Ravens Fantasy News

Gary Kubiak says the Broncos 'need' WR Cody Latimer, snaps will 'pick up'

Sunday, April 19, 2015, 12:29pm

Denver Post - [Full Article]

Broncos HC Gary Kubiak's relationship with WR Cody Latimer dates back 13 months. Latimer visited the Baltimore Ravens leading up to the 2014 draft, meeting with Kubiak, then the Ravens' offensive coordinator. He told Latimer their paths would cross again. Their intersection in Denver — sooner than either expected — brings lofty expectations.

"He showed a lot of flashes from me watching (film of) him in practice," Kubiak said. "A lot of times being a rookie can be over- whelming. I think it's time for him to make a big jump, not just a little jump. Obviously his playing time is fixing to pick up, and it needs to pick up. We need him."

Fantasy Impact:

Kubiak has a reputation for preferring two-TE sets over three-WR sets, which may limit Latimer's upside. The Ravens' WR3, Marlon Brown, played 40 percent of the snaps last season, so it remains to be seen if Latimer gets enough run to be fantasy relevant. He's at best the Broncos' WR3 behind Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders. Kubiak's tendencies mean that Latimer will have to carve out snaps -- they won't be handed to him.

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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.

Monday, April 6, 2015, 8:06pm

Pro Football Talk - [Full Article]

After working with 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, Kurt Warner came away impressed with his arm. Now, he wants to make sure he doesn’t use his legs too much.

During an interview with Rich Gannon on SiriusXM, Warner said he thought Kaepernick would be better served staying in the pocket, rather than allowing his incredible athleticism to become a crutch.

“He can’t do all the running,” Warner said, via Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com. “Now he’s got to become more of a pass-first guy and complement with his athleticism. And he’s never been asked to do that before. And so that’s the process that we kind of went through in the couple of months I was working with him."

Fantasy Impact:

Warner spent 10 sessions working with Kaepernick in Arizona this offseason, according to the story, and said he hoped the work helped keep Kaepernick focused on moving the ball downfield. Last year, Kaepernick averaged just 7.0 yards per pass attempt, and the 49ers went out and bought Torrey Smith in free agency in an attempt to stretch the field.

Monday, April 6, 2015, 10:22am

Baltimore Sun - [Full Article]

It’s evident that the Ravens do have a lot of confidence in the development of young receivers like Marlon Brown, Michael Campanaro, Kamar Aiken and Jeremy Butler.

The Ravens still will likely draft a wide receiver pretty early and they still are monitoring the markets of veteran free agents like Greg Jennings and Michael Crabtree. But by now, it’s pretty clear that they want to give every opportunity for their own young receivers to step into bigger roles.

Fantasy Impact:

With the departure of Torrey Smith to San Francisco, and Steve L. Smith another year older, a few of the young WRs mentioned above look like they will get a chance at more snaps in 2015. Still, the Ravens remain a run-first team, so in terms of fantasy value, a lot remains to be seen concerning these guys heading into fantasy draft season.

Sunday, April 5, 2015, 9:11am

ESPN - [Full Article]

Jaguars beat writer Mike DiRocco answered a question about RB Storm Johnson and getting more of a role in 2015.

DiRocco: Only if he improves his issues with pass protection. It's not a physical problem. He is willing to block and can do it. He just struggles knowing what his responsibilities are in certain protections and audibles. If he's able to figure that out then he will have more opportunities.

Fantasy Impact:

Blocking responsibilities are a big reason young RBs can't get on the field. The emergence of Denard Robinson last season could also limit Johnson's snaps. And don't forget about Toby Gerhart - DiRocco added that he thinks the starting spot will come down to Robinson or Gerhart in 2015. The team also signed Bernard Pierce this offseason.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015, 2:29pm

Peter King, Twitter - [Full Article]

The Ravens have signed Matt Schaub.

Fantasy Impact:

Schaub will serve as a backup to Joe Flacco.

Kubiak: C.J. Anderson goes into offseason as the starter

Monday, March 30, 2015, 1:31pm

Denver Broncos - [Full Article]

Broncos RB C.J. Anderson earned his place on the first team with a performance in the second half of the season that was more productive than all but one other running back in that span.When offseason workouts start, he will remain atop the depth chart at running back -- but only if he can maintain his performance and diligence.

"He made a big jump as a player, and I think he's earned the right to walk in to the offseason program -- the OTAs -- and line up as our starter," Head Coach Gary Kubiak said. "But he's got to continue to earn it on a daily basis... I think he's shown he has all the ability to be an excellent starter in this league, so we're really looking forward to working with him."

But he will return to find his predecessors at running back at full strength. Montee Ball and Ronnie Hillman have recovered from groin and foot injuries, respectively, and will factor into the scramble for carries.

"All those guys are young. I think all three of those guys ... have all kind of had their little spurts of success with the club when they've had their opportunity," Kubiak said. "But they're all young. Who's going to be the bell cow, who's going to play every down, who's going to be the three-down player, they've got to sort that out. C.J. has shown the flashes of doing that... We'll give them all a chance and see how it pans out, but C.J. obviously has a good head start on things," Kubiak said.

The competition could be fierce, but Anderson's success last year and his ability to translate that to a zone-blocking scheme gives him the early lead.

"All good players fit your system, and he's a good player," Kubiak said. "So we've got some good young backs, and it's going to be very competitive from that standpoint, but, yeah, he's proven that running zone schemes and doing those types of things seem to fit him very well."

Fantasy Impact:

Anderson began to see starter-type touches in Week 10 with 17 touches for 163 yards and a touchdown against the Raiders. Over the final eight weeks, he averaged 24.0 touches for 132 yards and 1.3 TD, and was the #1 RB in that span. If the Broncos commit to Anderson (and why wouldn’t they?), he should thrive under Kubiak, who just coaxed a career year out of journeyman Justin Forsett.

Thursday, March 19, 2015, 10:09pm

Aaron Wilson, Twitter - [Full Article]

Bernard Pierce claimed by Jaguars, according to league source.

Ravens release RB Bernard Pierce after DUI

Wednesday, March 18, 2015, 3:38pm

Baltimore Sun - [Full Article]

The Ravens released backup running back Bernard Pierce following his arrest early Wednesday morning on driving under the influence charges.

Fantasy Impact:

After a pretty strong rookie season (4.9 YPC on 108 carries), Pierce has rushed for just 802 yards on 245 carries for a 3.27 YPC. He was a cut candidate even before the DUI, but his run-in with the law made him even more expendable. The Ravens currently have Justin Forsett and Lorenzo Taliaferro atop the depth chart at running back.

Ravens RB Benard Pierce arrested for DUI

Wednesday, March 18, 2015, 10:23am

Aaron Wilson, Twitter - [Full Article]

Ravens running back Bernard Pierce arrested for driving under the influence early Wednesday morning, according to Baltimore County police.

Fantasy Impact:

This is a situation to monitor as the offseason wears on.

Schefter: Justin Forsett to re-sign with the Ravens

Thursday, March 12, 2015, 2:56pm

Adam Schefter, Twitter - [Full Article]

Ravens are giving RB Justin Forsett a three-year deal, per source.

Fantasy Impact:

Forsett should see his PPR upside increase due to new OC Marc Trestman's tendency to use his running backs in the passing game. Under 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. However, the loss of OC Gary Kubiak is likely to hurt the Ravens’ running game. As the #8 RB in both standard and PPR formats in 2014, he'll likely hold RB2-type draft value if he continues as the lead back in Baltimore.

Torrey Smith officially agrees to terms with the 49ers

Tuesday, March 10, 2015, 8:48pm

ESPN - [Full Article]

Free-agent wide receiver Torrey Smith has reached agreement on a five-year contract with the San Francisco 49ers, sources told ESPN's Adam Schefter and Adam Caplan.

The deal is worth $40 million, including $22 million guaranteed, sources said.

Fantasy Impact:

Smith got off to a slow start in 2014, posting just six catches for 85 yards in the first three games. Over the final 13 games of the season, he averaged 3.3 receptions for 52 yards and 0.85 touchdowns, which equates to #20 WR-type numbers in PPR formats. As it stands, he finished as the #29 WR in PPR and #19 in standard formats (thanks to the high touchdown rate), which is the fourth time he has finished in the top 23 (in standard formats) in his four-year career. He'll join a 49ers receiving corps that is likely losing Michael Crabtree and has a still-effective Anquan Boldin as a possession receiver. Smith will serve as a deep threat for QB Colin Kaepernick, though this move has to be considered a downgrade from an offensive/quarterback standpoint since the 49ers are typically run-heavy and Joe Flacco is pretty adept at putting touch on the deep ball. Throwing with touch is not one of Kaepernick's strengths.

Broncos sign TE Owen Daniels

Tuesday, March 10, 2015, 4:27pm

Adam Schefter, Twitter - [Full Article]

The Broncos have reached an agreement with TE Owen Daniels, per sources.

Update: He signed three-year, $12 million contract.

Fantasy Impact:

Daniels continues to follow HC Gary Kubiak around the league. In the 12 games in which he played at least 75 percent of the snaps, Daniels averaged 3.0 catches for 33 yards and 0.25 TD (on 5.1 targets). He'll be a serviceable TE2 playing with Peyton Manning, unless the Broncos aren't done trying to replace Julius Thomas.

Torrey Smith to 49ers a 'done deal'

Sunday, March 8, 2015, 9:37pm

Baltimore Sun - [Full Article]

Wide receiver Torrey Smith is poised to leave the Ravens as a free agent, according to multiple NFL sources, and the San Francisco 49ers are the front-runners to land the former Maryland standout.

For Smith to have remained with the Ravens, which several league sources reiterated has been an extremely unlikely scenario for weeks, he would have had to leave several million dollars on the table.

Although no deal has been finalized, sources indicated there's strong mutual interest between the former second-round draft pick and San Francisco. One source characterized the Smith situation as a "done deal with the 49ers," barring any unforeseen snags. Deals cannot become official until Tuesday at 4 p.m., when the league year and free agency signing period begins.

Smith acknowledged his pending departure Sunday night with a blog in which he thanked the Ravens for his four years in Baltimore.

Update: Smith signed a five-year, $40 million deal that includes $22 million guaranteed.

Fantasy Impact:

Smith got off to a slow start in 2014, posting just six catches for 85 yards in the first three games. Over the final 13 games of the season, he averaged 3.3 receptions for 52 yards and 0.85 touchdowns, which equates to #20 WR-type numbers in PPR formats. As it stands, he finished as the #29 WR in PPR and #19 in standard formats (thanks to the high touchdown rate), which is the fourth time he has finished in the top 23 (in standard formats) in his four-year career. He'll join a 49ers receiving corps that is likely losing Michael Crabtree and has a still-effective Anquan Boldin as a possession receiver. Smith will serve as a deep threat for QB Colin Kaepernick, though this move has to be considered a downgrade from an offensive/quarterback standpoint since the 49ers are typically run-heavy and Joe Flacco is pretty adept at putting touch on the deep ball. Throwing with touch is not one of Kaepernick's strengths.

Outlining the Ravens' plan at tight end

Thursday, February 26, 2015, 1:14pm

Baltimore Ravens - [Full Article]

Ravens GM Ozzie Newsome said he spoke with trainers about Dennis Pitta’s status this week, and their main message was that an answer on his availability won’t come until this summer. The Ravens likely won’t wait until they get that definitive answer to spur into action.

The Ravens want to re-sign Owen Daniels and they hope Pitta can play again, but they will certainly have contingency plans in place.

“Are we going to try to add some tight ends to this offense? Yes,” General Manager Ozzie Newsome said during Tuesday’s press conference.

Newsome’s comment made it clear that the Ravens will look outside the building to bring in new pieces over the next few months. This year’s draft is considered thin at the position, but the Ravens will keep a close eye on prospects who could help the offense this fall.

Fantasy Impact:

Daniels finished as the #18 tight end on 78 targets (which were 17th-most at his position). Pitta's availability is very much up in the air, and the Broncos are rumored to have interest in Daniels now that Gary Kubiak is the Broncos' head coach.

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