Restricted free agent Andrew Hawkins signed a four-year, $13.6 million offer sheet with the Browns.
The deal includes $10.8 million over the first two seasons, and a $5.8 million cap hit in 2014. The Bengals have five days to match or let Hawkins walk. It's a big chunk of change for a 5-foot-7 slot receiver, one that was also clearly designed to make it tough for the Bengals to match. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, they do indeed plan to match, however.
Coach Ken Whisenhunt said he sees newly signed Dexter McCluster as more of a running back than wide receiver.
The 5'8/170 McCluster last played running back in 2011, when he carried 114 times for 516 yards (4.52 YPC) with one touchdown. It looks like Whiz indeed wants McCluster to be his new Danny Woodhead, who rushed 106 times and caught 76 passes for the Chargers last season. "It could vary week to week," Whisenhunt said of McCluster's role. "As long as he makes a lot of plays he is going to get a lot of touches."
The Colts will host free agent Hakeem Nicks on Friday.
Indy would be a great place for Nicks to rehab his career, assuming his heart is still in it. There are whispers it isn't. Still only 26 years old, Nicks would add theoretical playmaking ability on the perimeter of the Colts' offense, with T.Y. Hilton and Reggie Wayne moving around the formation. Nicks recently listed the Colts as one of his preferred destinations due to quarterback Andrew Luck. He's also drawing interest from the Panthers.
Free agent DT Jason Hatcher will meet with the Titans Thursday night.
The Raiders let Hatcher get out of town without a contract, so his tour continues. He's already been linked to the Bucs and Seahawks as well. Hatcher is entering his age-32 season and has had more success in a 4-3 scheme than the 3-4 the Titans are installing.
Texans re-signed TE Garrett Graham to a three-year contract.
Graham returns as Owen Daniels walks. A 2010 fourth-rounder, Graham has proven to have little upside, and enters his fifth NFL season with only 78 career catches. Given a chance to shine while Daniels was sidelined with a broken leg last season, Graham posted a middling 49/545/5 line, showing little play-making ability. He can't block. Second-year pro Ryan Griffin has a brighter future.
The Jets have been "in communication" with free agent Brandon Pettigrew.
Pettigrew would team with Zach Sudfeld and Jeff Cumberland to give the Jets a mediocre tight end trio. His market has been scant to this point, although the NY Daily News reports the Raiders and Lions have shown some interest.
Panthers re-signed QB Derek Anderson.
Anderson, 31 in June, has attempted just four passes since the 2010 season. He'll be back to hold the clipboard as Cam Newton's backup. Newton has yet to miss a start.
Chargers signed ILB Kavell Conner to a three-year contract.
Conner leaves Colts head coach Chuck Pagano to play for his brother, Chargers defensive coordinator John Pagano. He'll step in as a backup behind Donald Butler and Manti Te'o, providing some early-down run-stopping depth.