Mario Edwards Jr.

NFL COVID List Updates: 12/23/21

We’ve compiled a list of players who were placed or activated from the reserve/COVID-19 list today. In some instances, players activated from the list remain on IR:

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

Buffalo Bills

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Dallas Cowboys

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Houston Texans

Kansas City Chiefs

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Rams

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New York Giants

New York Jets

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Washington Football Team

Bears Re-Sign Mario Edwards

The Bears will re-sign defensive lineman Mario Edwards, as Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk was first to report. Adam Schefter of added that it will be a three-year contract for the 2015 second-rounder, with Ian Rapoport of reporting that the deal is worth $11.55MM (Twitter links). Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle tweets that the deal includes $5.5MM in guaranteed money.

It’s unclear how much of that is guaranteed, but it represents a nice payday for Edwards, who bounced around the league for a couple of years before finding some stability in Chicago in 2020. Though he played in just under a quarter of the Bears’ defensive snaps last season, he managed a career-best four sacks and graded out as the third-best interior defender in the league, per Pro Football Focus’ advanced metrics.

The limited snap count and the inherent uncertainty in PFF’s metrics suggest that Edwards’ stellar overall grade of 90.1 might skew a little high, but the Bears clearly feel confident that he can continue to be a productive rotational piece if nothing else. That is despite the fact that Edwards will be suspended for the first two games of the 2021 season due to a PED violation.

The deal comes one day after the Bears finalized a series of restructures to get under the 2021 salary cap of $182.5MM.

Bears DL Mario Edwards Suspended Two Games

Mario Edwards will be looking for a new home this spring, but the veteran defensive lineman won’t be able to suit up for the beginning of 2021. Edwards has been suspended for the first two games of next season, a source told Field Yates of (Twitter link).

It’s for a PED violation. It certainly won’t help Edwards, who’s set to be a free agent, find a decent contract. He played a good amount for the Bears this season, notching around 25 percent of the defensive snaps in a rotational role across 15 games. He finished the year with 17 tackles, six for a loss, and four sacks to go with one pass defended.

The Florida State product was drafted 35th overall by the Raiders in 2015, but never lived up to his draft status. He didn’t standout as a rookie, then missed almost the entire 2016 season due to injury. He started 14 games for the Raiders in 2017, but was waived before the 2018 campaign.

After spending one year with the Giants, he signed a two-year, $5MM deal with the Saints in March of 2019, and had three sacks with them in a similar rotational role. Cut back in September, he was picked up just a few days later by Chicago. Still only 26 (for another week), he should get picked up by somebody this offseason despite the looming suspension.

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/8/20

Today’s minor moves:

Arizona Cardinals

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Denver Broncos

New England Patriots

Seattle Seahawks

Bears To Sign DE Mario Edwards

It didn’t take long for Mario Edwards to find a new home. One day after being released by the Saints, the veteran defensive end has agreed to sign with the Bears, as Mike Garafolo of the NFL Network reports (via Twitter).

New Orleans was reportedly interested in re-signing Edwards to its practice squad, but the Bears were quick to pounce in an effort to bolster their defensive line depth. Though Chicago’s LB corps looks pretty stout, the club is a bit thin along the D-line in the wake of Eddie Goldman‘s decision to opt out of the 2020 season.

Edwards is not a replacement for Goldman, a nose tackle, but he will provide a more experienced DE to bookend with Akiem Hicks. He will likely push 2018 fifth-rounder Bilal Nichols for playing time.

Now 26, Edwards has never lived up to his status as a second-round draft choice. The Raiders selected the Florida State product in the 2015 draft, but he was waived after three seasons with Oakland. The Giants claimed him off waivers, and he parlayed his one year with Big Blue into a two-year, $5MM pact with the Saints last offseason. New Orleans liked him enough to keep him on this year’s practice squad but did not consider him good enough to be a part of its deep D-line rotation.

The Bears, however, don’t have as much depth, so they will give Edwards a spot on the 53-man roster.

Saints Cut DE Mario Edwards, LB Anthony Chickillo

The Saints are cutting a pair of notable veteran defensive players as they trim the roster down to 53. They’ll be letting go of defensive end Mario Edwards (Twitter link via Ian Rapoport of NFL Network), and linebacker Anthony Chickillo (Twitter link via Adam Schefter of

Rapoport notes that Edwards could come back on the practice squad, and also that the Saints had tried moving him in trade talks this week. A second round pick of the Raiders back in 2015, he never lived up to his draft status. He was waived after three seasons in Oakland and signed a two-year, $5MM deal with the Saints last offseason after spending 2018 with the Giants. He had three sacks with New Orleans last year.

Chickillo was drafted by the Steelers in the sixth-round in 2015, and spent the first five years of his career with Pittsburgh. He signed a two-year, $8MM extension in March of 2019, but was released earlier this offseason. He signed with the Saints in May, but couldn’t make it out of camp. The Miami product was mostly a reserve and special teams guy with the Steelers.


Saints Expected To Sign DE Mario Edwards Jr.

The Saints are adding a defensive end. Nick Underhill of The New Orleans Advocate tweets that the team is expected to sign Mario Edwards Jr. today. It will be a two-year, $5MM deal with $1.5MM “upside for sacks,” according to Mike Florio of (via Twitter).

The 25-year-old was claimed off waivers by the Giants in September after having spent the first three seasons of his career with the Raiders. The former second-rounder proceeded to play in 15 games for the Giants, compiling 14 tackles, two sacks, and one forced fumble.

While Edwards didn’t play enough snaps (232) to earn a spot on Pro Football Focus‘ interior defender rankings, his grade indicates that he performed as an above-average lineman in 2018.

We heard earlier this week that the Saints had interest in Edwards. The lineman would likely play a backup role behind Cameron Jordan and Marcus Davenport. Edwards would also be competing with Trey Hendrickson and Tomasi Laulile for reps.

Extra Points: WRs, Steelers, Edwards, Cook

Some assorted notes from around the NFL:

  • The Saints, Seahawks, and Patriots are continuing to monitor the wide receiver market, per Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports (via Twitter). Golden Tate is the best receiver still unsigned, but there are a number of other notable names available. New Orleans is reportedly interested in bringing back Dez Bryant, and veterans like Michael Crabtree and Randall Cobb still have some value.
  • The Steelers are working to re-sign linebacker L.J. Fort, as Jeremy Fowler of tweets. Fort was primarily deployed on passing downs in 2018 and was an underrated part of Pittsburgh’s defense last season, racking up 48 tackles and a sack. Fowler notes that Fort has generated interest from other clubs.
  • Defensive lineman Mario Edwards is set to visit with the Saints tonight, tweets Mike Florio of The 25-year-old was claimed off waivers by the Giants in September after having spent the first three seasons of his career with the Raiders. The former second-rounder proceeded to play in 15 games for the Giants, compiling 14 tackles, two sacks, and one forced fumble.
  • The Raiders continue to monitor free agent tight end Jared Cook, writes Scott Bair of NBCSports Bay Area. The writer cautions that it’s “hard to imagine” the veteran returning, as he’s visited with the Saints and received interest from the Patriots. The 31-year-old started 14 of his 16 games last season, hauling in 68 receptions for 896 yards and six scores.
  • Trent Brown isn’t all that concerned about his role with the Raiders, tweets Bair. After playing left tackle for the Patriots in 2018, Brown said he’d be receptive to a switch to right tackle. As of right now, Kolton Miller is expected to start on the opposite side of the offensive line.

Sunday NFL Transactions: NFC East

Listed below are the Sunday roster moves for the four NFC East teams. Following the 53-man roster cutdown deadline yesterday, many teams will make slight tweaks to their rosters, claiming players off waivers or signing guys who clear waivers. Those transactions for the Cowboys, Giants, Eagles, and Redskins are noted below.

Additionally, as of 12:00pm CT today, teams can begin constructing their 10-man practice squads. You can check out our glossary entry on practice squads to brush up on those changes, as well as all the other guidelines that govern the 10-man units, whose players practice with the team but aren’t eligible to suit up on Sundays.

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

Dallas Cowboys



Practice squad:

New York Giants



Practice squad:

Philadelphia Eagles



Practice squad:

Washington Redskins

Practice squad:

Giants Claim Mario Edwards

The Giants have claimed DE Mario Edwards off waivers from the Raiders, per Tom Pelissero of the NFL Network (via Twitter). The Raiders had been shopping Edwards, whom they selected in the second round of the 2015 draft, but they could not find any takers. Edwards has not lived up to his draft status yet, but he will get a fresh start in the Big Apple.

Edwards entered the league very young as a 21-year-old rookie and missed most of his second season with a hip injury. Edwards bounced back a bit last year, as he started in each of his 14 appearances and set a new career high with 3.5 sacks. However, he never impressed new Oakland head coach Jon Gruden, and the team was reportedly frustrated with him.

In New York, Edwards will certainly have a chance to show off the pass rushing ability that made him a second-round draft choice, as rookie B.J. Hill and second-year player Dalvin Tomlinson are currently penciled in as the team’s starting defensive ends.

In addition to Edwards, the Giants have also claimed the following players, per Albert Breer of TheMMQB (via Twitter):