Bengals rookie OT Jonah Williams will "likely" miss the entire 2019 season after undergoing surgery on Tuesday to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder, the team announced. It's a massive blow to a team that was planning on its 1st-rounder stepping right in at LT. Cordy Glenn is now expected to move back to that spot. He ranked 60th among 80 qualifying OTs in Pro Football Focus' 2018 grades.
The Bears are “optimistic” that WR Anthony Miller (shoulder) and TE Trey Burton (hernia) will be ready for the start of training camp, according to Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune. Both players have missed offseason workouts while working back from surgeries. We’ll watch their participation early in camp
"Damien Williams is our starter. We expect him to excel in that role." That's what Chiefs OC Eric Bienemy said Thursday, according to Brandon Kiley of 610 Sports in Kansas City. It's not a shocking revelation, but it does add some clarity to a backfield that added Carlos Hyde early this offseason for basically the same annual salary as the team is paying Williams. We're tempering our expectations a bit for Williams, who has never topped 50 carries or 23 catches through 5 NFL seasons (after arriving as an undrafted free agent). But his tremendous finish to 2018 and the numbers Kareem Hunt delivered over the previous year and a half point to the high ceiling that comes with his new job. Hyde, meanwhile, looks like more of a handcuff for fantasy purposes than a weekly flex candidate.
The Bears selected Georgia WR Riley Ridley in the 4th round of the 2019 NFL Draft. Calvin’s younger brother never popped at Georgia, topping out with 43 catches, 559 yards and 9 TDs this past season. Even in a run-heavy offense, his market shares underwhelm: 17.8% of the catches, 17.6% of the receiving yards and 26.5% of the receiving scores. Those marks rank 39th, 43rd and 29th among the 48 WRs at this year’s Combine. Ridley doesn’t check the athleticism box either, registering a 15th percentile SPARQ score at 6’1 and 194 pounds. He is 1 of the better route runners in this class and shows well in contested situations. That makes him a pro-ready and relatively safe WR prospect, but nothing in Ridley’s profile points to him becoming a real difference maker for the Bears or fantasy squads. He’ll compete for targets with Anthony Miller and Taylor Gabriel behind Allen Robinson.
The Bears added Iowa State RB David Montgomery in the 3rd round of the 2019 NFL Draft. Montgomery is coming off 3 productive seasons for the Cyclones. He led the squad with 563 rushing yards as a true freshman and then broke out for 1,146 yards and 11 TDs in 2017. Montgomery bested those numbers this past season, racking up 1,216 yards and 13 scores. His career 4.7 yards per carry looks disappointing, but he played behind some bad offensive lines. Montgomery is a tackle-breaking machine on tape and ranked 4th in this RB class in Pro Football Focus’ 2018 Elusive Rating. He’s also adept in the passing game, totaling 71 catches over 3 college seasons and faring well in pass protection. Montgomery tested as a 36th percentile athlete at the Combine and won’t be a big-play back as a pro. But he has the size (5’10, 222 lbs.) and skill set to make it as a lead back. He joins free-agent addition Mike Davis and change-of-back guy Tarik Cohen in Chicago’s backfield. Montgomery has a shot to lead the way in touches this season.
Bears WR Anthony Miller says he dislocated his left shoulder 5 or 6 times last year, the 1st coming in Week 3. “Every time I tried to stiff arm, it would come out, or if I ran kind of crazy, it would come out. Really I was playing games with like one arm, making it happen," Miller said. He ended up playing in 15 games but was often limited. So he did well to post a 33-423-7 line as a rookie. Miller had surgery in January to repair a torn labrum and should be back by the time training camp gets going. “Chicago hasn’t seen how I can play yet,” he added. Miller's early ADP is sitting in the 13th round.
NFL Network reports that the Cowboys and Dolphins have worked out a trade for DE Robert Quinn. That should position Quinn as Dallas' starting right DE, opposite Demarcus Lawrence. Quinn led Miami with 6.5 sacks and 9 tackles for loss last season. Among Cowboys, only Lawrence beat either number. Settling at DE in Dallas' 4-3 front helps Quinn's IDP value and makes him a potential DL2. His arrival also helps a team D that has upgraded over the past couple of years.
The Cardinals have signed WR Damiere Byrd to a 1-year deal. The 5'9, 180-pounder caught just 12 balls across 3 seasons with the Panthers, making his biggest splash in the 2017 preseason opener. We'll see if Byrd can carve out a worthwhile role in a fairly open Arizona WR corps, but he's not likely to factor into the average fantasy football league's draft picture in 2019.
The Browns have reached a 2-year deal with former Chiefs TE Demetrius Harris, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. That's a disappointing move for anyone hoping to get some kind of Harris breakthrough via free agency. Harris is a size-speed freak, with a 4.57-second 40 time at 6'7 and 230 pounds. But he managed just 57 total receptions over 5 seasons behind Travis Kelce. In Cleveland, he figures to remain behind David Njoku. And we're not too worried at this point about Harris lowering Njoku's fantasy ceiling. We'll see if HC Freddie Kitchens and his staff reveal anything about Harris' role.
The Jaguars have reached a 4-year deal with QB Nick Foles. ESPN's Adam Schefter reports it's a 4-year, $88 million pact with $50.125 million guaranteed. That's obviously a pretty serious commitment. We'll see how long it takes Jacksonville to realize that the 30-year-old Foles isn't really an upgrade over Blake Bortles. Foles is a QB3 for common-sized fantasy football leagues, and he doesn't significantly enhance the outlook for Jacksonville's wideouts. Ian Rapoport reports that the Jags are expected to release Bortles once the Foles deal becomes official.
Bears S Eddie Jackson is active for today’s game against the Eagles. He arrived questionable after missing the previous 2 games with an ankle sprain
Bears S Eddie Jackson (ankle) is questionable for Sunday's game against the Eagles. He missed the past 2 games but returned for limited practices the past 2 days. We'll check his status Sunday.
Eagles QB Nick Foles (ribs) put in a limited practice on Wednesday. The fact that he was out there at all early in the week is a good sign. He's fully expected to start Sunday's game against the Bears.
Bears WRs Allen Robinson (ribs), Taylor Gabriel (shoulder) and Anthony Miller (shoulder) all practiced in full on Wednesday. Robinson sat out the season finale vs. Minnesota, while Gabriel and Miller exited early. But it looks like Chicago's WR corps will be at full strength for Sunday's game against the Eagles.
The Eagles believe QB Nick Foles suffered bruised ribs in Sunday's win over the Redskins and will be OK, ESPN's Adam Schefter reports. Philly locked up the NFC's #6 seed with the victory, and it sounds like Foles will be available for next weekend's game against the Bears. We'll keep an eye on his status this week.
Eagles QB Nick Foles suffered a chest injury in the 4th quarter of Sunday's game against the Redskins and is officially questionable to return. QB Nate Sudfeld has entered for Philly. We'll update Foles' status when we learn more.
Bears WR Anthony Miller injured his left shoulder in the 1st half of Sunday's game against the Vikings and is questionable to return. He dealt with an injury to the same shoulder earlier this season. We'll update the rookie's status when we learn more.
Update: Miller has been ruled out. We'll see if he's able to play in next weekend's Wild Card game.
Bears WR Allen Robinson (ribs) is inactive for today’s game against the Vikings. Taylor Gabriel and Anthony Miller will serve as Chicago’s top 2 WRs and are both in the WR3 mix for fantasy lineups.
Bears S Eddie Jackson (ankle) is doubtful for Sunday's game against the Vikings. That would be his 2nd straight missed game. Without Jackson last week, the Chicago D still held the Niners to just 9 points and 279 total yards on the road.
49ers WR Marquise Goodwin (calf) is out for Sunday’s finale against the Rams. With WR Dante Pettis (knee) also out, San Francisco is down to Kendrick Bourne, Trent Taylor and Richie James. Bourne is the best fantasy bet but not more than a WR4. Look for TE George Kittle to lead the ‘Niners in targets.
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