P.J. Mustipher

Minor NFL Transactions: 3/19/24

Today’s minor moves:

Buffalo Bills

Cleveland Browns

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Philadelphia Eagles

Saints Place DT Malcolm Roach, S Marcus Maye On IR

The Saints announced a number of roster transactions today along with their earlier successful waiver claim of linebacker Monty Rice. The team placed two defenders, defensive tackle Malcolm Roach and safety Marcus Maye, on injured reserve and signed defensive tackle P.J. Mustipher to their active roster from the Broncos‘ practice squad. Lastly, New Orleans released safety Daniel Sorensen from its practice squad.

Roach, a former undrafted free agent out of Texas, is a disappointing addition to the injury list as he is having a career year in New Orleans. As a defensive tackle, his numbers won’t jump off the stat sheet, but Roach has been a strong contributor coming off the bench in the team’s defensive line rotation. So far this year, Roach has career-highs in total tackles (38), tackles for loss (3), and batted passes (3). Pro Football Focus (subscription required) also ranks Roach as the league’s 24th-best interior defensive lineman.

Maye has also played a large role in the Saints’ defense the past two years, serving as a starter when healthy. In his first year away from the Jets last year, Maye started 10 games for New Orleans, missing games here and there throughout the year. That trend continued as Maye has missed five of the team’s first 12 games in 2023 and is set to miss at least four more on IR. In his seven starts this year, Maye has contributed two interceptions, his first picks since 2020.

With Maye sidelined, the Saints will likely rely on rookie fifth-round pick Jordan Howden, who the team has turned to on multiple occasions this year to start in place of Maye. On the line, Mustipher will come in to make up for the depth lost in Roach’s departure. Mustipher, an undrafted rookie out of Penn State, was signed to Denver’s practice squad after failing to make the 53-man roster to start the year. He was a disruptive presence as a Nittany Lion with three sacks and 11.0 tackles for loss in college.

Sorensen, the former long-time Chiefs safety, will head to free agency at 33 years old. He had two picks in as many starts with the Saints last year and is set to have his first season without an interception since 2015. He could find himself on a new practice squad as a depth option, but the veteran’s time in New Orleans appears to be over for now.

Broncos Sign 15 Undrafted Free Agents

As more teams’ rookie minicamps commence, UDFA classes are emerging. The Broncos brought in 15 post-draft free agents. Here is how Denver’s group looks:

  • TE Nate Adkins (South Carolina)
  • ILB Seth Benson (Iowa)
  • G Henry Boyd (Princeton)
  • WR Dallas Daniels (Jackson State)
  • CB Darrious Gaines (Western Colorado)
  • CB Art Green (Houston)
  • WR Taylor Grimes (Incarnate Word)
  • OLB Marcus Haynes (Old Dominion)
  • OLB Thomas Incoom (Central Michigan)
  • T Demontrey Jacobs (South Florida)
  • TE Kris Leach (Kent State)
  • RB Jaleel McLaughlin (Youngstown State)
  • DT P.J. Mustipher (Penn State)
  • T Alex Palczewski (Illinois)
  • RB Emanuel Wilson (Fort Valley State)

Green received a nice $180K salary guarantee to sign, Troy Renck of Denver7 tweets. The 6-foot-2 cover man earned second-team All-American Athletic Conference acclaim last season and finished his career with a Most Valuable Defender honor in the Independence Bowl. The Broncos have seen a number of UDFAs make significant impacts for their team over the past several years, from Chris Harris to Shaq Barrett to Phillip Lindsay. Green’s guarantee suggests he is a good bet to challenge for a 53-man roster spot.

Palczewski received $80K to sign, Mike Klis of 9News tweets. He will join the Broncos with more starter experience than just about any college player has accumulated in the sport’s history, having made a Big Ten-record 65 starts for the Fighting Illini. The additional eligibility year the NCAA granted due to the COVID-19 pandemic boosted this total, but Palczewski received All-American acclaim from several publications last season. He spent six years in college and, while logging nearly 20 starts at guard — some of which as a true freshman back in 2017 — worked as Illinois’ primary right tackle over the past several years.

Grimes finished his college career with back-to-back 1,000-yard receiving seasons, while Incoom totaled 11.5 sacks as a senior. McLaughlin finished his career with consecutive 1,100-plus-yard rushing seasons at Youngstown State, while Wilson totaled 1,371 rushing yards and 17 touchdowns in 2022. The Broncos signed Samaje Perine but have a fairly unclear backfield pecking order, given the uncertainty surrounding starter Javonte Williams‘ return from an October ACL tear.