Eric Decker Fantasy Football News 2018

3:08pm EDT 8/26/18

Patriots WR Eric Decker announced his retirement Sunday via an Instagram post. There had been rumors recently of Decker being unlikely to make the final roster. His announcement continues to clear out a once-crowded WR corps. New England previously dumped WRs Malcolm Mitchell and Kenny Britt and waived/injured WR Jordan Matthews. Without Decker, the regular-season roster locks look like Chris Hogan, Julian Edelman, Phillip Dorsett, Matthew Slater and Cordarrelle Patterson -- with Riley McCarron and Braxton Berrios as wild cards. Slater and Patterson gain real-life value for their special-team contributions. Patterson and Dorsett look like the late-round WR fliers in current fantasy football drafts.

Andy Hart of the Patriots' website calls WR Eric Decker "far from a lock to make the roster," adding that "the veteran still doesn't seem comfortable." Of course, you can still take a late shot on Decker in fantasy football drafts this weekend if you'd like, in a WR corps that will miss Julian Edelman for the 1st 4 weeks. But Phillip Dorsett and Cordarrelle Patterson are better bets to make the final roster if you're looking for a late upside pick.

Ben Volin of the Boston Globe projected New England's 53-man roster Monday and did not include Kenny Britt among the WRs. Volin projects Chris Hogan, Phillip Dorsett, Eric Decker and Cordarrelle Patterson making the roster, with Julian Edelman opening the year on suspension and Riley McCarron going to the practice squad. Britt has yet to practice in training camp because of a hamstring injury. "If Britt can't get on the field soon, his time with the Patriots might end swiftly," Volin writes. This is just 1 writer's opinion, of course, but we have to weigh all these opinions from regular observers of the team this time of year -- especially when deciding how to treat murky situations such as New England's WR corps in our fantasy football drafts. For now, Britt's a risky late-round option in any format. If he does get the boot, there's no guarantee he catches on elsewhere. Among the 3 new veterans listed, Patterson is probably the best bet to stick because of his value in the return game.

The Patriots have signed WR Eric Decker. The 31-year-old is clearly past his prime, averaging just 10.4 yards per catch in Tennessee last year. But he was still a reliable possession receiver, hauling in 65.1% of his targets. He finished a decent 48th among 116 WRs in Pro Football Focus' 2017 receiving grades. "Decent" is all Decker needs to be to have a shot at early-season fantasy value in New England. He'll compete with Kenny Britt, Phillip Dorsett and Cordarrelle Patterson for snaps behind Chris Hogan while Julian Edelman serves his 4-game suspension.

Titans WR Corey Davis (hamstring) has been ruled out for Sunday's game against the Seahawks. Getting scratched so early means he could be looking at a multi-week absence. We'd still try to stash the talented rookie on fantasy benches. With Davis sidelined, Tennessee's top 3 WRs will be Rishard Matthews, Eric Decker and Taywan Taylor. None is a strong fantasy play vs. Seattle.

The Titans' WR corps is getting healthy. Corey Davis (hamstring) and Eric Decker (ankle) returned to practice on Tuesday. It's unclear if either guy will play in Thursday's preseason finale, but both are on track to be ready for Week 1. That's good news for QB Marcus Mariota.

Titans WR Eric Decker will miss the team's 3rd preseason game with an ankle injury, HC Mike Mularkey said. It's not ideal for a guy coming off an injury-wrecked season and settling into a new offense, but we've heard nothing to suggest that Decker is in danger of missing the start of the regular season. He's fine to draft as a WR3 at his 9th-round ADP.

Titans insider Jim Wyatt called WR Taywan Taylor a "star of the offseason" and even predicted that he'll out-target WR Corey Davis this season. Davis, of course, was the 5th overall pick of this year's draft. Taylor was a 3rd-rounder. But he checks boxes for college production (3,197 yards and 34 TDs over the last 2 seasons) and athleticism (96th percentile SPARQ score). There's a crowd in Tennessee with Taylor and Davis joining veterans Rishard Matthews and Eric Decker at WR. TE Delanie Walker is still there. And the Titans figure to remain a run-leaning offense. We'd be surprised if they produced more than 2 viable fantasy starting WRs, so the battle for snaps and targets this summer will be worth monitoring closely.

The Titans have agreed to a 1-year deal with WR Eric Decker. The former Jet gives QB Marcus Mariota a talented, steady veteran presence. Decker shouldn't keep Corey Davis from reaching the top of the WR depth chart if the rookie proves ready to do so, but he'll cut into the available targets and certainly make it tough for Rishard Matthews to deliver another fantasy-starter line. Decker could also block 3rd-round WR Taywan Taylor from turning into a fantasy surprise this season. We'll see this summer just how healthy Decker is coming off groin and shoulder surgeries at the end of last year. But he reportedly looked good in Jets OTAs before his release. Another receiving weapon makes Mariota even more attractive around the fringe of QB1 territory in fantasy football drafts.

The Jets have released WR Eric Decker, saving $7.25 million against the 2017 salary cap. They tried to find a trade partner but found no takers with the other 31 teams knowing that Decker would be released. It shouldn't take him long to find a new job on the open market. Decker has reportedly been medically cleared from last year's shoulder and hip surgeries and has remained productive. He posted an 80-1,027-12 line back in 2015 and hit pay dirt in 2 of 3 games last year. Only 5 players have scored more receiving TDs than Decker since 2011.

The Jets have informed WR Eric Decker that he'll be traded or released this week, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. The move will save the rebuilding Jets a little over $7 million this season. It'll also see them lose their only proven pass-catcher. New York's WR depth chart now reads: Quincy Enunwa, Robby Anderson, ArDarius Stewart, Chad Hansen and Charone Peake. That group will try to catch passes from some combination of Josh McCown, Bryce Petty and Christian Hackenberg. God speed, Jets fans. Decker, meanwhile, should find a new job relatively quickly. And it figures to be in a spot much more conducive to fantasy production.

 
 
 

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