• Lions Edge James Houston IV: Houston has been incredibly productive under a limited workload in 2022, but he may be the odd man out in Detroit this year.
• Bears WR Darnell Mooney: With DJ Moore and Chase Claypool keeping goals away from Mooney, the Bears may be looking to trade him.
• Vikings WR Galen Regor: The Vikings have sent the Eagles draft stipulations to acquire Reagor but they can release him before he reaches his stat thresholds.
Estimated reading time: 7 minutes
The NFL’s rule change to roster cuts means that the Tuesday following the final pre-season game is now one of the busiest days on the NFL calendar. All 32 rosters should shrink from 90 players to 53 players instead of making several additional cuts, which creates some interesting dynamics.
Firstly, pre-season participation data may be more important for teams with 90 players during the last game – more on that later. Second, there could be a larger whirlwind of deals at once with the front offices monitoring 37 potential additions each from 31 other rosters.
With some big moves already emerging in the past week, we’re taking a look at some surprise deals or candidates ahead of tomorrow’s deadline.
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Edge James Houston IV, Detroit Lions
While pre-season football isn’t quite the real product, there are still many different takeaways that can be learned from the events leading up to the regular season. Share data can serve as a key indicator of a player’s position on the depth chart, for example, which made Houston’s 27 snaps in the second half of the preseason Week 2 so notable. Detroit got the lion’s share of starters and top players, yet Houston dealt with a heavy workload in the second half.
Houston was a sixth round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft and recorded 17 quarterback pressures and eight sacks on 92 pass rushes last season, which is a really impressive productivity rate. However, Detroit used its first and second round picks on superior defensemen in last year’s draft and also has veterans – including Romeo Okwara, Charles Harris, John Kominsky – in the barn.
It looks like Houston might be the odd man out in Detroit, but the Lions certainly shouldn’t release a player with three years of cheap control remaining who showed a knack for going after the quarterback on limited snaps last season. Many teams would be happy to take a post on a developmental rushing specialist coming off the season with an 88.2 rushing score.
Possible touchdown points: Atlanta Falcons, Denver Broncos, Jacksonville Jaguars, Kansas City Chiefs, New York Giants.
WR Darnell Mooney, Chicago Bears
It would be a big surprise if the bears thought of actually moving out of that position Darnell Mooney, but it would be less surprising if Mooney was a little frustrated with the lack of progress in talks stretching up to this point in the off-season and was open to a change of scenery. 1 receiving option in 2022 to sharing goals with him DJ Moore And Chase ClaypoolChicago was last in pass attempts, completions, and yards last season. While they expect to make a huge leap forward, Mooney may want more volume in a pivotal decade year.
In Mooney’s best season of 2021, he hauled in 81 receptions for 1,055 yards, with his 29 explosive receptions tied for seventh among wide receivers and his 10 missed tackles forced the top 20 mark. Mooney is a quarterback who has dealt with poor passing offenses throughout his NFL career, which certainly doesn’t help his contract chances. He seems to be very close to the midfielder Justin Fields Growth is expected in 2023, but Mooney may not want to wait to find out without a new contract after an ankle injury prematurely ended his 2022 campaign.
Possible touchdowns: Carolina Panthers, Denver Broncos, Houston Texans, Las Vegas Raiders
QB Matt Corral, Carolina Panthers
Carolina is signed to a free agent quarterback Andy Dalton to a two-year, $10 million deal, and that was followed by a blockbuster trade for the franchise’s quarterback Price Young. Coral, a third-round team selection just last year after trading with… New England PatriotsEvidently, it was the strange man who had entered the camp. Teams may take advantage of the new rule allowing them to play three midfielders on game day and include a third option, but Carolina may also see if they can recover any value from a recent prospect.
With what looks like a tough injury to the wide receiver DJ Sharkthe Panthers can look to add outside talent to the receiving room if they are not comfortable going in Marshall Terraceand Laviska Chenault Jr. and others on the depth chart. Number games elsewhere across the list may make Corral more difficult to keep, too.
Corral was 4 of 12 for 52 yards in Prep Week 3, and had a passing grade of 45.0. The hit pass was one of the incompletes. Perhaps a team with a less stable reserve place – or a team interested in providing a change of scenery for the young midfielder, as is the case with the squad. Dallas Cowboys done with Tri Lance — Carolina will call Coral.
Possible touchdowns: Cincinnati Bengals, Minnesota Vikings, Seattle Seahawks
De Lawrence Jay, New England Patriots
Gaye has missed out on off-season activities, reportedly unhappy with his contract situation after signing a four-year contract extension in 2021, not at all uncommon for a 31-year-old defensive lineman. With two years left on his contract and now 33, it’s a very difficult position to take, especially as New England continues to add talent with instinctive abilities, such as a second-round pick. Keon White.
Daniel Equilewho recorded a career-high 362 snaps in 2022, also starred in the preseason with a sack by the quarterback. CJ Stroud Plus a few other middle pressures. Last but not least, the 2021 second-round selection Christian Barmore Much more playable characters than he did last year when dealing with injuries.
Jay’s role is as an early filler, which can keep him around, as the Patriots have sought to add more passing juice in the past few seasons with Davon Goodchow And a well-established man. However, New England may be willing to go younger up front and give more snaps to other players while winning back the late round capital they gave up on backup tackle. Federian Lowe.
Possible landing spots: Dallas Cowboys, Detroit Lions, New Orleans Saints, Seattle Seahawks.
WR Galen Regor, Minnesota Vikings
the Minnesota Vikings He got Regaur from Philadelphia Eagles for a 2023 seventh-round selection and a 2024 conditional fifth-round selection which could become a fourth-round pick. It’s possible the Vikings could advance before Reagor gets a chance to reach various stat thresholds in 2023.
Reagor notably played in the preseason with 91 snaps, the most of any wide receiver on the Vikings’ roster. The former Eagles first-round pick made eight receptions for 93 yards down the stretch, and while he’s strong, he’s at best the #4 pick behind him. Justin Jefferson, Jordan Addison And KG Osborne. depth receivers Brandon Powell And Galen Naylor Offering much more value to special teams, which could make Regor’s role going forward an interesting one. In 2022, Regor managed just eight receptions for 104 yards and one touchdown, and this season he earned a fully guaranteed salary of about $2.5 million.
Possible touchdown points: Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, Detroit Lions, New York Jets, Tennessee Titans.
TE Zack Koontz, New York Jets
It’s not necessarily surprising that a seventh-round starter wouldn’t be on the starting 53-man roster, especially on a team like this one. New York Jets who are all chasing the Super Bowl ring in 2023 and would care less about developmental projects. However, Koontz may have fallen behind as he did in part because of how loaded the tight end position is in the 2023 NFL Draft.
In the Gates camp, Koontz stood out as much skinnier than the rest of the stance group, especially in his lower half. Nathaniel Hackett’s offense will ask his tight ends to make a few saves, and that by no means seems to be Koontz’s forte. However, Koontz’s combination of size and speed sometimes blinked as he broke open above the middle and moved onto the court quickly after being taken on a reception. Old Dominion’s product test numbers were really off the charts, and it’s an interesting name to watch if it can land itself elsewhere with the chance to fill out its 6-foot-8 frame and continue development.
Possible touchdown points: Cincinnati Bengals, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers, New England Patriots, Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Commanders.