NFL roundup: Steelers cut Larry Foote, Bears give Adam Podlesh the boot

Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE

Roster cuts are still taking place around the league in advance of the start of free agency. Several moves around the league are making headlines on Wednesday.

The Steelers have announced the release of three veteran players on Wednesday. Pittsburgh has dropped linebacker Larry Foote, cornerback Curtis Brown and offensive tackle Levi Brown from the roster. Foote was in his second stint with the Steelers and played 11 total seasons in Pittsburgh. Levi Brown was acquired by trade from the Cardinals midway through last season and failed to appear in a game for the Steelers. Curtis Brown was a third-round pick out of Texas in 2011 by the Steelers.

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Chopping the contract of Levi Brown, who was still on a massive contract he signed with the Arizona Cardinals, saves the team $6.3 million, while Foote was to make $1.5 million in the 2014 season but only managed to play in one game this past season. Curtis Brown was entering the final year of his rookie deal.

The move simply opens roster spots and saves money for Pittsburgh, writes Behind the Steel Curtain.

Neither Levi Brown nor Larry Foote completed a full game in uniform for the Steelers. This move continues a series of necessary decisions by Kevin Colbert to make space for the Steelers with the salary cap.

Here are some more headlines you may have missed on Wednesday:

Bears release punter Adam Podlesh

The Bears have announced the release of punter Adam Podlesh. The former Jaguar was with Chicago for three seasons. Podlesh signed a five-year deal in 2011 after playing four seasons with the Jaguars. He owns a career average of 42.4 yards per attempt and 38.7 net yards on punts, but he had a career-low 40.6 yards per attempt last season.

Windy City Gridiron writes that it was not a surprise cut.

The move will save the Bears $1.025 million, as Podlesh was set to have a cap hit of $1.825 million this season. This move was evident to many in the 2013 season as Podlesh continued to struggle late.

Rams cut cornerback Cortland Finnegan

The Rams have released cornerback Cortland Finnegan from his contract, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. The veteran was coming off a rough season in which he was benched. The move gives the Rams $4 million in cap space. Finnegan signed a five-year, $50 million deal in 2012.

Turf Show Times notes that St. Louis may be open to bringing Finnegan back on a smaller contract, though the team is in decent hands with starting corners Janoris Jenkins and Trumaine Johnson.

There's been some talk that they could pursue Alterraun Verner, another one of Fisher's former Titans, in free agency. That would come at a hefty cost to the team, as Verner's seen as the top CB on the market this year ...

The Rams may not need to sign a big ticket free agent, but they will need to add some depth at the position, in either free agency or the draft. It gets thin behind the two starters.

Buccaneers sign Bobby Rainey to extension

The Buccaneers are sorting out their offensive backfield under their new regime. Tampa Bay has signed running back Bobby Rainey to a two-year extension, according to ESPN's Adam Caplan. Rainey was claimed off of waivers by the Buccaneers after he was let go by the Browns in the middle of last season. Rainey took over for an injured Doug Martin and finished with 532 rushing yards and six total touchdowns in nine games with the Buccaneers.

D'Qwell Jackson down to 4

D'Qwell Jackson has made good use of his time since being released by the Cleveland Browns last week. The free agent linebacker will choose between the Miami Dolphins, Denver Broncos, Tennessee Titans and Indianapolis Coltsaccording to the Miami Herald's Barry Jackson. Jackson could have his decision by the end of the week, according to Ian Rapoport.

The most intriguing landing spot is Miami, where the pursuit of Jackson smells of dissatisfaction with Philip Wheeleraccording to The Phinsider.

... the fact that the new Dolphins front office is telling a prospective free agent linebacker that a starting job is his for the taking is a clear sign that the team is quite serious in pushing Wheeler in 2014 to perform better by providing serious competition, regardless of his fully guaranteed salary. It also means that the new regime doesn't consider Dion Jordan a viable option at linebacker yet ...

Jameel McClain talks with Bills, Giants

Former Baltimore Ravens linebacker Jameel McClain visited the Buffalo Bills on Wednesday and will visit the New York Giants next, according to Bills reporter Joe Buscaglia. McClain, a Syracuse product, has spent his six NFL seasons in Baltimore. Last season, McClain recorded 52 tackles and forced one fumble in 10 games played.

From Bills blog Buffalo Rumblings:

The news has an expected implication for the Bills: they are looking for a veteran middle linebacker to man the inside spot in the Jim Schwartz 4-3 defense. That would allow second-year linebacker Kiko Alonso to move over to the weak side, where GM Doug Whaley told reporters that he believes Alonso would excel.

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