15 NFL Players Headed for Release During Training Camp
15 NFL Players With a Solid Chance of Being Released
As NFL teams across the league prepare to kick off training camp, focus will now shift back to the players on the field. After months of front office moves and retooling rosters, it's finally time to see the product on the field. There will be many position battles and many players battling just to make rosters. There are very few guarantees in the NFL. Beyond the elite top-tier of players, everyone else is scrapping to hold their spot and stay employed.
The unfortunate part for lots of training camp invitees is that the final roster will shrink to 53 in just a few short weeks. It's with that in mind that we'll look at 15 players that could be headed for release. These are not unproven guys trying to make their first roster, for the most part, this list is comprised of veteran players trying to hang on or fit in with new teams.
Age is probably the biggest factor teams look at when evaluating some of these players. Many of them are well past their prime and there's just not a lot of value in giving a roster spot to someone who figures to play a limited role for a short amount of time. Ideally, younger players take up the reserve spots to sit and wait for their chance to breakout.
Of course with training camp casualties it's not always about age or long-term value, sometimes there's simply only room in town for one guy at a position. Getting released is often times just a part of losing a position battle, but those players usually can land right back on their feet.
So with all the reasons why veteran players get released in mind, let's take a look at 15 who could possibly be cut in the near future:
Simpson is skating on thin ice after a terrible 2012 campaign with the Vikings, but he was brought back on a one-year deal. If No. 81 still can't hold on to the ball in camp, he'll be gone.
The Titans seriously beefed up their offensive line by signing G Andy Levitre and drafting G Chance Warmack and both players figure to start in 2013. Spencer will be battling for a backup spot in camp and at 31, he might not be part of the team's future plans.
After a failed run in Philly, Asomugha got a break and landed with the defending NFC champs. But with a roster already loaded with defensive talent, many are speculating that Asomugha won't make the final cut in San Fran. He'll be going into his 11th season and it appears his best football is behind him.
After signing a five-year/$25 million contract a year ago, Carlson delivered only eight catches for 43 yards in 2012. The Vikings have already restructured his contract for this season and if he's still not right by the end of training camp, he could be headed down the road.
Not that Robinson isn't a solid football player, but he might not be worth his $2.5 million salary in 2013. The former receiver turned fullback isn't exactly known as a great blocker, plus the Seahawks now have sixth round draft pick Spencer Ware to potentially take his spot.
The Patriots decision to ink Jenkins was an odd one and now with their release of the much younger Donald Jones, Jenkins could be next. The Pats are said to be shifting their focus to young talent at receiver and that's certainly not Jenkins.
Burress is going to be 36 by the time the season starts and he's coming off a year in which he caught only three balls. The Steelers lack of depth at wide out could be the only thing that saves him in 2013. If Burress just don't have it anymore, he'll be headed for a release.
Tebow's release won't be the least bit surprising. There are already reports that he's a long shot to make the team and that he's only at camp to compete for the backup QB spot. Ryan Mallett will easily win any competition with Tebow, so he's a very good candidate to be sent packing this August.
While this probably sounds crazy to some fans, the Eagles could very easily release Vick if they trust Nick Foles. If Foles is their guy, there would be no good reason to keep Vick lurking on the sidelines. If Vick doesn't earn the starting job, he could be looking for his third NFL team.
Hester's name has been kicked around in release rumors for months now. He's expected to focus nearly all of his attention on returning kicks this season and if the Bears don't think he has his mojo anymore, it wouldn't be a complete shocker to see him shown the door.
Jolly has returned to the Packers for the first time since 2009. He's been out of football due to legal issues and he's now 30-years old. He's going to have an uphill battle to make the final roster.
If the Jaguars decide to go with Blaine Gabbert, they could easily kick Henne to the curb to show support for their new starting QB. I believe Henne is too valuable to release, but it's certainly within the realm of possibility.
The Patriots won't hesitate one second to release this guy if he's not up to snuff. You'd think Blount was brought in solely to be a short-yardage back, and if he doesn't prove to be very effective at that role by the end of camp, he could be looking for yet another team to pick him up.
With two new rookie running backs in town, Starks is really going to have to prove his worth to the Packers. If he does make the final cut, his role figures to be diminished in 2013.
After suffering the worst type of Lisfranc injury early in 2012, Holmes isn't sure when he'll be ready to go in 2013. It sounds like he may have a ways to go before he gets back on the field, and with the Jets rebuilding, Holmes could be a candidate for release. New York already restructured his contract to pay him $3.5 milllion less this year, but he's still owed a guaranteed $7.5 million in base salary. Guaranteed money could be the only thing between Holmes and the free agent market.