Zach Kerr

Cardinals Sign DT Zach Kerr

The Cardinals are making another move. Arizona has been shuffling its roster the past week, and now they’re bringing in veteran defensive tackle Zach Kerr, the team announced.

The Cards had an open roster spot, so no corresponding roster move is coming. Kerr worked out for them yesterday along with a handful of other defensive linemen, and they apparently liked what they saw. He originally entered the league as an undrafted free agent out of Delaware, and signed with the Colts. He started eight games his last two years in Indy, then signed with the Broncos.

He played a role as a run-stuffer, and got a two-year extension from Denver in March. However, they cut him at the end of the preseason. He worked out for the Lions a couple weeks back, but hasn’t drawn too much other known interest. He was able to pocket a $600K signing bonus that the Broncos gave him before cutting him. For his career, he has 116 tackles and 7.5 sacks in 63 games.

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NFL Workout Updates: 10/1/19

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NFL Workout Updates: 9/24/19

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Broncos To Release Zach Kerr

The Broncos have released defensive lineman Zach Kerr, as Mike Klis of 9News tweets. It’s yet another indication that the Broncos are expecting big things from DeMarcus Walker in 2019.

Following three seasons with the Colts, Kerr joined Denver on a two-year deal prior to the 2017 season. The defensive lineman appeared in 27 games for the Broncos over the past two seasons, including a 16-game campaign in 2018.

Despite not starting a single game last season, the 334-pound lineman still finished with 33 tackles, 1.5 sacks, and one pass defended. While Pro Football Focus gave him a solid score, he still only ranked 73rd among 112 eligible interior defenders.

The release is not ideal for Kerr, but on the plus side, it’s preferable to get cut earlier in the week rather than later. He’ll keep the $600K signing bonus he secured in March, though the rest of his two-year, $5MM deal contained no guarantees.

Contract Details: Vaccaro, Callahan, Okafor

Let’s take a look at the details of a few recently-signed NFL contracts, with all links going to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle’s Twitter account:

Broncos To Re-Sign DL Zach Kerr

The Broncos are re-signing defensive lineman Zach Kerr, reports Ryan O’Halloran of the Denver Post (on Twitter). It’s a two-year deal, according to the team.

Following three seasons with the Colts, Kerr joined Denver on a two-year deal prior to the 2017 season. The defensive lineman has appeared in 27 games over the past two seasons, including a 16-game campaign in 2018.

Despite not starting a single game last season, the 334-pound lineman still finished with 33 tackles, 1.5 sacks, and one pass defended. While Pro Football Focus gave him a solid score, he still only ranked 73rd among 112 eligible interior defenders.

Assuming Kerr is indeed returning, the Broncos will presumably continue to hunt for defensive tackles. The team is only rostering one player at the position in Caushaud Lyons.

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Broncos Notes: Gotsis, Kerr, Ray, Kelly

Broncos defensive end Adam Gotsis is setting himself up for a solid payday. The former second-rounder is eligible to sign an extension this offseason, and the new contract has certainly been on the 26-year-old’s mind.

“It’s exciting knowing that (could) come in the future,” Gotsis told Ryan O’Halloran of the Denver Post. “I feel like if I take care of what I have to on the field, the extension is going to be there when the time comes. Saying this or saying that won’t get it done for me. It’s just going out there and making plays.”

Gotsis has been productive this season, compiling 35 tackles and a pair of sacks, and Pro Football Focus currently ranks him 51st among 116 interior defenders. As O’Halloran writes, the defensive end has really turned in on over the past six games, as he’s collected 11.5 “stuffs,” two hits, and both of his sacks.

O’Halloran points to the extension signed by teammate Derek Wolfe as a potential basis for Gotsis’ new deal. Wolfe inked a four-year, $36.7MM back in 2016. O’Halloran also opines that inking Gotsis to a new deal with be a priority for John Elway and Denver’s front office.

Let’s take a look at some more notes out of Denver…

  • O’Halloran also previewed the Broncos players who are set to hit unrestricted free agency this offseason. The writer doesn’t see a reason why the team wouldn’t bring back defensive lineman Zach Kerr, but he has the opposite sentiment for linebacker Shane Ray. The writer also explores the chances of bringing back cornerbacks Tramaine Brock and Bradley Roby, linebacker Shaquil Barrett, offensive guard Max Garcia, tight end Jeff Heuerman, center Matt Paradis, nose tackle Domata Peko, offensive lineman Billy Turner, and offensive tackle Jared Veldheer.
  • Former Broncos quarterback Chad Kelly appeared in court last week to be arraigned on a felony charge of first-degree trespassing (via Caitlin Hendee and Katie Wilcox of 9News.com). The charge stems from an Oct. 23 incident when the backup signal-caller allegedly walked into a family’s house after departing Von Miller‘s Halloween party. Denver released the former seventh-rounder following the arrest. The arraignment was continued to January 28th.
  • We previously heard the Broncos head coach Vance Joseph is expected to be fired at the end of the season, and it sounds like he’ll then become one of the top candidates for the Bengals’ defensive coordinator gig. We also heard today that Denver is still hopeful of interviewing Ravens head coach John Harbaugh, despite Baltimore’s recent announcement that Harbaugh will be back in 2019

AFC Rumors: Browns, Lynch, Broncos, Jets

Kenny Britt is now on thinner ice with the Browns despite his lucrative free agent deal, but there’s now a report that the Browns made an exception to their curfew policy. Adam Schefter of ESPN.com reports the Browns previously did not enforce their 11 p.m. curfew on injured players. Both Britt and Corey Coleman were declared out for the Texans game, and Schefter reports Britt did not get back to the team hotel until around 1:15 a.m. It’s unclear why the Browns apparently changed their policy, which resulted in Britt and Coleman being sent home. Although, Schefter reports the wideouts returned to Cleveland at the same time as their team. However, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk doesn’t believe the team that employs Josh Gordon and the one that drafted Johnny Manziel would have a double standard like this, where injured players could stay out much longer than their teammates who are preparing to play.

Here’s the latest from around the AFC.

  • The NFL revealed Friday it planned to explore fines and a suspension for Marshawn Lynch, and it came forth with a one-game ban for the Raiders running back. However, Michael Gehlken of the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports the league will not impose any additional fines on Lynch — other than the docked game check he’ll miss if this suspension is upheld. Lynch stands to lose $110K, from a portion of his base salary and $500K roster bonus. The maximum fine he was facing, if the NFL didn’t go through with the suspension, was $60K.
  • The Broncos cut both Ahtyba Rubin and Kyle Peko from their 53-man roster this week, and some of the reasoning behind these moves centered on Zach Kerr improving to the point he can contribute after a lengthy injury absence, Mike Klis of 9News notes (on Twitter). Signed in March after the Colts non-tendered him, Kerr was expected to be a key rotation presence at defensive end and nose tackle prior to suffering a preseason knee malady. He’s played in one game for the Broncos this season.
  • A Muhammad Wilkerson release has emerged as a key Jets topic this week, and ESPN.com’s Rich Cimini indeed expects Gang Green to follow through with this after the season (Twitter link). Wilkerson has not been the same player since signing his landmark extension at the 2016 franchise tag deadline, with injuries playing a role in that. While the Jets would incur a $9MM dead-money charge — which could be spread out over multiple years if Wilkerson is a post-June 1 cut — they would also save $11MM by parting with the seventh-year veteran.
  • Jay Ajayi‘s chemistry with Jay Cutler may be suffering because of a chronic knee condition that keeps the Dolphins running back out of at least one practice per week, Roy Cummings of FloridaFootballInsiders.com notes. Miami OC Clyde Christensen said Ayaji’s condensed practice time is limiting his development as a pass-catcher. Ajayi has just seven receptions (on 12 targets) for 23 yards through five games. He wasn’t used much in the passing game last season, but the third-year running back remains productive on the ground with his 391 rushing yards ranking seventh in the league.

Broncos To Sign Domata Peko, Zach Kerr

The Broncos have agreed to free agent deals with defensive linemen Domata Peko and Zach Kerr, tweets Mike Klis of 9NEWS. Peko will receive a two-year, $7.5MM contract that includes $3.8MM guaranteed, per Klis (Twitter link). Kerr will also garner a two-year pact, reports Nicki Jhabvala of the Denver Post (Twitter link).Domata Peko (Vertical)

Peko, 32, will now leave the Bengals after spending the past 11 seasons in Cincinnati. The former fourth-round pick appeared in 171 games with the Bengals during his time in the Queen City, starting 156 of those contests. Although he’s started every game for the past seven seasons, Peko’s playing time had started to dwindle, as he’d only managed roughly half of Cincinnati’s defensive snaps over the past two years. Peko registered 37 tackles in 2016 while grading as the league’s No. 106 interior defender, Pro Football Focus, which has given Peko disastrous marks for the past four years.

Addressing the defensive line was thought to be a primary focus for Denver this offseason, but Peko and Kerr are the the only defensive linemen the club has added thus far. That’s not for lack of trying, however, as the Broncos were reportedly among the final suitors for Calais Campbell before he signed with the Jaguars. Denver had to ward off other teams in order to land Peko, as the Vikings apparently had interest in the 6’3″, 307 pound defender, tweets Matt Vensel of the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

Kerr, 26, was not tendered a restricted free agent contract by the Colts after appearing in 12 games (four starts) for the club last year. Appearing on nearly a third of Indy’s defensive snaps, Kerr posted 19 tackles, 2.5 sacks, and a fumble recovery in his third NFL campaign. Kerr drew interest from the 49ers and Lions before signing with the Broncos, according to Stephen Holder of the Indianapolis Star (Twitter link).

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Extra Points: Colts, Okung, Panthers, Ngata

Restricted free agent defensive tackle Zach Kerr has yet to be tendered an offer by the Colts and an NFL source tells Stephen Holder of the Indy Star that indications are he won’t be tendered at all. Kerr’s playing time vacillated last year but he still finished out with 2.5 sacks. Since joining the Colts as a UDFA in 2014, he has played nose tackle, defensive tackle, and defensive end. In related news, the Colts have decided against tendering an offer to linebacker Josh McNary.

Here’s more from around the NFL: