Will Ratelle

Chiefs Sign Six Players, Cut Seven

The Chiefs are making moves. The team announced on Tuesday afternoon that six players have been signed while seven others have been shown the door:

Signed:

Cut:

Taylor was signed by the Chiefs just last week but was unable to stick on the roster. Before coming to KC, Taylor spent part of the 2016 season on the Seahawks’ practice squad and one game on the 53-man roster. Unfortunately, his odds of making the Chiefs’ final cut was never all that great anyway with Spencer Ware, Charcandrick West, C.J. Spiller, and third-round pick Kareem Hunt already in the fold. Taylor, a former sixth-round pick, will now look to hook on elsewhere.

Jean-Baptiste auditioned for the Chiefs over the weekend. Selected in the second round of the 2014 draft by New Orleans, he has yet to live up to the hype. In his three seasons since being drafted, he has appeared in just four games.

Chiefs Sign Four To Futures Deals

The Chiefs have signed four players to reserve/futures deals, the club announced today. These contracts will take effect when the new league year begins on Thursday:

Of the four players listed above, Hughes is the only with NFL experience. The former fifth-round pick appeared in 16 games during the 2013-14 seasons with the Colts, then played in nine games over the past two years with the Giants. All told, the 27-yar-old Hughes has managed 17 tackles, two fumble recoveries, and one pass defensed.

In other Kansas City news, the Chiefs are expected to tender restricted free agent safety Daniel Sorensen, according to Terez A. Paylor of the Kansas City Star. At present, it’s unclear at what level Sorensen will be tendered.

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 TitansOnline.com on Monday (via Chris Wesseling of NFL.com). “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 NFL.com 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.

NFL Workout Updates: 12/13/16

We’ve already passed along one batch of workout updates earlier today, but clubs with continuously taking a look at free agents as the season comes to a close — likely with an eye on futures contracts — we have a fresh listing of tryouts to share. Here’s the latest from the workout circuit:

  • Before signing Shaquille Riddick to their practice squad earlier today, the Steelers also worked out fellow linebacker Davis Tull, tweets Adam Caplan of ESPN.com. Tull was waived from Atlanta’s practice squad in early November.
  • The Broncos auditioned the following 10 players, according to Howard Balzer of BalzerFootball.com (Twitter links): linebackers Khairi Fortt, Deon Lacey, and John Lotulelei; safeties Kevin Peterson, Josh Evans, Dezmen Southward; and cornerbacks Keith Baxter, Mike Hilton, Demetrius McCray, and Corey Tindal.
  • Like Denver, the Saints also worked out a large group of players. The full list, per Nick Underhill of the Advocate (all links go to Twitter): quarterback Sean Renfree; running backs Will Ratelle, Darrel Young, and Soma Vainuku; wide receivers Max McCaffrey, Derel Walker, and Kevin Smith; linebackers Khalil Bass and Adam Bighill; defensive end T.J. Fatinikun; defensive tackle Drake Nevis; defensive backs Tony Burnett, Otha Foster, Anthony Gaitor, and Forest Hightower.
  • The Packers worked out linebacker Frank Beltre and defensive lineman David Moala today, reports Rob Demovksy of ESPN.com. The third member of that tryout, linebacker Jordan Tripp, was ultimately signed to the active roster.
  • The Buccaneers tried out cornerback Tre Jones and linebacker Raphael Kirby, per Caplan (Twitter link).

Buccaneers Audition Nate Washington

After losing wide receiver Vincent Jackson to a torn ACL last week, the Buccaneers are working out another veteran pass-catcher. According to Adam Caplan of ESPN.com (Twitter link), Tampa Bay took a look at WR Nate Washington today.Nate Washington (vertical)

[RELATED: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Depth Chart]

The 33-year-old Washington has been a member of three teams since going undrafted from Division III Tiffin University in 2005. He spent a productive 2015 as a member of the Texans, with whom he hauled in 47 passes for 658 yards and four touchdowns. Washington, who has also played three years in Pittsburgh and six seasons in Tennessee, has 458 receptions and 44 touchdowns to his name. In his most prolific campaign, 2011, the 6-foot-1, 185-pounder recorded career highs in catches (74), targets (121), yards (1,023) and scores (seven) with the Titans.

The Bucs can still rely on No. 1 wide receiver Mike Evans, who is second in the league with 75 targets, but are quite thin behind their top option. Cecil Shorts, coming off a hamstring injury, is joined by Adam Humphries, Freddie Martino, and Russell Shepard — who caught five passes for 77 yards and a score on Sunday — in the wide receiver corps. Tampa also re-signed WR Donteea Dye to its practice squad today.

In addition to Washington, the Buccaneers also worked out running backs Austin Johnson and Will Ratelle, reports Howard Balzer (Twitter link).

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/2/16

To cap off a transaction-packed Friday, here are the latest minor moves from around the NFL:

  • The Steelers released former Virginia Tech offensive lineman Wade Hansen, agent Brett Tessler tweets, and waived quarterback Dustin Vaughan with an injury settlement (Twitter link via Mark Kaboly of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review).
  • The Colts waived defensive back D’Joun Smith with an injury designation, as Mike Garafolo of NFL.com tweets. Smith was a third-round pick in 2015.
  • The Lions cut center Gabe Ikard, per Michael Rothstein of ESPN.com (Twitter link).
  • The Jets waived safety Dion Bailey off IR with an injury settlement, Adam Caplan of ESPN.com tweets.
  • The Cowboys are releasing linebacker Derek Akunne, according to his agent David Canter (on Twitter). They’ve also waived defensive ends Gerald Dixon and Shaneil Jenkins off IR with injury settlements, Caplan tweets.
  • The Saints waived linebacker Dillon Lee, as Nick Underhill of The Advocate tweets.
  • The Falcons will work out an injury settlement with fullback Will Ratelle, Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com tweets.
  • The Buccaneers reached an injury settlement with receiver Donteea Dye, as Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times tweets.
  • The Seahawks signed long snapper Tyler Ott, according to a source who spoke with Aaron Wilson of The Houston Chronicle (on Twitter).

Minor NFL Transactions: 8/31/16

Here are today’s minor moves.

  • Wide receiver Mario Alford cleared waivers and will revert to the Bengals‘ IR, Katherine Terrell of ESPN.com tweets.
  • Recently cut tight end Ryan Malleck will revert to the Giants‘ IR after clearing waivers, Ralph Vacchiano of SNY.tv reports (on Twitter).
  • Continuing a busy day for their secondary, the Saints waived/injured rookie DB Jimmy Pruitt, Josh Katzenstein of NOLA.com reports (on Twitter).
  • The Saints also moved cornerback Damian Swann to IR, Nick Underhill of The Advocate reports. A second-year cornerback who played in seven games with New Orleans last season and started two, Swann went down with an undisclosed injury this month. Paul Kruger will take his roster spot after signing today. This strips another corner from the Saints’ depth chart due to injury; the team recently cut Keenan Lewis, who remains unsigned.
  • The Bills announced that they have signed linebacker Ramon Humber. To make room, the team relased kickoff specialist Jordan Gay. Humber, 29, was cut loose by New England on Tuesday. Humber was a favorite of Bills assistant head coach Rob Ryan when he served as the defensive coordinator in New Orleans.
  • The Bills also made a successful claim for third-year center Patrick Lewis on waivers, per Mike Garafolo of Fox Sports (on Twitter). To make room, the team waived offensive lineman Jamison Lalk, Joe Buscaglia of WKBW tweets. Seattle waived Lewis on Tuesday in trimming its roster down to 75 players. This comes two days after the Seahawks attempted to trade Lewis but evidently found no one willing to part with the kind of capital they preferred. The Bills, who occupied the 19th position in the waiver order, landed Lewis without parting with any draft picks and potentially added an interior-line backup for Eric Wood. Lewis started 13 games for the Seahawks over the past two seasons but saw Justin Britt‘s move to center push him out of a job. The Bills are the second team to claim the 2014 UDFA on waivers, doing so after the Seahawks added him by this measure when the Browns waived him.
  • The Falcons re-signed fullback Will Ratelle and placed wide receiver Devin Fuller on IR, as D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution tweets. Fuller, a seventh-round pick, will undergo surgery after suffering a shoulder injury against the Dolphins on Thursday.
  • The Jaguars announce they have waived/injured wide receiver Tony Washington, Michael DiRocco of ESPN.com tweets.
  • The 49ers waived undrafted rookie DB Jered Bell from injured reserve with an injury settlement, Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com tweets.

Zach Links contributed to this report

Minor NFL Transactions: 8/26/16

Today’s minor moves:

  • The Falcons announced that they’ve waived David Glidden, defensive end Efe Obada, fullback Will Ratelle, cornerback Jordan Sefon, and guard Jordan Walsh. Atlanta is simply whittling down its roster before the 75-man deadline comes on Tuesday, and the club now has 84 players on its squad. Four of the five players who were waived — with the exception of Obada — were 2016 undrafted rookie free agents.
  • The Colts have reached an injury settlement with tackle Kevin Graf, removing him from their IR, tweets Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle.

Falcons Agree To Sign 22 UDFAs

SATURDAY, 6:05pm: The Falcons announced that they’ve added a trio of undrafted free agents on Saturday:

The Falcons also announced that they waived four of their previously signed undrafted free agents: Gerald Dixon Jr.Alex FifitaMalachi Jones, and David Richards.

THURSDAY, 4:21pm: Despite the fact that Atlanta only selected six players during last weekend’s draft, the Falcons’ rookie minicamp will be a busy place. The team confirmed today that it has signed 22 undrafted free agents to fill out its roster, with another 27 free agent rookies headed to the minicamp to try out for the club.

The full list of 27 tryout players can be found right here. Listed below are the 22 players who have agreed to contracts with the Falcons:

AFC Draft Updates: Ravens, Dolphins, Chiefs

The Ravens hosted Ole Miss defensive lineman Robert Nkemdiche and West Virginia safety Karl Joseph today, according to Albert Breer of NFL.com (via Twitter). Notre Dame offensive tackle Ronnie Stanley was also in Baltimore visiting the Ravens today, per Breer (via Twitter). Stanley is considered by most to be a top-10 lock, but not all teams agree, as Tony Pauline of DraftInsider.net recently reported. Some scouts have concerns about Stanley’s apparent lack of athleticism.

Here are several more updates on draft visits and workouts from out of the AFC:

  • Ohio State wideouts Braxton Miller and Michael Thomas worked out for the Titans last week, then got a look from three Bengals evaluators on Monday, tweets Ian Rapoport of NFL.com. Matt Miller of Bleacher Report adds (via Twitter) that he keeps hearing Thomas is a top target for Cincinnati.
  • University of Miami defensive lineman Ufomba Kamalu, defensive back Deon Bush, wide receiver Rashawn Scott, and wideout Herb Waters were all a part of the Dolphins‘ local prospect day, according to Armando Salguero of The Miami Herald (all four Twitter links). Western Michigan WR Daniel Braverman and Western Kentucky QB Brandon Doughty were among the other prospects with Florida roots to participate in the Dolphins’ local day, per Salguero (Twitter links).
  • In other Dolphins draft news, the team is privately working out Temple wide receiver Robby Anderson on Friday, tweets Aaron Wilson of the National Football Post.
  • Northern Illinois inside linebacker Perez Ford visited the Chiefs today, a source tells Aaron Wilson. Wilson also reports (via Twitter) that North Dakota fullback Will Ratelle, a converted linebacker, visited Kansas City.
  • Tennessee wide receiver Marquez North had private workouts with the Colts and Patriots, according to Aaron Wilson.

Zach Links contributed to this post.