Brandon Scherff

Brandon Scherff Intends To Sign With Jaguars

One of the biggest free agents amongst offensive linemen – and in this year’s class overall – may have found his destination. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports (via Twitter) that Brandon Scherff “intends” to sign with the Jaguars. It’s a three-year, $49.5MM deal for Scherff, including $30MM guaranteed and $33MM paid out through the first two years (via NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo on Twitter).

[RELATED: Jaguars To Sign Foye Oluojun]

The 30-year-old had spent his entire seven-year career with Washington. The three most recent of those campaigns each earned him trips to the Pro Bowl, bringing his career total to five. 2020 also saw him recognized with first-team All Pro honors for the first time. PFF assigned him an overall grade of 73.6 in 2021, which continued his trend of consistent, high-level play.

A first round pick out of Iowa, Scherff has long been considered one of the top offensive linemen (at any position) in the NFL. Size, athleticism, technique and strength have never been an issue for him. Availability, however, has. He has missed 14 games over the past three years, which was part of the reason for a growing riff between him and the team.

After playing two consecutive years on franchise tags, it became increasingly clear Scherff would be headed elsewhere. Washington reportedly offered a contract which would have made him the highest-paid guard in the league this time last year, but nothing could be agreed upon for a long-term pact.

With Scherff in place, the Jaguars have taken a massive step forwards in terms of protecting quarterback Trevor Lawrence. With left tackle Cam Robinson having been franchised tagged, the signing of an interior linemen represents, in the eyes of many, another sign that the Jags could draft Michigan edge rusher Aidan Hutchinson with the first overall pick in April’s draft.

Washington Offered Brandon Scherff Top Guard Salary; Sides Likely To Part Ways?

Brandon Scherff became the second Washington player in five years to go through two franchise-tagged seasons, following Kirk Cousins. Like the former Washington starting quarterback, the team’s Pro Bowl guard appears headed elsewhere in free agency.

No significant movement between the Commanders and Scherff has taken place toward a long-term extension, John Keim of ESPN.com notes, adding the signs point to Scherff leaving soon. A third tag is not feasible for Washington, given that it would be a 44% markup from Scherff’s already-lofty $18MM salary last season.

Washington did try to lock down Scherff last year, however, with Keim adding the team made the veteran blocker an offer to become the league’s highest-paid guard. Scherff instead opted to play the 2021 season on the tag. Particulars of Washington’s proposal are not known, only that the deal would have pushed Scherff past Joe Thuney‘s $16MM-AAV guard pact. Thuney and Joel Bitonio are the NFL’s highest-paid guards, each earning $16MM on average. Scherff can expect to top that in free agency, with the salary cap set to return after its COVID-19-induced reduction.

When healthy, Scherff remains one of the NFL’s top guards. The former top-five pick has made the Pro Bowl in five of the past six seasons and earned first-team All-Pro recognition in 2020. Of course, he has run into considerable injury trouble in recent years. The Iowa product has missed 23 games since the 2016 season, including five last year. An MCL sprain and a stay on the COVID list shelved Scherff in 2021.

This year’s guard market features some interesting talent. Although Scherff is the biggest name expected to be available, Laken Tomlinson, James Daniels, Mark Glowinski and Connor Williams are each on track for free agency. Scherff’s age (30) may impact the length of his deal, but he should be expected to finally cash in on a long-term accord after playing out his five-year rookie contract and being tagged twice.

NFL COVID List Updates: 12/20/21

A long list of players were placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list. We listed the players who landed on the list today, as well as those who were activated off the list:

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

Buffalo Bills

Chicago Bears

Cleveland Browns

Detroit Lions

Houston Texans

Kansas City Chiefs

Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Rams

Las Vegas Raiders

Miami Dolphins

New England Patriots

New York Giants

New York Jets

  • Placed on reserve/COVID-19 list: DE John Franklin-Myers, DB Sharrod Neasman

Philadelphia Eagles

Seattle Seahawks

Tennessee Titans

Washington Football Team

WFT Places Brandon Scherff On COVID-19 List

Brandon Scherff will be placed on Washington’s Reserve/COVID-19 list (Twitter link via Ben Standig of The Athletic). With the All-Pro guard added to the tally, WFT currently has 16 players on the list headed into tomorrow’s game against the Eagles. 

[RELATED: WFT Activates Allen, Sweat]

Washington expects offensive lineman Matt Ioannidis to be cleared in time (Twitter link via Edward Ford of FOX 61), but everyone else’s status is TBD. That includes quarterbacks Taylor Heinicke and Kyle Allen, which means that journeyman Garrett Gilbert could be in line to start.

Scherff, who turns 30 on Sunday, missed a total of 18 games from 2017-2020. So far this year, he’s suited up for just nine games and he’ll miss another this week. Playing on his second-straight franchise tag at a rate of $18.04MM, he’s scheduled for free agency in the spring.

Washington still has a 20% chance of making the playoffs, per the stats at Five Thirty Eight. But, at 6-7, a loss to the Birds would likely level those odds.

WFT’s Brandon Scherff To Miss Time

Washington guard Brandon Scherff has been diagnosed with a sprained MCL that will keep him out of action for 2-to-3 weeks (Twitter link via Adam Schefter of ESPN.com). Meanwhile, tight end Logan Thomas is considered week-to-week with his hamstring injury.

[RELATED: WFT’s Bostic Suffers Pec Injury]

Scherff missed a total of 18 games from 2017-2020, including an MCL issue that sidelined him for three games in last year. Now, he’ll add to that total en route to free agency. The two sides could not come to terms this summer, so the the All-Pro guard is playing out his second-straight franchise tag for a salary of $18.04MM. Barring any further setbacks, Scherff is still expected to net a record-setting contract. His tag already puts him at the top of the list for guards while Joe Thuney‘s $16MM/year deal leads the way for multi-year pacts.

Thomas, a one-time quarterback, is coming off of a career year with 72 catches, 670 yards receiving, and six touchdowns. His 72 grabs last year put him third among all tight ends while his yardage (670) put him seventh at the position. Through four games this year, he has a line of 12/117/2.

WFT’s Jon Bostic Suffers Pec Injury

WFT linebacker Jon Bostic suffered a pec injury on Sunday (Twitter link via Ian Rapoport of NFL.com). He’ll undergo an MRI today to determine the severity, but Washington is bracing for bad news.

Bostic was ruled out in the fourth quarter, following early exits for tight end Logan Thomas (hamstring), wide receiver Cam Sims (hamstring), and guard Brandon Scherff (knee). They went on to beat the Falcons 34-30 in Atlanta, but it was a costly victory.

Bostic never lived up to his second-round draft status in Chicago and barely played in New England. But, when he resurfaced with the Colts in 2017 and the Steelers in 2018, he found his footing as a starter. His best work has come in D.C. Bostic has did not miss a game between 2019 and 2020, starting in all but one of his games. Last year, he finished out with 118 tackles — a new career best — plus three sacks, six tackles for loss, three passes defensed, and one interception.

Now at .500, the WFT will travel to New Orleans to take on the Saints in Week 5.

Brandon Scherff, WFT Unlikely To Reach Deal

Brandon Scherff is unlikely to have a long-term deal in hand by Thursday’s deadline (Twitter link via NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport). Barring any changes, the All-Pro guard will play out his second-straight franchise tag, now worth $18.04MM. 

The two sides have been at this for a while now. As a 2015 first-round pick, Scherff has been extension eligible for more than three years. Instead, Washington has seen another tag situation near the point of no return. As the Kirk Cousins standoff showed, a third tag is unrealistic. Now, Scherff is ticketed towards free agency in March of 2022.

Washington clearly wants to keep Scherff, but that would require a record-shattering deal for interior linemen. Currently, the mantle is held by Chiefs guard Joe Thuney, who inked his $16MM/year contract in March.

Scherff finds himself in a good spot, though he’d probably like the security of a long-term deal given his injury history. The All-Pro has missed a total of 18 games across the last four seasons, including an MCL issue that sidelined him for three games in 2020. On the flipside, he’ll be the belle of the ball if he stays healthy and enters free agency at a relatively young 30 years of age.

Status Of 7 Remaining Franchise-Tagged Players

Ten players comprised this year’s franchise tag contingent — down from 14 in 2020. However, the Broncos, Cowboys and Giants reached extension agreements with their tagged players — Justin Simmons, Dak Prescott and Leonard Williams, respectively — to leave seven tag recipients unsigned entering July.

With the July 15 deadline to extend franchise-tagged players less than two weeks away, here is where things stand with the remaining members of the group:

WR Chris Godwin, Buccaneers

Rather than tag Shaquil Barrett for a second straight year, the Bucs cuffed Godwin at $15.9MM. The defending Super Bowl champions found room for Barrett and every other notable free agent they had this offseason, going into overdrive in their effort to defend their second championship. Like every other franchise-tagged player this year, Godwin has signed his tender. The former third-round pick has said he wants to stay in Tampa long-term. The Bucs have Mike Evans signed to a now-below-market deal ($16.5MM per year), so it will be interesting to see how they navigate negotiations with his less accomplished (but three years younger, at 25) sidekick.

S Marcus Maye, Jets

Tagged months after the Jets traded Jamal Adams, Maye has not exactly enjoyed a smooth negotiating process. Just before the Jets tagged Maye, his agent slammed the team for a lackluster effort to extend the four-year starter beforehand. The Jets have carried on negotiations since applying the tag and are believed to have been steadfast in this approach, but this has not necessarily translated to progress. These talks are expected to go down to the wire. Maye, 28, not signing an extension by July 15 would keep the Mike Maccagnan-era draft choice on the $10.6MM tag.

OT Taylor Moton, Panthers

While the Panthers’ left tackle position has been one of the toughest to fill over the past decade, Moton has locked down the team’s right tackle post. A 2017 second-round pick, Moton has not missed a game since debuting in Carolina’s lineup in Week 1 of the 2018 season. The Panthers have a new regime in place, but the Matt RhuleScott Fitterer duo hopes to extend Moton.

The right tackle market moved this week, with Ryan Ramczyk agreeing to a $19.2MM-per-year extension. Moton, 26, is not a candidate to top that, but he may be primed to fill the gap between the top tier (Ramczyk and $18MM-AAV Lane Johnson) and Jack Conklin‘s $14MM-AAV deal. Moton is attached to a $13.8MM franchise tender.

WR Allen Robinson, Bears

Tagged at a higher price ($17.98MM) than Godwin because of his previous contract, Robinson has been the Bears’ No. 1 option on offense for the past three years. This has not translated to harmony between he and the team. Robinson has expressed frustration with the Bears’ tactics during his lengthy extension talks, which date back to last year, and he at one point surfaced in trade rumors.

This will be the eighth-year veteran’s age-28 season. A long-term Robinson deal would pair well with Justin Fields‘ rookie contract, with no other Bears receiver making even midlevel money, but the former third-round pick did not sound especially confident a deal will be finalized by the deadline.

OT Cam Robinson, Jaguars

This might be the closest to a “prove it” tag in this year’s lot. The former second-round pick has recovered from the ACL tear that cost him 14 games in 2018, starting 30 over the past two seasons. But Robinson, 25, has yet to show he is among the better players at the left tackle position. Without a viable replacement lined up, the Jaguars tagged the Alabama alum at $13.8MM. It would make sense for the Urban Meyer regime to gauge Robinson’s contract-year performance and reassess the matter next year. Holding the most cap space in the NFL ($38MM), the Jags can afford to carry Robinson’s tag figure this season.

G Brandon Scherff, Washington

Washington and its top offensive lineman have been at this for a while. A 2015 first-round pick, Scherff has been eligible for an extension since the 2017 season ended. Instead, Washington has seen another tag situation near the point of no return. The four-time Pro Bowl guard has played on the fifth-year option and the franchise tag, pushing this year’s tag price to $18MM. A third tag is unrealistic, as the Kirk Cousins standoff showed, and no deal this month would push Scherff toward free agency in 2022. The team wants to extend the 29-year-old blocker, but it will almost certainly take a guard-record agreement to do so. Joe Thuney raised the position’s ceiling with a $16MM-AAV deal in March.

S Marcus Williams, Saints

The Saints’ salary cap tightrope walk included a $10.6MM Williams tag, completing an odyssey that began with the team $100MM-plus over this year’s reduced cap. With New Orleans already doing the rare fifth-year option restructure with Marshon Lattimore, a Williams extension would be the easiest way to create more cap room. The team checked the top item off its offeseason to-do list, the Ramcyzk extension, but it may well have either a Lattimore or Williams re-up in its near-future plans.

Part of New Orleans’ impact 2017 draft class, the 24-year-old safety has been a starter from Day 1. Even though Lattimore may be a higher extension priority, the team coming all the way back from $100MM over the cap to use a franchise tag illustrates its view of Williams’ work.

Brandon Scherff Signs Franchise Tender

Brandon Scherff is now attached to a monster guard salary. Washington’s twice-franchise-tagged offensive lineman signed the second of those tenders Friday, according to Field Yates of ESPN.com (on Twitter).

This will guarantee Scherff’s $18.04MM franchise tag salary. Washington franchised Scherff again earlier this week, with the hope of locking him down long-term. Should the sides fail to agree on an extension by July 15, Scherff moved to ensure his lucrative 2021 tag salary will be locked in.

Scherff has been eligible to sign an extension since the 2018 offseason. Washington picked up the Pro Bowler’s 2019 fifth-year option, used the franchise tag in 2020 and has now used it again. The team has put off a long-term arrangement with its 2015 first-round pick for quite some time now, but with Scherff continuing to produce and remaining by far the best O-lineman on Washington’s roster, he has moved into good position to land a long-sought-after extension.

Some urgency may exist on Scherff’s part as well. He has a history of injuries, including an MCL issue that sidelined him for three games last season, and will turn 30 later this year. Still, the second franchise tag will put the four-time Pro Bowler in strong position this offseason.

NFL Sets $182.5MM Salary Cap

The NFL salary cap has been set at $182.5MM, according to Tom Pelissero of NFL.com (on Twitter). This marks a sizable (though expected) drop from last year’s $198.2MM limit.

Teams will not be allowed to borrow cap room from future years, per the CBA, so teams are basically stuck with the hard cap and difficult choices ahead. However, teams do have other ways to navigate the cap, including rollover from 2020, post-June 1 cuts, and contract restructuring.

With the new salary cap, the league has also determined the values of this year’s franchise tag tenders (Twitter link):

  • Quarterback $25.104MM
  • Running Back $8.655MM
  • Tight End $9.601MM
  • Offensive Lineman $13.754MM
  • Defensive End $16.069MM
  • Defensive Tackle $13.888M
  • Linebacker $14.791M
  • Cornerback $15.06MM
  • Kicker/Punter $4.482MM

Here’s the full rundown of this year’s franchise tags, including players on repeat tags who receive a 20% increase: