The Turk is making the rounds of NFL camps, but thus far the only big fantasy name to get a visit has been Buffalo running back Fred Jackson. The Bills hated to part ways with the fan favorite, but as an aging running back on a rebuilding squad he wasn’t a particularly good fit. Don’t be surprised if he lands elsewhere, maybe with fantasy ramifications.
Seattle barely uses its receivers anyway, so they had no problem trading one away. The Panthers acquired Kevin Norwood from the Seahawks for presumably a conditional draft pick. In Carolina Norwood will compete with Corey Brown, Jerricho Cotchery, Jarrett Boykin, and Ted Ginn for relevancy.
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You can put the four-game suspension for Martavis Bryant on the board, as his appeal was denied. Bryant’s absence means more snaps for Markus Wheaton through at least the first month of the season. Rookie Sammie Coates might be rushed into action as well.
On the opposite end of the spectrum the legal battle of Tom Brady rages on. In a four-minute court session on Monday, a judge announced that because the league and Brady’s legal team were unable to reach a settlement agreement those talks are now over. A final decision could be announced as early as Tuesday. Four games for Brady—or Jimmy Garoppolo—hang in the balance.
Bad news on the injury front for the Jaguars, as they revealed free agent tight end Julius Thomas will need surgery to repair a tendon in his finger and will miss up to five weeks. There’s still a second opinion to be hand, but the new timetable ensures Thomas will miss the regular season opener—and possibly as much as the first month of the season. Marcedes Lewis and Clay Harbor will see the snaps in Thomas’ place, with Lewis the better fantasy option.
In Buffalo Rex Ryan has named Tyrod Taylor the starting quarterback for the Bills’ season opener. Taylor, like fellow combatants Matt Cassel and EJ Manuel, had a strong showing in the third preseason game. Expect the situation to remain fluid all year long, though Taylor’s rushing ability gives him a literal leg up fantasy-wise.
The Redskins also named a starter, with Jay Gruden giving Kirk Cousins the nod for 2015. Robert Griffin III still hasn’t been cleared to play, but Gruden opted to hitch his wagon to Cousins sooner rather than later. Not sure what that means for RG3 going forward, but in ensures things will at least remain interesting in our nation’s capital.
Finally, kicker news! The Jaguars traded Josh Scobee to the Steelers, who have been snake-bitten at the position this preseason. Scobee replaces Garrett Hartley, who injured his hamstring after being signed to replace Shaun Suisham, who tore his ACL in the preseason opener. Scobee gains fantasy relevancy, while Jason Myers takes over kicking duties in Jacksonville.