Wednesday, November 26, 2014, 6:20pm
It's a good sign that Foster is practicing this early in the week, even if he's limited. We'll see how the groin responds on Thursday and Friday, but for now we're penciling him into lineups. He has an outstanding matchup against the Titans, who are last in the league in RB aFPA.
It appears that the Colts have seen enough of Richardson and his 2.9-3.4 YPC that he's provided since coming over from the Browns. Herron carried the ball 12 times for 65 yards (5.4 YPC) against the Jaguars in Week 12, and added five catches for 31 yards for good measure. Herron looks like a premier add this week on the waiver wire.
Bears beat writer Michael C. Wright was asked how the team intends to cover the Lions' receivers:
Wright: To me, that's one of the most significant concerns for the Bears entering this game. As you already know, rookie cornerback Kyle Fuller's availability for this game is uncertain with him suffering a knee injury in the win over Tampa Bay. Fuller had been playing with a broken hand and a hip pointer prior to his latest setback. Fuller's injury didn't appear to be significant initially. But if Fuller can't go, the Bears would likely go with undrafted rookie Al Louis-Jean, who possesses similar size to Tillman (6-foot-1, 187 pounds). But would you want to put an undrafted rookie on Johnson? Tim Jennings (5-foot-8) would likely struggle matching up with Johnson. So Chicago would be in a tough spot if Fuller isn't able to play. If the Bears are forced to go with Louis-Jean, more than likely, the corners would probably stay on their respective sides with the defense giving the corner to Johnson's side safety help over the top, along with extra help underneath whether that's from a linebacker or the nickel.
Ryan met with Smith and Michael Vick on Wednesday morning and informed them of the decision. Ryan likes to say that all decisions are organizational decisions, but this choice suggests that General Manager John Idzik had a far greater say and it bodes poorly for Ryan’s job security.
Starting Smith on Monday – and the rest of the season, it seems – gives Idzik another, perhaps final, opportunity to evaluate the quarterback he drafted in the second round last year.
The Jets offense is a mess and Smith won't be startable in a bad matchup with the Dolphins on Monday night. It may be good news for Eric Decker long term. In the five games in which Smith attempted more than 15 passes (and Decker played at least 60% of the snaps), Decker averaged 4.6 receptions for 61 yards and 0.60 TD on 8.0 targets per game. The arrival of Percy Harvin may change this dynamic, but Decker has posted solid fantasy numbers with Smith under center. We wouldn't want to use any of the Jets players this week in a tough matchup, however.
Washington is planning to start Colt McCoy over Robert Griffin III on Sunday at Indianapolis, per a team source.
While Griffin is not a part of Washington's plan for Sunday's game, he still appears to be a significant part of the Redskins' long-term plan, per another source.
Yet right now, Washington is hitting the reset button, though it might not last long, a source cautioned.
McCoy has played a game and a half of football this season, relieving Kirk Cousins in the second half of Week 7 against the Titans. In that game he threw for 128 yards, which included a 70-yard touchdown to Pierre Garcon. He started the following week in Dallas, throwing for 299 yards and an interception, while also rushing for 16 yards and a touchdown. More importantly, the Redskins beat the Cowboys, 20-17. The thing that jumps out about McCoy is his YPA, which is 10.2 on 42 attempts. This is a rather small sample size, but it is an encouraging sign for McCoy backers. The move may be good for DeSean Jackson, who had six catches for 136 yards in McCoy's start against Dallas. Jackson had a nice Week 8 game with Griffin against the Vikings, but only caught six passes for 74 yards combined in the last two games. McCoy doesn't have a bad matchup the rest of the way.
Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 9:01pm
Jets rookie tight end Jace Amaro has a head injury and is going through the NFL's concussion protocol.
For much of the last two seasons, the Denver Broncos have lived the hot-hand life in the run game.
Running backs coach Eric Studesville, with a collection of backs he ranks every week for playing time but close enough in abilities to split the carries in some fashion, would roll them all through the huddle.
As he puts it: “It’s a gut feel, you look at the guys, look at where were are on offense, see how they’re running and you go from there."
Besides, when a team throws the ball as often as the Broncos have since Manning’s arrival in 2012, there aren’t always that many carries to go around.
“I don’t know what’s going to happen, but I just look at it like I need to get myself ready to handle whatever they ask me to do," Anderson said. “[Studesville] tells me to go in and I go in. He tells me to run it, I run it. If you need to block, you block, if you need to catch the ball, you catch the ball. And if you need to wait a bit to do it, you wait and stay ready."
The story goes on to point out that with injuries to Montee Ball (right groin) and Ronnie Hillman (left foot), the sturdy Anderson might get a workload that resembles a primary-back approach like he did in Sunday’s win over the Miami Dolphins. Anderson had 27 carries for 167 yards -- both season-highs for a Broncos running back and easily career-bests for Anderson. The Broncos are at Kansas City in Week 13.
Already dealing with an ankle problem, Bush was limited in Tuesday’s practice with a back injury, too.
He also would have been a limited participant on Monday with both injuries, if the Lions had actually practiced.
Bush, of course, said he would play Thanksgiving Day in a nice matchup against the Bears. However, we've learned not to trust players when it comes to their injury status. Owners have been down this road several times, so they already know Joique Bell should get a bulk of the carries while Theo Riddick plays a part in the passing game - if Bush misses Thursday's game.
The Broncos were in the market for a new kicker after McManus clanked a 33-yard field goal off the right upright in Denver's 39-36 win over Miami on Sunday. That came on the heels of a game in St. Louis where they passed up field goal attempts of 54 and 55 yards indoors.
McManus' longest field goal was from 44 yards, and he didn't really get the chance for a pressure kick for the AFC West-leading Broncos.
While solid on kickoffs, McManus was 9 for 13 on field goal attempts. His 69.2 percent conversion rate was dead last among NFL kickers, ranking ahead of only Nate Freese and Alex Henery, both of whom were released by Detroit earlier this season.
Barth, who spent four of his five seasons in Tampa Bay, has plenty of experience in crunch time, although not for a team with quite the Super Bowl aspirations of the Broncos, the story said. Barth has made 84 percent of his career field goal tries. He was the most accurate kicker in Buccaneers history but missed all of last season after tearing the Achilles tendon in his right foot during a charity basketball game. He returned this year but was beaten out by rookie Patrick Murray. The Broncos, of course, kept McManus over Matt Prater who was suspended the first four games of the season and is now with Detroit. Barth has a ton of fantasy potential for those looking to upgrade.
The Arizona Cardinals are doing something about their troubled ground game.
Bush, 30, hasn't played since making 13 appearances with the Bears last season as a short-yardage back who never lived up to the promise of the four-year deal he signed in 2012. The former Raiders starter rumbled for 977 yards with Oakland in 2011, but accounted for just 197 yards and three scores in the Windy City last autumn.
As the story said, in theory, Bush gives the Cardinals a physical presence they've missed this season. Andre Ellington is a tantalizing athlete, but Arizona's inability to sustain drives on the ground cost them dearly in Sunday's loss to the Seahawks. Coming out of Week 12, only the Raiders are churning out fewer yards per outing than the Cards. The Cards have had some tough matchups at least in terms of fantasy. Things get a bit easier the next two weeks, but for fantasy playoffs, it's the Rams and Seahawks followed by the 49ers in Week 17, all in the top-five. Bush likely won't have much fantasy value, but could potentially steal short-yardage TDs.
Cameron would be an interesting play for those hurting at the TE position at this point in your season. While he's had three concussions the last three years, the thought of Cameron getting back on the field with WR Josh Gordon opening things up is too good to pass up. We'll continue to monitor the situation but early signs apparently point to him playing in Week 13. The Browns take on the Bills who came into last week as the top team against TEs, but Cameron's schedule the rest of the way appears favorable.
Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 2:09pm
HC Jay Gruden's calling a vanilla offense because Griffin can’t handle a more complicated scheme right now. He has to call quick-hitters in an attempt to get the ball out of the quarterback’s hands, because he’s holding on to it too long as he struggles to play with rhythm and anticipation.
Gruden couldn’t afford to have Griffin stand in the pocket and wait for things to unfold downfield on Sunday because of the fierce 49ers defense. He got sacked six times while waiting for intermediate routes to unfold. Gruden tried to spice things up by calling for the Pierre Garcon end-around/pass downfield. He also called for Griffin to take a shot downfield, but he threw into double coverage and didn’t even see Pierre Garcon wide open in single coverage, also downfield.
Jones answered many frustrating questions from fans about RGIII. Another interesting answer was that Gruden is likely very frustrated Griffin hasn't picked up more of the offense by now, which leads Gruden to say things like: they intend to start Griffin this week. Jones went on to say Gruden was hired to fix RGIII but so far that hasn't happened and while he likely feels he needs to give RGIII more time, watching this offense is a struggle. It all adds up to meaning just about everyone on the Redskins offense is a risky fantasy play, especially as we head into the fantasy playoff season.
Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 12:44pm
Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 12:39pm
Thomas had just five carries to Ingram's 11, but as expected, Thomas was a big part in the passing game with six catches for 37 yards. Ingram had a tough time, at one point having seven carries for 0 yards before finishing with a 11-27-0 line. At WR, Toon ended with three catches for 42 yards but it was Kenny Stills who had eight catches for 98 yards and seemed to benefit the most from a fantasy perspective with Cooks not being in the lineup.