Training Camp Recap 8/23/2022
Travis Etienne – there’s been good news on James Robinson possibly returning from his Achilles injury by week 1 but it sounds like Travis Etienne who is coming off an injury of his own and should have a solidified passing down role in this new Jaguars offense under Doug Pederson.
RB Travis Etienne…
“North/south speed. Looks explosive on tape through the first two pre-season matchups.
Would expect an increased/schemed role in the pass game during the regular season.”
Mo Alie-Cox – Mo Alie-Cox is now the TE1 for the Colts with Jack Doyle retiring and he could be a sleeper for those in TE premium fantasy leagues this year with a QB upgrade in Matt Ryan without a solidified #2 pass catching option.
“Caught up with Mo Alie-Cox, who’s sliding into the TE1 role this year. Is the job much different?
‘Nah, I just have a few different routes.’
‘Those short little sit routes. You gotta be that guy on third down.’
‘You mean the Jack Doyle routes?’
New Orleans Saints
Alvin Kamara – I think the biggest question for Alvin Kamara this year is will he be suspended or not but there seems to be optimism that his case will be postponed again leading to a possible suspension for the 2023-2024 season.
“Alvin Kamara looks so smooth and quick throughout these practices. He beat Nephi Sewell on a wheel route (throw by Winston) a touchdown in 7s. Sewell actually had good position, but the throw and catch were on point.”
Jalen Hurts – Hurts was a fantasy superstar last year and if he can improve his passing skills even a little bit with AJ Brown now in the mix, he could possibly be the QB1 this year for fantasy.
“Jalen Hurts doing an excellent job taking care of the ball
Training camp 2022, 7v7/11v11:
4 INT in 244 attempts overall
1 INT in last 193 attempts
0 INT in last 130 attempts
His ability to take care of ball is very underrated skill and really helped offense last year”
Equanimeous St. Brown – It sounds like Amon-Ra St. Brown’s brother is fighting to start in the slot as the Bears WR3 with their depth chart being wide open behind last year’s breakout WR Darnell Mooney.
Pleasant surprise: Equanimeous St. Brown
“St. Brown has seemingly won over Fields. His numbers should still trail those of Mooney, Kmet and potentially Pringle in the passing game but at 6-foot-5, St. Brown is a big target for Fields. They’ve connected on plenty of long completions off play action throughout camp.”
Darnell Mooney – Mooney is looking to capitalize off his breakout year last year with Allen Robinson now with the LA Rams. It sounds like the connection Fields and Mooney had last year is only improving in camp so far for this year.
Most impressive player, offense: Darnell Mooney
“He caught everything thrown his way. His route running is on a different level. He has the best rapport with quarterback Justin Fields. It’s an easy choice but still reassuring for the Bears that Mooney was a playmaker this summer.
Courtland Sutton – we’ve been hearing for a few months now that Courtland Sutton is Russell Wilson’s favorite target in this new Denver offense.
“This says Courtland Sutton has been Russ Wilson’s ‘favorite target during training camp.’”
KJ Osborn – KJ Osborn is a sleeper this year with the Vikings offense looking to run more 3 wide receiver sets under Kevin O’Connell.
“Vikings were in a 3-WR set on just 47% of their snaps last season, well below the NFL average of 61%.
That’s going to change under Kevin O’Connell. Main beneficiary is late-round flier KJ Osborn.”
KJ Hamler – KJ Hamler is working his way back from a season-ending ACL tear last year so this could be a concern if he’s not at least the WR3 in this offense. He was a trendy sleeper last year but this year you may want to temper expectations.
“The bottom line is that [Kendall] Hinton and [Brandon] Johnson have been the two wide receivers who have worked most consistently with the first-team unit in practices alongside Sutton and Jeudy (Hamler has been largely relegated to individual work in training camp, but he did participate in 11-on-11 drills Monday.)”
Ken Walker – I don’t usually believe a word that comes out of Pete Carroll’s mouth but he’s usually OVERLY optimistic when it comes to players coming back from injuries, so I would guess that Ken Walker may not be ready for week 1 but even if he is, he will have a slow start to the year but could be a player to target later on in the season.
“Carroll on Walker: ‘He’s really tough. He’s very demanding of himself. So we’ll see how it goes, but we’re going to be hopeful for that to happen.’”
“Pete Carroll initially said he expected RB Ken Walker III to return by Week 1 from his hernia procedure, but he’s since backed off that thought. Said today that Walker is making ‘big progress every day’ and feeling more comfortable, but his status for the opener is uncertain.”
Jaylen Warren – Warren seems to have solidified his role as the backup to star RB Najee Harris so if you are into handcuffing your running backs, he’s the guy I would target to backup Harris.
“My Steelers’ RB camp/preseason grades:
Jaylen Warren: A-
Anthony McFarland: B
Benny Snell: C+”
Jameson Williams – this was an obvious move with the team being up front about making sure not to rush their future star wide receiver back too early – he will now miss the first 4 weeks (at least)
“The Lions are moving rookie WR Jameson Williams to NFI, per Tom Pelissero. Always the expected move.”
Green Bay Packers
Christian Watson – Watson is finally back after suffering an injury in camp earlier so it would be nice to see the young wide receiver get his feet wet with some preseason action before week 1 of the regular season begins.
“Undecided whether Christian Watson will play Thursday, LaFleur says. If he’s healthy enough to play, LaFleur says he will.”
New England Patriots
Kevin Harris – Harris was a prospect many in the industry thought was underrated but the Patriots have a crowded depth chart so he may be a stash in deep dynasty leagues but he’s not someone that should be on your redraft radar.
Kevin Harris: “Harris has earned high marks from grading services for his work in the preseason, which includes a rushing touchdown, but his lack of speed (he ran a 4.6-second 40-yard dash) shows up in practices.”
Isaiah Likely – Likely continues to impress and it looks like he could realistically be the #3 pass catching weapon for this Ravens offense – I’m not sure that makes him super fantasy relevant for redraft purposes but he’s a fun dynasty asset right now – especially in TE premium type leagues.
Isaiah Likely: “It’s wise to keep expectations in check, but Likely will have a significant role in the offense. He’s shown he’s ready for it.”
Treylon Burks – Burks has struggled in camp and was last seen playing with the 4th string offense in the preseason. There was a lot of hype around the rookie pre and post draft but he may come along slower than we expected this year after we all assumed he would take over the AJ Brown role who was traded away before they used the pick they got back to select Burks.
“Sounds like the Titans expected to open the season with Robert Woods and Nick Westbrook-Ikhine as their top-2 WRs.”
Desmond Ridder – Ridder is a fun prospect and he might play sooner rather than later this year but as of now Marcus Mariota is the starter for this Atlanta Falcons offense.
“Desmond Ridder oh buddy! He was absolutely precise last night.”
New England Patriots
Tyquan Thornton – the bad news is that Tyquan Thornton is going to miss about 8 weeks or so – the rookie wide receiver was flashing in camp but he may be more of a dynasty buy at the moment than someone we are looking to draft in redraft leagues this year.
“’If anybody can handle it, I think he’ll be the guy that can.’
Why Jakobi Meyers is confident Tyquan Thornton will be ‘perfectly fine’ after the Patriots rookie’s preseason injury.”
Kansas City Chiefs
Isiah Pacheco – Pacheco’s ADP is soaring so this may temper expectations a bit with the rookie having to learn to be patient but he’s still a fine dart throw at the end of your bench in almost all formats.
“I think this is what Bieniemy was referencing when he talked about patience with Pacheco. He is so use to playing behind the Rutgers OL that if he presses behind Smith & let’s him come of his double to the safety that’s a house call.”
New England Patriots
There’s been a lot of talk as to who will take over the James White role and maybe the answer is nobody? Bill Belichick always seems to be up to something so we may have to wait and see how this shakes once the regular season starts.
“Bill Belichick to Bob Socci in Las Vegas, acknowledges that RBs Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson are ‘looking at all three downs’ and the team ‘has to plan accordingly on that.’
This was a notable change from preseason game No. 2. No more designated ‘passing back’, per se.”
It’s good news to see that the Miami offense is grooving in practice – we hope that translates to the regular season…
“Day 16 is over – we’ve got another deep dime from Tua to Tyreek. Blitz was on, Tua lets it go early from the +40. Tyreek was maybe 10 yards off the line when Tua throws as the ball met Cheetah right around the goal line for a TD. Later, similar ball to Gesicki for 60-yard score…”
Gus Edwards – this Ravens backfield is already starting to feel like a bit of a mess again. Edwards is behind JK Dobbins in his rehab from tearing his ACL last year and with the Ravens bringing in Mike Davis and drafting rookie RB Tyler Badie, this might be more of a committee than we want it to be.
“John Harbaugh said RB Gus Edwards’ rehab is still on schedule. He’s still expected to play this season.”
“Ravens placed running back Gus Edwards on the reserve/physically unable to perform list, meaning he’s out for at least the first four games this season.”
“No practice for Khalil Herbert, who went thru stretching/light individuals on Sunday but didn’t do team drills. He left practice early w/ apparent injury on Saturday.”