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Shark Bites - Up-to-the-minute Fantasy Football News

Fantasy Football News 2022

Most Recent Shark Bites

Seahawks HC Pete Carroll said RB Rashaad Penny is resting a slight hamstring issue. We’d typically avoid posting about a minor injury in May, but we’re talking about Rashaad Penny here. If he misses significant time in OTAs, we’ll let you know. Following the addition of Kenneth Walker, Penny looks like just a depth option in fantasy.

Per beat writer Jourdan Rodrigue, Rams QB Matt Stafford “won’t throw much, if at all, through voluntary spring workouts.” Rodrigue points out that Stafford had an injection in his throwing elbow over the spring, so a conservative offseason approach is wise. The 34-year-old will enter his 14th season in the league this fall.

49ers RB Elijah Mitchell is looking to play this season at 215 pounds -- up about 15 pounds from last season. The added weight is aimed at keeping Mitchell healthier after he dealt with knee, rib, concussion and shoulder issues as a rookie last year. We've seen plenty of RBs lose burst and speed after packing on pounds, though, so Mitchell will be worth watching closely this summer.

Patriots RB James White (hip) was on the field for voluntary workouts late last week, according to NESN's Zack Cox. White is returning from last September's season-ending hip surgery that had him "bedridden for months," per Cox. It's still unclear when White will be cleared for full-team work, but it at least looks like he's trending toward being available for the start of the season. If healthy, White is the favorite for pass-catching duties in New England's backfield.

Per beat writer Joseph Person, the Carolina coaching staff has “kicked around the idea” of giving Christian McCaffrey more slot snaps. During his injury-riddled 2021, McCaffrey played only 12 snaps out of the slot (4.6%). So there’s room for a bit more work inside. Regardless of where he lines up, however, the former All-Pro will remain busy as a pass-catcher. Current projections peg McCaffrey for over 100 targets.

The Colts have agreed to a 2-year deal with QB Nick Foles, according to NFL Network's Mike Garafolo. Foles most recently played for the Bears but previously played under then-OC Frank Reich with the Super Bowl-winning Eagles. His Indianapolis role under HC Reich will obviously be to back up new Colts QB Matt Ryan.

The 49ers have agreed to a 1-year deal with veteran TE Tyler Kroft, according to his agent. Kroft spent last year with the Jets after 2 with the Bills and 4 with the Bengals. He has topped 16 receptions just once in 7 seasons (42 with the 2017 Bengals). If Kroft becomes fantasy relevant in San Francisco, then something bad will have happened to George Kittle (and quite possibly others).

Jaguars HC Doug Pederson said Monday that RB Travis Etienne is a "full go" for OTAs this week, according to NFL.com. Etienne is coming off a Lisfranc injury that cost him his entire rookie season. But the fact that he's all the way back for on-field work this early in the 2022 cycle removes his primary concern. We'll watch for setbacks, but consider us excited for Etienne's fantasy upside this season (and beyond).

The Browns have agreed to a 1-year, $11 million deal with DE Jadeveon Clowney, NFL Network reports. Ian Rapoport adds that Clowney turned down multi-year deals from other teams in the range of $14-15 million per year. Clowney will reprise his role as left DE opposite Myles Garrett. Clowney has double-digit upside but has yet to reach 10 in an NFL season.

Steelers OC Matt Canada commented on rookie WR George Pickens. “He can go down the field, he can make plays, he goes up and gets the football… we were impressed with his hands -- all those things you like about a wideout,” Canada said. “But I think probably for me sitting here, I think that [returning from a torn ACL late last season] said a lot about his character. He wanted to be part of that team, he wanted to be part of that championship and he fought to come back.” Pickens declared himself 100% healthy earlier this month. His 2022 path to targets isn’t clear, but it's easy to see him carving out a decent-sized role as the season develops. He’s currently our WR90 in redraft.

Per beat writer Pat Leonard, Giants WR Kadarius Toney underwent a “minor” arthroscopic knee procedure. He’s been limited in OTAs as a result. Per Leonard, Toney is “expected to be fine and ready for training camp.” Still, it’s a concerning development after Toney picked up a variety of injuries as a rookie. Avoiding a setback in training camp will be critical for the mercurial WR.

Steelers WR Diontae Johnson is not participating in Pittsburgh’s offseason program. Citing Johnson’s social media posts, beat writer Mark Kaboly concludes that the WR wants a new contract. The 25-year-old is set for a contract year following a 107-catch season. Per Kaboly, the earliest an extension would likely come is September. We’ll see on that, but there’s no cause for concern unless Johnson sits out training camp.

Beat writer Dan Duggan puts the odds of RB Saquon Barkley returning to the Giants in 2023 at 40%. Barkley, who enters a contract year, was the focus of offseason trade rumors. Duggan considers the franchise tag a potential “compromise option” next spring, but it’ll be costly ($13 million). Of course, Barkley’s 2021 performance will play some role in his future with New York. But we agree that he'll likely play elsewhere in 2023.

Cowboys beat writer Jon Machota believes RB Tony Pollard is in for his most productive season yet. Machota points to the departures of Amari Cooper, Cedrick Wilson and Blake Jarwin as reason for a boosted workload. Last year, Pollard totaled 169 touches in 15 games. The contract-year back currently holds a reasonable ADP of 8.04.

Seahawks OC Shane Waldron and HC Pete Carroll have both recently said that QB Geno Smith opens offseason workouts as the leader at QB. “Right now, Geno has done such a good job of carrying over (the offensive principles from 2021). He already had a head start over Drew right there,” Waldron told KJR radio this week. That seemed to echo Carroll's sentiment that Smith "automatically" starts ahead of Drew Lock. Waldron added, "We have a long way to go to see where this competition (goes).” For now, the fantasy football takeaway is that there's a competition to replace Russell Wilson in Seattle. It's not necessarily Lock's job.

Titans WR Robert Woods is happy with his recovery so far from last November's torn ACL. "I actually feel like they're kind of holding me back a little bit," Woods said. "I am trying to get back as well as I can, just doing everything (trainer) Todd Toriscelli has me doing, trying to stay focused and be patient with it. Right now I feel really, really good, getting going, being able to do some things." It sounds like Woods is on track to be ready for Week 1, which will be about 10 months after his knee injury.

Per league inside Jeff Howe, the Patriots “sound ecstatic” with QB Mac Jones’ “offseason dedication.” Jones exceeded year 1 expectations with 3,801 yards, 22 TDs and 13 picks across 17 games. He completed nearly 68% of his passes. A lack of rushing hurts his fantasy outlook, but the former ‘Bama standout at least projects as a bye week fill-in. Jones, 24 in Septmeber, finished as the QB18 in 2021.

According to Raiders beat writer Tashan Reed, the Raiders will hold “active competitions” for 4 starting O-line spots. That includes LG, C, RG and RT, with only Kolton Miller locked in at LT. This unit will be under the tutelage of OL coach Carmen Bricillo, formerly with HC Josh McDaniels in New England. The potentially high turnover here is worth monitoring for Derek Carr and the Vegas offense.

Wes Hodkiewicz of Packers.com expects RBs Aaron Jones and AJ Dillon to have a “big role” in the passing game. Jones saw 65 targets in 2021; Dillion handled 37. While Green Bay added several bodies to the WR corps, there’s uncertainty regarding how they’ll replace 224 targets left by Davante Adams and Marquez Valdes-Scantling. Current projections have Jones for a career-high in catches.

Ryan O'Halloran of The Denver Post says he has "flipped" to believing rookie TE Greg Dulcich will be ahead of Albert Okwuegbunam on the depth chart come Week 1. O'Halloran adds that "both players will have significant roles" but that praise from Broncos coaches since the draft factors into his expectation. This, of course, is just 1 beat writer's early opinion, well ahead of Dulcich's 1st training camp with the team. We're not altering fantasy outlooks at this point, but this is just 1 of multiple indications that a role competition is coming this summer.

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