Ryan Williams (RB)

Minor NFL Transactions: 7/28/15

Today’s minor moves and signings..

  • The Bills cut Deon Broomfield from injured reserve, Wilson tweets.
  • The Browns announced that they have signed offensive lineman Erle Ladson while waiving defensive back Micah Pellerin, Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon-Journal tweets.
  • The Panthers waived running back Darrin Reaves, who saw a good amount of playing time last season as the Panthers had issues with their backfield, ESPN.com’s David Newton writes. Meanwhile, Carolina inked tackles Tony Hills and Davonte Wallace.

Earlier Updates:

  • Bengals wide receiver James Wright has been released with a waived/injured designation, according to Coley Harvey of ESPN.com (on Twitter). If he isn’t claimed tomorrow, he’ll be placed on the Bengals’ IR for the season.
  • The Cowboys released running back Ryan Williams, linebacker Cameron Lawrence, and offensive lineman Ryan Miller while signing running back Gus Johnson, offensive lineman Ronald Patrick, and linebacker Justin Anderson, Todd Archer of ESPN.com tweets.
  • The Cardinals placed wide receiver Damond Powell on the reserve/NFI list, Josh Weinfuss of ESPN.com tweets. The move creates a place for tight end Jermaine Gresham on the 90-man roster.
  • The Jets announced that they have released kicker Andrew Furney. That move will create room for the addition of wide receiver Austin Hill, who was picked up yesterday. Furney was signed by the Jets last offseason as an undrafted free agent out of Washington State to compete with Nick Folk during the ’14 training camp. He signed a reserve/future contract to return to the Jets last Dec. 30.
  • The Bears signed defensive lineman David Carter to a one-year deal, Adam Jahns of the Chicago Tribune tweets. To make room, linebacker Jonathan Brown has been waived.

NFC Notes: AP, Bridgewater, Dotson, Cowboys

Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater had a solid rookie year despite being without the services of six-time Pro Bowl running back Adrian Peterson, who missed all but one game in 2014 because of domestic-violence issues. The newly reinstated Peterson is hoping his return will help Bridgewater’s game reach new heights this season.

“Hopefully my presence will be able to lose a guy or two by bringing guys in that focus on stopping the run,” Peterson said, per ESPN’s Tania Ganguli.

Peterson won’t just aid Bridgewater as a runner, but he’s expecting to be a useful option in the passing game.

“With coach [Norv] Turner’s offense, there’s so much that he throws out there, so I’ll be more involved in the pass game, being out wide, presenting myself for Teddy to check down,” said the 30-year-old.

Here’s more from around the NFC:

  • Buccaneers right tackle Demar Dotson is optimistic that ending his brief holdout and reporting to minicamp next week will help him get the new contract he’s seeking. “I think we can get a deal done pretty quickly,” Dotson said, according to Roy Cummings of the Tampa Tribune. “We were pretty close before. I’m hoping if I show up we can get it done. I really don’t want to miss any workouts or training camp.” Dotson, 29, has two years remaining on his contract, but he’s just the 22nd-highest-paid right tackle in the NFL. That doesn’t jibe with his on-field performance, as Pro Football Focus (subscription required) ranked the six-year veteran an impressive 28th among 84 qualifying offensive tackles last season.
  • Thanks to DeMarco Murray‘s departure in free agency, the Cowboys don’t have a clear No. 1 running back as the summer nears, but offensive coordinator Scott Linehan believes someone – be it Darren McFadden, Joseph Randle or Ryan Williams – will separate himself from the pack and earn the job as the team’s go-to ball carrier. “I think before it’s all said and done, that person will rise to the top. What’s interesting and exciting is that we’re going to find out,” said Linehan, according to Rainer Sabin of the Dallas Morning News.
  • When asked if the Lions’ addition of Garrett Gilbert meant that backup quarterback Dan Orlovsky could be on the way out, Dave Birkett of MLive.com responded that the chances of that happening are slim (via Twitter).

Rob DiRe contributed to this post.

NFC Links: Vereen, Foles, Cowboys, Vikings

It was presumably a tough decision for running back Shane Vereen to leave the Super Bowl-winning Patriots to join the Giants. The tough choice may have ultimately come down to the G-Men wanting the running back more, and the various recruiting calls, including one from Odell Beckham Jr., clearly left an impression with the 26-year-old.

“I asked around [about the Giants] with guys who played here, a couple guys in California I work out with, and previously I had met Odell [Beckham, Jr.],” Vereen said (via MMQB’s Jenny Vrentas). “So I hit them up, trying to talk to them and learn things I didn’t know. They filled me in.

“[Beckham Jr.] said it was a young team with a lot of talent. He loves it here, and he was excited for this upcoming season. That was really all I needed to hear. I love when guys are excited to be somewhere. That makes me want to be there and excited for the growth.”

Let’s take a look at some more notes from around the NFC…

  • Nick Foles may have wore out his welcome with the Eagles, but the Rams are excited to have him. The receivers are especially thrilled, writes Chris Wesseling of NFL.com. Two top targets, Kenny Britt and Jared Cook, both expressed their enthusiasm for the new quarterback’s abilities.
  • The running back position for the Cowboys is in flux, and Lance Dunbar will be fighting Ryan Williams for a spot on the roster again this season, according to Bob Sturm of DallasNews.com. Dunbar’s a limited player, but his abilities on special teams should give him the edge on Williams in terms of a roster spot.
  • New Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer walked into a tough situation amid the ongoing feud between Adrian Peterson and the organization. However, has has handled it quite brilliantly, without looking like a puppet for management or sucking up to Peterson, according to Albert Breer of NFL.com. “A lot of it was … It was tough for Adrian. It was tough for the Vikings, as well. So trying to be fair to both sides was important,” Zimmer said. “I always want to support my players, and still do the best thing for our football team.”

Ben Levine contributed to this post.

Cap Notes: Steve Smith, Ravens, Barwin, ‘Boys

Despite being eliminated during the Divisional Round of the playoffs, several Ravens players can rest easy knowing they’ve earned more money based on their 2014 performance. According to Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun, receiver Steve Smith will earn an extra $1MM in incentives, which were based on playing time, individual, and team performance. Linebacker Daryl Smith will also have another $1MM tacked onto his 2014 earnings, and he also hit an escalator that will increase his 2015 salary by $500K. Tight end Owen Daniels earned $755K through incentives, and center Gino Gradkowski will see a pay raise thanks to the proven performance escalator (explained here). Here are more cap-related notes from around the NFL…

  • After an outstanding 2014 season that saw him record 14.5 sacks, Eagles linebacker Connor Barwin will earn a higher base salary in 2015 thanks to escalators in his contract. Per Adam Caplan of ESPN (Twitter link), Barwin hit all of his escalators, meaning he’ll make $5.5MM next year, a bump of $900K.
  • Cowboys safety Barry Church will earn a $1MM raise on top of his scheduled 2015 salary, according to Todd Archer of ESPN.com, who writes that Church met a playing time threshold by seeing action on 85% of defensive snaps last season.
  • Veteran Saints linebacker Curtis Lofton earned a $200K salary increase in each of the next two seasons thanks to an unknown escalator, per Mike Triplett of ESPN.com.
  • As we head to the offseason, several teams are willing to offer high guarantees in order to sign highly-coveted players to reserve/futures deals. According to Brian McIntyre (via Twitter), the largest guarantees on reserve deals thus far belong to running back Ryan Williams (who signed a two-year contract with the Cowboys) and defensive lineman Lawrence Okoye, who inked a pact with the 49ers.
  • The Cowboys will carry over $3.26MM in cap space into 2015, tweets Todd Archer of ESPN.com.

Minor Moves: Williams, Wade, Cleary

Today’s minor moves..

  • The Cowboys confirmed that Ryan Williams has been signed to a two-year contract extension, according to Clarence Hill Jr. of the Star-Telegram (via Twitter). Williams signed with Dallas last offseason, but never stepped foot on the field. The former member of the Cardinals has not been on the gridiron for in-game action since 2012.
  • The Giants signed defensive back Trevin Wade, a former member of the Browns and Saints, to a reserves/futures deal, according to Ralph Vacchiano of the New York Daily News (via Twitter). Wade, an Arizona product, has 15 career NFL games to his credit.
  • The Eastern Athletics agency (via Twitter) announced that client Emmett Cleary has signed a futures deal with the Giants. The tackle previously spent time with the Bengals.

Cowboys Sign Eight Players To Futures Deals

In the wake of their season-ending loss to the Packers on Sunday, the Cowboys have moved quickly to lock up their coaches without contracts, and they’re doing the same for their practice squad players. Per Todd Archer of ESPNDallas.com, the ‘Boys have re-signed seven players who finished the season on their taxi squad, plus Troy Davis, who was on the squad’s IR list. Here’s the full list of signees:

Of the players who finished the season on Dallas’ practice squad, only defensive tackle Davon Coleman and cornerback Micah Pellerin have yet to sign new deals.

Joseph Randle Staying A Cowboy “For Now”

Tensions have been high in the Cowboys’ locker room since video emerged showing Joseph Randle talking to Frisco police, in which he mentioned legal problems of both Dez Bryant and Josh Brent, reports Ed Werder of ESPN. Bryant and Brent were reportedly furious, and an argument ensued that spilled onto the practice field. Head coach Jason Garrett had a meeting with the players involved to try to smooth things over.

The video stems from Randle’s shoplifting arrest earlier this season. Randle’s future with the team is in doubt, following the arrest and the current unrest between him and his teammates. Werder writes that he has been ostracized by his teammates, but will still play Sunday against the Cardinals as of right now.

One source Werder spoke to was far from definitive about the team’s stance on the second-year back. “Randle is staying for now,” according to the source.

The team fined Randle roughly the equivalent to a game check in response to his shoplifting arrest.

Starting running back DeMarco Murray has had a heavy workload, carrying the team to a hot start. Randle provides a spark when spelling Murray, and also stands as insurance in case of an injury to Murray, who has struggled to stay healthy his first three seasons in Dallas. Randle, Lance Dunbar, and Ryan Williams are the other backs on the roster.

Randle would probably be released if backup Williams was able to contribute more on special teams, writes Calvin Watkins of ESPNDallas.com (via Twitter).

Watkins also writes that the meeting was called because a majority of players want him off the team (via Twitter). “Garrett is trying to get a hold of the situation,” according to Watkins.

The team will need to resolve the situation quickly, with a need for talent as they try to hold on in the NFC East. Their urgency is only heightened with the uncertainty surrounding Tony Romo‘s back injury.

Sunday/Monday Transactions: NFC East

Listed below are the Sunday roster moves for the four NFC East teams. Following the 53-man roster cutdown deadline yesterday, many teams will make slight tweaks to their rosters, claiming players off waivers or signing guys who clear waivers. Those transactions are noted below.

Additionally, as of 11:00am CT today, teams can begin constructing their 10-man practice squads. For the 2014 and 2015 seasons, changes were made to practice squad rules that allow teams to carry eight players instead of 10, and the eligibility requirements for those extra two spots were also loosened. You can check out our glossary entry on practice squads to brush up on those changes, as well as all the other guidelines that govern the 10-man units, whose players practice with the team but aren’t eligible to suit up on Sundays.

Here are Sunday’s NFC East transactions, which will continue to be updated throughout the day:

Dallas Cowboys:

New York Giants:

Philadelphia Eagles:

Washington Redskins:

Cowboys Make Cuts, Reduce Roster To 53

Only two Cowboys’ cuts surfaced yesterday, and the team added Lavar Edwards in a trade with the Titans earlier today, meaning 21 players had to be removed from the team’s active roster today. Among those roster casualties were a few notable names, including veteran guard Uche Nwaneri and running backs Phillip Tanner and Ryan Williams. Here’s the complete list of Cowboys roster moves, via a press release:




Placed on reserve-suspended list:

Extra Points: Cowboys, 49ers, Browns, Giants

Let’s check out some leftover links on this Saturday night…