Laremy Tunsil

Texans Designate Tytus Howard For Return, Place Kendrick Green On IR; Howard To Play Left Guard

OCTOBER 8: The Texans will indeed have Howard and Tunsil back in the lineup for today’s game against the Falcons, per Rapoport. However, as Wilson reports, Howard will be returning to the interior of the line and will slot in at left guard. Earlier in the week, Wilson published a full-length article discussing the possbility of that alignment and noted that the presence of George Fant, who has played well at right tackle in Howard’s absence, could allow Fant to stay right where he is.

It is unclear if Howard at LG and Fant at RT will be a permanent arrangement, but if they perform at a high level today, it will be difficult for head coach DeMeco Ryans to make a change in that regard.

OCTOBER 5: Kendrick Green will not join Howard and Scruggs in the IR-return picture. The recent trade acquisition underwent meniscus surgery that is expected to sideline him for the rest of the season,’s Ian Rapoport notes. While Green did not suffer any ligament tears and is in line to be ready for Houston’s offseason program, he will head into a contract year coming having played in just four games over the past two seasons.

OCTOBER 4: The Texans have seen C.J. Stroud show considerable promise early in his rookie season, and the No. 2 overall pick has done so behind a backup-laden offensive line. That group is beginning to move toward full strength.

As expected, the Texans designated Tytus Howard to return from IR on Wednesday. Today marks the start of most teams’ pre-Week 5 practices. With this week doubling as the first for players on IR, NFI and PUP lists to be designated for return, Howard is one of several recovering performers to see his 21-day activation clock started.

Howard broke his hand in two places early in training camp and underwent surgery. He joined center Juice Scruggs and guard Kenyon Green in being placed on IR. Scruggs remains on Houston’s injured list, but a potential Week 6 return is in play for the second-round rookie. Green is out for the season, being placed on IR before teams finalized their initial 53-man rosters. While the 2022 first-round pick was part of the Texans’ O-line plans, he will need months to recover. Howard and Scruggs, however, are on the road back to action.

Houston gave Howard a three-year, $56MM extension this offseason. That deal followed pacts for Laremy Tunsil and trade acquisition Shaq Mason. The latter has been the only healthy Houston first-stringer up front. Howard, a five-year starter who has settled in at right tackle after being tried at guard and on the blind side, may well be back in uniform by Week 5. Tunsil has a decent chance of coming back as well. The eighth-year left tackle has missed the past three games, but Tunsil returned to practice Wednesday. Optimism exists the high-priced edge protector will be back in place Sunday, KPRC2’s Aaron Wilson notes.

While starters are preparing to return, the Texans did sustain another blow up front. Kendrick Green is now on IR, the team announced. The late-summer trade acquisition suffered a torn meniscus in his right knee in Week 4, per Wilson, who adds surgery is likely. Green avoided ligament tears, but he must now miss at least four games.

The former Steelers third-round pick had been pressed into duty, starting the past three games. Those not only marked Green’s first starts since his rookie year but also his first appearances since that 2021 season. Adding multiple new interior O-line starters in 2022, Pittsburgh benched the interior O-lineman and unloaded him a year later. Pro Football Focus ranks Green 38th at guard thus far, showing a glimpse at improvement after a rough rookie year.

Teams are allotted eight IR activations per season. Howard will join punter Cameron Johnston, whom the team also designated for return, as two activations. Scruggs is set to take up a third slot for the Texans, who have started 2-2 behind strong early-season play from Stroud.

Texans Designate Cameron Johnston For Return; Tytus Howard Moving Toward Debut

Texans punter normalcy looks likely to return this week. On IR for the season’s first four games, Cameron Johnston is on track to come back for Week 5.

Houston waived its replacement punter, Ty Zentner, on Monday, KPRC2’s Aaron Wilson reports. With no punters on the active roster or practice squad as a result of this transaction, the Texans are also designating Johnston to return from IR. Johnston’s return to practice will start his 21-day activation clock, but Monday’s other Houston punter transaction points to a quick ramp-up period coming.

A calf injury has sidelined Johnston, who has been the Texans’ primary punter since 2021. The ex-Eagles specialist is tied to a three-year, $8MM deal. This will be Johnston’s sixth year as an NFL punter. The 31-year-old Australian had never missed a game during his career prior to this calf injury.

Johnston averaged 48.1 yards per punt last season. A Kansas State alum, Zentner sits at 42.1 through four games. The Texans signed Zentner as Johnston insurance in late August. The rookie UDFA, who also came to Houston after a Philadelphia stint, will become a free agent if he goes unclaimed.

Houston will be preparing to use some of its eight allotted IR activations early. Right tackle Tytus Howard is on track to be activated from IR this week, Wilson adds. Howard broke his hand in two places and underwent surgery in August. The Texans have played without four starting O-linemen at points this season, with Laremy Tunsil missing extensive time as well. The NFL’s O-line salary kingpin has a chance to return this week, per Wilson.

The Texans, who placed 2022 first-round guard Kenyon Green on season-ending IR in August, have both Howard and second-round pick Juice Scruggs on short-term IR. The team’s projected center starter, Scruggs is out with a hamstring injury. He is tracking toward returning by Week 6, however. But the Texans could soon have both their tackles back to project promising rookie C.J. Stroud.

Latest On Texans’ Offensive Line Injuries

The Texans have been dealing with a number of injuries on their offensive line, but the team is set to return a number of key players over the next few weeks. Per Aaron Wilson of KPRC2 in Houston, Tytus Howard is set to be activated from injured reserve before Week 5. Wilson also notes that center Juice Scruggs should return by Week 6 at the latest.

Howard broke his hand during training camp, leading to his placement on IR before Week 1. The offensive tackle has reportedly made great progress and should return to practice next week. Howard has been a mainstay on the Texans offensive line since he was selected in the first round of the 2019 draft, starting all 54 of his appearances. Pro Football Focus has generally graded him as an average-to-above average offensive tackle, with the site giving him particularly high marks for his pass-blocking ability.

Scruggs was expected to slide into the starting role when Scott Quessenberry went down with a torn ACL and MCL. However, the rookie second-round suffered a hamstring injury that required a stint on the injured reserve. Wilson notes that the lineman could return as early as next week against the Falcons.

Thanks to all the injuries, the Texans have been forced to rely on a number of backup linemen. Veteran George Fant has been thrust into the starting lineup with Howard sidelined, and rookie Jarrett Patterson has started all three games at center in place of Scruggs. Predictably, the results haven’t been pretty, as the Texans offensive line has allowed 11 sacks and has contributed to a league-worst 2.8 yards per carry.

Unfortunately for Houston, it’s going to get a bit tougher before it gets easier. Offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil is set to miss another game while dealing with a knee injury, and potential fill-in Josh Jones won’t play in Week 4 thanks to a hand injury. As a result, the team is preparing practice-squad lineman Austin Deculus to be the starting LT on Sunday against the Steelers, per Wilson.

Largest 2023 Cap Hits: Offense

The NFL’s salary cap once again ballooned by more than $10MM, rising from its $208.2MM perch to $224.8MM. Factoring in the pandemic-induced 2021 regression, the NFL’s salary risen has climbed by more than $42MM since 2021.

This has allowed teams more opportunities for roster additions and opened the door for more lucrative player deals — at most positions, at least. However, it does not look like this season will include a $40MM player cap number. The Browns avoided a record-shattering Deshaun Watson $54.9MM hit by restructuring the quarterback’s fully guaranteed contract, calling for monster figures from 2024-26.

Here are the largest cap hits for teams on the offensive side going into training camp:

  1. Patrick Mahomes, QB (Chiefs): $39.69MM
  2. Ryan Tannehill, QB (Titans): $36.6MM
  3. Jared Goff, QB (Lions): $30.98MM
  4. Jake Matthews, T (Falcons): $28.36MM
  5. Trent Williams, T (49ers): $27.18MM
  6. Dak Prescott, QB (Cowboys): $26.83MM
  7. Laremy Tunsil, T (Texans): $26.61MM
  8. Jimmy Garoppolo, QB (49ers): $23.8MM
  9. Amari Cooper, WR (Browns): $23.78MM
  10. Mike Evans, WR (Buccaneers): $23.69MM
  11. Ronnie Stanley, T (Ravens): $23.67MM
  12. Joe Thuney, G (Chiefs): $22.12MM
  13. Russell Wilson, QB (Broncos): $22MM
  14. Lamar Jackson, QB (Ravens): $22MM
  15. Daniel Jones, QB (Giants): $21.75MM
  16. David Bakhtiari, T (Packers): $21.29MM
  17. Kirk Cousins, QB (Vikings): $20.25MM
  18. D.J. Moore, WR (Bears): $20.17MM
  19. Matthew Stafford, QB (Rams): $20MM
  20. Brian O’Neill, T (Vikings): $19.66MM
  21. Taylor Decker, T (Lions): $19.35MM
  22. Deshaun Watson, QB (Browns): $19.1MM
  23. Braden Smith, T (Colts): $19MM
  24. Josh Allen, QB (Bills): $18.64MM
  25. Courtland Sutton, WR (Broncos): $18.27MM

As should be expected, quarterbacks dominate this list. Mahomes’ number checks in here despite the Chiefs restructuring his 10-year, $450MM contract in March; the two-time MVP’s cap hit would have set an NFL record had Kansas City not reduced it. The Chiefs did not restructure Mahomes’ deal last year, but if they do not address it — perhaps via a complex reworking — before next season, Mahomes’ $46.93MM number would break an NFL record.

The Titans have not touched Tannehill’s contract this offseason, one that included some trade rumors months ago. This is the final year of Tannehill’s Tennessee extension. Mahomes and Tannehill sat atop this ranking in 2022.

Cousins is also heading into a contract year, after the Vikings opted for a restructure and not an extension this offseason. Cousins does not expect to discuss another Minnesota deal until 2024, when he is due for free agency. Two relatively low cap numbers have started Wilson’s $49MM-per-year extension. The Denver QB’s cap number rises to $35.4MM in 2024 and reaches historic heights ($55.4MM) by ’25. The subject of a Goff extension has come up, and it would bring down the Lions passer’s figure. But Goff remains tied to his Rams-constructed $33.5MM-per-year deal through 2024.

Jackson and Jones’ numbers will rise in the near future, with the latter’s contract calling for a quick spike in 2024. Next year, the Giants QB’s cap hit will be $45MM. Watson’s 2024 hit, as of now, would top that. The Browns signal-caller is on the team’s ’24 payroll at $63.98MM. Long-term consequences aside, the Browns can be expected to once again go to the restructure well with Watson’s outlier contract.

The Raiders did not backload Garoppolo’s three-year contract; it only climbs to $24.25MM on Las Vegas’ 2024 cap sheet. The Bills did backload Allen’s pact. Its team-friendly years are done after 2023; the six-year accord spikes to $47.1MM on Buffalo’s cap next year. The Cowboys have gone to the restructure well with Prescott. Like Watson, the Cowboys quarterback is tied to a seemingly untenable 2024 cap number. The March restructure resulted in Prescott’s 2024 number rising to $59.46MM. Two seasons remain on that $40MM-AAV extension.

Another notable cap hold that should be mentioned is Tom Brady‘s. When the Buccaneers did not sign the again-retired QB to another contract before the 2023 league year, his $35.1MM dead-money figure went onto Tampa Bay’s 2023 cap sheet. The Bucs will absorb that entire amount this year. Brady’s 2022 restructure, after retirement No. 1, led to the $35.1MM figure forming.

Were it not for another O-line-record extension, the Tunsil number would have come in at $35MM this year. Matthews signed an extension last year. Moore would have come in higher on this list were he still on the Panthers, who took on $14.6MM in dead money to move their top wideout for the No. 1 overall pick. Sutton came up regularly in trade rumors, with the Broncos wanting a second-round pick for the sixth-year veteran. The former second-rounder’s high base salary ($14MM) hinders his trade value.

Contract Details: Tunsil, Ogunjobi, Thompson, Tomlinson, Bradbury

Here are some details on contracts signed since the start of free agency:

  • Laremy Tunsil, T (Texans): Three years, $75MM. The extension, according to Mike Florio of NBC Sports, includes a guaranteed amount of $60MM, $50MM of which is guaranteed at signing. The $50MM amount in composed of a $30MM signing bonus, Tunsil’s 2023 base salary of $2MM, and his 2024 base salary of $18MM. The remaining $10MM, which comes out of his 2025 base salary (worth a total of $20.95MM), is guaranteed for injury at signing and becomes fully guaranteed on the fifth day of the 2024 league year. His 2026 base salary is worth $20.95MM. The contract also includes annual workout bonuses of $150,000 and annual per game active roster bonuses that can potentially total $250,000 each season.
  • Dalvin Tomlinson, DT (Browns): Four years, $57MM. The contract, according to Florio, includes a guaranteed amount of $26.29MM consisting of a $15.09MM signing bonus, Tomlinson’s first year base salary of $1.08MM, and his 2024 option bonus of $10.13MM. Of the 2024 option bonus, $8.84MM is guaranteed at signing with the rest fully guaranteeing on the third day of the 2024 league year. His 2024 base salary of $1.21MM is guaranteed for injury at signing and will fully guarantee along with the second part of the 2024 option bonus. His 2025 and 2026 base salaries are both worth $13MM, and both have roster bonuses of $750,000 due on the third day of their respective league years. In the first two years of the contract, Tomlinson will receive a per game active roster of bonus of $14,705 worth a potential season total of $250,000. The following two years see the per game active roster bonus rise to $44,117 for a potential season total of $750,000. The deal includes a potential out, allowing the Browns to cut Tomlinson after 2025 with $12.11MM in dead money but $14.5MM of cap savings over the next three years, including two voidable years.
  • Larry Ogunjobi, DT (Steelers): Three years, $28.75MM. The new deal, according to Aaron Wilson of KPRC 2, includes a guaranteed amount of $12MM at signing consisting of a $10.6MM signing bonus and Ogunjobi’s first year base salary of $1.4MM. His second year base salary of $5MM is guaranteed for injury and his 2025 base salary is worth $4MM. The contract includes roster bonuses of $4.75MM (guaranteed on the third league day of 2024) and $3MM (guaranteed on the third league day of 2025). Pittsburgh also put a potential out in the contract that would allow them to cut Ogunjobi after 2023 with $7.07MM of dead money but with $16.75MM in cap savings over the next two years.
  • Garrett Bradbury, C (Vikings): Three years, $15.75MM. The new contract, according to Wilson, includes a guaranteed amount of $9.8MM, $4.9MM of which is guaranteed at signing. The initial $4.9MM is composed of a $3.82MM signing bonus and Bradbury’s first year base salary of $1.08MM. The remaining $4.9MM consists of his second year base salary which fully guarantees on the third day of the 2024 league year. The deal includes an annual workout bonus of $100,000 and a per game active roster bonus of $14,705 for a potential season total of $250,000. The deal also includes a potential out that allows the Vikings to release Bradbury after 2023 with zero dead cap, resulting in $13.05MM in cap savings over the next two years.
  • Shaq Thompson, LB (Panthers): Two years, $12.6MM. The reworked deal, according to Joe Person of The Athletic, includes a guaranteed amount of $8.5MM consisting of a $5.3MM signing bonus, Thompson’s first year base salary of $1.2MM, and $2MM of his 2024 base salary (worth a total of $3.8MM). He’ll receive a $1MM roster bonus guaranteed in March of 2024 and a per game active roster bonus of $29,411 for a potential season total of $500,000. There are also possible incentives concerning a Pro Bowl selection and playoff wins. The deal includes three void years to reduce his current cap hit. His cap number in 2023 was reduced from $24.5MM to $14.06MM.

Texans, LT Laremy Tunsil Agree To Extension

The Texans have signed left tackle Laremy Tunsil to a record-setting extension. Per Ian Rapoport of, player and team are in agreement on a three-year deal worth $75MM, including $50MM in fully guaranteed money and $60MM in total guarantees (Twitter link).

Houston acquired Tunsil in a blockbuster deal with the Dolphins in 2019, sending two first-round picks, a second-rounder, and two players to Miami in exchange for the blindside blocker and WR Kenny Stills. In light of that massive haul and the fact that he earned Pro Bowl honors in his first year in Houston, Tunsil — who operates without an agent — had considerable leverage when it came time to talk extension with the Texans. He landed a three-year, $66MM contract in April 2020, and the $22MM annual average on that deal was a record for left tackles at the time.

That AAV has since been surpassed by Trent Williams and David Bakhtiari, but Tunsil’s new $25MM/year rate once again positions him atop the LT hierarchy. In a piece by Jeff Howe and Adam Coleman of The Athletic (subscription required), Coleman notes that Tunsil will have the chance to hit the market in three years, which suggests that the new extension simply scrapped the final year of his previous contract and will run through the 2025 season. As such, Tunsil will be eligible for free agency when he is just 31 years old, thereby giving him a great chance to cash in all over again in fairly short order.

The contract will drop Tunsil’s 2023 cap number down from $35MM to $26.6MM, Aaron Wilson of KPRC2 adds. Tunsil’s 2024 cap figure drops to $25.9MM, with Wilson adding the 2025 and ’26 hits check in at $28.9MM apiece. Tunsil’s 2023 and ’24 base salaries are fully guaranteed, and his 2025 base features a partial injury guarantee ($10MM). That $10MM injury guarantee shifts to a full guarantee a year out, as Wilson adds it vests on Day 5 of the 2024 league year.

Though the payout is staggering, it is difficult to argue with the Texans’ decision to authorize it. After Tunsil missed most of the 2021 season with a thumb injury, he bounced back in a big way in 2022, ranking as Pro Football Focus’ 10th-best offensive tackle and boasting the best pass-block grade of any tackle. That grade was supported by the fact that he only allowed three quarterback hits and 17 pressures on the year, and he earned Pro Bowl acclaim for the third time in his four Houston seasons (the only year in which he did not receive that honor as a member of the Texans was his injury-shortened 2021 campaign).

Plus, the Texans are widely expected to select a quarterback with the No. 2 overall pick in this year’s draft, as Albert Breer of recently confirmed. So while having an elite left tackle is a top priority for any team, it is especially critical for a rebuilding Houston outfit that could be deploying a rookie under center as soon as Week 1. The club also has Tytus Howard, another extension candidate, at right tackle, giving it an enviable OT situation. The Texans also made a recent move to bolster the interior of their O-line by trading for guard Shaq Mason.

AFC South Rumors: Tunsil, Colts, Jaguars

Left tackle Laremy Tunsil has truly found a home in Houston. After being traded to the Texans from Miami in 2019, Tunsil has made the Pro Bowl in every season except for last year, when he missed 12 games after undergoing season-ending thumb surgery. After another stellar season this year, Tunsil has his eyes on finishing his career in Houston, according to Aaron Wilson of KPRC 2, an expensive ask for the last place team of the AFC South.

Tunsil will head into a contract year next season and has intensions of resetting the market for NFL tackles. 49ers left tackle Trent Williams currently leads the position in average annual value with a deal worth $23.01MM per year. Tunsil isn’t hurting for money. His most recent deal had an AAV of $22MM. If the Texans intend to keep Tunsil in Houston long-term, they will likely need to reset the market for the position. A new deal for Tunsil could fetch an amount in the neighborhood of $24-25MM per year.

Tunsil is certainly worth it. He has consistently been one of the league’s top blindside blockers since coming to the Texans, saving his best season for just before negotiations for an extension. Tunsil ranked as the 10th best offensive tackle in the league this year, according to Pro Football Focus (subscription required), boasting the best pass block grade of any tackle. That grade was certainly reflected in his production as he only allowed three quarterback hits and 17 pressures on the season.

Tunsil is working towards an All-Pro honor and a record-setting deal this offseason, and he’s put in a strong body of work towards both goals.

Here are a few other rumors from the AFC South, starting with a pair of free agents from the Hoosier State:

  • Colts wide receiver Parris Campbell put himself in a good position heading into free agency this year with his best season to date. After missing 34 games in his first three seasons, the former second-round pick finally got to play a full, healthy season in Indianapolis. He stepped up when the Colts needed receivers behind No. 1 wideout Michael Pittman, finishing second on the team with 63 catches for 623 yards and three touchdowns. While his injury history may cause the Colts to hesitate on a long-term deal, Campbell showed that he has a role in the offense and provided a strong audition for any suitors this offseason. Campbell told Mike Chappell of FOX59 in Indianapolis that he would “absolutely” embrace a second contract with the Colts.
  • Colts linebacker Bobby Okereke also had a strong contract year, finishing second on the team with a career-high 151 total tackles and six tackles for loss. This is the second strong season in a row for the 26-year-old who had 132 total tackles last year and tacked on two of his three career interceptions for good measure. Ranking as the league’s 21st best linebacker, according to PFF, Okereke had his best season since he graded out as the 9th best linebacker playing limited snaps in his rookie season. The changes in the Colts’ coaching staff may provide a hurdle for Okereke’s return, but if he isn’t able to come to an agreement with the team that drafted him, Okereke’s final season with the horseshoe on his helmet should set him up for a decent paycheck with a new team. Okereke spoke with Chappell about the possibility of exploring free agency, pointing out that his former defensive coordinator, Matt Eberflus, has since departed for a windier city.
  • A bright spot in the Jaguars‘ season this year was the performance of key additions to the wide receivers room. After shelling out what many thought was too much money for receivers Christian Kirk and Zay Jones, both players had career years that contributed to the team’s overall success. A key reason for those strong performances was wide receivers coach Chris Jackson who, according to Mia O’Brien of 1010 XL radio station, informed head coach Doug Pederson that he will be accepting the wide receivers coaching position at the University of Texas. Jacksonville will be on the lookout for a new position coach to lead a group next year that may lose veteran Marvin Jones to free agency but should add former Falcon Calvin Ridley following one year of his indefinite suspension.

Texans LT Laremy Tunsil Eyeing Market-Setting Extension

One of the few bright spots for the Texans this season has been the continued high-level play of their top offensive lineman. Left tackle Laremy Tunsil plans to turn his 2022 performance into a noteworthy raise during the coming offseason.

The 28-year-old made it clear that he intends to become the league’s highest-paid left tackle, as detailed by ESPN’s DJ Bien-Aime. That position has consistently been the top-ranked amongst all offensive linemen, with only Colts guard Quenton Nelson joining three blindside blockers at the $20MM-per-year mark. Tunsil is already one of them, owing to his three-year, $66MM extension signed in the spring of 2020.

“I don’t know who’s the highest right now, maybe Trent [Williams] at $23 [million], but I want to top that,” the former first-rounder said. “[I] always want to reset the market. Perfect opportunity to reset the market. Everything is lining up as far as my contract to how I’m playing. Everything lining up perfectly.”

Tunsil has been named a Pro Bowler for the third time in his four seasons spent in Houston. He has played every snap this year, an encouraging sign of durability which comes after he was limited to just five games played in 2021 by a thumb injury. The former Dolphin had strung together three nearly identical campaigns before that in terms of PFF grades, and he has taken a step forward in that regard in 2022.

Tunsil has posted an overall grade of 79.9 this year, the highest mark of his career. That rating places him 12th amongst all qualifying tackles, but his pass protection grade (91.8) is the highest at the position. He has allowed just one sack and 12 pressures this year, though penalties (10 accepted) have once again been an unwanted factor in his performance.

The Ole Miss product has one year remaining on his big-ticket deal, but no guaranteed money remains after this season. Tunsil’s cap hit is scheduled to reach $35.2MM in 2023, and Houston would see $18.5MM in relief by cutting or trading him. Long-term security – along with a figure which sets him ahead of both Williams and David Bakhtiari in terms of annual compensation- will therefore be his target in the spring. The rebuilding Texans are currently projected to have just under $47MM in cap space next year, which should afford them more flexibility than most teams.

Latest On Rams’ Trade Deadline Plans

The Rams certainly bolstered the team which ultimately won the Super Bowl with their midseason moves last year. They are once again being looked at as potential buyers in the 2022 trade market, but appear unlikely to make major additions in the coming days.

The name most closely linked with the team has been Texans wideout Brandin Cooks. The 29-year-old spent two years in Los Angeles, after the Rams traded a first-round pick to the Patriots to acquire him in 2018. He posted a career-high 1,204 receiving yards in the regular season that year, playing a large role in the team’s postseason run to the Super Bowl as well. His numbers dropped off considerably the following year, and he was then dealt to Houston.

Over the past two years with the Texans, Cooks has proven himself to still be one of the top vertical threats in the league (2,187 yards, 12 touchdowns). With Houston residing in the basement of the AFC, though, the Oregon State product also represents a logical trade candidate. He is reportedly willing to lower his 2023 salary (currently a fully-guaranteed $18MM) to facilitate a move back to Los Angeles.

Peter King of NBC Sports notes that the Rams are indeed a candidate to add a speed receiver such as Cooks (provided the financial burden of taking on his contract is lessened). Notably, though, King adds that a move to upgrade the WR room could involve the Rams trading away Allen Robinson. A free agent signing from March, the 29-year-old joined Los Angeles on a three-year, $46.5MM deal. Seen as a Robert Woods replacement to complement Cooper Kupp, Robinson has yet to eclipse 63 yards in a game so far and has scored just two touchdowns.

Elsewhere on offense, King reports that the Rams have little-to-no interest in two other players who could be on the move today or tomorrow: Texans left tackle Laremy Tunsil and Browns running back Kareem Hunt. Both positions have emerged as sore spots for Los Angeles this season; Joe Noteboom is out for the season with a torn Achilles, while Cam Akers has fallen out of favor with head coach Sean McVay.

Tunsil could shore up the team’s pass protection, though a 2022 restructure of his deal leaves him with a prohibitive cap hit of over $35MM next year. Hunt, meanwhile, could reportedly be had for a fourth-round pick as he is set to hit free agency in March.

The Rams currently have just under $5MM in cap space, so a deal of some kind could be coming soon. Outside of a reunion with Cooks, however, the defending champions could have a much quieter trade deadline than last season.

Cowboys Unlikely To Trade For Left Tackle?

The Cowboys have very limited time to find a Tyron Smith replacement, but a few avenues by which they could acquire one. Their financial situation could make a trade viable on paper, though it appears the team will look elsewhere while evaluating their options. 

Smith is expected to be sidelined until at least December due to an avulsion fracture of the knee and subsequent hamstring tear. Dallas doesn’t have a replacement on hand with anywhere near the pedigree of the eight-time Pro Bowler, of course, but promoting from within remains an immediate solution. Playing first-round rookie Tyler Smith at left tackle – his college position – is a possibility, though he was thought to be a guard candidate early in his career. Fellow rookie Matt Waletzko and 2021 fourth-rounder Josh Ball could also step in on the blindside.

Indeed, CBS Sports’ Josina Anderson reports that the Cowboys are turning to the aforementioned “in-house players” while also “working through” potential free agent additions (Twitter link). That is in line with reporting from yesterday indicating that a signing could be coming soon. A number of veterans remain on the open market, including Super Bowl champion Andrew Whitworth; Anderson adds, however, that the retired 40-year-old is not among Dallas’ considerations.

Adding further to the sense that the Cowboys will not be executing a trade for a stop-gap solution, Aaron Wilson of Pro Football Network tweets that the Texans are not expected to make Laremy Tunsil available to Dallas (or any other club). The two-time Pro Bowler has two years remaining on his contract, including a $17.7MM cap hit the Cowboys could absorb given their current financial situation. Beside his talent level, Wilson cites the dead cap charge (over 16.6MM) which would be generated by a trade as the reason such a move is unlikely on Houston’s end.

With final roster cuts just days away, more options could surface for the Cowboys to consider. A recent release, or an aging veteran still available remains the likeliest way the team augments its unproven stable of incumbents.