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Terrance Williams expected to start in 2014
Tuesday, February 4, 2014, 6:46pm
Williams was a big-play threat for Romo last season with 12 catches of 20 or more yards. Overall, Williams had 44 catches for 736 yards and five touchdowns, with three of those scores going for at least 20 yards.
Williams has good speed, and improved his route running as the season progressed. Becoming reliable is the key for Williams in his development. Bryant dealt with similar questions after his rookie season, and as you saw in 2013 he produced his first Pro Bowl season.
With Austin basically sidelined from Week 4 to Week 10, Williams was the #12 WR in fantasy, racking up 24 catches for 438 yards and five TDs in that seven-game span. He faded upon Austin’s return to starter’s snaps, but showed enough in his rookie season to make him an interesting late-round sleeper in 2014. The Cowboys figure to throw a lot under new OC Scott Linehan, who was pass-happy while in Detroit.
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Ray Rice wished he had 'thought twice' about playing through hip injury
Monday, February 3, 2014, 8:33pm
Ray Rice is using last season’s adversity as fuel for a redemption campaign in 2014.
The Ravens’ running back battled a hip injury, which limited his ability to make cuts and accelerate. The injury persisted all season and hindered Rice’s ability to explode for big gains.
“I played through an injury and I probably should have thought twice about it, but I’m glad I was able to push through the season and not have any surgical procedures,” said Rice, who was speaking at an event promoting BODYARMOR Superdrink. “One thing I know my body needed was rest, and we had a tough turnaround, and we didn’t do what we wanted to this year, but I’m positive that things are looking better for next year already. We’ll get this thing rolling again."
For an offense that is built around the run, the Ravens were never able to adapt to Juan Castillo’s zone-based schemes. The Ravens’ rushing offense finished last in the NFL in yards per carry. Castillo, who was hired to be the team’s run game coordinator, has been tabbed as the offensive line coach for next season. The Ravens’ running game should be buoyed by the hiring of offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak.
Kubiak’s stretch-zone scheme suits the Ravens’ personnel more naturally. Opposed to relying on the passing game of Joe Flacco, Kubiak prefers balance and using the run to set up the pass. The offensive linemen will be called upon to move laterally, and the running backs must thrive in a one-cut system.
Rice is only 27 years old, so he shouldn't be hitting the wall age-wise. It sounds as if he never fully recovered from the hip injury, so a bounce back season is entirely possible if he can stay healthy in 2014. Kubiak's arrival should help as well.
Gary Kubiak 'very impressed' with Dennis Pitta
Monday, February 3, 2014, 11:13am
“I remember studying Dennis, and I’m very impressed with him as a player," Kubiak said. "I know he went through a tough year this year with getting injured, but that position has always been a big part of our offense. I’m sure it won’t be any different.”
We had Pitta as a mid-TE1 prior to the injury, so that's roughly where he'll be ranked heading into 2014 with a TE-friendly coach like Kubiak.
Sunday, February 2, 2014, 5:45pm
Percy Harvin is active as expected and reportedly "100%."
Sunday, February 2, 2014, 5:40pm
Report: Browns hire Kyle Shanahan as OC
Saturday, February 1, 2014, 2:10pm
Source tells Fox Sports that Kyle Shanahan is Browns' new offensive coordinator.
Shanahan was the offensive coordinator for the Redskins for the last four years. The unit was 22nd in yards gained in the year before his arrival and he led the offense to two straight top 10 finishes in that category in 2012 and 2013.
Saturday, February 1, 2014, 12:51pm
Browns WR Josh Gordon received a personal invitation from Larry Fitzgerald to attend his annual pre-camp all-star training session in Minnesota, in which former stars such as Michael Irvin, Jerry Rice and Deion Sanders help current top players perfect their skills. The camp runs for about six weeks in the summer, and Pro Bowl-caliber players come and go.
"I'm definitely going to make the trip,'' said Gordon. "I talked to Larry and he personally invited me out. Michael invited me, Jerry invited me, so I've got to go. It's going to be fun. It will be in the summer time and help get ready for training camp and hopefully tear it up this season.''
It's great to hear that Gordon -- who has had off field issues in the past -- seems focused and committed to perfecting his craft. The sky is the limit.
Jermichael Finley to be cleared for contact in 3-4 weeks
Friday, January 31, 2014, 7:24pm
Finley hits free agency this fall and while the Packers are expected to let him walk, he could sign a one-year deal to prove his health before testing free agency again in 2015. If he signs elsewhere, Brandon Bostick would be the big beneficiary. (Andrew Quarless is also a free agent.) The tight end is a crucial component in the Green Bay offense.
Jaguars want Justin Blackmon back
Friday, January 31, 2014, 7:20pm
Receiver Justin Blackmon missed 12 of the Jaguars’ 16 games because of two suspensions for violating the league’s substance abuse policy. When Blackmon is reinstated, owner Shad Khan “absolutely” wants him to remain with the team.
There's no doubt that Blackmon has talent. In his last 17 games (which don't include his slow start in his rookie season), he has averaged 5.2 catches for 74 yards and 0.35 TD, which are low-end fantasy WR2 numbers In four games last season, he averaged 7.3-104-.25, which are low-end WR1 numbers -- and that's with Chad Henne/Blaine Gabbert throwing the ball. If he can get his head on straight and the Jaguars can upgrade their QB, Blackmon will be a star. He'd be a high risk pick if he's reinstated in time to play in 2014.
Jaguars confirm Maurice Jones-Drew will hit free agency
Friday, January 31, 2014, 7:08pm
Owner Shad Khan supported GM Dave Caldwell’s decision to publicly announce the Jaguars would let running back Maurice Jones-Drew hit the free agent market on March 11. But he hopes a new contract agreement can be reached.
Jordan Todman is a restricted free agent and is currently atop the Jaguars' depth chart at running back. His YPC (3.4) wasn’t impressive, but it was the same as MJD’s indicating that the offensive line was more of a problem than either of the running backs. As a starter, he did have a nice game against the Bills in Week 15 (29 touches, 153 yards), showing that he can carry the load if necessary.