NFL Wire News

NFL notebook: Vikings don’t plan to trade Peterson, Zimmer says


Running back Adrian Peterson is not long for the Minnesota Vikings, if you ask his agent, Ben Dogra. Coach Mike Zimmer told another story Wednesday on the final day of NFL owners meetings.

“I’m not going to speculate on what he wants or doesn’t want,” Zimmer said. “Adrian is under contract with us for three more years. That’s why you sign those contracts. Why you get this big bonuses, you know. But yeah, we are planning on him being here.”

Dogra has said in no uncertain terms that Peterson is ready to move on. This week, he told USA Today., “We want out of Minnesota.”

Peterson hasn’t played since September and at 30 is owed $45 million on the final years of his contract with the Vikings. The Arizona Cardinals and Dallas Cowboys are the teams most frequently tied to Peterson trade rumors. Zimmer said such talks are just that.

“We have no plans to trade Adrian, no,” Zimmer said.

—Four weeks before the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are officially on the clock in the NFL draft on April 30, coach Lovie Smith does not deny Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston is the leader to be the No. 1 pick.

“No, I wouldn’t say it’s an erroneous assumption,” Smith said in response to a query about the Bucs taking Winston over Oregon’s Marcus Mariota first overall. “I would say when people make that assumption, we haven’t had the pro workout (for Winston) yet. But we’ve done a lot of research, have watched a lot of video and had both of them in and talked with them individually and had them on the board. But the process, the game isn’t over yet. I think you can have a leader, but you have to let the game play out and we’re doing that.

“We’re excited about this final stage almost to decide exactly which direction to go.”

—No one in the NFL is more unpredictable than Chip Kelly, but the Philadelphia Eagles’ coach appears resolute in his message that he will not mortgage the team’s future to move up to select Mariota.

“Philosophically, I want to build through the draft,” Kelly said at the NFL owners meetings. “So if you gut yourself for one year and one guy, philosophically I don’t think that’s the right thing to do.”

Kelly acknowledged that there are exceptions to every philosophy, but he does not envision any scenario in which the price tag would not be far more than he is willing to pay to move up and snag his former protege.

“More players are better than one player. Philosophically,” Kelly said. “Just look at the history of the game. Study all the trades. What set the Cowboys going forward? They traded one player (running back Herschel Walker) for multiple players. The draft isn’t an exact science. You’ve got a better chance of hitting if you have more draft picks than if you have less draft picks.”

—The NFL appears poised to make a major change when it comes to the almost-automatic point after touchdown.

During the final day of the league meetings Wednesday, no vote was taken on the proposal to move the line of scrimmage for an extra-point kick to the 15-yard line. However, according to competition committee chairman Rich McKay, president of the Atlanta Falcons, there was a 30- to 40-minute discussion, with numerous ideas suggested.

Most notably, McKay said, the sentiment in the league was that “it’s time to make this a football play.” That could also lead to the defense being able to score one or two points on an attempt whether by a blocked kick or interception/fumble return. “There is a movement to make a change and make it this year,” McKay added.

In other votes Wednesday:

–The adjustment for eligible/ineligible receivers was approved, mandating that a normally eligible receiver who reports as ineligible must line up within the tackle box. St. Louis Rams coach Jeff Fisher, a member of the competition committee, said last week that “there was a concern on behalf of a number of clubs and number of coaches and coach (John) Madden’s subcommittee that unless we had some guidelines in place this thing may get out of hand.”

–An unsportsmanlike conduct penalty or taunting foul at the end of the first half will carry over to the second half.

–Linebackers will be permitted to wear uniform numbers 40-49.

–Teams with retractable roofs that have the roofs closed at the start of the game can open the roofs at halftime.

—Citing a database error, the NFL revised compensatory draft picks for three teams Wednesday.

The Carolina Panthers had a sixth-round pick bumped to the fifth round, giving the Panthers two fifth-round comp picks.

The Pittsburgh Steelers had a seventh-round pick turned into a sixth — their lone comp pick — and the Denver Broncos had a sixth turned into a seventh. The Broncos now have three picks in a row at the end of the seventh round.

The Broncos remain one of four teams with the maximum four comp picks, along with the Seattle Seahawks and Kansas City Chiefs.

—The Seattle Seahawks announced the hires of three assistant coaches.

Dwaine Board will be the assistant defensive line coach, Chris Cash will coach cornerbacks and Andre Curtis will coach safeties.

Board spent 2003-08 as the defensive line coach under Mike Holmgren. The Seahawks ranked second in the NFL with 136 sacks from 2005 to 2007 and led the NFL with 50 sacks in 2005, when they played in Super Bowl XL.

Cash played in the same USC secondary as Kris Richard under Pete Carroll in 2000-01. Both defensive backs were drafted in 2002, and Richard had been Seattle’s secondary coach until being promoted this offseason to defensive coordinator to replace Dan Quinn, who was hired as the Atlanta Falcons’ coach.

Curtis most recently was assistant secondary coach for the New Orleans Saints. He also was a defensive quality control coach for the New York Giants (2006-08) and safeties coach for the St. Louis Rams (2009-11).

—The Chicago Bears signed linebacker Mason Foster to a one-year contract.

A third-round pick by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2011, Foster started 54 games for the Bucs and tallied 341 tackles, six sacks and five interceptions. He returned two of the five interceptions for touchdowns.

Foster is the third defensive player to join the Bears in the past two days. They also agreed to one-year deals with defensive linemen Ray McDonald defensive end Jarvis Jenkins.

—The Arizona Cardinals signed tight end Ifeanyi Momah to a one-year contract after he participated in the NFL Veteran Combine during the weekend in Tempe, Ariz.

Momah is the second player to land with the Cardinals from the Veteran Combine. On Monday, the team agreed to terms with wide receiver/kick returner Nathan Slaughter, who was the fastest player among the 105 at the combine, running a 4.45 40-yard dash.

The Cardinals did not disclose terms of Momah’s deal.

—The Green Bay Packers signed defensive back Kyle Sebetic.

The 6-foot, 197-pound Sebetic originally signed last June with the New York Giants but was released on Aug. 26. He returned to spend a week on the Giants’ practice squad in November.

Sebetic is a Wisconsin native who played college football at the University of Dayton.

—The Tampa Bay Buccaneers waived linebacker Brandon Magee, who will report to spring training with the Boston Red Sox.

Magee played in nine games for Tampa Bay in 2014, tallying one tackle on defense and six on special teams.

Magee first joined the Bucs just before last year’s training camp. He entered the NFL as an undrafted free agent out of Arizona State in 2013, signing with the Dallas Cowboys.

Magee participated in spring training with the Red Sox in 2014. He was drafted by the Tampa Bay Rays in 2008.

The Red Sox confirmed Wednesday that Magee is reporting to the team’s minor league complex in Fort Myers, Fla.

—Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones is not worried star wide receiver Dez Bryant remains unsigned.

Bryant has yet to sign his franchise tag, guaranteeing him $12.7 million in 2015, but Jones said he is confident Bryant will be under contract before the season starts.

“I’m not worried about that at all, and it’s because of how much he loves the game, how much he knows that preparation, practice, all of that improves him,” Jones said at the NFL owners meetings in Phoenix. “He’s at a time in his career where he’s physically still very much improving, can get better.

“The biggest reason I want a long-term agreement with Dez is so we’ll have a deal with him for a long term — but not as far as impacting what we’re doing this year in terms of what Dez’s performance will be or what we are as a team. We’ve got that in place with the franchise. So I’m not worried. I know how much he loves to play football, I know how much he loves his teammates, I know how much he loves his team and I know how much money he’s getting. With all of that, you play.”

—Cincinnati Bengals defensive lineman Devon Still received good news.

His 4-year-old daughter Leah’s cancer is in remission, he said in a post on Instagram. She was diagnosed last June and had undergone months of treatment that included chemotherapy while drawing widespread support from around the country and raising awareness for pediatric cancer.

“June 2, 2014, and March 25, 2015, are days I will remember for the rest of my life,” Devon Still wrote. “As everyone probably knows, June 2nd was the day doctors walked into the waiting room to tell me my daughter had cancer. It was the most devastating day of my life. March 25th, however, is feeling like the best day of my life.”

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