Greg olsen's son gets heart transplant
Starting things off with a feel-good story: Eight-year-old TJ Olsen, son of recently retired tight end Greg Olsen, received a heart transplant over the weekend. He is currently still in recovery but is in good spirits.
TJ was born with a heart defect and has had multiple heart surgeries throughout his life. Olsen's foundation, The HEARTest Yard, focuses on care for children who have conditions like his son. You can find more info or even donate here.
jalen ramsey wishes rams went after julio jones
Los Angeles Rams corner Jalen Ramsey has never shied away from speaking his mind. Now he's questioning why his team wasn't more "in" on star wide receiver Julio Jones before he was traded to the Tennessee Titans over the weekend.
Many players (and fans) can probably relate to this sentiment, especially since the payback for Jones looks to be so cheap in terms of getting said "generational guy." In the Rams' case, they already have plenty of financial commitments to big-name players, including Ramsey. Newly acquired quarterback Matthew Stafford is one of them, along with Aaron Donald. Los Angeles did ask about Jones (likely asked the price, if I were to guess) early on, before saying, "no thanks, we're good."
ja'wuan james signs with ravens
This one is, for lack of better words, puzzling. After filing a grievance against the Denver Broncos for cutting him after he tore his Achilles working out away from the team's facility, the Baltimore Ravens have signed James to a two-year deal, even though he won't see the field this year.
Fans are raving about this and calling it "genius," but they do that with every move the Ravens make these days. I'm still filing this one under "a head-scratcher."
bills have no update on josh allen's contract
Buffalo Bills star quarterback Josh Allen is in the group of QBs due their first "big" contract extension following their rookie deals. While it's something Buffalo wants to get done sooner rather than later, GM Brandon Beane gave no updates on Monday when he was asked about a likely extension.
There are no doubts that this will get done, but I can't lie when I say I'm interested to see these Numbers. With a capital N.
aaron rodgers won't show up for minicamp, as expected
This was expected (at least for me), but Aaron Rodgers is not expected to attend Green Bay Packers minicamp, after no-showing at OTAs.
Everyone from the team to the coaches to the front office crossed all their fingers and toes that Rodgers will swallow it up and show up, but alas. It's a no-go. I'm not going to break down the entire feud between him and the team (if you're reading this, you likely already know), but basically, Rodgers is making a point here.
Green Bay can still fine Rodgers a pretty penny for not attending (over $90,000) minicamp, in addition to the $500,000 workout bonus that was voided when he didn't show up for OTAs. Rodgers is saying he's choosing winning over money and wants to be in on certain decisions and generally just wants to be heard.
greg olsen shares update on son's health
Recently retired tight end Greg Olsen shared an update regarding his son's health earlier this week. He shared that his son TJ may need a heart transplant.
Olsen previously played with the Chicago Bears, the Carolina Panthers, and, most recently, the Seattle Seahawks. Olsen's charity, the HEARTest Yard, focuses on helping children with heart defects get proper health care. You can find out more here.
bucs cut OTas to six sessions
Because Tom Brady said so. Brady urged players to negotiate with their coaches when it came to reporting for offseason work, and it seemed to work in Tampa (shocking). The team is now reducing their organized team activities down to six sessions.
The Bucs will still hold mandatory minicamp in early June, and it's likely a more relaxed schedule will be given for those exercises as well.
Other teams, such as the Pittsburgh Steelers also negociated offseason work. While the details aren't known, players were able to work virtually and in-person, and players, like Cam Heyward, are appreciative.
Bucs head coach Bruce Arians told the media on Tuesday that while most veterans stayed away and OTAs were more for the younger players, he also mentioned "for their protection" that players should work out together at team facilities. Aka, "we don't want a Ja'Wuan James situation.
first look at joe burrow's comeback szn
Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow tore his ACL in late November of last season and is determined to be ready for training camp. While he's still not at 100 percent currently, Burrow still took to the field on Tuesday and even did some throwing. We love to see it.
I know it's only May, but this is still a good thing to see if you're a Bengals fan. But I'm still gonna be keeping an eye on that offensive line as well.
Arthur smith isn't talking about julio jones right now
There's still major drama surrounding Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones and his (potential) trade, but the Falcons' personnel isn't going to give anything away at the moment. After famously (at this point) saying on Undisputed that he was "out of there" earlier this week, head coach Arthur Smith pulled the "conversations are private" card when speaking of Jones.
A reminder that a trade after June 1 will leave the Falcons with under $8 million in dead cap (before June 1, it would be over $20 million). It's May 26. Tick, tock.
aaron jones says he re-signed with packers regardless if rodgers will be there or not
The rumor mill was turning (and continues to turn) when it comes to the Green Bay Packers and quarterback Aaron Rodgers. Rumors swirled about that Rodgers told teammates and free agents that he likely wouldn't be back in Green Bay, but running back Aaron Jones said that wasn't the case with him, and he likely would have been back regardless.
It's still up in the air whether Rodgers will be there come September, but another Aaron will be back.
all teams (sort of) cleared for full stadiums
30 of the 32 NFL teams are cleared to return to full capacity in stadiums this fall. The two lone teams are the Denver Broncos and the Indianapolis Colts, but their plans should be approved in time for the season to begin.
Masking and vaccination rules will be left up to the teams and local regulations, but things look to heading back to "normal" in the NFL world. NFL teams are still encouraging players, staff and fans to get vaccinated at their earliest convenience.
Lane Johnson cleared for offseason work
Philadelphia Eagles right tackle Lane Johnson suffered a plethora of injuries during his 2020 season, including ankle surgery that inevitably ended his season in December. Johnson says it's old news and that he's ready for offseason workouts at full strength.
Joe Flacco needs all the protection he can get.
it doesn't sound like julian edelman will be playing in tampa
New England Patriots wide receiver and former Super Bowl MVP Julian Edelman announced his retirement earlier this year. The second he did, the rumors started swirling that he'd end up in Tampa Bay with former teammates Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski. Edelman said on Thursday that likely will not happen and that he's a "one-team guy."
Edelman's main reason for retirement was injuries, but so was Gronk's...
marquise brown switches to no. 5
Another Baltimore Ravens player is switching his jersey number. Wide receiver Marquise Brown is switching from No. 15 to No. 5. Linebacker Patrick Queen announced he was changing numbers earlier this week.
Brown wore the No. 5 in college BUT MORE IMPORTANTLY, elite quarterback and Super Bowl MVP Joseph Vincent Flacco wore the No.5 for his career in Baltimore and is the basis of its legendary symbolism.
I'm not nearly as bothered by this as most people would assume I would be. It's just a jersey, and I'm sorry to say, but Hollywood Brown at this moment is not nearly the player Flacco was for the Ravens, so it's all good for me.
daesean hamilton clears waivers, is added to broncos nfi list
The Denver Broncos were planning on trading wide receiver DaeSean Hamilton last week until he, unfortunately, tore his ACL working out (away from the team's facility, might I add). The team ended up waiving him earlier this week. Hamilton was not picked up by any of the other 31 clubs, so he lands on Denver's non-football injury list.
This situation is eerily similar to the Broncos' other current player-gets-injured-away-from-team-facility-and-its-therefore-not-our-problem case. Tackle Ja'Wuan James faced a similar problem, except he was released from the team. James may file a grievance as well, and players are keeping an eye on this one.
courtland sutton hopes to be ready for broncos camp
Denver Broncos wide receiver Courtland Sutton tore his ACL in his first game in 2020, ending his season. Sutton hopes to be thoroughly ready for camp in 2021. Sutton says he has been training this offseason and taking the necessary steps to be sure he's prepared to start training camp.
Denver's offense struggled last season, but the bright point was the addition of receiver Jerry Jeudy. Having Sutton back and Jeudy in his sophomore season should be a significant boost.
Matt Ryan speaks on his future and julio jones
While I, personally, still believe the Atlanta Falcons should have drafted a quarterback in this year's draft, they did not. Still at the helm is good ol' Matt Ryan. Ryan just turned 36 this week, and while it's clear he's not going to play much longer, the Falcons believe they can still get something out of him. What that is, I'm not sure. But Ryan explained that he thinks the team made the correct decision.
Um, ok. Onto more important things -- Julio Jones. There have been rumors aplenty about a potential trade of the star wide receiver, which were only strengthened when the team recently left him off their schedule release calendar, photos, etc. (and included the kicker). Of course, Ryan was asked about this too, and what he thought of potentially playing this upcoming season without the guy who has bailed him out many times.
Um, ya think?
darius leonard is due for a new deal soon, and he hopes the colts notice
The Indianapolis Colts got a solid steal in linebacker Darius Leonard in 2018, and now he's in the final year of his rookie contract and ready for that big one.
Leonard was the Defensive Rookie of the Year in 2018 and was an All-Pro two out of his first three seasons. I'd say that's reason enough for an upgrade, but watching him play, it's apparent the Colts would benefit from keeping him around.
patrick queen switching numbers
Baltimore Ravens linebacker Patrick Queen is the latest player to switch his jersey number. He's switching from No. 48 to No. 6. On a linebacker. In Baltimore. This seems... wrong.
This really doesn't affect me in any way, other than the fact that I know it will be difficult for the opponent to pull positions... but a single-digit does not belong on a linebacker. SORRY BOUT IT.
Jonathan Taylor on board with marlon mack re-signing
The Indianapolis Colts added to their offense last season by drafting running back Jonathan Taylor. Taylor got way more than his originally desired workload in 2020 when Marlon Mack tore his Achilles in Week One. Taylor impressed with almost 1200 yards rushing in his rookie year but is still excited about sharing the field with Mack in 2021.
patrick surtain ii signs rookie deal with broncos
The Broncos agreed to terms with their first-round draft pick in 2021, CB Patrick Surtain II.
I hope he got a bonus for that pink suit on draft night. All I gotta say.
packers reiterate they want Aaron Rodgers to stay in green bay
Amidst all the rumors and reading between the lines during this Aaron Rodgers versus Green Bay Packers gauntlet, head coach Matt LaFleur finally spoke to the media after the first rookie minicamp meeting. If LaFleur thought he would be asked about just the rookies and not this whole thing, he was mad wrong. LaFleur stated that the team still wants Rodgers as their quarterback (who wouldn't) and that the team is working through the situation.
This sounds like someone who is being broken up with and told that they have to "learn to love themselves before they love someone else," no?
LaFleur has a point, and really, what else is he supposed to say? But also, actions speak louder than words in this situation. Rodgers deserves to speak his mind and be consulted regarding certain decisions (like Tom Brady was in Tampa Bay). I'm in the camp that believes the two will come to some sort of agreement eventually, but crazier things have happened.
fully vaxxed players and staff no longer have to wear masks in team facilities
Hallelujah! While we folks who believe in science are getting vaccinated and doing the right things to get this horrible past year and a half behind us, the NFL is also incentivizing players and staff who do the same. The NFL sent a memo to teams on Friday, stating that fully vaccinated personnel (which means two shots and two weeks following the second shot) are no longer required to wear masks in team facilities. The memo also mentioned that teams will have to adhere to any local regulations.
broncos release ja'Wuan james
This is an odd one. The Denver Broncos placed offensive tackle Ja'Wuan James on the non-football injury list last week after he tore his Achilles while working out away from the team facility. They released him from the team over the weekend.
Long story short: The NFLPA was urging players to not show up to in-person workouts because it worked perfectly fine for everyone last year doing it virtually. However, there was a snag in that line of thinking which was: What happens if you get injured (and/or are declared out for the season) and it happened away from the facility because they chose not to show up, is the team still inclined to pay said player? Now, James is that example.
James sent a tweet stating his thoughts on the situation (which I agree with, by the way):
James is also considering filing a grievance against the team, so this will be something to keep an eye on.
giants give kelvin benjamin a shot.. maybe at tight end
If this sounds familiar, it's because there seems to be an influx of older players trying to convert to tight end and sign with a team. The New York Giants are signing free agent wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin after a tryout this weekend, but there's a catch. Benjamin may be playing tight end.
He has the size at 6'5" and 245 pounds. But, converting to a new position after not having played in the NFL in three seasons isn't an easy task.