Here are some positive and negative stats to know for a few of the biggest-name NFL players that were recently cut.
Riley Reiff, OT, Vikings (age 32.8 on September 1)
Reiff is a durable, experienced starter with 127 career starts under his belt while starting 93.0% of possible games over the past eight seasons. Manning the left tackle spot, he had a decent season in pass protection for Minnesota in 2020. His 74.9 pass blocking grade at Pro Football Focus ranked 31st out of 63 qualified tackles (52nd percentile).
Reiff’s 60.8 run blocking grade in 2020 ranked 45th out of 63 qualifiers (29th percentile). He will also be turning 33 years old in December.
Kenny Vaccaro, S, Titans (age 30.5 on September 1)
Vaccaro has plenty of experience under his belt with 109 career starts over eight seasons.
Cutting Vaccaro to save $3.9 million in cap space was easily warranted for Tennessee, as the veteran was a bad player in 2020. With 17 missed tackles in 13 games, he led safeties in missed tackles per game (1.31). In coverage, he gave up four touchdowns, no interceptions, and a career-high 128.5 passer rating.
Malcolm Butler, CB, Titans (age 31.5 on September 1)
The Butler cut clears up an enormous $10.2 million for the Titans, but it’s still a bit of a surprising move considering that he played well in 2020. His 71.6 overall grade at PFF ranked 19th out of the 86 cornerbacks to play at least 500 snaps (79th percentile). He tied for seventh among cornerbacks with 14 passes defended and tackled excellently as he whiffed on just 8.4% of his tackle attempts, 16th-lowest among qualifiers (82nd percentile).
Butler is a good playmaker when the ball comes his way, but he gives up a lot of throws in his direction. He was targeted 116 times in 2020, 13 more than any other player. His total of 892 yards allowed was the second-most, although his average of 7.7 yards per target allowed was actually below the positional average of 8.0.
Kyle Van Noy, LB/EDGE, Dolphins (age 30.4 on September 1)
Van Noy had a great season as an edge rusher for the Patriots in 2019, tying for 19th at the position in pressures (58) and 12th in run stops (20).
Van Noy’s 2020 season in Miami wasn’t as successful, but he maintained his pass rushing prowess. He created pressure on 12.7% of his pass rush reps in 2020, just a tad off of his 12.9% rate in 2019.
Miami took Van Noy out of his full-time edge role and tried to make him a Swiss Army knife outside linebacker in 2020, and that didn’t work out. Van Noy was scorched in coverage as he allowed 20-of-22 passing for 233 yards (10.6 per target). He also ranked 58th out of 62 qualified linebackers in PFF’s tackling grade (44.4).