Despite Shaq Lawson being in trade rumors for much of his tenure with the Bills, the current regime was interested in bringing him back. However, it does not appear Buffalo’s interest in retaining the former Doug Whaley first-round pick was extensive. The Bills were open to re-signing Lawson, but Joe Buscaglia of The Athletic notes such interest was contingent on Lawson returning at a certain price (subscription required). But once the Dolphins guaranteed two years of Lawson’s $10MM-AAV contract, the Bills let him walk. Buffalo signed both Mario Addison and versatile D-lineman Quinton Jefferson to cover for Lawson’s exit.
Here is the latest from the AFC East:
Shifting to Lawson’s new team, the Dolphins received good news on the health statuses of two of their recent free agent additions. Emmanuel Ogbah said he has been cleared for football work for around a month but has yet to partake in workouts because of COVID-19 concerns, Cameron Wolfe of ESPN.com tweets. Ogbah will receive a Chiefs Super Bowl ring, but the defensive end’s contributions ended midseason because of a torn pectoral muscle.
Jordan Howard also will be full-go when the Dolphins reconvene, Wolfe adds. After a strong start to his Eagles season, Howard suffered a shoulder injury that derailed his momentum. He played in just one game after Week 9 but did not log any carries. Howard was inactive for Philadelphia’s playoff game. The Dolphins gave him a two-year, $9.75MM contract.
Sam Martin ended up signing with the Broncos, but the Jets were interested in adding the former Lions punter, Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News notes. The Broncos gave Martin a three-year, $7.05MM deal; Mehta adds the Jets were not budgeting that much for their punter position. Martin’s $2.35MM salary ranks 15th among punters. The Jets have opted not to re-sign incumbent punter Lac Edwards, their four-year punter, and Mehta adds they have remained in contact with former Dolphins and Bills punter Matt Darr. Ian Berryman, a 2019 Steelers UDFA, is the only punter on the Jets’ roster. The team remains interested in another addition here. Bringing considerable punter news to the table, Mehta adds that the Jets are doing their homework on Texas A&M’s Braden Mann — the 2018 Ray Guy award winner.
On Monday, the Jets announced the signing of punter Matt Darr. This officially marks the first signing by interim GM/head coach Adam Gase.
Gase coached Darr in Miami, so he’s already familiar with his skill set. For now, he’ll give Gang Green a second punting option to evaluate alongside Lachlan Edwards.
Darr beat out Brandon Fields to become the Dolphins’ punter in 2015 and held the job in 2016, Gase’s first season in Miami. He was out of work in 2017, but hooked on with the Bills for five games last year. For his career, Darr owns 45.4 yards per kick average.
September 18th, 2017 at 2:11pm CST by Zachary Links
Depending on how rehab on his knee goes, the Vikings believe Sam Bradford can return next week, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com hears (on Twitter). The quarterback is believed to have a bone bruise, a source tells NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero (Twitter link). The plan for right now is to see how his knee responds to an injection this week and then take from there.
On Sunday, the Case Keenum-led Vikings lost badly in Pittsburgh, so the team is hoping to get its best QB back on the field in time for the home contest against Tampa Bay.
Here’s more from around the NFL:
The Dolphins filed a missing persons report on linebacker Lawrence Timmons when he went AWOL on Saturday, according to TMZ. The police found Timmons at LAX on early Sunday morning as he was looking to board a flight to Pennsylvania. At that point, a team employee met him at the airport and traveled with him. TMZ hears that Timmons was going to Pennsylvania to meet with a child of his and her mother.
Patriots linebacker Dont’a Hightower’s MCL injury was diagnosed as the 2-3 week variety by two different doctors, Rapoport tweets. The key Pats defender should be back either this week or next based on that timeframe. Problems with his right knee forced Hightower to start training camp on the PUP list and he was forced out of the season opener after aggravating it. Hightower earned his first Pro Bowl nod in 2016 and re-upped with the Pats this offseason on a four-year deal that could pay him as much as $43.5MM.
Bengals tight end Tyler Eifert is battling back and knee injuries and his status for Sunday’s game against Green Bay is uncertain, a source tells Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (on Twitter). For now, it doesn’t seem like a long-term issue, but it’s a situation worth monitoring given Eifert’s previous health troubles.
Punter Matt Darr worked out for the Bills and agent Brett Tessler (on Twitter) claims that it went very well. Darr had a 46-yard career average before his release from Miami earlier this month.