NFL News: Player News and Updates for 3/9/14
NFL Updates: Mendenhall Calls It Quits, Off-Season Schedule and More
March 9, 2014
With the NFL league year officially beginning in a couple of days, we’ve already seen lots of activity this weekend. We’re sure to see plenty more as free agency continues, and that should whet our appetites for the impending draft. All that said, let’s take our daily look around the league and see who’s making headlines out there. Here’s the latest.
Jacoby Jones, WR, Baltimore Ravens: Even if Jones doesn’t return to Baltimore this off-season, at least the Ravens can say they made an attempt to keep him. A report emerged yesterday which indicated the team had made an offer to the eight-year veteran WR, though no agreement is considered to be imminent.
It sounds like Jones will be testing the waters in free agency, then will mull his options as far as returning to the Ravens. He started nine games for Baltimore in 2013, producing 37 receptions for 455 yards and two touchdowns.
Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports
Matt Schaub, QB, Houston Texans: The Schaub situation--along with a handful of other potentially available quarterbacks--has taken several twists and turns this off-season. Even though he hasn’t yet been formally released by the Texans, it’s a foregone conclusion that the team will be cutting ties with him.
If (well, when) that happens, there’s already a line forming to try and win his services. Linked as potential suitors to Schaub are the Raiders, Browns and Jets. In that immediate group, we’d give Cleveland an early lead since he’s had experience with their offensive system and knows OC Kyle Shanahan. All this is purely speculation at the moment, of course, but we’ll keep you posted.
Ben Tate, RB, Houston Texans: While we’re in Houston, let’s visit with Tate, who will be drawing a fair bit of interest of his own on the open market. He’s confirmed that he’s done with the Texans, and is taking offers in free agency. Fittingly enough, both the Jets and Browns have been mentioned as potential landing spots for him.
Tate has a pretty good upside attached to him, but there are a couple of risk factors associated here. The elephant in the room is his injury history, which has caused him to miss part of each of his four years in the league so far. It also remains to be seen whether or not he can be a feature back in the NFL. Playing behind a beast like Arian Foster doesn’t allow much in the way of showcasing. We’ll see who takes the bait here.
Rashard Mendenhall, RB, Free Agent: Well, it looks like the journey really is over for Mendenhall. After just six years in the league--five in Pittsburgh and one in Arizona--he’s calling it quits and retiring ahead of the upcoming 2014 campaign.
Mendenhall’s agent has been informing potentially interested teams of his departure from professional football, likely expedited by the toe and knee injuries he fought through last year. He leaves the game with career totals of 1081 carries, 4236 rush yards and 37 rushing touchdowns.
NFL Key Dates: We’re now back to full-on anticipation mode for the 2014 campaign. Here’s a look at some of the noteworthy dates from this off-season period that should keep us occupied until the league kicks off again.
Important 2014 Dates:
February 3: Waiver System Starts (Teams can make transactions, cuts, etc.)
February 17-March 3: Franchise Tag Designation Period
February 19-25: NFL Combine (Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis, IN)
March 8: Contract Negotiations for Unrestricted Free Agents Can Begin
March 11: League Year Officially Begins (4:00 PM ET)
March 23-28: Annual Owners Meeting (Orlando, FL)
May 8-10: NFL Draft
July 24: Training Camp Opens
September 4: First Game of the 2014 Season
For the latest article updates, follow Andrew on Twitter @SCPAndrew.