Shark Bites

The Raiders announced Wednesday that they have re-signed RB Jalen Richard. It's not surprising, given that Richard was a restricted free agent. At the moment, he stands a good chance at staying heavily involved in the Oakland backfield. Richard's primary competition looks like Isaiah Crowell and 2018 rookie Chris Warren, neither of whom should threaten Richard's receiving role. We'll see what else the Raiders do at the position in the draft and whether Marshawn Lynch decides to return.

The Raiders have signed WR Ryan Grant, according to ESPN's Field Yates. Grant had a big opportunity with the Colts last year but mustered just a 35-334-1 line on 52 targets. He's yet to top 45 catches or 573 yards through 5 NFL seasons and is averaging just 11.1 yards per catch. Grant joins Antonio Brown, Tyrell Williams and J.J. Nelson in Oakland's new-look WR corps.

The Raiders have signed TE Luke Willson. The 29-year-old has yet to top 22 catches across 6 NFL seasons. Jared Cook's departure has Willson and former WR Darren Waller sitting atop Oakland's TE depth chart right now. The Raiders could still add to the position in free agency or the draft. But the passing game figures to revolve around WRs Antonio Brown and Tyrell Williams.

The Raiders have signed RB Isaiah Crowell to a 1-year contract. Crowell averaged 4.8 yards per carry in a wildly inconsistent 2018 with the Jets. He delivered 219 yards in a win over the Dolphins and racked up 102 and 2 TDs on just 10 carries in the surprise opening blowout win at Detroit. But Crowell cracked 50 yards just 1 other time and tallied only 143 rushing attempts (plus 21 catches) for the season. His arrival in Oakland likely means unrestricted free agent Doug Martin is done there. Marshawn Lynch isn't expected to decide until after the NFL Draft whether he'll return for another season. RBs Jalen Richard and Chris Warren remain on the roster. HC Jon Gruden has compared Richard to former RB Charlie Garner, which indicates he'll maintain a significant role. Warren spent his rookie season on IR after a flashy preseason. This backfield figures to see further changes before we can project its 2019 touch splits.

WR J.J. Nelson has inked a deal with the Raiders. The 5'10, 160-pounder totaled just 81 catches in 4 seasons in Arizona but averaged 17.8 yards per catch with 10 TDs. He'll battle Seth Roberts for #3 WR duties in Oakland behind Antonio Brown and Tyrell Williams.

The Jets have released RB Isaiah Crowell. It was a no-brainer move after they landed RB Le'Veon Bell. Crowell averaged 4.8 yards per carry in his lone season in New York. That was fueled by runs of 54, 62 and 77 yards -- but Crowell also didn't get much help from an offensive line that finished dead last in Football Outsiders' Adjusted Line Yards. He ranked 16th in Pro Football Focus' Elusive Rating among 47 RBs who carried 100+ times last year. We'll see where he lands, but Crowell has a shot to be a fantasy factor in 2019.

The Raiders have agreed to a deal with former Chargers WR Tyrell Williams, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. Williams' playing time dipped by a few percentage points each of the past 2 years. And he went from 119 targets with Keenan Allen out in 2016 to just 69 and 65 the past 2 years. Oakland gives him the chance to settle in as the 2nd target behind WR Antonio Brown, though Williams will need to fend off WR Jordy Nelson for that role. TE Jared Cook led the 2018 Raiders in targets but will hit unrestricted free agency this afternoon. Williams adds upside to Raiders QB Derek Carr, giving Carr a pass-catcher with the ability to win deep and create yards after the catch.

Update: Schefter reports it's a 4-year, $44 million deal with $22 million guaranteed and a max value of $47 million. That certainly points to Williams serving as the team's #2 target.

The Raiders have reached a 4-year deal with S Lamarcus Joyner, per multiple reports. He should take over the free safety spot for Oakland, which spent 2018 rotating players there. The Rams already added Eric Weddle for Joyner's old post.

The Raiders and OT Trent Brown have agreed to a 4-year, $66 million contract. The deal will make Brown the league's highest-paid OT. San Francisco's 1st-round pick back in 2015, Brown was mediocre over his first 2 seasons but has received positive grades from Pro Football Focus in each of the last 2 (1 with the 'Niners, 1 with the Patriots). He ranked 44th among 80 OTs in PFF's 2018 pass-blocking grades and 30th in run blocking. Between Trent Brown and Antonio Brown, QB Derek Carr's supporting cast has gotten a big boost over the past couple of days.

The Steelers traded WR Antonio Brown to the Raiders in exchange for 3rd- and 5th-round picks. Oakland also gave Brown a new 3-year, $50.1 million deal that makes him the league's highest-paid WR. The move ends Brown's 9-year tenure in Pittsburgh that saw him top 1,100 yards 7 times. The future Hall-of-Famer turns 31 in July and remained a stat-piling machine last season, leading the league with 15 receiving scores and finishing top 10 in catches (104) and yards (1,297). But it's worth noting that he posted his lowest yards-per-target average (7.72) since 2012. And Pro Football Focus graded him 26th among 117 WRs. Even if he's past his peak, though, Brown is still 1 of the game's best. We'll see how he gels with HC Jon Gruden and QB Derek Carr, but he'll obviously be fed a boatload of targets in Oakland. Brown figures to land safely inside our top 10 WRs when the rankings come out this spring. In Pittsburgh, meanwhile, JuJu Smith-Schuster takes over as the #1 WR and James Washington gets a big opportunity to step in as the #2.

ESPN's Chris Mortensen hears that there's a "high probability" the Steelers trade WR Antonio Brown this offseason. The mercurial receiver may have punched his ticket out of town when he reportedly got into a tiff with QB Ben Roethlisberger on the Wednesday before the season finale and then skipped the next 2 days of practice. Brown showed up ready to play against the Bengals on Sunday, but the Steelers made him inactive. It's possible that cooler heads prevail and Brown returns to Pittsburgh for the 2019 campaign, but this will obviously be 1 of the biggest storylines of the offseason. He's due a $2.5 million roster bonus on March 17, so any trade would likely come before then. Brown's departure would make JuJu Smith-Schuster the Steelers' clear #1 WR and give James Washington a shot to capture the #2 job.

Steelers WR Antonio Brown (knee) is inactive for today's game against the Bengals. That leaves JuJu Smith-Schuster as the clear #1 WR, with James Washington, Eli Rogers and Ryan Switzer behind him. Washington is your best bet if you're looking to take a flier.

Pro Football Talk hears that Steelers WR Antonio Brown (knee) is “feeling better today” and "has a chance" to play against the Bengals. A final decision won't be made until pregame warmups, but the vibe on Brown is trending in the right direction. We'll have his official status around 3 pm ET.

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reports that Steelers WR Antonio Brown "has a chance" to play in Sunday's game against the Bengals but that his bothersome knee "will need to improve to have a shot" at Brown being active. The 4:25 p.m. ET kickoff obviously complicates the decision for fantasy owners. We'll watch for early Sunday updates, but you might have to sit the Steelers star if you don't have a later-game replacement option. Rookie WR James Washington would likely play in Brown's place if he sits and could serve as likely available insurance.

The Rams have ruled S Lamarcus Joyner (ankle) out for Sunday's finale against the 49ers.

Steelers WR Antonio Brown (knee) is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game against the Bengals after not practicing all week. He went for tests on the knee on Friday after experiencing “discomfort,” HC Mike Tomlin said. We’ll look for further updates on Brown’s status. Steelers-Bengals doesn’t kick off until 4:25 pm ET on Sunday. If Brown is unable to play, WR JuJu Smith-Schuster would get a boost in volume, and rookie James Washington would likely step in as the #2 WR.

Steelers WR Antonio Brown was held out of Thursday's practice with what ESPN's Aditi Kinkhabwala hears is a "sore knee." Two Steelers told Kinkhabwala that they expect Brown to play against the Bengals this weekend. We'll get another update on his status tomorrow, but he can stay penciled into fantasy lineups for now.

Bengals LB Vontaze Burfict (concussion) is inactive for today's game against the Browns. He shouldn't have been in IDP consideration anyway.

11:12am EST 12/14/18

The Jets have placed RB Isaiah Crowell (foot) on IR, ending his 2018 campaign. New York promoted RB De'Angelo Henderson from the practice squad to take Crowell's spot on the roster. Henderson and Trenton Cannon will handle change-of-pace duties behind Elijah McGuire over the final 3 weeks. McGuire is just a RB3 vs. a tough Texans defense on Saturday but has a more favorable matchup against the Packers in Week 16.

Jets RB Isaiah Crowell (toe) is out for Saturday night's game against the Texans. RB Elijah McGuire (ankle) is not listed on the final injury report after limited practices on Wednesday and Thursday. McGuire should see 15+ touches on Saturday but is just a RB3 vs. a tough Houston run defense.

 
 
 

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