Roc Thomas

Packers Work Out Five Players

The Packers were busy today, as ESPN’s Field Yates reports (via Twitter) that the team worked out five players. The group of auditionees included wide receivers Ryan Grant and T.J. Jones, quarterback Tyree Jackson, running back Roc Thomas, and defensive tackle Eddie Vanderdoes.

It’s been a busy few days for Grant and Jones, as the two wideouts worked out for the Vikings on Friday. The 28-year-old Grant caught four passes for just 14 yards with Oakland this season, although he did snag 35 passes for 334 yards with the Colts in 2018. Jones has 67 career receptions in 45 games, and he also has some experience returning kicks and punts. He had three receptions for 38 yards and one score in three games with the Giants this season.

Vanderdoes, a 2017 third-round pick by the Raiders, had a solid rookie season, compiling 18 tackles in 16 games (13 starts). He tore his ACL at the end of that season, and he wasn’t activated from the PUP during the 2018 campaign. Vanderdoes landed on IR following this year’s preseason, and he was cut by the organization earlier this week.

Thomas, 24, appeared in five games as a rookie for the Vikings last season, compiling 51 total yards on offense. Jackson was an undrafted free agent out of Buffalo in this past year’s draft. He spent the preseason with the Bills.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Lions Work Out Running Backs

The Lions are on the lookout for help in the backfield. On Friday, they auditioned running backs Roc Thomas and Wes Hills, as Howard Balzer tweets.

Thomas just became eligible to return to the NFL. On Tuesday, the league reinstated him for a substance abuse violation stemming from his arrest earlier this year.

Last year, the Jacksonville State product was on and off of the Vikings’ roster. In his five games, he tallied ten carries for 51 yards.

Hills, meanwhile, was dropped by the Cardinals with an injury settlement in late August. If either back joins the Lions, they’ll join an RB group that includes Kerryon Johnson, Ty Johnson, J.D. McKissic, and recent arrival Paul Perkins.

Minor NFL Transactions: 8/28/19

We’ll keep track of today’s roster shuffling here as teams gear up for major cuts at the end of the week:

Buffalo Bills

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Detroit Lions

  • Signed: RB James Williams

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Jacksonville Jaguars

New England Patriots

Philadelphia Eagles

Tennessee Titans

  • Waived: TE Cole Wick
  • Waive/injured: OLB Josh Smith

Seattle Seahawks

  • Signed: T Will Holden, DE Logan Tago
  • Waived: DT Jay-Tee Tiuli

Minor NFL Transactions: 8/15/19

Today’s minor moves:

Baltimore Ravens

Buffalo Bills

Cleveland Browns

Jacksonville Jaguars

Pittsburgh Steelers

  • Signed: TE Micky Crum, LB Christian Kuntz
  • Waived: LB J.T. Jones, CB Jermaine Ponder

Oakland Raiders

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

  • Signed: DT Shane Bowman
  • Placed on injured reserve: WR Bryant Mitchell

Tennessee Titans

Jaguars To Sign Roc Thomas

The Jaguars are signing former Vikings RB Roc Thomas, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (via Twitter). Thomas, who signed with Minnesota as a UDFA last year, had an impressive preseason in 2018 and ultimately appeared in five games for the Vikes.

However, he was arrested in March for felony drug possession, and the NFL announced several weeks ago that he would be suspended for three games. Minnesota waived him shortly thereafter, and now he will attempt to catch on with the Jags (Thomas was sentenced to probation but avoided jail time for the drug charge).

Jacksonville’s RB depth chart is currently topped by Leonard Fournette, but behind him, the situation is largely unsettled. The team added a number of backs this year, including Alfred Blue, Thomas RawlsBenny CunninghamDevante Mays, and fifth-round rookie Ryquell Armstead, but none of them (outside of Armstead) are slam dunks to make the roster. Thomas will have a chance to compete for touches and could at least carve out a role on special teams.

The Jags are heading to Baltimore for joint practices with the Ravens this week, and Thomas will be a part of those practices, per Schefter.

In a corresponding move, Jacksonville has waived DB Jocquez Kalili.

Minor NFL Transactions: 7/22/19

Here are Monday’s minor moves:

Detroit Lions

Jacksonville Jaguars

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

  • Signed: OL Tiano Pupungatoa
  • Waived: RB Roc Thomas

New York Jets

  • Placed on active/PUP list: DB Brandon Bryant
  • Placed on active/NFI list: CB Bless Austin

NFL Suspends Vikings RB Roc Thomas

Roc Thomas‘ chances of making the Vikings became more difficult Tuesday, with the NFL announcing the second-year running back has been suspended for three games.

This stems from an arrest earlier this year. Thomas was popped for felony drug possession after police found 143.28 grams of marijuana in the 23-year-old’s apartment.

A 2018 UDFA out of Jacksonville State, Thomas only received 10 touches last season, spending time on both Minnesota’s practice squad and active roster. The Vikings signed him to a reserve/futures contract in January, but he may now face an uphill battle to stick with the team.

The Vikings allowed Latavius Murray to leave in free agency, to New Orleans, but drafted Alexander Mattison in Round 3 and re-signed Ameer Abdullah.

NFC Notes: Buccaneers, Falcons, Cardinals, Mosley, Vikings

The Buccaneers have an interesting offseason ahead of them. They have a lot of holes to fill on the roster as Bruce Arians takes over as coach, but not much cap space to work with. In a recent piece, Jenna Laine of ESPN.com previewed their offseason. Overall, Laine isn’t too bullish on their ability to add many big names. The Bucs have been linked to some high-end free agents like Le’Veon Bell, but Laine cautions they’d need to make a bunch of moves to make his potential salary fit. One of their own, receiver Adam Humphries, is set to be a free agent, and Humphries will reportedly be a hot commodity. Sources told Laine that Humphries is seeking a deal worth $8MM annually, which is actually slightly less than the $10MM we heard he was looking for yesterday. 

Either way, it sounds like Humphries might get priced out of the Buccaneers‘ range. Laine also reports no decision has been made yet on fellow receiver DeSean Jackson as he heads into the final year of his contract, but writes that “lack of cap space may force their hand” into releasing or trading him. In her piece Laine also throws out some names who could be cut to create cap space, like ” defensive end William Gholston ($3.75 million against the cap in 2019), defensive tackle Beau Allen ($5 million), defensive tackle Mitch Unrein ($3.75 million).”

Here’s more from the NFC:

  • The Falcons made major shakeups to their coaching staff after their disappointing 2018 season. All three coordinators were let go, and now Atlanta is making another coaching change. The Falcons have hired Jess Simpson to be their new defensive line coach, as current defensive line coach Bryant Young is stepping down, according to Will McFadden of the team’s official website. Simpson comes to the Falcons from the University of Miami, where he served as defensive line coach. In 2017 he was a defensive assistant on the Falcons’ staff, so there’s some familiarity here.
  • We heard yesterday that some Ravens players thought C.J. Mosley and Terrell Suggs could re-team in Arizona, and now there’s more smoke to that fire. The “Cardinals are expected to make a big push” for Mosley if the Ravens don’t lock him up before free agency starts, sources told Tony Pauline of DraftAnalyst.com. Mosley to the desert seems to be picking up some steam, and it makes sense. Mosley is still only 26, and would be a very nice pickup for this rebuilding Cardinals team.
  • Vikings running back Roc Thomas was arrested and charged with felony drug possession, according to Courtney Cronin of ESPN.com (Twitter link). Thomas was arrested in January after “police found 143.28 grams of marijuana” in his apartment. Thomas is due back in court on March 18th. Thomas was a rookie undrafted free agent last year, and made Minnesota’s initial 53-man roster after an impressive preseason. He was cut midway through the season and re-signed to the practice squad, and signed a reserve/futures contract at the end of the year. He’s likely to face discipline from the league when this all gets sorted out.

NFL Reserve/Futures Contracts: 1/2/19

Here are Wednesday’s reserve/futures contract moves:

Cleveland Browns

Cincinnati Bengals

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Minnesota Vikings

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Washington Redskins

 

* = part of the NFL’s International Player Development Program

NFL Reserve/Futures Contracts: 12/31/18

New Year’s Eve marks the first day eliminated teams can sign players to reserve/futures contracts. Here is the first wave of those decisions:

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

Carolina Panthers

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Minnesota Vikings

New York Giants

Pittsburgh Steelers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Washington Redskins