Friday, September 25, 2015, 7:02pm
DE Kenny Anunike (knee)
S Omar Bolden (foot)
RB C.J. Anderson (ankle, toe), DE Malik Jackson (head), S Darian Stewart (groin)
S David Bruton (hip), QB Peyton Manning (back), LB Brandon Marshall (foot), LB Lerentee McCray (groin), WR Demaryius Thomas (hand)
Kansas City Chiefs
S Husain Abdullah (quadricep), LB D.J. Alexander (hamstring), G Jeff Allen (knee), WR Jason Avant (hip), T Eric Fisher (ankle), LB Tamba Hali (neck), TE Demetrius Harris (foot), TE Travis Kelce (hip), WR Jeremy Maclin (back), LB Joshua Mauga (achilles), DT Dontari Poe (back), WR De'Anthony Thomas (calf), RB Charcandrick West (achilles), WR Albert Wilson (shoulder)
Friday, September 11, 2015, 6:21pm
Chiefs WR Chris Conley (knee, probable) took full practice reps all week and is probable for Week 1. Conley is likely to split time with Albert Wilson as the two compete for snaps opposite Jeremy Maclin.
Friday, September 11, 2015, 6:21pm
Chiefs WR Albert Wilson (shoulder, probable) took full practice reps all week and is probable for Week 1. He’s competing with Chris Conley for snaps opposite Jeremy Maclin.
Rookie wide receiver Chris Conley played in his first NFL preseason game last weekend and will try to take the next step by making his first catch for the Kansas City Chiefs in Friday night’s game against the Tennessee Titans at Arrowhead Stadium.
He should get enough chances. Conley led Chiefs wide receivers in snaps last week with 33, and offensive coordinator Doug Pederson promised he would get even more work this time.
“He was kind of getting his legs back last week,’’ Pederson said of Conley, who missed the early part of training camp with a sore knee and didn’t play in the Chiefs’ preseason opener two weeks ago. “We wanted to get him back out there and get a couple of snaps. His play will increase this week. He’s a guy that’s in the mix. We’ve got to have a lot of reps on tape to evaluate him properly and see where he fits into out scheme.’’
Dispatches have been coming out of Chiefs camp in all forms of media, like Bigfoot sightings from the wilderness: I saw the Chiefs throwing the deep ball today. And lest anyone doubt them, HC Andy Reid took the opportunity to punctuate this expected staple of the offense, dialing up Alex Smith to Jeremy Maclin right out of the preseason gate. Much to the liking of his quarterback and wide receiver tandem.
"(Reid) came to us and said, 'This is what we're going to do,'" Smith said.
Spend a few days watching the Chiefs and you will see some evidence that Smith and Maclin have an exciting connection. A bond that is typically tough to come by for wide receivers reeled in via free agency, then tossed into a soup of new offensive terminology and concepts.
"It may not be bombs over Baghdad every play," Maclin said of the Chiefs' offense. "But is that something we can do? Do we want to do more of it? Yes, we do."
Maclin was the #9 wide receiver in both standard and PPR formats last season, though he faded down the stretch. Now he’ll have Smith as his quarterback and should dominate the targets along with up-and-coming TE Travis Kelce. Reid is very familiar with Maclin, so we would expect his transition to be a smooth one, though this is a system downgrade. Maclin averaged 4.6 catches for 61 yards and 0.50 TD (solid WR2-type numbers) from 2010-2012, while playing for Reid. One concern: Chiefs’ WR1 Dwayne Bowe only averaged 6.3 T/G in 2014, while Maclin averaged 9.0 T/G for the Eagles. Maclin is a much better player, so the Chiefs should target him more than they did Bowe, but it’s something to weigh when evaluating his fantasy value.
Monday, August 10, 2015, 1:39pm
Head coach Andy Reid says Maclin has a neck strain and had an X-ray taken.
That decision was a show of faith in their other starter, Albert Wilson. The Chiefs got a peek at Wilson’s ability over the last four games of last season when he forced his way into their lineup after joining them last year as an undrafted rookie.
They were encouraged by what they saw. Wilson caught 16 passes last year, 12 in those last four games.
More importantly, Wilson averaged a team-leading 16.3 yards per catch, an impressive statistic on a team that otherwise struggled to get long pass plays.
That end-of-season playing time helped the Chiefs believe Wilson belonged. But it also helped Wilson believe that too.
“It makes me more comfortable being on the field,” he said. “It makes me attack more. Me being out there and having some playing time last year, I know what to expect. I’m able to play faster.”
The Chiefs had a fifth-round grade on Wilson last year. The reason he went undrafted is that he’s far below optimum size for a wide receiver at 5-foot-9. Shorter receivers can be difficult for quarterbacks to find. They tend to get lost in a clutter of bigger bodies, something Wilson will have to overcome, the story concluded. Wilson is just 97th on our list, but the story said he will be a starter. Chief WRs didn't record a TD last season with all of those going to TEs and RBs, but the hope is that changes this year. We do have Chris Conley ranked higher than Wilson, coming in at 76th.
Sunday, August 2, 2015, 2:42pm
At least three times Smith threw one way while an open Maclin cut another, the result being an incomplete pass each time. Offensive coordinator Doug Pederson said it was far too early to worry.
“It’s the second day,’’ he said. “It takes a couple of days. It goes down and builds back up. That’s kind of what happens during training camp. No concern there. We’re encouraged by what’s going on and we’ve got a lot of great days ahead of us.’’
It is still early but it's perhaps something to monitor when you factor in that Smith didn't throw a TD to a WR a year ago.
With Jeremy Maclin now in Kansas City, many expected the Eagles to move Jordan Matthews to the outside, and line Josh Huff up in the slot. That is not, however, what the plan is. Huff has been lining up with the first team offense on the outside in Maclin's place, with Matthews remaining in the slot.
Huff could see some time inside, but the plan is for Huff to run many of the same routes Maclin did -- including going deep. Huff is the quickest receiver on the team, and the Eagles will be giving him a chance to stretch the field, much like DeSean Jackson did two seasons ago.
Ask Riley Cooper how much the Eagles like their receivers to be able to block, and he will respond by pointing out he played 980 snaps last season, second most on the team. That is a good sign for Huff, who is perhaps the second-best run-blocking receiver on the Eagles, behind only Cooper. Huff should be able to stay on the field, and keep rookie Nelson Agholor off of it, by being a strong run blocker.
When the team drafted Agholor, it was assumed that he would start. That could still end up being the case, and Agholor has the skills to be a star in the NFL. It will be Huff, however, that gets the first crack at the starting job, with Agholor on the bench.
Agholor could end up taking one of the starting spots, from Huff or Cooper, but he will have to do it in training camp, and won't be handed the job.
The prevailing assumption is that Agholor will start alongside Matthews, who could play outside or in the slot. If Matthews is in the slot, then there's an opening for Huff or Cooper on the other side. Then there's the matter of Zach Ertz, who is rumored to be in line for more snaps as he pushes Brent Celek for the starting job. Ertz could also play more in two-TE sets, but that will send two of the aforementioned receivers to the bench. Training camp will be key for all the Eagles' receivers -- the only player seemingly assured of a big role is Matthews.
Sunday, July 26, 2015, 4:32pm
MManamon: I’m going with Brian Hartline. Dwayne Bowe, to me, has never consistently lived up to the moniker of the No. 1 receiver. He’s had good seasons, but not great ones year after year. He did not have a single touchdown last season and he was targeted 93 times, just less than six per game, according to ESPN Stats & Information.
After catching 72 and 81 passes in 2010 and ’11, Bowe has caught 59, 57 and 60 the last three seasons. Whether it’s a function of the Kansas City offense or whether it’s a function of Bowe being in a decline will play out. Andy Reid is a pretty good offensive coach and he preferred Jeremy Maclin.
Hartline’s receptions in Miami dropped in 2014 as well, from 74 and 76 in 2012 and ’13 to 47 in ’14. But unlike Bowe, Hartline’s targets dropped precipitously.
In 2013 and 2012, he was targeted 130 and 125 times. Last season he was thrown to 62 times.
McManamon has some questions about where Bowe is at this stage of his career, while Hartline is just a year removed from a career season. The author added that Hartline's hard-nosed, consistent play will certainly help the Browns in terms of what they can expect. Our rankings disagree with this, though, and we project Bowe to have a much better season.
As the season progressed, it was clear that Zach Ertz was taking on a larger role in the Eagles' offense. Over the final four-game stretch of the season, Ertz edged out Brent Celek in total offensive snaps (168 to 167), and his historic 15-catch performance (an Eagles record) against Washington in Week 16 was the shining example of what Ertz might be able to accomplish in his NFL career.
Ertz was the #13 TE in both standard and PPR formats despite only playing half of the Eagles’ snaps in his second year. Most (73%) of his snaps came on passing downs, so if his playing time is going to increase, a majority of the additional snaps are likely to come in run formations. Still, there’s upside with Ertz if he begins to see starter’s snaps. The Eagles lost their leading receiver -- first DeSean Jackson and then Jeremy Maclin -- in back-to-back seasons, so there will be opportunity from a targets standpoint.
According to a person familiar with the situation who requested anonymity, Eagles QB Sam Bradford is "looking great", has been in the rehab room close to every day this summer, and should be ready to go when training camp opens.
That means Bradford should be out on the field for 11-on-11 drills for the start of training camp.
If Bradford is fully healthy and wins the starting job, then he's a threat to post low-end QB1 numbers in Chip Kelly's offense, which has been fantasy friendly towards quarterbacks over the last two seasons. The team is dealing with turnover at receiver, losing DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin in consecutive years, but Jordan Matthews, Nelson Agholor and Zach Ertz should be able to pick up the slack.
Throughout OTAs and minicamp, Chris Conley has demonstrated the skills that make him a very intriguing player to watch as the rookie prepares for his first training camp.
Eagles beat writer Sheil Kapadia was asked which rookies would contribute in 2015:
Agholor joins a receiving corps that has lost its best receiver (DeSean Jackson, Jeremy Maclin) in each of the past two offseasons. He’s expected to win a starting job, likely outside opposite Riley Cooper with Jordan Matthews in the slot. If that’s the case, he’ll be a fantasy factor as a rookie. Matthews finished #25 in PPR formats as a rookie last season. That sort of production is certainly feasible for Agholor if he plays starter's snaps and the team gets good play out of the quarterback position.
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