Latest NFL News & Rumors: Monday, October 10

Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule leaves the field after the game at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Carolina Panthers fire head coach Matt Rhule

  • Carolina also fired defensive coordinator Phil Snow.
  • Rhule went 11-27 during his tenure and 1-27 in games in which his offense failed to score at least 17 points.
  • Head coach candidates to monitor include Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator Demeco Ryans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich, Los Angeles Rams defensive coordinator Raheem Morris, Philadelphia Eagles offensive coordinator Shane Steichen and Eagles defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon.

Carolina Panthers quarterback Baker Mayfield to miss time due to ankle injury

  • Mayfield’s 53.3 passing grade in 2022 ranks 36th out of 40 qualifying quarterbacks, and his 64.1% adjusted completion percentage ranks 38th.
  • P.J. Walker completed five-of-six passes for 60 yards in garbage time upon replacing Mayfield in Week 5 against the 49ers.
  • In Walker’s lone start in Week 10 of 2021, he earned a 73.7 grade with 167 passing yards. Walker completed 22-of-29 attempts, getting the ball out lightning quick with a 2.15-second average time to throw. He avoids holding onto the ball too long, which has been an issue for Mayfield.

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Juju Smith-Schuster expected to play in Monday Night Football matchup against Las Vegas Raiders

  • Though Smith-Schuster has yet to find the end zone for Kansas City, he has at least five receptions and 45-plus receiving yards in three of his first four games as a Chief. He also has recorded zero drops on 25 targets. Smith-Schuster is averaging 6.4 yards after the catch per reception, which ranks 16th among wide receivers with at least ten targets on the season.

Atlanta Falcons trade linebacker Deion Jones to Cleveland Browns

  • Cleveland lost linebacker Anthony Walker to injury in Week 3, and up to that point, Walker’s 82.7 grade ranked fifth among off-ball linebackers.
  • Jones, who is currently on injured reserve, struggled in 2021 with a 34.6 grade, but from 2016-20, his 83.3 overall grade ranked ninth while his 91.6 coverage grade ranked third among off-ball linebackers. 

Seattle Seahawks running back Rashaad Penny out for season

  • Penny’s 90.7 rushing grade since Week 14 of 2021 – when he became the lead running back – is second to only Cleveland Browns running back Nick Chubb over the span.
  • Seattle claimed former New Orleans Saints running back Tony Jones Jr. off waivers Monday to bolster its running back room.
  • Second-round rookie Kenneth Walker III will now handle the lion’s share of the workload as planned when he was selected, and he ripped off a 69-yard touchdown run almost immediately after taking over the lead role in the Week 5 loss to the Saints.

Baltimore Ravens safety Marcus Williams placed on injured reserve with wrist injury

  • Williams is expected to return in 2022 after suffering the injury against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday Night Football.
  • Williams signed a five-year, $70 million free agent contract with Baltimore and had played up to his billing thus far with a 73.1 overall grade.
  • Fortunately for Baltimore, veteran safety Chuck Clark and first-round rookie Kyle Hamilton are capable on the backend in the interim, earning 63.5 and 70.5 grades through Week 5, respectively.

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