Ross Blacklock

Minor NFL Transactions: 10/1/21

Here are Friday’s minor moves:

Detroit Lions

Houston Texans

Los Angeles Chargers

New England Patriots

Tennessee Titans

Texans Complete Draft Class Deals

The Texans signed three draft picks Tuesday, finalizing the contracts for their five-man 2020 draft class.

Houston agreed to terms with second-round defensive tackle Ross Blacklock, fourth-round cornerback John Reid and fifth-round wide receiver Isaiah Coulter.

One of the teams that traded away its first-round pick, doing so in last summer’s Laremy Tunsil deal, Houston led off its draft with Blacklock at No. 40 overall. The TCU product will be in line to replace D.J. Reader, a 2019 breakout performer whom the Bengals poached in free agency.

Coulter will join a new-look Texans wideout corps that could see another change before the regular season begins. The Texans traded DeAndre Hopkins, acquired Brandin Cooks‘ $16.2MM-per-year salary and signed Randall Cobb to a three-year, $27MM deal. They already have Will Fuller on a fifth-year option salary and Kenny Stills on a $7MM 2020 cap number. It would seem the latter is a trade candidate (again).

Here is the Texans’ 2020 draft class:

2-40: Ross Blacklock, DT (TCU)
3-90: Jonathan Greenard, LB (Florida): Signed
4-126: Charlie Heck, OL (North Carolina): Signed
4-141: John Reid, CB (Penn State)
5-171: Isaiah Coulter, WR (Rhode Island)

NFL Draft Rumors: Bengals, Colts, Bucs, Colts

The Bengals (No. 33) and Colts (No. 34) will kick off the second round and the belief is that they’re both targeting offensive help, Jonathan Jones of CBSSports.com tweets. Beyond that, he gets the sense that defensive tackle Ross Blacklock could be the first defensive player selected in the second round. Earlier today, we heard Blacklock mentioned as a possibility for the Bengals, but they might be more focused on providing help for Joe Burrow instead. That could lead them to Baylor wide receiver Denzel Mims, one of the most intriguing talents left on the board.

Here’s the latest as we get set for the second night of the NFL Draft:

  • More from Jones (on Twitter), who says “everyone” he’s talked to around the league believes that the Panthers will go after Mims. As previously reported, they’ve been getting calls on wide receiver Curtis Samuel, though they’re not shopping him. Mims, or another wide receiver, could wind up taking Samuel’s spot on the depth chart. The Panthers’ currently sit at No. 38 overall (the sixth pick in the second round), which might not be good enough to get Mims.
  • Over the last two months, the Buccaneers and Colts have both been high on Washington quarterback Jacob Eason, Albert Breer of The MMQB hears. Eason remains available heading into Day 2 of the draft and both clubs profile as potential fits. Before the night is through, Eason could be tapped as the heir to Tom Brady or Philip Rivers, a perfect scenario for a QB easing into the pro game.
  • There weren’t a ton of trades in the first round, but it wasn’t for a lack of trying. The Falcons pushed hard to trade up for cornerback C.J. Henderson and the Raiders wanted to move back from No. 12 before taking Alabama wideout Henry Ruggs.

Bengals Eyeing Mims, Blacklock At No. 33?

The Bengals, who hold the first pick in the second round, are high on wide receiver Denzel Mims and defensive tackle Ross Blacklock, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter) hears.

Rapoport also notes several teams looking to move up/down in the order. The Jets, Jaguars, and Falcons are among the clubs interested in making a leap. Potential trade partners include the Colts (No. 34) and Dolphins (No. 39), who are willing to listen on offers to move back.

Cincinnati doesn’t necessarily need any immediate help at wide receiver, as the club boasts A.J. Green, Tyler Boyd, and John Ross as its top three options. However, Green and Ross haven’t been able to stay healthy, and each has just one year remaining on his respective contract (the Bengals hold a 2021 option on Ross that they’ve yet to exercise). Mims would add an explosive option for new quarterback Joe Burrow, and give Cincinnati a long-term asset.

Blacklock, meanwhile, was a draft riser in recent months and was viewed as a potential Day 1 pick. Instead, he’s likely to come off the board at the top of Round 2. The Bengals already have Geno Atkins and free agent acquisition D.J. Reader on the interior of their defensive line, but Blacklock would give them ample depth.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Draft Rumors: Henderson, Dobbins, Davis

Are you ready for surprises on draft day? It sounds like you should be. “The media is wronger about mock drafts this year than you guys have ever been,” one NFL general manager told Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link). That’s undoubtedly because of the ongoing certainly involving COVID-19, which has caused the league to upend its predraft process. As Daniel Jeremiah of NFL.com tweets, “group think” is less likely to occur in 2019 because scouts and executives were unable to congregate at pro days, events where evaluators typically will — intentionally or not — develop something of a consensus on prospects.

After deciding whether “wronger” is actually a word, let’s take a look at more on the upcoming draft:

  • The Falcons held a predraft video meeting with Florida cornerback C.J. Henderson last week, according to Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com (Twitter link). Atlanta currently holds the 16th overall pick, but recent reports have indicated general manager Thomas Dimitroff & Co. could be interested in moving up the board. Henderson is considered the draft’s second-best cornerback behind Ohio State’s Jeffrey Okudah, although some decision-makers may rate Henderson No. 1.
  • Ohio State running back J.K. Dobbins has held video meetings with several NFL teams, including the Chiefs, Packers, Bills, Lions, Saints, Dolphins, reports Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle. This isn’t the first time Dobbins has been linked to Miami, as he took a predraft visit with the Dolphins before such meetings were shut down due to COVID-19. Indeed, Dobbins left that visit feeling Miami was “infatuated” with him.
  • Alabama defensive tackle Raekwon Davis says the 49ers, Packers, Dolphins, Ravens, and Eagles are the teams that have contacted him most, as Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk writes. A massive presence at 6’6″, 310 pounds, Davis a first-round projection and comparisons to DeForest Buckner from NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein. Mike Renner of Pro Football Focus, however, ranks Davis just 10th among interior defender prospects, noting his lack of development as a pass-rusher.
  • The Ravens, 49ers, Panthers, Titans, and Seahawks have all held video sessions with TCU defensive tackle Ross Blacklock, per Wilson. Blacklock, who stock has risen during the predraft process, missed the 2018 campaign with an Achilles injury but was productive during both his freshman and junior seasons. Last year, he posted 40 tackles (nine for loss) and 3.5 sacks.