Content provided by Player News - Sunday, July 21st, 2013
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|Cowboys lose key reserve DE Crawford for year||07-21-2013|
|Tyrone Crawford DE DAL|
Cowboys DE Tyrone Crawford suffered a torn Achilles' on the first day of training camp and will miss the enter 2013 season.
Tim McMahon on Twitter
|Tyrone Crawford suffers Achilles' injury||07-21-2013|
|Tyrone Crawford DE DAL|
Cowboys 2012 third-round DE Tyrone Crawford was carted off the field on the first day of training camp Sunday with a potentially serious Achilles' injury.
Todd Archer on Twitter
|He fell awkwardly during a tackling-dummy drill. As the cart approached, Crawford was "holding his head" in agony. Beat reporter Todd Archer compared the injury to LB Caleb McSurdy's last summer, which was a torn Achilles' tendon. Crawford was expected to be a key depth piece at defensive end and tackle.|
|Colt McCoy locked into 49ers No. 2 QB role||07-21-2013|
|Colt McCoy QB WAS|
49ers backup QB Colt McCoy turned in a "solid" spring and is locked in as Colin Kaepernick's top clipboard holder.
|It's a depth chart to keep in mind in case dual-threat Kaepernick suffers an injury. Beat writer Matt Barrows suggests Jim Harbaugh would run an "Alex Smith-like" offense if McCoy were pressed into action. McCoy and Smith are similar players; extremely limited arm talents with some mobility and "moxie."|
|Tony Romo shows up short of peak condition||07-21-2013|
|Tony Romo QB DAL|
Tony Romo reported to training camp short of peak condition due to reduced offseason conditioning as he nursed a back injury.
Fort Worth Star-Telegram
|Carrying four QBs on their 90-man roster, the Cowboys planned to ease Romo into camp and limit his throws anyway. He's only one pound over his playing weight of 230. Observed QBs coach Wade Wilson, "(With) the extended camp that we have, I don't think it'll be a concern coming into the start of the season."|
|Jay Ratliff to undergo MRI on hamstring||07-21-2013|
|Jay Ratliff DT CHI|
Cowboys DT Jay Ratliff will undergo an MRI after reporting to training camp with a hamstring injury.
Fort Worth Star-Telegram
|Ratliff missed ten games last season with various injuries, primarily to his feet/ankle region in addition to a year-ending hernia surgery. His sack totals have decreased five years running and Ratliff turns 32 before Week 1. The extent of the hamstring injury is unknown, but the Cowboys don't seem worried.|
|Jamar Taylor all healed up at Dolphins camp||07-21-2013|
|Jamar Taylor CB MIA|
Dolphins rookie CB Jamar Taylor was a full participant on the first day of training camp after offseason hernia surgery.
|Running with the deep reserves, Taylor promptly got burned deep for a 70-yard touchdown bomb by Jeff Fuller, thrown by third-string quarterback Pat Devlin. Taylor is better than that, but he's no longer considered a serious competitor for a starting job. LCB Brent Grimes and RCB Richard Marshall appear locked in.|
|Olivier Vernon opens camp as starter||07-21-2013|
|Olivier Vernon LB MIA|
Dolphins 2012 third-round pick Olivier Vernon opened training camp as the team's starting right defensive end.
|The Fins loved what they saw from Vernon at spring workouts, and he flashed with 3.5 sacks on limited snaps as a rookie. This position may eventually go to Dion Jordan or perhaps incumbent RE Jared Odrick, but the Dolphins want Vernon geared up for an increased role. He has explosive pass-rushing traits.|
|DeMarcus Ware cleared as Cowboys open camp||07-21-2013|
|DeMarcus Ware LB DEN|
Cowboys RE DeMarcus Ware was fully cleared on the first day of training camp after offseason shoulder surgery.
Charean Williams on Twitter
|He passed his conditioning test and received medical clearance, practicing at right defensive end as Ware transitions from 3-4 outside 'backer. Ware will remain a highly productive edge-bending pass rusher in the new scheme, but Dallas' run defense could be a concern with one of the NFL's lightest front sevens. They'll definitely have the league's lightest-weight defensive end duo.|
|Will Allen opens camp as starting safety||07-21-2013|
|Will Allen S PIT|
|Journeyman/special teamer Will Allen opened Cowboys training camp as the starting strong safety.||Your Cowboys starting safeties are Allen and Barry Church, who's coming off a torn Achilles'. It's a huge weakness for a defense that figures to play an awful lot of two-deep safety looks under Tampa 2 guru Monte Kiffin. They still drafted middle-round projected pick Travis Frederick at No. 31 overall, with Johnathan Cyprien and Matt Elam on the board. The Jags and Ravens are grateful.|
|Joseph Randle back healthy||07-21-2013|
|Joseph Randle RB DAL|
Rookie RB Joseph Randle participated in the first practice of Cowboys training camp Sunday.
Todd Archer on Twitter
|The fifth-round pick out of Oklahoma State missed all offseason practices due to thumb surgery, but his recovery progressed on schedule. Lance Dunbar opened camp as Dallas' No. 2 back behind DeMarco Murray, but Randle will compete hard for that role. The Cowboys don't seem as excited about Phillip Tanner.|
|Michael Egnew practices with 3rd & 4th teams||07-21-2013|
|Michael Egnew TE MIA|
Dolphins 2012 third-round pick Michael Egnew opened training camp with the third- and fourth-team offenses.
|"So much for him having a great offseason," quipped Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald. Egnew has apparently already been passed on the depth chart by fourth-round rookie Dion Sims. He's also behind Dustin Keller and Charles Clay.|
|Jimmy Graham to recapture 2011 production?||07-21-2013|
|Jimmy Graham TE NO|
The New Orleans Times-Picayune believes there's "every reason to expect" Jimmy Graham to re-reach his 2011 production after a somewhat disappointing 2012 season.
New Orleans Times-Picayune
|The fact that Graham's 2012 can be described as "somewhat disappointing" and he still outscored every other fantasy tight end reflects his dominant fantasy football value. Graham is in a contract year, has the NFL's premier playcaller back in Sean Payton, and is 100 percent healthy after battling wrist and ankle problems for much of last season. In 2011, Graham caught 99 passes for 1,310 and 11 touchdowns. During that '11 campaign, only four wide receivers -- emphasis on wide receivers -- scored more fantasy points than Graham.|
|Cowboys sign Alex Tanney & Lavasier Tuinei||07-21-2013|
|Alex Tanney QB CLE|
|Cowboys signed QB Alex Tanney and WR Lavasier Tuinei.||A trick-throw specialist on YouTube, Tanney will serve as a camp arm as the Cowboys scale back 33-year-old Tony Romo's reps. Tuinei is a 6-foot-5, 206-pound red-zone specialist. He'll try to make Dallas' practice squad.|
|Cowboys formally ink veteran T Demetress Bell||07-21-2013|
|Demetrius Bell OT DAL|
|Cowboys signed OT Demetress Bell, formerly of the Eagles.||ESPN Dallas reported this move was coming two days ago. Bell, 29, possesses the athletic skill set to be an NFL starter, but struggled mightily in Philadelphia last year. Appearing in nine games with five starts, Bell graded out as Pro Football Focus' No. 78 tackle among 80 qualifiers, ahead of only Cardinals turnstile LT D'Anthony Batiste and Chargers UDFA Mike Harris. Ideally, OC Bill Callahan will coach up Bell's talent into a viable swing tackle.|
|Rams expect 'big things' from DT Brockers||07-21-2013|
|Michael Brockers DT STL|
The Rams are expecting "big things" from 2012 first-round pick Michael Brockers in his second year.
|Slowed by a high ankle sprain early in his rookie season, Brockers came on very strong down the stretch and ranked 21st in Pro Football Focus' 4-3 defensive tackle run-stopping ratings. Brockers chipped in four sacks and a forced fumble in 12 starts. Brockers won't turn 23 years old until just before Christmas.|
|Rams envision spread-the-wealth pass offense||07-21-2013|
|Tavon Austin WR STL|
Rams COO Kevin Demoff suggested the team won't necessarily have any one receiver catch 70-plus passes in 2013, but "four or five" players who "catch 40-50."
Turf Show Times
|"The goal this year is for Sam (Bradford) to be able to throw to the "open" player," Demoff explained, "and I expect that we will get meaningful contributions from all five wide receivers, the two tight ends, and the running backs. ... I think that is where we are evolving, letting the down, distance, scheme, and coverage dictate who becomes the targeted player." It's a reminder that Tavon Austin is being overdrafted at his current sixth-round ADP. The Rams are going to run a spread-the-wealth offense in 2013.|
|Dolphins not out of the running for Vonta Lea||07-21-2013|
|Vonta Leach RB BAL|
According to the Miami Herald, the Dolphins are "not completely out of the picture" to land free agent FB Vonta Leach.
|Beat reporter Armando Salguero suggests the Fins may still "circle back to Leach" if they don't like what they see from Jorvorskie Lane and Charles Clay early in training camp. Leach has a standing one-year, $2 million offer to rejoin the Ravens. For Lamar Miller's fantasy sake, we're hoping Leach lands in Miami.|
|Brent Grimes a full participant at Fins camp||07-21-2013|
|Brent Grimes CB MIA|
Dolphins LCB Brent Grimes was a full participant at the first practice of training camp Sunday.
Barry Jackson on Twitter
|After missing all of 2012 with a torn Achilles' tendon, Grimes is all systems go and that's terrific news for Miami's secondary. Richard Marshall is running as the first-team right corner. Dimitri Patterson is the slot cornerback.|
|Dre Kirkpatrick to enter season as backup||07-21-2013|
|Dre Kirkpatrick CB CIN|
Bengals 2012 first-round pick Dre Kirkpatrick is not expected to enter the season as a starter.
|The Bengals re-signed Terence Newman and Pacman Jones, and Bengals.com considers them "entrenched" in Cincinnati's top three corners behind Leon Hall. An injury-prone disappointment to this point in his brief career, Kirkpatrick would need 35-year-old Newman's play or body to break down to earn major playing time.|
|Jorvorskie Lane struggled to keep job in OTAs||07-21-2013|
|Jorvorskie Lane RB TB|
The Dolphins benched FB Jorvorskie Lane in favor of H-back Charles Clay at times during OTAs.
Palm Beach Post
|Lane is a useful short-yardage option and special teamer, but was maddeningly up and down as a lead blocker last season. It's surprising the Fins have ostensibly jumped out of the Vonta Leach sweepstakes. They made heavy use of I-formations and the offset I last year, particularly when Lamar Miller was in the backfield. We would have loved Leach's addition for Miller's fantasy outlook.|
|Blaine Gabbert struggled in offseason||07-21-2013|
|Blaine Gabbert QB SF|
According to the Florida Times Union, Blaine Gabbert's offseason performance was a usual mix of "Good Gabbert and Bad Blaine" with big-time throws followed by inconsistent accuracy and decision making.
Florida Times Union
|Per beat writer Ryan O'Halloran, Gabbert appeared prone to "head-scratching one-hoppers or throws into traffic." Coordinator Jedd Fisch says the Jaguars are in no rush to name a Week 1 starter. "What the [eventual starter] has to do is tilt the field," Fisch said. "We want to feel his presence on the practice field, feel his leadership and really feel like he's taking over the team. The quarterback that does that will start." The smart money is on Chad Henne.|
|Doug Martin piles up yards after contact||07-21-2013|
|Doug Martin RB TB|
Doug Martin ranked second in the NFL in rushing yards after contact in 2012, behind only Adrian Peterson.
|The gap between Peterson and Martin was large -- AP had 1,109 yards after contact to Muscle Hamster's 683 -- but Martin outperformed more well-known backs like Arian Foster, Marshawn Lynch, Frank Gore, Steven Jackson, Jamaal Charles, Ray Rice, and Chris Johnson in this area. It's more confirmation that Martin is the real deal. He's locked in as Rotoworld's No. 2 fantasy back for 2013.|
|Jonathan Dwyer may not make Steelers roster||07-21-2013|
|Jonathan Dwyer RB ARZ|
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette considers fourth-year RB Jonathan Dwyer "no lock to make the roster."
|Beat writer Ed Bouchette says Isaac Redman is Le'Veon Bell's "main competition" to be Pittsburgh's starter. In addition to slow feet and lack of versatility, working against Dwyer is his $1.323 million salary. That's a lot for an annually cap-strapped team like the Steelers to pay a backup running back.|
|Ronnie Hillman opens Broncos camp as starter||07-21-2013|
|Ronnie Hillman RB DEN|
Ronnie Hillman will open Broncos training camp as the starting tailback, ahead of Montee Ball and Knowshon Moreno.
|We'll see how long it lasts. VP of Football Operations John Elway has repeatedly called Hillman a "change-of-pace back" since he was drafted in the 2012 third round, and Hillman's body of work as a rookie was largely unimpressive. Hillman was prone to negative runs and stuffs, and the Broncos didn't trust him in pass protection. Downhill rookie runner Ball would be far better suited to a bellcow role. We'll be monitoring this camp competition closely throughout August.|
|Still 'small questions' about Peyton's health||07-21-2013|
|Peyton Manning QB DEN|
Per the Denver Post, there are still "small questions" about Peyton Manning's ability to grip the football with his right hand and the strength of his right triceps entering his age-37 season.
|Most fantasy websites rank Manning higher than Rotoworld -- we have him No. 4 among quarterbacks -- and one reason for caution is the way he was essentially unable to throw the ball late in Denver's playoff loss to Baltimore. The Post item alludes to that fact. Ultimately, Manning's body seems more likely to hold up than not, and he offers big upside with an improved receiver corps.|
|Brian Quick was inconsistent during OTAs||07-21-2013|
|Brian Quick WR STL|
According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, second-year WR Brian Quick flashed "big-play ability" at OTAs, but continued to experience "periods of inconsistency."
St Louis Post-Dispatch
|The 33rd overall pick in last year's draft, Quick struggled to comprehend Brian Schottenheimer's playbook as a rookie and remains a work in progress entering his second NFL training camp. Quick offers a lot of sleeper appeal, but obviously still needs to earn playing time. He's battling Austin Pettis for a starting job.|
|Garrard was threat to Sanchez's roster spot||07-21-2013|
|Mark Sanchez QB PHI|
According to ESPN New York, Mark Sanchez's 53-man roster spot "wouldn't have been secure" had David Garrard been healthy enough to continue playing.
ESPN New York
|Garrard abruptly retired in May due to knee issues. Per reporter Rich Cimini, the Jets "didn't consider Sanchez's contract untradable," and indeed there were rumors they tried sneaking him into the Darrelle Revis trade to Tampa. The Garrard thing is water under the bridge, but the story is more confirmation that the Jets are internally not thrilled with the idea of keeping Sanchez around.|
|RG3 'feeling great,' wants to practice fully||07-21-2013|
|Robert Griffin III QB WAS|
A source tells the Washington Post that Robert Griffin III (knee) "feels great" and continues to run and make cuts "without pain or limitation."
|Griffin is hoping to receive full medical clearance on Wednesday via Dr. James Andrews, who doubles as a Redskins consultant. Andrews will examine RG3's knee "extensively" on Wednesday. Andrews' opinion will determine whether Griffin opens camp on the active/PUP list or begins full-squad practicing immediately. Griffin is reportedly "adamant" about practicing as much as possible. The Redskins' goal should be to have him ready to go by Week 1.|
|Tashaun Gipson in driver's seat to start||07-21-2013|
|Tashaun Gipson S CLE|
Second-year UDFA Tashaun Gipson enters Browns camp as the favorite to start at free safety.
|His only real competitors are converted CB Johnson Bademosi, another 2012 UDFA, and sixth-round rookie Jamoris Slaughter. Slaughter was a linebacker/safety hybrid at Notre Dame and is highly unlikely to suddenly become a centerfielder in the NFL. Gipson practiced as the starter throughout spring practices.|
|Jahvid Best to try to continue his career?||07-21-2013|
|Jahvid Best RB DET|
According to the National Football Post's Len Pasquarelli, there is "suspicion in some quarters" that free agent Jahvid Best (concussions) will continue to meet with brain specialists and try to resume his career.
National Football Post
|Best hasn't played football since October 2011 and still "possesses residual effects" from his five documented concussions. Pasquarelli believes the "likelihood" remains Best will end up retiring. Best is still only 24 years old.|
|Buzz builds for Patriots UDFA WR Thompkins||07-21-2013|
|Kenbrell Thompkins WR NE|
According to ESPN Boston, Friday's release of Donald Jones was tied at least in part to UDFA WR Kenbrell Thompkins' "strong work" at spring practices.
|The Pats salvaged a $200,000 training camp reporting bonus by cutting Jones, but Thompkins practiced so well that he earned first-team reps by the end of minicamp. Reliable beat writer Mike Reiss deems Thompkins "the under-the-radar Patriots offensive player who has arguably built more momentum than any other." Worth a look in all dynasty leagues, Thompkins is also a favorite of Rookie Scouting Portfolio's Matt Waldman, who has a terrific eye for talent.|
|Browns get top pick OLB Mingo under contract||07-21-2013|
|Barkevious Mingo DE CLE|
|Browns signed No. 6 overall pick Barkevious Mingo to a four-year contract.||Top-of-the-draft signings are starting to roll in now, after Nos. 3 and 4 picks Dion Jordan and Lane Johnson signed on the dotted line Saturday. Like Jordan, Mingo agreed to offset language in exchange for a larger up-front payment on his first NFL contract. A highly explosive if somewhat straight-linish pass rusher with technique work to do, Mingo will be a rotational 'backer as a rookie barring an unexpected pre-season trade of Jabaal Sheard.|