NFL free agency is in full swing.
The league’s new year began Wednesday afternoon, with several of the deals and trades from the previous 48 hours becoming official. But the day’s action wasn’t merely one of formalities. Several more notable signings materialized, with top pass rushers Von Miller (Buffalo Bills) and Chandler Jones (Las Vegas Raiders) joining new teams.
Check back with USA TODAY Sports often throughout Thursday and the entire week for all the latest news and buzz on the free-agent market and what deals could be materializing:
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Bills cut WR Cole Beasley
The one move that everyone expected the Buffalo Bills to make as the free agency signing period arrived this week finally went down Thursday afternoon when it was announced that wide receiver Cole Beasley has been released.
With the Bills desperate for every dollar of salary cap space, especially now in light of the massive deal they just gave star edge rusher Von Miller Wednesday night, cutting Beasley opens up $6.1 million of space.
The team also has re-worked the contract of Matt Milano which freed another $5.1 million.
Beasley came to the Bills as a free agent from the Cowboys in 2019 and there is no denying he had a big impact on the development of quarterback Josh Allen, serving as an ultra-reliable target on underneath routes.
Beasley caught 82 passes in each of the last two seasons and for this three-year tenure he had 231 catches for 2,438 yards and 11 touchdowns.
– Sal Maiorana, Democrat & Chronicle
Steelers part with linebacker after one year
One linebacker’s arrival meant another’s dismissal for the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Linebacker Joe Schobert was released by the Steelers on Thursday, the team announced.
Schobert, 28, recorded 112 tackles last season for Pittsburgh, his lone season with the franchise. The Steelers acquired him last August in a deal with the Jacksonville Jaguars, sending a sixth-round pick back in the deal.
But on Wednesday, the Steelers added another former Jaguars linebacker in Myles Jack.
– Michael Middlehurst-Schwartz
Packers get a new punter
GREEN BAY, Wis. – A day after dropping punter Corey Bojorquez, the Green Bay Packers have replaced him by signing former Chicago Bears punter Pat O’Donnell.
According to NFL Network, the Packers are turning to O’Donnell, who has been the Bears‘ punter for the last eight seasons.
O’Donnell, 31, averaged 46.2 yards per punt in 2021. He punted 62 times for 2,865 yards with a long of 72 yards.
O’Donnell was a sixth-round draft pick by the Bears in 2014 out of the University of Miami.
The Packers traded a sixth-round pick to the Los Angeles Rams before the start of last season, receiving Bojorquez and a seventh-round pick in return. Bojorquez, who almost won a position battle in L.A. against four-time All-Pro Justin Hekker, replaced former fifth-round pick JK Scott.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: NFL free agency 2022: News, rumors on all of Thursday’s deals