Johnathan Hankins

Cowboys Activate NT Johnathan Hankins

JANUARY 16: Hankins is back in uniform for the Cowboys. The team activated the veteran defensive tackle from IR ahead of its Monday wild-card matchup. Hankins, whom the Cowboys acquired from the Raiders days before the trade deadline, has been out since Week 14.

JANUARY 11: The Cowboys could be getting some defensive reinforcement in time for their showdown with the Buccaneers. Michael Gehlken of the Dallas Morning News reports (via Twitter) that nose tackle Johnathan Hankins was designated for return today.

That means Hankins’ 21-day practice window officially started today. Of course, there’s no guarantee that the Cowboys are still in the postseason in 21 days. So, most likely, the Cowboys are preparing for the nose tackle to be on the field for Monday’s game against the Buccaneers, a sentiment that Gehlken echoes.

A pectoral strain forced Hankins to the injured reserve in December, but assuming he’s back this season, he’ll ultimately have missed the minimum four required games.

“I feel good. I feel like I could’ve been back sooner but, with the [IR] rules, I had to be out four weeks,” Hankins said today (via the team’s website). “But I’m not mad about it, it just gave me more time to get my body right and ready for the playoffs…The time is now.”

In October, Hankins was traded with a seventh-round pick from the Raiders to the Cowboys for a sixth-round selection. The 30-year-old got into five games (three starts) for his new squad, collecting 10 tackles. Hankins previously spent time with the Giants, Colts, and Raiders, including an eight-year stretch where he started 116 of his 117 games.

The Cowboys got some more positive injury news today. Gehlken passes along that center Tyler Biadasz and linebacker Leighton Vander Esch both returned to practice today.

Injury Notes: Dolphins, Bills, Hankins, Allen

As we head into what could very well be the season’s first true snow game, the Dolphins and Bills will be preparing to play without a few key players. Miami will be playing without safety Eric Rowe, while Buffalo will head into the matchup without offensive guard Ryan Bates.

Rowe hasn’t been the prominent defensive player he was during his first two seasons in Miami but was forced back into a starting role when safety Brandon Jones was placed on injured reserve. A hamstring injury will hold Rowe out of tonight’s game, pushing the Dolphins to their third-string safety.

With Elijah Campbell also out tonight with a concussion, Miami has only two options to turn to at safety. The team will either have to start undrafted rookie Verone McKinley, who started a game earlier on this year, or veteran Clayton Fejedelem, who hasn’t started a game since 2018 when he was with the Bengals, alongside regular starter Jevon Holland. McKinley did overlap with Holland at Oregon with the two playing a year together in the Ducks’ secondary. The team also has the option of pushing a cornerback like veteran Justin Bethel into the safety role if needed.

The Bills will be without Bates to start a game for the first time this season. Bates suffered an ankle injury in last week’s win over the Jets that knocked him out of the game. Buffalo used two players to fill in for Bates in Greg Van Roten and Bobby Hart. Seeing how Van Roten got the majority of the snaps last week, he’s likely to be tapped to start this week in place of Bates.

Here are a few other injury updates from around the league, these both from the NFC:

  • Cowboys veteran defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins suffered a sprained pectoral muscle early in last week’s win over the Texans, according to Jon Machota of The Athletic. The injury appears to be significant as owner/president/general manager Jerry Jones told the media that, while Hankins may make a return for the playoffs, “he won’t be back before then.” The foreseen absence has led the team to place Hankins on IR. Any starts or playing time for Hankins will likely be taken by a combination of Neville Gallimore, Quinton Bohanna, and Carlos Watkins for the remainder of the regular season.
  • The Cardinals also lost a defensive lineman to a significant injury last week when defensive end Zach Allen injured his hand in the third quarter of Monday’s loss to the Patriots, according to Charean Williams of NBC Sports. Allen underwent surgery on his hand that will keep him out this week against the Broncos. When asked about Allen’s prospects to return this season, head coach Kliff Kinsgbury responded with uncertainty. Allen is headed to free agency at the end of this season and, after a strong showing last year with four sacks, five tackles for loss and 14 quarterback hits, Allen improved greatly in his contract year tallying 5.5 sacks, 10 tackles for loss, and 19 quarterback hits. Arizona doesn’t have much depth on the defensive line, so Jonathan Ledbetter will likely earn the start opposite J.J. Watt this week while the Cardinals may need to elevate some reinforcements from the practice squad.

Raiders To Trade DT Johnathan Hankins To Cowboys

Johnathan Hankins is heading back to the NFC East. The Raiders are sending their longtime defensive tackle to the Cowboys, according to’s Ian Rapoport (on Twitter).

The former Giants starter has seen his Raiders role diminish under new DC Patrick Graham this season, but the veteran interior D-lineman has extensive starting experience. Hankins stands to add a seasoned depth piece to Dallas’ high-end D-line.

This is a pick-swap trade. Dallas will send a 2023 sixth-round pick to Las Vegas for the 10th-year defender, per Tom Pelissero of tweets, adding that a 2024 seventh will go back to the Cowboys (Twitter links). It will mark Hankins’ third career team change.

After a mid-career stopover with the Colts, Hankins enjoyed a lengthy Raiders run. The former Giants second-round pick started 61 games with the Raiders. Only one of those came this season, which has seen Hankins’ defensive snap rate drop from 58% to 37%. Hankins, 30, had played at least 58% of the Raiders’ defensive snaps in each of his previous four seasons with the team.

While the Raiders had a regular role carved out for the 340-pound defender, big money did not follow. The Colts gave Hankins a three-year, $27MM deal in 2017, but they cut bait a year later. Since, Hankins has signed a host of short-term, lower-cost agreements. This latest deal will not hit the Cowboys’ cap too hard. Hankins signed a one-year, $1.33MM accord this offseason, being one of many midlevel defensive linemen to sign with the Raiders during Josh McDaniels‘ first months at the helm.

At his best, Hankins was known as a plus run-stopping presence. The Cowboys are in greater need in that area than they are for pass-rushing help, and the Dallas Morning News’ David Moore notes the team indeed discussed adding Hankins on Monday to help shore up its run defense (Twitter link). So much for Jerry Jones“I don’t see a trade” forecast. Dallas leads the NFL in sacks (29) but ranks just 20th against the run.

Although Hankins took a backseat to new Raiders starters Andrew Billings and Bilal Nichols this season, he will be added to the Cowboys’ interior rotation. Hankins has spent most of his career as a 4-3 D-tackle. He will join the likes of Osa Odighizuwa, Quinton Bohanna, Trysten Hill and Neville Gallimore in Dallas. Gallimore was inactive for the Cowboys’ Week 7 game. Progression of Raiders rookie D-tackles Neil Farrell and Matthew Butler helped lead to this trade, The Athletic’s Vic Tafur tweets.

Minor NFL Transactions: 8/17/22

After yesterday’s deadline dump, there are plenty of new names available to be plucked out of free agency. Here’s today’s minor moves:

Arizona Cardinals

  • Waived: LB Jesse Lemonier

Atlanta Falcons

  • Signed: WR KeeSean Johnson
  • Waived: WR Tyshaun James
  • Waived (injury settlement): DL Bryce Rodgers

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

Dallas Cowboys

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Jacksonville Jaguars

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Rams

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

  • Placed on IR: OT Jonathan Hubbard

Tennessee Titans

Raiders Place Three Defenders On PUP

A trio of Raiders defenders landed on the Physically Unable to Perform List today. The team announced that defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins, cornerback Trayvon Mullen Jr., and defensive tackle Bilal Nichols were all placed on PUP.

It’s uncertain what ailments the two defensive linemen are dealing with, but Mullen underwent foot surgery back in May, so it was always unlikely that he’d be ready to go for the start of training camp. If any of the players remain on PUP past August 23, they’ll be forced to miss the Raiders’ first four games of the 2022 season (a change from last year’s six-game rule).

The Raiders traded for Rock Ya-Sin and signed Anthony Averett earlier this offseaosn, so Mullen’s delayed start could cost him a starting gig. The former second-round pick has spent his entire three-year career with the Raiders, starting 31 of his 37 games. After starting all 16 games in 2020, the 24-year-old started each of his five games for the Raiders in 2021, finishing with 20 tackles, one interception, and four passes defended. He had two stints on the IR during the 2021 campaign.

Hankins and Nichols both missed a chunk of OTAs, but at the time, it was assumed the defensive tackles were healthy scratches. Instead, the two veterans will be limited to start training camp. Hankins started 14 games for the Raiders last season, collecting 38 tackles. Nichols signed a two-year deal with the Raiders this past offseason after spending the first four seasons of his career with the Bears. With the duo sidelined to start training camp, rookies like Neil Farrell Jr. and Matthew Butler could have a chance for extra reps.

The Raiders also announced that they’ve signed wide receiver Isaiah Zuber. The receiver spent the 2021 campaign on the 49ers, Browns, and Jets practice squads. He’s seen time in four career games, totaling 50 yards from scrimmage on four touches.

Raiders Re-Sign Johnathan Hankins

The Raiders are keeping one of their own in the fold. On Monday, the Raiders announced that they’ve re-signed defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins.

Terms of the deal are not yet known. Last offseason, Hankins re-upped on a one-year deal worth $3.5MM, a drop-off from his previous two-year, $8.5MM accord.

The Ohio State product been with the Raiders for past four seasons. Originally a 2011 second-round pick of the Giants, Hankins spent his first four years in New York. He then signed a three-year, $30MM pact with the Colts in 2017, but was released just one season into that. He landed with the Raiders, where he’s been ever since.

He’s started at least 14 games in each of his four seasons with the Raiders, including all 16 in 2020. In 2021, he finished with 38 tackles and, despite not registering a sack, he did notch two QB hits. All in all, he’s started in 60 of his 61 Raiders games for 172 tackles, 2.5 sacks, and three fumble recoveries.

Hankins, heading into his tenth pro year, has registered 356 tackles, 14.5 sacks, 36 tackles for loss, nine passes defensed, three forced fumbles, and three fumble recoveries over the course of his career.

Raiders To Re-Sign Johnathan Hankins

The Raiders are keeping one of their own in the fold. Las Vegas is re-signing defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins to a one-year deal, Vic Tafur of The Athletic tweets.

Hankins’ contract is a one-year deal worth $3.5MM, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle tweets. It comes with a $1.75MM salary and a $1.75MM signing bonus, per Wilson. This will represent a slight salary decrease for the mammoth D-tackle, whose previous Raiders pact was a two-year, $8.5MM accord. 

The big fella from Ohio State has been with the Raiders the past three seasons now. Originally a second-round pick of the Giants back in 2011, he spent his first four years in New York. He then signed a three-year, $30MM pact with the Colts in 2017, but was released just one season into that. He landed with the Raiders, where he’s been ever since.

He’s started at least 14 games in each of his three seasons with the team, including all 16 in 2020. He finished with 48 tackles, one sack, and a fumble recovery while playing a little over 60 percent of the defensive snaps as a run-stuffer. He received middling marks from Pro Football Focus.

He signed a two-year, $8.5MM deal prior to the 2019 season, and it’ll be interesting to see how the financials on this one compare to that.


Seven Raiders Defenders To Come Off Reserve/COVID-19 List

While the Raiders practiced without several defenders this week, they are at least on track to have those players in uniform Sunday night against the Chiefs.

After continuing to test negative for COVID-19, seven Raider defenders will come off the team’s coronavirus list Saturday, Paul Gutierrez of tweets. Johnathan Abram, Johnathan Hankins, Arden Key, Maliek Collins, cornerback Isaiah Johnson and defensive lineman Kendal Vickers will be activated Saturday. David Irving is set to come off Las Vegas’ practice squad COVID-19 list, per Gutierrez.

The Raiders placed these seven players on their reserve/COVID list earlier this week, preventing each from practicing. They joined Lamarcus Joyner in that regard; the Raiders activated Joyner on Friday. This octet profiled as close contacts of Clelin Ferrell, who tested positive for the coronavirus earlier this week. Abram, Hankins, Key, Collins, Johnson and Vickers will be eligible to play against the Chiefs if their most recent COVID tests come back negative Sunday morning. Irving must be activated off the Raiders’ practice squad to suit up in Week 11.

Unlike Week 7’s Raiders-Buccaneers game — which was moved out of the Sunday-night window after Las Vegas’ first-string offensive line did not practice all week because of Trent Brown‘s positive COVID test — the NFL did not switch this week’s Raiders-Chiefs rematch out of the Sunday-night time slot.

Raiders To Place Several Defenders On Reserve/COVID-19 List

4:09pm: The following Raiders landed on the reserve/COVID-19 list: Johnathan Abram, Maliek Collins, Johnathan Hankins, Arden Key, cornerback Isaiah Johnson and defensive tackle Kendal Vickers. While this comes in under the rumored eight-starter number, five Raiders defensive first-stringers are currently sidelined — when Ferrell and Joyner are included.

3:06pm: The Raiders already prepared for a game without their first-string offensive line. They will face another difficult task ahead of their Week 11 rematch with the Chiefs.

At least eight members of the Raiders’ starting defense will land on their reserve/COVID-19 list, according to Ian Rapoport of (on Twitter). Some of Las Vegas’ non-starter contributors on defense will also surface on the COVID list soon.

These players qualify as high-risk close contacts, and while Rapoport and’s Tom Pelissero note they are not ruled out of Sunday night’s game (Twitter link), this certainly will bring another challenge for a team accustomed to dealing with them on the coronavirus front.

This news comes after the Raiders placed Clelin Ferrell and Lamarcus Joyner on their coronavirus list. The former tested positive for COVID-19, Rapoport tweets. With two starters already on the list — and Ferrell set to miss the team’s Week 11 game — Wednesday’s news would cover almost every other starting defender. The latest slew of players set to appear on Vegas’ COVID list are indeed close Ferrell contacts, Vincent Bonsignore of the Las Vegas Review-Journal tweets.

Players who land on the virus list must isolate for five days. That timetable starts not at the point they land on the list but dates back to the individuals’ last contact with someone who contracted the virus. The Raiders are currently down right tackle Trent Brown due to COVID-19 and have lost a 2021 draft choice — and more than $1MM in total this season — because of failure to comply with the NFL’s COVID protocols.

Ahead of their Week 7 game against the Buccaneers, the Raiders practiced without Brown and the rest of their starting offensive line because of the group qualifying as high-risk close contacts of the mammoth tackle. The rest of the Raiders’ O-line returned to face the Bucs, which was moved from Sunday night to Sunday afternoon. With more Raiders out of practice because of the virus a month later, it would not be surprising if the NFL removes this game from the Sunday-night time slot as well to create flexibility in the event a postponement is necessary.

Raiders Rework Johnathan Hankins’ Deal

The Raiders converted the $1.75MM roster bonus due to defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins this offseason into a signing bonus, a source tells Field Yates of (on Twitter). The adjustment prorates his bonus over the next two years and indicates that he’ll be a part of the team’s plans for 2020 and beyond. 

Hankins has turned in a solid 2019 with starts in all 15 of his games for the Raiders. With one game to go, he’s got 48 tackles and one sack on his stat sheet, including 30 solo tackles – tying him for 21st among all NFL interior defensive linemen.

Hankins joined the Raiders on a two-year, $8.5MM deal prior to the 2019 season. He’s slated to earn a $3.75MM base salary next year before reaching the open market, but the Raiders won’t let him get away if he keeps up the good work. Hankins, 28 in March, could be in line for an extension this offseason.

Before that, Hankins will round out the 2019 regular season in a Week 17 matchup against the Broncos. Hankins & Co. will be playing for more than pride – with a win, and lots of luck elsewhere, they could sneak into the playoffs.