Zach Ertz is showing how his talent and skills can fit in nicely with a Chip Kelly offense. At the tail-end of last season, his rookie year, he was used all over the field, causing mismatches with his size and stature. Last season, he struggled with his blocking and the Philadelphia weather caused him to have limited production, but in 2014 all looks changed, and he should see more targets and snaps.
"Eagles tight ends coach Ted Williams said this week, per the Philadelphia Daily News. "He's one of the best route-runners I've ever seen. He takes a lot of pride in that.
"He has a lot of confidence. He's hard to defeat, because he doesn't take defeat very well. He feels, 'You can't cover me.'"
Pyro's take: Chip Kelly has come out and told reporters that Zach Ertz role is going to expand. Ertz will win the space battle, but is not born with game breaking speed, he is strong at the point of attack, and has sure hands. He has garnered the trust of quarterbacks as 25 of his 36 catches last season triggered first downs, while his size makes him a great red zone target.
Ertz will be drafted in your league, so keep an eye on your tiers and rankings. At this moment his ADP is 107 overall, and climbing.
More than three months reports surfaced that the NFL was suspending Browns receiver Josh Gordon for a year for violating the substance abuse policy, the league upheld that suspension Tuesday.
“I'd like to apologize to my teammates, coaches, the Cleveland Browns organization and our fans," Gordon said in a statement through the NFLPA. "I am very disappointed that the NFL and its hearing office didn't exercise better discretion and judgment in my case. I would like to sincerely thank the people who have been incredibly supportive of me during this challenging time, including my family, my agent, my union, my legal team, and the Cleveland Browns staff.”
Pyro's take: Take the man off your tiers as we finally have an answer to something that has been looming for what seems like the entire offseason. For those of you that have drafted him already drop him in pick up a lotto ticket of your choosing!
Josh Gordon will be suspended for the entire 2014 NFL regular season. Harold Henderson the hearing officer in the case, overruled Josh Gordon's appeal on testing positive for marijuana.
He’ll be eligible for reinstatement as of August 27, 2015, only days before the start of the 2015 regular season.
Pyro's take: Those that took a risk on drafting him in redraft leagues can now cut him lose and fill in a roster spot of need. Dynasty owners and keeper leagues should maintain rights on him. He is still young, and is going to want to prove to everyone he is back on track.
Keep a watch on Pyro as we fill in updates on news, talk, and angles for the Browns to take now that the door has been shut on Josh Gordon.
The NFL world was losing hope on Mark Ingram, after all he was a first round draft choice, 28th overall, in 2011, and has made a career of being not much more than a football flop is averaging 7.1 yards on 21 preseason carries. Going back to Week 15 of last season, Ingram has rushed for 397 yards on his last 65 carries (6.1 YPC) in a Saints uniform.
The numbers are nice, but it's also the way he has ran the ball. He has that competitive drive, and drives with authority. Ingram is displaying patience, vision, decisiveness, balance and explosion. He's accelerating through holes and breaking tackles on runs that would have gone for two or three yards in years past.Ingram can also catch the ball, as seen in the preseason against the Titans on a 23 yard pass catch and touchdown.
Pyro's take: Mark Ingram should have more opportunities to get his mojo working this year, and it wouldn't be surprising to see him dominate not only in standard leagues, but also in PPR. His ADP is 44th running back drafted, or 10th round in standard. In PPR he is 43rd ranked running back. This is great value, and he should be targeted for all leagues.
Wide receiver Steve Smith made six catches for 80 yards and a highlight reel touchdown late in the first half, when he hauled in a 24-yard pass from quarterback Joe Flacco while sliding through the end zone.
“You come here in free agency and everybody has a question,” Smith said after the game. “‘Will he be able to play? What kind of plays can he make?’ … That kind of just shows that I can still play and what kind of play that I’m going to have.
“That’s what I want to do, show what I bring to the table,” Smith said.
Smith, who was a frequent target of Flacco’s during training camp, had been quiet during the first two games of the preseason. Smith made one catch for nine yards in the starters’ only drive against San Francisco, and made one catch for eight yards in Dallas.
“Last week, I really didn’t play well,” Smith said. “I didn’t line up well, and my assignments were off. Today was a great opportunity to show that I can be an asset, instead of the liability I was last week.”
Pyro's take: The Ravens are in dire need of a receiver with a lot of fight in him, and they have that in Smith. You are not going to get the top end fantasy production of his past, but his ADP of 51st amongst receivers means that you don't have to reach for him. Smith is going to be that steady veteran who can be a good bye week replacement when you need just decent production.
Evans caught on video fighting at a Miami Nightclub
TMZ seems to have cameras on everyone at all times and that includes Buccaneers rookie wide receiver Mike Evans. The entertainment website posted a video of Evans on Friday that shows the No. 7 overall pick taking part in a brawl outside of a nightclub in Miami.
The video starts with Evans yelling at the bouncers, then at about the 23-second mark, things get a lot more intense. During the 54-second video, Evans throws at least two punches and even jumps over the hood of a car.
TMZ purports that the video was taken on Aug. 15, however, Evans' agent disputes that. Deryk Gilmore told the Tampa Bay Times that the video is from March. Gilmore added that Evans was trying to get back in the nightclub to get his girlfriend.
According to Gilmore, the then 20-year-old Evans wasn't drinking on the night of the incident. The wide receiver actually just turned 21 on Aug. 21.
Pyro's take: The rookie is not getting the type of press he wants right now, so maybe this will help to get his mind back to football. In the Bucs third preseason game Evans had three catches for 44 yards, highlighted by a 24-yard touchdown reception from Josh McCown. His size and ability should allow him to be a productive fantasy receiver as a rookie.