Neville Hewitt

Texans To Retain LB Cory Littleton, RB Mike Boone

AUGUST 30: While Kirksey has a deal lined up to join the Bills’ taxi squad, the same is not true of Littleton. The latter is remaining in Houston on the team’s 53-man roster, Wilson reports. Littleton has re-signed with the same terms he originally agreed to; that will allow him to max out his 2023 earnings at $2.7MM.

The same release-and-re-sign move has been employed with running back Mike Boone, Wilson adds. Boone will carry on under the terms of the two-year, $3.1MM pact he signed this offseason.

AUGUST 29: Multiple veteran linebackers are receiving their walking papers from the Texans this week. Following the Christian Kirksey cut, the Texans are releasing Cory Littleton, Aaron Wilson of KPRC2 tweets.

Littleton joined Denzel Perryman in signing with the team in March. Even without Kirksey, the Texans’ roster includes a number of notable linebackers. Christian Harris, a 2022 third-round pick, joins veterans Blake Cashman and Neville Hewitt. The latter, a special-teamer, re-signed this offseason. The team also drafted Alabama’s Henry To’oTo’o in the fifth round.

Big on midlevel veteran additions and short-term contracts under GM Nick Caserio, Houston added Littleton on a one-year, $2.2MM deal. The former Rams, Raiders and Panthers defender received $600K guaranteed, representing the dead money set to come from this release. The Texans are retooling on defense once again, returning to a 4-3 scheme under HC DeMeco Ryans. This has led to some offseason adjustments.

Perryman and Cashman are listed as starters in Houston, Wilson adds. Littleton, 29, has been unable to stick around with a team since his productive Rams tenure ended. Still in their all-in mode when Littleton’s free agency year transpired, the Rams let the starting linebacker walk in 2019. While the Raiders gave Littleton a nice contract (three years, $35.25MM), they restructured it a few times and shed it from their payroll — via a post-June 1 cut — last year. Littleton caught on with the Panthers but only started seven of the 15 games he played last season.

Contract Details: Trubisky, K. Jackson, Texans

Here are a few details on recently-signed contracts/extensions:

  • Mitchell Trubisky, QB (Steelers): Two-year extension. Signing bonus of $6.92MM. 2023-25 salaries (unguaranteed) of $1.08MM, $4.25MM, and $5MM. 90-man offseason roster bonuses of $1MM in 2024 and 2025. Up to $4.25MM of incentives in 2023. Up to $14.5MM in incentives from 2024-25. Via Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk and Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
  • Kareem Jackson, S (Broncos): One-year, $2.67MM. Despite a 13-year career as a full-time starter, only guarantee is $152.5K signing bonus. Twitter link via Mike Klis of 9News.com.
  • Byron Cowart, DT (Texans): One-year. $1.08MM salary (veteran minimum). Includes injury waiver for previous back and knee injuries. Twitter link via Aaron Wilson of KPRC2.
  • Neville Hewitt, LB (Texans): One-year. $1.2MM salary. Signing bonus of $300K. Playing time incentives of up to $300K. Per game active roster bonus of up to $200K. Twitter link via Wilson.
  • Greg Little, OT (Texans): One-year. $1.08MM salary (veteran minimum). Signing bonus of $100K. Twitter link via Wilson.
  • Shaq Mason, G (Texans): Three-year, $36MM extension ($22MM guaranteed) on top of one remaining year of club control in 2023. Signing bonus of $10MM. 2023-26 salaries of $1.07MM (guaranteed) $9.25MM (guaranteed), $10MM ($1.05MM guaranteed), and $10.4MM (unguaranteed). Annual per game active roster bonus of up to $500K. Annual Pro Bowl incentive of $250K. $50K workout bonus from 2024-26. Twitter link via Wilson.

Trubisky was already under contract through 2023, and he was due an $8MM salary for the upcoming year. So, as Florio notes, the 28-year-old passer essentially gave the Steelers two more years of club control without any increase in 2023 pay and without securing any guaranteed money in the two tack-on years. It seems that after Pittsburgh unexpectedly re-signed fellow signal-caller Mason Rudolph, Trubisky was worried that he might be released, so in order to lock in the $8MM he was already planning to earn this season, he agreed to a team-friendly extension.

His contract is now due to expire when Kenny Pickett‘s rookie deal expires, so the Steelers will at least have a high-end backup on hand as Pickett seeks to establish himself as Pittsburgh’s franchise QB.

Texans Sign T Greg Little, LB Neville Hewitt

The Texans’ offensive line is becoming a popular landing spot for ex-Dolphins. As Laremy Tunsil heads into his fifth season in Houston, the team has also added ex-Miami blocker Michael Deiter. On Thursday, they expanded their number of former Dolphins linemen by signing Greg Little.

A former Panthers second-round pick, Little agreed to terms, per his agent (on Twitter), and Adam Schefter of ESPN.com adds the team also reached an agreement to bring back linebacker Neville Hewitt. The veteran defender and special-teamer agreed to a one-year deal (Twitter link).

Little spent last season with the Dolphins, coming to Florida via a summer 2021 trade from Carolina, started seven games for a Dolphins team that ran into injuries at both tackle spots last season. Little, who did not play in 2021 due to being a healthy scratch and then heading to IR midway through the season, has started 13 career games. The former No. 37 overall pick has not panned out, and with Tunsil and Tytus Howard manning Houston’s tackle spots, Thursday’s agreement will be for depth purposes. But the Ole Miss product could have a path to a swing-tackle role.

Hewitt has spent the past two seasons with the Texans. Despite the team changing head coaches in each of the past three offseasons, Hewitt has returned on one-year deals. This latest one-year pact will keep one of the Texans’ top special-teamers in the fold. Hewitt saw action on 81% of Houston’s special teams plays last season and has been an ST regular throughout his career.

The former Dolphins and Jets linebacker has 44 career starts on his resume, though only five have come in Houston. After working as a 16-game Jets starter in 2020, Hewitt settled in as a primary backup with his third NFL team. Hewitt totaled 60 tackles in 2021. Moved to a special teams-only contributor last season, he tallied 14. The 30-year-old linebacker played just 23 defensive snaps last year — down from 324 in 2021 — but will be back on DeMeco Ryans‘ first Texans team.

Ryans’ team has been busy at linebacker this offseason, signing both Denzel Perryman and Cory Littleton to go with the likes of Christian Kirksey, Christian Harris, Blake Cashman and fifth-round pick Henry To’oTo’o.

Texans Re-Sign LB Neville Hewitt

The Texans are bringing back a key contributor from Lovie Smith‘s defense from last year. According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, Houston is bringing back linebacker Neville Hewitt on a one-year deal. 

Hewitt performed admirably in a single season try out for the Texans last year. The seventh-year undrafted player out of Marshall played the third-most snaps for Houston’s linebackers behind starters Christian Kirksey and Kamu Grugier-Hill, racking up five starts along the way.

Hewitt did enough coming out of college in 2015 to sign on as a free agent with the Dolphins as a rookie. After increasing his role in Year Two, the Dolphins waived Hewitt, stashing him on the practice squad for most of the 2017 season.

In 2018, Hewitt signed a one-year contract with the Jets, starting four games in his first season in New York. Hewitt broke out a bit over the next two years, stepping in to start all 28 games he appeared in with injuries to players like C.J. Mosley providing the opportunity for him to show what he could do. In 2020, Hewitt led the Jets in tackles with a career-high 134, adding 2.0 sacks, four passes defensed, and one interception to the stat sheet, as well.

The productive year in New York earned him a one-year contract with Houston in May of last year. With Kirksey and Grugier-Hill both set to return, as well, the Texans bring back their top three linebackers, providing a nice bit of defensive familiarity for Lovie Smith to start his head coaching tenure in Houston.

NFL COVID-19 List Updates: 12/29/21

Several key players returned to practice Wednesday. Here are the latest COVID-19 updates from around the league:

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

Buffalo Bills

Carolina Panthers

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

Dallas Cowboys

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Rams

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

New York Jets

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

  • Activated from practice squad/COVID-19 list: WR Rico Bussey

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Washington Football Team

Texans, LB Neville Hewitt Agree To Deal

Yet another Texans one-year linebacker deal will commence this offseason. Veteran linebacker Neville Hewitt agreed to terms with the team Friday, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets.

Hewitt arrived in Houston on Thursday for a visit; the meeting produced an accepted offer. The six-year vet spent the first four seasons of his career as a backup, working primarily in a reserve capacity for the Dolphins and Jets. But he operated as a starter for the past two years.

The 28-year-old off-ball ‘backer will join several new arrivals at the position for the Texans. They have agreed to deals with Christian Kirksey, Tae Davis, Kamu Grugier-Hill, Joe Thomas, Hardy Nickerson and ex-Hewitt Jets teammate Kevin Pierre-Louis this offseason. Hewitt, Pierre-Louis and outside linebacker Jordan Jenkins were each part of the 2018 Jets’ linebacking corps.

The Texans will add Hewitt after his best NFL season. The former UDFA finished eighth in the league with 134 tackles; he added six for loss and two sacks. While the Jets went 2-14, Hewitt produced throughout the season and logged a career-high 99% of his team’s defensive snaps.

Although the Texans traded Benardrick McKinney to the Dolphins, they still have starter Zach Cunningham signed long-term. The rest of this lot will vie for the other off-ball linebacker jobs, doing so alongside fifth-round pick Garret Wallow.

Texans Host LB Neville Hewitt

Neville Hewitt could be heading west. The free agent linebacker visited with the Texans today, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter (via Twitter).

Despite going undrafted out of Marshall, Hewitt has had a consistent NFL gig since 2015. After spending his first three seasons in Miami, Hewitt joined the Jets back in 2018, and he’s been a staple of their defense ever since.

Following a 2019 campaign that saw him finish with a career-high three sacks, Hewitt arguably had his best NFL campaign in 2020. He ultimately finished the season with 134 tackles (the eighth-highest mark in the league), six tackles for loss, two sacks, and one forced fumble. Hewitt also finished the year having appeared in 99-percent of his team’s defensive snaps, while his previous career-high saw him appear in only 69-percent of his team’s defensive snaps.

Hewitt is a bit of a curious fit in Houston; the Texans have already added seven free agent linebackers, and they added TCU’s Garret Wallow in the fifth-round of last week’s draft. In total, the team currently has 15 linebackers on their roster.

Jets Re-Sign Neville Hewitt

Linebacker Neville Hewitt will return to the Jets, as ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter tweets. He’ll sign a new one-year, $2MM deal to suit up for Gang Green in 2020.

Hewitt, 27 in April, spent most of 2017 on the Dolphins’ practice squad, but was promoted for the last six games of the regular season. He played only eleven snaps, but saw 66.5% playtime on special teams.

In 2018, he got a career break with the Jets. Over the last two years, he’s suited up in 16 games for them. There’s been a lot of turnover at the Meadowlands, but the new regime seems to like him as much as the old one.

Jets Notes: Bell, Clowney, Johnson, Kalil, LBs

For a player without a major injury, Le’Veon Bell has gone through a historically light amount of organized football work over the past 19 months. Bell’s game-action delay will continue until Week 1, with Adam Gase indicating (via Rich Cimini of ESPN.com, on Twitter) his top running back will be held out from Jets preseason games. Bell has not played in a game since the Steelers’ divisional-round loss to the Jaguars in January 2018. His most recent regular-season game was Week 16 of that season. Gase had slammed the door nearly shut on Bell seeing preseason reps, but the first-year Jets coach said Avery Williamson‘s season-ending injury finalized that conversation (Twitter link via SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano). For a player who based his ’18 holdout on conservation, this should go along well with his late-2010s M.O.

Here is the Jets latest:

  • Despite the Jets devoting extensive resources to positions that are not typically tabbed as high-value areas, with Bell and C.J. Mosley making out great in free agency, the team largely left its persistent need for edge rushers alone. While Jadeveon Clowney would obviously start for the Jets, were they to make a move for the disgruntled Texans outside linebacker, Cimini writes no trade should be expected. A way it could work: the Jets trade a mid-round pick — worse value than the Texans would have received before the franchise tag extension deadline — and then flip Clowney in a 2020 tag-and-trade. The Jets hold $14.7MM in cap space, so they would have to perform some slight reorganization mechanisms to fit Clowney’s $15.9MM cap figure on their books. For now, the team will head into another season with Brandon Copeland and Jordan Jenkins on the edge.
  • On the inside, Neville Hewitt received the first crack at replacing Williamson. At the Jets’ Green and White scrimmage Sunday night, the four-year veteran — who played 16 Jets games (four starts) last season — lined up in Williamson’s inside ‘backer spot, per Vacchiano (on Twitter). Hewitt’s high-water mark for starts came with the Dolphins in 2016, when the former Miami UDFA started five games.
  • It still appears Bilal Powell, Trenton Cannon and Eli McGuire are competing for two spots. Although the Jets re-signed Powell this offseason, the 30-year-old not playing special teams stands to work against him, Cimini writes. Cannon remains the leading Jets kick-return candidate, pointing to a Bell-McGuire duel for New York’s final running back slot. McGuire is not a key Jets special-teamer, either, and only averaged 3.0 yards per carry last season.
  • Trumaine Johnson‘s adjusted timetable: Week 1. Gase said he is targeting his top cornerback for a return in time for the Jets’ opener. Johnson is dealing with a hamstring injury. He missed six games with leg trouble last year.
  • Not that Ryan Kalil‘s timetable is in question, but the recently signed center had yet to practice with his new team. The Jets deployed him with their first unit (which had some second-stringers sprinkled in) on Sunday night, Cimini adds (via Twitter). The former Panthers snapper has started in the past 12 Week 1s.

Minor NFL Transactions: 3/13/19

Here are Wednesday’s minor moves:

Arizona Cardinals

Cleveland Browns

Los Angeles Chargers

New York Jets

Pittsburgh Steelers