According to numerous media reports, the New England Patriots filled two major needs Thursday, signing offensive tackle LaAdrian Waddle and linebacker Marquis Flowers.

The Patriots have a major need at left tackle with veteran Nate Solder signing with the New York Giants. By signing Waddle, the Patriots get a proven veteran option at tackle to pair with Marcus Cannon. They could still add another tackle in the draft. Cannon, Cole Croston, Matt Tobin, Antonio Garcia and Andrew Jelks all have experience playing tackle as well.

Waddle, 26, played 12 games for the Patriots last season, including four starts. The five-year veteran can play both left and right tackle but spent most of last season on the right side with Cannon out of the lineup.

Flowers, 26, who was traded to New England ahead of last year’s regular season, signed a one-year, $2.55 million deal. He played in all 16 games for the Patriots a season ago, starting two. He had 32 total tackles and 3.5 sacks. With Flowers signed, he rejoins a group of Dont’a Hightower, Kyle Van Noy, Elandon Roberts, Harvey Langi and Nicholas Grigsby at linebacker.

GIANTS: Sending two-time Pro Bowl defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul to Tampa Bay for two draft picks gives New York much-needed salary-cap space for 2019 and allows the Buccaneers to continue rebuilding a line that had the fewest sacks in the NFL last season.

With the unexpected trade announced Thursday, the Giants took another step in their rebuilding and the Bucs upgraded their defense in a bid to end a decade-long playoff drought. The Giants got Tampa Bay’s third-round pick (69th overall) in the draft in late April. The teams also swapped fourth-round picks, with the Bucs moving up to the 102nd pick and the Giants selecting 108th.


While the Pierre-Paul trade only clears up a couple of million dollars in cap space this year, the benefit for the Giants – who were 3-13 last season – will be in 2019 when they will shed roughly $18 million in cap space. That will be important with safety Landon Collins and receiver Odell Beckham Jr. both possibly looking for new contracts.

JOHNNY MANZIEL, a former first-round pick of the Cleveland Browns attempting a comeback from substance-related setbacks, attracted evaluators from up to 10 NFL teams Thursday at the University of San Diego.

“It was fun,” Manziel told the Union-Tribune after throwing 37 passes. “I’m here for these (USD) guys. They seem like great dudes.”

Manziel, who developed a relationship with USD personnel through his San Diego-based quarterbacks coach, George Whitfield Jr., said it was his most extensive performance with NFL staff present since his final game with the Browns, at Kansas City’s Arrowhead Stadium on Dec. 27, 2015. Manziel, 25, said he has been working out in Los Angeles and is at his strongest and fittest, perhaps ever.

An evaluator with the New England Patriots helped to conduct the workout.

Following the workout, he said he has an offer to play in Canada but would welcome the chance to return to the NFL and expects to show progress next week in a spring-league session in Texas.


“It’s a process right now,” he said. “All I can really continue to do is focus on myself, and focus on what I’ve been doing to try to be the best person that I can.”

SEAHAWKS: Running back Mike Davis signed with Seattle, reportedly a one-year contract. Davis was originally a restricted free agent but Seattle did not tender him, making Davis an unrestricted free agent. The 25-year-old chose a return to Seattle over looking for options elsewhere.

RAIDERS: Oakland re-signed backup quarterback E.J. Manuel and signed free-agent tackle Breno Giacomini.

Free-agent safety Eric Reid – among the NFL’s most visible protesters since former San Francisco teammate Colin Kaepernick decided not to stand for the national anthem in 2016 – said he’s not planning to protest during the national anthem this upcoming season.

BILLS: Prosecutors will not bring criminal charges against Buffalo receiver Zay Jones after a naked, bloody argument with his brother in Los Angeles earlier this week.

The 22-year-old Jones was arrested after officers were called to a disturbance in downtown Los Angeles, said police spokesman Luis Garcia. Jones was found “breaking glass doors and windows,” and arrested on suspicion of felony vandalism, Garcia said.

DOLPHINS: Frank Gore, the NFL’s active rushing leader, agreed to terms with Miami, according to reports. Gore, 34, grew up in south Florida and played for the Miami Hurricanes.

FALCONS: Atlanta re-signed defensive end Derrick Shelby to a one-year contract and added depth at tight end by agreeing to a one-year deal with seven-year veteran Logan Paulsen.

COWBOYS: Free-agent wide receiver Deonte Thompson signed a one-year contract. The team also signed linebacker Joe Thomas to a two-year deal.

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