National Football League
NFL News Wire
  • Monday, August 31, 2015
    Giants bring back S Brown
    By The Sports Xchange

    The New York Giants signed safety Stevie Brown on Monday after he was released by the Houston Texans.

    • The Giants' safety corps has been depleted by season-ending injuries to Bennett Jackson, Mykkele Thompson and Justin Currie. Nat Berhe underwent surgery Saturday to repair a calf injury. Two other safeties, rookie Landon Collins and Cooper Taylor, have missed time with injuries, although they played in the preseason game against the New York Jets on Saturday night.

      Brown, who played for the Giants from 2012-14, was released Saturday by the Texans. The 5-foot-11, 215-pounder signed with Houston on May 1.

      Brown originally joined the Giants as a free agent on April 3, 2012. That season, he played in 16 games with 11 starts and led the team and was tied for second in the NFL with eight interceptions. He set a franchise record with 307 interception return yards.

      In 2013, Brown missed the entire season after tearing his left anterior cruciate ligament in a preseason game on Aug. 24. He was placed on injured reserve the following day and underwent surgery on Sept. 5.

      Last year, Brown returned to the field to play all 16 games with eight starts. He contributed 36 tackles, a pass defensed, a sack and two special teams tackles.

      Brown was drafted by the Oakland Raiders in the seventh round in 2010 and played for the Indianapolis Colts in 2011.

      To create room on the roster, the Giants terminated the contract of linebacker Victor Butler.

      Butler, a seven-year veteran, was signed to a reserve/future contact on Jan. 5. He played in each of the Giants' first three preseason games and had two tackles.

  • Monday, August 31, 2015
    Browns waive TE Ezeakunne, WR Wynn
    By The Sports Xchange

    The Cleveland Browns waived tight end Anthony Ezeakunne and wide receiver Shane Wynn on Monday.

    • The team also terminated the contracts of linebackers Everette Brown and Moise Fokou, running back Jalen Parmele and defensive back Aaron Ross.

      The cuts were not a surprise, although Fokou started 12 games for the Tennessee Titans in 2013.

      Wynn, a rookie out of Indiana, caught a 21-yard touchdown pass from Johnny Manziel in the Browns' 11-10 loss to the Buffalo Bills in the second preseason game.

      The Browns' roster is currently at 84 players and must be reduced to a maximum of 75 players by 4 p.m. ET Tuesday.

  • Monday, August 31, 2015
    NFL Roster Moves: Bills' Jackson, Lions' Broyles among notable cuts
    By The Sports Xchange

    Longtime Buffalo Bills running back Fred Jackson and Detroit Lions wide receiver Ryan Broyles were among the notable cuts Monday as NFL teams must reduce their roster to 75 players by 4 p.m. ET Tuesday.

    • Jackson, 34, started nine games for the Bills last season, rushing for 525 yards on 141 carries. He entered the NFL as an undrafted free agent from Coe College but logged carries in NFL Europe and Arena Football before he broke through with the Bills.

      Broyles, the Lions' 2012 second-round pick out of Oklahoma, had three injury-filled seasons with the Lions. He tore his left ACL during his final season with the Sooners, and then he tore his right ACL during his rookie year with the Lions and tore the Achilles tendon in his left leg in 2013. He returned before the 2014 season but played sparingly, recording just two receptions for 25 yards.

      --The New York Giants signed safety Stevie Brown after he was released by the Houston Texans.

      The Giants' safety corps has been depleted by season-ending injuries to Bennett Jackson, Mykkele Thompson and Justin Currie. Nat Berhe underwent surgery Saturday to repair a calf injury.

      Brown, who played for the Giants from 2012-14, was released Saturday by the Texans.

      --Among the trades on Monday, the Denver Broncos sent tackle Chris Clark to the Houston Texans for a seventh-round pick in the 2016 draft.

      Clark, who is entering his sixth NFL season, started seven games for the Broncos last season. He started 14 games in 2013.

      The Broncos also released veteran linebacker Reggie Walker, along with backup quarterback Zac Dysert.

      --The Pittsburgh Steelers made a trade aimed at slowing a revolving door at place-kicker, acquiring Josh Scobee from the Jacksonville Jaguars. Garrett Hartley, signed as a free agent to replace Shaun Suisham (ACL), was injured in Saturday's game against the Buffalo Bills. Suisham tore his ACL in the preseason opener against the Minnesota Vikings.

      --The Tampa Bay Buccaneers traded tight end Tim Wright to the Lions in exchange for kicker Kyle Brindza.

      Wright, who originally entered the NFL in 2013 as a college free agent with Tampa Bay, re-joined the Bucs this offseason after being waived by the New England Patriots in June. He had 26 receptions for 259 yards and six touchdowns in his only season in New England.

      Brindza is a rookie out of Notre Dame, who entered the NFL with Detroit this offseason. During the preseason, Brindza has made all three of his field-goal attempts.

      --The Indianapolis Colts released veteran guard Donald Thomas. The Colts signed Thomas, 29, to a four-year, $14 million contract in 2013 but he had a history of injury problems. He tore his right quad and left biceps in Week 2 in 2013, causing him to miss the rest of the season. Thomas' 2014 season ended when he tore the same quad in training camp.

      --The Cincinnati Bengals cut wide receiver Denarius Moore, who signed as an unrestricted free agent after four years with the Oakland Raiders. He played in Cincinnati's first three preseason games, with a 30-yard reception.

  • Monday, August 31, 2015
    WR Moore among Bengals cuts
    By The Sports Xchange

    The Cincinnati Bengals cut wide receiver Denarius Moore and six other players Monday.

    • Moore signed with the Bengals as an unrestricted free agent for 2015 after four years with the Oakland Raiders. He played in Cincinnati's first three preseason games, with a 30-yard reception.

      The Bengals waived three veterans: third-year defensive tackle Kwame Geathers, third-year linebacker Nico Johnson and second-year defensive end Sam Montgomery.

      The team also waived three college free agents: guard Chris Jasperse of Marshall, wide receiver Desmond Lawrence of North Carolina A&T and tight end John Peters of Mount St. Joseph.

      The Bengals now have 80 players on their roster, which must be reduced to 75 by 4 p.m. ET Tuesday.

  • Monday, August 31, 2015
    Lions release WR Broyles
    By The Sports Xchange

    The Detroit Lions released veteran wide receiver Ryan Broyles on Monday after three injury-filled seasons.

    • Broyles, the Lions' 2012 second-round pick out of Oklahoma, expressed his thanks to the organization.

      "Lions organization thank you for believing in me from the very beginning," Broyles wrote, in part, on Twitter. "I have enjoyed my time here. Although it is time for me to move on there will be a special place in my heart for these memories."

      Broyles tore his left ACL during his final season with the Sooners, and then he tore his right ACL during his rookie year with the Lions and tore the Achilles tendon in his left leg in 2013. He returned before the 2014 season but played sparingly throughout the season, with just two receptions for 25 yards.

      Broyles met with general manager Martin Mayhew over the weekend and requested his release, according to the Detroit News.

      The Lions must reduce their roster from 88 players to 75 by 4 p.m. Tuesday.

  • Monday, August 31, 2015
    Broncos trade T Clark to Texans
    By The Sports Xchange

    The Denver Broncos traded tackle Chris Clark to the Houston Texans on Monday for a seventh-round pick in the 2016 draft.

    • Clark, who is entering his sixth NFL season, started seven games for the Broncos last season. He started 14 games in 2013 after the Broncos lost Ryan Clady to a foot injury.

      The Broncos also released veteran linebacker Reggie Walker and placed rookie tight end Jeff Heuerman on injured reserve.

      Backup quarterback Zac Dysert was among the group of waived players. He was joined by cornerback Tevrin Brandon, guard Andre Davis, tight end/fullback Joe Don Duncan, punter Spencer Lanning, tight end Jake Murphy, running back Jeremy Stewart, outside linebacker Chase Vaughn and safety Ross Madison.

      Denver's current active roster, which consists of 79 players, must be cut to 75 players by 4 p.m. ET Tuesday.

  • Monday, August 31, 2015
    Judge to rule on Brady by Wednesday
    By The Sports Xchange

    NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady were back in federal court Monday morning in an effort to settle the Deflategate case.

    • The hearing in New York started at 11 a.m. ET before U.S. District Judge Richard Berman, who had ordered both sides to appear for a status conference. After a four-minute hearing, Berman ended the proceedings and indicated he would rule by Wednesday.

      Neither side presented additional arguments in court Monday, when Brady was accompanied by good friend and players' union official Jay Feely.

      Brady is expected to appeal any suspension through a court injunction through the second circuit. Brady could argue he would suffer irreparable harm by missing several games.

      Brady was suspended four regular-season games by the NFL for his alleged knowledge of the intentional reduction of football air pressure in the AFC Championship game in January. Brady also was uncooperative in the opinion of the NFL and Goodell during investigator Ted Wells' search for details.

      Goodell said in his decision to uphold the four-game suspension after hearing Brady's appeal on June 23 that Brady intentionally destroyed a cell phone on or shortly after being asked for access to the device. Goodell upheld the suspension on July 29, prompting Brady and the NFL Players Associationto file suit in federal court.

      Berman has continued to push for a settlement in the dispute, saying it would be "rational and logical."

      The NFLPA and Brady have asked the judge to void the suspension. At a court hearing earlier this month, Berman told the NFL there was precedent for judges to toss out penalties issued by arbitrators.

      Berman said, if left up to him to rule in the matter, he would not be held to a Friday deadline for a decision, which is six days before the Patriots are scheduled to open the regular season against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sept. 10.

      Monday's hearing may be the last chance for lawyers from both sides to make their arguments.

      With the ruling by Goodell, Brady is slated to miss the Patriots' first four regular-season games: the Sept. 10 home opener against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Sept. 20 at the Buffalo Bills and Sept. 27 at home against the Jacksonville Jaguars. After a Week 4 bye, the Patriots visit the Dallas Cowboys on Oct 11. Second-year quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo would start in place of Brady.

      Brady would be eligible to return in Week 6 at Indianapolis in a Sunday night game against the team that helped pave the way for the investigation.

      After routing the Colts 45-7 to advance to the Super Bowl, the Patriots beat the Seattle Seahawks 28-24 to win their fourth title.

  • Monday, August 31, 2015
    Steelers trade for Jaguars K Scobee
    By The Sports Xchange

    The Pittsburgh Steelers made a trade aimed at slowing a revolving door at place-kicker, acquiring Josh Scobee from the Jacksonville Jaguars.

    • Garrett Hartley, signed as a free agent to replace Shaun Suisham (ACL), was injured in Saturday's game against the Buffalo Bills. Suisham tore his ACL in the preseason opener against the Minnesota Vikings.

      Scobee is a career 80.8 percent kicker in 11 years in Jacksonville. He confirmed the trade to a Jacksonville sports radio station on Monday.

      Rookie Jason Myers, 4 of 5 on field goals in preseason, become's Jacksonville's primary place-kicker.

      He was drafted in the fourth round of the 2004 draft. Scobee was the longest-tenured player on the Jaguars' roster and Jacksonville's leader in field goals (235) and points scored (1,022). Scobee is in the final year of a four-year, $13.8 million deal.

  • Monday, August 31, 2015
    Bills cut RB Jackson, 11 others
    By The Sports Xchange

    Longtime Buffalo Bills running back Fred Jackson was released Monday.

    • "Today, we had to make the difficult decision to release Fred Jackson. He had an incredible career for this organization for the past 10 years. We thank Fred for his hard work, dedication and leadership during his tenure with the Buffalo Bills," general manager Doug Whaley said in a release. "Fred has inspired the city of Buffalo in a number of ways. Fred and his family have been dedicated to this community and we can't thank them enough for their contributions through his career."

      Jackson, 34, started nine games for the Bills last season, rushing for 525 yards on 141 carries. He entered the NFL as an undrafted free agent from Coe College but logged carries in NFL Europe and Arena Football before he broke through with the Bills.

      He missed time in training camp with a sore hamstring.

      The Bills replaced Jackson as the starter in the offseason, acquiring LeSean McCoy from the Philadelphia Eagles and giving him a contract with a salary of $16 million due in 2015.

      Last week, coach Rex Ryan said he was excited that Jackson was ready to play in his first preseason game. Jackson said he wasn't surprised by doubters. Being released now gives him a chance to sign with another team before rosters are cut down to 53-man rosters on Saturday. One team to watch is the New England Patriots. Head coach Bill Belichick has long praised Jackson for his professionalism and do-it-all, no-nonsense approach.

      "I've had doubters all my life. You grow accustomed to that. You’re always proving yourself, showing that you can compete. Every time you step on the field that should be your mindset. And that’s definitely my mindset – to go out here, make some plays and show that I can still compete," Jackson said last week.

      In addition to releasing Jackson, the Bills cut defensive end Michael Buchanan, cornerback Ross Cockrell, defensive tackle Justin Hamilton, linebacker Andrew Hudson, offensive tackle Terren Jones, cornerback Ellis Lankster, safety Kenny Ladler, safety Wes Miller, offensive guard DJ Morrell, defensive end Cedric Reed and running back Ricky Seale.

  • Monday, August 31, 2015
    Bucs trade TE Wright to Lions for K Brindza
    By The Sports Xchange

    The Tampa Bay Buccaneers traded tight end Tim Wright to the Detroit Lions on Monday in exchange for kicker Kyle Brindza.

    • Wright, who originally entered the NFL in 2013 as a college free agent with Tampa Bay, re-joined the Bucs this offseason after being waived by the New England Patriots in June. He had 26 receptions for 259 yards and six touchdowns in his only season in New England.

      Brindza is a rookie out of Notre Dame, who entered the NFL with Detroit this offseason. During the preseason, Brindza has made all three of his field-goal attempts. He finished his collegiate career as Notre Dame's career leader in field goals made (57).

  • Monday, August 31, 2015
    G Thomas among Colts cuts
    By The Sports Xchange

    The Indianapolis Colts released veteran guard Donald Thomas and waived 11 players Monday.

    • The Colts signed Thomas, 29, to a four-year, $14 million contract in 2013 but he had a history of injury problems. He tore his right quad and left biceps in Week 2 in 2013, causing him to miss the rest of the season. Thomas' 2014 season ended when he tore the same quad in training camp.

      Thomas has played in 45 games (23 starts) over his eight-year NFL career with Indianapolis, New England, Detroit and Miami. He was originally drafted in the sixth round of the 2008 NFL Draft.

      The Colts waived guard Harland Gunn, linebackers Nicklas Haag, Zack Hodges and Justin Shirk, tackle Tyler Hoover, wide receivers Ryan Lankford and Ezell Ruffin, defensive tackle Jeris Pendleton, tight end Justin Sinz, running back Abou Toure and center randon Vitabile.

      The team also placed cornerback Tevin Mitchel on the injured reserve list and waived-injured cornerback Donald Celiscar. If Celiscar clears waivers, he will revert to the Colts' injured reserve list.

      With the moves, the Colts reached a 76-man roster. The team has until 4 p.m. ET Tuesday to reach the league-mandated 75-man roster.

  • Monday, August 31, 2015
    RG3 benched, Redskins are 'Kirk's team'
    By The Sports Xchange

    Kirk Cousins was named the starting quarterback for the Washington Redskins and will replace Robert Griffin III when the team opens the regular season against the Miami Dolphins on Sept. 13.

    • "There's something powerful about feeling believed in, and something powerful about knowing where you stand," Cousins said.

      Contrary to reports, Gruden said the decision is not being made based on Griffin's health situation. He insisted the keys to the offense are in Cousins' hands beyond the season-opening game.

      "When it's all said and done, we feel like at this time Kirk Cousins gives us the best chance to win," Gruden said Monday.

      All three quarterbacks were informed of their standing with the team at Redskins' headquarters before Monday's practice.

      Griffin did not play in Saturday's preseason game. He spent most of the week recovering from a concussion and shoulder stinger. The Redskins admitted uncertainty into Griffin's status, even clearing him to return only to have a neurologist say he had not been cleared. Head coach Jay Gruden said the team did everything "by the book" regarding NFL concussion protocol which requires clearance from an independent neurologist.

      Cousins, 27, has nine career starts and was drafted in 2012 in the same draft in which the Redskins got Griffin after trading a bounty of draft picks to the St. Louis Rams. Cousins in 2-7 as a starter.

      "Kirk's taken a giant leap," Gruden said of Cousins' development this offseason.

      The Redskins reportedly told other teams they may be willing to trade Griffin, but no other teams showed interest, per NFL Network and ESPN reports. CBS Sports refuted the report, citing sources.

      Griffin's $16.1 million salary this season, the fifth-year contract value set because he was the No. 2 overall pick in the draft, is extremely prohibitive for any team wanting to acquire him via trade. However, a team that loses its starter to injury might be inclined to blink at some point during the season.

      Cousins got the start against the Ravens, completing 20 of 27 passes for 190 yards, one touchdown and an interception.

      "Right now, I'm going to evaluate the game, go from there and find out how Robert is doing," the second-year coach said. "I'm not going to announce anything. There's no controversy."

  • Monday, August 31, 2015
    49ers offense running on empty in preseason
    By The Sports Xchange

    SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- San Francisco 49ers coach Jim Tomsula is a little like a stranger sitting at the high-stakes poker table for the first time.

    • When it comes to the 49ers' dismal offense this preseason, you have to wonder:

      Is this guy showing us all of his cards?

      Or is he already a world-class bluffer?

      Chances are we won't know until the 49ers snap the ball for the first time on Sept. 14 in their regular-season opener against the Minnesota Vikings.

      For now, the rookie head coach is keeping his cards close to the vest.

      Tomsula admitted Sunday, a day after his club's poor offensive effort in a 19-12 preseason loss at Denver, that "we haven't game-planned."

      As part of that philosophy, quarterback Colin Kaepernick has not been given the ability to audible out of plays that don't look promising at the line of scrimmage.

      So is the struggling offense nothing more than an inability to guess which alignment the opponents will be in? Or is that excuse just part of the new coach's bluff?

      Based on the first team's performance this preseason, and especially in an extended look in Saturday's loss, it doesn't appear as if Tomsula is holding much of a hand.

      Quarterback Colin Kaepernick didn't complete a pass for the first 29-plus minutes of Saturday's game. When he finally connected on a couple in the final seconds of the half, they went for just 13 yards.

      Before that, the 49ers had gone their first three offensive series of the game without a single first down.

      The 49ers ended the first half with just three points, extending the first-team offense's string of consecutive non-touchdown series in the preseason to eight.

      Tomsula didn't think the quarterback was at fault.

      "O-line-wise, we had a little bit of a struggle," he understated.

      Kaepernick was sacked twice in the half, including once for a safety.

      "There's not any concern," Tomsula insisted of an offensive line that's looking to replace Mike Iupati at left guard and Anthony Davis at right tackle. "That's what the preseason's for."

      --Saturday's matchup between a guy who sat out all of last season and one of the league's standout players was an absolute mismatch.

      49ers linebacker NaVorro Bowman owned Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning.

      Bowman was so good, 49ers coach Jim Tomsula forgot all about his supposed 10-play limit and watched in joy as the former three-time All-Pro played 42 snaps in San Francisco's 19-12 loss to the Denver Broncos.

      Don't be misled by the score. The Bowman-led 49ers defense dominated the first half, keeping Manning's vaunted offense out of the end zone.

      "He was just having a blast," Tomsula said of the decision to let Bowman keep playing. "He would have played all night if we had let him."

      Bowman, who suffered a career-threatening knee injury in the NFC Championship Game at the end of the 2013 season, finished the half with two sacks and a game-high nine tackles.

      In his mind, the most significant aspect of the brilliant performance was that it had occurred without his knee brace on.

      "I took that chance and I felt great," Bowman reported. "Keep taking the next step. It responded well for me. I was just selling out all the way and not thinking about (the knee)."

      --If there was good news from the game other than the defensive effort, it was that the club reported no significant injuries. The 49ers also received good news upon returning to their training site Sunday. Following a doctor's examination, injured center Daniel Kilgore has gotten the thumbs-up to begin light workouts.

      The starter hasn't played since suffering a broken leg in the 49ers' fourth game of the 2014 season on Oct. 28. He remains questionable for the Sept. 14 opener.

  • Sunday, August 30, 2015
    Winston hits rocky road as Bucs' quarterback
    By The Sports Xchange

    TAMPA -- Quarterback Jameis Winston's up and down preseason took another dip Saturday against the Cleveland Browns. Five days after a mostly flawless performance in a win over the Cincinnati Bengals, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers No. 1 overall pick was sacked four times, threw an interception, blew some protection calls against the blitz and failed to see the field well in a 31-7 loss to the Cleveland Browns at Raymond James Stadium. Winston finished 6-of-15 passing for 90 yards and the interception.

    • It was as disjointed of a performance as you can imagine for Winston, who proved he may not be ready to tear the NFL up as a rookie. And since Winston isn't expected to play in the preseason finale at Miami Thursday, he won't have any game time to correct it before the Sept. 13 regular-season opener against the Tennessee Titans.

      Winston likely will finish the preseason with no touchdown passes (he ran for two scores) and a 52.7 passer rating.

      To be fair, Winston spent the night with Browns defenders in his facemask. The Bucs have allowed 13 sacks, the most of any NFL team in the preseason. Winston has been dropped seven times, tying for the most in the league.

      "We had some bad plays last night, yes, along our offensive line," head coach Lovie Smith said Sunday. "It's like that most games, though. You have some plays you'd like to have back. Good plays on their part. Looking at the overall picture, just like before when we played a lot better, you take everything in, which we will do. But that play last night, for the most part, was unacceptable for us and we'll fix it."

      The pressure on Winston also is the byproduct of having two rookie offensive linemen -- Penn State tackle Donovan Smith and right guard Ali Marpet, a second-round pick from Division III Hobart College on the field.

      "I've got to get the ball out faster. They brought a lot of pressure," Winston said. "I've got another thing to learn from, from a blitz protection standpoint. I've got to see things and get us in the right protection call. Obviously, they came with a different game plan than we expected."

      Overall, Smith said he is pleased with how Winston has played during the preseason.

      "I like what he's done throughout the games, but (Saturday), he was part of a bad effort that we had as a football team," Smith said. "There's not much we did well tonight, Jameis or any other position you bring up - coaching, all of it."

  • Sunday, August 30, 2015
    Bears cut former pro-bowl CB Jennings
    By The Sports Xchange

    Cornerback Tim Jennings, a two-time Pro Bowl honoree, was cut after five seasons with the Chicago Bears, the team announced Sunday night.

    • Jennings maintains that he is 100 percent following offseason knee surgery.

      "Once the (new) regime came in and everybody was here, I kind of knew and the writing was on the wall," Jennings said, according to the Chicago Tribune. "But they also gave me a heads-up and told me I would be out there competing for a job."

      Jennings, 31, was a second-round draft pick of the Colts in 2006. He spent four years with Indianapolis, making 21 starts.

      He became a regular when he joined Chicago in 2010, starting 13 games that year, then 15, 14, 16 and 16 in the following years.

      Jennings recorded a career-high nine interceptions in 2012 and four the following year, earning Pro Bowl selections each season.

      Following the 2013 season, he signed him to a four-year, $22.4 million extension. According to the Tribune, Jennings made $7.5 million last year, and he had a guaranteed base salary of $4.4 million this year. His contract includes offset language that could give the Bears some money should he sign with another team.

      In other moves Sunday, the Bears put safety Ryan Mundy on injured reserve due to a hip ailment. Chicago moved first-round pick Kevin White, a wide receiver out of West Virginia, onto the physically unable to perform list.

      The Bears waived tight ends Chris Pantale and Kevin Greene, long snapper Rick Lovato, wide receivers Levi Norwood and Jeremy Kelley, defensive end Olsen Pierre, safety Malcolm Bronson, offensive tackle Cameron Jefferson and cornerback Al Louis-Jean. Injured wide receiver John Chiles was waived, and the team terminated the contract of running back Daniel Thomas.

  • Sunday, August 30, 2015
    Ealy has earned job as Panthers starting defensive end
    By The Sports Xchange

    CHARLOTTE -- When the Carolina Panthers opened their 2014 season in Tampa Bay, it surprised many to see second-round defensive end Kony Ealy on the inactive list.

    • He's come a long way in a year.

      Head coach Ron Rivera said after Sunday's practice that "unless he completely flops" in this week's preseason finale, Ealy will start the season opener in Jacksonville.

      "He has taken the bull by the horns," Rivera said. "He's earned the opportunity, and I've been very pleased with him the last two weeks."

      After opening the preseason with a dud in Buffalo, Ealy had a sack and two tackles against both the Dolphins and Patriots.

      When asked to grade himself after the first-team defense's impressive effort against Tom Brady on Friday night, Ealy said:

      "It's a process, it's the preseason, I don't rate myself like that. The things I did good was good, but there were things I didn't do good."

      Ealy's slow start last year continued through his Week 1 appearance on the inactive list. The rookie had just one sack in his first 12 games before he rattled off three straight games with a sack at the end of the season.

      When the Panthers face the Jaguars two weeks from Sunday, Ealy will line up on the right side across from Charles Johnson. He's expected to be ready despite missing the first three preseason games with a calf strain.

      Mario Addison and Wes Horton will continue to rotate in, and when the Panthers go into their "NASCAR" package, Ealy will slide inside.

      Frank Alexander's season-ending Achilles injury made it almost a foregone conclusion that Ealy would be in for the first snap against the Jaguars, but Rivera said the spot wasn't necessarily won by default. Instead, Ealy became the second starting defensive end he hoped would emerge.

      "He's done that the last two weeks and I've been very pleased with his progress," Rivera said. "I hope he continues to fight at it and hope the other guys behind him keep pushing him."

      --Safety Dean Marlowe has steadily improved since coming to Carolina in the spring. The James Madison product was one of the Panthers' priority undrafted free agents, and with Colin Jones struggling with a groin injury, the door may have been opened for Marlowe to sneak on the final roster. But head coach Ron Rivera pretty much closed that door while hinting at a practice-squad invite.

      "He's a long ways away from where we need him to be, but he's a young guy that's got a chance," Rivera said Sunday. "He'll grow. A good year of seasoning, a good year of opportunity to watch and grow. I think he's going to be a quality football player some day."

  • Sunday, August 30, 2015
    Vikings waive RB Banyard, 10 others
    By The Sports Xchange

    Running back Joe Banyard was one of 11 players waived by the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday.

    • Banyard played in 15 games for the Vikings last season, when he rushed for 88 yards. He also scored a touchdown in Saturday night's preseason win against the Dallas Cowboys.

      Besides Banyard, the Vikings cut tight end Brandon Bostick, cornerbacks Jalil Carter, Justin Coleman and DeMarcus Van Dyke, wide receivers DaVaris Daniels and Jordan Leslie, offensive tackle Stephen Goodin, linebacker Josh Kaddu and defensive linemen Crishon Rose and Caesar Rayford.

      The Vikings have 78 players on their active roster and must get down to 75 by Tuesday.

  • Sunday, August 30, 2015
    Giants defense has a ways to go for real improvement
    By The Sports Xchange

    EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- It's only the preseason and the games don't count toward anything. Still, one of the objectives of all teams is to show marked improvement as the days on the calendar inch closer to the regular-season opener.

    • For the New York Giants, they have had more than their fair share of instances where they have taken a step forward followed by two steps back. In particular, their new defensive scheme, orchestrated by coordinator Steve Spagnuolo, has seen far more valleys than peaks.

      The Giants, currently ranked 15th in the league after allowing opponents an average of 324.3 yards per game, have struggled to maintain any kind of consistency.

      In their most recent game, against the Jets, the Giants starting defense not only spotted their stadium neighbors 21 first-half points, the Giants simply couldn't stop the Jets' first-team offense.

      Gang Green exploited the Giants' soft run defense on the edges to the tune of 136 yards on 30 carries, including 35 yards on five carries by Chris Ivory on the Jets' first scoring drive of the game.

      "I think we all have a ways to go," head coach Tom Coughlin said. "I had the feeling they were running the ball and running it with consistency, and they did a good job of that.

      "We didn't make as many stops as we wanted to make, and so from that standpoint, we have work to do," he added. "There weren't a lot of points scored, but there was some run yardage out there that you think you could stop."

      "I felt like we kept beating ourselves with leverages; when you have to stay inside, stay inside; when you have outside contain for the run, you stay outside, and we just hurt ourselves," cornerback Prince Amukamara added.

      The defensive performance also included some communication breakdowns and missed assignments, some of which were back-breakers.

      One such example came on a second-quarter 24-yard touchdown catch by Jets running back Zac Stacy. On the play, a screen pass, three Giants defenders -- linebackers Jameel McClain and Devon Kennard, and safety Jeromy Miles -- all went to cover the tight end, which left Stacy wide open to run to daylight.

      Run to daylight he did, as safety Brandon Meriweather made a feeble attempt to cut Stacy at the ankles, the running back simply stepping over the safety's lame tackle attempt.

      "Yeah, it was a mistake," Coughlin said. "Whoever was supposed to be responsible was not there. There was no coverage on the screen."

      All new systems take time to jell, but when a unit has had as many injuries necessitating the shuffling of different guys into the lineup, Coughlin admitted that any chance of building continuity to where a team can add to the foundation previously established the week before becomes a challenge.

      "Well you don't have a lot of continuity when you have a lot of people missing and you have to change, and you have to create it and it takes a little bit of time to do that," Coughlin said. "Now there's no excuse; we've been practicing long enough but there's no question that when you're constantly changing parts, it's not quite as smooth as you'd like to be."

      The hope for Coughlin and the defense, then, is for the players who do have to miss time to be able to reach back into their memory to where if something comes up that they saw before, they can reach back and recreate the scenario, even though they haven't physically practiced it.

      "Our game is a game of continuously building on the previous week," Coughlin said. "Over the long haul, you have to build and build and build and allow that what someone experienced two weeks ago if it comes back in a game, and perhaps it's something new that you can reach back into your memory bank to understand why those things take place."

      With little choice but to keep on plugging away while they wait for injured players such as middle linebacker Jon Beason, defensive ends Robert Ayers and George Selvie, and others to return to action, about all the Giants can do is hope for the best.

      "You know it's preseason and we continue to build, continue to work on what we need to work on and be on the same page as a defense," said safety Landon Collins, who missed practice and game time with a knee injury before returning this past week. "All we can do as a whole and make sure we go on and dominate the next team we play."

      --The Giants and Jets, who face each other every year in the preseason, will meet again this year in just under 100 days.

      Besides the battle of bragging rights, one of the battles that both teams gave a glimpse of in their preseason game is the matchup between future Hall of Fame cornerback Darrelle Revis and dynamic receiver Odell Beckham Jr.

      Beckham, who was matched up against Revis on some pass plays, caught his first receptions of the preseason, going five of six for 31 yards to lead the Giants in receptions. The newly crowned Madden cover boy brimmed with excitement and anticipation when asked about seeing Revis again when the Giants host the Jets on Dec. 6.

      "I think it's going to be a very good matchup during the season. He's one of the best out there," Beckham said. "I think it'll be better once we all watch film and we really see how he's going to play and reach our game plan for a team. It was great to be able to just get out there, get into the offense a little bit, and have fun."

      One of the highlights of the Beckham-Revis matchup was on a free play that came once the Jets had jumped offside. Beckham ran a pattern along the sideline, but got a little too close to being out of bounds.

      Revis, who has made an art of using the sideline to his advantage, managed to guide the receiver out of bounds as Beckham came up with one of his signature one-handed receptions that wowed the crowd even though it was ruled incomplete.

      "I knew I was close to out of bounds, and I was just trying to make sure that I caught the ball first," Beckham said of that play.

      "By the time I looked down, I couldn't get my other foot in, but there was another ball down the sideline that I have to make the play; it's just plays that we need made. We need big plays, and we all have to do it, so on my behalf, it's just one of those balls that I'll be thinking about."

      In his short career so far, Beckham has made plenty of cornerbacks look foolish. Last year as a rookie, he got the better of Seattle's Richard Sherman, who praised the young superstar after their epic battle. Moving forward, Beckham realizes that opposing defensive coordinators are likely to assign their top cornerback to cover him exclusively throughout the game.

      "That's what you play for; you play to go against those guys: Joe Haden, (Richard) Sherman, Pat Pete (Patrick Peterson)," Beckham said. "All those corners who are known for being the best, that's what you play for; to be able to go against them. So it was definitely a lot of fun, and much respect to (Revis)."

      Beckham smiled and shook his head when asked if it meant anything to him to be able to get his first preseason receptions against Revis.

      "None of those catches count for anything really, so it doesn't really matter as much, but it's still great to be able to come out here and run routes and get open in the game and be able to catch passes," he said, adding, "There's still so much we need to improve on that it's kind of irrelevant."

      --With the Giants searching for that dynamic pass rusher to fill the void left by defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul as he recovers from a July 4 fireworks accident, head coach Tom Coughlin said he has liked what he has seen of third-round pick Owa Odighizuwa.

      "He has done a good job to this point in time and we are obviously thinking more and more about how we might be able to utilize him to a further extent, so he is a young man that we have high expectations for," Coughlin said.

      Odighizuwa, who initially missed parts of the spring practices due to knee soreness, has made significant progress since the start of the summer that has Coughlin encouraged.

      "Obviously he has had a chance to practice and he has had a chance to learn more in the system and look at himself on tape and his coach has been able to make the corrections with him," Coughlin said.

      "Again, that cumulative effect is what you are trying to accomplish in professional football even throughout the course of the entire season so he definitely has improved --- there is still of course a lot of work to be done, but he has improved."

  • Sunday, August 30, 2015
    Dolphins waive TE Robinson, 10 others
    By The Sports Xchange

    Gerell Robinson, who appeared to have an outside chance to make the team as the third tight end, was one of 11 players waived by the Miami Dolphins on Sunday.

    • Teams need to get their rosters down to 75 players by Tuesday.

      Besides Robinson, the Dolphins cut defensive tackle Calvin Barnett, guard Bryant Browning, wide receiver LaRon Byrd, wide receiver Kevin Cone, defensive end Ray Drew, wide receiver Tyler McDonald, defensive end Kendall Montgomery, cornerback Sammy Seamster, safety Phillip Thomas, and center/guard J.D. Walton

  • Sunday, August 30, 2015
    NFL roundup: Raiders lose Watson for season, game
    By The Sports Xchange

    Oakland right tackle Menelik Watson sustained a season-ending torn Achilles tendon Sunday during the Raiders' 30-23 preseason loss to the Arizona Cardinals in Oakland, Calif.

    • Watson tweeted, "Ruptured Achilles' tendon... I Will be back stronger than ever that's a promise. Main thing is supporting the team right now. #RaiderNation"

      The 26-year-old was due to be a starter this year after starting nine games last year and three as a rookie out of Florida State in 2013.

      Austin Howard, the Raiders' starter last year at right guard, is likely to shift to right tackle in Watson's absence.

      The Cardinals pulled out the win when running back Marion Grice ran for an 11-yard touchdown with 31 second left in regulation.

      Arizona quarterback Carson Palmer completed just eight of 22 passes for 103 yards with two interceptions. Cardinals tight end Ifeanyi Momah caught three passes for 61 yards.

      Oakland quarterback Derek Carr wound up 18-for-34 for 213 yards with one interception. Wide receiver Amari Cooper paced the Raiders with four catches for 62 yards.

      Raiders kicker Sebastian Janikowski booted five field goals.

      Texans 27, Saints 13

      Houston's top two quarterbacks, Brian Hoyer and Ryan Mallett, rebounded from poor showings last week to lead the team to a win at New Orleans.

      Hoyer, who was named the starter for the regular season this week, completed seven of 11 passes for 82 yards while leading the Texans to 10 points on his first two drives.

      Mallett completed nine of 17 passes for 77 yards and a touchdown.

      The Saints, who played their offensive stars for just the opening series, were led by quarterback Luke McCown's 8-of-14 passing for 117 yards.

      New Orleans' No. 1 quarterback, Drew Brees, led the Saints 75 yards for a field goal in his lone series on the field. He completed four of six passes for 40 yards.

  • Sunday, August 30, 2015
    Rams offensive line still a work in progress
    By The Sports Xchange

    EARTH CITY, Mo. -- While the St. Louis Rams seem to be a popular choice among the national media as a possible surprise team this season, one thing is inescapably clear: For the offense to improve enough to win as many as nine or 10 games, a young offensive line will have to come together very quickly.

    • Meanwhile, that line was shuffled entering Saturday night's 24-14 loss to the Indianapolis Colts when rookie third-round pick Jamon Brown was shifted from right guard to left guard. Brown had been at right guard alongside second-round right tackle Rob Havenstein since the first day of OTAs and through the Thursday practice prior to Saturday's game.

      In practice, having seen enough of Brandon Washington at left guard as the replacement for injured left guard Rodger Saffold, center Demetrius Rhaney was at left guard. Rhaney started the Aug. 23 preseason game against Tennessee at center, as he had been in a competition with Tim Barnes and Barrett Jones for the starting center job.

      Against the Colts, with Brown moving to left guard, Rhaney started and played right guard. Jones started at center after Barnes opened the preseason opener against Oakland.

      Saffold has not practiced or played since suffering a shoulder injury on the fourth offensive play of the game against the Raiders. While it had been suggested that it might be best for Saffold to be at right guard next to the rookie Havenstein, head coach Jeff Fisher said the switch was made because Saffold is better at right guard and while Brown was mostly a tackle in college, that was also on the left side. Brown said he hadn't played left guard since his freshman year at Louisville and was told about the move the day before the game.

      When asked about separating the rookies on the right side, Fisher said, "No, I have no problem with playing them side-by-side. Just feel for the entire offensive line and communication standpoint we're probably better that way."

      Still, he wouldn't commit to saying the Saturday switch was permanent, but did say, "We're going to consider it, yeah. I think Rodger's really comfortable on the right. It'll be a consideration and that's particularly why we did it. Line him (Brown) up and let him work with (left tackle) Greg (Robinson) and then put Rodger over next to Rob."

      As for Jones' play, Fisher said, "Barrett was good. He had the one issue, he had the one hold (actually a facemask penalty). Other than that, he was sliding well and communicating well. He did some things on the second level well. I was pleased with him."

      It's unknown when a decision will come regarding the starting center, and there were those that wondered if making the guard switch would have been better to be done sooner.

      "No, just something that we decided to do," Fisher saiid. "You can see we're playing people at all different positions. They have to have the versatility. Look at Garrett (Reynolds). Garrett's playing all over the line right now. I think that's important. Barrett's got guard snaps. Demetrius has center and guard snaps. We're just trying to get them settled down. It just helps them once they settle into the one position because they've got the experience."

      Fisher also said the inexperienced Rhaney, a seventh-round pick in 2014 who missed the entire season with a knee injury, has "done well" at guard. Said Fisher, "The guard position, in his defense, is a little easier. There's a lot of thinking that goes on with the center spot. He's handling that very well. At the guard position, you just line up and play."

      Against the Colts, Havenstein was badly beaten by linebacker Erik Walden on a play that resulted in a sack of quarterback Nick Foles.

      Fisher said of Havenstein, "I thought Rob played well. He got beat off the snap on one, gave up the one sack, but he'll learn from that."

      The always positive Foles said of the line, "We just have to keep working. It's a process. We just have to, and I know it sounds like a broken record, but it really is every day you just have to keep working on it and keep thinking positive, keep correcting. If you mess up again, just keep correcting because they're coming along. They're getting better and better and they're doing a great job right now. They're going to continue to improve."

      --As good as the Rams are on the defensive line, two undrafted free-agent players - end Matt Longacre and tackle Louis Trinca-Pasat -- are making a push for a roster spot and at least a job on the practice squad.

      Trinca-Pasat played 54 snaps (74 percent) against the Colts, while Longacre played 42 (58 percent).

      When asked specifically about Trinca-Pasat, Fisher said, "Both he and Matt have been really impressive. Matt's playing both ends. Trinca-Pasat's playing both tackles. They just make plays. They shock and shed people and get off blocks and penetrate and put pressure on the quarterback, so it's been great to have them here."

      Notes: Left guard Jamon Brown suffered a lateral sprain to his right ankle, and while it's doubtful he will play in the preseason finale against Kansas City, he should be OK for the season opener. Brown was retaped on the sideline after playing 21 snaps (the rest of the starting line played 29) and wanted to go back in and play. ... Running back Tre Mason left the game against Indianapolis with a mild hamstring strain and could be questionable for the season opener. Said Fisher, "He felt it, so he shut it down on the play. He's a quick healer, so we're optimistic." Mason described it as "a little tweak" and added, "I'm OK. It's not bad."

  • Sunday, August 30, 2015
    NFL notebook: Redskins reportedly discussed trading RG3
    By The Sports Xchange

    Washington Redskins coaches and front office personnel want to part ways with quarterback Robert Griffin III, but team owners are against the move, ESPN reported Sunday.

    • The Redskins have even told other teams they may be willing to trade Griffin, but no other teams seem interested.

      If ownership decides the Redskins must keep Griffin, the team is determined to start a quarterback other than Griffin, according to the ESPN report.

      This report ties into the confusion regarding Griffin's playing status following a concussion.

      Redskins head coach Jay Gruden admitted there was confusion over Griffin's lingering symptoms of a concussion but says the team did everything "by the book."

      Griffin was sidelined for the Redskins' 31-13 preseason win over the Baltimore Ravens on Saturday night after an independent neurologist reversed his decision and said RG3 was not cleared to play.

      --The Redskins officially announced that they signed left tackle Trent Williams to a multi-year contract extension.

      Multiple media outlets reported the deal is a five-year, $66 million contract extension, making Williams the highest-paid offensive tackle in NFL history.

      --Green Bay Packers wide receiver Randall Cobb thought at first he broke his collarbone Saturday night, but tests after the preseason game revealed the injury wasn't that serious.

      Cobb suffered an AC joint sprain in his shoulder, NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported. While the injury is considered minor, there is no word on whether Cobb will be ready to play in Week 1.

      --An MRI exam showed no ligament damage in the knee of New York Jets defensive lineman Leonard Williams, who was injured during Saturday's game against the Giants.

      The injury is being called a muscle strain behind his knee. The Jets do not expect it to be a long-term injury, but it is unclear whether Williams will be available for the regular-season opener.

      --Offensive linemen of the San Diego Chargers have accused Seattle Seahawks rookie defensive lineman Frank Clark of trying to attack quarterback Philip Rivers during Saturday night's preseason game.

      Multiple players were angered when Chargers left tackle King Dunlap was flagged for a 15-yard unnecessary roughness penalty after yanking Clark from under a pile. Rivers was sacked on the play by Seattle's Jordan Hill.

      --The Kansas City Chiefs waived long snapper Andrew East and 10 other players on Sunday to prepare for the NFL's mandated 75-player roster limit by Tuesday.

      Other cuts included: wide receivers Kenny Cook, Jeret Smith and L'Damian Washington, tackle Anthony Dima, cornerbacks Aaron Hester and Kenneth Penny, defensive end Vaughn Martin, guard Marcus Reed, tight end Adam Schiltz and offensive lineman Charles Tuaau.

      --The Philadelphia Eagles released wide receivers Mike Johnson, GJ Kinne and Josh Reese among 12 roster cuts.

      Other cuts included: cornerback Marc Anthony, safety Brandan Bishop, offensive linemen Mike Coccia, Kevin Graf and Jared Wheelers, defensive ends Alfy Hill and Jeremy Towns, linebacker Dasman McCullum and tight end Justin Tukes.

      --The New York Jets cut 12 players, including wide receiver DeVier Posey, to reduce their roster to 78.

      Other players released were: CB Javier Arenas, OL James Brewer, CB Curtis Brown, C Dalton Freeman, WR T.J. Graham, WR Saalim Hakim, WR Austin Hill, LB Bryan Johnson, TE Matt LaCosse, CB Keith Lewis and WR Jonathon Rumph.

      --The Carolina Panthers reduced their roster by eight players, ncluding offensive tackle Tony Hills who was terminated/vested veteran.

      Five undrafted rookies along with linebacker Kevin Reddick and recently added veteran tight end Dallas Walker were waived.

      Rookies waived were wide receivers Paul Browning and Avius Capers, defensive end Steve Miller, fullback Lee Ward and punter Matt Wile.

      --Seventh-round draft pick Joey Iosefa was among 10 players waived by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as they move toward finalizing their 75-man roster.

      The other players waived by the Buccaneers were running back Dominique Brown, defensive tackle Quayshawne Buckley, offensive lineman Antoine Everett, long-snapper Brandon Hartson, safety Kimario McFadden, punter Karl Schmitz, cornerback Al-Hajj Shabazz, defensive end George Uko and defensive end Jamal Young.

      --The Tennessee Titans waived 10 players Sunday, including center Fernando Velasco.

      The Titans also released linebackers Nate Askew, Dezmond Johnson and Chaz Sutton, cornerback Will Brown, wide receivers Tebucky Jones and Deon Long, defensive end Derrick Lott, guard Justin McCray and kicker Mike Meyer.

      --Tight end Mickey Shuler, who played in three games for Jacksonville last season, was released by the Atlanta Falcons, who also waived 12 other players.

      Offensive tackle Lamar Holmes (broken foot) was placed on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list by the Falcons, who waived linebacker Boris Anyama, wide receiver Marquez Clark, running back Michael Ford, wide receiver John Harris, defensive tackle Warren Herring, nose tackle Derrick Hopkins, offensive tackle Matt Huffer, cornerback Michael Lee, guard Eric Lefeld, linebacker Terrell Manning, defensive end Sam Meredith and center Valerian Ume-Ezeoke.

  • Sunday, August 30, 2015
    Falcons release TE Shuler, waive 12 others
    By The Sports Xchange

    Tight end Mickey Shuler, who played in three games for Jacksonville last season, was released on Sunday by the Atlanta Falcons, who also waived 12 other players.

    • Shuler spent the 2013 season on the Falcons' practice squad before playing for the Jaguars last season.

      Offensive tackle Lamar Holmes (broken foot) was placed on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list by the Falcons, who waived linebacker Boris Anyama, wide receiver Marquez Clark, running back Michael Ford, wide receiver John Harris, defensive tackle Warren Herring, nose tackle Derrick Hopkins, offensive tackle Matt Huffer, cornerback Michael Lee, guard Eric Lefeld, linebacker Terrell Manning, defensive end Sam Meredith and center Valerian Ume-Ezeoke.

      The Falcons need to get down to the 75-player roster limit by Tuesday.

  • Sunday, August 30, 2015
    Injured players make Colts roster decisions difficult
    By The Sports Xchange

    INDIANAPOLIS -- Some tough roster decisions will be made over the next day or so by Indianapolis Colts officials.

    • With the first league-mandated cuts slated to be completed by 4 p.m. ET Tuesday, the Colts must trim their roster down to 70 players quickly.

      Some NFL teams have already announced some roster moves. But Indianapolis head coach Chuck Pagano said Sunday afternoon that while the decisions will come, he's not sure if anything will be announced sooner rather than later.

      Injuries to players who have missed significant time over the past two seasons is going to play a big part in whatever roster decisions are made.

      Running back Vick Ballard, who has sat out the last two years with knee and Achilles issues, has tweaked both of his hamstrings since the start of training camp. Ballard's latest hamstring issue occurred last Thursday and sidelined him for Saturday night's preseason game at St. Louis.

      And then there's defensive tackle Art Jones, who signed with the Colts prior to last season. But an ankle injury in 2014 forced him to the sidelines. Jones incurred another ankle/foot injury against the Rams, which puts his immediate future in question.

      Have the Colts' coaching staff seen enough of Ballard to warrant keeping him around during the regular season? Will Jones' injury force Indianapolis into making other moves in order to fortify its defensive line depth?

      "It's tough," Pagano said when asked about Ballard's continued battle to come back from a series of injuries. "The small glimpse that we got (in the preseason game with the Chicago Bears). It's day-to-day with this (hamstring) injury.

      "Hopefully we can get him out there (against Cincinnati on Thursday night). We saw signs of the old Vick. He's a complete football player when he's healthy."

      Can the Colts afford to take a gamble on what Ballard showed during his rookie season and hope that he can return from his hamstring issues? Can he be as productive as he was in 2012 when Ballard rushed for over 800 yards?

      "I wish that I had a crystal ball," Pagano said. "I really don't know (how to evaluate his progress)."

      With Jones' latest injury, rookie defensive tackle Henry Anderson got extensive playing time in the Rams game. Anderson played well when given the opportunity.

      "He played good, he played hard and he played smart," the Colts coach said, adding that Anderson, Zach Kerr, Jeris Pendleton and Montori Hughes are also all in the mix to replace Jones if necessary.

      "Any of those guys have the flexibility to play there."

      --Wide receiver Andre Johnson scored his first touchdown since joining the Colts on a pass from quarterback Andrew Luck in the first half of the Rams game. Johnson says that he's still getting his timing down with Luck during the preseason.

      "I think day by day you just keep getting comfortable. You know you come in and do the OTAs and stuff and that way you're comfortable for camp and you know you just keep getting more familiar with everything as time goes along," Johnson said.

      "I'm still in there every day, taking notes and doing things every day trying to make sure I get as much down as possible. That's just the way I'm going to approach it."

  • Sunday, August 30, 2015
    Redskins sign LT Williams to record $66M extension
    By The Sports Xchange

    The Washington Redskins officially announced Sunday that they signed left tackle Trent Williams to a multi-year contract extension.

    • Full terms were not disclosed by the team, but multiple media outlets reported Saturday that the deal is a five-year, $66 million contract extension, making Williams the highest-paid offensive tackle in NFL history.

      Williams will receive $43.25 million in guarantees and $32 million at signing, and will average $13.2 million per year.

      Williams, 27, confirmed the extension on Twitter Saturday: "Happy to announce I will be a Redskin for the next 5 years. This is a dream come true HTTR 4 Life."

      The 6-foot-5, 337-pound Williams was drafted by the Redskins in the first round (No. 4 overall) of the 2010 NFL Draft. He has appeared in 71 career regular-season games with 70 starts in addition to starting in the NFC wild-card round during the 2012 season.

      During his time in Washington, Williams has become one of the game's premier left tackles, earning Pro Bowl selections in each of the last three seasons. With the selection following the 2014 season, Williams joined Chris Samuels and Joe Jacoby as the only Redskins tackles to make three consecutive trips to the Pro Bowl since the merger.

      In each of his three Pro Bowl seasons, Williams helped Redskins running back Alfred Morris eclipse 1,000 rushing yards, contributing to Morris becoming only the second player in team history with three consecutive 1,000-yard rushing seasons. Williams has been an integral part in Washington's 6,564 rushing yards since 2012, the third-most in the NFL in that time frame.

      Williams played collegiately at Oklahoma, where he started 39 of the 50 games in which he played and earned All-American honors as a senior in 2009.