One of the toughest stretches of the NFL preseason is here, as all 32 NFL teams have to trim their rosters down from 90 players to the league-mandated 53. It means over 1,100 players will lose their jobs. These calls are never easy for the teams to make, and it almost always involves some big names being shown the door.
We’re going to run down a few of the biggest cuts that come in over the next day or so while offering some background on the decisions.
Houston Texans WR Braxton Miller (per John McClain of the Houston Chronicle)
Miller, who played quarterback over his first 37 games at Ohio State, moved to wide receiver during his senior season. The Texans eventually drafted him in the third round of the 2016 NFL Draft. Over his first two seasons, Miller caught 34 passes for 261 yards and two touchdowns over 21 games. During the 2018 NFL preseason, the former Texans wideout was solid, totaling 11 receptions for 122 yards and one score.
San Francisco 49ers RB Joe Williams (NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero)
Williams did battle injuries and failed to tally a single regular-season stat in 2017. This preseason he rushed 19 times for 45 yards and scored one touchdown while catching four passes for 29 yards. The former Utah Utes running back impressed in his final collegiate season, though, rushing for 1,407 yards (6.7 yards per carry) with 10 touchdowns.
Dallas Cowboys DE Kony Ealy (NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo)
The Cowboys signed Ealy to a one-year deal this offseason, but he was largely overshadowed by other young members of the defensive line. Ealy had just two combined tackles and one pass defensed this preseason.
Prior to landing with the Cowboys, he had a brief stint with the New England Patriots, spent a year with the New York Jets and began his career with the Carolina Panthers. Ealy had a solid two-year stretch with the Panthers from 2015-16 in which he totaled 64 combined tackles, 10 sacks, five forced fumbles and five passes defensed.
New Orleans Saints DE Hau’oli Kikaha (Nick Underhill of The New Orleans Advocate)
Kikaha was impressive during his rookie season but has suffered multiple torn ACLs and can’t seem to remain healthy, unfortunately. After being a second-round pick in 2015, he totaled 52 combined tackles, four sacks, and four forced fumbles in 15 games that season. Since then, he’s played in just 12 games.
Houston Texans P Shane Lechler (John McClain of the Houston Chronicle)
Lechler is one of the most well-respected punters in NFL history. He’s been named First-Team All-Pro six times, Second-Team All-Pro three times and made seven Pro Bowls. The 42-year-old played for the Oakland Raiders from 2000-12 and the Texans from that point through 2017.
Buffalo Bills WR Corey Coleman (NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport)
The Browns traded Coleman, their former No. 15 overall pick in the 2016 draft, to the Bills around a month ago. Cleveland received a seventh-round pick in return, but it seems Coleman was unable to make a strong enough impression on his new coaching staff to earn a roster spot.
Los Angeles Chargers kicker Roberto Aguayo (ESPN’s Field Yates)
Aguayo was a second-round pick by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and only made it through the 2016 season before being released. He made 22-of-31 attempts as a rookie and missed two extra points. During his preseason run with the Chargers, he made all three of his attempts, including a game-winner during the finale.
Washington Redskins G TJ Clemmings (NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport)
Clemmings was a fourth-round pick and started 32 games over the past three seasons. He’s had an up-and-down career but should draw interest as a free agent.
Philadelphia Eagles RB Donnell Pumphrey (NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero)
New England Patriots CB Cyrus Jones (The Athletic’s Jeff Howe)
Dallas Cowboys RB Bo Scarbrough (Houston Chronicle’s Aaron Wilson)
Minnesota Vikings WR Kendall Wright (NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero)
Baltimore Ravens WR Breshad Perriman (NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport)
Perriman can officially be declared a first-round draft bust. Over 27 career games, he has just 43 catches for 576 yards and three touchdowns. Perriman also hasn’t caught a touchdown since the 2016 season, missed his entire rookie year and five games last season.
Oakland Raiders WR Martavis Bryant
Detroit Lions CB DeShawn Shead
Dallas Cowboys K Dan Bailey
San Francisco 49ers G Jonathan Cooper
New York Giants LB Mark Herzlich
Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB Charles Sims
Cincinnati Bengals DL Michael Johnson
Pittsburgh Steelers QB Landry Jones