Shark Bites

The Seahawks lost starting LT George Fant to an ACL tear in Friday night's preseason game. Fant hasn't proved to be a special talent, but it's a bad loss for a team that has already struggled on the O-line. It harms the fantasy outlook for all Seattle RBs. We're not changing the projections for QB Russell Wilson, but losing Fant could make life more challenging for him all year.

Bears RB Jordan Howard suffered a minor eye injury in Friday's walkthrough and is not expected to play Saturday, NFL Network reports. We'll see if it lingers, but there seems no reason to worry about his fantasy outlook.

Seahawks 7th-round rookie RB Chris Carson played with the 1st-team offense in Friday night's preseason game against the Vikings. He was on the field for 9 of 22 snaps with QB Russell Wilson. RB Eddie Lacy played 13. It's certainly worth noting that neither Thomas Rawls nor C.J. Prosise played in this one. But it still feels like Carson is pushing for a regular-season role. He's reportedly been impressive in training camp and turned his 7 touches into 44 yards vs. Minnesota. We're not ready to recommend Carson as a redraft pick just yet, but he's made this Seahawks backfield even more crowded.

Panthers QB Cam Newton won't play tomorrow afternoon against the Titans, but he's on track for Carolina's 3rd preseason game next week, according to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero. Newton's rehab from throwing-shoulder surgery has gone slowly (by design) but smoothly. "Cam is throwing more each day, and he feels fine," Pelissero added. We're looking forward to seeing him in action next week.

Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins will miss the 2nd preseason game with a hand injury. It's the 1st we've heard of it, and we don't have any other details. HC Bill O'Brien has said Hopkins is fine and that they're just making sure he's good to go for the regular season, according to the Houston Chronicle's Aaron Wilson. We'll keep an eye on this, but we're not moving Hopkins in the WR rankings.

The Florida Times Union's Ryan O'Halloran predicts Chad Henne will be under center for the Jaguars come Week 1. It's the fallout from QB Blake Bortles' brutal performance in Thursday night's preseason game. "This regime isn’t about the future, it’s about which players they feel give them the best chance to win in Houston on Sept. 10," O'Halloran writes. "They’ll take Check-down Chad over a quarterback whose confidence looks shattered." He also points out that playing Bortles exposes him to an injury that could guarantee his $19 million salary next year. O'Halloran even believes that Bortles could end up getting cut. He's obviously undraftable right now.

Lions TE Eric Ebron (hamstring) has been sidelined all week after returning to practice last Friday. HC Jim Caldwell claims it's not a setback, though. "He's just got a couple issues that he's dealing with," Caldwell said. "He's got a couple things and not quite ready yet, so hopefully he'll continue to heal and we'll get him back out there soon." Ebron has had trouble staying on the field as a pro, missing 8 games through 3 seasons. He's not off to a good start in 2017. There's some breakout potential for the 24-year-old, but he also comes with plenty of risk in fantasy drafts.

Raiders CB Sean Smith was arrested Thursday and charged with felony assault over a July 4 incident, according to TMZ. Oakland had previously benched the former starter in favor of T.J. Carrie, according to NFL Network. Don't be surprised if Smith is soon gone from the team entirely.

In his 1st action since the big Sammy Watkins trade, Bills QB Tyrod Taylor looked out of sorts. He completed just 8 of 18 passes for 53 yards in Thursday's preseason game against the Eagles -- and was picked off twice. He had "as tough of a time as one could remember in his two-plus years in Buffalo," insider Joe Buscaglia wrote. In Taylor's defense, he played without Jordan Matthews and behind an offensive line that was regularly beat by the Eagles pass rush. But the QB has also reportedly been inconsistent in training camp. Remember that he's learning a new offense under OC Rick Dennison. One of our favorite late-round QB targets at the start of this month, Taylor is tough to like as more than a lower-end QB2 now.

QB Jay Cutler made his debut with the Dolphins Thursday night against the Ravens and appeared to be developing a connection with WR DeVante Parker. Cutler targeted Parker 4 times among 7 total pass attempts, including a 31-yard connection negated by holding. The duo connected on just 1 of their other 3 looks, a 16-yard completion. Cutler also targeted RB Jay Ajayi, WR Jarvis Landry and RB Damien Williams once apiece. After the game, Cutler called Parker a "faster Alshon [Jeffery]," referring to the WR he played with in Chicago -- and peppered with targets in their most recent work together. It's early, but we'll be watching this duo in the "dress rehearsal" Week 3 of the preseason. Parker's current mid-Round 7 ADP makes him a potential upside play in fantasy football drafts.

Jaguars HC Doug Marrone said of his team's starting QB spot after Thursday night's preseason game, "It's right up there for grabs, and either person can take it." That would mean Chad Henne could take the job away from Blake Bortles with better performances the rest of this month. Whether that's true or Marrone was trying to light a fire under Bortles, it's a bad look for the former #3 overall pick heading into his 4th pro season. Bortles is already going very late in fantasy football drafts, though. So this proclamation doesn't change much. Consider it a tie-breaker between Bortles and whatever other backup QB you're considering near the end of your draft.

Bucs RB Doug Martin was busy and productive in the team's 2nd preseason game on Thursday night. He carried 5 times for 30 yards and score in 2 series, adding 2 catches for 11 more yards. Martin looked quick and elusive -- and was the focal point of Tampa's attack. He's suspended for the first 3 games of the regular season but should return to something at least close to a workhorse role.

Jaguars RB Leonard Fournette said he's been sidelined with a toe injury, rather than the previously reported foot. "Someone stepped on it in practice," he added. This doesn't seem like a big deal -- and we're glad it's not related to the ankle issue that hampered Fournette throughout his final season at LSU. We'll see when he's able to get back on the field, but we haven't moved him in our RB rankings.

Chargers MLB Denzel Perryman had surgery this week to repair a torn ankle ligament, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. The team now expects him to be out 8-10 weeks, a 4-week extension on each end of the initial estimate. That could mean missing 4-6 games. Perryman should not be in anyone's IDP redraft plans. We'll see how he progresses in his return. His absence could mean more tackle opportunities for weak-side starter Jatavis Brown. Korey Toomer and Nick Dzubnar are competing for Perryman's vacated spot.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that a league source told him Rams DE Aaron Donald's contract holdout could last into the regular season. Donald is in the final year of his rookie contract but seeking new money after making the Pro Bowl in each of his 1st 3 campaigns. We'll see where this goes. The closer we get to the regular season without Donald getting back on the field, the further we have to drop him on IDP draft boards, though. Donald's absence from real games would chip away significantly at the upside of the Rams' team D as well.

Jets RB Matt Forte (hamstring) didn't practice on Thursday and won't play in the team's 2nd preseason game, according to insider Manish Mehta. Forte missed a week with the hammy early in training camp, and it sounds like he's been on and off the field since. It's not a good look for a 31-year-old back who's missed 5 games over the past 2 seasons. Bilal Powell is the Jets RBs to target in fantasy drafts.

Seahawks RB Thomas Rawls will miss the 2nd preseason game with what HC Pete Carroll labeled a "minor ankle issue." Remember that Rawls fractured his ankle back in 2015 -- although it's unclear if this is related, or even the same ankle. We'll keep an eye on him. Rawls' absence will give RB Eddie Lacy a shot to run with the starters against the Vikings on Friday.

ESPN's Adam Schefter confirms that Steelers RB Le'Veon Bell will report to the team before the start of the regular season. "Though it remains unclear exactly when," Schefter adds. This has been our expectation all along. Missing training camp isn't ideal, but Bell is a 4-year veteran who's returning to the same offense. He remains our pick at #2 overall across fantasy formats.

Redskins WR Josh Doctson (hamstring) returned to practice on Wednesday, although he was limited to individual drills only. He'd been sidelined since August 6. "I'm good," he said after the workout. "It feels good." HC Jay Gruden wouldn't say whether Doctson will play in Washington's 2nd preseason game. He's still the favorite to open the season as the #3 WR but needs a healthy few weeks leading up to Week 1.

Packers RB Ty Montgomery has missed the past 2 days of practice with a lower leg injury. When asked for details on Tuesday, Montgomery offered, "just soft-tissue stuff." He added, "It was just something on and off. Something I’m dealing with. Nothing in particular that happened. Nothing major. Nothing to worry about." We'll keep an eye on this one.

 
 
 

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