NFL General Managers have until Saturday to slice their rosters all the way down to the league maximum of 53 but even the first trim down to 75 features a few head-scratchers and salary-cut casualties.
Let’s take a look at some of the notable names who are looking for new jobs as a result of today’s deadline.
As Donald Trump would do it: “You’re fired!”
Nobody likes an aging running back
Fred Jackson racked up 5,646 yards with 30 TDs over the course of his eight-year tenure with the Buffalo Bills – good enough for third all-time on a team that once featured OJ Simpson and Thurman Thomas. But in a “What have you done for me lately?” league, production in the past doesn’t necessarily result in a roster spot today.
The Bills jettisoned their long-time workhorse back in favor of cheaper, younger talent.
I can’t say I blame Rex Ryan for trying to start fresh on a team that needs a fresh start – but there’s no question that Jackson still has a few yards left in the tank.
In all likelihood, he’ll be reuniting with his old teammate, Marshawn Lynch, spelling and blocking for ‘Beast Mode’ in Seattle. He’s in the Emerald City as we speak for a physical and his imminent signing could mean goodbye for the disappointing Christine Michael. Michael came into the league with a high ceiling but several years in now he’s yet to show more than a flash of his potential.
It should be noted that Pete Carroll is on record as saying, “This is a visit, not a signing.” But salary cap implications aside, Jackson would surely love to slide into a top-tier team after nearly a decade with the perennially losing Bills.
Not all is lost in Buffalo, however, as Jackson’s misery could translate into a half-price burrito.
— Lloyd Taco Trucks (@whereslloyd) September 1, 2015
Chicago parts ways with Tim Jennings
Quality veteran cornerbacks don’t generally stay unemployed for long but Tim Jennings is probably wondering what he did wrong to be kicked to the curb by Da Bears.
Then again, this is a franchise that bet the farm and then some on Jay Cutler.
Jennings appears to be heading back to work for ex-coach Lovie Smith in Tampa. From one mediocre team to another…but it beats flipping burgers.
— NFL (@NFL) September 1, 2015
Is the Trent Richardson saga finally over?
It’s hard to call the Trent Richardson firing a surprising tidbit of news. After all, there’s quite a bit of evidence backing up claims that he’s the biggest bust in the history of the NFL – but nevertheless, here we are talking about it.
It’s not very often the fourth overall pick has stats like this tweeted about him:
Trent Richardson (3.31, 614 attempts) has the 2nd-worst career rush avg (min 610 attempts). Only Clarke Hinkle (3.30, 1,171) was worse,
— Gil Brandt (@Gil_Brandt) September 1, 2015
In classic Oakland form, however, Richardson’s contract guaranteed him 600 grand even if he didn’t make the team.
So yeah, Trent’s gonna earn about 10 times what you get this year just for sitting on his ass playing Playstation. And that’s where he’ll be alright, because no team outside of the Canadian Football League will want to touch this guy with a 10-foot pole. His goose is finally cooked for good. (At least it should be.)
Hard to hang with Johnson and Tate
Former second-round pick Ryan Broyles won’t be catching balls from Matthew Stafford this season, but with Calvin and Golden as the starters this was a safe assumption anyway.
But the sure-handed WR will undoubtedly be picked up elsewhere as today’s pass-happy teams are always looking to stock their coffers with extra wideouts. If you’re going to run five-receiver sets you need five dudes to line up as legitimate targets.
With two star-studded starters, the Lions were happy to roll with Corey Fuller, Jeremy Ross, Lance Moore and Greg Salas to round out their receiving corps.
WR Jarrett Boykin could have been a flash in the pan
There was a time when Boykin looked like an up-and-coming player. Now it looks like he may have been a product of Aaron Rodgers’ mastery of the game.
If the WR-starved Panthers don’t want him, who knows if anyone else will.
Carolina’s decision to part with Boykin was much in part due to a last-minute trade that brought Kevin Norwood over from the Seahawks. Norwood never quite lived up to expectations in Seattle but he’s a big body with great hands – don’t be surprised to see his career finally get legs with his new team.
WR Kevin Norwood is a 6-2, 200 lb WR. Had 9 REC for 102 yds for SEA. Panthers traded an undisclosed 2017 pick for him pic.twitter.com/djMSGkjlZ8
— CAR Panthers News (@CarPanthersNews) August 31, 2015
Denarius Moore says goodbye to Bengals
Moore started off hot for the Raiders, piling up 2,000+ yards in his first three seasons, but last year he lost his starting gig and fell completely off the radar, hauling in just 12 receptions in 10 games for a paltry 115 yards. After averaging 18.7, 14.5 and 15.1 yards per catch, he dropped down to just 9.6 in 2014.
Cincinnati had hoped he’d regain his old form. Denarius will now be hoping at least one more team shares the same sentiment.
And now we wait…
Four days to go and Kirk Cousins has already been named the starter.
Will Washington finally cut ties with RGIII and admit their draft-day gamble turned up double-zeroes?
At this point I can’t help but believe the drama and distraction outweighs any chance Griffin returns to his rookie form.