It’s another setback for Lee (hamstring), who didn’t miss an OTA or minicamp practice this spring/summer. He has missed practice time the last two training camps with knee and hamstring issues. Yeldon (right ankle) was limping around the locker room after yesterday’s workout because of an issue with his new cleats.
Jags QB Blake Bortles enters this year's camp with a clear mind.
That should be good news for the Jaguars' offense. Bortles had a rough rookie season in 2014. He threw for 11 touchdown passes and 17 interceptions, then spent the entire offseason reworking his throwing motion (he shortened his windup and lengthened his follow-through) and cleaning up fundamentals. That helped him make a significant leap in his second season, when he set franchise records in attempts (606), completions (355), passing yards (4,428) and passing touchdowns (35).
Earlier this month, Bortles spent six days in California with throwing coach Tom House, who helped him the previous offseason, but only to fine-tune a few things. He spent the rest of the offseason throwing with receivers in town, seeking advice from quarterbacks such as Green Bay's Aaron Rodgers. The fantasy community is expecting Bortles to regress in his third season due to his outrageous share of total touchdowns (taking part in 37 of the team’s 40 offensive touchdowns), the addition of Chris Ivory as a short yardage threat and a boatload of free agency money and draft picks thrown at the defensive side of the ball. Still, as the 10th or 11th QB off the board, he’s a solid pick given his weapons in the receiving game.
The main question with Forte is how much tread he has left on the tire. He had a remarkable workload in Chicago. He leads the NFL in all-purpose yards (12,718) since he entered the league in 2008. Forte is now 30, which is seen by most as the point where running backs fall off the cliff. Forte is out to prove them wrong.
Chan Gailey will come up with plenty of creative ways to get Forte the ball. Gailey loves to throw to running backs, and Forte is as good as it gets in that department. I would expect to see plenty of screen passes and Forte lined up at wide receiver in certain formations.
Forte may lose carries to Bilal Powell and/or Khiry Robinson, and is unlikely to score many rushing touchdowns. But if he's utilized regularly in the slot, he should be able to catch at least 50 passes, maybe more. Jets running backs caught a total of 90 balls last season under OC Chan Gailey. Forte hasn’t finished outside the top 12 in PPR formats in his eight-year career.
It's all about Matt Forte, who will be asked to replace 1,000-yard rusher Chris Ivory as the lead dog in the Jets' backfield. Forte will be highly motivated after getting the cold shoulder from his forever team, the Chicago Bears. Forte, 30, is battling Father Time and a cranky knee that sparked some concern in free agency, but he's said to be healthy and rejuvenated as he approaches his ninth season. His workload will be an ongoing story. As a three-down back for the Bears, he averaged 315 touches (rushes and receptions) per year. That's a bit steep for an aging runner, so look for a time-share system with Bilal Powell.
There was a noticeable improvement last season in Powell's speed and quickness. He set career highs in yards per rush (4.5) and receptions (47), becoming a valuable member of the offense. He was the ideal complement to the bruising Ivory, but the dynamics have changed. Powell and Forte have similar skill sets, so it'll be interesting to how it plays out in terms of role definition.
Khiry Robinson could wind up as the short-yardage/goal-line back (fantasy alert). Don't be surprised if he starts camp on the physically-unable-to-perform list. Robinson sat out the offseason as he recovered from a broken leg, but he should be good to go in the preseason.
Forte may lose carries to Powell and/or Robinson, and is unlikely to score many rushing touchdowns. But if he's utilized regularly in the slot, he should be able to catch at least 50 passes, maybe more. Jets running backs caught a total of 90 balls last season under OC Chan Gailey. Forte hasn’t finished outside the top 12 in PPR formats in his eight-year career.
The Jaguars’ running back situation, chiefly how the carries will be divided between Ivory and T.J. Yeldon, is a frequent question. Most expect Ivory to be the starter and Yeldon a third-down back. But don’t be surprised if it ends being a more even split (55-45 range).
What will be interesting is if the Jaguars coaches take the Hot Hand Approach, giving Ivory and Yeldon equal first-half work and then leaning on one guy in the second half.
We currently project a 53/47 split in carries between Ivory and Yeldon. Ivory is probably the better bet in standard formats, while Yeldon could end up with more points in PPR leagues.
The Jets let Bilal Powell know how they felt about him by signing him to a three-year, $11.25 million contract in free agency. Powell is one of the few holdovers left from the Mike Tannenbaum era. Powell’s ability to stick with the Jets through three general managers and four offensive coordinators shows how valued he is.
The Jets revamped their running back corps this offseason, but Powell remains in the middle of it. It will be interesting to see how Gailey divides up the carries between Powell and Matt Forte, who arrives with a great reputation and resume. Powell complemented former Jets running back Chris Ivory, who was more of a bruising back than he is, but Powell and Forte have similar skill sets, so this could be a trickier division of labor for Gailey.
You can count on Powell getting major touches this season, though. Gailey will figure out a way.
The Florida Times-Union reports that Robinson was found asleep behind the wheel of a car by police responding to reports about a car crashing into a pond early on Sunday morning. Neither Robinson nor his passenger were hurt.
Per the responding officer, Robinson woke up and then went back to sleep after a knock on the window before eventually being roused from his slumber. The police report adds that both Robinson and the other passenger were reluctant to exit the vehicle despite the officer telling them that the car was sinking into the pond.
According to the report, Robinson was screened by two officers and found not to be intoxicated, the story went on to say. In a post to Twitter, Robinson indicated that he fell asleep at the wheel. We just posted a news story about the Jags RB situation and Robinson would likely be battling for the RB3 spot behind T.J. Yeldon and Chris Ivory.
Tuesday, July 5, 2016, 10:56am
Gray was given an opportunity in the team’s final two games and said he “feels good about” what he was able to do: 14 carries for 54 yards while showing a nice burst against New Orleans and Houston.
Getting another chance like that in Jacksonville this season could be difficult.
Robinson has struggled to prove he can withstand a heavy workload. Grant was placed on injured reserve in October with a hip injury. He had just two carries last season, but might also be the team’s best kick returner. But, Gray has struggled to stay on the radar since a huge game against Indy with the Pats. He was then late for a meeting and eventually lost his roster spot.
Via Hays Carlyon of the Florida Times-Union, Jaguars tight end Julius Thomas and quarterback Blake Bortles looked “nearly unstoppable” during Organized Team Activities and minicamp. While shorts and T-shirts football remains a far cry from real football, it won’t be a surprise if Thomas and Bortles are indeed unstoppable this year.
Last season, Thomas broke his hand during the preseason. This season, assuming that he stays healthy, Thomas will have plenty of opportunities in a passing game fueled by receivers Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns.
Thomas missed the first month of the season with a hand injury, but returned in Week 5 to post #11 TE numbers (PPR) the rest of the way. He has missed seven games over the past two seasons due to injury. He has reportedly had a great offseason and has spent extra time in the film room with QB Blake Bortles in the hopes of building better chemistry.
“I’m at 225; it’s a better 225,” Yeldon said. “I’m still going to try and lose five more pounds before camp. I feel like I’ve gotten a lot stronger to hold off the bigger guys [on defense].”
Prior to the Chris Ivory signing, Yeldon was an intriguing middle round pick thanks to a large projected workload, but the duo is expected to split carries with Ivory getting most of the goal line work. Yeldon figures to be the primary pass-catching back, so his value is a bit higher in PPR formats.
Quarterback Blake Bortles said that he and Thomas have been working to develop the kind of chemistry that leads to a spike in production.
“We had a chance this offseason to sit down multiple times, watch film and talk about things,” Bortles said, via ESPN.com. “Talk about what he wanted from me and what I wanted from him and how we can quickly get on the same page to grow together. He’s been unbelievable. He’s obviously a freak athlete and he’s continued to prove that and make plays.”
Thomas missed the first month of the season with a hand injury, but returned in Week 5 to post #11 TE numbers (PPR) the rest of the way. He has missed seven games over the past two seasons due to injury.
The Jaguars continue to be one of the teams to watch in 2016, in part because they have a high-end passing game that few noticed in 2015. Guys like quarterback Blake Bortles and receivers Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns are heading into their third NFL seasons, and things continue to look up for the offense, and for the rest of the team.
“All of the receivers have been in our locker room at some point this offseason,” Bortles said Monday, via Hays Carlyon of the Florida Times-Union. “It’s been cool to see them work together and talk through some stuff as well. The chemistry is continuing to grow, not only on the field, but off the field as well — in the weight room and in the locker room. That builds trust. It’s a special room of receivers that are all super talented.”
Bortles hoped to add to the chemistry by being present and available.
“I tried to stay here a little bit more,” Bortles said. “Most of the guys are here, which is good so we can go over stuff together.”
Robinson and Hurns were already pretty good fantasy WRs last year as the Jags played from behind in a lot of their games. But the offense continues to grow together and the Jags passing game could be one to look for in fantasy drafts this summer.
Wednesday, March 9, 2016, 7:24pm
The Rams reportedly made a late push, but he decided to stay put where he’s spent all 10 years of his career.
Lewis caught just 16 passes last year and 18 the year before, well off the kind of production that once made him their franchise player.
But there’s something to be said for consistency, and Lewis lends the kind of blocking and gravity the Jaguars can use as they try to make the next step.
Of course, Julius Thomas will remain the pass-catching option at the TE position for the Jags.
Wednesday, March 9, 2016, 7:14pm
Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reported Gipson will sign a five-year deal worth up to $35.5 million with the Jaguars.
Gipson was named to the Pro Bowl in 2014, when he finished with six interceptions in 11 games. He had two interceptions in 13 games last season, when he played under a second-round restricted free agent tender.
One of the stalwarts of the New York Jets' offense won't be returning to the team in 2016.
Running back Chris Ivory, who racked up more than 1,000 yards last season, will sign with the Jacksonville Jaguars after NFL free agency opens on Wednesday, a source told NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport.
Related players: T.J. Yeldon
Ivory reportedly got approximately $6 million a year which is quite surprising considering the team's other needs, the presence of T.J. Yeldon and the fact that Ivory is mainly a two-down player. The signing is obviously bad news for Yeldon's stock, which is dependent on expected volume. Ivory is a pretty good runner and it's conceivable that the duo will form a timeshare in 2016.
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