Robert Woods

Rams Give Raise To Robert Woods

The Rams are taking care of one of their own. Los Angeles is giving receiver Robert Woods a raise for the 2019 season, a source told Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (Twitter link).

According to Schefter, the Rams are “adding an additional $1 million to 2019 Base Salary, and fully guaranteed a new $2 million Roster Bonus for next year.” He notes that there aren’t any extra years being added or strings attached, and that it’s just a straight raise. It’s a gesture of good will that doesn’t happen too often in the NFL. Woods has been playing at a level well above what he’s being paid, so it does make sense why the Rams are feeling generous.

In March of 2017, Woods signed a five-year, $34MM contract with the Rams. He’s locked in for another three seasons, and that deal looks like an absolute steal for the team now. He had a career year last season, racking up 1,219 yards and six touchdowns on 86 receptions. He also played a big role as a runner/decoy with Sean McVay’s frequent jet motions, carrying the ball 19 times for 157 yards and a touchdowns.

Woods led one of the league’s best offenses in receiving yards last season, and he’d shatter the less than $7MM annually he’s earning under his current deal if he were to hit the open market now. Woods was a solid player his first handful of seasons in Buffalo, but he’s taken his game to a new level under McVay. Alongside Cooper Kupp and Brandin Cooks, he’ll be apart of one of the game’s best receiving corps in 2019.

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Rams Restructure Woods, Whitworth Deals

The Rams have carved out an extra $7MM in cap space by restructuring the deals of offensive tackle Andrew Whitworth and wide receiver Robert Woods, Field Yates of ESPN.com (on Twitter) hears. The moves may be an indication that the Rams are close to finalizing an extension with star defensive tackle Aaron Donald

Exact details of the restructures are not known, but these moves typically convert a portion of salary into a signing bonus, which can be smoothed out over future seasons. Whitworth was slated to earn an $8MM base salary this year and Woods had a $5MM base in addition to the $3MM roster bonus he collected on earlier this year.

The finish line may be in sight for the Rams and Donald. The defensive tackle stayed away from the Rams this summer in order to ramp up the pressure, and it appears that his tactics have worked. Donald also got to skip training camp, which is a nice perk for any accomplished veteran.

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Rams Add To WR Robert Woods’ Deal

The Rams are doing right by wide receiver Robert Woods after his strong debut season in Los Angeles.

A 2017 free agent signee, Woods was a healthy scratch in Week 17 because the Rams rested most of their key contributors to prepare for their wild-card playoff game. As a result, Woods missed out on a performance incentive. But the Rams are making it up to him.

The franchise will add $200K to Woods’ $3MM roster bonus, Field Yates of ESPN.com reports. Woods needed just 19 yards to reach 800 last season, and doing so would have increased his incentives to $600K instead of the $400K he collected.

Woods played in 12 games for the Rams last season and cleared the 19-yard threshold in 10 of those. But the Rams did not need to win in Week 17 to secure a division title.

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NFC West Notes: Seahawks, Woods, Peters

The Seahawks have dealt with multiple injuries on the defensive side this season. Marquee performers like Richard Sherman, Kam Chancellor and Cliff Avril have all been ruled out for the year and in the case of Avril and Chancellor, their overall football careers could really be in jeopardy.

Bob Condotta of The Seattle Times writes in a column, with the help of former NFL agent Joel Corry, how he expects the team will handle a few of these injury situations from a cap point of view in 2018. The most complicated of the group seems to be Chancellor, who’s contract runs through the 2020 season. By simply retiring, the strong safety would alleviate a lot of Seattle’s cap problems, but he’s unlikely to do that given all the money that’s left for him to make. Condotta notes that if the safety was inactive to start the season, he would still make a guaranteed $6.8MM if he remains on the roster by February 10, 2018. With this in mind, it seems likely that the front office would opt to wait things out to see how the soon-to-be 30-year-old responds next year given the salary cap situation. However, unlike Chancellor, Avril is likely not to be back with the Seahawks on his current deal given that the team can save $7.5MM if he were released or retires. Seattle could look to bring him back on a lesser, more incentive-rich contract if he were to be released.

The piece adds some more in-depth cap information as well, and is really a good deep dive into how the Seahawks will handle some of their trickier contract situations given that they are right up against the cap at the moment.

  • On more positive Seahawks injury news, head coach Pete Carroll spoke positively about the chances starting defensive backs Earl Thomas and Shaquill Griffin would be able to play Sunday, reports Brady Henderson of ESPN.com“He’s fine,” Carroll said of Thomas. “He had something we just tended to yesterday, a sore foot, and that was it. Not a big deal.” The star safety was listed as questionable on Thursday, but looks to be on track to suit up this weekend. Griffin missed last week’s game against the 49ers with a concussion, but he will be back too, according to Henderson.
  • Breakout Rams wide receiver Robert Woods was sidelined for the team’s win over the Saints last week and will most assuredly be out for Week 13 as well. However, head coach Sean McVay told reporters this afternoon that he’s “shooting for” Woods to return by December 10, although the young coach did clarify that the more likely return date would be a week later than that, tweets Aiden Gonzalez of ESPN.com. Woods has been a real impact free agent for LA, especially in recent weeks, as he’s recorded 20 catches and four touchdowns in the last three games he played. Without the 25-year-old receiver, the Rams will more heavily rely on Sammy Watkins, Cooper Kupp and Josh Reynolds.
  • The Cardinals officially agreed to a contract extension with defensive tackle Corey Peters earlier in the day. Now we are learning more about the specific finances of the new deal looks like. The 29-year-old defensive lineman will earn $12MM over three years with $7.25MM being paid in total guarantees, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link). Rapoport adds that Peters’ deal also includes a $2.75MM signing bonus and incentives that could add another $1MM to the total value of the contract.

Robert Woods To Miss Time

The Rams will be without top wide receiver Robert Woods for “a couple weeks,” head coach Sean McVay told reporters including ESPN’s Alden Gonzalez (Twitter link). McVay touched on the importance of the injury, calling it “a significant loss for us.” Robert Woods (feature)

Though McVay also stated the injury could threaten the receiver’s season and require surgery, he remained positive, saying the Rams hope to have him back in two weeks.

Woods injured his left shoulder in the Rams’ Week 11 matchup with Minnesota after being tackled by safety Harrison Smith.

To call the injury a significant loss is putting it lightly. Woods has been easily the team’s No. 1 wideout in recent weeks, posting 20 catches, 322 yards and four touchdowns in the team’s last three games. The emergence of the fifth-year pass catcher has also hid the ineffectiveness of Sammy Watkins, who has posted more than two catches just once since Week 3.

Woods has been quite the find for the Rams, who signed the former Bills receiver to a five-year contract prior to the 2017 campaign. The California native has looked right at home in the Rams’ new-look passing attack and has already recorded a career-high 703 yards through 10 games.

With the loss, the Rams will look for Watkins, who the team traded for in the offseason, to fill the void.

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FA Notes: Blount, Peterson, Pryor, Glennon

Coming off an 18-touchdown season, LeGarrette Blount hasn’t found much traction on his latest free agency odyssey. The Patriots, though, have discussed a deal with the bruising running back, Mike Reiss of ESPN.com reports. However, the sides could not agree on terms. Reiss suggests that even though the Pats signed Rex Burkhead they still don’t have a power back, with their roster housing only multipurpose cogs Dion Lewis and James White, pointing to a possible reunion between the oft-reunited parties after the draft. Blount rushed for a career-high 1,161 yards as well last season but turned 30 in December. He ranks as PFR’s No. 2 UFA running back.

Here’s more on some still-unsigned and recently signed UFAs, continuing with PFR’s No. 1 available back.

  • An ESPN report pegged Adrian Peterson‘s reported asking price of $8MM per year as the reason he’s still a free agent. Peterson took to Twitter to express skepticism in that report. The three-time rushing champion disputed the notion he’s seeking $8MM AAV and added he wants to play for a contending team. The 32-year-old ball-carrier added, however, he’s not in a rush to sign. Peterson visited the Seahawks and has been linked to several other teams, most recently the Packers.
  • Mike Glennon‘s contract contains offset language to help protect the Bears against the quarterback earning dual salaries in the future, in the event he doesn’t play out the deal in Chicago, Albert Breer of TheMMQB.com reports. Breer categorizes the three-year, $45MM deal as basically a one-year, $16MM commitment that includes team options for 2018 and ’19. Only $4.5MM in guaranteed money exists on the deal after this season.
  • Breer views that the five-year deals for Robert Woods and Stacy McGee authorized by the Rams and Redskins, respectively, are essentially one-year pacts. Woods saw $10MM of the $34MM deal fully guaranteed at signing, per OverTheCap. He has $5MM due on the third day of the 2018 league year. Nothing is guaranteed for the former Bills complementary target past Year 2. Breer sees McGee’s Washington accord as a one-year, $6.5MM deal.
  • Speaking of one-year agreements, Terrelle Pryor explained his reasoning for taking the Redskins‘ one-season offer. “Maybe … our market wasn’t where it was supposed to be or we thought it would be,” Pryor said, via the Associated Press in a piece about the increased frequency of one-year commitments this month. “Some guys don’t want to take deals where they’re outplaying the deal. I just wanted to get a one-year deal and see how I fit with the program and move forward after that, and see if we get something done if everything works well.” Conflicting reports emerged about Pryor’s Browns exit, regarding whether or not he gave the team a chance to match his Redskins offer. The converted wideout joined the Redskins on a one-year deal worth up to $8MM and could be in position to cash in come 2018 if he proves his 1,000-yard season in Cleveland wasn’t a fluke.

Rams To Sign WR Robert Woods

Robert Woods intends to sign a five-year, $39MM deal with the Rams, sources tell ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter (on Twitter). The pact will include $15MM in guaranteed cash."<strong

Woods, 24, spent the past four years in Buffalo after being selected in the second round 2013 draft. Playing opposite Sammy Watkins, Woods settled as a dependable No. 2 receiver in an offense that always worked primarily through the running game. During his time in Buffalo, Woods averaged 51 receptions, 613 yards, and three touchdowns per seasons.

In Los Angeles, Woods is (for now) the No. 1 receiver on the depth chart, as the Rams have lost free agent Kenny Britt to the Browns. Woods will play alongside a group that includes Tavon Austin, Mike Thomas, and Pharoh Cooper as 2016 No.1 overall pick Jared Goff attempts to right the ship at quarterback under new head coach Sean McVay.

PFR had Woods ranked as one of the 15 best receivers available in this year’s free agent class.

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Top 2017 Free Agents By Position 2.0: Offense

NFL free agency is right around the corner! The legal tampering period starts on Tuesday and free agency officially starts on Thursday. The list of available free agents will change between now and then as players re-sign with teams or get cut loose, but we have a pretty good idea of who will be available right now. After looking at the top defensive players, we now shift our attention to the other side of the ball.

Here are our rankings for the top 15 free agents at each position. The rankings aren’t determined by earning power, they are simply the players we like the most at each position, with a combination of short- and long-term value taken into account. You won’t find restricted free agents or franchise tagged guys here since they are unlikely to go leave their current clubs.

Player evaluation is always subjective, so we encourage you to make your voices heard in the comments section in cases where you disagree with us.

Here’s our breakdown of the current top 15 free agents by offensive position for 2017:

Updated 3-7-2017, 2:55pm CT

Quarterback:

  1. Mike Glennon
  2. Nick Foles
  3. Brian Hoyer (story)
  4. Ryan Fitzpatrick
  5. Colin Kaepernick
  6. Josh McCown
  7. Case Keenum
  8. Matt McGloin
  9. Mark Sanchez
  10. Ryan Mallett
  11. Christian Ponder
  12. Blaine Gabbert
  13. Geno Smith
  14. Matt Schaub (story)
  15. EJ Manuel

Honorable mention: Ryan Nassib, Landry JonesShaun Hill Mike Glennon (vertical)

Colin Kaepernick’s agents have (wisely) let everyone know that their client will stand for the National Anthem in 2017. That may seem like a minor point, but teams say they would have automatically removed him from consideration if he continued his attention-grabbing protest. He grabbed headlines for his actions on the sidelines last year, but he actually turned in an OK season. From a football standpoint, Kaepernick would make sense for a lot of teams as a QB2 with upside.

Interestingly, this list includes three quarterbacks who couldn’t cut it as the Jets’ starter and three rejects from the 49ers. They say that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure and all six of those players (Ryan Fitzpatrick, Kaepernick, Mark Sanchez, Geno Smith, Christian Ponder, Blaine Gabbert) come with varying degrees of potential and proven effectiveness. Smith, somehow, could reportedly be retained by the Jets and installed as the starter in 2017.

Ryan Nassib is just outside of the top 15 here with EJ Manuel getting the final spot. Despite positive word about his play in practice, Nassib is unproven and the Giants’ apparent lack of interest in re-signing him says a lot. It’s also possible that he might not be 100% after ending the 2016 season on IR with an elbow injury. Manuel, for all his warts, has shown potential in small bursts.

Running back:

  1. Eddie Lacy
  2. Adrian Peterson
  3. LeGarrette Blount
  4. Latavius Murray
  5. Jamaal Charles
  6. Darren McFadden
  7. Jacquizz Rodgers
  8. Rex Burkhead
  9. Rashad Jennings
  10. Danny Woodhead
  11. Tim Hightower
  12. DeAngelo Williams
  13. Andre Ellington
  14. Chris Johnson
  15. Christine Michael

Honorable mention: Robert Turbin, Travaris Cadet, Benny Cunningham, Lance Dunbar, Bobby Rainey, Brandon BoldenDenard Robinson, James Starks

Adrian Peterson (vertical)As expected, the Vikings have cut Adrian Peterson loose and he is expected to garner interest from contending clubs this week. Some might peg Peterson as the most talented running back in this year’s free agent class, but it all comes down to how you weigh his age and injury history. Peterson has shocked the football world in the past with an incredible comeback, but I’m a little skeptical of his ability to do it again in his age-32 season. Eddie Lacy, who has injury question marks of his own, takes the top spot at the position.

The Patriots believe they won’t be able to match the offers that come in LeGarrette Blount‘s direction. Latavius Murray could circle back to the Raiders, but he won’t be agreeing to a deal with them before free agency opens on Thursday.

Jamaal Charles has the most impressive resume of anyone on this list, with the exception of Peterson. However, no one knows exactly what he can do after playing eight games in the last two years. He’ll turn 31 in December and that’s usually not an indicator of success for running backs.

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AFC Notes: Marshall, Bennett, Jags, Woods

The Patriots have been linked to multiple impact receivers during Combine week. In addition to including their No. 32 overall pick in a package for Brandin Cooks, mutual interest between the Pats and Brandon Marshall exists, Ben Volin of the Boston Globe reports (on Twitter). The Jets cut Marshall earlier this week, a move Marshall sought after declining an extension to stay on a rebuilding team. Entering his 12th year and age-33 season, Marshall should generate interest, and the Patriots’ penchant for street free agents that don’t affect the compensatory pick formula makes this a potential situation to monitor. Marshall going 11 seasons without a playoff appearance does as well.

New England has its top four wideouts under contract for 2017, although Danny Amendola‘s $7.7MM cap hit is probably untenable at this point. The Patriots want the veteran back at a reduced rate. Marshall also has a connection to the Patriots, who employ former Broncos HC Josh McDaniels as offensive coordinator. However, McDaniels traded Marshall to the Dolphins in 2010 after one season with the then-mercurial wideout. During that ’09 slate, Marshall drew an insubordination suspension during the preseason and saw McDanniels bench him for a game later that year.

Here’s more from the AFC.

  • Martellus Bennett wants to test the market, but the Patriots would like him to return. Their top competition could come from fellow AFCers, with the Raiders and Jaguars interested in the veteran tight end, Volin tweets. Jacksonville just unloaded underwhelming UFA signing Julius Thomas, and the Raiders haven’t seen much from Clive Walford yet. Former starter Mychal Rivera is a free agent. Bennett and Jared Cook reside as the top tight ends on the market.
  • Shad Khan bringing Tom Coughlin back to Jacksonville in a front office role will affect GM Dave Caldwell, but the Jaguars’ former top decision-maker will still have input. Michael DiRocco of ESPN.com compares the rearranged Jags front office to the ones in Miami and Atlanta, with three men dividing up power. “Surprisingly enough, through the whole process and having an idea that this was going to happen, you kind of think, ‘How’s this going to work?’ But Tom has been great,” said Caldwell, who’s entering his fifth season as Jags GM. “It’s been great to be able to walk down the hallway and bounce some things off of him: ‘Hey we’re going to do this; we’re going to do that. What do you think about this? What do you think about that?’ And then we sit together with he, I and Doug [Marrone] and we come together on a collective decision.”
  • Myles Jack is expected to move to middle linebacker next season, Ryan O’Halloran of the Florida Times-Union reports. If that comes to fruition, Paul Posluszny would slide to strong-side ‘backer. This season represents the final year on Posluszny’s contract. He loomed as a cut candidate, but nothing’s surfaced about a potential release thus far this offseason. The 32-year-old has started for six seasons in Jacksonville. He’s due a $3.95MM base salary and will collected a $500K roster bonus if he remains with the Jags by the fifth day of the 2017 league year.
  • Mentioning DeSean Jackson and Kenny Stills being set to see “huge” contract offers, DraftAnalyst.com’s Tony Pauline included Robert Woods in this category. Woods hasn’t produced on the level of Stills or Jackson, with season-best receiving totals of 699 yards and five touchdowns (in 2014). But the former USC talent is still just 24 and hasn’t played with the kind of quarterbacks, from a passing standpoint, with the Bills that most of his UFA receiving peers have. His market could be difficult to determine as a result.
  • The Chiefs added another assistant coach, bringing first-timer Terry Brandon into the fold. He will work as a defensive assistant, Terez Paylor of the Kansas City Star reports. Brandon will make quite the jump, moving from graduate assistant at Bethune-Cookman to a job as an NFL staffer.

Robert Woods Open To Re-Signing With Bills

Impending free agent wide receiver Robert Woods is open to re-signing with the Bills this offseason. However, the four-year veteran acknowledged that he wants some clarity on the team’s quarterback position before he makes a final decision.

Robert Woods (vertical)“I think there’s always hope,” Woods told Bruce Murray and A.J. Hawk on SiriusXM. “I finished out well with them. I had a good talk with (general manager) Doug Whaley upstairs. It’s a whole new coaching staff coming in, so could be different plans. I’ve got to speak with them and see their plans, as well as see what happens with the quarterback decision there.”

After receiving medical clearance following last month’s groin surgery, the Bills could now easily move on from quarterback Tyrod Taylor and his $27.5MM option. Backup EJ Manuel is set to hit free agency, meaning the team could be left with former Ohio State standout Cardale Jones or 24-year-old rookie Josh Woodrum. Considering all of the question marks at the position, it’s logical why Woods would prefer to see how it all plays out.

“Everything factors in,” Woods said on SiriusXM. “It has to be the right amount as well as quarterback decision. Yes, they don’t have a quarterback right now. Tyrod is a pending free agent. EJ Manuel is coming up as a free agent and there also are many quarterbacks on the market as well. Who knows what the decision is going on upstairs, but in a few weeks, we’ll all find out.”

For what it’s worth, the 24-year-old acknowledged that he thinks Taylor is staying put.

A knee injury forced Woods to miss three games this season, but the wideout still finished with a team-leading 613 receiving yards, 51 receptions, and one touchdown. Since entering the league as a second-round pick in 2013, Woods hasn’t surpassed 700 receiving yards in a single season. If he does re-sign with the Bills, Woods figures to be the second wideout behind Sammy Watkins.

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