The Saints cleared a handful of roster spots today, letting go of three veterans. NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reports (via Twitter) that the Saints released kicker Cody Parkey, defensive back Brian Poole, and cornerback Desmond Trufant.
Parkey had a brief stint as the Saints starting kicker before suffering a groin injury that landed him on IR earlier today. Ultimately, the veteran was released with an injury settlement, allowing him to sign elsewhere (instead of being sidelined for three weeks before inevitably getting released). During New Orleans’ win over Washington the other day, Parkey didn’t attempt a field goal while converting three of his five extra point tries.
The kicker will be replaced by kicker Brian Johnson, who was signed off the Bears practice squad today. The Saints will continue to rotate through options at the position as they await Wil Lutz‘s return.
Trufant, a Pro Bowler during his time with the Falcons, joined the Saints in early September. He saw time in only two games for the Saints, collecting three tackles. The veteran hadn’t seen the field since Week 2, and he was pushed down the depth chart following the Bradley Roby acquisition. Now, the 31-year-old will have an opportunity to find work elsewhere.
Poole landed on injured reserve prior to the season, which meant he wasn’t going to see the field for New Orleans during the 2021 campaign. Like Parkey, he’ll be released with an injury settlement, allowing him to immediately find work elsewhere. Poole started 17 games for the Jets between the 2019 and 2020 seasons, collecting 103 tackles and three interceptions.
Besides the addition of Johnson, the Saints used one of their open roster spots to sign defensive tackle Christian Ringo.
September 11th, 2021 at 3:27pm CST by Sam Robinson
Here are the latest details on some of the notable contracts recently signed around the NFL:
Harrison Smith, S (Vikings): Four years, $64MM. The deal includes $14.2MM fully guaranteed, but Courtney Cronin of ESPN.com notes $26.4MM will be guaranteed by March 22 (Twitter link). Smith’s 2021 cap hit only comes in at $6.99MM. However, the veteran safety’s salary spikes from $2.95MM in 2022 to $14.7MM in 2023. His 2024 and ’25 base salaries ($14.45MM, $17MM) are not guaranteed.
Danny Amendola, WR (Texans): One year, $2.5MM. Deal includes a $1.25MM base salary and a $250K signing bonus, Sports Talk 790’s Aaron Wilson tweets. Amendola’s pact features $300K in per-game roster bonuses, with an additional $700K available through incentives.
September 6th, 2021 at 7:44pm CST by Zachary Links
The Saints are expected to sign cornerback Desmond Trufant, (Twitter link via NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport). The veteran impressed in his Monday workout and will join the club just in time for Week 1.
Trufant missed the Bears’ final cut but also missed the last couple weeks of training camp due to a family situation. A first-round pick of the Falcons back in 2013, the Washington product became a quality starter in Atlanta. He was a full-time first-stringer for all seven of his Falcons seasons and made the Pro Bowl in 2015. He received a massive payday when the Falcons gave him a five-year, $68.5MM extension in April of 2017.
The terms of Trufant’s new deal are unknown, but he’s still going to collect $3.5MM from the Lions for this season. Meanwhile, the soon-to-be 31-year-old will look to fortify the Saints’ banged up secondary.
August 31st, 2021 at 2:54pm CST by Andrew Ortenberg
The Bears are letting a big name go in their secondary. Chicago has released veteran cornerback Desmond Trufant, a source told Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (Twitter link).
Schefter notes that Trufant missed the last couple weeks of training camp to be with his family after the unfortunate passing of his father, although it’s not clear if that missed time played any role in the Bears’ decision. Schefter also writes that Trufant is still owed $3.5MM from the Lions for this season, and that he hopes to keep playing with another team.
A first-round pick of the Falcons back in 2013, the Washington product became a quality starter in Atlanta. He was always a full-time starter during his seven seasons with the Falcons, and made the Pro Bowl in 2015. He received a massive payday when the Falcons gave him a five-year, $68.5MM extension in April of 2017.
Cut after the 2019 season, he signed a two-year, $21MM pact with the Lions. Detroit released him back in March after he was limited to six games in 2020 due to injury, with the aforementioned significant guaranteed money still owed to him. Chicago scooped him up just a few days after his release, but he didn’t end up making the team.
It’s a surprising cut considering Trufant won’t turn 31 until next month. It probably won’t be long before he’s able to find a new home.
The Bears made Kyle Fuller a surprise cap casualty shortly after free agency’s outset, and while the team did sign Desmond Trufant, the former well-paid Falcon has struggled with injuries in each of the past two seasons. Chicago has resisted adding more help at the position, and Trufant may not have the inside track to start opposite Jaylon Johnson at outside cornerback. After a strong minicamp, Kindle Vildor may be ahead of Trufant on the track toward a starting job, Adam Jahns of The Athletic notes (subscription required). Although the 2020 fifth-round pick out of Georgia Southern only played 135 defensive snaps as a rookie, new DC Sean Desai mentioned him as an in-house solution to replace either Fuller or departed slot corner Buster Skrine. The Bears going with Vildor alongside Johnson will certainly represent an experience step back, with Fuller and Skrine having combined to play 17 seasons.
Here is the latest from the NFC:
On a similar note, the Cowboys appear set on a 2020 Day 3 pick taking over at center. Travis Frederick‘s retirement initially thrust Joe Looney into Dallas’ starting lineup, and after fourth-round pick Tyler Biadasz replaced an injured Looney early last season en route to four starts, the veteran reclaimed his job after a Biadasz pregame hamstring injury. Biadasz played just one offensive snap in Dallas’ final eight games, but Calvin Watkins of the Dallas Morning News notes the Cowboys plan to use the Wisconsin product as their starter this season. Looney, 30, remains a free agent, while OC Kellen Moore has talked up Biadasz this offseason. Biadasz started three years at center for the Badgers, winning the Rimington Award — given to college football’s top center — in 2019.
Some additional details have surfaced on Sheldon Richardson‘s second Vikings contract. The well-traveled defensive tackle agreed to return to Minnesota on a one-year, $3.6MM deal. The Vikings included some incentives in the former Defensive Rookie of the Year’s contract as well. Richardson can collect $250K if he reaches five sacks this season, Ben Goessling of the Minneapolis Star Tribune tweets. If Richardson gets to seven sacks, a $500K bonus will await. The team included another $250K bonus if the 30-year-old D-tackle makes the Pro Bowl. Richardson has two five-plus-sack seasons (2014 and ’15) and one Pro Bowl on his resume.
Cornerback Desmond Trufant has agreed to join the Bears on a one-year deal, as Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets. Terms of the deal are not yet known.
Trufant will try to fill the Bears’ post-Kyle Fuller void, though he’s unlikely to match his production. Fuller left Chicago with passes defended (82), good for top-five in franchise history. He also ranked in the top-20 for tackles (390) and interceptions (19).
After his best seasons with the Falcons, Trufant was rewarded with a five-year, ~$69MM mega-contract. In 2019, the Falcons dropped him, even though he managed four interceptions in just nine games. Then, the Lions released Trufant earlier this month to escape the rest of his two-year, $21MM deal. The Lions saved $6MM but were left saddled with ~$6.2MM in dead money.
Injuries were the culprit once again — Trufant played in just six games for the Lions, tallying one interception, four passes defended, and 20 total tackles. The Bears, who clearly need help in the secondary, could give him a chance to restore his value.
The Lions have informed Desmond Trufant that he will be released, according to ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter (on Twitter). Trufant — who served as a starting cornerback for Detroit — will be officially dropped on the first day of the league year later this month.
Trufant compiled four interceptions and seven passes defensed in 2019, despite being limited to only nine games. Still, the Falcons released him midway through his five-year, ~$69MM mega-deal.
That led him to the Lions last March on a more reasonable two-year, $21MM deal. Still, his Lions contract included $14MM in guarantees. So, with his release, the Lions will save $6MM while being left with roughly $6.2MM in dead money, provided that he isn’t classified as a post-June 1 release.
Trufant’s short Lions tenure ended early, due to injury. He finished out 2020 with one interception, four passes defended, and 20 total stops in six games.
December 2nd, 2020 at 10:35am CST by Zachary Links
The Lions have placed cornerback Desmond Trufant and defensive tackle Danny Shelton on injured reserve, per a club announcement. With the season winding down and the Lions out of the playoff picture, this could mark the end of their seasons.
The Lions picked up Trufant in March after he was released midway through his five-year, ~$69MM mega-deal with the Falcons. So far, he’s played in just six games under his more reasonable two-year, $21MM deal, which includes $14MM in guarantees. Last year, Trufant compiled four interceptions and seven passes defended despite being limited to only nine games. In 2020, he’s got one interception, four passes defended, and 20 total stops.
Shelton — who entered the league as the No. 12 pick in the 2015 draft — never lived up to his draft status, but he’s built a solid career as a run-stuffer. The 345-pound lineman played a key role with the Pats last year and found a home as the Lions starter this year. Unfortunately, after eleven starts, his season could be done thanks to a knee injury suffered against the Texans.
Down two defensive starters, the Lions will travel to Chicago this weekend to face the Bears.