NFL News and Notes: Fournette Pushing For Newton

Jacksonville Jaguars running back Leonard Fournette is openly insisting that the team sign current free agent quarterback Cam Newton according to ESPN. The two-time 1,000-yard rusher said that it “wasn’t anything against Gardner Minshew” but that Newton would give the team the best opportunity to win.

The Jaguars made a commitment to go with Minshew this offseason when they let Nick Foles walk just a year after signing him to be their franchise quarterback. The franchise is in a quasi-rebuilding mode after overhauling much of their front office and coaching staff while trading away Calais Campbell and letting Foles leave town.

It might do Fournette some good to check out some statistics as Minshew was right on par with Newton is his 14 games played in 2019 compared to Newton’s 2018 season. Newton was lost to injury for all but two games of the 2019 season.

Snead says players will receive money

Former Rams players Todd Gurley and Clay Matthews have both claimed via social media that they are owed money by their former team. Yesterday, Rams general manager Les Snead acknowledged the oversite and said that the two players were definitely going to receive their guaranteed money.

Gurley, now with the Falcons, and Matthews, currently a free agent, were both victims of the recent Rams salary dump that comes before the organization presumably attempts to sign cornerback Jalen Ramsey to a long term deal. The team also traded away receiver Brandin Cooks this offseason to the Houston Texans.

Los Angeles signed quarterback Jared Goff to a $134 million contract last September.

Brieda, Hunt to remain with their teams

Unrestricted free agents Matt Brieda of the San Francisco 49ers and Kareem Hunt of the Cleveland Browns will both remain with their teams, according to a report by ESPN.

Breida has signed his one-year tender, which will give Niners Coach Kyle Shanahan another season with his three-headed backfield monster. Breida, along with Tevin Coleman and Raheem Mostert, form possibly the most formidable backfield trio in the NFL.

Kyle Shanahan’s success with versatile backfields dates back to his time as offensive coordinator with the Falcons when Atlanta went to the Super Bowl a few years back. Coleman was a part of that team as well, and the Atlanta offense has not been nearly as effective since he left.

In Hunt, the Browns keep their primary backfield pass-catcher that is the yin to the Nick Chubb yang. He averaged roughly nine touches in his half-season played and six yards per touch. He is another talented player on an offense that to built to rock for newly-minted head coach Kevin Stefanski.

Bears release Burton

The Chicago Bears have released promising tight end Trey Burton signaling a commitment to Jimmy Graham for the 2020 season.

Burton signed a four-year deal two years ago and is owed $22 million in guarantees. He signed the deal following a season with Philadelphia that saw him flourish in the shoes of the sometimes absent Zach Ertz. Dallas Goedert now fulfills that role.

Burton was injured for half of the season last year and recorded only 14 receptions with fewer than 100 yards. He is expected to be ready for the 2020 season according to the ESPN report.

I would expect the market for Burton to ramp up once the OJ Howard market is settled as Howard finds himself on the trading block. In my humble opinion, the Patriots are the team to watch here. A talented, athletic tight end that could be had for a bargain is almost exactly what makes Bill Belichick salivate.

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