Jake Ballard Fantasy News
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Friday, August 30, 2013, 6:31pm
Wednesday, August 14, 2013, 1:40pm
There was a moment where Tom Brady yelled at Sudfeld for not getting to the ground in a drill simulating a late-game situation, but Sudfeld has been one of the most impressive Patriots throughout camp, and he carried it over into joint practices by consistently getting open against the Buccaneers linebackers and safeties. Sudfeld went 2-1 in the one-on-one coverage drills with the Patriots running backs and tight ends vs. the Buccaneers linebackers and safeties. He also caught a team-high three passes in 11-on-11 work, including a touchdown against safety Keith Tandy.
Sudfeld might be the right player to handcuff to Rob Gronkowski. He's been getting glowing reports from camp and it looks like he would start if Gronk misses time at the beginning of the season.
Sunday, August 11, 2013, 1:27pm
Patriot TEs Zach Sudfeld, Daniel Fells, Jake Ballard and Michael Hoomanawanui all filled their roles nicely in the opener. Sudfeld will assume some of Aaron Hernandez’ responsibilities, lining up offset or in the slot and catching passes, and his nifty spin move by the sideline was eerily familiar. Fells, who has had a nice camp, played well in his blocking and receiving assignments.
Ballard was counted on as more of a blocker, and Hoomanawanui did some of the same, including several snaps at fullback. All four would be useful on the 53-man roster until Rob Gronkowski returns.
Sudfeld and Fells have stood out the most in camp and there was talk of Ballard not making the team as he tries to get back to 100-percent. It seems like all could make the team if Gronkowski misses time or starts on PUP. But with the lack of info about Gronk, it's even possible Gronkowski is ready for week one. Either way, don't expect any of the other TEs to put up Hernandez-like numbers as the Pats are expected to run more and/or use more three WR sets.
Sunday, August 4, 2013, 10:19am
Patriots TE Jake Ballard was great for the Giants in 2011 with 604 receiving yards and four touchdowns, but we’re concerned about his mobility and pain threshold, even 18 months after ACL and microfracture surgery. Ballard doesn’t have any guaranteed money on his contract, either, so the Patriots could cut him with no salary-cap penalty.
Monday, July 22, 2013, 7:02pm
While Patriots TE Jake Ballard has seemed like the reasonable fill-in for Rob Gronkowski, he didn’t appear to be fully back to health during minicamps. He slogged through some routes and wasn’t a full-go participant. Microfracture surgery is hell to come back from.
Ballard could be a viable stopgap solution for Gronk owners, but he's not going to explode in this offense as some sort of replacement for Aaron Hernandez.
Jake Ballard "appeared rigid" in OTAs
Saturday, June 29, 2013, 5:55pm
Patriots TE Jake Ballard was very successful for the New York Giants in 2011 when they won the Super Bowl, catching 38 passes for 604 yards and four touchdowns. He’s coming off an ACL tear and through OTAs and minicamp has appeared rigid. But you can expect him to loosen up as he fully recovers from his injury.
Breaking: Patriots release TE Aaron Hernandez
Wednesday, June 26, 2013, 10:23am
The New England Patriots issued the following statement: “A young man was murdered last week and we extend our sympathies to the family and friends who mourn his loss. Words cannot express the disappointment we feel knowing that one of our players was arrested as a result of this investigation. We realize that law enforcement investigations into this matter are ongoing. We support their efforts and respect the process. At this time, we believe this transaction is simply the right thing to do.”
Apparently the Patriots aren't waiting for due process to run its course here. This is a damning sign for Aaron Hernandez. The Patriots will walk away from the embattled TE and his guaranteed money and move on with a less than 100% Rob Gronkowski, Jake Ballard, Daniel Fells and Michael Hoomanawanui on the roster. Another player to monitor is rookie 6'7" Zach Sudfeld out of Nevada. Sudfeld went undrafted, but had a really impressive pro day and the fact that the Patriots picked him up during all this turmoil may be telling. The loss of Hernandez as a weapon ultimately hurts Tom Brady. The Patriots could move towards a more run-oriented attack led by Stevan Ridley and Shane Vereen. We'll have a full rankings update with all the fallout later today, but don't expect Ballard or any other TE to just step in and fill the hole left by Hernandez.
Friday, June 21, 2013, 9:46am
Garafolo - Huge. He's almost 100%.
Ballard is coming off reconstructive knee surgery after getting hurt in the Super Bowl in 2012 while with the Giants. Ballard will turn 26 in December. He caught 38 passes for over 600 yards during the 2011 season along with four TDs. With the uncertainty of the Patriot TEs, it's possible Ballard has a role on New England by the time the season comes around. There's a lot that will have to shake out first, though, before Ballard becomes a target in drafts.
Aaron Hernandez sued for allegedy shooting man
Wednesday, June 19, 2013, 2:51pm
On Wednesday, Boston media reported Hernandez hasn't been ruled out as a suspect in a homicide case where a dead body was found less than a mile from his home.
Now Hernandez will reportedly be facing a lawsuit stemming from a February incident where he allegedly shot a man in the face, according to TMZ. Sports Illustrated has also confirmed the existence of the lawsuit.
According to TMZ, the man filing the lawsuit, Alexander Bradley, claims he went to a club in Miami with Hernandez on Feb. 13 and at some point, an argument broke out between the two men.
Hernandez and Bradley left the club in the same car, where the argument continued. At some point during the car ride, Hernandez allegedly aimed a gun at Bradley and the gun discharged, hitting Bradley in the face, according to the report.
Bradley claims to have lost his right eye and had reconstructive surgery. He also claims Hernandez isn't licensed to carry a gun. From a football standpoint, the Patriots could already be without TE Rob Gronkowski for at least the start of the season, and right now Hernandez seems to be in a lot of hot water. The Pats currently have 7 TEs on the roster, including Gronk and Hernandez. The other five are: Jake Ballard, Daniel Fells, rookie Brandon Ford, Michael Hoomanawanui and rookie Zach Sudfeld.
Tuesday, June 18, 2013, 10:54am
Myers is an improvement over Kevin Boss, Jake Ballard and Bennett who have been the Giant tight ends since 2008. Myers figures to be a red zone target for quarterback Eli Manning as Giants tight ends have averaged 5 TDs a season. Myers is ranked 12th on our list which makes him a high-end, TE2. His ADP is the 14th round so you should get an opportunity to grab him if you want him.
Saturday, June 1, 2013, 10:23am
Judging from Patriots TE Jake Ballard’s work during the media’s two glimpses of the workouts, he still has some work to do in order to regain full health. He continues to run with a discernible limp and hasn’t participated fully in either workout, although he has been active and shown solid hands while generally working in offensive drills without the defense.
Thursday, May 30, 2013, 9:56am
Jake Ballard isn’t quite the player Rob Gronkowski is, but he had a solid season for New York in 2011, with 38 receptions for 604 yards and four touchdowns. He started in Super Bowl XLVI against the Patriots, but suffered the left knee injury in the second half of the game.
New England’s OTAs are Ballard’s first on-field reps in 16 months.
Even without pads and with some limitations, he’s happy to be back.
“They’re not having me go full-go the whole practice. It’s not like they’re turning me to the wolves,” Ballard said. “I talked with the trainer and the coaches and they all tell me what I’m limited to do and what they think I’m going to be able to do. We just gradually improve from there every week and day to day.”
Ballard will be a sleeper if Gronkowski misses any regular season games. He was solid for the Giants in 2011, finishing 14th in fantasy points per game among tight ends.
Aaron Hernandez had shoulder surgery
Tuesday, April 16, 2013, 10:49am
The New England Patriots have more bad injury news at the tight end position as Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network reports that Aaron Hernandez will likely miss the team's OTAs and minicamp this offseason after undergoing shoulder surgery.
The Patriots began "Phase One" of their offseason program on Monday and have OTA dates scheduled for May 20-21, May 28-30, June 3-4 and June 6-7. The team's mandatory minicamp closes out their offseason program from June 11-13.
News of Hernandez's potential absence this offseason comes one week after a Boston Herald report that Rob Gronkowski may not be ready for the start of the 2013 regular season due to an infection in his twice-broken left forearm. Gronkowski is likely to require an additional surgery on the forearm, which could keep him out through the start of the regular season.
With Gronkowski and Hernandez likely on the shelf this offseason, veterans Jake Ballard, Daniel Fells, Michael Hoomanawanui and first-year player Brad Herman will get plenty of work with the first-team offense.
Hernandez should be fine for the start of the season, so there's no reason to panic. Of greater concern is Gronkowski's injury, which has put his Week 1 availability in jeopardy.
Brandon Myers had a sprained shoulder in 2012
Sunday, March 24, 2013, 12:07pm
"Obviously, (I) had to take a few shots, but it wasn’t only about me, it was about trying to help the Raiders win," Myers said in a phone interview this week. "And that’s what I tried to do."
Topic No. 1: blocking, which Myers said he and TE coach Mike Pope "talked a lot about." Myers admits that part of his game suffered after he sprained the AC joint in his left shoulder in training camp last year, resulting in him managing the injury all season. As he explains, "It’s never fun to go out there and try to block a 300-pound guy with basically one arm."
After rest and rehab in Southern California (no surgery), Myers said he’ll be back to full strength by the time the Giants start their offseason program April 15.
"Obviously, my blocking wasn’t up to par. That’s not an excuse by any means," Myers said. "But we kind of went over some things, (Pope’s) technique that he could teach me to help me out, so I think it will be a good fit."
Add Myers to the long list of semi-reliable TEs that will be available in the middle or late rounds. He was 9th in standard formats (6th in PPR) in 2012 and is heading to a good situation in New York. In the last five seasons, the top Giants tight end has averaged 2.7-36-.33, which isn't bad considering that we're talking about Kevin Boss (2008-2010), Jake Ballard (2011) and Martellus Bennett (2012). That works out to 5.6 fantasy PPG, which would have equated to #14 TE numbers in 2012. Myers is a better receiver than any of those players and his weakness (only 4 TD catches in 2012) should be offset by Eli Manning's propensity to throw to his tight end in the redzone. Giants TEs have averaged 5.0 TDs per season, so Myers should be able to build on that given his skill set. He looks like an upside TE2 in standard formats and a low-end TE1 in PPR formats.