Tre Houston

AFC Notes: Jets, Titans, Bills, Raiders

While the Jets have two recently drafted quarterbacks on their roster in 2015 fourth-round pick Bryce Petty and 2016 second-rounder Christian Hackenberg, the franchise has little faith in either, reports Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News. General manager Mike Maccagnan opined Thursday that Petty has starting-caliber potential, but the organization only regards him as a backup behind the scenes, according to Mehta. Petty struggled mightily this season in his first taste of NFL action, completing 56.4 percent of attempts, tossing three touchdowns against seven interceptions and posting a 60.0 passer rating in parts of six games. Hackenberg wasn’t even active until Week 17, when he backed up Ryan Fitzpatrick, and a team source scoffed at the notion Thursday that the ex-Penn State Nittany Lion could be the Jets’ long-term solution. “He will never make it,” the source told Mehta. “Never.” Although Maccagnan stated that Hackenberg made progress during the season, the executive also implied that the Jets will look for an outside starter, revealing that “all options are on the table.”

More from New York and three other AFC cities:

  • As a reward for a strong debut season as the Titans’ GM, controlling owner Amy Adams Strunk decided Thursday to make Jon Robinson the second-highest-ranking member of the organization. Robinson is now the team’s executive vice president/GM after helping the Titans go from three wins in 2015 to nine victories this season. “This is an acknowledgement of his work and it puts him on equal footing with others in the league who direct football operations,” Strunk said in a statement (via Jim Wyatt of
  • Woody Johnson could be under consideration to become the U.S. Ambassador to the United Kingdom when President-elect Donald Trump takes office later this month, but the Jets’ owner downplayed it as speculation Thursday, per the Associated Press. If chosen, Johnson would reportedly hand control of the Jets over to his brother until the appointment ends.
  • Bills linebacker and pending free agent Zach Brown posted a message Thursday on Instagram referring to his time in Buffalo in the past tense, as Mike Rodak of points out (on Twitter). After spending the first three years of his career in Tennessee, Brown signed a modest deal with the Bills last April. The 27-year-old then emerged as a major bargain, playing 16 games for the fourth time in a row and totaling an AFC-high 149 tackles to go with four sacks and two forced fumbles. Brown, whom Pro Football Focus graded an impressive 17th among 89 qualified linebackers, should fare much better on the open market this offseason.
  • The Raiders are still optimistic that Matt McGloin will be able to serve as the primary backup to Connor Cook in Saturday’s wild-card game round game in Houston, Adam Caplan of tweets. “Moxy,” who’s dealing with a shoulder injury, got some light work in Wednesday.
  • The Jets worked out Olympic sprinter Tre Houston on Thursday, writes Mehta. Houston competed in the 200 meters for Bermuda at the 2016 Rio Games and projects as a wide receiver.

Zach Links contributed to this post.

AFC Notes: Titans, Bills, Raiders, Texans, Fins

The Titans made wide receiver Kendall Wright a healthy scratch for their season finale last Sunday, and now the impending free agent is ready to leave Tennessee. “I saw the 2017 Tennessee Titans, and I am not a part of the 2017 Tennessee Titans,” Wright told on Monday (via Chris Wesseling of “It is what it is. I respect everybody in the building.” A first-round pick in 2012, Wright began his career with three straight seasons of at least 57 catches and 93 targets, but the Titans tamped down their reliance on him the past two years. In 21 games dating back to 2015, Wright has combined for just 65 receptions and 102 targets. Now, with a trip to the open market looming, Wright feels “free.”

While Wright looks like a lock to exit the organization, two of his coaches – Bob Bratkowski (receivers) and Jason Tucker (assistant WRs) – definitely won’t be back in 2017. The Titans parted ways with the duo Wednesday, tweets Jim Wyatt of the team’s website.

More from the AFC:

  • The Bills will interview their interim head coach, Anthony Lynn, on Thursday, according to John Wawrow of the Associated Press (Twitter link). There was a report Tuesday that Lynn might not want to take over on a permanent basis in Buffalo, though he’s at least keeping that option on the table. The 48-year-old is a popular candidate around the NFL, as PFR’s Head Coaching Search Tracker shows.
  • Raiders safety Karl Joseph says he’ll play in Saturday’s wild-card matchup in Houston, James Palmer of tweets. The rookie missed the last four games of the regular season, and his return is big for Oakland with Nate Allen in the concussion protocol.
  • Unlike Joseph, Texans quarterback Tom Savage won’t be available this weekend, relays Palmer (Twitter link). Savage suffered a concussion last Sunday, thereby reopening the door for Brock Osweiler to start, but there was hope that Savage would be OK to serve as a backup. That won’t be the case, though, and the Texans will have to turn to Brandon Weeden as their No. 2 option.
  • The Dolphins worked out linebacker Ron Thompson, defensive end Arthur Miley and four defensive backs – L.J. McCray, Floyd Raven, Trent Matthews and Daniel Davie – according to ESPN’s Adam Caplan (Twitter link). Miami’s need for DBs is obvious, as its secondary is extremely banged up with the team’s weekend wild-card game in Pittsburgh approaching. Cornerback Byron Maxwell and safety Bacarri Rambo didn’t practice Wednesday, while safeties Reshad Jones and Isa Abdul-Quddus are on the shelf thanks to season-ending injuries.
  • In addition to the previously reported Elijah Shumate and Jeff Richards, the Chiefs auditioned receiver Tre Houston, kicker Devon Bell, defensive tackle Montori Hughes, linebacker Deon Lacey, defensive end Terrell Lathan, tight end Ryan Malleck, running back Will Ratelle and defensive back Julian Wilson last Friday, per Terez A. Paylor of the Kansas City Star. All are candidates to sign reserve/futures deal with the Chiefs, writes Paylor, who notes that now-starting running back Spencer Ware joined the team on that type of contract in January 2015.
Zach Links contributed to this post.