NFL Updates: News From Around the League, Off-Season Schedule and More
February 27, 2016
We’re headed into the NFL Scouting Combine weekend, and there’s plenty to talk about while we gear up for the free agent period. In the meantime, let’s take our daily look at the headlines and see who’s in the news.
The Bears are reportedly interested in bringing back TE Zach Miller in 2016, but they’ll likely let him hit the open market before making an offer.
Miller apparently wants a numbers somewhere in the $5 million range, and it’s hard to believe that any team would pay that for a 32-year-old oft-injured tight end. Once he sees what he’s getting in free agency, expect the Bears to come in with a more reasonable offer.
Speaking of Bears tight ends, the team has to figure out what they’re doing with Martellus Bennett. The team is thought to be open to trade offers, and could drag a decision out through the draft in April.
If Chicago doesn’t get what they think is fair value for Bennett, they could even simply drop him and avoid that sizable $5.185 cap number. Regardless, it’s not expected that he’ll be with the team next season.
The Panthers reportedly haven’t gained much ground with free agent Josh Norman in their contract discussions.
Norman is looking to get paid similar to what Richard Sherman gets in Seattle. If there’s no agreement in place by March 1, expect the team to franchise tag him.
Tired of all those preseason games? The league has been talking about reducing the number of meaningless contests from four to three.
We’re still putting long odds on this happening, as the NFL would lose a boatload of money from not having that fourth week of preseason (when the starters don’t play anyway). It would be nice for the players to have an extra week off before the regular season, though. At least they’re discussing it, which is a step in the right direction.
NFL Off-Season Schedule: It’s a long, slow crawl back to the 2016 NFL season, but the league has a lot of activities planned in the meantime to keep us busy. Let’s check out the upcoming schedule before that first game of 2016.
February 22: Teams can use franchise or transition tags on players
February 23-29: NFL Scouting Combine
March 7: Free agent negotiations can begin
March 15: 2016 league year officially begins; free agency officially begins
March 20-23: League meetings
April 4: Off-season workouts can begin for teams with new head coaches
April 18: Off-season workouts can begin for teams retaining head coaches
April 22: Offer sheet deadline for restricted free agent signings
April 28-30: NFL Draft (Chicago, Illinois)
May 6-9: Post-draft minicamps
Mid-July: Training camps open
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