Texans Fantasy News

Falcons cut RB Steven Jackson; Devonta Freeman ready for bigger role

Friday, February 27, 2015, 10:37am

Adam Schefter, Twitter - [Full Article]

Falcons released RB Steven Jackson, per source.

Fantasy Impact:

Looking at the running back position, Kyle Shanahan presided over three stellar fantasy seasons in his seven years as an offensive coordinator. In 2008, while Shanny was the OC of the Texans, Steve Slaton turned 327 touches (50 receptions) into 1,659 yards and 10 touchdowns. (Slaton averaged 77.6 total yards on 15.9 touches in 2009.) In 2012, rookie Alfred Morris racked up 1,690 total yards and 13 touchdowns. He followed it up with 1,353 total yards and seven scores in 2013. Shanahan even coaxed 86.7 total yards (on 18.2 touches) from Ryan Torain in 2010 and 67.9 yards on 13.3 touches from Roy Helu in 2011. Freeman wasn't terribly impressive in his rookie season (248 yards rushing, 3.8 YPC), but he was active and effective in the passing game (30 catches for 225 yards), so a Slaton-esque season isn't out of the realm of possibility. With Jackson out of the way, GM Thomas Dimitroff said that there was “no question” that Freeman is ready to be the feature back in Atlanta.

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Ravens 'expected' to draft a running back

Wednesday, February 25, 2015, 9:52am

Baltimore Sun - [Full Article]

If they can bring back Justin Forsett, the Ravens are expected to pair him with a young running back. They met with Melvin Gordon (Wisconsin), David Johnson (Northern Iowa) and Duke Johnson (Miami) at the NFL scouting combine.

"He doesn’t have the wear and tear, and Justin did a very good job of coming in, competing and then being our bell cow," GM Ozzie Newsome said. "We would like to retain Justin, but I’ve learned something since the end of the season about Justin that I didn’t really know. He has mentored some very good, young backs, starting with Arian Foster, Marshawn Lynch, Maurice Jones-Drew when he was in Jacksonville.

"Having Justin here, and with the opportunity also bringing in hopefully another young running back, to have Justin be around that guy would be an asset also. So, we will work to try to retain Justin.”

Fantasy Impact:

Under OC Marc Trestman, Matt Forte caught 176 passes in the last two seasons, including 102 catches in 2014. Forsett caught 44 passes last season, and could potentially see that number double if he's the RB1 for the Ravens in 2015. Depending on his asking price, re-signing the 29-year-old Forsett isn't a no-brainer for the Ravens, though he's not likely to garner a huge contract in free agency. As the #8 RB in both standard and PPR formats in 2014, he'll likely hold RB2-type draft value if he stays in Baltimore. If the Ravens draft a running back early, it would certainly damper Forsett's outlook in 2015.

Texans say they have to 'manage' Arian Foster's workload

Monday, February 23, 2015, 12:06pm

NFL.com - [Full Article]

NFL.com asked Texans coach Bill O'Brien this week if Arian Foster, who will turn 29 in August, has reached the age where the Texans need to re-think how they use him.

"I think any time a player reaches that age of 30 or close to that age of 30, and you know that the guy can still play, you know that he is a very talented player," O'Brien said at the NFL Scouting Combine. "Arian is a very talented guy in a lot of phases. He can run the ball, he can catch the ball, he's a good pass protector, he's a smart football player, but you've got to manage him. How do you manage that? You manage him in practice. You manage him in the games.

"That's something we'll always take into account. We communicate with the player. We communicate with Arian. How are you feeling this week? What's ailing you? Things like that. You take a lot of hits at running back in this league. I think we just continue to communicate with Arian and manage it. He's got a lot of good football yet."

O'Brien went on to say he's high on both Alfred Blue and third-down back Jonathan Grimes, though he didn't rule out adding a new face.

Fantasy Impact:

Foster averaged 22.9 touches per game (the 4th-highest workload in the league) and scored 0.79 fantasy points per touch (13th among the top 60 running backs). From a fantasy points per game standpoint, he was #2 in standard formats and #4 in PPR, so he's still playing at a very high level when healthy. However, he missed three games in 2014 and eight more in 2013, and has only played 14 or more games once in his last four seasons. Alfred Blue averaged 23.0 touches for 103 total yards in the three games that Foster missed, so unless the Texans go another direction at the position, Blue is a must-handcuff for Foster owners. It sounds as if the team will try to limit Foster’s workload as he enters his age 29 season, but he should easily average 18-20 touches when healthy.

Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins had offseason wrist surgery

Monday, February 23, 2015, 10:35am

PFT - [Full Article]

Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins had 76 catches for 1,210 yards and six touchdowns and his numbers would have been even better if he hadn’t slumped to the finish line with two catches for five yards in Week 17. Hopkins had a decent excuse for the poor finish to the year, though.

He was listed on the injury report with a wrist injury and revealed during an interview with Sports Radio 610 in Houston that he had surgery to repair a torn ligament after the season. Hopkins said that he had a pin and rod inserted into the wrist that was set to be removed on Saturday and that he expects to get back to regular activities in a couple of weeks.

Fantasy Impact:

Hopkins finished as the #14 WR in both standard and PPR formats even though the Texans’ quarterbacks finished 17th in both touchdowns thrown and yards per attempt. Assuming the team gets similar play from the position in 2015, Hopkins should continue to produce solid to high-end WR2 numbers even though he continues to play second-fiddle to Andre Johnson in the passing game.

Titans QB Zach Mettenberger (shoulder) is 100 percent

Saturday, February 21, 2015, 9:11pm

Paul Kuharsky, Twitter - [Full Article]

Titans QB Zach Mettenberger says he's been throwing, shoulder is 100%.

Fantasy Impact:

Mettenberger averaged 272 yards, 1.8 touchdowns and 1.0 interception in the four games that he started and finished. He was also on pace for 329 yards and 1.8 TD against the Texans in Week 13 before missing nearly half the game with a shoulder sprain. He wasn’t effective against the Giants in Week 14 before re-injuring his shoulder. For the most part, what we saw was encouraging, especially since he was just a rookie. If the Titans enter the season with Mettenberger as the starter, then we can expect the solid QB2 numbers that he posted in 2014 -- he’ll be a committee and/or streaming candidate.

Falcons GM believes Devonta Freeman is capable of a featured role

Thursday, February 19, 2015, 8:51pm

Vaughn McClure, Twitter - [Full Article]

Falcons GM Thomas Dimitroff said Devonta Freeman can be the team's featured back.

Fantasy Impact:

Looking at the running back position, new OC Kyle Shanahan presided over three stellar fantasy seasons in his seven years as an offensive coordinator. In 2008, while Shanny was the OC of the Texans, Steve Slaton turned 327 touches (50 receptions) into 1,659 yards and 10 touchdowns. (Slaton averaged 77.6 total yards on 15.9 touches in 2009.) In 2012, rookie Alfred Morris racked up 1,690 total yards and 13 touchdowns. He followed it up with 1,353 total yards and seven scores in 2013. Shanahan even coaxed 86.7 total yards (on 18.2 touches) from Ryan Torain in 2010 and 67.9 yards on 13.3 touches from Roy Helu in 2011. Freeman wasn't terribly impressive as a runner in his rookie season (248 yards rushing, 3.8 YPC), but he was active and effective in the passing game (30 catches for 225 yards), so a Slaton-esque season isn't out of the realm of possibility. If the Falcons stand pat at running back, he'll have some middle round appeal, assuming his role looks to be bigger than Steven Jackson's.

Falcons OC Kyle Shanahan 'loved' Devonta Freeman prior to 2014 Draft

Tuesday, February 10, 2015, 2:09pm

Jay Adams, Twitter - [Full Article]

Falcons OC Kyle Shanahan said he loved Devonta Freeman last year coming out of college. He’s still evaluating offensive talent on roster here.

Fantasy Impact:

Looking at the running back position, Shanahan presided over three stellar fantasy seasons in his seven years as an offensive coordinator. In 2008, while Shanny was the OC of the Texans, Steve Slaton turned 327 touches (50 receptions) into 1,659 yards and 10 touchdowns. (Slaton averaged 77.6 total yards on 15.9 touches in 2009.) In 2012, rookie Alfred Morris racked up 1,690 total yards and 13 touchdowns. He followed it up with 1,353 total yards and seven scores in 2013. Shanahan even coaxed 86.7 total yards (on 18.2 touches) from Ryan Torain in 2010 and 67.9 yards on 13.3 touches from Roy Helu in 2011. Freeman wasn't terribly impressive in his rookie season (248 yards rushing, 3.8 YPC), but he was active and effective in the passing game (30 catches for 225 yards), so a Slaton-esque season isn't out of the realm of possibility. If the Falcons stand pat at running back, he'll have some middle round appeal, assuming his role looks to be bigger than Steven Jackson's.

Steelers expected to sign RB Ben Tate

Tuesday, December 30, 2014, 9:58am

NFL.com - [Full Article]

In desperate need of a feature back with Le'Veon Bell's immediate future uncertain, the Steelers are working out former Texans, Vikings and Browns running back Ben Tate, ESPN reported Tuesday morning.

If the visit goes well, they are expected to sign the 26-year-old, once thought to be the best running back on the open market back in March.

Fantasy Impact:

Some inside the Steelers organization are doubtful that Bell will make an appearance on Saturday in prime time against the Ravens, which would make the need for an all-purpose back like Tate that much greater, the story said. The piece went on to say that in some respects, this is the ideal opportunity Tate has been waiting for. Just like former Steelers running back LeGarrette Blount knows, strong playoff performances can change perception, and after getting cut by two teams in less than a year, Tate is longing for that opportunity. The Ravens do present a tough matchup however, as they are ranked third in allowing fantasy points to RBs.

Friday, December 26, 2014, 6:53pm

Texans QB Tom Savage (knee, out) missed practice all week and is out for Week 17. Case Keenum will get the start against Jacksonville.

Friday, December 26, 2014, 6:53pm

Texans RB Arian Foster (not injury related, probable) took full practice reps on Friday after being limited earlier in the week and is probable for Week 17. Foster will be fine to face Jacksonville this week.

Friday, December 26, 2014, 6:53pm

Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins (wrist, probable) took limited practice reps all week and is probable for Week 17. Hopkins will be fine to face Jacksonville.

Friday, December 26, 2014, 6:53pm

Texans WR Andre Johnson (not injury related, probable) took full practice reps on Friday after being limited earlier in the week and is probable for Week 17. Johnson will be fine for a must win game against Jacksonville.

Friday, December 26, 2014, 6:53pm

Texans TE C.J. Fiedorowicz (shoulder, probable) took limited practice reps all week and is probable for Week 17.

Friday, December 26, 2014, 6:53pm

Texans TE Garrett Graham (ankle, out) missed practice all week and is out for Week 17. Ryan Griffin should continue to lead the Texan tight ends in snaps.

Vikings release RB Ben Tate

Tuesday, December 23, 2014, 8:15pm

NFL.com - [Full Article]

Ben Tate is back on the street.

The Vikings have released the veteran running back less than a month after claiming him off waivers from the Cleveland Browns, per the league's transaction wire.

Tate was cut free after amassing just 38 yards off 13 attempts over three appearances for Minnesota. His 2.9 yards per carry were even lower than the paltry 3.1 yards per tote he accounted for in eight games with the Browns, who surprised many by releasing the former Texans runner after Week 11.

Fantasy Impact:

The story points out that it's not a good sign that Tate has been shipped out of town by two teams in less than a month. Whispers of a bad attitude in Cleveland don't help, but even more concerning is the apparent on-field decline for a runner still just 26 years old. Tate hasn't been healthy this season, which has contributed to his ugly play. If the playoff-bound Colts and Cardinals don't come calling, a team may take a long look this offseason in order to find out if Tate is worth keeping around for 2015.