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Tampa Bay Buccaneers 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.

The Broncos activated EDGE Randy Gregory off the PUP list Monday. He has been working back from offseason shoulder surgery, but it was an issue known to the team before Gregory signed a big-money deal in free agency. "(The shoulder issue) was something I've been dealing with for 2, 3 years now," he said, according to The Denver Post. "We got to the point where it was kind of hindering my play, so (the surgery) was something that was important for me to do long term, for the good of the team." Gregory added that he expects to be ready for the regular-season opener.

Bucs RB Gio Bernard was knocked out of Saturday's preseason opener with an ankle injury. With RB Leonard Fournette sitting, Bernard drew the start over RBs Rachaad White and Ke'Shawn Vaughn. We'll see about the severity of the ankle injury.

The Panthers have announced that QB Baker Mayfield will start Saturday's preseason opener. This doesn't necessarily mean he's THE starter, but it sure seems like a signal that Mayfield holds at least a slight lead over incumbent Sam Darnold. And it comes less than a week after Ian Rapoport reported that Mayfield has the "inside track" to the gig. Mayfield is certainly our bet in this competition, and he's still going late enough to be a value in best-ball and superflex drafts.

QB Baker Mayfield has the "inside track" for the Panthers' starting job, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Mayfield and QB Sam Darnold have been splitting reps in camp, and that's expected to continue in the preseason, per Rapoport. "Based on the understanding [Mayfield] has of this offense, based on the kind of plays he can make, the kind of command he's already getting inside this locker room, it certainly does seem like it's Baker Mayfield's job to win," Rapoport says. We've projected Mayfield as Carolina's starter since the trade was made back in early July. Mayfield is just a low-end QB2 but should be an upgrade for RB Christian McCaffrey, WR D.J. Moore and the rest of the Panthers' skill-position guys.

Insider Jordan Schultz hears that the hamstring injury Bucs WR Mike Evans suffered in Friday's practice is "minor." We'll see when he's able to get back on the field, but we haven't moved Evans in the WR rankings.

Bucs WR Mike Evans "tweaked" a hamstring in Friday's practice, HC Todd Bowles said. This doesn't sound like a serious injury, but we'll keep an eye on it. Evans has dealt with hamstring trouble in 2015, 2019, 2020 and 2021.

Bucs WR Chris Godwin participated in positional drills on Friday for the 1st time since tearing his ACL last December. Here's video. "Very positive sign, but as one source says, not surprising," ESPN's Jeff Darlington tweeted. "This is 'on schedule' in terms of Godwin’s own plan for himself." It's still unclear if he'll be ready for Week 1, but we're expecting to at least see Godwin at some point in September.

Joseph Person of The Athletic reports that the Panthers continue to alternate QB Baker Mayfield with QB Sam Darnold in 1st-team workouts at training camp. HC Matt Rhule says he'll let the competition play out rather than anointing anyone. Person writes, "My expectation is that it will be Mayfield -- and nothing from the first seven practices has changed my mind." He adds that Mayfield has looked more comfortable in the 2nd week of camp than he did the 1st, though he also says Darnold has "looked sharp." We'll continue assuming that Mayfield wins out but will watch for confirmation.

Bucs HC Todd Bowles complimented the play of TE Cade Otton. “Cade’s a very cerebral player. You won’t see all the speed and power, but you look up and he’s always doing the right things, always in the right place. He has great hands and he understands how to play the game,” Bowles said. “I think a lot of young players don’t have that. He has that coming in, so that’s going to benefit him going forward.” Bowles noted that Otten needs to improve his play strength — standard language for a rookie. The 4th-round pick figures to see limited action alongside Kyle Rudolph and Cameron Brate, but he’s a name to monitor in dynasty circles.

The Broncos placed DE Randy Gregory on the physically unable to perform list ahead of training camp. Gregory is returning from shoulder surgery but is expected to be ready for the season. The large contract ($28 million guaranteed) that Denver gave him in free agency says the team assumes he'll be just fine.

Bucs WR Chris Godwin has been cleared to practice at training camp. He surprisingly avoids the PUP list despite being only ~7 months out from ACL surgery. While he won’t be a full practice participant, look for Godwin’s WR32 ADP to rise immediately. Also note: Tampa Bay just added Julio Jones on a 1-year deal.

The Bucs are "cautiously optimistic" that WR Chris Godwin (knee) will be ready for Week 1, insider Greg Auman said on SiriusXM radio Monday. "But the Bucs aren't set on him being ready just yet," Auman added. Godwin tore his right ACL and MCL on December 19 and had surgery on January 3. Week 1 is just a little more than 8 months after that surgery, which would be an extremely aggressive timeline. We'll continue to monitor Godwin's progress but still aren't projecting him to be ready for the opener. That said, there's still plenty of upside on him at his 6th-round ADP in recent FFPC drafts.

Bucs TE Cade Otton (ankle) has been cleared for the start of training camp, according to The Tampa Bay Times' Rick Stroud. The rookie missed OTAs and minicamp after undergoing ankle surgery in November, putting him a bit behind the 8-ball. We'll see if Otton can push TE Cam Brate and newly signed TE Kyle Rudolph for snaps.

11:00pm EDT 7/20/22

The Buccaneers have agreed to a 1-year deal with TE Kyle Rudolph, according to multiple reports. The veteran managed just 26 catches for 257 yards and 1 TD across 16 games in his lone season with the Giants after Minnesota released him following the 2020 season. It marked the 3rd straight year in which Rudolph's receptions per game declined. Obviously not a threat for big numbers in a season that will find him turning 33 in November, Rudolph still clouds the TE target picture for an offense that (at least for now) must go without Rob Gronkowski. We weren't excited about Cameron Brate or Cade Otton in any format before this signing, which certainly doesn't help either player.

Panthers GM Scott Fitterer called the team’s QB situation “an open competition” on Tuesday. As such, Fitterer anticipates the reps being divvied up “fairly evenly” at the start of training camp. While competition might be a point of emphasis, Baker Mayfield enters camp as the clear favorite to start Week 1 over Sam Darnold. Current QB projections have the former Brown slated for 15 games.

The Browns are trading QB Baker Mayfield to the Panthers for a conditional 5th-round pick in 2024, NFL Network reports. The 2 teams "split the financials to make it happen," according to Ian Rapoport, so Carolina is presumably picking up about half of Mayfield's nearly $19 million 2022 cap hit. Mayfield is coming off a disappointing, injury-riddled 2021 season but played well the previous year, finishing 10th among 32 qualifiers in Pro Football Focus' passing grades. In fact, Mayfield earned higher PFF passing grades in each of his first 3 NFL seasons than QB Sam Darnold has managed in any of his 4 NFL seasons. So Mayfield is a tangible upgrade for D.J. Moore, Robby Anderson, Terrace Marshall and Christian McCaffrey. Mayfield himself looks like just a middling QB2, although those weapons give him some weekly upside. Check out the updated projections for the Panthers offense.

Update: Per NFL Network's Mike Garafolo, Mayfield agreed to shave about $3.5 million off his 2022 salary. The Browns will pay him $10.5 million this year; the Panthers around $5 million.

Speaking at his youth football camp, Browns QB Baker Mayfield confirmed that he plans to play elsewhere in 2022. “I think it’s been pretty obvious the mutual decision on both sides is to move on,” Mayfield said. Cleveland would be the best spot to rehab his real-life value, especially with Deshaun Watson likely to get a lengthy suspension. But it’s been clear for weeks that such a scenario won’t play out. It’s only a matter of time before the Browns either release Mayfield or unload him to Seattle, Carolina or another team.

CBS' Josina Anderson reports that the Seahawks "still have high-level interest" in Baker Mayfield and are even open to extending his contract. With training camp now about a month away, we should be nearing movement on this front. Carolina has also reportedly remained in the hunt.

Speculating on the team's replacement plan in the wake of TE Rob Gronkowski's (2nd) retirement, Scott Smith of the team website highlights the potential of 4th-round rookie Cade Otton. Smith says "there is the potential for him to be the one tight end the Buccaneers keep on the field most often," with receiving skills that "many draft analysts" believe exceed his college usage and the fact that he's "already considered an above-average and very willing blocker." Smith goes on to say that there might not be a "single clear answer" and that the Bucs could just blend Otton, fellow rookie Ko Kieft, vet Cameron Brate and perhaps 1 more player. Otton is primarily a name to know for dynasty usage, but this also serves as a reminder to temper fantasy expectations for Brate. He's likely the team's best receiving bet at the position with Gronk gone. But Brate has also played less than 40% of Tampa Bay snaps in 3 straight years. Just 2 of those included Gronkowski, and he missed 5 games in 2021.

The Athletic's Greg Auman confirms that Bucs WR Chris Godwin is a candidate to open the season on the PUP list. That's not a surprise considering Godwin is working his way back from a mid-December ACL tear. "There have been encouraging reports on Godwin’s progress, but the Bucs have made a big investment in him long-term, so the priority will be getting him back to his old self rather than getting him back right away," Auman writes. Note that new NFL rules require a player placed on the PUP list to miss a minimum of 4 games, rather than the previous 6-game minimum. We're tentatively projecting Godwin to make his 2022 debut sometime in October.

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