NFL News: Player News and Updates for 7/16/14
NFL Updates: News From Around the League, Off-Season Schedule and More
July 16, 2014
We’ve reached the middle of the week, and the excitement continues to build ahead of the 2014 NFL season. The first rookie training camp reporting dates are occurring today, so there’s a lot going on. We’re seeing some fresh updates on teams around the league continuing to trickle in, and we’ve got a new batch of news items this morning. Let’s take a look at the headlines and see what’s happening out there.
Jimmy Graham, TE, New Orleans Saints: Early yesterday, word broke that the lengthy contract impasse between the Saints and their star TE Jimmy Graham had reached a conclusion. That conclusion was a four-year, $40 million deal, with $20-21 million guaranteed. He’s now the highest-paid tight end in the league, but not by much.
The resolution to this long and drawn-out process ultimately ends badly for Graham. He was unsuccessful in convincing an arbitrator that he should be paid like a wide receiver, since the team technically uses him in that way the majority of the time. That said, it’s great news for the Saints and their fans, as he’s locked up for the next four seasons.
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Jermichael Finely Latest: Today will be a big day for free agent TE Jermichael Finley. He’s set for a series of major tests today that will be crucial in determining his readiness for the 2014 NFL season.
He’ll be getting an MRI and CAT scan--among other tests--on his injured neck to determine his health after spinal fusion surgery late last year. Since then, he’s cleared a series of hurdles, including gaining clearance from the neurosurgeon who performed the procedure.
Finley has indicated that he’s received a few contract offers from teams looking to add him, but hasn’t gotten any worth the money he wants.
Jordan Matthews, WR, Philadelphia Eagles: Get used to hearing Matthews’ name. If his season plays out the way the Eagles’ coaching staff thinks it will, we could be seeing a breakout star.
The rookie WR was a second-round pick by Philadelphia this season and is already receiving rave reviews for his speed and size (6’3”; 210 lbs.). Eagles receivers coach Bob Bicknell has praised Matthews’ hands in off-season workouts, saying he looks “very good” thus far.
The team will likely end up using Matthews as its No. 3 receiver behind Jeremy Maclin and Riley Cooper, so he’ll be a key piece in the offensive attack.
Week 1 Schedule: Now that the schedules have been released, we can start looking forward to the on-field action as we warm up for the 2014 campaign. Here’s a look at the first week of the season, which begins September 4.
Thursday, September 4, 2014:
8:30 PM ET:
Green Bay Packers at Seattle Seahawks (NBC)
Sunday, September 7, 2014:
1:00 PM ET:
New Orleans Saints at Atlanta Falcons (FOX)
Minnesota Vikings at St. Louis Rams (FOX)
Cleveland Browns at Pittsburgh Steelers (CBS)
Jacksonville Jaguars at Philadelphia Eagles (CBS)
Oakland Raiders at New York Jets (CBS)
Cincinnati Bengals at Baltimore Ravens (CBS)
Buffalo Bills at Chicago Bears (FOX)
Washington Redskins at Houston Texans (FOX)
Tennessee Titans at Kansas City Chiefs (CBS)
New England Patriots at Miami Dolphins (CBS)
4:25 PM ET:
Carolina Panthers at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (FOX)
San Francisco 49ers at Dallas Cowboys (FOX)
8:30 PM ET:
Indianapolis Colts at Denver Broncos (NBC)
Monday, September 8, 2014:
7:10 PM ET:
New York Giants at Detroit Lions (ESPN)
10:20 PM ET:
San Diego Chargers at Arizona Cardinals (ESPN)
NFL Off-Season 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 Remaining:
July 16: First Rookie Training Camp Reporting Date
July 19: First Veteran Training Camp Reporting Date
July 23-25: Training Camps Open
September 4: First Game of the 2014 Season
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