Brett Maher

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/17/22

Today’s minor moves around the league, including practice squad elevations for tomorrow’s action:

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

  • Promoted from practice squad: CB Daryl WorleyWR Raleigh Webb

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Cleveland Browns

Dallas Cowboys

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Rams

Miami Dolphins

New York Giants

New York Jets

New Orleans Saints

Pittsburgh Steelers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Washington Commanders

Cowboys Sign QB Cooper Rush, K Brett Maher To Active Roster

In anticipation of only his second career start, Cooper Rush is set to officially join the Cowboys’ 53-man roster. He is being signed from the practice squad, along with kicker Brett Maher, per a team announcement. 

Both players suited up last week, of course, but in that instance they were designated as the two taxi squad elevations each team is permitted every week. For Rush, the move confirms the fact that he will take over for Dak Prescott as the team’s starting signal-caller. The duration of Prescott’s absence could be shorter than initially expected, but for the time being, Rush is tasked with keeping the Cowboys afloat and improving on the team’s underwhelming offensive performance in Week 1.

The 28-year-old’s only other start resulted in a victory last season, but with just 63 career pass attempts, little will be known or expected of him. Dallas also has a weakened offensive line in front of him, and a less accomplished assortment of pass-catchers compared to 2021, so the challenge facing him will be significant. Not surprisingly, the Cowboys are elevating Will Grier from the practice squad to operate as Rush’s backup. With Prescott expected to be back relatively soon, that pair will be leaned on, instead of a stop-gap veteran addition.

Maher wasn’t initially in the Cowboys’ kicking plans this offseason. Not long after the team began looking for outside options, however, the 32-year-old returned to Dallas. The Cowboys’ kicker in 2018 and 2019, Maher was responsible for the team’s only points in Week 1, making his only attempt. For his career, he has converted 77.6% of his field goals, a figure which, coupled with his familiarity with the organization, allowed him to make a late push to operate as Greg Zuerlein‘s successor.

Rush, Maher and the Cowboys will look to get into the win column on Sunday against the defending AFC champion Bengals.

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/10/22

Today’s minor moves around the league, as teams prepare for the first Sunday slate of regular season games:

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Cleveland Browns

Dallas Cowboys

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Kansas City Chiefs

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Chargers

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

New York Jets

Philadelphia Eagles

San Francisco 49ers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

The Cardinals’ moves come as a reaction to yesterday’s injury news. Baccellia’s roster spot was opened up in the short-term by the injury to Rondale Moore, but he won’t simply be a stop-gap. Arizona signed the 25-year-old to a two-year deal to remain on the main roster, per Aaron Wilson of Pro Football Network (Twitter link). A UDFA out of Washington, Baccellia has yet to make a regular season NFL appearance.

Likewise, the fact that Ford will miss at least the first four weeks of the season makes the re-acquisition of Garcia a logical one. The former fourth-rounder has plenty of guard experience, including his three seasons spent in Arizona. It was only in 2021 that he logged any starts, but he could provide veteran depth behind Justin Pugh at least until Ford is able to return.

Addison, 35, was one of several veteran signings the Texans made this offseason to add depth to their front seven. He had a productive season with the Bills last season, notching seven sacks despite not starting any games. In his absence, Harris and Pierre-Louis will provide depth in the edge rush department on Sunday, and likely the short-term future as well.

Quick reminder that standard game day practice squad promotions are a recent development from the new CBA and COVID-19 seasons. Essentially, each team is able to promote two players from the practice squad to the active roster for game days. The players will automatically revert back to the practice squad after the game, not needing to clear waivers before rejoining the developmental roster. A player can only be promoted three times per season. If a team would like to promote a player for a fourth game, they’ll need to go through the normal method of creating space on the 53-man roster to promote them and have them clear waivers before placing them back on the practice squad. That is the difference between “Signed to 53-man roster” from the practice squad and “Promoted from practice squad.”

Wednesday NFL Transactions: NFC East

Following the 53-man roster cutdown deadline Tuesday, many teams will make slight tweaks to their rosters. In addition to waiver claims, teams can begin constructing their 16-man practice squads today. These CommandersCowboys, Eagles and Giants moves are noted below.

Here are Wednesday’s NFC East transactions, which will continue to be updated throughout the day.

Dallas Cowboys

Signed to practice squad:

New York Giants

Signed:

Released:

Claimed:

Placed on IR:

Signed to practice squad:

Philadelphia Eagles

Claimed: 

Waived:

Signed to practice squad:

Washington Commanders

Released:

Claimed:

Waived:

Placed on IR:

Signed to practice squad:

Cowboys Set 53-Man Roster

The Cowboys got their roster down to 53 players today, and to get there, they cut all their backup QB options, their kicker, and their long snapper:

Released:

Waived:

Waived/injured:

Placed on reserve/NFI:

The Cowboys are currently rolling without a second QB behind Dak Prescott after the team moved on from Cooper Rush, Will Grier, and Ben DiNucci. Rush has the most experience of the group, appearing in 10 career games, including five appearances (one start) with Dallas in 2021. The 28-year-old finished last season having completed 30 of his 47 pass attempts for 422 yards, three touchdowns, and one interception. The Cowboys also aren’t rostering a kicker or long snapper at the moment, something that will certainly change over the next few days.

Special teams ace C.J. Goodwin could also land back on the active roster once the dust settles. Goodwin has spent the past four seasons in Dallas, and he hasn’t missed a game over the past three years. The 32-year-old finished last season with a career-high 10 tackles.

Minor NFL Transactions: 8/23/22

Tuesday marked the day teams were forced to cut down from 85 to 80 players. Here are the moves teams made made to reach the new maximum. Players who land on the reserve/PUP or reserve/NFI list must miss at least the first four regular-season games.

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Cincinnati Bengals

Dallas Cowboys

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Kansas City Chiefs

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Chargers

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

New York Jets

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

San Francisco 49ers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Washington Commanders

Cowboys To Bring Back K Brett Maher

The Cowboys’ Tuesday kicker workout has concluded, and it will lead to a transaction. The team will circle back to Brett Maher, Michael Gehlken of the Dallas Morning News tweets.

Dallas’ kicker from 2018-19, Maher spent last season with the Saints. Kicking in eight Saints games last season, Maher lasted longer than New Orleans’ other batch of Wil Lutz replacements did last season. And the Division II product will attempt to secure a second Cowboys stint that lasts into the regular season. Maher went 16-for-18 on field goal tries during his eight-game Saints run — one that ended in February when the team released him.

To make room on their 90-man roster, the Cowboys are waiving rookie Jonathan Garibay. The Texas Tech UDFA struggled during training camp. Tuesday’s transactions will bring about a competition between two inexperienced 30-something specialists. Both current Cowboy kickers have kicked in Canada. Hajrullahu, 32, played in the CFL from 2014-19; Maher, also 32, did so from 2013-16 and again in 2018.

Maher, who joined Matt Ammendola and Cole Murphy in Tuesday morning’s workout, will vie with Lirim Hajrullahu to succeed Greg Zuerlein as the Cowboys’ kicker. Dallas cut Zuerlein in March, leading him to the Jets. The team initially cut Maher back in 2019, signing Zuerlein not long after, but the parties will link up again.

Maher, 32, did not kick in 2020, though he remained a workout-circuit fixture, but his late-2010s Dallas tenure was one of the more memorable short kicker stints in recent memory. Maher’s 63-yard field goal as a Cowboy in 2019 represents a team record. He made two other 60-plus-yard tries, making him the only kicker to boot three field goals from beyond 60 yards in NFL history. The Cowboys, however, ousted him after he made 66% of his 2019 attempts (20-for-30).

Cowboys To Work Out Brett Maher, Matt Ammendola, Cole Murphy

The Cowboys moved on from two-year kicker Greg Zuerlein this offseason and introduced a competition between far less experienced specialists. Said competition appears to be generating some unease.

Struggles from both Lirim Hajrullahu and Jonathan Garibay will bring the Cowboys to work out some replacement options. Brett Maher, Matt Ammendola and Cole Murphy are coming in for a Tuesday workout, Michael Gehlken of the Dallas Morning News notes. Maher, of course, has a Dallas history. He operated as the Cowboys’ kicker from 2018-19.

Garibay resided as the team’s lone kicker for much of the offseason; Hajrullahu arrived July 1. Garibay has struggled throughout camp, per Gehlken, who adds he missed seven of his 11 field goal tries during Saturday’s practice. Despite having just four games on his resume (all in 2021), Hajrullahu is going into his age-32 season. Garibay is a rookie UDFA out of Texas Tech.

The NFL’s lone kicker with three 60-plus-yard field goals — all coming during his time with the Cowboys — Maher resurfaced last season. He was part of the Saints’ Wil Lutz solution, one of four kickers to be classified as such last year. Maher, 32, made 88.9% of his field goal tries in eight games with the Saints. He was 10-for-12 on extra points. The Saints waived the ex-CFL leg in February.

Ammendola, 25, kicked in 11 Jets games last season — his first NFL action. The Oklahoma State alum made just 68.4% of his field goal attempts and was 14-for-15 on PATs. The Jets cut him in March. He also auditioned for the Jaguars last month. Murphy, who kicked at Syracuse from 2014-17, has not played in an NFL regular-season game.

After Maher’s late-season struggles in 2019, the Cowboys moved on. They gave Zuerlein a three-year, $7.5MM deal in 2020 but dropped him in March of this year. Zuerlein has since replaced Ammendola with the Jets. Considering the underwhelming Hajrullahu-Garibay competition, it would be a slight surprise if one of these available kickers was not added after Tuesday’s workout. With Hajrullahu going 8-for-8 against a live rush Monday, it might be Garibay whose job is at stake here.

Saints Waive K Brett Maher

The Saints cycled through a host of kickers in their attempt to replace Wil Lutz last season. Brett Maher ended up being the one to stick, playing eight games and finishing the season. But the team made a move in preparation for Lutz’s presumptive return.

New Orleans waived Maher on Tuesday. While this move makes Maher available to the 31 other teams, the former Cowboys kicker did not see game action between his November 2019 Dallas exit and the November 2021 New Orleans arrival.

Maher enjoyed two stints as a Saint, first catching on in August. A groin injury halted that stay, but after New Orleans’ procession of regular-season Lutz replacements — Aldrick Rosas, Brian Johnson, Cody Parkey — did not perform up to par, the team pivoted back to Maher. The strong-legged specialist was 16-for-18 on field goals and made 10 of 12 extra points. Maher remains the only kicker in NFL history to make three 60-plus-yard field goals.

Lutz aggravated a groin injury in August that ended up nixing his season. The Saints’ regular kicker attempted to come back in October, returning to practice, but a setback shut him down for the season’s entirety. Lutz signed a five-year, $20.25MM extension in 2019. He is under contract through 2023 and set to count $5.6MM against New Orleans’ cap in 2022.