August 15th, 2018 at 10:00pm CST by Andrew Ortenberg
The Chiefs released safety Robert Golden today, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network (Twitter link).
Golden’s agent told Rapoport that the release was at Golden’s request. He also said Golden “didn’t feel like he was getting the opportunity to contribute the way he wanted to.” Golden signed a one-year deal with the team back in April.
Golden came into the league as an undrafted free agent with the Steelers back in 2012, and spent the first six years of his career in Pittsburgh. Across 92 games with the Steelers, he racked up 125 tackles, seven passes defended, and two interceptions.
Golden appeared to break the news himself, tweeting earlier that he was “no longer a Kansas City Chief”. Golden’s agent added that “he’s hoping to catch on with another team soon” although it will be difficult for him to make a team this late in camp.
Robert Golden has signed with the Chiefs, Mark Kaboly of The Athletic tweets. The defensive back has been on the market ever since being released by the Steelers in March.
The Steelers dropped Golden in order to save $1.5MM against the salary cap. For the Chiefs, he’ll serve as a cheap reinforcement in the secondary after the departures of cornerbacks Terrance Mitchell and Phillip Gaines and the possible loss of free agent Kenneth Acker. The Chiefs’ new look cornerback group will be headlined by former Redskin Kendall Fuller and February free agent pickup David Amerson. Steven Nelson, Keith Reaser, and Will Redmond are also slated to return as reserves. Meanwhile, Golden will also see some action at safety (behind starters Eric Berry and Daniel Sorensen) and special teams.
Golden, 27, spent his entire six-year career with the Steelers until he was cut last month. In 2017, Golden appeared in all 16 games, posting 11 tackles and one interception in that time.
Pittsburgh will save nearly $1.5MM against the salary cap by parting ways with Golden. He’s not the only veteran defensive back the Steelers have released in cost-cutting moves, as William Gay and Mike Mitchell are also on their way out.
Golden, 27, has spent his entire six-year career with the Steelers. In 2017, Golden appeared in all 16 games, posting 11 tackles and one interception in that time.
Here are a few of the latest contract details for players who have agreed to new deals and/or signed them in recent days. All links are courtesy of Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle unless otherwise indicated…
Jermaine Kearse, WR (Seahawks): Three years, $13.5MM. $6.3MM guaranteed. $5.5MM signing bonus. Up to $4.7MM in total incentives/escalators (Twitterlinks via Wilson and Tom Pelissero of USA Today).
Tahir Whitehead, LB (Lions): Two years, $8MM. $4.75MM guaranteed. $3MM signing bonus. $500K in annual playing-time/Pro Bowl incentives. $200K in per-game active roster bonuses in 2017 (Twitterlinks).
Sherrick McManis, CB (Bears): Two years, $2.85MM. $600K signing bonus. $150K roster bonus due 10th day of 2016 league year. $50K annual workout bonus (Twitter link).
Senio Kelemete, OL (Saints): Two years, $2.7MM. $300K signing bonus. $50K roster bonus due third day of 2017 league year. Up to $600K in annual incentives (Twitterlinks).
Kenrick Ellis, DT (Vikings): One year, $810K. $25K workout bonus. $25K bonus for one game on 53-man roster (Twitter link via Pelissero).
Tamba Hali, OLB (Chiefs): Three years, $21MM. $11.5MM fully guaranteed. $4.75MM signing bonus. $500K annually in weight bonuses (five weigh-ins worth $100K each). $500K annually in per-game active roster bonuses (Twitterlinksvia Wilson and Pelissero).
10:09am: Golden’s deal is worth $5MM for three years, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com confirms (via Twitter). That’s a nice price for the Steelers, and suggests the team views the safety more as a special teams player than a potential starter on defense.
8:25am: The Steelers have reached an agreement on a new three-year contract with pending free agent safety Robert Golden, reports Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com (via Twitter). The Steelers have since confirmed the deal (Twitter link via Burt Lauten).
Golden, 25, has primarily been a depth piece and a special-teamer for the Steelers during his first four years in the NFL. However, he did earn three starts for the club last season, making a career-high 36 tackles to go along with nine passes defended and an interception.
Golden had been one of several Steelers defensive backs eligible for free agency this offseason, along with fellow safety Will Allen and cornerbacks William Gay, Brandon Boykin, and Antwon Blake. With Mike Mitchell set to man one of the safety spots for Pittsburgh in 2016, perhaps Golden will get the opportunity to compete for playing time as the other safety. However, that will likely depend on what else the team does this offseason to address the position.
According to La Canfora, Golden’s new deal is worth $5MM. However, based on that report, it’s not entirely clear whether Golden will be paid $5MM per year, or $5MM over the course of three years. The safety is coming off a season in which he earned $1.542MM, so $5MM over three years would represent a modest bump in his annual salary. Still, considering he saw his first extended action on defense in 2015 and played well, such a small increase in Golden’s pay would make for a very team-friendly deal.
Addressing a report that suggested he left several members of the Bills‘ front office and coaching staff out of the loop when he decided to cut Fred Jackson, general manager Doug Whaley said on Thursday night that he consulted several others before making the move official, writes Tyler Dunne of The Buffalo News. According to Whaley, head coach Rex Ryan was with him when he informed Jackson of the decision.
“So he was in there with me when we told him together,” Whaley said. “Talked to the running backs coach (Anthony Lynn). So it wasn’t just me waking up one day and deciding, ‘Hey, I want to do this.'”
Whaley added multiple times that he informed Bills ownership of the move, which the original report didn’t dispute. For his part, Jackson suggested Whaley was behind the decision, adding that the GM “wasn’t honest with me the entire time that I’ve known him.”
Here’s more from across the AFC:
Having turned down a minimum-salary offer from the Texans last month, veteran running back Pierre Thomas is seeking a salary around $1.3MM or $1.4MM, tweets Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle. It appears the Texans have moved on from Thomas, though perhaps Houston or another club could revisit the free agent back after Week 1.
According to Jason Fitzgerald of Over the Cap and ESPN’s Field Yates (Twitterlinks), the Browns won’t be on the hook for Phil Taylor‘s full $5.477MM salary after all, after releasing the defensive tackle. When he asked for his release, Taylor accepted a three-week injury settlement, which works out to a $966,529 payment.
Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette wonders if the Steelers might part ways with one – or all – of the three players who received restricted free agent tenders from the club earlier this year — Pittsburgh could clear about $3.3MM in cap space by cutting fullback Will Johnson, cornerback Antwon Blake, and safety Robert Golden.
The Steelers have re-signed safety Robert Golden, according to Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun, who tweets that the restricted free agent signed his tender to remain with the team. Because Golden was tendered at the lowest level by Pittsburgh, he’ll be in line for a $1.542MM salary in 2015.
Golden, 24, has played all but one regular season game for the Steelers since joining the club in 2012, but has yet to see significant action on defense. In those three seasons, Golden has played just 107 defensive snaps, contributing more regularly on special teams — he has 17 tackles in kick and punt coverage over the last two years.
Despite Golden’s limited contributions – and the team’s limited cap flexibility – the Steelers saw enough out of the Arizona product that they were willing to tender him a one-year contract offer. With Troy Polamalu no longer in the mix in Pittsburgh’s secondary, it’s possible Golden will see his role expanded for the 2015 season.
Assuming he earns the necessary service time this coming season, Golden will be eligible for unrestricted free agency in 2016.
The Cardinals announced they’ve re-signed Alameda Ta’amu to a one-year contract, as Mike Jurecki of FOX Sports tweets. The Cards decided not to tender him but they have retained him at a lower salary.
The 49ers will restructure their deal with safety Craig Dahl, according to Aaron Wilson of The Baltimore Sun (on Twitter). It’s now a one-year, $1.3MM deal with a $200K signing bonus, a $175K roster bonus, and a $50K workout bonus.
The Ravens have assigned a $510K exclusive rights tender to offensive lineman Ryan Jensen, a source tells Aaron Wilson of The Baltimore Sun (on Twitter). Wilson (link) also hears that the Ravens have given wide receiver Kamar Aiken a $585K exclusive rights tender.
The Bills announced that they have extended the contract of kicker Jordan Gay, according to ESPN.com’s Mike Rodak (via Twitter).
The Browns announced that they have tendered qualifying offers to four of their restricted free agents: free safety Tashaun Gipson, defensive back Johnson Bademosi, defensive lineman Ishmaa’ily Kitchen, and linebacker Craig Robertson, Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon-Journal tweets. It’s a second-round tender for Robertson, according to Mary Kay Cabot of The Plain Dealer (on Twitter). Gipson also gets the second-round tender, according to Ulrich (link).
The Ravens have sent a second-round restricted tender $2.356MM to Pro Bowl kicker Justin Tucker, a source tells Aaron Wilson of The Baltimore Sun (on Twitter).
The Steelersannounced that they have agreed to terms with veteran tight end Matt Spaeth on a two-year deal. The 31-year-old appeared in 15 regular-season games in 2014 (eight starts) and caught three passes for 46 yards and a touchdown, and also started the Steelers’ playoff game against Baltimore.
The Buccaneers are not expected to tender an offer to fullback Jorvorskie Lane, Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times tweets. They could bring Lane, an ERFA, back on a different deal later, however. Lane had a tough year in 2014. He was hit with a two-game suspension for violating the league’s policy on performance enhancing substances in October and his season ended in November after he underwent surgery on his injured right leg.
The Broncos have placed the low-level contract tender on restricted free agent defensive back Tony Carter, extending him a one-year offer worth $1.542MM, per Mike Klis of the Denver Post. The move gives Denver the right to match any offer sheet Carter signs with another team, and according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link), there may be strong outside interest.
The Brownsannounced that they have re-signed offensive lineman Ryan Seymour. Seymour, 25, appeared in 11 games during the 2014 season, starting three at center. Nick McDonald was originally the team’s choice at center after Alex Mack went down with a broken leg, but Seymour eventually got his chance at the job.
The Panthers have re-signed wide receiver/kick returner Brenton Bersin to a one-year deal, a source tells Joe Person of the Charlotte Observer (via Twitter). Bersin was an exclusive rights free agent.
The Panthers announced that they re-signed Fozzy Whittaker on a two-year deal, according to Person (on Twitter). The tailback had 32 carries for 145 yards last season and also contributed on kick returns. Linebacker Ben Jacobs and center Brian Folkerts got one-year deals to remain in Carolina (link). Tackle Kevin Hughes is the only Panthers ERFA who wasn’t tendered an offer (link).