Frenzied day in NFL as Rams watch from the sideline

By Howard Balzer

(KSDK Sports) -- Flushed with a salary cap that increased $10 million to $133 million, NFL teams reacted with a frenzy when the bell rung at 3 pm Central time Tuesday, signaling the start of the 2014 league year.

Emboldened by the three-day negotiating period that began Saturday, agreements came fast and furious with offensive linemen leading the storm. Within an hour, more than 25 players had already switched teams. By the time things slowed Tuesday night, nearly 80 players were involved in transactions.

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Five linemen combined for a reported $95 million in guarantees, including tackle Branden Albert moving from Kansas City to Miami for $46 million over five years with $25 million guaranteed, tackle/guard Rodger Saffold going from the Rams to Oakland for $42.5 million over five years with $21 million guaranteed, and tackle Jared Veldheer leaving Oakland for Arizona for $35 million over five years with $17 million guaranteed.

Baltimore re-signed tackle Eugene Monroe for $37.5 million over five years with $19 million guaranteed, while Denver guard Zane Beadles left the Broncos for Jacksonville on a five-year, $30 million deal with $13 million guaranteed.

Pass rushers were also in demand. After defensive end Michael Bennett re-signed with Seattle Monday, the Bears turned their attention to Oakland's Lamarr Houston, signing him for $35 million over five years with $15 million guaranteed. Later Tuesday evening, the Bears terminated the contract of defensive end Julius Peppers.

Tampa Bay was also close to an agreement with Cincinnati defensive end Michael Johnson, but no contract terms were available yet.

The Rams had interest in guard Geoff Schwartz, but he signed with the Giants. Cornerback Alterraun Verner signed with Tampa Bay, while safety Jairus Byrd signed with the Saints.

Following is a capsule look at significant moves made by teams Tuesday:
: Signed tackle Jared Veldheer (Oakland); re-signed defensive end Frostee Rucker, tight end Jake Ballard; released guard Daryn Colledge.

Atlanta: Signed defensive tackles Paul Soliai (Miami), Tyson Jackson (Kansas City), guard Jon Asomoah (Kansas City); re-signed center/guard Joe Hawley; released safety Thomas DeCoud.

Baltimore: Re-signed tackle Eugene Monroe.

Buffalo: Re-signed kicker Dan Carpenter; released quarterback Kevin Kolb.

Chicago: Signed defensive end Lamarr Houston (Oakland), safety Ryan Mundy (N.Y. Giants), linebacker Jordan Senn (Carolina); re-signed linebacker D.J. Williams; released defensive end Julius Peppers.

Cincinnati: Re-signed wide receiver Brandon Tate; released center Kyle Cook.

Cleveland: Signed linebacker Karlos Dansby (Arizona), safety Donte Whitner (San Francisco).

Dallas: Released defensive end/linebacker DeMarcus Ware.

Denver: Signed safety T.J. Ward (Cleveland), cornerback Aqib Talib (New England); re-signed wide receiver Andre Caldwell.

Detroit: Re-signed wide receiver Kevin Ogletree, running back Joique Bell.

Houston: Released tight end Owen Daniels, cornerback Brice McCain.

Indianapolis: Signed defensive end Arthur Jones (Baltimore); re-signed cornerback Vontae Davis, running back Ahmad Bradshaw, safety Sergio Brown.

Jacksonville: Signed guard Zane Beadles (Denver), running back Toby Gerhart (Minnesota); released running back Justin Forsett.

Miami: Signed tackle Branden Albert (Kansas City), defensive tackle Earl Mitchell (Houston).

Minnesota: Signed defensive tackle Linval Joseph (N.Y. Giants); re-signed center Joe Berger.

New Orleans: Signed safety Jairus Byrd (Buffalo).

N.Y. Giants: Signed LB O'Brien Schofield (Seattle), running back Rashad Jennings (Oakland), guard Geoff Schwartz (Kansas City); re-signed safety Stevie Brown, kicker Josh Brown, cornerback Trumaine McBride, running back Peyton Hillis

N.Y. Jets: Re-signed kicker Nick Folk (franchise player to long-terms contract).

Oakland: Signed tackle/guard Rodger Saffold. Re-signed running back Darren McFadden.

Philadelphia: Signed safety Malcolm Jenkins (New Orleans); re-signed punter Donnie Jones; released safety Patrick Chung.

Pittsburgh: Signed safety Mike Mitchell.

San Diego: Running back Donald Brown (Indianapolis).

San Francisco: Signed safety Antoine Bethea (Indianapolis); acquired quarterback Blaine Gabbert from Jaguars, tackle Jonathan Martin from Dolphins; re-signed cornerback Eric Wright; released cornerback Carlos Rogers.

Seattle: Re-signed tight end Anthony McCoy.

Tampa Bay: Signed defensive end Michael Johnson (Tampa Bay), cornerback Alterraun Verner (Tennessee), defensive tackle Clinton McDonald (Seattle), tight end Brandon Myers (N.Y. Giants); re-signed cornerback Danny Gorrer, tackle Jamon Meredith; released kicker Lawrence Tynes.

Tennessee: Signed wide receiver Dexter McCluster (Kansas City); re-signed running back Leon Washington; released wide receiver Kevin Walter.

Washington: Signed guard Shawn Lauvao, wide receiver Andre Roberts, linebacker Adam Hayward (Tampa Bay); re-signed wide receiver Santana Moss, linebacker Perry Riley.

Howard Balzer hosts "H and Friends" Monday-Friday from 9-11 on Fox Sports 1490 The Champ. He is also a host on SiriusXM NFL Radio and one of 44 selectors for the Pro Football Hall of Fame.


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