Brian Robison says he’ll likely retire after 2018

By Nick Shook
NFL.com
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While the Vikings spend the offseason strategizing how they’ll attempt to bounce back from 2016’s disappointment, it’s safe to observe from afar that their window of contention might be closing.

One Viking has placed a deadline on his own chances.

Defensive end Brian Robison told the St. Paul Pioneer Press on Friday that he thinks 2018 will be his final season in the NFL. Continue reading

Who will chase O-linemen in the draft? A look at teams in need

By Nick Shook
NFL.com
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The NFL draft is less than two weeks away — April 27-29 in Philadelphia. We’re almost there, folks. I promise.

While I’m a proponent of salad before entree, let’s skip the appetizers and get right into the meat of the piece, the lineman’s true favorite part of the meal (other than dessert). Needy teams, meet available draft prospects. Below are a few teams who should be expected to look at offensive linemen in the early rounds of the league’s annual orderly injection of fresh talent.

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Seahawks sign LSU track star Cyril Grayson

By Nick Shook
NFL.com
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It’s nothing new, but it has gained steam in the last decade, and it isn’t slowing down any time soon.

We’re talking about the transition of non-college football players to the NFL, and we have a new name to add to the list: wide receiver Cyril Grayson. Grayson signed with the Seattle Seahawks on Monday, the team announced.

It’s perfectly fine to respond with “who?” Grayson is a product of LSU, but never played for Les Miles or Ed Orgeron. Instead, he was busy melting track spikes, earning All-American honors seven times between indoor and outdoor seasons in the 200-, 400- and 800-meter events. Continue reading

NFL’s top five offensive lines look to keep dominating in 2017

By Nick Shook
NFL.com
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With the NFL draft just three weeks away, we’re in a dead period when it comes to major changes in the trenches.

No worries, though, because those big uglies are busy squatting, benching, power cleaning, deadlifting and getting those feet right for the upcoming season. And while we await the hogmolly shake-up, we’re taking a look back at the best offensive lines of 2016, with an eye on their outlooks for 2017 and beyond.

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Transactions roundup: Ego Ferguson fails physical

By Nick Shook
NFL.com
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It turns out Ego Ferguson isn’t headed to Green Bay after all.

The defensive end’s addition to the Packers via waiver claim has been nixed due to a failed physical, according to the league’s transaction wire.

Ferguson was waived by the Bears after appearing in just 20 games in three seasons in Chicago. Injuries have marred what was an otherwise promising career for the former second-round pick out of LSU, who is now forced to face career mortality after this latest setback. Continue reading

Amazon Prime to livestream ‘Thursday Night Football’

By Nick Shook
NFL.com
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The NFL is bringing a new meaning to “prime time.”

After a run with Twitter in 2016, the league’s Thursday night prime-time games are moving to Amazon Prime, the league announced on Wednesday. The site and the league have agreed to partner on a deal for the rights to livestream 10 Thursday Night Football games.

The news was first reported by the Wall Street Journal.

“We are continually looking for ways to deliver our games to fans wherever they watch, whether on television or on digital platforms and we are thrilled to bring Thursday Night Football to Amazon”, said Brian Rolapp, Chief Media and Business Officer for the NFL, in a release. “As has been the case with all our streaming initiatives, we look forward to continuing to innovate with our partners as we learn the best ways to serve our fans both this season and into the future.” Continue reading

Tony Romo: Houston Texans were at ‘top of the list’

By Nick Shook
NFL.com
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So it was, on April 4, 2017, Tony Romo traded his shoulder pads for a CBS suit jacket and microphone.

(No one’s used that yet, right?)

Romo’s decision to retire dominated headlines Tuesday. But now that that is apparently resolved — the quarterback himself didn’t completely rule out the possibility of a return to the field during a conference call Tuesday — all we have left to sort out is what those two lead contenders for the veteran will do at quarterback, and think about what could have been. Continue reading

Transactions roundup: Packers claim Ego Ferguson

By Nick Shook
NFL.com
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Ego Ferguson‘s time in Chicago is over, but his career isn’t.

Ferguson will be wearing green and gold when he next steps on a football field after being claimed via waivers by the Green Bay Packers on Monday, according to the league transaction wire.

Ferguson was waived by the Bears on Friday after appearing in just 20 games in three seasons. The former second-round pick out of LSU missed all of 2016 and played in only four games in 2015 due to shoulder and knee injuries. During his rookie season of 2014, Ferguson recorded 23 tackles and two sacks in 16 games.

Ferguson will get a second shot at making it in the NFL with the Packers, who added the defensive end as a low-risk signing with the hopes of providing depth along the line. Continue reading

Tim Hightower agrees to terms with 49ers

By Nick Shook
NFL.com
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Fresh ink continues to dry in the Bay Area.

The 49ers added some much-needed depth at running back, agreeing to terms with Tim Hightower, general manager John Lynch announced Saturday. Hightower becomes the second running back to join the Niners this week, along with DuJuan Harris, who re-signed with the team on March 28.

Lynch continues to add players by the generous handful, gathering mostly unheralded talent at cheap prices as the new regime looks to jumpstart a turnaround with an injection of fresh faces. Hightower will battle Harris for the leftover carries not given to entrenched starter Carlos Hyde, and will be able to look forward to running behind newly acquired fullback Kyle Juszczyk. Continue reading

Jets’ Buster Skrine: ‘You can’t rebuild in New York’

By Nick Shook
NFL.com
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Plenty of folks don’t have very high expectations for the New York Jets.

With a quarterback room filled with Josh McCown, Bryce Petty and Christian Hackenberg, it’s hard to blame them. But don’t count Buster Skrine as one of them.

You can’t rebuild in New York,” Skrine told ESPN. “Because y’all will eat us up. Ain’t no rebuilding here. It’s getting right to the point. This is a competing team. We still have the players to compete.” Continue reading