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  Patriots | Dont'a Hightower could get transition tag    Sun Feb 19, 03:04 PM

New England Patriots impending free-agent LB Dont'a Hightower may be more likely to receive the transition tag than the franchise tag if the Patriots decide to use a tag on him, in the opinion of ESPNBoston.com's Mike Reiss.

Footballguys view: Hightower would receive around $11 million if he receives the transition tag and the Patriots would have the first right of refusal if another team signed him. The franchise tag would be worth between $14.5 million and $15 million, which may be too rich for the Patriots.

Link to story
Donta Hightower player page


  NFL | Hype building for Myles Garrett    Sat Feb 18, 10:24 PM

Texas A&M DE Myles Garrett is going to 'completely torch' the 2017 NFL Scouting Combine, according to Daniel Jeremiah of the NFL Network, and Jeremiah said the expectation is for Garrett's workout to rival that of Houston Texans LB Jadeveon Clowney's 2014 appearance.

Footballguys view: Garrett should be the biggest standout player at the combine. At 6'4" 268, Garrett is a freak athlete who can move like a much smaller man. Garrett can wreak havoc on opposing quarterbacks with multiple pass-rushing moves and burst to the passer. He should be the no.1 pick in the 2017 NFL draft.

Link to story
Jadeveon Clowney player page


  Colts | Indy could pursue Melvin Ingram    Sat Feb 18, 02:22 PM

Los Angeles Chargers impending free-agent LB Melvin Ingram could receive interest from the Indianapolis Colts if he hit the free-agent market.

Link to story
Melvin Ingram player page


  Cardinals | Arizona talking with Chandler Jones    Fri Feb 17, 02:41 PM

The Arizona Cardinals have had contract talks with the agent for impending free-agent LB Chandler Jones but no deal is imminent at this point.

Footballguys view: General manager Steve Keim said the team will place the franchise tag on Jones if the two sides are not able to reach a long-term agreement.

Link to story
Chandler Jones player page


  Bills | Lorenzo Alexander looking for lucrative deal    Wed Feb 15, 04:53 PM

Buffalo Bills impending free-agent LB Lorenzo Alexander will receive between $5 million and $10 million per season on a short-term deal this offseason, according to his agent.

Footballguys view: Alexander had a career-best 12.5 sacks in 2016, and he's hitting the open market on a high note. New head coach Sean McDermott is switching to a 4-3 defense, but Alexander feels he's a fit for any scheme.

Link to story
Lorenzo Alexander player page


  Cardinals | Chandler Jones to be tagged if no deal    Tue Feb 14, 10:44 PM

Arizona Cardinals LB Chandler Jones will receive the franchise tag if both sides can't agree to terms on a multi-year contract, according to team president and owner Michael Bidwill, who said, 'He's a great pass rusher, but if we can't agree to terms that work for us, we're just going to franchise him, and his people know that.'

Footballguys view: The tag for a linebacker guarantees a one-year salary of $14.1 million this year. If tagged, Jones and the Cardinals would have until July 15th to work out a new long-term contract.

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Chandler Jones player page


  Raiders | Aldon Smith in domestic violence incident    Tue Feb 14, 12:15 AM

Oakland Raiders LB Aldon Smith is currently being investigated by San Francisco police regarding a domestic violence incident. An incident report was filed on Saturday, Feb. 11, and both Smith and the woman who filed the complaint are cooperating with the investigation. No arrests have been made or charges filed.

Footballguys view: Smith has yet to be reinstated by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, even though he's been cleared to do so since late last year. This incident is still under investigation, and Smith is cooperating with authorities. Even if nothing comes from this, it's not a good sign for Smith.

Link to story
Aldon Smith player page


  Patriots | Dont'a Hightower a candidate to be tagged    Tue Feb 14, 12:05 AM

New England Patriots LB Dont'a Hightower is 'the prime candidate to receive the franchise tag' if the team decides to use it, according to Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston.com

Footballguys view: The Patriots have plenty of cap space to sign Hightower to a long-term deal. They could use the franchise tag as leverage to give themselves more time to work out a multi-year contract.

Link to story
Donta Hightower player page


  Falcons | Sean Weatherspoon interested in returning    Sun Feb 12, 05:53 PM

Atlanta Falcons impending free-agent LB Sean Weatherspoon said he wants to re-sign with the Falcons this offseason.

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Sean Weatherspoon player page


  Raiders | Oakland willing to wait on Aldon Smith    Fri Feb 10, 10:25 PM

Oakland Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie said he won't count on LB Aldon Smith being reinstated, but the team will 'welcome' him back if it happens.

Footballguys view: Smith was cleared to return late last season, but NFL commissioner Roger Goodell never made the decision to activate Smith. Lord only knows when Goodell will get around to reinstating the oft-troubled pass-rusher.

Link to story
Aldon Smith player page


  Patriots | Dont'a Hightower may test the market     Thu Feb 9, 04:28 PM

New England Patriots impending free-agent LB Dont'a Hightower said he's been in contact with former teammate and current Cleveland Browns LB Jamie Collins and other players to better handle the free-agent process. When asked if Hightower would take less money to stay with the Patriots, Hightower only said 'we'll see,' and that he has a long process to go through.

Link to story
Donta Hightower player page
Jamie Collins player page


  Patriots | No surgery for Dont'a Hightower    Wed Feb 8, 04:49 PM

New England Patriots LB Dont'a Hightower (knee, shoulder) will not need to undergo any surgeries this offseason even though he dealt with knee and shoulder injuries during the season.

Footballguys view: Hightower missed three games this year, and he was never fully healthy dealing with these nagging injuries. A free agent this offseason, avoiding surgery should help his market value. The Patriots have the third-most salary cap space ($65 million) at this time, so if they want to keep Hightower they'll be able to afford him.

Link to story
Donta Hightower player page


  Patriots | Dont'a Hightower could receive tag    Wed Feb 8, 03:04 PM

New England Patriots impending free-agent LB Dont'a Hightower is a candidate for the franchise tag if the two sides are not able to reach an agreement on a long-term deal.

Footballguys view: The Patriots have plenty of salary cap space this year. In fact, they have the third most at this time (around $65 million). They could place the tag on Hightower to keep him under their control while working behind the scenes to get him signed before the July 15th deadline.

Link to story
Donta Hightower player page


  Patriots | Super Bowl inactives for Pats    Sun Feb 5, 05:02 PM

The New England Patriots have declared CB Cyrus Jones, RB D.J. Foster, QB Jacoby Brissett, SS Jordan Richards, CB Justin Coleman, OT LaAdrian Waddle, WR Michael Floyd inactive for Super Bowl LI

Justin Cole player page
Michael Floyd player page
Jordan Richards player page
Justin Coleman player page
Cyrus Jones player page
Jacoby Brissett player page


  Raiders | Aldon Smith could be reinstated in March    Sun Feb 5, 03:04 PM

Oakland Raiders LB Aldon Smith is expected to be reinstated from his substance abuse-induced suspension in March 'barring a slip-up', according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Smith met with commissioner Roger Goodell in December, but his reinstatement was deferred for three months.

Footballguys view: Smith is still under contract with the Raiders and could be the "2" in a lethal one-two pass rush combination with Khalil Mack. The Raiders had a disappointing end to 2016 when Derek Carr went down, but they are poised to do bigger and better things in 2017 with some breaks like Smith's uneventful return to play.

Link to story
Aldon Smith player page


  Cowboys | Reunion possible for Dallas, DeMarcus Ware    Sun Feb 5, 03:01 PM

Impending free-agent LB DeMarcus Ware is 'leaving the door open' to play next season in Dallas, where he spent the first nine seasons of his career.

Footballguys view: The Cowboys could certainly use pass rush punch, and rejoining them would represent a shot for Ware to get another ring before retiring. Even if he is just a role player on passing downs at this point, Ware will draw plenty of interest on the open market.

Link to story
DeMarcus Ware player page


  Patriots | New England pursued DeAndre Hopkins    Sun Feb 5, 02:04 PM

Houston Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins was a primary trade target for the New England Patriots during the season. Prior to dealing LB Jamie Collins to the Cleveland Browns for a conditional third-round pick, the Patriots asked for Hopkins in a potential trade for Collins.

Footballguys view: Hopkins will be a free agent in 2018, so if the Texans are unsure about signing him long-term, trading him would make sense. It still seems very likely that they are planning on retaining him, so this is more about the Patriots looking for talent at wide receiver than the Texans making Hopkins available.

Link to story
DeAndre Hopkins player page
Jamie Collins player page


  Redskins | Junior Galette already under contract    Sat Feb 4, 08:00 PM

Updating a previous story, Washington Redskins LB Junior Galette is already under contract after spending all of the 2016 season on the non-football injury list, essentially rolling over the terms of last year's agreement into the 2017 season.

Link to story
Junior Galette player page


  Patriots | Friday injury report for Patriots    Fri Feb 3, 04:49 PM

New England Patriots DT Alan Branch (toe), FS Nate Ebner (concussion), LB Dont'a Hightower (shoulder) and DT Vincent Valentine (back) were limited during practice Friday, Feb. 3, and are listed as questionable for Super Bowl LI.

Link to story
Alan Branch player page
Donta Hightower player page
Vincent Valentine player page


  Broncos | DeMarcus Ware wants to return to Denver    Fri Feb 3, 04:00 PM

Denver Broncos DE DeMarcus Ware stated that he plans on playing 2017 and that he would like to remain with the organization. 'Hopefully I come back there, and I want to,' Ware said. 'But it's also about the man who writes the checks and that's (general manager John) Elway. But I'm ready, I'm passionate and I want to lead that defense.'

Link to story
DeMarcus Ware player page


  Bills | Lorenzo Alexander eyeing QB situation    Fri Feb 3, 03:09 PM

Buffalo Bills LB Lorenzo Alexander said that whoever is the team's quarterback in 2017 will 'factor into his decision' regarding a return to the organization next season. He added that he supports QB Tyrod Taylor and says he 'hopes' he remains the starting quarterback.

Link to story
Lorenzo Alexander player page


  Broncos | DeMarcus Ware not done    Fri Feb 3, 10:23 AM

Denver Broncos impending free-agent DE DeMarcus Ware (back) said he feels like a new man a month after back surgery, and he wants to play in 2017.

Footballguys view: Ware might not be as effective without Von Miller on the other side of his defensive front, but he can still provide an edge rush presence that many teams need in a small role a la Dwight Freeney, who has a chance to get a ring with the Falcons on Sunday. Broncos head coach Vance Joseph apparently wants Ware to return, but his price on the open market and the team's strong depth at OLB could make that a tough sell if they decide to pony up for the services of Tony Romo.

Link to story
DeMarcus Ware player page


  Patriots | New England's Thursday injury report    Thu Feb 2, 07:14 PM

New England Patriots DTs Alan Branch (toe), Vincent Valentine (back), FS Nate Ebner (concussion) and LB Dont'a Hightower (shoulder) were limited participants in practice Thursday, Feb. 2.

Alan Branch player page
Donta Hightower player page
Vincent Valentine player page


  NFL | LaMarr Woodley unlikely to play again    Thu Feb 2, 12:45 PM

Free-agent LB LaMarr Woodley (Cardinals) has not filed his retirement papers at this point but indicated that he is not interested in playing again.

Link to story
Lamarr Woodley player page


  Patriots | Wednesday injury report for Patriots    Wed Feb 1, 06:16 PM

New England Patriots DT Alan Branch (toe), FS Nate Ebner (concussion) and LB Dont'a Hightower (shoulder) were limited during practice Wednesday, Feb. 1.

Link to story
Alan Branch player page
Donta Hightower player page


  Steelers | Steelers want James Harrison back    Tue Jan 31, 10:17 PM

Pittsburgh Steelers president Art Rooney II said the team is 'open' to the possibility of LB James Harrison returning in 2017. Rooney added that he thinks Harrison is open to it as well.

Link to story
James Harrison player page


  49ers | San Francisco suing Aldon Smith    Tue Jan 31, 07:50 PM

Oakland Raiders LB Aldon Smith is being sued by his former team, the San Francisco 49ers, for more than $340,000 in signing bonus money. According to the lawsuit, Smith was obligated to repay the 49ers for part of his signing bonus after being suspended nine games in 2014 for failing a drug test. Smith has paid $844,396.82 of $1,186,027 that he owes San Francisco. Thus, the 49ers are seeking $341,630.18.

Link to story
Aldon Smith player page


  Redskins | Junior Galette returning to Redskins    Tue Jan 31, 05:40 PM

Washington Redskins impending free-agent LB Junior Galette announced Tuesday, Jan. 31, that he will re-sign with Washington Wednesday, Feb. 1.

Footballguys view: Galette's contract will be his third with Washington despite not yet playing a regular season down for the team. He has torn each of his achilles tendons the last two summers after leaving the Saints under the shadow of a domestic violence incident. He would provide the defense with much needed edge rush presence if he can return to form in 2017.

Link to story
Junior Galette player page


  Bills | Lorenzo Alexander wants to stay    Tue Jan 31, 02:35 PM

Buffalo Bills impending free-agent LB Lorenzo Alexander said he would love to return to Buffalo. Alexander has played for four teams in the last five years but tallied a career-high in tackles (76) and sacks (12.5) in 2016.

Footballguys view: Alexander was a one-time special teams ace who has graduated to defensive star heading into his age 34 season. He can play inside linebacker in addition to outside linebacker, so that should add value on the free agent market.

Link to story
Lorenzo Alexander player page


  Broncos | Shane Ray may start in 2017    Mon Jan 30, 06:32 PM

Denver Broncos LB Shane Ray may be one of the starting outside linebackers next season since LB DeMarcus Ware is an unrestricted free agent and is coming off back surgery. Ray played 58.1 percent of the defensive snaps this season and finished with eight sacks.

Footballguys view: Ray was able to be a good complement to Von Miller as a pass rusher, and the team also has Shaq Barrett, who has already made his share of big plays. Ray will get the immediate bump in IDP leagues, but the Broncos will be in good hands without Ware even if Ray's production levels off.

Link to story
Shane Ray player page


  Steelers | Pittsburgh could let Jarvis Jones go     Mon Jan 30, 05:32 PM

Pittsburgh Steelers impending free-agent LB Jarvis Jones is not expected to be re-signed by the Steelers with LB Bud Dupree emerging and LB James Harrison returning.

Footballguys view: Jones was a colossal bust as a first-round pick on production over measureables. Dupree was a measureables over production pick and when healthy, he has looked like he is going to pan out.

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James Harrison player page
Jarvis Jones player page
Bud Dupree player page


  Panthers | Julius Peppers could return to Carolina    Sat Jan 28, 05:58 PM

Impending free-agent LB Julius Peppers could be an option to return to the Carolina Panthers, where he spent the first eight years of his career, according to the Charlotte Observer's Scott Fowler.

Footballguys view: Peppers began his career with the Panthers as the no.2 overall pick in the 2002 NFL draft. He spent eight seasons there before moving on to the Bears then to the Packers. Entering his age-37 season, Peppers has to be considering retirement. However, if he wants to keep playing then going back to Carolina makes sense. We'll see if he'd sign a team-friendly deal to go back where it all started.

Link to story
Julius Peppers player page


  Bills | Buffalo wants Lorenzo Alexander back    Sat Jan 28, 02:28 PM

Buffalo Bills impending free-agent LB Lorenzo Alexander said the Bills have told him they would like to re-sign him, but Alexander said he wants to see all of the offers he receives before signing with a team.

Link to story
Lorenzo Alexander player page


  Texans | Jadeveon Clowney should be ready for workouts    Fri Jan 27, 06:17 PM

Updating a previous report, Houston Texans DE Jadeveon Clowney (knee) is not expected to miss any of the team's offseason workouts because of his arthroscopic knee surgery.

Footballguys view: The surgery is considered minor, but it is a bit concerning due to Clowney's injury history. Even if he's ready for OTAs, we can't see the Texans rushing him back. Clowney should be good to go for training camp.

Link to story
Jadeveon Clowney player page


  Patriots | Friday injury report for Patriots    Fri Jan 27, 05:18 PM

New England Patriots FS Nate Ebner (concussion) did not participate in practice Friday, Jan. 27. RB Brandon Bolden (knee), DE Jabaal Sheard (knee), LB Dont'a Hightower (shoulder) was limited during practice.

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Jabaal Sheard player page
Donta Hightower player page
Brandon Bolden player page


  Saints | NO not ready to give up on Stephone Anthony    Fri Jan 27, 12:18 PM

New Orleans Saints LB Stephone Anthony lost his job to James Laurinaitis in training camp and barely played in 2016 even after Laurinaitis was released midseason, playing only 133 snaps for the season before landing on the Reserve/Injured list. However, assistant general manager Jeff Ireland isn't ready to throw in the towel on him yet.

Footballguys view: A first-round pick in the 2015 NFL draft, Anthony's pro career hasn't gone as planned. He only played 10 games this year, and his season ended in December due to a knee injury. The team hasn't given up on him yet, but they call it the "Not For Long" league for a reason. If Anthony can't impress this year, the team could move on in 2018.

Link to story
Stephone Anthony player page


  Patriots | Thursday injury report for Patriots    Thu Jan 26, 05:36 PM

New England Patriots RB Brandon Bolden (knee), LB Dont'a Hightower (shoulder) and DE Jabaal Sheard (knee) were limited in practice Thursday, Jan. 26.

Link to story
Jabaal Sheard player page
Donta Hightower player page
Brandon Bolden player page


  Texans | Jadeveon Clowney undergoes surgery    Thu Jan 26, 12:50 PM

Houston Texans DE Jadeveon Clowney (knee) is not playing in the Pro Bowl because of arthroscopic surgery on his left knee.

Footballguys view: This is of minor concern, and he should be ready to go for 2017. Clowney really played well this year and with a returning JJ Watt, the Houston defense will once again be potent.

Link to story
Jadeveon Clowney player page


  Lions | No surgery for DeAndre Levy    Wed Jan 25, 06:09 PM

Detroit Lions LB DeAndre Levy (knee) does not need another surgery on his right knee at this time, according to a source.

Link to story
DeAndre Levy player page


  Patriots | Wednesday injury report for Patriots    Wed Jan 25, 05:00 PM

New England Patriots FS Nate Ebner (concussion) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Jan. 25. RB Brandon Bolden (knee), DE Jabaal Sheard (knee) and LB Dont'a Hightower (shoulder) were limited during practice.

Link to story
Jabaal Sheard player page
Donta Hightower player page
Brandon Bolden player page


  Eagles | Mychal Kendricks a trade candidate    Wed Jan 25, 11:17 AM

Philadelphia Eagles LB Mychal Kendricks is likely to be shopped in the offseason, in the opinion of PhillyVoice.com's Jimmy Kempski.

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Mychal Kendricks player page


  Ravens | Two LBs options to replace Zach Orr    Mon Jan 23, 08:02 PM

Baltimore Ravens LBs Kamalei Correa and LB Albert McClellan are possible candidates to replace retired LB Zach Orr at inside linebacker next season.

Link to story
Albert McClellan player page
Kamalei Correa player page


  Browns | Jamie Collins signs extension    Mon Jan 23, 06:05 PM

Cleveland Browns LB Jamie Collins signed a four-year contract extension with the Browns Monday, Jan. 23, worth $50 million. The deal includes $26 million in guaranteed money.

Footballguys view: This contract has been in the works for quite some time. In the last year of his rookie deal, Collins was traded mid-season from the Patriots to the Browns. With over $100 million in cap space, the Browns had the room to pay him a price Collins wanted. This total makes him the 4th-highest paid linebacker in the NFL.

Link to story
Jamie Collins player page


  Dolphins | Koa Misi likely done in Miami    Mon Jan 23, 12:59 PM

Miami Dolphins LB Koa Misi missed 13 games in 2016 with a serious neck injury, and he hasn't played a full 16-game season since 2010, making him too injury prone to be counted on as a starter, according to ESPN.com's James Walker.

Footballguys view: The Dolphins are expected to overhaul their linebacking corps and cutting Misi would save the team $4.2 million. His neck injury was first thought to be career threatening, but it looks like Misi will be able to continue playing football....just not for the Dolphins most likely.

Link to story
Koa Misi player page


  Ravens | Kamalei Correa now viewed as ILB    Mon Jan 23, 12:21 PM

Baltimore Ravens LB Kamalei Correa was drafted last spring to be a 3-4 edge rusher, but the organization quickly moved him inside. He ended up playing only 49 snaps as a rookie in part because the coaches wanted him to show more physicality and a better feel for the defense, but he is now the early favorite to start opposite C.J. Mosley following Zach Orr's surprising retirement.

Footballguys view: A second-round pick out of Boise State in 2016, Correa has "see ball, get ball" traits as a linebacker. He's a smart player who diagnoses well as the play unfolds in front of him. Correa's aggressiveness can be used against him, and he'll overrun a play here or there because of it.

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Kamalei Correa player page


  Browns | Jamie Collins close to four-year deal    Mon Jan 23, 09:47 AM

Updating previous reports, Cleveland Browns LB Jamie Collins is close to agreeing to a four-year contract Monday, Jan. 23.

Footballguys view: Earlier reports indicate that Collins is seeking around $12 million annually. With the most cap space in the league ($109 million per OverTheCap.com), the Browns should have no problem making a deal work.

Link to story
Jamie Collins player page


  Steelers | James Harrison not done    Mon Jan 23, 08:17 AM

Pittsburgh Steelers LB James Harrison said after the AFC title game loss Sunday, Jan. 22, that he intends to continue playing in 2017.

Footballguys view: Harrison spends a few hundred thousand a year preparing his body for the rigors of the NFL. He may not quite be the player he used to be, but Harrison is essentially the Ponce De Leon of pass-rushers in the NFL. He'll be a free agent in March.

Link to story
James Harrison player page


  Steelers | Pittsburgh's inactives for AFC title game    Sun Jan 22, 05:15 PM

The Pittsburgh Steelers have declared CB Al-Hajj Shabazz, OL Brian Mihalik, WR DeMarcus Ayers, DL Johnny Maxey, LB L.J. Fort, TE Ladarius Green, QB Zach Mettenberger inactive for Week 20.

Ladarius Green player page
L.J. Fort player page
Zach Mettenberger player page
DeMarcus Ayers player page


  Steelers | James Harrison likely to play    Sun Jan 22, 09:57 AM

Pittsburgh Steelers LB James Harrison (shoulder, triceps) is expected to play in the AFC Championship game against the New England Patriots Sunday, Jan. 22. He was a full participant in two of the team's three practice sessions during the week and was listed as questionable on the injury report.

Link to story
James Harrison player page


  Texans | Jadeveon Clowney fined    Sat Jan 21, 09:54 AM

Houston Texans DT Jadeveon Clowney was fined $18,231 by the National Football League for his hit on New England Patriots QB Tom Brady during the fourth quarter of the AFC Divisional Round game Saturday, Jan. 14, according to a league spokesman. The play drew a roughing the passer penalty.

Link to story
Jadeveon Clowney player page