Snacks fills hole on Lions D Line

The Detroit Lions have traded for DT Damon ‘Snacks’ Harrison from the New York Giants for a 5th round pick. 

Harrison joins the Lions and will be an instant upgrade to their defensive line and improve their defense against the run, which was their major weakness until trading for Snacks, who is known as a run stuffer and is one of the best in the NFL.

The Giants signed Snacks in free agency to a big contract a couple of seasons ago along with Olivier Vernon and a contract extension for Jason Pierre-Paul as they created one of the best defensive lines in the league but with the Giants out of the playoff race and heading towards a major rebuild with another top 5 pick in the draft, they thought it was better to trade Harrison to free up cap space and so they can concentrate on the younger players coming through on the roster as well as look forward to the draft and finding their new franchise quarterback with Eli Manning progressively getting worse throughout the season.

The Lions have got great value for Harrison, who plays much better than the 5th round pick that they traded away for him while the Giants clearly just wanted his salary off the books and further a pick to add to the rebuild next season.

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Cowboys trade for Cooper

The Dallas Cowboys have traded for WR Amari Cooper from the Oakland Raiders, sending a 1st round pick in return for the former 1st rounder. 

Cooper joins a very weak receiver group in Dallas and will automatically come in and be the no.1 wideout on the roster with the likes of Allen Hurns and Michael Gallup at 2 and 3 and the Jones family will hope that Cooper can replace Dez Bryant, who was released in the offseason and was one of the best receivers in the NFL at his prime, connecting with QB Tony Romo, so they hope that Cooper and QB Dak Prescott can strike up a similar relationship and combine that with RB Ezekiel Elliot and one of the best offensive lines in the league to reboot a misfiring offense.

The Raiders once again like with DE Khalil Mack, have removed a former 1st round pick from their roster as HC Jon Gruden further strips the team of assets to gain picks for the upcoming draft next year so he can pick players that will fit more into his scheme and style of play. The Raiders now have 3 1st round picks in 2019 so they can add young talent to the heavy veteran influence under Gruden and attract their fans to follow them to Las Vegas once they leave at the end of next season or the season after that. Cooper may have lacked big play ability and production in the past couple of seasons but he was still a good player and Oakland’s no.1 receiver and along with him being young, he has a great chance to restart his career in Dallas.

Jets release Pryor, sign Matthews

The New York Jets have made moves at the receiver position to give rookie QB Sam Darnold more help.

They have released WR Terrelle Pryor and signed WR Rishard Matthews, who requested his release from the Tennessee Titans so he could find a team that would give him more playing time. Pryor has played limited snaps since joining the Jets in free agency, catching 14 passes for 235 yards and 2 touchdowns, mainly being a deep threat for Darnold but with Robbie Anderson also filling that role and also, Pryor picked up a groin injury and Quincy Enunwa also out with an injury, the Jets thought releasing Pryor would be best for both parties as well as so they can bring in a healthy wideout.

Matthews requested his release from the Titans due to a lack of snaps and catches with only 3 catches for 11 yards in the first 3 games before being inactive for the rest before his release. Matthews was the Titans’ leading receiver in 2016 and 17 so definitely has production which could help Darnold gain some confidence and help further his development. The Jets will hope that Matthews will be an upgrade to Pryor and kickstart their offense, which has been one of the worst in the NFL besides a couple of performances and give them a better chance to make the playoffs in the future.

UPDATE – Pryor signs for the Buffalo Bills.

Hyde traded to Jags

The Jacksonville Jaguars have traded for RB Carlos Hyde from the Cleveland Browns as Leonard Fournette’s injury still remains an issue and forcing the star running back out.

The Jags gave the Browns a 5th round pick for Hyde, who will come in and get starts once he has picked up the playbook. Hyde has been performing well so far for the Browns this year, rushing for 382 yards and 5 touchdowns in a revitalised offense in Cleveland.

The Jaguars have made the move with Fournette out indefinitely with a hamstring injury, which has been affected him all year and Jacksonville in a win-now mode need a between the tackles runner like Hyde. The Browns gain further picks for their future and can now lean on rookie Nick Chubb, who is starting to be used more in the offense and will take over Hyde’s snaps and help QB Baker Mayfield further develop the Browns for the rest of this season and the near future.

ESPN reported it first.

Cardinals fire OC McCoy

The Arizona Cardinals have fired offensive coordinator Mike McCoy after another terrible performance in their 45-10 loss to the Denver Broncos on Thursday night. 

It’s the second straight season that McCoy has been fired from his play calling duties after he was let go by the Broncos last year. Arizona’s QB coach, Byron Leftwich, has been promoted to the position and hopefully can restart an offense, which is one of the  worst in the NFL, being last in yards per game, first downs per game and 3rd down conversions. Furthermore, they haven’t had a game over 300 yards or a 100 yard rusher.

The hope is that Leftwich, who is only in temporary control until the end of the season, can develop QB Josh Rosen who has shown promise since entering the lineup and help to open up the playbook for Rosen and hopefully spark the offense and get major playmakers like RB David  Johnson and WR Larry Fitzgerald to help increase their stats. Leftwich has experience calling plays after calling them in the preseason so the Cardinals believe the transition won’t be painful due to this prior experience. Arizona are currently 1-6 and will hope Leftwich can revitalise the offense and push them closer towards a .500 season.

NFL’s Tom Pelissero reported it first.

Bucs fire DC Mike Smith

Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive coordinator Mike Smith has been fired after he was in charge of one of the worst defenses in the NFL through the first 6 weeks of the season.

Mark Duffer, the linebackers coach, will take charge until the end of the season at least and will hopefully work on the Bucs passing defense, which is on course to be one of the worst in NFL history as well as getting the best out of the main players like Gerald McCoy, Jason Pierre-Paul and Lavonte David. Since Smith was hired, the Bucs have given up 400 yards plus in 20 games, the highest in the NFL, including all 5 games this season leading to them being ranked 32nd in the league in points per game allowed and passing yards given up per game, 31st in yards allowed per game but they are the 5th best run defense, which clearly shows where Tampa have to work on.

Smith’s firing perhaps came a week too late as they had a bye week in week 5, which would have been the perfect time to make changes instead of waiting a week and then pulling the trigger but Duffer comes into a sticky situation, which if not fixed, could lead to HC Dirk Koetter losing his job and Tampa Bay finding a whole new coaching team.

NFL’s Ian Rapoport and Mike Garafolo reported it first.

Brees becomes all time passing yards leader

New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees has broke the record for most passing yards in NFL history

Brees broke Peyton Manning’s record in the Monday Night matchup against the Washington Redskins on a touchdown pass to Tre’Quan Smith and at the end of the game, he had 72,103 yards in his career, overtaking Manning’s 71,940 yards he threw during his time in the NFL. Furthermore, Brees is now sitting on 499 touchdown passes and only 1 away from joining the 500 club with the likes of Favre and Brady, who joined during the Thursday Night game against the Colts.

There was no doubt before this that Brees was a first ballot Hall of Famer with the quarterback holding many NFL records already like most career pass completions and 54 consecutive games with a touchdown as well as many more and is in the discussion for the greatest player to ever play in the NFL. Brees is more than likely going to throw his 500th touchdown in the Saints next game after their Week 6 bye and he can further extend his yardage record during the rest of this season and potentially future seasons too.