News: Shields has agreed to re-sign with the Packers, keeping one of the top free-agent cornerbacks this offseason off the market. Shields' agent, Drew Rosenhaus, confirmed the four-year NFL veteran agreed to a four-year, $39 million deal with a $12.5 million signing bonus.
Impact: Undrafted out of Miami in 2010, Shields has emerged to combine with Tramon Williams to provide a solid corner tandem in Green Bay. He had 61 tackles with four interceptions and 16 passes defended last season. Pro Football Talk first reported the deal. This could be a busy offseason for the Packers, who are looking to add playmakers to a defense that slipped in the second half.
News: Mendenhall is retiring from football, ESPN's Adam Schefter reports.
Impact: Slated to become an unrestricted free agent on Tuesday, Mendenhall will instead call it quits. He hasn't looked particularly explosive the last few seasons and likely would have been forced to settle for a one-year deal at something close to the veteran's minimum. With the 26-year-old Mendenhall out of the picture, Andre Ellington's path to an increased role becomes even clearer. The Cardinals will obviously want a larger back to complement the speedy Ellington, and Stepfan Taylor should get a chance to earn that role, despite failing to make any noise as a fifth-round rookie in 2013.
News: A person familiar with the situation says Sproles has been informed that the Saints will release him if they are unable to trade him before free agency begins.
Impact: The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the club's decision, first reported by NFL.com, has not been made public. New Orleans' decision to part with Sproles is the latest in a series of cost-cutting moves, including Friday's release of receiver Lance Moore.
News: The agent for defensive end Jared Allen says his client is looking forward to free agency, but he is not interested in a role as a situational pass rusher.
Impact: Ken Harris tells The Associated Press that Allen has put together a list of priorities as the negotiating period is set to open Saturday. They include ability to contend for a championship in the next three to four years, a coaching staff that he meshes well with, and "a fair" contract. Harris declined to put a specific dollar figure on what Allen wants to make. Allen has spent the last six years with the Minnesota Vikings. He had 11 1/2 sacks last season and leads all defensive ends in sacks since he entered the league in 2004. Allen made $17 million in 2013.
News: Bryant says he's been medically cleared to play after a health scare.
Impact: Bryant underwent an operation in December to correct an irregular heartbeat. His season ended with four games left because of a rapid heartbeat, a condition he has known about for several years and had been treated for in the past. On Friday, Bryant posted a message on his Twitter account, saying "the doctor gave me full clearance and I am currently preparing for a very successful 2014 season!"
News: The New York Jets and tight end Jeff Cumberland have agreed to terms on a new contract. The Jets announced the move Saturday, but did not release terms. It's believed to be for three years, according to published reports.
Impact: Cumberland, who was scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent Tuesday, led the Jets last season with a career-high four touchdown receptions. He also had a career-best 398 yards receiving on 26 catches in his fourth NFL season. Cumberland, a former wide receiver at Illinois, signed with the Jets as an undrafted free agent in 2010. He has developed into a key part of New York's offense while starting 24 games the past two seasons. Cumberland has 58 career catches for 795 yards and seven touchdowns.
News: The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have released veteran guard Davin Joseph, a mainstay on their offensive line over the past eight seasons.
Impact: The 30-year-old Joseph was a first-round draft pick out of Oklahoma in 2006, the 23rd overall selection. He started 99 of 100 games he appeared in with the Bucs, who are coming off a 4-12 finish in 2013. New general manager Jason Licht said in a statement it was not an easy decision to part with Joseph, a two-time Pro Bowl selection. The GM added every move the Bucs make leading up to the start of the free agency signing period will be made with "the intention of improving our roster and building towards becoming a championship team." Joseph was due to earn $6 million next season.
News: Stuckey and the San Diego Chargers have agreed to a new contract that keeps the safety and special teams standout from hitting the free-agent market. Stuckey tweeted that it was a four-year deal. The Chargers said only that it was a multiyear deal.
Impact: Stuckey was special teams captain last season. He's the second potential unrestricted free agent to remain with the Chargers. Inside linebacker Donald Butler agreed on Feb. 28 to a deal that could be worth more than $51 million over seven years, with the final four years tied to a club option. In his tweet, Stuckey says, "The future is bright."
News: The Jacksonville Jaguars and free agent defensive tackle Red Bryant have reached agreement on a four-year contract. The deal Saturday will reunite Bryant with his former Seattle coordinator, Jaguars coach Gus Bradley.
Impact: Jacksonville is looking to upgrade its talent along both lines of scrimmage, and getting the run-stuffing Bryant gives the team a strong start to free agency. Jacksonville already re-signed quarterback Chad Henne to a two-year, $8 million deal. Bryant turns 30 next month. He spent six years in Seattle, making 121 tackles. He began his career as a defensive tackle but moved to end in 2010. He missed one game over the past three seasons, recording 87 tackles, 2 1/2 sacks and two interceptions in that time.