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Curtis Samuel

Carolina Panthers

Samuel Back in Pads


Curtis Samuel was back in full pads for today's practice (Wednesday), he has missed almost all of training camp with a hamstring problem that began as a issue in the spring. He's been out for so long that it's hard to see him having a immediate early-season role.

Fantasy Goo: Samuel is the ultimate utility knife if he can get healthy, he can pick up the big plays vacated by Ginn and match anything fellow rookie McCaffrey does in the passing game.


08/16/17, 08:15 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com


Ty Montgomery

Green Bay Packers

Green Bay Rookie's on Display


“Ty Montgomery’s likely absence from Saturday night’s preseason game at Washington will put an even bigger spotlight on the depth-chart battle involving three of Green Bay’s third-day draft picks. Williams is the front-runner in part because he’s shown the best aptitude for pass protection in the backfield. Jones has displayed a different gear in the open field that he’d love to show off in a game if he gets a crease. Mays is the best example of compact power, at 5-10 and 230 pounds.”

Fantasy Goo:Ty performed very well last year with the 3rd best juke rate of 34% and the best yards per contact per touch of all RBs at 2.8. The issue with Montgomery is Jamaal Williams is in line to take away the short yardage work and it’s unclear what type of volume Ty can handle as he rushed double digits in only 1 game.


08/16/17, 07:58 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: www.packers.com


Jamaal Williams

Green Bay Packers

Green Bay Rookie's on Display


“Ty Montgomery’s likely absence from Saturday night’s preseason game at Washington will put an even bigger spotlight on the depth-chart battle involving three of Green Bay’s third-day draft picks. Williams is the front-runner in part because he’s shown the best aptitude for pass protection in the backfield. Jones has displayed a different gear in the open field that he’d love to show off in a game if he gets a crease. Mays is the best example of compact power, at 5-10 and 230 pounds.”

Fantasy Goo:Ty performed very well last year with the 3rd best juke rate of 34% and the best yards per contact per touch of all RBs at 2.8. The issue with Montgomery is Jamaal Williams is in line to take away the short yardage work and it’s unclear what type of volume Ty can handle as he rushed double digits in only 1 game.


08/16/17, 07:58 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: www.packers.com


Jaron Brown

Arizona Cardinals

Jaron Number Two?


Larry Fitzgerald is the No. 1 wideout. Brown? “He’s No. 2 right now,” Coach Bruce Arians said Tuesday.
“I’ve been here for a while,” Jaron Brown said. “Every camp is different. We obviously have injuries, and that gives me an opportunity. I just try to take advantage.

Fantasy Goo: I could see Jaron shooting up draft boards, and I like him as a last round dart throw, but this just makes that receiving corps all the more crowded. A torn ACL prevented Jaron from possibly breaking-out last year. Yesterday we thought JJ Nelson would emerge, I’m sure we will be re-visiting this regularly.


08/16/17, 04:21 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com


Cole Beasley

Dallas Cowboys

Beasley Under the Radar


NFL Next Gen Stats have revealed many of their numbers to the public recently. Hartbeat picked this one out on Twitter: Cole Beasley adding another advanced stat that he thrives in, Top 10 in separation among all pass catchers.

Fantasy Goo: Beasley was one of the most efficient weapons in the NFL last year. His Defense-adjusted Yards above Replacement and Defense-adjusted Value over Average ranked as 5th best among WRs. For more on Beasley and others check out the Pyro Pulse podcast episode 6, WR Tiers.


08/15/17, 05:08 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com


John Brown

Arizona Cardinals

John Brown’s Health Back in Question


WR John Brown looking like sickle cell IS NOT being managed by the Cardinals. Could be another injury plagued season for Brown. Arians said WR John Brown not practicing full time is a concern (He's been participating in certain drills during practice).

Fantasy Goo: JJ Nelson was the WR11 in PPR scoring weeks 13-17, it appears as though we should be drafting Nelson as one of our late round flyers immediately. If the Brown news continues to be negative we will begin to see Nelson’s stock rise. Jaron Brown and Chad Williams are names we should also keep an eye on, but Arians has complained about their lack of performance publicly.


08/15/17, 04:28 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com


Maxx Williams

Baltimore Ravens

Maxx Looks Slow, Open Door for Watson


“Tight end Maxx Williams deserves a ton of credit for persevering through a serious knee surgery and getting back onto the field this summer. But in watching him run, it’s still pretty clear that he has a ways to go. He has bulked up and gotten considerably stronger, so it will be interesting to see whether he becomes more of a blocking tight end, assuming he’s on the season-opening roster.”

fantasy Goo: Ben Watson appears to be worth a last round flier. Denis Pitta was the number eight TE overall last year and he only scored 2 TD’s. Watson was the number 6 TE in 2015 with Drew Brees throwing him 6 TD’s.


08/15/17, 03:54 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: www.baltimoresun.com


Ryan Mathews

Philadelphia Eagles

Ryan Matthews Released


After passing his physical earlier today, The Eagles have informed former starting RB Ryan Mathews that he's been released. This move was completely expected, the Eagles save a bunch of money by releasing him now.

Fantasy Goo: Hartbeat would like to see him land in: IND, SF, MIA or CHI (all backup roles). I think the Giants or Ravens should see what he has left in the tank, even if it’s just a few games Matthews is a talented back, he’s just been drenched with injuries. I don’t think the team that picks him up has to pay much for him.


08/15/17, 03:30 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com


Devonta Freeman

Atlanta Falcons

Freeman in Concussion Protocol


Coach Quinn says Devonta Freeman is in concussion protocol, will be ruled out for Sunday's game. This really means nothing if he’s back by next week, but if this lingers like Jay Ajayi’s concussion, Coleman might actually be worth his draft value in the sixth round.

Fantasy Goo: Despite being only 206 lbs he had the 3rd most RZ carries with 53. Although Coleman is an extremely strong receiver Freeman was still top 5 in catches among RBs on only a 63% snap share.


08/14/17, 04:34 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com


Leonard Fournette

Jacksonville Jaguars

Fournette Battling Same Issues


Jaguars rookie RB Leonard Fournette suffered a foot injury and HC Doug Marrone said team intends to be "careful with him." Fournette battled a recurring foot/ankle injury throughout his final season at LSU. It was a real problem most of the year.

Fantasy Goo: Fournette was clocked running 22.9 MPH at LSU last season, for reference Tyreek Hill was the NFLs fastest player at 23.2MPH. It appears as though Jacksonville is being cautious, but rookies need to get on the field and learn the nuances of the NFL, especially pass blocking.


08/14/17, 03:31 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com


Jordan Matthews

Buffalo Bills

Matthews Must Play With Pain


Bills' WR Jordan Mathews has what team is calling "a chip fracture in his sternum" and is week to week.
The good news is that it’s just a pain tolerance issue. The bad news is that it can be pretty painful.

Fantasy Goo: Matthews move to Buffalo had very little effect on his projections, but with lack of practice with his new team he will almost certainly get off to a slow start. Check the Pyro Pulse Podcast (Ep.5) to get the hot, sticky goo on how this affects the value of the other Bills and Eagles skill players.


08/14/17, 03:29 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com


Marqise Lee

Jacksonville Jaguars

Lee High Ankle Sprain Opens Door for Hurns, Again


Jaguars WR Marqise Lee suffered a high-ankle sprain, source said. He'll push hard to be ready for Week 1, but caution could push it back.

Fantasy Goo: Lee was the 39th overall pick of the 2014 draft. In 2016 he caught a career-high 63 passes for 851 yards and three touchdowns. He was finally healthy after continuous injuries the last two years. I think many would rank him higher if we could be sure that he has beaten Allen Hurns out for regular targets.


08/14/17, 02:56 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com


Jordan Reed

Washington Redskins

Reed Has "Special Shoes"


“Redskins tight end Jordan Reed said his new cleats and orthotics have made a difference for his sprained big toe. Reed said, "I'll be out there shortly." He remains on the PUP list.”

Fantasy Goo: Jay Gruden has made it very clear that the offense runs through Jordan Reed, this was never more prominent than when the Redskins let their two best WRs based on production walk this offseason. Reed has obviously red flags when it comes to injuries, he is one dirty hit away from a career ending concussion. When he is healthy, there is no TE that I would rather have, Reed has averaged the most fantasy points per game over the past two seasons and is targeted on a minimum of 15% of his routes.
For more see Hartbeat TE Gold Diggers vol.1


08/13/17, 08:24 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com


Sterling Shepard

New York Giants

Shepard Back in Practice


“Just 11 days after he was carted off the practice field with an ankle injury fearing the worst, Shepard practiced fully with his teammates on Sunday. There appeared to be very few restrictions on the second-year receiver, who also didn't seem to be favoring his injured ankle at all.”

Fantasy Goo: Shepard finished second among rookie WRs in targets, catches, yards and touchdowns. In general, second year WRs see a jump in fantasy production by 16%, but Sterling is more likely to move in an inverse fashion. With the Giants bringing in Brandon Marshall and Evan Engram, Shepard is the most likely to see a decrease in targets. See Hartbeat, WR Gold Diggers vol.1 for more.


08/13/17, 07:55 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com


Robby Anderson

New York Jets

Robby With Early Bomb


With Enunwa out for the season the New York Jets will be looking for one of their young receivers to step-up. On their first drive Josh McCown connected with Robby Anderson for a 53 yard gain and finished the drive with a 4-yard TD pass to Charone Peake. Anderson finished the first half with three receptions for 71 yards.

Fantasy Goo: Anderson could be a nice late-round flyer, but this offense doesn’t project for much fire-power. Anderson projects for a 63/830/4 line and Peake is nothing more than a DFS GPP play or possible bye-week flyer.


08/13/17, 08:14 AM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com


Travis Kelce

Kansas City Chiefs

Kelce to Return Next Week


After the game, Chiefs coach Andy Reid provided an update on a few of those guys, specifically Travis Kelce. “They are close,” Reid noted of those three guys. “(They will) potentially get some work this next week, we’ll just see how it goes. They’ve got a big rehab session (Saturday), so we’ll see.”

Fantasy Goo: Since he fractured his patella in 2013 and missed his entire rookie campaign, Kelce has not missed a game. Kelce led all TEs last season in fantasy points, but he also thrived under advanced metrics, also leading the league in Success Rate on 65% of his plays. – Hartbeat
I five games without Maclin on the field over the past two years Kelce averages 2.76 more PPR points per game even though he did not score a TD in any of them.


08/12/17, 07:56 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com


Jay Ajayi

Miami Dolphins

Ajayi Still in Concussion Protocol


Running backs coach Danny Barrett believes Kenyan Drake could be an every-down back if Jay Ajayi misses multiple games. He said Drake is “more reliable, more dependable, being where he’s supposed to be – especially in our passing game”

Fantasy Goo: I’m not necessarily buying what they’re selling, but Ajayi out for 10 days so far does concern me. Gase was not happy with Ajayi to start last year and it was a work-ethic issue. A concussion requires medical clearance and cannot be put in the same category, but Gase seems to have the old-school mentality of, “you can’t make the club from the tub.” If Ajayi is out for any amount of time we can expect about a 50/50 split from Drake and Damien Williams, neither is built for work-horse carries.


08/12/17, 06:23 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com


Kenyan Drake

Miami Dolphins

Ajayi Still in Concussion Protocol


Running backs coach Danny Barrett believes Kenyan Drake could be an every-down back if Jay Ajayi misses multiple games. He said Drake is “more reliable, more dependable, being where he’s supposed to be – especially in our passing game”

Fantasy Goo: I’m not necessarily buying what they’re selling, but Ajayi out for 10 days so far does concern me. Gase was not happy with Ajayi to start last year and it was a work-ethic issue. A concussion requires medical clearance and cannot be put in the same category, but Gase seems to have the old-school mentality of, “you can’t make the club from the tub.” If Ajayi is out for any amount of time we can expect about a 50/50 split from Drake and Damien Williams, neither is built for work-horse carries.


08/12/17, 06:23 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com


Jordan Matthews

Buffalo Bills

Bills replace Watkins with Jordan Matthews


“Bills acquired WR Jordan Matthews and a 2018 third-round pick from the Eagles in exchange for CB Ronald Darby.” I’m not quite sure what the Bills are thinking here, they now have three (Zay Jones, Anquan Boldin) receivers that play predominantly out of the slot.

Fantasy Goo: For Matthews this is pretty much a lateral move, if he continues to play from the slot. He is far more successful from the slot compared to playing the outside receiver positions. Podcast (Ep.5) to get the hot, sticky goo on how this affects the value of the other Bills and Eagles skill players.


08/11/17, 07:38 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: pyromaniac.com


Sammy Watkins

Los Angeles Rams

Sammy to Rams


“Bills have acquired CB E.J. Gaines and Rams 2018 second round pick for WR Sammy Watkins and Bills 2018 sixth round pick.” This is a nice piece for Goff to show if he’s is worth the draft position. Rams GM has also stated publicly that he would like to sign Sammy to a long term deal.

Fantasy Goo: This is a slight downgrade for Sammy depending on how Goff is able to recover from a dismal rookie year. Sammy is currently going at the end of the third, I’m going to wait just a few picks to see if I can get him in the 4th now. This puts a hurting on all of the Robert Woods truther’s out there, Woods will only have value now if Sammy goes down again. Check the Pyro Pulse Podcast (Ep.5) to get the hot, sticky goo on how this affects the value of the other Rams skill players.


08/11/17, 07:25 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: pyromaniac.com


Ezekiel Elliott

Dallas Cowboys

Six Game Suspension


NFL suspended Cowboys RB Ezekiel Elliott six games for violating the league's personal conduct policy. Reports out of the Ezekiel Elliot camp say the player is considering sitting out all of the 2017 NFL season if suspended. Zeke will be appealing the decision with his lawyers in full force, the appeal will most likely be heard by Roger Goodell because the initial suspension was handed down by Todd Jones.

Fantasy Goo: Staggs projections have about a 100 point drop-off for Zeke in terms of year end points. He drops from RB3 to RB14 projections wise, his rank will be slightly higher because we can factor in replacement value with other RB's. Check the Pyro Pulse Podcast (Ep.5) to get the serious goo on who to stream/handcuff Elliot with, and how this affects the value of the other Cowboys skill players.


08/11/17, 01:29 PM CDT by Wheeler

Source: pyromaniac.com


Leonard Fournette

Jacksonville Jaguars

Fournette Talking Speed


Fournette told NFL Network after his first preseason game that the step up in competition didn’t faze him at all. In fact, while many players say the speed of the game is difficult to get used to in the NFL, Fournette thought the opposite was true after he carried nine times for 31 yards and a touchdown in a preseason win over the Patriots.

Fantasy Goo: Fournette was clocked running 22.9 MPH at LSU last season, for reference Tyreek Hill was the NFLs fastest player at 23.2MPH. Impressive, but more talk like this and Fournette will run right into a brick wall week 1. If he thinks the Patriots team he saw last night was indicative of full-speed, first string, NFL game-day, he’s in for a rude awakening.


08/11/17, 09:13 AM CDT by Wheeler

Source: twitter.com

Training Camp Battles (2012)

Training Camp Battles (2012)

Posted by d-Rx on 08/01/12

by   The Archer


@TheArcher


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Training Camp Battles

 

 

Quarterback Battles

 

Cleveland Browns: Brandon Weeden vs. Colt McCoy

The Scoop: Not really much of a competition here. McCoy’s career QB rating is an abysmal 74.5 and he has thrown just as many interceptions as touchdowns in his first two seasons. Meanwhile, the Cleveland Browns did not draft a 28 year old rookie in the first round with intentions to sit him. Weeden is currently taking snaps with the first team.

 

Fantasy Impact: The Cleveland Browns expect ride running back Trent Richardson this year. It’s a good thing too, because with either quarterback the passing game will be abysmal.

 

Edge: Weeden

 


Jacksonville Jaguars: Blaine Gabbert vs. Chad Henne

 

The Scoop: Gabbert’s rookie season was marked with sloppy play, barely completing 50% of his passes. Henne looked as though he was finally putting it together for Miami until a shoulder injury abruptly ended his season. Jacksonville’s aggressive pursuit of Henne has sparked this controversy, but it’s too early to give up on the young quarterback of the future.

 

Fantasy Impact: I’m personally more of a believer in Henne than Gabbert, but considering Gabbert is likely to start I wouldn’t draft either quarterback.

 

Edge: Gabbert

 


Tennessee Titans: Matt Hasselbeck vs. Jake Locker

 

The Scoop: The Titans brought in Hasselbeck last year to start and to mentor first round pick Jake Locker. While Hasselbeck preformed well last year, Locker exceeded expectations in his limited playing time. Will the Titans want Locker to sit and watch for another year, or is the future now in Tennessee?

 

Fantasy Impact: Either quarterback could end up being a formidable backup.

 

Edge: Hasselbeck

 


Miami Dolphins: Matt Moore vs. David Garrard vs. Ryan Tannehill

 

The Scoop: While Miami is insisting that all three quarterbacks are in contention to start, this really is a two man competition, as Tannehill won’t be thrown to the wolves with two veteran QB’s on the team. Matt Moore looked impressive after taking over for an injured Chad Henne last season, helping Miami go 6-3 in their last 9 games. After sitting out the entire 2011 season due to injury, Garrard is hoping to recapture his Pro Bowl form from the 2010 season as a member of the Jacksonville Jaguars.

 

Fantasy Impact: Both Moore and Garrard could end up surprising people. Best case scenario, I see the Dolphins’ quarterback as a mid-level backup.

 

Edge: Garrard

 


Arizona Cardinals: Kevin Kolb vs. John Skelton

 

The Scoop: Arizona gave up Domanique Rodgers-Cromartie and spent a lot of money to acquire Kolb last year, and Kolb repaid them with an inconsistent, injury plagued season. With backup QB John Skelton at the helm, the Cardinals rallied to a 5-2 record, allowing for a little quarterback controversy in Arizona. However, during this stretch, Skelton himself was inconsistent and threw more interceptions (14) than touchdowns (11).

 

Fantasy Impact: With Larry Fitzgerald in the mix, there is always fantasy potential for a quarterback in Arizona.

 

Edge: Kolb

 


Seattle Seahawks: Tavaris Jackson vs. Matt Flynn vs. Russell Wilson

 

The Scoop: Jackson is coming off the best year of his career, but when compared to quarterbacks around the league his numbers were subpar. Seattle responded this offseason by signing Packers’ backup Matt Flynn who threw for 480 yards and 6 touchdowns in his lone start last season, and by drafting Wisconsin’s Russell Wilson, an undersized quarterback with elite intangibles.

 

Fantasy Impact: Of the three, only Flynn will truly make an impact. His performance against the Lions last season is a fantasy owner’s dream.

 

Edge: Flynn

 

 

Running Back

 

Washington Redskins: Tim Hightower vs. Roy Helu vs. Evan Royster

 

The Scoop: All three of these players saw solid time at running back last season. Hightower began the season as the #1 back, but an ACL tear sidelined him for the season in late October. After a brief Ryan Torain stint, rookie running back Roy Helu stepped up and started 5 games, galloping his way to three straight 100-yeard rushing games and finishing 2nd among rookies in rushing yards with 640.  To further complicate matters, Washington signed rookie Evan Royster in late November, and he put up two 100-yard rushing games and a 5.9 yards per carry average.

 

Fantasy Impact: All three can put up great fantasy numbers, but I don’t even think Mike Shanahan knows who will get the carries from week to week.

 

Edge: Royster

 

 

Carolina Panthers: DeAngelo Williams vs. Jonathan Stewart vs. Mike Tolbert

 

The Scoop: The last team expected to pick up another running back this offseason was the Carolina Panthers, but that’s exactly what they did in signing ex-Charger Mike Tolbert. The Panthers claim they will utilize Tolbert as a fullback, so while he may steal some carries from the other two he isn’t stealing their playing time. Expect this classic “Thunder and Lighting” tandem (Williams and Stewart respectively) to continue doing what they’ve done for the past few years: splitting the carries.

 

Fantasy Impact: The major question is who will get the goal line carries. Unfortunately, the answer will most likely be Cam Newton.

 

Edge: Split

 

 

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: LeGarrette Blount vs. Doug Martin

 

The Scoop: Blount followed up an impressive rookie season with a pedestrian sophomore campaign, averaging only 4.2 yards per carry, scoring only 5 touchdowns, and failing to break 50 yards in 7 games. In steps Doug Martin, the rookie first round choice out of Boise State. So far, Martin’s work ethic has and performance on the practice field has earned him a majority of the reps.

 

Fantasy Impact: It seemed last year that there were times Tampa Bay abandoned the run for no apparent reason. If they can recommit to running the football, I see the #1 back putting up huge numbers.

 

Edge: Martin

 


Arizona Cardinals: Beanie Wells vs. Ryan Williams

 

The Scoop: Beanie Wells is coming off his best season as a Cardinal, topping both 1,000 rushing and 10 touchdowns for the first time in his career. Despite his success, Arizona is very high on Ryan Williams, a second year back out of Virginia Tech who was sidelined last season with a patella injury. This factor, plus the fact that Wells has started training camp on the PUP list, calls for an interesting situation brewing in Arizona.

 

Fantasy Impact: There is no reason to believe that Arizona’s #1 back won’t duplicate Wells’ numbers from last year. 

 

Edge: Wells

 


Buffalo Bills: Fred Jackson vs. CJ Spiller

 

The Scoop: Fred Jackson was having a career year last season That is, until a fractured leg abruptly ended his season. In stepped C.J Spiller to pick up the slack, and all he did was average 5.2 yards per carry. Jackson is old for a running back at 31, but he didn’t experience a full work load until 2009. Spiller, the more dynamic runner of the two, seems poised to prove he was worth the 9th overall pick in 2010.

 

Fantasy Impact: Whether it was Jackson or Spiller, the Bills #1 back was often in double digit fantasy points last season. Expect the trend to continue this season.

 

Edge: Spiller

 


Cincinnati Bengals: Benjarvus Green-Ellis vs.  Bernard Scott
 

 

The Scoop: The Bengals have insisted that they implement a running back by-committee approach this season after letting go veteran Cedric Benson this offseason. Green-Ellis, who came over as a free agent from the Patriots, is a power back who has never fumbled in his NFL career. Scott has been a steady backup for the Bengals and is expected to get around 10 carries a game.

 

Fantasy Impact: Green-Ellis has 24 touchdowns over the past two seasons, with all but one coming inside the redzone. It is shocking that nobody is talking about him. He will be a major sleeper. 

 

Edge: Green-Ellis

 


Detroit Lions: Jahvid Best vs. Mikel Leshoure vs. Kevin Smith

 

The Scoop: Best has big play ability, but is oft-injured and coming off a series of concussions suffered last season. Leshoure, a bruising power back with workhorse potential, is returning from an Achilles tear and has been suspended for the first 2 games of the 2012 season because of off the field issues (2 arrests). Smith is a dependable 3rd down back, but is not suited to handle a large workload.

 

Fantasy Impact: The Lions are dying for a complement to their passing game, and a healthy Best is a high-end #2 back. Unfortunately, Best can’t seem to stay healthy.

 

Edge: Best

 


Indianapolis Colts: Donald Brown vs.  Delone Carter

 

The Scoop: Out of the two, Donald Brown has been the more steady and consistent back. New Colts Head Coach Chuck Pagano seems to think that Carter’s potential is greater than Brown’s, but Carter first needs to solve his fumbling issue in order to earn the coaches trust.

 

Fantasy Impact: With rookie Andrew Luck starting at quarterback, the Colts will rely heavily on the running game. Drafting one of these backs late is a low risk/high reward move.

 

Edge: Brown 

 


Kansas City Chiefs: Jamaal Charles vs. Peyton Hillis

 

The Scoop: This tandem possesses the classic combination of power and speed. Charles is a speedster with a career average of 6.1 yards per carry. The problem is that Charles is coming off a torn ACL, an injury that is devastating for running backs in particular. Hillis will provide the punch and is expected spell Charles and receive the bulk of the goal line carries. 

 

Fantasy Impact: Charles’ big play ability and knack for piling up yards will make him a solid #1 back regardless, assuming he can return to his 2010 form. Hillis is the one who will suffer from this pairing despite getting the goal line carries.

 

Edge: Charles

 


New England Patriots: Stevan Ridley vs. Shane Vereen

 

The Scoop: With Danny Woodhead’s role set as the 3rd down back/receiver out of the backfield, the competition boils down to Ridley vs. Vereen. Ridley impressed the New England coaches last season in a limited role, averaging 5.4 yards per carry in the last 3 weeks of the season. However, he was plagued by a few key fumbles late in the season. Vereen is expected to play a larger role in the Patriots offense, but first he must prove he can stay healthy for an entire season.

 

Fantasy Impact: Ultimately, the Patriots hope that one of these backs can fill the void left by Green-Ellis. However, when was the last time a New England back could ever be trusted week after week?

 

Edge: Ridley

 

 

Wide Receiver

 

Arizona Cardinals: Andre Roberts vs. Early Doucet vs. Michael Floyd

The Scoop: With Fitzgerald as the #1 receiver, this battle is for the 2nd spot. Floyd was the 12th overall pick in this year’s draft, but he showed up slightly out of shape and has warranted concern about his work ethic. Roberts put up 51 catches for 586 in his second season, which is impressive considering the QB mess in Arizona last season. Doucet is the most established of the three, but is better suited as a slot receiver.

 

Fantasy Impact: Whoever the #2 receiver is should have many opportunities, as teams will be gearing there defenses towards Fitzgerald. If the quarterback situation in Arizona gets worked out, there could be decent contributions here.

 

Edge: Roberts

 


Carolina Panthers: Brandon Lafell vs. David Gettis vs. Louis Murphy

 

The Scoop: To ignite the battle for the #2 receiver, the Panthers recently acquired Louis Murphy from the Oakland Raiders. Murphy isn’t exactly a stud, averaging only 28 catches for the past two seasons. Lafell and Gettis have been only slightly better, both averaging 37 catches per season over the same stretch.

 

Fantasy Impact: With Smith, solids TE’s and a dynamic running game, the Panthers aren’t asking these receivers to do much, so don’t expect significant production out of this spot.

 

Edge: Lafell

 


Cincinnati Bengals: Mohamed Sanu vs. Tate vs. Armon Binns

 

The Scoop: With the departure of Jerome Simpson and Andre Caldwell, the Bengals are looking to fill a spot that was surprisingly productive last season. While Tate is now an NFL veteran, he has rarely been used as anything other than a return specialist. In fact, last year he didn’t even record a single catch. Still, Tate has more experience than both Sanu, a third round pick in this year’s draft, and Binns, whose most impressive game occurred in preseason of last year.

 

Fantasy Impact: Even with QB Andy Dalton’s anticipated improvement, this spot will bear little significance. WR A.J Green and TE Jermaine Gresham are still Dalton’s top targets.

 

Edge: Sanu

 


Cleveland Browns: Mohamed Massaquoi vs. Josh Gordon

 

The Scoop: Brown’s Head Coach Pat Shurmur asserted this offseason that Greg Little and Mohamed Massaquoi were penciled in as the starting receivers, but that was before Cleveland took Josh Gordon in the 2nd round of the supplemental draft. Massaquoi has greatly underperformed in Cleveland and last year had only 31 catches for 384 yards and 2 touchdowns. Gordon is definitely the more talented of the two, but he missed spring practices and will be playing catch up for most of training camp.

 

Fantasy Impact: Don’t expect much here. Cleveland has shaky quarterback play and will elect to run the ball more often than not.

 

Edge: Massequoi

 

 

Detroit Lions: Titus Young vs. Nate Burleson

 

The Scoop: Burleson had a personal best 73 receptions last year and provided a security blanket for Stafford when Megatron was double and triple teamed. As a rookie last season, Young caught 48 passes for 607 yards and 6 touchdowns. Burleson is over 30 and is better suiting in the slot, while Young is 23 and poised for a breakout season.

 

Fantasy Impact: With one of the best QB’s in the league in Matthew Stafford running the show, Titus Young is expected to become one of the top #2 receivers in the game.

 

Edge:  Young

 


Green Bay Packers: James Jones vs. Randall Cobb vs. Donald Driver

 

The Scoop: Never has a battle for the #3 WR position gained this much hype. Jones saw his receptions go down last year, but had a career high 7 touchdown receptions. Cobb excelled in the return game as a rookie and showed flashes of brilliance at the receiver position, but has the least experience of the three. Finally, the veteran Driver is the most decorated of the three, but has seen his receptions drop every year since 2006.

 

Fantasy Impact: With Aaron Rodgers as the Packers QB, all three of these players figure to produce, but as fantasy players they are too inconsistent to start every week.

 

Edge: Jones

 


Kansas City Chiefs: Jonathan Baldwin vs. Steve Breaston

 

The Scoop: The Chiefs were very disappointed with Baldwin’s performance as a rookie last year a fear that he lacks the consistency required from a #2 receiver. Breaston is the definition of consistency, having at least 4 catches in 11 games last season. A key stat to highlight the difference between the two: Baldwin caught 41.2% of his targets; Breaston caught 63.5%.

 

Fantasy Impact: With Matt Cassel returning, the passing game in Kansas City figures to return as well. Still, neither of these players will put up massive numbers.

 

Edge: Breaston

 


New England Patriots: Deion Branch vs. Jabar Gaffney Donte Stallworth

 

The Scoop: Despite the QB mess in Washington last season, Gaffney managed 68 receptions and almost broke 1000 yards receiving. Stallworth also comes over from Washington, but he was significantly less productive with only 22 receptions. Branch reunited with QB Tom Brady last season and it was as though the two never parted, but age is becoming a factor, as Deion is already 33 years old.

 

Fantasy Impact: With Tom Brady as the Quarterback, everyone on New England has fantasy impact, but whoever the third receiver is will be the 5th option behind Welker, Lloyd, Hernandez, and Gronkowski.

 

Edge: Gaffney

 

 

New York Jets: Stephen Hill vs. Chaz Schilens

The Scoop: With experienced players Santonio Holmes and Jeremy Kerley atop the depth chart going into preseason, an intense battle has broken out between Schilens and Hill for the 3rd spot. Schilens has breakaway speed, but Hill has all the talent in the world to become the next big thing. Coming out of Georgia Tech’s wishbone offense though, Hill may need time to develop, similar to the situation Damarius Thomas was in a few years ago.

 

Fantasy Impact: It’s hard to say that the #3 receiver slot will contribute much until Mark Sanchez can prove himself as a consistent QB.

 

Edge: Hill

 


New York Giants: Rueben Randle vs. Domenik Hixon

 

The Scoop: Both of these receivers are trying to fill the major void left by Mario Manningham. When Hakeem Nicks went down with an injury earlier in the offseason, Hixon filled in as the #2 receiver, which wasn’t a surprise considering his already established chemistry with Eli Manning. Randle was drafted out of LSU to play, though he still has much to learn about player wide receiver in the NFL.

 

Fantasy Impact: Remember that Manningham has filled this spot in recent years. While his numbers were not incredible last year, he did score 9 touchdowns out of this spot in 2010.

 

Edge: Hixon

 


San Diego Chargers: Eddie Royal vs. Vincent Brown

 

The Scoop: With Robert Meachem and Malcolm Floyd expected to start, this battle is for the #3 receiver. Royal speed makes him the ideal slot receiver, but since his rookie season when he had 91 catches he hasn’t lived up to his potential. Brown came on late in his rookie season, but impressed the Chargers with his ability to attack the ball in mid-air.

 

Fantasy Impact: Both could be potential late round sleepers in the Chargers’ dynamic aerial attack.

 

Edge: Royal

 


San Francisco 49ers: Mario Manningham vs. Randy Moss

 

The Scoop: Randy Moss returns to the NFL after retiring following the 2010 season. His last season in the NFL was forgettable, but scouts are saying that Moss is looking like his old self out there on the football field. Meanwhile, Manningham is coming off a remarkable Super Bowl performance for the Giants, and came to the 49ers seeking more opportunities.

 

Fantasy Impact: The 49ers were one of the worst red zone offenses in football last year. Both Moss and Manningham provide another threat other than Davis in the red zone passing game.

 

Edge: Moss

 


Tennessee Titans: Kendall Wright vs. Damian Williams

 

The Scoop: The Titans drafted Wright out of Baylor with the 20th overall pick in the 2012 NFL draft. In his senior year at Baylor, Wright paired with Heisman Winner Robert Griffin III to record 108 catches for 1633 yards and 14 touchdowns. Williams preformed in his limited role for the Titans last season, hauling in 45 passes for 592 yards and 5 touchdowns.

 

Fantasy Impact: With Kenny Brit’s off the field issues/health always an issue, the winner of this battle can potentially find himself in the #1 spot come opening day.

 

Edge: Wright

 

 


Washington Redskins: Santana Moss vs. Leonard Hankerson vs. Josh Morgan
 

 

The Scoop: Santana Moss is the veteran of the three and is entering his 12th season, but at this point he is probably better suited as a slot receiver. Leonard Hankerson had a disappointing rookie season, but reports coming out of Washington are saying that Hankerson has really impressed during this offseason. Josh Morgan has seen his numbers decrease in each of the past two seasons and is looking to jump start his career in Washington.

 

Fantasy Impact: The fantasy fortunes of these receivers rides on the success of Robert Griffin III.

 

Edge: Hankerson

 

 

 

Tight Ends

 


Arizona Cardinals: Todd Heap vs. Rob Housler

 

The Scoop: Housler will be given every chance to become a breakout player. He's fast and has displayed good hands in his short NFL career. An 11-year veteran, Heap has proven to be an elite receiver when healthy. He surprised the Cardinals by showing the ability and willingness to block, too. The problem was that he missed six full games because a hamstring injury and wasn't healthy in many of the games in which he did play.

 

Fantasy Impact: Whichever one earns the starting job could be a big producer in the red zone.

 

Edge: Housler

 


Seattle Seahawks: Kellen Winslow vs. Zach Miller

 

The Scoop: After 4 productive seasons with Oakland, Miller came to Seattle last year and struggled, only recording 15 receptions for the season. While Seattle is hoping for Miller to have a bounce-back season, they traded for Winslow just in case. Winslow is a model of consistency at the TE position, having caught at least 65 passes in 5 of the past six seasons.

 

Fantasy Impact: The production here depends on who is playing quarterback. If it’s Matt Flynn, the potential exponentially rises.

 

Edge: Winslow

 


Kansas City Chiefs: Tony Moeaki vs. Kevin Boss

 

The Scoop: Moeaki is coming of an ACL injury that kept him out of the 2011 season. In his rookie season (2010), Moeaki caught 47 passes for 556 yards. Boss is coming from Oakland, where he turned in his worst season in 4 years.

 

Fantasy Impact: Unless Moeaki can stay healthy for a full season, neither of these two seem to factor into the tight end conversation.

 

Edge: Moeaki

 


Minnesota Vikings: Kyle Rudolph vs. John Carlson

 

The Scoop: Carlson signed as a free agent from the Seahawks and did not play in 2011 due to injury. His strength comes in the red zone, where his 6’5 250 pound frame comes into play. Rudolph is entering his 2nd season, coming off a 23 catch rookie campaign. Carlson’s recent MCL sprain is a cause of concern.

 

Fantasy Impact: Minnesota generally utilizes TE’s, but the more both Rudolph and Carlson play the less each will produce individually.

 

Edge: Rudolph

 


Baltimore Ravens: Ed Dickson vs. Dennis Pitta

 

The Scoop: a poor man’s version of Hernandez and Gronkowski, both were productive last season. Dickson is the better athlete and put up 10 receptions in a game last year. Pitta came on late last year and is one of Flacco’s favorite targets. Pitta broke his hand early in training camp and may not be ready for opening day.

Fantasy Impact: Both TE’s were in there 2nd season last year and made an impact. Expect good but not great production from both players.

 

Edge: Pitta (if healthy)

 


Denver Broncos: Jacob Tamme vs. Joel Dreessen

 

The Scoop: Tamme signed as a free agent from the Colts and is reunited with Peyton Manning. In 2010, the last time Manning and Tamme played together, Tamme put up 67 catches for 631 yards. Dreessen served as a reliable target for Matt Schaub in Houston, and looks to have even more opportunities with Manning.

 

Fantasy Impact: Whoever wins this job could put up huge numbers playing alongside Manning and would be a nice sleeper pick.

 

Edge: Tamme 

 


Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Luke Stocker vs. Dallas Clark

 

The Scoop: The most experienced and arguably best player is Clark, but he hasn't been a productive pass-catching tight end for two years now and is limited as a run-blocker. Stocker, last year's fourth-round pick. Unfortunately, Stocker suffered from injuries for much of his rookie season and has not stood out thus far in training camp.

 

Fantasy Impact: With Clark nearing the end of his career and Stocker unproven, I wouldn’t expect much from either of the two.

 

Edge: Stocker

 

 

by Sykeout!

 

 

our Draft Kit: 2012 fantasy football draft kit image