NFL News: Player News and Updates for 3/9/16
NFL Updates: News From Around the League, Off-Season Schedule and More
March 9, 2016
We’re hearing all sorts of free agency negotiation rumors, and it’s looking like some of the league’s top players will be on the move. That said, let’s check out some of the notable news items out there in our morning wrap-up of the league headlines.
It’s a sad day for Lions football. All-time great Calvin Johnson officially announced his retirement yesterday, making things official by filing his papers with the league.
Johnson has attributed this relatively early retirement (he’s only 30) to a breakdown of his body over the past few years. He was able to start all 16 games in 2015, but did miss out on a lot of practice time due to his balky ankles.
Will Johnson make the Hall of Fame? He’s got a strong case in his nine NFL seasons, with 731 career grabs and 83 touchdown catches.
Now that Johnson is gone, it’ll be the Golden Tate show in Detroit for now. Look for the team to try and make some WR upgrades in free agency or the draft.
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Free agent former-Bengals CB Adam Jones has gotten a lot of attention this week, and has several teams vying for his services.
The Dolphins seem to have the inside track on getting Jones, as DC Vance Joseph and he have a solid professional relationship. Other teams to watch out for in potentially landing Jones are the Ravens, Browns, Vikings and Jets.
We’ve got a bit more information on why the Colts chose to re-sign TE Dwayne Allen early this week. Allen said that OC Rob Chudzinski promised to give him a much larger role on the offense in 2016, which should be music to Colts fans’ ears.
Allen has a really nice all-around TE skill set, and if he can remain healthy he’ll be a potent weapon for Indy. They’re paying him just under $30 million over four years, so they’ll be getting him out on the field as much as possible to get a return on their investment.
The Panthers will be moving on from free agent WR Jerricho Cotchery. That will leave them with a WR corps of Kelvin Benjamin, Devin Funchess, Ted Ginn, Stephen Hill and Corey Brown.
Cotchery’s talents have diminished in recent years, and he’ll be 34 this summer. He dropped three big passes in the Super Bowl, which likely left a bad taste in Carolina’s mouth heading into the off-season. With the WR market as shallow as it is, however, Cotchery has a decent chance at catching on somewhere else in free agency.
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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