Jeremy Maclin, Kansas City Chiefs — A couple of our rankings have Maclin in the top 15, but only one of us has him outside of the top 23. Maclin’s ADP is WR29 right now, which would be a steal. Yes, we all know how much trouble the Chiefs had with their receivers scoring the ball last year, but Maclin is much more talented than Dwayne Bowe. He should be a popular red zone target with coach Andy Reid, all while getting some production between the 20s.
Eric Decker, New York Jets — We have him at WR28 compared to WR44 on the ADP. Most people don’t like the Jets offense, but they have a great offensive line and Decker is going to have some big games this year.
Andre Johnson, Indianapolis Colts — This one is a little tough for me to write because I have AJ as WR18, which is the highest among our writers. Presumably, there is some concern about receiver T.Y. Hilton taking away his targets and maybe Johnson’s age is a factor. For me, the Colts are going to score a ton, be pass-happy and they play in a dome. We have him as WR26 compared to the ADP sitting at WR18.
Still, he’s had more than 1,000 yards from scrimmage in five of the last six years, supplementing occasionally modest rushing totals with regularly strong receiving. With the Buffalo quarterback situation — the triumvirate of EJ Manuel, Matt Cassel and Tyrod Taylor is horrifying — a running back who can catch checkdown passes could be crucial. Jackson will still be relevant even with LeSean McCoy in the fold.
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We all saw how the Patriots used Shane Vereen for years. He was on the field regularly as a “running back,” even if all he was doing was catching passes. Danny Woodhead, Darren Sproles. We all know the type.
Limited Womens Phil Esposito Jersey When the team sent out a notice Wednesday morning that Thursday¡¯s 10 a.m. ET scheduled news conference would begin at 9:55 a.m. it was a clear indication that Tom Coughlin sits atop the mountain. That¡¯s classic Coughlin, who firmly believes that if you¡¯re not five minutes early, you are, in fact, late.
Jaguars owner Shad Khan hired Coughlin earlier this week to be the team¡¯s executive vice president for football operations. Though the team said general manager Dave Caldwell would now report to Coughlin, it was unclear just how much power Coughlin would wield.
Now know it¡¯s similar to what Coughlin had during his eight seasons with the franchise from 1995-2002, which means things are going to be a lot different around EverBank Field.
Tom Coughlin is back in charge in Jacksonville, and Jaguars players must adjust.
Antonio Brown – The NFL’s leading receiver from last season is going to have to shoulder even more of the load in this game with Bell and Bryant on the sideline. Brown is one of the most consistent wideouts in the league — he’s riding an NFL-record streak of 33 games with at least five catches and 50 receiving yards — and probably needs to have a big game on Thursday night if the Steelers are going to upset the Patriots.
Limited Womens Brent Celek Jersey “Professional football is a very specialized game; it demands precise techniques and a certain mental approach,” Shanahan said in a statement. “Pac Pro’s time has come, and these fantastic athletes will be well trained for the pro game on and off the field.”
This is the second football league to spring up recently. In December, the NFL notified its 32 teams of a spring development league that will operate in April 2017 and will work with NFL veterans who do not have contracts.
The Pittsburgh Steelers and San Diego Chargers are in a similar position, playing in tough divisions with clear front-runners, and owning a couple quality wins alongside rough losses. The two will meet under the bright lights of Monday Night Football to try and make life even tougher for each other to wrap up Week 5.
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The Steelers lost to the New England Patriots to start the season, but quickly picked up wins over the San Francisco 49ers and St. Louis Rams. Even with Ben Roethlisberger out due to injury, there was some reason for optimism for the Steelers. Unfortunately, a lot of that optimism faded as they gave the Baltimore Ravens their first win of the season in Week 4.
Manning turned to Shane Vereen as his main target until Beckham returned with 45 seconds to go. Vereen got the Giants to the 20, and Beckham drew a pass interference call at the 12 on the next play.
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The Giants should have put the game away at the end of the first half, but they followed up a San Francisco mistake with a bigger one of their own. With 1:11 left in the half, the 49ers had second-and-1 at the Giants 4-yard line. Instead of giving Hyde a shot to pick up the yard and score a touchdown, San Francisco ran a rollout pass that Kaepernick had to throw away and then kicked a chip-shot field goal. As much trouble as the Niners are having scoring, they needed to take a shot at the end zone.
Sure enough, the Giants drove right down the field, and with 11 seconds left, Manning had time for one shot at the end zone. At worst, it was an easy field goal that could have made it 16-6 at the half. Instead, Manning tried to force a pass to Beckham and Tramaine Brock picked it off to keep the Niners within a touchdown.
Although the NFL clearly had no interest in Wake, he wasn¡¯t ready to give up on the NFL. At his core, Wake believed he could still achieve all his football goals. But a detour was necessary. During better times in high school and college, Wake thought about the Canadian Football League as much as he thought about traveling to Mars. After all, he was a prep standout.
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In college football, it doesn¡¯t get much bigger than Penn State. The CFL? That was a different world. That league was for guys who weren¡¯t good enough to make it at the game¡¯s highest level. Wake never looked at himself as one of those guys. Still, with no other options, Wake headed north. In an effort to jump-start his career in 2007, he signed with the BC Lions of Vancouver, British Columbia. Wake wasn¡¯t where he wanted to be. But he had what he needed: A starting point for where he hoped to go. Wake¡¯s talent took care of the rest.
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So much promise and then ¡ poof. And yet, the Raiders were a league-wide feel-good story that became a cautionary tale with a league-high seven Pro Bowl selections. The tone was set in the season opener, when second-year coach Jack Del Rio laid it all on the line by going for it on a do-or-die two-point conversion for a road victory over the New Orleans Saints. The Raiders converted.
And there was no looking back, with Carr passing for a franchise-record 513 yards with four TDs and no interceptions in a road overtime victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, All-Pro Khalil Mack went on an eight-game sack streak, and the Raiders had their first winning season since 2002. Then Carr was taken down by the Colts’ Trent Cole and the thrill was gone, even as the future looks bright.
Biggest draft need: A thumping but athletic middle/inside linebacker. After Ben Heeney struggled early and then went on injured reserve and rookie Cory James was miscast, Perry Riley Jr. was signed off the street and settled things down. Still, the Raiders need someone who can solidify the middle of their defense for the long haul. Can they find one in the 20s in the first round of the draft?
The New Orleans Pelicans and big man Donatas Motiejunas have agreed to terms on a one-year deal at the veteran¡¯s minimum, the team announced on its Twitter account on Tuesday. The signing was initially reported by ESPN¡¯s Marc Stein. The Pelicans cut Reggie Williams on Sunday to clear a roster spot.
The New Orleans Pelicans have signed free agent forward/center Donatas Motiejunas.
The Royals immediately announced after the season that they would have to cut payroll. Last year, the team spent a franchise record $144 million, only to finish at .500 and 2017 shows they have a lot in financial commitments. Dayton Moore says the team has been living beyond their means, and the Wade Davis trade may have been the first indication he plans on austerity measures.
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The Royals have been almost completely inactive this off-season other than the Davis trade, although Dayton Moore insists he is still working to build a contender in 2017. The Royals still face holes in the starting rotation, at designated hitter, possibly at second base, and they could use more bullpen depth. Will the Royals fill those moves by adding to payroll or will they go cheap and paper over those holes?
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With the core of the team together for one more year, it would seem this is a foolish time to get frugal on payroll. And if the team does want to cut payroll, a complete firesale and rebuild would maximize the ability to build the next great Royals team. Trying to thread the needle seems to be the worst of both worlds.
The team’s young players were able to see the field a bit more against the Ravens and while the present might be bleak, the future is at least bright. Miami has 31 players at or under the age of 25 on the roster and some of the success they had against Baltimore was in large part to those players.
The Miami defense was able to limit the Ravens and keep the Dolphins in the game; they could do the same against the Giants, but will need to rely on the offense to find the end zone for the win.
The Giants have won the last four of five meetings with the Dolphins, and lead the overall series 5-2. The last time these two teams met in Florida was in 1996 when the Giants won 17-7. Quarterback Dave Brown threw for 169 yards and a touchdown in the outing.
The defense consistently stood up the Broncos. Denver settled for four field goals, three of which came after it entered the red zone, and one after making its way to Oakland’s 2-yard line. Repeatedly, the Raiders front seven made things miserable for the Broncos. With first-and-goal from the Raiders’ 4-yard line, running back Ronnie Hillman was stuffed for minus-1 and minus-6 yards, bring up an ill-fated third-down heave to Emmanuel Sanders.
Why this defense hasn’t showed up every week is hard to say. The Raiders were giving up 26.2 points per game entering Week 14, the sixth-worst average in the league. They’ve given up at least 30 points in five games this season.
The Raiders’ total performance was impressive, however. The Raiders had 127 yards of offense and still won. That number is even more impressive when one considers that they also won after giving up 493 yards to the Ravens earlier this season.
It’s impossible to say when the Raiders’ offense and defense will finally get on the same page. When it does, however, the Raiders may finally be a serious contender out of the AFC West.
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It was over for less than an hour, and already the Detroit Lions knew they needed to move on. The 24-hour rule so many teams try to implement after wins and losses was going away.
But they all know. They recognize what awaits. Sunday against Green Bay, in prime time for the second straight week, is what the Lions are going to focus on. Win and Detroit takes its first division title since 1993, when the four-team NFC North was the five-team NFC Central. Lose and they are the No. 6 seed in the playoffs at best and done for the year at worst.
While being dominated by Dallas on a national stage was still fresh in their minds, the Lions had to move past it as fast as they possibly could. They couldn¡¯t think about losing two straight games by double digits and how, for the first time since the beginning of October, they were officially on a losing streak.
¡°We had very good opportunities the last two weeks, but next week is even bigger,¡± linebacker DeAndre Levy said. ¡°We¡¯re at home. We have a night game. It¡¯s for the [division]. It¡¯s for everything. You know, this is what you suit up for, these opportunities.
¡°No matter what happened, you know, the previous 15 weeks, previous two weeks, three weeks, whatever, we have to take care of business.¡±
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And the results, outscored 59-27 over the past two weeks, have been poor — particularly on Monday night.
Two numbers say all you need to know about the instability that’s plagued the AFC East over the last 15 years:
39: The number of different starting quarterbacks on the Jets, Dolphins and Bills since the Patriots named Tom Brady their starter in 2001.
21: The number of different head coaches on the Jets, Dolphins and Bills since Bill Belichick was hired as Patriots head coach in 2000.
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Despite being in the NFL since 1998, Woodson has played with just two teams, spending the first part of his career with the Raiders before joining the Green Bay Packers through 2012. After that season, he returned to the Raiders and has been a leader in the locker room ever since.
Woodson has a Super Bowl ring from Super Bowl XLV, has been named to the Pro Bowl eight times, including as recently as 2011, and has been named an All-Pro defensive back seven times. He was the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year in 1998 and the NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 2009. He led the league in interceptions in 2009 and 2011, and is tied for sixth in the league with five interceptions this year.
Woodson is tied with Ken Riley for fifth all-time with 65 interceptions.
He will play in front of his final home crowd when the Raiders host the San Diego Chargers on Thursday, and he’ll try and play spoiler for the Kansas City Chiefs on the road in Week 17.
This offseason, jobless once again, Fitzpatrick signed on with the Jets to mentor Geno Smith, the supposed quarterback of the future. At 33 years of age, it seemed as if Fitzpatrick’s career was winding down before it even really began.
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But then in training camp, little-known linebacker IK Enemkpali broke Smith’s jaw in a locker room altercation. No matter where Fitzpatrick went, he couldn’t escape volatility.
If it was the other way around, if it was a player who was the best guard, offensively, but not even in the top 50-60 [defensively], the guy would be a perennial All-Star.
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Scott Niedermayer Kids Jersey “So I think that Avery is a very underrated player. I think he¡¯s an All-Star-caliber player, for sure, and should be considered and mentioned among all the guys. Unfortunately, All-Star teams tend to be picked by points per game much more than what players shoot against you and defensive numbers and just watching how great of a defender he is. Because defense is so important in winning.”
The NBA wants to slow down or even stop superstar players from leaving their teams in free agency. Since 2010, there’s been a steady stream of huge names who have left as free agents, including LeBron James, Chris Bosh, Dwight Howard and Kevin Durant. Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul and Kevin Love also forced trades because they knew their teams were afraid they’d leave in free agency.
Trades like the one that sent James Harden from OKC to Houston could happen more if young players try to exploit a loophole in the NBA’s new CBA.
The SEED Project helps Senegalese boys and girls between ages 13 and 17 in schools around Dakar and Thies and has helped graduates enroll in universities around the world.
“SEED Project is thrilled to partner with the NBA to develop young talents from Africa,” said SEED Project executive director Mohamed Niang, whose organization has helped develop Minnesota’s Gorgui Dieng among its graduates. “Our organization has a rich tradition of producing student athletes that are able to compete at the highest level, and we welcome the opportunity to work alongside the NBA to continue inspiring, enabling, and supporting the holistic development of our youth.”
Players Off Game Status Injury Report: Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions, finger/right hand: What looked to be a very concerning injury to Stafford’s throwing hand early in the week doesn’t even warrant an appearance on the game status injury report. A dislocation of the PIP (proximal interphalangeal joint) on his middle finger and an apparent tendon injury to the tip of that same finger weren’t enough to keep Stafford from finishing the game in Week 14, although he did so with a glove.
In an effort to craft something more comfortable for him heading into this week’s contest, the medical staff created a four-fingerless glove, leaving all fingers free to directly contact the football except the protected middle finger.
Last week he scored his first touchdown of the season, so that’s an encouraging sign for fantasy owners. He’s not entirely out of the woods but will continue to play barring a setback.
Jordan Matthews, Philadelphia Eagles, ankle, (Q): Matthews did return to action last week after missing one game with a sprained ankle. One more week removed from the injury can only help. Matthews was limited on Wednesday but practiced in full both Thursday and Friday. Barring a surprise, Matthews will be active Sunday, but fantasy owners should confirm his status via the pregame inactive report.
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Brandon Marshall, foot/knee/back, and Quincy Enunwa, ribs, New York Jets, ACTIVE: The Jets play Saturday night and both receivers are active, despite being listed as questionable. Marshall did tell reporters he might see fewer reps than usual, but it’s hard to know how that translates, especially given the general offensive woes of the team.
Elite Mens Nikola Mirotic Jersey Marshall has less than 50 yards receiving in each of the past two games and had a season low in targets in Week 13. Those numbers won’t help fantasy owners and Enunwa’s won’t either (just four receptions in the past two weeks). For those who may have few options, both players will be active.