Germain Ifedi

Falcons Sign Germain Ifedi

Not long after visiting the Falcons, offensive linemen Germain Ifedi has indeed joined the team. Atlanta announced on Wednesday that they have signed the veteran to a one-year contract. 

Ifedi met with the Falcons less than two weeks ago, so this move doesn’t come as much of a surprise. The 27-year-old was a first-round pick of the Seahawks in 2016. In four seasons there, he started all 60 games he appeared in. He manned both the right guard and right tackle spots, but never graded out well in terms of PFF ratings.

Ifedi then signed with the Bears two years ago. The first of his campaigns in the Windy City saw his best performance to date, as he played every snap and earned a PFF grade of 65. Availability became a problem for the first time in his career in 2021, however; a knee injury helped limit him to seven starts and nine games played. Just like in Seattle, Ifedi spent time at both guard and tackle.

By signing in Atlanta, the Texas A&M alum becomes the fifth ex-Bear to join the Falcons. The team’s starters at the RG and RT spots – Chris Lindstrom and Kaleb McGary, respectively – are each under contract for one more season. Ifedi could, at a minimum, provide experienced depth at each position for the 2022 campaign and perhaps earn himself an extended stay with his play there.

Falcons Host OL Germain Ifedi

Germain Ifedi is still looking for his next home, and the veteran offensive lineman may have a chance to continue his career in Atlanta. According to ESPN’s Field Yates (via Twitter), the Falcons hosted the offensive lineman on a visit today.

Ifedi spent the past two seasons in Chicago, where he was originally recruited by former Bears GM (and current Falcons executive) Ryan Pace. The lineman started 23 of his 25 games during his time with the Bears, spending time at guard in 2020 before shifting to right tackle in 2021 following the release of Bobby Massie.

Ifedi missed a chunk of the 2021 season with a knee injury, and after starting the first two games following his return, he was demoted to special teams for Chicago’s final two contests.

The offensive lineman was a first-round pick by the Seahawks in 2016, and he ended up starting all 60 of his games during his four seasons with the team. His fifth-year option was ultimately declined, leading to him inking a one-year deal with Chicago in 2020.

Minor NFL Transactions:  12/20/21

Today’s minor moves:

Arizona Cardinals

Baltimore Ravens

Buffalo Bills

  • Promoted: OL Jacob Capra

Chicago Bears

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

Dallas Cowboys

Kansas City Chiefs

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Rams

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New York Giants

Washington Football Team

  • Promoted: OT Sam Cosmi

Minor NFL Transactions:  12/16/21

Today’s minor moves:

Arizona Cardinals

Baltimore Ravens

Chicago Bears

Cleveland Browns

Houston Texans

Kansas City Chiefs

Los Angeles Chargers

New England Patriots

  • Placed on IR: LB Ronnie Perkins

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

  • Activated from reserve/COVID-19 list: G Wes Martin
  • Promoted: WR Pharoh Cooper

New York Jets

Washington Football Team

Bears Place OL Germain Ifedi On IR

The Bears will be without one of their offensive line starters going forward. They moved Germain Ifedi to IR, knocking the veteran blocker out for at least three games.

A knee injury sustained late in the first half Sunday sidelined Ifedi, moving Elijah Wilkinson into Chicago’s lineup. That arrangement will likely continue beginning Sunday. Ifedi is not expected to miss the rest of the season, per Matt Nagy. The Bears also placed outside linebacker Jeremiah Attaochu on IR. Attaochu suffered a torn pec, which will end his season.

Ifedi has started all 21 games he has played for the Bears. The former first-round pick came over after an underwhelming Seahawks tenure, but the Texas A&M product has proven dependable in Chicago. Ifedi slid to guard last season, but after the Bears released Bobby Massie this offseason, Ifedi moved back to the right tackle spot he played in Seattle. The Bears’ upcoming stretch — against the Packers, 49ers and Buccaneers — stands to test Ifedi’s replacement.

Wilkinson signed with the Bears this offseason but could not win the starting right tackle job out of camp. The Bears are already without their preferred left tackle, rookie Teven Jenkins, but the team does roster Jason Peters on the left side. Wilkinson did serve as a plug-and-play option in Denver, being the Broncos’ primary right tackle in 2019 and adding seven more starts to his resume in place of the oft-absent Ja’Wuan James last season.

NFL Distributes Performance-Based Payouts

Since 2002, the NFL’s performance-based pay system has rewarded low-salary players who exceed their expected playing time. This year, due to the pandemic, the league and the players’ union negotiated a gradual payout schedule, one that will meter out the money between now and 2024.

All in all, the league divested $8.5MM per club. This year’s top earner is Buccaneers guard Alex Cappa, a 2018 third-round pick who played every single snap for the eventual champs. Cappa will now receive an extra $622K on top of his $750K base salary for 2021. Per the union’s records, 25 other players also topped $500K, including Cardinals tackle Kelvin Beachum ($604K), Bills cornerback Taron Johnson ($579K), Rams guard Austin Corbett ($573K), Lions cornerback Amani Oruwariye ($572K), Bears tackle Germain Ifedi ($571K), Steelers offensive lineman Chukwuma Okorafor ($568K), Vikings offensive lineman Dakota Dozier ($561K), Ravens safety DeShon Elliott ($557K) and Bucs safety Jordan Whitehead ($555K).

The full list, going team-by-team, can be found here, courtesy of the NFLPA.

Bears To Re-Sign OL Germain Ifedi

It sounds like the Bears’ pursuit of Trent Williams will not result in a deal, but the club is bringing back one of its own offensive linemen. Per Ian Rapoport of NFL.com, Chicago is re-signing Germain Ifedi to a one-year deal worth up to $5MM (Twitter link). Adam Schefter of ESPN.com reports (via Twitter) that $4.25MM of that amount will be in the form of base salary.

This represents a nice raise for Ifedi, who signed a veteran salary benefit contract with the Bears last offseason. After serving as a guard during his rookie season in Seattle in 2016, the former first-round pick kicked out to right tackle for the 2017-19 seasons. Chicago moved him back into the interior of the line, and he performed reasonably well, grading out as Pro Football Focus’ 35th-best guard in the league (out of 80 qualifiers).

He also played better towards the end of the season, which certainly played a part in his pay bump. But after making a failed push for Williams and Russell Wilson, the Ifedi re-up is not likely to get the juices flowing for Bears fans.

The 26-year-old Texas A&M product will be blocking for Nick Foles, the newly-acquired Andy Dalton, or a rookie passer (or maybe all three).

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/6/20

Here are Friday’s minor moves:

Chicago Bears

Cincinnati Bengals

Kansas City Chiefs

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

San Francisco 49ers

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/3/20

Today’s minor NFL transactions:

Baltimore Ravens

Chicago Bears

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

New England Patriots

New York Giants

New York Jets

San Francisco 49ers

Tennessee Titans

NFC Notes: Slay, Hurts, Cowboys, Bears

The Eagles were eyeing Darius Slay for a long time. In March, they finally got him for the cost of a third-round pick, a fifth-round pick, and a brand new three-year, $50MM deal. We heard all the way back in January that upgrading the secondary was a priority for Philly, and it looks like they could change their style of play a bit on defense. The Eagles traditionally play strictly zone under defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz, without a number one corner shadowing the opponent’s top receiver. Slay apparently wants to change that. “I love the challenge,” Slay said of shadowing during his introductory press call, via Kevin Patra of NFL.com.

I kind of ask for it a lot because the fact that I want the game on me, and I want to help win the game, and if the best route to go about it is me traveling with a guy, then I’ll do it,” he continued. “I’ve been doing it the past four or five years,” the former Lion explained, “and I’ve been very, very successful at it. If they need me to continue to do it, that’s what I’ll continue to do.” Most observers seemed to agree that the Mississippi State product’s play dropped off a little bit last season as he dealt with injury, but the Eagles’ new top corner rejected that assertion. “I had a great year, in my opinion,” Slay said of 2019. “I think I played freaking fantastic. … It was dang sure good enough to make a Pro Bowl third season in a row.

Here’s more from the NFC:

  • The Cowboys are still waiting to close an extension with starting quarterback Dak Prescott, and while those negotiations continue they’re apparently taking a look at some of the quarterbacks in this year’s draft class. Dallas owner Jerry Jones conducted a video interview with Oklahoma passer Jalen Hurts, via a post on the team’s Instagram page. The Cowboys’ post offers a cool behind the scenes look at what the pre-draft process is looking like for teams in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Hurts is expected by many analysts to go off the board sometime in the second or third-round, which would be pretty early for the Cowboys to be taking a backup. If they do end up picking Hurts and still don’t have a deal done with Prescott, that would certainly raise a lot of eyebrows.
  • Yesterday we passed along word that the Bears were planning on using free agent acquisition Germain Ifedi at guard, and now we have the details on his contract. Ifedi got a $137.5K signing bonus and a $910K base salary on his one-year deal, Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets. We figured Ifedi didn’t get too much, but this is still pretty cheap for a 25-year-old with versatility who has started 60 games the past four seasons. A first-round pick of the Seahawks back in 2016, Ifedi became a full-time starter but always underwhelmed and never lived up to his draft status. He played both tackle and guard extensively for Seattle.
  • In case you missed it, the Seahawks may only be willing to pay between $13-15MM for Jadeveon Clowney.