Marshon Lattimore

Mike Evans Issued One-Game Suspension; Bucs WR Will Appeal

SEPTEMBER 20: Evans is appealing the suspension, Adam Schefter of tweets. The appeal will be heard Tuesday. Evans’ 2017 appeal did not lead to an overturned suspension. Considering the similarities between the 2017 incident that prompted a ban and Sunday’s Lattimore shove, Evans seeing this suspension vacated would surprise.

SEPTEMBER 19: The fallout from yesterday’s brawl in the Buccaneers-Saints game has begun. Tampa Bay receiver Mike Evans has been given a one-game suspension for his role in the altercation, the NFL announced on Monday. 

The ban was handed down by VP of football operations Jon Runyan; in a letter to Evans, he wrote in part, “Your aggressive conduct could have caused serious injury to your opponent and clearly does not reflect the high standards of sportsmanship expected of a professional.”

This marks the second time that the 29-year-old has been suspended. He was also banned for one game in 2017 after a similar incident involving he and Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore, a pair which have a long history with one another within the broader Buccaneers-Saints rivalry. Both Lattimore and Evans were ejected from yesterday’s game, but the latter expressed confidence that he would not be facing supplemental discipline.

“That was terrible – [in] 2017 I didn’t even get ejected and that was really a cheap shot,” Evans said after the game, via ESPN’s Katherine Terrell and Jenna Laine“This wasn’t. [Lattimore] punched my teammate in the face and I just pushed him to the ground.”

Evans has the option of appealing the suspension, and is expected to do so, reports ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler (Twitter link). If the ban is upheld, he will lose just over $62K in salary, a by-product of his 2022 base salary being reduced to the league minimum. That would also leave the Buccaneers even more shorthanded at the position, though, as fellow starters Chris Godwin and Julio Jones were sidelined due to injuries yesterday.

No other suspensions have been levied, but fines affecting players on both teams are likely to be announced later this week, per Tom Pelissero of NFL Network (Twitter link). While the league continues to sort through the aftermath of yesterday’s events, attention will turn to Evans’ status as the Buccaneers prepare to play the Packers.

South Notes: Saints, Darnold, Colts

Links between Patrick Mahomes and other teams have emerged in the past. The Cardinals were preparing to draft the eventual Chiefs megastar five years ago. Sean Payton also confirmed the rumored story of his old team’s plans with the then-Texas Tech prospect. During his latest FOX appearance (h/t’s Peter Schrager), the former Saints coach said he was prepared to draft Mahomes at No. 11 in 2017. While Payton confirmed he discussed the selection with Drew Brees and informed the future Hall of Famer a Mahomes pick would not impact his starter status, the Saints also viewed Marshon Lattimore as a top-four player in the 2017 class.

Payton said in 2020 the team did not have a clear choice between Lattimore and Mahomes, though then-Kansas City GM John Dorsey made New Orleans’ decision easier with the trade-up for the quarterback. Payton said this week Mahomes was “the best quarterback I’d ever seen on college tape.” The Saints had worked out Mahomes in Lubbock that year. Hindsight would suggest the Saints needed to be ready to climb into the top 10 for such a talent, but Mahomes was not viewed as a surefire top-10 pick that year. GM Mickey Loomis also said Lattimore falling impacted the team’s decision not to trade up for Mahomes. Both Mahomes and Lattimore are now signed to long-term contracts, though the former’s prime should be expected to last longer.

Here is the latest from the NFC South:

  • The NFL’s longest-tenured general manager, excluding those with owner-GM or coach-GM roles, Loomis has seen fellow Saints cornerstones Payton and Brees depart in the past two offseasons. But the 21st-year Saints front office boss is not planning to join them in leaving anytime soon, via Jeff Duncan of When the acclaimed salary cap guru does walk away, Jeff Ireland looms as a logical successor. The former Dolphins GM is well-regarded by Loomis and others in the organization, Duncan adds. Ireland, 52, was the Dolphins’ GM from 2008-13. Currently the Saints’ assistant GM, Ireland has been with the team since 2015. The Bears interviewed Ireland for their GM post this offseason, while the Lions and Panthers met with him in 2021. It will be interesting to see if Ireland sticks around to potentially succeed Loomis or land a GM gig elsewhere before the New Orleans GM exits.
  • After a strained 2021 between Michael Thomas and the Saints, first-year HC Dennis Allen made connecting with the wide receiver one of his first acts upon being promoted. Allen flew to Los Angeles to have dinner with Thomas early this offseason, Mike Triplett of notes. Despite Thomas’ injury-plagued 2020s and the Saints’ frustration with their top wideout regarding his 2021 surgery timetable — a process that led to the All-Pro missing a full season — the team vowed not to trade him early this offseason. Thomas, 29, has returned healthy and caught two touchdown passes in the Saints’ Week 1 comeback win over the Falcons.
  • Potentially the Colts‘ left tackle of the future, Bernhard Raimann backed up Matt Pryor in Week 1. But the Colts used the third-round rookie in a rotation with Pryor. After Raimann played 12 of the five-period game’s 90 left tackle snaps, Frank Reich said (via the Indianapolis Star’s Joel Erickson) he plans to continue rotating his backup in going forward. Left tackle represented the only position at which the Colts deployed a rotation, beginning a path to Raimann seizing this job full-time. The Colts re-signed Pryor on a one-year, $5.55MM deal this offseason, and Erickson offers the 2021 Colts swingman — who has never been a full-time left tackle — could be an option at right guard, should Raimann take over the blindside.
  • Sam Darnold is making progress toward a return. The Panthers backup has shed his walking boot, per The Athletic’s Joe Person (on Twitter). On IR due to a high ankle sprain, Darnold will miss at least the season’s first four weeks.

Saints Restructure CB Marshon Lattimore’s Contract

The Saints entered the offseason with one of the worst cap situations in the NFL, but there’s light at the end of the tunnel. According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport (via Twitter), the Saints opened up a significant chunk of cap space after restructuring cornerback Marshon Lattimore‘s contract.

Specifically, the team converted Lattimore’s base salary into a signing bonus, opening up a whopping $18.45MM in cap space. Per Nick Underhill of NewOrleans.Football (on Twitter), the Saints are now about $5MM over the cap.

It’s another step forward for the cap-crunched Saints, who previously reworked the deals of defensive ends Cameron Jordan and Tanoh Kpassagnon. The team also restructured Alvin Kamara‘s deal yesterday, opening up another $8MM in space. Once the team manages to get the under the cap, they’ll have some interesting questions to answer, including a resolution on a potential long-term deal for standout safety Marcus Williams.

It hasn’t even been a year since Lattimore signed a lucrative five-year, $97.6MM extension with New Orleans. He earned another Pro Bowl nod (his fourth) in 2021 after finishing with 68 tackles, 19 passes defended, and three interceptions in 16 starts.

Saints Rework Marshon Lattimore’s Deal

The Saints have converted Marshon Lattimore’s $500K Likely To Be Earned (LTBE) All-Pro incentive into a roster bonus for 2022 (Twitter link via Field Yates of The move provides the Saints with an additional $500K in cap room for the current year while guaranteeing Lattimore’s bonus, whether or not he earns All-Pro honors. 

[RELATED: Updated 2022 NFL Draft Order]

Lattimore, 25, was named to the Pro Bowl just last week, his fourth nod in five years. Given his quality work, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him capture All-Pro honors for the first time in his career this year. Through 14 games, Lattimore has 62 tackles, two interceptions, and a fumble recovery while allowing a stingy 54.8% completion rate.

Historically, Pro Football Focus hasn’t always been high on Lattimore. In 2020, PFF’s metrics give him a 59.1 overall grade, good for just 70th out of 121 qualified players. This year, it’s a different story. The Ohio State product currently ranks 15th in the league with a solid 75.9 mark.

Yesterday’s ugly loss to the Dolphins dropped the Saints to 7-8, but they could still manage a Wild Card spot with wins over the Panthers and Falcons.

Saints CB Marshon Lattimore Pleads Guilty To Misdemeanor

Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore has cleared up the legal matter that was hanging over his head. Lattimore, who was arrested in March and charged with possessing a loaded handgun that was believed to be stolen (a fourth-degree felony), recently pled guilty to a misdemeanor charge of failing to promptly inform officers that he was carrying a concealed handgun, as Mike Triplett of writes. The felony count was dropped as part of the plea deal.

Triplett points out that Lattimore has a permit to carry a concealed weapon. The 25-year-old DB was a passenger in a car that was pulled over for multiple traffic violations, and he did not tell the officers that he had the gun until they asked. Lattimore’s attorney, Marcus Sidoti, said his client was unaware that the gun was stolen.

NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy says the matter is still being reviewed by the league office. But now that the criminal case has been resolved, one would think that a decision as to whether Lattimore will face any sort of punishment under the NFL’s personal conduct policy will come fairly quickly.

The Saints were clearly not too concerned about this incident, as they handed Lattimore a record-setting contract extension in September. Pro Football Focus has not been particularly high on the Ohio State product since his rookie campaign, and that trend has continued this year. PFF’s metrics give him a 63.6 overall grade, good for 54th out of 118 qualified players. Still, Lattimore is viewed in a different light by New Orleans brass, and as the club’s CB1, he is often matched up against an opponent’s top receiver.

He chipped a bone in his thumb in the Saints’ Week 1 win over the Packers, missed Week 2 as a result, and played a few games with a cast. On the season, the three-time Pro Bowler has 42 tackles, one interception, and 11 passes defensed.

Lattimore was sentenced to one year of unsupervised probation and was required to pay a $1K fine.

Saints’ Marshon Lattimore Set For Surgery

What a day for Marshon Lattimore. The Saints’ star cornerback suffered a thumb injury against the Bucs on Monday night and will need surgery (via PFT). Of course, this all came hours after he agreed to a five-year, $97.6MM extension with New Orleans. 

[RELATED: Saints, Marshon Lattimore Agree To ~$100MM Deal]

Lattimore mostly played through the pain with a cast on his right hand and finished with three tackles and one pass defensed. Still, he’ll need the issue corrected before he retakes the field. For now, he’s considered week-to-week, but the Saints could consider a short-term injured reserve stint pending the outcome. That would allow Lattimore to return after three missed games and retake the field in Week 5.

Fortunately, it’s a minor injury, and Lattimore has all the fiscal security he could ever ask for. His new five-year re-up furnishes him with $97.6MM and $44MM in full guarantees, a record for defensive backs. The deal also includes $68.3MM in overall guarantees and incentives that can take him up to $100MM.

Without Lattimore, the Saints will lean on recent pickup Desmond Trufant for support.

Saints, Marshon Lattimore Agree To ~$100MM Deal

The Saints have locked up Marshon Lattimore. On Sunday, the Pro Bowl cornerback agreed to a five-year, $97.6MM extension including $44MM in full guarantees and $68.3MM in overall guarantees. Plus, through incentives, Lattimore can earn up to $100MM over the course of the contract. 

With the new deal in hand, Lattimore has secured the most guaranteed cash of any cornerback or safety in NFL history. He was initially set to play out his fifth-year option — worth $10.2MM — before approaching free agency in the spring of 2022.

The 2017 first-round pick has started all 57 of his games as a pro, missing only seven possible contests on the whole. Meanwhile, he’s notched three Pro Bowl selections in four NFL seasons. That includes his debut year, when he earned Defensive Rookie of the Year honors.

Lattimore, 25, has 55 passes defensed and ten interceptions over the course of his career. He stands as one of the most feared young CBs in the league but, in the interest of equal time, it’s worth noting that the advanced metrics have soured on him somewhat. Pro Football Focus pegged him at a stellar 86.1 as a rookie, followed by scores of 77.5 (2018), 65.6 (2019) and 59.1 (2020).

Still, the Saints recognize his value and had no interest in letting him get away. Now, after helping the team to rank No. 5 in 2020 pass defense, he’s locked in for years to come.

Saints Likely To Extend At Least One Of Marshon Lattimore, Marcus Williams

The Saints crossed a key item off their 2021 agenda earlier today by agreeing to a massive extension with right tackle Ryan Ramczyk. With that deal done, New Orleans can now turn its attention to the contract situations of several of its other high-profile talents.

Katherine Terrell of The Athletic writes that the Saints are likely to extend at least one of CB Marshon Lattimore and S Marcus Williams this summer. As Jason Fitzgerald of tweets, the Ramczyk extension cleared roughly $5.5MM off the club’s books for the 2021 season, so a Lattimore or Williams extension isn’t necessarily vital for cap purposes (plus, since Lattimore’s fifth-year option for this season was already restructured, an extension for him wouldn’t create more cap room anyway). But both players are integral pieces of DC Dennis Allen‘s defense, and the Saints would certainly like to keep them for the long haul if they can.

The problem is that New Orleans is already projected to be over the 2022 cap of $208.2MM, and GM Mickey Loomis might not be able to re-sign both of his young defenders. Terrell says Lattimore has always seemed like the higher priority, and as he plays a premium position and has three Pro Bowls to his credit, he will certainly be more expensive. On the other hand, he does not always play up to his potential, and Pro Football Focus’ metrics considered him the 70th-best corner out of 121 qualifiers last year. A March arrest could also complicate matters.

Loomis, though, has more time to talk contract with Lattimore than he does with Williams. As a franchise-tagged player, Williams cannot sign a multi-year deal after July 15. Given the Saints’ cap crunch, there was a belief that the team would not be able to retain the Utah product this year, let alone hit him with a franchise tag that carries a $10.6MM cap charge. The fact that Loomis made the financials work might be an indication of the team’s long-term outlook for Williams, who did well to clean up his one glaring weakness (his tackling abilities) in 2020.

In addition to Lattimore and Williams, left tackle Terron Armstead is also entering a contract year (his deal automatically voids in 2022). Terrell says it’s unclear what the Saints have in mind for their longtime blindside protector, but he will not come cheap either. We just saw soon-to-be 33-year-old Trent Williams pull down a $23MM/year deal, and Terrell suggests that Armstead — who will turn 30 in a few weeks — could shoot for a similar figure. With Ramcyzk now carrying a $19.2MM AAV and left guard Andrus Peat working on a $15MM/year pact, that would be a ton of money invested into the O-line.

We heard earlier this year that the Saints could let Armstead walk next offseason and shift Ramczyk to left tackle, and Terrell says that remains a possibility. Still, one would think that New Orleans will at least have serious discussions with Armstead about continuing what has been a very fruitful partnership.

Contract Details: Tannehill, Saints, Ravens

Here are the details from the latest contracts agreed to around the NFL:

  • Ryan Tannehill, QB (Titans): Tannehill’s restructured deal will pay out a $1.5MM base salary in 2021 and count $11.1MM against the cap, Field Yates of tweets. Those numbers jump back up beginning in 2022, with Tannehill set to earn a $29MM base salary and count $38.6MM against Tennessee’s cap. In 2023, Tannehill is due a $27MM base and will be a $36.6MM cap hit. The Titans used two void years (2024 and ’25) to help create more than $15MM in cap space.
  • Marshon Lattimore, CB (Saints): Four years, $120MM, according to Yates (on Twitter). Like New Orleans’ Taysom Hill deal, this contract is flush with void years and does not reflect true value. Lattimore’s fifth-year option ($10.2MM) will be spread onto the Saints’ 2021 and ’22 salary caps, with $2.841MM on this year’s cap and $7.403MM next year, according to OverTheCap. Lattimore remains under contract through 2021.
  • Gus Edwards, RB (Ravens): Two years, $10MM. Edwards will collect a $3.75MM signing bonus and earn base salaries of $1MM (2021), $3.25MM (’22) and $4.38MM (’23) on this extension, Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic notes (subscription required).
  • Ja’Wuan James, OT (Ravens): One year, up to $9MM. James will receive a $500K signing bonus but count just $250K toward Baltimore’s cap this year, Zrebiec adds. If James is on the Ravens’ roster on the fifth day of the 2022 league year, he will collect a $500K roster bonus. In that scenario, James’ 2022 base salary will be $2.5MM. He would then count $3.25MM against the Ravens’ 2022 cap. $5MM in incentives round out the deal.
  • De’Vondre Campbell, LB (Packers): One year, $2MM, per the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Tom Silverstein (on Twitter). Campbell will receive a $1.1MM signing bonus and count $1.19MM against Green Bay’s 2021 cap. The Packers tacked on four void years, creating an $808K cap hit in 2022. The deal also contains $500K in playing-time incentives.

Saints Sign Entire Draft Class, Restructure Marshon Lattimore

The Saints just knocked out a big order of business. New Orleans has signed their entire draft class to their rookie deals, as Nick Underhill of NewOrleans.Football tweeted.

To create the cap space necessary for these deals, the team restructured cornerback Marshon Lattimore‘s contract, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network tweets. They converted his “$10.2M fifth year option to a $990K base salary and the rest in a roster bonus with voidable years,” he reports. Rapsheet adds that the team will “keep working on an extension” with Lattimore.

The six-man draft class includes defensive end Payton Turner (first-round; Houston), linebacker Pete Werner (second-round; Ohio State), cornerback Paulson Adebo (third-round; Stanford), quarterback Ian Book (fourth-round; Notre Dame), offensive tackle Landon Young (sixth-round; Kentucky), and wide receiver Kawaan Baker (seventh-round; South Alabama).

It’s great they got this out of the way as the offseason starts to heat up with mandatory minicamps. The Saints had been in a terrible cap situation at the end of 2020, but GM Mickey Loomis has always been able to work some magic.