FBG Daily Email - Volume 13, Issue 60
By Joe Bryant
June 22nd, 2012


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Hi Folks,

Good Saturday to you. Hope you're ready for a great weekend - we've got the news and notes you need so let's get to it.

J

SITE NEWS

A. Footballguys TV - Episode 7
Cecil Lammey breaks down some of the latest news and notes from around the NFL. Topics Include - Robert Griffin III picking up the offense quickly and why he has an orange aura, the Raiders have interest in Cedric Benson, where could Browns QB Colt McCoy be traded, plus more!

INSIDE THIS ISSUE

1. MIA - Coach says QB competition close
2. CHI - RB Matt Forte says talks getting better
3. ATL - RB Michael Turner says he is not overweight
4. MIN - Christian Ponder showing improvement
5. CIN - OC impressed with WR Brandon Tate
6. MIN - WR Percy Harvin may work out with Christian Ponder
7. SF - WR Randy Moss practicing with first-team offense
8. TEN - RB Chris Johnson explains added weight
9. DET - Teammate raves about QB Matthew Stafford's arm
10. TB - Luke Stocker not expected to have big role in offense
11. NYG - WR Ramses Barden may be longshot for No. 3 WR job
12. CIN - Two believed to be favorites for No. 2 WR job
13. - RB Earnest Graham could retire
14. SD - Coach impressed with minicamp results
15. NE - Questions at running back

MIA - Coach says QB competition close

Source: Palm Beach Post - Brian Biggane

Miami Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin said the competition between QBs Matt Moore, David Garrard and Ryan Tannehill is close. He will be sitting down with the other coaches to determine what the depth chart at the position will look like entering training camp. It is believed Tannehill is a step or two behind Moore and Garrard in the competition but has not been ruled out for the job.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

We think Moore ends up winning this job and will begin the season as the Dolphins starter. He could play a lot like Matt Flynn did under Joe Philbin, and may be able to hold onto the starting job for some time. However, the future of the team is Tannehill and we're likely to see him on the field at some point this year.

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CHI - RB Matt Forte says talks getting better

Source: Chicago Sun-Times - Joe Cowley

Chicago Bears franchise free-agent RB Matt Forte said long-term contract talks with the Bears have progressed this offseason.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

The first good sign in the Forte contract situation so far this year. The Bears got themselves holdout insurance when they added RB Michael Bush in free agency. If the talks continue to progress then we could see Forte at training camp. Earlier it had been assumed by most this holdout would last into the preseason.

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ATL - RB Michael Turner says he is not overweight

Source: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution - D. Orlando Ledbetter

Atlanta Falcons RB Michael Turner disputed a report that said he is overweight. He said that he is around his playing weight now and nothing as change in terms of his weight.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

Some radio personalities in Atlanta were reporting that Turner looked extremely overweight at minicamp. That report was disputed by Ledbetter, who said Turner looked fine to him out at practice. Some fantasy owners are trying to promote Jacquizz Rodgers as the RB to own in Atlanta. However, the team will still feature Turner with a 70/30 split in favor of the seasoned veteran. Turner may not get 300 carries this year, but it doesn't seem like his fantasy production will fall as much as some think.

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MIN - Christian Ponder showing improvement

Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune - Kent Youngblood

Minnesota Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier said QB Christian Ponder made a lot of progress during offseason workouts but there are other things he still needs to work on before the season.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

Ponder has a good skill set he just needs to stay healthy in order to play up to his potential. We'd like to see him improve his decision making and pre-snap reads so he can get rid of the ball quicker and avoid the rush. The addition of Jerome Simpson will give the team a downfield threat they were missing last year.

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CIN - OC impressed with WR Brandon Tate

Source: Bengals.com - Dan Hoard

Cincinnati Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden said WR Brandon Tate was one of the standout players during workouts this offseason. 'He's been one of the best surprises of camp for me,' said Gruden. 'Last year he came in late (after being acquired on waivers from New England) and was mainly a return guy and our fifth receiver and never really got in the flow with the group at wide receiver. Now I think he's more confident, he sees that he belongs as an NFL wide receiver, and I think the confidence level that he has is showing. He's got all the ability. He runs all of the routes great, he's got great feel, and he's done an outstanding job.'

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

Tate has an interesting skill set. If he can stay healthy and play up to his potential then he should be able to take advantage of one-on-one coverage as most defenses will focus on shutting down superstar A.J. Green.

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MIN - WR Percy Harvin may work out with Christian Ponder

Source: 1500ESPN.com - Tom Pelissero

Minnesota Vikings QB Christian Ponder said he has talked with WR Percy Harvin about the possibility of working out together over the next few weeks since both spend time in Florida during the offseason.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

Sounds like this Harvin stuff is blowing over in Minnesota. We think the Vikings will find any way to make Harvin happy as he's their best weapon in the passing game.

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SF - WR Randy Moss practicing with first-team offense

Source: CSNBayArea.com - Matt Maiocco

San Francisco 49ers WR Randy Moss has been practicing with the first-team offense in minicamp, and it appears he's a starter heading into training camp.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

Moss has certainly impressed this offseason with his new team. If he can look like the Randy Moss of old it will make him a big fantasy factor in 2012. His current ADP is WR37 and he's coming off the board at the end of the 8th round in most drafts. That number will rise if he continues to impress in training camp and the preseason.

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TEN - RB Chris Johnson explains added weight

Source: The Tennessean - Jim Wyatt

Tennessee Titans RB Chris Johnson said he wants to add weight this offseason because he believes it will allow him to get through the bumps and bruises of the season. 'I want to be a little heavier because it makes me feel a little sturdier and it helps me make it through the whole season with the bumps and bruises,' he said. Johnson weighed 191 last season but wants to play at 197 or 198 pounds this season.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

It's not like Johnson is going to add bad weight here. We like the idea of him playing at a bigger size. He should still retain his world class speed and may finish as a top 5 fantasy RB again this year.

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DET - Teammate raves about QB Matthew Stafford's arm

Source: NFL.com - Gregg Rosenthal

Detroit Lions WR Nate Burleson thinks QB Matthew Stafford has the strongest arm in the league, and it has only gotten stronger. Burleson said it reminds him of former Vikings QB Daunte Culpepper.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

Stafford has always had a strong arm. It's one of the many reasons why he was the number one overall pick in 2009. Durability is the only concern with the young star, and if he stays healthy we think he could approach 5,000-yards passing again this year.

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TB - Luke Stocker not expected to have big role in offense

Source: Tampa Bay Times - Stephen Holder

Tampa Bay Buccaneers TE Luke Stocker is not expected to have a big role as a receiver in the offense this season because of the addition of TE Dallas Clark. The team are looking for Stocker to be a consistent blocker this season.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

Stocker is a big bodied TE who makes for a nice target in the red zone. With the addition of Clark he won't be much of a fantasy factor this year. We don't think Clark is worth a roster spot on your fantasy team because of Greg Schiano's run heavy offense.

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NYG - WR Ramses Barden may be longshot for No. 3 WR job

Source: New York Daily News - Ebenezer Samuel

New York Giants WR Ramses Barden may be considered a longshot for the No. 3 wide receiver job during training camp because offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride did not mention his name when talking about the receivers during offseason workouts. Barden does believe he got more comfortable with the offense this offseason since he was able to participate in the workouts.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

Barden was extremely raw coming out of Cal Poly but injuries have prevented him from developing his skill set much as a pro. He could be on the roster bubble if he doesn't start to show better when he gets an opportunity. We like rookie Rueben Randle as the favorite to land the WR3 job behind Hakeem Nicks and Victor Cruz.

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CIN - Two believed to be favorites for No. 2 WR job

Source: Bengals.com - Dan Hoard

Cincinnati Bengals WRs Brandon Tate and Armon Binns are believed to be the frontrunners for the No. 2 wide receiver job during training camp.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

Injuries have prevented Tate from playing up to his potential. When he came out of college some in the scouting community compared his skill set to that of Eagles WR Jeremy Maclin. Binns is a big bodied WR with a large wingspan. He knows how to box out defenders for the ball but is not much of a threat after the catch.

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- RB Earnest Graham could retire

Source: Fort Myers News-Press - David Dorsey

Free-agent RB Earnest Graham (Buccaneers) said he is prepared to move on from football if teams don't pursue him this offseason. 'Right now, honestly, I'm going to focus on being a free agent, but I definitely understand that it is likely that I may have already played my last game,'

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

Graham was one of the most versatile players at the RB position in recent years. His team first mentality helped him play a lot longer than some expected.

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SD - Coach impressed with minicamp results

Source: The San Diego Union-Tribune - Michael Gehlken

San Diego Chargers head coach Norv Turner said QB Philip Rivers and TE Antonio Gates have had their best minicamp he has seen. 'I told our guys, I don't have to, but if I listed 10 guys who have been outstanding,' Turner said, 'and probably have had their best camp that I'm aware of, (Antonio) Gates falls in that category. Ryan is in that category. Philip Rivers is in that category. He's still been here (at the team facility) more days probably more than any other guy on the team.'

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

The Chargers have a big hole to fill on offense as they lost WR Vincent Jackson in free agency. They added Robert Meachem and Eddie Royal in free agency themselves, and are hopeful those two guys can produce at a high level.

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NE - Questions at running back

Source: Boston Herald - Jeff Howe

It appears the New England Patriots will rely on second-year RBs Shane Vereen and Stevan Ridley as their top runners in 2012. However, the pair has more questions surrounding them than answers right now. Vereen had just 15 carries as a rookie because of injury problems and Ridley had fumble problems in consecutive games last year, which led to a quick hook from the field. The team has veteran RBs Joseph Addai and Danny Woodhead on roster and they may, as reported, have interest in re-signing RB Sammy Morris.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ OUR VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

The Patriots backfield is a cluster you-know-what right now. For fantasy purposes it's best to avoid any of these RBs. If one does emerge we feel it could be Vereen as he's got the best all-around skill set. If you're feeling lucky, grab Vereen late in your draft as a "lottery" pick.

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That'll do it for today, Folks. Thanks for reading and letting us be a part of your fantasy football season. We'll see you tomorrow with the update.

Peace,

J

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