It’s still unclear who will take Johnny Manziel. It’s clear that two teams in the top five won’t.
Earlier tonight, Jay Glazer of FOX reported that the Browns won’t take Manziel with the fourth overall pick in the draft. Glazer has since reported that the Raiders won’t take Manziel with the No. 5 pick.
Vic Tafur of the San Francisco Chronicle recently shared a similar sentiment regarding the possibility of the Raiders taking any quarterback with the fifth pick, although Glazer’s report regarding Manziel seems to be more unequivocal.
It makes plenty of sense for the Raiders to not use the fifth pick on a quarterback. They acquired a starter in Matt Schaub. With G.M. Reggie McKenzie and coach Dennis Allen widely believed to be in win-now-or-else mode, why use the fifth pick on a guy who quite possibly would be on the bench this year?
It’s far better for the Raiders to pick players who will contribute right away. If the Raiders don’t players who contribute this year, the franchise could have a new regime come 2015.
With the draft two days away and the Cowboys holding the 16th overall pick, speculation remains that owner/G.M. Jerry Jones will try to make a play for quarterback Johnny Manziel.
Not so, says Jones.
“I”m not that gunned up over what a rookie quarterback could do for us this year,” Jones said Tuesday, via Clarence Hill of the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram. “That takes time. This is not rebuilding time.”
So does that mean the Cowboys can rule out using a first-round pick on a quarterback?
“It does not qualify for the biggest need,” Jones said. “I will go as far as to say it is not our primary goal in the first round to be looking at a quarterback. We’ve got a good one.”
It’s hardly a categorical denial. While drafting a quarterback may not be the “primary goal,” it technically could still be the secondary goal.
At this point in the process, it’s impossible to believe what anyone says so close to the draft. If Jones doesn’t want a quarterback, he has no reason to say so. In fact,it would make more sense to suggest he wants one, in the hopes a team drafting lower than No. 16 jumps the Cowboys to take a player the Cowboys wouldn’t taken.
Actually, the biggest reason for saying Jones doesn’t want a quarterback in the first round could be to conceal the fact that, in reality, he does.
Just over a week after the Buffalo Bills elected to pick up his fifth-year option for 2015, defensive tackle Marcell Dareus has run into legal problems.
According to Travis Leder of WVUA-TV in Tuscaloosa, Ala., Dareus was arrested last night in Cleburne County for being in possession of synthetic marijuana.
Dareus was reportedly arrested by a state patrol officer and released within an hour of his arrest.
Dareus made the Pro Bowl for the first time last season for Buffalo. However, he was also benched by the Bills for the first half of their game against the New England Patriots in December for a violation of team rules.
Dareus recorded 71 tackles and 7.5 sacks for Buffalo last season.
UPDATE 10:40 p.m. ET: Per Leder, Alabama State Troopers say Dareus was arrested for felony possession of a controlled substance and felony possession of drug paraphernalia. He was initially pulled over on Interstate 20 (the freeway connecting Birmingham, Ala. and Atlanta) for speeding.
The Texans and the Rams hold the first two picks in the draft. And there’s a growing sense that both teams really want to trade down.
The thinking in some league circles is that the Texans would like to trade down and take linebacker Khalil Mack. The thinking is that the Rams would like to trade back and select tackle Jake Matthews.
With the draft less than two days away, the question of whether either or both teams can trade down remains murky. Look for both teams to keep trying to make a move up until they have to make their picks.
The Bengals have taken more cornerbacks in Round One (three) than any other position in Marvin Lewis’ 11 years as head coach.
Of those three first-round corners, Leon Hall (2007) and Dre Kirkpatrick (2012) remain on the roster, with Johnathan Joseph having moved on to Houston in 2011. In addition, the Bengals have two other first-rounders — Terence Newman (2003, Dallas) and Adam Jones (2005, Tennessee) on the depth chart at cornerback.
At the club’s press conference, Lewis went into some detail on why the club has added so much first-round talent at cornerback.
“Quarterback and cornerback are the toughest positions to play in the league, and if you’re not good enough there, everyone else suffers,” Lewis said, according to a transcript on the club’s website. “And there’s no way to mask it. It takes certain rare ability to play those two spots.
“To play cornerback on defense, to run with a guy that can be bigger than you, can be faster than you, knows where he’s going, and you’ve got to run with him, and you’ve got to defend him and you can’t touch him.”
Added Lewis: “That’s a tough position. I’ve been fortunate in the league to be around a bunch of good corners, and most of them came in the first round. I feel pretty good about that.”
The Bengals select 24th overall on Thursday night. And, as it turns out, they could use a little help at cornerback.
When mentioning earlier the chatter about the Buccaneers moving up to No. 2 via trade with the Rams, the specific reason for the five-spot climb wasn’t clear.
Do the Bucs want receiver Sammy Watkins or quarterback Johnny Manziel?
As we currently understand it, the Buccaneers would be making the move not for Watkins, but for Manziel.
It’s not known whether a deal is close or even doable. Two years ago, the Rams got the sixth overall pick, two more first-round selections, and a second-round pick from Washington for the ability to select Robert Griffin III.
Whatever the Rams may want for the pick, their extensive scouting of Manziel will help them apply an appropriate value to the player, and in turn the slot.
It would be a fascinating move, if it happens. And if it happens, here’s hoping the Bucs dump their hideous new uniforms and adopt Manziel’s Pro Day ensemble.
The Chiefs are reportedly willing to listen on offers for Pro Bowl cornerback Brandon Flowers.
According to Dan Pompei of Bleacher Report, the Chiefs are “believed to be willing to deal” Flowers for draft considerations.
The 28-year-old Flowers made 13 starts for Kansas City a season ago, notching 68 tackles, intercepting one pass and garnering his first-ever Pro Bowl berth.
According to NFLPA data, Flowers is due $5.25 million in 2014, $6.25 million in 2015 and $6.5 million in 2016.
The Chiefs have six picks in this week’s draft. They lack second- and seventh-round selections.
With the 2014 draft considered deep in talent, it will be interesting to see if the names of any other well-compensated veterans circulate in trade rumors. It is not uncommon for veteran-for-pick trades to occur later in drafts, with the Patriots’ 2007 acquisition of Randy Moss a famous example.
It’s not draft time without some wildly conflicting reports about a team’s intentions.
On Monday, Chris Mortensen of ESPN reported that Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel would not fall past the Browns with the fourth pick in the draft. Tuesday brought the exact opposite report from Jay Glazer of FOX Sports when he was asked about the Browns taking Manziel during an appearance on FOX Sports Radio. Glazer also shot down the notion that owner Jimmy Haslam is pushing to add Manziel to the roster.
“Let me just stop you right there, ok? ESPN has reported all night that the Cleveland Browns are taking Johnny Manziel, and I am here to tell you they are not,” Glazer said. “NFL Network — I know they had come out and said well Jimmy Haslam has told everybody in the room that he wants it to happen — that is not happening. In fact, it’s the other way. Jimmy Haslam has walked into the Brown’s draft room and said, ‘Hey guys, this is not what I do for a living, it’s what you do for a living. Whatever you do, I trust.’ There has not been some edict I guess. I have no idea where that came from, but that’s not happening.”
On Twitter, Glazer wrote that the Browns will not be taking Manziel with the fourth pick. They also have the 26th pick, of course, so there’s a chance that things could work out for a second chance at the Heisman Trophy winner.
The PFT crew highlight the top stories from the around the NFL, including Cam Chancellor recovering from hip surgery, Roger Goodell’s reaction to the Donald Sterling fiasco and rumors about the Vikings trying to trade for Sam Bradford.
Bengals RB Giovani Bernard joins the PFT crew to break down how much Cincinnati will miss Jay Gruden, what the Bengals need to do on draft day and what advice he would give to RB prospects.
The increasing chatter that Cleveland will choose the Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Johnny Manziel with the fourth overall pick has led to speculation that Browns owner Jimmy Haslam might be pushing for the move. But Browns coach Mike Pettine says Haslam isn’t pushing for Manziel, or for any other draft pick.
Pettine told Aditi Kinkhabwala of NFL Network that Haslam wouldn’t tell the football people what to do during the draft.
“That would never happen,” Pettine said.
Perhaps that’s why, according to Jay Glazer on FOX Sports Radio, the Browns will not draft Manziel. An owner who’s interested in selling tickets would surely love to add Johnny Football, but the football people in the building may have decided that they’re better off taking another player at another position.
The ProFootballTalk crew discuss what the St. Louis Rams will do on draft day. Mike Florio says he would be shocked to see the Rams pick Manziel with the No. 2 pick, but that he is certainly a possibility with their second pick (No. 13).
Last month, a report from Miami indicated that Seahawks wide receiver Ricardo Lockette called police to report a naked woman who refused to leave his hotel room in an incident that also involved 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
Miami police released audio from a pair of 911 calls on Tuesday, one by a hotel security guard and the other by an unidentified man who could be Lockette based on that report.
“I want to report there’s a young lady in my friend’s bed,” that caller said, via the San Jose Mercury News. “He’s not here. She’s going to wait in his bed. She’s not leaving. We asked her to leave. We told her he won’t be here tonight. She said she’s not leaving until she sees him. … He’s not her boyfriend. (Inaudible.) But he’s not here so she went and got in bed naked, and said she’s staying there until he got back.”
The security guard also said that the woman refused to leave and added that the woman responded “Jesus” when asked her name.
No charges have been filed, although Miami police have yet to close their investigation into what Kaepernick referred to as “a bad circumstance” in his hometown recently.
Patriots linebacker Jerod Mayo is making his way back from surgery to repair a torn pectoral muscle and he said Tuesday that there are still several steps he needs to take before he’ll feel totally comfortable returning to the field.
Mayo said that he’d feel sure about his ability to play “if it was flag football,” but said that he’ll need to pass each set of milestones in the offseason from OTAs to training camp before he’d feel 100 percent about his return.
“I don’t know how it’ll feel when we start going out there doing different things as far as a little bit of contact drills,” Mayo said, via CSN New England. “Even though there’s no pads, you can fall a certain way so I’m just gonna take it one day at a time and see how it goes.”
The Patriots got good work from both Jamie Collins and Dont’a Hightower while Mayol was out of the lineup last year, which will leave them with a strong linebacking corps once Mayo is back to feeling like himself. If Vince Wilfork and Tommy Kelly can also make full returns from their injuries, things will set up well for the New England defense.
The Rams own the second overall pick in the NFL draft, and coach Jeff Fisher sees a lot more than two players they could be happy with.
“We’ve identified six to eight players that we think could potentially fit us at two,” Fisher said today at his pre-draft press conference.
If that’s the way the Rams feel, trading down a few spots would make a lot of sense. If they move down to No. 6, they could pick up extra picks and still guarantee that they’ll get one of the players they’ve identified as worth the second overall pick.
But while that trade might make sense, Fisher insisted that another much-discussed trade — the Rams moving quarterback Sam Bradford — is not in the cards.
“With respect to Sam, he’s our starter, as you guys know,” Fisher said. “No. We are not shopping Sam.”
Instead, the Rams are looking for players who can win alongside Bradford. And they think six to eight of them will be available at No. 2.