NFL Training Camp Notes- Patriots Getting Back WR Help

It’s actually been a pretty big day of training camp, as some important injury updates are rolling in that may impact upcoming fantasy drafts. We’ll start out in New England-


• While excitement has been growing since reports of Josh Gordon’s reinstatement last Friday, he was seen today at the team’s facility and he’s now on the active roster, though he’s also on the non-football injury list. It’s uncertain as to when he’ll begin practicing, but there’s a good chance he’ll be ready to roll when the season begins, though the coaching staff could ease him into action over time. After working with Tom Brady in the offseason, Gordon will look to build on an 11-game stat line of 40/720/3 in 2018, and don’t forget, he was dealing with a hamstring injury while playing in his first few games. He’ll likely be drafted in the WR3 range, but he has solid WR2 upside.

• Sticking with the Patriots, Julian Edelman’s been removed from the non-football injury list, and he was practicing in pads today. With over two weeks until the season begins, Edelman can be drafted with confidence as a WR2, especially in PPR leagues.

• After missing significant time with a calf injury, Derrick Henry returned to practice, though he participated in individual drills only. Regardless, it’s a step in the right direction, and unless he suffers a setback, he should see a ton of work, which should allow him to retain his value as an RB2 in fantasy. Of course, he may need some help from the offensive coordinator, so that he doesn’t have to see a steady diet of stacked boxes.

• There shouldn’t be any concern as to Aaron Rodgers’ Week 1 availability despite him missing time with back tightness, as Rodgers reports that he’s feeling fine, and he actually considered practicing yesterday. Currently with an ADP as QB4, this is as cheaply as we’ve seen him get drafted in a long time, and if the new coaching regime can breathe life into this offense, Rodgers could actually be a draft-day steal.

• Meanwhile, Rodgers’ teammate, Jimmy Graham, injured his finger, but the good news is that he won’t require surgery. It’s uncertain what his timetable to return is, but there’s a good chance he’ll be ready for Week 1. He’s currently being drafted as a borderline fantasy starter, but this news shouldn’t change your opinion of him on draft day.

• Another player dealing with a knee injury is David Njoku, but he went through individual drills today and he’s trending toward being ready for Week 1. As a locked in starter for what should be a high-scoring offense, Njoku is the cheapest piece of the Browns offense in fantasy drafts, typically being drafted around TE8-10.

• Many fantasy owners have been waiting patiently to see Derrius Guice on an NFL field- well, that could be coming up soon, as John Keim of ESPN.com is reporting that the RB should be cleared soon for full contact, and it could happen in this week’s preseason game. Currently being drafted as an RB3, should he play extremely well, we could see an overreaction by fantasy owners.

• In injury news out of Seattle, D.K. Metcalf is set to undergo knee surgery, though coach Pete Carroll said the receiver could return for Week 1. That said, Carroll has always been overly optimistic when it comes to injury timetables, so don’t be surprised if Metcalf misses a game or two to start the season. In any case, based on his ADP, most fantasy owners are counting on him as depth and with a full slate of games in Weeks 1 and 2, missed time shouldn’t be a big problem.

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• There’s still uncertainty in Miami as to who’ll be the opening-day starter, as Ryan Fitzpatrick and Josh Rosen are still competing for the QB job. In practices, both have split first-team reps, but with Fitzpatrick set to make the start in the third preseason game, he could be going into the contest as the leader in the competition. Regardless, it appears that this week’s game has a great chance of determining the outcome of this camp battle.

• Don’t sleep on KeeSean Johnson- according to John Weinfuss of ESPN.com, Johnson’s making a case to earn the No. 3 WR role. Sure, there’s a lot of negative buzz about the Arizona offense after they looked terrible against the Raiders, but it seems obvious by watching the games that the Cardinals aren’t showing their offense scheme during the preseason. But with the amount they want to throw the ball along with the pace they expect to play at, any Arizona starting WR (and in the ‘Air Raid’ offense, four WRs is the base offense) could see enough volume to be a strong fantasy producer. With Johnson going super-late in drafts, he’s definitely a good dart throw.

• After trying to show he was ready to put his Achilles’ injury in the rear-view mirror after being picked up by the Colts, D’Onta Foreman suffered a torn biceps, landing him on injured reserve. Although it’s possible he recovers and is added to the roster later in the season, it’s more likely he’ll battle for a roster spot in 2020.

• And finally, it’s mostly impossible to write a training camp report without a John Ross update. The latest news is that he may be recovered enough from his hamstring injury that he’s targeting a return to practice Saturday. Despite having elite speed when healthy, between injuries and lack of production, draft him at your own risk.