Posts Tagged ‘Preseason’

Toronto Maple Leafs center John Tavares will miss a minimum of three weeks due to an oblique strain, head coach Sheldon Keefe said Tuesday, according to Sportsnet’s Luke Fox.

With the Leafs’ campaign beginning Oct. 12 against the Montreal Canadiens, the captain is in danger of missing at least the first week of the 2022-23 season.

In his absence, Keefe said the team plans to try Alexander Kerfoot and newcomer Calle Jarnkrok at second-line center.

Tavares, 32, finished fourth on the team with 76 points (27 goals, 49 assists) in 79 games last season while averaging just over 18 minutes per contest. He added three goals and three assists in the Maple Leafs’ first-round loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The Mississauga, Ontario, native signed with the Maple Leafs as an unrestricted free agent in 2018. He is about to enter the fifth season of a seven-year, $77-million pact.

Since his first season in Toronto, his 274 points in 280 games are the third most on the team, behind just Mitch Marner and Auston Matthews.

Tennessee Titans pass-rusher Harold Landry is expected to miss the entire 2022 season after suffering a torn ACL in Wednesday’s practice, a source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Landry is coming off his first Pro Bowl season after he recorded a career-high 12 sacks in 2021. The Titans rewarded the linebacker with a five-year, $87.5-million contract this offseason.

Drafted in the second round in 2018, Landry had been an ironman over his first four seasons. The Boston College product has played in 64 of 65 games for the Titans since entering the league.

Landry became a full-time starter in 2019, registering nine sacks over 16 appearances. He’s tallied 31 sacks and 41 tackles for a loss over his career.

Tennessee’s depth options behind Landry include Ola Adeniyi and 2021 fourth-round pick Rashad Weaver. Roaming on the other side will be veteran Bud Dupree, who generated three sacks over 11 games last season.

Miami Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel was full of praise for Tua Tagovailoa after the quarterback was named one of the team’s captains for the first time in his career.

The Dolphins allowed their players to vote on their team captains using a point system, with Tagovailoa being the “resounding highest point winner,” according to McDaniel.

“It speaks volumes to where he is with the team and their belief in him,” McDaniel said Thursday to reporters, including NFL Network’s Cameron Wolfe.

The 24-year-old is entering a pivotal third year with the Dolphins. A top-five pick in 2020, Tagovailoa’s play has been shaky since entering the league. He threw 16 touchdowns to 10 interceptions in 2021 but averaged only 6.8 yards per attempt.

Tagovailoa has earned praise this offseason from his teammates, most notably new wide receiver Tyreek Hill. The former Kansas City Chiefs star previously said the quarterback “has one of the prettiest balls I’ve ever caught.”

Miami’s six other captains are Hill, Terron ArmsteadXavien HowardJevon HollandElandon Roberts, and Christian Wilkins.

The Cleveland Browns made another shift in their ever-changing quarterback room, claiming Kellen Mond off waivers from the Minnesota Vikings on Wednesday.

The Browns were looking to add a third quarterback after terminating Josh Rosen’s contract when general manager Andrew Berry finalized the team’s initial 53-man roster.

Mond, a third-round draft pick in 2021 from Texas A&M, was released by the Vikings on Tuesday. He’ll serve as the Browns’ No. 3 QB behind starter Jacoby Brissett and backup Joshua Dobbs.

Cleveland’s quarterback situation has been in almost constant flux this summer with Deshaun Watson leaving the team Tuesday to begin serving his 11-game NFL suspension for alleged sexual misconduct.

The 6-foot-3, 212-pound Mond played in one game for the Vikings last season, completing two passes for 5 yards.

Mond’s chance to win Minnesota’s backup job effectively ended last week when the Vikings acquired former Browns quarterback Nick Mullens in a trade with the Las Vegas Raiders.

The 23-year-old Mond finished 29 of 51 passes for 303 yards in the preseason with two touchdowns and two interceptions. He was sacked five times.

The Browns signed Rosen early in training camp to compete with Dobbs for the backup job. Cleveland was Rosen’s fourth team in four years after being drafted by Arizona with the No. 10 overall pick in 2018.

The Los Angeles Chargers are signing veteran running back Sony Michel, the team announced Wednesday.

Michel, who reportedly visited the Chargers on Wednesday, lands in Los Angeles after a short stay with the Miami Dolphins. Miami signed the former first-round running back in May but cut him earlier this week.

The 27-year-old made seven starts for the Los Angeles Rams last season and rushed for 845 yards on 208 carries. He spent the first three years of his career with the New England Patriots where he tallied two seasons with 900-plus yards on the ground.

Michel will slot in a Chargers running back group that’s fronted by Austin Ekeler. Los Angeles also used a fourth-round pick on rookie rusher Isaiah Spiller, who was nursing an ankle injury before returning to practice Tuesday. Third-year pro Joshua Kelley and Larry Rountree III round out the team’s backfield.

The Philadelphia Eagles are trading wide receiver Jalen Reagor to the Minnesota Vikings, the Vikings announced Wednesday.

Minnesota will acquire the third-year wideout in exchange for a 2023 seventh-round pick and a conditional 2024 selection; the conditional pick could be a fourth- or fifth-rounder depending on statistical achievements.

Reagor, 23, has struggled to find a role in the Eagles’ offense since they selected him 21st overall in the 2020 NFL Draft.

The TCU product recorded 31 receptions for 396 yards and one touchdown during his rookie campaign. He followed that with 33 receptions for 299 yards and two scores last season.

Reagor found himself buried behind A.J. BrownDeVonta SmithZach Pascal, and Quez Watkins on Philadelphia’s receiver depth chart.

Reagor will become teammates with two-time Pro Bowler Justin Jefferson two years after being drafted one spot ahead of him. Reagor, who could provide value in the return game, joins a Vikings receiving group that also features Adam Thielen and K.J. Osborn.

Minnesota waived Ihmir Smith-Marsette after adding Reagor.

The New Orleans Saints have traded defensive back C.J. Gardner-Johnson to the Philadelphia Eagles, the Eagles announced Tuesday.

New Orleans will receive the Eagles’ 2023 fifth-round pick and the lower of Philadelphia’s two 2024 sixth-rounders in exchange for Gardner-Johnson and a 2025 seventh-round selection.

The Saints opted to move Gardner-Johnson after extension talks broke down, sources told Tom Pelissero and Ian Rapoport of NFL Network. The 24-year-old is entering a contract season.

“I want to say: That was not an easy decision … We wouldn’t have done that if we didn’t feel extremely confident in the group we that we have,” Saints head coach Dennis Allen said.

Gardner-Johnson is expected to be a full-time safety with the Eagles after New Orleans used him in a versatile role.

Selected by the Saints in the fourth round of the 2019 NFL Draft, Gardner-Johnson spent the first three seasons of his career with New Orleans. He started 31 games (with 12 further appearances), producing 161 total tackles, three interceptions, and 28 pass defenses.

The Eagles made room for Gardner-Johnson in their secondary by releasing Anthony Harris, a source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Harris, 30, started 14 games last year in his lone season with the NFC East club.

The Las Vegas Raiders waived 2021 first-round offensive lineman Alex Leatherwood on Tuesday.

The Raiders tried to trade Leatherwood, who was a surprising selection at No. 17 overall, around the entire league but received no offers, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.

Las Vegas will take dead-money hits of $7.86 million in 2022 and $3.91 million in 2023 by releasing Leatherwood post-June 1, according to Spotrac.

The former Alabama standout struggled as a rookie, with the Raiders forced to shift him inside to guard from right tackle following a poor first four starts.

Although Leatherwood was given the chance to reclaim his natural position by new Raiders head coach Josh McDaniels and general manager Dave Ziegler, he quickly fell down the depth chart.

Las Vegas’ new regime further moved on from the Mike Mayock-Jon Gruden era by trading 2019 second-round cornerback Trayvon Mullen to the Arizona Cardinals on Tuesday.

The team also released veteran wide receiver Keelan Cole.

The Miami Dolphins released wide receiver Preston Williams on Tuesday.

Williams has been on the trade block for the last few weeks, but the Dolphins were unable to find a destination for the fourth-year wideout, according to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero. Williams will now go through the waiver process.

Miami’s receiving corps has shifted multiple times over the last two seasons. The Dolphins drafted Jaylen Waddle sixth overall in the 2021 NFL Draft and traded for star wide receiver Tyreek Hill this offseason.

The team signed Williams as an undrafted free agent in May 2019, and he had 428 receiving yards in his rookie season before tearing his ACL in November. Williams only has 359 receiving yards over the last two campaigns combined.

The Jacksonville Jaguars traded wide receiver Laviska Shenault to the Carolina Panthers on Monday.

The Jaguars will receive a 2023 seventh-round draft pick and a 2024 sixth-round selection, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero.

Shenault, 23, spent his first two seasons with Jacksonville after being selected in the second round of the 2020 NFL Draft. The Colorado product recorded 121 receptions and back-to-back 600-yard campaigns.

The Panthers have been active in their search to add depth to their receiving corps. Carolina was reportedly in contact with the New York Jets about Denzel Mims‘ availability following his trade request.

The team instead opted to acquire Shenault to bolster a Panthers wideout group that features DJ MooreRobbie Anderson, and Rashard Higgins.

Carolina also traded offensive lineman Dennis Daley and its 2024 seventh-round pick to the Tennessee Titans for a 2024 fifth-round selection.