The NFL free agency legal tampering period begins on Monday at 12 PM ET. Teams around the league are getting ready for that and the official start of free agency on Wednesday at 4 PM ET. Here’s a look at today’s NFL News and Rumors on March 13.
NFL News and Rumors: Cardinals restructure Justin Pugh’s contract
The Arizona Cardinals restructured the contract of veteran offensive guard Justin Pugh, cutting his base salary from $9.8 million to $5.5 million with $1.5 million available in incentives. Pugh had an $11.8 million salary cap figure originally.
Pugh, 31, is a former New York Giants first-round draft pick. He signed a five-year, $45 million contract with the Cardinals in 2018. He agreed to a pay cut to $4.25 million from $8.025 million. Last season, he started 13 games for the Cardinals.
Commanders agree to three-year deal with Scott Turner
The Washington Commanders are signing offensive coordinator Scott Turner to a three-year contract extension. He is signed through 2024.
Turner, 39, will be coaching quarterback Carson Wentz after he was acquired in a trade from the Indianapolis Colts.
Turner is the son of Norv Turner. He has coached for the Carolina Panthers, Cleveland Browns, and Minnesota Vikings.
Lions bring back Evan Brown
The Detroit Lions have agreed to a one-year contract with center Evan Brown. Brown, 25, was a restricted free agent who will now return to the team. He started 12 games and allowed just 1 sack last season after Frank Ragnow had knee surgery. Brown has played in 27 games with 18 starts over the past three seasons.
NFL News and Rumors: Buccaneers hold onto Ryan Jensen with three-year, $39 million deal
Tampa Bay Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht was determined to hold onto center Ryan Jensen, and now he has locked him up on a three-year extension, per agent Mike McCartney. The deal is worth $39 million, according to a league source.
Licht was going to do everything possible to keep Jensen, especially after the abrupt retirement of offensive guard Ali Marpet.
Jensen is coming off his first Pro Bowl selection. He started every game last season, playing in 97% of the Buccaneers’ offensive snaps. Additionally, he overcame an ankle injury that hampered him during the playoffs.
Now that his four-year, $42 million contract is expiring, the former Ravens’ sixth-round draft pick has landed another payday. Jensen made $10 million last season and now gets a $3 million raise.
NFL News and Rumors: Commanders re-sign Troy Apke
The Washington Commanders re-signed safety Troy Apke to a one-year contract, per his agent Joe Linta.
Apke was a special-teams contributor last season who played in all 17 games, racking up 6 tackles (5 solo). This marks his fifth season with the Washington franchise since being drafted in the fourth round.
Texans re-sign Chris Moore to one-year, $1.187 million deal
The Houston Texans re-signed veteran wide receiver and special-teams contributor Chris Moore to a one-year, $1.187 million contract, according to a league source.
The deal includes $1.047 million guaranteed with a $152,500 signing bonus and $895,000 of his $1.035 million base salary guaranteed.
Moore, 28, is a special-teams standout capable of big games at wide receiver. Last season, against the New England Patriots, he caught all 5 of his targets for 109 yards and beat Devin McCourty and J.C. Jackson for a score on a sideline pass.
In 12 games (one start) last season, Moore recorded 21 receptions for 227 yards and 2 touchdowns. He also contributed 5 tackles on special teams. Moore has accrued 68 receptions, 738 yards, and 6 touchdowns in his six-year career, spending the first five with the Baltimore Ravens.
NFL News and Rumors: Texans restructure Kevin Pierre-Louis contract, reduce salary to $2.4 million
The Houston Texans have restructured the contract of veteran linebacker Kevin Pierre-Louis, reducing his total compensation for next season to $2.4 million with $1.2 million of it guaranteed, according to a league source.
Pierre-Louis got a $1 million signing bonus and $280,000 of his $1.12 million base salary guaranteed with up to $280,000 in per-game active roster bonuses and up to $300,000 in playtime incentives.
Pierre-Louis was originally due $3.5 million under a two-year, $8 million contract. He was limited to eight games and one start due to a positive COVID-19 test in addition to a hamstring injury that forced him to be placed on the injured reserve. Thus, Pierre-Louis only recorded 10 tackles last season.
In 2020, Pierre-Louis played in 13 games for the Washington Football Team, producing 56 tackles, 1 sack, a forced fumble, and 2 passes defensed.
Patriots bring back Devin McCourty on one-year, $9 million deal
The New England Patriots have retained veteran safety and team leader Devin McCourty on a one-year, $9 million contract, according to a league source.
McCourty, 34, had 60 tackles, 3 interceptions, and 10 passes defensed last season.
The former first-round draft pick from Rutgers played out an original five-year, $47.5 million contract that included $28.5 million guaranteed. He then signed a two-year, $23 million contract with $17 million guaranteed in 2020.
Now, McCourty is back with the Patriots for another year of reliable play and leadership on and off the field.
Bills bring back Isaiah McKenzie on two-year, $8 million deal
The Buffalo Bills have retained wide receiver Isaiah McKenzie on a two-year contract. Per a league source, McKenzie’s deal is worth $8 million total.
He was originally claimed off waivers from the Denver Broncos and has emerged as an important player for the Bills. He caught 11 passes for 125 yards in a win over New England.
Last season, McKenzie had 20 catches, 178 receiving yards, and 1 touchdown. He also returned 24 kickoffs for an average of 24.3 yards per return and 19 punts for 147 return yards this past season.
NFL News and Rumors: Patriots assign second-round tender to Jakobi Meyers
The New England Patriots assigned a second-round restricted free agent tender to wide receiver Jakobi Meyers, according to agent Drew Rosenhaus.
It’s a $3.986 million one-year tender. The Patriots have the right of first refusal and can match any offer sheet. If Meyers signs with another team and the Patriots don’t match, they would receive a second-round draft pick in exchange for him. Meyers caught 83 passes for 866 yards and 2 touchdowns last season.
The Patriots are not tendering fullback Jakob Johnson.
Lions retain C.J. Moore
The Detroit Lions retained special-teams ace C.J. Moore on a one-year, $2.4 million maximum value contract, according to a league source. He’ll receive $800,000 in guarantees.
The identical twin brother of Houston Texans safety A.J. Moore, C.J. Moore had 22 tackles last season for the Lions in 17 games with one start.
NFL News and Rumors: Broncos hold onto Andrew Beck
The Denver Broncos are retaining fullback Andrew Beck on a one-year contract, according to his agent, Ray Haija.
Beck joined the New England Patriots after going undrafted, was shifted to fullback, and then released. Claimed off waivers by the Broncos, he replaced Andy Janovich as the starter when he got hurt. He caught a touchdown in 2019 in a win over the Raiders.
Beck was awarded the NFL’s Salute to Service Award presented by USAA in February.
He has caught 9 career passes for 90 yards and a score. Beck played collegiately at the University of Texas where he caught 28 passes for 281 yards and 2 touchdowns and was named All-Big 12 Conference.
Buccaneers re-sign Aaron Stinnie
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have re-signed offensive guard Aaron Stinnie to a one-year contract.
Stinnie started for the Buccaneers in the Super Bowl when right guard Alex Cappa got hurt.
With Ali Marpet retiring, Stinnie is a candidate for a starting job. Plus, Cappa is a free agent.
A former undrafted free agent from James Madison, Stinnie was claimed by Tampa Bay off waivers from the Tennessee Titans. He has played in 23 games with four starts, including the postseason.