Shark Bites

Ravens TE Ben Watson tore his Achilles early in Saturday night's preseason game, according to ESPN. That ends his season -- and possibly the 35-year-old's career. Maxx Williams now looks like the best fantasy bet among Baltimore's TEs. Last year's 2nd-rounder is a talented pass-catcher who tallied 13 receptions over his final 3 games as a rookie. Williams still isn't worth a roster spot in most fantasy leagues but could emerge as a spot-start option. TE Crockett Gillmore also remains in the mix.

Patriots QB Tom Brady returned to practice on Tuesday, 5 days after slicing his thumb with a pair of scissors before the team's 2nd preseason game. "Good," Brady said when asked how the thumb is feeling now. "It took a few days. I wanted to go and Coach [Belichick] said it's probably best if we just take it easy." Brady is hoping to play in the 3rd exhibition. Regardless of whether he does, the thumb thing is a non-issue.

9:03pm EDT 8/18/16

Patriots QB Tom Brady was scratched from Thursday night's preseason game after slicing his right thumb with a pair of scissors, per insider Tom Curran. Brady was reportedly "trying to pry something from the bottom of his cleat." It's uncertain whether he'll require stitches. As ridiculous as it sounds, this will be something to keep an eye on considering the injury is to Brady's throwing hand. Of course, his 4-game suspension means he has about 7 weeks to get ready for his 2016 debut.

Colts WR Phillip Dorsett had a buzz-filled spring and carried that momentum into training camp. Insider Stephen Holder deemed Dorsett the team's most improved player, noting growth in his route-running and hands. The former 1st-round pick will serve as the #3 WR this year, so consistency might be tough to come by. But he'll have tons of weekly upside as a 4.3 speedster in a pass-heavy offense.

Patriots WR Julian Edelman was on the practice field on Wednesday. It's unclear whether he was limited, but yesterday's issue with his twice surgically repaired foot obviously isn't a major concern. Edelman remains a big injury risk but is a good bet for at least WR2 PPR production when on the field.

Patriots WR Julian Edelman was injured during a 1-on-1 drill in Tuesday's joint practice with the Saints. The injury appeared to be to his left foot, which he had 2 surgeries on over the past 9 months. Tuesday was Edelman's 2nd practice since being activated from the PUP list. NFL Network's Ian Rapoport hears that the injury is not believed to be serious based on "initial exams." We'll continue looking for updates on Edelman's status. He checks in as the 6th biggest injury risk among WRs.

Patriots WR Julian Edelman (foot) was activated from the PUP list and made his practice debut on Sunday. He sat out the scrimmage, so he's not quite a full-go yet. But he's clearly on track to be there ahead of Week 1. Edelman has missed 9 games over the past 2 seasons and is 1 of the biggest injury risks at WR. But he's also ranked among the top 18 in PPR points per game in 3 straight years. Edelman is a risk/reward pick at his early 4th-round ADP.

With RB Dion Lewis yet to practice -- and looking questionable for the start of the regular season -- RB James White appears to be controlling the 3rd-down back job. In reviewing White's blitz-protection work during Saturday's practice, Rich Thompson of the Boston Herald referred to how important that will be on 3rd downs, "when White is in the backfield." It's not a surprising role for White, who caught 40 passes vs. just 22 carries last season as a 2nd-year pro. But it might offer some clarity in a fairly muddled backfield picture. As long as Lewis remains out, White will carry some PPR upside. At the least, he makes sense as a late-round handcuff to Lewis right now. As we get closer to the season, no Lewis would make White more of a standalone fantasy target. He's barely getting drafted right now.

Patriots WR Julian Edelman (foot) was spotted running routes off to the side of practice on Thursday. "He was moving at a good clip," observed insider Tom Curran. Edelman remains on the PUP list after April foot surgery, but it sounds like he's not far off from being cleared to practice. He's going in the early 4th round of recent MFL10 drafts.

Patriots WR Julian Edelman (foot), WR Danny Amendola (knee) and RB Dion Lewis (knee) were all placed on active/PUP list to open training camp. None of this comes as a surprise, and all 3 are eligible to be activated at any point and play Week 1. None are guaranteed to be ready at that point, though. We'll continue to track the progress of all 3 guys. They combined for 162 catches last year -- 40% of the team total.

Colts WR Phillip Dorsett is "really going to surprise people" this year, beat writer Mike Wells said on ESPN's Mike Clay's radio show. The 2015 1st-rounder mustered just 18 catches, 225 yards and 1 TD in 11 appearances last year. He figures to slot in as the #3 this season, but the Colts are "definitely going to be a three-wide-receiver offense", per Wells. Dorsett will probably be tough to rely on from week to week, but he'll present intriguing upside on Indy's high-powered offense. He makes sense as a later pick in best-ball drafts.

Patriots WR Julian Edelman (foot) is still uncertain when he'll be cleared to get back on the field. “I’m feeling a day better than yesterday, and I’m feeling a second better than the last second,” he said on Sunday. “Hopefully when that time’s up, that time’s up.” Edelman has undergone 2 foot surgeries over the past 8 months. We'll be keeping a close eye on his status over the next month. He's going in the late 3rd round as WR22 in recent MFL10 drafts.

Patriots QB Tom Brady announced on Friday that he'll no longer contest his 4-game suspension. "It has been a challenging 18 months and I have made the difficult decision to no longer proceed with the legal process," Brady wrote on Facebook. So he'll sit out the season's first 4 games. QB Jimmy Garoppolo will start at Arizona, vs. Miami, vs. Houston and vs. Buffalo. The Dolphins game looks like the only potential spot to use him as a streamer or cheap DFS play. Brady, meanwhile, remains an excellent bet for QB1 production with top-5 upside over the final 12 games. He's worth considering at his current 9th-round price tag. That might drop even further with the suspension confirmed.

Patriots QB Tom Brady's request for a rehearing of his case has been denied by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. Brady's next -- and final -- course of action is to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. No word yet on whether he'll take that step, but Brady has continued to prove willing to fight this until the end. NFL Network's Albert Breer notes that "there is a kick-the-can scenario here that could extend this to '17." We'll continue to monitor the situation, but fantasy owners should still be drafting as if a 4-game suspension is the most likely scenario for Brady this season.

The legal community doesn't give Patriots QB Tom Brady a good chance to get his 4-game suspension overturned again, according to Sports Illustrated's Peter King.  His current appeal to the Second Circuit Court is unlikely to be heard, per King.  Brady would then need to appeal to the Supreme Court, which is an "even longer shot."  The most likely scenario remains Brady missing 4 games this season.  His ADP has dropped a full round from the late 8th to the late 9th since the suspension was announced on April 25. 

Patriots QB Tom Brady is appealing his 4-game suspension that was originally overturned before being reinstated last month.  "The facts here are so drastic, and so apparent, that the court should rehear it," Ted Olson, 1 of Brady's lawyers, said.  If the court decides to rehear the case, Brady would be allowed to play until a ruling is made.  If not, an appeal can be made to the Supreme Court.  So the legal process goes on, and fantasy owners are left to wait.  We'd still be drafting under the assumption that Brady will miss 4 games at some point this season.

Patriots insider Jeff Howe hears that there's "confidence" that WR Julian Edelman (foot) will be ready for the start of training camp.  Edelman recently underwent surgery when doctors discovered a "very small crack" in his foot, according to Howe.  That, of course, is the same foot Edelman had surgery on in November.  We'll keep a close eye on his rehab.  Foot injuries can be tricky to recover from.

Patriots WR Julian Edelman recently underwent left foot surgery, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.  That's the same foot that Edelman fractured on November 15, costing him the final 7 games of the season.  He underwent surgery the day after suffering the injury, and this latest one was considered a "cleanup procedure," per Schefter.  Edelman was recently spotted in a walking boot and using a motorized device to get around.  Schefter adds that Edelman is "on track to return for training camp," but the foot will be worth watching closely.  He turns 30 in May, and New England has added WRs Malcolm Mitchell, Chris Hogan and Nate Washington this offseason.

The Browns surprisingly made QB Coby Kessler the 6th QB off the board, taking him with the 93rd overall pick of the 2016 NFL Draft.  A 3-year starter at USC, Kessler completed an impressive 67.5% of his passes with 88 TDs and just 19 INTs.  He's smallish at 6'1, 220 pounds, though, and possesses just an average arm.  There doesn't appear to be much upside here.  Kessler figures to spend 2016 on the bench behind Robert Griffin and/or Josh McCown.

A federal appeals court ruled on Monday that Patriots QB Tom Brady must serve the 4-game suspension for his role in "Deflategate."  Brady won his appeal of the suspension last fall and played all 16 games.  He does have the option of appealing this decision to the Supreme Court, although that's viewed as unlikely.  Brady and the league could also agree on a reduced ban.  But for now, he'll miss the first 4 contests of the 2016 season.  QB Jimmy Garoppolo will start those games against the Cardinals, Dolphins, Texans and Bills.  Those matchups make him tough to like as a fantasy option, especially with no teams on bye for the first 3 weeks.  Brady's suspension also hurts WR Julian Edelman and TE Rob Gronkowski's early-season outlooks.

 
 
 

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