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Footballguys #91 - 7/21 - Why Derrick Henry Will Be Drafted Too Early, plus News and Notes You Need To Know

Volume 20, #91 -- Saturday Night, July 21st, 2018

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Howdy Folks,

Good Sunday to you. We've got more new Content for you plus the News and Notes you need. Let's get to it.

Joe

SITE NEWS

A. FREE Feature - Royce Freeman: The Road to a Breakout Fantasy Season
Our Daniel Simpkins with a detailed look at Royce Freeman's fantasy prospects for 2018. This one is free to everyone.

B. 3 Reasons Why Derrick Henry Won't Deliver
Our Daniel Simpkins takes a detailed look at Derrick Henry's fantasy prospects for 2018. And why he's likely to disappoint Fantasy GMs who draft him too soon.

C. 7 Critical Fantasy Football Questions: AFC North
Our Chad Parsons dives into the critical fantasy football questions for each NFL team heading into the 2018 season.


1. NE - QB Tom Brady plans to report early

Source: ProFootballTalk.com - Michael David Smith

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady indicated that he plans to report to training camp early.

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Brady was never going to miss training camp, and even though he had some interesting comments about the Patriots coaching staff (mainly Bill Belichick) this offseason he showed up when the work was mandatory. He turns 41-years old in early August, yet Brady is still near the top of his game. Brady's current ADP is QB4 (6.05) in 12-team PPR leagues.

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2. LAC - LAC open to re-signing TE Antonio Gates

Source: ESPN.com - Eric D. Williams

The Los Angeles Chargers have continued to express interest in re-signing free-agent TE Antonio Gates, according to general manager Tom Telesco.

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This has always seemed like a possibility since Hunter Henry went down with a knee injury earlier this offseason. Gates has a great connection with QB Philip Rivers but he's certainly not the same player he used to be. The Chargers currently have blocking TE Virgil Green atop their depth chart at the position.

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3. CHI - Anthony Miller performs well Saturday

Source: Chicago Sun-Times - Adam L. Jahns

Chicago Bears WR Anthony Miller made several terrific catches during practice Saturday, July 21.

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That's what Miller was known for during his college days at Memphis. A second-round pick by the Bears in the 2018 NFL draft, Miller can make circus catches seem routine. He fights for every yard after the catch and has the body control to work the sidelines or the back of the end zone effectively. Miller is third on the depth chart as a rookie behind Allen Robinson and Taylor Gabriel. We could see him snaring around 35-40 catches as a rookie in 2018.

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4. DAL - Cooper Rush likely to be No. 2 quarterback

Source: The Dallas Morning News - Jori Epstein

Dallas Cowboys QB Cooper Rush is expected to win the No. 2 quarterback job over QB Mike White, in the opinion of Jori Epstein of The Dallas Morning News. Rush took snaps with the second-team offense ahead of White during OTAs, had a strong showing in the 2017 preseason and appears to have a better grasp of the team's offense.

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White is an interesting rookie from Western Kentucky the Cowboys picked up in the fifth round of the 2018 NFL draft. In 2017, White was missing quite a bit of talent from the previous season but he still posted great numbers for the Hilltoppers. White joined Oklahoma State's Mason Rudolph as the only FBS quarterbacks to throw for 4,000-plus yards each of the last two seasons. Rush has the leg up in the competition so we'll have to see how this shakes out in training camp. Both players are interesting to us, but only in deep dynasty leagues of course.

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5. MIN - TE Kyle Rudolph excited to work with OC

Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune - Andrew Krammer

Minnesota Vikings TE Kyle Rudolph said he's looking forward to working with offensive coordinator John DeFilippo because of DeFilippo's success with tight ends.

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Rudolph was a favorite target of Case Keenum last year, and he should be a security blanket for new QB Kirk Cousins in 2018. Fantasy GMs know what they get from Rudolph, a TE1 each of the last two seasons. He has a current ADP of TE7 (6.11) in 12-team PPR leagues.

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6. MIN - Tyler Conklin, TE Blake Bell competing

Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune - Andrew Krammer

Minnesota Vikings TE Tyler Conklin and TE Blake Bell are in competition for the No. 3 tight end job and a spot on the Week 1 roster, in the opinion of Andrew Krammer of the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

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Conklin, a rookie fifth-round pick out of Central Michigan, is not much of a blocker but he certainly has intriguing traits as a receiver. A former basketball player, Conklin knows how to use his frame (6'4" 255 pounds) to box out smaller defenders. Bell is a converted quarterback who has spent a few years in the NFL developing as a tight end (mostly with the 49ers). He's got strength and athleticism but things as a pass catcher haven't quite yet come together. We'll see how this battle works out in training camp.

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7. BAL - Lamar Jackson being worked in

Source: ProFootballTalk.com - Michael David Smith

Baltimore Ravens QB Lamar Jackson was on the field at the same time as QB Joe Flacco for a few plays during training camp Thursday, July 19.

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Jackson is too explosive of an athlete to keep on the sideline even though he's the backup to Flacco. We'll see if he can develop into the franchise quarterback of the future for the Ravens, but this season we could see him worked in on some gadget plays. Teams facing the Ravens will have to prepare for anything when a playmaker like Jackson comes onto the field.

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8. NFL - CB Bashaud Breeland to meet with AFC West teams

Source: NFL Network - Mike Garafolo

Free-agent CB Bashaud Breeland (Redskins) is scheduled to meet with the Oakland Raiders Sunday, July 22, and Monday, July 23, and will then meet with the Kansas City Chiefs Tuesday, July 24, according to a source.

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Breeland's contract with the Panthers voided back in March and he hasn't gotten much interest since then. The Raiders could use a veteran like Breeland as a starter, and the Chiefs are in need of help at the cornerback position since trading Marcus Peters to the Rams. Breeland is recovering from foot surgery because of an injury he sustained while on vacation.

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9. NFL - Two more workouts for WR Eli Rogers

Source: ProFootballTalk.com - Mike Florio

Free-agent WR Eli Rogers (Steelers) is scheduled to work out for the Cleveland Browns and Oakland Raiders this week, according to a source.

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Rogers had ACL surgery back in January and was non tendered by the Steelers. He's ahead in his recovery and recent reports indicate Rogers expects to sign with a team in the near future.

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10. CHI - DE Aaron Lynch sits out

Source: Chicago Sun-Times - Adam L. Jahns

Chicago Bears LB Aaron Lynch (hamstring) did not participate in practice Saturday, July 21, because he suffered a hamstring injury Friday, July 20.

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Lynch signed a one-year deal with the Bears earlier this offseason. This latest problem is his third injury since joining the Bears. He was bothered in OTAs and minicamp by an ankle injury and a hamstring injury.

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11. HOU - DE Jadeveon Clowney ready for camp

Source: Houston Chronicle - Aaron Wilson

Houston Texans DE Jadeveon Clowney (knee) said he is ready for the start of training camp. Clowney would not say when he will start practicing.

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Clowney had a knee scope about six months ago and has missed all of the Texans offseason work. He's in a contract year in 2018, and the Texans have previously showed confidence about getting a long-term deal done with one of the league's premier pass rushers. We'll see if they can get something accomplished before the start of the regular season.

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12. DEN - DT Clinton McDonald missed workouts

Source: 9News.com - Mike Klis

Denver Broncos DT Clinton McDonald (shoulder) did not participate in any off the offseason workouts because of a shoulder injury.

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McDonald can be a disruptive rotational player on the defensive line when healthy. The team hopes McDonald will be ready for the start of training camp.

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13. BUF - WR Andre Holmes may see bigger role

Source: BuffaloBills.com - Dominic LoVallo

Buffalo Bills WR Andre Holmes was used as a red zone threat last season but has a chance to earn a bigger offensive role during training camp.

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Holmes might be fourth on the depth chart right now for the Bills. We're avoiding their passing game in fantasy drafts, just like most fantasy GMs. Their top WR, Kelvin Benjamin, has a current ADP of WR48 (11.01) in 12-team PPR leagues.

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14. DET - QB Jake Rudock's spot in jeopardy?

Source: MLive.com - Kyle Meinke

Detroit Lions QB Jake Rudock is unlikely to beat out QB Matt Cassel for the backup quarterback job, according to Kyle Meinke of MLive.com, and Meinke doesn't expect the Lions to keep three quarterbacks on the roster.

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A sixth-round pick out of Michigan back in 2016, Rudock has been developing for the last two seasons behind Matthew Stafford. He doesn't have a rocket arm but Rudock is tough and can make accurate short-to-intermediate throws. We'll see if he can hold off Cassel for the backup job to Stafford in 2018.

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15. PIT - Special teams key for Quadree Henderson

Source: Pittsburgh Tribune-Review - Joe Rutter

Pittsburgh Steelers WR Quadree Henderson must perform well as a kick and punt returner during training camp and the preseason in order to make the 53-man roster.

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Henderson was a gadget player in college at PITT and he's not likely to make much of an impact as a pro on offense. His ticket for making the 53-man roster as a UDFA in 2018 is clearly on special teams as a return man.

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16. MIN - Bigger role for David Morgan?

Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune - Andrew Krammer

Minnesota Vikings TE David Morgan II is 'expected to take a step forward' this season, according to Andrew Krammer of the Minneapolis Star Tribune, and Krammer believes Morgan could be more involved as a receiver.

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A sixth-round pick out of UTSA in 2016, Morgan could be the Vikings no.2 tight end this year behind Kyle Rudolph. Measuring in at 6'4" 265 pounds, Morgan is known mostly for his blocking ability.

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17. DEN - Two backs on the bubble in Denver

Source: The Denver Post - Ryan O'Halloran

Denver Broncos RB Phillip Lindsay and RB David Williams are likely competing for one roster spot, according to Ryan O'Halloran of the Denver Post.

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We think Lindsay could have a strong showing in Broncos training camp that starts next week. The rookie UDFA from CU is a smaller back (190 pounds) but he runs tough and can make plays as a slot receiver too. Lindsay can contribute as a return man on special teams as well. Williams, a seventh-round pick out of Arkansas this year, is your traditional banger. A larger back (230 pounds), Williams makes his living between the tackles. Lindsay could make the 53-man roster due to his versatility while Williams may be more likely bound for the practice squad.

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That'll do it for today, Folks. Thanks for reading and thanks for being part of the Footballguys Family. It's an honor for us.

We'll see you tomorrow with the Update.

Peace,

J