NFC Notes: Sam Howell, Jacoby Brissett, Commanders, Cowboys, Eagles, Giants


  • Commanders GM Martin Mayhew said he expects QB Jacoby Brissett and QB Sam Howell to be their top two quarterbacks going into training camp. (Nicki Jhabvala)
  • Mayhew doesn’t believe Howell is a “developmental” player: “He’s going to be a very good player, I believe.” (Jhabvala)
  • Mayhew added the team is still “talking about” picking up DE Chase Young‘s fifth-year option. (JP Finlay)
  • Mayhew said the team has “no problem” investing heavily into the defensive line, even if that means paying Young. (Finlay)
  • Mayhew believes LB Cody Barton is ready to take the next step: “We think he’s an ascending guy and he’s ready to step his game up.” (Finlay)
  • Mayhew said the team has not decided on C Chase Roullier‘s future: “I can’t really speak to that right now…He’s on our roster, we will see how that goes.” (Finlay)
  • Mayhew said the team’s impending sale has had no impact on roster construction: “Honestly, the sale process has had zero effect on anything that we have done. Our ownership has been very supportive of the guys that we have signed in our free agency. It’s been zero impact on any of that.” (Ben Standig)
  • Commanders HC Ron Rivera says to expect a left guard competition between Saahdiq Charles and Chris Paul. Rivera then added on G Andrew Norwell: “He’s going to be there.” (Finlay)
  • Rivera said they never considered pursuing QB Lamar Jackson: “It was something we feel didn’t suit what we want to do. We know he’s a tremendous player. I just didn’t think that was the direction we wanted to go.” (Jhabvala)
  • Rivera says the team won’t rule out selecting a quarterback in the draft at pick number 16 despite being comfortable with their current pairing of Howell and Brissett. (Standig)
  • As for the starting quarterback job between Howell and Brissett, Rivera said: “I think it’s open right now. All I said was Sam would get the first crack. We will play the guy that gives us the best chance to win football games.” (Finlay)
  • According to Rivera, the team is “dragging their feet” on the decision on Young’s fifth-year option because of the ownership uncertainty: “We may need to get the approval of the new owners to pick it up. I have no idea what to expect.” (Ralph Vacchiano)
  • Rivera on if the ownership uncertainty is frustrating: “It is a little bit. You want to continue and just do what you’re doing. … But we understand it’s a delicate situation. … Everything we’ve needed to do, we’ve been able to do.” (Jhabvala)


Cowboys HC Mike McCarthy said nobody felt good about letting RB Ezekiel Elliott walk, but said that you have to make tough decisions when it comes to the business side of the NFL.

You know, no one felt good about that,” he said, via “I mean, Zeke has such a bright light to him too. He’s a great teammate. There’s so much love for him in the building, but you get to these spots, you know, the longer you’re in this league, these are tough decisions. Very difficult decisions. Very difficult for Dak (Prescott). You know, I’ve had a number of conversations with Dak, but it’s not easy.

McCarthy did leave the door open for Elliott to return this offseason.

Yeah, definitely,” he responded. “I think you always keep the door open. Absolutely.


  • Eagles GM Howie Roseman was excited to get DT Fletcher Cox back and feels he’s undervalued by the league: “I don’t really understand the perception on Fletch. I think Fletch is a great player. He had seven sacks. I don’t know how many DTs in the league had seven sacks, but not many. He took less to come back. He was offered more.” (Jeff McLane)
  • Eagles HC Nick Sirianni on RB Kenneth Gainwell stepping into a bigger role: “We all saw Kenny have a big playoff run. It seems like any time Kenny is in the game, he makes plays – whether it’s in the passing game or the running game.” (Josh Tolentino)
  • Sirianni on getting to coach QB Marcus Mariota: “I’ve been wanting to coach him for a long time. He’s very talented. He’s a proven starter in this league. We’re really confident in the work ethic and person were getting.” (Tolentino)
  • Sirianni on S Reed Blankenship: “We had confidence in him on a 16-4 team last year to start games. So we have a lot of confidence that he can do the same thing this year.” (Zach Berman)
  • As for RB Trey Sermon, Sirianni had the following to say: “I can’t tell you how many times at practice he made a cut or you just saw him in his pads or he made a play on a screen or whatever it was, you’re like, ‘Man, this guy got chance to be really good.’ I wish we could get him touches.” (Berman)
  • UAB CB Starling Thomas V met with the Eagles at his pro day. (Tony Pauline)


  • Giants GM Joe Schoen and owner John Mara made it seem as if DL Leonard Williams will be back and the team won’t ask him to take a pay cut, per the Athletic’s Dan Duggan
  • Mara also said he’s “in favor” of bringing back WR Odell Beckham Jr. if Schoen can figure it out. 
  • Regarding the Giants’ options at center, Schoen listed Ben Bredeson, Shane Lemieux and Jack Anderson, as well as a potential addition later this offseason via free agency or the draft. 
  • Cincinnati WRs Tyler Scott and Tre Tucker both met with the Giants at their pro day. (Justin Williams)

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