Jarrad Davis

Lions To Bring Back LB Jarrad Davis

Jarrad Davis spent the 2021 season with the Jets, but the former Lions first-round pick is heading back to Detroit. Despite a new regime having replaced the one that drafted him, the veteran linebacker committed to rejoin the Lions on Friday, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets.

Although Davis received steady opportunities in Detroit, the Lions did not pick up his fifth-year option. He was benched during his contract year and ended up a Jet on a one-year deal. The Florida alum contemplated retirement following his initial Detroit exit and saw injury issues slow him in New York.

The Lions used Davis as a full-time player from 2017-18, and he compiled a 100-tackle, six-sack season in 2018. Advanced metrics did not view Davis’ work especially well, and he missed five games due to injury in 2019. In 2020, the Lions used him as just a four-game starter. With the Jets last season, Davis played nine games (five starts) but recorded just 25 tackles and spent the first half of the season on IR.

Detroit has not made significant investments at inside linebacker since Davis departed in 2021. The team jettisoned Jamie Collins midway through last season, opening the door for fourth-round rookie Derrick Barnes to see additional playing time. Alex Anzalone remains under contract, but the team lost Jalen Reeves-Maybin to the Texans last week. Reeves-Maybin’s 82 tackles led Lions linebackers last season.

Inside Linebacker Market

There are many inside linebackers waiting patiently on the open market. A wild first week of free agency has come and gone with other positions seeing record deals and big names moving. The market for inside linebackers, however, has been quiet and less than lucrative.

In years past, we’ve seen monster deals to players like C.J. Mosley, whose contract has an average annual value of $17MM and guaranteed him $43MM at signing, and Darius Leonard, whose contract has an average annual value of $19.7MM and guaranteed him $33MM at signing. The largest payout we’ve seen this offseason to an inside linebacker was when the Packers kept De’Vondre Campbell from entering free agency with a five-year, $50MM deal, with a guaranteed $15MM. It’s certainly an impressive deal, and one the esteemed linebacker deserves, but no other deals have come close.

After being cut by the Jaguars, Myles Jack signed a two-year, $16MM deal to become a Steeler. Josey Jewell remained with the Broncos after signing a two-year, $11MM deal. Minnesota’s new inside linebacker, Jordan Hicks, joined the Vikings on a two-year, $10MM contract. Christian Kirksey signed a similar deal to remain with the Texans. We’ve seen a few other small deals like Zaire Franklin signing a three-year, $10MM deal to remain in Indianapolis and Alex Anzalone signing a one-year, $2.25MM contract to play another year with the Lions.

While that may sound pretty active, there are many big names who have yet to find deals. The biggest of these names is Bobby Wagner. Cut after ten outstanding years in Seattle, Wagner was expected to be a highly sought after free agent. While there have been many teams who’ve voiced interest in the eight-time All-Pro, there has been no word of negotiations. Any deal Wagner signs will likely top the numbers posed by Campbell and the Packers, but the fact that he has yet to find a home may hint at the fact that the money he’s looking for isn’t being offered.

There are many other impact names on the open market: Kwon Alexander, Jayon Brown, Jarrad Davis, Dont’a Hightower, Anthony Hitchens, Nick Kwiatkoski, Reggie Ragland, Joe Schobert, and Danny Trevathan.

Due to the low spending we’ve seen thus far and the plethora of names available, these players will likely have to search for the right fit and accept a decent deal if offered. They may end up having to wait until injuries provide an opportunity for them to fill in on a roster. The exception, of course, is Wagner, who can afford to be patient. Wagner will have the luxury of being able to wait and see how rosters form throughout the league, biding his time until he’s sure he’s joining a contender. Look for the others to give up on looking for a lucrative payday and settle for decent deals from teams with schemes they like.

Minor NFL Transactions: 10/30/21

Here is the Week 8 Saturday minor move blitz:

Atlanta Falcons

Buffalo Bills

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Houston Texans

Los Angeles Rams

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Jets 

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Washington Football Team

NFL Minor Transactions: 10/27/21

All of today’s minor transactions in one place:

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Detroit Lions

Houston Texans

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Jets

Pittsburgh Steelers

San Francisco 49ers

Wednesday NFL Transactions: AFC 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 BillsDolphinsJets and Patriots moves are noted below.

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

Buffalo Bills

Signed:

Placed on IR: 

Signed to practice squad:

Miami Dolphins

Claimed:

Waived: 

Signed to practice squad:

New England Patriots

Claimed:

Waived: 

Signed to practice squad:

New York Jets

Claimed:

Re-signed:

Waived:

Placed on IR:

Jets’ Jarrad Davis To Miss Time

Another week, another brutal blow to the Jets’ defense. Last week it was pass-rusher Carl Lawson tearing his Achilles, and now one of New York’s other big offseason acquisitions is hitting the shelf.

Linebacker Jarrad Davis has an ankle injury that will keep him out until some time around the Jets’ bye week, rookie head coach Robert Saleh announced Monday. Fortunately it’s not a season-ender like Lawson’s, but it’s still a tough break. Davis, who went down during the team’s preseason game against the Packers over the weekend, was supposed to be a starter. Saleh announced that rookie fifth-round pick Jamien Sherwood would slide into the starting lineup to replace him while he’s out.

The 21st pick of the 2017 draft by the Lions, Davis didn’t quite live up to first-round expectations in Detroit. He saw his fifth-year option get declined, and became a free agent after four seasons with the team. The Florida product then inked a one-year, $5.5MM pact with the Jets this offseason.

That deal apparently almost never happened, because Davis revealed just a few weeks ago that he considered walking away from the game and retiring. He went on to say that he felt rejuvenated playing for Saleh and his 4-3 defense where he felt like a better fit, so this injury is especially disappointing.

New York underwent a lot of change this offseason, with a new coach, new quarterback, and overhauled defense. Health issues are the last thing they needed as they enter a 2021 campaign with lots of uncertainty.

Jets’ Jarrad Davis Considered Retirement

Jarrad Davis joined the Jets earlier this year on a one-year, $5.5MM deal. But, according to the outside linebacker, that almost didn’t happen. 

I contemplated walking away,” Davis said (via Dennis Waszak Jr. of the Associated Press). “I really did, man. But at the end of the day, like, I wouldn’t have felt right doing something else, you know?

Davis was the No. 21 overall pick in 2017 but didn’t quite live up to his draft status. Then he saw his role — and confidence — reduced under then-Lions head coach Matt Patricia. After starting at least eleven games in each of his first three pro seasons, Patricia started him just four times in 2020. Davis played on less than 30% of the defensive snaps and pondered life without football.

The battle’s up here,” Davis said, pointing to his head. “And I was losing that battle every single day.”

Now he says he feels rejuvenated under new Jets coach Robert Saleh and his 4-3 defense. Davis fits in well as a 4-3 OLB, giving him a chance to show what made him such a highly-valued prospect just a few short years ago.

To date, he has 45 games to his credit across four years in Detroit. His most productive year came in 2018 when he started all 16 games and finished with 100 tackles, six sacks, and five passes defended.

Jets To Sign Jarrad Davis

We heard last night the Jets were expected to “make waves” in free agency, and they’re starting to heat up their activity. They’ve agreed to terms with free agent linebacker Jarrad Davis, a source told Ian Rapoport of NFL Network (Twitter link).

The Jets are giving him a one-year deal for $7MM, Rapoport reports. New Jets coach Robert Saleh will be installing a 4-3 defense, and Davis fits nicely as a 4-3 outside linebacker. The 21st overall pick of the 2017 draft by the Lions, Davis didn’t quite pan out in Detroit. He certainly wasn’t terrible but didn’t live up to his draft status, and the Lions declined his fifth-year option last offseason, making him a free agent now.

All told, he started 45 games across his four years in Detroit. After starting at least 11 games in each of his first three pro seasons Matt Patricia curtailed his role sharply in 2020, as he only started four times and played just below 30 percent of the defensive snaps.

His most productive year was in 2018, when he started all 16 games and finished with 100 tackles, six sacks, and five passes defended.

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/10/20

We’ve got a long list of all the minor transactions from the last day or so:

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

Chicago Bears

Cincinnati Bengals

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

  • Waived: DL Ron’Dell Carter
  • Promoted: WR DeMichael Harris

Kansas City Chiefs

Los Angeles Rams

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New York Giants

New York Jets

San Francisco 49ers

Washington Football Team

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