Mike Florio talks about the Seahawks scoring 50-plus points in their last two games and if Russell Wilson’s impressive rookie year can end with a Super Bowl victory. Florio also discusses the NFC and AFC playoff picture and if the Patriots should start to worry.This video is no longer available. Click here to watch more NBC Sports videos!
PFT Live: Can Seahawks make a Super Bowl push?
With Sebastian Janikowski currently dealing with a strained quadriceps that will keep him out of Thursday’s preseason finale against the Seattle Seahawks, the Oakland Raiders announced Tuesday they have claimed kicker Giorgio Tavecchio off waivers from the Detroit Lions.
Tavecchio, who played college football just a few miles away in Berkeley at the University of California, was waived by the Lions Monday as they trimmed their roster to the maximum 75 players.
Tavecchio has also spent time with the San Francisco 49ers and Green Bay Packers in training camp the prior two seasons. He was 1-for-2 on field goal attempts this preseason and converted both extra points he attempted.
To make room for Tavecchio, the Raiders released kicker Kevin Goessling. Tavecchio could be a hedge option for the Raiders in case Janikowski isn’t ready for the start of the season as well.
There has seemingly been a pipeline connecting the Jacksonville Jaguars and Seattle Seahawks since Gus Bradley left to become the head coach of the Jaguars last year.
However, that pipeline has predominantly flowed in one direction – from Seattle to Jacksonville – when it comes to picking up the cast-offs from the other team.
Seattle reversed the flow on Tuesday by claiming center Patrick Lewis off waivers from the Jaguars.
Lewis was an undrafted free agent out of Texas A&M in 2013 that initially signed with the Green Bay Packers. After being released, he was signed by the Cleveland Browns to their practice squad. He was then signed off the practice squad to Jacksonville’s active roster last December.
Lewis likely won’t find a way onto Seattle’s roster either as they appear set at center with starter Max Unger and backup Lemuel Jeanpierre. He could be a practice squad candidate following final cuts this weekend.
To make room on their roster, Seattle released linebacker Marcus Dowtin.
Some of you have asked why the NFL fined both the Seahawks and coach Pete Carroll for violating the rules prohibiting contact during offseason workouts. It’s a new twist to the 2011 labor deal, which contains enhanced penalties for the team and the coach if/when offseason workouts result in contact.
Prior to 2011, the labor deal prohibited offseason contact, and a certain amount of it routinely was ignored. Only in egregious cases would the league get involved, with teams losing one or more OTA days and fines rarely if ever imposed.
Carroll didn’t receive a fine when the Seahawks violated the rules two years ago, presumably under the portion of Article 21, Section 8 that allows the Commissioner to reduce or eliminate fines if the violation resulted from a good-faith interpretation of the rules or if the violation wasn’t “material.”
This time around, the Commissioner opted to fine Carroll more than $100,000 — but less than the $250,000 specified for a second offense. The Seahawks were fined more than $200,000 for the second offense — but less than the $500,000 specified for a second offense. This suggests that the Commissioner believed the certain circumstances justified a reduction in the fines contemplated by the CBA.
While the Seahawks reportedly have lost “at least two minicamp practices in 2015,” the rules contemplate the elimination not of minicamp practices but of a week of OTAs. If two violations occur in the same league year, the team also loses a fourth-round draft pick.
Violations of the rules against offseason contact are inevitable, given that players are competing for roster spots and depth-chart position. But the Seahawks have become the first team to receive a fine for violating offseason rules under the new CBA, and Carroll has become the first coach to personally be fined for an offseason workout violation. Whatever happened was noteworthy, but also isolated.
Otherwise, the fines would have been much higher, and the Seahawks would have lost a fourth-round draft pick.
The St. Louis Rams soon have a decision to make regarding seventh-round rookie defensive end Michael Sam. In a Tuesday appearance on PFT Live, Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch explained that Sam could still have a difficult time making the team, despite a couple of sacks in the preseason.
With the Rams destined to keep eight defensive lineman, Sam will be competing with Ethan Westbrooks, who arrived undrafted from West Texas A&M for the ninth spot. If the Rams decide to carry 10 defensive lineman on the 53-man roster, Sam and Westbrooks will both stay.
As Rams G.M. Les Snead told PFT Live in May, the team used a late-round pick on Sam due to concerns that it would be difficult to persuade rookie defensive ends to choose to join a loaded depth chart via undrafted free agency. Westbrook, to his credit, embraced the challenge.
As Peter King of TheMMQB.com pointed out on Tuesday, Sam could be destined for the practice squad. To get to the practice squad, however, Sam would first have to clear waivers. And there’s a good chance Sam has played well enough in the preseason to prompt a team with needs at the position to make a claim on Sam’s contract.
So, basically, all those 96 jerseys in blue and gold could soon be worthless.
For the length of his professional relationship with Sean Payton, no one has ever accused Saints quarterback Drew Brees of shooting blanks.
But after celebrating the birth of his fourth child — and first daughter — Brees joked that his days of leading a prolific, ahem, offense might be over.
Brees returned to practice Tuesday after his wife Brittany delivered their daughter Monday, and joked that the fourth kid might be the last.
“I think I’m done,” Brees said, via Larry Holder of the New Orleans Times-Picayune. “I might have to follow Jim Henderson’s recommendation from the [New Orleans Touchdown Club] luncheon. … He was saying the ‘V’ word was next for me.
“Vasectomy. We’ve got some football games to win first. And then as I’ve been told by those who have experienced it, do it Saturday before the final round of The Masters so I’ve got an excuse to sit around and watch it.”
That might have been a bit more information than anyone needed, but then again, Brees was never in danger of getting cut this week anyway.
Washington safety Brandon Meriweather is suspended for the first two games of the regular season for an illegal hit to Ravens receiver Torrey Smith. One person who doesn’t support the suspension is the player who bore the brunt of the illegal hit.
Smith wrote on Twitter that he doesn’t think Meriweather should have been suspended, although he hastened to add that he knows it’s not up to him.
“I don’t think he should be suspended,” Smith wrote, “but I don’t make or enforce the rules…I just play.”
It’s not uncommon for players to say they don’t want a fellow player punished, but in the case of Meriweather, the NFL really didn’t have much choice but to act. Meriweather has a long history of illegal hits to opponents’ heads, and fines don’t seem to deter him. A suspension was expected as soon as Meriweather delivered that hit, even if Smith didn’t think it was warranted.
The first of this week’s two big roster cutdown days has ended, and all NFL teams are down to the 75-player limit.
We’ve updated our NFL roster cuts tracker to give you one place to keep track of all the transactions that have been made in the NFL over the last couple of days.
There were no big surprises among today’s cuts. The biggest roster transaction of the day came when the Patriots traded guard Logan Mankins to Tampa Bay for tight end Tim Wright and a fourth-round pick. But that move didn’t have any bearing on the 75-man roster limit, as each team lost one player and gained one player.
Some surprises are likely to come on Saturday, when all NFL teams must reach the 53-player roster limit for the regular season. We’ll be tracking all of it right here.
Injury-related roster moves got the Packers down to 75 players on their roster before today’s deadline.
The biggest move related to veteran defensive lineman B.J. Raji, who was placed on injured reserve after suffering a torn bicep.
Raji, who started all 16 games last season and has missed just two starts in the last four years, will be the biggest loss of the bunch for the Packers.
As the Buccaneers address one of their biggest questions on offense, a major question is swirling regarding the man who runs it.
Via JoeBucsFan.com, offensive coordinator Jeff Tedford is absent from the team after undergoing an undisclosed medical procedure.
“The procedure went well,” coach Lovie Smith said. “He’s fine, alert, up. Our staff will pull up the slack and we’ll go from there.”
Tedford won’t coach in the preseason finale. For now, there’s no reason to think he won’t be available for Week One.
Whatever the condition, we extend our best wishes to Tedford as he recovers.
Not that there was any doubt, but now it’s official: Sam Bradford is out for the season.
Bradford, the Rams franchise quarterback who suffered a torn ACL in Saturday’s preseason game, has been officially placed on injured reserve.
Moving Bradford to IR was one of four roster moves the Rams made today to get down to the 75-player limit. St. Louis also waived DE Sammy Brown and S Matt Daniels and placed C Demetrius Rhaney on injured reserve.
For the Rams and Bradford, the question now is whether Bradford has played his last game in St. Louis. The enormous contract Bradford got as a first overall draft pick under the old Collective Bargaining Agreement means it’s inconceivable that he could be back under his current contract. It’s possible that Bradford could return to the Rams if he’s willing to take a big pay cut, but it’s also possible that Bradford and the Rams are done.
When the Jaguars drafted defensive back Aaron Colvin in the fourth round of May’s draft, they knew it would be some time before he’d be ready to help the team on the field.
Colvin tore his ACL during the Senior Bowl early this year, an injury that led him to slip to Jacksonville in the draft as well as to the non-football injury list on Tuesday. The Jaguars made the move, which bars Colvin from practicing or playing for at least the first six weeks of the season, to drop their roster to 75 players. Colvin must be activated by Week 11 to play this season.
“We are really pleased with Aaron’s progress throughout the offseason and preseason,” Jaguars General Manager David Caldwell said on the team’s website. “He has been dedicated to his rehab from day one and worked extremely hard with our training and strength staff every day. He played at a high level at Oklahoma and we feel strongly about what he will bring to our roster in the future. He will continue his rehab and we will make a decision on his playing status for 2014 at the appropriate time.”
If Colvin makes a full recovery, the Jaguars should have a useful piece for their secondary in 2015 and beyond.
In 2012, the Seahawks were disciplined by the NFL for violating the league’s rules governing contact in offseason practices.
They were fined an undisclosed amount and stripped of two OTA practices for the violation, but that apparently didn’t stop them from crossing the league’s line again this year.When the Seahawks were punished in 2012, Carroll complained that it was unclear what constituted illegal contact during practices and the question has been raised by others during the last few off seasons as well.
Chris Mortensen of ESPN reports that the Seahawks and coach Pete Carroll have been collectively fined more than $300,000 for again violating the rule. Per Mortensen, Carroll was fined “at least” $100,000 and the Seahawks were fined more than $200,000. In addition, the team will lose two minicamp days during the 2015 offseason.
Like all the rules stemming from the 2011 collective bargaining agreement, the rule barring contact in offseason practices was agreed to by both the NFLPA and the league. NFLPA president Eric Winston is now a member of the Seahawks, but was not with the team in the offseason.
On Tuesday, NBCSN’s Pro Football Talk returns to a full hour in duration, and we’ll cover as much ground as we can in the allotted time.
Linebacker Jonathan Vilma joins the effort for the day, and the conversation will include a look at current NFL narratives and the inevitable reality of playoff turnover.
One of the narratives currently making its way through the league is that the defending NFC East champions will run away with the crown. But we’d like some empirical proof of that. So go ahead and answer the question below, and then tune in at 6:00 p.m. for a full hour of PFT on NBCSN.
The Texans are the latest team to reach the 75-man roster limit.
The Texans made most of their roster moves on Monday.
The Eagles didn’t delay making the bulk of their cuts to the 75-man limit, but held off on making their final move until Tuesday.
That move has been made. Offensive lineman Julian Vandervelde was waived-injured, dropping the team to 75 players ahead of the deadline to reach that level.
Vandervelde, who played 14 games last season, had back surgery earlier this summer and can revert to injured reserve if he goes unclaimed. Given his injury, that seems unlikely but it is unclear what future Vandervelde would have in Philadelphia. David Molk has taken over as the team’s backup center and done well in the role, taking away one of Vandervelde’s bigger selling points when he’s healthy.
The Eagles will now move on to paring the roster down to 53 players ahead of Saturday’s deadline to reach the regular season roster limit.