Falcons Fantasy News

Tuesday, May 26, 2015, 8:30pm

Atlanta Journal-Constitution - [Full Article]

Falcons TE Jacob Tamme lined up with the first team at Tuesday's practice.

Fantasy Impact:

Tamme could be stream-worthy in the Falcons' potent offense but he hasn't been very trustworthy throughout his career.

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Falcons Beat: Team will use a 'two-back system with equal reps'

Sunday, May 24, 2015, 10:33am

ESPN - [Full Article]

Falcons beat writer Vaughn McClure:

The running back position became compelling when the Falcons drafted Indiana’s Tevin Coleman in the third round. Coleman, a 2,000-yard rusher last season, boldly claimed he was ready to take over the starting job. Problem is, the Falcons have expressed plenty of faith in second-year player Devonta Freeman, who told me he wants to take his game to another level and maybe be in the MVP conversation one day. Freeman and Coleman will push each other daily, which should only benefit the Falcons going into the 2015 season. Freeman has impressed the new coaching staff with his pass-catching skills, while both players have to show the ability to consistently block when it comes to pass protection. I anticipate a two-back system with equal reps as the Falcons make a concerted effort to bring more offensive balance with a stronger run game. And don’t count out the contribution of explosive Antone Smith, who could be back to his old self once he fully recovers from a broken leg.

Fantasy Impact:

We currently project Coleman for 248 touches and Freeman for 160, with Smith seeing 68 touches if his leg is fully recovered. This could be a fairly ugly committee, though the overall production could be solid with Kyle Shanahan running things.

Falcons RB Antone Smith (fractured leg) running 'almost full force'

Thursday, May 21, 2015, 12:33pm

Journal-Constitution - [Full Article]

Falcons running back Antone Smith, who suffered a fractured right leg while covering a punt against Carolina on Nov. 16, has started running during his rehabilitation.

“The recovery is going pretty good,” Smith said on Tuesday. “I’m up and running. I’m almost full force, but not quite where I need to be. In time, that will take care of itself.”

Smith is not likely to be cleared when the Falcons open their organized team activities on Tuesday.

Smith believes that he’s a fit for the team’s new outside-zone blocking scheme.

“It’s a fit for my skill set, but it’s a fit for anybody that wants to run the ball,” Smith said. “They want to run the ball here and that’s the biggest thing. They want to run the ball. I don’t care who’s the running back you want to be in this scheme right here. I’m happy for this scheme.”

Fantasy Impact:

Along with Devonta Freeman, Smith is a reason we're tepid about rookie Tevin Coleman. It's possible that Coleman wins a feature job in the Falcons' backfield, but Freeman showed some pass-catching chops as a rookie and Smith has racked up 518 yards and seven touchdowns on 44 career touches.

Bucs intend to utilize an up-tempo offense

Wednesday, May 6, 2015, 9:53am

NFL.com - [Full Article]

With Dirk Koetter running the offense in 2015, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers finally will be able to unleash their pace plan.

"A guy that just, you know, he loves, loves fast tempo, loves to get the ball up field," offensive tackle Demar Dotson said of Koetter, via JoeBucsFan.com. "He loves to go a lot of no-huddle. That's going to be something that's more different than what we're used to. So it's going to be a lot of up-tempo stuff. You know, so that's something he loves doing. It's got its ups and downs, but I'm looking forward to being a part of it."

Last season with the Atlanta Falcons, Koetter ran the sixth-fastest offense in the NFL, per Football Outsiders' pace stats.

While both Koetter and Smith want to play fast in 2015, their ability to perform with pace will be dictated by how quickly Jameis Winston picks up the system.

Fantasy Impact:

If the team is successful in running an up-tempo offense, it should further boost Winston's fantasy value as a rookie. Mike Evans, Vincent Jackson and Austin Seferian-Jenkins would also benefit, along with whoever is running the ball in Tampa. But it's one thing to want to play fast and another to successfully do so.

TE Rob Housler signed with the Browns due to expected opportunity

Wednesday, April 15, 2015, 5:56pm

Ohio.com - [Full Article]

Browns TE Rob Housler, 27, confirmed the Atlanta Falcons, Baltimore Ravens and Cincinnati Bengals were interested in signing him, but he said he ultimately chose the Browns partly because of the opportunities he expects to receive in new offensive coordinator John DeFilippo’s scheme. Housler emphasized the coach affectionately known as “Flip” wants to move him around a lot in the offense and feature him as a vertical threat in the middle of the field.

“It was a big factor,” Housler said of weighing the pass-catching opportunities each of his suitors would likely grant him. “I’ve seen both ends of the spectrum where I’ve been a part of targets and a part of the flow and rhythm of the offense, and I’ve seen where it goes other ways. For me, I want to be a big part of the offense. So that was a big consideration. I’m confident in my ability, and I just want to be able to contribute.”

Housler should get plenty of chances as the Browns try to compensate for losing Cameron, whom they attempted to re-sign before he bolted to Miami.

Fantasy Impact:

Housler signed a one-year deal with aligns with his expectation that he'll be a big part of the offense. He has great athleticism for his position, but so far that athleticism hasn't translated to on-field production. Part of the problem is that he was an afterthought in the Arizona offense, but it sounds as if the Browns intend to utilize his speed down the seam.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015, 5:26pm

Adam Caplan, Twitter - [Full Article]

Bears announced: signed RB Jacquizz Rodgers to a one-year deal.

Falcons sign oft-injured TE Tony Moeaki

Thursday, March 19, 2015, 4:06pm

PFT - [Full Article]

The Falcons started the day by signing former Colt and Bronco Jacob Tamme, but they weren’t done adding players to compete with Levine Toilolo for playing time. The team announced that they have also signed former Chief, Bill and Seahawk Tony Moeaki on Thursday afternoon.

Fantasy Impact:

Moeki has talent but hasn't been able to stay out of the training room. The Falcons are looking to shore up the TE position and today's signings of Tamme and Moeaki give them a couple of veterans to lean on.

Falcons sign TE Jacob Tamme

Thursday, March 19, 2015, 3:43pm

NFL.com - [Full Article]

The effort to replace Tony Gonzalez continues in Atlanta as the Falcons announced Thursday they have signed tight end Jacob Tamme.

Fantasy Impact:

Tamme could be a stopgap option if the Falcons draft a tight end and wait for him to develop.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015, 2:43pm

Leonard Hankerson, Twitter - [Full Article]

WR Leonard Hankerson signed with the Falcons.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015, 7:10pm

Vaughn McClure, Twitter - [Full Article]

Falcons announce they've agreed to terms with Antone Smith.

Fantasy Impact:

Smith has averaged 11.8 yards and 0.16 TD per touch on 44 career touches.

Schefter: Titans sign WR Harry Douglas

Tuesday, March 10, 2015, 1:02pm

Adam Schefter, Twitter - [Full Article]

Titans are signing former Falcons WR Harry Douglas to a 3-year deal, per source.

Fantasy Impact:

This signing is somewhat puzzling since the Titans already have a superior slot receiver in Kendall Wright. In Atlanta, Douglas performed well when called upon, but struggled in 2014 due to a foot injury.

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.

Falcons cut WR Harry Douglas

Friday, February 27, 2015, 10:33am

Rand Getlin, Twitter - [Full Article]

WR Harry Douglas has been released by the Falcons, per a league source.

Fantasy Impact:

Even though he missed four games with a foot injury, Douglas was set to make $3.5 million in the final season of his contract and offered a relatively cheap insurance policy for Roddy White. It's possible that the Falcons plan to upgrade the position to prepare for White's retirement. This year's crop of free agent receivers is deep and talented.

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.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015, 10:31am

ESPN - [Full Article]

The Falcons need to upgrade in the backfield and that's likely to start with the release of veteran Steven Jackson. New offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan brings with him an emphasis on the outside zone-blocking scheme and one-cut-and-go mentality for the running backs. The Falcons will benefit from having younger legs in such a scheme. Don't discount second-year player Devonta Freeman, who is eager to take the next step and could thrive in the system. But the Falcons need more bodies, and Jacquizz Rodgers and Antone Smith are headed to free agency. Keep an eye on Justin Forsett, who also is bound for free agency. Forsett thrived in the zone-blocking scheme the past season en route to a career-high 1,266 rushing yards. And Forsett is represented by the same agent who represents Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff.

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