Player Notes

  • Trent Taylor to place third on Niners in catches?
    The Athletic's Matt Barrows considers Trent Taylor the favorite to place third on the 49ers in receptions behind George Kittle and Deebo Samuel.

    Advice: That's if Samuel is healthy. Taylor missed all of 2019 with the same injury Samuel has now, a Jones fracture. Taylor suffered multiple setbacks, ultimately undergoing five surgeries. NBC Sports Bay Area reported in April the Niners were still expecting "big things" from the 26-year-old slot man. Taylor caught 43 balls in 2017 and 26 in 2018. Considering Taylor's health woes and the Niners' crowded, if unsettled, receiver group, 40 is probably a realistic over/under. Yesterday, 7:46 pm
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • George Kittle to end up at $13 million per season?
    The Athletic's Matt Barrows reports George Kittle's extension could end up in the range of $13 million per season. 

    Advice: Barrows' report is via "someone in the know." That would make Kittle the highest-paid tight end by a comfortable margin — amongst players on multi-year deals, Austin Hooper is the current leader at $10.5 million per season — but perhaps isn't the bank-breaking number some might expect. Kittle's extension has arrived at an awkward time, as the league is staring at potential revenue shortfalls in a fanless season. That would lower the 2021 salary cap. NFL Network's Mike Silver reported in May the sides were "far apart." Kittle's agent has talked up his ability as a blocker and leader in addition to pass catching. It's safe to say Kittle isn't in the market for a hometown discount. Yesterday, 7:29 pm
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • Deebo Samuel has 'classic' Jones fracture
    The Athletic's Matt Barrows reports Deebo Samuel (foot) is dealing with a "classic" Jones fracture.

    Advice: Barrows reports the timeline is more in the 10-12 week range than the 12-16 that was initially reported. That could be the difference between beginning the season on the reserve/PUP list or not. Barrows does believe the team might exercise extreme caution with Samuel after Trent Taylor's recovery from a Jones fracture went awry last year. So far, Samuel has been sidelined for two weeks. Yesterday, 7:21 pm
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • 49ers have discussed Kendrick Bourne extension
    The Athletic's Matt Barrows reports the 49ers have discussed an extension for contract-year WR Kendrick Bourne. 

    Advice: Going on 25, Bourne will be playing on his restricted free agent tender this season. Bourne has proven to be invaluable depth for the 49ers' undermanned receiver corps over the past few seasons, though he committed some high-profile mistakes in 2019. Bourne has taken on greater 2020 importance in the wake of Deebo Samuel's foot injury. Any extension would be team-friendly, as Bourne will not be a hot commodity in next spring's free agent market. Yesterday, 6:49 pm
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • Le'Veon Bell 'training like a mad man'
    The Athletic's Connor Hughes reports Le'Veon Bell has been "training like a mad man" this offseason. 

    Advice: It's unclear if Hughes is basing his assertion on more than Bell's Instagram stories, but nevertheless. Bell is smarting after a disastrous 2019 that saw him look like a shell of his former self behind the Jets' broken-down offensive line as coach Adam Gase leaked to anyone who would listen that he wanted to be rid of his highly-priced back. Neither Gase nor GM Joe Douglas did anything to tamp down the trade rumors this offseason. Bell, who will now be running behind a fortified line, will not be lacking for motivation, we just don't know if his 28-year-old body has anything left to offer after his monstrous early-career workloads. Yesterday, 6:38 pm
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • Jets 'still talking' with FA Demaryius Thomas
    The Athletic's Connor Hughes reports the Jets are "still talking" with free agent Demaryius Thomas. 

    Advice: It is the first we have heard of 32-year-old Thomas since the end of last season. Thomas, who knows coach Adam Gase from his Broncos days as well as last season, posted a sleepy 36/433/1 line in 11 games after Gang Green acquired him from the Patriots. He would make sense as a depth signing to round out the Jets' unimpressive receiver corps. Yesterday, 6:34 pm
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • Antonio Brown works out with Russell Wilson
    Free agent Antonio Brown worked out with Russell Wilson on Thursday. 

    Advice: Sure, why not. With the Bucs once again shooting down interest in AB, the Seahawks might end up his only option for the 2020 season. That's if they are an option to begin with. Brown is believed to be facing a roughly eight-game suspension for his many off-the-field transgressions. Brown is trying to get back into the league's good graces, but it is surprising he is in the running for a new job at all. Brown isn't much of a re-draft flier. Yesterday, 6:31 pm
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • PFT: NFL officially cuts preseason to two games
    Profootballtalk's Mike Florio reports the NFL has officially decided to reduce the preseason to two games. 

    Advice: The league will reportedly scrap exhibition weeks one and four. It no longer makes sense to play four preseason games in a normal year. With a worldwide pandemic raging, the reduction is a no-brainer for 2020. It could be a coronavirus-induced change that ends up surviving beyond this year. Teams simply no longer take the preseason seriously, with many not even playing their regulars in what has traditionally been a "regular season dress rehearsal" in the third game. Yesterday, 1:09 pm
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • Happy 4th, Aaron: Jordan Love signs rookie deal
    Packers signed No. 26 overall pick QB Jordan Love to a four-year contract. 

    Advice: As is the case with all first-round contracts, the deal includes a fifth-year team option for 2024. The most controversial pick of this year's class, Love arrives in Green Bay as the backup to Packers legend Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers has barely concealed the fact that he's not a happy camper, responding to Love's selection by saying he would like to play into his 40s. This also does not seem to be a Jimmy Garoppolo/Tom Brady situation. The Packers are planting their flag for the future. For his part, Love physically looks like an NFL quarterback while boasting intriguing athletic traits, but he was extremely inconsistent for mid-major Utah State. The Packers have upset their franchise player and tethered their future to a prospect who is nothing close to a sure thing. Yesterday, 12:26 pm
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • Packers get second-round RB Dillon signed
    Packers signed second-round RB AJ Dillon to a four-year contract.

    Advice: Dillon (6’0/247) was a highly productive three-year starter at Boston College who earned three-straight first-team All-ACC honors in averaging at least 110 rushing yards and one touchdown per game in each season. He showcased 97th-percentile Adjusted SPARQ athleticism by running a 4.53 forty at Indy's Combine, adding a 41-inch vertical to his hit-or-miss tape. Dillon was a punishing power back, but rarely broke off big runs and only caught 21 career passes. In the NFL, he profiles as a potential two-down committee back who has more top-speed than other goal-line backs, but will likely be subbed out on passing downs, limiting his overall appeal both on the field and in fantasy. Dillon's workload in his first year with the Packers is questionable, but his presence alone may allow the organization to forego extending Aaron Jones as the latter enters the final year of his deal. Yesterday, 10:01 am
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • Duke Williams, Robert Foster unlikely to make team
    The Athletic's Joe Buscaglia believes both Duke Williams and Robert Foster "are going to have a difficult time" making the Bills' roster.

    Advice: Williams actually led the Bills in targets (10) in their Wild Card playoff loss to the Texans after he emerged as the No. 3 receiver late in the season behind John Brown and Cole Beasley. But following the trade for Stefon Diggs and selections of Gabriel Davis (fourth round) and Isaiah Hodgins (sixth round) in April, Williams and Foster face uphill battles to make the team. Andre Roberts is locked in as the return man, so that's already six wideouts. Backup slot man Isaiah McKenzie was also re-signed this offseason. Williams and Foster should both garner interest on the open market if they are let go by the Bills. Yesterday, 9:50 am
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • Devin Singletary to get more looks in passing game
    The Athletic's Joe Buscaglia believes the Bills want to get Devin Singletary more involved in the passing game this season.

    Advice: Singletary averaged 3.4 targets per game as a rookie, but Buscaglia expects that number to rise in 2020 after Singletary produced a pedestrian 29-194-2 line on 41 targets. While it sounds nice that Singletary's receiving output could increase, it just doesn't really fit Josh Allen's playing style. He's not one to check the ball down to running backs all that often. Especially with the addition of Stefon Diggs outside and continued presence of Cole Beasley and even Dawson Knox in the short areas of the field, we doubt Singletary sees a dramatic spike in pass-game production. He still figures to be the 1A in this backfield ahead of rookie Zack Moss. Yesterday, 9:41 am
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • Report: Pats haven't guaranteed Cam starting job
    The Athletic's Jeff Howe reports the Patriots have not guaranteed Cam Newton their starting quarterback job.

    Advice: Coach Bill Belichick has never been in that business, so it's not surprising. Newton is now the monstrous favorite to start over Jarrett Stidham, though a source claims via Howe that Newton's addition has "nothing to do with Stidham’s performance." That is difficult to believe. The Pats were famously not interested in Newton earlier this offseason, but Howe reports it was all about his contract demands. Once they went down, the Pats swooped in. Newton would not be the first name-brand veteran to fail in New England, but this is an excellent upside gamble for both sides. Tuesday, 2:33 pm
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • 'Not a slam dunk' Wilkins makes Colts' roster
    1070 The Fan's Kevin Bowen suggests it's "not a slam dunk" Colts RB Jordan Wilkins makes the team.

    Advice: "The Colts hardly ever use a 4th running back, and the skill group is now accounting for another body, with the signing of fullback Roosevelt Nix, who they envision having a routine offensive role," Bowen writes. Wilkins can certainly earn his way onto the team's roster by continuing his admirable performance on special teams, but as it pertains to having any inkling of an offensive role, the 25-year-old is obviously on the outside looking in. He'll open the year as Indy's No. 4 back behind Marlon Mack, Jonathan Taylor, and Nyheim Hines. Tuesday, 7:17 am
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • Engram (Lisfranc) shown running on Instagram video
    Evan Engram (Lisfranc surgery) was shown running in a video shared on Instagram.

    Advice: The full video can be viewed in the link below. It's the first time we've seen Engram participate in any activity since initially going under the knife in December. It's a positive sign for his outlook as the 25-year-old's participation in training camp remains up in the air. Engram is fittingly being drafted as the TE6 in Best-Ball leagues behind Travis Kelce, George Kittle, Mark Andrews, Zach Ertz, and Darren Waller. Tuesday, 6:55 am
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • Schad expects Jordan Howard to get goal line work
    The Palm Beach Post's Joe Schad expects RB Jordan Howard to be the top choice for the Dolphins' goal line work this season.

    Advice: Schad hints at a "thunder and lightning" approach, with Howard offering the power and Matt Breida offering the speed. Ultimately, Schad predicts a backfield split, but does suggest a short-term extension of one or two years might be a smart decision in regards to Breida's future. In the end, it is all up to Chan Gailey and the offense he brings to Miami - a total unknown since he has been out of the league since 2016. We know he has previously loved three and four receiver sets, and if the goal is to get speed into the open field, Breida is the best option. This is certainly a backfield to monitor due to its low price tag in fantasy drafts. Monday, 7:35 am
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • Cam signing has 'nothing to do' with Stidham
    The Athletic's Jeff Howe cites a source that "implied" the Patriots' signing of Cam Newton "has nothing to do with Jarrett Stidham’s performance."

    Advice: Since Tom Brady departed, the local and national expectation was for Stidham to enter his second season in the NFL as the team's starting quarterback despite only four career pass attempts. Howe recalls Stidham's "impressive" rookie offseason with accuracy that "really jumped out." ESPN's Mike Reiss has even hesitated to name Cam Newton the Week 1 starter, saying this move was a chance to "bolster the depth chart." It would be stunning, even on an incentive-laden minimum contract, if Newton is not the team's best option to open the season against the Dolphins - but those close to the team are not closing the door on Stidham's possibilities. Monday, 6:43 am
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • Redskins WR Emanuel Hall tears Achilles’
    Redskins WR Emanuel Hall will miss the 2020 season with a torn Achilles’.

    Advice: Hall made the announcement on his Instagram account, saying he tore the Achilles’ while running routes and preparing for training camp. Injuries have been Hall’s downfall for years, dating back to his electric days at Mizzou as a top deep threat for Drew Lock. The athletic freak just can’t stay off the trainer’s table and has yet to appear in a regular season game. Sunday, 11:12 am
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • Cardinals rookie WR Braswell popped for DUI
    Cardinals undrafted rookie WR Jermiah Braswell was arrested for DUI in Ohio Saturday night.

    Advice: Braswell reportedly drove his car off an embankment and into Lake Erie. Upon arrival, police allegedly found Braswell still in the car, attempting to drive. His BAC was above the legal limit. Braswell went undrafted out of Youngstown State in April before signing with Arizona. Sunday, 9:59 am
    Week 1 Projected Rank
  • Marquise Brown (foot) has had 'a great offseason'
    Ravens offensive coordinator Greg Roman believes WR Marquise Brown has had "a great offseason physically."

    Advice: Roman is rightfully excited to see his young No. 1 receiver to get back to full health this offseason following an inconsistent rookie season, partially because of his Lisfranc injury. Brown averaged just 42 yards in 2019 but closed the year with a 7-126-0 receiving line against Tennessee in the playoffs. Following the season, Brown had surgery to remove the screw from his foot and has been rehabbing ever sense. With training camp just a month away, we'll see if Brown is truly back to full health or not. If he is, Brown will be a WR3 target in fantasy drafts. Lamar Jackson led the NFL in passing touchdowns (36) despite Baltimore's league-low 468 quarterback dropbacks. Saturday, 5:53 pm
    Week 1 Projected Rank
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