Patriots WR Josh Gordon played over a quarter in Thursday night's preseason finale, catching 2 of 6 targets from QB Jarrett Stidham for 30 yards. He also drew a pass-interference penalty. Gordon appeared to be in excellent shape, just 2 weeks after being reinstated. It's still possible that he's on a snap count early in the season, but Gordon doesn't need many snaps to do damage. His recent 12-team ADP is sitting at 6.04.
Patriots WR N'Keal Harry is still moving "gingerly," according to insider Andrew Callahan. The rookie suffered a lower-body injury in the preseason opener about 2-and-a-half weeks ago and hasn't done much since. It's believed he's dealing with a hamstring injury, a toe injury, or both. Harry was off to an inconsistent start even before this issue and seems unlikely to play a significant early-season role.
Patriots WR Josh Gordon has passed his physical and been activated from the NFI list, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Gordon was in full pads for Sunday's practice. We'll be looking for reports on what kind of shape he's in, but he's seemingly on track to be out there come Week 1. Gordon's ADP is sitting in the mid-7th-round in best balls on DRAFT over the past week.
"There isn’t much mystery regarding the Patriots running game," the Boston Herald's Kevin Duffy writes. "The preseason has made this much clear: The Pats are going to feed Sony Michel the ball early and often." It was a shaky spring for Michel, who was sidelined after another knee surgery. But he's been healthy throughout training camp and looked excellent in New England's 3rd preseason game. Michel figures to open the season as a workhorse on the ground -- and we've even heard that his role in the passing game might expand this season. He's a fine value at his current 5th-round ADP.
Patriots TE Ben Watson sustained a concussion in Thursday night's preseason game against the Panthers. It's the 6th documented concussion of his career. Watson is suspended for the first 4 games of the season, though, so he should be ready to go when first eligible in Week 5.
Patriots WR Julian Edelman (thumb) has been activated from the Non-Football Injury list. He was spotted in full uniform on the practice field on Monday. The broken thumb he suffered in early July was never expected to cost him the start of the season, and he's clearly on track for Week 1. Edelman is a fine value at his 4th-round ADP.
The NFL has conditionally reinstated Patriots WR Josh Gordon, according to both Adam Schefter and Ian Rapoport. He can rejoin the team on Sunday for meetings, conditioning work and individual drills, according to the statement released by the league. The statement doesn’t say whether Gordon is eligible to play in games yet — but Schefter confirms that he’s “ready to go for the regular season.” Of course, fantasy drafters need to be wary of the potential for relapse. Gordon performed like a WR2 after joining the Pats during last season, though, and remains a high-upside fantasy prospect. His return crushes the sleeper prospects of guys like N’Keal Harry, Phillip Dorsett, Jakobi Meyers and Maurice Harris. QB Tom Brady obviously gets a boost. Check out our updated projections for all of the Patriots.
Patriots RB Damien Harris is dealing with a "minor" hand/wrist injury, according to insider Jeff Howe. That explains why the rookie didn't play in last week's preseason opener. It doesn't sound like Harris is in danger of missing the start of the season, but the missed practice time hurts his chances of earning a significant role out of the gate. Sony Michel's role as lead ball-carrier seems safe to open the season.
Patriots TE Matt LaCosse sprained his ankle in the preseason opener and has been ruled out for the 2nd exhibition, the Boston Globe's Jim McBride reports. Based on the injury video, Dr. David Chao believes LaCosse has a high-ankle sprain and might not be ready for the start of the season. He had been the favorite to serve as New England's lead TE during Ben Watson's 4-game suspension. That job could now go to Stephen Anderson or Lance Kendricks. It's a situation to avoid in fantasy drafts.
The Boston Herald's Kevin Duffy writes "it's pretty clear" that RB Sony Michel remains the Patriots' lead ball-carrier. Rookie RB Damien Harris drew some early-summer buzz but "hasn’t received many practice reps over the past week," per Duffy. Michel, meanwhile, has avoided a setback with his troublesome knee and even flashed improved pass-catching ability. He's turned into a nice value at his recent RB26 ADP.
Patriots WR N'Keal Harry suffered a lower-body injury in Thursday night's preseason opener. He remained on the sideline for the rest of the game, which usually means the injury isn't serious. The Boston Herald's Kevin Duffy hears, though, that Harry will "likely" miss some practice time. The rookie is expected to be ready for Week 1, but he was already seemingly behind Phillip Dorsett and Jakobi Meyers on the depth chart (in addition to Julian Edelman). Harry remains a high-end prospect but won't be an early-season fantasy option.
Patriots insider Evan Lazar notes that RB Sony Michel has been seeing more work in the passing game in camp over the past few days. "The second-year running back ran routes out of the backfield and motioned out wide a few times as well," Lazar adds. Michel caught just 8 of 14 targets in 16 games (including playoffs) last year. But he turned in 22- and 26-catch seasons at Georgia. If he can even get up to 20 to 25 catches this season, it'd help his weekly reliability in fantasy lineups -- and obviously boost his PPR value.
Patriots WR Josh Gordon has applied for reinstatement, according to SiriusXM's Howard Balzer. Gordon was suspended indefinitely in December for again violating the league's substance abuse policy. Since then, New England re-signed him as a restricted free agent, and Gordon was reportedly working out with QB Tom Brady. We'll see where this goes, but you could do worse than Gordon as a late-round flier. He posted a 40-720-3 line in 11 games with the Patriots last year, ranking 28th among WRs in PPR points over that span.
Patriots RB Sony Michel (knee) has been activated from the PUP list and will practice on Saturday, director of player personnel Nick Caserio said. Michel missed spring workouts after undergoing another knee surgery. Now we'll see if he can hold up and hold off rookie Damien Harris over the next month. Michel's ADP is sitting in the middle of the 5th round in DRAFT best balls over the past week.
The injury that has Patriots WR Julian Edelman sidelined for the start of training camp is a broken thumb, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. The injury reportedly occurred when Edelman was playing catch 3 weeks ago. Rapoport confirms that Edelman is fully expected to be ready by Week 1. We probably won't see him this preseason, though, which could help us get him at a discount in fantasy drafts.
Patriots WR Julian Edelman is expected to be sidelined for "about 3 weeks" with a left thumb injury, ESPN's Adam Schefter reports. That timeline would have Edelman back on the field by mid-August. So barring a setback, the injury shouldn't be an issue by the time Week 1 rolls around. We'll keep an eye on him, but we're not adjusting Edelman's projections right now. His absence leaves N'Keal Harry, Phillip Dorsett, Maurice Harris, Dontrelle Inman and Braxton Berrios as New England's top 5 WRs to open training camp.
The Patriots are placing RB Sony Michel on the active/PUP list to begin training camp. ESPN's Mike Reiss reports that means Michel has yet to be cleared for on-field activities. Michel, of course, is working back from offseason knee surgery. His progress will be a key training-camp story, along with how rookie Damien Harris is performing (and his role).
The NFL Network's Michael Giardi hears that Patriots RB Sony Michel is "progressing quickly" from his arthroscopic knee surgery. Michel has already resumed running "full tilt," Giardi adds. It sounds like Michel will be ready for training camp after missing the offseason program. But durability remains a significant concern for the 2nd-year back, who tore his ACL in high school, had knee surgery last August and then missed 2 games with knee trouble as a rookie. RB Damien Harris reportedly impressed this spring with Michel sidelined.
Patriots RB Sony Michel had arthroscopic knee surgery this offseason, according to Jeff Howe of The Athletic. Michel had been missing workouts without explanation. It's not yet clear which knee had the operation, but his left has been the problem since he tore the ACL on that side in high school in 2011. Michel also had a "minor" procedure on the knee last August that cost him the preseason and the regular-season opener. And he later missed 2 more games with an issue in the same knee. Howe reports that this latest surgery is also "minor" and that Michel's expected to return for training camp. But it looks worrisome from here that Michel is averaging a knee surgery a year so far. We've already been low on the 2nd-year Patriots RB, who might be in for a move further down the rankings given positive reports on rookie Damien Harris and Rex Burkhead so far.
Patriots TE Ben Watson has been suspended 4 games for violating the league's performance-enhancing drug policy. Watson admitted in a Facebook post that he took a banned substance after he announced his retirement earlier this offseason. The Pats knew of the impending ban when they signed Watson, so it shouldn't impact his odds of making the team. But it makes him pretty much undraftable in fantasy drafts. Austin Seferian-Jenkins and Matt LaCosse figure to open the season atop New England's TE depth chart.
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