John Ross

FA WR John Ross Generating Interest

It sounds as if free agent wide receiver John Ross will find a new employer soon. The No. 9 overall pick of the Bengals in the 2017 draft, Ross spent the 2021 campaign with the Giants and is still recovering from a knee injury that he sustained towards the end of the season.

As such, Ross will begin meeting with teams around the start of the regular season next month, per Jeremy Fowler of (via Twitter). He is expected to be fully healthy by that time, and a number of teams have remained in “consistent contact” with the Washington product.

Injuries have been the prevailing theme of Ross’ career. He possesses blinding speed, but due to various ailments and his inability to impress then-head coach Marvin Lewis, Ross played in just one game in his rookie year in Cincinnati. Though he started 10 games in 2018, he managed only 21 catches for 210 yards, and after a hot start to 2019, he missed another eight games due to injury.

The Bengals made the easy call to decline Ross’ fifth-year option in May 2020, and in his final season in the Queen City, Ross was a healthy scratch for a number of games and requested a trade as a result of his diminished role. Cincy could not find any takers, and Ross eventually landed on IR with a foot injury.

He signed with the Giants in March 2021, and he once again missed time for health reasons. A hamstring malady kept him out of the first few games of the season, and the above-mentioned knee trouble sidelined him towards the end of the year. Still, clubs apparently remain tantalized by his speed and big-play ability, which will buy the 26-year-old another opportunity.

Ross has indeed shown flashes of his potential. In 2019, he caught 28 balls for 506 yards — good for a 18.1 yards-per-reception rate — and in his first and only season with Big Blue, he tallied 11 catches for 224 yards, which represents a career-best 20.4 YPR average. His 43.4% career catch percentage is quite low, but that is largely a function of the routes he is asked to run. If he can ever stay healthy for a full season, his abilities as a bonafide home run threat would be a welcome addition to any number of WR rooms.

Although Fowler did not specify which clubs have expressed interest, the Colts, Cowboys, Packers, and Ravens are just a few of the teams that could still use receiving help.

NFL COVID-19 List Updates: 12/29/21

Several key players returned to practice Wednesday. Here are the latest COVID-19 updates from around the league:

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

Buffalo Bills

Carolina Panthers

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

Dallas Cowboys

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Rams

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

New York Jets

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

  • Activated from practice squad/COVID-19 list: WR Rico Bussey

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Washington Football Team

Giants Activate WR John Ross From IR

The Giants will be relying fully on offseason acquisitions at wide receiver Sunday, having ruled out both Sterling Shepard and Darius Slayton. One of their outside hires will make his season debut in Week 4.

John Ross is off the Giants’ IR list, moving onto the team’s active roster after the mandatory three weeks. The Giants placed Ross on IR with a hamstring injury, one he suffered early in training camp. After extensive rehab, Ross will have a chance to begin his second-chance effort.

Ross will join Kenny Golladay, first-round pick Kadarius Toney and late-summer waiver claim Collin Johnson as the Giants’ top receivers against the Saints. Shepard and Slayton are on the shelf due to hamstring injuries sustained in Week 3.

Despite Ross not coming particularly close to justifying the top-10 investment the Bengals made, the Giants gave him $2.25MM this offseason. They signed Ross before coming to terms with Golladay, and the team later drafted Toney. Ross still holds the Combine’s 40-yard dash record time — 4.22 seconds — but he did not pan out in Cincinnati and has run into frequent injury trouble during his career.

Ross did show promise in 2019, averaging 63.3 yards per game over an eight-game sample, but that was the only season in which he cleared 250 yards.

Giants Place WR John Ross On IR

John Ross is heading to the IR. The Giants placed the wide receiver on injured reserve today, keeping their offseason acquisition sidelined through at least the first three weeks of the season.

Ross is well known for being the ninth overall pick in 2017, as well as his legendary NFL Combine 40-time of 4.22. Things didn’t go as planned with the Bengals, as his four years in Cincinnati were an abject disaster. He struggled with injuries, playing in three, 13, eight, and three games during his four seasons there. He finished his run with 51 catches for 733 yards and ten touchdowns, a pitiful sum for a top ten pick.

The 25-year-old inked a one-year, $2.5MM deal with the Giants this offseason. He was sidelined throughout August with a hamstring injury, and that ailment will keep him on the shelf through September. Ross likely would have slotted in as the team’s fourth receiver behind Kenny Golladay, Sterling Shepard, and Darius Slayton.

The Giants made a long list of moves today, including additions to their practice squad. See all of their transactions here.

Wednesday NFL Transactions: NFC 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 CowboysEaglesGiants and Washington moves are noted below.

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

Dallas Cowboys

Signed to practice squad:

New York Giants

Placed on IR:




Signed to practice squad:

Philadelphia Eagles

Signed to practice squad:

Washington Football Team

Placed on IR:


Signed to practice squad:

Giants To Sign John Ross

The Giants were rumored to be looking for another receiver this offseason, and now they’ve found one. New York has agreed to terms on a deal with receiver John Ross, a source told Mike Garafolo of NFL Network (Twitter link).

It’s a one-year, $2.5MM deal that includes $1MM in guaranteed money, Garafolo reports. The move isn’t necessarily the big splash many Giants fans have been waiting for, but it’s a nice low-risk flyer with significant upside. Ross is well known for being the ninth overall pick in 2017, as well as his legendary NFL Combine 40-time of 4.22.

Things didn’t go as planned with the Bengals nearly immediately, and his four years in Cincinnati were an abject disaster. He struggled with injuries, playing in three, 13, eight, and three games during his four seasons there. He finished his run with 51 catches for 733 yards and ten touchdowns, a pitiful sum for a top ten pick.

Needless to say, the team didn’t exercise his fifth-year option and returning to Cincy was never in the cards. He’s obviously got game-breaking speed, and showed plenty of flashes during the 2019 season when he had 506 yards in only eight games, so the potential is there.

After releasing Golden Tate the Giants don’t have much at all at receiver beyond Darius Slayton and Sterling Shepard, as Ross has a realistic path to some playing time in 2021. Keep an eye on this one.

Bengals Activate Sam Hubbard, Place John Ross On IR

Takkarist McKinley will not make his Bengals debut this week, needing to go through the NFL’s COVID-19 protocol. But the team will have a key pass rusher in uniform after some time away.

The Bengals activated Sam Hubbard from IR Saturday. The third-year defensive end has missed the past three games because of an elbow injury.

Cincinnati also moved John Ross to its IR list. While Ross has not been active since Week 6 and has not caught a pass since Week 1, he has run into multiple injury issues during another disappointing season. After a foot injury shelved him recently, more foot trouble emerged in practice this week, Mike Garafolo of tweets.

This setback came shortly after Bengals coaches had a conversation with Ross about working as a cornerback, Garafolo notes, but the injury came on a play in which Ross was playing his usual position. None of this is good for a player who joined the Bengals as a top-10 pick.

The team did not pick up Ross’ option and has not featured him prominently this season, using younger players Tee Higgins and Auden Tate over Ross. While Ross requested a trade, the Bengals did not move him. Ross’ contract expires at season’s end. The Combine’s 40-yard dash record holder is not on track to enter free agency with much momentum.

Hubbard will return to a defensive line that no longer houses Carlos Dunlap, whom the Bengals traded during Hubbard’s injury hiatus. Hubbard will rejoin Carl Lawson in Cincy’s lineup, while McKinley — added on waivers this week — is set to join the incumbents next week.

The Bengals also placed cornerback Darius Phillips on IR and promoted guard Quinton Spain, wide receiver Stanley Morgan, cornerback Jalen Davis and defensive tackle Kahlil McKenzie ahead of their matchup with the Steelers.

Trade Rumors: Thomas, Njoku, Watt, Jets

Saints head coach Sean Payton has said his team has no interest in trading star receiver Michael Thomas, though Thomas’ camp was recently said to be looking for potential deals. There has been no movement towards a Thomas trade, and whether that’s because New Orleans has no interest in dealing him or because the club has not received an offer it likes, Ian Rapoport of says Thomas will stay put.

With the trade deadline two days away, let’s round up a few more rumors on players who could be on the move:

  • The Browns don’t want to trade tight end David Njoku, but Njoku has renewed his request to be dealt, and Rapoport says Cleveland has been fielding calls on the former first-rounder. It may take at least a fourth-round pick to get a deal done, but with Austin Hooper set to return and with the emergence of rookie Harrison Bryant, the Browns may elect to move Njoku.
  • Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports writes that the Texans are at the center of the trade market, with one executive saying Houston could move as many as five players if it wants to. Rapoport expects the Packersinterest in Will Fuller — which dates back to the summer — to ramp up, but it will likely take a high pick to convince the Texans to move Fuller. Fellow WR Kenny Stills has also drawn some interest, though rival clubs see the contracts for Stills and Randall Cobb as prohibitive. DE J.J. Watt may be receptive to a trade, but considering his contract and age, other teams probably don’t value him like the Texans do.
  • The Jets have received calls on LB Avery Williamson, OTs George Fant and Chuma Edoga, and CB Quincy Wilson, per Albert Breer of Rich Cimini of says the Steelers — who recently lost Devin Bush for the season — could be in the market for Williamson, and Edoga also seems like a good bet to be dealt since he does not look like a fit with the current regime.
  • La Canfora says teams have also called the Jets about WR Breshad Perriman and TE Chris Herndon, though Breer notes that safety Marcus Maye has not drawn much interest.
  • Rapoport names Dolphins RB Jordan Howard and Seahawks TE Jacob Hollister as two other players who could be moved. And though the Bengals are shopping disgruntled wideout John Ross, Jeremy Fowler of says there hasn’t been interest in Ross (Twitter link).

Bengals Shopping WR John Ross

John Ross reiterated his request to be traded Friday, and the Bengals may be attempting to accommodate the disgruntled deep threat.

The Bengals, who have made Ross a healthy scratch at times this season, have made calls on the fourth-year wide receiver, Tyler Dragon of the Cincinnati Enquirer tweets.

He of a Combine-record 4.22-second 40-yard dash, Ross is listed as questionable with an illness for Sunday’s Bengals-Titans game. Ross disputed this designation, indicating (via Twitter) he is healthy and dissatisfied with his role. Ross has just two catches for 17 yards this season.

Cincinnati has already unloaded Carlos Dunlap after his weeks-long dissatisfaction spree, and the team is covered at wide receiver. The Bengals have used A.J. Green, Tyler Boyd and second-round pick Tee Higgins as their top three wideouts. Auden Tate, who came up in trade rumors after being a healthy scratch earlier this season, also still resides on the Bengals’ roster. Tate is controlled beyond 2020; Ross is not.

Despite the Dunlap deal, however, the Bengals are not known for aggressiveness in trades. The rebuilding team is not willing to deal 11th-year defensive tackle Geno Atkins, and Sirius XM Radio’s Adam Caplan threw cold water on the prospect of a trade. The Bengals would rather let Ross walk in March than deal him now, per Caplan (on Twitter). Teams are interested in Ross, per Caplan, which would make an anti-trade stance rather confusing.

Ross’ injury troubles led the Bengals to pass on his fifth-year option. The ex-Washington Husky, however, has shown intermittent promise. He caught seven touchdown passes in 2018 and surpassed 500 receiving yards in eight games last season. This and his elite speed would make Ross an interesting trade chip ahead of Tuesday’s deadline.

Bengals’ John Ross Requests Trade

After playing just one snap on Sunday, Bengals wide receiver John Ross is seeking a fresh start. This week, agent Brad Cicala went to the team officials to request a trade, Mike Garafolo of (on Twitter) hears. 

Ross was a healthy scratch for much of the season leading up to Sunday’s game. The Bengals didn’t make any promises after talking to his agent, but they’ve got a couple of weeks to explore options before the Nov. 3 deadline.

Ross, the former No. 9 overall pick in the draft, has yet to turn his speed into pro success. Health has played a big part in Ross’ struggles – due to various injuries and his inability to impress then-head coach Marvin Lewis, Ross played in just one game as a rookie. Though he started ten games in 2018, he managed only 21 catches for 210 yards, a disappointment in terms of both overall output and yards-per-catch average. Then, after a hot start to 2019, he missed another eight games due to injury.

In three pro seasons-and-change, Ross has played a grand total of 26 games. At times, when healthy and on the field, he’s dazzled. Ross looked like a monster in the making after is Week 1 performance against the Seahawks last year, going off for seven catches, 158 yards, and two scores. In Week 2 against the 49ers, he topped 100 yards once again, and he did it with just four receptions. After that, Ross missed all of October and November due to injury and did not post another 100-yard game.