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Carlos Hyde

SF -RB

1 day ago

Hyde trim and looking 'good'

49ers GM Trent Baalke said Friday that RB Carlos Hyde has cut his weight to the "mid-220s" and that Hyde looks "extremely good," according to Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee. That signals some serious work this offseason for a back officially listed at 235. Mockdraftable.com lists Stevan Ridley and Eddie Lacy as Hyde's closest comps based on all of his measurements from the 2014 Combine. The young Niner is poised to take over the lead role after seeing very limited playing time behind Frank Gore as a rookie. With Reggie Bush the biggest current threat to his workload, we see huge upside for Hyde in 2015.

Roy Helu

OAK -RB

2 days ago

Helu could play significant role for Raiders

ESPN's Matt Williamson expects RB Roy Helu to play a significant role for the Raiders this season.  “While he isn’t great in protection, I think he will be a very valuable piece and a quick safe option for Derek Carr in this up-tempo passing game and offense overall,” Williamson said. “Helu has been extremely productive on a per-snap basis.”  That he has.  Helu averaged an uber-impressive 5.4 yards per carry and 11.4 yards per catch last season.  He ranked 2nd in fantasy points per touch among the 82 RBs who recorded 50+ touches.  Williamson believes the Raiders could use Helu in a similar role as the Patriots used Shane Vereen, who totaled 148 touches last year.  That type of volume could easily land Helu among the top 30 RBs in PPR points.

Adrian Peterson

MIN -RB

2 days ago

Peterson will be reinstated tomorrow

The NFL announced that Vikings RB Adrian Peterson will be reinstated from his indefinite suspension.  Peterson must continue his counseling and treatment, but no further punishment from the league is expected.  With that out of the way, we can now start to work toward a resolution between Peterson and the Vikings.  Neither side has flinched so far.  If Minnesota is going to make a move, it could happen during the NFL Draft later this month.

Antonio Gates

SD -TE

2 days ago

Gates wants to play LESS in 2015

When guys talk playing time, they're usually wanting more of it.  Not so for Chargers TE Antonio Gates.  He wants to see the field less in 2015.  "With injuries and whatnot, I played a little bit more than they expected me to play last season,” Gates said. “I was playing the whole game. How I feel next year, it depends on how much volume they have me doing. I’d like to come in on third-and-7s, red zones, those situations. That’s what my contribution is at anyway.”  Gates actually played 72% of San Diego's offensive snaps last year.  His total of 787 ranked just 17th among TEs.  Gates turns 35 in June but has remained plenty effective.  He posted a 69-821-12 line last year, hauling in 70% of his targets and averaging 11.9 yards per catch.  We doubt the Chargers significantly scale back his playing time in 2015.

Emmanuel Sanders

DEN -WR

5 days ago

Sanders to play more slot in 2015

Broncos WR Emmanuel Sanders has been told that he'll play more in the slot this season.  This has been our expectation since Denver drafted the 6'2, 215-pound Cody Latimer in the 2nd round of last year's draft.  When the Broncos go to 3-WR sets this season, Latimer will join Demaryius Thomas on the outside, while Sanders kicks into the slot.  The problem for Latimer's 2015 production is that new HC Gary Kubiak doesn't typically run a whole lot of 3-WR sets.  Of course, that doesn't mean he won't run more this season.  As for Sanders, he was extremely efficient in the slot last year, posting an 85.7% catch rate and 13.5 yards per catch.  More time in the slot doesn't hurt his fantasy outlook.

Michael Crabtree

OAK -WR

5 days ago

Crabtee signing with Raiders

WR Michael Crabtree is set to sign with the Raiders, according to insiders Bill Williamson and Adam Caplan.  Crabtree was met with an extremely soft market, drawing no known interest until over a week into free agency.  It's a sign that the league as a whole is down on him.  Crabtree is still only 27, but there have been whispers that his lower-leg injuries have sapped his explosion.  He averaged an ugly 10.3 yards per catch last year. Crabtree also dropped 12.8% of his targets, per Pro Football Focus, which was 4th worst among 50 qualifying WRs.  As Oakland's depth chart currently stands, Crabtree will join James Jones in the starting lineup.  But the Raiders should still be looking to add talent to the position, potentially with the 4th overall pick of this month's draft.

Stevan Ridley

NYJ -RB

6 days ago

Ridley expected to be ready for training camp

ESPN's Rich Cimini hears that new Jets RB Stevan Ridley (knee) is expected to be ready for the start of training camp.  Ridley tore his ACL and MCL last October and had to wait until November to have surgery.  He'll be about 8 months removed from surgery when camp opens in late July.  Ridley will need to be at full strength if he wants to beat out Chris Ivory for the lead-back job in New York.

James Casey

DEN -TE

1 week ago

Broncos add Casey

The Broncos have signed TE James Casey.  He's familiar with HC Gary Kubiak's offense after spending 4 years with him in Houston.  But Casey's best season there was a 34-330-3 line in 2012.  And he figures to slide in as the #3 TE in Denver behind Owen Daniels and Virgil Green.

Charles Tillman

CAR -DB

1 week ago

Tillman joins Panthers

Former Bears CB Charles Tillman has signed with the Panthers. The 34-year-old lost 22 games to a pair of triceps tears over just the past 2 seasons, but he made it through all 16 games for 3 straight seasons before that. Tillman has a shot to win a starting job and figures to find a familiar role under his former DC Ron Rivera. A healthy Tillman has remained among the best fantasy football producers in the DB group. He'll be worth a shot in your IDP draft. Finding a replacement will be easy if the vet goes down again.

Colin Kaepernick

SF -QB

1 week ago

Kaepernick a changing man

A number of reports this offseason have centered on 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick refining his passing technique. TE Vernon Davis said Friday that he certainly sees a difference. "When I saw him yesterday, I didn't even know that was Colin," he said, according to the team website. "Seriously, he was working on his drop-back, (I said), 'Who was that?' You guys are in for a treat. He looks like a totally different guy." Positive regression on his rushing TDs alone could have Kaepernick contending for fantasy's top 12 QB spots, so any improvement on the passing front could push him even higher. We'll see what he looks like through the spring and into the summer, but Kaepernick could prove to be a high-value pick if he remains outside starter range in fantasy football ADP.

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