Nine Unassisted: Rookie RBs, old SPs, marathon podcasts

If the nine bullets below leave you thinking, "Gosh, I'd really like to spend the next hour or so listening to Andy discuss the NFC," then it's your lucky day, champ. Enjoy some Deadcast right here.

Carolina's Jonathan Stewart(notes) has been sidelined for most of camp by Achilles soreness, and it's allowed rookie fourth-rounder Mike Goodson(notes) a bit more visibility. That dude is dangerous. In the Panthers' preseason opener versus the Giants, Goodson had eight touches for 59 total yards and a TD. If Stewart's issues persist, remember Goodson's name. Here's a key quote from a local source: "This rookie is a big-play guy who will shake up Carolina's offense." [Charlotte Observer]

Lots of folks are looking at 40 innings of John Smoltz, deciding things. You'll find both despair and hope in the brackets. Here's an important quote from Dave Cameron: "Cardinal fans just picked up a pretty good pitcher for the league minimum, thanks to the continued overestimation of the usefulness of ERA. The sooner people realize that it’s an obsolete pitching statistic, the better off baseball will be." [Beyond the Boxscore, FanGraphs]

Chris Wells(notes) (ankle) is back at practice. Sort of. He's going through individual drills, then watching when the grown-ups take the field. "[Ken] Whisenhunt said Wells looked good. Wells' play will be progressed as the week goes, Whisenhunt said, as long as his ankle responds well daily." And of course there's no reason to doubt that Wells' ankle will respond superbly, right? []

Eternal prospect Matt LaPorta has returned, finally. Promises have been made regarding playing time: "'He's going to play regularly, I'm just not sure where,' said Manager Eric Wedge. The options are left field, right field, and first base, which are the positions LaPorta played at Columbus." The 24-year-old LaPorta had a .917 OPS at Triple-A with 17 HR in 93 games. [The Morning Journal]

This is bad news for all Seahawks, past and present: Seattle LT Walter Jones(notes) needs another knee procedure. Ignore offensive lines at your own peril, fantasy owner. This is bad for Matt Hasselbeck(notes), bad for the ground game, bad for Funston … just bad, period. When asked about the amount of time Jones is expected to miss, coach Jim Mora had this to say: "I don't know. We'll have more information in the morning. We don't think that it's anything mind-blowing serious, but we want to be sure." [Seattle Times]

Willy Taveras has hit the 15-day DL, so the Reds have called up Drew Stubbs from Triple-A Louisville. He might be a low-cost Taveras replicant: .268 AVG, 3 HR, 46 SB. If you have a desperate need for stolen bases, Stubbs is in play. He was the Reds top draft pick in '06. Cincinnati fans can probably tell you a few of the pitchers they passed up in favor of Stubbs. The list is impressive. [Razzball, Dayton Daily News]

Over at the Cafe, they're already discussing odd pick sequences from early football drafts. "Brett Favre in the 8th round and Michael Vick(notes) in the 10th round by the same guy." [Fantasy Football Cafe]

The Hardball Times offers a rather thorough and fantasy-specific look at Texas shortstop Elvis Andrus. It could be more than you ever wanted to know, but they feel strongly enough to break out the all-caps: "The bottom line is, don't miss out on Andrus next season or in 2011. He is a player to reach on. I repeat: GET ELVIS NEXT YEAR." [THT Fantasy]

John Hansen delivered a collection of notes from the opening preseason games, and it's definitely worth a review. (Please note that it's pre-Favre). Here's a quick blurb on America's favorite Bengal: "I thought Cedric Benson(notes) ran hard, which is good. But I was really impressed with Bernard Scott(notes). He came in off the bench second, and I think if he continues to do well Scott will be the backup. If Benson goes down, Scott’s a major, major sleeper. He’s very talented and has a lot to offer. [Fantasy Guru]


Photo via US Presswire

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