Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

2018 Free Agency Discussion

This is our open thread to discuss all the free agent movement, trades, cuts, and other news for the first few days of free agency, starting with the "legal tampering period" that begins at noon Eastern on March 12.

Later today we'll begin updating this thread with announcements of moves.


  • Kansas City cuts OLB Tamba Hali.
  • Miami cuts DT Ndamukong Suh and OLB Lawrence Timmons.
  • Oakland cuts CB Sean Smith.
  • Seattle re-signs SS Bradley McDougald (3 years, $13.95 million).
  • Cincinnati trades for Buffalo OT Cordy Glenn. Buffalo gets Cincinnati's No. 12 pick and the Bengals get Buffalo's No. 21 pick. They also swap fifth- and sixth-round selections.


  • Baltimore cuts RB Danny Woodhead.
  • Buffalo signs DT Star Lotulelei.
  • Chicago signs WR Allen Robinson (3 years, $42 million, $25 million guaranteed).
  • Denver signs QB Case Keenum (2 years, $36 million).
  • Jacksonville signs G Andrew Norwell (5 years, $66.5 million, $30 million guaranteed).
  • Kansas City signs WR Sammy Watkins (3 years, $48 million, $30 million guaranteed) and LB Anthony Hitchens. (5 years, $45 million, $25 million guaranteed)
  • Miami signs WR Albert Wilson (3 years, $24 million)
  • New Orleans re-signs QB Drew Brees (2 years, $50 million, $27 million guaranteed).
  • San Francisco signs C/G Weston Richburg.


  • Chicago signs TE Trey Burton (4 years, $32 million).
  • Detroit signs OLB Devon Kennard (3 years, $18.75 million).
  • Minnesota signs QB Kirk Cousins (3 years, $86 million, fully guaranteed).
  • Phildelphia signs DT Haloti Ngata.
  • Washington signs WR Paul Richardson (5 years, $40 million).


  • Arizona signs QB Sam Bradford (1 year, $20 million, with a $20 million option for 2019).
  • Carolina signs CB Bashaud Breeland. (3 years, $24 million, $11 million guaranteed)
  • Chicago signs WR Taylor Gabriel. (4 years, $26 million, $14 million guaranteed)
  • Detroit signs LB Christian Jones (2 years, $7.75 million).
  • Green Bay signs TE Jimmy Graham and cuts WR Jordy Nelson.
  • Jacksonville re-signs WR Marqise Lee.
  • Miami signs WR Danny Amendola (2 years, $12 million, $8.25 million guaranteed).
  • New York Jets re-sign QB Josh McCown.
  • Philadelphia cuts TE Brent Celek and signs LB Corey Nelson (1 year, $2.25 million).


  • Houston signs CB Aaron Colvin. (4 years, $34 million, $14 million guaranteed)
  • Jacksonville signs WR Donte Moncrief. (1 year, $7 million)
  • Los Angeles Rams re-sign CB Nickell Robey-Coleman.
  • New York Giants sign RB Jonathan Stewart. (2 years, $6.9 million, $2.95 million guaranteed)
  • New York Jets sign RB Isaiah Crowell.
  • Oakland signs TE Derek Carrier.
  • Tennessee signs CB Malcolm Butler (5 years, $61 million, $30 million guaranteed).


  • Arizona signs QB Mike Glennon, who hasn't been officially cut yet, but he will be on Wednesday.
  • Baltimore signs WR Ryan Grant (4 years, $29 million, $14.5 million guaranteed) and WR John Brown (1 year, $5 million).
  • Chicago re-signs CB Prince Amukamara.
  • Green Bay signs DT/DE Muhammad Wilkerson.
  • New York Jets sign CB Trumaine Johnson, ILB Avery Williamson, and QB Teddy Bridgewater.
  • Tennessee signs RB Dion Lewis. (4 years, $20 million)


  • Houston signs C/G Zach Fulton.
  • New York Giants sign OT Nate Solder (4 years, $62 million, $35 million guaranteed).
  • Philadelphia re-signs OLB Nigel Bradham.
  • Tampa Bay signs DT Beau Allen.


  • Carolina re-signs DE Julius Peppers.
  • San Francisco signs RB Jerick McKinnon (4 years, $30 million -- theoretically the fourth-highest paid RB in the NFL).
  • Baltimore releases WR Jeremy Maclin.
  • Arizona releases DB Tyrann Mathieu.
  • New Orleans signs LB Demario Davis. (3 years, $24 million)
  • Cleveland signs DE Chris Smith (3 years, $14 million)
  • Cleveland signs OT Donald Stephenson (1 year, $2.5 million)
  • Cleveland signs OT Chris Hubbard (5 years, $37.5 million, $18 million guaranteed)
  • Cleveland signs RB Carlos Hyde (3 years, $15 million)
  • Cleveland signs TE Darren Fells (3 years, $12 million)
  • Cleveland signs CB Terrance Mitchell (3 years, $12 million)
  • Buffalo signs S Rafael Bush (2 years, $4.5 million)
  • Buffalo signs EDGE Trent Murphy (3 years, $21 million)
  • Detroit signs CB Nevin Lawson (2 years, $10.3 million)
  • Chicago signs QB Chase Daniel (2 years, $10 million)
  • Jacksonville signs CB D.J. Hayden (3 years, $19 million)
  • Denver signs CB Tremaine Brock (1 year, $4 million)
  • New Orleans signs CB Patrick Robinson (4 years, $20 million, $10 million guaranteed)


  • Cleveland signs CB T.J. Carrie (4 years, $31 million, $10 million guaranteed)
  • Indianapolis signs DE Denico Autry (3 years, $17.8 million)
  • Arizona signs OT Andre Smith (2 years, $8 million)
  • Atlanta signs OG Brandon Fusco (3 years, $12.75 million)
  • Chicago re-signs LB Sam Acho.
  • San Francisco re-signs LB Brock Coyle.
  • New Orleans signs QB Tom Savage.
  • New England re-signs RB Rex Burkhead.


  • Buffalo signs QB AJ McCarron.
  • Denver trades QB Trevor Siemian and a 2018 draft pick to Minnesota in exchange for a 2019 draft pick.
  • Denver re-signs LB Todd Davis.


by jtr :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 12:29pm


Tanier raises the point that, besides the quarterbacks, this free agent class doesn't have much sizzle.

Seven teams have over $60M of cap space (including Jets and Browns at over $80), and two more have over $45M. There's a ton of money chasing a largely underwhelming class. I think there are going to be a lot of big contracts going to players with age, injury, attitude, or regression risks.

by TecmoBoso :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 1:38pm

On the flip side, it seems like teams have also been much more strategic in rolling over/carrying over money year to year. That won't stop some teams from handing out bad contracts, but I'd be shocked if the Browns, Jets, Bears, Bucs, Colts, etc spend all that cap space.

by jtr :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 1:53pm

At some point they have to spend. The CBA specifies that each team has to spend 89% of the cap, averaged over a rolling 5-year period. For teams like Cleveland who have been really under-spending recently, they have to make up some spend.

by herewegobrownie... :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 9:02pm

In relevant "other news," Joe Thomas NOT retiring -it was thought, especially with him slimming down a lot since the injury, that he would take up broadcasting.

Edit: TheRealLA__ deleted that tweet regarding JT, so it appears to be still up in the air. The reports from all inside sources - i.e. Mitchell & Geoff Schwartz - were that Thomas is leaning towards not retiring, though.

by Raiderjoe :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 1:05pm

SEan Smith not great with Raiders. Not surprising he was cut.

by MilkmanDanimal :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 1:07pm

Well, he's apparently going to jail for a year, which is likely to reduce his ability to cover during the next calendar year.

by barf :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 2:04pm

Have you seen the Raider fans? Isn't Oakland Colosseum like a minimum security facility anyway?

by bravehoptoad :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 2:34pm

Its reputation is worse than its reality. However! Do not wear Bronco colors when the Broncos come to town, not unless you want a beer poured down the back of your neck.

by The Ninjalectual :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:03pm

Pfft. Like a minimum security stadium could hold the Raiders for more than a quarter.

by barf :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:20am


by jtr :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 2:06pm

Reports coming out that Steelers are cutting longtime nickelback William Gay. Gay is 33 now and lost the starting slot job to Mike Hilton in the 2017 preseason, though he played 266 snaps in a roving dime slot/safety role. It's hard to picture him really catching on as the primary slot corner anywhere.

by billprudden :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 2:24pm

I just want to point this out, though I know it'll never happen: If some enterprising young (or old) HC or GM wanted to, they could build a three-man DL, either a traditional 3-4 or an aggressive 46, with Sheldon Richardson, Mo Wilkerson, and Suh.

The shortest path to the QB is up the middle.

by jtr :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 2:32pm

You'd largely be re-creating the magic of the 2014 Jets, who went 4-12 with Richardson and Wilkerson as their starting ends. Both guys are undeniably talented, but there's definitely motivational issues there. Might be motivational issues with Suh, as well.

by Noah Arkadia :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 3:17pm

I don't think there are on-the-field issues with Suh. More like issues with Tannebaum's complete lack of grasp on how to manage a football team.

by Led :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 4:14pm

No on the field issues with Richardson either, as far as I know. He always played hard for New York. The D line in 2014, which also had Snacks Harrison, was legit. The main problem with that 2014 Jets defense was the secondary of Darrin Walls, Marcus Williams, Antonio Allen, Kyle Wilson, Calvin Pryor, Dawan Landry (the only solid pro, albeit at age 32), and Jaicquan Jarret. Also, Rex without Mike Pettine to provide appropriate discipline (on Rex and the players) has proven not to be a good coach at all.

by billprudden :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 3:57pm

Yes, I was assuming some sort of magic dust, like three 1 year contracts, that had them playing to their combined potential.

by johonny :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 4:21pm

The Dolphins front office is a disaster. This is exactly what happen to the Jets under Mike Tannenbaum. I think it's safe to say Miami is not in win now mode. They're not in win later mode either. They're in permanent-meh mode. Can't wait to see what free agents they sign with all this freed up money.

by Dave Bernreuther :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 4:44pm

That's the best part... you just know they're erasing past mistakes so that they can just go out there and make the exact same mistakes again.

And all of this was easy to see coming the moment they hired Mike Tannenbaum.

by Bright Blue Shorts :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 5:08pm

Question is where this leaves Gase ... great 1st year making the playoffs, meh 2nd year with the excuse of losing his chosen QB. But if year 3 comes out average - will they stick with him?

by theslothook :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 7:33pm

I can name maybe two coaches that could take this current Miami roster and make them a playoff team. I think Tanny is an average qb and the miami roster is probably bottom third in terms of talent.

Miami is the Orland Magic of the NFL, perpetually below average but never completely bottoming out because theres a layer of further incompetence blocking their path. I mean, the browns mirror the sac-town kings so closely its disturbing.

by lenny65 :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:22am

He won't survive a real trainwreck season but given how the Dolphins operate it's totally plausible to imagine Gase/Tbaum surviving another dismal 6-7 win campaign, unless it's the result of a total collapse or something. What remains of the fan base won't like it but unless some impossible to ignore HC/GM candidates suddenly make themselves available I could definitely see Miami standing pat and kicking the can down the road for another year.

by James-London :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 8:41pm

This. Until Tannenbaum is shit-canned, Miami are going nowhere.
1st round trade-up and a metric fuck-ton of cash for this years's flashy free agent anyone?

Phil Simms is a Cretin.

by lenny65 :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:05am

And what's going to happen next is as predictable as the tides. After another sluggish draft that yields little-to-no bonafide NFL talent, the Dolphins, armed with a few new unnecessary free agent pickups, will cruise into training camp chock full of optimism and positivity. Then they'll lurch, stagger and snooze their way to another instantly forgettable six or seven win season. The coach and GM will be fired and the Dolphins, after the usual badly bungled GM/HC search, will begin anew yet again. While there are worse franchises, few if any have been as boring and forgettable as the Dolphins have over the last few decades.

by RugMcDaniels :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:28am

No, they usually stagger the HC/GM firings. It's the best way to ensure maximum levels of both strategic and tactical incompetence.

by Noah Arkadia :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 11:58am

The scenario that makes me cringe is they fire Gase and keep Tannenbaum.

by The Ninjalectual :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:02pm

Haha, that's gotta be getting close to Redskins-levels of shitbagging.

Tannenbaum: "You know who runs a tight ship? Snyder's guys in Washington. Constant front office power plays and backstabbing, that's how you keep your guys sharp. Steel sharpens steel, bitches!"

I don't actually know anything about Tannenbaum or if he would think any of that stuff. You can't prove he wouldn't

by Dave Bernreuther :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 4:42pm

Oakland is signing the Grief Whale, which I am sooooo very tempted to list up top, just so that more people can giggle the way I do at the mention of Grief Whale.

by Aaron Brooks Go... :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 5:34pm

You're going to have to go ahead and explain that joke.

by Vincent Verhei :: Mon, 03/12/2018 - 6:51pm
by Aaron Brooks Go... :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 8:29am

Thank you.

by Bright Blue Shorts :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 9:18am

Don't know anything about Whalen other than I'm getting some sort of association between him and the Colts fake punt debacle?

by Will Allen :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 11:29am

If the Vikings didn't want to commit 36 million over two years to Keenum, I think it is pretty unlikely that Broncos fans are going to be happy with the decision. Zimmer and Co. know better than anybody how much of Keenum's productivity this past season was due to outstanding receiver play, reasonable blocking, excellent design, rarely having to play with a significant deficit, and plain good luck. The Broncos give no sign yet, after several seasons, of making significant progress with their o-line, their receivers aren't nearly as good as the Vikings', and the defense seems sure to regress to no better than average. Unless the Vikings pay Cousins like Tom Brady without a wealthy spouse (and I sure hope they don't), I'd guess Keenum has definitely seen his best season. Glad he got 36 large out of it.

by deus01 :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:09pm

I don't expect Keenum to be productive for the Broncos because they have poor, inflexible and unimaginative coaching. If the Vikings are giving Cousins the bank it makes some sense that they wouldn't to tie up that extra money for Keenum.

by Will Allen :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:19pm

Well, no, they weren't going to sign Keenum, if they signed Cousins. My point is that if 18 million per year, for 2 years, was unattractive to the Vikings, it tells you that the Vikings think Keenum's year with them was a fluke.

It sounds as if the Cousins deal is going to be 28 million for 3 years, fully guaranteed. I would have liked 25-26 a lot more, but given where the t.v. contracts appear to be moving, by year 3, the cap may be about 200 million, so it is likely manageable.

by theslothook :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:23pm

Have to think these sky high qb contracts are mostly a function of the rookie wage scale. In a cleaner market, I think Cousins gets closer to what Alex Smith got from the Chiefs.

Speaking of: what the hell are the Redskins doing exactly? Their entire team building philosophy makes no sense

by MilkmanDanimal :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:28pm

The Washington philosophy has been a train wreck ever since Danny Boy took over. There were those years of overpaying washed-up veterans, then trading away everything for RGIII, and now the ridiculous Cousins scenario. Whatever they're doing, I hope they keep doing it, because anything that annoys Dan Snyder is good to me.

by theslothook :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:47pm

Wow, in reading about some of the Danny transgressions, especially about McCloughan, I'm slack jawed. Even by his own pathetic standards, he sinks to a new low. I'd rather work for Haslam and that is truly saying something.

by Will Allen :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:48pm

What did he do to McCloughan?

by billprudden :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:19pm

Leaked "we fired him b/c he was drunk at work".

by The Ninjalectual :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:20pm

Yes, which is especially fucked up because Scott M. is a former alcoholic, but who's apparently been sober for more than a few years now, and they thought they could destroy his reputation this way. Besides, if it was actually true, a team run by humans would focus on getting him help, not belittling him for a problem they fucking enabled. Fortunately I haven't seen any reason to believe anything the team says here.

Remember, not long before that, this same front office ran a smear campaign on the greedy "Kurt" Cousins, who should be grateful they offered him a $750k raise for signing away the next three years. I think it's entirely possible Snyder hates Cousins for being better than RG3/making Snyder look bad. Because he certainly wouldn't have looked bad otherwise

by Will Allen :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 5:27pm

Well, if he has been sober, and it can be established that the Redskins planted a false story that he hasn't been, he ought to sue them for defamation, along with trying to recover the full terms of his contract. Even if the assertion that he was habitually intoxicated is true, it is really terrible for the Redskins to leak that to the media.

Having said that, and with no desire to defend Snyder, if one of the conditions of McCloughan's employment is that he stay sober, and he didn't do so, it is perfectly reasonable that he be fired for violating that agreement. The addict doesn't get to use the addiction to avoid the cost of violating trust.

If I had to bet, I'd wager that a guy who used to hide his habit by putting vodka in his Gatorade bottles, and then started claiming that he had the habit under control, because he started to restrict himself to beer alone, started getting drunk again. Which, again,doesn't excuse the Redskins leaking to the press.

by apk3000 :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 7:44am

They did have a grievance hearing about the firing. I don't think we've gotten resolution on that.

by apk3000 :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:22pm

I don't know if Snyder himself did anything, but the Skins generally have been acting like McCloughan was drunk the entire time he was there. And really, pretty much every other organization wouldn't try to bring McCloughan's issues (if real) out in the open. But the Redskins have decided to go petty and fire him for cause claiming the alcohol use. And really, going petty is pretty par for Snyder. I seem to recall he once threatened to sent a receiver home and send him a TV to watch the games if he didn't give up his bonus so the team could cut him.

by perly :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:40pm

Re: McCloughan, claiming alcohol abuse despite Bruce Allen's widely documented boozing at work habits, no less.

by The Ninjalectual :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:24pm

Speaking of, Bruce Allen's hot daughter's instagram is wall to wall pics of her and her friends getting fucking trashed at college. It's worth checking out :P

by Will Allen :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:41pm

I've not seen anything published, with regard to trends, of the median percentage of cap space consumed, for the top 10 highest paid qbs for each yearv of the past decade. It may be an interesting metric.

by Aaron Brooks Go... :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:05pm

Alternatively, Denver knew Cousins was leaning toward Minnesota. This meant 1) they weren't getting him and 2) Keenum would be available.

Keenum's getting 2/36M versus 3/86M. He's getting 60% of what Cousins is.

Perhaps the calculus is the Vikings are going all in, knowing they need something better than Keenum, and Denver is going in, knowing they need something better than Siemian.

by Will Allen :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:13pm

I don't see how the Broncos can go all in, while shedding defensive talent, and all their issues on offense. With Case Keenum.

I hope the Vikings aren't going all in. They still need more depth on both lines of scrimmage, and Cousins isn't a HOF qb. Like I said, however, they rarely get crimped by the cap, so I suspect the Cousins deal won't be too ornerous.

by MilkmanDanimal :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:15pm

The Keenum contract is also reasonable enough to where the Broncos are still in play for drafting a rookie, meaning Keenum could easily get Glennoned here. I'm assuming this means the Broncos still have interest in drafting a QB, as this being only a two-year contract says they're still looking for a longer-term solution.

by doktarr :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:09pm

The Broncos do have pretty good receivers, but a much worse O-line, so I expect poor production from Keenum.

I think it was a mistake to expect Keenum was the future for Denver. I would have rather taken a flyer on Bradford (likely to be much cheaper) and taken a chance in the draft.

by Raiderjoe :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:11pm

good move for Chiefs getting sa. Watkins. will comopete now for 2nd placve with Charegsrs. Broncos still bottom feeders. Keenum not going to get it doen

by deus01 :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:04pm

Bradford went for 20M for 1 year with a 2nd year option and with the Broncos OL there's no way Bradford makes it through a season playing there.

by andrew :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 9:50am

The Vikings line in 2016 was worse (amazing, yes, I know) than the Bronco's 2017 line, and Bradford lasted the whole season.

Then the Vikings gave him a better line in 2017, and he only lasted one game despite being only hit twice.

This correlation clearly means causation and Denver is just doing the numbers on what keeps Bradford healthy.

by BroncFan07 :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:30pm

I mean, anytime you can give $36 million to a player you could have had for nothing the year before, you have to do it. Seriously, is there a big difference between Siemian and Keenum? Other than Keenum is 2 inches shorter? Does Keenum get to bring Diggs with him?

by The Ninjalectual :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 2:12pm

I'm surprised by all the pooh-poohing of this deal, I'm okay with it. So the Broncos overpaid a bit. Elway is not a good GM, we already know this. What are they going to do, fire him?

Keenum: 28% DVOA
Siemian:-24% DVOA

by BroncFan07 :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 2:33pm

Right, but Keenum also did that with a much better team than the one he is going to. The thing I like about this is at least it's only 2 years.

by Lebo :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 3:49pm

I feel that Elway signed Keenum primarily to secure a bridging QB (and that Elway plans to draft one) and secondarily in case Elway can't draft the QB he wants.

by Aaron Brooks Go... :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 3:01pm

In 2000, the Rams could have had Warner and Brady for a combined $570k.

This is why retrospect has such clear vision.

by bobrulz :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 1:57am

I'm going to have to disagree strongly with you here BroncFan (from another fellow Broncos fan). Keenum is significantly better than Siemian. Is he the answer? No. But he'll get them through 2 years while they hopefully develop a rookie. Also, sometimes players do legitimately get better as their career goes on. Is is not possible that has happened with Keenum?

Also, I would say that Sanders and Thomas are on par with Diggs and Thielen - maybe not as explosive, and older, but they're both great receivers.

by The Ninjalectual :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:58pm

Sure, Keenum had a career year and nobody should expect him to repeat that. But he was at 28.2% DVOA! Where do you think he'll be in Denver? Somewhere between 0 and 20%, surely? That would be fantastic!

I do feel like his performance will make or break the Broncos as a 1st class or 2nd class team.

by Southern Philly :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 3:13pm

"But he was at 28.2% DVOA! Where do you think he'll be in Denver? Somewhere between 0 and 20%, surely?"

Keenum has three prior seasons with 100+ attempts:

2016: -19.5%
2015: -1.1%
2013: -22.4%

by ssereb :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:03pm

Yeah, but the first one was his rookie season, when he took over after midseason after Matt Schaub fell off a cliff and the other two were with Jeff Fisher. I'm not saying the Broncos should expect Jared Goff, but there's a very real possibility he underperformed his ability at the start of his career.

by BroncFan07 :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:11pm

There’s also the issue of, who would you rather have right now? Diggs, Thielen, and Rudolph, or Thomas, Sanders, and, um Jake Butt’s ACL?

by Southern Philly :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:12pm

2013 was his first season on an active roster, but he spent all of 2012 on the practice squad FWIW.

"there's a very real possibility he underperformed his ability at the start of his career"

This is based entirely on one season that appears to be a fluke.

by The Ninjalectual :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:56pm

What makes it look like a fluke?

We may be using different definitions of fluke; like I said a few comments ago, no one expects another year of 1,300/28%. Some regression is all but certain, so maybe that's what you mean by "fluke?" Does that make any career year a fluke? To me, calling last year a fluke implies you think he'll be league average at best from here on out, or something similar.

by ssereb :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:56pm

He threw 2/3 as many passes (481) in that one "fluke" season, during which he had solid peripherals, as he did in the three "non-fluke" seasons you cited (702), during which he played in demonstrably bad offenses that other quarterbacks also failed in. Like I said, I'm not expecting him to be a Pro Bowl candidate or anything, but I don't see any reason to think that nearly 500 pass attempts are a fluky sample size but the 700 that preceded them aren't.

by MC2 :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 5:59am

The reason I think Keenum's 2017 season was a "fluke" (perhaps "outlier" would be more accurate) isn't because of a small sample size. It's because he played in a very favorable situation where I think lots of QBs would have had as much, or more, success than he did. Now, he's going to a situation that, while not nearly as bad as the Jeff Fisher Rams, also isn't nearly as good as the 2017 Vikings. Given all that, I would expect him to be no better than league average next year, and only a modest upgrade over Siemian. Therefore, I think it would be a major mistake for the Broncos to pass on drafting a QB this year.

by ssereb :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 8:54am

I think, given how extraordinarily bad those Fisher Rams were and how good the Vikings were, it's probably reasonable to think he settles somewhere in between with the Broncos, who have good receivers but a so-so line. Somewhere around 10% DVOA, maybe. I don't think the Broncos are getting fleeced.

by Will Allen :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 11:32am

Who takes a flyer on Suh, and offers him too much money?

by jtr :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:16pm

Gotta be Washington. He's the heir apparent to Albert Haynesworth.

by Will Allen :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:21pm

Unless he has become too toxic even for Snyder, in which case the Patriots might get yet another very useful 1 year rental.

by MilkmanDanimal :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:32pm

A player could be too toxic for Snyder?

I'd guess a team that like to make big, dramatic splashes so the owner's plasticized face can get all over the media.

Oh, hi, Mr. Jones, didn't see you over there with that giant bucket of money.

by Aaron Brooks Go... :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:10pm

Suh's not Haynesworth.

Haynesworth had two good seasons, got paid once, and then turned back into a pumpkin.

Suh's floor has been "really good" with a ceiling of "Haynesworth at max effort". And he's been paid since the start.

by Noah Arkadia :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 5:34pm

He also plays nearly every snap. The guy's a beast. Where's this talk about Suh being toxic coming from?

by Will Allen :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 5:53pm

Overstatement. All his fines aside, he's only been suspended once, so probably not at pronounced risk for missing games.

by billprudden :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:20pm


by andrew :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 9:58am

I hope this doesn't spell the end of that awesome Miami restaurant "Suh Casa"

by Will Allen :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 11:45am

Local t.v. in Minnesota is saying Cousins has deal with Vikings at 28 million a year. That's higher than I'd like, but the Vikings usually manage the cap very well, so perhaps it'll be structured in a way that doesn't crimp the future too much.

by Will Allen :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:45pm

I feel bad for Teddy Bridgewater. I have no idea what sort of market exists for him, until he gets a chance to start.

by Raiderjoe :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:08pm

hearing Jets trying to alnd Brdigewater. team colud actually sign bridgeater and mccown and draft qb in 1stn round. mccown more like a coach AND SECURITY IN CASE bRIDGEWATER STILL NOT RECEOVERED ENOUGH TO PLAY AND ROOKIE IS NOT READY

by ChrisLong :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:49pm

The Sammy Watkins deal is pretty nuts.

by jtr :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:00pm

It was really badly needed in KC, though. Last year their offense completely fell apart when Kelce got hurt or Hill was less than 100%. Adding another playmaker will give them some margin for error to deal with injuries. Kelce and Hill largely operate off short throws and YAC, which was Alex Smith's wheelhouse. Mahomes is much more willing to drive the ball down the field, and Watkins gives him someone who can make contested catches on longer throws. I like the move to give their young QB a target who fits his skill set, even if the price is pretty steep.

by ChrisLong :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 2:39pm

Is he that guy anymore though? It’s been a long time since we’ve seen it consistently. And even if he is, $30 million guaranteed over 3 years is top tier money. I hope he’s worth it because Mahomes launching it to him and Hill will be fun, but I’m skeptical.

by RickD :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 5:59pm

How do I get my hands on a $16 M/year contract coming off a 40 yards/game season? And it's not like the Rams had a weak offense.

I'm not understanding why teams are throwing money at guys like Jarvis Landry and Sammy Watkins.

by bravehoptoad :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 6:38pm

Because there's no one else to throw it at. This is one bad free-agent class.

by ChrisLong :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:50pm

Hoping the Packers restructure Nelson and/or Cobb, sign a speedy guy (e.g., John Brown) and a TE at reasonable value, and a couple difference makers on defense (e.g., Wilkerson, T. Johnson)

by Will Allen :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:56pm

If Cousins is a 28 million a year guy, what's it going to cost to extend Rodgers?

by ChrisLong :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 2:41pm

Good question, and it may lead them to be more conservative than they might have been. Lots of people were thinking he would go fully guaranteed even before Cousins did so he probably will do something like 4 years/$130 fully guaranteed.

by Raiderjoe :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:10pm

HAVE SAID LOTS OF TIMES IN PAST, gREEN bAY pACKERS NOT WINNIGN IT ALL BECAUSE NTOL SUPPLEMENTING ROOSTER WITH FREE AGMNET.S Think if team adds Paul Richardsomn that is nice add for them. Rodgers throws good deep ball. Richardson very nice fit in GB

by ChrisLong :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 2:43pm

Yes ever since Jordy Nelson got hurt they’ve lacked the speed to have a real deep threat and open up the underneath stuff. Everything the past two years has been so congested. They need a speedster who can play. People want to talk about the defense but this is an urgent need as well.

by mathesond :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 3:47pm

I have to say, as a long-time fan of RJ, the idea of supplementing the rooster with free magnets has me intrigued!

by The Ninjalectual :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:35pm

Not magnets, ag-mints! You know, for farmers.

by bravehoptoad :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 6:32pm

No, no, ag-nets! You know, compostable basketball nets.

by LionInAZ :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:22pm

Comment deleted because of outdated information regarding the Albino Owl.

by Steve in WI :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:57pm

The Bears went out and signed arguably the best free agent option at WR, their position of greatest need, and the contract looks reasonable.

As a Bears fan, I don't know how to respond. This has never happened before.

by Roch Bear :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 2:57pm

Pretty much my read too. Stuff just worked out. Perhaps those in the know figure his ACL recovery means a slightly limited 2018, hence a slight 'discount.' Bears, I think, should be figuring 2019 and on anyway.

by TomC :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 5:44pm

The contrarian view is that they just gave the money they wouldn't spend on Alshon to a guy coming off a blown ACL, and now their top three receivers by some count are coming off season-ending injuries. (My actual view is somewhere in between. At the very least I am surprised by Pace's willingness to gamble.)

I am very intrigued by the signing of Taylor Gabriel. He was a monster out of the slot in Atlanta in 2016 (#1 among all WRs in DVOA) then had a down year (like everyone in Atlanta) in 2017.

I think they overpaid for Burton. Admittedly he was #3 in DVOA last year, but I make the same level of adjustment for last year's Eagles as I do for last year's Falcons.

by Eddo :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 9:16pm

I'm glad they didn't give Jeffery an big contract. He played all sixteen games this year, most of those for an MVP candidate QB (and the rest for a Super Bowl MVP QB), and had less than 800 yards receiving. The Jeffery extension, honestly, seems like the rare misstep by the Eagles.

EDIT: You even mention the Eagles effect when you discuss Burton (and I generally agree with you there; I like him, but it's a bit of an overpay). If Burton (or Gabriel) was boosted so much by the Eagles offense, how little would Jeffery have produced otherwise?

by TomC :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 9:34pm

That's a fair point. He made some great catches in that super bowl, though.

by Roch Bear :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 10:13pm

Jeffery is reported to have torn his rotator cuff in training camp but played through it all year. He just got the rotator cuff surgery. Hard to know details as the Eagles seem to have hid it well.

Re Burton, as middle of the field yardage gets easier and easier, red zone targets get more valuable. The Bears can now put an array of big, high-quality red-zone receivers in. At least that's my rationalization of Burton's price.

by Steve in WI :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:58pm

I know Drew Brees is 39, but how is he making less per year than Kirk Cousins? Did he take less money to stay in New Orleans or something?

by billprudden :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:21pm

innerwebs say he was offered 60m 2 years by somebody else and turned it down.

So yeah, serious hometown discount.

by LionInAZ :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:14pm

Why not? The Saints and the city have done right by him, so why not go out a New Orleans hero?

by The Ninjalectual :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:11pm

I hope the Vikings at least TRIED to get Cousins to sign for the same amount as the Alex Smith is getting, to cheese Snyder off

by Harris :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 3:27pm

Arizona to give Bradford $20 million to throw for 4 yards on 3rd-and-7 for a total of (maybe) three games before he ruptures further internal organs. Nobody has ever made more money while accomplishing less than Sam Bradford. I want his agent to represent me for everything.

by MilkmanDanimal :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 3:48pm

I just find it fascinating that the last guy who got a ridiculously massive rookie deal prior to the cap keeps get paid huge amounts. He's like a legacy pledge at a frat, except instead of keggers it's constant giant buckets full of money.

by theslothook :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:18pm

Teams have also spent three first round picks for him over his career during that time.

by rfh1001 :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 5:15pm

Yeah, I guess. No, wait, that sounds snitty. I mean, it IS fascinating, but I can't shake a soft spot for Bradford - I mean, look at the rest of Fisher's victims and how utterly hapless they were under him compared to how they played elsewhere. It still seems just possible that he's a pretty fragile upper echelon QB who's been royally screwed, year in, year out. God knows he's been paid for it, but I can still find a tiny spark of belief. somewhere deep down in me, that he might just be a decent percentage of a real deal, and for the sake of Larry Fitzgerald, I really hope this is the case.

(I'm a hoper as a person, I admit it.)

by Harris :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 5:30pm

He's been injured and/or terrible for three separate teams. Maybe he's Rich Gannon 2.0. Probably he's just a bad QB who can't stay healthy.

by Will Allen :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 5:36pm

When healthy, he is definitely not a bad qb.

by Will Allen :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 5:34pm

The guy really throws well, and all snark aside about throwing short of the chains, he's a good decision maker. He was terrific for the Vikings in 2016, behind absolutely zero protection, no running game, and a beat up receiving corps.

by bravehoptoad :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 6:36pm

I'd always heard he was a bad QB. Then I saw him play for the Eagles in 2015, the last year Chip Kelly was coach, and he was so good on such a crappy team that whenever I watched one of their games it was like Bradford had a giant golden arrow bouncing over his head, pointing out the best player on the field.

by Harris :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 9:35pm

He ranked 24th in DVOA that year. He sucks.

by Will Allen :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 10:31pm

No, he doesn't

by Aaron Brooks Go... :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 8:07am

He doesn't suck, but he wasn't a golden child for that Eagles team, either. He had a nasty habit of turning the ball over in scoring range and tended to get happy feet. If you gave him a clean pocket, though, he was outstanding.

He has been much better in Minnesota in dealing with messy pockets.

by Will Allen :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 8:12am

In 2016, behind an absolute dumpster fire of an injury addled o-line, he played really well. That's obviously the year in which I watched him most closely.

by Harris :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:11am

Clean pocket. O-line. Blah, blah, blah. He was 17th in DVOA in 2016. Bradford's greatest abilities are collecting checks and generating excuses.

by Aaron Brooks Go... :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:18am

Minnesota's offense in 2016 was sub-Fisherian. I think they hired the Viking horn dude from the stands in one game and plugged him in at guard.

That he was average in an offense that couldn't block and couldn't run was... outstanding. That should not have been a functional offense.

by Will Allen :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:51am

Opposing defenses nearly always developed fast pressure with 4, never had to respect the running game, and Diggs and Rudolph were slowed by injuries. Bradford arrived two days prior to the 1st game. For them to have a middling passing attack took really good coaching and quarterbacking, and anybody who can't see that doesn't, in the words of Bill Parcells, know if the ball is blown up or stuffed.

by Will Allen :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:35am

Yes, yes, football is a game where one player determines outcomes.

Good grief.

by bravehoptoad :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 1:47pm

17th? 24th? Even if you ignore context, how do either of those equate "sucking?"

by bravehoptoad :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 11:37am

I'll disagree with that one. He showed great pocket presence in the games I watched. 14 interceptions that year not good, but also not typical.

by bravehoptoad :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 11:34am

24th in DVOA, on that team? He should have gotten MVP.

by Harris :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 3:28pm

Double post.

by jds :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:16pm

Well, in one place, the above:

• Denver signs QB Case Keenum (2 years, $36 million).
• New Orleans re-signs QB Drew Brees (2 years, $50 million, $27 million guaranteed).
• Minnesota signs QB Kirk Cousins (3 years, $86 million, fully guaranteed).
• Arizona signs QB Sam Bradford (1 year, $20 million, with a $20 million option for 2019).

Brees looks low in comparison, but I guess he is at the stage of how much more do I need, and hometown discount and all that. Cousins looks high, but I guess that's the market.

That only leaves Bridgewater (nobody cares about McCarron, do they), and I don't know that there is a starter spot left (those with spots open, are drafting this year's ROY, aren't they). Is Bridgewater's only hope of taking a spot "until the rookie is ready"?

by MilkmanDanimal :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:22pm

Bridgewater is in the Official Ex-Vikings 2017 QB situation, which is very possibly "taking a spot until the rookie is ready" deal for all three, as Bradford and Keenum both have short enough deals that getting a rookie is a very plausible scenario for all. Which would really be crazy, but everything about the Vikings QB situation has been nuts for the last year or so anyways.

by Aaron Brooks Go... :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:23pm

Per Triplette, Brees turned down a 2/60M offer from a different team.

by andrew :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:35am

I'm assuming the source of this news is not Jeff Triplette.

"Upon further review, Brees was offered more money...."

by Will Allen :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:38am

Having been half blinded by a thrown object, Brees misread the large offer.

by Cogitus :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 5:02pm

Jets/Bills are still open, but both are probably likely to draft rookies

by justanothersteve :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:21pm

NFL Network reporting TE Jimmy Graham will sign with Packers. W00T!

by The Ninjalectual :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 5:01pm

Wow, I thought their GM would still be in therapy after the Bennett thing last year.

by Cogitus :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 5:03pm

New GM this year, seems like he's not as pathologically allergic to FA as Thompson was. Or something in the water in GB GM philosophy to only sign aging TEs and no one else

by PatsFan :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 4:28pm

Reports that MIA will be getting Danny Amendola for a 2yr deal with $8+ mil guaranteed, total value of $12mil with incentives.

by JustAnotherFalc... :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 5:27pm

My God, what is Matt Ryan going to get in his extension? 10% of Home Depot?

by PatsFan :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 5:55pm

Reports that Malcolm Butler will be signing with TEN.

by Hoodie_Sleeves :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 9:46am

I liked Butler - but judging from their play over the last 12 months, and the cost of this contract, I'm awfully glad the Patriots decided to dump their cash on Gilmore instead of him.

by sbond101 :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 11:31am

Agreed - given that the compensation between Gilmore & Butler is now comparable (with what appears to be a little more flexibility in the Gilmore contract), it seems fairly clear that the Pats were on the right side of that choice. Butler's skillset is really much easier to replace then the physical attributes that Gilmore has that give him a chance in coverage on some of the bigger receivers around the league.

The Pats 2017 FA move I still don't understand is paying a premium price for Hightower - with almost 50% of that contract guaranteed. I just don't see the value over replacement that he really offers to the Pats given that he appears to struggle badly in coverage now - and will likely slow further in the future. It seems like the Pats paid for the player he was before the injuries - which is out of character.

by Hoodie_Sleeves :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 11:48am

Why do you think Hightower struggles badly in coverage now?

Since signing the contract, he's played 5 games, mostly at Defensive End, while nursing an injury.

It's totally possible that he's lost speed and is cooked at this point - of course - but I don't think we really know anything from what we saw this year.

And yeah, the fact that they signed him to a big extension while he was hurt probably isn't a good thing.

by sbond101 :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 2:04pm

I may be being unfair as he was still catching up from the knee injury while he was playing in 2017 - but he was asked to cover RB's several times out of an on the line alignment and struggled with it e.g. against the Jets. It's something that I observed in 2016 as well, and thought it was part of the reason he did more rushing the passer rather than coverage (though the personal mix evolution from the start of the 2016 season might have been the basis for that transition rather then poor coverage skills).

by Bright Blue Shorts :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 5:52am

Just read comments from Butler about leaving New England and clearly showing no grudge. Very mature handling of a situation that many players would let poison their attitude for many years to come. Very classy of him.

"[Belichick] took a veteran out of Super Bowl XLIX (against the Seahawks) and put in a first-year rookie, and that turned out right, so you could never question his decision. It didn't work out right (against the Eagles). It didn't work out the best for me or him or the New England Patriots. But I can say he won more than he lost, so it is what it is. I always have love for New England, Bill Belichick, Mr. Kraft, all those guys. Life just goes on.""


by Mike B. In Va :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 6:08pm

Bills also re-signed Kyle Williams.

by Mr Shush :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 9:51pm

Any Jags fans have strong opinions on Aaron Colvin?

by ChrisLong :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 10:40pm

Reaction to Packers moves so far:
-I’m fine with Jimmy Graham, but only at the right price. Want to see the contract details before truly judging, but he will help in the red zone if nothing else.
-Muhammad Wilkerson is a steal at $8M. One year deal will motivate him and helps insure the Packers aren’t stuck with a lemon.
-Jordy was a great player, but he had to be let go if he wouldn’t restructure (as reported). Just not anywhere close to a $13M player anymore.

They still need a deep threat at WR and a CB, although I have a feeling they think Q. Rollins is a viable starter still. I think they’re wrong.

by justanothersteve :: Tue, 03/13/2018 - 11:12pm

I agree with all that. NFL.com is reporting Wilkerson's deal as $5M with $3M in incentives. Don't know the difficulty of the incentives, but that's great. Graham essentially takes Nelson's pre-ACL spot in the Packers offense as downfield threat and end zone target. I think House and King are the expected starters. We'll find out Rollins' future by where they draft a CB.

by MC2 :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 6:08am

I wouldn't expect Graham to be much of a downfield threat. Last year, he averaged a paltry 9.1 yards per reception, and at this stage of his career, he appears to be little more than a one-trick pony red zone target.

by justanothersteve :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 2:12pm

Graham is 31, but I don't think he's lost his speed. The yds/rec was the lowest in his career. He had 14.2 yds/rec in 2016, which was the best of his career. Wilson's yds/att last year was also the lowest of his career, so I don't think the drop was entirely Graham's fault.

by dank067 :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:13am

I don't think Davon House is signed for 2018. They can probably bring him back at a pretty low cost, but the fact that they haven't yet makes me think they might have something else in mind for starting CB next year. We'll see if anything happens in the next few days now that the bigger name CBs have found homes.

by LionInAZ :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:49pm

Nelson was a threat mainly because he could anticipate and execute those over-the-shoulder throws on the sidelines. Graham could be a downfield threat, but I figure it would more along the lines of doing the things that Jared Cook and Jermichael Finley were supposed to do.

by JimZipCode :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:41am

How much does Jordy have left? Can he still get deep, at all?

by dank067 :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 2:37pm

When he first came back from his ACL tear in 2016, Jordy was still extremely productive (97/1257/14, 3rd in DYAR and 8th in DVOA) but had very clearly lost his top-end speed and was slow off the line. You can see some of the impact in how his yards/catch and yards/target fell from pre-tear career averages of 15.3 and 10.3 to 13.0 and 9.3 in 2016. He could still get open on seam routes and deep crosses but, other than a couple of occasions vs. the Bears the past two seasons, it seemed like he couldn't create separation on the true home run ball the way he used to.

Last season was a total disaster, but I have no idea how to separate how much was his decline vs. Hundley's near-total inability to complete deep passes. I'd like to think he can still produce at a #2 or #3 level, especially if he found a role on an offense that had another receiver that could credibly threaten the defense deep to give him more space to work into.

by Fargo :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 3:28am

WR contracts seem to have gone crazy, felt like Washington had overpaid for Richardson at 5 years/40m, but then that Ryan Grant deal....wow.

by Mike B. In Va :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 9:16am

Yeah, I'm not sure exactly what's going on there, other than lack of options. I guess in combination with this being a "down" WR draft, teams are reaching a bit.

by Hoodie_Sleeves :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 11:50am

There are a whole lot of teams with a ton of cap space who need to make sure they hit the spending minimums, and not a whole lot to spend it on.

by JimZipCode :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:52am

Ravens were absolutely crippled at WR heading into this offseason. They had basically no one under contract that they could credibly trot out as a "starter", except maybe Jeremy Maclin: and Maclin pissed-off the coaching staff last season and will likely be cut.

So: the Ravens were over a barrel and had to overpay for "average". It's a bad situation to have put themselves in; but, given they were in that situation, the Grant signing was probably a reasonable move.
(If you think you detect a note of me trying to convince myself: well, maybe.)

by Richie :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 7:09pm

I don't think I had ever heard of Ryan Grant before. Apparently he had 500 yards and 2 TD receiving last year.

So he's a 28-year-old WR with 985 yards and 6 TD in his career.


by jtr :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 9:44am

Browns supposedly locked up Carlos Hyde for 3/$15M. They've already got a capable back in Duke Johnson. So I think this means they're taking a QB with pick 1 and are not confident that Barkley will be around for pick 4.

by andrew :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:37am

49ers sign McKinnon. As long as he isn't the every down back (which he very much wants to be) I think he will be very valuable on that team....

by Will Allen :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:41am

On a team where the passing attack forces defenses to be very focused on the wide receivers, McKinnon can be very productive. Shanahan will likely use him well, and the Vikings could not possibly match what the Niners put forth.

by MilkmanDanimal :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 11:04am

There may be Official Contract Wizardry or something going on behind the raw numbers, but 4 years, $30 million is a lot for a change-of-pace receiving back. Could easily be highly inflated by how things are structured, but $7.5 million/year is a lot. Throw in Juzcskzkzk (I don't feel like googling the spelling) and that is a lot of money in guys catching balls out of the backfield.

by bravehoptoad :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 11:44am

Shanahan's system uses versatile players better than most, so he overpays for that. I don't think he'd be that unhappy if someone told him he had to have 4 H-backs on the field at all times.

by bravehoptoad :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 11:46am

Yeah, not always out of the backfield. RBs lining up as WRs, FBs lining up as TEs--that'll happen a lot.

by JimZipCode :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:40am

Ravens discussion board erupting in angst and vitriol on report of the John Brown & Ryan Grant signings. "We were promised a splash signing, and THIS is what we get?!?" The indignation and "fire Ozzie & Harbaugh" content is epic.

I dunno, Brown is probably worth a "prove it" deal, and he only got one year. Richer than I would have preferred, but that seems to be the WR market now.

Grant can actually play, and he's exactly what the Ravens need. Excuse me, he exactly fits one of the Ravens many needs. Not a home-run hitter but a reliable target. I think that's a good addition, though again pricier than I would have preferred.

Getting Ozzie to pry open Bisciotti's wallet is a major event. As a Ravens fan, this feels like a tentative step into the era of modern offenses. A very shy, delicate, tentative step: but a step nonetheless.

by jtr :: Fri, 03/16/2018 - 11:39am

Grant failed his physical, so his contract with the Ravens is void. Rumors are now connecting them with Crabtree, who would also fit the veteran-possession-receiver mold that they previously filled with Steve Smith and Anquan Boldin.

by JimZipCode :: Fri, 03/16/2018 - 12:34pm

>> the veteran-possession-receiver mold that they previously filled with Steve Smith and Anquan Boldin.

And Derrick Mason.

by johonny :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 11:03am

I had liked Miami getting Wilson 21st in WR at half the cost of Landry 46th in WR. But knowing Miami they couldn't just stop there. I don't get clogging the team with Danny Amendola. If they didn't think Wilson could handle the position why give him the money. If they do think he can, why waste a roster spot on Amendola when there were plenty of good young WR in camp last year? Miami now basically spent Landry's salary on 2 wr replacements. They still have 0 quality TE on their roster. If they want real production from the slot they need a TE that draws coverage. This team is going nowhere because they can't manage their resources at all.

by Noah Arkadia :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 11:44am

It doesn't make any sense but at this point it's barely worth commenting on.

by James-London :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 3:26pm

At least they've plugged the holes at guard and linebacker... oh...

Phil Simms is a Cretin.

by PatsFan :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 11:21am

NYG reportedly making Solder the highest-paid LT in the league - 4/$62mil, $35mil guaranteed.

by andrew :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 2:06pm

They will weld that line together with....

oh, never mind.

by justanothersteve :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 2:15pm

NFL Network reporting Joe Thomas retiring. Next stop, Canton. Great player. Great Badger. Great person.


by Will Allen :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 2:21pm

I won't say it was a career wasted, because he made a lot of money, and it is his life, but, gosh, it would have been fun to watch him playing with good teammates, who were part of a competently managed organization.

by MilkmanDanimal :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 2:25pm

Cards are cutting Tyrann Mathieu.

As someone who roots for a safety-needy team with lots of cap space, I find this intriguing.

by billprudden :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 2:56pm

Fascinating to see which team, with which scheme, picks him up.

by Bright Blue Shorts :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 5:37pm

Note to Will Allen ... Chase Daniel signs for 2-years, $10million to backup Trubisky. He had another 0 pass attempts year backing up Brees last year.

by Will Allen :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 5:48pm

Oh, oh, this could be dangerous. Young, still unproven qb, who may be inclined to run, instead of throwing the ball away. If he gets hurt, my dream of Daniel having a 12 year, 40 million dollar career, with fewer than 100 pass attempts, goes right out the window!

by Aaron Brooks Go... :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 5:56pm

You could have a bad break on this one, Will. He's one start away from 100 attempts.

by jtr :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 6:40pm

Pittsburgh cuts FS Mike Mitchell. I've never thought he was a very good player, and he wasn't going to be worth the $5M he was due this year, but Pittsburgh probably doesn't have his replacement on the roster right now.

by billprudden :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 6:41pm

Honey badger?

by Mike B. In Va :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 7:06pm

If they have the cap space, sure - he would fit the attitude of that D.

by Mike B. In Va :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 7:07pm

Cleveland is signing their way up to that cap floor, aren't they?

by ChrisLong :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 7:19pm

Further Packers thoughts:
-Jimmy Graham deal is too much for what he is now, if the reported figures are true ($30M over 3 years, $22M guaranteed). I guess they can cut and run for free after two years, but I'm definitely not wild about it.
-They need to restructure Cobb and/or Matthews, if they can. Especially Cobb. Matthews might balk if they ask him to cut his salary.
-Rashaan Melvin a CB I have my eye on; would probably be middle of the pack as far as salary goes, but performed very well last season by most accounts.

by justanothersteve :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 7:45pm

I think Matthews would discover there's less interest in him than he would think. If they didn't have such a bad LB corps I'm sure they'd make him restructure. Melvin and King would be a big upgrade over the House/ Randall/ Rollins mess last year.

by dank067 :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 9:00pm

The restructures are tricky (and it sounds like those talks didn't go over well with Jordy). Matthews is old enough that he'd probably be more open to the conversation, but at the same time the Packers might be wary of committing even a moderately-reduced salary over multiple years, especially given what they are paying Nick Perry. Cobb is young enough (28 next season) that, despite his struggles, he's probably willing to bet that he still has productive years ahead of him and that he can earn another good deal rather than lock himself into a multi-year pay cut.

by Noah Arkadia :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 11:09am

I think you guys are confusing restructures with pay cuts. A restructure is when you convert this year's scheduled salary to a bonus, thereby spreading the cap hit over several years. There's no reason for a player to say no to that. A pay cut, on the other hand, can be problematic.

by MarkV :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 3:41pm

fwiw in most contracts players don't have a say in restructures. The team can convert P5 money to signing bonus at any valid time on their own.

by dank067 :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 4:30pm

The idea that's been floated for these guys has been that, since they each only have/had one non-guaranteed year left on their contracts, they could be offered an extension that results in an annual pay cut to reduce their cap hit but at least guarantees them the money left on their existing deal, maybe even a bit more. (Or less, I suppose, if they really think their market value has cratered.) "Restructure" may not be the best term to use, then, but it's kind of what the media has latched on to.

by jtr :: Fri, 03/16/2018 - 8:40am

That was bugging me too. The salary-into-signing bonus restructure is entirely a win for the player. The player gets a) non-guaranteed money turned into guaranteed money, b) money now that he would have had to wait for, and c) "dead money" added onto the rest of his contract that makes him harder to cut in the future. There's literally no downside for the player. The fact that Nelson turned down Green Bay's offer means they were trying to renegotiate his deal, not just restructure it.

by justanothersteve :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 7:20pm

Bears look to have a brand new WR corps next year. Allen Robinson and now Taylor Gabriel. They still have Kevin White and right-of-refusal on Cameron Meredith. If healthy, they could have a real offense. A huge if given the history.

by ChrisS :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 1:08pm

Didn't they have a terrible OL last year? Was it mostly injuries that are expected to be healed? Have they signed anybody new to the OL?

by Roch Bear :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 3:10pm

I don't think the OL was bad. The run game, despite a weak passing attack threat, was adequate. Many sacks occurred when Trubisky held onto the ball too long. The reports were he was instructed to severely limit turnovers and so he didn't throw late. With a few games experience he got better at that judgement and sack number went toward normal.

OL had injuries, and by the end of the year was a little beat up (Long, Sitton missed some).

by Cogitus :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 11:02pm

I'm still not completely sold on the McBeane combo in Buffalo, but stealing basically a 2nd rounder from Cleveland for Taylor (who they were going to CUT!) and then being smartly patient to sign AJ McCarron after his market didnt materialize for an absurd value deal of 2yr 10 million were both highway robbery moves. That, coupled with the fact we're moving up for one of these blue chippers (Rosen is my best guess for fit) makes me pretty optimistic for the future.

They just love their overpaid, aging, plodding backup RBs, though (Tolbert and now Ivory). If that's Beane's biggest flaw as a GM he can be forgiven if he keeps making moves like he has this offseason.

by justanothersteve :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 11:21pm

I've never understood AJ McCarren's appeal. I thought he was at best a low-end starter/high-end backup. 2 yr/$10M prove it deal is a bargain though. It also doesn't preclude them from drafting a QB and let McCarren proves he deserves a starter's salary.

by Bright Blue Shorts :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 10:21am

It probably works for both parties. McCarron would ideally like a KirkCounsins-like longterm deal but given his lack of playing experience, they weren't going to give him that.

So two years is long enough to prove himself but not so long that he'll be on the downside for free agency.

by BJR :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 9:21am

Can we be certain Buffalo we’re not in the bidding for any of the other free agent QBs? Otherwise I’m not sure we can assign too much credit for being patient. Whatever, it has worked out well.

by Mike B. In Va :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 10:52am

Reports from the Buffalo press are that McCarron was the guy they were targeting from the beginning, since Bradford apparently priced himself out.

by Theo :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 9:49am

Cleveland spent a pick on Taylor to be sure he lands there. The alternative for Cleveland was to wait and the bid with the other teams. Taylor would not prefer to go Cleveland.

by Steve in WI :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 1:11pm

Yeah, but unless someone else was bidding for Taylor, why did it have to be a 3rd round pick? You'd think Buffalo would take a 6th or 7th if they were truly going to cut him otherwise.

by Dan :: Wed, 03/14/2018 - 11:25pm

Last offseason for their passing offense the Bears gave:
$18.5M to Mike Glennon
$6M to Markus Wheaton
$6M to Dion Sims
$2M to Kendall Wright
$2M to Mark Sanchez
$1.5M to Victor Cruz
=$36M total

This year for their passing offense the Bears are giving:
$14M/yr to Allen Robinson
$8M/yr to Trey Burton
$6.5M/yr to Taylor Gabriel
$5M/yr to Chase Daniel
=$33.5M/yr total

I like this year's haul a lot better.

Allen Robinson is the only one of these players that is worth getting excited about.

Besides Robinson, Kendall Wright is the only other player that looks like a good value for his contract. Gabriel feels like a similar sort of player but gets a much bigger contract.

Burton could turn out to be an exciting part of the offense, but it feels like they're paying him at his upside. Worth it if he does in fact turn out to be the next Delanie Walker, otherwise not.

I do not like the strategy of paying up for a backup quarterback. They just don't play enough expected snaps to be worth it. Give me Sanchez for $2M rather than Daniel for $5M.

by justanothersteve :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 1:10am

Gabriel scares me as a Packers fan. He's a speed guy and the Packers have been vulnerable to deep balls. New DC. But I'll believe Pettine has fixed the problem when I see it. I don't see the money to Daniel as a problem. We already saw last year (and in 1999) how quickly a sucky Rams team turned around. Even making the playoffs would be huge for the Bears. Trey Burton, OTOH, is only worth it if he throws Trubinsky a TD in the Super Bowl.

by Mike B. In Va :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 10:53am

Pettine's pass defense has been historically solid, it's the run defense that's been his issue (at least in Buffalo, which was the last time he was just a DC.)

by medelste :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 5:52pm

I love the thought of Gabriel and Tarik Cohen on the field together on offense.

by Roch Bear :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 12:10am

"I do not like the strategy of paying up for a backup quarterback. They just don't play enough expected snaps to be worth it. Give me Sanchez for $2M rather than Daniel for $5M."

Seems a little peculiar to pay that much for a backup QB unless the Bears front office thinks they really have a superbowl shot this year. I think the following year is more realistic but they know Trubisky's progress far better than I do and that is key.

by Bright Blue Shorts :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 5:08am

There are usually a few backups who earn around the $5m mark but they tend to be very experienced - Matt Schaub for example will be picking up $4.5m

But this does seem like a huge overpayment for a backup with little playing experience. The Saints only paid him $900,000 last year.

It just seems like there was high demand at the Quarterback Carousel this year and Daniel's agent probably played it perfectly.

by Sixknots :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 12:23pm

Daniel's agent is a wizard or a Jedi.

by The Ninjalectual :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 1:14pm

I hate, hate John Elway.What does he have against Trevor Siemian? Regardless of system, he's a good backup with plenty of real game experience to build on, and he seems to have a great attitude about it. Beyond that, I thought it seemed really suspicious that after playing fairly well for Kubiak, he looked a lot worse in a completely different system that doesn't seem very good in general. Weird coincidence, huh, Elway? I don't think many teams want him as a starter, but he's almost an ideal backup.

The Vikings now have two of my favorite quarterbacks in the NFL. I'm optimistic about Keenum, and pessimistic about Elway's ability to draft anyone decent.

by deus01 :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 3:32pm

Probably just to avoid the QB controversy when Keenum ends up being terrible this year as a result of the Broncos boring and poor offensive system.

by The Ninjalectual :: Thu, 03/15/2018 - 8:14pm

This once again showcases Kirk Cousins' intelligence. I would have loved to see him here in Denver, but I can't blame him for going with the better situation. The Broncos and Vikings are moving in opposite directions, and I don't see Denver changing course without a real GM/HC. Even just one of the two, at least.

by jtr :: Fri, 03/16/2018 - 8:45am

If that's really the reasoning, then Elway is truly an idiot. No good organization makes personnel decisions based on what the fan reaction might be. Having a good backup QB is far better than having a bad one. If your coach can't handle an occasional question from the media about his backup QB, you have the wrong coach.

by Bright Blue Shorts :: Fri, 03/16/2018 - 9:45am

QB controversies aren't just a fan thing. If half the players prefer Siemian as QB and half prefer Keenum it buggers up team cohesiveness.

Having said that I suspect it is adversity to media coverage / fan reaction that Elway was sick of hearing how 7th round Siemian had turned out better than his 1st choice heir apparent Paxton Lynch. Probably doesn't want to continue hearing that with his free agent choice.

by andrew :: Fri, 03/16/2018 - 9:18am

Siemian and Sloter?

I was originally thinking they would go with Sloter as the backup, I love what I saw of him for Denver in the last preseason, seems to have something.

by Dan :: Fri, 03/16/2018 - 2:43am

Interesting approach from the Raiders, prioritizing experience instead of speed as in days of yore.

They brought Marshawn Lynch out of retirement last year in hopes that he had run out of gas, but he showed a little too much so now they're bringing Doug Martin in too.

Crabtree looked like he might've hit the wall last year, but it's hard to be sure, so to be safe they've dumped him for Jorday Nelson.

by andrew :: Fri, 03/16/2018 - 9:40am

Its like the plot of major league, they need a certain amount of suckage to smooth the franchise move to Vegas (reports are Oakland is considering a lawsuit).

Of course they will now somehow win the superbowl against the wishes of the evil Mark Davis.

by Travis :: Fri, 03/16/2018 - 10:27am

If it's like Major League, the Raiders will win the AFC West and lose in the playoffs.

by Bright Blue Shorts :: Fri, 03/16/2018 - 4:31pm

The Al Davis Raiders always prioritised experience in free agency by giving overblown contracts to ex-Pro Bowlers who'd reached their mid-30s and were ready to loaf. Occasionally they'd manage to secure a SB MVP still in their prime but usually it was washed up veterans.

Draft day was speed day.

by justanothersteve :: Fri, 03/16/2018 - 5:39pm

Packers just signed Kyle Fuller to an offer sheet. Force Bears to decide if they want him. Packers need a CB bad. I'll be happy no matter how this plays out.

by ChrisLong :: Fri, 03/16/2018 - 8:05pm

Rapoport already reporting that the Bears will match the Packers 4 yr, $56 million deal with $18 million guaranteed.

I really hope Gutekunst makes a similar offer to Tyrann Mathieu.

by CaffeineMan :: Fri, 03/16/2018 - 8:01pm

Pats sign DE Adrian Clayborn (ex Tampa Bay Bucs and Falcons).

by CaffeineMan :: Fri, 03/16/2018 - 7:57pm

Pats sign RB Jeremy Hill (ex Bengals). Another RB for the RBBC.

by Will Allen :: Sat, 03/17/2018 - 1:59am

The Vikings address another need by signing Sheldon Richardson. If they can obtain some o-line depth in the draft now, they'll have made substantial progress.

by justanothersteve :: Sat, 03/17/2018 - 11:52am

The fight for the NFC North is going to be good this year as long as Rodgers, Cousins, and Stafford stay healthy. I'd even say the NFC winner could be any of about 8-9 teams. It's going to be an interesting year, though this somewhat reminds me of the 80's-90's NFL where the NFC had most of the best teams with only a few in the AFC; the difference being there are a few AFC teams (Pats, Steelers) that are as good as the best NFC teams.

by Will Allen :: Sat, 03/17/2018 - 2:00am

The Vikings address another need by signing Sheldon Richardson. If they can obtain some o-line depth in the draft now, they'll have made substantial progress.

by MilkmanDanimal :: Sat, 03/17/2018 - 10:24am

Tyrann Mathieu signs a one-year deal with the Texans; guess he's figuring playing on the back end with Watt and Clowney up front is going to help him have a great year, and turn that into an even bigger contract next year.

by mehllageman56 :: Sat, 03/17/2018 - 3:27pm

I'll comment here on the Jets/Colts trade since there isn't a separate thread for it. Sending 3 2nd round picks to move from 6 to 3 in the first round is overpaying, but I'm wondering if the Colts could have gotten more on the day of the draft. This trade only works for the Jets if their guy is available after the Browns and Giants pick; the rumor is that MacCagnan likes Darnold, Rosen and Allen. If MacCagnan has Josh Allen as the third best player in this draft... eh, it's not safe harbor time, I cannot write what I would like to. If MacCagnan has Josh Allen as the third best quarterback in this draft.. still can't write that. If MacCagnan drafts Josh Allen at 3, I won't be rooting for the Jets until everybody gets fired. Josh Allen is a mistake you let other GMs make.

Two things I remember right now; when the Jets traded up for Sanchez, I was cussing at my computer screen. Granted, I loved them going to consecutive AFC championship games, and that was a much better trade than this. The other thing I remember is a quote from Dan Marino's agent in the Elway to Marino ESPN special, about the Jets drafting Ken O'Brien instead of Marino; "I had a hard time explaining it in any way other than that these people just aren't smart". The Jets would be lucky if Josh Allen worked out as well as a guy who made the playoffs 3 times and led the league in passer rating one year. Most likely, they would have traded up to get Kyle Boller.