Content provided by Player News - Sunday, April 6th, 2014
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|Yates, Keenum to battle for 1 roster spot||04-06-2014|
|T.J. Yates QB ATL|
The Houston Chronicle expects reserve QBs T.J. Yates and Case Keenum to compete for one roster spot in training camp.
|(This assumes Yates isn't gone before camp begins.) Gary Kubiak and interim coach Wade Phillips both passed over Yates repeatedly last year in Houston's QB carousel. Through three NFL seasons, Yates has a 3:6 TD-to-INT ratio and 60.8 completion rate. As rookie coach Bill O'Brien is installing a spread offense, we expect him to keep Keenum over Yates, assuming he keeps one at all.|
|Browns sign slot WR Burleson to 1-year deal||04-06-2014|
|Nate Burleson WR CLE|
Browns signed WR Nate Burleson to a one-year contract.
Cleveland Plain Dealer
|He chose Cleveland over Miami. Burleson, 33 in August, is more of a locker-room than on-field asset at this stage of his career. He posted a 39-461-11.8-1 stat line across nine games in Detroit last season, missing seven with a broken arm. He missed ten games the year before due to a broken leg. Burleson provides reliable hands in the slot, but his playmaking ability evaporated years ago. He'd be best in a fourth receiver role with the Browns.|
|Panthers will host Jason Avant on Monday||04-06-2014|
|Jason Avant WR CAR|
The Panthers will host free agent Jason Avant on Monday.
|He'd give Carolina another underwhelming possession-slot receiver to pair with Jerricho Cotchery. The Panthers are simply looking for bodies at wideout. Avant, 31, has drawn interest from old head coach Andy Reid's Chiefs, and visited the Patriots in mid-March. He should be available for a minimum salary.|
|Report: Bills didn't want Chris Johnson||04-06-2014|
|Chris Johnson RB NYJ|
A Bills source tells the Buffalo News the club never had interest in free agent Chris Johnson.
Tim Graham on Twitter
|Reports surfaced late last week that the Bills had "discussed" a potential trade for Johnson, prior to his Friday release. As it turns out, the Titans contacted the Bills -- not the other way around -- and Buffalo informed Tennessee it had no interest in the player formerly know as CJ2K. Per beat writer Tim Graham, the Bills source believes the Titans "floated the Bills as a possible trade partner" to the media "to make it seem like they didn't just cut him." Whatever the case, Johnson isn't going to Buffalo.|
|Bears land C De La Puente on one-year pact||04-06-2014|
|Brian De La Puente G CHI|
|Bears signed C Brian De La Puente to a one-year contract.|
|Mike Wallace was a 1-trick pony in 2013||04-06-2014|
|Mike Wallace WR MIA|
Mike Wallace lined up as the Dolphins' right-side wide receiver on 90 percent of the team's offensive snaps in 2013.
|As reporter Armando Salguero notes, Wallace "rarely went into the slot" and "rarely motioned." This made Wallace easy for defenses to take away. Salguero suggests new OC Bill Lazor -- formerly the Eagles' QBs coach -- could employ Wallace like Chip Kelly did with DeSean Jackson last season. Jackson aligned all over the formation, and played nearly 30 percent of his snaps in the slot.|
|Nate Washington expected back with Titans||04-06-2014|
|Nate Washington WR TEN|
The Nashville Tennessean considers Nate Washington's roster spot "safe" despite a $4.8 million base salary.
|The Titans could wipe all of the $4.8 million off their cap by cutting 30-year-old Washington, but they're more likely to bring him back as a third receiver behind Kendall Wright and Justin Hunter. Washington is also insurance on at-times enigmatic sophomore Hunter. Titans wideouts project to disappoint in fantasy this season as the team moves away from ex-OC Dowell Loggains' spread offense, and toward new coach Ken Whisenhunt's run-first attack.|
|Bills expected to keep Stevie Johnson||04-06-2014|
|Steve Johnson WR SF|
ESPN Bills reporter Mike Rodak expects the team to keep Stevie Johnson for 2014.
|Specifically, Rodak considers Johnson a "long shot" to move on this offseason. Johnson may be entering his final season with Buffalo, but he's due back as the club's primary slot receiver, with Mike Williams likely playing "X" and Robert Woods "Z" in three-wide packages. From a fantasy perspective, Johnson would need E.J. Manuel to take a huge leap forward for a bounce-back season.|
|Travis Kelce to have major role in 2014?||04-06-2014|
|Travis Kelce TE KC|
ESPN Chiefs reporter Adam Teicher expects second-year TE Travis Kelce to be the team's "pass receiver at tight end" in 2014, and "an important piece" of the Chiefs' 2014 passing game.
|Per Teicher, Kelce showed the ability in practice last year to "line up in a variety of places," and "get down the field to beat coverage." We loved Kelce's game tape coming out of college, but his rookie year essentially wound up as a "redshirt" due to a relatively minor microfracture surgery on his knee. Kelce has a Heath Miller-type skill set. He remains a hold in Dynasty leagues.|
|Steelers see 'significant step' from Wheaton||04-06-2014|
|Markus Wheaton WR PIT|
Steelers coach Mike Tomlin anticipates 2013 third-round pick Markus Wheaton taking a "significant" leap in his second NFL season.
|Wheaton is penciled in as Pittsburgh's No. 2 receiver for now, opposite Antonio Brown. "It's tough to play wide receiver with broken fingers," said Tomlin, explaining why Wheaton barely played as a rookie. "I look forward to him taking a significant step for us. I know that we need him to." Wheaton drew Mike Wallace comparisons coming out of college and ran 4.4-flat at the 2013 Combine.|
|Browns would match 3-year, $22M offer to Mack||04-06-2014|
|Alex Mack C CLE|
A league source tells Profootballtalk.com the Browns would match a three-year, $22 million offer sheet from the Jaguars to transition-tagged C Alex Mack "in a second."
Profootballtalk on NBC Sports
|This is all just hypothetical for now -- no offer has been extended -- but it's notable because the Florida Times Union reported Saturday the Jaguars would have to come up with an offer of three years and at least $22 million guaranteed in order to land Mack. The Browns have already locked in Mack at $10.039 million for 2014, which suggests they see him as a $10-plus million per-year player. The three-year, $22 million idea would pay him only $7.3 million annually.|
|De La Puente still in play for the Saints||04-06-2014|
|Brian De La Puente G CHI|
ESPN Saints reporter Mike Triplett believes free agent C Brian De La Puente is definitely still in play for the Saints.
|De La Puente's market has been ice cold to this point. He should be relatively cheap to retain. He's started the past 32 games for the Saints and remains easily the top free-agent center on the market not named Alex Mack. Tim Lelito is currently penciled in as the Saints' starting center.|
|Jets CB Wilson's spot could be in jeopardy||04-06-2014|
|Kyle Wilson CB NYJ|
ESPN New York suggests Jets CB Kyle Wilson's roster spot could be in jeopardy.
ESPN New York
|Wilson, the No. 29 overall pick in the 2010 draft, has one year left on his rookie deal and has shown that he's really a slot corner only. The Jets recently signed CB Dimitri Patterson, another slot corner, to a one-year, $3 million deal. "Wilson makes no plays," said an AFC scout. He has just three career interceptions. The Jets will be eyeing cornerback help in next month's draft.|
|Colts remain high on Da'Rick Rogers||04-06-2014|
|Da'Rick Rogers WR IND|
ESPN Colts reporter Mike Wells says the team remains high on Da'Rick Rogers.
|After Hakeem Nicks' signing, Rogers lost a bit of his luster. But keep in mind that Nicks only signed a one-year deal, and Reggie Wayne is nearing the end of the line. While Rogers may not make the second-year leap fantasy owners were hoping for, his arrow still remains pointing up. Rogers is the overwhelming favorite for No. 4 receiver duties, followed by LaVon Brazill and Griff Whalen.|
|Mallett wouldn't fetch more than late-rounder||04-06-2014|
|Ryan Mallett QB HOU|
ESPN Boston believes Ryan Mallett would only fetch the Patriots a "late-round pick at best" in a trade.
|Mallett was loosely connected to the Texans earlier this offseason. He was also hypothetically mentioned as a possibility for the Vikings. Predictably, nothing came of it. Mallett has one year left on his rookie deal and appears locked in as Tom Brady's backup. The Patriots' best bet at future return on Mallett is that he plays well this preseason and nets them a compensatory pick in 2016.|
|Lions CB Darius Slay's knee fully healthy||04-06-2014|
|Darius Slay CB DET|
Lions CB Darius Slay (knee) is 100 percent healthy.
Detroit Free Press
|Slay tore his meniscus in December. He also underwent a knee scope shortly after last year's draft. This offseason is considered a big one for the second-year corner. The Lions are banking on Slay taking the next step and possibly developing into their No. 1 corner. LCB Chris Houston was a disaster in 2013, and veteran stopgap Rashean Mathis hasn't been re-signed.|