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Mar 2 2015 - Andre Johnson (Texans), WR Andre Johnson received permission from the Texans on Monday to work out a trade to another team. If a swap isn't completed, Johnson would asked to be waived, which would make him an unrestricted free agent, according to the Houston Chronicle.The arrangement was reached after Johnson was told he would face a reduced role with the Texans.
"I knew it was going to happen," Johnson told FOX26 Sports in Houston. "That's pretty much it. I think the role that they had for me, it wasn't a role for me. I don't know how you tell a guy who catches 85 balls that he'll only probably catch 40. I just didn't feel like it was a role for me to fit in."
Mar 2 2015 - Jason Pierre-Paul (Giants), DE Jason Pierre-Paul received the franchise tag from the Giants Monday (March 2), a move that will cost the team $14.813 million for 2015.
New York was unable to come to terms on a long-term deal with the 2010 first-round pick before Monday's deadline to designate franchise tags. The teams can now continue to negotiate, although Pierre-Paul is also free to negotiate with other teams. The Giants would receive two first-round picks if received an offer sheet the team wouldn't match.
Pierre-Paul, a two-time Pro Bowl selection, recorded 12.5 sacks last season, including 9.0 over his final five games.
He was set to become an unrestricted free agent March 10.
Mar 2 2015 - Stephen Gostkowski (Patriots), K Stephen Gostkowski received the franchise tag ($4.126 million) from the Patriots Monday (March 2). The Patriots issued the following statement on the use of the franchise tag: "Stephen has been extremely productive and a vital component to our success since joining our team in 2006. Utilizing the franchise designation allows both sides more time to try to reach an agreement, which is the goal."
Gostkowski was named to the Pro Bowl for the second straight season in 2014 and for the third time overall since joining the team as a fourth-round selection in the 2006 NFL Draft out of Memphis. He led the NFL in 2014 with 156 total points. Gostkowski also led the NFL in points in 2008, 2012 and 2013, becoming just the third player to lead the NFL in points in at least four seasons. He has connected on 86.8 percent of his regular-season field goal attempts since entering the NFL (243-of-280), the best field goal percentage in Patriots history.
Gostkowski became the Patriots' all-time leading scorer in the win vs. Miami on Dec. 14 and now has 1,179 career points. He was 35-of-37 on field goals in 2014 for a 94.6 field goal percentage, the highest field goal percentage in a single season for the Patriots.
Mar 2 2015 - Justin Houston (Chiefs), LB Justin Houston received the franchise tag from the Chiefs Monday. Houston will reportedly challenge the designation over his classification as a defensive end or outside linebacker. Defensive ends have a franchise one-year tender of $14.813 million, second only to quarterbacks. The tender for linebackers is $13.195.
Baltimore Ravens pass rusher Terrell Suggs filed a similar grievance but the two sides negotiated a middle ground before it reached arbitration. New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham filed a grievance last year, hoping to be recognized as a wide receiver because he spent more than 50 percent of the team's snaps in the slot. Graham was confirmed as a tight end but then agreed to a long-term contract.
The deadline for a long-term extension to be signed is July 15. Houston can choose not to sign the tender until this summer.
In his fourth season, Houston led the NFL in sacks with 22 in 2014. He finished one-half sack shy of Michael Strahan's league record. For his four-year career, Houston has registered 48.5 sacks.
The 26-year-old Houston had at least one sack in 13 of Kansas City's 16 games. His near-historic season earned him an invitation to a third straight Pro Bowl.
Mar 2 2015 - Demaryius Thomas (Broncos), WR Demaryius Thomas received the franchise tag from the Broncos Monday (March 2), the deadline for using the designation. Thomas was tendered a $12.823 million contract for 2015 -- the average of the top five NFL salaries at his position. He is allowed to negotiate with other teams, but the Broncos would have the chance to match any offer sheet or receive two first-round draft picks from the signing team.
Thomas and the Broncos are expected to continue talks toward a long-term contract. If they don't sign a multi-year contract by July 15, Thomas would have to play 2015 under the $12.823 million tag.
"This is another step in our efforts to extend Demaryius' contract and ensure he remains a Denver Bronco," general manager John Elway said. "We will continue working toward a long-term agreement with Demaryius, who is a very important part of our team."
Thomas, Denver's first-round pick in 2010, has compiled 4,483 yards on 297 receptions and 35 touchdowns in three years with Peyton Manning as the Broncos' quarterback. He has not missed a game since 2011.
He has three straight seasons of more than 1,400 yards and 10 touchdowns -- stats matched only by former wide receivers Jerry Rice and Marvin Harrison.
The Broncos' move probably signals the end of Pro Bowl tight end Julius Thomas' stay in Denver, who is expected to become an unrestricted free agent March 10.
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