Kareem, who was just activated off of injured reserve, is being waived to make room for defensive end Montez Sweat, acquired by trade this morning. The Bears also announced a practice squad release, indicating a possible return for Kareem on that unit. The Colts are expected to do the same with Boettger.
O’Connor will lose his active roster spot to make room for quarterback John Wolford, whom Tampa Bay officially promoted today in order to ward off interest parties such as the Rams and Vikings, both of whom are experiencing injury issues at quarterback.
The Falcons suffered a loss on the scoreboard yesterday but an even larger one in the injury department as well. Defensive tackle Grady Jarrettsuffered an ACL tear and is out for the remainder of the season, reports ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Jarrett exited Atlanta’s Week 8 loss to Tennessee, and further testing has confirmed the worst-case scenario. Today’s news will bring an end to the two-time Pro Bowler’s ninth season, each of which have come with the Falcons. Attention will turn to his recovery process while the team will be faced with replacing his production over an extended stretch for the first time in his career.
The 30-year-old has missed only three games across his time in Atlanta, and none since 2018. Jarrett’s loss will thus be notable in terms of its impact on the team’s defense but also its rarity. He has remained a full-time starter in 2023, though his playing time (62% snap share) has taken a dip compared to previous seasons.
That figure marks the lowest workload Jarrett has logged since 2016, as other members of the team’s defensive front have seen notable playing time. The Falcons made a number of moves in the offseason aimed at boosting their front seven, a unit which has for years relied heavily on Jarrett’s production as a pass rusher and a run defender. The former fifth-rounder has remained consistent in both regards, having posted 61 tackles and six sacks last year.
Given his durability and continued impact on the statsheet, it came as little surprise when Jarrett and the Falcons agreed to another extension in May 2022. That $49.5MM pact has him on the books through 2025. It also carries cap hits of $20.38MM over the next two years, so it will be crucial for the Clemson product to recover in full over the next several months and return to his pre-injury form once he is healthy. No guaranteed salaries remain on Jarrett’s deal, but $1MM roster bonuses are due in each of the next two league years, helping ensure his future in Atlanta.
Williams and Chiefs D-tackle Chris Jones carry high contract-year cap hits, while the Steelers’ two front-seven cornerstones each are set to go into training camp with cap figures north of $20MM. As the salary cap climbed to $224.8MM this year, here are the top defensive cap figures as camps near:
As for Williams, the Giants had wanted to adjust his deal to reduce his eye-opening cap number. As of mid-June, however, no extension appeared to be on the team’s radar. The previous Giants regime signed off on the 2021 Williams extension (three years, $63MM). The Giants are also uninterested — for the time being, at least — in extending Jackson, who was also a Dave Gettleman-era defensive addition.
Donald is in the second season of a three-year, $95MM deal. The Rams gave Donald a landmark raise last year, convincing the all-everything D-tackle to squash retirement talk. A no-trade clause exists in Donald’s contract, which pays out its guarantees this year. Mosley remains tied to the $17MM-per-year deal the Mike Maccagnan regime authorized with the Jets. That contract, which reset the off-ball linebacker market in 2019, still has two seasons remaining on it due to the deal tolling after Mosley’s 2020 COVID-19 opt-out call. The Jets restructured the deal last year.
Washington now has two D-tackles tied to deals of at least $18MM per year. While Daron Payne‘s pact is worth more ($22.5MM AAV), higher cap hits on that deal will come down the road. Three years remain on Allen’s 2021 agreement. At safety, no team is spending like the Seahawks. In addition to the big-ticket deals authorized for Adams and Diggs, Seattle gave ex-Giants starter Julian Love a two-year, $6MM accord in March.
New Titans GM Ran Carthonattempted to give Byard a pay cut. That request did not go over well, but the standout safety remains with the team and has not requested a trade. Tennessee re-signed Landry on a five-year, $87.5MM deal in 2022; the veteran edge rusher has yet to play on that deal due to the ACL tear he sustained just before last season.
The 49ers can bring Bosa’s number down via an extension, which has long been on the team’s docket. As San Francisco extended Deebo Samuel just after training camp began last year, Bosa received back-burner treatment due to the fifth-year option. The star defensive end’s price undoubtedly went up during the waiting period, with the former No. 2 overall pick earning Defensive Player of the Year acclaim in the fourth year of his rookie contract.
Here are some details on deals recently reached around the NFL:
Grady Jarrett, DT (Falcons): Three-year, $50.47MM. The contract, according to Mike Florio of NBC Sports, includes a guaranteed amount of $34.47MM consisting of a $16.5MM signing bonus and the full amounts of the 2022 and 2023 base salaries worth $1.47MM and $16.5MM, respectively. The deal includes roster bonuses of $1MM each due on the fifth day of the 2024 league year and the 2025 league year. Jarrett’s base salary for the 2024 and 2025 seasons will see an increase of $500,000 each if he makes the Pro Bowl in the 2023 or 2024 seasons, respectively.
Jordan Akins, TE (Giants): One-year, $1.09MM. The deal, according to Aaron Wilson of Pro Football Network, is composed of a base salary of $1.04MM with a signing bonus $50,000. Under the veteran salary benefit, Akins will only have a salary cap hit of $945,000.
Rasheem Green, DE (Texans): One-year, $3.25MM. The contract, according to Wilson, includes a guaranteed amount of $1MM consisting of a $500,000 signing bonus and $500,000 of the base salary worth $1.5MM total. Green will receive a $500,000 workout bonus and a per game active bonus of $44,177 for a potential season total of $750,000.
Jason Verrett, CB (49ers): One-year, $1.04MM. Verrett’s deal has an injury waiver which leaves none of the money guaranteed for the 30-year old who has spent his fair share of time on the injured reserve during his career. Under the veteran salary benefit, Verrett will only have a salary cap hit of $895,000.
Geno Smith, QB (Seahawks): Refiled one-year, $3.5MM. Original details posted here. The deal, according to Wilson, has a signing bonus of $500,000 and a base salary of $1.26MM. The contract lists a roster bonus of $1.69MM and a workout bonus of $50,000. Additionally there is a Week 1 roster bonus of $585,000 due to Smith on September 15. Smith will receive a per game bonus of $30,000 whether active or inactive with that bonus increasing to $65,000 if Smith is active for a low season total of $510,000 and a potential season total of $1.12MM if Smith spends the entire season on the active roster. We mentioned Smith’s $3.5MM worth of potential incentives in the first post, but Wilson details that those incentives will be based on playtime, playoffs, passing yards, and whether or not Smith is voted to the Pro Bowl.
Mitchell Trubisky, QB (Steelers): Incentive details for two-year, $14.29MM contract. Original details posted here. According to Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated, the incentives are as follows: in 2022, Trubisky is due $1MM if he hits 60% of the team’s playtime, $1.5MM if he hits 70%, $2MM if he hits 80%, $2.5MM if he hits 70% and the Steelers make the playoffs, and $4MM if he hits 80% and the team makes the playoffs. He’ll earn an additional $250,000 if he makes the Pro Bowl. If Trubisky hits the 60% mark of playtime in 2022, he’ll earn a roster bonus in March of 2023 worth $1MM. That roster bonus elevates to $4MM if he triggers the 70% bonus from 2022. The same playtime, playoff, and Pro Bowl incentives will be in place for the 2023 season, as well, just without the following year roster bonus.
The Falcons have agreed to a brand new deal with Grady Jarrett (Twitter link via NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport). The defensive tackle has a fresh three-year extension that will pay up to $51MM and keep him under contract through the 2025 season.
Jarrett previously had one year to go on his deal, a four year, $68MM pact inked in 2019. That contract came with $42.5MM in guarantees and $38MM guaranteed at signing. This new deal furnishes Jarrett with a healthy $34.5MM locked in at signing.
The Falcons have now secured their standout interior lineman while tamping down their 2022 cap figure. That’s a big deal for Atlanta. Heading into today, they were in the bottom five of the NFL in cap room — ahead of the Titans, Cardinals, Patriots, and 49ers — and just $4.8MM under the max. The newfound cash will help them sign their rookie class and, perhaps, enable some veteran additions between now and September.
“I’m not going to predict that I 100 percent know,” head coach Arthur Smith said recently when asked about a potential Jarrett extension (via the team website). “He knows where we stand. We love Grady. We also know that players may have their own opinions, and that’s welcome. It’s part of doing business. We’ll see how it plays out. I love Grady and we’d love to keep coaching him.”
Jarrett, who just turned 29, earned Pro Bowl honors in 2019 and 2020. There was no Pro Bowl for him in 2021, but he did suit up for all 17 games while continuing his usually solid work as a run-stuffer.
Despite theKyle Pittsselection giving the Falcons the chance to pair him with Julio Jones and emerging standout Calvin Ridley, the team’s cap situation may be at a point where this trio will never take the field together. The Jones trade buzz is not going away.
Jones remains available, according to The Athletic’s Jeff Schultz, who notes the Falcons would like to trade the future Hall of Fame wideout (subscription required). Although the 32-year-old wideout made the Pro Bowl each season from 2014-19 and missed four total games during that span, he is signed to a receiver-record contract and missed seven games in 2020. New GM Terry Fontenot confirmed the Falcons are listening to offers on their all-time great.
The Falcons have made a number of restructures this offseason — from Deion Jones to Jake Matthews to Matt Ryan, with Schultz adding the team did not want to restructure its quarterback’s deal — but still have less than $500K in cap space. Atlanta obviously needs to sign its draft class, and although losing Jones for that purpose would mark a sobering conclusion to his Falcons run, the team views only he and Grady Jarrett as candidates to fix its cap problem, Schultz adds. The Falcons, however, want to keep Jarrett long-term; 10 years may be it for Jones in Atlanta.
The Thomas Dimitroff regime gave Jones his $22MM-per-year extension during the same summer Jarrett received his payday. Jarrett has two seasons left on his deal; Jones has three. A Jones restructure is not out of the question, but that would mean the Falcons moving a lot of money into Jones’ age-33 season and beyond. Atlanta, per Schultz, does not want to go this route, one that would involve considerably more dead money down the line. It is a non-starter for the Falcons to move Jones before June 1, but were they to trade him after that date, they would create more than $15MM in cap space.
Numerous teams could use Jones, but most would need to carve out cap space to absorb his $15.3MM salary. Some expect teams to ask the Falcons to eat a portion of Jones’ salary to help facilitate a trade, per Schultz, who also notes the Titans have come up as a potential suitor. Tennessee has a noticeable hole at receiver opposite A.J. Brown, with Corey Davis heading to New York, but the team has barely $3MM in cap space before its top draft salaries are accounted for. A first-round pick is not expected in a Jones deal, though Ian Rapoport of NFL.com would not expect Fontenot to move Jones unless a strong offer emerges (video link via the Pat McAfee Show).
Losing Jones would certainly affect the Falcons, who can count the seven-time Pro Bowler as a top-three player (comfortably) in franchise history. From 2014-19, Jones amassed 9,388 receiving yards — the most in a six-season span in NFL annals. But the Falcons’ new regime does not appear to view 2021 as a season in which Super Bowl contention is realistic, Schultz notes. Atlanta hopes to benefit from a bidding war involving teams that do.
Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott is definitely considering a holdout, though Yahoo’s Charles Robinson reports that Elliott has not yet made up his mind one way or another. However, Robinson acknowledged earlier today (via Twitter) that the situation could go sideways fast. He writes that the club has discussed an extension for Elliott for a month or so, but those talks have not progressed in any meaningful way, so Elliott is now exploring his options.
Critically, Robinson notes that Elliott must report to training camp by August 6 in order to get a fourth accrued season towards free agency and preserve his right to hold out next summer if he so chooses. That reality gives Dallas a little more leverage, but Robinson also reports that the two sides are still working towards an agreement and that Elliott’s toying with the idea of a holdout has not yet strained the relationship between player and team.
Elliott and his camp will take this week to assess his options. If Elliott agrees to report on time, perhaps the team will assure him that it will prioritize an extension for him before the regular season. To date, a new deal for Elliott has not been on the top of Dallas’ to-do list.
We rounded up some NFC notes earlier today, and now we’ll dive into more items from the National Football Conference:
The last we heard, the 49ers and DeForest Bucknerhad not made much progress in extension talks, and Joel Corry of CBS Sports says that the contract San Francisco gave to DeeFord after acquiring him via trade could be complicating Buckner negotiations (Twitter link). The club is set on using a team-friendly structure just like it always does — and just as it did with Ford — and it will not change its M.O. for Buckner, which is surely a sticking point for 2016’s No. 7 overall pick.
Seahawks RB C.J. Prosise may be a release candidate, but Seattle head coach Pete Carroll says the oft-injured tailback is very much in the mix for a roster spot. Carroll said, per John Boyle of Seahawks.com, “[Prosise] has been fit throughout, he’s really strong, worked out really hard in the offseason to get his strength right, and his weight is up, but he’s fit and has really been able to do a little bit of everything. So to add him into the competition is really nice. So we’re fired up about C.J. being back.”
The $42.5MM guarantee inGrady Jarrett‘s contract is essentially a full guarantee. While the Falcons defensive tackle officially received $38MM guaranteed at signing, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk reports he also has a $4.5MM injury guarantee that turns into a full guarantee on the third day of the 2020 league year. Jarrett is almost certain to receive all $42.5MM. The $38MM figure represents the second-highest full guarantee a team has given to an interior defender, with Jarrett’s deal trailing only Aaron Donald‘s ($50MM fully guaranteed) in that department. So, the zero-time Pro Bowler (but well-regarded lineman) made out well on deadline Monday.
Part of that guaranteed amount is an $18MM signing bonus, with Florio adding Jarrett will earn $6.5MM in base salary in 2019 and $10.5MM in 2020. Of Jarrett’s 2021 and ’22 salaries, only $4.5MM is guaranteed. His 2022 $16.5MM salary is non-guaranteed, and the structure of this contract looks like it will make it fairly easy for the Falcons to cut bait after 2020 if the investment proves poor.
Here is the latest from around the NFC, shifting from the Falcons to teams that do not open camp this week:
Part of the reason Patrick Peterson requested a trade last season stemmed from the changes the Cardinals were making on defense. Their switch from their long-used 3-4 look to a 4-3 did not go well, and Peterson was not happy with how far the team fell since the 2015 NFC championship game. “I mean, honestly, what happened last year, it was a lot of turn of events,” Peterson said during a SiriusXM NFL Radio interview (via the Arizona Republic). “Especially being one game removed from going to the Super Bowl, and getting new coaches, getting new staff, a new scheme, when you’re so used to playing in a 3-4, and you felt that it was good for the players that you had on your roster. So, it was just a lot of whirlwind going on last year and I was just frustrated.” Fully backtracking on last year’s trade demand, the eight-time Pro Bowl cornerback recently said he wants to be a Cardinal for life.
The Jarrett deal looks like good news for Seahawks defensive tackle Jarran Reed, Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times writes. Reed’s representation will be pointing to Jarrett’s deal as the floor for Reed, Joel Corry of CBS Sports said in the piece. The Seahawks have identified Reed as an extension candidate after his breakout 10.5-sack 2018. Reed statistically outperformed Jarrett in 2018, registering 24 quarterback hits in addition to his sack total. While Corry adds he does not believe Reed will sign for what Chiefs defensive tackle Chris Jones does, he adds the longer the Seahawks wait on this front the more a 2020 Reed deal — with a Jones pact factored into the equation — could cost them.
Bobby Wagner‘s deal will likely take precedence over Reed’s, Condotta continues. The Seahawks have more than $23MM in 2019 cap space and, as of mid-July, stand to hold more than $75MM in 2020. They do not have a bevy of pricey defender contracts on their 2020 cap sheet, with both Wagner and Reed in walk years, so the team will have to determine how it wants to allocate resources. Wagner is still believed to be targeting more money thanC.J. Mosley received ($17MM AAV) on the open market.
Barely an hour away from this year’s deadline, the Falcons and Grady Jarrett have a new deal in place. Jarrett agreed to a four-year, $68MM deal to stay in Atlanta, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com reports (on Twitter).
Momentum built in the past 24 hours on the Jarrett front, and he becomes the second franchise-tagged player to agree to an extension Monday. Robbie Gould and the 49ers agreed to terms earlier today, leaving only Jadeveon Clowney without a deal. Jarrett, 26, has been a full-time starter for the Falcons since his second season. He would have made $15.2MM this year on the tag.
Jarrett’s $17MM-per-year average is well off Aaron Donald‘s benchmark for defensive tackles, but considering the disparities between the interior defenders’ profiles, that was to be expected. However, agent Todd France got his client on the same level as four-time Pro Bowler Fletcher Cox, whose 2016 extension averages $17.1MM annually. Jarrett is now NFL’s third-highest-paid interior defender.
Jarrett will receive $42.5MM in guarantees, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. This total places Jarrett fifth among interior defenders — behind Donald, Cox, J.J. Watt and Kawann Short.
Although Jarrett has zero Pro Bowls in four seasons and just 14 sacks in that span (not counting his three-sack Super Bowl LI), the Falcons have long acknowledged the former fifth-round pick’s immense value to their defense. Jarrett produced 15 tackles for loss in 2017 and graded as a top-10 interior defender last season, per Pro Football Focus. He registered a career-high six sacks and 16 quarterback hits in 2018.
Arthur Blank said earlier this year he wanted Jarrett to join Julio Jones and Deion Jones as “Falcons for life.” The team has secured a key item off its offseason checklist and can now turn its attention to the Joneses.
Jarrett has been vocal about his desire for a new deal. He abstained from much of the Falcons’ offseason activities, though he reported for the Falcons’ mandatory minicamp in June along with receiver Julio Jones.
If Jarrett does not secure an extension on Monday, the Falcons will not be able to sign him to a long-term contract until the season is over. After that, they will have the option to employ the franchise tag for the second straight year, though it would come with a 20% increase and the risk of irritating one of their defensive stars.
If Jarrett stays on the $15.2MM tag, he’ll carry the third-highest cap hit in 2019 among defensive tackles, putting him behind only Aaron Donald ($17.1MM) and Kawann Short ($17MM).