After growing frustrated with reporters and briefly walking out during a videoconference Tuesday, Los Angeles Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey stated clearly that he is not spending time concerned about a contract extension as he enters the final season of his rookie deal.
“I’m worried about what I can worry about,” Ramsey said after initially avoiding a pointed question regarding his contract situation. “I’m controlling what I can control.”
The No. 5 pick in 2016, Ramsey is scheduled to earn $13.7 million this season.
It’s expected the All-Pro cornerback is on track to earn a record-breaking extension after the Rams traded two first-round picks and a fourth-round pick to the Jacksonville Jaguars to acquire him last October.
When asked Tuesday whether it felt important to him to have a new contract signed before the season opener in September, Ramsey responded, “My agent and the front office, they’ll handle all that.”
When asked the same question in a follow-up, Ramsey provided the same answer, then added a quick quip, “C’mon now… You got to take the answer I give you, man!”
A third attempted follow-up about how he felt regarding his contract situation resulted in Ramsey cutting off the question.
“I answered it: I said my agent and the front office, they gonna handle it,” Ramsey said. “I’m worried about what I can worry about, I’m controlling what I can control… Either accept the answer or keep it pushing. I don’t want to be disrespectful, but that’s the answer.”
Lol I love the Rams PR & media that cover the team. They pushed me today for an answer about my contract 😂😂..The only answer I geniuly have is that I DONT KNOW!! I can say that I have the best agent in the game tho @DavidMulugheta & I can also say that God’s timing is the best!
— Jalen Ramsey (@jalenramsey) August 4, 2020
A brief pause in questions resulted in Ramsey walking out of the videoconference for more than two minutes before a Rams public relations person persuaded him to return.
Ramsey then launched into a passionate 2-minute, 20-second monologue about his contract situation.
“I told y’all at the beginning of this, I said I’m controlling what I can control and when you asked me the question about my contract, I said I’m letting my agent, who is by far the best agent in the game, David Mulugheta, and the front office handle it,” Ramsey said. “I can’t do anything about it. I’m not worried about it. I’m trying to do my job as a football player. I’m trying to be a leader on the team, I’m not gonna do every Zoom session or however we gonna do them this year, talking about my contract. Look, if it comes, it comes. It’s gonna be a surprise to me like it’s gonna be a surprise to y’all …”
Ramsey added that he told his agent in August that he did not want to field any calls regarding his contract until a deal was in place.
“I said I want you to call me one time, I said, when my deal is done. I said, When you feel like my deal is done, call me. That’s it,” Ramsey said. “I’m not worried about it. I’m worried about football. I’m worried about other things in my life, like my blessings will come when they come, like I got all my trust in God, so when I give y’all an answer, that’s the answer.”
Ramsey is expected to hold the upper hand in negotiations after the Rams’ trade of 2020 and 2021 first-round picks and a 2021 fourth-round pick to acquire him.
Earlier this week, Rams coach Sean McVay said there was no update to provide on contract negotiations for Ramsey or for receiver Cooper Kupp and safety John Johnson, who also are entering the final season of their rookie deals.
“Obviously those guys are instrumental parts of what we want to do,” McVay said. “I’m just making sure I know what the heck I’m doing next after this right now, negotiating through the days.”
Rams general manager Les Snead has previously acknowledged the price the Rams paid to acquire Ramsey, indicating that it would be ideal for the team to reach a long-term extension with him.
Snead, however, declined on Monday to provide any details regarding Ramsey’s contract situation.
“We’ll keep the intimacy of those details with the players — let’s call it contracts that are expiring this year — we’ll keep those in-house,” Snead said, adding later, “We do have a very healthy relationship with, specifically… with Jalen’s agent, David Mulugheta.”
The four players drafted ahead of Ramsey in 2016 — Rams quarterback Jared Goff, Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz, Chargers defensive end Joey Bosa and Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott — have each signed long-term extensions, all of which included record-breaking terms, with their teams.
Considered a premier lockdown cornerback, Ramsey has intercepted 10 passes and has 49 pass deflections in 59 career starts.
Biggest Week 3 injury questions for all 32 NFL teams
Elsewhere, the status of a pair of star receivers is in doubt with the Green Bay Packers‘ Davante Adams (hamstring) and the Atlanta Falcons‘ Julio Jones (hamstring) nursing injuries. The injury-ravaged San Francisco 49ers likely won’t get quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (ankle) back for their game against the New York Giants, but tight end George Kittle might return.
Here’s a look at the biggest injuries for every team:
Are Tremaine Edmunds and Matt Milano healthy enough to play? The Bills were gashed by the Dolphins in the middle of the field in Week 2, in large part due to the absences of their two starting linebackers. Both players were at practice Wednesday — a positive sign with Cooper Kupp, Robert Woods and Tyler Higbee coming to town on Sunday. Buffalo will need all hands on deck to control the Rams’ passing attack. — Marcel Louis-Jacques
CB Bryon Jones (groin/Achilles) is out for Thursday’s game against Jacksonville and the Dolphins are also dealing with CB Xavien Howard being bothered by a knee injury. Rookie first-round pick Noah Igbinoghene likely will start in Jones’ place. It’s not a good time to have issues in the secondary because the Jaguars are averaging 294 yards per game passing and QB Gardner Minshew ranks in the top 10 in completion percentage and passer rating. — Michael DiRocco
Starting center David Andrews missed Wednesday’s practice with a hand injury. He’s been solid the first two weeks of the season, and his potential absence would be a setback Sunday. “He’s the piece that holds it all together,” starting left tackle Isaiah Wynn said. — Mike Reiss
The Jets have major issues at wide receiver. Breshad Perriman (ankle) is expected to miss two games. Jamison Crowder (hamstring), who sat out last week, is a question mark. It leaves Chris Hogan, Braxton Berrios and Josh Malone as their starting three, which could make for another long day for QB Sam Darnold. — Rich Cimini
The Ravens didn’t practice, so there was no official injury report for Monday’s game against the Kansas City Chiefs. The most high-profile injury is OT Ronnie Stanley, who played last week despite dealing with hip and ankle injuries. Asked about his status for Monday’s game against the defending Super Bowl champions, Stanley said Wednesday, “It’s going to take a lot to keep me out of this one.” — Jamison Hensley
Will the Bengals regain the services of Geno Atkins and Mike Daniels against the Eagles? Last week, the absence of the two defensive tackles was very notable as the Browns racked up 215 rushing yards. If the Bengals are without both again, shoring up the rush defense could be a big problem. And if that happens, that will also affect the Bengals’ pass rush, which has also struggled through the first two weeks. If neither player can practice by Thursday, it’s hard to see either playing in Philadelphia. — Ben Baby
After sitting out Week 2 with an ankle injury, right tackle Jack Conklin said he expects to be 100% again by the end of the week and will play against Washington’s talented defensive line. — Jake Trotter
David DeCastro is back at practice, but will he play in Sunday’s game against the Texans? The veteran guard practiced for the first time since training camp on Wednesday, but he was sporting a hefty brace on his left knee. Earlier in the week, coach Mike Tomlin said DeCastro’s participation this week would be their guide for his availability. If DeCastro has any setbacks the Steelers showed last week they have a solid backup in rookie Kevin Dotson, who didn’t allow a sack. — Brooke Pryor
Matthew Berry explains that Gardner Minshew going up against the Dolphins’ defense gives fantasy managers a better shot at winning than Deshaun Watson, who will be facing the Steelers.
Texans defensive end J.J. Watt played only 68% of defensive snaps in Week 2 because he was dealing with a groin injury last week. “As the game kind of got away from us at the end, just being very smart about what had to be handled moving forward,” Watt said. He felt “great” at practice on Wednesday and said his groin “feels much better this week than it did last week.” — Sarah Barshop
Tight end Jack Doyle continues to be out with a knee and ankle injury. Coach Frank Reich has yet to go into any details on when he expects Doyle back. The good news for the Colts is that Mo Alie-Cox is coming off a career game against Minnesota as Doyle’s replacement. Alie-Cox had five catches for 111 yards against the Vikings to show that he’s capable of continuing to fill in as the starter. — Mike Wells
C Brandon Linder (knee) and K Josh Lambo (left hip) are out for Thursday’s game. The Jaguars do have experience behind Linder in Tyler Shatley. He has started 15 games in seven years with the Jaguars. However, the Jaguars are going with rookie Brandon Wright to replace Lambo. Lambo has made 95% of his field-goal attempts in his four seasons with the Jaguars. — Michael DiRocco
The Titans managed to score 33 points without WR A.J. Brown last week. Brown was limited in practice last Wednesday before being held out of practice the rest of the week and ruled out for Week 2. Brown missed his third consecutive practice on Wednesday due to a bone bruise. If Brown is unable to go on Sunday, the Titans will have to rely on a more balanced attack against the Vikings. — Turron Davenport
What will the Broncos do to adjust to the short-term loss of quarterback Drew Lock (shoulder), who they built an entire offseason plan around on offense? Jeff Driskel, who played 64 of the Broncos’ 77 snaps on offense in last week’s loss to the Steelers, will get the start against Tampa Bay. He is fairly mobile, but they may have to adjust in pass protection or they’ll be replacing Driskel as well given they surrendered seven sacks and 19 quarterback hits against the Steelers. The Broncos should give Driskel snaps in two tight end looks and add rollout and play-action to slow the Buccaneers’ defensive front. — Jeff Legwold
The Chiefs protected veteran RB DeAndre Washington on their practice squad this week, an indication they don’t feel backup Darrel Williams will be ready to go on Monday night against the Ravens. Williams injured his ankle last week. The Chiefs also have starter Clyde Edwards-Helaire and backup Darwin Thompson but they have no one else quite like the 224-pound Williams, their best power runner. In his third season with the Chiefs, Williams has seniority over the other backs and the trust of the coaching staff in all situations. — Adam Teicher
Stephania Bell explains that Josh Jacobs looked good after returning to the game against the Saints and that she isn’t overly concerned about an injury limiting him in Week 3.
Raiders trainers put in a lot of work on Josh Jacobs during the home opening-win against the Saints Monday night. With the second-year running back missing practice on Wednesday with a hip issue, alarm bells are ringing. Yes, quarterback Derek Carr is in control of the offense and tight end Darren Waller is a force who also sat out practice with a knee issue. But the offense flows through Jacobs. If he cannot go on a short week in New England, they turn to Jalen Richard, who is more a change-of-pace pass-catching back, and Devontae Booker, who has a lot to prove in the Raiders system. — Paul Gutierrez
Quarterback Tyrod Taylor will not start because of a chest injury and a pain-killing injection that accidentally punctured his lung. Rookie Justin Herbert will make his second straight start. — Shelley Smith
The Cowboys will be challenged at cornerback this week with starter Chidobe Awuzie expected to miss a couple of weeks with a hamstring strain. The Cowboys lost Anthony Brown last week to broken ribs suffered in practice. Daryl Worley took over for Awuzie last week vs. Atlanta but it is possible Brandon Carr could also see some action at cornerback although his focus had been at safety since signing prior to Week 1. In training camp, Worley played both cornerback spots as well as the nickel spot and safety. His versatility is a plus but now he likely will be counted on as the right cornerback. — Todd Archer
The Giants have injury concerns but not really for this week. Star running back Saquon Barkley (knee) is out for the season and WR Sterling Shepard (turf toe) landed on injured reserve. That will keep him out at least three weeks. The only players on this week’s injury report are reserve safety Adrian Colbert (quad) and rookie outside linebacker Carter Coughlin (hamstring). Colbert was limited at Wednesday’s practice and Coughlin was a full participant. — Jordan Raanan
Rookie receiver Jalen Reagor will be sidelined multiple weeks with a UCL tear in his thumb. That puts the onus on JJ Arcega-Whiteside and fellow rookie John Hightower to produce. The Eagles lean on two tight end sets more than any team in the NFL, and that certainly won’t change now. — Tim McManus
Washington receiver Steven Sims, who doubles as a returner, missed practice with a toe injury suffered in Sunday’s loss at Arizona. It’s uncertain how bad the injury is at this point, but it’s certain that if he misses time it would be tough to replace him. Sims has caught six passes for 103 yards. Also, Washington lacks legitimate receiver depth. There are options, including Terry McLaurin, who could move inside more while rotating others at the spot. Washington can also incorporate the running backs more in the pass game — Antonio Gibson and J.D. McKissic can run routes from this spot. Still, if Sims is lost, it’s a blow. — John Keim
The Bears have stayed relatively healthy, but veteran outside linebacker Robert Quinn‘s (ankle) snap count is worth monitoring in Week 3. Quinn, who was inactive in Week 1, played just 25 of 65 total defensive snaps against the Giants. Quinn finished the game with a sack and forced fumble. “He’s got really long arms, and he cuts that leverage down,” Bears coach Matt Nagy said. “Robert has that bend going around the edge and stays so low. It’s hard for tackles and then he has some counter moves off of that.” The Bears ideally want to pair Quinn with Khalil Mack as much as possible. Mack played 54 snaps against the Giants.— Jeff Dickerson
With Kenny Golladay returning to practice Wednesday and seemingly on track to play barring a setback, the main concern for Detroit has to be its No. 1 cornerback, Desmond Trufant. He didn’t work out Wednesday — his fourth straight missed practice — and on a defense struggling against the pass, he is needed. Detroit would likely again go with Amani Oruwariye and Jeff Okudah if Trufant can’t play. — Michael Rothstein
Field Yates, Matthew Berry and Stephania Bell discuss the severity of Davante Adams’ injury, and they delve into the streaming options should Adams miss any time.
Davante Adams says it’s “too early to tell” whether his hamstring injury will be healed enough to play Sunday against the Saints. Adams wanted to go back into last Sunday’s game against the Lions but coach Matt LaFleur held him out with the Packers up big in the second half. Adams did not practice Wednesday but said in hindsight not returning against Detroit was the right call. “It’s feeling better,” Adams said. “I think we’re making good progress every day. But we’re just going to wait it out and see. It’ll probably be a decision that’s made later in the week most likely, just to get a full assessment, give me the full amount of time I need to get right.” Remember, as valuable as Adams is to the Packers’ offense, they went 4-0 without him last year when he had a turf toe injury. — Rob Demovsky
Injuries are piling up on Minnesota’s defense. Cornerback Cameron Dantzler (ribs), who did not play in Indianapolis after missing three days last week, was absent from Wednesday’s practice along with Mike Hughes, who has a neck injury. With linebacker Anthony Barr on injured reserve, the Vikings want to expand Troy Dye‘s role, but the rookie is dealing with an injured foot that kept him sidelined on Wednesday. If Dye can’t play, it appears Hardy Nickerson Jr., who was called up from the practice squad, could be in line as the No. 3 linebacker. — Courtney Cronin
Star wide receiver Julio Jones did not practice Wednesday after straining a previously injured left hamstring during last Sunday’s loss at Dallas. Falcons coach Dan Quinn said they will take it all the way through the week with Jones to determine his availability. Jones said he couldn’t run like he wanted to against Dallas, but he fought through it. Jones typically fights through injuries, but this is worth keeping an eye on. If for some reason he can’t play against the Bears, the Falcons and Matt Ryan would rely more on receivers Calvin Ridley and Russell Gage as well as tight end Hayden Hurst. The Falcons might have to run the ball more anyway with Todd Gurley against Khalil Mack and the Bears defense. — Vaughn McClure
Everyone knows star running back Christian McCaffrey (high ankle sprain) is out 4-6 weeks, so the attention returns to the defensive front and tackle Kawann Short. Short (foot) was on the field in sweats for Wednesday’s practice and coach Matt Rhule is encouraged enough to think the two-time Pro Bowl selection could be ready for the Chargers. The Panthers need Short next to first-round pick Derrick Brown to help a defense that has an NFL-low zero sacks and six pressures. — David Newton
Receiver Michael Thomas‘ status remains uncertain after he missed last week’s game with a high ankle sprain. The team didn’t practice Wednesday, but they listed Thomas as a DNP on their “estimated” injury report. We’ll learn more when they actually practice on Thursday and Friday. This week would be a surprisingly-early return from that type of injury. But the Saints didn’t place Thomas on injured reserve, which means they hope he can miss less than three games. — Mike Triplett
The Bucs are actually in much better shape with injuries compared to the last two weeks. Pro Bowl wide receiver Chris Godwin cleared the concussion protocol Monday and is expected to play in Denver, while their other Pro Bowl wideout, Mike Evans, is no longer even on the injury report with a hamstring injury. — Jenna Laine
Christian Kirk missed Wednesday’s practice with a groin injury that he suffered Sunday against Washington that, at the time, coach Kliff Kingsbury said was just “a little tightness.” But Kirk wasn’t in uniform on Wednesday and was seen working out on the side with a trainer. If he can’t play against the Lions this week, the Cardinals will have the option of using either Trent Sherfield, Andy Isabella or KeeSean Johnson, who’s returning from the reserve/COVID-19 list. — Josh Weinfuss
Rookie running back Cam Akers separated rib cartilage in the opening series of a Week 2 win over the Eagles and is now considered day to day, according to Rams coach Sean McVay. Through two weeks, Akers has been the starter, but he’s playing in a rotation with Malcolm Brown and Darrell Henderson. If he is unable to play Sunday, look for Brown or Henderson to start, but expect that carries will continue to be shared. — Lindsey Thiry
Stephania Bell updates the status of a bevy of injured 49ers and says guys like George Kittle and Jimmy Garoppolo may decide not to play on the turf at MetLife Stadium.
The 49ers have many injury questions right now but with it looking increasingly unlikely that quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (ankle) will play against the Giants on Sunday, all eyes turn to tight end George Kittle and his sprained left knee. Kittle was limited in practice Wednesday and will be evaluated as the week goes on. In normal circumstances, Kittle would probably be able to return this week but given the 49ers’ concerns about the artificial surface at MetLife Stadium, they might opt to err on the side of caution and hold him out another week. — Nick Wagoner
Defensive end Rasheem Green has yet to be cleared from the neck stinger that forced him to miss Seattle’s win over New England last week, so his status for Sunday’s game against Dallas is up in the air. “He’s not feeling that bad but he’s still got a little something going on that we’ve got to wait through it and see which day it turns,” coach Pete Carroll said. Green’s iffy status is magnified by the loss of Bruce Irvin to a season-ending knee injury. — Brady Henderson
Las Vegas Raiders’ Richie Incognito on IR, out at least 3 weeks
With teams able to bring players back from IR after three weeks, the Raiders are hoping Incognito, a four-time Pro Bowler and Pro Bowl alternate last season, can return soon.
Incognito, 37, had been dealing with an Achilles injury entering Monday night’s home opener against the New Orleans Saints. He left the game after the first quarter and was replaced by rookie John Simpson.
The Raiders (2-0) had already been without the services of right tackle Trent Brown (calf) and his backup Sam Young (groin), and Denzelle Good, a guard by trade, has played the position after both went out in the season opener at Carolina.
Incognito has been one of general manager Mike Mayock’s best free-agent signings since joining the Raiders after the 2018 season after retiring in 2017. Incognito, who has had his share of both on- and off-the-field issues, has not been a distraction for the Raiders since signing a one-year “prove-it” deal and then being rewarded with a two-year extension worth up to $14 million, with more than $6 million guaranteed late last season.
But with Incognito out at least through the team’s bye week, Simpson, a fourth-round selection, has to step up this weekend at the New England Patriots (1-1).
“You know what, he did pretty good, it’s a credit to him,” Raiders coach Jon Gruden said of Simpson on Tuesday. “We put him in some tough spots…we let him fill in for Richie Incognito and he had his struggles on Wednesday [in practice] against Datone Jones. He learned some valuable lessons.
“He got thrust into a real tough situation [against the Saints]. [David] Onyemata, [Sheldon] Rankins, those are two of the best interior players in the game. He did OK in there. He handled a lot of situations very well. I give [Raiders center] Rodney Hudson and [left tackle] Kolton Miller a lot of credit for playing really good next to him. But it was a good start for John Simpson.”
Who says Packers don’t need Davante Adams? He does (jokingly and wrongly) – Green Bay Packers Blog
And now everyone knows what Adams learned from that experience.
“Yeah, man, they don’t need me,” Adams said Wednesday. “They don’t need me — that’s what it boils down to.”
His quarterback respectfully disagrees.
“We need Davante,” Aaron Rodgers said when told of Adams’ self-deprecating remark.
“We always need Davante — he’s so damn talented. I think what we learned was maybe just how damn talented he is. He’s a game-changer and he changes the way defenses play. So in the time that he was out, we saw some different types of defenses based on their respect or maybe lack of respect of the other guys we had on the squad. I think what it allowed us to do was see what we had with those other guys.”
So here are the unbeaten Packers a season later, again facing the possibility of playing without Adams. He did not practice Wednesday because of the hamstring injury that he suffered in the second of half of Sunday’s win over the Detroit Lions. A day later, coach Matt LaFleur said Adams had lobbied to reenter the game, but LaFleur held him out. Whether his decision was based more on the injury or that the Packers were up big and didn’t need Adams, either way his status for Sunday night’s game at the New Orleans Saints remained in doubt.
“It’s feeling better,” Adams said. “I think we’re making good progress every day. But we’re just going to wait it out and see. It’ll probably be a decision that’s made later in the week most likely, just to get a full assessment, give me the full amount of time I need to get right, to a real comfortable spot. Obviously, I don’t think we’re there just yet, but we’re making great strides on the way there.”
Still, what Rodgers was referring to about the way teams defend the Packers based on Adams is evident again this season. Adams tied a team record with 14 catches (for 156 yards and two touchdowns) in the season opener against Minnesota, and then the next week, the Lions shifted their coverage to try to take him away. He caught three passes for 36 yards before he dropped out. But even before the injury, Adams’ presence -– and the way the Lions focused on him -– opened things up for running back Aaron Jones and his 236-yard, three-touchdown day.
The Packers ran more plays against a loaded box (defined as at least eight defenders in the box) than any team in Week 1, allowing Adams to go wild. With so much focus on Adams by the Lions, all of Jones’ Week 2 runs came with seven or fewer defenders in the box, and the Packers had the blocking advantage on 94% of his runs, the highest rate of his career, according to NFL Next Gen Stats.
“It just shows that our guys are mentally tough enough to be able to step up,” Adams said. “Obviously, having certain injuries, the things that I’ve had in the past, we weren’t expecting that. I didn’t come into the season with an injury saying, ‘Hey he’s probably gonna miss this amount of time,’ so people don’t really have ample time to get their mind right, which is such a critical thing playing in the National Football League … And just having that adversity, me being able to experience that along with them, it’s a test of character, but last year just showed that we have the right type of guys on our team.”
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