Nick Vannett

New Orleans Saints
Tight End #81
New Orleans Saints
Tight End #81

Nick Vannett News

Logs nine games in 2021

Vannett caught nine of 15 targets for 133 yards and one touchdown over seven games in 2021.

Analysis: Vannett's preseason knee injury wound up costing him over half of the season. While he caught a few passes in two of the four games Adam Trautman missed down the stretch, the veteran otherwise didn't do much from a receiving standpoint while rotating in behind Trautman. Both players will be back to head the Saints depth chart at tight end in 2022 and Juwan Johnson, who is an exclusive-rights free agent, should be there to join them.

Jan 17, 2022 3:09 PM EST

Activated off reserve/COVID-19 list

Vannett was activated off of the reserve/COVID-19 list Thursday, Nick Underhill of NewOrleans.Football reports.

Analysis: The tight end was placed on the COVID list Jan. 1, forcing him to miss the Saints' Week 17 win over the Panthers. Vannett will now return ahead of a must-win Week 18 matchup with the Falcons, though his role will likely be limited as a result of him playing a secondary role behind Adam Trautman.

Jan 6, 2022 3:08 PM EST

Lands on COVID list

Vannett was placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list Saturday, Aaron Wilson of Sportstalk 790 Houston reports.

Analysis: The return of Juwan Johnson (COVID-19) and Adam Trautman (COVID-19) has relegated Vannett to essentially a bit piece in the Saints offense, but Saturday's designation will test the depth of the team's tight end corps once more. Expect the aforementioned duo to shoulder the majority of the offensive snaps as the Saints did not elevate another one from the practice squad.

Jan 1, 2022 3:02 PM EST

No injury designation

Vannett (ankle) doesn't have an injury designation for Sunday's game against the Panthers, Katherine Terrell of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: Vannett was limited in practice all week due to an ankle injury, but he'll be able to suit up in Week 17. Since Adam Trautman (illness) was activated from the reserve/COVID-19 list Wednesday, Vannett should revert to a backup role against Carolina.

Dec 31, 2021 1:39 PM EST

Limited Thursday

Vannett (ankle) was a limited participant at Thursday's practice session.

Analysis: Vannett served as the Saints' top tight end in Monday's loss to the Dolphins but was targeted just once. He apparently sustained an ankle injury that has made him a limited participant at practice Wednesday and Thursday. If he hopes to avoid the Week 17 injury report, he'll likely need to practice fully Friday.

Dec 30, 2021 2:47 PM EST

Likely starter at tight end

Vannett is expected to serve as the Saints' top option at tight end Monday against the Dolphins, Katherine Terrell of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: New Orleans didn't activate fellow tight ends Adam Trautman (illness) and Juwan Johnson (illness) from the reserve/COVID-19 list prior to the deadline for Week 16 roster moves, leaving Vannett and practice-squad call-up Ethan Wolf as the Saints' lone options at tight end. Considering Wolf has just one NFL appearance to his name since turning pro in 2018, Vannett will likely dominate the snaps at the position. He had already been on the field for at least half of the Saints' offensive plays in each of the last three weeks, operating primarily as a blocker. Over that stretch, Vannett hauled in six of 11 targets for 92 yards and no touchdowns.

Dec 27, 2021 2:48 PM EST

Leasing receiver in run-heavy win

Vannett caught three of six targets for 44 yards in Sunday's 30-9 win over the Jets.

Analysis: Vannett led the Saints in targets and receiving yards, but New Orleans did the vast majority of its damage on the ground, totaling over 200 rushing yards and three rushing touchdowns. A more pass-heavy game plan will likely be required in Week 15 against the Buccaneers, and Vannett should continue to see plenty of looks from quarterback Taysom Hill given the Saints' dearth of enticing alternatives in the passing game.

Dec 12, 2021 2:38 PM EST

Finds end zone

Vannett caught his only target for 11 yards and a touchdown during Thursday's 31-6 loss to Buffalo.

Analysis: Vannett, who made his season debut last week against the Eagles, split time with Garrett Griffin and Juwan Johnson but again was minimally involved in the passing game. While he at least found the end zone, you probably can' t count on many scores from someone who's topped one touchdown once in five previous seasons. Next up for Vannett and the Saints is a Week 13 home matchup against the Cowboys.

Nov 25, 2021 9:13 PM EST

Healthy scratch Sunday

Vannett is inactive for Sunday's game against the Titans, Katherine Terrell of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: Vannett picked up a knee injury in preseason and while he's healthy, he will have to wait at least one more week to make his season debut. He appeared in 15 games for the Broncos last season.

Nov 14, 2021 9:42 AM EST

Activated from IR

Vannett was activated off of injured reserve Thursday.

Analysis: The tight end injured his knee in the preseason finale and is yet to make his 2021 debut. Vannett's first opportunity will come Sunday against the Titans, though he will likely operate as a depth option behind Adam Trautman and Garrett Griffin.

Nov 11, 2021 2:57 PM EST

Designated to return

Vannett (knee) was designated to return from injured reserve Thursday, John DeShazier of the Saints' official site reports.

Analysis: Vannett has been on injured reserve since Sept. 7, but he'll be able to rejoin the Saints for practice this week. The tight end will have to be activated within the next 21 days if he hopes to return this year.

Oct 21, 2021 1:19 PM EST

Shifts to injured reserve

The Saints placed Vannett (knee) on injured reserve Monday, Amie Just of reports.

Analysis: Vannett injured his knee during the Saints' preseason finale against the Jaguars. He will be forced to miss at least the first three weeks of the regular season after being placed on IR. His absence could mean more playing time for Adam Trautman and Juwan Johnson.

Sep 7, 2021 9:18 AM EST

Out 2-4 weeks

Vannett (knee) is expected to miss two-to-four weeks, Jeremy Fowler of reports.

Analysis: The blocking-oriented TE injured his knee during Monday's preseason game against the Jaguars, while fellow tight end Adam Trautman hurt his ankle/foot. The position already looked like a potential weakness for the Saints after they parted ways with Jared Cook and Josh Hill in the offseason, and a trade would make sense now that the top two guys on the depth chart are banged up. Vannett is an extreme long shot for fantasy value this year, but his presence/absence could have some impact on playing time for the team's more receiving -oriented TEs, i.e., Trautman and Juwan Johnson.

Aug 25, 2021 8:27 AM EST

Headed for MRI

Vannett will have an MRI after injuring his knee during Monday's preseason game against Jacksonville, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.

Analysis: Fellow Saints tight end Adam Trautman suffered a foot/ankle injury in the contest, and Garrett Griffin (undisclosed) didn't play at all. Trautman is the favorite to lead the group in targets if his injury isn't too serious, while Vannett could have a blocking-heavy role similar to the one Josh Hill filled in recent years. All the injuries could also create an opening for Juwan Johnson, a converted wide receiver who reportedly has looked good at training camp.

Aug 24, 2021 8:12 AM EST

Enjoying new offensive system

Vannett expects to have chances to make plays in the passing game with New Orleans. "I'm just excited for being in this system, especially as a tight end." Vannett said during minicamp. "I think they do a great job of really giving us a legit shot of making plays in this system."

Analysis: Spending time with Seattle, Pittsburgh and Denver since being drafted out of Ohio State in 2016, Vannett never topped 20 receptions in college and he's only done it once through five years in the pros. While New Orleans' Sean Payton represents the first offensive-minded coach that Vannett will play under in the NFL, the potency of the Saints offense going forward largely hinges on the ability of Jamies Winston or Taysom Hill to replace future Hall-of-Fame quarterback Drew Brees. While Vannett should see plenty of playing time this year after the Saints decided against further bolstering the tight end through the draft, the 28-year-old seems significantly less likely to emerge as a fantasy asset compared to Adam Trautman, who racked up 916 yards and 14 touchdowns during his final season at Dayton in 2019.

Jul 12, 2021 9:05 AM EST

Signs with Saints

Vannett signed a three-year contract with the Saints on Wednesday, Mike Garafolo of NFL Network reports.

Analysis: The Saints let Jared Cook and Josh Hilll go this offseason, so Vannett is part of their plans to replace them. Vannett suited up in 15 games with the Broncos last season in a secondary role behind Noah Fant, recording 14 receptions for 95 yards and a touchdown. The 28-year-old will need to compete with 2020 third-round pick Adam Trautman for the No. 1 tight end in 2021, though both players should have roles on offense.

Mar 24, 2021 5:35 PM EST

Let go by Broncos

Vannett has been released by the Broncos, Mike Klis of 9News Denver reports.

Analysis: Vannett was to slated to earn $2.678 million this coming season, so the move frees up some extra cap room for the Broncos. The 28-year-old hauled in 14 of his 21 targets for 95 yards and a TD in 15 games last year, while earning most of his keep with his blocking. He'll look to catch on elsewhere as a depth tight end.

Mar 23, 2021 9:22 AM EST

Faces uncertainty heading into 2021

Vannett brought in 14 passes off of 21 targets for 95 yards and a score during the 2020 campaign.

Analysis: Vannett stepped up a bit following the season-ending knee injury to Albert Okwuegbunam. The veteran Buckeye had three of his four multi-catch games during the final six contets of the season, including a four-reception outing in Week 13 against Carolina. He did well in providing Drew Lock with a safety blanket underneath. The question heading into 2021 is whether that's worth $3.6 million against the cap when cutting him will cost just $875,000. Vannett is a strong blocker and a solid veteran presence, but he might be squeezed out with returning youngsters Noah Fant, Andrew Beck, and Okwuegbunam.

Jan 14, 2021 7:23 PM EST

Falls in pecking order

Vannett didn't catch his lone target in Sunday's 48-19 loss to the Bills.

Analysis: Vannett logged 16 snaps on offense, finishing behind Noah Fant (44) and Troy Fumagalli (19). Fant was the only position mate to catch a pass, however, as he finished with an 8-68-1 line on 11 targets. Vannett and Fumagalli will continue to compete for the No. 2 role in Denver's offense, and it could simply shape up as a timeshare moving forward.

Dec 22, 2020 1:12 PM EST

Steps in following Fant exit

Vannett reeled in all four of his targets for 20 yards and a touchdown during Sunday's 32-27 win against Carolina.

Analysis: Vannett and Troy Fumagalli saw increased passing-game opportunities during Week 14, with starting tight end Noah Fant being forced to an early exit after falling ill. Vannett's two-yard receiving TD in the second quarter marked the 27-year-old's first since he scored three times for Seattle in 2018. With Albert Okwuegbunam (knee-ACL) remaining on injured reserve, Vannett could maintain a minor role as a pass catcher Week 15 against the Bills. Absences from Fant and Jake Butt (hamstring) -- who was designated to return from IR on Dec. 10 -- would clear Vannett's path towards a more integral role, however.

Dec 13, 2020 4:37 PM EST

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