Wednesday February 17th, 2016

By Tom Downey, Chat Sports

The NFL off-season is in full swing, with Tuesday marking the first day teams could apply the franchise tag to players.

Check out the latest NFL news and rumors below. 

• New England Patriots linebacker Jerod Mayo announced his retirement Tuesday on Instagram. Mayo, 29, battled injuries in recent years. 

• ESPN’s Adam Caplan reports the Patriots will re-hire offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia, who will return for his third stint with the team. 

• The Chicago Bears released offensive tackle Jermon Bushrod on Tuesday, the team announced. Bushrod lost his starting job because of an injury last year, and cutting him saves the team $3.3 million. 

• Chat Sports: The five best fan bases in the NFL

• The Detroit Lions released running back Joique Bell on Tuesday, the team announced. Bell had an injury-filled season in 2015, and cutting him saves the Lions $2.5 million. 

• Lions cornerback Rashean Mathis announced Tuesday that he will retire after a 13-year NFL career. 

• Carolina Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly will undergo shoulder surgery, reports The Charlotte Observer. Kuechly is expected to return in time for training camp. 

• The Washington Redskins and quarterback Kirk Cousins broke off contract talks, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

• The 2016 NFL Hall of Fame game will feature the Indianapolis Colts and Green Bay Packers, reports

Chat Sports: More NFL news and rumors on the Chat Sports app

• Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison will play at least one more year. Harrison’s agent told ESPN that he will play the final season remaining on his contract.

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