August 4th Training Camp Fantasy Notes
August 4, 2015 | Ian Goldsmith
If there was ever any doubt, Andrew Luck has just confirmed the treachery that flows through his blood. This became evident yesterday as Matt Hasselbeck – he who was going to supplant the former Stanford Cardinal as the #1 QB caller for the Colts this season – was “randomly” picked for HGH testing by the league. Sure, Andrew….I’m sure you had nothing to do with that, just like you had nothing to do with Pat McAfee’s drug test after leveling this hit against Trindon Holliday in 2013. I smell a rat, you Cataniac.
Star Lotulelei, Carolina’s star DT, injured his right foot during practice on Monday, the same foot that he broke in January before the Panthers faced off with the Seahawks, a tensely fought game that they eventually lose 31-17. Jonathan Jones of the Charlotte Observer noted that Lotulelei was later seen in a walking boot. ESPN’s Ed Werder tweeted that the injury was not believed to be serious. Panthers’ coach “Riverboat” Ron Rivera was optimistic when talking about the former Utah Ute standout. The Carolina DST would take a huge hit if he were to miss a significant amount of time. Their ADP is all over the place currently; it is as high as 4th on CBS and as low as 20th on Yahoo. This is a good time to remind you, dear reader, to not be the one to overpay for DST. Streaming is a very viable strategy, one which I use in almost every league.
One of my favorite things about preseason is watching unheralded players progress and outwork other players onto a roster. While Terrelle Pryor may have had a star name at one point, he never really caught on as an every week QB in the league. Instead of insisting on playing the position, he has been working tirelessly to harness his incredible athleticism into the skills needed to play wide receiver. Early reports from camp have been very positive. His WR coach has been very positive about his work ethic and, while he notes that Pryor still needs to hone his skills, has implied that he has a very good chance of making the roster. Though not a Browns’ fan, I have to respect the work ethic that Pryor has put forth. He is the antithesis of the Tim Tebow (who has changed his tune somewhat) from a few years back that insisted on only playing QB.
While I’m certainly not going to worry yet, it is a little concerning – from a fantasy perspective – that Jimmy Graham has been implying that he will be used heavily in blocking this season for the Seahawks. From Pro Football Talk:
“I’m blocking here,” Graham told reporters on Monday, via comments distributed by the team. “Out there the last few I was pretty banged up so midway through the year I kind of stopped blocking . . . . Now here, I’m blocking quite a bit and I love it. It’s very important for me to be a part of that here because that’s about 75 percent of the offense here, and when you have a back like [Marshawn Lynch] you want to be in there on those explosive runs, and you want to be a part of that.”
Graham will, no doubt, still be used heavily in the red zone. There are few players in the league that offer his combination of size, strength, athleticism and pass catching ability. Graham is still the 2nd highest selected TE in early drafts, generally going in the 3rd round. If he is indeed utilized for as much blocking as he says, however, then I may be inclined to downgrade him slightly in PPR leagues.
The Texans are still without a starting QB. Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk details it here.
Arizona Cardinals’ TEs Jermaine Gresham and Troy Niklas were activated from the PUP and NFI lists, respectively.
Chicago Bears’ rookie WR Kevin White has still not been cleared to practice. He sat out yet again with a shin injury.
Pro Bowler Haloti Ngata has been placed on the active/NFI list by the Lions.
And finally: You’ve got to be kidding me, Minnesota.