Research Tools - News

    • Thu, Jun 22, 6:32am

      Cowboys running backs coach Gary Brown expects Elliott to catch more passes this season, Jon Machota of The Dallas Morning News reports.

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      Analysis: Elliott easily led the league in carries (322) and rushing yards (1,631) as a rookie, but he only ranked 31st among running backs in targets (40), despite finishing third in yards per target (9.1) among the 50 backs that drew more than 25 looks. While he often stayed on the field for passing downs, the Cowboys simply didn't rely on their backfield much for pass-catching duties, with running backs accounting for only 79 of the team's 483 targets (16.4 percent). That share likely will rise closer to the league average of 18-20 percent, and with Lance Dunbar no longer on the roster, Elliott unquestionably is the Cowboys' best option for passing downs. While still unlikely to match the kind of receiving workloads David Johnson and Le'Veon Bell handle, Elliott should push to finish among the top 10 at his position in both carries and targets.

      by Rotowire.com
    • Thu, Jun 22, 5:50am

      The Colts likely will use more of a committee approach in the backfield this season, giving Turbin a heavier workload than last season's 47 carries and 35 targets, Mike Chappell of CBS 4 Indianapolis reports.

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      Analysis: Turbin only produced 3.5 yards per carry and 5.1 yards per target last season, but he found the end zone on eight of his 73 touches, including three of his his four carries from inside the 5-yard line and seven of his 14 from inside the 10. Fourth-round rookie Marlon Mack may be the flashier option to alleviate some of 34-year-old Frank Gore's workload, but Turbin's strong work in the red zone and as a pass blocker makes him the better bet to handle a significant snap count in Week 1. Turbin still doesn't offer much upside, as he failed to produce a 20-yard gain last season and has a long gain of just 26 yards on 328 career carries. He'd likely share playing time with Mack, and possibly Josh Ferguson, in the event of a Gore injury.

      by Rotowire.com
    • Thu, Jun 22, 12:30am

      Agholor has been the "standout star" of spring practices, Dave Zangaro of CSN Philly reports.

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      Analysis: Eagles receivers coach Mike Groh had nothing but high praise for the former first-round pick, citing Agholor's productive spring practices and versatility. The USC product took over first team reps in the slot while Jordan Matthews nursed a knee injury and continued to shine. While Agholor has disappointed in his NFL career thus far and is slated to be Philadelphia's fourth receiver behind Matthews, Alshon Jeffery and Torrey Smith, it is not as if the first two on that list are bastions of good health. The 24-year-old could still see plenty of playing time and a possible breakout if he can translate his spring production to the regular season.

      by Rotowire.com
    • Wed, Jun 21, 9:48pm

      The Broncos lost DeMarcus Ware to retirement in the offseason.

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      Analysis: Eighth-placed on the all-time sack list (138.5), Ware's presence will certainly be missed. However, the future Hall-of-Famer had two years to mentor 2015 first-round OLB Shane Ray and leaves behind five-time All-Pro OLB Von Miller to boot. With Shaq Barrett rotating in behind them, the Broncos' pass rush remains in good hands. Expect an encore from a Denver unit that placed first in the sack department in 2015 (52) and third in 2016 (42).

      by Rotowire.com
    • Wed, Jun 21, 8:51pm

      The Cowboys drafted DE Taco Charlton and DB Chidobe Awuzie with their first- and second-round picks, respectively, in the 2017 NFL Draft.

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      Analysis: Dallas lost seven starters or key contributors from 2016, including safety Barry Church (Jaguars), CB Brandon Carr (Ravens) and DL Terrell McClain (Redskins). Awuzie, in addition to the signing of Nolan Carroll, should help fill the void in the secondary, but neither is expected to be a starter Week 1. Charlton, on the other hand, will be likely counted on for much more; the Cowboys' pass rush is arguably the defense's biggest question mark entering 2017. However, despite the fact that he upped his sack count in each subsequent year at Michigan, the Lone Star state should be praying that he only keeps improving. If Charlton isn't able to quickly acclimate to the professional game, and DeMarcus Lawrence (back) and Tyrone Crawford (shoulder) aren't able to return to their pre-injury form, the Cowboys could have a lot of trouble getting to the opposing quarterback.

      by Rotowire.com
    • Wed, Jun 21, 8:35pm

      The Browns drafted Texas A&M DE Myles Garrett with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft.

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      Analysis: The Browns are desperately trying to overhaul a defense that has perennially ranked among the league's worst. The addition of Garrett is a great start. Not only should the Texas A&M product help improve a run defense that allowed the second-most rushing yards in the league last season, but Garrett should instantly bolster a pass rush that accumulated only 26 sacks. Considering the secondary is now looking stacked after the signing of Jason McCourty from the Titans and the drafting of Jabrill Peppers -- also in the first round -- the entire Browns D/ST appears to be on the up and up ahead of the 2017 campaign.

      by Rotowire.com
    • Wed, Jun 21, 8:05pm

      The Bengals 2016 first-round pick, William Jackson III, should be ready to play in 2017 after missing his entire rookie season with a pectoral injury.

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      Analysis: With Adam Jones and Dre Kirkpatrick still around, the return of a healthy Jackson could take this group to the next level. The Houston product was one of the fastest players at his position in the 2016 NFL Combine and led the nation in passes defended during his final year of college ball. Ideally, he wouldn't need to be counted on to start from Week 1 since this is technically Jackson's rookie season and he's coming off a season-ending injury, but Jones' legal predicament could make it so. That is if the veteran is eventually slapped with a suspension. However, in any case, the Bengals D/ST should be just fine considering they allowed just 3,800 passing yards in 2016, good for 11th-best in the league, and return the majority of their starters from a season ago.

      by Rotowire.com
    • Wed, Jun 21, 7:38pm

      The Bears signed S Quintin Demps in the offseason.

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      Analysis: It may come as a surprise to some, but the Bears allowed the seventh-fewest yards through the air last season. However, they also finished 29th in the league with only eight interceptions, which is where Demps should come in; the nine-year veteran tied for second in the league with six picks in 2016. On the flip side, he might not be able to offer much help to a run defense that was gashed for the sixth-most rushing yards a year ago, as it will likely take more than the addition of a 32-year-old safety to do so.

      by Rotowire.com
    • Wed, Jun 21, 7:19pm

      Former Panthers defensive coordinator Sean McDermott took the Bills' head coaching job in the offseason.

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      Analysis: Forgiving a 2016 season in which the Panthers finished 21st in total yards surrendered, McDermott coordinated a defense that finished top-10 in the league from 2012-2015. Stepping into his place is former assistant head coach and defensive backs coach Steve Wilks. Wilks is on the record saying he won't change anything scheme-wise, so look for Carolina to stick with a 4-3 front in 2017, but Wilks also admitted he's going to add a few wrinkles to presumably improve a struggling pass defense that was gashed for the fourth-most yards through the air in 2016. Since the Panthers did almost nothing to address the secondary this offseason, Wilks could struggle to turn things around.

      by Rotowire.com
    • Wed, Jun 21, 7:01pm

      The Bills lost starting cornerback Stephon Gilmore in free agency this offseason.

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      Analysis: Gilmore was the top cornerback on the free-agent market this offseason and his loss is only compounded by the fact he signed with the divisional rival Patriots. Also, his departure likely spurred Buffalo to spend a first-round pick on LSU corner Tre'Davious White. Alongside 2015 second-rounder Ronald Darby, White is expected to hold down a starting job from day one. It's hard to knock a pass defense that allowed the sixth-least rushing yards per game in 2016, but gambling on the Bills D/ST means gambling on one of the most inexperienced pairs of starting cornerbacks in the league.

      by Rotowire.com
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