Fantasy News Home

Bengals signed WR Brandon LaFell

Wednesday, March 30, 2016, 4:41pm

ESPN - [Full Article]

Former New England Patriots wide receiver Brandon LaFell has reached agreement with the Cincinnati Bengals, agents Neil Schwartz and Jonathan Feinsod said.

In two seasons with the Patriots, LaFell caught 111 passes and scored seven touchdowns. However, his role diminished greatly in 2015 and he was released March 2.

LaFell had a career year with the Patriots in 2014, his first season with the club, totaling 74 receptions for 953 yards and seven touchdowns. He started 13 of 16 games during the regular season and then all three playoff contests, adding 13 catches for 119 yards and two touchdowns in the playoffs.

An injury to his left foot, however, affected his offseason, and he opened 2015 on the physically unable to perform list. LaFell never seemed to find his groove upon his return, finishing this past season with 37 catches for 515 yards and no touchdowns.

Fantasy Impact:

Last season, LaFell was never able to recapture the magic from the year before, when he finished as the #22 fantasy receiver in standard formats. The Bengals lost both Marvin Jones and Mohamed Sanu this offseason, so LaFell will have the opportunity to start if the team doesn't use an early draft pick on a receiver.

Packers to sign TE Jared Cook

Monday, March 28, 2016, 10:15am

ESPN - [Full Article]

Tight end Jared Cook will sign a deal to join the Green Bay Packers, sources told ESPN.

Cook is in Green Bay taking a physical before the deal will be official, a source told ESPN Packers reporter Rob Demovsky.

The Carolina Panthers, Atlanta Falcons and Chicago Bears also had interest in the 28-year-old, sources told ESPN, but he opted to join Green Bay and its offense led by quarterback Aaron Rodgers.

Fantasy Impact:

Cook finished #28 in 2015 (PPR), but in the four prior seasons, he posted an average ranking of 16.3. He ran a 4.49 40-yard dash at the combine back in 2009 and while he's probably lost a step along the way, he can still threaten the seam better than Richard Rodgers. It's not inconceivable that he turns into a fantasy starter, but the position is deep this year and unless he vastly outplays Rodgers, he's more likely to form a committee with the third-year tight end.

Saints match Bears' offer sheet to TE Josh Hill

Friday, March 25, 2016, 4:09pm

nola.com - [Full Article]

The New Orleans Saints are keeping tight end Josh Hill by matching the offer sheet he signed with the Chicago Bears, the team announced Friday.

Fantasy Impact:

This means that Hill is staying in New Orleans. He isn't likely to have much fantasy value playing behind Coby Fleener, but owners should have him on speed dial if Fleener can't stay healthy.

Patriots to sign WR Nate Washington

Thursday, March 24, 2016, 5:00pm

Adam Schefter - [Full Article]

The Patriots are signing former Texans and Titans WR Nate Washington.

Fantasy Impact:

Washington is turning 33 in August. He averaged 3.4 catches for 47 yards in 14 games last season with the Texans. It's not inconceivable that he wins the starting job on the outside, but he'll have to beat out Chris Hogan, whom the team prioritized in free agency.

Browns sign QB Robert Griffin III

Thursday, March 24, 2016, 12:48pm

Cleveland Browns - [Full Article]

Robert Griffin III was sold on Cleveland as soon as his meeting with Browns head coach Hue Jackson and associate head coach Pep Hamilton was complete.

Now, the former Washington Redskins quarterback is focused on just one thing: Coming to the Cleveland and competing to become the team’s starting quarterback.

Griffin, a free agent, made it official Thursday when he signed with the Browns.

“I'm excited about the opportunity to join the Dawg Pound and help build something here in Cleveland,” Griffin said. “Coach Hue and Pep, I had a great meeting with them. I really believe in what they preach and how they can help not only me as a player but this team win games and that's what we're all about.

“I'm just excited to come in and compete. Nothing's ever been given to me in my life, so I just want to go out and compete with the guys and grow with this team. I feel like that's all I'm really focused on.”

Fantasy Impact:

RG3 will have the opportunity for a fresh start after an up-and-then-down stint in Washington. We're not immediately writing off the Browns potentially having a few quality fantasy players in 2016 with Griffin, Duke Johnson, Gary Barnidge and maybe Josh Gordon in the fold. Griffin's short-term upside depends largely on the presence of Gordon, who is a game-changer in the passing game.

Eagles sign WR Rueben Randle

Wednesday, March 23, 2016, 9:50pm

CBS Sports - [Full Article]

For the first time in his NFL career, Rueben Randle won't be wearing a Giants uniform. After four years in New York, the free agent receiver is jumping ship for a division rival.

The 24-year-old agreed to terms on a one-year deal with the Eagles on Wednesday, the team announced. Randle's agent, Vincent Taylor, told NFL.com that the deal includes $500,000 in guaranteed money and can be worth up to $3 million if Randle meets all of his incentives.

Before the Eagles added Randle on Wednesday, new coach Doug Pederson had mentioned that Nelson Agholor and Jordan Matthews would be the top two outside receivers heading into OTAs. If that doesn't change, Randle will likely compete against Josh Huff for playing time at the No. 3 receiver spot.

Fantasy Impact:

Randle will likely compete with Josh Huff for WR3 duties, but he could push the unimpressive Nelson Agholor for snaps as the team's WR2. Randle has largely been a fantasy disappointment, but he did finish as the #28 WR (standard) in 2015 and #37 the year before.

Koetter: WR Vincent Jackson isn't 'anywhere close to being done'

Wednesday, March 23, 2016, 1:02pm

Rick Stroud - [Full Article]

Buccaneers HC Dirk Koetter says he feels good about his receiving corps and is not of the belief Vincent Jackson "is anywhere close to being done."

Fantasy Impact:

Jackson struggled with a knee injury in 2015, but produced as a fringe fantasy WR2 (3.9-66-0.38) in the eight games that he was able to finish. Ageism is real in fantasy football, and given his 11th-round ADP, owners are already writing him off in early drafts. If his knee looks healthy this offseason then he'll be a nice value later on in the draft.

Eagles WR Nelson Agholor still expected to start

Wednesday, March 23, 2016, 12:47pm

Zach Berman - [Full Article]

Eagles HC Doug Pederson said Jordan Matthews and Nelson Agholor are the two starting outside WRs entering spring. “Yes, that’s how it looks right now."

Fantasy Impact:

Agholor was a major fantasy disappointment in his rookie season, but it sounds as if the team hasn't given up on the possibility that he'll develop into a productive starter. He's currently going in the 10th round of early fantasy drafts.

49ers RB Carlos Hyde looks ready for OTAs

Wednesday, March 23, 2016, 12:43pm

Sacramento Bee - [Full Article]

Carlos Hyde seems to have recovered from foot surgery.

Hyde’s Miami, Fla.-based trainer recently posted a reel of Hyde and 49ers teammate Bruce Ellington going through drills and both players look ready for the team’s offseason program, which begins April 4.

The clip shows Hyde, who had surgery in December to repair a stress fracture in his left foot, weaving through cones, hopping over hurdles and looking perhaps a little slimmer than the 235 pounds at which he was listed last year.

Fantasy Impact:

Hyde was the #14 RB (PPR) through the first six weeks before missing the rest of the season with a foot injury. Chip Kelly's teams in Philadelphia had an average ranking of 7.3 in total rush attempts, so Hyde should get plenty of work as the team's lead back. The team re-signed Shaun Draughn after he showed solid productivity down the stretch, but Hyde is the better talent and should serve as the team's RB1.

Pete Carroll updates the status of RB Thomas Rawls and TE Jimmy Graham

Tuesday, March 22, 2016, 9:49pm

Seattle Times - [Full Article]

Running back Thomas Rawls will be ready for the start of the season, tight end Jimmy Graham could be, and the Seahawks did not like the idea of two personal fouls resulting in an ejection.

On how Thomas Rawls is doing in his recovery: “He’s doing really well. He should be fine and we anticipate that he’ll be fully recovered and ready to go at least by the time the season starts and hopefully by camp. Thomas had a terrific season. He just came out of nowhere and most people, they didn’t have any idea what he was going to do. He brought us attitude and style of play that we like. He was really physical and really tough, so we’re thrilled to have him coming back and we need to get him some help. Christine Michael re-signed with us which is a good thing; Christine did his best job of playing football for us in the short stint that he had. So those two guys will be the one-two punch right now and we’ll see where we go from there.”

On Jimmy Graham: “I’m communicating with Jimmy regularly. He should be fine. It is a substantial recovery. He’s doing great and he’s doing everything he needs to do, and he’s really competitive about it. We’re anticipating that he’ll come back and again we hope to have him by the start of the season. We’ll see how it goes as far as camp and all of that, but he’s an incredible football player and a great team member and we’re thrilled to have him on our club. We were just getting going with Jimmy last year, so we’ll be really excited to get him back in the lineup.”

Fantasy Impact:

Carroll sounded more optimistic about Rawls being ready for camp than he did of Graham. With Marshawn Lynch out of the way, Rawls is first in line for workhorse back duties given his performance in 2015. In the six games in which Rawls played and Lynch did not, the rookie averaged 20.5 touches for 120 yards and 0.84 touchdowns (on a stellar 5.6 YPC). That doesn't even include Week 3, when he turned 16 carries into 104 yards while Lynch was limited to five carries. Michael may form a "1-2 punch" with Rawls but we expect that Rawls will get the clear majority of the carries.

Chiefs say RB Jamaal Charles will be ready for training camp

Tuesday, March 22, 2016, 5:18pm

Kansas City Star - [Full Article]

Chiefs trainer Rick Burkholder also gave injury updates on a number of players Tuesday afternoon.

Running back Jamaal Charles and cornerback Phillip Gaines each underwent ACL surgery early last season. Both are doing “great,” and both are training at the team’s facility and will get some limited work during organized team activities and minicamps in May and June.

Fantasy Impact:

Charles tore his ACL in mid-October, so he will be nine months into his recovery in mid-August. Historically, it takes a year to fully recover from a torn ACL, but that timeframe has been decreasing in recent years.

Bears say that WR Kevin White is '100 percent healthy'

Tuesday, March 22, 2016, 5:05pm

Adam Jahns - [Full Article]

Bears GM Ryan Pace said WR Kevin White is 100 percent healthy.

Fantasy Impact:

White, who spent the entire year on the shelf with a severe case of shin splints and/or some sort of leg injury, should have a big role in 2016. He was starting to practice before the end of the season but landed on injured reserve since he wasn’t in game shape and there was no really point in rushing him back in what became a lost season for the Bears. He was the #7 overall pick in the 2015 Draft and the bottom line is that the Bears need him.

Bears sign RFA TE Josh Hill to an offer sheet

Tuesday, March 22, 2016, 4:59pm

Brad Biggs - [Full Article]

It is a 3-year contract for TE Josh Hill and Saints have until Sunday to match Bears offer.

Fantasy Impact:

Hill was a 4for4 sleeper last summer until it became clear that the Saints were intent on starting Benjamin Watson at tight end. If Hill signs with the Bears, then he'll likely back up Zachary Miller who played very well down the stretch last season.

Cowboys sign RB Alfred Morris

Tuesday, March 22, 2016, 10:34am

ESPN - [Full Article]

Former Washington Redskins running back Alfred Morris will sign a two-year deal with the Dallas Cowboys, his agent confirmed to ESPN.

Morris, 27, rushed for a franchise-record 1,613 yards as the Redskins captured the NFC East title in 2012. He benefited from the zone read option, but also excelled out of any look in the Redskins' outside zone system.

This past season, Morris finished with 806 yards overall and one touchdown. He averaged career lows in yards per carry (3.7) and yards after contact (1.45).

Fantasy Impact:

On the outs in Washington, Morris's career may be on the upswing as he lands with a team who not only wants him, but also has one of the best offensive lines in football. His arrival puts a big dent in Darren McFadden's upside as the duo will probably form a timeshare as long as both players stay productive. Morris may hold more value in standard formats while McFadden will compete with Lance Dunbar to serve as the team's primary back on passing downs.

Steelers 'excited' about WR Sammie Coates

Monday, March 21, 2016, 4:04pm

Gerry Dulac - [Full Article]

Mike Tomlin: "We’re excited about growth and development of Sammie Coates. I’m more concerned about [Martavis Bryant] the man than contributor to offense."

Fantasy Impact:

The team has been talking up Coates since news broke of Martavis Bryant's suspension. He's likely to fill the WR3 role occupied by Markus Wheaton last year. Wheaton is likely to see full-time snaps. As the WR3, Coates could be 4th or 5th in targets after Antonio Brown, Wheaton, Ladarius Green and LeVeon Bell.

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