Thu, 24 Jan 2019

NFL notebook: Brady could make $5 million in incentives

Sports Xchange
10 Aug 2018, 09:38 GMT+10

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady could be in line for a fatter wallet.

The Patriots will add $5 million in performance-based incentives to Brady's contract by this weekend, multiple media outlets reported on Thursday.

Brady, who won his third NFL Most Valuable Player Award in 2017, is scheduled to make $15 million this season -- $14 million in base salary and a $1 million roster bonus. He currently is set to count $22 million against the Patriots' salary cap this year because of a $7 million charge on a previous signing bonus.

The 41-year-old Brady is under contract with the Patriots through 2019 season. He has said he would like to play until he's 45 years old.

The highest-paid quarterback in the NFL is currently Atlanta Falcons star Matt Ryan, who signed a deal worth $30 million per season. Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers is awaiting a new contract, however.

--The Cleveland Browns want to bring in Dez Bryant for a workout next week but there's only one obstacle.

"He won't return any phone calls," Browns general manager John Dorsey told on Thursday.

Dorsey is planning on bringing a number of wide receivers in next week and said Bryant would be among that group if would pick up the phone.

Dorsey's comments drew an immediate response from Bryant, who posted on his Twitter account Thursday night: "I wouldn't mind playing for the Browns. I just want to be right first."

--Odell Beckham Jr. has been looking impressive in training camp, but his return to game action will have to wait at least another week.

Beckham is not expected to play in the New York Giants' preseason opener against the visiting Cleveland Browns on Thursday night, ESPN reported.

The fifth-year receiver has not played since suffering a fractured ankle in October that limited him to four games last season.

The 25-year-old Beckham, who is seeking a new contract that will make him the highest-paid wide receiver in the NFL, appeared in only one preseason game a year ago.

--Minnesota Vikings offensive lineman Nick Easton likely will miss the entire 2018 season with a neck injury, according to a published report Thursday.

Agent Joe Linta told ESPN's Adam Schefter that his client underwent surgery to repair a herniated disk in his neck on Thursday. Easton's injury is not expected to be career-threatening, per the report.

Easton, 26, appeared in 12 games last season before being shut down in late December due to an ankle injury.

The Vikings' offensive line has been in a state of flux this offseason. Guard Joe Berger retired in March, center Pat Elflein resides on the physically unable to perform list and offensive tackle Mike Remmers is dealing with an ankle injury.

--Cleveland Browns rookie wide receiver Antonio Callaway is expected to play in Thursday night's preseason game against the New York Giants, according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

Callaway was cited by police earlier this week for marijuana possession and driving with a suspended license when he was stopped in Strongsville, Ohio. His hearing was rescheduled for Aug. 23.

The 21-year-old Callaway had a turbulent career at Florida that caused him to tumble to the fourth round of the 2018 draft. His arrest came hours before Cleveland traded wide receiver Corey Coleman to the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.

On Monday, Callaway was elevated to the first-team unit in place of Coleman, the No. 15 overall pick of the Browns in the 2016 draft.

--Aaron Donald's holdout can start getting a lot costlier with the Los Angeles Rams set to open their preseason schedule on Thursday night.

Donald has yet to report to training camp and skipped all of the team's voluntary and mandatory offseason workouts while he waits for the Rams to negotiate a long-term contract extension.

While he can be fined $30,000 daily for missing training camp, Donald can be slapped with a $405,000 fine for sitting out the preseason opener at the Baltimore Ravens.

The 2017 NFL Defensive Player of the Year, Donald reportedly is seeking a contract that would top the six-year, $114 million deal signed by Ndamukong Suh in 2015.

--Free-agent cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie is once again scheduled to visit the Seattle Seahawks.

Rodgers-Cromartie told ESPN's Josina Anderson that a family matter forced him to miss his previously scheduled appointment with the Seahawks. NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported that Rodgers-Cromartie is set to work out for the team in the next few days before visiting the Oakland Raiders.

The 32-year-old Rodgers-Cromartie started five of the 15 games in which he played last season with the New York Giants and failed to record an interception for the second time in his career. He played the last four seasons with the Giants.

A two-time Pro Bowl selection, Rodgers-Cromartie has 30 interceptions in 10 seasons with the Cardinals, Philadelphia Eagles, Denver Broncos and Giants since being selected with the 16th overall pick of the 2008 draft by Arizona.

--Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Stefon Diggs and cornerback Xavier Rhodes, who were absent from practice on Wednesday due to disciplinary reasons, are back in the good graces of coach Mike Zimmer.

"There was no time out," Zimmer said, per the St. Paul Pioneer Press. "I just decided to do what I did. Everything is good."

Diggs, who was signed to a five-year contract extension last month, and Rhodes exchanged words in practice on Tuesday after the former caught a 50-yard pass from Kirk Cousins and launched the ball into the stands. The heated exchange between the two carried over into Wednesday's walkthrough before Zimmer opted to take action.

Although Zimmer terms the behavior of the players "juvenile," both Diggs and Rhodes attempted to downplay the incident on Thursday.

--Oakland Raiders wide receiver Martavis Bryant apparently has taken head coach Jon Gruden's public criticism to heart.

Gruden complimented Bryant for showing "what he's capable of doing" during Wednesday's practice with the Detroit Lions while quarterback Derek Carr went a step further with his praise.

"You can definitely tell that he has a sense of urgency for him to pick things up and learn them," Carr said of the 26-year-old Bryant, via NBC Sports Bay Area. "He wants to do right, he really does. To see that in him, to see him continue, he always practices hard, that's never a question. He's going to practice hard. And usually that's the hardest part to get someone to practice hard, but he is. No problem practicing hard and going hard.

"In the film room and in the playbook is where he's really working hard and he's gotten a lot better."

--Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Breshad Perriman said he's tuning out any criticism that comes his way.

Perriman has heard plenty of negativity after his considerable struggles during the three seasons since being selected in the first round of the 2015 draft. The 24-year-old's troubles continued during the Hall of Fame Game last week, as he was questioned by reporters after a pass from Robert Griffin III went through his hands and led to an interception against the Chicago Bears.

"I don't care what they see," Perriman said, per the Baltimore Sun. "I don't know what they see because I'm not interested in what they see, for the most part. If they just see (the interception), then that's fine. It doesn't really matter who saw it."

Perriman, who is now in the final season of his four-year, $8.7 million rookie deal, sat out his rookie campaign with a partially torn PCL in his right knee after being selected with the 26th overall pick in 2015.

--The Oakland Raiders signed safety Quincy Mauger, the team announced.

Mauger spent last season on the injured reserve list of the Atlanta Falcons after signing with them as an undrafted free agent out of Georgia.

The 6-foot, 202-pound Mauger had seven interceptions in four seasons with the Bulldogs, including a career-best four in 2014.

In a corresponding move, the Raiders released long snapper Drew Scott, who was signed by the team in May.

--Players for the Minnesota Vikings will wear decals on their helmets to honor the memory of late offensive line coach Tony Sparano.

The black stickers will feature his initials "TS" in white letters, multiple media outlets reported.

Sparano, who spent the past two seasons with the Vikings, died on July 22 due to arteriosclerotic heart disease, according to the Hennepin County Medical Examiner. He was 56.

Coach Mike Zimmer announced later that week that Clancy Barone and Andrew Janocko will be responsible for working with offensive linemen during the 2018 season.

--Faye Spanos, the wife of Los Angeles Chargers owner Alex Spanos, has died at the age of 92, the team announced Wednesday.

She died late Tuesday night of undisclosed causes.

Faye married Alex Spanos in 1948 and they raised four children. Alex Spanos, who built a billion-dollar fortune in real estate and construction, purchased a majority share in the then-San Diego Chargers in 1984.

Their son, Dean, is the Chargers' chairman of the board and controlling owner.

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