Shark Bites

Redskins HC Jay Gruden gushed about rookie WR Terry McLaurin in a recent interview with The Athletic's Ben Standig. “I think the addition of Terry has been a wow factor for me personally and I think everybody who has seen him run on a daily basis,” Gruden said. “He’s powerful, he’s smart, and he’s physical. That’s a combination that’s rare. He’s been exciting.” As for WRs Paul Richardson and Josh Doctson, Gruden said, "both of those guys are doing fine." Standig projects McLaurin to be a Week 1 starter alongside Richardson and slot man Trey Quinn. We're moving McLaurin up the WR rankings (and Doctson down).

Rams WR Cooper Kupp, now almost 9 months removed from his torn ACL, participated in contact practices with the Chargers. "A guy gives you a pop, you roll up, hit the ground and pop back up," Kupp said of taking a hit. "Honestly, I didn't really realize I'd gone down. And it's like, 'Oh, yeah, my first time really being hit and being on the ground.' But it felt great. You get that first one out of the way, and you're good." This is just about the last step in Kupp's rehab. He continues to trend toward being a full-go come Week 1.

A source tells ESPN's Josina Anderson that Cowboys RB Ezekiel Elliott's holdout is "not likely" to last into the regular season. Anderson hears that Zeke won't play without a new contract but that owner Jerry Jones wants to get a deal done before Week 1. Of course, "not likely" doesn't mean there's no chance Elliott misses games. Until he reports to the team -- presumably with a new contract in hand -- he carries elevated risk in fantasy drafts.

Jaguars OC John DeFilippo loves what he's seen from WR D.J. Chark in training camp. “DJ is greatly improved from the spring," DeFilippo said. "I think you see confidence level in the offense, in himself at a really high level right now." Chark mustered just 14 catches for 174 scoreless yards as a rookie last season. But the Jags spent a 2nd-round pick on him a year ago after he blazed a 4.34-second 40 time and earned a 96th percentile SPARQ score at the Combine. There's upside here -- and Chark has been running as a top-3 WR in camp, alongside Dede Westbrook and Chris Conley. Add Chark to your list of intriguing late-round WR fliers.

Contrary to Monday's ProFootballTalk report, the Cardinals and WR Michael Crabtree have not agreed to terms. Adam Schefter and Ian Rapoport both report that the 2 sides could not agree on a contract after the veteran wideout worked out for Arizona. We'll see if the Cardinals proceed with adding anyone to an already-crowded WR corps.

Bears TE Trey Burton, who underwent offseason sports-hernia surgery, has missed the last 3 practices. “It’s not a setback,” HC Matt Nagy said Monday. “It’s, more of, for us, I’m trying to protect him a little bit. I need him and we need him 100 percent for Week 1.” We'll keep an eye on this one, but it's obviously not ideal for a guy to be getting babied in early August.

Steelers WR Donte Moncrief "hasn’t participated much" since suffering a finger injury, according to The Athletic's Mark Kaboly. It's the 1st we've heard of the injury. Kaboly's report makes the injury seem minor, but we'll see how much longer Moncrief is sidelined. He was reportedly having a strong camp prior to going down and, if healthy, is the favorite to open the season as Pittsburgh's #2 WR.

Seahawks MLB Bobby Wagner had platelet-rich plasma therapy on a knee over the weekend, according to the Tacoma News Tribune, with a source describing the situation as "nothing major." HC Pete Carroll also downplayed the procedure, which several Seattle players have had in recent seasons. "He's done it a couple times before, and it's something that has been successful for him," Carroll said. "We felt like this was the time to do it." Carroll added that Wagner will likely see some preseason action at some point and might take part in the team's 2nd exhibition. The Seahawks will open their preseason Thursday against the Broncos. We're not concerned about Wagner's IDP outlook for the regular season.

Colts DE Jabaal Sheard recently had knee surgery to address an unspecified injury that has kept him out for nearly all of training camp, Mike Chappell of Fox59 reports. Sheard took part in the team's 1st camp practice back on July 25 but has been sidelined since then. Indy has offered no timeline yet for his return. We'll watch for more details on Sheard's situation. Kemoko Turay and Al-Quadin Muhammad are the 2nd-team DEs, according to the team's initial "unofficial" depth chart.

Buccaneers LB Lavonte David had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee Sunday to repair a "minor" meniscus tear, the Tampa Bay Times reports. HC Bruce Arians called the surgery "nothing serious" and said David should be ready for the regular season. We'll be watching David's return to confirm that. In the meantime, we've knocked David down the LB rankings a bit.

ProFootballTalk reports that the Cardinals have signed WR Michael Crabtree after working out multiple receivers. The move seems to indicate Arizona isn't satisfied with its existing WR group. We'll see whether the former Raven can climb into the top 3 at the position. He'll have to work past the rookie trio of Andy Isabella, Hakeem Butler and KeeSean Johnson.

The Colts have claimed RB D'Onta Foreman off waivers. The 89th pick of the 2017 draft was cut over the weekend by the Texans, who reportedly weren't happy with Foreman's work ethic. It remains to be seen if he'll ever regain pre-injury form after his torn Achilles, but he was once an intriguing prospect at 6’0, 233 pounds with 4.4 speed. We don't consider Foreman an immediate threat to Marlon Mack's lead ball-carrying role -- and he's definitely not a threat to Nyheim Hines' pass-catching role. But Foreman could push Jordan Wilkins for the #3 spot on the depth chart.

Packers RB Aaron Jones has been sidelined for almost a week now with what was originally described as hamstring "tightness." We haven't heard anything on the issue since. Jones missed a couple weeks of camp with a hammy issue last summer and has suffered 3 MCL injuries — 2 to the right knee, 1 to the left — over the past 2 seasons. Durability is a fair concern. We'll see when Jones is able to get back on the field.

Steelers RB Jaylen Samuels is expected to play a big role in the team's passing game this season, according to The Athletic's Mark Kaboly. "The Steelers have been so enamored with his route-running ability that a good chunk of their post-Antonio Brown offense has been modified to incorporate Samuels’ best skills: running routes, catching footballs and creating mismatches," Kaboly writes. Samuels racked up 195 receptions over his final 3 seasons at North Carolina State and then posted a 26-199-3 receiving line on 29 targets as a rookie. He ranked 14th in Pro Football Focus' receiving grades among 62 RBs with 20+ targets last season. Antonio Brown leaves behind 168 targets from a year ago, and it sounds like Samuels is in line to soak up a bunch of those. He has a shot at RB3 value in PPR leagues -- even behind a healthy James Conner.

The New York Post's Brian Costello believes Jets RB Ty Montgomery "could be a significant piece" of the offense this season. The former Packer and Raven has been "one of the most impressive players" in camp, Costello adds. Although he's flamed out in lead roles, Montgomery is a plus pass-catcher and is still just 26. We're not expecting him to see enough action to be a real fantasy option. But he could put a dent in RB Le'Veon Bell's volume.

The Steelers on Sunday activated OLB T.J. Watt off the PUP list. Watt opened camp on the active PUP after experiencing hamstring tightness during the initial conditioning run. He appears good to go now, though.

Niners HC Kyle Shanahan said Friday that DE Dee Ford will miss at least a week of action because of tendinitis in his left knee, according to multiple reports. Shanahan said Ford has had a platelet-rich plasma treatment on the joint, which he expects to help the issue. "He could've toughed it out ... but we feel good about where Dee Ford's at, and we wanted to make sure we took care of that so he could be fresh going into the year," Shanahan said. We won't alter Ford's projections just yet but will keep an eye on his return from this.

Jaguars DE Yannick Ngakoue ended his 11-day training camp holdout Sunday and reported to the team, despite not getting a new contract. ESPN reports that Ngakoue passed the conditioning test in the morning and assumed his usual starting spot in full-team drills. He also sits with the starters in the initial depth chart on the team website. HC Doug Marrone deemed Ngakoue "ready to go and in great shape." It looks like we can proceed as normal in IDP leagues, where Ngakoue supplies double-digit sack upside but a low tackle floor.

Raiders WR Antonio Brown is considered "day-to-day" with his foot injury, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. It sounds like Brown got good news from the foot specialist he visited. We'll see when he's able to get back on the field. The veteran could use the practice reps in a new offense and with a new QB.

The Athletic's Scott Bodrow calls KeeSean Johnson the Cardinals' "clear" #3 WR, behind Christian Kirk and Larry Fitzgerald. Johnson was the 3rd WR Arizona drafted this spring -- after Andy Isabella and Hakeem Butler -- but has reportedly had the best camp so far. Isabella and Butler, meanwhile, have both struggled with drops, per Bodrow. This competition is far from over, but Johnson is now on the radar as a late-round flier in fantasy drafts. We just bumped him up the WR rankings.

 
 
 

Dominate Your Fantasy Football Draft

Turn your phone into a draft weapon with our FREE APP

Download on the App Store Download on Google Play