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Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Football

Report: Cowboys hosting Randall Cobb for visit

The Dallas Cowboys are searching for a new slot receiver now that Cole Beasley has signed with the Buffalo Bills, and they are getting a closer look at a free agent who used to be one of Aaron Rodgers’ favorite targets.

Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports that the Cowboys are hosting Randall Cobb for a visit on Monday.

Cobb’s production has steadily declined in recent years and he battled some injuries last season that limited him to nine games. He finished with just 38 catches for 383 yards and two touchdowns in 2018, but he still appears to be drawing decent interest from teams. One top AFC team reportedly tried to trade for Cobb last season.

Raiders release OT Donald Penn

Donald Penn Raiders

The Oakland Raiders have officially released offensive lineman Donald Penn.

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the team and player mutually agreed to part ways after five seasons.

The writing had been on the wall for Penn for some time, even after he restructured his contract prior to the start of last season. He landed on injured reserve with a groin injury last season, and had been displaced from the left tackle role by rookie Kolton Miller. Add in the fact that Penn was not a player originally acquired Jon Gruden and it wasn’t all that difficult to see this conclusion coming.

Patriots, Seahawks reportedly among teams interested in Jordy Nelson

Jordy Nelson has looked like nowhere near the player he used to be over the past two seasons, but the veteran wide receiver is still drawing plenty of interest in the wake of the Oakland Raiders releasing him.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that Nelson is scheduled to visit with the Seattle Seahawks on Tuesday. Two of the AFC’s best teams — the New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs — are also expected to give Nelson a look.

Nelson had three consecutive seasons with 1,000 or more receiving yards for the Green Bay Packers from 2013-2015, but he fell off in 2017 and struggled to produce when Aaron Rodgers got hurt. He came on strong with the Raiders late last season after a slow start, finishing with 63 catches, 739 yards and three touchdowns.

The Patriots would be a good landing spot for Nelson, as they are extremely thin at the receiver position and were reportedly interested in another former Packers wide receiver at one point. Nelson will turn 34 in May and isn’t nearly as explosive as he once was, but he can still be a solid possession receiver.

Johnny Manziel reportedly signs contract with the AAF

Johnny Manziel

Johnny Manziel is resuming his football career in the United States.

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Manziel has signed the Alliance of American Football’s Standard Player Agreement, and will go through the waiver system to join a team.

There were some signs that Manziel was exploring this avenue to continue his NFL career. While it’s unclear where he’ll land, it’s not the worst deal for him. A number of other ex-NFL players have used the AAF to play competitive football with some visibility in the hopes of returning to the league. Whether it works or not remains to be seen, but it’s a good opportunity for Manziel at this point in his career — and also potentially the one of the last chances he’ll get considering how many bridges he’s burned elsewhere.

Giants GM explains his infamous quote about not trading Odell Beckham

Dave Gettleman

In the hours after Odell Beckham Jr. was traded to the Cleveland Browns, an old tweet from the New York Giants’ Twitter account quickly achieved a sort of viral status. It was a quote from Giants general manager Dave Gettleman given after the team signed Beckham to a new contract last year, and at the time, it was meant to quiet the trade rumors around the star wide receiver.

Obviously, those words rung hollow with many Giants fans after the deal was completed. Speaking for the first time since the trade on Monday, Gettleman asserted that the quote had been true — but someone had blown the Giants away with an offer too good to turn down.

That offer was a first-round pick, a third-round pick, and safety Jabrill Peppers. Do with that information what you will.

Ultimately, there’s no chance this is going to calm down angry Giants fans. If anything, it might stoke their anger even more.

Johnny Manziel joining AAF’s Memphis Express

Johnny Manziel CFL

Johnny Manziel has a new football team.

The AAF announced that Manziel has been assigned to the Memphis Express and will join the team on Sunday. The news comes shortly after they announced Manziel had signed a player agreement with the league.

The former Heisman Trophy winner had been playing for the Montreal Alouettes in the CFL, but the league terminated his contract in late February, saying he had violated the terms of his contract.

The Memphis Express had the first waiver priority in the AAF due to their 1-5 record. They are on their third quarterback for the season. Initial starter Christian Hackenberg struggled, and Zach Mettenberger hurt his ankle in Week 6. If nothing else, Manziel should attract some fan attention for the league.

Report: Jay Gruden not being consulted on Redskins’ roster moves

Jay Gruden

If the latest report out of Washington is true, the Redskins organization is in quite the messy spot.

According to Eric Bickel of 106.7 The Fan, Washington head coach Jay Gruden has not been consulted on any of the team’s offseason moves. He even went as far as to say that Gruden learned of the Landon Collins signing through media reports, not from anyone associated with the organization.

Gruden is said to be very frustrated by the fact that Bruce Allen has essentially frozen him out of the decision-making process.

True or not, the last time we heard about this sort of disconnect between the coach and the front office, John Fox lasted one more season before ultimately being fired by the Chicago Bears. If there’s anything to this, it seems like Gruden may also be living on borrowed time in Washington.