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Friday, January 6, 2017, 5:00pm

Texans K Nick Novak (shoulder) took full practice reps all week.

Ravens WR Steve Smith Sr. has officially retired

Friday, January 6, 2017, 10:05am

Steve Smith - [Full Article]

Steve L Smith has retired from the NFL in true Steve Smith fashion:

"This is to notify you that as of today, I, Steve Smith Sr., will no longer be antagonizing defensive backs. I am retiring from the National Football League."

Fantasy Impact:

In his illustrious 16-year career, Smith made five Pro Bowls and was named First Team All-Pro twice. He is 12th in career receptions (1,031), 7th in receiving yards (14,731) and 26th in touchdowns (81). He will be missed.

Giants OC: Paul Perkins & Rashad Jennings 'complement each other well'

Thursday, January 5, 2017, 4:50pm

Jordan Raanan - [Full Article]

Giants OC Mike Sullivan says Paul Perkins and Rashad Jennings complement each other well. I'd still expect Giants to use both good amount.

Fantasy Impact:

On Wednesday, Raanan said there was a "good chance" that Perkins would start against the Packers. He has out-carried Jennings 36-to-27 in the last two games, and has out-gained Jennings 170-to-96 in the same span. But it's unlikely that the Giants completely hand the RB1 job to a rookie in an elimination game against the Packers. Perkins is the better play this week, but Jennings is likely to stay involved.

Bills QB Tyrod Taylor 'elected' to have surgery on injured groin

Thursday, January 5, 2017, 11:17am

Buffalo Bills - [Full Article]

The Buffalo Bills confirmed in a team statement Thursday that quarterback Tyrod Taylor chose to have surgery after seeking a second opinion this week. The statement read as follows.

Bills QB Tyrod Taylor had a consultation visit yesterday with Dr. William Meyers and elected to have surgery this morning. The Bills were informed late yesterday of this morning’s procedure.

No other details on the procedure were provided.

Fantasy Impact:

There's some drama regarding Taylor's contract. If he can't pass a physical on March 11, the Bills are "stuck" with Taylor and a contract number of $27.5 M. Pro Football Talk: "The Buffalo predicament is the direct result of a convoluted contract extension aimed at giving Taylor a bump for 2016 along with the promise of a big payday in 2017, while protecting the Bills against a Kirk Cousins-style franchise tag dilemma after what would have been the last year of Taylor’s contract. If that device blows up on the Bills, with Taylor getting the $27.5 million at a time when the Bills would have liked to pull the plug and move on, the blame will fall on the two men who have managed to work their relationships with ownership into a high degree of job security: G.M. Doug Whaley and team president Russ Brandon." We're very interested to see where Taylor lands. From a fantasy standpoint, he should get out of Buffalo and start fresh elsewhere.

Raiders to start QB Connor Cook vs. Texans

Wednesday, January 4, 2017, 2:50pm

Aaron Wilson - [Full Article]

Jack Del Rio on starting Connor Cook 'we trust him to go out and lead us'.

Fantasy Impact:

Cook was 14-of-21 for 150 yards, a touchdown and an interception in his debut against the Broncos in Week 17. His YPA of 7.1 was significantly higher than what the Broncos allowed in 2016 (5.8 YPA). The Texans are similarly stingy against the pass, so this isn't shaping up to be an advantageous matchup.

Raiders QB Derek Carr feels positive about rehab

Tuesday, January 3, 2017, 8:27pm

Pro Football Talk - [Full Article]

Injured Raiders quarterback Derek Carr said in a radio interview Tuesday with 95.7 The Game in San Francisco that it “ripped [his] heart out” to watch the Raiders play on television last Sunday at Denver.

Carr suffered a broken leg on Christmas Eve and had surgery a few days later. That surgery revealed no ligament damage, which bodes well for Carr being back on the field this spring.

Browns want to take 'aggressive shots' to add talent

Tuesday, January 3, 2017, 8:24pm

Browns.com - [Full Article]

You build through the draft.

Browns executive vice president of football operations Sashi Brown said as much Monday afternoon in an end-of-year news conference.

But Brown, who reflected on a trying 1-15 season alongside head coach Hue Jackson and chief strategy officer Paul DePodesta, said they’ll work in “lockstep” this offseason to build up the team’s roster by any means necessary.

“We want to take aggressive shots at adding talent to the roster, whether that’s at the trade deadline, free agency or in the draft,” Brown said. “The draft is going to be our primary pipeline of talent to the roster but it’s not going to be an exclusive pipeline. I think we’re going to go out and look at all the opportunities available to us come March.”

Fantasy Impact:

Brown’s comments echo a plan outlined by owner Jimmy Haslam, who spoke Sunday after an overtime loss to the Steelers. Haslam broke down Cleveland’s path forward in three parts. Cleveland wants to re-sign our key players, be appropriately aggressive in free agency and have a great draft.

Texans will start Brock Osweiler at QB even if Tom Savage cleared

Tuesday, January 3, 2017, 5:44pm

Pro Football Talk - [Full Article]

Yes, the Texans are preparing for Saturday’s playoff game against the Raiders with Brock Osweiler as the staring quarterback. No, it won’t matter if Tom Savage clears the concussion protocol by then.

Coach Bill O’Brien made it clear on Tuesday that Osweiler is the starter for Saturday, period.

“I’m not going to speculate on when [Savage] might clear but yes he is in the concussion protocol,” O’Brien told reporters. “If he were to clear, then he would be the backup quarterback. If not, it’ll be Brandon Weeden.”

Ravens want to run more in 2017

Tuesday, January 3, 2017, 5:41pm

USA Today - [Full Article]

Joe Flacco threw for a career-high 4,317 yards and had 20 touchdown passes, but the Ravens averaged 42 passes and 23 rushes per game — an imbalance HC John Harbaugh wants to see corrected in 2017.

"Marty believes in running the football, and I believe in running the football," Harbaugh said. "We have not run the football well enough or enough, really, for the last two years. That has to change, and I think it goes hand-in-hand with being good at it and doing it a lot more than we do it."

Terrance West led the team with 774 yards rushing and rookie Kenneth Dixon had 382. Harbaugh expects both to be back next season, and hopes to add another couple of backs to the mix.

Fantasy Impact:

Dixon could be the back trending up the most here, and before he got hurt in the offseason, some who followed the team felt he'd eventually take over as the lead back in 2016. The Ravens never really trusted a rookie back to carry the load, but Dixon was certainly involved this season and has a chance to have a bigger role in 2017.

Steelers TE Ladarius Green (concussion) could return

Tuesday, January 3, 2017, 3:04pm

Tribune Review - [Full Article]

Ladarius Green remains in concussion protocol, but Steelers coach Mike Tomlin is hopeful the veteran tight end can play Sunday in the AFC wild-card playoff game against the Miami Dolphins at Heinz Field.

Green has not played since taking a blow to the head late in the Steelers' game at Cincinnati on Dec. 18.

“He is progressing rather well,” Tomlin said.

Fantasy Impact:

Green practiced on a limited basis twice last week but was withheld from the regular-season finale against the Cleveland Browns that had no impact on the Steelers' playoff positioning.

Jets OC Chan Gailey retires, five other assistants fired

Tuesday, January 3, 2017, 3:01pm

New York Post - [Full Article]

Jets offensive coordinator Chan Gailey has retired, the team announced.

The 64-year-old oversaw an offense that regressed severely in 2016 as the Jets sputtered to a 5-11 finish. Jets quarterbacks combined for 25 interceptions.

“I informed Coach Bowles prior to the 2016 season that I would retire after this season,” Gailey said in a statement. “I thought it was best to tell him early, so that he could begin to think about how he would move the team forward on offense. While we did not have the season we all wanted to have, I think there are some great people here at the Jets and in the New York/New Jersey area. I wish them all the best moving forward.”

Quarterbacks coach Kevin Patullo and running back coach Marcel Shipp were fired, along with three assistant coaches from the defensive side of the ball.

Fantasy Impact:

NFL Network reported Eagles quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo is on the Jets’ list of potential candidates to replace Gailey.

Zimmer: QB Sam Bradford earned right to start

Tuesday, January 3, 2017, 2:56pm

ESPN - [Full Article]

The Minnesota Vikings don't yet know whether Teddy Bridgewater will be their starting quarterback again. Their future, instead, could be with Sam Bradford.

Coach Mike Zimmer said in his season-ending press conference that Bradford "has earned the right to be the starting quarterback" after a year during which he set a NFL single-season record with a 71.6 completion percentage. Bradford, who came to Minnesota in a trade Sept. 3 with the Philadelphia Eagles after Bridgewater dislocated his left knee and tore his ACL on Aug. 30, threw for a career-high 3,877 yards and passed for 20 touchdowns against five interceptions.

"I think Sam has played great this year," Zimmer said. "Right now all I'm worried about is Teddy getting better. He comes in here every single day, busts his rear end and I just want him to get better right now and so we'll worry about those things later. But Sam has done remarkable things this year, with all the things that he's had to do."

Fantasy Impact:

Bradford is signed through the 2017 season, and general manager Rick Spielman said before the season that the quarterback's contract was part of the reason the Vikings were willing to trade a first-round pick and a 2018 fourth-rounder to the Philadelphia Eagles for Bradford. He will have a $18 million cap hit next year, with $4 million coming in a roster bonus due in March, and the Vikings will eventually have to decide whether to sign Bradford to a long-term contract. Meanwhile, Bridgewater has not talked to reporters since his injury, and declined interview requests during the Vikings' final open locker room session of the season on Monday. The Vikings said on Sept. 9 that Bridgewater had a multi-ligament reconstruction of his left knee, but have not disclosed which ligaments Bridgewater needed repaired other than his ACL.

Giants Beat: RB Paul Perkins should be starter vs. Pack

Tuesday, January 3, 2017, 1:06pm

ESPN - [Full Article]

When the New York Giants offense takes the field on Sunday against the Green Bay Packers in their wild-card game at Lambeau Field, there is a good chance that Paul Perkins is standing behind quarterback Eli Manning as the starting running back. There is also a good chance he’s nervous.

Perkins was handed a starting role in the regular-season finale on the road against the Washington Redskins. All he did was become the first Giants running back to rush for 100 yards in a game this season. The rookie had 102 yards on 21 carries despite admitting he was more nervous for the game than other since high school.

Fantasy Impact:

Given the way things have unfolded and the progress Perkins has made -- he’s increased his yardage total each of the past six games and shown improvement with his blocking -- it’s hard to imagine he won’t be starting against the Packers. If it’s not broken, don’t fix it, the story said.

Texans to start Brock Osweiler at QB

Tuesday, January 3, 2017, 12:46pm

NFL.com - [Full Article]

Brock Osweiler will be the starting quarterback for the Houston Texans in their AFC Wild Card game against the Oakland Raiders, head coach Bill O'Brien said Tuesday. Osweiler replaced Tom Savage, who left their Week 17 game against Tennessee with a concussion.

Fantasy Impact:

Savage had previously unseated Osweiler as the starter late in the season. Brandon Weeden will dress as the backup if Savage doesn't clear concussion protocol, O'Brien added.

Raiders expected to start Connor Cook at QB

Tuesday, January 3, 2017, 12:44pm

NFL.com - [Full Article]

For the first time in the Super Bowl era, it appears a rookie quarterback will be making his first start in an NFL playoff game.

According to NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport, the Oakland Raiders are moving forward with "the expectation that" Connor Cook is their projected starter for Saturday's matchup against the Houston Texans. Matt McGloin suffered an injury to his trapezius muscle in a season-ending loss to the Broncos and will not be ready.

Fantasy Impact:

Cook, in relief, completed 14 of 21 passes for 150 yards, a touchdown and an interception. McGloin was 6 of 11 for 21 yards. Some even felt that Cook looked like the better QB.

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