Let’s call it Wednesday

Why is the NFL free agent period so confusing. Today is the actual start of free agency, but teams have been able to negotiate with players since Monday; so there have been all the reports of this guy signing here or that guy signing there when they really can’t sign anything until today. It would be so much easier if the free agent signing period started either Monday when you can talk to players or Wednesday when players can actual sign with teams. That just seems like it would be so much easier for everyone involved.

There will be signings going on all day long, but a couple of them that I caught had the Jacksonville Jaquars signing Malik Jackson formerly now of the Denver Broncos for 6 years and around $90 million. Jacksonville had the most salary cap space out of any team entering free agency and not only did they sign Jackson it’s also being reported that Jacksonville has signed running back Chris Ivory to a 5 year deal, but I didn’t see the money involved. The Oakland Raiders have added a couple of free agents signing Bruce Irvin away from the Seattle Seahawks and also getting offensive lineman Kelechi Osemele for 5 years and $60 million. There are plenty of other signings that have happened and plenty more that will happen today; so I’m not going to run through the list here when so many more guys will be added to it. I’ll just wait until it’s time to write the Saturday blog and we can go through who the winners and losers are in free agency.

Now the Philadelphia Eagles have been busy not signing free agents, but trading the players former head coach/general manager Chip Kelly brought in. The first deal they made had linebacker Kiko Alonso and defensive back Byron Maxwell going to the Miami Dolphins for draft pick compensation. The draft pick compensation wasn’t announced, but part of it has the Eagles and Dolphins swapping spots in the 1st round. The Eagles would move up to 8th pick and the Dolphins would go to the 13th pick. There may be an issues with this trade though. The Dolphins are considering cancelling the trade because of an injury to Maxwell’s shoulder. The Dolphins actual do this kind of stuff quite a bit. Remember they cost themselves Drew Brees a few years back when they voided a deal with him over a shoulder concern; so don’t be surprised at all if they back out of this deal or adjust the draft pick compensation. The Eagles where also able to find a taker for running back DeMarco Murray. Philadelphia has worked out a deal to send Murray to the Tennessee Titans. It hasn’t been reported what the Eagles will get in return, but just being able to move Murray’s contract is a win for the Eagles. Murray was signed to a 5 year $40 million dollar deal by Kelly last off season. While Murray was the best running back in the NFL in 2014 with the Dallas Cowboys he never seemed to fit with the Eagles system and was unhappy there. It will interesting to see which DeMarco Murray the Titans get. If the trade with the Dolphins goes through both of these moves will become official this afternoon when the new NFL season is officially under way. I did hear a report that the Eagles would be willing to move another Kelly signee from last season in running back Ryan Matthews. Will have to see if Matthews is still with Philadelphia by the end of the day.

The St. Louis Cardinals suffered the first big injury of spring training when shortstop Jhonny Peralta hurt his left thumb diving for a ball during an exhibition game Sunday. If Peralta ends up needing surgery like it looks like he will there’s a good chance he would miss the first two months of the season. Then the question becomes; who’s the Cardinals shortstop? Don’t forget that the Cardinals picked Jedd Gyorko in an off season deal with the San Diego Padres. While Gyorko has played mostly 2nd and 3rd base in the majors he did spend the last month of the 2015 season playing shortstop for San Diego. Gyorko was acquired with the intent of giving him time at second base, shortstop and third base to keep Kolten Wong, Peralta and Matt Carpenter fresh, but Gyorko was a full time shortstop in college and looks like he’ll get the first chance to replace the injured Peralta. St. Louis also could use Cuban shortstop Aledmys Diaz. Who was signed to an $8 million, four-year in March 2014. The 25-year-old has hit well in the minors putting up 10 homers and 46 R.B.I.s at Double-A Springfield and played just 14 games at Triple-A Memphis, batting .380 with three homers and six R.B.I.s. The Cardinals also have Greg Garcia who appeared in 49 games for them last season, but he is the likely utility option. I would be very surprised if the Cardinals went out and traded for someone to fill the shortstop spot while Peralta is out injured; that’s not really the way they do things. The only way they might look for a deal is if Gyorko and Diaz couldn’t hold down the position until Peralta returned from his injury.

It was an upset weekend in the UFC as woman’s bantamweight champion Holly Holm lost her title in her first defense of it to Miesha Tate and Connor McGregor lost his fight to Nate Diaz. Both Holm and McGregor where the favorites to win going into the fights. It’s already been announced that Tate’s first title defense will be against Ronda Rousey. Holm beat Rousey to win the belt and that was the fight people thought she should’ve waited for. McGregor who moved up two weight classes to fight Diaz will now return to the featherweight division where he is the reigning champion. I believe I heard that McGregor will defend his title against Jose Aldo, but I didn’t hear a date for the fight or for the Tate/Rousey title fight. I also learned this week that Women’s strawweight contender Paige Van Zant will be appearing on Dancing with the Stars. To be honest with you though I’ve never seen her fight and didn’t know much about her until they announced her as an UFC competitor when they where talking about the line up for the television show.

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