NFL Rumors: Five Potential Veterans that could be looking for work

Every NFL season begins with a few surprises. Some come in the form of trades, some in the form of teams naming starters, and others by releasing players. Saturday, September 2 is cut down day for the NFL. Teams have to be down to their 53-man regular season roster by 4 pm EST. This day will be flooded with players as the NFL changed the way teams have to cut players. There is certain to be some veterans released. Here are five potential veterans that teams may release.

Geno Smith – QB, New York Giants

The New York Giants signed Geno Smith to back up lifelong Giants QB Eli Manning. However, they also signed Josh Johnson and drafted Davis Webb. The Giants staff feels that Davis Webb could be the heir apparent to Manning. Given the fact that Johnson has out played Smith and Webb has a high draft status, this all but makes Geno Smith expendable.

Cutting Smith would come at a minimal cost to the Giants. He only has a cap hit of $1.087 million with $300,000 guaranteed. The Giants would have a cap savings of $787,500.

Lamarr Houston – OLB, Chicago Bears

The Chicago Bears have made some strides on the defensive side of the ball. Last season they finished as the eighth ranked pass defense in the league. They have a solid pass rush and some stout defensive backs. They have done this all without the services of Lamarr Houston.

The Bears brought Houston over on a big free agent contract in 2014. He signed a $35 million contract that offseason. However, he has only played one complete season with the Bears. Houston is currently sitting third on the depth chart. The play of Willie Young and Leonard Floyd along with the acquisitions of Pernell McPhee and Sam Acho have made Houston expendable.

Houston’s release would be a huge cap saver. He has a cap number of $6.9 million. If released he would have a dead money number of $990,000. He would bring a cap savings of $6 million, however.

Brock Osweiler – QB, Cleveland Browns

Word is the Cleveland Browns are trying to restructure Osweiler’s contract and trade him. That is highly unlikely to happen. Therefore, the Browns would end up releasing him. One reason the Browns took on the contract from the Houston Texans was that of their legit cap space. Even having to owe Osweiler $16 million in guaranteed money the Browns still sit at $62 million under the cap.

T.J. Ward – Safety, Denver Broncos

The Broncos have been actively shopping their starting safety. Moreover, by actively, I mean they are the ones making the phones calls to the other teams. Not vice-versa. This is a complete salary cap move for the Broncos. I do not see this as anything else.

Ward’s release would cost the Broncos $1.25 million in dead money. However, it would give them cap saving of $4.5 million.

Eric Winston – OT, Cincinnati Bengals

Eric Winston is an aging veteran. He has been in the league since 2006 when the Houston Texans in the third round selected him. He is in the final year of his contract. Although releasing him may not save the Bengals much money.

Winston is currently sitting as the number two right tackle behind Jake Fisher. However, they have a young Kent Perkins that they are high on along with Landon Lechler.

Winston’s release would cost the Bengal $80,000 in dead money and have a saving of $615,000.

There are always some surprise cuts that happen on cut down day. With the new form of cutting and a little over 1,100 players losing their job in the next couple of days, it is bound to busy.

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