Rumors, rumors and more rumors. 'Tis the season for NFL rumors to abound. From the NFL draft to possible trades to free agency to, well, every little detail of the Jimmy Graham situation, there are no shortage of rumors at the moment.
Below, we'll take a look at a few of the latest rumors to make the rounds. Believe them at your own risk; ignore them at your own peril. Or, um, something like that.
New Orleans Saints
All eyes remained affixed on the Graham situation, but Adam Schefter of ESPN stirred the waves a bit on Wednesday when he tweeted the following:
Saints shopping RB Pierre Thomas and WR Lance Moore to other teams, per sources, and even could be open to trading RB Darren Sproles also.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 6, 2014
Of course, all roads in New Orleans seem to lead to Graham, and moving these players for a pick could clear some much-needed cap space. Plus, in a deep draft, the Saints could replace all three. And especially at running back, New Orleans is pretty loaded, with Mark Ingram and Khiry Robinson still on the roster.
Of course, no matter what happens, it remains likely Graham will return to the team. Saints general manager Mickey Loomis recently told Rich Gannon and Bruce Murray of SiriusXM NFL Radio (via Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk) the following:
These negotiations are always a process, and Jimmy’s been a great player for us for the last four years. Look, I had hoped and I’m sure he had hoped we’d come to some conclusion on a longer-term deal before this. But we haven’t yet, and hopefully we will. ... We’ll just let it play out, and I’m sure we’ll get something resolved.
One thing is for certain—it's probably unlikely any team will pay Graham a huge contract and give up two first-round picks in the process. Consider the following, from Bleacher Report's Mike Freeman:
Packers source when asked notion of them giving up 2 No.1s for Jimmy Graham: "Beyond dumb." Ten-Point Stance: http://t.co/ixpCkfFOK5— mike freeman (@mikefreemanNFL) March 5, 2014
Those picks are extremely valuable, and as good as Graham is, his injury concerns probably make him too risky to give up two firsts. Expect him to be a Saint next season.
At first, it seemed only Adrian Peterson was interested in adding quarterback Michael Vick to the Minnesota Vikings.
@MikeVick would intently make the vikings a playoff team!— Adrian Peterson (@AdrianPeterson) March 6, 2014
But now, it seems the team could potentially grant the star running back his wish. From Florio:
Per a source with knowledge of the situation, the Vikings could become very interested in Vick if Matt Cassel chooses to sign elsewhere.
Cassel, who signed a two-year deal in 2013, has opted out of the second season. On Thursday, coach Mike Zimmer said that he wants Cassel to stay, if Cassel wants to stay. He’d been due to earn $3.7 million in 2014.
Vick doesn’t necessarily fit with offensive coordinator Norv Turner’s system, but that may not matter. Peterson publicly has made his preference known. Privately, he could be lobbying even more strongly. The Vikings have committed to Peterson as the current and future face of the franchise; will they give him what he apparently wants?
Vick would certainly add some more excitement to this Vikings offense. Bringing him aboard would put less pressure on the team to select a quarterback in the first round, as the top three options will likely be off the board by the time they select.
This rumor could have some legs, folks.
While free agency will soon be the dominant story around the NFL, the Texans are going to control the storylines once the NFL draft gets closer. Such are the perks when you hold the first overall pick.
In the coming weeks, expect the team to be linked with a number of players, all likely a part of an elaborate misinformation campaign to keep other teams guessing or enticing them to offer a package to trade for that top overall pick.
At the moment, rumors linking the Houston Texans to Jadeveon Clowney are starting to heat up. From Lance Zierlein of Sports Talk 790 in Houston:
Looking more and more like Texans go with best player on their board (likely Clowney) and a QB later in the draft. Traits usually win out.— Lance Zierlein (@LanceZierlein) March 6, 2014
Clowney is considered by many to be the top overall talent in this draft, so it wouldn't be a shocker if the Texans drafted him. But the team is also in dire need of a quarterback, so floating their interest for Clowney in the hopes that other potential suitors will try to strike up a deal for the top overall pick makes sense.