Lamar Holmes

Minor NFL Transactions: 5/23/16

Here’s today’s look at the minor signings and cuts around the NFL:

  • Just one week after being released by New England, running back Joey Iosefa is re-signing with the Patriots, per Doug Kyed of Iosefa, who played in two games for the Pats in 2015, turned down the opportunity to work out for another club, according to Mike Reiss of (Twitter link), who adds that Iosefa had planned to re-sign with New England all along.
  • The Lions have added an undrafted rookie free agent, inking Central Michigan defensive tackle Louis Palmer to a contract, according to Tim Twentyman of (Twitter link). In order to create a roster spot, Detroit released offensive tackle Lamar Holmes, a veteran of 21 NFL games who signed with the Lions in February.
  • The Titans also agreed to terms with an UDFA, signing Kansas State cornerback Morgan Burns, tweets Jim Wyatt of Burns, who ran a 4.38 40-yard dash, is expected to make his mark as a kick returner, according to his draft profile.
  • Former Wisconsin tight end Austin Traylor was set to attend the Chargers rookie camp on a tryout basis, but he’ll instead sign with the Cowboys, reports Michael Gehlken of the San Diego Union-Tribune (Twitter link).

Lions Sign Lamar Holmes

The Lions have signed former Falcons tackle Lamar Holmes to a contract, according to Tim Twentyman of Atlanta cut Holmes from its roster with an injury settlement back in December, so he had been eligible to sign with a new team before 2016 free agency begins next month.Lamar Holmes

Holmes, 26, started 19 games at left and right tackle for the Falcons during his time with the team, including 15 games in 2013. A third-round pick in 2012, Holmes has been slowed by injuries since entering the NFL. He would have spent the entire 2015 campaign on Atlanta’s PUP list had the team not waived him in December.

If the Falcons had kept Holmes on their roster, his contract would have tolled, meaning his rookie deal would have extended for another year, keeping him under contract through the 2016 season. Instead, Atlanta opted to cut him, allowing him to reach the open market. Holmes took advantage of that opportunity by working out for a handful of teams over the last couple months, including the Cowboys, Dolphins, and Jets.

In Detroit, Holmes is probably unlikely to claim a starting job for the 2016 season, but given the problems the Lions have had getting steady production from some spots on their line, including right tackle, it’s not out of the question. At the very least, Holmes should have every opportunity to compete for a spot on the team’s 53-man roster. As long as he has recovered from the foot injury that sidelined him for all of 2015, he’s a decent bet to make the cut.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFC Notes: E. Rogers, Lions, Cousins, Morstead

Standout CFL receiver Eric Rogers is signing with the 49ers, but it was a visit to the Eagles that helped convince him to choose San Francisco. As he explains to Scott Mitchell of the Calgary Sun, Rogers was impressed at a December workout with the Eagles that head coach Chip Kelly took the time to attend and to meet with him despite Philadelphia having a game to play a couple days later. Kelly’s enthusiasm for the Calgary Stampeders star didn’t dim at all when he became the Niners’ new head coach.

“When he got hired by the Niners, he called me two or three hours after it got announced that they were going to hire him,” Rogers said. “He basically told me, ‘I guess I had to come to Cali to sign you since you’re a Cali boy.’ So he still had that kind of recruitment in him like he was at Oregon. He was like, ‘You’re the first player I called and I want you to be the first player I sign at my new job.'”

As we look forward to seeing if Rogers can earn a roster spot and make an impact for the 49ers this season, let’s check in on a few more items from out of the NFC….

  • During an appearance on SiriusXM NFL Radio, new Lions general manager Bob Quinn said that he approached the decision of whether or not to retain head coach Jim Caldwell with an open mind (link via Tim Twentyman of “We had a series of meetings,” Quinn said. “It wasn’t just one day or one hour. It was over a couple of days and a dozen hours. Really, get to know you sessions. My philosophy and his philosophy meshed.”
  • With Kirk Cousins in line for a new contract, Washington will aim to build its roster around the quarterback, and will have to build its salary cap strategy around his new deal, writes Master Tesfatsion of the Washington Post. Former agent Joel Corry tells Tesfatsion that he doesn’t expect Cousins to agree to a team-friendly long-term deal like the ones signed by Colin Kaepernick and Andy Dalton.
  • Mike Triplett of doesn’t expect the Saints to cut Thomas Morstead this offseason, but says the team will have to consider it, since the veteran punter – who has a $4.45MM cap hit in 2016 – may be a luxury the team can’t afford. I suggested as much back in September in my preview of New Orleans’ cap outlook for ’16.
  • Former Falcons tackle Lamar Holmes continued to work out for NFL teams this week, auditioning on Wednesday for the Cowboys, per Adam Caplan of (via Twitter). Holmes spent most of the 2015 season on the PUP list before being cut by Atlanta with an injury settlement.

Workout Updates: 1/15/16

After working out earlier this week for the Jets, free agent offensive tackle Lamar Holmes got a look from another AFC East team, auditioning for the Dolphins, according to Adam Caplan of (via Twitter).

Holmes, a former third-round pick, started 19 games at tackle for the Falcons in 2013 and 2014. However, he spent most of the 2015 season on the PUP list due to a foot injury, and was ultimately cut by Atlanta in December with an injury settlement, allowing him to explore other opportunities. If he’s healthy, he should get a chance to sign somewhere and compete for a roster spot in 2016.

Here are the rest of today’s workout updates:

  • In addition to trying out Holmes, the Dolphins also brought in CFL pass rusher Cleyon Laing, tweets Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle. An Iowa State product, Laing recorded 40 tackles and eight sacks for the Toronto Argonauts this season.
  • Another CFL star, wide receiver Eric Rogers, continued his NFL tour by working out for the Titans, tweets Caplan. Wilson (Twitter link) adds Laing and quarterback Jerry Lovelocke to the list of players who tried out for Tennessee.
  • Linebacker Jason Ankrah, who appeared in two games in 2014 for the Texans, auditioned for the Packers, per Wilson (Twitter link).
  • The Chiefs worked out a pair of tackles, Kevin Graf and Bryce Quigley, according to Wilson (Twitter link). Kansas City remains alive in the postseason, so the team could be considering those offensive linemen as additions to the current roster, but I expect they’re candidates for reserve/futures contracts instead.

East Notes: Mincey, Morris, Wake, Jets

After recording six sacks in his first season with the Cowboys in 2014, defensive end Jeremy Mincey failed to get to the quarterback in 2015, finishing the year without a sack. Still, Mincey was solid against the run, and thinks there’s “probably a 50-50 chance” that he’ll re-sign with Dallas as a free agent (link via Dallas Morning News).

During an appearance on KDFW-TV Channel 4 in Dallas, Mincey was also asked about Greg Hardy‘s impact on the Cowboys, and whether it would be difficult for the team to bring Hardy back and have a cohesive locker room.

“Yeah, it will be,” Mincey said. “I think it will be good for the younger guys, which I don’t know how they feel about him personally, I mean I haven’t spoken to them or asked. It would be me or him, you see what I’m saying? It would be either-or. It’s hard to have two type of line mentality guys in one room, so it’s tough to figure out who the younger guys are going to follow. Of course they’re going to look up to a guy who’s a prolific player. But I just understand the game, and I know what it takes to win.”

Here’s more from around the NFL’s East divisions:

  • With rookie running back Matt Jones cutting into Alfred Morris‘ workload this season, it’s not clear if Morris is a part of Washington‘s long-term plans. According to John Keim of though, the free-agent-to-be hopes not to go anywhere. “When I first came into the league, no matter what team I went to, I just wanted to do my whole career with the same team,” Morris said. “That’s still my goal. I would love to return, but a lot goes into that. I haven’t thought about that. You all keep bringing it up, but we’ll see what happens.”
  • The Dolphins will face a very difficult decision on defensive end Cameron Wake this offseason, writes James Walker of Wake, who is on the books for $9.8MM in 2016, is confident he can return “better than ever” from a torn Achilles, but the club will likely have to make a call on the 34-year-old’s $8.4MM salary before he’s back to full health.
  • The Jets hosted a pair of players for workouts, taking a look at offensive lineman Lamar Holmes and CFL defensive lineman Freddie Bishop, according to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle (via Twitter). Holmes, a former third-round pick, started 19 games at tackle for the Falcons in 2013 and 2014, while Bishop has played for the Calgary Stampeders since ’13.

Minor NFL Transactions: 12/5/15

Here are Saturday’s minor transactions from around the NFL, including practice squad moves:

  • The Falcons have released an injury settlement with tackle Lamar Holmes, releasing him from the reserve/PUP list, tweets Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle. Holmes’ four-year rookie deal had been set to expire at season’s end, but since he was on track to spend all year on the PUP list due to a foot injury, his contract would’ve tolled, keeping him on Atlanta’s roster. Instead, he’ll reach the open market a little early.
  • To fill the roster spot formerly held by Trent Robinson, whose release was noted below, Washington promoted linebacker Carlos Fields from its practice squad, Tarik El-Bashir of reports. The 25-year-old Fields should serve as depth for a depleted Washington linebacking corps Monday night, with Mason Foster and Will Compton expected to start. Perry Riley remains out, and Keenan Robinson is questionable, so Fields figures to see extensive special teams time.

Earlier updates:

  • Darius Jennings joins the Browns‘ active roster after the team promoted the wide receiver from their practice squad. Cleveland cut linebacker Darrian Miller to make room, Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports (on Twitter). A former Virginia wideout, Jennings caught on with the Browns after a minicamp tryout this May. Miller played in two games as a backup after spending nine weeks on the team’s practice squad prior to his promotion.
  • The Dolphins signed defensive end Jordan Williams from their practice squad and cut tight end Brandon Williams to make room, James Walker of tweets. Initially signing with the Jets as a rookie UDFA this offseason, Jordan Williams signed to the Dolphins’ practice squad in October.
  • The Giants waived cornerback Leon McFadden and signed linebacker James Morris to take his spot on the 53-man roster, Dan Graziano of reports (on Twitter). A 24-year-old inside backer, Morris played in three games with the Giants this season after spending time with the Patriots in 2014.
  • Washington waived/injured safety Trent Robinson, per Master Tesfatsion of the Washington Post (via Twitter). Robinson was backing up Dashon Goldson and Kyshoen Jarrett previously. If Robinson clears waivers, he’ll land on Washington’s IR, per Jay Gruden (via Tarik El-Bashir of, on Twitter).
  • The Bills have promoted running back Michael Gillislee to the active roster, reports Joe Buscaglia of WKBW in Buffalo (via Twitter). The former fifth-round pick hasn’t played in the NFL since a three-game stint with the Dolphins in 2013. To make room on the roster, the team has waived offensive lineman Gabe Ikard. The Oklahoma product has only made three appearances this season, although Buscaglia believes his absence will lead to Ryan Groy being active for the first time.
  • With the Bengals dealing with a banged up secondary, the team has promoted cornerback Troy Hill from the practice squad, reports ESPN’s Coley Harvey (via Twitter). To make room on the roster, the team waived cornerback Chris Lewis-Harris, who was injured during last week’s victory over the Rams.

PUP, NFI Players Soon Eligible To Practice

Week 6 of the NFL season will come to an end after Monday night’s game between the Giants and Eagles, and when teams begin preparing for Week 7, many clubs could be welcoming injured players back to practice. Six weeks into the NFL season, players who were placed on the physically unable to perform list or the non-football injury list prior to Week 1’s games will be eligible to return to the practice field.

Of course, just because those players are able to return to practice doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll be healthy enough to do so. Players on the PUP list have a five-week window to begin practicing. Once they return to practice, they have three weeks to be added to their respective teams’ active rosters. In other words, a player currently on the PUP list could return to the field for his team’s Week 7 game, or could return as late as for his team’s Week 15 contest.

The rules for NFI players are similar to those for PUP players. If a player on either reserve list doesn’t return to practice or game action in time, his 2015 season will officially be over.

Here are the players currently on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list who can begin practicing as soon as this Tuesday:

And here are the players currently on their teams’ non-football injury or illness lists, who are also eligible to begin practicing this Tuesday:

  • Arizona Cardinals: WR Damond Powell
  • Buffalo Bills: CB Leodis McKelvin
  • Cincinnati Bengals: T Cedric Ogbuehi
  • Cleveland Browns: DB Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, TE Randall Telfer, RB Glenn Winston
  • Dallas Cowboys: LB Mark Nzeocha
  • Houston Texans: T David Quessenberry
  • Kansas City Chiefs: QB Tyler Bray
  • San Francisco 49ers: WR DeAndre Smelter
  • Seattle Seahawks: DT Jesse Williams

In addition to monitoring players on the PUP and NFI lists, it’s worth keeping an eye on players who have been placed on the injured reserve list with the designation to return. Teams can use this IR-DTR spot on one player per season, placing him on the injured reserve list without necessarily ruling him out for the season. As we explained in an earlier post, players given this designation can begin practicing after six weeks and can return after eight weeks.

That means that a player who was placed on IR-DTR prior to Week 1 can begin practicing on Tuesday, though he won’t be eligible to return to game action until Week 9. A player who was placed on IR-DTR after Week 1 will have to wait until next Tuesday – October 27 – to return to practice, while other IR-DTR players will have to wait until November to practice.

Here’s the list of players currently on IR-DTR who can begin practicing as soon as Tuesday:

Falcons Trim Roster To 76

MONDAY, 3:21pm: In an unusual twist, the Falcons announced today (via Twitter) that Terrell Manning, whose name is listed below as one of the team’s roster casualties, is actually still on the team, since the transaction was never sent into the league office.

The club waived defensive back Jonathon Mincy today, according to a press release, but is still at 76 players since Manning remains on the roster. Presumably, the club will officially cut Manning tomorrow in order to get to a 75-man squad, but we’ll see if the Falcons have a change of heart at all.

SUNDAY, 4:46pm: The Falcons have announced a series of roster moves, trimming their roster to 76 players:


  • Boris Anyama, LB
  • Marquez Clark, WR
  • Michael Ford, RB
  • John Harris, WR
  • Warren Herring, DT
  • Derrick Hopkins, NT
  • Matt Huffer, T
  • Michael Lee, CB
  • Eric Lefeld, G
  • Terrell Manning, LB
  • Sam Meredith, DE
  • Valerian Ume-Ezeoke, C


  • Mickey Shuler, TE

Placed on Physically Unable To Perform List:

  • Lamar Holmes, T

Atlanta will still need to move one more player off its roster before Tuesday’s deadline.

2015 Proven Performance Escalator Raises

According to the NFL’s contractual bargaining agreement, players drafted in rounds three though seven are entitled to raises during the fourth year of their respective rookie contracts. The pay bumps are tied to playing time — a player must have played in 35% of his team’s offensive or defensive snaps in two of his first three seasons, or averaged 35% playing time in said snaps for the duration of his first three years in the league. If one of these thresholds is met, the player’s salary is elevated to the level of that year’s restricted free agent qualifying offer — that figure was $1.431MM last year, and will inflate commensurate with the salary cap increase. Players selected in the first or second round, undrafted free agents, and kickers/punters are ineligible for the proven performance escalator.

Here are the players who will see their 2015 salary rise due to the PPE, courtesy of Jason Fitzgerald of Over the Cap.

Bengals: George Iloka, S; Mohamed Sanu, WR

Bills: Nigel Bradham, LB

Broncos: Malik Jackson, DL; Danny Trevathan, LB;

Browns: Billy Winn, DL

Cardinals: Bobby Massie, T

Chargers: Johnnie Troutman, G

Colts: Dwayne Allen, TE; T.Y. Hilton, WR

Dolphins: Lamar Miller, RB; Olivier Vernon, DE

Eagles: Brandon Boykin, CB; Nick Foles; QB

Falcons: Lamar Holmes, T

Jets: Demario Davis, LB; Antonio Allen, DB

Packers: Mike Daniels, DL

Panthers: Josh Norman, CB

Patriots: Alfonzo Dennard, CB

Raiders: Miles Burris, LB

Rams: Chris Givens, WR; Trumaine Johnson, CB

Ravens: Gino Gradkowski, C

Saints: Akiem Hicks, DT; Corey White, CB

Seahawks: J.R. Sweezy, G; Russell Wilson, QB

Steelers: Kelvin Beachum, T

Texans: Brandon Brooks, G; Jared Crick, DL; Ben Jones, G

Titans: Coty Sensabaugh, CB

Vikings: Robert Blanton, S: Rhett Ellison, TE; Josh Robinson, CB; Jarius Wright, WR

Washington: Alfred Morris, RB

Falcons Sign Three Players, Put Three On IR

Three Falcons players are headed to injured reserve, the team announced today (Twitter links). Starting center Joe Hawley and right tackle Lamar Holmes have been placed on season-ending IR with ACL and foot injuries, respectively. Safety William Moore was also placed on injured reserve, though he received the designation to return, so he’ll be eligible to return from his shoulder injury after eight weeks.

Atlanta has filled two of its three newly-opened roster spots by promoting a pair of players from its practice squad, according to the team (Twitter link). Guard Harland Gunn and safety Sean Baker are two of the newest additions to the Falcons’ 53-man roster. Per D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal Constitution (via Twitter), that final open roster spot will be filled by veteran tackle Cameron Bradfield, who was cut by the Jaguars earlier this month.

Hawley and Holmes hadn’t been playing exceptionally well in the early going — both players had negative grades, according to Pro Football Focus. Still, they were adding some stability to a unit that is missing veteran Sam Baker and has seen rookie Jake Matthews get a little banged up as well.

With Hawley and Holmes now out of the mix, the club worked out a handful of offensive linemen today, including Leroy Harris, according to Adam Caplan of and Ian Rapoport of (Twitter links). It appears for now though that Atlanta will try to get by with Gunn and Bradfield providing depth, as Peter Konz and Gabe Carimi appear likely to assume starting roles.

Safety Kimario McFadden and guard Adam Replogle have filled the two newly-opened spots on the Falcons’ practice squad, reports Ledbetter (via Twitter). Both players were cut by the team at the end of the preseason.