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Tuesday, March 26, 2019

NFL Notebook: Gruden Affirms Carr As Raiders’ QB

FILE PHOTO: Feb 28, 2019; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Oakland Raiders coach Jon Gruden speaks to the media during the 2019 NFL Combine at the Indianapolis Convention Center. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
March 26, 2019
Amid rumors and speculation that the Oakland Raiders could be looking to move on from Derek Carr, coach Jon Gruden said Monday that Carr’s status is set for 2019.
“Yeah. He’s going to be our quarterback,” Gruden said in an interview with NFL Network from the league meetings in Phoenix. “I’m not going to address all the rumors. I could care less about the rumors.”
Gruden also confirmed the team will conduct private workouts with top quarterback prospects Kyler Murray of Oklahoma and Dwayne Haskins of Ohio State, as The MMQB reported earlier Monday. But he noted that those workouts are simply part of the team’s due diligence.
“We’re going to meet with a lot of guys at every position,” Gruden said. “We’re not going to look past anybody at any position.”
–NFL owners unanimously approved the Raiders’ lease agreement with the city of Oakland, keeping the team in the city for one more season before the club relocates to Las Vegas for the 2020 season.
The Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Authority voted unanimously 10 days earlier to approve a new stadium lease with the franchise.
The Raiders will play seven games in Oakland in 2019, with an eighth “home” game scheduled against the Chicago Bears in London.
–Rob Gronkowski’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, suggested the now-retired tight end might come back for a few games if he was asked by New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.
“If the team was struggling or they needed him at some point next year, and let’s just say hypothetically Tom Brady gave him a call and said ‘Rob, I need you,’ I wouldn’t be shocked if he came back to play a few games,” Rosenhaus said.
–The Bears and Green Bay Packers will kick off the NFL’s 100th season when they meet at Chicago’s Soldier Field on Thursday night, Sept. 5.
The Super Bowl champion New England Patriots will open their season on Sunday night, Sept. 8, against a yet-to-be-announced opponent. It will be the first time since 2003 that the Super Bowl champion won’t play in the season’s first game.
–Free agent defensive end Ziggy Ansah might not sign with a team until mid-April, NFL Network reported, due to concerns about his recovery from shoulder surgery.
Per the report, teams would like to know more about Ansah’s shoulder and will wait for his four-month checkup. Ansah reportedly visited the Buffalo Bills and New Orleans Saints earlier this month.
A first-round pick of the Detroit Lions in 2013, Ansah missed nine games last season while playing on the franchise tag. He will turn 30 in May.
–Lions nose tackle Damon Harrison has approached the team about a new contract after changing agents this offseason, reported.
Harrison, 30, was acquired for a conditional fifth-round pick from the New York Giants last offseason. One of the best run-stoppers in football, he has two years and $15.75 million remaining on his contract, with a $7 million cap figure for 2019.
Meanwhile, the Lions are bringing former Indianapolis Colts wideout Dontrelle Inman for a free agent visit, according to NFL Network.
–Defensive lineman Malik McDowell, a second-round pick in 2017 who has never played in the NFL because of off-field injuries, has been cleared to play by independent doctors, according to Rosenhaus, his agent.
McDowell sustained reported extensive head and eye injuries in July 2017 in an ATV accident. He was waived with a non-football-injury designation by the Seattle Seahawks earlier this month.
–The San Francisco 49ers do not plan to release running back Jerick McKinnon, general manager John Lynch said.
McKinnon, who turns 27 in May, missed all of last season with a torn ACL after joining the 49ers on a four-year, $30 million deal. San Francisco added former Falcons running back Tevin Coleman in free agency this month.
–After being cut by the Tennessee Titans 10 days ago, quarterback Blaine Gabbert is expected to sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, according to The Athletic.
Gabbert played for new Tampa Bay head coach Bruce Arians while both were with the Arizona Cardinals in 2017.
–The New York Jets re-signed outside linebacker Brandon Copeland and tight end Neal Sterling.
Copeland’s deal is for one year and $1.25 million, with an additional $1.75 million in incentives, the New York Daily News reported. He had five sacks and 14 QB hits last season, his first in New York.
–The Buffalo Bills added a familiar face by signing cornerback E.J. Gaines to a one-year contract.
Per the Houston Chronicle, the deal will pay Gaines, who spent 2017 in Buffalo, $3.6 million for the 2019 season.
–Former Green Bay Packers defensive end Nick Perry is visiting the Seahawks, CBS Sports reported.
Perry, who was released earlier this month, had 1.5 sacks in nine games last season after totaling 18 over the previous two years. He turns 29 in April.

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