NFL News: Player News and Updates for 3/1/14
NFL Updates: McCown, Giants, Off-Season Schedule and More
March 1, 2014
Now that we’ve hit the weekend, we’re sure to see a continuation of the NFL storylines out there over the past several days. There’s a lot to talk about between now and the free agency period (not to mention the draft), so with that in mind let’s take our daily look at some of the noteworthy players and headlines out there right now. Here’s the latest.
Emmanuel Sanders, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers: With each passing day, it’s looking more and more like Sanders’ tenure in Pittsburgh has come to an end. Yesterday, a report came out that said it was “hard to imagine” him returning to the Steelers, so he’ll likely dip his toe in the free agent waters this off-season.
There are several teams who would potentially be interested in Sanders if he becomes available, and it’s assumed he’ll get a similar deal to the Eagles’ Riley Cooper ($5 million annually). The possibility exists that Pittsburgh might make him an offer during free agency after the market sets itself, but if not we’ll be seeing more of Markus Wheaton next season.
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sport
Charles Woodson, CB, Oakland Raiders: It’s possible that we’ve seen legendary CB Charles Woodson’s last snap in the NFL. The 16-year veteran wants to return to the Raiders in 2014, but if a deal isn’t reached with what he calls “the right numbers,” he’s apt to retire from the game.
There’s no doubt that Woodson still has some football left in the tank. He made 97 tackles last season (third on the Raiders squad) with a pair of sacks and an interception. If Oakland doesn’t step up, it’s still conceivable he could catch on somewhere else in need of some depth and veteran leadership.
Giants Want a TE: Once free agency hits, we’re likely to see the New York Giants in hot pursuit of a quality tight end. With offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo--who was a TE coach in Green Bay--New York could be looking to pick up a Packer.
Both Andrew Quarless and Jermichael Finley are free agents this year, and either one could end up with the Giants. Finley is the more established talent, but he carries with himself a major injury risk after spinal fusion surgery this past year. Quarless, on the other hand, showed some flashes last season but only had 312 yards and a pair of touchdowns on 32 receptions.
Josh McCown, QB, Chicago Bears: The more we hear about the McCown situation in Chicago, the less we believe he’ll even reach the open market as a free agent. The journeyman QB reportedly would like to sign with the Bears over any other team, in an effort to provide some stability for his family. The only hang-up on a re-signing we can see is the fact that he’ll want a multi-year contract, and given his age (almost 35), the Bears may balk at anything beyond a single season.
If McCown does hit the market as a free agent, he won’t have any problem finding a home. Still, much of his success can be attributed to offensive guru Marc Trestman’s system, so there’s no telling if he’d even be effective anywhere else.
NFL Key Dates: Now that we’ve finished up the season in the NFL, it’s now back to 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
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