Owa Odighizuwa

Cowboys To Sign Osa Odighizuwa

The Cowboys have signed third-round defensive tackle Osa Odighizuwa (Twitter link via Michael Gehlken of the Dallas Morning News). With the UCLA product in the fold, the Cowboys now have just two unsigned draft picks to go.

Odighizuwa, the younger brother of former Giants defender Owa Odighizuwa, comes with four years of collegiate seasoning. And, for the last three years, he’s served as a starter for the Bruins. Even in a pandemic-shortened season, the 6’2″, 280-pound lineman managed to shine. In seven games, Odighizuwa notched six tackles for loss, four sacks, and 30 total stops. In total, he’s got 37 appearances to his credit with 120 tackles, 27.5 TFL, 11.5 sacks, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, and a defensive touchdown.

The Cowboys’ defense could certainly use the help and new DC Dan Quinn is a big believer in Odighizuwa’s ability. Currently, he projects to be the first DT off of the bench, behind starters Carlos Watkins and Trysten Hill. Sixth-round pick Quinton Bohanna also figures to be in the mix.

Bohanna, Odighizuwa, and the majority of the Cowboys’ draftees are now taken care of. Two of their third-rounders — defensive lineman Chauncey Golston and cornerback Nahshon Wright — remain as the last stragglers.

Bills Sign DE Ryan Russell

The Bills have agreed to a one-year deal with free agent defensive end Ryan Russell, reports Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk (Twitter link).

Buffalo has been interested in Russell for some time, as the club visited with the veteran lineman in May before bringing him in for another visit on Saturday. That’s been the only known league-wide interest in Russell, whom the Buccaneers allowed to hit the open market in the spring after opting not to tender him as a restricted free agent.

Russell, a fifth-round pick in the 2015, draft, appeared in 14 games and made six starts for the Buccaneers a season ago in a campaign that was his most active to date. The 26-year-old played on 456 defensive snaps for Tampa Bay (nearly triple his career snap count to that point), managing two sacks and 12 tackles in that time. Russell also chipped on special teams, seeing action on roughly 20% of the Bucs’ ST snaps.

The Bills had been on the lookout for defensive line help, as they worked out former Bronco Jared Crick before inking Russell while also signing interior defender John Hughes. Russell, for his part, will compete for reserve snaps behind Jerry Hughes, Trent Murphy, and Shaq Lawson.

In order to create a roster spot for Russell, Buffalo has waived defensive end Owa Odighizuwa, the club announced.

NFL Workout Updates: 10/31/17

Today’s workout updates, with all links going to veteran NFL reporter Howard Balzer’s Twitter account unless otherwise noted:

Baltimore Ravens

Carolina Panthers

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

New England Patriots

New York Giants

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Washington Redskins

Buccaneers To Sign DE Darryl Tapp

The Buccaneers have agreed to sign free agent defensive end Darryl Tapp, according to Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times (Twitter link).Darryl Tapp (vertical)

Tampa Bay is dealing with several injuries along its defensive line, the most severe of which may be to edge rusher Noah Spence, who left Sunday’s contest with a shoulder injury and will likely miss an extended period of time. Ryan Russell is also coming back from a shoulder issue, while veteran Robert Ayers is managing a knee injury (and was able to play in Week 7).

Tapp, 33, has already had multiple stints with the division rival Saints in 2017, but hasn’t actually played a down for New Orleans since last season. He’s been more or less a rotational defensive end since 2009 (with his best and most productive years coming as a starter for the Seahawks in 2007-08), and that’s likely the role he’ll play for the Buccaneers. Tapp, who has 162 career appearances under his belt, will play behind Ayers, William Gholston, and Will Clarke in Tampa.

This isn’t the first time the Bucs have sought to add help on the edge of their defensive line. Free agent pass rusher Lamarr Houston worked out for Tampa Bay earlier this month before signing with the Texans, while the Buccaneers auditioned defensive ends Wallace Gilberry and Owa Odighizuwa alongside Tapp on Tuesday, per veteran NFL reporter Howard Balzer (Twitter link). Tampa also looked at cornerbacks Josh Johnson, Deji Olatoye, and Raysean Pringle, plus defensive tackle Marquavius Lewis.

NFL Workout Updates: 10/17/17

Today’s workout updates, with all links going to veteran NFL reporter Howard Balzer’s Twitter account unless otherwise noted:

Buffalo Bills

Chicago Bears

Cincinnati Bengals

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions 

Houston Texans

  • QB Taylor Heinicke (link via Caplan)

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

Los Angeles Chargers

New Orleans Saints

New York Jets

San Francisco 49ers

Washington Redskins

Patriots Work Out Owa Odighizuwa

The Patriots’ tryouts on Monday included former Giants defensive end Owa Odighizuwa, as Mike Reiss of ESPN.com tweets. There’s no word yet on how the tryout went, but the Pats could use some pass rush reinforcements following the events of this past offseason. Owa Odighizuwa (vertical)

For much of the offseason, it seemed like Odighizuwa was prepared to walk away from football at the age of 25. After taking some time to mull it all over, Odighizuwa was a late entrant to Giants camp and put himself in the mix to make the final 53-man cut. He struggled in practice, however, and his four-game ban for PEDs was the final nail in the coffin.

Odighizuwa was a third-round pick of the G-Mne in 2015. He appeared in four games as a rookie and 14 last season, though he didn’t make much of an impact. His suspension expired this week, so he’ll be ready to rock immediately if New England chooses to sign him.

Giants Waive Owa Odighizuwa

The Giants have waived Owa Odighizuwa. The move was expected after the defensive end was hit with a four-game suspension on Monday.

For much of the offseason, it seemed like Odighizuwa was prepared to walk away from football at the age of 25. After taking some time to mull it all over, Odighizuwa was a late entrant to training camp and put himself in the mix to make the final 53-man cut. Word is that he was struggling in practice, however, and was far from a lock to stay with the team past the Saturday deadline. Once word of the PED ban came down, it was a fairly easy call for GM Jerry Reese & Co.

Odighizuwa will be free to sign with any club if he clears waivers in the next 24 hours. Odds are, he will.

Giants’ Owa Odighizuwa Suspended

Giants defensive end Owa Odighizuwa has been suspended for the first four games of the season, according to an announcement from the league. Odighizuwa will be eligible to return for the Giants’ Oct 8 game against the Chargers. Owa Odighizuwa (vertical)

[RELATED: Giants Tried To Claim New Jets DE Kony Ealy]

Odighizuwa has violated the league’s PED policy, according to the league office. It’s another strange turn for Odighizuwa who hinted at retirement this offseason. After taking some time to address personal issues, Odighizuwa rejoined the team in camp this summer with an eye on playing.

So far, the 25-year-old has been running with the third-string defense and hasn’t been able to really get going. Because Odighizuwa was far from a lock to make the 53-man cut, this could wind up being the end of the line for him in New York.

NFC East Notes: OBJ, Cowboys, Redskins

The Giants aren’t prioritizing a new contract for wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., who’s under control at eminently affordable prices through next season. If they do attempt to lock up Beckham down the line, it doesn’t seem that it’s going to be an easy negotiation. Beckham told uninterrupted.com on Thursday that he’s aiming to eventually become the NFL’s highest-paid player (via Paul Schwartz of the New York Post). “It’s like the elephant in the room and you don’t want to talk about it,’’ said Beckham. “I’ve gotten to a point in my life where I’m like, there’s no need to not talk about it. I believe that I will be, hopefully not just the highest-paid receiver in the league, but the highest paid, period.”

As great as Beckham has been during his three-year career, the top-paid honor tends to belong to a quarterback. That’s the case right now, with the Raiders’ Derek Carr‘s just-signed deal (five years, $125MM-plus) atop the heap on an annual basis. The Steelers’ Antonio Brown leads all receivers in yearly pay ($17MM per on a four-year, $68MM accord), but he lags far behind Carr. And it might be awhile before the 24-year-old Beckham is even able to challenge Brown and the league’s other richest wideouts, given that the Giants will have the option of placing the franchise tag on him for tolerable costs in both 2019 and ’20 if he’s unsigned. In the meantime, Beckham’s set to play this year for $1.8MM – a pittance relative to his production – and the Giants picked up his $8.5MM fifth-year option for 2018.

More on New York and two of its NFC East rivals:

  • The Cowboys’ signing of running back Ronnie Hillman on Thursday has nothing to do with a potential suspension for Ezekiel Elliott, reports David Moore of the Dallas Morning News. Rather, the Cowboys added Hillman as both a possible Lance Dunbar replacement and someone capable of accruing touches during the summer and taking some of the stress off the team’s other backs in the coming weeks. As for Elliott, who was bracing for a suspension two weeks ago, the NFL probably won’t announce his fate until later in the preseason, per Moore.
  • Redskins outside linebacker Trent Murphy underwent offseason surgery to repair a broken bone in his foot, according to JP Finlay of CSN Mid-Atlantic. Murphy is now healed, but he still won’t factor into the Redskins’ early season plans as a result of the four-game performance-enhancing drugs suspension the NFL handed him in April. When he returns in Week 6 (the Redskins have a Week 5 bye), the nine-sack man from 2016 will look to continue that strong production in a contract year.
  • Giants coach Ben McAdoo told reporters on Thursday that defensive end Owa Odighizuwa has reported to camp (Twitter link via Schwartz). Odighizuwa stayed away from the Giants during the offseason on account of personal issues.

Zach Links contributed to this post.

NFC East Notes: Cowboys, OBJ, Redskins

Earlier this week, Cowboys wideout Dez Bryant attempted to recruit free agent cornerback Darrelle Revis via Twitter. Subsequent reports indicated that the organization wasn’t pursuing the veteran, but head coach Jason Garrett was rather vague when addressing the rumors today.

“Yeah, I really don’t know the nature of that,” Garrett said (via Jon Machota of The Dallas News). “Obviously we have a lot of respect for Revis. He’s been a great player in this league for a long time.”

Meanwhile, defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli deferred to the front office.

“I wouldn’t even speculate on anything like that,” he said. “That’s in the front office. They are the ones that decide those things.”

Predictably, Marinelli acknowledged that there could be a role for the seven-time Pro Bowler.

“Any great player you can,” he said. “It doesn’t matter where he’s at, what position.”

As we wait to see how this plays out, let’s take a look at other notes from the NFC East…

  • Odell Beckham Jr. grabbed headlines this month by staying away from the Giants during OTAs, but he says that he’s not fretting his contract situation. “I leave that in the hands of the man above,” Beckham said (according to Paul Schwartz of the New York Post on Twitter). “When that time comes, that time comes. Right now is really not the time to discuss it. When it comes, it’ll come.”
  • Giants defensive end Owa Odighizuwa is handling “personal issues” and isn’t expected to be present at mandatory minicamp, reports ESPN.com’s Jordan Raanan (via Twitter). The former third-round pick, who also wasn’t present for OTAs, has played in 18 games over the past two seasons, compiling six tackles.
  • Redskins running back Matt Jones was absent during OTAs, but NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport reports (via Twitter) that the veteran was present for mandatory minicamp. Recent reports indicated that Jones wasn’t “a part of the team’s plans for 2017,” which echoed previous rumors that the team was shopping the 24-year-old. Jones appeared in seven games last season, running for 460 yards and three touchdowns on 99 carries.

Zach Links contributed to this report.