Vikings GM Rick Spielman joins Mike Florio to talk about the decision to trade wide receiver Percy Harvin and sign wide receiver Greg Jennings. Spielman said that we’ll have to “wait and see” if cornerback Antoine Winfield will return next season.
ProFootballTalk: Spielman confident in Vikings offseason moves
There’s a new Superman movie coming out this summer and Jets owner Woody Johnson appears to be in the spirit.
Johnson, who is at the league meetings in Boston, spoke to reporters on Monday about the arrest of running back Mike Goodson and said that the team was gathering information about the incident. Mike Garafolo of USA Today reports that he also attempted to reassure those worried about the image of the Jets by saying that the team is about “truth, justice and the American way.”
That’s also what the Man of Steel has devoted himself to depending for most of the last century. He’s had a lot more success in his endeavors than the Jets, especially if you leave Superman IV out of the discussion, but some may argue that kryptonite is an easier to overcome than Mark Sanchez.
Rich Cimini of ESPNNewYork.com reports that Goodson was at the team’s facility as they started OTAs Monday but that he did not participate in the workout. There’s no timeline for how long the fact-finding will continue before the Jets might take any action.
Goodson was charged with five drug and gun counts last week after police responded to a 911 call about a car parked in on Route 80 in New Jersey. Goodson was not driving the car, but was charged with possession of under 50 grams of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia, unlawful possession of a handgun, possession of a loaded handgun and possession of hollow point ammunition.
In the new, post-2011 CBA NFL, offseason workouts are supposed to feature less intensity, because they’re supposed to include no contact.
As it was before 2011, it’s sometimes easier said than done.
After practice, Spence said the fight happened because Spence fired off the ball too aggressively on the first snap.
“Hopefully [Zuttah] respects me for that because I want to be a part of the team,” Spence said. “It’s just me not knowing the speed. . . . Now I know I need to throttle it down a little bit but at the same time get my work.
“I’m not going to back down from nobody so I mean I had to let that be known here on the first day here. So, hey, there it is.”
Contact during offseason workouts often occurs via young players trying to prove themselves. Which makes it more important for the coaching staffs to educate the young players as to the limits of permissible contact during these sessions.
Actually, there’s supposed to be none. Which means there’s a chance the NFL and/or the NFLPA will be looking into the situation.
The Chargers aren’t taking the same approach since drafting the Notre Dame linebacker.
According to Michael Gehlken of U-T San Diego, the Chargers have decided to not make Te’o available to the local media until mid-June, calling it an “organizational decision.”
It’s an odd approach for first-year head coach Mike McCoy.
The longer they play keep-away with Te’o, the longer the list of sideshow questions has a chance to grow.
If he rolled by the reporters who cover the Chargers on a daily basis, they would have exhausted all the controversial material already, and would be on to talking to him about whether he can play three downs, or how his adjustment to the NFL was going.
Instead, the organization is making it look like a guy who seemed to be embracing the joke in order to make it go away has now chosen to go back in hiding.
The Dolphins started OTAs on Monday without one of their best defensive players.
Safety Reshad Jones was not present for the first organized team activity of the year. Presence is voluntary at these workouts, but Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald reports that the Dolphins didn’t know where Jones was and spent most of the morning trying to track him down. Neither Jones nor his agent returned phone calls seeking comment about his whereabouts.
Salguero also reports that there has been speculation among some of Jones’ teammates that the safety is unhappy with the slow pace of negotiations regarding a new contract. Jones’ rookie deal expires after the 2013 season and there have reportedly been “intermittent discussions” about a deal that would keep Jones in Miami for the long term.
Jones started every game for the Dolphins last season and led the team with four interceptions. That helped him hit escalators in his contract that bumped his 2013 salary from $575,000 to $1.323 million, which is likely well below what he’s seeking in a longer deal. As with most players under contract, Jones has limited leverage once mandatory work gets underway so this absence may linger through OTAs if the contract is indeed the reason for Jones’ absence.
With the franchise-tagged defensive tackle Randy Starks also looking for a new deal, Dolphins General Manager Jeff Ireland still has a good bit on their plate after an offseason that’s been a busy one in Miami right from the opening bell.
Last season, after Lions receiver Calvin Johnson suffered a concussion, the Lions said he didn’t.
Today, Johnson reportedly confirmed that he played with three broken fingers in 2012. And while the team has not yet addressed the contention, a source with knowledge of the situation tells PFT that Johnson actually didn’t break any fingers.
He also apparently didn’t say that he broke his fingers, based on the questions asked and answers provided.
A portion of Johnson’s quotes appears in Chris McCosky’s story in the Detroit News. There’s no specific quote from Johnson acknowledging the fingers were broken.
This doesn’t change the fact that he suffered some sort of injury to the fingers on his left hand that has left them crooked, but the injury report for last year only shows Johnson as having a “thumb” injury twice, in Week 13 and Week 15.
Thus, broken or not, Johnson played with finger injuries last year. Which can make slightly more difficult the task of using the fingers and the hands to catch footballs.
I spent last night watching the Penguins blow a 1-0 lead to the Senators on NBC Sports Network, before eventually losing in double overtime. The game-tying goal came with 28.6 seconds to play.
Over on the parent network, Tim Tebow showed up after the clock expired.
For the season finale of Donald Trump’s The All-Star Celebrity Apprentice on NBC, Tebow arrived at the final task with a check for $100,000, which went to finalist Trace Adkins’ charity. But Tebow got there after the deadline for gathering funds, so Adkins didn’t get credit for the money.
Adkins still raised more than fellow finalist Penn Gillette, and Adkins ultimately was named The All-Star Celebrity Apprentice, a title that as far as we can tell is meaningless. Like Vice President of the United States.
It’s unclear when the segment including Tebow’s appearance was taped, and whether the money came from his pocket, his foundation, or elsewhere.
It was clear that Tebow showed up with $100,000 less than expected. Adkins said multiple times that Tebow was coming with $200,000.
Regardless, it was a generous contribution, which will go to the American Red Cross. And it possibly gives Tebow an opening to join the show for its next season, since he quite possibly won’t be otherwise occupied.
If Buccaneers coach Greg Schiano ever gets tired of having to tell people Josh Freeman is his starting quarterback, someone should probably mention to him that it’s kind of his own fault.
“We have a starting quarterback, and it’s Josh Freeman,” Schiano said, via Stephen Holder of the Tampa Bay Times.
According to the report, Schiano said he’s trying to be honest, and doesn’t mean to put pressure on Freeman by saying such things in the national media.
“I guess nationally, they don’t sit here with me every day like you guys [local media] do,” Schiano said. “From the day we arrived, our whole program has [been based on] competition, . . . That’s what we believe in. It’s the most competitive sports league in the world. It’s competition, and I love it.
“But we have our starting quarterback, and it’s Josh Freeman. I’m not looking to find another.”
If he really wanted to clear things up, he could always, you know, stop leaving the door open a crack every time he talks about Glennon.
Or, if he wanted a stronger statement on Freeman and how much he loves him under center, he could give him a new contract to replace the final year of his rookie deal.
But it doesn’t appear at the moment that Schiano intends to do either.
And that’s fine, as long as everyone’s clear about the implication sent by those actions.
He likes Freeman, right up until the point he decides he doesn’t.
So Schiano’s apparently going to have to keep clarifying all the things that he keeps saying, whether to the national or local media.
The 28-year-old Fluellen has appeared in 56 games in five NFL seasons, notching 52 tackles and 2.5 sacks. He had stints with Miami and Detroit in 2012. The Lions drafted him in the third round in 2008 out of Florida State.
The 6-foot-2, 302-pound Fluellen has primarily been a backup interior lineman on teams employing 4-3 schemes, and it’s possible he could appeal to clubs using four-player defensive lines.
In 2012, Packers linebacker Desmond Bishop never saw the field after suffering a hamstring injury in the preseason. In 2013, Bishop thinks he’s going to be the best defensive player in the NFL.
Bishop told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that he keeps a notebook with everything he plans to do for the whole season, and at the top of the list is “2013 Defensive MVP. Why not?“
Some might say the answer to “Why not?” is simple: Bishop is nowhere near good enough to be the defensive player of the year. But Bishop doesn’t see it that way.
“Seriously,” Bishop says, “why not? I know I’m capable.”
The Packers may not believe Bishop is capable, which is why they were considering trading him last month. Bishop says that trade talk motivates him.
“Oh yeah,” Bishop said, “definitely. I get so much motivation from so much different stuff. I’m ready to go.”
From all indications, Bishop will be ready to go in 2013 after missing all of 2012. But ready to be the defensive player of the year? Don’t bet on it.
Darrell Green had a Hall of Fame career with the Redskins, but no one will be happier to cheer for the Cowboys this season.
That’s because his son, wide receiver Jared Green, is on the Cowboys roster after spending last year on the Panthers practice squad.
So as natural as it would have been for the son to idolize an Art Monk or a Gary Clark growing up, it was a Michael Irvin poster on his wall instead.
“Every kid, I don’t care what anybody says, any kid in the ’90s saw that star and wanted to be a Dallas Cowboy,” Jared said, via Todd Archer of ESPNDallas.com. “I don’t care who you are or where you’re from, you wanted to be a Dallas Cowboy. . . .
“My dad was a player at that place, and we appreciated everything he did and what the organization allowed him to do, but after that it’s just a job Dad worked for 20 years. I’m a grown man, and my dad is supporting what I do and we’re all-in for the Dallas Cowboys.”
The younger Green apparently stood out in rookie minicamps, though the competition will increase when the veterans arrive for OTAs.
And if he can crack the roster, he’ll have a chance to see up close the uniform his father starred in.
But if his father shows up wearing a star, he said not to be surprised.
“Daddy doesn’t care what the color of the jersey is as long as my son’s name is on the back,” Darrell said.
Jared’s far from a lock to even win a roster spot, though he does have a good measure of his father’s speed. And if he can make that last, he has a chance to make for some interesting choices of jerseys at family reunions.
Owens (5-10, 225) could appeal to Buffalo on numerous levels. He is a two-time Pro Bowler on special teams, and he’s capable of playing both fullback and running back.
The 29-year-old Owens has primarily made his name on special teams, but when injuries forced him into the lineup at tailback for Jacksonville a season ago, he acquitted himself well. Overall, Owens rushed for 209 yards and a touchdown on 42 carries in 2012 for the Jaguars, who released him last week.
PFT Live was on vacation last week, but it’s a new week and that means we’ll be back at it on Monday.
We’ll get the ball rolling again by checking in with Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune about what’s going on with the Chargers. The big news is on the defensive side of the ball, where theyy didn’t waste any time signing longtime Colts pass rusher Dwight Freeney after losing linebacker Melvin Ingram to a knee injury. We’ll hear more about how the Chargers will use Freeney and see if there’s going to be a veteran left tackle like Max Starks joining him in the locker room.
Former Chiefs General Manager Scott Pioli will also be on hand to talk about the other big stories around the league as most of the 32 teams gear up for a week of OTAs.
You can watch it all live at noon ET.
According to Chris McCosky of the Detroit News, Johnson has confirmed that he played with three broken fingers during the 2012 season. Johnson said surgery won’t be needed, and that he’s trying to straighten them out. (Torry Holt and Brian Baldinger think that’s cute.)
In February, McCosky reported that Johnson had played with at least two broken fingers. At the Scouting Combine, coach Jim Schwartz declined to comment.
“I am not going to comment on any of our players’ health,” Schwartz said at the time. “But that’s not uncommon for a wide receiver. . . . We don’t have any injury reports this time of year. And you know how I am about injuries.”
Yes, we know. Because we’ve looked at the Lions’ injuries reports for every game of the 2012 season, and there’s nothing about broken fingers. Twice — in Week 13 and Week 15 — Johnson is listed with a “thumb” injury. Presumably, three broken fingers would result in a different description, and it would show up more than twice, in non-consecutive weeks.
It’s the kind of development that should have folks like Ravens coach John Harbaugh calling the league office and complaining. Harbaugh’s team was fined $20,000 last year for failing to disclose an Ed Reed shoulder injury. The Lions apparently failed to disclose Johnson’s broken fingers.
This gets back to something we mention about from time to time. If the rules aren’t going to be enforced consistently, the NFL needs to change the rules, and enforce those rules consistently.
Regardless, the broken fingers make Johnson’s accomplishments from last season even more impressive. And they finally give the Maddencursers something tangible to which they can point and exclaim, “A-ha!“
UPDATE 1:53 p.m.: A source with knowledge of the situation tells PFT that Johnson did not actually break any fingers.
Johnson was reportedly out of the state at the time that the warrant was issued, but he’s back in Florida on Monday and TMZ reports that he’s now under arrest. Per the report, which features a picture of Johnson being cuffed by police officers, Johnson appeared in the Broward County courtroom and the judge ruled that he had violated his probation by missing two visits with his probation officer and failing to produce proof that he had enrolled in a domestic violence education class.
Johnson was placed on probation when he pleaded no contest to charges stemming from an incident with his then-wife Evelyn Lozada last August. Johnson’s arrest led to his release by the Dolphins and, most likely, the end of a professional football career that was already on its last legs.
There’s no word yet on bail or future court dates for Johnson.
The Seahawks are number one — in performance enhancing substance suspensions.
And according to Mike Sando of ESPN.com, that’s the highest total in the league during that span.
Two other teams, the Broncos and Giants, have had four suspensions each, while the Patriots, Redskins, Bengals, Texans and Rams are tied for fourth with three each.
With 50 total suspensions during that time frame, 22 teams have had at least one.
Only the Bills, Lions, Jaguars, Colts, Chiefs, Jets, Raiders, Cowboys, Eagles and 49ers have stayed off the board.
There have been times in recent years when the Seahawks have been applauded for taking chances in the draft. But there’s a flip side to that, and it bears watching, especially with four guys on the current roster (the Seahawks released Allen Barbre after his suspension, and he’s with the Eagles now) now staring at a possible eight-game suspension if they test positive again.