Broncos extended an original pick tender to restricted free agent DT Mitch Unrein.
It's the lowest possible RFA tender, and values at $1.431 million. It's a good contract offer for Unrein, a special teamer and reserve who can double at fullback and defensive tackle. He should sign on the dotted line quickly.
A league source tells the Florida Times Union that the Jaguars are unlikely to use a first-round pick on a quarterback after re-signing Chad Henne to a two-year contract on Friday.
There is increasing chatter that quarterbacks are going to fall in the draft, and the slides could be expedited if QB-needy teams like Jacksonville suddenly pull out of the derby. Of course, this is Lying Season in the NFL, making it difficult to trust anonymous "league sources." Stated the source, "With Henne back, I don't expect them to take QB until 2nd round and maybe not until 3rd or 4th round." It's worth noting that the source's quarterback expectation would be similar to the path that led the Seahawks to Russell Wilson. Gus Bradley was Seattle's defensive coordinator at the time. He's now the Jaguars' head coach.
Lions extended exclusive rights free agent tenders to WR/KR Jeremy Ross, LB Julian Stanford, CB Chris Greenwood, and TE Matt Veldman.
Ross is the most notable name here. He averaged 29.3 yards per kickoff return with a touchdown and 16.2 yards on punts with another score after signing off the practice squad last season. Ross won't be in the mix for significant 2014 offensive snaps, but should have Detroit's return duties locked up.
Bills CB Stephon Gilmore allowed opposing receivers to catch just 11-of-27 passes thrown into his coverage in the final four games of 2013.
Gilmore missed the Bills' first five games in 2013 due a wrist injury he sustained in the preseason. He struggled upon returning to the starting lineup, but righted the ship down the stretch, holding opposing quarterbacks to average passer rating of 36.1 over the last four games of the season.
Texans LT Duane Brown is putting on weight this offseason.
Brown was a Pro Bowl alternate in 2013, but his run blocking slipped and he attributes it to an offseason loss of 12-15 pounds. "I lost a lot of weight last year and I’m off that. I’m staying pretty big these days," said Brown. Still only 28, Brown remains an elite NFL left tackle. He's signed through 2018.
The Green Bay Press-Gazette reports the Packers have made a "meaningful offer" to free agent DL/OLB Mike Neal.
Unfortunately for the Pack, GM Ted Thompson's offer is "not enough to keep Neal from testing (the) market," per beat reporter Pete Dougherty. Neal is expected to draw interest from the Cardinals and perhaps several other teams once he hits free agency. Neal is 26 and can play all over the defensive front.
The Carroll County Times reports free agent LT Eugene Monroe is seeking $10 million per year.
Per beat writer Matt Zenitz, the Ravens are offering Monroe $8 million to $9 million per year. So there's a decent-sized gap to be bridged before next Tuesday's start of free agency. GM Ozzie Newsome surrendered 2014 fourth- and fifth-round picks when he acquired Monroe via Jacksonville last October. If Monroe hits the market, the Dolphins are expected to pursue him aggressively.
Northern Illinois S Jimmie Ward clocked forty times of 4.46 and 4.51 at the Huskies' Pro Day.
Ward did not participate at the Combine due to a foot injury, which has since apparently healed. Despite standing just 5-foot-10 3/4 and 193 pounds, Ward is a big hitter with plenty of straight-line speed. He's got a chance to be a late first-round pick. Ward is a favorite of Rotoworld draft guru Josh Norris.