According to multiple reports, the Texans will be hiring David Culley as their new HC. Culley has been coaching in the NFL since 1994, spending the past 2 seasons as the passing-game coordinator, WRs coach and assistant HC in Baltimore. Before that, he spent 2 years as Buffalo's QBs coach, 18 years working under Andy Reid -- 14 as WRs coach in Philly and then 4 more as WRs coach and assistant HC in K.C. -- 3 years as WRs coach in Pittsburgh and 2 years coaching WRs for Tampa Bay. Culley has yet to be a full-on OC at any stop and has coached across multiple regimes, so it might be tough to nail down his scheme. The most important fantasy issue, though, will be whether he can win over Houston QB Deshaun Watson. We'll be watching this situation over the next couple of months.
Update: Culley will retain OC Tim Kelly, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. Kelly has spent the past 2 seasons in that role.
NFL Network's Ian Rapoport is told that there will be an "open competition" this offseason between Rams QBs Jared Goff and John Wolford. Goff has been far too inconsistent from game to game in 4 seasons under Sean McVay -- but it'd frankly be a major surprise if he lost a battle to Wolford, a former undrafted free agent who didn't even complete 60% of his passes at Wake Forest. The takeaway here, though, is that Goff is on thin ice in Los Angeles. We'll see if the Rams add any additional competition this offseason.
Packers President Mark Murphy didn't mince words when discussing QB Aaron Rodgers' standing with the team in a Tuesday radio interview. “I’ll say this: There’s no way in heck that Aaron is not going to be on the Packers," Murphy said. "I mean, he is going to be the MVP of the league, might have had his best year ever. He’s our unquestioned leader and, you know, we’re not idiots.” Rodgers made headlines when he said he was unsure of his Packers future after the loss to the Bucs last weekend, but it always seemed unlikely that he'd play anywhere else in 2021. Rodgers' contract makes it easier for Green Bay to move on during the 2022 offseason.
The 49ers signed restricted free-agent RB Jeff Wilson to a 1-year deal, ESPN's Field Yates reports. Wilson set career highs across the board last season and finished strong, tallying 58 carries for 319 yards (5.5 YPC) and 2 scores over the final 3 games. He also saw 13 targets during that stretch -- although he caught just 4 of them. With both Tevin Coleman and Jerick McKinnon set to hit free agency in March, it's Wilson and Raheem Mostert signed in San Francisco for 2021 right now.
The Seahawks are hiring Shane Waldron as their new OC, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. We can't say we know much about the guy, to be honest. Waldron spent the past 4 seasons as passing-game coordinator/QBs coach for the Rams under Sean McVay. He also spent time with Washington and New England. But his only OC experience came at Buckingham Browne & Nichols High School in 2011. We've heard that Seattle wants to be a run-leaning offense going forward, but it can't be bad news for Russell Wilson and his WRs that the 'Hawks hired a former passing-game coordinator to call the plays.
Joe Lombardi has been named Chargers OC. The 49-year-old and grandson of Vince Lombardi has had 2 stints with the Saints under Sean Payton, including the past 5 seasons as QB coach. In between, Lombardi spent 2 seasons as Lions OC in 2014 and 2015. Those teams both ranked in the bottom half of the league in total yards and points. The running games were anemic, headed by Ameer Abdullah, Joique Bell and Reggie Bush. But QB Matthew Stafford topped 4,200 yards both years with 54 total TDs. This seems like a solid hire for QB Justin Herbert and the Chargers passing game.
Bills WR Cole Beasley revealed that he broke his fibula in Week 16. He sat out the regular-season finale but returned for the playoffs, catching 7 of 11 targets in 2 games. “Take a few meds and suck it up," Beasley said. “There was no way I was gonna miss a playoff game.” It's unclear if he'll need surgery, but the injury shouldn't impact his 2021. Beasley has posted 67-778-6 and 82-967-4 lines in 2 years with the Bills, finishing 34th and then 27th among WRs in PPR points. He'll probably be undervalued again in 2021 fantasy drafts.
Packers QB Aaron Rodgers "fully sounded like someone who doesn't know if he'll be the QB here next season," The Athletic's Matt Schneidman tweeted after Rodgers' press conference following the loss to the Bucs. Here was that quote from Rodgers that's causing a stir: “A lot of guys’ futures that are uncertain, myself included.” That could mean a lot of things, of course. Rodgers is coming off an MVP-caliber season and still has 3 years left on his deal, so it'd be a surprise if Green Bay decides to move on. But it was also a surprise when the Packers traded up to select QB Jordan Love with the 26th overall pick of last year's draft. We'll track this situation all offseason.
The Eagles have named Shane Steichen their new OC. Steichen coached alongside new Eagles HC Nick Sirianni with the Chargers from 2014 to 2017. He took over as Chargers OC midway through the 2019 campaign and then led the squad to a 9th-place finish in total yards this past year. The 2020 Chargers were a fast-paced offense, ranking 5th in situation-neutral pace.
Buccaneers S Antoine Winfield (ankle) is inactive for today's game against the Packers. He sustained an ankle injury during the practice week. Mike Edwards will start in his place. Losing a starting safety certainly doesn't help the defense, but it's worth noting that Edwards actually graded out significantly better in coverage (83.2) this season than Winfield (55.1), according to Pro Football Focus.
Packers CB Kevin King (back) is active for today's game against the Buccaneers. He turned up questionable after missing Friday's practice with a back issue but appears good to go.
Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes was diagnosed with turf toe on his left foot following last week's win over the Browns, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Mahomes was clearly bothered by that issue before exiting with the head injury. "The next day was very sore, and every single day since then it's gotten a lot better," he said. Mahomes will reportedly be re-evaluated by a foot specialist after the season to determine whether he needs surgery on the toe. We'll see how he fares in the AFC Championship and then monitor the situation this offseason.
The Chiefs will test WR Sammy Watkins (calf) before today's game against the Bills to determine whether he's ready to play. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, though, they "don't sound optimistic" that he'll be active. Watkins has been out since Week 16 but did return to limited workouts all this week. It seems like Watkins is a true game-time decision, which will make him risky even if he turns up active. Watkins' absence would boost the outlooks for both Mecole Hardman and Demarcus Robinson. They played 69% and 71% of the snaps in the win over the Browns, with Watkins out.
The Chiefs expect RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire (ankle, hip) to play against the Bills today, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. RB Le'Veon Bell (knee), on the other hand, is not expected to be active. That would leave CEH and Darrel Williams sharing the backfield work. Edwards-Helaire has not played since sustaining the dual injuries in Week 15 at New Orleans. He'll be risky for fantasy lineups in his 1st game back, but he's in play with limited RB options on a 2-game slate.
Bills WR Kenny Stills has been promoted from the practice squad for Sunday's AFC Championship vs. the Chiefs. It's an indication that WR Gabriel Davis (ankle) won't play, although that's still not official. Signed just a few weeks ago, Stills is unlikely to have a big role in Kansas City.
The Lions are set to hire Anthony Lynn as OC, according to insider Michael Lombardi. Lynn struggled -- particularly with in-game management -- as Chargers HC over the past 4 seasons, but all 4 of those squads finished top 11 in total yards. In his only previous OC stint, Lynn led the 2016 Bills to a 16th-place finish in yards and 10th place in points. That team led the league in rushing yards, yards per carry and TDs -- with RB LeSean McCoy going for 1,267 yards and QB Tyrod Taylor for 580. Lynn is a former RBs coach, and especially with Detroit breaking in a new QB, we'd expect a run-leaning attack in 2021.
The Lions and QB Matthew Stafford have agreed to part ways this offseason, according to multiple reports. That means the team will begin exploring trade options. NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reports that a move would likely happen before the 5th day of the new league year (which begins March 17), because Stafford will be due a $10 million bonus that day. The veteran QB has 2 years left on his contract at $43 million and is coming off a solid season that found him finishing 15th among QBs in total fantasy points. Expect Detroit to try to address the position in the 1st round of the NFL Draft. The Lions pick 7th. The uncertainty could create a "buy" window in dynasty leagues, especially considering that older QBs tend to run cheap. Stafford figures to be most attractive to a contending team seeking a QB upgrade. Chase Daniel is the only other Lions QB whose contract runs through 2021.
Chiefs RBs Clyde Edwards-Helaire (ankle, hip) and Le'Veon Bell (knee) are listed as questionable for Sunday's AFC Championship vs. the Bills. The rookie seems to have a better chance to play after getting in 3 limited practices this week. Bell was sidelined on Thursday and Friday, reportedly dealing with swelling in 1 of his knees. We'll look for updates on both guys on Sunday morning. Darrel Williams remains our bet to lead this backfield in touches on Sunday.
Chiefs WR Sammy Watkins (calf) is listed as questionable for Sunday's AFC Championship vs. the Bills. He was limited in practice all week. We'll look for an update on Watkins' status on Sunday morning. If he returns for this one, he'll be a risk/reward option for DFS tournaments only. It'd also put a dent in Mecole Hardman and Demarcus Robinson's projections.
Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes said Friday afternoon that he's cleared the concussion protocol. "We have the belief that I'll have no lingering effects and I'll be able to go out there and be who I am," he added. The bigger issue now might be the toe injury that had Mahomes clearly hobbled last week before he left with the head injury. That might limit his mobility inside the pocket and his rushing ability outside of it.
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