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Gailey says Jackson has “concussion-like symptoms”

Buffalo Bills v New England Patriots Getty Images

The Bills have yet to officially diagnose running back Fred Jackson with a concussion.  Appearing Monday morning on WGR 55 in Buffalo, coach Chan Gailey admitted that, on the flight back from New England, Jackson was experiencing “concussion-like symptoms.”

So . . . he was hit in the head while playing football, he left the game because of it, and he was suffering “concussion-like symptoms” on the flight home.  Maybe he ate a bad black-and-white cookie.

It’s a bit ridiculous that some teams continue to resist application of the “C” word, but it’s understandable.  Once that label is used, the team loses control over the process, with the player returning to practice and/or games only after being cleared by an independent neurologist.

For Jackson, it’s unlikely that such clearance will be provided before Thursday night, when the Bills and Dolphins get together for their lone short-week game of the year.

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49ers sign wide receiver DeAndre Carter

FOXBORO, MA - AUGUST 18: DeAndre Carter #13 of the New England Patriots makes the catch as Taveze Calhoun #33 of the Chicago Bears defends in the second half of a preseason game at Gillette Stadium on August 18, 2016 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images) Getty Images

The 49ers have signed wide receiver DeAndre Carter to a two-year contract.

Carter broke into the league with the Ravens following the 2015 draft. He has bounced around since then, spending time on the practice squad with the Raiders and Patriots. He went to camp with the Patriots last year before being waived in September.

The 49ers are expected to remake their receiving corps under new head coach Kyle Shanahan, so Carter will go to camp with a chance to earn a roster spot.

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Placement of chip in football poses another challenge

GLENDALE, AZ - OCTOBER 23:  Detail of NFL footballs during the NFL game between the Arizona Cardinals and the Seattle Seahawks at the University of Phoenix Stadium on October 23, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. The Cardinals and Seahawks tied 6-6.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) Getty Images

As Mike Pereira explains it, putting a chip in the football won’t help with rulings that depend on determining when a player’s knee hits the ground. There’s another issue with embracing ball-chip technology.

A source with extensive knowledge of the efforts to develop improved football technologies tells PFT that the question of where to place the chip also has vexed those trying to come up with a way to determine digitally the question of whether the ball crosses a boundary or breaks a plane.

“If we are counting on the chip to provide exact ball placement at the time the runner is ruled down that placement will oftentimes be inaccurate depending on how the ball is being carried,” the source explained. “Assume the chip is in the left tip of the ball and the runner has that end tucked in his elbow. When he’s ruled down it’s the opposite end that accurately places the ball.”

It’s a great point, and it means that, as a practical matter, a football would need to have sufficient chips to create a digital map of its location in relation to yard markers, sidelines, goal lines, etc.

Which means that it would make a lot more sense to suspend efforts to digitize the football and instead put cameras in as many places as possible to give a full and complete universe of angles and looks to ensure that officials will be able to quickly and efficiently determine whether the ruling on the field was right or wrong.

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Giants go from No. 130 to No. 140 in draft due to walkie-talkie penalty

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 18:  head coach Ben McAdoo of the New York Giantslooks on against the Detroit Lions during their game at MetLife Stadium on December 18, 2016 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) Getty Images

The NFL’s announcement of compensatory picks on Friday included handing the Browns with the 139th overall pick and the Rams with the 141st overall pick, but No. 140 was not included in the additional picks distributed around the league.

That pick near the end of the fourth round belongs to the Giants, who wound up in that spot as a result of league discipline.

After the Giants were found to be using walkie-talkies on the sideline in violation of league rules during a game last December, the league ruled that the Giants would see their fourth-round pick drop down the draft order. The team will also pay a $150,000 fine while head coach Ben McAdoo, who used the device when his regular connection to quarterback Eli Manning went out, will pay a $50,000 fine.

The Giants did not receive any compensatory picks in this year’s draft after going on a defensive free agent buying spree last offseason that got them back to the postseason for the first time in five years.

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Past trades net Patriots, Titans third-round compensatory picks

BALTIMORE, MD - NOVEMBER 10: Wide receiver Steve Smith #89 of the Baltimore Ravens is tackled by outside linebacker Jamie Collins #51 of the Cleveland Browns in the first quarter at M&T Bank Stadium on November 10, 2016 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) Getty Images

When the Browns and Patriots agreed on a trade sending linebacker Jamie Collins from New England to Cleveland, the pick going back to the Patriots was unknown.

If the Browns got a third-round compensatory pick, they would convey it to the Patriots. The Browns found out that they did get a compensatory pick on Friday, so the 103rd overall pick will be in play for Bill Belichick to use in April. The Patriots now have two third-round picks and two fifth-round picks to go with selections in the first, second, fourth (they acquired one in a trade during last year’s draft to offset the one stripped by the NFL in Deflategate) and seventh rounds.

This is the first year that teams have been allowed to deal compensatory picks in trades and the Patriots weren’t the only ones adding a third-round selection to their collection. The Titans will pick at No. 100 with the Rams sending their compensatory pick to Nashville in last year’s trade for the first overall pick.

The Browns were rewarded with four compensatory picks, but they will only have two come the draft. They also agreed to send a fourth-round compensatory pick to the Eagles as part of Philly’s deal for the No. 2 overall pick last year. They received two of them and it is believed the higher of the picks — No. 139 overall — will go to the Eagles.

Cleveland also received a compensatory selection in the fifth round to go with the nine other picks under their control.

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Eleven teams get compensatory third-round picks

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - AUGUST 12: Olivier Vernon #54 of the New York Giants of the New York Giants during warm ups before an NFL preseason game against the Miami Dolphins at MetLife Stadium on August 12, 2016 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) Getty Images

Half the teams in the league ended up with extra draft picks Friday, with 11 teams getting an extra third-rounder.

The league announced compensatory choices, which are awarded to teams for net free agent losses the year before.

The highest pick, the 97th overall, went to the Dolphins, who were picked over last March, with defensive end Olivier Vernon and Lamar Miller among their losses.

The Panthers, who pulled the franchise tag from cornerback Josh Norman and watched him go to Washington, were given the 98th pick. The Ravens (annually among the league leaders in comp picks) were 99th, followed by the Rams. The Broncos, Seahawks, Browns, Chiefs, Steelers, Seahawks again and the Jets also added third-round comp picks.

The Bengals, Browns, Broncos, and Chiefs each got four extra picks.

A total of 32 choices were handed out, with 16 teams receiving at least one. Unlike previous years, comp picks can be traded this year, which should spice up the second and third days of the draft. Here’s a look at the picks awarded:

3-97, Miami

3-98, Carolina

3-99, Baltimore

3-100, Los Angeles Rams

3-101, Denver

3-102, Seattle

3-103, Cleveland

3-104, Kansas City

3-105, Pittsburgh

3-106, Seattle

3-107, New York Jets

4-138, Cincinnati

4-139, Cleveland

4-141, Los Angeles Rams

4-142, Cleveland

4-143, San Francisco

4-144, Indianapolis

5-178, Cincinnati

5-179, Denver

5-180, Miami

5-181, Arizona

5-182, Kansas City

5-183, Cleveland

5-184, Green Bay

5-185, New England

5-186, Miami

6-218, Kansas City

6-219, Cincinnati

6-220, Kansas City

7-253, Cincinnati

7-254, Denver

7-255, Denver

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Adrian Peterson is perplexed that people doubt him

Adrian Peterson AP

Vikings running back Adrian Peterson knows a lot of people doubt he can ever return to his past greatness, but he doesn’t understand why.

Peterson told Josina Anderson of ESPN he’s perplexed by that talk. Peterson notes that he has previously recovered from a serious knee injury to have an MVP season, and he notes that in 2015 he led the league with 1,485 rushing yards. He sees no reason he can’t come back again and have another big year in 2017.

What Peterson may not want to admit, however, is what athletes often can’t admit to themselves: He’s getting old. Yes, he led the league in rushing in 2015, but even that year he was beginning to slow down toward the end of the season: Over the last eight games of 2015, counting the playoffs, Peterson averaged just 3.67 yards per carry. And at the start of 2016, before he suffered the torn meniscus that would allow him to play in just one more game all year, he was even worse: Peterson totaled 31 carries for 50 yards before suffering that meniscus tear in Week Two.

And the reality is, while Peterson still led the league in rushing at age 30 in 2015, for an NFL running back the difference between 30 and 32 is huge. There have been 25 running backs in NFL history who gained at least 1,000 yards at age 30. Only two of them, Walter Payton and Emmitt Smith, also gained at least 1,000 yards at age 32. And neither Payton nor Smith suffered a serious knee injury at age 31, as Peterson did.

So while Peterson may have no doubt that he can return to form, it’s easy to understand why others doubt him. Every athlete gets old eventually, and for Peterson, that time has come.

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Mike Pettine Sr. passes away

PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 11: A Cleveland Browns helmet rests on the field prior to the game against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field on September 11, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Eagles defeated the Browns 29-10. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) Getty Images

Mike Pettine Sr., a legendary high school football coach in Pennsylvania and father of former Browns head coach Mike Pettine Jr., passed away on Friday.

Per the Bucks County Times, Pettine Sr. was at his winter home in Florida when he passed.

Pettine Sr. was the coach at Central Bucks West High School in Eastern Pennsylvania for 33 seasons and won 326 games. He also won four state championships and won three consecutive state championships before retiring in 1999. His final year as coach was documented by ESPN cameras for a series called The Season.

Pettine Sr. was 5-0 against his son before Mike Pettine Jr. went to the NFL, first with the Ravens, then as defensive coordinator with the Bills before becoming head coach of the Browns in 2014-15. Pettine Sr. was often seen at Browns training camp and other offseason activities when his son was in Cleveland.

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Cardinals bringing back return man Jeremy Ross

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 01:   Carson Palmer #3 of the Arizona Cardinals celebrates his touchdown pass to Jeremy Ross #16 with Larry Fitzgerald #11 to take a 13-0 lead over the Los Angeles Rams during the second quarter at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on January 1, 2017 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) Getty Images

The Cardinals brought Jeremy Ross in for a late look last year, and apparently want to take a longer one.

According to Adam Caplan of ESPN, the Cardinals have re-signed Ross to a one-year deal.

The journeyman special teamer was brought in last year after the Cards cut Michael Floyd following his DUI arrest, and appeared in two games.

He’s also spent time with the Jets, Ravens, Raiders, Lions, and Packers.

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Director of college scouting Matt Malaspina leaves 49ers, takes job with Packers

Seattle Seahawks v Green Bay Packers Getty Images

When teams hire new General Managers, the move is usually followed by other departures from the personnel department and the 49ers are proving to be no exception.

They announced that assistant G.M. Tom Gamble is leaving the team and he’ll be followed out the door by director of college scouting Matt Malaspina. According to multiple reports on Friday, Malaspina is joining them as a college scout.

Malaspina spent the last 12 years with the 49ers and spent the last four years at the top of their college scouting hierarchy. He worked for the Seahawks and Panthers before joining the Niners.

The 49ers will likely be making further moves in their personnel department as new General Manager John Lynch puts his stamp on the front office. He’s already hired Adam Peters as vice president of player personnel and former Lions G.M. Martin Mayhew as a senior personnel executive.

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Mohamed Sanu: Fourth quarter collapse won’t be our legacy

HOUSTON, TX - FEBRUARY 05:  Mohamed Sanu #12 of the Atlanta Falcons avoids a tackle by Logan Ryan #26 of the New England Patriots in the fourth quarter during Super Bowl 51 at NRG Stadium on February 5, 2017 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) Getty Images

Shortly after the Super Bowl, former NFL coach Kevin Gilbride stopped by PFT Live and told us that it can take a long time for an NFL team to get over a playoff collapse.

Gilbride has first-hand experience on that front as he was the offensive coordinator for the 1992 Oilers when they blew a huge lead against the Bills. The Oilers struggled out of the gate the next year, something Gilbride attributed to an extended hangover from that meltdown.

The Falcons will have to guard against a similar fate come the start of the 2017 season. One way that wide receiver Mohamaed Sanu appears to be approaching that task is to resist defining themselves solely as the team that gave up a 25-point lead over the final 23 minutes of Super Bowl LI.

“I mean, it’s however you guys want to interpret it as. Us as a team, we know what we have and what we did throughout the whole season and I wouldn’t say the last quarter of that game is our legacy,” Sanu said on NFL Network. “We did what we had to do throughout the season to make it on the big stage and we played well. It just so happened it didn’t go our way.”

While Sanu said that the pain of the loss has “definitely gotten better” over the last couple of weeks and that he’s focused on moving forward to the 2017 season, he also admitted there are still days where he wakes up thinking about the missed opportunity. Channelling those feelings in the right way will be a must for the Falcons if they want to give themselves another shot to finish the job.

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Broncos begin process of rebuilding defensive line

NEW ORLEANS, LA - DECEMBER 27:  Bobby Richardson #78 of the New Orleans Saints celebrates an interception during the second quarter of a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on December 27, 2015 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images) Getty Images

Denver’s looking for defensive line help, and they’re dealing in bulk.

The Broncos announced they are signing former Saints defensive end Bobby Richardson.

He started 11 games for the Saints in 2015 after making the team as an undrafted rookie, but bounced from practice squads in Washington and Kansas City.

The Broncos also brought former Dolphins defensive tackle Earl Mitchell, and are still awaiting word on that possible acquisition, as they add depth to a group that was hit hard with injuries last year.

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Are Vikings fans ready to move on from Adrian Peterson?

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - SEPTEMBER 20: Adrian Peterson #28 of the Minnesota Vikings carries the ball against the Detroit Lions during the game on August 20, 2015 at TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Vikings defeated the Lions 26-16. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) Getty Images

The Vikings have yet to offer running back Adrian Peterson a contract that would pay him less than the $18 million he is due to earn in 2017. It’s unclear whether they will.

From a P.R. standpoint, there’s a good reason for the Vikings to make Peterson an offer, even if it’s an offer he wouldn’t accept. Cutting him loose is one thing; extending what appears to be a fair offer on a revised deal and having him reject it is another.

This approach presumes that the fan base wants to continue to relationship, and that the fans will place blame based on how and why it ends. What if the fans are ready to move on from Peterson?

Paul Allen of KFAN and the Vikings Radio Network appeared on Friday’s PFT Live to discuss the team’s offseason priorities. He senses that there wouldn’t be an outcry if the team decides to put an end to Peterson’s 10-year run with the team.

Besides, the team can do plenty with the $18 million that otherwise would go to Peterson in 2017. Most fans are smart enough to notice it.

Paul said plenty more about the Vikings’ priorities for the coming year. To hear everything he had to say, check out the video.

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Add Washington to the list of non-talkers at the Scouting Combine

Jay Gruden AP

Each year, most of the coaches and General Managers around the NFL will speak to the assembled media at the Scouting Combine.

This year, there’s a new abstainer on the list of the usual suspects.

Patriots coach Bill Belichick, Saints coach Sean Payton and Saints G.M. Mickey Loomis generally do not participate, but at the moment, no one from Washington is on the schedule provided by the league.

While coach Jay Gruden has taken to the podium in the past, he’s not scheduled to speak this year, and G.M. Scot McCloughan isn’t either. Then again, McCloughan isn’t being allowed to talk to anyone else either, so that probably shouldn’t come as a surprise.

There’s plenty to talk about there, considering the Kirk Cousins decisions being made, but those searching for answers are going to have to work the hallways and corridors of Indianapolis rather than having them provided.

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Tom Coughlin: QB improvement starts with improved protection

HOUSTON, TX - DECEMBER 18:  Blake Bortles #5 of the Jacksonville Jaguars is sacked by Jadeveon Clowney #90 of the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium on December 18, 2016 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images) Getty Images

The Jaguars have a new head of football operations in Tom Coughlin and Coughlin didn’t wait for the start of the league year to start making moves in hopes of improving the team’s fortunes in 2017.

Coughlin spoke to the Dolphins about a pair of trades this week that would send tight end Julius Thomas to Miami with left tackle Branden Albert making the move to Jacksonville. The acquisition of Albert is something that Coughlin believes will help address one of the biggest needs for the team.

That would be improvement from quarterback Blake Bortles. During a Friday press conference, Coughlin said that there’s plenty for Bortles (and everyone else on the team) to improve in their own games, but said that any big jump will require better work on the offensive line.

I think to improve the quarterback we have to improve the protection,” Coughlin said. 

Coughlin also said that he doesn’t think the team is helping Bortles “at all” if they can’t run the ball and noted that the team needs more than they got from the T.J. Yeldon/Chris Ivory backfield combo last year. He said there have been discussions about adding a fullback to the offensive mix, something that fit with his general theme of building a tougher Jaguars team in his first season back in Jacksonville.

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Will the Bills keep Tyrod Taylor despite upcoming payday?

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - SEPTEMBER 27:  Tyrod Taylor #5 of the Buffalo Bills looks on during a game against the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium on September 27, 2015 in Miami Gardens, Florida.  (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) Getty Images

When the Bills signed quarterback Tyrod Taylor to a contract extension, the goal was to give the player a short-term raise and possible long-term security while also protecting the team against a possible Kirk Cousins-style game of tag. If Taylor had played really well or really poorly last year, the decision would be easy.

But Taylor’s 2016 performance falls somewhere between not good enough to make giving him $27.5 million for 2017 and not bad enough to make cutting him a no-brainer. So what will the Bills do?

The decision to bench him late in the 2016 regular season operated as a fairly clear indication that they wouldn’t be bringing him back, because they didn’t want him to suffer an injury that would have tied their hands as to the $27.5 million. The more accurate interpretation of that decision could be that the Bills wanted to give the next coaching staff maximum flexibility as to the question of whether Taylor would or wouldn’t be kept around.

The hiring of former Broncos offensive coordinator Rick Dennison made the situation more intriguing, given that the Broncos (where Dennison most recently worked) were interested in Taylor when he became a free agent two years ago. He opted for Buffalo and a starting job over joining a depth chart that featured Peyton Manning and Brock Osweiler.

Albert Breer of TheMMQB.com recently said it’s his “sense” that Dennison would like to keep Taylor. The question becomes the financial commitment. With $27.5 million due this year and another $13 million owed to Taylor in 2018, that’s a $40.5 million proposition over the next two seasons.

Ideally, the Bills and Taylor would negotiate an arrangement that allows him to continue to be the starter at a more realistic salary. But Taylor reportedly won’t re-do the deal. Which makes it an all-or-nothing proposition for the Bills.

And the clock is ticking.

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