The carousel that is the NFL news cycle is never ending and leading up to the first week of the preseason, there was no shortage of storylines.
Training camp has seen more injuries this week, some knocking players out for significant time and necessitating countermoves a la the New York Jets signing Duane Brown in place of the injured Mekhi Becton. This week has also revealed multiple players’ discontent with more than one trade request in the last seven days alone.
- Running back Kareem Hunt wants out of Cleveland, formally requesting a trade over the weekend, which the Browns denied. He ended his hold-in with the team and there hasn’t been much more to do about the situation since, but it remains to be seen if there are further contract adjustments coming.
- Bears wide receiver N’Keal Harry exited practice early last weekend with an ankle sprain. It is now known to be severe enough that it required ‘tightrope’ surgery, which Harry underwent on Thursday. He is expected to be out for about eight weeks.
- Jets left tackle Mekhi Becton fractured his kneecap and suffered patella damage in Monday’s practice and is now out for the year. New York signed tackle Duane Brown to a two-year contract on Thursday worth up to $22 million in a move necessitated by Becton’s injury.
- Linebacker Roquan Smith formally requested a trade from the Bears this week via a very candid notes app screenshot in which he said the deal that was offered to him would not only be bad for himself but bad for the entire linebacker market should he sign it. General Manager Ryan Poles came out after and said his intention is to sign Smith but the two sides remain at an impasse—though Smith has still been in the building and with his teammates. He was removed from the PUP list earlier this week, as well.
- As another fun wrinkle in the saga, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk is reporting that a person purporting to be representation for Smith has been calling around to other NFL teams gauging trade interest. Smith has not been granted permission to seek a trade and the person in question is not a certified NFL agent so he could not represent Smith in any capacity. Should teams engage, they can also be charged with tampering. It seems this Roquan Rollercoaster isn’t ending any time soon, unfortunately for Bears fans.
- Eagles center Jason Kelce quietly underwent elbow surgery after experiencing continued pain. He is still expected to be ready for Week 1.
- With no word on when Peter C. Harvey’s appeal of the six-game suspension will come down, Deshaun Watson is slated to start Friday’s preseason opener for the Browns. It will be his first time playing a football game in 584 days.
- Finally, Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady is taking an indefinite leave of absence from the team. Brady was excused by Head Coach Todd Bowles after the two had a conversation before training camp where Brady asked for time off for personal reasons. Bowles said Brady will be back after the team’s second preseason game against the Tennessee Titans on August 20. No specific return date was set.
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