Colts Fantasy News

Titans agree to terms with WR Hakeem Nicks

Friday, April 24, 2015, 1:38pm

Tennessean - [Full Article]

The Titans have agreed to terms on a deal for former Colts receiver Hakeem Nicks, according to sources familiar with the situation.

"I'm nowhere near finished, man, and I want to prove that to the world and everybody," Nicks told FOX Sports' Mike Garafalo recently. "That's definitely my mentality, but I don't even want to talk about it. I feel like I got into that situation last year talking about it. I'm about to just go out there and prove it.

"I can't even describe the feeling to you. It's like a burning sensation inside of me. I just want to be the best. I know I have to work hard at it; it's something that's in me. It's just in me and takes over me."

Fantasy Impact:

Nicks was underwhelming in Indianapolis, catching only 55% of his targets while posting 38 catches for 405 yards and four touchdowns. The Titans also added Harry Douglas this offseason, so he and Nicks will join a receiving corps that already includes Kendall Wright and Justin Hunter. There isn't much fantasy value here.

Andre Johnson says playing for Colts is 'like a breath of fresh air'

Thursday, April 23, 2015, 3:20pm

PFT - [Full Article]

“Being in one place for a long time, the past two years have been pretty frustrating,” Colts WR Andre Johnson said, via ESPN.com. “Just being here is like a breath of fresh air for me.”

Part of that breath of fresh air has to include playing with Andrew Luck after cycling through several quarterbacks while with the Texans. Matt Schaub was the most accomplished player of that group and Johnson showed them all some kindness by putting a unnecessary qualifier on his assessment of Luck’s skills.

“He throws a great ball,” Johnson said. “Probably the best quarterback I’ve ever played with. I’m excited about the opportunity.”

Fantasy Impact:

Johnson will likely start opposite T.Y. Hilton. It’s a big upgrade from a quality-of-quarterback standpoint, as he has never played with one as good as Andrew Luck. His targets are likely to take a hit, however. He averaged 9.7 T/G in 2014, while Hilton and Reggie Wayne led the Colts with 8.7 and 7.7 T/G, respectively. So this looks like a case of the targets dropping but the quality of those targets increasing. After finishing in the top 10 (in PPR) in five of his previous six seasons, Johnson finished #28 in 2014. He’s turning 34 this offseason, so it may be foolhardy to expect a huge bounceback season, but low-end WR2 numbers in PPR formats seem reasonable.

Raiders planning to use RB Roy Helu in up-tempo offense

Saturday, April 11, 2015, 1:36pm

ESPN - [Full Article]

Roy Helu, 26, looks like a perfect fit for Oakland’s new up-tempo offense that will often feature a no-huddle approach. ESPN scout Matt Williamson thinks Helu can be one of the Raiders’ most productive offensive weapons even though it will be in a limited role.

Williamson thinks Helu can do what like new New York Giants back Shane Vereen did in New England. Vereen had a total of 148 touches last season.

“While he isn’t great in protection, I think he will be a very valuable piece and a quick safe option for Derek Carr in this up-tempo passing game and offense overall,” Williamson said. “Helu has been extremely productive on a per-snap basis.”

Fantasy Impact:

Helu has averaged 2.69 catches per game in his four-year career, and is expected to serve as the team's primary passing down back while Latavius Murray and Trent Richardson compete for early-down duties. The Raiders are planning to move to a more up-tempo offense under OC Bill Musgrave, who spent last season working for Chip Kelly in Philadelphia. Helu is likely to be fantasy relevant in PPR formats, though the explosive Murray should hold the most fantasy value in 2015.

Thursday, April 9, 2015, 6:54pm

Indianapolis Star - [Full Article]

In a decision that likely took all of three seconds to make, the Colts today exercised the fifth-year option of quarterback Andrew Luck's contract.

The expected move comes as mere formality: Luck has no intentions of going anywhere, nor do the Colts intend on letting their young superstar sniff free agency anytime in the near future. What this move does is keep him under contract over the next two seasons, though a new deal – the mammoth payday Luck is certain to get – will likely come after this coming season.

Thursday, April 9, 2015, 9:08am

Colts.com - [Full Article]

The Colts have made it clear, for this offense to truly (consistently) thrive, a more than adequate run game is needed.

Gore can be the lead man in that running attack.

While the Colts won’t need Gore to rack up carrying the ball upwards of 250 times, just an average season from the 10-year pro (by Gore’s standards) would be the best from a Colts running back in a decade.

In the last four years, Gore’s season-high for receptions is just 28 so he could be primarily used on early downs.

The Colts have stated that Gore is capable of being a three-down back but at the age of 32, employing a couple of backs in an offensive game plan would be in the offense’s best interest.

Fantasy Impact:

Boom Herron warrants reps in the backfield this season and can definitely provide a change of pace from Gore’s skill set, the story said. It went on to say if Herron improves his pass blocking, he could be a guy the Colts use on third-downs after his torrid postseason catching the ball out of the backfield. Behind Herron is Vick Ballard coming off back-to-back season-ending injuries. Right now from a fantasy perspective, Gore looks like he has some RB2 value but you can probably expect him to give away some work to Herron, while Herron could have deeper-league PPR value.

Saturday, April 4, 2015, 9:05am

ESPN - [Full Article]

ESPN Raider beat writer Bill Williamson answered a question about the Raiders backfield competition between Latavius Murray and Trent Richardson.

Williamson: I think Murray is going to win the job. I just don’t think Richardson is a starting running back in the NFL. He has shown no explosion. I think he is a backup. Two teams have committed first-round picks to him and they both gave up on him. That’s a hint. Murray has more explosion and more potential at this point.

Fantasy Impact:

Williamson added that Murray does have to improve his football IQ. That likely means they want Murray to know the playbook more, know scheme better, know the blocking schemes better. It’s all things a young running back has to go through. Roy Helu may be a bigger threat to take away production than Richardson.

Colts WR Donte Moncrief poised to break out, but playing time is uncertain

Friday, April 3, 2015, 11:15am

Colts.com - [Full Article]

There’s been a lot of wide receiver news this offseason, but all the while, Colts WR Donte Moncrief appears poised for an even bigger second season in the NFL.

“This guy can make plays. He’s big. He’s fast. He can stretch the defense, all those types of things,” said Pagano. “It’s a learning process, and he’s going to be better in year two than he was in year one. He’s going to have more opportunities.”

The question is to what extent will Moncrief’s production increase. There are a lot of options in the passing game for Andrew Luck, not even factoring in tight ends Dwayne Allen and Coby Fleener.

Overall, Moncrief played more than 50% of the snaps in just six games (week 8 at Pittsburgh when Reggie Wayne was out & the last five weeks of the season). In those six games, Moncrief accumulated 18 receptions, 301 yards, and all 3 of his TDs.

That’s more than 56% of his catches for the year, about 68% of his yards, and 100% of his touchdowns for the season...in just six games, the only games where Moncrief played a majority of the snaps. The picture is getting clearer as to why the 6’2”, 221 pound burner is expected to get more opportunities in 2015.

Fantasy Impact:

In those six games, Moncrief averaged 3.0 catches for 50 yards and 0.50 touchdowns, but that split includes both huge games (3-134-2 vs. Washington, 7-113-1 vs. Pittsburgh) and disappearing acts (a goose egg vs. Houston, 2-5 vs. Dallas, 3-16 vs. Tennessee), so his production was all over the place. Moncrief's ADP took a two-round hit (6th to 8th) once the Colts signed Andre Johnson, and the signing certainly takes some of the wind out of Moncrief's sails. But both Reggie Wayne (859 snaps) and Hakeem Nicks (576 snaps) are gone, so there may be room for both Johnson and Moncrief to play starter's snaps. The question is how often the Colts go to two-TE sets since Dwayne Allen should be healthy after missing six games last season. When either Allen or Wayne were out, Nicks played 59% of the snaps. When both were in the lineup, Nicks played just 45% of the snaps. Moncrief is still going to be a breakout candidate, but his playing time is up in the air.

Dolphins RB Lamar Miller bulking up to break more tackles

Thursday, April 2, 2015, 11:19am

Miami Herald - [Full Article]

When Dolphins RB Lamar Miller went back and watched film from last season, he saw flaws.

He didn’t break enough tackles, so he put on seven pounds of muscle in the University of Miami weight room to get up to 225 pounds.

And he didn’t catch enough passes (38 in 2014, with six drops).

So Miller has spent the offseason in front of the Jugs football-passing machine. He has worked on technique with standout wide receiver Andre Johnson, who’s now a member of the Indianapolis Colts.

And he runs routes for Ryan Tannehill with the team’s other young skill-position players.

Fantasy Impact:

Miller carried the ball 219 times for 1,099 yards and eight touchdowns while adding 38-275-1 on 52 targets in the passing game. This resulted in a #9 finish in both standard and PPR formats. Despite this, the team doesn't seem completely sold on Miller as a feature back and is looking to shore up the position in the offseason. It's good to hear that he's putting on some muscle and is working on his flaws to hopefully take his game to the next level.

Colts will use WR Andre Johnson as a 'big, possession-type guy'

Wednesday, April 1, 2015, 3:08pm

NFL.com - [Full Article]

If Andre Johnson has lost a step -- as Texans owner Bob McNair intimated last week -- the wide receiver's new coach hasn't seen it on game film.

"You don't see a huge drop-off numbers-wise," coach Chuck Pagano said, via ESPN.com's Mike Wells. "Maybe in touchdowns. But you still see a guy who is more than capable of stretching the defense. Certainly somebody who an opponent can't just line up and say, 'Don't worry about Andre Johnson.'"

If defenses still opt to send extra coverage toward T.Y. Hilton, Pagano expects Johnson to take advantage as a "big, possession type guy" on the underneath routes that an injury-ravaged Reggie Wayne couldn't convert in the second half of last season.

"He's a big body guy that can still separate, create separation," Pagano continued. "He's got a big catch radius. But again, the contested catches that you see on tape. It's very difficult to match up."

Fantasy Impact:

Johnson will likely start opposite T.Y. Hilton. It’s a big upgrade from a quality-of-quarterback standpoint, as he has never played with one as good as Andrew Luck. His targets are likely to take a hit, however. He averaged 9.7 T/G in 2014, while Hilton and Reggie Wayne led the Colts with 8.7 and 7.7 T/G, respectively. So this looks like a case of the targets dropping but the quality of those targets increasing. After finishing in the top 10 (in PPR) in five of his previous six seasons, Johnson finished #28 in 2014. He’s turning 34 this offseason, so it may be foolhardy to expect a huge bounceback season, but low-end WR2 numbers in PPR formats seem reasonable.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015, 3:59pm

Adam Schefter, Twitter - [Full Article]

Colts announced they signed former Chargers wide receiver Vincent Brown.

Raiders expect a 'competitive situation' at running back

Wednesday, March 25, 2015, 1:14pm

ESPN - [Full Article]

Oakland Raiders coach Jack Del Rio said he expects Lavatius Murray and Trent Richardson to compete for the starting tailback job.

"I think it will be a competitive situation," Del Rio said.

Del Rio likes Richardson's potential.

"What I saw when we brought him in and talked to him was a young man that was hungry to kind of leave that portion of his career behind him and start fresh," Del Rio said. "My challenge to him was, 'Look, I don't want you to worry about anything other than coming in here and competing your butt off every day. Come in here and be a great teammate. Come in here and find a role on special teams. Come in here and just grind every day with the hunger you had as a freshman at Alabama.'"

Fantasy Impact:

We fully expect Murray to win the job, though it is concerning that the Raiders aggressively pursued DeMarco Murray. It indicates that they aren't fully ready to move forward with Latavius Murray, even though he rushed 82 times for 424 yards (a 5.2 YPC) and two touchdowns, including an incredible four-carry, 112-yard, two-TD performance against the Chiefs in Week 12. He still averaged a solid (if unspectacular) 4.0 YPC when that game is excluded. With good size (6'2", 223 lbs) and great speed (4.38 40-yard dash), Murray has all the physical tools to succeed at the position. He even showed solid hands with 17 receptions on 23 targets. We don't see Richardson as much of a threat, but teams have force-fed him before. Roy Helu is also in the mix, so if the Raiders don't commit to Murray, this could devolve into an ugly committee.

Colts view Frank Gore as an 'every-down' running back

Tuesday, March 24, 2015, 8:06pm

CSN Bay Area - [Full Article]

The 49ers were willing to go only so far to re-sign running back Frank Gore.

But Gore’s new coach, Chuck Pagano, sees a player who can help take the Indianapolis Colts a long way.

“Put the tape on him, and you still see the production,” Pagano said Tuesday at the NFL owners meetings.

“He’s a tough, hard-nosed, every-down back. He can play all three downs. He’s a great protector in pass-pro. He catches the ball out of the backfield. We all know what he can do as a runner on early downs.

The Colts still view Gore as an every-down back.

“I don’t think we would’ve gone after him and made the investment and made the decision to bring him in if we didn’t feel that way,” Pagano said. “Based on what we saw on tape, there’s video evidence that he’s more than capable of still being that guy.

“Some guys are like that. Carry 1 through 20, they’re OK. And 20 to 30, they keep getting better as you wear defenses down. And I think Frank is that type of runner.”

Fantasy Impact:

Gore is turning 32 this summer, but should be able to shore up the Colts' running game. Dan Herron and Vick Ballard are in the mix, but Gore is better than advertised in the passing game. Gore averaged 51.0 receptions from 2006-2010, but as soon as Greg Roman took over as offensive coordinator in 2011, his targets dropped precipitously. He averaged just 28.3 targets over the past four seasons, while the Colts' running backs accounted for 113 targets last season, so look for Gore's value to jump in PPR formats. Due to his age, Gore typically goes later than he should in fantasy drafts, but he hasn't missed a game in three seasons and should be reinvigorated by a change of scenery.

Raiders sign RB Trent Richardson

Tuesday, March 17, 2015, 1:00pm

Bill Williamson, Twitter - [Full Article]

Can confirm Trent Richardson is final stages of getting deal with Raiders.

Fantasy Impact:

This is actually good news for Latavius Murray, since Richardson isn't a real threat to Murray's chances of winning the RB1 job in Oakland. The team went hard after DeMarco Murray but ended up with T-Rich. There's an opportunity for a joke here, but we're going to let it pass. The team also signed Roy Helu, who should serve as the third down back.

Colts waive RB Trent Richardson

Thursday, March 12, 2015, 7:08pm

USA Today - [Full Article]

The Colts have waived running back Trent Richardson after two disappointing seasons following a trade that brought the former top-five draft pick from Cleveland.

Fantasy Impact:

The Colts will move forward with Frank Gore, Dan Herron and Vick Ballard, unless they decide to add another RB in the draft or via free agency.

Colts sign WR Andre Johnson to a three-year deal

Wednesday, March 11, 2015, 4:32pm

Jason La Canfora, Twitter - [Full Article]

Andre Johnson's three-year deal with the Colts is worth $21 million. Gets to face the Texans twice a year.

Fantasy Impact:

Johnson will likely start opposite T.Y. Hilton. It’s a big upgrade from a quality-of-quarterback standpoint, as he has never played with one as good as Andrew Luck. His targets are likely to take a hit, however. He averaged 9.7 T/G in 2014, while Hilton and Reggie Wayne led the Colts with 8.7 and 7.7 T/G, respectively. So this looks like a case of the targets dropping but the quality of those targets increasing. After finishing in the top 10 (in PPR) in five of his previous six seasons, Johnson finished #28 in 2014. He’s turning 34 this offseason, so it may be foolhardy to expect a huge bounceback season, but low-end WR2 numbers in PPR formats seem reasonable. His arrival puts a big dent in Donte Moncrief's prospects.

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