Training Camp Notes: R. Kelley hits the Ignition

It’s not the R&B star, it’s undrafted rookie running back Rob Kelley who is about to secure a spot on the Redskins’ roster. Seventh round rookie RB Keith Marshall hit the IR earlier this week, which all but assures a roster spot for one of Kelley or Mack Brown. Both Kelley and Brown impressed in Wednesday night’s final preseason game against the Buccaneers. Kelley amassed 99 yards on 16 carries while Brown led all backs in the game with 149 rushing yards and a touchdown on 19 carries. With starter Matt Jones on the shelf and pass-catching back Chris Thompson currently dealing with a shoulder issue, Kelley could be the team’s starting RB in their Monday night opener against the Steelers. Kelley has looked agile and decisive hitting holes this preseason. With a week until opening kickoff, Kelley deserves our attention after Round 12 of 12-team drafts and will now likely cost more than a buck in auctions.

Vikings’ General manager Rick Spielman announced on Thursday that Shaun Hill will remain the starting quarterback even if they pick up another quarterback before the start of the season. Hill is 36-years old and in his 15th season in the NFL, spending most of it as a backup to former first-round picks like Alex Smith, Matthew Stafford and Sam Bradford. His best season was with the Lions in 2010 when he threw for 2,686 yards and a 16:12 TD:INT ratio in 11 starts. Hill is a clear downgrade from Teddy Bridgewater, though it shouldn’t affect an already run-heavy offense. At most, the situation slightly downgrades up-and-coming wideout Stefon Diggs’ value.

Undrafted rookie D.J. Foster made the case for sneaking onto the Patriots’ 53-man roster with a fantastic performance against the Giants in the preseason finale. Foster caught nine of 10 targets for 110 yards and a touchdown as well gaining 22 yards on nine carries. With Dion Lewis beginning the season on the PUP list and Tyler Gaffney now dinged up, Foster is slated as the third man up on the depth chart behind LeGarrette Blount and James White. Foster is worthy of our end-game consideration in draft leagues or as a one dollar pickup in auction leagues.

Rams’ head coach Jeff Fisher stated that Sean Mannion, not first overall pick Jared Goff, would serve as Case Keenum’s backup if the season was to start this Sunday. Goff had another shaky outing in the preseason finale, going 6-for-16 for 67 yards, one touchdown, one interception and a lost fumble. There is no concern about Goff serving as the quarterback of the future, but for now it appears that the Rams plan to take it slowly with their prized pick. Goff has a reputation from scouts as a game manager and it may well turn out that second overall pick Carson Wentz becomes a more fantasy-friendly option.

DeVante Parker (hamstring) and Kenny Stills (back) were inactive for the Dolphins’ preseason finale as the team does not want to push them and make sure they are both 100 percent for the start of the season. It allowed rookie Leonte Carroo and Griff Whalen to get some extra snaps on Thursday. Whalen appears to have secured a spot as the team’s number four wideout behind Jarvis Landry, Parker and Stills, leading the team with 48 receiving yards on five receptions against the Titans. Carroo caught both of his targets for 17 yards and will likely be inactive for the season opener against the Seahawks.

The Steelers recently held a workout for suspended second-year back Karlos Williams, joining the Jets as teams that have put him through a workout. Williams made a big splash as a rookie for the Bills, gaining 517 yards at 5.6 yards-per-carry and scoring seven touchdowns. The Bills released Williams a couple of weeks ago after he was suspended four games for violating the NFL Policy and Program for Substances of Abuse. Williams is working on getting back into game shape and possibly helping a team out starting Week 5 of the season.