Unfortunately for the Cincinnati Bengals, it looks like they may be without their No. 1 wide receiver for a while. AJ Green’s ankle appears to have significant damage after a training camp injury Saturday, and there is a belief that he could be out six to eight weeks.
Injuries have seemed to become a recurring issue with Green, as he was limited to just nine games last season for the Bengals. In those nine games, he had 46 catches for 694 yards and six touchdowns. There is no denying that he is still one of the best wide receivers in the game when healthy, but as he enters this season at age 31, that may become more and more of a factor.
In his eight-year career, Green has played in all 16 games four times, but only once in the last three years. Still, the Bengals will look to try to manage without him for the first few weeks and are likely excited that they signed Tyler Boyd to an extension as Boyd had a phenomenal year last season in Green’s absence.
The New York Giants received some bad news over the weekend as wide receiver Golden Tate was suspended for four games for violating the NFL’s Performance Enhancing Substance policy. It appears Tate is appealing the suspension as he says that the positive test results from a treatment prescribed in regards to his wife and Tate seeing a fertility planning specialist. According to Tate, he was proactive with notifying the team and the league of this prior to his failed test, but it is unclear whether that argument will be effective in reversing his suspension.
Tate was acquired this offseason in an effort to lessen the blow of the Odell Beckham Jr. loss, but it appears that might not happen immediately. Last season, with the Lions and Eagles, Tate caught 74 passes for 795 yards and four touchdowns. He also had four rushes for 34 yards.
Wagner, Ott Extended By Seahawks
With so much turnover on the defensive side of the ball for Seattle in the last few years, the Seahawks have locked up one of their best. Linebacker Bobby Wagner has agreed with the Seahawks on a three-year, $54 million extension with a little over $40 million in guaranteed money. Last season, Wagner played in 15 games, accruing 138 tackles, one sack, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, and an interception.
In a separate, less impactful move, the Seahawks also extended their long snapper, Tyler Ott, to a multi-year contract.
In a surprising move, the Detroit Lions have released running back Theo Riddick. Riddick agreed to a three-year deal in 2016 that was due to pay him $11.5 million over the life of the deal. At $4.6 million this year, it was a cap hit that the Lions obviously felt that they could not deal with. Last season, Riddick rushed 40 times for 171 yards in 14 games with no touchdowns. Where he has been big, though, is in the passing game. Last season he had 61 receptions for 384 yards. Still, it was a skillset that the Lions felt that they could replace with the likes of CJ Anderson, Ty Johnson, and Kerryon Johnson.
It doesn’t appear that Riddick will be on the unemployment line for long, though. Reports indicate that he has narrowed down the decision of his next team to either the Denver Broncos or New Orleans Saints. Both of these teams have solid running backs, but Riddick’s skills as a receiver still make him valuable.
Lions Sign Daniels
After being released by the Green Bay Packers, defensive lineman Mike Daniels has agreed to a one-year, $9.1 million deal ($7.8 million is guaranteed) with the Detroit Lions. Daniels, who was drafted in 2012, is set to have a decent payday, higher than he would have had if the Packers had not released him. In seven years with the Packers, Daniels had 236 tackles, 29 sacks, three fumble recoveries, and one interception. Last season, he played in 10 games with 18 tackles and two sacks. At age 30, he will look to rekindle his career with the Lions, where he will be expected to make a big impact as a veteran right out of the gates.
Cowboys Sign Morris
With Ezekiel Elliott holding out of camp in search of a new contract, the Dallas Cowboys reached out to a former player of theirs for a little insurance. Dallas has agreed to bring back Alfred Morris in an attempt to gain some backfield depth in case their star doesn’t return before Week 1. Morris last played for the Cowboys in 2017 when he rushed 115 times for 547 yards and a touchdown.
Last season, with the San Francisco 49ers, he played in 12 games, rushing 111 times for 428 yards and two touchdowns. He also had eight receptions for 73 yards. At age 31, he is far from his glory days. At one point, he seemed destined to be a star when he broke into the league rushing for 1,613 yards and 13 touchdowns. While his next two seasons were solid, he has been in a steady decline. Still, the Cowboys are hoping that he can at least bring some depth and versatility for the team, at least until they get Elliott’s situation wrapped up.