Chargers Rumors

2023 NFL Cap Space, By Team

The start of June has served as a key NFL financial period for decades. While teams no longer have to wait until after June 1 to make that cost-splitting cut designation, teams pick up the savings from those transactions today. With a handful of teams making post-June 1 cuts this year, here is how each team’s cap space (courtesy of OverTheCap) looks as of Friday:

  1. Chicago Bears: $32.58MM
  2. Carolina Panthers: $27.25MM
  3. Arizona Cardinals: $26.68MM
  4. New York Jets: $24.79MM
  5. Detroit Lions: $23.72MM
  6. Indianapolis Colts: $23.39MM
  7. Dallas Cowboys: $20.48MM
  8. Houston Texans: $16.81MM
  9. Green Bay Packers: $16.57MM
  10. Pittsburgh Steelers: $15.73MM
  11. Cincinnati Bengals: $14.92MM
  12. New Orleans Saints: $14.27MM
  13. New England Patriots: $14.12MM
  14. Miami Dolphins: $13.9MM
  15. Cleveland Browns: $13.86MM
  16. Philadelphia Eagles: $13.85MM
  17. Los Angeles Chargers: $12.61MM
  18. Jacksonville Jaguars: $12MM
  19. Washington Commanders: $11.57MM
  20. Baltimore Ravens: $11.54MM
  21. San Francisco 49ers: $10.72MM
  22. Atlanta Falcons: $10.7MM
  23. Denver Broncos: $10.13MM
  24. Minnesota Vikings: $9.75MM
  25. Tennessee Titans: $7.99MM
  26. Seattle Seahawks: $7.94MM
  27. New York Giants: $3.82MM
  28. Las Vegas Raiders: $3.37MM
  29. Los Angeles Rams: $1.49MM
  30. Buffalo Bills: $1.4MM
  31. Kansas City Chiefs: $653K
  32. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: $402K

The Dolphins gained the most from a post-June 1 cut (Byron Jones) this year, creating $13.6MM in cap space from a deal that will spread out the cornerback’s dead money through 2024. But the Browns (John Johnson, Jadeveon Clowney) and Cowboys (Ezekiel Elliott) created more than $10MM in space as well.

The Jets’ number is a bit deceiving. They are still working on a restructure with Aaron Rodgers, as the trade acquisition’s cap number — after a Packers restructure — sits at just $1.22MM. In 2024, that number skyrockets to $107.6MM. Rodgers’ cap hit will almost definitely will climb before Week 1, so viewing the Jets along with the other teams north of $20MM in space is not entirely accurate.

Minnesota is moving closer to separating from its $12.6MM-per-year Dalvin Cook contract. The team already created some space by trading Za’Darius Smith to the Browns. Cleveland, which is one of the teams connected to DeAndre Hopkins, added Smith and did so with help from its Deshaun Watson restructure. Watson was set to count $54.9MM against the Browns’ 2023 cap. That number is down to $19.1MM, though the Browns’ restructure both ballooned Watson’s mid-2020s cap figures to $63.9MM — which would shatter the NFL record — and added a 2027 void year.

Tampa Bay and Los Angeles sit atop the league in dead money, with the Bucs — largely from their April 2022 Tom Brady restructure — checking in at $75.3MM here. That total comprises nearly 33% of the Bucs’ 2023 cap sheet. The Rams, at more than $74MM, are not far behind. Despite the Bills and Chiefs — the teams most frequently tied to Hopkins — joining the Bucs and Rams near the bottom of the league in cap space, both AFC contenders also sit in the bottom five in dead money.

Minor NFL Transactions: 6/1/23

Here are Thursday’s minor moves:

Buffalo Bills

Los Angeles Chargers

Seattle Seahawks

Shepherd has not played in an NFL game since 2020, when he finished a two-season stint with the Packers. Shepherd did go to training camp with the Broncos last year, and he spent time on Denver’s practice squad. This year, the North Dakota State product finished as a top-five receiver in the XFL. Playing for the St. Louis BattleHawks, Shepherd hauled in 48 passes for 519 yards and six touchdowns. Both the BattleHawks’ top two wideouts — Shepherd and Hakeem Butler — have received NFL opportunities. Only Butler’s eight receiving TDs topped Shepherd’s total. The Steelers added Butler last month.

Minor NFL Transactions: 5/31/23

Today’s minor transactions:

Baltimore Ravens

  • Signed: CB Jordan Swann

Denver Broncos

Los Angeles Chargers

  • Waived: LB Damon Lloyd

Tight end Tommy Hudson got into five games with the Titans last season, hauling in three catches for 31 yards. He’ll join a relatively deep tight ends group in Denver that includes Greg Dulcich, Chris Manhertz, Adam Trautman, and Albert Okwuegbunam.

Each NFL Franchise’s Richest QB Contract

The quarterback market has moved again this offseason. A year after Aaron Rodgers raised the average annual value bar past $50MM, Jalen Hurts and Lamar Jackson did so on long-term extensions. Overall, four teams have authorized the most lucrative QB deal in their respective histories this offseason. Two more — the Bengals and Chargers — are in talks about record-setting extensions as well.

On that note, here is the richest quarterback contract each team has authorized. Although teams like the Jets and Lions have acquired big-ticket contracts via trade, only teams’ extensions or free agency agreements will qualify here.

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

Buffalo Bills

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

  • Jay Cutler, January 2014. Seven years, $126.7MM. $38MM fully guaranteed

Cincinnati Bengals

  • Carson Palmer, December 2005. Six years, $97MM. $30.8MM fully guaranteed

Cleveland Browns

Dallas Cowboys

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

In trading this contract to the Jets in April, the Packers restructured the deal. Rodgers’ exit will still tag the Pack with $40.3MM in 2023 dead money.

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

Las Vegas Raiders

Carr’s second Raiders deal — agreed to in April 2022 — was worth $40.5MM per year. The full guarantee, thanks to the February escape hatch the team built into the contract, checked in lower than Carr’s initial Raiders extension.

Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Rams

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

Cousins’ 2020 extension checked in with a higher AAV ($33MM) but did not approach his initial Minnesota pact for guarantees.

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

New York Jets

  • Mark Sanchez, June 2009. Five years, $50.5MM. $28MM guaranteed

This was the former No. 5 overall pick-turned-TV analyst’s rookie deal, made possible before the 2011 CBA reshaped the rookie salary structure. Chad Pennington‘s September 2004 extension (seven years, $64MM, $23MM guaranteed) marks the top contract the Jets have authorized for a veteran QB.

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

San Francisco 49ers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Washington Commanders

Chargers’ Tom Telesco Addresses Justin Herbert Contract Outlook

The 2019 quarterback class did not feature multiple members on Year 4 extension tracks last year, with only Kyler Murray on that radar. A year after Murray’s deal, the 2020 QB class’ first bite at the extension apple is producing more fireworks.

Jalen Hurts$51MM-per-year Eagles deal laid the groundwork, but the Super Bowl LVII starter became a locked-in extension candidate much later than draft contemporaries Joe Burrow and Justin Herbert. The Bengals and Chargers passers remain on their rookie contracts but will almost definitely sign extensions that surpass Hurts’ April accord. Both players have begun discussions regarding their second contracts.

A QB extension will not be new territory for Chargers GM Tom Telesco. In addition to hammering out Philip Riversfour-year, $84MM deal in 2015, Telesco was with the Colts for Peyton Manning‘s entire tenure. As Telesco moved up from the scouting ranks to director of player personnel in Indianapolis, the Colts gave Manning two extensions. The first — a seven-year, $98MM pact — came in 2004, but the second (five years, $90MM — in 2011) did not lead to any playing time. Manning’s neck injury forced him to miss all of the ’11 season, and the Colts cut the all-time great in March 2012. Prior to the release, Indianapolis continually constructed championship-caliber rosters around its perennial MVP candidate. This included Super Bowl XLI and XLIV appearances despite highly paid pass rushers and wide receivers (though, Marvin Harrison was not on the second Super Bowl roster) joining Manning on Indy’s payroll.

Telesco, 50, has used Manning’s first Colts extension as a blueprint for building a team around a monster QB deal, Lindsey Thiry of ESPN.com notes. The 11th-year Chargers GM kept a binder in his office themed around how the Colts built around Manning. As Herbert is ticketed to become a $50MM-per-year player, Telesco’s Chargers team-building mission will soon change.

Some of it doesn’t apply anymore, but there’s still some things in there that I’ve written down that I’ve learned that like, yeah, this definitely is going to apply,” Telesco said.

The 2011 CBA introduced the modern rookie-scale contract, changing roster-building equations and creating a tremendous advantage for teams that find impact quarterbacks in the draft. The Chargers have been unable to follow the paths of several teams — the Eagles (twice) and Chiefs among them — in making a Super Bowl trip with a rookie-QB contract, but they have found a superstar-caliber passer. Herbert seems unlikely to go into his fourth season without a new deal, and while typical extension terms leave teams early-years wiggle room regarding cap hits, the Chargers’ model will change during Herbert’s second contract.

Since Patrick Mahomes‘ 10-year, $450MM deal, only one QB — the Bills’ Josh Allen — has come relatively close to agreeing to a team-friendly extension like the one the Chiefs orchestrated. Allen signed a six-year extension in 2021. Of the other QBs to sign lucrative re-ups since Mahomes’ July 2020 deal — Deshaun Watson (twice), Dak Prescott, Aaron Rodgers, Murray, Russell Wilson, Hurts and Lamar Jackson — none have agreed to contracts longer than five years. The Mahomes model may not be realistic for Burrow or Herbert, given how their other peers have proceeded (and the Chiefs potentially needing to adjust the 10-year deal three offseasons after they finalized it), but Telesco views his centerpiece player as understanding how his contract will affect the Chargers’ team-building effort.

At least in our situation, I don’t think I need to have that talk with our quarterback. I think he’s fully aware, has really good self-awareness on how much money he is going to make, how it affects the team,” Telesco said. “But like most agents will tell you, like, it’s my job to figure out how to make sure that the player gets the value that he deserves and we build a team around him.”

The Bolts have four $20MM-per-year players on their payroll, though only one of those (Joey Bosa) may profile as a long-term roster cog. Khalil Mack is going into his age-32 season, while Keenan Allen is now 31. Mike Williams‘ deal runs through 2024, and the Bolts just drafted Quentin Johnston in Round 1. The Chargers also have Derwin James signed to the NFL’s top safety contract and Corey Linsley inked to a top-five center deal. Rookie-deal standouts like Rashawn Slater will become necessary around Herbert, especially if the Oregon product becomes the latest QB to eschew the Mahomes structure and opt for a more traditional extension.

It will be interesting to see which of the 2020 first-rounders signs his extension first and if Burrow — after two AFC championship game appearances and a Super Bowl start — pushes to create distance between himself and Herbert. Until these contracts are finalized, the Bengals and Chargers will continue to be linked due to their QBs’ parallel tracks.

Austin Ekeler Agrees To Reworked Chargers Deal

MAY 24: Ekeler’s incentive package includes escalators for total yardage, touchdowns and a Pro Bowl berth. The seventh-year back can earn up to $1MM depending on his total yardage, NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero tweets, with the incentive package beginning at 1,125 yards and topping out at 1,639. Ekeler finished with a career-high 1,637 scrimmage yards last season. As for TDs, Ekeler’s incentive package ranges from 10-16. He can earn up to $600K in this area. Ekeler scored 20 touchdowns in 2021 and 18 last year.

MAY 23: After requesting a trade earlier this offseason, Austin Ekeler will remain with the Chargers for the 2023 season. The veteran running back has agreed to a new deal which includes almost $2MM in incentives being added to his scheduled compensation, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter (Twitter link).

Ekeler is entering the final season of his contract, and was due a base salary of $6.25MM this year. Where that figure ranks him amongst the league’s other top running backs drove his trade request at the start of free agency, something which the Chargers allowed him to explore. As expected, little interest emerged with respect to teams looking to acquire the 28-year-old.

Ekeler has expressed a willingness to remain in Los Angeles for one more campaign, knowing another strong season would help his free agent value. Likewise, the Chargers have made it clear that they had no intention of actively seeking a trade which would have seen the league’s two-time reigning touchdown leader depart. Now, Ekeler will once again occupy a central role in the team’s offense, one which faces signficant expectations this season.

The former UDFA has topped 1,500 scrimmage yards in three of the past four campaigns, and a continuation of his substantial two-way production could give him multiple suitors on the open market next offseason. However, the 2023 free agency period saw a number of short-term, low-cost deals handed out at the RB position, which could lessen the chances of the Chargers being outbid for Ekeler’s services on a new contract. In any event, the Western Colorado product’s relationship with his current team should no longer be a concern.

Head coach Brandon Staley said yesterday that he fully expected Ekeler – who, as per usual, is currently absent from OTAs – to attend mandatory minicamp in June. Given today’s development, that can now be considered a lock as Ekeler’s immediate financial future has been taken care of.

Chargers Expect Austin Ekeler At Minicamp

Austin Ekeler did not turn up for the Chargers’ initial OTA session Monday, though that is not exactly a surprise. The standout running back, as ESPN’s Lindsey Thiry notes) has made a recent habit of skipping voluntary workouts, but his offseason trade request does make this absence a bit more notable.

That said, the Chargers have long held the line they want Ekeler back this season. Unlike the murkier Dalvin Cook and Joe Mixon situations, Ekeler is firmly in the Bolts’ plans for 2023. Brandon Staley said Monday he expects the league’s two-time reigning touchdown leader to show for minicamp in June.

Players can be fined nearly $100K for not being at minicamp. While that is a drop in the bucket for a player with Ekeler’s earning history, minicamps do generally feature 100% attendance. A few players bucked this trend last year, and it will be interesting to see if Ekeler follows suit. The Chargers gave the seventh-year back permission to speak to teams regarding a trade in March, and the TD kingpin’s contract is out of step with his value.

Ekeler, who turned 28 last week, is attached to the four-year, $24.5MM contract he signed in 2020. One season remains on that deal. The Chargers have not done especially well to acquire reliable Ekeler backups during his time as the team’s unquestioned lead back. The Bolts did not make a notable addition to their backfield this offseason, either, keeping Ekeler (38 TDs from 2021-22) a vital presence for the AFC’s Los Angeles franchise.

The Bolts gave their UDFA success story his extension shortly before letting Melvin Gordon walk in free agency in 2020. At the time, Ekeler had not been a true full-time presence in L.A. A 2015 first-round Chargers pick, Gordon served as the team’s primary back — save for a 2019 holdout — during his rookie contract. The Chargers did well to lock down Ekeler to a $6.13MM-per-year deal, but that contract has plummeted to 13th at the position. Although Ekeler bizarrely has not made a Pro Bowl — his well-crafted 2022 ad campaign notwithstanding — he certainly has a case to be called a top-five running back due to his receiving contributions.

This year’s market did not treat backs well, due to the supply-and-demand issue caused by ball carriers’ diminishing status and the flood of starter-caliber players hitting free agency, but several have on extensions in the recent past. Seven eight-figure-per-year RB deals remain on teams’ books, and Josh Jacobs, Saquon Barkley and Tony Pollard received $10.1MM franchise tags in March. Tepid Ekeler trade interest is believed to have emerged following his trade ask, which came after stalled extension talks. Teams have largely stocked their backfields for 2023.

The 2020 CBA effectively deterred training camp holdouts, upping fines to a non-waivable $50K per day (for players on non-rookie deals) once camp begins. Although Ekeler does not need to worry about the accrued-season component of the CBA’s language pertaining to training camp absences, he would risk losing considerable cash by staying away once camp begins. A “hold in” measure — an increasingly popular move for disgruntled players in 2020s — could become a consideration, should this stalemate continue into August. The Chargers would certainly miss Ekeler’s presence, with few backs capable of his performance level.

The Chargers have two $20MM-per-year wide receivers (Keenan Allen, Mike Williams), and Justin Herbert is due a monster extension. Though, whopping Herbert cap numbers are unlikely to emerge until around Year 3 of his expected extension. As minicamp nears, however, Ekeler remains attached to a contract he has outplayed.

Chargers To Sign DT Nick Williams

Nick Williams will be sticking around the NFL for an 11th season. The defensive tackle is signing a one-year deal with the Chargers, per Charean Williams of ProFootballTalk.com. Free agent QB Chase Daniel, who spent the past two seasons in Los Angeles, was first with the news (on Twitter).

Williams, a 2015 seventh-round pick, took a bit to find his footing the NFL. He had his breakout season in 2019, when he compiled six sacks in 16 games (five starts) for the Bears. That performance earned him a two-year, $10MM deal from the Lions, and he proceeded to start 30 of his 31 appearances during his time in Detroit.

He caught on with the Giants for the 2022 campaign and ended up getting into eight games (seven starts) before landing on injured reserve with a biceps injury. He finished the season with 15 tackles and a pair of QB hits, and had he earned enough snaps to qualify for Pro Football Focus’ positional rankings, he would have been listed as a middle-of-the-road interior defender.

In Los Angeles, the 33-year-old will be joining a DT/NT grouping that includes Sebastian Joseph-Day, Austin Johnson, Otito Ogbonnia, and Chris Hinton. It shouldn’t take too long for Williams to get acclimated; he played under Chargers head coach Brandon Staley in Chicago.

Poll: Which Team Has Improved Most This Offseason?

Although several starter-caliber veterans remain unsigned, NFL teams have largely taken their big swings this offseason. Be it through free agency, the trade market or the draft, franchises have updated their rosters in hopes of improving in 2023.

Any conversation of 2023 improvement efforts probably needs to start with the Jets. Thanks to the Sacramento Kings’ playoff advancement, the Jets hold major North American sports’ longest postseason drought — at 12 years. After missing on a few rookie-contract QBs in the time since their last playoff run, the Jets now have Aaron Rodgers. The six nationally televised games on Gang Green’s docket illustrate Rodgers’ impact on the team’s perception, and although the four-time MVP will turn 40 before year’s end, he has made the Jets a free agency destination of sorts. The team added ex-Rodgers Packer wideouts Allen Lazard and Randall Cobb, with those moves coming after the addition of safety Chuck Clark via trade.

As the Jets stands to be a factor in the one of the deepest conferences in recent memory, the Dolphins added Jalen Ramsey via trade and will pay Vic Fangio upwards of $4.5MM to run their defense. Miami will bank on Tua Tagovailoa health and showed faith in the oft-scrutinized passer by picking up his fifth-year option two months early.

The Ravens took their biggest steps yet — in the Lamar Jackson era, at least — to strengthen their receiving corps, keeping Odell Beckham Jr. from a Big Apple return (via a $15MM guarantee) and drafting Zay Flowers in the first round. The Browns bolstered their receiving corps as well, trading for Elijah Moore and drafting Cedric Tillman in Round 3. Cleveland also has now added two edge rushers — with Jadeveon Clowney not expected back — in Za’Darius Smith and Obo Okoronkwo to complement Myles Garrett. Cincinnati may have made the biggest outside addition in the AFC North, signing Orlando Brown Jr., though the team did lose both starting safeties (Jessie Bates, Vonn Bell) in free agency. The Steelers added two likely O-line starters, in Broderick Jones and Isaac Seumalo, and made changes at cornerback by signing Patrick Peterson and drafting Joey Porter Jr.

The returns from this year’s top AFC South headlines likely will not emerge until the mid-2020s, but the Texans, Colts and Titans drafted hopeful long-term QBs (C.J. Stroud, Anthony Richardson, Will Levis). Houston also gave up a bounty to move back into the top three for Will Anderson Jr.

Making Nathaniel Hackett just the third HC since the 1970 merger to be fired before his first season ended, the Broncos paid up — both in terms of draft capital and salary — to add Sean Payton. They also spent heavily to better protect Russell Wilson, signing Ben Powers and Mike McGlinchey. The latter will be Denver’s 11th Week 1 right tackle in 11 years. The Raiders added Tyree Wilson in Round 1, but the team’s Derek Carr-to-Jimmy Garoppolo transition injects considerably more injury risk into their equation.

Darren Waller going from Las Vegas to New York provided the centerpiece of the Giants’ hopeful pass-game upgrade, which includes a few midlevel wide receiver investments. The team added likely starters in cornerback Deonte Banks and center John Michael Schmitz. Dallas brought in Pro Bowlers Brandin Cooks and Stephon Gilmore via trade, and Mike McCarthy will dust off his play-calling chops after Moore’s Chargers exit. The Eagles drafted two more Georgia defenders (Jalen Carter, Nolan Smith) in Round 1 but lost Javon Hargrave and both coordinators.

Few position groups received more attention than the Lions’ secondary. The rising team added Cameron Sutton, C.J. Gardner-Johnson, Emmanuel Moseley and second-rounder Brian Branch. This came after Jameson Williams‘ six-game gambling ban and after two first-round picks (Jahmyr Gibbs, Jack Campbell) receiving positional value-based criticism. While the Bears collected future assets from the Panthers in the Bryce Young swap, they pried D.J. Moore from Carolina and added two likely O-line starters in Nate Davis and Darnell Wright.

Carolina stopped its QB carousel with the Young move, and Frank Reich will be tasked with developing the atypical prospect. The Panthers also lured Ejiro Evero from the Broncos, despite Denver’s interest in retaining its DC. Though, the team’s receiving situation — now featuring Adam Thielen and DJ Chark — may take multiple years to fix post-Moore. The rest of the NFC South will also include new Week 1 starting QBs. The Saints made the second-most notable veteran quarterback addition this year — in giving Carr what amounts to a three-year, $100MM deal — and will hope this brings the QB stability Drew Brees‘ retirement stripped away two years ago.

While the 49ers lost another coordinator (DeMeco Ryans) to a head coaching job, they gave new DC Steve Wilks superior D-line talent via Hargrave’s $20MM-AAV deal. With the Colts taking Richardson at No. 4, the Seahawks doubled down on the recently re-signed Geno Smith by beginning this year’s receiver run with Jaxon Smith-Njigba at No. 20. Seattle also zagged from its Pete CarrollJohn Schneider M.O. by taking cornerback Devon Witherspoon at 5. This and the Dre’Mont Jones contract headlined a big year for Seahawks defensive investments.

What other teams deserve mention here? Vote in PFR’s latest poll and weigh in with your thoughts in the comments section.

WR Rumors: Ravens, Chiefs, Giants, Mooney, Lockett, Chargers, Falcons

Although the Ravens gave Lamar Jackson the biggest contract in NFL history — in terms of average annual value — their top two outside investments this offseason have gone to wide receivers. Following their Odell Beckham Jr. signing, the Ravens chose Zay Flowers 22nd overall. Baltimore took calls from teams during the first round, and GM Eric DeCosta indicated teams wanted to move up. Leery of losing their chance to add a first-round-caliber wideout, the Ravens passed on offers.

We had gotten some calls from some teams behind us. It didn’t take a rocket scientist … to tell me that they were coming up for receivers,” DeCosta said during The Lounge podcast (via BaltimoreRavens.com). “We decided to stand pat at that point because we knew there was a legitimate risk that we were going to lose the guys that we coveted. The Giants being one of those teams. The Chiefs were behind us as well.”

Both teams showed interest in wideouts, with the Chiefs being connected to moving up for Jordan Addison. The Giants made an effort to trade up for a receiver — with their target believed to be Flowers — but after the Vikings chose Addison at No. 23, Big Blue moved up one spot (to No. 24) for cornerback Deonte Banks. DeCosta also expected the Chargers to pass on Flowers at No. 21, indicating the Bolts generally like “the bigger receivers, the route runners.” The biggest of this year’s first-round receiver lot, 208-pound Quentin Johnston, went to the Chargers. The Ravens have added Beckham, Flowers and Nelson Agholor to their receiver group, one previously headlined by Rashod Bateman and Devin Duvernay. Both holdovers are coming off season-ending foot injuries.

Here is the latest receiver news from around the NFL:

  • Darnell Mooney missed the final five games of the Bears‘ 3-14 season due to an ankle injury. The three-year starter underwent surgery, with NFL.com reporting he had sustained ligament tears. But Mooney is on track to return to football work fairly soon. The contract-year wideout has a chance to be cleared before the end of Chicago’s offseason program, per Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune. Should that benchmark not be met, Mooney will be expected to be full-go by training camp. Mooney totaled 1,055 receiving yards in 2021 and will be expected to join D.J. Moore as Justin Fields‘ top targets this season, one that will potentially set him up for a lucrative extension or free agency accord.
  • The Chargers did not retain DeAndre Carter this offseason; the veteran returner/auxiliary wideout signed with the Raiders. They are expecting the other TCU wideout they drafted — fourth-rounder Derius Davis — to pick up the slack in the return game, Lindsey Thiry of ESPN.com notes. Davis posted the second-fastest wide receiver 40-yard dash time (4.36 seconds) at the Combine and tallied six return touchdowns (five on punts) with the Horned Frogs from 2018-22. While Brandon Staley is not limiting the 5-foot-8 rookie to return duty, the Bolts did draft Johnston and are also still rostering Josh Palmer and Jalen Guyton as Keenan AllenMike Williams backups.
  • The Seahawks created some cap space recently by restructuring Tyler Lockett‘s contract. By converting $8.5MM of Lockett’s base salary into a signing bonus, the Seahawks created $5.7MM in space (per ESPN’s Field Yates). As Lockett’s 2023 cap hit drops to $11MM, his 2024 and ’25 numbers balloon to $26.7MM apiece. Lockett is tied to his third Seahawks contract, a four-year, $69MM deal agreed to in April 2021.
  • Former Eagles second-round pick JJ Arcega-Whiteside received a tryout opportunity at the Falcons‘ recent rookie minicamp, according to Fox Sports’ Greg Auman (on Twitter). Arcega-Whiteside has been unable to establish himself as a pro, being tried at tight end and then traded to the Seahawks before last season. The Seahawks cut the Stanford product in November. He remains unsigned.