New Washington S Landon Collins doesn't seem to think his December shoulder surgery will be an issue for the coming season. "I'm way ahead of it," Collins told The Washington Times, when asked about his recovery and rehab. "It's definitely on schedule." The big contract certainly seems to indicate the team isn't worried. Barring some training camp setback, expect to find Collins near the top of our 2019 DB rankings.
OLB Markus Golden has reached a 1-year deal to join the Giants. He reunites with DC James Bettcher, who spent 3 seasons piloting the Arizona defense. Golden tallied 16.5 sacks over his 1st 2 seasons with the Cardinals -- including 12.5, plus 4 forced fumbles, in 2016 -- before tearing his right ACL early in 2017. He endured a sluggish return season while dealing with further knee trouble. This looks like a "prove it" deal, and Golden should get a chance at winning a starting job or at least a prominent spot in the Giants' EDGE rotation. The team traded away OLB Olivier Vernon, leaving 2018 rookie Lorenzo Carter and Kareem Martin as the top returnees at the position. The whole team totaled just 30 sacks last season, led by Vernon's 7. Golden as a chance to deliver spot-start value in pressure-friendly IDP leagues in 2019.
The Chiefs have reached a 3-year deal with EDGE Alex Okafor, according to multiple reports. NFL Network reports it's worth "up to" $24 million. Okafor spent the past 2 years at DE for the Saints, totaling 8.5 sacks. There might be some upside beyond that, but he ranked no higher than 90th in Pro Football Focus' pass-rushing productivity among EDGE players either season. Okafor's a solid player but not likely to approximate the production of departed OLB Dee Ford. His shift to OLB in the Chiefs' 3-4 front further knocks his IDP value.
K Chandler Catanzaro has inked a deal with the Jets. He spent 2017 with New York, connecting on 83.3% of his FG attempts. Catanzaro struggled with the Bucs last year, missing 4 FGs and 4 XPs in 9 games before getting cut. He bounced back with the Panthers, though, converting all 5 of his FG attempts and 7 of 8 XPs. Catanzaro could be a fantasy spot-start option in 2019 with the Jets offense capable of taking a step forward.
The 49ers have signed WR Jordan Matthews to a 1-year deal. The 2014 2nd-rounder racked up 225 catches and 2,673 yards over his first 3 NFL seasons. But he's mustered just 45 grabs and 582 yards across the past 2, dealing with injuries and playing for 3 different teams. Matthews turns just 27 in July, though, and is capable of playing both outside the numbers and in the slot. There's opportunity for him to carve out a significant role in San Francisco amid a largely unproven WR corps.
The Raiders have released WR Jordy Nelson, NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reports. Nelson posted a 63-739-3 line in his lone season in Oakland, hauling in 71.6% of his targets but averaging just 11.7 yards per catch. Turning 34 in May, he's on his last legs. The Raiders have re-tooled their WR corps with the additions of Antonio Brown and Tyrell Williams. Williams looks like at least a WR3 in his new digs.
WR Golden Tate has inked a 4-year, $37.5 million deal with the Giants, ESPN's Adam Schefter reports. Tate will get $23 million fully guaranteed. He hung around on the open market a bit longer than expected but ends up making more per year than John Brown, Adam Humphries and Cole Beasley. Tate's raw numbers were down last season between Detroit and Philadelphia, but he still ranked 2nd among WRs with 50+ targets in missed tackles forced per catch and 4th in yards-after-catch average. He'll need to deal with a washed-up Eli Manning, but Tate shouldn't hurt for targets in a WR corps with very little besides Sterling Shepard.
The Patriots have signed WR Bruce Ellington to a 1-year deal. The 27-year-old has battled injuries throughout his career and is averaging just 9.7 yards per catch. He did haul in 23 balls over a 4-game stretch in Detroit late last season -- but he averaged 5.7 yards per catch before hurting his hamstring. There's opportunity in New England as the current depth chart stands, but Ellington remains a long shot for 2019 fantasy value.
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.
Gregg Bell of the Tacoma News Tribune reports that LB K.J. Wright is re-signing with the Seahawks. That will keep him and MLB Bobby Wagner in their established roles, with fellow re-signee Mychal Kendricks potentially manning the opposite outside spot. Wright struggled through a knee injury last season, which limited him to just 5 games. Kendricks filled in for him at times, amid a league suspension and his own injury. When healthy, Wright has been a solid LB2-to-LB3 for IDP purposes. His deal is believed to be short term -- perhaps a "prove it" type contract coming off his 2018 knee issue.
ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that WR Donte Moncrief and the Steelers have agreed to a 2-year deal. Moncrief ranked 2nd among Jaguars with 89 targets in his lone Jacksonville season, catching 48 balls for 668 yards and 3 TDs. The targets, receptions and yards were each his 2nd-best career marks, while the 3 TDs tied his 2nd-highest. Moncrief figures to compete with 2nd-year WR James Washington for the #2 WR gig behind JuJu Smith-Schuster. We'd bet on Washington's upside first, but the ADP of each player will be interesting to watch and factor heavily into which is the better fantasy football draft value.
WR Phillip Dorsett has re-signed with the Patriots on a 1-year deal. The former 1st-rounder evolved into a short-range target in New England last season, hauling in 76.2% of his targets but averaging just 9.1 yards per catch. He has a shot to take on a bigger role in 2019 with Chris Hogan a free agent and Cordarrelle Patterson off to Chicago. But we'd bet on the Pats making some additions to their WR room.
The 49ers have signed RB Tevin Coleman to a 2-year deal worth a "maximum" of $10 million. Coleman spent his first 2 NFL seasons with 49ers HC Kyle Shanahan in Atlanta, which will certainly help as he makes this move. Coleman joins a 49ers backfield alongside RB Jerick McKinnon, who got a 4-year, $30 million deal last offseason. We'll see how much a factor those contracts are when these guys start to battle for playing time. But we're likely looking at a committee backfield considering neither McKinnon nor Coleman profiles as a workhorse.
The Buccaneers have re-signed RB Peyton Barber on a 1-year deal. It's not a surprising move, given that Barber was a restricted free agent. He should face more of a fight for touches in a backfield that will at least include a more experience Ronald Jones. We'll see what else the Bucs add (besides free-agent addition Andre Ellington).
The Seahawks are keeping LB Mychal Kendricks on a 1-year, $4 million deal, according to NFL Network's Mike Garafolo. Kendricks could take over the starting weak-side job, with K.J. Wright an unrestricted free agent. If he does, Kendricks would likely land in LB3 territory in our 2019 IDP rankings. He'd also carry upside into LB2 range.
The start of the new league year at 4 p.m. Wednesday means that Nelson Agholor's $9.387 million salary for 2019 is now guaranteed, according to Pro Football Talk. Agholor had been rumored to be on the trade block or even a cut candidate. Barring a trade now, though, he'll be back with the Eagles for the final season on his rookie contract. Agholor will need to fight for the #3 target role in a crowded pass-catching crew that added DeSean Jackson via trade. He'll merely be a late-round option in fantasy football drafts.
The Chiefs have released S Eric Berry. The veteran appeared in just 2 games last season, topping 30 snaps only once. He was set to draw $12.4 million in salary in the coming season, so the move clears cap space. It also thins a secondary that just added Tyrann Mathieu in free agency. Berry -- who just turned 30 in late December -- figures to get a shot elsewhere if he wants to keep playing.
Washington has released LB Zach Brown, according to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero. Brown graded out #3 among all LBs on Pro Football Focus last season but checked in much worse the year before. Washington now makes the 3rd team that has either booted Brown or let him walk in free agency -- and the 2nd of 3 teams to decrease Brown's playing time before he left. Brown has showed at each stop that he can put up strong fantasy numbers when starting. We'll see where he lands this time, heading into his age-30 season.
RB Adrian Peterson is re-signing with the Redskins on a 2-year deal. The future Hall-of-Famer exceeded expectations (as usual) last year, pumping out his 8th 1,000-yard campaign on a decent 4.2 yards per carry. Ideally for Washington, Peterson will be a lightly used backup behind Derrius Guice in 2019.
Update: Peterson's deal is for $8 million, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. We're curious to see more details on the contract, but this initial reports makes it look like the 'Skins envision a significant role for AP. Perhaps there's concern about Guice's rehab from last year's torn ACL, which has required multiple surgeries.
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.
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