Zane Gonzalez is getting a jump start on free agency.
The Cardinals are releasing Gonzalez, NFL Network's Mike Garafolo reported, in what is essentially a procedural move. Gonzalez was placed on injured reserve in mid-December due to a back injury, and was headed to free agency at the start of the new league year.
Releasing Gonzalez does not mean he won't have a chance to return to the Cardinals, per Garafolo, but it is a roster move that essentially jump-starts what would have been reality in 12 days. The former Arizona State standout made 16 of his 22 field goal attempts and all but one extra-point try in 2020, his third season spent with the Cardinals.
Here's other news Around The NFL is monitoring on Friday
- The Las Vegas Raiders are releasing offensive lineman Richie Incognito in a move to free up room under the salary cap, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported. Due $5 million in base salary in 2021, Incognito had a cap number of $5.47 million. Incognito spent two seasons with the Raiders, but his 2020 campaign was cut to two games due to an Achilles injury sending him to injured reserve. He is "100% healthy and looks forward to continuing his career," Rapoport added. The 37-year-old is a 14-year pro with four Pro Bowl selections in his career.
- The Houston Texans have signed former longtime Seahawks center Justin Britt to a one-year deal worth $3.2 million with a chance to make $5 million, Rapoport reported. Britt, who announced the signing on Instagram, had been with Seattle since 2014 when he was selected in the second round. He started all over the line before settling in at center ahead of missing the entire 2020 season with an ACL injury.
- The Detroit Lions are restructuring linebacker Jamie Collins' contract to create salary cap space, NFL Network's Mike Garafolo reported. Collins is "on the books for $9 million in total cash" for 2021, per Garafolo and the linebacker will get that with voidable years added and his cap number of $11.3 million set to be lowered significantly.
- The Cleveland Browns do not plan to tender cornerback/special teams player Tavierre Thomas, NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported. Thomas, who was set to be a restricted free agent, hits the open market in a cost-saving move for the Browns. Cleveland announced it has tendered exclusive rights free agents TE Stephen Carlson and DE Porter Gustin.
- The Cincinnati Bengals announced they have released center B.J. Finney, who was acquired last season via trade with the Seahawks.
- The Washington Football Team released quarterback Alex Smith, with head coach Ron Rivera issuing a statement that "we decided that it would be best for both parties to move on and we will be granting Alex his request to be released."
- The Philadelphia Eagles restructured cornerback Darius Slay's contract to create $9.14 million in cap room and agreed to a new deal for the 2021 season with center Jason Kelce, Rapoport reported. Kelce's deal is for $9 million fully guaranteed at signing and potentially up to $12 million.
- The Minnesota Vikings have released cornerbacks Tae Hayes and Cordrea Tankersley, the team announced.
- The Baltimore Ravens re-signed defensive tackle Justin Ellis to a one-year deal.
- The Carolina Panthers are expected to apply the franchise tag to offensive tackle Taylor Moton, Rapoport reported.
- The Buffalo Bills announced they have signed safety Micah Hyde to a two-year extension. The deal is worth $19.25 million, per Rapoport, with Hyde under contract through 2023 and his cap number remaining largely the same for 2021.
- The Denver Broncos are applying the franchise tag to safety Justin Simmons for a second year in a row, Rapoport reported.
- The Los Angeles Chargers announced they have signed kicker Tristan Vizcaino.
- The Tennessee Titans agreed to terms on a one-year contract with running back/fullback Khari Blasingame, who was scheduled to be an exclusive rights free agent next month.
- The San Francisco 49ers have signed tight end Ross Dwelley and safety Marcell Harris to one-year extensions, the team announced on Friday.