Preseason video games are principally bereft of gamers with any fantasy relevance, and the Broncos’ 14-10 dud over the Falcons final week was no exception. There was nonetheless loads of drama across the league this week, together with coaching camp updates, accidents, contract signings and holdouts, and extra.
Let’s separate the wheat from the chaff:
— Operating again Duke Johnson Jr. was traded to the Texans on Thursday in trade for a 2020 draft decide. This will increase Nick Chubb’s worth, particularly in PPR, as he’ll inevitably see extra targets in Johnson’s absence, and may have a minimal influence on Lamar Miller given coach Invoice O’Brien’s affinity for operating again committees.
— Eagles second-round decide Miles Sanders is popping heads in coaching camp. He’s getting first group reps and even eliciting comparisons to LeSean McCoy. Quarterback Carson Wentz known as him “explosive” on Tuesday, and a few consider he’ll edge out Jordan Howard for the RB1 spot in Philadelphia. Howard, who desires an opportunity to “re-establish himself” because the “constant participant [he has] been up to now,” has additionally obtained reward from offensive coordinator Mike Groh, notably for his work with move safety and pass-catching, two features of his sport which have drawn criticism all through his profession with the Bears. Coach Doug Pederson has favored a cut up workload up to now, so it is a state of affairs to intently monitor.
— Antonio Brown has missed virtually all of coaching camp and is taken into account day-to-day with a worrisome foot challenge as documented on his Instagram. It was reported on Tuesday that the mysterious blisters on his ft had been frostbite burns attributable to coming into a cryotherapy machine with out the correct footwear. Brown is at the moment being drafted towards the tip of the second spherical in each codecs in a 12-team league. He’s anticipated to take a step again in a Raiders offense that pales compared to the Steelers, and whereas this harm doesn’t seem like long-term, it could jeopardize his taking part in time in Week 1 and draft worth.
— The Broncos signed veteran Theo Riddick to a one-year, $2.5 million contract on Sunday, complicating an already crowded backfield in Denver. Riddick, who was launched from the Lions in July, will compete for snaps with Phillip Lindsay, Royce Freeman, and Devontae Booker, amongst others. Riddick’s addition to this committee lowers the others’ values: He’ll probably cannibalize Lindsay’s workload since Riddick has traditionally been extra concerned within the passing sport. This acquisition ought to decrease Lindsay into RB3/flex territory.
— Studies out of coaching camp have been overwhelmingly optimistic for second-year Jets quarterback Sam Darnold. Head coach Adam Gase extolled Darnold’s coaching camp efficiency up to now and mentioned on Monday, “I don’t assume I spotted how robust his arm was.” Darnold will really feel much more snug this season with an upgraded offensive line, most not too long ago with the additions of heart Ryan Kalil, who got here out of his retirement and signed a one-year, $8.four million contract this weekend, and left guard Alex Lewis, who was acquired from the Ravens in trade for a conditional seventh-round 2020 decide. With a 12 months of expertise and extra time to throw, Darnold has the potential to develop right into a streaming possibility throughout bye weeks, and a reliable weapon in two-QB or superflex leagues.
— Anybody who drafted Le’Veon Bell in 2018 will recall the emotional turmoil of a contract holdout all too clearly. Ezekiel Elliott is threatening to duplicate the identical tactic ought to the Cowboys not meet his phrases. Alfred Morris advantages from Elliott’s absence, however the veteran again will probably cut up time with rookies Tony Pollard and Mike Weber. Proprietor Jerry Jones spoke extremely of Pollard on Sunday throughout their blue and white scrimmage and advised reporters that “if he will get higher and higher and higher, which he’s bought to, I feel you will see a man who performs early for the Cowboys.” The choice whether or not or to not take Elliott with a top-four decide will come all the way down to your threat tolerance.
— Bears tight finish Trey Burton has missed three practices in a row and it’s probably he’ll miss the complete preseason because the group proceeds with warning following offseason sports activities hernia surgical procedure. Burton, who’s at the moment being drafted on the cusp of the TE1 tier, was already a dangerous decide given his boom-or-bust 2018 season. His inventory will decline even additional in drafts if his state of affairs doesn’t enhance.
— Chiefs coach Andy Reid expressed frustration on Saturday relating to Damien Williams’ lack of apply time on account of a hamstring harm. Williams returned to coaching camp on Wednesday, however it was offseason acquisition Carlos Hyde who took snaps with the primary group. Reid says Hyde has been “taking benefit” of the reps and can be seeking to fill the position star operating again Kareem Hunt performed on this offense final season. Hyde might grow to be a reliable fantasy menace if Damien Williams’ harm persists, however he’ll face competitors from Darrel Williams, Darwin Thompson, and not too long ago transformed cornerback Tremon Smith for touches.