Today’s minor moves before Championship Sunday:
Kansas City Chiefs
Los Angeles Rams
San Francisco 49ers
Today’s minor moves before Championship Sunday:
Kansas City Chiefs
Los Angeles Rams
San Francisco 49ers
Damon Arnette was arrested last night in Las Vegas for assault with a deadly weapon, a source tells NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero (via Twitter). Arnette is also facing weapons and drugs charges (Twitter link). The Chiefs immediately released the cornerback.
This is another troubling off-field incident for the former first-round pick. The Raiders cut Arnette earlier this year after a video surfaced showing him threatening a person while brandishing a handgun. Arnette is also facing multiple lawsuits, one for a car accident that resulted in injuries.
He later caught on with the Dolphins practice squad, and he was inked to a reserve/futures deal with the Chiefs following the regular season. Per Pelissero (on Twitter), the Chiefs signed him “with a commitment to intense counseling and zero tolerance.” Arnette ended up lasting only nine days with his new squad.
The Raiders used Arnette as a seven-game starter in 2020, with the defensive back finishing with 25 tackles and two passes defended. He was relegated to a part-time role this year in Las Vegas, where he collected four tackles in four games before earning his release.
This does not impact Kansas City’s playoff roster, but it does give the Chiefs yet another corner recently drafted in the first round. The former Raiders Round 1 pick will head to Kansas City after a brief stint on Miami’s practice squad. The Raiders cut Arnette earlier this year after a video surfaced showing him threatening a person while brandishing a handgun.
The Chiefs acquired former Vikings first-round corner Mike Hughes via trade last year and also have former Giants first-round cover man Deandre Baker on their playoff roster. Kansas City signed Baker not long after an off-field incident led to his New York ouster. Hughes is due for unrestricted free agency after this season; Baker can be controlled next season via exclusive-rights free agent tender.
Andy Reid‘s team has not shied away from players with checkered pasts, and the six-time reigning AFC West champions have benefited considerably from the acquisitions of Tyreek Hill and Frank Clark. While Arnette entered the NFL with a higher profile than each, being chosen 19th overall in 2020, he was headed in the wrong direction with the Raiders.
The Raiders used Arnette as a seven-game starter in 2020 but relegated him to a part-time role this year. The Ohio State product played four games with this year’s Las Vegas squad but was cut shortly after the Raiders parted ways with their other 2020 first-rounder — Henry Ruggs. Arnette is also facing multiple lawsuits, one for a car accident that resulted in injuries.
The Dolphins have signed Damon Arnette to a practice squad deal (Twitter link via David Furones of the Sun Sentinel). This marks the cornerback’s first deal since he was cut by the Raiders earlier this year.
Shortly after the tragedy involving Henry Ruggs, a video surfaced showing Arnette issuing threats and brandishing a handgun. The Raiders moved quickly to release the 2020 first-rounder, who was also in the midst of multiple lawsuits, including one for a car crash of his own.
Arnette made his name at Ohio State, flashing potential opposite of Jeff Okudah. With the ability to play on the inside or the outside, the Raiders were high on his upside. Unfortunately, his potential has been torpedoed by his off-the-field problems.
Arnette started in seven of his nine games as a rookie, collecting 25 tackles along the way. This year, he appeared in the Raiders’ first four games, but didn’t top 30% of the snaps in any of those contests.
While Arnette joins the 16-man practice squad, the rest of the team will prepare to face the Jets on Sunday. A win would give them six straight, a 7-7 record on the year, and at least a glimmer of hope in the Wild Card race.
Trayvon Mullen is primed for a return to action as the Raiders have announced that he’s been activated from injured reserve today. Las Vegas had designated the former second-round pick to return from injured reserve a little over a week ago.
Interim head coach Rich Bisaccia had made a statement saying, “[Mullen] wants to be in a position where he feels like he’s ready to go and he’s not at 70 percent or 80 percent,” so Mullen’s activation should indicate a return to full health for the Raiders’ starting cornerback.
While the Raiders will certainly be happy to have a bit more depth to a cornerback room that was looking fairly slim with Mullen injured and Damon Arnette‘s release, Mullen’s absence has allowed Las Vegas to test out some of the corners they had available. Even after losing Mullen and Arnette after only four games, the Raiders knew they had experience in ten-year veteran Casey Hayward and liked what they saw in rookie fifth-round pick Nate Hobbs. They did take action, reaching out to sign Hayward’s former teammate, Brandon Facyson, off the Chargers’ practice squad to help fill out the room. The signing has paid off as they’ve seen Facyson start their last six games as Hobbs continues to develop as a pro.
Adding Mullen to the mix strengthens an already impressive position group for the Raiders’ defense. Mullen’s activation was joined by defensive tackle Darius Philon‘s activation off injured reserve. Las Vegas also announced the signing of linebacker Will Compton to the active roster and the release of defensive tackle Damion Square. From the practice squad wide receiver Tyron Johnson, linebacker Javin White, and running back Trey Ragas have been called up for Sunday’s game against the Chiefs.
Entering the season on one of the hottest seats among the current crop of head coaches, Vic Fangio has overseen an up-and-down slate. After starting 3-0, the Broncos lost four straight. They have since rebounded with back-to-back wins, despite significant injury issues. This midseason stretch certainly has helped Fangio’s case for a fourth season in Denver, and Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com notes that George Paton is fond of the John Elway-hired HC not necessarily looking to bring in his own leader. While the Broncos have endured several blowout losses during Fangio’s three-year tenure, it appears the defensive-minded leader has a decent chance of saving his job. Paton did say recently the team must play better offensively, potentially putting Pat Shurmur‘s job in question. The Broncos rank 18th offensively but averaged just 16 points per game during their four-game losing streak.
Here is more from Denver and the latest from around the AFC West:
The Raiders will release cornerback Damon Arnette (Twitter link via NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero). This comes on the heels of a recent video which showed Arnette threatening a person while brandishing a handgun.
Arnette is also in the midst of multiple lawsuits, including one for a car crash that resulted in injuries. In the wake of Henry Ruggs‘ fatal collision, the Raiders have decided to move on from the former first-round pick. This particular incident occurred in 2020, but the suit just came to light over the weekend. plans on fighting the allegations.
“Mr. Arnette denies the allegations in the complaint and looks forward to addressing these claims through the court process,” the player’s attorney said in a statement.
The plaintiff alleges that Arnette slammed into her car while driving 65 mph and fled the scene. And, according to the police report, Arnette’s friend tried to take the blame for the crash before the cornerback was found to be behind the wheel.
Arnette made his name at Ohio State, flashing potential opposite of Jeff Okudah. With the ability to play on the inside or the outside, the Raiders were high on his upside. Now, he’ll head to the waiver wire with slim odds of getting claimed.
Nov. 7: In addition to the lawsuit detailed below, Arnette is facing a second suit filed by a hotel employee. The employee alleges that he told Arnette that the cornerback’s vehicle could not be retrieved from valet because Arnette lost the valet receipt, which prompted Arnette to berate the employee, spit on him, and poke him in the chest (via Jon Hoefling of Deadspin.com). The employee is seeking $500K in damages.
Plus, a video showing Arnette wielding multiple guns and threatening someone’s life has recently surfaced (video link includes offensive and NSFW language). All in all, it’s a bad run of publicity for Arnette, and Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk suggests that his roster spot could be in jeopardy.
Nov. 6: Raiders cornerback Damon Arnette has been accused of injuring a woman in a 2020 car crash, according to a report from TMZ Sports. The woman is seeking $92K in damages. Arnette plans on fighting the allegations.
According to the lawsuit, Arnette slammed into the woman’s car during the morning of October 14, 2020. While attempting to enter team facilities, Arnette reportedly missed a turn, and while trying to correct his mistake, he slammed into the woman’s car at speeds of 65 miles per hour. The woman claims she suffered “head trauma,” and that’s vicariously resulted in “shoulder, neck and back pain as well as depression and panic attacks.”
Further, the woman accuses Arnette of leaving the scene of the crash. According to an incident report, Arnette acknowledged making an unsafe turn leading to a collision, but he said he stuck around the scene long enough to “render aid to the woman.” Arnette also told police that he later left the scene because he was running late for a team meeting, but he had a friend stick around and provide police with information. According to the police report, Arnette’s friend actually tried to take the blame for the collision before cop’s sorted out the story.
“Mr. Arnette denies the allegations in the complaint and looks forward to addressing these claims through the court process,” the player’s attorney said in a statement to TMZ Sports.
Following a standout career at Ohio State, the Raiders selected Arnette with the 20th-overall pick in the 2020 draft. He started seven of his nine games as a rookie, collecting 25 tackles. He got inconsistent playing time through the first four games of this season, never appearing in more than 30 percent of his team’s defensive snaps. The 25-year-old landed on injured reserve with a groin injury back in October.
It’s been a chaotic month for the Raiders. An email scandal forced head coach Jon Gruden to resign from his position, while wide receiver Henry Ruggs was released following a DUI crash that caused the death of a woman.
A foot injury left Mullen sidelined this week, while Arnette is dealing with a groin issue. The Raiders ruled both out for Week 5. This stalls a nice start for Mullen. For Arnette, this represents another setback in an underwhelming start to his career.
A second-round pick in 2019, Mullen became part of the Raiders’ Clemson-heavy draft that year. Mullen reprised his role as a starter this season, being a first-unit player in new DC Gus Bradley‘s defense. Pro Football Focus graded Mullen as a top-25 corner through four games, with the third-year defender joining Casey Hayward and Nate Hobbs in an atypically strong Raiders coverage corps.
One of this Raider regime’s surprise first-round picks, Arnette has not seen the field much in his second season. The Ohio State product has played just 60 defensive snaps through four games. While the Raiders tried him as a starter for much of his 2020 season, Arnette suffered a thumb injury during his rookie training camp and then aggravated the issue later. He played nine games last season. Thus far in 2021, Arnette has joined fellow Jon Gruden–Mike Mayock first-rounder Clelin Ferrell as a seldom-used backup.
The Raiders also activated running back Jalen Richard and cornerback Keisean Nixon from IR. Set to begin his sixth season with the Raiders, Richard returned to practice last week. It will be interesting to see how the Raiders use Richard, given Kenyan Drake‘s presence, but the shifty reserve’s re-emergence should at least help for depth purposes. Peyton Barber is set to miss time with turf toe.