Lions Fantasy News
Golden Tate compares new role to Lance Moore's with Saints
Wednesday, April 16, 2014, 10:37am
New offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi has brought over a lot of concepts from New Orleans’ offense after spending the last seven years there as both an offensive assistant and quarterbacks coach.
“I watched some tape on the Saints over the last few years and just looking at that – I haven’t talked to coach Lombardi that much – I see myself being a Lance Moore type of player, but just more explosive and able to do a few more things,” Tate said.
“That’s exciting, because Lance Moore caught a lot of balls and he’s a terrific player that did a lot for the Saints. That’s kind of how I see myself having the best receiver in the league (Calvin Johnson), and one of the best to ever to play the game, opposite of me or sometimes on the same side.”
Tate has top 20 potential if he gets enough work in the offense, though that may be a bit of a stretch. The top 30 seems likely given his per target production and the role he'll have in the offense, provided the Lions don't draft a starter-caliber wideout this summer. Click here for an in-depth look at Tate by Senior Editor John Paulsen.
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Lions see Reggie Bush and Joique Bell in 'split role'
Tuesday, April 15, 2014, 11:03am
Bush's stock has taken a hit this offseason with the Lombardi hire -- coming from New Orleans, where they use a RBBC -- and the team's decision to re-sign Bell to a long-term deal. Bell was the #17 RB in 2013 (#29 in 2012), so he should be a nice middle round value again in '14. Bush has three straight top 14 finishes in standard formats, but his usage may take a hit this season.
Reggie Bush is expecting a reduced workload in 2014
Thursday, April 10, 2014, 11:56am
“We had a pretty good rotation going last (season), so, you know, we did some pretty special things with that,” Bush said. “It can only go up from there, even if the workload is less for both of us, that’s only going to help us toward the end of the season, help us to stay healthy and probably play a little bit stronger and better toward the end of the season.”
Last season, both Bush and Joique Bell topped 500 yards in rushing and receiving -- the first time two running backs on the same team accomplished that in the same season. Considering the way the New Orleans offense is run, it could happen again in 2014.
Some of that speculation comes from the New Orleans Saints history. Under Sean Payton -- and this is the offense Lombardi said his attack will be based on -- the Saints used more running backs in varying rushing and route-running situations than the Lions did last season, when the team primarily used Bush and Bell with small doses of then-rookie Theo Riddick.
Last season, no New Orleans running back had more than 150 carries, although four had at least 60. Two, Pierre Thomas and Darren Sproles, had more than 70 catches. That type of breakdown has been typical of a Saints' offense in recent years.
Bush may be overdrafted this year based on last year's numbers. The team re-signed Bell to a long-term deal and intend to use him. Bell may end up being the better value on draft day.
Wednesday, April 9, 2014, 6:58pm
Five months later, he was cleared by doctors to rejoin the Detroit Lions for the start of voluntary conditioning this week. And that's huge news for him.
The receiver has missed 16 games through his first two seasons in the league, and the Lions, who once thought Broyles would be a complement to Calvin Johnson, could be looking to revamp their starting lineup.
Broyles figures to serve as the Lions WR3 or WR4 depending on how the depth chart shakes out after the draft.
Browns sign Nate Burleson to a one-year deal
Monday, April 7, 2014, 11:28am
Burleson, who spent the past four seasons in Detroit, will provide the Browns with some depth and an experienced veteran who can help mentor young receivers such as Josh Gordon. In 2011, he won the Lions' Good Guy Award from the local sportscasters and Pro Football Writers Association and was a leader in the locker room.
The Browns also signed Andrew Hawkins to man the slot, so Burleson is likely to be the team's WR4 assuming they find a starter in the draft. If not, he is capable of starting opposite Gordon, though he doesn't offer much playmaking ability at this point in his career. Greg Little's days in Cleveland look to be numbered.
Wednesday, April 2, 2014, 8:24pm
Yes, that Dan Orlovsky.
The Lions originally selected the quarterback out of Connecticut in the fifth round of the 2005 draft. He spent four years here, and started seven games, all of which came during the club's winless 2008 season.
He went on to play for Houston (2009-10), Indianapolis (2011) and Tampa Bay (2012-13). He started five games for the Colts - then coached by Jim Caldwell - but has attempted just seven passes since, and none in the past two years.
Wednesday, March 26, 2014, 2:12pm
Caldwell: Matt Stafford's accuracy can be fixed
Tuesday, March 25, 2014, 9:21pm
At the center of many of his problems is a decline in accuracy, which sank all the way to 58.5 percent last year. That was 30th in the NFL.
"Absolutely, absolutely, absolutely, without question," Caldwell said, when asked if accuracy could be taught. As the story points out, Caldwell has a pretty good resume with QBs: He worked with Peyton Manning for nearly a decade in Indianapolis, and took him to a Super Bowl in 2009, and later rode Baltimore's Joe Flacco to a Super Bowl in 2012. He has a reputation around the league for knowing the fundamentals of the position, and just how to impart them.
Lions will use more two-back sets in 2014
Thursday, March 20, 2014, 11:44am
But the cash-strapped Lions also would not be making these investments if they were not serious about actually featuring all these backs in the offense. Team president Tom Lewand confirmed as much this week.
"You're going to see some more two-back sets," Lewand told a small crowd this week at the TAP restaurant in the MGM casino in downtown Detroit. He added that they would mimic what New Orleans has done with deploying a multitude of tailbacks.
"It's a very adaptable offense, and they want to use the talent and the guys that we have, not just one back at a time because that's what the personnel group calls for."
The Lions wanted to use more two-back sets last year after signing fullback Montell Owens, but Owens played only one offensive series due to a pair of knee injuries. Bell and Bush were occasionally featured on the field at the same time, though those formations usually split Bush out at receiver.
The Lions are paying Bell about the same as what Ben Tate and Toby Gerhart signed for, so it's starting to look like Bell will play the Pierre Thomas/Mark Ingram role in the Lions offense with Reggie Bush returning to more of a Darren Sproles-like role as a receiving specialist. Bell's stock is up while Bush's is down.
Lions re-sign Brandon Pettigrew
Friday, March 14, 2014, 11:17am
Brandon Pettigrew is a bit of a relic in today’s NFL, a tight end who’s just as comfortable blocking as he is catching the ball.
For the Detroit Lions, that versatility was a part of their offense they couldn’t bear to lose.
Pettigrew agreed to a four-year, $16-million deal with the Lions on Thursday that includes $8 million guaranteed.
After back to back top 12 seasons in 2010 and 2011, Pettigrew finished #21 in 2012 and #31 last year. He's a low-end TE2, at best. His return puts a big dent in any sleeper potential that Joseph Fauria will have heading into next season.
Packers re-sign TE Andrew Quarless
Thursday, March 13, 2014, 2:28pm
Quarless took over for Jermichael Finley after Finley went down in Week 7. From Week 8 through the Packers' playoff loss to the 49ers, Quarless averaged 2.6 catches for 27 yards and 0.20 TD, or 3.9 fantasy points per game. That's about what Brandon Pettigrew and Tyler Eifert scored in 2013, so it's not terribly promising. Moreover, his two best games -- back to back 6-66-1 outings against the Falcons and Cowboys -- came with Matt Flynn under center, so it's not clear what kind of rapport he has with Aaron Rodgers. According to Mockdraftable, he most resembles Todd Heap athletically, though it's tough to make that case using the eye test. Still, if he's starting, Quarless will be an intriguing TE2 option playing in Green Bay's high-octane offense.
Thursday, March 13, 2014, 12:21pm
Lions sign Golden Tate to five-year contract
Wednesday, March 12, 2014, 4:36pm
Tate finished as the #35 WR in 2012 and #29 last season, so he's a proven commodity that should remedy the Lions' WR2 issues. His FP/target numbers (4th-highest in 2012, 29th in 2013) indicate that he should thrive in a bigger role. He's joining an offense that has 1,374 pass attempts in the last two seasons, which is nearly 67% more than the Seahawks have attempted in the same span. He obviously won't be the top target in Detroit, but if he sees the usual 18% of targets (typical for a WR2), it would result in 123 targets, a 25% jump from his 2013 totals. The Lions may run a bit more this season, but Tate's arrow is certainly pointing up. In Seattle, Tate's departure currently leaves Percy Harvin, Doug Baldwin and Jermaine Kearse atop the depth chart. The news is certainly good for Baldwin and Kearse. Once Sidney Rice went down, Baldwin emerged as a productive starter, averaging 3.6 catches for 55 yards and 0.45 TD in his final 11 games (including the postseason). Those are solid fantasy WR3 numbers.
Tuesday, March 11, 2014, 4:42pm
Lions re-sign Joique Bell
Tuesday, March 11, 2014, 1:16pm
Bell's extension is worth $7 million and will include $4.3 million in guaranteed money, a source confirmed to ESPN NFL Insider Adam Caplan.
In standard formats, Bell was the #29 RB in 2012 and #17 last year. New OC Joe Lombardi (previously with the Saints) is expected to bring more balance to the Lions' offense which means that Bell should once again have a large role alongside Reggie Bush. Bush's presence means that Bell should be a good value on draft day. In early drafts, he is the 25th RB off the board in the 8th round.