NFL minicamp 2024 live updates: Browns QB Deshaun Watson throws in some drills

Wednesday, June 12, 2024

It's the second week of mandatory minicamps in the NFL, with 22 teams taking another critical step toward the starting line of the 2024 season. Ten teams got the mandatory ball rolling last week, with three taking the practice field Monday and another 19 on Tuesday.

ESPN's NFL reporters will be found at each of the 22 locations this week, providing information on position battles, notable appearances from new faces, compelling quotes from coaches and players and updates on injuries and holdout situations.

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Top NFL news of the day

Rodgers, Reddick not skip Jets' minicamp

Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers and edge rusher Haason Reddick are skipping the team's mandatory two-day minicamp, the team announced Tuesday. Both absences are unexcused, meaning both players are subject to fines.

Giants expect Daniel Jones to return from ACL tear at training camp

The Giants have made it clear that they expect Jones to be ready for the beginning of training camp and be their starting quarterback this season. Their first practice is slated for July 24.

Chiefs DL BJ Thompson out of hospital after cardiac arrest

Thompson, 25, suffered seizures and went into cardiac arrest Thursday while in a special teams meeting at the Chiefs' practice facility. "The family thanks everyone for their prayers and wants to especially thank the Chiefs medical and training staff for their rapid response and professionalism throughout this situation," agent Chris Turnage said in a statement provided to NFL Network.

Bucs LB Randy Gregory absent from mandatory minicamp

Buccaneers coach Todd Bowles said outside linebackerRandy Gregoryhad an unexcused absence this first day of mandatory minicamp and that the team will "deal with it."

Jordan Love optimistic extension will get done by training camp

Jordan Love has reason to think he will have a contract extension finalized with the Green Bay Packers by the time they open training camp July 22. What made the quarterback so optimistic when he spoke Tuesday on the first day of the team's mandatory minicamp?

"It's what I've heard," Love said.

Amari Cooper's absence unexcused as Browns begin minicamp

Browns wide receiver Amari Cooper was not in attendance for the first day of mandatory minicamp Tuesday, an absence coach Kevin Stefanski said was not excused. Stefanski would not confirm whether Cooper's absence was contract-related but said "there's been a dialogue" between the team and Cooper's agent.

What our NFL Nation reporters saw today

Washington Commanders

For the first time this spring, rookie quarterbackJayden Daniels opened 11-on-11 work with the starters. Teammates and coaches continue to rave about Daniels' work behind the scenes and how it has translated to spring practices.

"Getting out of a bad play, get to a check, knowing where to go with the correct read," coach Dan Quinn said. "And at the end of it is just having command. That showed up early and it continues."

It's not as if Daniels has been perfect, but he has consistently shown why the Commanders liked him. On Tuesday, Daniels scanned the field and with no one open ran to his right, hitting receiver Dyami Brown running across the field in the other direction with a perfect pass. Another time, he ran out of the pocket to his right -- in a game, he might have been sacked -- and hit Brown again on a 45-yard pass in stride. -- John Keim

Carolina Panthers

The protection for quarterback Bryce Young wasn't consistent, but coach Dave Canales said the top pick of the 2023 draft had "by far" his best day of operating the offense. And that was despite throwing an interception near the goal line on the final play.

But Young, as wide receiver Diontae Johnson noted, is going through his reads faster and getting rid of the ball faster, a priority for Canales.

"I would say just the comfort and familiarity with our terms,'' Canales said of where he has seen Young improve the most. "The execution of the plays, the defense makes plays, too. But as far as getting out of the huddle, getting to the line of scrimmage, moving the shifts and motions, using the cadence, figuring out problems with the protections, this was a fantastic day for Bryce in understanding what we're trying to get done.'' -- David Newton

Arizona Cardinals

Cardinals rookie wideoutMarvin Harrison Jr. was first in line during receiving drills at the start of Tuesday's minicamp, a jump from where he started offseason practices toward the back.

It was a sign of the growth Harrison has made this offseason both on the field, in the eyes of his coaches and in the locker room. Typically, the first player in a position's line is a veteran or star. A rookie taking that spot means something.

"How we handle everybody's a little bit different, you know what I mean?" coach Jonathan Gannon said. "Just depending on all the variables that you have to make the decision. So, he's done a really good job from the start of OTAs when he got here to where he is now." -- Josh Weinfuss

Cleveland Browns

Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson increased his activity in practice as he returns from November's season-ending shoulder surgery. Watson had his most extensive practice to date, throwing passes in 7-on-7 drills, which he didn't do during OTAs. Previously, he would take mental reps and simulate throws in team drills. Watson took mental reps during 11-on-11 drills on Tuesday.

After practice, coach Kevin Stefanski said Watson will continue to abide by his current regimen and throw every other day this week.

"I thought he looked good," Stefanski said. "Made good decisions. You get mental reps when you're back there and then it's a little different when you're taking the snap from the center or the shotgun. But, I thought he did a nice job."

Watson said he plans to throw with his pass-catchers during the break before training camp but will have to continue to follow his medical team's plan. -- Daniel Oyefusi

Kansas City Chiefs

Rashee Rice looked ready to build on his solid rookie season. He had a big day, catching several passes, including a go route down the left sideline from Patrick Mahomes for a long touchdown. The Chiefs added major pieces at wide receiver in free agent Marquise Brown and first-round draft pick Xavier Worthy, but Rice was clearly Mahomes' receiver of choice today.

Worthy didn't practice because of a sore hamstring, an injury that kept him out of most of the previous offseason practices as well. The Chiefs have indicated his absence is more precautionary than anything and that he should be ready for full practice when they get to training camp next month. All non-injured players participated for the Chiefs except kicker Harrison Butker, who has been ill. -- Adam Teicher

Baltimore Ravens

The Ravens are going with some old-school discipline to try to eliminate offsides. A handful of Ravens -- offensive tackles Ronnie Stanley and Daniel Faalele and wide receivers Zay Flowers, Rashod Bateman and Sean Ryan-- ran laps around the field after jumping early.

"I think we're going to learn quickly," Stanley said after practice.

Ravens coach John Harbaugh indicated the issues are the result of an increased emphasis on quarterback cadence at the line of scrimmage.

"We understand there are going to be those moments and you have a choice: You either always go on one or you say, 'We're going to push through it, we're going to live with the mistakes, but we're going to get good at it,'" Harbaugh said. "So, we want to get good at it because we think cadence is a weapon. If [offensive coordinator Todd Monken] wants the guys to run after they jump offsides, they'll do it." -- Jamison Hensley

New York Giants

The Giants are expecting a lot out of their wide receivers after tight end Darren Waller's retirement over the weekend. Among that group, third-year wideout Wan'Dale Robinson. Surely it was positive for them to see Robinson make the biggest play of the day at Tuesday's minicamp. Lined up outside of first-round pick Malik Nabers, Robinson took a slant and raced through the middle of the field and into the end zone for a 50-yard score. He flashed the explosiveness that wasn't there for most of last season as he returned from a torn ACL.

With Robinson, Nabers, Darius Slayton and Jalin Hyatt, the Giants have an explosive receiving corps. "It's great sharing the field with those guys because we all fast and we all out there doing route concepts," Nabers said. "So it's easy to get the ball in our hands in space." The Giants sure hope so. -- Jordan Raanan

New York Jets

Without Aaron Rodgers (unexcused absence), the Jets got their first extended look at backup QB Tyrod Taylor, who ran the first-team offense in practice.

It was a mixed day for Taylor. He aced the 7-on-7 period, delivering the ball quickly and accurately, but he struggled in an 11-on-11 red zone period. His last four plays of the period: three incomplete passes and one fumbled exchange with rookie RB Isaiah Davis.

The Jets experienced life without Rodgers last season, as he missed the final 16 games with a torn Achilles, and it wasn't pretty. Determined to upgrade at QB2, they signed the well-traveled Taylor ($8 million guarantee) and jettisoned Zach Wilson.

On Tuesday, coach Robert Saleh called Taylor an "elite human and an elite leader." Maybe so, but this team still needs Rodgers at quarterback. Saleh tried to downplay his absence, saying the four-time MVP had notified them in advance that he had a previous commitment. Still, it's never a good look when your team leader is skipping out on a mandatory event. -- Rich Cimini

Green Bay Packers

No, the Packers weren't standing around watching "SportsCenter" on the large TV screen above Ray Nitschke Field on Wednesday. Instead, players and coaches alike caught replays of what happened in practice just seconds earlier. It's part of a system called Lyvve Coach designed by 8K Solutions.

"It caught my eye," Packers quarterback Jordan Love said. "First time we've had it out there since I've been here, so it was cool to see that. Got a little bit of a replay going on at practice so you can just take a look and see kinda what you'd watch on film but just right there at practice, so it was pretty cool."

Coach Matt LaFleur said other teams have used it, and the Packers have to decide whether it's something they will continue in training camp and the regular season. "I think the more immediate the feedback, the more beneficial it could be," he said.-- Rob Demovsky

New England Patriots

Rookie QB Drake Maye took repetitions Monday immediately after Jacoby Brissett, which marked the second week in a row he did so. This was a change from the initial weeks of spring practices when it was Brissett, Bailey Zappe and then Maye.

Coaches have downplayed the depth chart in spring practices, but not only has Maye seemed to leapfrog Zappe at this point, he's also receiving significantly more repetitions than him. Maye had a 20-yard TD to TE La'Michael Pettway on a laser under the goal posts, and another impressive sideline hookup with rookie WR Ja'Lynn Polk after climbing the pocket. -- Mike Reiss

Las Vegas Raiders

While free agent veteran Gardner Minshew got the majority of the first-team reps in his quarterback competition with second-year returnerAidan O'Connellon Tuesday, neither QB distinguished himself particularly well in practice. There were numerous off-target throws and several miscommunications with wideouts, when the two weren't being harassed by the defensive line.

Receiver Jakobi Meyers referred to "growing pains" for the offense. But there was the time Minshew got nickel cornerback Nate Hobbs on third and long.

"Minshew, at the top of the drop, gave me a little pump fake and I broke on it," Hobbs said. "Most quarterbacks can't do that. They don't have that awareness; they don't have the poise. They're just trying to get the ball out on third down. ... He pumped, I broke, they high-lowed me. First down. Then he pointed at me after. That pissed me off. I jumped offsides the next play." -- Paul Gutierrez

Jacksonville Jaguars

One of the most improved players this spring has been second-year receiver Parker Washington. Coach Doug Pederson and offensive coordinator Press Taylor have each said there are two main reasons: his health and confidence. Washington was dealing with the aftermath of an ankle injury at Penn State when he was drafted and missed eight games with the Jaguars because of a knee injury. He was thrust into a prominent role after Christian Kirk's groin injury and caught 16 passes for 132 yards and two touchdowns in nine games.

"Parker's definitely playing more confidently," Taylor said. "I think he's a lot healthier than he was this time last year when we got him, but just things slow down as guys [go into their second year]. ... He knows the expectations of that particular player in that particular concept, and so now you just see the skill set start to come out. That confidence is a big thing and he will continue to grow."-- Michael DiRocco

Atlanta Falcons

Defensive tackle Grady Jarrett spoke for the first time this spring and said his goal is to be ready to practice in time for training camp. Jarrett tore his right ACL in Week 8 last year and has not practiced at all this spring. Head coach Raheem Morris said initially the hope was that Jarrett would be back on the field by minicamp this week, but he was not.

"Obviously, with training camp coming up [in late July], it's always a ramp-up period," Jarrett said. "Mine may look a little different, but my goal is to have most of my reps getting in and not too much special treatment to the side or nothing. So yeah, that's what I'm working for."

Jarrett, who is going into his 10th year in the NFL, has been one of the best interior linemen in the league for years. The Atlanta native is a team leader and a key player on a defense that has a lot of question marks going into 2024. -- Marc Raimondi

New Orleans Saints

Saints running back Alvin Kamara and cornerback Marshon Lattimore were both in attendance at mandatory minicamp after skipping all of OTAs. That has been their normal routine the past few offseasons. Both took some snaps in 11-on-11 drills with the starting lineup.

"Lattimore has never missed a mandatory event, so I kind of expected he would be here," Saints coach Dennis Allen said. "I think I'll reserve judgment until I get a chance to watch the tape."

The only notable absence was right tackle Ryan Ramczyk, who has been excused to rehab a knee issue that Allen said has not been progressing as hoped. -- Katherine Terrell

Los Angeles Rams

Kyren Williams hasn't taken part in the Rams' offseason program because of what head coach Sean McVay called a "foot issue," although the running back has been working on the side during the practice sessions open to the media. Because Los Angeles held a walkthrough Tuesday to end their offseason program, Williams was able to take part.

McVay said that "even in a walkthrough setting, you always feel his presence."

"He's just got such a great energy about himself," McVay said. "He's so engaged. He's got a great focus and concentration, so we'll be glad to be able to have him back in practice settings too."

McVay confirmed Williams is expected to be a full go for training camp. -- Sarah Barshop

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Buccaneers left tackle Tristan Wirfs was in attendance for the first day of minicamp, but he did not take part in any drills or team periods as he and his agent Jeremy Newberry are actively negotiating a contract extension and don't want risk injury. Coach Todd Bowles said, "Yeah, we don't need to see him. He's getting the plays and he's getting the work in. To come into work for three days would probably be useless [in terms] of getting something out of it." Justin Skule lined up at left tackle in his place. -- Jenna Laine

Denver Broncos

After the Broncos' first day of a three-day minicamp, coach Sean Payton said he doesn't have a date in mind for when he will make a decision on which of his three quarterbacks will be the starter: rookie Bo Nix, Jarrett Stidham or Zach Wilson.

"Every day we're rolling with the 1s, 2s and 3s. ... I would say I have an end date, and that's the week before the first game, but I don't have a set date ... most importantly it's the right decision," he said.

Payton has said throughout the offseason program, and in this week's mandatory minicamp, that he has continued to try and split the work with the starters on offense equally among the three. -- Jeff Legwold

Cincinnati Bengals

Tuesday marked a notable step inDax Hill's journey. Last year's starting free safety took first-team reps at outside cornerbacks in 7-on-7 drills and in defense-only drills featuring all 11 starters.

Hill, a first-round pick in 2022, will be competing with DJ Turner, last year's second-round pick, for one of the team's starting spots. In Hill's time with the Bengals, the team has liked his versatility. Those skills and attributes will be put to the test as he seeks to regain a starting role on a secondary that is looking to improve after a lackluster season that allowed too many explosive passing plays. In 2023, Cincinnati was tied for the second-most receptions allowed of 20 yards or more, according to ESPN Stats & Information. -- Ben Baby

Los Angeles Chargers

Since selecting OT Joe Alt fifth overall, the Chargers' starting offensive line has been one of the team's biggest unknowns. On the first day of minicamp Tuesday, coach Jim Harbaugh ended any speculation. Alt, Rashawn Slater, Zion Johnson, Trey Pipkins IIIand Bradley Bozeman have separated themselves as the starting group, Harbaugh said.

He didn't specify positions, but the starting unit in the team's most recent practices open to the media has featured Alt at right tackle, Pipkins at right guard, Bozeman at center, Johnson at left guard and Slater at left tackle.

The left side of the line will remain intact with the starters from last season in Slater and Johnson, but Alt and Pipkins will both be playing new positions. Alt played left tackle at Notre Dame, and Pipkins was the starting right tackle last season. But Harbaugh said he isn't concerned about the change for either.

"It's on track to be a top-tier offensive line in the NFL," Harbaugh said. "... Not having a weak link is critical, and I think we're trending to really have a top-to-bottom outstanding offensive line." -- Kris Rhim

Buffalo Bills

The "injury bug," as coach Sean McDermott described it, has caught the Bills in a significant way. Wide receiver Khalil Shakir left early with what appeared to be a lower body injury but was able to walk off. Linebackers Dorian Williams, Nicholas Morrow, Baylon Spector and Edefuan Ulofoshio, running backs Ray Davis and Ty Johnson, and fullback Reggie Gilliam all missed Tuesday's practice with injuries.

"[Injuries] affects availability, which affects some of the development, building trust, especially if you're a new player," McDermott said. "We're just dealing with it. We've had to cut back on some of the third-group reps over the last week or so."

Linebacker Matt Milano took a step in his recovery from a season-ending right leg injury suffered in Week 5 last year. Milano was a limited participant, doing some individual drills. McDermott said he hopes Milano will be available when the team opens training camp. -- Alaina Getzenberg

Pittsburgh Steelers

Veteran Cordarrelle Patterson signed with the Steelers for his prowess as a kick returner, something that's especially important with the change to kickoff rules. But Patterson is more than a kick returner. The veteran, who has 16 receiving touchdowns and 22 rushing touchdowns in his career, worked out Tuesday with the running back group during individual drills. Patterson, though, said last week he gets involved with all position groups during team meetings.

"He's versatile," running backs coach Eddie Faulkner said. "You can use him in a lot of different ways, and I'm sure we'll dabble in that as we get going. But I'm right. He sits in my room because the running back position kind of encompasses all things, both in the backfield and out in the backfield."

And while Faulkner's group had a newer face in Patterson on Tuesday, they were missing a familiar one as Najee Harris missed the first day with an excused absence. Coach Mike Tomlin said the running back had a prior appointment, but he expects Harris to return for Wednesday's practice. -- Brooke Pryor

Seattle Seahawks

The versatile role that coach Mike Macdonald and his defensive staff have in mind for pass-rusher Dre'Mont Jonesis coming into focus. After missing part of OTAs for the birth of his child, Jones was on the field for Seattle's first practice of minicamp Tuesday, as was every other non-injured Seahawks player besides punter Michael Dickson, who is getting married.

Jones worked with the outside linebackers during positional drills, then slid inside and lined up alongside Leonard Williams during one play in an 11-on-11 period in which Seattle was in nickel.

The Seahawks signed Jones last offseason to a three-year, $51.53 million contract that made him the highest paid free agent addition under John Schneider and Pete Carroll. He had 4.5 sacks during a solid but unspectacular debut season, almost exclusively playing defensive tackle for the first 10 games before moving to D-end after Uchenna Nwosu was injured. It appears the Seahawks will try to take advantage of his versatility on a play-by-play basis more than they did last year. --Brady Henderson

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