Market Report: Aug 14

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Market Report: Aug 14

Our Training Camp Market Report is intended to be a one-stop shop for the most important news from around the NFL during training camp. We’ll post a new Market Report every Friday during training camp to help our subscribers keep the pulse of what’s happening in the fantasy marketplace.

Note: All ADP data used in this article is courtesy of our partners at the NFFC and the data is used from drafts in the last month.

Catch up on previous training camp Market Reports

Read the August 7 Market Report

INJURY UPDATES FROM PREVIOUS REPORTS

Ke’Shawn Vaughn (RB, TB) — The Buccaneers activated Vaughn from the reserve/COVID-19 list on Aug. 9 after two weeks spent away from the team. The rookie has enough time to catch back up to speed, but he’s facing an uphill battle for early playing time after the team signed LeSean McCoy and with Bruce Arians pumping up Ronald Jones as the “main guy.” Vaughn’s is starting to plummet to 100+ picks into drafts, and we may have a buying opportunity if he falls a little more with RoJo’s ADP starting to soar.

T.Y. Hilton (WR, Ind) — The Colts activated Hilton (hamstring) from the active/NFI list on Aug. 12 after a 10-day rest. Hilton has plenty of time left in training camp to get on the same page with new QB Philip Rivers, but the minor hamstring scare is something to file away for later this year. Hilton has a history of nagging soft-tissue injuries in his background, which includes quad and calf injuries that limited him to 10 games last season. I’ve stayed away from Hilton at his sixth-round price this summer.

Jarvis Landry (WR, Cle) — The Browns activated Landry (hip) from the active/PUP list after a week away from the team. He needed hip surgery back in February, but his early activation off the PUP list in early August is a good sign for his Week 1 availability. Landry isn’t a sexy seventh-round pick, but he exceeds expectations every year.

Will Dissly (TE, Sea) — Dissly’s second remarkable recovery from a devastating leg injury in as many off-seasons is complete with Dissly returning to practice after 10 months off for his torn Achilles. Dissly tore his patellar tendon as a rookie in 2018, but he made it back for the start of his sophomore season before he tore his Achilles after six games last season. Dissly has posted a remarkable 31/418/6 receiving in just 10 career games, and he can be had for free in any draft (ADP 252). Russell Wilson also continued his push for the offense to play more aggressively and with more tempo, which could mean fantasy gold for this passing attack.

UPGRADES

Players whom we’re feeling more optimistic about based on training camp reports and injury news.

Quarterbacks

Russell Wilson (Sea) — Russ has been advocating for a more aggressive offensive approach from the start of games this off-season, and HC Pete Carroll acknowledged Wilson’s desire to play with more tempo back in February at the Combine. Wilson once again pushed for the ball to be in his hands more when he was recently asked about the #LetRussCook movement, which calls for the Seahawks to get away from their run-first mentality to let Russ work his magic. This isn’t the first time that the Seahawks have talked about letting Russ cook but it has been more persistent this off-season. We’ll need to hear conservative OC Brian Schottenheimer actually say the Seahawks will be airing it out more before we truly believe it, but it would still be wise to get some shares of Wilson, Tyler Lockett, and D.K. Metcalf in drafts just in case Schottenheimer finally loosens the leash on this passing game.

Running Backs

Alvin Kamara (NO) — Kamara played through knee, ankle, and back injuries last season, and he revealed back in March that he played most of the season with his leg at about 75% of its capabilities. Kamara gave us even more insight into what he was dealing with in early August when he revealed that he tore his knee in Week 6. He played through the injury the rest of the season, and Kamara avoided surgery to repair the tear this off-season. Kamara had a down 2019 by his standards, but he has a great chance to return to his hyper-efficient ways this season. I’ve personally been drafting him as the RB3 this summer, and he’s our overall RB4 in our site rankings.

Miles Sanders (Phi) — It’s looking more and more likely that Sanders is going to be a bell-cow back in this Eagles backfield this 2020 after Lamar Miller signed with the Patriots. Devonta Freeman is the only realistic back still available on the market who could knock Sanders out of that role, and Freeman will need to lower his asking price first before he lands with any team. Our Adam Caplan has been all over Sanders’ bell-cow potential all summer long, and he’s in a prime spot to give us fantasy goodness as a runner and as a receiver. Don’t be afraid to pull the trigger on Sanders in the mid-to-late first round.

Clyde Edwards-Helaire (KC) — Edwards-Helaire opened Kansas City’s first padded practice of training camp as the team’s featured back. HC Andy Reid said after practice that CEH will continue to see a lot of work with the first-team offense. CEH will need to fall flat on his face to not open the season as the team’s featured back at this point after Damien Williams’s decision to opt-out. Edwards-Helaire is inside our top-10 at running back, and fantasy drafters should consider selecting CEH as a mid-to-late first-round pick.

Le’Veon Bell (NYJ) — Bell and HC Adam Gase have had a contentious relationship from the start, but Gase said his lead back is “extremely motivated” and is in “phenomenal shape” heading into 2020. Bell wants to play this season in the 210-215 pound range, and he said that he’s the lightest he’s weighed since high school. Bell seems motivated to put his miserable first season with the Jets behind him after he averaged just 3.2 YPC and he found the end zone only four times. The problem is Gase has been non-committal on how he’ll use Bell and Frank Gore this season, and if there’s one thing we know about Gore it’s that he always plays a bigger role than anticipated. Gore has missed time in camp with a minor hamstring injury, but it’s not expected to be a long-term issue. We’d consider Bell if he falls a bit into the fourth round, but we’d rather drafts RBs early and hammer WRs in the same range that Bell is being drafted.

Lamar Miller and Rex Burkhead (NE) — Miller and the Patriots agreed to a one-year contract to provide insurance for third-year RB Sony Michel, who is currently on the PUP list after he needed foot surgery in May. Miller isn’t even guaranteed to make it out of camp since the Patriots have very little invested into him, but he’s at least resurfaced after tearing both his ACL and MCL last August. The Patriots actually placed Miller on the PUP list after he signed his pact, which is good news for Damien Harris and Burkhead. Miller is still off the re-draft radar for now but that could change if we get some good reports on Miller and if Michel looks destined to stay on the PUP list to open the season. Burkhead has been the forgotten man in this backfield, and he could be the guy with a bigger role early in the year if the Patriots are worried about both Michel and Harris.

Benny Snell (Pit) — Snell is the latest Steelers back to transform his body from Year One in the NFL to Year Two, following similar paths to Le’Veon Bell in 2014 and James Conner in 2018. It’s unclear how much weight Snell has lost, but The Athletic’s Mark Kaboly wrote that Snell has undergone a “significant transformation” from last season when he was listed at 224 pounds. Snell’s stock is rising a bit heading into his second season with Jaylen Samuels potentially being on the roster bubble. Pittsburgh doesn’t have a true handcuff for Conner heading into the season, and we’d still prefer to draft Anthony McFarland toward the end of drafts because he’s the more talented all-around player. If Conner went down this season and Samuels is indeed released, Snell would likely take over the lead runner role with McFarland liberally mixing in as the passing back and as a change-of-pace option.

Wide Receivers

Will Fuller (Hou) — Fuller reported to camp with a little more weight on his frame at 190 pounds, up from his listed weight of 184 pounds from last season. Bill O’Brien told the Houston media this week that Fuller worked specifically on his lower-body strength on a “unique ramp-up program.” O’Brien’s comments came two weeks after B.O.B. said at the start of camp that Fuller looks as good as he’s ever looked and that they’re excited to have him for 16 weeks. Fuller has yet to put together a 16-game season in four years because of a number of soft-tissue injuries, but he’s put the work in this off-season to potentially play a full season. We’ll see if his body cooperates, but Fuller has tremendous upside with a potential usage bump playing with one of the league’s elite QBs in Deshaun Watson. Fuller’s upside outweighs his injury risk at his current seventh-round ADP.

A.J. Green (Cin) — Green has missed his last 24 games because of foot and ankle injuries, but he’s impressed his teammates in his return to practice in the early part of training camp. Fellow wide receiver Alex Erickson said Green’s explosiveness and his quick-twitch cutting has been evident in his route running during the early part of camp. Green also spent the off-season training his body to avoid more ankle injuries after dealing with ankle and foot in recent years. Green has had more than enough time to build his body back up, and it wouldn’t be shocking to see him have a career resurgence as he plays for a new contract with an up-and-coming star in Joe Burrow. Green has routinely been a WR1 when he’s been healthy during his career, and it’s tough to find WRs with his potential at his current ADP of 71.

A.J. Brown (Ten) — Brown admitted to hitting a bit of a wall late in games last season as his conditioning wasn’t quite up to snuff as a rookie. He said he left some plays out on the field because of some sloppy route running late in games when he was fatigued. Brown has come to Titans camp in much better shape in Year Two, and he looks primed to keep his momentum going from the end of last season when he exploded for 22+ FP in four of his final six regular-season games with Ryan Tannehill at quarterback. We prefer other WRs going off the board around him, but he’s still worth toward the back end of the fourth round.

Tyler Lockett and D.K. Metcalf (Sea) — Russell Wilson has been advocating for a more aggressive offensive approach from the start of games this off-season, and HC Pete Carroll acknowledged Wilson’s desire to play with more tempo back in February at the Combine. Wilson once again pushed for the ball to be in his hands more when he was recently asked about the #LetRussCook movement, which calls for the Seahawks to get away from their run-first mentality to let Russ work his magic. This isn’t the first time that the Seahawks have talked about letting Russ cook but it has been more persistent this off-season. We’ll need to hear conservative OC Brian Schottenheimer actually say the Seahawks will be airing it out more before we truly believe it, but it would still be wise to get some shares of Wilson, Lockett, and Metcalf in drafts just in case Schottenheimer finally loosens the leash on this passing game.

Tee Higgins (Cin) — John Ross stepped away from Bengals camp to help to take care of his son who recently tested positive for COVID-19. Ross is doing what’s right for his family, but it’s going to give Higgins a chance to establish himself as the preferred #3 WR. Ross and Higgins will likely split time at the #3 WR spot to start this season, but Higgins is going to have a chance to get some extra reps with Joe Burrow before the start of the season. Ross should be back for the season opener against the Chargers, but he’ll have to quarantine before he can return to the field. Higgins is worth a look in the last rounds of best-ball formats, especially if you’re looking to stack the Bengals after drafting Burrow as your #2 QB.

Tight Ends

George Kittle (SF) and Travis Kelce (KC) — The NFL’s two best tight ends got fat new contracts on the same day. Kittle and the 49ers agreed to terms on a five-year, $75 million extension with $30 million guaranteed, which will make him the highest-paid tight end with an annual average value of $15 million. Just hours later, Kelce became the second-highest-paid tight end ($14.3 million AAV) after inking a four-year, $57.25 million contract with $28 million guaranteed. Kittle and Kelce are fine picks in the late second after the top RBs like Josh Jacobs and Austin Ekeler are off the board.

Defense/Special Teams

Cowboys — The Cowboys beefed up their D-line by signing former Vikings DE Everson Griffen to a one-year, $6 million contract, which will help fill the void left behind by Robert Quinn. The Cowboys also brought in DTs Gerald McCoy and Dontari Poe to pair with DeMarcus Lawrence and Griffen to form a formidable starting four. Griffen has eight sacks or more in each of his last five seasons when he’s played 15 or 16 games so we’re feeling a little better about the Cowboys as a second D/ST in best-ball formats.

DOWNGRADES

Players whom we’re feeling less optimistic about based on training camp reports and injury news.

Quarterbacks

None of note.

Running Backs

Todd Gurley (Atl) — It didn’t take long for the negative reports to start trickling out about Gurley’s health at the beginning of his new stint with the Falcons. ESPN’s Vaughn McClure reported Atlanta is considering limiting Gurley’s workload in training camp after he was already walking with a noticeable limp during the acclimation period. A source from the Rams also told McClure, “He can’t put his foot in the dirt and go like the old Todd Gurley, but he could still be a productive back.” Gurley may get as much volume as he can handle in this backfield, but the problem is we have no idea how much volume his body will actually be able to handle and/or if he can be effective without any explosiveness left. Gurley is one of our players to avoid this season, and we’ll be watching closely to see if Ito Smith, Brian Hill, or Qadree Ollison can separate for the #2 RB job to see if we can find a Falcons back worth drafting.

Sony Michel and Damien Harris (NE) — The Patriots signed Lamar Miller to a one-year deal, which isn’t exactly a ringing endorsement for Michel and his injured foot. Michel started training camp on the PUP list after he needed foot surgery in May. Miller’s signing is also a bit of indictment on second-year pro Harris who appeared in just two games last season. Miller isn’t even guaranteed to make it out of camp since the Patriots have very little invested into him, but Michel is still completely off of our draft radars since he could start the season on the PUP list. The Patriots actually placed Miller on the PUP list after he signed his pact, which gives Harris more hope to start the season if Miller isn’t ready for Week 1. Harris is only worth a late-round dart throw in case he gets the chance to be the primary runner in this backfield at the start of the season, but he’s not going to contribute much in the passing game with James White and Rex Burkhead soaking up all of the targets.

Wide Receivers

John Ross (Cin) — Ross stepped away from Bengals camp to help to take care of his son who recently tested positive for COVID-19. Ross is doing what’s right for his family, but he could potentially fall behind a bit with rookie Tee Higgins likely to be the biggest beneficiary. Ross and Higgins are likely to split time at the #3 WR spot to start this season, but Higgins is going to have a chance to get some extra reps with Joe Burrow before the start of the season. Ross should be back for the season opener against the Chargers, but he’ll have to quarantine before he can return to the field. Ross should go undrafted except in deeper formats.

Sammy Watkins (KC) — Watkins is one of our players to avoid this season and, in a recent interview with the Kansas City media, it sounded like Watkins won’t be drafting himself either in 2020. He told the media that he’s fine with his reduced role in this potent offense and that he chose to stick around with the Chiefs to help them in a reduced role. Watkins said, “As a receiver, yeah, of course, I want more balls and I would love to have more balls. But that’s not my focus. My focus is getting the win and going out there and having fun.” Watkins is currently being selected around 145 picks into drafts, right in front of three of our favorite late-round targets in DeSean Jackson, Michael Pittman, and Brandon Aiyuk.

Denzel Mims (NYJ) — Mims injured his hamstring in camp this week and the injury is serious enough that he doesn’t have a timetable for his return. With Mims absent from practice, the all-time great Vyncint Smith is running with the first-string offense next to Breshad Perriman and Jamison Crowder. It looks like Mims could fall behind Smith for snaps early in the season if the rookie is looking at a prolonged absence. Mims was a borderline option at the end of drafts before his injury, and we’d now hold off on selecting him re-draft formats since he’s likely to get off to a slow start.

Tight Ends

None of note.

Defense/Special Teams

None of note.

Tom is a Senior Writer at Fantasy Points who specializes in fantasy and betting analysis. He’ll be helping you to navigate the waiver wire and manage your fantasy teams while also keeping our betting content robust all year long, especially during the season. Tom's Best Bets against the spread won at 61.5% clip in 2019 and he was a perfect 8-0 on his Best Bets for season win totals in 2020.

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