Jarrad Davis

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/12/22

Here are the minor roster moves in anticipation for Sunday’s slate of games:

Arizona Cardinals

  • Activated from IR: S Charles Washington
  • Promoted from practice squad: OL Rashaad Coward

Chicago Bears

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Kansas City Chiefs

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Chargers

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

  • Promoted from practice squad: TE Nick Muse

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

San Francisco 49ers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Wednesday NFL Transactions: NFC North

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 BearsLions, Packers and Vikings moves are noted below.

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

Chicago Bears

Claimed:

Released:

Waived:

Placed on IR:

Signed to practice squad:

Detroit Lions

Claimed:

Waived:

Released from IR:

Signed to practice squad:

Green Bay Packers

Signed:

Waived: 

Signed to practice squad:

Minnesota Vikings

Waived:

Lions Finalize Initial 53-Man Roster

Detroit got an early start on reducing its roster size Monday, but the team made the final moves toward 53 players Tuesday. Here are the moves from today that got the Lions there:

Released:

Waived:

Waived/injured:

Placed on reserve/physically unable to perform:

Houston was the only member of the Lions’ 2022 rookie class that failed to make the initial 53-man roster. The young linebacker should have a good chance to land on the team’s 16-man practice squad Wednesday, if he can clear waivers. On the other hand, undrafted defensive lineman Demetrius Taylor found his way onto the roster after a disruptive preseason. Another undrafted rookie, running back Greg Bell, didn’t make the roster, but will remain with the team on Detroit’s injured reserve.

There were a number of surprising, but necessary, cuts today. Igwebuike had a decent chance to make the roster due to his experience and ability returning kicks. Kennedy led the team in catches, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns during the preseason. His lack of effective use on special teams likely lost him his spot on the final roster. Parker started much of last year at nickel for the Lions. Unfortunately he was expendable after the offseason additions of veteran JuJu Hughes and rookie Chase Lucas.

The winner of the kicking battle has been crowned as Austin Seibert made the final roster over Patterson. Patterson showed plenty of ability during the last couple of weeks and it would be no surprise if he was to be claimed by another team off waivers by tomorrow.

Finally, it appears the backup quarterback battle was won by David Blough, who outperformed Boyle in preseason. Still, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Detroit peruse the mass of recently waived players for a new quarterback. They have the second-highest priority on the waiver wire and should have their pick of the litter if they think they can improve on Blough.

Lions To Release LB Jarrad Davis

Another, somewhat surprising name has emerged amongst today’s roster cuts. The Lions are releasing linebacker Jarrad Davis, per Ian Rapoport of NFL Network (on Twitter). 

Davis was a first-round pick of the Lions in 2017. He was an immediate starter in Detroit, reaching the 100-tackle mark in his second season. Things changed dramatically during the final season of his rookie contract, however, as he saw his playing time diminish considerably.

With the Lions having declined Davis’ fifth-year option, the 27-year-old admitted to considering retirement before ultimately signing with the Jets. His one-year stay in New York was limited to just nine games, and resulted in only 25 tackles. Not surprisingly, then, he found himself back on the free agent market this spring.

That led to a reunion in Detroit for the Florida alum, allowing him to join a relatively unproven LB corps. He likely would have been in line for at least a depth role in the middle of the team’s defense, one which is expected to take a significant step forward in 2022. Instead, the Lions will move forward with the likes of Alex Anzalone, Josh Woods, Derrick Barnes and Chris Board as inside ‘backers.

Back on the open market, Davis will now join veterans such as Joe Schobert and Danny Trevathan looking for new NFL homes. He will likely be facing another one-year deal, similar to last season, though he will surely be unable to match the $5.5MM value of his Jets deal from 2021.

NFC North Notes: Smith, Lions, Vikings

A strange situation may be developing in Chicago. Roquan Smith made his trade request public earlier this week, and the standout linebacker is staging a hold-in effort at Bears camp. Smith does not have an agent, but Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk reports a person claiming to represent the fifth-year defender has been contacting teams to gauge trade interest. The person calling teams is not an NFLPA-certified agent, per Florio, and the Bears have not given Smith permission to seek a trade. The team still wants to extend the two-time second-team All-Pro, even though Smith does not have much hope for salvaging this situation. A team that negotiated with this unknown Smith representative would face tampering charges. While teams are interested in the former top-10 pick, Doug Kyed of Pro Football Focus does not expect a first-round pick to be offered — if it reaches the point the Bears are fielding offers.

Here is the latest from the rest of the NFC North:

  • The Lions signed veteran wide receiver Devin Funchess and converted him to tight end, a position where he spent some time while a Michigan freshman in 2012. Funchess is not a lock to make the Lions’ roster, and Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press notes the team may only keep three tight ends. In addition to T.J. Hockenson, Dan Campbell plans to a keep a blocking tight end and an all-purpose player. Funchess would obviously be competing for the latter spot, with Birkett adding Shane Zylstra and fifth-round pick James Mitchell are in that group as well. Garrett Griffin and Brock Wright are vying for the blocking gig. Funchess would still have practice squad eligibility, and teams can still keep 16 players on their taxi squads.
  • Detroit also brought back Jarrad Davis this offseason, but the former first-round pick is not a lock to make the team. Davis has worked with the second- and third-team defenses in training camp, per Birkett, who adds the ex-Florida standout might need to show he can be a productive special teams player to make the team. Davis logged a career-high 46% special teams snap rate with the Jets last season. The Lions are not particularly deep at linebacker, but this regime did not draft Davis, who was brought in during Jim Caldwell‘s final season under GM Bob Quinn. Davis, 27, started 45 games for the Lions from 2017-20.
  • Despite the Vikings selecting Kellen Mond in last year’s third round, they brought back Sean Mannion for another potential run as Kirk Cousins‘ backup. The two have split time behind Cousins at training camp, per the St. Paul Pioneer Press’ Chris Tomasson. They are listed as co-backups on Minnesota’s depth chart, with Mond — after a year of seasoning — seemingly having a better chance to move into the QB2 role. Under Mike Zimmer, Mond worked only with the Vikings’ third-team offense. The quarterback said earlier this offseason he played at less than full strength throughout his rookie year due to contracting COVID-19 during camp.

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: