|Drew Brees’ new toy in New Orleans, Brandin Cooks, is turning heads.|
Training camps roll on, with a skirmish in Cleveland—both on the field and off, where Josh Gordon is mounting an appeal of his suspension. The fate of an elite fantasy receiver hangs in the balance, but while that plays out this update will focus more on what’s happening on the field.
Reuben Randle must have been feeling left out amongst all the injured receivers in New York, because he joined Odell Beckham on the sidelines with a bum hammy. Beckham, however, remains sidelined and unable to take advantage of the opportunity to carve out more looks in the New York passing game. You know, the passing game where Eli Manning is suddenly supposed to start completing 10% more passes than he has in the past.
The news in New York wasn’t all receiver-related. David Wilson, fresh off of offseason neck surgery, left practice with a “burner” and is headed for more tests. Seems like we should just copy that phrase to the clipboard and set it to paste on a regular basis.
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Also on the re-injury front, Seahawks tight end Anthony McCoy suffered another Achilles’ tendon injury, and like the last one this looks to be serious. He was carted off the practice field, and hopes that the talented sleeper fantasy candidate might finally get a chance to showcase his wares appear scuttled.
Tony Romo sat out another practice, but the Cowboys were quick to announce the move was purely precautionary. Still, it’ll be tough to take Romo without also investing in a quality backup unless and until we see him back on the field on a more consistent basis.
Texans coach Bill O’Brien pulled a page out of the Bill Belichick playbook in noting that neither Arian Foster nor Andre Johnson were practicing due to injury, with the pinpoint diagnosis that neither injury was “life-threatening”. Any Foster absence means more reps for rookie Alfred Blue, who has the most fantasy upside of the stable of backs clamoring to caddy for Arian. Though veteran Andre Brown has the inside track on the job, any old-school fantasy owner can’t help but think that Blue is their boy.
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Lots of Saints will catch passes from Drew Brees this season, but early in camp Brandin Cooks is the one turning the most heads. Cooks has the speed to serve as New Orleans’ deep threat, but don’t be surprised if Sean Payton uses him in the Darren Sproles role as well. In either case he’s a solid bet to carve out fantasy value in the Saints’ crowded receiver rotation.
Finally, Julian Edelman isn’t a sexy fantasy option but right now he may be the best receiver on the Patriots. He was the only Pats wideout to beat Darrelle Revis in one-on-one drills, and you know both Belichick and Tom Brady love their veteran role players. Not that Belichick is anti-rookie; James White looks to be playing his way into the RB3 role, one with both short-term upside (if Shane Vereen can’t stay healthy and Stevan Ridley can’t hold on to the football) and long-term potential (as both Vereen and Ridley are in the final year of their respective contracts).
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