Jedrick Wills

NFL Restructures: Mahomes, Chiefs, Allen, Bills, Broncos, Browns, Martin, Cowboys

Completing a Marquise Brown signing after franchise-tagging L’Jarius Sneed, the Chiefs were able to find room due to once again taking advantage of Patrick Mahomes‘ unique contract. Kansas City created $21.6MM in cap space by restructuring the three-time Super Bowl MVP’s contract, ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweets. The Chiefs have gone to this well twice before, making the move in 2021 and 2023 to create cap room. The team reworked Mahomes’ deal in September 2023, following the QB market moving well beyond the Missouri-based superstar’s $45MM AAV, by moving guaranteed money around. But the extension still runs through 2031, giving the team room to maneuver here. Even with the Sneed tag on the books — ahead of a potential trade — the Chiefs hold more than $15MM in cap space as of Friday afternoon.

Here is the latest on the restructure front:

  • After the Bills made a few high-profile cuts last week, they restructured their centerpiece player’s deal this week. Buffalo created $16.7MM in cap space by restructuring Josh Allen‘s deal, Field Yates of tweets. This merely moved Allen’s 2024 cap charge down to $30.4MM. No void years are on Allen’s $43MM-per-year extension, but monster cap numbers in 2026 and ’27 ($63.9MM, $56.9MM) will need to be addressed. Allen’s deal runs through 2028. The Bills also adjusted Dawson Knox‘s contract to create cap space, per ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler.
  • The Broncos may be preparing to take the bigger Russell Wilson dead money hit this year as opposed to in 2025. Though, the final number has not yet emerged. The team has created considerable cap space as of late, releasing Justin Simmons and trading Jerry Jeudy. The Broncos also restructured the contracts of 2023 UFA pickups Zach Allen and Ben Powers, per Yates, creating nearly $20MM in cap room.
  • The Cowboys reorganized Zack Martin‘s deal recently, according to ESPN’s Todd Archer, who indicates the move created roughly $13MM in cap space. To end Martin’s holdout last year, Dallas provided considerable guarantees over the final two years of the All-Pro guard’s six-year deal. That contract now features four void years. If the Cowboys do not extend Martin before the 2025 league year, they would be staring at a $24.5MM dead money blow.
  • Jedrick Wills will check in here, even though he is not on a veteran contract. The Browns restructured their left tackle’s fifth-year option, per’s Tom Pelissero. The move created more than $10MM in cap space. Cleveland tacked four void years onto Wills’ deal. If the team does not re-sign him before the 2025 league year, it incurs an $11.8MM dead money bill. The Browns also turned to Jerry Jeudy‘s fifth-year option, which the team recently acquired from the Broncos, to create more than $10MM in space, Yates adds. The team likely used the same void years-based structure with the wide receiver’s option.

Browns LT Jedrick Wills Undergoes Surgery, To Miss Rest Of Season

Stationed on IR with an MCL sprain, Jedrick Wills is eligible to be activated. But the Browns will not have their top left tackle available at any point down the stretch.

Rather than making a return from an injury that often leads to seasons pausing but not ending, Wills underwent surgery Tuesday morning, Bleacher Report’s Jordan Schultz reports. While this is an arthroscopic procedure, it is slated to sideline the fourth-year blocker for the rest of the season. The Browns have since announced the procedure will keep Wills off the field the rest of the way.

This deals a blow to a Browns team that has been playing without top right tackle Jack Conklin since Week 2. Cleveland also lost fill-in tackle starter Dawand Jones to a season-ending injury as well. Conklin suffered an ACL tear in the Browns’ opener; Jones sustained a knee injury in practice leading up to the team’s Week 14 game. Wills’ status update will continue Cleveland’s uphill battle at tackle.

The Browns started James Hudson and Geron Christian at tackle Sunday. That combination was good enough to propel a now-Joe Flacco-quarterbacked team past the Jaguars, despite Christian arriving as a practice squad pickup on Halloween. A 2018 third-round Washington pick, Christian is on team No. 6. But he has made five starts for the Browns this season. A 2021 fourth-rounder, Hudson has made three this year and 10 during his Browns run. This looks like the combination Cleveland will need to rely on going forward.

One of four tackles who went off the 2020 draft board in the top 13 picks, Wills was selected 10th — behind Andrew Thomas but ahead of Mekhi Becton and Tristan Wirfs. The Browns picked up the Alabama alum’s fifth-year option this offseason, locking him into a $14.1MM salary for 2024. This injury-marred season blunts any momentum the team had hoped Wills would carry into the ’24 offseason, potentially complicating extension talks. The Browns already have three big-ticket contracts along their O-line, having also extended guards Joel Bitonio and Wyatt Teller in 2021.

Coming into the season, Wills had never missed more than four games during any of his NFL slates. This gave the Browns some stability at tackle during a period that has involved two severe Conklin injuries. Cleveland gave Conklin a four-year, $60MM extension in December 2022. This points to the Browns running out the Wills-Conklin tandem for a fifth straight season come 2024. Those two will be tabbed to protect Deshaun Watson and likely open run lanes for Nick Chubb. As it stands now, the Browns’ offense is missing cornerstone cogs as it attempts to complement a high-end defense.

Watson and Chubb are done for the year. While Jerome Ford (feat. Kareem Hunt) has been the team’s backfield solution, the Browns are on QB No. 4 in Flacco. Despite not playing for the season’s first three months and being a month away from his 39th birthday, Flacco has played well in two starts with the Browns. The former Super Bowl MVP has done so despite the issues at tackle. While placing an immobile passer behind two backup tackles represents a shaky situation for the Browns, they are atop a jumbled AFC wild-card race at 8-5. The Browns having a solid interior O-line mix (Bitonio-Teller-Ethan Pocic) certainly helps their battered offense’s cause.

Browns To Place LT Jedrick Wills On IR

The Browns earned a lopsided win in Week 9, but it came at a cost on the injury front. Left tackle Jedrick Wills was carted off the field during Cleveland’s win over Arizona, and he will be sidelined for an extended stretch.

Head coach Kevin Stefanski said on Monday that Wills has been diagnosed with an MCL sprain, an ailment which is not expected to be season-ending. However, the Browns’ blindside protector will be placed on injured reserve. That move will guarantee at least a four-week absence. NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero adds that a PCL sprain and bone bruise will set his recovery timeline at roughly six weeks, although Mary Kay Cabot of reports surgery is not expected in this case.

Wills had an air cast fitted on his right leg before being taken off the field, a sign his injury would be serious. Further testing has confirmed those fears, and Cleveland will now need to make a change along the O-line. The Browns are already without starting right tackle Jack Conklin, who suffered an ACL tear in Week 1. Fourth-round rookie Dawand Jones has taken over the RT spot in his absence, and another new starter will need to be found opposite him for at least the time being.

Wills, 24, entered the league with major expectations in 2020. The former top-10 pick has been a full-time starter since his arrival, but his performances to date have drawn criticism. In spite of that, the Browns have remained confident in growth by picking up his fifth-year option, a decision which will keep him on the books through 2024. Stefanski endorsed the Alabama product before the start of the 2023 campaign, one in which he has posted a career-worst PFF grade (54). Wills has been charged with three sacks and 29 pressures allowed through eight games this year.

Cleveland’s offensive line – a unit which has for years been seen as a strength for the team – has helped pave the way for the Browns’ effective, Nick Chubb-less running game in 2023. They rank third in the league in rushing yards per game, but another loss among the starting unit up front could deal a blow to that success. Bringing Wills back will use up one of Cleveland’s eight remaining IR activations.

Restructured Contracts: Garoppolo, Bills, Wilson, Reed

Jimmy Garoppolo continues to help the Raiders carve out cap space. After reworking his deal earlier this offseason, the quarterback has once again restructured his deal, per ESPN’s Field Yates (via Twitter).

The move will create $17MM in cap space for the organization, making them cap compliant. As Vince Bonsignore of the Las Vegas Review-Journal notes, the team previously converted an $11.25MM signing bonus into base salary, increasing Garoppolo‘s salary from $11.25MM to $22.5MM in the process. Bonsignore assumes the front office did some work today to reduce that newfound 2023 number.

Shortly after Garoppolo signed a three-year, $72.75MM deal, he underwent surgery to repair the fractured foot he sustained in early December. The Raiders’ first restructuring helped protect the organization in case the QB’s foot injury lingers into the regular season.

More financial notes from around the NFL…

  • The Bills opened a chunk of cap space today. The team opened $4.5MM in cap space by restructuring the contracts of guard Ryan Bates and cornerback Taron Johnson, per Yates. Bates turned into a full-time starter for the Bills in 2022, while Johnson has started 41 games for Buffalo over the past three seasons.
  • Cedrick Wilson Jr. reworked his contract with the Dolphins prior to cutdown day, per Jonathan Jones of NFL on CBS. The veteran wideout lowered his base salary to $2MM while receiving a $3MM signing bonus, equaling his $5MM in guarantees from last season. With incentives, Wilson can earn up to $7.25MM on his reworked contract.
  • The Vikings recently reworked the contract of guard Chris Reed, according to ESPN’s Ben Goessling. The offensive lineman’s base salary is now fully guaranteed at $1.165MM, an increase from the $1.4MM ($600K guaranteed) pact he was previously attached to. This was the second time this offseason that Reed agreed to a reworked contract.
  • Browns left tackle Jedrick Wills restructured his deal recently, converting $2.28MM of his base salary into a signing bonus, per Yates. The new deal also has three new void years, opening around $1.8MM in cap space.
  • The Cowboys restructured Neville Gallimore‘s contract, according to ESPN’s Todd Archer. The defensive tackle’s salary was reduced from $2.7MM to $1.5MM, and he can now earn $750K via incentives.

Latest On Browns, LT Jedrick Wills

Jedrick Wills has been a mainstay on the Browns’ offensive line since his arrival in the NFL in 2020, operating as a full-time left tackle starter for three years. His performance to date has not lived up to expectations, though, leading to questions about his long-term future with the team.

Cleveland has committed to the former No. 10 pick for the next two seasons, having picked up his fifth-year option for 2024. That decision will earn Wills $14.18MM one year from now, and provide him plenty of further opportunities to play his way into a multi-year extension. Doing so will require a step up in play in the future compared to his first three campaigns, which have yielded middling PFF grades and less-than-stellar evaluations from several observers.

The Browns remain optimistic regarding Wills’ ability to develop into a franchise tackle, however, as noted by Mary Kay Cabot of The Alabama product played a full season for the first time in 2022, logging over 1,000 snaps. He was charged with six sacks and 41 pressures allowed by PFF, and committed eight penalties. Those figures have not resulted in a lack of confidence on the team’s part.

“In the moment, in the season, you felt it because he was healthy and was playing well,” head coach Kevin Stefanski said of Wills earlier this offseason. “But as you go back and watch a lot of the tape over and over, he’s doing a nice job in the run game and the pass game. He’s winning his one-on-one matchups. Never perfect because it’s hard to be perfect as a left tackle in this game. But he played well. I really think, if he stays healthy, the trajectory continues to ascend.”

Cabot notes that a Wills extension will likely come no earlier than the 2024 campaign, giving the team at least a full season to evaluate him with Deshaun Watson at the helm. She adds that some speculation has tied Wills to a position change to guard or the right tackle role he had in college while protecting the blindside of southpaw quarterback Tua Tagovailoa. Continued usage at left tackle can be expected moving forward, though.

The Browns added a developmental tackle in this year’s draft by selecting Dawand Jones in the fourth round. His likeliest route to playing time is on the right side as an eventual successor to veteran Jack Conklin, however, so plenty of attention and expectations will be directed to Wills this season and next. The degree to which he matches the team’s confidence in him will go a long way in determining their willingness to invest in him beyond 2024.

2024 NFL Fifth-Year Option Tracker

NFL teams have until May 2 to officially pick up fifth-year options on 2020 first-rounders who are entering the final year of their rookie deals. The 2020 CBA revamped the option structure and made them fully guaranteed, rather than guaranteed for injury only. Meanwhile, fifth-year option salaries are now determined by a blend of the player’s position, initial draft placement and performance- and usage-based benchmarks:

  • Two-time Pro Bowlers (excluding alternate Pro Bowlers) will earn the same as their position’s franchise tag.
  • One-time Pro Bowlers will earn the equivalent of the transition tag.
  • Players who achieve any of the following will get the average of the third-20th highest salaries at their position:
    • At least a 75% snap rate in two of their first three seasons
    • A 75% snap average across all three seasons
    • At least 50% in each of first three seasons
  • Players who do not hit any of those benchmarks will receive the average of the third-25th top salaries at their position.

With the deadline looming, we’ll use the space below to track all the option decisions from around the league:

  1. QB Joe Burrow, Bengals ($29.5MM): Exercised
  2. DE Chase Young, Commanders ($17.45MM): Declined
  3. CB Jeff Okudah, Falcons* ($11.51MM): N/A
  4. T Andrew Thomas, Giants ($14.18MM): Exercised
  5. QB Tua Tagovailoa, Dolphins ($23.2MM): Exercised
  6. QB Justin Herbert, Chargers ($29.5MM): Exercised
  7. DT Derrick Brown, Panthers ($11.67MM): Exercised 
  8. LB Isaiah Simmons, Cardinals ($12.72MM): Declined
  9. CB C.J. Henderson, Jaguars** ($11.51MM): Declined
  10. T Jedrick Wills, Browns ($14.18MM): Exercised
  11. T Mekhi Becton, Jets ($12.57MM): Declined
  12. WR Henry Ruggs, Raiders: N/A
  13. T Tristan Wirfs, Buccaneers ($18.24MM): Exercised
  14. DT Javon Kinlaw, 49ers ($10.46MM): Declined
  15. WR Jerry Jeudy, Broncos ($14.12MM): Exercised
  16. CB AJ Terrell, Falcons ($12.34MM): Exercised
  17. WR CeeDee Lamb, Cowboys ($17.99MM): Exercised
  18. OL Austin Jackson, Dolphins ($14.18MM): Declined
  19. CB Damon Arnette, Raiders: N/A
  20. DE K’Lavon Chaisson, Jaguars ($12.14MM): Declined
  21. WR Jalen Reagor, Vikings*** ($12.99MM): To decline
  22. WR Justin Jefferson, Vikings ($19.74MM): Exercised
  23. LB Kenneth Murray, Chargers ($11.73MM): Declined
  24. G Cesar Ruiz, Saints ($14.18MM): Declined
  25. WR Brandon Aiyuk, 49ers ($14.12MM): Exercised
  26. QB Jordan Love, Packers ($20.27MM): Extended through 2024
  27. LB Jordyn Brooks, Seahawks ($12.72MM): Declined
  28. LB Patrick Queen, Ravens ($12.72MM): Declined
  29. T Isaiah Wilson, Titans: N/A
  30. CB Noah Igbinoghene, Dolphins ($11.51MM): Declined
  31. CB Jeff Gladney, Vikings: N/A
  32. RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Chiefs ($5.46MM): To decline

* = Lions traded Okudah on April 11, 2023
** = Jaguars traded Henderson on Sept. 27, 2021
*** = Eagles traded Reagor on August 31, 2022

Browns To Exercise LT Jedrick Wills’ Fifth-Year Option

With tomorrow’s deadline for fifth-year option decisions approaching, more teams continue to commit to one extra year with their 2020 first-round picks. In the Browns’ case, that process has led to a long-anticipated move becoming official.

[RELATED: 2024 Fifth-Year Option Tracker]

Cleveland will pick up the option for left tackle Jedrick Wills, reports ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler (Twitter link). Doing so will lock him into a 2024 salary of $14.175MM, since he has yet to receive a Pro Bowl nod. The Alabama product has been a mainstay on the blindside to begin his career, and that will continue for at least the next two seasons.

Wills, 23, made the interesting transition from right tackle (blocking for the left-handed Tua Tagovailoa) at the college level to left tackle in the NFL. He has started all 45 games he has appeared in, though his career has not been viewed favorably to date by PFF. Wills’ best overall grade has been 66.1, and he has ranked no higher than 52nd amongst qualifying tackles in any of his three seasons.

Nevertheless, Wills has been a key member of the Browns’ highly-rated offensive front, a unit which helped the team rank sixth in rushing yards per game last season. Development in run blocking could go a long way to earning Wills a long-term contract given his comparative strength as a pass protector, but both sides will now have an extended period to negotiate an extension.

This decision will make Wills the third offensive tackle from the 2020 class to have his option picked up (joining Tampa Bay’s Tristan Wirfs and the Giants’ Andrew Thomas, the latter of whom has long been expected to sign a multi-year extension at some point in the near future). The Browns added a right tackle prospect (fourth-rounder Dawand Jones) during the draft with veteran Jack Conklin‘s future beyond 2024 potentially in doubt. On the left side of the line, though, continuity will be had for at least two more years.

Latest On Browns C J.C. Tretter, O-Line Plans

Browns center J.C. Tretter profiles as a potential cap casualty, given that his release would save the team $8.2MM against the cap while incurring a modest $1.6MM dead money charge. Cleveland GM Andrew Berry recently addressed Tretter’s status, and he stopped short of confirming Tretter will be back in 2022, the final year of his current contract.

“For all of these situations on our roster, we work through them over the next couple weeks,” Berry said (via Marla Ridenour of the Akron Beacon Journal). “J.C.’s been a real productive veteran for us, he’s been a starter since 2017 for us and played a lot of really good football, we expect him to continue to play some really good football.”

Tretter, 31, has dealt with ankle and knee injuries over the past three seasons, but he has missed just one game since joining the Browns in 2017 (which came in Week 16 of the 2021 season and which was due to a positive COVID-19 test). Although he has never made a Pro Bowl, Pro Football Focus’ advanced metrics have consistently rated him as a high-end starter, with a grade no lower than 72.0 since 2018. And with the Browns angling for a postseason berth in 2022, a quality veteran on a reasonable salary at the pivot is a nice luxury for Berry to have.

That is especially true when considering that RT Jack Conklin, who recently restructured his deal, missed 10 games in 2021 due to a variety of injuries, including a torn patellar tendon. Berry said that Conklin is “doing well” in his recovery, but in light of the play-time incentives included in the reworked contract, it seems as if there is at least a chance that Conklin will miss game action in 2022.

If that happens, though, the Browns do not plan to shift LT Jedrick Wills to the right side. Wills had some injury issues of his own in 2021 and did not play particularly well in his 13 contests, but he is going to stay right where he is, despite his RT experience in high school and college.

“No, Jed will stay at left tackle,” Berry said. “We feel good about the depth that we have at the tackle position.”

Berry did leave open the possibility of supplementing that depth. Swingman Chris Hubbard, who played in just one game in 2021 due to a triceps injury, is eligible for free agency, and as a result of the health issues experienced by Hubbard, Wills, and Conklin, 2021 fourth-rounder James Hudson and former Jets taxi squad member Blake Hance were forced into significant action.

On the plus side, 2020 fifth-rounder Nick Harris played well in Tretter’s absence last year. If Berry were to move on from Tretter, that would suggest that he has considerable faith in Harris.

In related news, head coach Kevin Stefanski will continue calling the team’s offensive plays, per Mary Kay Cabot of (via Twitter). This is despite the fact that Alex Van Pelt no longer has to pull double-duty as offensive coordinator and QB coach.

Browns Place Eight Players On COVID-19 List

The Browns could be seriously shorthanded for Saturday’s game against the Raiders. On Tuesday, the Browns placed wide receiver Jarvis Landry, right guard Wyatt Teller, tight end Austin Hooper, left tackle Jedrick Wills, defensive end Takkarist McKinley and guard Drew Forbes (on IR) on the reserve/COVID-19 list. Meanwhile, tight end Ross Travis and return man JoJo Natson have been placed on the practice squad COVID list. 

[RELATED: Chargers’ Slater Placed On COVID-19 List]

All eight players have tested positive for the virus (Twitter link via’s Tom Pelissero), putting their availability in doubt. Still, as of this writing, the game is still slated to go ahead as planned on Saturday (Twitter link).

On Monday alone, 36 NFL players — including Chargers tackle Rashawn Slater — were placed on the COVID-19/Reserve list. Since then, the league has issued a memo requiring booster shots for all Tier 1 and 2 staff by Dec. 27. While players are not required to be vaccinated, coaches and trainers fall within Tier 1.

The Browns were already down three players on Sunday, including tight end David Njoku, thanks to the reserve/COVID-19 designation. Despite that, they still managed to beat the Ravens and advance to 7-6 on the year.

Browns Activate Jarvis Landry From IR

11:44am: Landry is indeed back on the Browns’ 53-man roster for Week 7. The Browns activated him from injured reserve, providing Case Keenum with a key weapon tonight.

9:56am: The Browns will be missing their all-world backfield duo and Baker Mayfield against the Broncos on Thursday night, but they should have at least one of their starting wideouts available for this game.

Jarvis Landry is likely to return from IR tonight, James Palmer of tweets. Landry has missed the past four games due a knee injury sustained on the Browns’ opening drive of their Week 2 contest. While the five-time Pro Bowler would reasonably benefit from an extra 10 days to prepare, the Browns appear prepared to deploy him to help a shorthanded offense tonight. Landry returned to practice last week.

A Landry re-emergence would be crucial for a Browns team down both Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt, who is now on IR, and one that may not have Odell Beckham Jr. available. The shoulder injury OBJ sustained last week marked a “significant” setback, per Palmer, who notes the injury-prone pass catcher has an uphill battle to play against Denver. The Browns have yet to rule Beckham out, however.

Beckham did not practice during Cleveland’s short week but did play through the injury in the team’s loss to Arizona, catching five passes for a season-high 79 yards in Week 6. Beckham and Landry have not played together in nearly a year; Beckham suffered a torn ACL in Week 7 of last season.

Cleveland’s tackle situation appears to break down similarly. One of the team’s two starters, left tackle Jedrick Wills, is set to be available. Jack Conklin is not expected to play, Palmer tweets. Conklin logged a limited practice Wednesday but missed the Browns’ first two workouts this week. He is battling a knee injury. Swing tackle Chris Hubbard is out for the season; the Browns started rookie James Hudson at right tackle against the Cardinals.