Rod Smith

Giants Add Alfred Morris To Practice Squad

Alfred Morris has resurfaced on the NFL radar. The eight-year veteran running back agreed to join the Giants’ practice squad, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle tweets.

The Giants added Morris and quarterback Clayton Thorson to its taxi squad. Morris has been out of the NFL since the Cardinals released him in November 2019. To make room on their 16-man P-squad, the Giants cut running back Rod Smith and quarterback Cooper Rush.

This will bring a former Jason Garrett charge to New York. The Giants OC coached the former Pro Bowler in two seasons in Dallas. Morris served as Ezekiel Elliott‘s backup/suspension fill-in from 2016-17 but is certainly best known for his time in Washington.

Morris, now 31, strung together three straight 1,000-yard seasons with Washington and made the Pro Bowl in 2013 and ’14. He averaged 4.8 yards per carry with the 2017 Cowboys and gained 428 yards as a 49er in 2018. He played in one Cardinals game.

The Giants are down Saquon Barkley for the season, leaving them with Wayne Gallman, offseason addition Dion Lewis and recent signing Devonta Freeman. They rank last in the NFL in rushing, having gained just 170 yards (3.2 per carry) in three games.

Thorson spent time on the Cowboys’ practice squad in Garrett’s final season, playing behind Rush — who resided on Dallas’ active roster. The Giants brought Smith back earlier this month.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Raiders Release Rod Smith, Jordan Devey

The Raiders removed a player from their suddenly crowded backfield Tuesday, releasing Rod Smith. They also released veteran guard Jordan Devey.

Smith signed with the Raiders in December 2019 and played in three games. But the team since added Devontae Booker, Lynn Bowden Jr. and Theo Riddick to a backfield already housing Josh Jacobs and Jalen Richard.

Smith, 28, is a vested veteran and will return to free agency. He is best known for his years backing up Ezekiel Elliott in Dallas but has been on three teams — the Giants, Titans and Raiders — since 2019.

Las Vegas also re-signed Devey this offseason, bringing back the former 49ers and Chiefs lineman in April. However, the Raiders drafted guard John Simpson in the draft a few weeks later. They still have starters Gabe Jackson and Richie Incognito, with Simpson and Denzelle Good supplying depth. A six-year veteran, Devey played in four Raiders games last season before heading to IR with a torn pectoral muscle.

In additional roster-clearing moves, the Raiders waived linebacker Sharif Finch and guard Jordan Roos.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Minor NFL Transactions: 8/18/20

Here are Tuesday’s minor moves, with the list being updated throughout the afternoon.

Cleveland Browns

  • Waived/injured: DE George Obinna

Dallas Cowboys

Las Vegas Raiders

Minnesota Vikings

Seattle Seahawks

Raiders Make Flurry Of Roster Moves

Oakland is coming off three straight lopsided defeats, and in the wake of the embarrassments Jon Gruden is reshuffling his roster. The Raiders are waiving veteran defensive players D.J. Swearinger, Preston Brown, and Terrell McClain while signing running back Rod Smith, the team announced today.

They also placed rookie tight end Foster Moreau on injured reserve, which was expected. Oakland has given up at least 40 points in back to back weeks, and Gruden made it clear he isn’t happy with the defensive effort. Brown, an inside linebacker, had been with the Bengals for most of this season and was starting for them before he was scooped up by the Raiders prior to this week’s loss to the Titans. Brown started almost every game for the Bills from 2014-17, but he lasted only one game with Oakland. McClain started the season with Kansas City before latching on with the Raiders for the last few games.

Swearinger was picked up by Oakland after the Cardinals cut him earlier this season, and he started three of his four games with the Raiders including their most recent loss to Tennessee. He’ll get a shot elsewhere in 2020 if not sooner. Smith is a former Cowboys backup running back, and his signing could indicate that workhorse back Josh Jacobs won’t be ready to return this week.

The shakeup comes as the Raiders’ playoff hopes have been all but dashed. Just a few weeks ago they were looking good at 6-4, but they collapsed in epic fashion. Gruden promised there would be changes following their most recent loss, and he delivered by sending almost all of their recently added guys packing.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFL Workout Updates: 11/18/19

Today’s updates from the workout circuit:

Cleveland Browns

Houston Texans

Jacksonville Jaguars

New York Jets

Oakland Raiders

Titans Waive RB Rod Smith

Rod Smith‘s stint with the Titans has come to an end. Jim Wyatt of the team’s website reports (via Twitter) that the team has waived the veteran running back. The Titans promoted offensive lineman Daniel Munyer from the practice squad to take the open roster spot.

The 2015 undrafted free agent out of Ohio State quickly found a home in Dallas, as he spent three-plus years with the Cowboys. Smith saw some extended work during Ezekiel Elliott‘s six-game suspension in 2017. Playing behind Alfred Morris, Smith ran for 232 yards and four touchdowns on 55 carries. He also added 19 catches for 202 yards and one score.

However, with Zeke back in the fold for the 2018 campaign, Smith didn’t see nearly as many opportunities on offense. The running back finished the campaign with 187 total yards, although he did finish with a career-high nine special teams tackles.

Smith signed with the Giants this offseason, but after landing on injured reserve in late August, he was released with an injury settlement. The 27-year-old caught on with the Titans in early October, appearing in three games with his new squad.

Munyer, 27, has bounced around the NFL since going undrafted out of Colorado in 2015. The lineman appeared in a career-high 14 games for the Cardinals last season. He’s spent most of the season on the Titans practice squad.

Minor NFL Transactions: 10/8/19

Here are today’s minor moves:

Buffalo Bills

Oakland Raiders

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Giants Cut Kyle Lauletta; Reach 53

The Giants waived quarterback Kyle Lauletta as a part of their moves to reach the 53-man roster limit. The move leaves Alex Tanney as the No. 3 QB behind starter Eli Manning and first-round pick Daniel Jones.

Between an October arrest and a poor professional debut, Lauletta dug himself into a bit of a hole. Although the 2018 fourth-round pick is just 24 and had enough upside to merit a mid-round selection, the 31-year-old Tanney edged him out in practice. This, perhaps, isn’t a huge surprise after the G-Men signed him to a two-year, $2.1MM contract with $775K guaranteed.

Besides Lauletta, here’s how the Giants got to the limit.

Released:

Waived/injured:

Waived off the commissioner’s exempt list:

Placed on IR:

Giants To Place RB Rod Smith On IR

One of Saquon Barkley‘s backups will head to IR. The Giants signed Rod Smith as a free agent but will place the longtime Cowboy on IR with a adductor injury, The Athletic’s Dan Duggan tweets.

Smith joined holdovers Wayne Gallman and Paul Perkins as candidates to back up Barkley. Now, Big Blue may be in the market for a waiver claim. Or two of Jerry Reese’s draft picks will stick around and reprise their roles as Barkley’s understudies, with the three-down dynamo not coming off the field especially often.

The Giants will place Smith on season-ending IR, per SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano, who adds Perkins will make the team after missing all of last season (Twitter link). Had Big Blue carried Smith over to its 53-man roster, he would have been eligible for IR-return status later this season. Now, he’ll be shelved for 2019.

Smith averaged just 2.9 yards per carry, on 44 totes, last season. However, he was more productive in 2017, averaging 4.2 yards per handoff for a Cowboys team that lost Ezekiel Elliott to suspension midsseason.