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Coach Mike Smith singled out Steven Jackson's ability in the passing game as a "weapon."

Michael Turner, inept as a receiver, totaled 59 catches across five years in Atlanta. During that span, Jackson caught 217 passes. It's just another way the Falcons have upgraded their offense by ditching Turner. "[Jackson] creates issues for defenses," Smith said. "He’s a guy that we can use in the passing game. He's not just a running back, he's a receiving back as well." Finally in an offense that can create goal-line opportunities for him, S-Jax is on the fringe of RB1 status.
Thu, May 30, 2013 11:55:00 AM

Peyton Manning is officially returning to the Broncos in 2015.

The only hoop left to jump through was his physical, which he passed. Manning accepted a $4 million pay cut Wednesday to give Denver more cap room to sign free agents. Peyton's favorite target, Demaryius Thomas, was franchise-tagged earlier this week. With those two back in the fold, it should be another high-scoring season in Denver -- even if Manning's volume declines as he enters his age-39 season with more arm strength concerns than ever.
Mar 5 - 12:43 PM

The Chicago Tribune reports the Bears are looking to trade Brandon Marshall.

The Bears will try to trade Marshall before March 12, when his $7.5M base salary becomes guaranteed. The 30-year-old was a shell of himself in 2014, reaching 100 yards just twice en route to Marshall's lowest receiving total since his rookie season. Injuries played a role, but it became increasingly clear Alshon Jeffery is the Bears' No. 1 receiver. One source told the Tribune it would only take a mid-round pick to pry Marshall out of the Windy City.
Mar 5 - 11:25 AM

According to NFL.com's Ian Rapoport, the Chiefs are expected to cut Dwayne Bowe unless they can unload him in a trade.

A high-priced perennial underachiever, Bowe has finally worn out his welcome in Kansas City. Finding the root of Bowe's struggles is like the chicken and egg argument: it's hard to tell if Bowe fared poorly because of Alex Smith or if it was the other way around. Either way, there's no way anyone is trading for Bowe at his $10.75 million salary. He'll hit free agency soon.
Mar 5 - 11:15 AM

A source tells Yahoo the Packers "balked" at paying free agent Randall Cobb $10M per year.

The Packers are reportedly willing to pay Cobb $8-9 million annually, but aren't going to go past that number. So unless Cobb surprisingly chooses to give a massive hometown discount, Aaron Rodgers will be left with Davante Adams and Jeff Janis behind Jordy Nelson. The Raiders and Jaguars, armed with an ocean of cap space and a need to spend it to meet league minimums, figure to offer something around the $11M per season Cobb is seeking.
Mar 5 - 10:57 AM

49ers signed DE Darnell Dockett to a two-year, $7.5 million contract.

The deal includes $4M in the first year but only $2M guaranteed. It's more than the Cardinals offered Dockett to come back, but still reflects his status as a 34-year-old (in May) who missed all of 2014 due to an August ACL tear. In San Francisco, Dockett will compete with Tank Carradine and others for the starting 3-4 end job vacated by Ray McDonald. Most likely, Dockett will end up in a heavy rotation.
Mar 5 - 9:46 AM

Vince Wilfork announced on Twitter the Patriots will not be picking up his 2015 option, making him a free agent.

New England saves $8.06 million against the cap by moving on from one of their all-time greats. With all of the Patriots' other offseason commitments (Devin McCourty, Darrelle Revis, etc.), Wilfork had to see this coming. Big Vince said he is not considering retirement, and coming off a decent run-stopping season, we wouldn't expect him to. It will be interesting to see how the market shapes out for the 33-year-old. Wilfork went to five Pro Bowls during his 11-year stay in Foxboro and won two Super Bowls. The Patriots drafted his possible replacement, Dom Easley, in the first round last year.
Mar 5 - 9:11 AM

After dealing LeSean McCoy, the Philadelphia Inquirer expects Eagles coach Chip Kelly to "more evenly distribute the carries to three tailbacks as he did at Oregon."

Beat writer Jeff McLane expects the Eagles to "add a lead back" in free agency or the draft. We wouldn't be shocked if Philadelphia brought in two more running backs of relatively high quality, as change-up back Darren Sproles is going on age 32 and Chris Polk is an oft-injured restricted free agent. Either way, we'd be stunned if Polk or Sproles entered 2015 as the Eagles' lead runner.
Mar 4 - 10:58 PM

Based purely on tape study, NFL Films' Greg Cosell believes Georgia RB Todd Gurley is "the best back in the draft."

We agree wholeheartedly. "I like Gurley more (than Melvin Gordon)," Cosell said. "Gurley, to me, has elements of Steven Jackson in his prime and Marshawn Lynch. He's that kind of runner. He's got an excellent combination of size, power, short-area quickness and burst, and top-end acceleration. I like Gurley a lot. And he looks like an NFL foundation back. I think he can be the starting point of an NFL offense." If Gurley's ACL looks recovered at next month's Combine medical recheck, he should have a chance to be a first-round pick.
Mar 4 - 9:29 PM

Multiple league sources tell Yahoo's Rand Getlin that the Dolphins and Colts are poised to make the "strongest pushes" for free agent Ndamukong Suh.

Getlin reports Suh's guarantees could "exceed" $60 million, topping J.J. Watt's $51.8 million. A source "close to Suh's camp" told Getlin this year's top free-agent prize has a "slight preference" for the Dolphins, although the Colts and Lions "aren't far behind" in the Suh sweepstakes. The NFL's negotiating window opens Saturday. The free agent signing period begins next Tuesday.
Mar 4 - 8:47 PM

Following Wednesday's meeting with Vikings brass, Adrian Peterson issued a statement saying he "still" has "concerns" with returning to the team.

Vikings GM Rick Spielman and coach Mike Zimmer flew to Peterson's home in Houston. "I appreciate Rick and Coach Zimmer coming down to see me today," Peterson's statement reads. "We had a great dialogue and they were able to understand where I was coming from and concerns my family and I still have. We respect each other and hopefully the situation can pan out so that everyone involved is content." Peterson did not state he suddenly wants to return to the Vikings. His 2015 whereabouts remain in limbo.
Mar 4 - 8:05 PM

Saints released RB Pierre Thomas.

The Saints begin the difficult process of cutting veterans amid their salary-cap nightmare. Currently about $20 million over the cap, the Saints save just $1.735 million with this move. Thomas took a pay cut last offseason and went on to total 600 yards with three TDs on 90 touches. At age 30, he now joins a flooded running-back market. An obvious product of Sean Payton's system, Thomas would do well to command $2 million per year as a passing-game specialist. The Saints have an in-house replacement option in Travaris Cadet.
Mar 4 - 4:16 PM




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