Thu, 21 Mar 2019

NFL notebook: Falcons WR Jones will skip minicamp

Sports Xchange
12 Jun 2018, 13:16 GMT+10

Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones will not attend the team's mandatory minicamp.

The Falcons announced Monday that Jones has informed the team that he will not be present when the Falcons get to work this week. The Falcons' three-day minicamp begins Tuesday and ends Thursday.

Jones is a two-time first-team All-Pro selection and apparently wants a new contract.

According to the Journal Constitution, Jones signed a five-year, $71.2 million contract extension on Aug. 31, 2015. The deal included $47 million in guaranteed money, with base salaries of $10.5 million in 2018, $12.5 million in 2019 and $11.4 million in 2020.

--Oakland Raiders star defensive end Khalil Mack is not expected to report for the team's mandatory minicamp this week, according to a published report.

NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport cited sources that Mack plans to hold out as he seeks a lucrative contract extension.

Mack, who is a three-time Pro Bowl selection and 2016 NFL Defensive Player of the Year, is set to make $13.846 million this season in the fifth-year option of his rookie contract. The 27-year-old reportedly is looking to become among the highest-paid non-quarterbacks in the league.

--The Raiders are expected to sign veteran defensive lineman Frostee Rucker, Adam Schefter of ESPN reported.

Rucker, 34, played the past five seasons for the Arizona Cardinals, and he started all 16 games last year, recording 1.5 sacks and 30 tackles.

He has played in 142 games, including 72 starts, during his 11-year NFL career.

--The Raiders signed veteran defensive tackle Ahtyba Rubin, according to a tweet posted by his agents.

The 31-year-old Rubin played in 12 games last season -- 10 for the Atlanta Falcons and two for the Denver Broncos -- but he did not start any of them.

--New Orleans Saints first-round pick Marcus Davenport will undergo thumb surgery after the team's mandatory minicamp, multiple media outlets reported.

The injury doesn't sound serious for the 6-foot-6, 265-pound defensive end, who is expected to be ready to participate when training camp begins at the end of July.

--Defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul missed the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' voluntary organized team activities, but he will participate in the team's mandatory minicamp this week.

The Tampa Bay Times reported he showed up at team headquarters, set to start workouts in the minicamp that begins Tuesday.

Pierre-Paul was acquired from the New York Giants in March in a trade that sent a third-round draft choice to the Giants.

--Dallas Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones said the team is close to a long-term deal with right guard Zack Martin, and it reportedly would make him the highest-paid guard in the league.

Rapoport reported that it will be a six-year deal that will provide Martin with the largest guaranteed payout at his position in NFL history.

A four-time Pro Bowl selection, Martin has missed the team's voluntary offseason work as he seeks a contract extension.

--New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and tight end Rob Gronkowski attended last week's mandatory three-day minicamp, but they are not expected to show up for volunteer workouts this week.

The Patriots' final four days of voluntary OTAs are scheduled for Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday this week, and Brady and Gronkowski will not attend any of them, Rapoport reported.

The two players also skipped the previous voluntary portion of the OTAs.

--The NFL is still analyzing the substance that led to the league issuing a suspension of New England Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman, per a published report.

Albert Breer of The Sports Illustrated reported that the substance wasn't "immediately recognizable" and is being analyzed.

Breer declared that the test came in the offseason "a couple months ago." That rules out stimulants, which are included in the substances of abuse policy, separate from the performance-enhancing policy.

--Safety Ricardo Allen signed his restricted free-agent tender to remain with the Atlanta Falcons, Vaughn McClure of reported.

The second-round tender is worth $2.914 million, a significant raise from the $615,000 that Allen made in 2017.

--The Green Bay Packers signed defensive tackle Joey Mbu, the team announced.

Mbu has never started an NFL game, but he has appeared in nine -- two for the Atlanta Falcons in 2015 and seven for the Indianapolis Colts this past season.

--One of Terrell Owens' former teammates said he expects the wide receiver will show up for the Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrinement ceremony.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers backup quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, who spent the 2009 season playing with Owens in Buffalo, told Ira Kaufman of that he expects the mercurial wideout to be in Canton on Aug. 4.

"We had a good rapport and I consider T.O. a great teammate," the 35-year-old Fitzpatrick said. "When he came to Buffalo, he had been in hot water a little bit. But he still had a lot of juice and I was impressed with the way he worked and grinded every rep at practice. When all is said and done, I think he'll show up in Canton."

--Denver Broncos linebacker Shane Ray is scheduled for surgery on his left wrist later this week in Houston, Nicki Jhabvala of The Athletic reported.

Multiple media outlets reported last week that Ray would undergo a fourth surgery on that wrist, but the surgery had not been scheduled at that time.

NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport reported that Ray will be sidelined at least three months.

--Brice Butler said he can make an impact in the Cardinals' search for a No. 2 wide receiver behind Larry Fitzgerald.

Butler was signed to a two-year, $2.6 million contract in April despite starting just seven games over five years with the Oakland Raiders and Dallas Cowboys. The 28-year-old recorded 15 receptions for 317 yards and three touchdowns in 13 games last season with the Cowboys.

"Yeah, I'm going to prove it," Butler said, via "That's why I came here. I definitely didn't come to not be on the field with Larry. But it's not going to be given to me."

--New York Giants linebacker Mark Herzlich has volunteered to accompany general manager Dave Gettleman to a chemotherapy session.

Gettleman, 67, announced last week that he has been diagnosed with lymphoma and is determining a course of treatment.

Herzlich was diagnosed with a rare form of bone cancer called Ewing's sarcoma before his senior season at Boston College in 2009. The 30-year-old Herzlich, who has been cancer-free for the past nine years, told Dan Duggan of The Athletic that he learned it's helpful to "have someone else come and be a distraction from actually doing it."

--Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey extended another invitation to free-agent wide receiver Dez Bryant over social media.

Ramsey initially asked Bryant to come to the Jaguars in April, shortly after the wide receiver was released by the Dallas Cowboys. On Sunday, the 23-year-old Ramsey wrote the following on Twitter:

"Yo @DezBryant What you thinking? We both can go to jax this week."

--The Cardinals signed safety Travell Dixon and waived/injured safety Jonathan Owens, the team announced.

The 6-foot-1, 210-pound Dixon has played in one NFL game, that coming in 2016 while with the Carolina Panthers.

Owens was signed by Arizona in April as an undrafted free agent out of Missouri Western. He had a knee injury.

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