Capitals

Jaguars trade WR Thomas to Lions for draft pick

Jaguars trade WR Thomas to Lions for draft pick

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) A year after giving Mike Thomas a new contract, the Jacksonville Jaguars are giving him a new home.

The Jaguars traded Thomas to the Detroit Lions on Tuesday for an undisclosed draft pick.

The trade makes sense for both sides.

The Lions (3-4) lost receiver Nate Burleson for the season last week, so Thomas gives them depth behind Calvin Johnson, Titus Young and rookie Ryan Broyles.

The Jaguars (1-6), meanwhile, get a draft pick for a player who clearly has fallen out of favor with a new coaching staff. First-round draft pick Justin Blackmon and second-year pro Cecil Shorts III passed Thomas on the depth chart, and the Jaguars recently stripped him of his role as punt returner.

It's been a swift slide for a player who signed a three-year extension worth $18 million last October. The deal included $9 million guaranteed.

Thomas has just 13 receptions for 80 yards this season. He also has returned eight punts for 56 yards. A fourth-round draft pick from Arizona in 2009, Thomas has 171 catches for 1,768 yards and six touchdowns in four seasons. But his effort was under fire late last season when it became obvious he was unhappy being part of the league's worst offense.

Also Tuesday, the Jaguars signed center/guard Steve Vallos and rookie Brandon Marshall to the 53-man roster. The team waived quarterback John Parker Wilson and running back Keith Toston, and also waived cornerback Prince Miller from the practice squad.

Vallos, a seventh-round draft pick by Seattle in 2007, spent three seasons with the Seahawks and the last two with Cleveland. He signed as a free agent with Philadelphia this summer and played in two games before being released last week. He has played in 42 games with eight starts.

Marshall, a fifth-round draft pick in April, spent the first seven weeks on Jacksonville's roster before being waived Saturday. He saw action in four games and recorded two special teams tackles.

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Capitals Faceoff Podcast: What happens in Vegas....

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Capitals Faceoff Podcast: What happens in Vegas....

It's almost here.

After a lengthy break between the conference finals and the Stanley Cup Finals, the Capitals and Vegas Golden Knights are set to meet on Monday for Game 1.

Who will hoist Lord Stanley's Cup?

JJ Regan and Tarik El-Bashir give their keys to the series and their predictions for the Stanley Cup Final. Plus, JJ speaks with several member from the local media to get their insights and predictions.

Check out their latest episode in the player below or listen on the Capitals Faceoff Podcast page.

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Need to Know: A look at the Redskins' key 2019 free agents

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Need to Know: A look at the Redskins' key 2019 free agents

Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, May 27, 16 days before the Washington Redskins start minicamp.  

Note: I am vacationing in the Outer Banks this week. In this space, I’ll be presenting some of the most popular posts of the last few months. I hope you enjoy these “best of” presentations and I’ll see you folks when I get back. 

Here is my sunrise view from this morning:

Looking at next year’s free agents

This post was originally published on March 18. 

There is still work that the Redskins can do in free agency and they still have some of their own players they want to retain. But with a lot of the player movement already in the books, we can take a look forward some of the key Redskin who currently are set to be free agents when the 2019 league year opens. 

QB Colt McCoy (Week 1 age 32)—Lots of questions here. Will the Redskins want to keep him around for another year as Alex Smith’s backup? Or will they want a younger and cheaper backup? Will McCoy want to move on rather than back up another QB who doesn’t miss many games?

OL Ty Nsekhe (32)—The Redskins gave him a second-round restricted free agent tender this year so it’s possible that he could be gone or on a long-term contract in Washington. If he is a free agent, his value and the difficulty of retaining him could depend on if he ends the season as a reserve tackle (easy) or as a starting guard (hard). 

OLB Preston Smith (25)—As we saw with Trent Murphy (three years, $21 million with up to $30 million), pass rushers get paid. Smith also makes big plays. Since Smith came into the NFL, he is the only player with at least 20 sacks, 3 interceptions, and 4 forced fumbles. If the Redskins can’t reach a deal on an extension with him this year the franchise tag is a distinct possibility. 

WR Jamison Crowder (25)—This year the supply of quality receivers both as free agents and in the draft sent contract prices skyrocketing. To guard against that happening next year, the Redskin should start talking to Crowder about an extension soon. 

ILB Zach Vigil (27)—As I noted here, Vigil went from being cut in September to a very valuable reserve in November. Both Zach Brown and Mason Foster will still be under contract, but the Redskin still should make an effort to retain Vigil for special teams and as a capable backup. 

Other Redskins who are slated to be UFA’s next year are DL Ziggy Hood and ILB Martrell Spaight. 

It’s also worth noting that WR Maurice Harris and DE Anthony Lanier will both be restricted free agents next year. Both positions were pricey in free agency this year, so both could require at least second-round tenders, which likely will increase to about $3 million in 2019. 

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page, Facebook.com/TandlerNBCSand follow him on Twitter  @TandlerNBCSand on Instagram @RichTandler