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Footballguys #271 - 1/17 - News And Notes From Around The League

Volume 20, #271 -- Thursday Night, January 17th, 2019

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Howdy Folks,

Welcome to Friday. We've got the News and Notes you need so let's get to it.

J


1. LAC - QB Philip Rivers in line for extension

Source: ESPN.com - Eric D. Williams

Los Angeles Chargers QB Philip Rivers likely will have contract extension talks with the team this offseason, according to general manager Tom Telesco.

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The Chargers are good to go so long as they have Rivers. They work diligently to find a good price for the veteran quarterback. Rivers said he would like to play several more seasons.

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2. OAK - RB Jalen Richard expected back

Source: NBC Sports Bay Area - Scott Bair

Oakland Raiders restricted free-agent RB Jalen Richard is expected to return to the team next season.

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Richard can stick with the Raiders for a good price. He'll once again serve as a backup or change-of-pace back for the Raiders.

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3. KC - WR Sammy Watkins fully practices

Source: Chiefs.com

Kansas City Chiefs WR Sammy Watkins (foot) fully participated in practice Thursday, Jan. 17.

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Watkins can be a big play threat for the Chiefs. Even on limited snaps in extreme cold this Sunday, Watkins is a player the Patriots must gameplan for.

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4. KC - Full practice for WR Tyreek Hill

Source: Chiefs.com

Kansas City Chiefs WR Tyreek Hill (heel, thigh) fully participated in practice Thursday, Jan. 17.

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The weather is going to be extremely cold but that may not slow down Hill. He's good to go for Sunday's game against the Patriots.

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5. KC - RB Spencer Ware takes part in practice

Source: Chiefs.com

Kansas City Chiefs RB Spencer Ware (hamstring) fully participated in practice Thursday, Jan. 17.

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Ware should be good for the AFC Championship Game on Sunday. He's the backup to Damien Williams and might get some touches here and there.

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6. SEA - Seattle signs QB Paxton Lynch

Source: KJR Radio

Free-agent QB Paxton Lynch (Broncos) was signed to an undisclosed deal by the Seattle Seahawks Thursday, Jan. 17.

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Lynch was a bust with the Broncos of epic proportions. A first-round pick in 2016, Lynch never could earn the starting job in Denver over backup-caliber QB Trevor Siemian. Lynch was out of football for the 2018 season but did workout for several teams. He'll get a chance to compete for the backup spot to Russell Wilson in 2019.

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7. HOU - DE J.J. Watt had knee procedure

Source: NFL Network - Ian Rapoport

Houston Texans DE J.J. Watt (knee) recently underwent a minor knee cleanup, according to a source.

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This is just a cleanup procedure, and Watt will be good to go for the offseason program.

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8. DEN - Denver hires Wade Harman

Source: NFL Network - Ian Rapoport

Former Atlanta Falcons tight ends coach Wade Harman was hired by the Denver Broncos for the same position Thursday, Jan. 17, according to a source.

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Harman worked with new Broncos OC Rich Scangarello during their time with the Falcons. He comes in to take over a group that lacks healthy impact players. Jake Butt is a fine all-purpose tight end but he's coming off yet another knee injury (the third of his football career). Jeff Heuerman was the leading tight end last season but he's set to be a free agent in 2019. Needless to say, Harman has a lot of work to do.

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9. KC - S Eric Berry's practice draws praise

Source: ESPN.com - Adam Teicher

Kansas City Chiefs S Eric Berry (heel) drew the praise of head coach Andy Reid on Thursday, Jan. 17, after putting in a full practice the previous day. 'He looked good out there,' Reid said. 'I see him out there looking like Eric Berry.'

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Having Berry out there...even if he's incredibly limited...would be a boost for the Chiefs defense. We'll know more about Berry's status later in the week.

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10. NE - Another big day for N.E. RBs?

Source: Boston Herald - Kevin Duffy

New England Patriots RBs Sony Michel, James White and Rex Burkhead combined for 47 rushing attempts/targets and 254 yards from scrimmage in the divisional-round playoff win over the Los Angeles Chargers.

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The Patriots are going to have a gameplan in place to take advantage of the Chiefs weaknesses on defense. The Chiefs surrendered the third-most total yards (2,709) to opposing running backs during the regular season.

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11. NE - QB Tom Brady excels in cold

Source: NBC Sports - Television

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady is 24-4 playing in sub-30-degree weather and 5-1 when the temperature is below 20 degrees.

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As Rick James would say, Tom Brady is 'cold blooded!' An arctic cold front in expected Sunday, Jan. 20, in Kansas City, Mo., where the Patriots will face the Chiefs in the AFC Championship Game. We'll see how much the severe cold impacts the game on Sunday.

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12. DEN - Bill Musgrave out in Denver

Source: The Denver Post - Ryan O'Halloran

Offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave will not be returning to the Denver Broncos' staff.

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Musgrave couldn't get the best out of QB Case Keenum and now he finds himself looking for work after one season as the Broncos OC. He's been around the league forever, has a good reputation and shouldn't find it difficult to find another gig.

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13. CHI - Anthony Miller not facing prolonged recovery

Source: Chicago Tribune - Brad Biggs

Chicago Bears WR Anthony Miller (shoulder) should not miss significant time during the offseason following his upcoming shoulder surgery, according to the Chicago Tribune's Brad Biggs, who believes Miller will be ready to go at or near the start of the team's offseason program.

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Good news for the young receiver here. He injured the shoulder in Week 3 but was able to tough it out through 15 games in 2018. When Miller is ready to return, expect the Bears to take it easy on him and ease him back into action.

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14. CHI - RB Jordan Howard has little trade value?

Source: Chicago Tribune - Brad Biggs

Chicago Bears RB Jordan Howard holds little value if the team decides to shop him around during the offseason, according to the Chicago Tribune's Brad Biggs, who points out Howard is in the final year of his rookie deal and that running back is one of the NFL's most replaceable positions.

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Howard had less than 1,000 yards rushing in 2018, the first time in his career he's fell below that mark. He just missed that total with 935 rushing yards in 2018. We'll see if the Bears want to go with a more dynamic runner in 2019. Biggs believes Howard's greatest value in 2019 would be as depth for the Bears.

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15. HOU - WR DeAndre Hopkins was big part of offense

Source: Houston Chronicle - Aaron Wilson

Houston Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins was targeted 163 times during the regular season while the second highest total on the team was 45 targets.

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The headline can be filed under 'in other news, water is wet.' Hopkins is their passing game, and he's one of the best in the game. The team needs to keep feeding him the rock...and protect QB Deshaun Watson better...in 2019.

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16. HOU - QB Brandon Weeden hopes to return

Source: Houston Chronicle - Aaron Wilson

Houston Texans impending free-agent QB Brandon Weeden said he hopes to re-sign with the Texans this offseason.

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The Texans had Weeden and Joe Webb behind Deshaun Watson this year. With Weeden potentially leaving in free agency, the Texans have to find some quarterback talent. They could always just have Weeden stick around for a good price.

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17. NYJ - DE Henry Anderson may not return

Source: ESPNNewYork.com - Rich Cimini

New York Jets impending free-agent DE Henry Anderson may not re-sign with the Jets if the team moves to a 4-3 defensive alignment since he is is better option for a 3-4 defense, in the opinion of ESPN.com's Rich Cimini.

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Gregg Williams, the Jets new defensive coordinator, has long run a 4-3 defense and that makes Anderson an odd fit. Anderson has been through a switch to a 4-3 defense when he was with the Colts and it negatively impacted his play. Expect the free agent to be to find a home elsewhere in 2019.

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18. PHI - DE Brandon Graham to test market

Source: ProFootballTalk.com - Mike Florio

Philadelphia Eagles impending free-agent DE Brandon Graham said he plans to test the free-agent market this offseason because he wants to do what is best for his family.

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The Eagles have been trying for some time to get Graham signed but to no avail. "I'm a little disappointed that we tried the last couple years and couldn't get a deal done," Graham told PFT in a phone interview. The veteran should have quite a few teams interested in his services.

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19. PIT - No WR Antonio Brown trade talks yet

Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette - Ed Bouchette

Pittsburgh Steelers WR Antonio Brown has not been the topic of trade talks at this point, according to owner Art Rooney II.

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This drama will continue throughout the offseason. Rooney said Brown staying with the Steelers is still an option but not many signs are pointing that way at this time.

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That'll do it for today, Folks. Thanks for reading and thanks for being part of Footballguys. We'll see you with the Update tomorrow.

Peace,

J