprint champion Khalfani Muhammad in all four quarters of Thursday’s Hall of Fame Game.
  • Matt Breida may join Booker on the trade block, though that is not certain yet. The 49ers have one of the NFL’s deepest backfields, with Breida joining Tevin Coleman and Jerick McKinnon. It’s been posited the 49ers will not have room for all three on game days, considering Raheem Mostert was re-signed for his special teams ability. A way Breida (5.3 yards per carry last season) could see time will be as a kick returner, Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area writes. Breida has only returned five NFL kicks, all coming in his 2017 rookie year.
  • Seahawks recently waived tight ends Justin Johnson and Tyrone Swoopes cleared waivers and will revert to the team’s IR list, Condotta tweets.

West Notes: Broncos, Seahawks, Matthews

Sam Darnold‘s itinerary is starting to come into focus. He will spend Friday with the Broncos in Los Angeles working out for Denver brass, Albert Breer of reports (on Twitter). This will come after Darnold spends Wednesday in Cleveland visiting the Browns. Josh Allen is also expected to visit the Browns on Wednesday. As for the Broncos, they’ve now been linked to meetings or workouts with Darnold, Rosen and Baker Mayfield. And it would seem likely, judging by the type of quarterback prospects John Elway has invested in during his GM tenure, that the 6-foot-5 Allen will also meet with the Broncos. Denver signed Case Keenum but is participating in a thorough process to determine whether they should follow the 2016 Eagles’ or 2017 Bears’ routes by subsequently adding a high draft choice at football’s marquee position. Or, this could be partially about setting up a possible trade-down scenario.

Here’s the latest from the West divisions.

  • Eric Decker‘s best seasons came as Peyton Manning‘s No. 2 wideout, and the eight-year veteran remains a UFA. In Denver for non-football reasons, the 31-year-old receiver expressed interest in returning to the Broncos. “There’s no holdup on my end. Whoever you need to call for me, whoever you need to reach out to, please do,” Decker said in an radio interview with former Broncos wideout Brandon Stokley (via Nicki Jhabvala of the Denver Post, Twitter link) this week. “Everything’s got to align; the stars have to kind of align for it to all work. But I’m very receptive to make it happen.” The Broncos have needed a No. 3 wideout since Wes Welker‘s exit, with Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders having to carry most of the aerial attack’s load over the past three years. Decker caught 54 passes for 563 yards and a touchdown for the Titans last season, playing in all 16 games after suffering severe injuries in 2016.
  • Jordan Matthews is seeking a deal worth at least $5MM per year, Mike Jurecki of tweets. The Cardinals had an offer out to Matthews, but that was before news of their Brice Butler signing emerged. Matthews also visited the Packers and Patriots.
  • John Schneider said Barkevious Mingo was “pretty much” the Seahawks‘ top priority this offseason, and Pete Carroll detailed (via Brady Henderson of what the former top-10 pick’s role will be in Seattle. Mingo will slide into the spot Bruce Irvin used to occupy, playing outside linebacker in base sets and shifting to defensive end on passing downs. Schneider said the former LSU standout will have more pass-rushing opportunities with the Seahawks than he’s had at other stops. Mingo has recorded two sacks over the past three seasons.
  • Despite Tom Johnson being a Vikings starter last season, the Seahawks want his former teammate who trekked to Seattle with him, Shamar Stephen, to be a starter over Johnson this year. Henderson notes Stephen, not Johnson, is in line to start alongside nose tackle Jarran Reed. Seattle’s eyeing the soon-to-be 34-year-old Johnson as a rotational presence. A 16-game starter for the 2016 Vikings, Stephen played a depth role behind Johnson and Linval Joseph last season.
  • Jordan Taylor is now the clubhouse leader to be the 2018 Broncos‘ punt returner, but he won’t have a chance to work with the team over the offseason. Multiple hip injuries required surgery on one hip labrum and rehab on the other. He won’t be available until training camp, per Troy Renck of Denver7.

Jets Targeted Jerick McKinnon, Weston Richburg, Others

The Jets looked to be Kirk Cousinsbackup plan, and the franchise had to move on to some its own contingency signings soon after. Most notably, the Jets sought a backfield option that ended up in San Francisco.

Despite entering free agency with more than $90MM in cap space, the Jets could not land Jerick McKinnon. Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News reports the Mike Maccagnan-led franchise put a “full-court press” on the former Vikings running back, only to see him join the 49ers instead.

While McKinnon looked to be the main target that got away, the Jets also had interest in Weston Richburg, with “strong plays” for defenders DaQuan Jones and Barkevious Mingo also not working out for Gang Green, Mehta reports.

Once the Jets didn’t sign McKinnon, they moved on to Isaiah Crowell. However, Mehta reports the Jets agreeing to terms with McKinnon would not have precluded them from adding Crowell as well. Although, the team already has Bilal Powell and Elijah McGuire.

Mehta reports the Jets felt their offer was strong enough to close a deal with the 25-year-old McKinnon, but the team also felt Kyle Shanahan was determined to win a bidding war. The end result shows that to be the case. The four-year, $30MM contract makes McKinnon one of the league’s highest-paid running backs.

The 49ers also beat the Jets on Richburg, but it doesn’t sound like the competition was as fierce between the two franchises as it was for McKinnon. New York eyed Richburg but knew the ex-Giants center was going to sign for more than what the team was willing to pay him. Despite having less cap space than the Jets, the 49ers signed Richburg for five years and $47.5MM.

Jones ended up re-upping with the Titans instead of replacing Muhammad Wilkerson on the Jets’ front, signing for three years and $21MM. Mingo will be one of the players the Seahawks turn to in an effort to replace Michael Bennett. The Jets’ interest in Mingo may not have been too strong, with it only taking a two-year, $6.8MM deal for the Seahawks to sign him.