Live Blog: Countdown to Cutdown, 8/27
Teams have had three weeks of preseason to evaluate players in live action and decisions are starting to be made as to who stays and who goes as the NFL’s roster deadline approaches.
As we did with free agency and the draft, we’ll be applying that unique PFF perspective to moves as they’re made and taking you through the upcoming week with comments and insight on the fly.
Check back often to keep up to date as players get the call to turn in their playbooks and look for new work.
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16:03 – Jay Ratliff to PUP
The Cowboys have officially placed DT Jay Ratliff on the PUP list, keeping him out of action for at least the first six weeks of the season. He’s expected to play nose tackle in the Cowboys’ transition from a 3-4 to a 4-3 defense, but that will have to be put on hold. Our own Steve Palazzolo took a look at one of Ratliff’s replacements who happened to have a good game the other night against the Bengals.
15:51 – Jonathan Stewart to the PUP list
The Panthers have officially placed Jonathan Stewart on the PUP list leaving RBs DeAngelo Williams and Kenjon Barner to shoulder the load in his absence. Battling injuries is nothing new for Stewart who was limited to only 322 snaps last season on his way to a +4.4 grade. The Panthers have invested heavily in both Stewart and Williams and they’ll go yet another season without having their 1-2 punch for all 16 games. Barner has flashed his elusiveness at times during the preseason with five forced missed tackles, but he’s also put the ball on the ground once while averaging only 2.8 yards/carry.
15:18 – 49ers announce Eric Reid to start at FS
Not a major surprise out of San Francisco given Reid’s first round status, but the 49ers eased him into his role during the preseason. The rookie has graded at +1.7 on his 116 snaps while not allowing a catch on the only throw into his coverage. He’ll be charged with replacing FS Dashon Goldson who moved on to Tampa Bay after grading at +6.5 last season.
15:00 – Lions Get to 75
Courtesy of Tim Twentyman the Detroit Lions have hit the intended mark with times to spare. That’s because they’ve said so long to two tight ends in the shape of Cameron Morrah and Matt Veldman. With five snaps between them during preseason it was always unlikely they’d work their way into a tight competition to be the teams third tight end. It’s just now been confirmed.
14:30 Houston Put 3 on I.R. … Possibly
They saw the Chargers have so much fun with it they’re following suit. Wide receivers Alec Lemon and Mike Smith are joined by defensive lineman David Hunter (per John McClain). Smith only managed six snaps, in contrast to Lemon who was on the field for 70 of them. He saw extensive action these past two weeks but let himself down with a couple of drops against the Saints. The most notable contribution from Hunter on his 47 snaps were the two penalties he got flagged for.
An update from Tania Ganguli on twitter let’s us know that Smith and Hunter were waived injured and will only revert to injured reserve if not claimed.
14:20 One in, One out for Raiders
In so much as they’ve cut Mitchell White (and not Tyler Wilson) and snapped up Justin Medlock. Mitchell only played 19 snaps in preseason but that was enough to earn a -1.6 grade after getting beat for two catches for 35 yards into his coverage. Oh well. Medlock will try and use these next few days to convince a team he’s worth a shot. He was with Carolina last year where he went 7-of-10 on his kicks.
The team also placed slot cornerback Joselio Hanson and running back Latavius Murray on injured reserve. Hanson is what he is and that’s a guy who is dependable in the slot and anything but outside. It’s a more significant loss than it might appear. Sixth rounder Murray won’t get a chance to build on his 22 preseason snaps in his rookie year where he averaged 3.6 yards per carry and forced one missed tackle.
14:15 – Eagles no longer on the Hunt
If another team doesn’t pick him up on waivers then Philip Hunt is heading for injured reserve. An intriguing player he hasn’t done much in preseason (-0.9 grade on 30 snaps) but it’s hard to forget his 2011 season where in very limited action he did show an ability to turn the corner and pick up pressure. Unfortunately he saw less playing time a year later and never really built on that cameo.
14:05 – Chargers Send 3 to I.R.
And those three are Dan DePalma, Chris Gronkowski and Mile Willie. That increases the chances of someone like Robert Meachem making it through to the final 53, especially as DePalma saw a lot of playing time (108 preseason snaps). He was the most targeted of his peers as well with 13 balls thrown his way, catching seven and dropping one. As a 2011 undrafted free agent he’ll likely return for another crack at the roster next year. That same fate awaits Willie who had a couple of spectacular grabs and touchdowns early on in preseason but became less of a factor the more he plays. As far Gronkowski he was unlikely to make the team with Le’Ron McClain on the books, and earned a -1.5 grade on his 12 snaps over the past few weeks. He spent last year with Denver but rarely got on the field with just 39 offensive snaps.
13:50 – Dallas Get on with the Cutting
After letting go just one guy yesterday the Cowboys have some ground to make up. From Calvin Watkins they’ve let go of Anthony Amos, Colin Cochart, Jared Green, Dennis Godfrey, Nick Stephens, Eric Rogers and Deon Lacy while sending Tyrone Crawford to injured reserve.
None are as surprising as the earlier release of Pendleton with Alex Tanney doing enough to make Stephens expendable heading into the final preseason game. The receivers all had their chance to press for a roster spot but none of them could make the most of their opportunities and now find themselves looking elsewhere to continue their careers. Of them all it was Lacy who walked away with the highest grade (+2.3).
13:40 – Bad News for Packers
And worse news for DaJuan Harris. He only say 12 snaps in the preseason but showed enough last year in his 126 snaps (including postseason) to suggest he would be in for a bigger role. Of course that means Eddie Lacy is likely in for a bigger role now with the rookie having already broken a tackle on a quarter of the rushes he had in preseason.
13:25 – Patriots Announce They’re At 75
We mentioned earlier today that New England had said goodbye to Evan Landi, and now they’ve finished their cuts process (for now) as Anthony Rashad White is released to make it a 75 man roster (per their own twitter feed). White struggled for playing time as preseason find Joe Vellano and Marcus Fortson ate up the majority of playing time. In the end he managed 26 snaps, picking up a hurry and two defensive stops in the run game. He just didn’t do enough on the practice field to give the team a reason for keeping him about.
13:15 – Chiefs Hit 75
And they’ve done it by waiving Jamar Newsome. The undrafted free agent from 2011 hit the 200 snap mark last year for the Chiefs (though he only caught 5-of-14 targets and dropped three balls). That said of the 11 receivers who got snaps for the Chiefs this offseason (including Jonathan Baldwin) six got more than the 34 he managed. He did haul in 5-of-7 targets with no drops but will have to hope he catches on somewhere else.
13:00 – Seahawks
Two more men won’t be making the Seahawks roster. They’ve just cut Will Blackmon and Donavon Kemp. Blackmon was at one time a scary returner but has bounced around the league in recent years and couldn’t latch on to a Seahawks team long on cornerback talent and not short on return options. He earned a -0.2 grade on his 37 snaps. Meanwhile Kemp didn’t even get that much playing time. He was limited to 18 snaps and wasn’t targeted once. That was a sign of what was to come.
12:30 – Enjoy Our Content
This isn’t the only piece we have going on at PFF right now. We’ve got a run down on all the first rounders with snaps and grades, every game from preseason ReFocused, while our analysts spend some time discussing the AFC North today.
12:15 – Colts Make it to 75
No cuts to speak of but Indy have stashed away Nathan Palmer, John Boyett and Josh McNary. Of them Palmer got on the field for 58 snaps in the preseason and earned a -1.2 grade on the 40 routes he run. He’s likely to end up on injured reserve. Neither of the other men got on the field.
12:00 – Cundiff Out, Carpenter In
That means that every team except for the Saints, who released nobody yesterday, have had their cuts assessed by us. Now we’re up to date this blog will continue to deliver reaction to all the goings on
Let’s start with the news, courtesy of a bunch of people on twitter, that the Jets have released Billy Cundiff and signed Dan Carpenter to replace him. Carpenter was our 16th ranked kicker last year and offers a reliable leg even if he is on his third team in three weeks.
11:45 – San Francisco 49ers
When you’re losing quarterback competitions to Colt McCoy, it’s not going to be long before you’re losing your job. That’s the lesson Scott Tolzien (-3.9) found out after a horrible spate of play in preseason. His 57.0 quarterback rating really doesn’t do his play justice as he completed just 52.9% of his passes.
That ended his chance of being the backup to Colin Kaepernick and makes him the most notable cut from the 49ers. He wasn’t the only one though with D.J. Harper, Joe Holland, Al Netter and Colton Schmidt given the boot. Harper was never likely to crack the roster at running back, turning his 27 snaps into a terrible (-2.4) grade. Netter was our second lowest graded player on the entire offense (-4.4) and won’t be the latest rags to riches story on that line.
11:40 – Seattle Seahawks
By the close of play on Monday Seattle had trimmed it’s roster by eight. The biggest surprise may have been, to us, Kyle Knox who showed some handy pass rushing on his 11 pass rushes that produced two sacks and a hurry. A shame for him.
There were few surprises elsewhere. Sure Martin Parker (+1.6) played well in his 37 snaps but the entire defensive line played well for Seattle. They’re just os loaded there. The other cuts were Perez Ashford, Jameson Konz, Andrei Lintz, Kyle Nelson, Brett Swain and Craig Wilkins.
11:35 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Seven down, a lot more to go. The most surprising aspect of the Buccaneers cuts is that it featured several NFL veterans. In fact no rookies are yet to be released with the guys to go wide receivers Derek Hagan and Carlton Mitchell, Spencer Larsen, safety Troy Nolan, defensive ends Ernest Owusu and Markus White and quarterback Adam Weber.
Hagan and Mitchell had a chance to latch on but neither delivered in preseason (they combined for a -3.4 grade) while Nolan could only get on the field for 14 snaps. The one time Texan nickel safety may struggle to latch back on with a team that picked up the pieces after he was let go by Miami last year.
11:30 – Minnesota Vikings
There were a host of cuts for the Vikings yesterday with no fewer than 13 guys let go. There’s a lot more breathing room in the lockerroom now.
Those guys were wide receivers LaMark Brown, Erik Highsmith and Chris Summers, offensive linemen Tyler Holmes and Camden Wentz, defensive linemen Lawrence Jackson and Marquis Jackson, linebacker Stanford Keglar, defensive backs Greg McCoy and Roderick Williams, running backs Bradley Randle and Jerodis Williams, and lastly quarterback James Vandenberg.
Quite the mouthful.
No guessing who the biggest cut was. Former first round pick of the Seahawks Lawrence Jackson who has never able to build on his impressive first year in Detroit to deliver on his potential. Can we bounce back from this? He didn’t look great in preseason with a -2.8 grade on 87 snaps. You can’t really say any of the other moves really caught the eye.
11:15 – Washington Redskins
This may be the end for Donte Stallworth. His career has had some highs but he just couldn’t fight his way through to a roster spot in a crowded receiver group. They gave him 51 snaps in the offseason but he could only catch two of six passes thrown his way and did drop one.
Of course he wasn’t the only one. There was also goodbyes to be had for cornerback Richard Crawford, linebackers Ricky Elmore, Quan Sturdivant and Jeremy Kimbrough, Eric Kettani, John Potter and Chip Reeves. Kettani, the former Navy fullback, actually looked the part with his lead blocker against the Steelers so his story may not be over yet. The same can’t be said for the trio of linebackers that managed just 17 preseason snaps between them. Crawford might be the biggest surprise at this stage however. He didn’t play poorly in the preseason (+0.1) and was decent enough in his 201 snaps last year.
11:10 – Dallas Cowboys
Only one guy gone so far from Dallas and it’s former Jaguars seventh round pick, Jeris Pendleton. His release comes as something of a surprise since he was both heavily used (115 snaps) and played reasonably well (+3.0 run defense grade). Sure he offered little as a pass rusher but what did you expect? He’s a guy that will draw some interest as he displayed some talent in his 33 snaps with the Jaguars last year.
11:05 – Green Bay Packers
Kicker Giorgio Tavecchio was meant to be camp competition for Mason Crosby but it never materialized as he missed his only kick attempt from 40 yards plus. Of course that wasn’t the biggest news, as it was the release of Graham Harrell that earned that honor. He had his chance in preseason but allowed Vince Young to outplay him as he was well worth his -1.5 grade. No real implications here for the Packers because either way this is a team still dependent on the talent of the excellent Aaron Rodgers.
Others to go were wide receivers Omarius Hines and Justin Wilson, running back Angelo Pease, and defensive tackle Gilbert Pena. The two wideouts combined for just 27 snaps, failing to put forward a case for more playing time. Pease was the longest of long shots with the depth at running back Green Bay has and could only muster a -1.7 grade on his 16 snaps. Meanwhile defensive tackle Pena managed 41 snaps and a +0.8 grade in run defense. Unfortunately it’s one area of the team that is performing exceptionally well right not.
11:00 – Houston Texans
A busier day for the Texans that some. After seeing two snaps against the Saints they decided Zach Boren wasn’t the fullback for them, while Ray Graham was the first running back to be let go as that competition intensifies. The remaining guys cut on offense were guard Bryan Collins, tackle Nick Mondek and tight end Adam Schiltz. Oh and one time preseason wonder Stephen McGee who we can safely assume isn’t going to make it in this league at this point. Mondek and Collins were gone when they didn’t get on the field this week while Schiltz couldn’t do enough to make the team look past the impressive play of Ryan Griffin so far.
On defense linebackers Elliot Coffey and Ja’Red Davis went (proving that wearing a number in the 60s isn’t a good omen), with cornerback Travis Howard and defensive Earl Okine also dismissed. Davis looked to have the best bet of lasting a little longer based on his 64 snaps, but it wasn’t to be.
10:55 – Cleveland Browns
The end was nigh for five now former Browns who handed in their playbooks yesterday. The most notable name was Jordan Norwood who the team had been trying to make something of since they picked him up after the Eagles let him go in 2009. Back in 2011 he even got on the field for 250 snaps but his speed didn’t translate to production and he found himself limited to just 77 snaps a year later. He was clearly not in the new regimes plans, especially after trading for Davone Bess.
He was joined by fellow receiver Cordell Roberson who caught four of the seven balls thrown his way, but did drop two passes. The others to go came on defense with Dave Kruger saying bye-bye to the team and his brother after just 4 preseason snaps. Those others continuing their dreams elsewhere were Vernon Kearney (49 snaps) and Tommy Smith (42 defensive snaps). Neither made the kind of impression that meant they were unexpendable.
10:45 – Cincinnati Bengals
If you watch Hard Knocks tonight you may get a final glimpse of the six chaps the Bengals cut yesterday. One was always likely with kicker Quinn Sharp never likely to unseat Mike Nugent. Of the others two were on offense and three on defense. The skill position guys to go were Jheranie Boyd and Richard Quinn. Yep that’s the Richard Quinn who not so long ago was a second round pick and got on the field for 63 snaps in the preseason. He was overdrafted and has under delivered as a pro.
On defense Jordan Campbell always faced an uphill battle to make the team and so it proved. The team is deep at linebacker and he couldn’t find more than 24 snaps with the last being against the Titans. Terrence Brown found himself in a similar situation trying to make it on a deep loaded at cornerback and couldn’t get onto the field at all. The last of the guys was Vaughn Meatoga and although he didn’t embarress himself in 20 snaps, he couldn’t crack a deep position with the team giving the majority of snaps to the impressive Terrence Stephens.
10:30 – New England Patriots
Just the sixmaking way in New England, and one of those was a reserve long snapper (Mike Zupancic). Of the other five only two played offense and combined they accounted for just 35 preseason snaps. Those men were Kamar Aiken and Evan Landi and neither had the opportunity to seperate themselves from the rest.
On defense they’ve said goodbye to Brandon Jones, Niko Koutouvides and LeQuan Lewis. Of them Jones saw the most preseason action (43) snaps but the biggest name to go is special teamer Koutouvides. He even got some playing time on defense a couple of years back (not that he did that well) and managed two special teams tackles last year.
10:00 – Miami Dolphins
Not many to speak of with the Dolphins who said goodbye to five guys yesterday. On the offensive side of the ball they got rid of Jeff Braun (a player who saw only seven snaps in preseason), Chandler Burden (who earned had his worst game of preseason at left guard versus the Texans a week ago), and wide receiver Kenny Stafford (a player who caught one ball for 3 yards and dropped another).
Two guys on defense were given similar treatment. Defensive tackle Chris Burnette (-3.4) had plenty of opportunities to impress (52 snaps) but struggled in the run game as the grade shows. The other was linebacker Alonzo Highsmith who didn’t look completely out of place in very limited action, but couldn’t get on the field against Tampa like the rest of the guys.
09:30 – Buffalo Bills
The Bills haven’t trimmed their roster as quickly as some but they did release five players yesterday. Perhaps the most notable is wide receiver Da’Rick Rogers (+0.6). There was some buzz about him when he was signed up as an undrafted free agent but in 34 preseason snaps he didn’t do enough to beat out the guys above him with players like Brandon Kaufman (+2.6) making a stronger case to be kept on the roster (at least for a few more days).
Others getting cut included DeMarco Sampson (+1.7 on 48 snaps), Ryan Turnley (-2.3 on 30 snaps), Dominique Ellis (27 snaps) and Jumal Rolle (44 snaps).
It’s a new day and we’re back blogging away on all the moves as teams trim down their roster. Keep coming back every 30 minutes and get reaction to all the moves.
Turn the page for the news from yesterday
According to Cam Inman of the San Jose Mercury News, the 49ers have traded OLB Parys Haralson to the Saints. The trade became a necessity for the Saints who lost new OLB-convert Will Smith to a season-ending knee injury. The Saints are transitioning to the 3-4 this season and already had question marks about whether or not their personnel was ready for the change. Now their depth will be challenged even further though Haralson should be a good fit given his experience at the position.
Haralson is coming off a season-ending injury of his own as he didn’t take a snap in 2012 after playing primarily in the 49ers’ base defense with OLB Aldon Smith spelling him on passing downs in 2011. He graded at +4.8 overall on 577 snaps that year, including +4.7 against the run. Heading into this eighth year in the league, it’s unlikely the Saints can expect more than average pass rushing production (+0.7 in 2011), but Haralson’s knowledge of the defense and ability to play on early downs should be a good fit. He’s had a strong preseason grading at +5.0 on 51 snaps to this point.
The 49ers remains strong at outside linebacker with Smith and Ahmad Brooks entrenched as starters to go with rookie third round pick Corey Lemonier (+2.3) and 2012 seventh round pick Cam Johnson also in the mix.
The most notable name of the Titans releases is T Barry Richardson who actually held his own at times last year after a difficult 2011. He graded at +2.1 for the Rams last season, but the Titans only gave him 35 preseason snaps that saw him grade at +0.1. With two tackles already entrenched as starters, Richardson’s best chance at making the team was as a swing tackle, but he’s been outperformed by Mike Otto (+5.3) to this point.
The rest of the Titans’ releases: K Maikon Bonani (+6.2 on kickoffs), WR Justin Hilton (0 snaps), Roberto Wallace (8 snaps) and Diondre Borel (7 snaps), S Tracy Wilson (26 snaps, +1.3), CB George Baker (8 snaps), LBs Greg Jones (32 snaps, -1.4) and Kadarron Anderson (63 snaps, +2.4), C Eloy Atkinson (14 snaps), G Oscar Johnson (14 snaps), and TEs Martel Webb (0 snaps) and DeMarco Cosby (0 snaps).
St. Louis Rams
The Rams didn’t have many surprises as they cut: K/P Brett Baer (-0.6), WRs Demetrius Fields (23 snaps), Andrew Helmick (18 snaps), and Raymond Radway (39 snaps, -2.1), LS Jorgen Hus, QB Tim Jenkins (6 snaps), DT Al Lapuaho (91 snaps, -3.3), LB Joseph Lebeau (4 snaps), G Graham Pocic (22 snaps, -2.6) , TE Colby Prince (12 snaps), and CB Robert Steeples (62 snaps, -1.9).
San Diego Chargers
San Diego released C Colin Baxter who is probably best known for being thrust into the New York Jets’ lineup in Week 2 of 2011 as an undrafted rookie free agent and posted a disastrous -8.9 grade over a two-week period. He’s played sparingly since then including only nine snaps for the Chargers last season and only nine during the preseason. Speaking of disastrous games, the Chargers also released T Brandyn Dombrowski who last saw the field in 2011 when he notched the lowest game we’ve every graded for a tackle at –12.5 in Week 10. He graded at -3.2 in 47 preseason snaps at guard. Also released was WR Deon Butler, the former Seahawks wide receiver who hasn’t caught a pass since Week 17 in 2011. He graded at -0.3 on his 31 preseason snaps.
The rest of the Chargers’ releases: RB Edwin Baker (23 snaps, +1.1), CB Greg Brown (47 snaps, +0.8), S Tony Burnett (10 snaps), QB Nathan Enderle (9 snaps), P Richard Kent (+1.9), DT Jamarkus McFarland (45 snaps, +0.5), and TE Dallas Walker (11 snaps).
Among the Steelers cuts were former Arizona Cardinal OT D’Anthony Batiste and RB Baron Batch. Batiste had a difficult 2012 grading as our second-worst OT at -38.7 and he followed it up with a -2.2 effort on 42 preseason snaps. Batch was in the Steelers’ running back mix last year but was unable to take advantage as he picked up only 49 yards on 25 carries. He graded at -0.8 on his 33 snaps this August.
The other Steelers releases include: OL Justin Cheadle (35 snaps, -1.6), OT Mike Farrell (0 snaps), WRs David Gilreath (20 snaps), Tyler Shaw (0 snaps), and J.D. Woods (13 snaps), CB Ryan Steed (-1.4), LB Stevenson Sylvester (0 snaps), TE Peter Tuitupou (23 snaps, -0.5), CB DeMarcus Van Dyke (0 snaps), QB John Parker Wilson (13 snaps), and RB Jeremy Wright (8 snaps).
The Raiders released 10 players, most notably WR/KR Josh Cribbs. We tracked Cribbs’ progress in free agency rather closely back in March, from tweets about him being on planes to various reports about where he was going to sign. It’s all for not as he’s back on the open market after battling injuries during camp, not even seeing game action at wide receiver and grading at -1.7 on his seven kick returns this preseason.
Among the other Raiders cuts: LBs Keenan Clayton (36 snaps, +1.2) and Eric Harper (30 snaps, -1.2), FB Jon Hoese (8 snaps), WRs Sam McGuffie (5 snaps), Isaiah Williams (18 snaps) and Tray Session (49 snaps, +0.8), CB Cory Nelms (9 snaps), G Andrew Robiskie (28 snaps, -1.9), and DT Myles Wade (9 snaps).
New York Jets
The Jets announced 15 cuts today including RB Joe McKnight and G Stephen Peterman. This ends a disappointing run for McKnight in New York who was expected to bring a dynamic playmaking ability to their offense but instead saw the field for only 286 snaps and posted a -0.9 overall grade in his three years. There was even a brief experiment with moving McKnight to cornerback. Someone will likely to give him a chance to live up to his change-of-pace-back potential.
The first offensive snap the Detroit Lions take this season will be the first without Peterman at right guard since Week 13 of 2010 and it will mark their first game without Peterman starting since Week 11 of 2009. This preseason, he was unable to crack the Jets starting lineup over free agent acquisition Willie Colon. Peterman may still have some use as a player as he graded at a respectable +0.8 last season, but only -8.5 as a pass blocker. He did not have a strong preseason grading at -4.9 on his 78 snaps.
The other big name to get released was WR Braylon Edwards. It remains to be seen what he has left in the tank after grading at +0.4 last year between New York and Seattle. Edwards played 45 preseason snaps and graded at +0.6.
The rest of the Jets cuts: WRs Joe Collins (21 snaps), Marcus Rucker (0 snaps), Rahsaan Vaughn (0 snaps) and K.J. Stroud (5 snaps), OLs Patrick Ford (0 snaps), and Trey Gilleo (12 snaps), DB Brett Lockett (0 snaps), RB Chad Spann (19 snaps), LS Patrick Scales, P Ryan Quigley (-1.2), CB Donnie Fletcher (9 snaps), and LB Sean Progar (35 snaps, -0.6).
No denying who the biggest cut for the Eagles was. Former Giants first round pick Kenny Phillips is a goner. Way back in 2011 he was our sixth ranked safety on the year with a series of solid, if not flashy, displays. Unfortunately his career has been hampered by injuries and he only saw 30 snaps in preseason (all in their opener) and that was enough reason for the Eagles to cut ties. If a team can get him healthy he’s a good pickup, but that’s a big if.
The Eagles other releases include Derek Carrier (29 snaps), Jamar Chaney (69 snaps), Nick Miller (45 snaps), Eddie McClam (6 snaps) , Nic Purcell (-4.8), Isaac Remington (24 snaps), Will Shaw (-2.2), Daryell Walker (28 snaps), James Winchester and Eddie Whitley (47 snaps)
New York Giants
The biggest name out of the Giants cuts was LB Aaron Curry, but it’s probably not a huge surprise that he was unable to catch on in New York. The former first-rounder still has draft analysts scratching their heads as the poster boy for the “safe” draft choice that didn’t pan out. He careers a -24.0 career grade and he graded at-1.5 on his 41 preseason snaps. The other name fans will recognize is five-year veteran DT Frank Okam who graded at 0.0 on his 30 snaps after being out of the league last year.
Among the other releases: TEs Jamie Childers (-2.9)and Chase Clement (13 snaps) WRs Brandon Collins (-1.3) and Terrence Sinkfield (0 snaps), OLs Austin Holtz (0 snaps) and Michael Jasper (26 snaps), FB Ben Guidugli (15 snaps), LBs Jake Muasau (37 snaps, +0.1) and Etienne Sabino (27 snaps, -0.1), CB Laron Scott (40 snaps, -0.3), DB Junior Mertile (21 snaps), and S Alonzo Tweedy (8 snaps).
The Jaguars released 12 players yesterday including: G Mark Asper (-5.4), LBs Jeremiah Green (18 snaps) and Maalik Bomar (33 snaps, -0.1), Long snappers Jeremy Cain and Luke Ingram, DEs J.D. Griggs (56 snaps, -0.2) and Paul Hazel (54 snaps, -0.8), WR Jamal Miles (24 snaps), P Ken Parrish (+3.7), S Ray Polk (-1.0), CB Lionel Smith (8 snaps) and T Roderick Tomlin (22 snaps, -1.2).
The most notable of the Colts’ releases was DT Kellen Heard who graded at -5.1 on 185 snaps in a reserve role for them last season. The 6-foot-6, 355 pounder started his career with the Buffalo Bills and will now look to latch on with his third team. The big man may still have some potential left so he’ll likely be on the radar for other teams running a 3-4. Heard graded at +0.7 on his 59 preseason snaps including two stops on his 22 snaps against the run.
The rest of the Colts releases included: CBs Johnny Adams (25 snaps), Allen Chapman (+0.3), and Teddy Williams (0 snaps), G Danous Estenor (15 snaps), P/K Brandon McManus (+4.9 on kickoffs), RB Davin Meggett (17 snaps), LB C.O. Prime, (+0.7) C Rick Schmeig (15 snaps), S Ashante Williams (29 snaps, +0.5), and WR Maurice Williams (0 snaps).
Not a lot of big names among the Broncos releases but draft analysts may be surprised to see undrafted free agent rookie CB Nigel Malone released after only nine preseason snaps. Many analysts had a draftable grade on Malone so he may have a chance to catch on elsewhere.
Here are the rest of the cuts: WRs Kemonte Bateman (21 snaps), Quincy McDuffie (0 snaps), and Greg Orton (0 snaps), TE Deangelo Peterson (3 snaps), OT Manase Foketi (3 snaps), QB Ryan Katz (0 snaps), C Quentin Saulsberry (3 snaps), CB Mario Butler (29 snaps, -0.9), LB Uona Kaveinga (5 snaps), DE Lanston Tanyi (13 snaps).
Perhaps the most notable release out of Arizona was that of kicker Dan Carpenter. The former Miami Dolphin was unable to beat out K Jay Feely for the starting job as he graded at -0.6 during the preseason. Carpenter ranked 16th among kickers last season with a +21.2 grade so chances are he’ll be one of the first options for kicker-needy teams during the season.
The rest of the cuts include: OT Joe Caprioglio (26 snaps, +0.4), WRs Jarrett Dillard (8 snaps) and Nicholas Edwards (17 snaps), Cs Deveric Gallington (8 snaps) and Scott Wedige (18 snaps, +0.4), QB Caleb Terbush (6 snaps), DE Cordian Hagans (15 snaps), LB Korey Jones (8 snaps) DT Jonathan Mathis (11 snaps) and CB Ronnie Yell (30 snaps, -1.0).
Not a lot of surprises out of Falcons camp as they released 14 players, 10 of which play on the offensive side of the ball. Here are the players and their preseason production:
TE Tim Biere (0 snaps), QB Seth Doege (0 snaps), FB Devonte Campbell (29 snaps, -0.6), TE Colin Cloherty (-3.9, two drops), WRs Marcus Jackson (34 snaps, -1.4), Marcus Sales (18 snaps, -0.4), and Rashad Evans (17 snaps), OT Jeff Nady (0 snaps), RB Donald Russell (19 snaps, +0.6) C Matt Smith (11 snaps), LB Nick Clancy (23 snaps +1.3), DE Cam Henderson (4 snaps), S Troy Sanders (7 snaps), and DE Brandon Thurmond (6 snaps).
Kansas City Chiefs
The Chiefs announced 14 releases today, including American “hero” Ricky Stanzi. He only took 16 snaps during the preseason and was a clear fourth on the depth chart behind Alex Smith, Chase Daniel, and Tyler Bray. Stanzi has yet to take a regular season snap.
Perhaps the most notable release in Kansas City was WR Terrance Copper who has been lurking around the league since 2004. He was only in on 13 plays in the preseason after catching eight passes for 79 yards last season.
The rest of the Chiefs releases include: CBs Vince Agnew (-7.3), Neiko Thorpe (+0.1), and Kamaal McIlwain (19 snaps), DEs Miguel Chavis (26 snaps, +0.4) and Rob Lohr (39 snaps, -0.1), OLs Ryan Durand (-3.9), A.J. Hawkins (16 snaps) and Hutch Eckerson (0 snaps),WR Tyler Shoemaker (-1.8), FB Braden Wilson (16 snaps), RB Jordan Roberts (7 snaps), and FS Otha Foster (-1.3)
The Lions parted ways with veteran FS Chris Hope after he graded at -1.5 on 98 preseason snaps. He had three spot starts in Atlanta last season that saw him grade at -5.3 on 273 snaps. The 11-year veteran could provide an experienced presence to another team’s defensive backfield, but he hasn’t been a valuable starter in the league since 2010.
Among the other notable releases in Detroit is that of DE Ronnell Lewis, last year’s fourth round pick. It was a curious selection for the Lions at the time as Lewis seems to be a better fit as either a SAM linebacker in a 4-3 or as a rush linebacker in a 3-4. He never really took to the defensive end role in the Lions’ 4-3 and saw the field for only one snap last year. This preseason, he graded at +2.3 overall including +3.0 against the run.
The rest of the Lions’ releases include: DT John Drew (0 snaps), CBs D.J. Johnson (-0.9), Myron Lewis (18 snaps), and Ross Weaver (6 snaps), WRs Chaz Schilens (-0.6) and Cody Wilson (-0.5) , and G Derek Hardman (-4.2).
The Bears’ tight end position has not looked good behind starter Martellus Bennett this preseason, particularly in the running game. Today, they released Leonard Pope (-3.3) and Gabe Miller (-1.4) but that leaves an uninspiring Steve Maneri (-5.1) and Fendi Onobun (-5.6) as Bennett’s top backups.
Devin Aromashodu’s return to Chicago did not last long as he was released after 60 preseason snaps that saw him grade at +0.1.
Among the rest of the Bears cuts were RB Curtis Brinkley (0 snaps), DT Eric Foster (7 snaps), OT A.J. Lindeman (11 snaps), C P.J. Lonergan (11 snaps), S Derrick Martin (36 snaps, +1.4), DE Kyle Moore (-2.6), DT Brent Russell (-1.3), LB Patrick Trahan (-0.5), LB Lawrence Wilson (-0.1), P Tress Way (-2.5) and S Tom Zbikowski (-0.5).
Unfortunate rumors coming out of Buffalo that QB Kevin Kolb may be forced to retire due to concussion issues. With first round rookie E.J. Manuel out for the rest of the preseason, the Bills have responded by bringing in QBs Matt Leinart and Thaddeus Lewis. Leinart has bounced around the league since being drafted in the first round of the 2006 draft while Lewis took all 65 of his career snaps in a Week 17 start last season against the Pittsburgh Steelers that saw him grade at -1.0. Chances are both players are simply keeping the seat warm for Manuel’s return and adding the some much-needed depth as we head into the preseason’s last week.
The other interesting story is undrafted rookie free agent Jeff Tuel. He looked outstanding in his first NFL action but only threw three passes in his second game. We’ve yet to get the final grades on yesterday’s game, but he’s at least gotten the attention of the Buffalo coaching staff with his strong start.
After turning the NFL Combine into near-first round hype in 2010, OT Bruce Campbell is looking for work after the Panthers let him go. Campbell’s only played 54 snaps in this three years in the league, and he graded at -0.1 in a 52-snap performance against the Chicago Bears in Carolina’s first preseason game.
One defensive end who flashed as much as any in the league this preseason was Louis Nzegwu who graded at +5.8 on only 35 snaps. He notched three sacks and three hurries in his limited time, but it wasn’t enough to secure a roster spot at one of the team’s deepest positions.
WR Kealoha Pilares (-0.9) fell behind the other wide receivers after catching two of his six targets for 12 yards in his two preseason games.
Amongt the other cuts for the Panthers were QB Colby Cameron (0 snaps), P Jordan Gray (-1.5), CB Nick Hixson (25 snaps, -1.0), K Morgan Kineberry (+0.6), WR Dale Moss (2 snaps), LB Ryan Rau (26 snaps, +0.4), S Ricardo Silva (15 snaps, -0.8), OG Justin Wells (1 snap), and FB Michael Zordich (1 snap).
Time to take a look at some of cuts to this point. We’ll start with a team-by-team look, before keeping up with the action as it unfolds.
The defending Super Bowl champions have cut 12 players, none of which were all that surprising. The most notable name was TE Visanthe Shiancoe who was brought in as possible insurance for injured starter Dennis Pitta. The veteran tight end played only 57 uneventful snaps last season for the New England Patriots and posted a -2.7 grade on 80 snaps for the Ravens during the preseason. The tight end position hasn’t been a strong one for Baltimore through three preseason games as five players have seen the field and all have posted negative grades, Shiancoe’s being the worst of the bunch.
OLB Meshak Williams was an intriguing undrafted free agent out of Kansas State but he underwhelmed in his 45 preseason snaps. He failed to notch any pressure on his 23 pass rush attempts. Fellow undrafted rookie free agent, CB Mo Lee, graded at +2.1 on the strength of an interception late in Week 1 against the Buccaneers, but only 24 snaps was not enough to overcome an uphill battle for a roster spot. Yet another undrafted rookie free agent was released in DE Will Pericak whose -2.6 grade is the only negative on Baltimore’s defensive line during the preseason. He only pressured the quarterback once on his 23 chances.
Amongst the other players who have been released, RB Damien Berry graded at -2.5 on his 45 plays that included a couple of drops (one nullified by penalty) in the passing game. Three offensive linemen were sent packing in Jack Cornell, David Mims, and Ramon Harewood. Only Harewood has seen regular season action in his career as the former 2010 sixth-round pick graded at -0.5 on 352 snaps in a backup role last season. Cornell did some fine work in the running game in his limited time this preseason grading at +2.1 while Mims struggled to a -3.2 overall. The rest of Baltimore’s releases include WRs Tommy Streeter (37 snaps, -0.1), Rashaad Carter (two snaps), and Gerrard Sheppard (zero snaps), and LB Bryan Hall (22 snaps, -0.5).