Jaguars release veteran Branden Albert off reserve/retired list, sign veteran running back

Jaguars vs. Patriots Recap: Beat writer Mike Kaye breaks down the preseason opener

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The Jaguars released veteran offensive tackle Branden Albert off the reserve/retired list Friday, ending his bizarre, nearly five-month tenure with the team.

Albert informed the team that he was leaving the franchise on July 31. His retirement was announced in the middle of the team's second padded practice. Since Albert was competing with second-round pick Cam Robinson for the starting left tackle job, Josh Wells was inserted into the competition to replace the veteran.

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Last week, Albert approached the team about potentially returning to the NFL in the future, according to the Jaguars. On Monday, the team and Albert mutually agreed to shift the player from the reserve/left team designation to the reserve/retired list.

Albert's release now allows him to become a free agent. He will no longer owe the Jaguars a prorated $3.4 million from the initial signing bonus he received from the Miami Dolphins as a free agent in 2014. 

The Jaguars traded a 2018 seventh-round pick to the Dolphins to acquire Albert's services in March. The Dolphins have said the pick will be returned to the Jaguars due to the conditions of the trade.

Albert participated in just three minicamp workouts and three training camp practices while with the Jaguars. He sat out for the entire voluntary portion of the offseason program.

The Jaguars have yet to name a starter at left tackle, though Robinson is considered the favorite. Albert's absence has shifted the line's projections, as the veteran and Robinson could have started together, no matter who won the left tackle job. With Albert out of the lineup, Patrick Omameh or Tyler Shatley could land a starting guard job.

Albert was set to make roughly $8.9 million this season. If he had stayed on the reserve list, the Jaguars wouldn't have owed him anything.

The release allows both sides to move on from each other without penalty.

More News and Notes

- The Jaguars signed veteran running back Jonathan Grimes Friday. Grimes played for the Jaguars in 2012, but has spent most of his career bouncing on and off the Houston Texans' roster. He also had a short stint with the New York Jets in 2012.

Grimes has appeared in 51 games, producing 619 rushing yards and two rushing touchdowns. He has also caught 53 receptions for 436 receiving yards and a touchdown.

- To make room for Grimes, the Jaguars waived/injured running back Tyler Gaffney, who spent a little over a week with the team. He did not play against the New England Patriots Thursday.

Follow Mike Kaye on Twitter at @Mike_E_Kaye.

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