Austin Bryant visiting with 49ers

Chicago Bears v Detroit Lions
Getty Images

The 49ers are looking at boosting some depth on their defensive line.

Per Tom Pelissero of NFL Media, edge rusher Austin Bryant is taking a free-agent visit with San Francisco.

A fourth-round pick in the 2019 draft, Bryant spent his first four seasons with the Lions. His most productive year was 2021, when he recorded 4.5 sacks, five tackles for loss, and six QB hits in 14 games with five starts.

Bryant appeared in nine games in 2022, playing 208 defensive snaps and 46 special teams snaps.

Damien Harris feels signing with Bills can take him to a new height

New England Patriots v Carolina Panthers
Getty Images

Running back Damien Harris is switching teams in the AFC East for the 2023 season.

Harris has signed with the Bills after spending four seasons with the Patriots and he’s joining an offense that is bringing back a number of weapons from their third straight division champion. Those weapons include running backs James Cook and Nyheim Hines, but Harris does not sound like he believes those players will keep him from thriving in Buffalo’s offense.

“I always said that playing against the Bills, I felt like brought out the best in me as a competitor and as a player,” Harris said, via the team’s website. “And from the outside looking in as an opponent if I felt that way then I knew that if I was able to join this organization, I feel like I could just take it to a new height.”

After rushing for 929 yards and 15 touchdowns in 2021, Harris dipped behind Rhamondre Stevenson in the New England backfield pecking order last year. It remains to be seen just how he’ll fit into the Bills attack, but it’s clear he feels like he can bounce back to previous heights.

JuJu Smith-Schuster on joining Patriots: Being wanted by a coach you respect goes a long way

Super Bowl LVII - Kansas City Chiefs v Philadelphia Eagles
Getty Images

Wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster joined the Patriots as a free agent this month and he had a succinct answer to why he wanted to continue his career in New England.

Smith-Schuster has faced the Patriots a number of times in his career and Bill Belichick has been the head coach in New England for all of them. During an appearance on 98.5 The Sports Hub, Smith-Schuster said that those experiences were on his mind when he heard from the Patriots early in free agency.

“To be honest, it was Belichick, man,” Smith-Schuster said, via “Just the want and the need and the position that I can fill there really caught my attention, and I felt that like that was the thing: feeling wanted in a place where I played against a head coach who have a lot of respect for. And I just think that goes a long way.”

Given the current makeup of the Patriots receiving corps, Smith-Schuster is set to be the No. 1 wideout for Mac Jones in New England and that should offer ample opportunities for him to show that the team’s interest was well placed this offseason.

Cam Newton throws more than 30 passes, including to his brother, Caylin, at Auburn’s Pro Day

2022 Huncho Day Celebrity Football Game
Getty Images

Free agent quarterback Cam Newton threw more than 30 passes during Auburn’s Pro Day on Tuesday, according to the Associated Press. He declined to speak to reporters after the workout.

While Newton hopes for a chance to return to the NFL, he also wanted to highlight his brother. Caylin Newton, a former quarterback at Howard who finished his collegiate career as a wide receiver at Auburn and William & Mary, caught passes from his brother.

“This was him showing love to me,” Caylin Newton said. “He doesn’t owe anybody anything. He has had an amazing journey, an amazing career in the NFL. He has nothing to prove to anybody. . . . He came to show his ability, show he still has it.

“I think, for him, this was a selfless act. But it was also to show and prove to everybody he’s not sitting around. He’s still got it. Whatever organization wants to get a winning quarterback, his number’s still open and available.”

Newton, 33, hasn’t played since 2021 in a second stint with the Panthers. He has received no offers since.

In a video Monday announcing the throwing session, Newton questioned why he isn’t still in the league.

“Tell me how these randoms keep getting jobs,” Newton says during the video before later adding, “Ain’t 32 mother [expletive] better than me. You dig?”

On social media, Newton earned rave reviews for a video showing him scrambling in the pocket before throwing a 50-yard pass downfield to his younger brother.

Caylin said Newton is working hard to get back into the league.

“What everyone sees on the TV screen, they see his character and they see his confidence,” Caylin Newton said. “They don’t see the grit. They don’t see how many hours he puts in. So, the media has what they say about who he is. I know who he is. And anywhere he’s been, they know who he is, too.”

Cowboys moving Isaac Alarcón to defensive tackle

Houston Texans v Dallas Cowboys
Getty Images

The Cowboys are moving Isaac Alarcón from the offensive line to defensive tackle. He has worked at both guard and tackle as he developed his football skills the past three seasons as part of the NFL International Pathway Program.

Alarcón had limited football experience in Mexico before joining the Cowboys.

He has never played defense except on the scout team, which gave the team the idea to move him.

“Issac is a big strong and athletic player and has physical skill set to play offensive line or defensive line,” Will McClay, the Cowboys’ vice president of player personnel, told Nick Eatman of the team website. “He did some things on scout team defense toward the end of the season that opened defensive coaches eyes to give him a serious look on defense. His time working with OL will also give him an understanding about what they are trying to do to him on defense.”

Alarcón no longer is eligible for any roster exemption, so he will have to show potential at the position to stick past training camp.

The Cowboys currently have Quinton Bohanna, Neville Gallimore, Osa Odighizuwa and Chauncey Golston at defensive tackle.

Report: Saints agree to terms with Malcolm Roach, Johnathan Abram

Los Angeles Rams v Seattle Seahawks
Getty Images

The Saints are re-signing Malcolm Roach, Tom Pelissero of NFL Media reports.

The team did not tender Roach as a restricted free agent, and several teams had interest in him.

In 2022, he appeared in 13 games and started three for the Saints. Roach had a career-high 26 tackles and a sack.

He originally joined the team as an undrafted rookie from Texas in 2020.

The Saints also are signing safety Johnathan Abram, Jeremy Fowler of ESPN reports.

Abram has played for three teams in four seasons after being a first-round draft choice of the Raiders in 2019. He played two games for the Packers last season before finishing the year in SEattle.

In his career, Abram has 267 tackles and three interceptions.

The Saints has added veteran safeties Ugo Amadi and Lonnie Johnson Jr. and re-signed J.T. Gray.

Cardinals sign Dennis Daley

Dallas Cowboys v Tennessee Titans
Getty Images

The Cardinals agreed to a two-year deal with offensive lineman Dennis Daley, the team announced Tuesday night.

Daley has made 36 starts since entering the league as a sixth-round selection of the Panthers in 2019.

The Titans traded for him before the start of the 2022 season when new Cardinals General Manager Monti Ossenfort was in Tennessee’s front office.

Daley started at left tackle most of the 2022 season after Taylor Lewan was injured.

He has experience playing both guard and tackle.

The Cardinals have kept their top three tackles from last season in D.J. Humphries, Kelvin Beachum and Josh Jones. Jones is also a candidate to play guard.

Vikings cut Thomas Hennigan

Minnesota Vikings v Miami Dolphins
Getty Images

The Vikings waived receiver Thomas Hennigan on Tuesday, the team announced.

He signed with Minnesota during training camp last summer but ended up landing on injured reserve.

Hennigan starred at Appalachian State, setting the school record for career catches (242). He ranks second in school history for receiving yards (3,124) and fourth in receiving touchdowns (23).

He set the FBS record of 65 games started and tied the school record of 66 games.

The Vikings do need depth at receiver after releasing Adam Thielen last week. He since has signed with the Panthers.

The Vikings also announced they signed defensive lineman Jonathan Bullard on Tuesday.

Giants agree to deal with Bobby McCain

NFL: JAN 01 Browns at Commanders
Getty Images

The Giants have agreed to terms with safety Bobby McCain.

The team was in need of safety help after Julian Love signed with the Seahawks.

The Commanders cut McCain on Feb. 27, saving $4.42 million.

McCain, 29, has played eight years in the NFL, including six with Miami after they made him a fifth-round selection in 2015. He spent the past two years with Washington.

In 121 career games, McCain has 393 tackles, 11 interceptions, four sacks, 44 passes defensed and two forced fumbles.

McCain has not missed a game the past three seasons.

Panthers announce agreement with Henry Anderson

Carolina Panthers v Los Angeles Rams
Getty Images

The Panthers announced Tuesday they are bringing back defensive end Henry Anderson.

Anderson, 31, originally signed as a free agent with Carolina in 2022.

He also has played for the Colts, Jets and Patriots in his eight seasons.

Anderson played 11 games in 2022 and totaled 18 tackles, including three tackles for loss.

In his career, Anderson has 188 tackles, 11.5 sacks and 45 quarterback hits.

He returns to a defensive line that has added Shy Tuttle and DeShawn Williams as the Panthers transition to a 3-4 base defense.

Broncos withdraw tender to Corliss Waitman after signing Riley Dixon

NFL: JAN 08 Chargers at Broncos
Getty Images

The Broncos signed punter Riley Dixon to a two-year deal Tuesday, prompting them to withdraw their tender to punter Corliss Waitman.

Waitman was an exclusive rights free agent with a $940,000 tender.

He averaged 46.6 yards per kick while leading the league with 96 punts last season.

That was Waitman’s first full year.

He punted in two games for the Steelers in 2021.

Dixon returns to Denver, which drafted him in the seventh round in 2016. He averaged a career-high 48.4 yards per punt last season with the Rams, and his net average of 41.7 yards per punt was the second-best mark of his career.

Nick Scott on signing with Bengals: This team has a shot at winning a championship

NFL: JAN 01 Rams at Chargers
Getty Images

Veteran safety Nick Scott won a Super Bowl ring with the Rams, and now he wants another one. And Cincinnati is where he went to get it.

Scott, who signed with the Bengals last week after a four-year career with the Rams, said the Bengals were an easy decision: They needed a safety because Jessie Bates and Vonn Bell both left in free agency, and he needed to be somewhere that he thought he could play a major role on a winning team.

“One of the first [reasons] being the need for a safety, that’s a no-brainer,” Scott said. “Wanting to be somewhere where I was wanted. Another huge factor just coming out here on this visit and getting a chance to meet [defensive coordinator Lou Anarumo and safeties coach Rob Livingston] and just talk ball with them. I’m super exciting about what those guys can do, their scheme and everything like that and how they see me fitting into it. And the other side of that is the family aspect. I grew up in Pennsylvania, so it’s not too far from my family. And most importantly, that this team has a shot at winning a championship.”

Scott started 16 games for the Rams last season and now will team with Dax Hill as the starting safeties in Cincinnati.

Cardinals announce agreements with L.J. Collier, Antonio Hamilton

Tennessee Titans v Seattle Seahawks
Getty Images

The Cardinals announced agreements with defensive lineman L.J. Collier and cornerback Antonio Hamilton Sr. on one-year contracts. In addition, exclusive rights free agent defensive lineman Jonathan Ledbetter signed his one-year tender.

The Seahawks made Collier the 29th overall selection in 2019, and he played out his rookie contract.

He appeared in 45 games with 16 starts with Seattle and totaled 40 tackles, three sacks, 13 quarterback hits, six tackles for loss and five passes defensed.

Collier, 27, appeared in eight games last season after spending the first seven weeks of the year on injured reserve.

Hamilton, 30, is back with Arizona after playing 10 games with five starts last season. He set career highs with 40 tackles and five passes defensed to go along with his first career interception.

The seven-year NFL veteran appeared in 27 games with seven starts the past two seasons with the Cardinals after originally joining the team in 2021.

He played 57 games with the Chiefs (2020), Giants (2018-19) and Raiders (2016-17). In his career, Hamilton has 100 tackles, 14 passes defensed and one interception along with 34 special teams tackles.

Ledbetter appeared in 14 games with three starts last season and had 22 tackles, one sack, two tackles for loss and one quarterback hit. He originally joined the Cardinals in 2021.

Darius Slayton: It would’ve been crazy to leave the Giants just as we get the thing built

NFC Divisional Playoffs - New York Giants v Philadelphia Eagles
Getty Images

Giants wide receiver Darius Slayton re-signed with the Giants early in free agency, and he said there was no doubt in his mind that he wanted to be back.

It would’ve been kind of crazy to leave as soon as we get the thing built,” Slayton said, via Newsday.

After playing his first three years on bad Giants teams, Slayton led the Giants in receiving yards last season as they went to the playoffs, and he said he’s excited about where the team is headed.

“I think just some of the guys we’ve been able to sign, it’s just a testament to what we’ve been able to build here and what [offensive coordinator Mike Kafka and coach Brian Daboll] have been able to bring to us,” he said.

Slayton was particularly happy the Giants made a long-term commitment to quarterback Daniel Jones.

“I might’ve been happier for his deal than my own deal, honestly,” Slayton said. “Just because [I’ve seen] the way that people viewed him before and the way they view him now. Anybody who follows me on Twitter knows Daniel Jones slander is not being tolerated on my timeline. That’ll be that way probably until the day I die. So I’m extremely happy for him. And I’m just glad he was able to get his deal.”

Slayton expects to be catching passes from Jones for years to come.

Michael Deiter signs one-year deal with Texans

NFL: JAN 01 Dolphins at Patriots
Getty Images

The Texans have signed free agent center Michael Deiter on a one-year deal, the team announced Tuesday.

They also announced completed deals with linebacker Cory Littleton and running back Devin Singletary.

Deiter, 26, played all 17 games last season with the Dolphins but only on special teams. He played 76 snaps.

The Dolphins made Deiter a third-round draft selection in 2019, and he spent four seasons in Miami. He has started 23 career games, while appearing in 57.

In 2021, Deiter played every snap in eight games before landing on injured reserve.

He has experience at tackle, guard and center in his college and pro career.

The Texans have re-signed starting center Scott Quessenberry to a one-year deal and have center Jimmy Morrissey under contract, too.