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Giants WR Odell Beckham having oral surgery

Tuesday, April 4, 2017, 6:01pm

Pro Football Talk - [Full Article]

Quarterback Eli Manning has organized workouts with his receivers at Duke University, which employs his coach at Ole Miss David Cutcliffe as their head coach, for the last few years. WR Odell Beckham told Newsday on Monday night that he won’t be there because he’s having oral surgery.

Beckham said that he expects to be good to go for the start of the Giants’ offseason program in a couple of weeks.

Fantasy Impact:

Beckham’s absence will leave Manning with more time to work with Brandon Marshall, who is the newest addition to the receiving corps after signing with the Giants last month following his release by the Jets.

Tony Romo could still play for Cowboys again

Tuesday, April 4, 2017, 1:21pm - [Full Article]

Tony Romo is retired, with one caveat:

If the Dallas Cowboys ever need him in an emergency, he'll fly out of the television booth, suit up and play savior for Big D.

That's the word from NFL Network's Jane Slater, in the wake of Romo's retirement.

"In his head right now, he has not ruled out coming back to Dallas if in fact they ever needed him, because, God forbid, there was an injury, that he could see himself in a savior role for the Cowboys," Slater said Tuesday on NFL Network's Good Morning Football.

Fantasy Impact:

As the story states, this boils down to simply: If Dak Prescott suffers a catastrophic, Teddy Bridgewater-esque injury, Romo could unretire to try and save the day. The story added one would assume the injury would have to take place early in the season, and not late-season, for Romo to shake off the rust and leave the broadcast booth.

Bills RB LeSean McCoy no-show for offseason program

Tuesday, April 4, 2017, 12:55pm

Pro Football Talk - [Full Article]

It’s still unclear why running back LeSean McCoy was the lone member of the Bills to not show up for the first day of the team’s offseason program. Per a source with knowledge of the situation, however, McCoy didn’t stay away due to his contract.

Fantasy Impact:

The Bills, despite a potentially significant change to the rushing philosophy under offensive coordinator Rick Dennison, have made it clear they want McCoy. And McCoy apparently isn’t trying to send them a message. The workouts are voluntary and he risks losing $250,000 worth of workout bonuses if he doesn't meet the threshold specified in his contract.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017, 10:21am - [Full Article]

On Monday afternoon, Eagles tight end Trey Burton officially signed his one-year tender offer.

The Eagles initially extended Burton a second-round tender on March 7. What this means is that another NFL team can still offer Burton a new contract, but the Eagles would have a chance to match the contract and keep Burton on the roster. If the Eagles elected not to match, the team signing Burton would have to give the Eagles a second-round pick.

Vikings Beat: Team will look for balance on offense

Tuesday, April 4, 2017, 10:19am

ESPN - [Full Article]

The Vikiogns are a group that will spend a decent chunk of the offseason trying to establish its identity on offense. Here's an idea: balance.

The Vikings haven't ranked in the top 20 in both running and passing yards since 2009, when Brett Favre shared a backfield with Peterson. Since that season, one facet of the Vikings' offense has been ranked 26th or worse in the league in every year but one: 2013, when the league's most porous defense forced the Vikings to play catch-up enough that their passing game ascended all the way to 23rd.

"We were almost totally 100 percent one-dimensional, which made it extra tough for the quarterback," Zimmer said at the NFL owners meetings last week. "Teams were able to load up on us, rush the quarterback, play more coverage. I thought [Bradford] did great. He hung in there and showed his toughness. He's an extremely accurate thrower. The guys in the locker room, he developed a relationship with those guys, even though he came in [eight] days before the season, and was able to learn the system and so on."

Related players: Latavius Murray, Sam Bradford

Fantasy Impact:

Last year, the Vikings' 18th-ranked passing offense was their best since 2009, but they were hindered by a 32nd-ranked ground game that made their offense almost inoperable at times.

QB Tony Romo expected to retire

Tuesday, April 4, 2017, 10:11am

ESPN - [Full Article]

Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo is leaving football and going into broadcasting, even with Dallas planning to release him Tuesday, league sources tell ESPN.

Romo has received interest from CBS, Fox and NBC, and can choose to be a color commentator where he wants. That move could come as early as Tuesday, sources said.
But the decision to leave football already has been made. His run as the Cowboys' quarterback -- and an NFL player -- officially ends Tuesday.

Fantasy Impact:

The story went on to say Dallas is expected to designate Romo as a post-June 1 release, softening the blow against the Cowboys' cap this season. Instead of counting $24.7 million in 2017, Romo would count $10.7 million this year and $8.9 million in 2018. The Cowboys would gain $14 million in cap space, but it would not become available until June 2. But after Tuesday, Romo will no longer be with the Cowboys.

Pats TE Rob Gronkowski will be ready for offseason program

Monday, April 3, 2017, 1:22pm

Pro Football Talk - [Full Article]

Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski had his boss’s permission to wrestle, and said he’s planning on being a full participant when the bell rings on the offseason program.

Before his Wrestlemania appearance last night, Gronkowski told ESPN he was recovered from back surgery and ready to get back to work.

“I’m feeling great. I’m good to go,” Gronkowski said. “It’s been about four months now [since surgery]. Just been back with the team a lot during the week, doing my rehab with the trainers there. I’m feeling good. I’ll be ready to roll when [the] offseason program starts. Super excited to get back on the field.”

Fantasy Impact:

New England begins its offseason program in two weeks with OTAs scheduled for May 22.

Bears Beat: Team believes WR Kevin White can save career

Monday, April 3, 2017, 1:17pm - [Full Article]

Serious leg injuries in each of his first two NFL seasons have forced Kevin White to miss 28 of 32 games. But the Bears are confident that the young receiver possesses the drive and determination to relaunch his career.

"Knowing his work ethic and his approach and his support system, I know he's going to come back ready to go," said general manager Ryan Pace. "He has just got to shake off some of that bad luck. Kevin is going to have to step up and stay healthy."

White has been anything but since being selected by the Bears with the seventh overall pick in the 2015 draft out of West Virginia. He missed his entire rookie season with a stress fracture in his left leg and then broke his fibula in the same leg in the fourth game last year, eventually undergoing surgery for the second straight season.

Fantasy Impact:

White has shown promise when healthy; his 19 receptions last year were the most ever by a Bears player through the first four games of a season, the story said. The key moving forward, of course, is for the 6-3, 216-pounder to stay on the field and out of the training room.

Chargers say they need a young QB

Monday, April 3, 2017, 9:58am

Pro Football Talk - [Full Article]

Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers has started 176 consecutive games, the fourth-longest streak for a quarterback in NFL history. But he won’t be around forever.

That’s why Chargers coach Anthony Lynn indicated at the league meeting that the Chargers will draft a quarterback who can back up the 35-year-old Rivers and compete with the 33-year-old Kellen Clemens for the No. 2 job.

“I think we do have to get a young quarterback on campus. We have to start developing someone because we have two veteran quarterbacks,” Lynn said. “Both of them are long in the tooth. I think they have some good years left in them — don’t get me wrong. But, you have to start thinking about down the line too.”

Fantasy Impact:

The story added that Rivers has indicated he has no issues with the team drafting a QB and he expects to start for at least a few more years.

Dolphins think TE Julius Thomas will cause matchup problems

Monday, April 3, 2017, 9:53am

ESPN - [Full Article]

Dolphins coach Adam Gase expects TE Julius Thomas to cause similar matchup problems with Miami like he did in Denver in 2013 and 2014.

According to Gase, the Dolphins were seeing a lot of base defenses when they went with three wide receivers and one tight end. Essentially, opponents didn't fear Miami's tight ends enough and were willing to cover them with linebackers, and the statistics bear that out.

The Dolphins did not get nearly enough production out of the tight end position last season due to injuries and inconsistency. Last year’s starters -- Jordan Cameron and Dion Sims -- combined for just 34 receptions for 316 yards and five touchdowns.

Fantasy Impact:

Thomas knows the system well and shouldn’t have a big learning curve, the story said. Gase also knows how to get the best out of Thomas and will put together a productive route tree and efficient ways to use the tight end.

RB Adrian Peterson to visit Patriots Monday

Sunday, April 2, 2017, 7:35pm

ESPN - [Full Article]

Sunday's news that the Patriots will be hosting RB Adrian Peterson on a visit, reported by ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter, seems to be a reflection of how the dynamics have changed.

If a potential contract is closer to minimum levels, or structured in a way in which it is heavy with incentives, maybe it could be a fit for Bill Belichick's club. Or, at the least, the Patriots now have more motivation to explore if it could be a fit.

That seems like the best way to sum up Monday's meeting.

Related players: James White, Dion Lewis, Rex Burkhead, D.J. Foster

Fantasy Impact:

Many didn't think Peterson would be a fit for the Pats, mainly because of cost. It's also a deep RB class in this year's draft and Peterson is challenged in pass protection. The Pats could use a power back, however, and it seems as if they are doing their due diligence with Peterson.

49ers sign RB Tim Hightower

Saturday, April 1, 2017, 7:30pm - [Full Article]

The 49ers added some much-needed depth at running back, agreeing to terms with Tim Hightower, general manager John Lynch announced Saturday. Hightower becomes the second running back to join the Niners this week, along with DuJuan Harris, who re-signed with the team on March 28.

Related players - Carlos Hyde

Fantasy Impact:

Hightower will battle Harris for the leftover carries not given to entrenched starter Carlos Hyde, and will be able to look forward to running behind newly acquired fullback Kyle Juszczyk. Some beat writers in New Orleans last year thought HIghtower was the better runner between he and Mark Ingram, but HIghtower will be 31 by the start of the season.

Redskins Beat: Expectations low for QB Kirk Cousins deal

Saturday, April 1, 2017, 10:28am

ESPN - [Full Article]

Mine [expectations for a Kirk Cousins deal] are rather low. Some people I know think it should be even lower. Maybe it changes, but that's the feeling now. I know the Redskins say they'll get a deal done, but I also think they've waited too long to make an offer that tempts Cousins. That said, they've still been willing to pay him $44 million over two years. It's not as if he's been done wrong financially thanks to the franchise tag. Still, at some point it won't be about the money for him; if free, he can get a similar deal elsewhere.

Fantasy Impact:

The story said their is really no update on the contract. Word surfaced the team offered Cousins around $20 million per year for five years on top of the 2017 franchise tag but the guarantees were low. The story went on to say at this point, there's more incentive for Cousins to wait and see how things play out in Washington -- the direction of the franchise, how he meshes with coach Jay Gruden as a playcaller, etc. Cousins can become a free agent next offseason (unless the Redskins tag him for a third and final time).

Tomlin on Ben Roethlisberger: 'It's not an issue for me'

Saturday, April 1, 2017, 10:19am - [Full Article]

Coach Mike Tomlin has talked to quarterback Ben Roethlisberger multiple times this offseason, hitting on all of the normal topics the two usually address in the offseason.

“We’ve been in pretty fluid conversation,” said Tomlin while attending the NFL Owners Meetings in Phoenix, Arizona. “I hear he’s in some big-game hunting with Jim Kelly in New Zealand. We spoke before he went on that trip. We’ve had some good, fluid discussions. But really, normal discussions that we have this time of year, keeping him abreast of what’s going on in free agency, how the draft is potentially shaping up, normal, fluid conversations you have with your veteran franchise quarterback.”

There is one topic that really hasn’t come up much, though, and that is Roethlisberger’s comments made shortly after the season when he hinted at potential retirement.

“Ben is answering questions," Tomlin said. "Sometimes in an effort to be transparent and answer the question as honestly you can, it produces other questions. It’s not an issue for me. I understand the nature of the conversation and how this discussion got started. He is going through his normal procedure. The older he gets, the more direct questions he gets in that regard. You guys ran with it. That is your right and responsibility. It’s not my responsibility to overreact to it.”

Fantasy Impact:

At the end of the season, Big Ben said he was going to take time in the offseason to evaluate and consider all his options, including his health, family and age. It would be hard to imagine Ben calling it quits at this point, especially with a dynamic offense surrounding him.

Friday, March 31, 2017, 10:00pm

Pro Football Talk - [Full Article]

Receiving tight end Gavin Escobar never truly caught on during four seasons in Dallas.

He found a fresh start on Friday.

The former Cowboys second-round pick will sign a one-year deal with the Chiefs, Adam Caplan of ESPN reported. Escobar caught fewer than 10 passes in each of his years with Dallas.

Related players - Travis Kelce

Fantasy Impact:

Kelce is coming off shoulder surgery but is expected to be ready for the start of camp. Escobar was thought to be the successor to Jason Witten in Dallas and is a former second round draft pick, ironically picked ahead of Kelce and Jordan Reed.

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