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Volume 19, #8 -- Sunday Night, April 30th, 2017

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Hi Folks,

Good Monday to you. The NFL Draft is in the book and that's the unofficial kickoff to the season each year. We'll be moving back to our Daily Format with these emails where we'll be giving you the NFL stories each day you need to know about plus our take on what the stories mean for your Fantasy Team. Thanks as always to our Footballguys Cecil Lammey and Sigmund Bloom for the work here.

We'll keep you on top of things so you can (continue) to be the smartest owner in your league. Thanks for being part of Footballguys and for giving us some of your time. Let's get to it.

J


1. BUF - Doug Whaley fired

Source: Rochester Democrat and Chronicle - Sal Maiorana

The Buffalo Bills have fired general manager Doug Whaley.

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You could see this move coming a mile away. Whaley wasn't very visible in the Bills draft process. The team probably wanted to avoid leaks of their draft plans, but it is clear that this is Sean McDermott's show. NFL Network's Ian Rapoport pegs Brandon Beane and Don Gregory from the Panthers organization as potential candidates to rejoin McDermott in Buffalo, and former exec Joe Banner brought up Brett Veach, who worked with McDermott in Philadelphia and is now in the Kansas City organization that has been a fertile ground for opportunities elsewhere.

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2. GB - RB Ty Montgomery still the starting RB

Source: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel - Tom Silverstein

Green Bay Packers RB Ty Montgomery is still the starting running back, head coach Mike McCarthy said Saturday, April 29.

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Fourth-round pick Jamaal Williams and fifth-rounder Aaron Jones are both more natural than Montgomery between the tackles and they should have a chance to make Christine Michael expendable. While Montgomery dodged Joe Mixon joining the team, which was a strong rumor before the draft, he'll remain in a committee.

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3. CAR - WR Kelvin Benjamin's weight causing concern

Source: The Associated Press

Carolina Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin is overweight, according to head coach Ron Rivera, and it's a concern. Benjamin, listed at 6-5, 245 pounds, was rumored to weigh 280 pounds, but Rivera disputed the report. He did not offer a specific weight, but he said Benjamin is a 'little heavy' right now and is working hard to lose the weight.

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Benjamin's weight was a reported problem at Florida State, and he was also in and out of the doghouse last year. Devin Funchess's development has stalled out and the team didn't bring in very much help in free agency (Charles Johnson and Russell Shepard) after letting Ted Ginn go to New Orleans and Corey Brown to Buffalo. Second-round pick Curtis Samuel is one to watch with 2016 UDFA Keyarris Garrett also a talented and productive name to remember if Benjamin flames out.

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4. BUF - QB Tyrod Taylor will need to compete for job

Source: ESPN.com - Mike Rodak

Buffalo Bills QB Tyrod Taylor will not be handed the starting quarterback job and will need to earn it during offseason workouts and training camp, according to head coach Sean McDermott.

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Cardale Jones and rookie Nathan Peterman join journeyman TJ Yates as the competition. This is a good line for the team to take, but if Taylor struggles to separate from this group at all it will be a sign that the new regime made a bad decision to keep him at a slight discount instead of letting him walk when his option was up this spring. Taylor should be considered a matchup QBBC play as long as he wins the job.

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5. HOU - D'Onta Foreman could be No. 2 RB

Source: ESPN.com - Sarah Barshop

Houston Texans RB D'Onta Foreman could beat out RB Alfred Blue for the No. 2 running back job this upcoming season, in the opinion of ESPN.com's Sarah Barshop.

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He should be the #2 with his vastly superior athleticism. Foreman wasn't as powerful as his mass indicates, and he's not a three-down back. He could have some relevance if Lamar Miller goes down this year, but he might be overrated in dynasty leagues because of his production and measureables.

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6. DET - RB Ameer Abdullah has hold of starting job

Source: ESPN.com - Michael Rothstein

Detroit Lions RB Ameer Abdullah will be the team’s starting running back this fall, according to general manager Bob Quinn.

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Theo Riddick will certainly play a big role in the passing game and Zach Zenner was strong enough at the end of the season to merit consideration as an inside runner, so Abdullah's upside is capped. Still, he was dynamic to open the season and the Lions line is arguably improved after the offseason. He's a mid-round consideration in PPR leagues.

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7. LA - WR Tavon Austin could move outside

Source: The Orange County Register - Rich Hammond

Los Angeles Rams WR Tavon Austin could move to the outside or be utilized more in the run game if WR Cooper Kupp is a better option as a slot receiver, according to beat writer Rich Hammond.

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Austin's deep speed isn't being used nearly enough, and he hasn't been the open field threat the Rams envisioned when they drafted him in the top 10 or signed him to a big extension. He's barely draftable in PPR leagues. Kupp could be a high volume target with so little at wide receiver for this team, but he still landed in a bad fantasy spot as long as Jared Goff is a work in progress.

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8. CIN - Quick transition for Joshua Malone?

Source: Bengals.com - Dan Hoard

Cincinnati Bengals WR Joshua Malone is 'well-coached' and knows how to play the receiver position, according to wide receivers coach James Urban. 'I think he's a guy that will flash plays on a daily basis because of his physical tool set, and then he'll just get better, and better, and better,' Urban said.

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Malone is a size/speed threat who can stick on the Bengals roster as a fifth receiver while he develops. He has starter upside and should be monitored in dynasty leagues just in case first-round pick John Ross can't stay healthy in the pros. Deep dynasty leaguers should look to stash Malone away.

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9. PHI - RB Ryan Mathews cleared to work out

Source: Delaware News Journal - Martin Frank

Philadelphia Eagles RB Ryan Mathews (back) has been cleared to work out, executive vice president of football operations Howie Roseman said Saturday, April 29.

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Many covering the Eagles expect Mathews to be released once he is healthy, so this is a sign that he could be on the way out. Darren Sproles and Wendell Smallwood will play roles in the backfield regardless of Mathews' status, but if he is let go, then there will some carries free for the taking in Philadelphia.

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10. MIA - Isaac Asiata may push for LG job

Source: ESPN.com - James Walker

Miami Dolphins OG Isaac Asiata is expected to compete with OG Ted Larsen for the starting left guard job during training camp.

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Matt Asiata's cousin is a body mover in the running game who should have the inside track to win this job because he meshes with the power running the team did so well once Jay Ajayi got going last year. It's good for Ajayi if we hear that Asiata is having a good summer and on track to win this job.

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11. GB - QB Brett Hundley was close to being moved

Source: ESPN.com - Rob Demovsky

Green Bay Packers QB Brett Hundley was close to being traded during the second day of the 2017 NFL Draft but likely will be remain with the team for at least one more season.

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This is part of a growing trend of teams trying to profit from developing backup quarterback by trading them for a high price before they hit free agency and likely get overpaid elsewhere by a quarterback hungry team. Hundley has a great athleticism but was a long-term project when the Packers drafted him. At least they have shown enough faith in him to allow him to be the backup early in his career. We'd love to know the team and price that was being discussed.

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12. SF - SF likely to pick up CB Jimmie Ward's option

Source: NBC Sports Bay Area - Matt Maiocco

San Francisco 49ers FS Jimmie Ward's fifth-year option likely will be exercised before the deadline, according to general manager John Lynch.

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That Ward is going to be kept by a new regime is a good sign for his development entering his fourth year. He has the corner/safety versatility that team's covet in the increasingly pass-happy league.

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13. BAL - Two Ravens WRs could see more playing time

Source: ESPN.com - Jamison Hensley

Baltimore Ravens WRs Chris Moore and Michael Campanaro will be given the opportunity to compete for more playing time in 2017, according to general manager Ozzie Newsome.

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Moore is a 2016 fourth-round pick and he has some downfield game to suit Joe Flacco's style as a quarterback. Campanaro is a quicker than fast slot receiver who has had trouble staying healthy. The Ravens need help at wide receiver, so they will have a chance to get on the field this year.

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14. BAL - WR Anquan Boldin may be option for Ravens

Source: ESPN.com - Jamison Hensley

Free-agent WR Anquan Boldin (Lions) has received interest from the Baltimore Ravens this offseason.

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The Ravens are really only two deep at wide receiver with often injured Breshad Perriman being one and Mike Wallace the other. The rest of the depth chart inexperienced, so a return to Baltimore would make sense. He might be relevant in fantasy leagues if he signs with the Ravens and one of their top two receivers go down, and he could also play a lot in the slot even if they stay healthy.

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15. NE - New England adds three UDFAs

Source: NESN.com - Doug Kyed

The New England Patriots have reportedly agreed to terms with undrafted free-agent RB LeShun Daniels Jr. as well as WRs Austin Carr (Northwestern) and Cody Hollister (Arkansas).

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Daniels is a big bruiser the team could develop with the LeGarrette Blount role in mind. Carr was highly productive, but is limited to a short and intermediate big slot role at best at the next level. Both are practice squad candidates, but ones to monitor in very deep dynasty leagues because of the quality of the Patriots organization.

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16. KC - KC agrees to terms with six UDFAs

Source: The Kansas City Star - Terez A. Paylor

The Kansas City Chiefs agreed to terms with undrafted free-agent TE Emanuel Byrd (Marshall) as well as WRs Gehrig Dieter (Alabama), Anas Hasic (West Florida), Justin Hunt (Marshall), Tony Stevens (Auburn) and Marcus Kemp (Hawaii).

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Dieter has great hands and size, and gets the most of out his limited athleticism, but the Chiefs wideout group is crowded, so he'll be a practice squad candidate with a good summer.

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17. JAX - Jacksonville agrees with four UDFAs

Source: DraftWire

The Jacksonville Jaguars agreed to terms with undrafted free-agent RB I’tavius Mathers (Middle Tennessee) as well as WRs Kenneth Walker (UCLA), Amba Etta-Tawo (Syracuse) and Keelan Cole (Kentucky Wesleyan).

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Etta-Tawo has decent size and overall athleticism, and it's no surprise that he is on Tom Coughlin and Doug Marrone's team with their connections to Syracuse. He'll have to toil away on the practice squad to have a future with the team after they drafted Dede Westbrook in the fourth round, unless both of Rashad Greene and Bryan Walters get released.

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18. HOU - Houston adds five UDFAs

Source: Houston Chronicle - Aaron Wilson

The Houston Texans agreed to terms with undrafted free-agent WRs Deante' Gray (Texas Christian), Justin Hardee (Illinois) and Shaq Hill (Eastern Washington), RB Dare Ogunbowale (Wisconsin) and TE Zach Conque (Stephen F. Austin) Saturday, April 29. Complete terms of the contracts were not disclosed, although Gray received a $2,000 signing bonus.

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Ogunbowale is a swiss army knife back who might not be able to be good enough at anything to be fantasy relevant, but useful enough to coaches to deny a roster spot to a back with a higher ceiling as a runner. There will be good competition among the Texans backup running backs this summer.

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19. LA - Los Angeles Rams sign two UDFAs

Source: TheRams.com - Nate Bain

The Los Angeles Rams agreed to terms with undrafted free-agent RB Justin Davis (Southern California) and TE Johnny Mundt (Oregon) Saturday, April 29. Terms of the contracts were not disclosed.

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Davis could be a decent third-down back eventually, but is probably a practice squad back at best with Lance Dunbar in Los Angeles.

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20. LA - WR Pharoh Cooper's role unknown

Source: The Orange County Register - Rich Hammond

Los Angeles Rams WR Pharoh Cooper's role in the offense remains unclear heading into the 2017 season.

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Cooper was never a great fit as an "offensive weapon" on a team that already had one with a big financial commitment in Tavon Austin. He might not make the team in a year or two with a new regime in place.

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21. BUF - Nathan Peterman ready for the NFL?

Source: BuffaloBills.com - Chris Brown

Buffalo Bills QB Nathan Peterman's accuracy and timing of his throws and his 'ability to work under center' stood out, according to head coach Sean McDermott. 'It's not something you see often in the college game,' McDermott said.

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Peterman can be similar to Cody Kessler, mostly safe with the ball, but not threatening to a defense in most ways as a passer. He is alternative to Cardale Jones for the new regime if Tyrod Taylor isn't kept next year.

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22. NYJ - DE Sheldon Richardson still on the market

Source: New York Daily News - Manish Mehta

The New York Jets will still try to trade DE Sheldon Richardson even though they were not able to make a deal during the 2017 NFL Draft, according to sources. The Jets talked with the Dallas Cowboys and Washington Redskins over the last few days, but Richardson's fully guaranteed $8.1 million salary for 2017 was a sticking point for teams.

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Richardson under Cowboys defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli would be fun to watch. The Jets are clearly in rebuilding mode, so Richardson is not part of that plan. He'll be traded for a mid-round pick at best because of his contract.

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23. BAL - Tim Patrick will join Baltimore

Source: The Baltimore Sun - Jeff Zrebiec

Undrafted free-agent WR Tim Patrick (Utah) will agree with the Baltimore Ravens once players are officially allowed to sign.

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Patrick is a tall receiver who is very athletic. He held up very well against quality corners in the Pac 12, and burned Titans first-rounder Adoree' Jackson. He is definitely a UDFA to watch in a thin Ravens wide receiver corps.

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24. TEN - Adoree' Jackson has chance to start in 2017

Source: ESPN.com - Paul Kuharsky

Tennessee Titans CB Adoree' Jackson is in line to be one of the starting cornerbacks in 2017.

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Jackson was taken advantage of a lot last year despite his high draft slot, and he is especially vulnerable to big receivers, although the AFC South doesn't have a lot of them. We'll be paying attention to who lines up against him, especially in DFS analysis.

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25. DAL - Immediate impact from Taco Charlton?

Source: The Dallas Morning News - Jori Epstein

Dallas Cowboys DE Taco Charlton is 'going to be ready to play from the get-go,' according to owner Jerry Jones.

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Charlton wasn't a first-rounder on every board, but he will benefit from defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli's coaching and good game scripts. He's a fringe consideration in dynasty IDP leagues, but still one to monitor in a strong DE class.

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That'll do it for today, Folks. Thanks for reading and thanks for hanging out with us. We'll see you tomorrow with the update. Have a great Monday.

Peace,

J