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Los Angeles Rams Fantasy Football News | Shark Bites

Shark Bites are the latest fantasy football news & NFL updates. Draft Sharks has been in business since 1999. And when we started, redraft was the dominant form of fantasy football. Check out what we've learned about this most basic form of fantasy football along the way.

Rams OC Mike LaFleur said Thursday that WR Cooper Kupp (hamstring) is day-to-day and "he'll be fine," according to Turf Show Times. We'll keep watching for more on this situation at least until Kupp returns to the field. For now, he hasn't budged in our WR rankings.

Rams WR Cooper Kupp left Tuesday's practice with a hamstring injury. ESPN's Adam Schefter reports he had an MRI and that the team expects him back "for scrimmages in a few weeks." We'll watch for more detail on that end of it, but the Rams have obvious reason to be cautious with Kupp's health.

Per reporter Gary Klein, the Rams “project” rookie QB Stetson Bennett as a “reliable backup…and perhaps [Matt] Stafford’s successor.” A Round 4 pick in April, Bennett’s seemingly off to a strong start at camp. “What I really like about him is, if a play doesn’t go well, he’s able to reset himself and go to the next play,” HC Sean McVay said. “You can definitely feel the athleticism show up, and I think he’s getting more and more comfortable.” The two-time national champion turns 26 in October. He’s only a stash in deep dynasty superflex setups.

Rams Wire's Cameron DaSilva says "no one should sleep on [Demarcus] Robinson or [Tyler] Johnson as the Rams' No. 3 receiver." He adds that either has a chance to "leapfrog" Ben Skowronek, Tutu Atwell, and Puka Nacua in pursuit of that third spot, joining Cooper Kupp and Van Jefferson. We wouldn't recommend investing heavily into any of those competitors -- and we're not even especially interested in Jefferson. But we'll be watching to see who emerges as that No. 3 wideout.

Rams rookie WR Puka Nacua has continued to be heavily involved on offense with the start of training camp. Jordan Rodrigue of The Athletic called it a "substantial workload" Thursday. That came minutes before Stu Jackson of the team website called it "very apparent the Rams are continuing to test and give [a] big workload" to Nacua. This follows buzz on the rookie in spring workouts. Nacua recently landed among our dynasty rookie sleepers. The Rams' thin receiving corps gives him a shot at immediate fantasy relevance as well, from a no-risk ADP. We'll keep watching his progress -- and ADP -- through summer. For now, the rookie remains low in our 2023 WR rankings.

Jourdan Rodrigue of The Athletic is hearing “positive mutterings” about fifth-round TE Davis Allen. He’ll get an extended look early in camp, as veteran newcomer Hunter Long (groin) is on PUP. File Allen’s name away as a deep dynasty sleeper. Tyler Higbee, now 30, enters a contract season.

Rams QB Matt Stafford appears to be throwing a full workload in training camp, according to The Athletic's Jourdan Rodrigue. That wasn't the case the past two summers, as Stafford dealt with injuries. “I feel a lot better physically,” Stafford said. “I feel really healthy compared to where I was at this point last year, so that’s fun for me.” There's bounce-back potential here given better health for Stafford, WR Cooper Kupp, and the Rams' offensive line.

Raiders QB Jimmy Garoppolo (foot) has passed his physical and will be available for the start of training camp, ESPN reports. Garoppolo spent the offseason recovering from March surgery on his left foot. A source told ESPN that Garoppolo will be worked into practice "at the right pace" to start camp. We'll continue to keep an eye on him, but Garoppolo should be ready to roll come Week 1.

The Broncos signed K Brett Maher. It’s a reunion for the 33-year-old, who once kicked for HC Sean Payton. Maher made 31 of 34 FGs last year but will need to beat out Elliott Fry for the starting nod.

Rams QB Matt Stafford's 2022 season ended in Week 11 with a spinal cord contusion. He was disappointing even before that, ranking 22nd among QBs in fantasy points per game. Stafford's 6.9 yards per pass attempt was his worst mark since 2018 and the fifth-worst mark among his 14 NFL seasons. A leaky offensive line was part of the problem. But Stafford registered his lowest Pro Football Focus passing grade since 2015, ranking 22nd among 31 qualifying QBs. Now 35, Stafford's best days are certainly behind him. But there's some bounce-back potential here with better health for Stafford, WR Cooper Kupp, and the offensive line. Remember that Stafford finished fifth among QBs in fantasy points in his Rams debut in 2021. We're not expecting him to return to that level of production -- but he doesn't need to at his current QB19 ADP. See where Stafford sits in our 2023 QB Rankings.

Rams beat writer Cameron DaSilva writes that “in all likelihood,” the team will use a rotation at WR3. Van Jefferson holds the WR2 role behind Cooper Kupp. But we’ll see training camp sort the depth chart beyond that, with Tutu Atwell, Ben Skowrenek, and Puka Nacua as leading contenders. Atwell brings big-play appeal, making him a late-round option in best ball leagues. Nacua, though, has drawn the most buzz this offseason. The real takeaway is that Kupp remains a strong candidate to lead the NFL in targets.

Rams TE Tyler Higbee set career highs last year with 108 targets and 72 catches. His 620 yards were his second most among seven NFL seasons. He ranked fourth among all TEs in targets, fifth in catches, and ninth in receiving yards. Despite underachieving in the TD department -- his three scores ranked 19th at his position -- Higbee finished TE6 in PPR points. The Rams shipped WR Allen Robinson to Pittsburgh earlier this offseason and only added fifth-round rookie WR Puka Nacua, free-agent WR Demarcus Robinson, fifth-round rookie TE Davis Allen, and TE Hunter Long to the pass-catching corps. So Higbee looks set up for a bunch more targets in 2023. Although not the most exciting player, he's a nice value at his TE15 ADP.

Rams HC Sean McVay said he should have utilized WR Tutu Atwell more last season. Atwell — who McVay called “a real bright spot” this offseason -- finished 2022 with 35 targets. “You can see just the comfort in playing a lot of snaps last year, gaining some confidence and then being able to move around,” McVay said. “That’ll be really valuable.” The former Round 2 pick brings big-play ability, but he’s ultimately a fringe best ball flier. Atwell doesn’t crack the top 90 of our PPR WR rankings.

Cam DaSilva of USA Today writes that QB Matthew Stafford is “fully healthy and taking part in everything” this offseason. That wasn’t the case last year, as the veteran needed an injection in his right elbow after the ’21 season. “Oh, it’s night and day. And he’ll be the first to tell you,” HC Sean McVay said on Stafford’s improved health. At QB20, he's going in a reasonable range in drafts. It’s just hard to see Stafford crushing that spot given the Rams’ lack of weapons behind Cooper Kupp.

Rams WR Cooper Kupp participated in full team practice on Tuesday for the first time since suffering a season-ending high-ankle sprain last November that required surgery. Kupp, though, is still rehabbing and hasn't been fully cleared. "Playing football, you can't simulate this stuff. So I don't know if we'll really know," Kupp said. "I feel right now we've been pushing it pretty hard. I feel like I'm asking for more, wanting to do more and feeling like you're getting held back versus feeling like they're pushing you to do more. We're in a good place now where I feel like I want to get out there and play." We'll continue to keep an eye on Kupp's progress, but he should be back to 100% before Week 1.

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reports that Raiders QB Jimmy Garoppolo is expected to be recovered from his foot surgery "long before training camp." The QB will need to pass a physical, of course, but it doesn't sound like there should be big issues on this front. Garoppolo has tumbled down best ball draft boards since news broke of his spring surgery, but he obviously remains the top bet to start for the Raiders this season. Treat him as a big late value, especially in formats where drafting three QBs makes sense.

Rams OC Mike LaFleur praised rookie WR Puka Nacua for his efforts at OTAs. “He’s a good-sized kid. He’s got a good frame to him. He catches the ball really effortlessly,” LaFleur said on Wednesday. “He can stay grounded through the catch and so he is doing a good job with it. And particularly moving him around quite a bit, not babying him at all with the motions and the alignments and stuff like that and so he’s doing a good job. You can tell, all you have to do is look at these – especially the young guys – just look at their eyes when they’re in the huddle and you can tell the guys that are swimming, the guys that aren’t and he definitely has a calm demeanor about himself and is fitting in nicely.” Nacua will compete for rotational snaps behind Cooper Kupp and Van Jefferson. The 5th-round pick is much more intriguing in dynasty formats.

Raiders QB Jimmy Garoppolo underwent surgery in March to address a left foot injury he suffered against the Dolphins in December, according to The Athletic. The 49ers reportedly believed that Garoppolo didn't need surgery, but the Raiders disagreed after giving Garoppolo a physical before he signed. There's no known timetable for Garoppolo's return to the field, but HC Josh McDaniels admitted that he “could be” out until at least training camp. “We don’t play a game for 100 days,” McDaniels added. “Everything that’s happened since we signed Jimmy, we knew ahead of time. … Certainly had an awareness of all of it. Our preference is not to push it and rush anybody back at this point in time.” We'll keep tabs on Garoppolo's recovery. But he wasn't appealing even as a QB2 before this news and certainly isn't now.

The Rams traded up to grab Ole Miss RB Zach Evans late in Round 6 of the NFL Draft. Our guy C.H. Herms is a big fan of Evans' film and has liked Evans' dynasty value all along. And he's far from the only Evans film fan. Evans bounced from TCU to Ole Miss and dealt with multiple injuries. He finished with just 290 carries and 30 catches through three seasons. But he also averaged 6.9 yards per rush and 10.8 per catch for his career. That included 6.5 yards per carry and 9.9 per reception in his lone SEC campaign. Going to the Rams likely puts him in competition with 2022 rookie Kyren Williams for the No. 2 spot behind Cam Akers. The situation presents opportunity, with neither Akers nor Williams having proved much as a pro to date. We'll be watching this backfield competition through training camp. He's worth a look late in your dynasty rookie draft. See where he lands in our dynasty RB rankings.

QB Jimmy Garoppolo and the Raiders have reportedly agreed to a three-year, $67.5 million deal. The former 49er will receive $34 million in guaranteed money and reunite with HC Josh McDaniels, dating back to their days together with the Patriots. Garoppolo has struggled with various injuries over the course of his career but has played fairly well when healthy. We expect him to maintain QB2-level production in Las Vegas as more of a game manager that's better for your real-life NFL team than your fantasy team. That said, Garoppolo kept pace with QB Derek Carr, the man he's replacing, in fantasy PPG from Week 5 through Week 12 (16.3 and 16.4, respectively) before a foot injury ended his season. Plus, anyone paired up with WR Davante Adams carries some appeal in superflex leagues. This move doesn't prohibit the Raiders from pursuing a younger QB in the NFL Draft this April, but at least they have a bridge plan in place at a minimum.

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