NFL Free Agent Rumors: Falcons Out of Chris Johnson Race, Again; Jermichael Finley Looking For Medical Clearance

Green Bay Packers tight end Jermichael Finley Benny Sieu USA TODAY Sports

The last we heard on the Chris Johnson front was that the New York Jets were the presumed favorites to land the former 2,000-yard rusher. And now, it looks as if the No. 2 contender has dropped out of the race, again.

The Atlanta Falcons are not expected to make a bid for Johnson, according to FOX Sports’ Alex Marvez. The Falcons were the first team that surfaced in connection to the former Tennessee Titans back per a report from the Nashville Tennessean, which continues to suggest the team is in play.

The top tight end available in free agency has still yet to earn medical clearance since undergoing major neck surgery this past year, but that could change very soon.

According to ESPN’s Josina Anderson, Finley is expected to get an X-ray on his on neck Thursday and an MARI within the next two weeks. His scans will then be sent to Pittsburgh Steelers team neurosurgeon Joseph Maroon, who performed his spinal fusion surgery, who can then inform teams interested on his progress.

A handful of teams showed interest in Finley this offseason, including the Seattle Seahawks. Finley failed his physical with Seattle, which may have raised flags about the tight end’s health for the upcoming season.

A pair of unsigned veterans may be close to finding new homes.

Former New Orleans Saints defensive end Will Smith has drawn interest from the New England Patriots, considered the favorite to land him, Pro Football Talk reported. Smith is about seventh months removed from a torn ACL and is willing to play under a one-year contract. New England tends to stockpile veteran pass-rushers, so the fit makes sense.

Former New York Jets and Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Santonio Holmes remains content to wait to sign with a team, at least until after the NFL Draft in May, according to Pro Football Talk. Since being released by the Jets, there has been no known reports of visits with any interested teams. Holmes time in New York was marred by injuries and off-the-field concerns. Teams may be more inclined to draft a young wideout in the draft then sign a veteran with so much baggage.

author avatar
Sam Spiegelman
Sam Spiegelman is a native New Yorker covering sports in New Orleans. He likes Game of Thrones way too much. Tweet him @samspiegs.