Posts by Aaron Wilson

NFL Twitter account hacked with false Tweet about Roger Goodell

The NFL's Twitter account got hacked.

A false tweet was posted saying that NFL commissioner Roger Goodell had died, writing: "We regret to inform our fans that our commissioner, Roger Goodell, has passed away. He was 57. #RIP."

The Tweet was deleted.

Law enforcement is investigating.

"We have engaged law enforcement to look into the

The NFL’s Twitter account got hacked.

A false tweet was posted saying that NFL commissioner Roger Goodell had died, writing: “We regret to inform our fans that our commissioner, Roger Goodell, has passed away. He was 57. #RIP.”

The Tweet was deleted.

Law enforcement is investigating.

“We have engaged law enforcement to look into the matter,” NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said. “We are reviewing and strengthening our cyber-security measures.”

Goodell is alive and well.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Von Miller upbeat about progress in contract talks

Denver Bronco star outside linebacker and Super Bowl MVP Von Miller is upbeat about the status of contract talks.

The franchise player has been absent from offseason workouts.

"We've made real progress over last couple of days and I'm very optimistic about the whole thing so, yeah, I remain optimistic about everything,'' Miller said at

Denver Bronco star outside linebacker and Super Bowl MVP Von Miller is upbeat about the status of contract talks.

The franchise player has been absent from offseason workouts.

“We’ve made real progress over last couple of days and I’m very optimistic about the whole thing so, yeah, I remain optimistic about everything,” Miller said at the White House.

Miller attended the ceremony with the rest of the team.

“I just felt complete, felt back at home, felt normal for the first time in the last couple of months,” Miller said. “This is where I’m myself, when I’m with my teammates, with my boys. It’s a special day for me and look forward to having more special days.”

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Aqib Talib expected to make full recovery from gunshot wound

Denver Broncos cornerback Aqib Talib is expected to make a full recovery from a gunshot wound to his leg suffered during a fight at a strip club in Dallas.

He remains in the hospital.

“We are in communication with Aqib Talib, who remains at a Dallas hospital for observation as he recovers from a gunshot

Denver Broncos cornerback Aqib Talib is expected to make a full recovery from a gunshot wound to his leg suffered during a fight at a strip club in Dallas.

He remains in the hospital.

“We are in communication with Aqib Talib, who remains at a Dallas hospital for observation as he recovers from a gunshot wound suffered to his lower right leg on Sunday,” the Broncos said in a statement. “He is expected to be released from the hospital soon, and we are glad he is OK and will make a full recovery. Our organization has been in touch with the NFL on this matter, and we will provide additional updates as appropriate.”

 

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Vikings sign Harrison Smith to five-year, $51.25 million deal

The Minnesota Vikings rewarded safety Harrison Smith to a five-year, $51.25 million contract.

It includes a $10 million signing bonus.

Smith, a former Notre Dame standout, has started ever since the Vikings drafted him in the first round in 2012.

Smith was a first-team All-Pro each of the past two seasons.

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The Minnesota Vikings rewarded safety Harrison Smith to a five-year, $51.25 million contract.

It includes a $10 million signing bonus.

Smith, a former Notre Dame standout, has started ever since the Vikings drafted him in the first round in 2012.

Smith was a first-team All-Pro each of the past two seasons.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Bears sign Nate Chandler

Former Carolina Panthers offensive tackle Nate Chandler signed with the Chicago Bears, according to a league source.

Chandler previously visited the Detroit Lions.

Chandler was released in March after missing the entire 2015 season because of a knee injury. He started 11 games at right tackle in 2014 and eight games in 2013.

 

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Former Carolina Panthers offensive tackle Nate Chandler signed with the Chicago Bears, according to a league source.

Chandler previously visited the Detroit Lions.

Chandler was released in March after missing the entire 2015 season because of a knee injury. He started 11 games at right tackle in 2014 and eight games in 2013.

 

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Jaguars sign Allen Hurns to four-year, $40 million contract

The Jacksonville Jaguars have signed wide receiver Allen Hurns to a four-year, $40 million contract.

It includes $20 million guaranteed.

He's under contract through the 20202 season.

Hurns is a former undrafted free agent from Miami.

"We are excited for Allen and his family and this is very well deserved," Jaguars general manager Dave Caldwell

The Jacksonville Jaguars have signed wide receiver Allen Hurns to a four-year, $40 million contract.

It includes $20 million guaranteed.

He’s under contract through the 20202 season.

Hurns is a former undrafted free agent from Miami.

“We are excited for Allen and his family and this is very well deserved,” Jaguars general manager Dave Caldwell said in a statement. “He is an extremely hardworking player and is so dedicated to his craft. Since the day he arrived, he’s been a consummate professional and is a great representative of the Jaguars. in the community. He continues to impress our coaching staff on a daily basis and has certainly earned the respect of his teammates. Our organizational philosophy is to reward our homegrown players when the opportunity presents itself. Hurnsy is a clear example of that.”

Hurns had 1,031 receiving yards and 10 touchdowns last season.

He has averaged 14.9 yards per reception for his career.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Source: Lions work out Joe Kruger at tight end

The Detroit Lions worked out former San Diego Chargers and Philadelphia Eagles defensive lineman Joe Kruger today at tight end, according to a source.

Kruger is a 6-foot-6, 290-pound former Eagles seventh-round pick. He spent his first NFL season on injured reserve.

He's the younger brother of Cleveland Browns outside linebacker Paul Kruger and played

The Detroit Lions worked out former San Diego Chargers and Philadelphia Eagles defensive lineman Joe Kruger today at tight end, according to a source.

Kruger is a 6-foot-6, 290-pound former Eagles seventh-round pick. He spent his first NFL season on injured reserve.

He’s the younger brother of Cleveland Browns outside linebacker Paul Kruger and played collegiately at Utah. He appeared in 37 games and recorded 69 tackles, nine sacks, 14 tackles for loss and an interception.

The Lions also worked out former Mississippi State tight end Darion Hutcherson.

Neither player was immediately signed to a contract.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Jake Long visiting Bears today

Veteran offensive tackle Jake Long visits the Chicago Bears today.

Long was drafted first overall in 2008 out of Michigan.

He played for the Miami Dolphins for five seasons.

He then signed with the St. Louis Rams.

He tore his anterior cruciate ligament twice with the Rams.

He was cut in 2014 to save $8

Veteran offensive tackle Jake Long visits the Chicago Bears today.

Long was drafted first overall in 2008 out of Michigan.

He played for the Miami Dolphins for five seasons.

He then signed with the St. Louis Rams.

He tore his anterior cruciate ligament twice with the Rams.

He was cut in 2014 to save $8 million in salary-cap space.

Long played in four games last season for the Atlanta Falcons.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Browns tight end Gary Barnidge sidelined with sports hernia

Cleveland Browns tight end Gary Barnidge underwent sports hernia surgery.

He'll be back by training camp, according to coach Hue Jackson.

Barnidge signed a four-year $13.5 million contract this offseason.

He had a breakthrough season with 79 catches for 1,043 yards and nine touchdowns.

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Aaron Wilson covers

Cleveland Browns tight end Gary Barnidge underwent sports hernia surgery.

He’ll be back by training camp, according to coach Hue Jackson.

Barnidge signed a four-year $13.5 million contract this offseason.

He had a breakthrough season with 79 catches for 1,043 yards and nine touchdowns.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.
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Cowboys rookie Maliek Collins breaks foot, to have surgery

Dallas Cowboys third-round defensive tackle Maliek Collins will miss the next 10 to 12 weeks as he recovers from surgery to repair a broken right foot he suffered last week during the first week of organized team activities at Valley Ranch.

The Cowboys drafted Collins out of Nebraska and expected him to immediately compete

Dallas Cowboys third-round defensive tackle Maliek Collins will miss the next 10 to 12 weeks as he recovers from surgery to repair a broken right foot he suffered last week during the first week of organized team activities at Valley Ranch.

The Cowboys drafted Collins out of Nebraska and expected him to immediately compete for a starting defensive tackle job. He’s now expected to begin training camp on the physically unable to perform list. Collins isn’t expected to be able to practice until late in training camp or early in the 2016 season.

The Cowboys were already thin along their defensive line, with ends Randy Gregory and DeMarcus Lawrence each out the first four games of the season due to NFL suspensions.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle

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Titans sign second-rounder Kevin Dodd

The Tennessee Titans have signed second-round outside linebacker Kevin Dodd.

Dodd is the 33rd overall pick of the draft.

Dodd had 12 sacks last season at Clemson.

“I definitely thought I would go higher,’’ Dodd said. “It didn’t happen as I planned, but I am still blessed to be drafted. A lot of guys don’t

The Tennessee Titans have signed second-round outside linebacker Kevin Dodd.

Dodd is the 33rd overall pick of the draft.

Dodd had 12 sacks last season at Clemson.

“I definitely thought I would go higher,’’ Dodd said. “It didn’t happen as I planned, but I am still blessed to be drafted. A lot of guys don’t get this opportunity. I know a lot of guys back home that would probably want to be in this position that I am.

“Not going where you expected to go, it will push you. You are going to have a little chip on your shoulder or what not. I am still going to work. I am still going to do what Kevin Dodd has been doing. I have been grinding since day one.”

Dodd is sidelined after undergoing foot surgery for a stress fracture.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Redskins defensive end Stephen Bowen retires

Former Washington Redskins defensive end Stephen Bowen has retired.

Bowen appeared in 128 career regular season games with 57 starts, accruing 175 career tackles (103 solo, 25 for loss), 12.5 sacks, nine passes defensed, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery. He spent four seasons with the Redskins from 2011-14 and served as a team

Former Washington Redskins defensive end Stephen Bowen has retired.

Bowen appeared in 128 career regular season games with 57 starts, accruing 175 career tackles (103 solo, 25 for loss), 12.5 sacks, nine passes defensed, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery. He spent four seasons with the Redskins from 2011-14 and served as a team captain on the Redskins’ 2012 NFC East championship squad.

In his first season in Washington in 2011, Bowen’s teammates voted him as the recipient of the Ed Block Courage Award. That year, he recorded a career-high 6.0 sacks despite facing tremendous personal tragedy that included the passing of his four-month-premature son, Skyler Bowen, and his mother-in-law, Muriel Johnson.

The hardship endured by the Bowen family motivated them to start the Skyler’s Gift Foundation, an organization dedicated to bringing hope and healing to grieving families who have lost children as the result of complications from premature birth.

Bowen, a veteran of 10 NFL seasons, originally entered the league as a college free agent with the Dallas Cowboys on May 1, 2006. He spent his first five seasons with Dallas from 2006-10, appearing in 63 regular season games plus three postseason contests for the Cowboys. He signed with the Redskins as an unrestricted free agent on July 29, 2011, and appeared in 50 regular season games and one postseason game with Washington, including starting all 16 games during both the 2011 and 2012 seasons. He joined the New York Jets as a free agent in 2015 and appeared in 15 games for the team during his final NFL campaign.

Bowen played collegiately at Hofstra from 2002-05. He was a three-year starter for the Pride, finishing his career with 168 tackles, 14.5 sacks and one interception, which he returned for a touchdown.

A native of Wheatley Heights, N.Y., Bowen was born March 28, 1984. He attended Half Hollow Hills West H.S. in Dix Hills, N.Y., where he was a standout performer in both football and basketball.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Browns shuffle scouting department

The Cleveland Browns on Tuesday announced six promotions and a new hire within their player personnel department.

The following six members of the department have taken on new titles:

Ken Kovash - Vice President, Player Personnel

Mike Cetta – Director of Scouting

Kevin Meers - Director of Research and Strategy

Chisom Opara - Director of

The Cleveland Browns on Tuesday announced six promotions and a new hire within their player personnel department.

The following six members of the department have taken on new titles:

Ken Kovash – Vice President, Player Personnel

Mike Cetta – Director of Scouting

Kevin Meers – Director of Research and Strategy

Chisom Opara – Director of Player Personnel

Dan Saganey – Director of Scouting

Bobby Vega – Director of Scouting

Additionally, the Browns named Glenn Cook, who spent the previous four years in Green Bay’s player personnel department, as their new Assistant Director of Scouting.

The staff will work with Executive Vice President of Football Operations Sashi Brown, Chief Strategy Officer Paul DePodesta and Vice President of Player Personnel Andrew Berry.

“We feel really good about our department as a whole and the extensive collaboration we have established in our everyday work,” Brown said. “Our intent has been to assemble a group committed to creating strategic and comprehensive processes that help us make the best decisions possible for building our football team. We are excited about the high caliber individuals within our football operations, the quality of their work and their passion for football.”

Kovash has been with the Browns since 2013 and spent the past three seasons in Cleveland’s player personnel department as the director of football research. His first three seasons in the NFL were with the Dallas Cowboys, where he worked as the team’s senior analytics manager.

“Ken is an intelligent, critical thinker,” Brown said. “He provides valuable leadership and input to our decision-making process and will continue to be a key component to our personnel department.”

 

Cetta joined the Browns scouting department in 2013 as an intern. He was hired full time in 2014 as a department assistant. In his new role, he will help direct systems and processes that support the Browns scouting department.

“In Mike’s three years with our organization he has worked extremely hard and has proven that he can have a positive impact on our scouting process,” Brown said. “He’s another smart, diligent and collaborative worker that has a bright future with our organization.”

 

Meers has been with the Browns for three years and was a football research analyst the past two seasons. Meers began his career with the Browns as a football research intern in 2013. He will work closely with DePodesta.

“Kevin’s inquisitive nature, his intelligence, and his tireless work ethic make him a perfect fit to lead our research function,” DePodesta said. “We look forward to him helping us in many different areas.”

Opara enters his 12th season with the Browns and will also work directly with DePodesta. He joined the team in 2005 and was an area scout for the first nine years after breaking into the NFL with the Baltimore Ravens, where he was a player personnel assistant. A former wide receiver at Princeton, Opara signed with the Ravens as an undrafted free agent in 2003, was waived at the end of training camp but landed with Baltimore one year later in the player personnel department.

“We’re thrilled to add Chisom’s expertise to the broader player personnel function,” DePodesta said. “His deep background in scouting and his ability to work across many different lines will make a huge impact on the organization.”

Saganey is in his eighth year with the Browns, most recently serving as a manager in the player personnel department. He tracked player movement around the league, conducted advance scouting of Browns’ opponents, helped prepare the staff during pro free agency and was also involved in the evaluation of college prospects. A position coach at Harvard for two seasons before he joined the Browns in 2009, Saganey is a native of Norfolk, Massachusetts, and an alum of Colby College in Waterville, Maine.

“It was very important for us to be able to retain Dan,” Brown said. “He has a diverse background in that he’s coached on the college level and has worked in our personnel department for seven seasons. He knows our league and knows our division especially well. We look forward to him leading our scouting efforts on the pro side.”

Vega has been with the Browns for 12 seasons working in different capacities within the player personnel department. A scouting assistant in his first two seasons with the Browns, Vega was elevated to a college-area scout in 2007, evaluating prospects from small schools from Maine to Florida before taking on mid-Atlantic responsibilities and eventually taking over as the club’s Southeast scout in 2009. A four-year letter winner at The College of Wooster, Vega will move to Cleveland after residing in Monroeville, N.C.

“Bobby has been one of the most respected college scouts on our staff for some time,” Brown said. “He understands our vision and we really value his input. In his role as director, we will look for him to provide leadership and efficiency in our college scouting process, enhancing our opportunities to pick the best players.”

Cook joined the Packers in 2012 and held a variety of responsibilities in the Packers’ pro personnel department. An alum and former graduate assistant at the University of Miami, Cook assisted in the evaluation of college and professional players, prepared advance scouting reports of upcoming opponents, conducted tryouts during the season and evaluated pro day/draft prospects during the spring.

“We are fortune to be able to add Glenn to our personnel department,” Brown said.  “He is a highly-regarded, bright scout that has been a part of a very successful scouting environment in Green Bay. He will bring a fresh perspective to our group and we are excited to have him on our staff.”

 

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Source: Nate Chandler to visit Lions on Wednesday

Former Carolina Panthers offensive tackle Nate Chandler will visit the Detroit Lions on Wednesday, according to a league source.

Chandler was released in March after missing the entire 2015 season because of a knee injury. He started 11 games at right tackle in 2014 and eight games in 2013.

The Lions drafted Taylor Decker in

Former Carolina Panthers offensive tackle Nate Chandler will visit the Detroit Lions on Wednesday, according to a league source.

Chandler was released in March after missing the entire 2015 season because of a knee injury. He started 11 games at right tackle in 2014 and eight games in 2013.

The Lions drafted Taylor Decker in the first round and are evaluating him at left tackle.

They also have Riley Reiff as a starting option at either tackle spot.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Bills sign Jamari Lattimore

The Buffalo Bills signed linebacker Jamari Lattimore.

Lattimore comes to Buffalo after spending the 2015 season with the New York Jets. Prior to arriving in New York last season, Lattimore spent the first three seasons of his career with the Green Bay Packers.

The 6-2, 229-pound Middle Tennessee State product has appeared in 64 career

The Buffalo Bills signed linebacker Jamari Lattimore.

Lattimore comes to Buffalo after spending the 2015 season with the New York Jets. Prior to arriving in New York last season, Lattimore spent the first three seasons of his career with the Green Bay Packers.

The 6-2, 229-pound Middle Tennessee State product has appeared in 64 career games, starting nine, while accumulating 68 tackles, two sacks and one interception—in addition to 22 solo and eight assisted special teams tackles. Lattimore, 27, is a native of Miami, Florida.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

 

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Ravens rookie Keenan Reynolds gets go-ahead from Navy to play this season

Baltimore Ravens rookie Keenan Reynolds got the go-ahead from Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter to defer his military service to play in the NFL.

"It is a blessing to hear the news from Defense Secretary Carter," Reynolds said. "I am truly excited to proudly serve my country while having the ability fulfill my dream of

Baltimore Ravens rookie Keenan Reynolds got the go-ahead from Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter to defer his military service to play in the NFL.

“It is a blessing to hear the news from Defense Secretary Carter,” Reynolds said. “I am truly excited to proudly serve my country while having the ability fulfill my dream of playing for the best organization in the NFL.”

Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus recommended that this happen weeks ago.

“This is good news, and congratulations to Keenan on his graduation today,” general manager Ozzie Newsome said.

Reynolds scored 88 touchdowns, rushed for 4,559 yards and scored 530 points.

“I would like to thank the Navy for allowing me to represent them while taking advantage of this unique opportunity,” Reynolds said.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Titans second-rounder Kevin Dodd has foot surgery

Tennessee Titans second-round defensive end Kevin Dodd had foot surgery.

He's out until training camp.

Dodd has a stress fracture of his fifth metatarsal. A screw was inserted to repair the damage.

Dodd was drafted 33d overall.

He had 12 sacks.

The surgery was described as preventative by coach Mike Mularkey.

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Tennessee Titans second-round defensive end Kevin Dodd had foot surgery.

He’s out until training camp.

Dodd has a stress fracture of his fifth metatarsal. A screw was inserted to repair the damage.

Dodd was drafted 33d overall.

He had 12 sacks.

The surgery was described as preventative by coach Mike Mularkey.

Follow me on Twitter: @AaronWilson_NFL

Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Ray Rice speaks to Ravens’ rookies

Former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice spoke to the Ravens' rookies this week as part of their player engagement program.

Rice has been out of the NFL for the past two seasons since a domestic violence incident involving his wife.

"[Rice] delivered an important message that included his story, both the good and the

Former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice spoke to the Ravens’ rookies this week as part of their player engagement program.

Rice has been out of the NFL for the past two seasons since a domestic violence incident involving his wife.

“[Rice] delivered an important message that included his story, both the good and the bad,” the Ravens said in a statement. “He clearly had the attention of our rookies.”

A three-time Pro Bowl selectiRice was cut in September 2014 after a video surfaced of Rice punching his then-fiancee, Janay, at the Revel Casino earlier that year.

Rice reached a $1.588 million settlement with the AFC North club after filing a wrongful termination grievance.

In March 2015, Rice received $1.588 million from the Ravens as part of a settlement in his wrongful-termination grievance.

A former Rutgers standout and second-round draft pick, Rice has repeatedly apologized for his actions. Rice and his wife, Janay, have a daughter, Rayven, and are expecting a son this fall.

“We hope that Ray will continue to work to be the best husband, father and person he can be, and he will turn this awful situation into something positive,”  owner Steve Bisciotti wrote in a 2014 letter to fans. We also have learned a great deal and will continue to strive to be an organization and team you and Baltimore will be proud of.”

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Lions running back Ameer Abdullah had shoulder surgery

Detroit Lions running back Ameer Abdullah had shoulder surgery in January and is likely out until training camp.

He had a torn labrum repaired.

Abdullah is the projected starter.

He led the Lions with 597 yards last season after being drafted in the second round out of Nebraska.

He had 1,077 kick return yards and

Detroit Lions running back Ameer Abdullah had shoulder surgery in January and is likely out until training camp.

He had a torn labrum repaired.

Abdullah is the projected starter.

He led the Lions with 597 yards last season after being drafted in the second round out of Nebraska.

He had 1,077 kick return yards and caught 25 passes.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Vikings DT B.J. Dubose tears ACL

Minnesota Vikings defensive tackle B.J. Dubose is out for the season.

He tore his anterior cruciate ligament.

It happened during a full-team drill.

Dubose was drafted in the sixth round last year out of Louisville.

He was on the practice squad most of the year.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans

Minnesota Vikings defensive tackle B.J. Dubose is out for the season.

He tore his anterior cruciate ligament.

It happened during a full-team drill.

Dubose was drafted in the sixth round last year out of Louisville.

He was on the practice squad most of the year.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Ravens docked week of organized team activities, Harbaugh, team fined

The Baltimore Ravens were punished with one week of organized team activities forfeited with coach John Harbaugh and the team fined for violating offseason rules.

The team was fined $343,057 and Harbaugh was fined $137,223.

The Ravens had rookies in full pads at a rookie minicamp, a violation of the rules.

"We made a mistake

The Baltimore Ravens were punished with one week of organized team activities forfeited with coach John Harbaugh and the team fined for violating offseason rules.

The team was fined $343,057 and Harbaugh was fined $137,223.

The Ravens had rookies in full pads at a rookie minicamp, a violation of the rules.

“We made a mistake and we are sorry for that,” the Ravens said in a statement. “We accept the NFL discipline.”

“It’s on me,” Harbaugh said. “It’s completely me. It was my decision. That’s the situation that we’re in and we’ll adjust and we’ll adapt. We’ll still become the best football team that we can be.”

Harbaugh said he misinterpreted the rulebook.

“There are things that you look at and you say, ‘I think we have an opportunity to gain some ground with our rookies,'” Harbaugh said. “It wasn’t the case. It was wrong. I read it the wrong way. The bottom line: It’s on me.”

This happened in 2010 after several players complained to the players’ union about late meetings and being on the field too long after practice.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

 

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Cowboys disappointed, supportive of Randy Gregory

The Dallas Cowboys are remaining supportive of defensive end Randy Gregory despite his four-game suspension for violating the NFL substance-abuse policy.

“Certainly, it’s very disappointing,” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said. “There’s no question about that. We made that abundantly clear with him, and he understands that more than anybody. But at some point, you have

The Dallas Cowboys are remaining supportive of defensive end Randy Gregory despite his four-game suspension for violating the NFL substance-abuse policy.

“Certainly, it’s very disappointing,” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said. “There’s no question about that. We made that abundantly clear with him, and he understands that more than anybody. But at some point, you have to say, ‘OK, this is what happened; this is what the consequences are for that action; and now we’re going to get to work. I’ve got to make sure it doesn’t happen again, and I’ve got to get to work as a football player to become a better player with the opportunities I do have.’ That’s what our emphasis is with him and really with the rest of the guys.”

Gregory will miss the first four games of the 2016 season for violating the league’s substance abuse policy. He is one failed test from a 10-game suspension.

“Again, it’s a work in progress,” Garrett said. “He has gotten better. But he has a long way to go. A lot of guys have a long way to go.”

Gregory is working with the first team at right end in organized team activities despite the fact the Cowboys won’t have him to start the season. Last year, he had 11 tackles and 16 quarterback pressures.

“You treat him like he is going to be part of our football team, certainly at this stage,” Garrett said. “You just get him to work. He will get plenty of work over the course of this offseason, and over the course of training camp and prior to the start of the regular season, when he is going to be gone for four weeks. So get him in there, get a good base underneath him, teach him technique, teach him the schemes we are using, and hopefully he grows every day.”

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Drew Brees not stressing about his contract talks

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees says he's not concerned about a stall in contract talks.

"I don't like to talk about contract during the season," Brees said. "If you go back to 2011, where it began to drag into the season, three

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees says he’s not concerned about a stall in contract talks.

“I don’t like to talk about contract during the season,” Brees said. “If you go back to 2011, where it began to drag into the season, three weeks in I was like, ‘I don’t want to deal with it anymore, I want to focus on football, I want to focus on the season.’ … That’ll be my approach again.

“So there’s a deal to be done now, and then if it doesn’t get done now, then there will be a different deal to get done at the end of the year.”

Brees, 37, is entering the final year of a five-year, $100 million contract.

“Whether I’m locked up for five years or whether I just have a one-year deal, it’s still the same mindset for me,” Brees said. “And that is that I’m playing year to year in regards to what I have to prove. Is there maybe security on paper? A little bit, yeah. But it doesn’t affect my approach or my preparation or anything.”

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Bills GM Doug Whaley acknowledges ‘poor use of words’

Buffalo Bills general manager Doug Whaley acknowledged using a "poor choice of words" when he said during a radio interview that the human body isn't built to withstand the game of football.

"Clearly I used a poor choice of words in my comment yesterday morning," the statement read. "As a former player who has the

Buffalo Bills general manager Doug Whaley acknowledged using a “poor choice of words” when he said during a radio interview that the human body isn’t built to withstand the game of football.

“Clearly I used a poor choice of words in my comment yesterday morning,” the statement read. “As a former player who has the utmost respect and love for the game, the point that I was trying to make is that football is a physical game and injuries are a part of it.”

During a radio interview when asked if receiver Sammy Watkins is injury prone, Whaley said: “This is the game of football. Injuries are part of it. It’s a violent game that I personally don’t think humans are supposed to play.”

“Playing football no doubt is very physically, mentally, and emotionally challenging, and that is all part of what makes the game so compelling to play and watch,” he said in the statement. “The game has more protection for players now than ever, thanks largely to the safety advancements and numerous rule changes made by our league and promoted to all levels of football. I believe our game continues to have a bright future and I hope that this statement provides clarity as to the intent of my earlier comment.”

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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Atlanta, Miami, Los Angeles awarded Super Bowls

The NFL awarded Super Bowls to Atlanta, Los Angeles and Miami in 2019, 2020 and 2021.

2019 will be held at the Falcons' Mercedes-Benz stadium. It's a $1.4 billion, 75,000 seat stadium.

2020 will be held at the Dolphins' Sun Life Stadium, which is undergoing a $400 million

The NFL awarded Super Bowls to Atlanta, Los Angeles and Miami in 2019, 2020 and 2021.

2019 will be held at the Falcons’ Mercedes-Benz stadium. It’s a $1.4 billion, 75,000 seat stadium.

2020 will be held at the Dolphins’ Sun Life Stadium, which is undergoing a $400 million renovation.
Los Angeles is building a $2.5 billion stadium.

Super Bowl LI next year is set for Houston’s NRG Stadium, and Super Bowl LII will be at Minnesota’s new U.S. Bank Stadium.
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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.
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Titans lineman Byron Bell dislocates ankle

Tennessee Titans offensive lineman Byron Bell dislocated his left ankle.

It's a season-ending injury.

He started every game last season.

He was previously a starter for the Carolina Panthers.

"He's a good football player," Titans coach Mike Mularkey said. "We're going to miss him."

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Tennessee Titans offensive lineman Byron Bell dislocated his left ankle.

It’s a season-ending injury.

He started every game last season.

He was previously a starter for the Carolina Panthers.

“He’s a good football player,” Titans coach Mike Mularkey said. “We’re going to miss him.”

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Bills complete visits with Andre Robets, Jamari Lattimore

The Buffalo Bills completed visits with wide receiver Andre Roberts and linebacker Jamari Lattimore.

Neither was immediately signed to a contract.

Roberts was cut by the Redskins on Tuesday.

He had 182 catches for 2,133 yards and 11 touchdowns in his first four seasons with the Arizona Cardinals.

Lattimore is a former Green Bay Packers

The Buffalo Bills completed visits with wide receiver Andre Roberts and linebacker Jamari Lattimore.

Neither was immediately signed to a contract.

Roberts was cut by the Redskins on Tuesday.

He had 182 catches for 2,133 yards and 11 touchdowns in his first four seasons with the Arizona Cardinals.

Lattimore is a former Green Bay Packers backup. He has also played for the New York Jets.

The Bills have one roster opening after placing running back Dri’ Archer on the reserve-did not report lsit.

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Saints signing kicker Connor Barth

The New Orleans Saints are signing former Tampa Bay Buccaneers kicker Connor Barth.

Barth is being brought in to compete with Kai Forbath.

Barth, 30, is being signed after the Saints cut veteran kicker Josh Scobee.

"He's hit the ball out here well," Saints coach Sean Payton said of Barth. "When we have a chance

The New Orleans Saints are signing former Tampa Bay Buccaneers kicker Connor Barth.

Barth is being brought in to compete with Kai Forbath.

Barth, 30, is being signed after the Saints cut veteran kicker Josh Scobee.

“He’s hit the ball out here well,” Saints coach Sean Payton said of Barth. “When we have a chance to bring in a guy who’s been in our division, someone that we feel like has kicked well, (the tryout gives us) a first-hand look.

“It’s a chance to look at another talented player for three days. And that’s a position that’s maybe a little easier than the others to evaluate in this scenario.”

Barth made 23 of 28 field goal attempts and 25 of 26 extra points for the Buccaneers last season after he re-signed with the team in October. He was released earlier this month after Tampa Bay traded up to draft Florida State kicker Roberto Aguayo in the second round.

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Jaguars first-rounder Jalen Ramsey tears meniscus

Jacksonville Jaguars first-round cornerback Jalen Ramsey suffered a small tear to the meniscus in his right knee.

He is getting a second opinion next week from Dr. James Andrews.

Surgery is a possibility for Ramsey.

Ramsey could miss either four to six weeks or four to six months.

Ramsey has microfracture knee surgery on the

Jacksonville Jaguars first-round cornerback Jalen Ramsey suffered a small tear to the meniscus in his right knee.

He is getting a second opinion next week from Dr. James Andrews.

Surgery is a possibility for Ramsey.

Ramsey could miss either four to six weeks or four to six months.

Ramsey has microfracture knee surgery on the same knee as a sophomore in high school.

Last year, the Jaguars lost first-round defensive end Dante Fowler for the season with a torn left anterior cruciate ligament.

The Jaguars scaled back their workouts this year, but Ramsey still got hurt.

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Running back-safety Jermichael Selders sets his ambitions on NFL shot

Speedy New Mexico State running back-safety Jermichael Selders has set his ambitions on landing a job in the NFL.
Selders is a 6-foot, 210-pounder with 4.4 speed in the 40-yard dash who's run the 100 meters in 10.5 seconds.
His speed is evident in this highlight video.
The second cousin of Indianapolis Colts
Speedy New Mexico State running back-safety Jermichael Selders has set his ambitions on landing a job in the NFL.
Selders is a 6-foot, 210-pounder with 4.4 speed in the 40-yard dash who’s run the 100 meters in 10.5 seconds.
His speed is evident in this highlight video.
The second cousin of Indianapolis Colts tight end Dwayne Allen, Selders was recruited by West Virginia and Baylor out of high school at Cypress Creek in Houston. He was a first-team all-district and second-team all-state selection.
He was also recruited by Arkansas, Tulane, Tulsa and Vanderbilt.
Although he committed to West Virginia, Selders had academic issues.
He enrolled at City College in San Francisco before transferring to New Mexico State.
“My grades got in the way,” Selders said. “That kind of messed me up at times.
After transferring, Selders redshirted and moved to defense to play safety. He then went back to running back.
He played behind Larry Rose at running back, averaging six yards per carry.
“I’m a physical guy with speed and power,” said Selders, who’s training at IX Innovations in Houston and is represented by Houston-based agent J.D. Ogilvie. “I will play special teams, free safety, corner or running back. I’m real fast.”
Selders is determined to support his family.
His mother needs two knee replacements. He’s also a devoted father.
“My son needs stability,” Selders said. “My dream is still within reach. I’m really motivated. My son is my life. I just want a better life for him. My mom has been struggling. I went through so much. I’m just so motivated. I just want to show it on the field. On the field is where I release all my stress. I just want to show everybody, all the people who’s been doubting me that it’s my time to come back.”
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Colts make scouting moves

The Indianapolis Colts today announced three promotions within its scouting department, including Todd Vasvari as senior player personnel scout, Matt Terpening as assistant director of college scouting and Brandon Brown as advance scout. The team also announced the hiring of Chad Henry as east regional scout and Joey Elliott as pro scout.

Vasvari enters his

The Indianapolis Colts today announced three promotions within its scouting department, including Todd Vasvari as senior player personnel scout, Matt Terpening as assistant director of college scouting and Brandon Brown as advance scout. The team also announced the hiring of Chad Henry as east regional scout and Joey Elliott as pro scout.

Vasvari enters his 19th season with the Colts and spent the last four years (2012-15) as the club’s assistant director of college scouting. In six previous seasons (2006-2011), Vasvari served as the team’s eastern regional scout following a stint as the team’s area scout. He worked as an area scout with the Carolina Panthers (1995-97) prior to joining the Colts and played tight end and earned a bachelor’s degree in economics from Bloomsburg University in 1991. Vasvari worked three training camps (1989-1991) as an equipment assistant with the Buffalo Bills and then worked as a substitute teacher and assistant football coach at his alma mater, Phillipsburg (N.J.) High School, from 1992-94.

 

Terpening enters his 19th season with the Colts and spent the last three years (2013-15) as a national scout for the team where he focused on the Midwest and top players across the country. Terpening spent 13 previous years with the team as an area scout. He graduated from Xavier University in 1998 with a bachelor’s degree in sports management. Terpening was a member of the Xavier basketball team that reached the NCAA tournament in 1997 and 1998. The Musketeers also captured the Atlantic-10 Conference Tournament championship in 1998. Terpening was a ball boy for the Colts in high school and served as a summer intern in the Colts public relations office in 1997. His father, Bob, is a former Colts executive vice president.

 

Brown enters his second season with the Colts and served as a scouting assistant in 2015. Prior to joining the team, he spent two seasons with Boston College as assistant director of player personnel (2014) and recruiting specialist (2013). Brown earned a Juris Doctor degree from Barry University Law School in Orlando, Fla., where he was named lead articles editor of the Earth Jurisprudence and Environmental Justice Law Journal. He was also a member of the Black Law Student Association and Sports Law Society. Brown served as an athletic compliance graduate assistant/football support at the University of Central Florida for 12 months while pursuing his law school degree. He previously served as a pro personnel intern with the New York Jets during the summer of 2012. Brown was a four-year letterman as a defensive back at Fordham and twice earned Patriot League honor roll recognition during his collegiate career. He earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration with a dual concentration in entrepreneurship and communications media management from Fordham in May 2010.

 

Henry spent the last 20 years with the Detroit Lions, where he served as an area scout for 17 seasons (2000-2015). He originally joined the Lions as an intern in the personnel department in 1997. Henry was hired full-time in 1998 and served as the team’s BLESTO scout before being promoted to area scout. He also gained NFL experience as a personnel and coaching staff assistant for the San Diego Chargers during training camp in 1996.

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Cowboys sign Ezekiel Elliott

The Dallas Cowboys signed first-round running back Ezekiel Elliott to a $24.9 million contract.

It includes a $16.3 million signing bonus.

Elliott's deal has a fifth-year team option.

Elliott rushed for 3,699 yards at Ohio State over the past two seasons.

He had 44 career touchdowns.

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The Dallas Cowboys signed first-round running back Ezekiel Elliott to a $24.9 million contract.

It includes a $16.3 million signing bonus.

Elliott’s deal has a fifth-year team option.

Elliott rushed for 3,699 yards at Ohio State over the past two seasons.

He had 44 career touchdowns.

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Colts signing cornerback Winston Rose

The Indianapolis Colts are signing former New Mexico State cornerback Winston Rose following a successful private workout.

Rose was previously with the Los Angeles Rams after going undrafted. He was released and worked out for the Washington Redskins at their rookie minicamp.

Rose ran the 40-yard dash in 4.37 seconds at his Pro Day.

Rose

The Indianapolis Colts are signing former New Mexico State cornerback Winston Rose following a successful private workout.

Rose was previously with the Los Angeles Rams after going undrafted. He was released and worked out for the Washington Redskins at their rookie minicamp.

Rose ran the 40-yard dash in 4.37 seconds at his Pro Day.

Rose played in the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl all-star game.

The 5-foot-11, 177-pounder had a 10-3 broad jump and a 36-inch vertical leap at his Pro Day. He bench pressed 225 pounds 10 times.

He had a 32 3/8 arm length, 9 3/8 hands and a 74 1/2 inch wingspan.

Rose had a 11.13 60-yard shuttle and a 6.72 three-cone drill. Those are among the best of any draft prospect.

Rose trains at IX Innovations with Abdul Foster and is represented by Houston-based agent J.D. Ogilvie, a former Utah State football player and Columbia University alumnus.

Rose played at Los Angeles Valley Junior College before transferring and was a first-team all-conference selection. He had three interceptions, returning two for touchdowns. He was a first-team all-league wide receiver and defensive back at St. Genevieve High School.

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Rams sign Dominique Easley

The Los Angeles Rams are signing former New England Patriots defensive tackle Dominique Easley to a one-year contract.

He was cut last month by the Patriots.

He worked out for the Rams this week.

He previously worked out for the Cincinnati Bengals.

A former first-round pick from Florida, Easley missed 10 games over the past

The Los Angeles Rams are signing former New England Patriots defensive tackle Dominique Easley to a one-year contract.

He was cut last month by the Patriots.

He worked out for the Rams this week.

He previously worked out for the Cincinnati Bengals.

A former first-round pick from Florida, Easley missed 10 games over the past two seasons.

He had injuries and dealt with attitude issues. For his career, he has three sacks and one interception.

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Saints cut Josh Scobee

The New Orleans Saints have released kicker Josh Scobee and put offensive tackle Bryan Witzmann on waivers, and they signed undrafted free agent cornerback Jimmy Pruitt.

The release of Scobee left Kai Forbath as the lone kicker on the roster, although they had three kickers in for tryouts during the three-day rookie minicamp over the

The New Orleans Saints have released kicker Josh Scobee and put offensive tackle Bryan Witzmann on waivers, and they signed undrafted free agent cornerback Jimmy Pruitt.

The release of Scobee left Kai Forbath as the lone kicker on the roster, although they had three kickers in for tryouts during the three-day rookie minicamp over the weekend.

The Saints could sign a kicker after working out Connor Barth.

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Broncos inducting John Lynch, Jason Elam, Simon Fletcher into Ring of Game.

The Denver Broncos announced that kicker Jason Elam, safety John Lynch and linebacker Simon Fletcher will be inducted into their Ring of Fame.

Elam is the Broncos' all-time leading scorer and a three-time Pro Bowl selection.

Fletcher is the Broncos' all-time sack leader with 97.5 sacks.

Elam kicked in Denver for 15 years, went to

The Denver Broncos announced that kicker Jason Elam, safety John Lynch and linebacker Simon Fletcher will be inducted into their Ring of Fame.

Elam is the Broncos’ all-time leading scorer and a three-time Pro Bowl selection.

Fletcher is the Broncos’ all-time sack leader with 97.5 sacks.

Elam kicked in Denver for 15 years, went to three Pro Bowls and is the franchise’s all-time leading scorer.

Lynch was named to the Pro Bowl in each of his four seasons with the Broncos and played on some of the best defenses in franchise history.

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Chargers awarded Zach Mettenberger off waivers

The San Diego Chargers were awarded quarterback Zach Mettenberger off waivers.

He was cut by the Tennessee Titans.

He played for Chargers offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt with the Titans.

They cut quarterback Bryn Renner.

Mettenberger joins starter Philip Rivers and backup Kellen Clemens.

Mettenberger played at LSU

Mettenberger is a former sixth-round pick.

He is

The San Diego Chargers were awarded quarterback Zach Mettenberger off waivers.

He was cut by the Tennessee Titans.

He played for Chargers offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt with the Titans.

They cut quarterback Bryn Renner.

Mettenberger joins starter Philip Rivers and backup Kellen Clemens.

Mettenberger played at LSU

Mettenberger is a former sixth-round pick.

He is 0-10 as a starter in the NFL.

He’s completed 60.3 percent of his throws for 12 touchdowns, 14 interceptions and a 75.4 passer rating.

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Redskins cut Andre Roberts

The Washington Redskins cut wide receiver Andre Roberts.

Roberts was released after the Redskins drafted TCU wide receiver Josh Doctson in the first round.

He was due a $4 million base salary.

After signing a four-year, $16 million contract in 2014, Roberts was a disappointment. He had 36 catches for 453 yards that year, and

The Washington Redskins cut wide receiver Andre Roberts.

Roberts was released after the Redskins drafted TCU wide receiver Josh Doctson in the first round.

He was due a $4 million base salary.

After signing a four-year, $16 million contract in 2014, Roberts was a disappointment. He had 36 catches for 453 yards that year, and last year he had just 11 catches for 135 yards before he was lost for the season with a knee injury. He ended up making $8 million in two years.

Roberts had his best season in 2012 with the Cardinals, when he caught 64 passes for 759 yards and five touchdowns.

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Bengals sign safety Shawn Williams to four-year extension

The Cincinnati Bengals signed safety Shawn Williams to a four-year contract extension, running through the 2020 season. Prior to the extension, Williams for 2016 was in the final season of the four-year contract he signed as a Bengals third-round draft choice in 2013.

Williams (6-0, 210; Georgia) has played in all 51 possible regular-season and

The Cincinnati Bengals signed safety Shawn Williams to a four-year contract extension, running through the 2020 season. Prior to the extension, Williams for 2016 was in the final season of the four-year contract he signed as a Bengals third-round draft choice in 2013.

Williams (6-0, 210; Georgia) has played in all 51 possible regular-season and postseason games in his Bengals career, and last season he gained an increased role on defense, starting four games and logging 28 tackles, two interceptions and five total passes defensed. On Nov. 1 at Pittsburgh, he made one of the significant plays of the team’s 12-4 AFC North championship season, a game-changing interception against Ben Roethlisberger in the fourth quarter. It set up a 45-yard TD drive that erased a 10-6 Steelers lead, putting the Bengals ahead to stay en route to a 16-10 win.
“Shawn is one of our bright, young players, and we’re excited to have him as part of the team moving forward,” said head coach Marvin Lewis. “He has been a physical player, and he has increased his value as a playmaker on the ball. This is just one more part of our plan, which is to draft the right players, develop them and retain them.”

Williams played 68 percent of the defensive snaps in last season’s Wild Card playoff game, ranking tied for third in tackles (five) and adding a pass defensed. Over 2013-14, Williams’ 23 special teams tackles ranked second on the team behind Cedric Peerman, the club’s 2015 season Pro Bowl special teamer.

“We see Shawn as an ascending player,” said defensive coordinator Paul Guenther. “He’s smart, he’s tough, and he’s not limited in his role. He can do a lot of things well.”

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Bills rookie Shaq Lawson having shoulder surgery

Buffalo Bills rookie defensive end Shaq Lawson, their first-round draft pick, will have surgery Tuesday and could miss the start of the regular season.

“The Buffalo Bills are taking measures to prevent the possibility of Shaq Lawson aggravating a pre-existing shoulder condition during the season," the team said in a statement. "While he could continue

Buffalo Bills rookie defensive end Shaq Lawson, their first-round draft pick, will have surgery Tuesday and could miss the start of the regular season.

“The Buffalo Bills are taking measures to prevent the possibility of Shaq Lawson aggravating a pre-existing shoulder condition during the season,” the team said in a statement. “While he could continue to play, the Bills medical staff has determined that surgery is the best course of action for the overall health of his shoulder moving forward. He had an occurrence of the condition last week but that would not preclude him from participating in the offseason program. Shaq is scheduled for surgery tomorrow on his shoulder with a rehabilitation program to follow. A timetable for his return is still being established.”

Added Bills general manager Doug Whaley: “I want to take this opportunity to commend Shaq Lawson and his representatives for putting the team first by having this surgery on his shoulder done now. By doing so, he’s forsaking personal goals to be 100 percent healthy when we will need him most during the regular season. Fans constantly hear us say that we want players with tremendous character who keep team goals ahead of personal ones and Shaq is a great example of this.”

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Broncos sign Dekoda Watson

The Denver Broncos signed linebacker Dekoda Watson.

Watson is a former Tampa Bay Buccaneers seventh-round pick from Florida State.

He has played for the Jacksonville Jaguars, Dallas Cowboys and New England Patriots.

He has started seven career games.

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The Denver Broncos signed linebacker Dekoda Watson.

Watson is a former Tampa Bay Buccaneers seventh-round pick from Florida State.

He has played for the Jacksonville Jaguars, Dallas Cowboys and New England Patriots.

He has started seven career games.

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Ravens sign Vlad Ducasse, Josh Johnson

After signing veteran cornerback Jerraud Powers, the Baltimore Ravens also signed quarterback Josh Johnson and guard Vladimir Ducasse.

Ducasse is a 6-5, 325-pound former New York Jets second-round pick.

He started 11 games last season with the Chicago Bears.

Johnson has played for seven teams, including the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Cleveland Browns, San Francisco 49ers,

After signing veteran cornerback Jerraud Powers, the Baltimore Ravens also signed quarterback Josh Johnson and guard Vladimir Ducasse.

Ducasse is a 6-5, 325-pound former New York Jets second-round pick.

He started 11 games last season with the Chicago Bears.

Johnson has played for seven teams, including the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Cleveland Browns, San Francisco 49ers, Indianapolis Colts and Buffalo Bills.

He has completed 54.2 percent of his 177 career passing attempts for 1,042 yards, five touchdowns and 10 interceptions.

The Ravens also signed another rookie free agent Sam Brown, a defensive back from Missouri Western.

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Titans cut Zach Mettenberger

 

The Tennessee Titans cut quarterback Zach Mettenberger.

Mettenberger became expendable when they signed Matt Cassel.

Cassel is the backup.

They also have Alex Tanney on their roster.

Mettenberger started six games as a rookie.

Mettenberger should be able to land a job elsewhere.

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The Tennessee Titans cut quarterback Zach Mettenberger.

Mettenberger became expendable when they signed Matt Cassel.

Cassel is the backup.

They also have Alex Tanney on their roster.

Mettenberger started six games as a rookie.

Mettenberger should be able to land a job elsewhere.

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Panthers cut Brandon Boykin

The Carolina Panthers cut veteran cornerback Brandon Boykin.

Boykin has played for the Philadelphia Eagles and Pittsburgh Steelers.

Boykin joined a team that drafted cornerbacks in the second round, third round and fifth round.

Boykin's career has been on the slide.

The Panthers also cut Ras-I Dowling.

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The Carolina Panthers cut veteran cornerback Brandon Boykin.

Boykin has played for the Philadelphia Eagles and Pittsburgh Steelers.

Boykin joined a team that drafted cornerbacks in the second round, third round and fifth round.

Boykin’s career has been on the slide.

The Panthers also cut Ras-I Dowling.

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Jarryd Hayne retires from football, rejoins rugby team

Running back and punt returner Jarryd Hayne is retiring from the San Francisco 49ers to return to his rugby roots.
Hayne announced he's leaving the NFL to play for the Fiji rugby team at the Olympics in Rio this summer.
The former Australia professional rugby player joined the 49ers last season.
“I am
Running back and punt returner Jarryd Hayne is retiring from the San Francisco 49ers to return to his rugby roots.
Hayne announced he’s leaving the NFL to play for the Fiji rugby team at the Olympics in Rio this summer.
The former Australia professional rugby player joined the 49ers last season.
“I am retiring from the NFL because the Fiji Rugby Sevens team reached out to me about the opportunity to join the team for the upcoming Olympics, and I simply could not pass that chance up,” Hayne said. “The Olympics has been something I have admired since I was a little boy, and it is an opportunity I feel very similar to me joining the NFL. The 49ers organization has been incredibly supportive throughout my journey and I cannot thank them and the support staff enough.

“I am especially grateful to the strength and conditioning coaches, trainers and medical staff, equipment guys, public relations crew, chefs, logistics, and merchandise staff for their countless hours helping me in many different ways, so I could focus on football. Thank you to the fans from down under, as well as those around the world, who stood behind me and supported me along this amazing journey. I also want to thank the boys, especially my running back brothers, for their help and support in my transition to the NFL. I wish the team nothing but the best for the upcoming season.”

Hayne rushed for 52 yards on 17 carries last season, caught six passes for 27 yards and returned eight punts with general manager Trent Baalke calling him a “tremendous example of what can happen when you commit to a goal and do everything in your power to make it a reality.”

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Browns sign first-rounder Corey Coleman

The Cleveland Browns have signed six draft picks, including first-round wide receiver Corey Coleman.

Coleman caught 173 passes for 3,009 yards and 33 touchdowns at Baylor.

They also signed fifth-round wide receiver Jordan Payton, fifth-round offensive lineman Spencer Drango, fifth-round wide receiver Rashard Higgins, fifth-round defensive back Trey Caldwell and seventh-round linebacker Scooby Wright.

Follow

The Cleveland Browns have signed six draft picks, including first-round wide receiver Corey Coleman.

Coleman caught 173 passes for 3,009 yards and 33 touchdowns at Baylor.

They also signed fifth-round wide receiver Jordan Payton, fifth-round offensive lineman Spencer Drango, fifth-round wide receiver Rashard Higgins, fifth-round defensive back Trey Caldwell and seventh-round linebacker Scooby Wright.

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Former Panthers lineman Edmund Kugbila attending Bears minicamp

Former Carolina Panthers offensive lineman Edmund Kugbila was cleared medically recently after undergoing surgery late last season.

He's attending the Chicago Bears minicamp today.

Kugbila has been in the process of lining up workouts and visits.

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Former Carolina Panthers offensive lineman Edmund Kugbila was cleared medically recently after undergoing surgery late last season.

He’s attending the Chicago Bears minicamp today.

Kugbila has been in the process of lining up workouts and visits.

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Panthers sign first-round pick Vernon Butler

The Carolina Panthers signed first-round draft pick Vernon Butler.

The entire rookie draft class is now under contract with the signing of the defensive tackle from Louisiana Tech.

Drafted 30th overall, Butler is due $8.4 million with a $4.3 million signing bonus.

Butler had 29 1/2 tackles for losses and five sacks in college.

The

The Carolina Panthers signed first-round draft pick Vernon Butler.

The entire rookie draft class is now under contract with the signing of the defensive tackle from Louisiana Tech.

Drafted 30th overall, Butler is due $8.4 million with a $4.3 million signing bonus.

Butler had 29 1/2 tackles for losses and five sacks in college.

The 6-4, 323-pounder joins Kawann Short and Star Lotulelei on the Panthers’ defensive line.

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Alabama hires Karl Dunbar as defensive line coach

Alabama hired former Buffalo Bills defensive line coach Karl Dunbar for the same position with the Crimson Tide.

After two months of unemployment, Dunbar has now found another job: Alabama has hired him as its defensive line coach.

“We have known Karl Dunbar for a long time and he has a lot of experiencing coaching

Alabama hired former Buffalo Bills defensive line coach Karl Dunbar for the same position with the Crimson Tide.

After two months of unemployment, Dunbar has now found another job: Alabama has hired him as its defensive line coach.

“We have known Karl Dunbar for a long time and he has a lot of experiencing coaching the defensive line in both the NFL and college,” Alabama coach Nick Saban said. “Karl is very familiar with our program from an organizational standpoint as well as the defensive scheme we run. He is a fantastic football coach who brings a wealth of coaching experience while being a great asset in recruiting.”

Dunbar has been a defensive line coach for the Bills, Jets, Vikings and Bears, as well as at LSU and Oklahoma State.

Dunbar replaced Bo Davis, who resigned after committing recruiting violations.

“I am really excited to get back into college football and to have a chance to work with such a talented group of student-athletes at The University of Alabama,” Dunbar said. “The program Coach Saban has built at Alabama is second to none, and the opportunity to work for him once again is special. I have a great appreciation for the tradition and history that surrounds Crimson Tide football, and I look forward to doing my part to contribute to this program’s continued success.”

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Seahawks’ Ricardo Lockette retiring due to neck injury

Seattle Seahawks receiver Ricardo Lockette is retiring due to a major knee injury suffered last season against the Dallas Cowboys.

Lockette, 29, joined the Seahawks as an undrafted free agent in 2011. He spent the 2012 season on the San Francisco 49ers practice squad, spent time with the Chicago Bears practice squad in 2013, and

Seattle Seahawks receiver Ricardo Lockette is retiring due to a major knee injury suffered last season against the Dallas Cowboys.

Lockette, 29, joined the Seahawks as an undrafted free agent in 2011. He spent the 2012 season on the San Francisco 49ers practice squad, spent time with the Chicago Bears practice squad in 2013, and returned to the Seahawks in 2013.

In the Super Bowl, Lockette caught three passes for 59 yards.

Lockette caught 22 passes for 451 yards and four touchdowns for his career.

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Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.

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