Good day Rotoworlders and all the Rotoworlders at sea. Welcome to our training camp daily dose. Football, football, football and did I mention football? Hodor? Ok, football!
The biggest news to come out yesterday was Steven Jackson’s hamstring injury. Coach Smith was vague on the particulars, but told beat writers that it wasn’t the same hamstring as last year, he’ll be ready for week one and claimed it wasn’t serious.
I really like the Falcons offense this year, so if we can get some kind of read on who the main back will be, then I will be happy to draft him. At this point Jackson is still the lead back and for all we know he plays 16 games and is just fine, but the odds of that are extremely slim if he’s already hurt his hammy in training camp. Most pundits and beat writers like Devonta Freeman to get the job if Jackson can’t stay healthy. Our own Josh Norris compares Freeman to Ahmad Bradshaw, which in this offense would be a nice fit. Jacquizz Rodgers isn’t going away, but his three seasons of under 4 yards a carry doesn’t provide much hope for a resurgence, especially if Freeman continues to look good in practice. Freeman’s ADP now will get a big boost with SJax on the sidelines so his profit margin will be much slimmer than if Jackson had made it through training camp intact.
And another hamstring injury, this one to Texan’s running back Arian Foster. The injury doesn’t appear to be more than a day-to-day thing, but with Foster’s injury history we have to take notice. Either way this isn’t good news and if he is sidelined longer than a few days we can probably start knocking him down your cheat sheets a few pegs.
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After finally being cleared to play after a scary neck injury, David Wilson left practice with a neck “burner.” He is undergoing tests so we will know more soon, but of course this is extremely worrisome for the talented back. As far as fantasy goes, if Wilson does have to miss more time, Rashad Jennings gets a little more security as the lead back.
Chris Ivory is a beast between the tackles and we’d all already assumed he’d be the goal line back, but the Jets made it official today with a ceremony and oversized key to the goal line package playbook. Well, they left those last two things out unfortunately, but running back coach Anthony Lynn told the New York Daily News that’s how it would be if they were playing tomorrow. It seems like a recipe that Chris Johnson should be used to by now and much like in Tennessee he’ll need to break long touchdown runs to score. It took him until week 8 last season to score a rushing touchdown.
The backup running back in Denver should hold a ton of fantasy potential and Ronnie Hillman currently leads the competition. Most thought C.J. Anderson was the front runner for the backup job, but Hillman has been running as the #2 running back all camp. Anderson seems like his body type would lend itself better to short yardage opportunities than Hillman's, but this Broncos' offense doesn’t need to go power in short yardage if they don’t want. There of course is a chance we would see both in a committee if Montee Ball goes down, but I think it’s time to reckon with the possibility of Hillman as your handcuff.
Brandon Lloyd is back! The 33-year-old receiver has returned to San Francisco and is making plays consistently. Colin Kaepernick told the Sacramento Bee that Lloyd has almost always been "open by a step or two." Of course this doesn’t mean much at this point and with Michael Crabtree, Vernon Davis and Anquan Boldin in his way, he doesn't have much room for upward mobility, but it’s still nice to see him back after a year away from the game and the man can catch any ball thrown his way. It will be interesting to see if he can make the team without playing special teams and where he might end up if he doesn’t.
The latest Josh Gordon news is interesting and a little disheartening in terms of the NFL's odd drug policies. Pro Football Talk got ahold of Gordon's drug testing results which show he passed 70 tests and barely failed one. Now we can all laugh at the “barely” failed, but the facts are that the NFL’s threshold for failing a drug test is much higher than Major League Baseball, the Olympics, and even the federal government. Gordon is saying the fact that out of his two samples, one tested positive and the other negative, shows the test was flawed or at the very least caused by secondhand smoke since the amount found was so very low that I could get a job driving gradeschoolers around with the same amount in my blood. I have no idea if this defense will work, but it does have an air of believability.
Aaron Dobson remains on the active/PUP list and Patriots beat reporter Jeff Howe learned that he had a permanent screw inserted into his foot when he had surgery in the spring and also that he wasn’t even able to run until July. Of course if he comes off the PUP and looks great in practice all of this is just noise, but it is a bit of a red flag at the moment.
Andre Ellington sat out Tuesday with a neck injury and Stepfan Taylor took the first team snaps. It doesn't sound like Ellington's injury is any cause for concern, but it is good to know where Taylor stands. If your league is deep enough he is the handcuff you would want over Jonathan Dwyer.