Why It’s Worth Trading For Jaguars QB Gardner Minshew

The Jacksonville Jaguars have the No. 1 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. With fair assumption, that first pick of the Urban Meyer era will be former Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence (barring any unseen circumstances). If the Jaguars decide to make Lawrence the future of their franchise, then they would most likely end up signing a veteran backup QB to serve as mentor for the young QB.. 

If that’s the case, that would make Jaguars’ Gardner Minshew expendable, allowing them to explore a trade to possibly get a pretty decent return of draft capital for him. That is what appears to be happening now, as NFL Network’s Ian Rapaport (@RapSheet) who reports that they have been receiving calls from teams inquiring about Minshew.

If you’re a franchise that is searching to add a quarterback, but don’t have a lot of cap flexibility, or a high draft pick, you should look at acquiring Minshew. There is so much potential value acquiring the former 2019 6th-round pick. He has exceeded all expectations going 6-6 as a rookie starter, and has proved he’s more than capable of handling adversity.

In his two seasons so far in the NFL, in 20 combined starts he has thrown for 5,530 YDS, 37 TD-11 INT. With the recent free agent signings of veteran QBs such as; Ryan Fitzpatrick, Andy Dalton, Jacoby Brissett and Tyrod Taylor all earning more than $5M, it would be such a bargain to acquire a QB that that has starting experience and will be only 25-years old next season.. It would not cost much money at all to acquire him, as he would make $850k in ’21 and $765k in ’22 if a team acquired him via trade.

Of course, if you want to acquire Gardner it would cost draft capital, but when you look around the league at the amount that other teams have had to give up to acquire a caliber starting QB is a hefty amount (Matt Stafford, Carson Wentz, Jared Goff are recent examples). 

One quarterback that continues to be brought up in trade rumors is New York Jets QB Sam Darnold, because they are in pretty much the same situation – as they select No. 2 overall. When you compare Minshew & Darnold, there is a lot more value acquiring Minshew. 

Teams won’t have to give up as much in draft capital, compared to Darnold. Also, you don’t have to make a decision to financially commit long-term to Minshew; opposed to Darnold would be a free agent if he’s not offered a 5th-year option.

Darnold might be the bigger name because of his draft pick, but he has not done anything on the field to demonstrate that he’s clearly a better QB than Minshew.. Darnold has thrown 28 more career interceptions than Minshew, while only throwing 8 more touchdowns in his career so far than Minshew. Minshew notably has thrown more touchdowns than Daniel Jones, who was drafted 1st-round in the same draft.

A team like the San Francisco 49ers who have Jimmy Garoppolo should look to acquire Minshew. Garoppolo is about 5 years older than Minshew and only has 14 more career passing touchdowns, despite already earning over $86M in his career so far (according to OverTheCap). 

Another team that would make sense would be the New England Patriots, as Minshew would be able to compete with Cam Newton, who has only thrown 8 touchdowns since 2018 (17 games).

Stay tuned and follow @OffTheGridiron_ on Twitter for the latest updates regarding Minshew and around the rest of the league.

Buffalo Bills 2021 Offseason Preview

For the first time in over 2 decades, there is a new team to beat in the AFC East and it is the Buffalo Bills. After finishing last season with a 13-3 record, one game away from reaching the Super Bowl, the opportunity is here to solidify themselves this offseason as one of, if no the team to beat this season in the AFC and NFL.

Buffalo does not have many glaring weaknesses on this team, as general manager Brandon Beane has done a great job building out this roster over the past few seasons. If Beane can upgrade a couple of positions on each side of the ball could be enough to really have a chance to win it all this upcoming season.

Projected Estimated Salary Cap: $6.2M

Total Draft Picks: 6 Picks; 1st Round (30th Overall), 2nd, 3rd, (2) 5th, 6th

Offense:

Free Agents: Matt Barkley, T.J. Yeldon, Taiwan Jones, Isaiah Mckenzie, Andre Roberts, Tyler Kroft, Daryl Williams, Ty Nsekhe, Jon Feliciano, Brian Winters

2020 Rankings: Passing: 3rd (288.8 yards per game), Rushing: 20th (107.7 yards per game), Scoring: 2nd (31.3 points per game)

Key Positional Needs: TE, G, WR, RB, Backup OT

Quarterback:

Starter: Josh Allen

Backups: Jake Fromm, Davis Webb, FA: Matt Barkley

In the past it wasn’t usual to see a quarterback start during their rookie season. Allen ended up starting 11 games in his rookie season in 2018 where he struggled a ton.. Last season, he had an incredible 2020 season, finishing 3rd in the MVP race; 4,544 yards also rushed for 421 for 8 TD and now has 1,562 rushing yards for 25 TDs in his 3 years combined. Allen’s past 3 seasons:

2018: 10 TD-12 INT, 52.8% completion %, 67.9 passer rating.

2019: 20 TD-9 INT, 58.8 comp. & 85.3 passer rating.

2020: 37 TD-10 INT, 69.2 comp. % 107.2 passer rating.

Running Back:

Devin Singletary, Zack Moss, Antonio Williams, Christian Wade, FA: T.J. Yeldon, Taiwan Jones

One of their biggest weaknesses last season was their rushing offense which finished 20th in the league, despite having one of the best rushing QBs in the league.

Players to Target: Rex Burkhead, Michael Carter (North Carolina), Jaret Patterson (Buffalo):

Rex Burkhead would provide them a solid veteran backup that can provide them with receiving help out of the backfield. UNC RB Michael Carter is a bull, he’s a machine that never stops churning, and would fit in so well in Daboll’s offense. Jaret Patterson, is a walking highlight reel and was a star this season at Buffalo, which the local ties definitely helps too, but is a very similar back towards how Singletary played at FAU.

Fullback:

Reggie Gilliam

Wide Receivers:

Stefon Diggs, Cole Beasley, Gabriel Davis, Isaiah Hodgins, Duke Williams, Jake Kumerow, Tanner Gentry; CUT: John Brown, FA: Isaiah Mckenzie, Andre Roberts

John Brown turned out to be such a great addition for them when he signed in Baltimore, but his cap hit was way too high for his age and they had to cut ties. They need to add one more receiver that can go alongside All-Pro Stefon Diggs. Diggs was the perfect addition last offseason for this offense, especially towards helping with Allen’s growth. Slot receiver Cole Beasley quietly had one of the best seasons in the league last year for a wideout, earning All-Pro honors as well. Gabriel Davis had a terrific rookie season last year and will have plenty of opportunities moving forward in this offense. Even with Davis, the Bills still need to another starting caliber receiver as it showed it wasn’t enough last year even with John Brown.

Player to Target: Curtis Samuel: Samuel, at 24-years old is one of the bright young receivers in this league, and could be the missing piece for what this offense needs. Samuel is an elite weapon and can be used all throughout the field, in motion, on reverse sweeps; whatever it takes to get the ball in his hands.

Tight Ends:

Dawson Knox, Lee Smith, Tommy Sweeney, Nate Becker; FA: Tyler Kroft

Players to Target: Hunter Henry, Kyle Rudolph & Jesse James:

The Bills really can use a veteran TE that can be relied upon in goal line and 3rd-down situations. The TE that would seem to make perfect sense is Hunter Henry or if not, Kyle Rudolph, then Jesse James. All 3 are solid blockers, as well as reliable receivers that could help mentor Dawson Know, and would all be an upgrade over Lee Smith.

Offensive Line:

LT: Dion Dawkins, Ryan Bates, Trey Adams; FA: Ty Nsekhe

LG: Ike Boettger

C: Mitch Morse, Jordan Devey

RG: Cody Ford; FA: Jon Feliciano, Brain Winters

RT: Darryl Williams (re-signed)

Player to Target: G Joe Thuney:

The addition of Thuney would complete this offensive line, slotting him in at LG. The former New England guard could look to seek revenge and join forces with the Bills. He will definitely get paid as he is the top free agent on the market, but they have some cap flexibility to possibly be able to afford him.

Defense (4-3):

Free Agents: Trent Murphy, Josh Norman, Dean Marlowe

2020 Rankings: Pass: 13th (232.9 yards per game), Rush: 17th (119.6 per game), Scoring: 16th (23.4 points per game)

Key Positional Needs: DE, DT, CB, OLB, Backup Safety

Defensive Line:

Ends: Jerry Hughes, Mario Addison, A.J. Epenesa, Darryl Johnson, Bryan Cox Jr., Mike Love; FA: Trent Murphy

Tackles: Ed Oliver, Vernon Butler, Harrison Phillips, Justin Zimmer, Brandin Bryant; CUT: Quinton Jefferson

Players to Target: DT Kawann Short & DE Ryan Kerrigan

There’s no secret that the Bills love adding former players in Carolina since there’s a ton of ties there with the coaching staff, so expect veteran Kawann Short to consider joining the Bills. Kerrigan has spent his entire career in Washington, but it seems like he would be the perfect fit to replace DE Trent Murphy if he leaves in free agency.

Linebackers:

Outside: Matt Milano (re-signed), A.J. Klein, Tyrel Dodson, Andre Smith

Inside: Tremaine Edmunds, Tyler Matakevich

Milano just agreed to a 4-year, $44M deal, so don’t expect them to be spending much money elsewhere at the linebacker position this offseason.

Secondary:

Cornerbacks: Tre’Davious White, Levi Wallace*, Taron Johnson, Siran Neal, Cam Lewis, Dane Jackson; FA: Josh Norman

Free Safety: Micah Hyde, Jaquan Johnson; FA: Dean Marlowe

Strong Safety: Jordan Poyer, Josh Thomas

Player to Target: CB Casey Hayward: The former Chargers CB was just let go as they said he did not fit their new defensive scheme. Hayward would be the perfect addition at CB to play on the other side of Tre’Davious White. This would allow him the opportunity to reunite with his former teammate in Green Bay – free safety Micah Hyde.

Special Teams:

Kicker: Tyler Bass

Punters: Corey Bojorquez

Baltimore Ravens 2021 Offseason Preview

The Ravens finished last season with a 11-5 record, after a 14-2 campaign in 2019. Former 2019 MVP Lamar Jackson won his first-career playoff game against the Titans in the wild-card round, but were defeated by his fellow draft class QB Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills. 

It’s time to start feeling like there’s a sense of urgency to go “all-in”, as their time with Lamar playing on a rookie contract is almost up. Lamar’s affordable rookie deal allows them the cap flexibility of paying the other star players on their roster. They will need to approach this offseason on finding which guys are the ‘missing pieces’ that could potentially push them over the hump; increasing their chances of competing for a Super Bowl title next season.

Current Estimated Salary Cap: $20.2M

Total Draft Picks: 7; 1st (27 overall), 2nd, 3rd, 4th, (2) 5th, 6th

Key Positional Needs: WR, OT (If Brown gets traded), Interior OL, Backup QB 

Offense:

Free Agents: Willie Snead, Dez Bryant, Chris Moore, D.J. Fluker, Matt Skura

Rankings: Pass: 32nd (171.2 yards per game); Rush: 1st (191.9 yards per game); Scoring: 7th (29.3 points per game)

Quarterback

Starter: Lamar Jackson

Backups: Trace McSorley, Tyler Huntley

Jackson was coming off an MVP season in 2019, and he followed that up with a pretty good season in 2020 for the most part, some ups & downs. The playoffs is where he needs to start improving, as he’s now had 1 TD-4 INT (3 games) in the past two postseasons. Veteran Robert Griffin III was let go after the season, so it will be interesting to see if they chose to go with Trace McSorely as the backup, or sign another veteran backup to mentor Lamar.

Running Back:

JK Dobbins, Gus Edwards, Justice Hill, Ty’Son Williams

Baltimore had the No. 1 rushing offense in the NFL last season, (averaging 191.9 yards per game) which a lot of that had to do with Jackson adding 1,005 yards (67 yards per game) to that total. With the release of veteran Mark Ingram, it now appears next season will be the JK Dobbins show. The former Ohio State RB was a terrific addition in the 2nd round, providing an explosive rusher to pair alongside Lamar. 

They placed a tender on RFA Gus Edwards, who has been solid the past few seasons as a backup role, he’ll take on more of a role next season if they don’t add anybody. Justice Hill has been a disappointment so far, they need more out of him if he wants to stick around here.

Player to Target: Chris Evans (Michigan), Elijah Mitchell (Lousiana): A mid-round prospect like Evans and Mitchell would make sense in adding to this backfield. 

Fullback:

Patrick Ricard

Wide Receiver:

Marquise Brown, Miles Boykin, Devin Duvernay, James Proche, Antoine Wesley, Jaylon Moore, Deon Cain, Binjimen Victor, FA: Willie Snead, Chris Moore

Wide receiver is arguably without a doubt the biggest need of any position this offseason. They desperately need to find a No. 1 option for Lamar, they had a terrible run-pass balance last season – they were the No. 1 rushing offense, but the worst passing offense in the NFL last season (averaging only 171.2 yards per game). 

Marquise “Hollywood” Brown is a dynamic, explosive wideout but does not have the size to be a No. 1 to take on consistent press coverage from opposing No. 1 corners. They need to spend money on a reliable receiver with size that Lamar can look for, especially when things get cold and nasty weather late into the season.

Players to Target: Kenny Golladay, Will Fuller, Sammy Watkins, Trade for Allen Robinson:

The fact of the matter is you can pretty much name any top receiver in the NFL and add them to this list, because the Ravens NEED to add one… This team seems like they have pretty much everything going for them to compete for a Super Bowl, but what they lack is receivers, which is starting to really limit the potential of this offense. They need to do whatever they can to land a top receiver.. Try first in free agency for a guy like Kenny Golladay or Will Fuller, even Sammy Watkins, then if that fails, they might have to try and leverage OT Orlando Brown who made it clear he wants out…

Tight End

Mark Andrews, Nick Boyle, Eric Tomlinson, Jacob Breeland, Eli Wolf

This group is led by Mark Andrews who is one of the best TEs in the league entering the prime of his career, alongside Nick Boyle who is one of the best blocking TEs around, so there really is not much of an immediate need to upgrade here.

Offensive Line:

LT: Ronnie Stanley, Orlando Brown

LG: Bradley Bozeman, Ben Bredeson 

C: Patrick Mekari, Trystan Colon-Castillo, Greg Mancz, FA: Matt Skura

RG: Ben Powers, Tyre Phillips, FA: D.J. Fluker

RT: Orlando Brown, Tyre Phillips

The Ravens offensive line has a very rare problem and that is they have two All-Pro caliber offensive tackles that both want to play on the left side.. It’s rare to come across and draft a franchise left tackle in the draft, but doing it twice with Ronnie Stanley and Orlando Brown is starting to cause a logjam. Brown only wants to play LT, but they already paid Stanley top dollar.. 

Players to Consider: Cedric Ogbuehi, Jermaine Eluemunor:

If Orlando Brown gets traded, they need to pick up a RT to step in and replace him. If they chose to add his replacement in free agency, two players to consider are Cedric Ogbuehi & Jermaine Eluemunor who was drafted in the 5th-round by Baltimore.

Defense (3-4):

Free Agents: Derek Wolfe, Jihad Ward, Matt Judon, Yannick Ngakoue, Tyus Bowser, Anthony Levine, Morgan Cox

2020 Rankings: Pass: 6th (221.1 yards per game); Rush: 8th (108.8 yards per game); 2nd (18.9 points per game)

Key Positional Needs: Edge (DE/OLB), SS, ILB

Defensive Line:

Ends: Chauncey Rivers, FA: Derek Wolfe

Tackles: Calais Campbell, Brandon Williams, Justin Ellis, Justin Madubuike, Broderick Washington Jr., Braxton Hoyett, Aaron Crawford

The defensive tackles is a pretty loaded group after they added veteran Calais Campbell last offseason. Williams & Ellis are two reliable veteran defensive tackles, while Madubuike & Washington Jr. are two young developing tackles that were each selected in last year’s draft. They can benefit from adding an edge rusher on the defensive line.

Player to Target: Brent Urban: Urban would provide a nice replacement for Derek Wolfe if he is unable to return. Urban previously spent 5 years in Baltimore (14-18’), so a return could be possible. 

Linebackers:

Outside: Pernell McPhee (RS), Jaylon Ferguson, Aaron Adeoye, FA: Matt Judon, Tyus Bowser

Inside: Patrick Queen, Malik Harrison, L.J. Fort, Chris Board, Otaro Alaka, Kristian Welch

General Manager Eric D’Costa added to this linebacker group in last year’s draft by adding rookies Patrick Queen & Malik Harrison. Queen flew all over the field and made a lot of impactful plays, racking up 106 combined tackles, but the one downside to his game that he’ll need to improve upon was missed tackles. Queen had the most missed tackles (21) in the NFL. In terms of the outside, Judon & Bowser are both free agents, so if both of them leave, this will be a need for them to replace both of them.

Player to Target: OLB Tarell Basham: Basham is an edge-rushing outside linebacker that fits in a 3-4 scheme, who is about to turn 27 this month. He’s played on the Colts and Jets and has 7 ½ career sacks, but the best football appears to be ahead of him; he had 3 forced fumbles last season and a career-high 3.5 sacks.

Secondary:

Cornerbacks: Marcus Peters, Marlon Humphrey, Tavon Young, Jimmy Smith, Anthony Averett, Iman Marshall, Davontae Harris, Khalil Dorsey, Chris Westry

Free Safety: DeShon Elliot, Jordan Richards

Strong Safety: Chuck Clark, Nigel Warrior, FA: Anthony Levine

After finishing 6th in pass defense last season, secondary help isn’t a dire need for them this offseason like it has in the past. They have 2 of the Top CBs in the NFL in Peters & Humphrey, as well as Jimmy Smith & Tavon Young who always are dependable as long as they can stay on the field. DeShon Elliot took on a huge role replacing Earl Thomas, and he did an excellent job proving he’s more than capable of starting at FS. 

Player to Consider: S Duron Harmon: Adding a veteran strong safety to compete with Chuck Clark would make sense, one name to consider is former Patriots and most recently, Detroit Lions.

Special Teams:

Kicker: Justin Tucker

Punters: Sam Koch, Johnny Townsend*

 

Atlanta Falcons 2021 Offseason Preview

The Falcons finished last season with a extremely disappointing record of 4-12, where former head coach Dan Quinn ended up being fired midseason. Following Quinn’s departure, they started playing some inspired football under interim HC (and now the Rams new DC) Raheem Morris. Atlanta ultimately was just completely unable to stop the pass, as they ended up finishing as the worst pass defense in the NFL (averaging 293.6 yards allowed per game).

Former Tennessee Titans offensive coordinator Arthur Smith has been hired as their new head coach. Smith, will attempt to implement the innovative schemes that he ran in Tennessee, into this offense – while utilizing their talented skill players already on this roster. They’ve also hired a new general manager, Terry Fontenot, which opens many questions on whether the two faces of their franchise, QB Matt Ryan & WR Julio Jones, will play for them this season, as they’re extremely limited cap space.

Current Estimated Salary Cap: $-15.7M 

Total Draft Picks: 9; 1st Rd (4th Overall), 2nd, 3rd, 4th, (3) 5th, (2) 6th

Offense:

2020 Rankings: Pass: 5th (272.7 yards per game), Rush: 27th (95.8 yards per game), Scoring: 16th (24.8 points per game)

Key Positional Needs: RB, QB, TE, Guard

Quarterback

Starter: Matt Ryan, Backup: N/A

Matty Ice has been their franchise QB for the past 13 seasons – since they drafted him in 2008. With 3 years still left on his contract, the future for Ryan as their franchise QB is definitely in doubt. He is 36-years old and has publicly expressed that he feels like he has a solid 2-4 years left to offer, but the question is whether how much of that time will be played in Atlanta.. 

Players to Target: No. 4 Overall: Trey Lance (North Dakota State), Justin Fields (Ohio State), Zach Wilson (BYU):

Drafting a QB 4th-overall is extremely tempting, especially when new GM Terry Fontenot has to decide upon whether one of these top QB prospects are worth investing in to ultimately build this franchise around. Trevor Lawrence is inevitably the first-overall pick, so after that the three QBs that would make sense for Atlanta would be Wilson, Fields and Lance. If Wilson gets chosen by the Jets at No. 2 overall, it would be a real surprise if they chose anybody other than Fields or Lance at pick No. 4.

Running Back:

Ito Smith, Qadree Ollison, Tony Brooks-James, FA: Todd Gurley, Brian Hill

Atlanta’s run game last season was dreadful and there is no other way of putting it.. It was one of the worst in the NFL, finishing 27th in rushing yards per game (95.8). Former 3x Pro Bowl RB Todd Gurley signed a 1-year deal last offseason, and that did not work out very well to say the least… Gurley had a career-low 678 yards in 15 games — 3.5 yards per attempt & 45.2 yards per game. 

Players to Target: NFL Draft: Early 2nd-round or trade up in late-first if either player is available: Najee Harris (Alabama) & Travis Etienne (Clemson):

They definitely should look to add one of the two premier running backs early in this draft if the opportunity presents itself. When new head coach Arthur Smith was the OC in Tennessee, the Titans were the 2nd-best rushing offense in the NFL last season – led by RB Derrick Henry. If Alabama’s Najee Harris were to fall to them in the early 2nd-round, it would set up for the perfect situation, as Harris could be used very similar towards how Henry is used in Tennessee, but actually offers a lot more help than Henry does in the pass game.

Fullback

Keith Smith

Wide Receiver:

Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley, Russell Gage, Olamide Zaccheaus, Christian Blake, Brandon Powell, Greg Dortch, Chris Rowland, FA: Laquon Treadwell

7x Pro Bowl WR Julio Jones’ future in Atlanta appears to be murky, as trade rumors continue to float around – since there’s a new GM & coaching staff, as well as their issue with cap flexibility. Trading Julio could be in the cards, especially after Calvin Ridley breakout 2020 season (90-1,374-9). Another receiver that quietly had a breakout season, was former 2018 6th-round pick Russell Gage who caught 72 passes for 786 yards and 4 scores. If Jones does not get traded, then adding a receiver would not be a major need for them, as Zaccheaus & Blake are solid rotational receivers.

Tight Ends:

Hayden Hurst, Jaeden Graham, FA: Luke Stocker

Former Baltimore 1st-round TE Hayden Hurst did a pretty nice job replacing Austin Hooper last season, (56-571-6) but can definitely be used more next season. They should look to add a No. 2 TE to pair alongside him in either free agency or the draft. 

Player to Target: TE Trey Burton: Burton would make a nice addition alongside Hayden Hurst, which could allow them to use a 2 TE set, without having to spend a ton on him. If they weren’t in cap trouble, former Titans TE Jonnu Smith would be a great addition to pair with his former OC.

Offensive Line:

LT: Jake Matthews, Matt Gono

LG: Willie Wright, CUT: James Carpenter, FA: Justin McCray

C: Matt Hennessy, FA: Alex Mack

RG: Chris Lindstrom

RT: Kaleb McGary, Willie Beavers; FA: John Wetzel

With the release of veteran guard James Carpenter, left guard is the one need on their offensive line. 

Player to Target: Quinton Spain spent time with Arthur Smith in Tennessee, he would be a nice plug-in-play replacement in free agency at left guard.

Defense (4-3):

Free Agents: Steven Means, Charles Harris, LaRoy Reynolds, Edmond Robinson, Darqueze Dennard, Blidi Wreh-Wilson, Sharrod Neasman, Ricardo Allen, Keanu Neal, Damontae Kazee

2020 Rankings: Pass: 32nd (293.6 yards per game); Rush: 6th (104.8 yards per game); Scoring: 19th (25.9 points per game)

Key Positional Needs: Safety, Edge Rusher, CB, ILB

Defensive Line:

Ends: Dante Fowler, Jacob Tuioti-Mariner, FA: Allen Bailey, Steven Means, Charles Harris

Tackles: Grady Jarrett, Tyeler Davison, Marlon Davidson, John Cominsky, Deadrin Senat, Chris Slayton

This defense had a ton of issues last season, but there was one bright spot and it was their run defense. They finished 6th in the NFL against the run, averaging 104.8 yards allowed per game. This unit is anchored by their two disruptive interior defenders; Grady Jarrett and Tyeler Davison. Adding a pass rusher at defensive end is a real crucial need this offseason, and with their lack of funds, it would make sense to add one in the early 2nd or 3rd round.

Player to Target: EDGE Carlos Basham Jr. (Wake Forest): Basham Jr. is a disruptive edge-rusher that would make a great fit in their 4-3 scheme as a DE. Adding Basham Jr. in the 2nd or 3rd round would help bolster their pass rush up front off the edge.

Linebackers:

Outside: Foyesade Oluokun, Mykal Walker, FA: LaRoy Reynolds

Inside: Deion Jones, FA: Edmond Robinson

The Falcons gave up the 2nd-most YAC per game, and while a lot of that was due to the secondary, this linebacker group could benefit from building upon its depth. This group is led by inside linebacker Deion Jones. They’ve received strong play last year from rookie 4th-round pick Mykal Walker, as well as 2018 6th-round pick Foye Oluokun.

Players to Target: Anthony Walker: Former Colts ILB Anthony Walker would make a great addition towards their depth behind Deion Jones.

Secondary:

Cornerbacks: AJ Terrell, Kendall Sheffield, Isaiah Oliver, Tyler Hall, Chris Williamson, Delrick Adams, FA: Darqueze Dennard, Blidi Wreh-Wilson

Free Safety: N/A, FA: Ricardo Allen, Sharrod Neasman

Strong Safety: Jaylinn Hawkins, T.J. Green, FA: Keanu Neal, Damontae Kazee

Their biggest need this offseason is secondary help, in every position, as they finished as the worst pass defense in the NFL in 2020 (averaging 293.6 yards per game). It became a running joke that their defense couldn’t stop any QB last season.. They added former Clemson CB A.J. Terrell in the first round last draft, but they need to do a lot more to improve this unit… Every one of their starting safeties is a free agent (Neal, Allen, Kazee) and they need to add at least 2 cornerbacks.

Players to Target: Malcolm Butler, Lamarcus Joyner, Malik Hooker, Xavier Woods, Trevon Moehrig (TCU), Richie Grant (UCF)

ATL Special Teams:

Kicker: Younghoe Koo, Elliot Fry

Punters: Sterling Hofrichter

Arizona Cardinals 2021 Offseason Preview

The Cardinals finished last season with a disappointing 8-8 record in head coach Kliff Kingsbury & former 2019 1st-overall pick QB Kyler Murray second season paired with one another in the NFL. This offseason is very important for them if they want a chance at qualifying for a playoff berth; they must upgrade in several positions.

They’ve already came firing out of the gates making noise by landing the first major significant free agent signing of the offseason so far, with the surprise signing of former 3x Defensive Player of the Year, J.J. Watt, who reunites with his former teammate DeAndre Hopkins.

Current Estimated Available Cap Space: $21.4M

Draft Picks: 5 Picks: 1st Round (16th overall), Rounds 2, 3, 4 & 7.

Offense:

Free Agents: Brett Hundley, Kenyan Drake, Larry Fitzgerald, Dan Arnold, Darrell Daniels, Kelvin Beachum, J.R. Sweezy, Max Garcia

2020 Rankings: Passing: 17th (244.8 yards per game); Rushing: 7th (139.8 yards per game); Scoring: 13th (25.6 points per game)

Key Positional Needs: RT, RB, TE, WR, RG, Backup QB

Quarterback

Starter: Kyler Murray

Backups: Chris Streveler, Cole McDonald, FA: Brett Hundley

The former 2019 No. 1 overall pick enters his 3rd season as the Cardinals starting QB, with the aspirations of leading his team to the playoffs for the first time. Murray received additional help last offseason, with the acquisition of All-Pro WR DeAndre Hopkins. Murray threw for 3,971 YDS, 26 TD-12 INT in 2020, while also rushing for a very impressive 819 YDs for 11 scores. They should look to address the backup spot for Murray this offseason. Brett Hundley has been the backup for the past few seasons, but they should look to find a veteran to mentor Murray, somebody that has had a similar experience as Murray

Player to Target: Robert Griffin III: RGIII was let go by the Baltimore Ravens, but he proved that he was an extremely valuable mentor towards Lamar Jackson. It would make a lot of sense to sign the former Heisman Trophy winner to mentor another Hesiman winner, just like he successfully did in Baltimore.

Running Back:

Chase Edmonds, Johnathan Ward, Eno Benjamin, Khalfani Muhammad, FA: Kenyan Drake

Kenyan Drake (27) is an unrestricted free agent, and after 1 ½ years as the Cardinals starting RB, it would not be surprising to see them move on from Drake and replace him as the starter. Drake had 955 rushing yards for 8 TD last season, averaging only 4.0 YDS per attempt. Arizona was the 7th-best rushing offense in the NFL last season, but a lot of that was due from Kyler Murray rushing for 819 YDS. They need to find a RB that is comfortable in RPOs, Options and Zone Reads; as that is a focal point of their running attack.

Chase Edmonds did a nice job when called upon last season, he provided a nice source of receiving for them out of the backfield — catching 53 passes for 402 YDS & 4 TDs, along with 448 rushing yards. Edmonds has proved he is more than capable of being the No. 2 RB, but drafting a RB in the 2nd-4th round would make a lot of sense.

Players to Target: NFL Draft Prospects: North Carolina RB Javonte Williams, Memphis RB Kenneth Gainwell

Both running backs are similar size towards Kenyan Drake, but would offer an upgrade in terms of athleticism and contract value since Drake enters free agency. Williams and Gainwell would be nice early-round targets for them that could potentially be able to start for them in their rookie season.

Wide Receiver:

DeAndre Hopkins, Christian Kirk, Andy Isabella, KeeSean Johnson, A.J. Richardson, Krishawn Hogan, JoJo Ward, Issac Whitney, FA: Larry Fitzgerald, Trent Sherfield

The Cardinals have a No. 1 receiver and one of the best receivers in the NFL in DeAndre Hopkins, but they really can benefit from adding at least 1 or 2 receivers. Christian Kirk has proven he is a reliable receiver, but has dealt with an injury at some point in each of his first 3 seasons. The Cardinals are definitely regretting their selection of Andy Isabella in 2019 over DK Metcalf.. Isabella only has 30 receptions in his first two seasons and they really need him to start stepping up his production next season. Future HOF & 11x Pro Bowl WR Larry Fitzgerald is mulling over whether he’s returning next season, that will play into huge factor in how many receivers they need to upgrade, but either way they need to add at least 1 to 2 receivers in either the draft or free agency.

Player to Target: Antonio Brown: Antonio Brown just won a Super Bowl with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and he may be looking to go elsewhere, even though he loves and admires playing for Tom Brady. Brown has expressed he is a huge fan of Kyler and has been very vocal about it. AB’s cousin Marquise Brown was Kyler’s receiver at OU, they have thrown with each other in the offseason in the past. Brown would be a great upgrade in the slot and would give Murray another HOF-caliber receiver to throw to.

Tight End:

Maxx Williams, Ian Bunting, FA: Dan Arnold, Darrell Daniels

Tight End has been a very weak spot for them for years, as they haven’t had a true No. 1 TE in a quite some time. Murray needs to be able to rely upon a tight end that can become a true pass catcher in this offense, as well as a reliable blocker. Free agent Dan Arnold played pretty well last season for them (31-438-4), but they really can use an upgrade to a true No. 1 TE, it should be one of their biggest needs to address this offseason.

Player to Target: Jonnu Smith: Former Tennessee Titans TE Jonnu Smith has demonstrated he has the talent to be a No. 1 TE, but the Titans don’t appear to have cap flexibility to re-sign him. Smith scored 8 TDs in 15 games last season, with 41 Rec for 448 Yds. He would bring an immediate upgrade to their passing offense, giving Murray another weapon to utilize in the middle of the field.

Offensive Line:

LT: D.J. Humphries, Joshua Miles, Josh Jones

LG: Justin Pugh, Sean Harlow; FA: Max Garcia

C: Mason Cole, Lamont Gaillard

RG: Justin Murray, Shaq Calhoun; FA: J.R. Sweezy 

RT: Justin Murray, Branden Bowen, Koda Martin; FA: Kelvin Beachum

The offensive line took a massive step in the right direction in 2020, after an extremely disappointing campaign in 2019. Murray was sacked 27 times last season, which was 21 less times than 2019 (48 sacks). Murray’s % of times pressured per dropback was an impressive 16.6% in 2020, which was the 2nd-best in the NFL behind Green Bay. The group did improve last season, but they should still look to upgrade as they have a couple of notable free agents. Starting RT Kelvin Beachum, as well as guards J.R. Sweezy & Max Garcia are free agents. They should look to address the holes in the right side of their offensive line by signing a veteran free agent who can immediately come in and help bolster their line.

Player to Target: Germain Ifedi: Former Chicago Bears G Germain Ifedi would both be a nice affordable upgrade to the right interior side of their line.

Defense (3-4):

Free Agents: Angelo Blackson, Corey Peters, Domata Peko, Haason Reddick, Markus Golden, Isaiah Irving, De’Vondre Campbell, Patrick Peterson, Dre Kirkpatrick, Kevin Peterson, Johnathan Joseph, Chris Banjo, Charles Washington

2020 Rankings: Pass: 10th (226.4 yards per game); Rush: 22nd (125.5 yards per game); Scoring: 12th (22.9 points per game)

Key Positional Needs: CB, EDGE, NT, SS, ILB  

Defensive Line:

Ends: J.J. Watt, Jordan Phillips, Rashard Lawrence, Shareef Miller; FA: Angelo Blackson

Tackles: Zach Allen, Leki Fotu, Michael Dogbe, David Parry, FA: Corey Peters

The Cardinals rush defense struggled last season finishing 22nd in the NFL – allowing 125.5 yards per game. The first thing they did this offseason was began addressing this need by signing J.J. Watt. Watt will help anchor their run defense and pass rush, but they will need to at least add another run stopper to this defense. Veteran NT Corey Peters is a free agent, so if they are unable to bring him back, they should look to replace him with another starting caliber veteran.

Player to Target: DT Johnathan Hankins (29) is a quality veteran starting tackle who would make a great replacement if they are unable to bring back Peters.

Linebacker:

Outside: Chandler Jones, Devon Kennard, Dennis Gardeck, Kylie Fitts, Terrance Smith, Reggie Walker, FA: Haason Reddick, Markus Golden, Isaiah Irving

Inside: Jordan Hicks, Isaiah Simmons, Tanner Vallejo, Ezekiel Turner, Evan Weaver, FA: De’Vondre Campbell

Former 1st-round pick Haason Reddick had an unbelievable breakout 4th-season. Reddick racked up 12.5 sacks in 2020, while his first 3 seasons combined he only had 7.5 sacks. It’s the perfect timing for Reddick to hit free agency, as he’ll look to receive a deal that is way more than he would have been offered before his breakout season.

Assuming Reddick departs to another team, they would really need to add another pass rusher to go on the other side of All-Pro Chandler Jones. At inside LB, they just re-signed Tanner Vallejo and will need last year’s rookie 1st-round pick Isaiah Simmons to take the next step in his 2nd season.

Players to Target: EDGEBud Dupree & Matthew Judon: The two former AFC North pass-rushers create a ton of pressure on the outside from the OLB in a 3-4 defense. Signing either Bud Dupree or Matthew Judon would immediately replace Reddick if he leaves in free agency and would really help their pass rush.

Secondary:

Cornerbacks: Byron Murphy, Robert AlfordJalen Thompson, Jace Whittaker, Rico Gafford, Picasso Nelson Jr., FA: Patrick Peterson, Dre Kirkpatrick, Kevin Peterson

Free Safeties: Budda Baker, Chris Miller

Strong Safeties: Deionte Thompson, Jamal Carter, Donald Rutledge, FA: Chris Banjo

Cornerback is arguably the biggest need of any position this offseason for the Cardinals. 8X Pro Bowl & 3x All-Pro CB Patrick Peterson’s future in AZ remains unclear as he enters free agency at 31-years old. Even if Peterson returns, CB is still a huge need as they are extremely limited in depth. Former 2019 2nd-round pick Byron Murphy has been a bright star, locking down slot-receivers as their primary Nickel-CB. 

They just re-signed Robert Alford who has had difficulty staying healthy after he came over from Atlanta. They will need to add a starting CB if Peterson stays, but if he leaves they will need to add 2 starters. At free safety they fortunately have one of the best in the league with Budda Baker, and Deionte Thompson is the other safety, but they definitely should consider adding another safety to compete with Thompson.

Players to Target: Draft: South Carolina CB Jaycee Horn; Free Agent CBs Jason Verrett, Xavier Rhodes, S Damontae Kazee:

The Cardinals pick 16th overall in the 1st round, and with a huge need at CB; a prospect they should consider is CB Jaycee Horn. Horn, is a 6-1 corner who excels in man coverage and is the son of former New Orleans Saints WR Joe Horn. He would be an immediate upgrade to their secondary. Former 49ers CB Jason Verrett was supposed to be a star with the Chargers, but was unable to stay healthy. He finally stayed healthy last season with San Francisco, and had a very impressive season. Xavier Rhodes changed scenery from Minnesota to Indy, and it worked out very well for him. Both corners would provide them with a starter that can be considered reliable if they can stay healthy..Former Falcons safety Damontae Kazee would be a nice addition to their secondary, giving Deionte Thompson competition to start.

Special Teams:

Kicker: Mike Nugent, Brett Maher, FA: Zane Gonzalez

Punter: N/A, FA: Andy Lee

Stay tuned for more offseason previews for all 32 NFL teams!

One Sleeper Offensive Skill Player From Every NFL Team

Here is a list of one offensive “sleeper” player from every NFL team. Each player is considered in most cases as “under the radar” and also included honorable mentions.

Arizona Cardinals: WR KeeSean Johnson

DeAndre Hopkins has been incredible in his first three games so far. Second-year WR Andy Isabella demonstrated why the team selected him in the 2nd round last year, scoring 2 TDs. Another 2nd-year receiver that would be considered more of the “sleeper” is KeeSean Johnson. He saw a ton of snaps in his debut last week vs. Detroit – 71% of the total snaps, while Isabella only played 40%, and he also had 7 targets, but only finished with 2 receptions.

Hon Mention: RB Chase Edmonds, TE Darrell Daniels

Atlanta Falcons: WR Olamide Zaccheaus

Last week, the second-year WR from the University of Virginia finished second amongst their receivers in total snaps (79%), behind only Calvin Ridley. Zaccheaus finished the game with 4 receptions for 41 yards, and saw 6 targets. Julio Jones was out, and Russell Gage left the game early, but Olamide proved he’s the next man up if one of them were to miss any time.

Hon Mention: RB Brian Hill, WR Brandon Powell

Baltimore Ravens: WR Devin Duvernay

Rookie third-round pick Devin Duvernay was one of the most explosive athletes in this year’s draft, he showed off his 4.39 40-yard time on Monday night when he took a kick return for a touchdown. Duvernay also saw 3 targets and 2 receptions, so Baltimore might want to start utilizing him in their offense going further.

Hon Mention: WR Miles Boykin, RB Gus Edwards, TE Nick Boyle

Buffalo Bills: Gabriel Davis

Rookie 5th-round WR Gabriel Davis has been terrific so far, and is continuing to earn the trust of their coaching staff and QB Josh Allen. Davis finished 2nd behind only Diggs in total snaps for receivers (74%) and had 4 receptions for 81 yards against the Rams.

Hon Mention: TE Tyler Kroft, WR Isaiah McKenzie

Carolina Panthers: RB Reggie Bonnafon

Not many “sleepers” at offense here for the Panthers that are currently producing, but one guy to keep an eye on is RB Reggie Bonnafon. Mike Davis has proved he is the starter going further until McCaffrey return, but Bonnafon is somebody who may start seeing some more snaps.

Hon Mention: TE Ian Thomas, RB Trenton Cannon, WR Seth Roberts

Chicago Bears: Rookie 5th-round WR Darnell Mooney from Tulane University has led all Bears receivers besides Allen Robinson in total snaps this season, and he received 5 targets last week. We’ll see if continues to see targets with Nick Foles now at quarterback.

Cincinnati Bengals: WR Tee Higgins

Rookie 2nd-round WR Tee Higgins has really starting to produce the past two games and has formed a connection with fellow rookie QB Joe Burrow. The former Clemson University star scored 2 touchdowns last week against Philadelphia, and saw 9 targets and led all receivers in total snaps (79%).

Hon Mention: TE Drew Sample, WR Mike Thomas & Auden Tate

Cleveland Browns: TE Harrison Bryant

With the loss of David Njoku on IR, Harrison Bryant, a 4th-round rookie TE from FAU is starting to see an increase amount of playing time every week (42<52<63% snaps). Bryant also scored a touchdown last game vs. Washington.

Hon Mention: WR KhaDarel Hodge

Dallas Cowboys: WR Cedrick Wilson

While TE Dalton Schultz is proving he’s capable of starting and replacing Blake Jarwin, an even more of “sleeper” is third-year WR Cedrick Wilson. Despite playing behind Cooper, Gallup and Lamb; Wilson played an exceptional game last week against Seattle. He had 2 touchdowns and had 5 receptions for 107 yards.

Hon Mention: WR Noah Brown, TE Blake Bell

Denver Broncos: WR KJ Hamler

While WR Tim Patrick did have a touchdown, the guy to keep an eye on is rookie 2nd-round pick KJ Hamler. Hamler is an elite athlete and very explosive when the ball is in his hands. He was dominant in his brief 2-year career at Penn State. He saw 5 targets and led all Denver offensive skill players in total snaps (92%), and this should only continue to increase without Courtland Sutton for the season.

Hon Mention: Tim Patrick

Detroit Lions: WR Quintez Cephus

The Lions #1 WR Kenny Golladay missed the first two games, and with him coming back there really was no “sleeper on the Lions offense. Rookie 5th-round pick Quintez Cephus proved the first two games he’ll be the next man-up if Golladay or Marvin Jones were to miss any time.

Hon Mention: TE Jesse James

Green Bay Packers: TE Robert Tonyan

Packers No. 1 WR Davante Adams missed last game with a hamstring injury, and Allen Lazard filled in and played extremely well. Lazard is not really considered a “sleeper” anymore, so going to instead list Tonyan here. The former college receiver – now transitioned to a tight end has played well, scoring a touchdown each of the past two games and leading all GB TEs in snaps.

Hon Mention: TE Jace Sternberger & RB Tyler Ervin

Houston Texans: TE Jordan Akins

Akins has been impressive so far this season, and he definitely appears to have upper-hand over the veteran Darren Fells right now – earning Watson’s trust. Randall Cobb is a household name, but seems to be forgotten in this offense, but he played very well last game.

Hon Mention: RB C.J. Prosise

Indianapolis Colts: TE Mo Allie-Cox

Allie-Cox has played turning heads the past two games, and it seems that he may have earned the starting spot over veteran Jack Doyle – who has been dealing with an injury.

Hon Mention: RB Jordan Wilkins & WR Daurice Fountain

Jacksonville Jaguars: WR Collin Johnson

Undrafted rookie RB James Robinson is starting to become a household name, especially in the fantasy community. A sleeper to keep an eye on in the future is the gigantic 6’6″ rookie 5th-round WR Collin Johnson. He saw 30% of the snaps last week and dropped a potential touchdown on a fade route, but it appears he may have some opportunities going further.

Hon Mention: TE James O’Shaughnessy

Kansas City Chiefs: WR Mecole Hardman

The Chiefs don’t really have a “sleeper” on offense. Everybody knows Mahomes, Hill, Kelce, Edwards-Helaire, and the only other person that has contributed on offense is 2nd-year speedster Mecole Hardman. Hardman is not really a “sleeper”, but with so many weapons in this offense, he tends to be forgotten about.

Hon Mention: RB Darwin Thompson

Los Angeles Chargers: WR Jalen Guyton

Rookie 4th-round pick Joshua Kelley has been extremely impressive so far this season. He’s played well enough the past three weeks that he’s not even considered a “sleeper” anymore, and so we’re going to chose Jalen Guyton. Guyton scored a touchdown already this season, and received the 2nd most snaps among their receivers last game (81%), so he’ll continue to have opportunities.

Hon Mention: WR K.J. Hill

Los Angeles Rams: WR Josh Reynolds

RB Darrell Henderson is really not considered a “sleeper”, but he’s played very well the past two games, so that should be noted. A played that hasn’t made a ton of noise, but continues to see a ton of snaps is WR Josh Reynolds. He played in 90% of the snaps against Buffalo last week, and had 4 receptions for 60 yards

Las Vegas Raiders: TE Foster Moreau

The second-year TE has a lot of talent, but has been competing for snaps in a crowded tight end room the past two years. Moreau is finally starting to see the field more, he scored a touchdown last game against New England. If he can see consistent playing time, he could be a productive part of their offensive going further.

Miami Dolphins: RB Myles Gaskin

Gaskin is on the teetering edge of no longer considered a “sleeper”. This is not looking like a RB by committee backfield by any means. Gaskin is the bellcow, he proved that last Thursday night where he had 5 receptions and 22 carries.

Hon Mention: TE Durham Smythe, WRs Isaiah Ford & Jakeem Grant

Minnesota Vikings: WR Justin Jefferson

There really is no “sleeper” in Minnesota’s offense, or at least that has shown anything so far this season. Justin Jefferson isn’t considered a “sleeper” but his breakout performance of 7 Rec-175 Yds-2 TD came out of nowhere. Even though he was just a first-round pick and dominated last year at LSU (100+ Rec/18 TD), nobody saw this coming so soon.

Hon Mention: TE Irv Smith Jr. & WR Chad Beebe

New England Patriots: WR Damiere Byrd

RB Rex Burkhead played incredible last game against Las Vegas, scoring 3 TD and had 7 receptions. It’s hard to consider Burkhead a “sleeper” especially with how he has been on the same championship team for multiple seasons. So instead, going to choose Damiere Byrd who has quietly proved he’s their starting slot receiver. He only had 3 catches last week, but the week prior he had 6 receptions for 72 yards against Seattle on 9 targets.

Hon Mention: RB J.J. Taylor & TE Ryan Izzo

New Orleans Saints: WR Tre’Quan Smith

Third-year WR Tre’Quan Smith is starting to finally breakout this season. Now that he has received more opportunities with Michael Thomas out. He played 100% of the snaps on Monday night, and the last two games combined he’s received 13 targets; where 9 of them have been catches for 128 yards.

Hon Mention: TE Adam Trautman & WR Deonte Harris

New York Giants: RB Wayne Gallman

To be honest, this might have been the hardest to choose so far.. Nobody on this offense has really stood out besides 2nd-year wideout Darius Slayton (who is not a “sleeper”). Going to chose Gallman because veteran RBs Devonta Freeman and Dion Lewis did nothing in replacing Barkley last week. Gallman at least proved last year that he’s serviceable when called upon with Barkley out, so if Freeman doesn’t step up, this could be Gallman’s backfield.

Hon Mention: TE Kaden Smith, WR Damion Ratley and C.J. Board

New York Jets: WR Lawrence Cager

The Jets don’t have much to be really proud about on offense this season.. One guy to keep an eye on is rookie undrafted free agent WR Lawrence Cager. He had 2 receptions for 35 yards, with 4 targets. Don’t be surprised if Cager continues carving out a role on their offense throughout the course of this season. Having a preseason potentially could of improved Cager’s chances of seeing the field even quicker than last week.

Philadelphia Eagles: WR Greg Ward

Due to the injuries of Eagles receivers Alshon Jeffrey and first-round pick Jalen Reagor, Greg Ward and rookie 5th-round speedster John Hightower have received a ton of playing time. Ward, formerly was a very productive college QB a few years ago at Houston, has now transitioned to a reciever the past few seasons in Philly. He had 11 targets last game, catching 8 passes for 72 yards and a touchdown.

Hon Mention: WRs John Hightower & Deontay Burnett, RB Boston Scott

Pittsburgh Steelers: WR Chase Claypool

Rookie 2nd-round pick out of Notre Dame Chase Claypool has demonstrated he’s a matchup nightmare for defenses. They already have three talented young recievers in Smith-Schuster, Johnson and Washington, but now adding a 6’4″ receiver that ran a 4.42 40-yard dash and had a vertical jump of 40.5″ at the NFL combine.

Hon Mention: RB Anthony McFarland Jr.

San Francisco 49ers: RB Jeff Wilson

The 49ers have been dealing with a plethora of injuries over the past few weeks, especially to key players. With RBs Raheem Mostert and Tevin Coleman missing time, it was Wilson and McKinnon’s time to shine. Wilson scored 2 touchdowns and had 3 receptions for 54 yards.

Hon Mention: TE Ross Dwelley, WR Trent Taylor, RB Ja’Mycal Hasty

Seattle Seahawks: RB Travis Homer

It’s tough to find a “sleeper” on this offense as their offense is centered around MVP favorite Russell Wilson and wide-outs Tyler Lockett and D.K. Metcalf. Starting RB Chris Carson got hurt last game against Dallas, so if he were to miss time this would be an opportunity for Homer to have a lot of opportunities alongside veteran Carlos Hyde.

Hon Mention: WRs David Moore & Freddie Swain, TEs Will Dissly & Jacob Hollister

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: WR Scotty Miller

The speedy second-year WR Scotty Miller has been very impressive so far, and is starting to find a connection with Tom Brady. Miller had 3 catches for 83 receiving yards, one of his catches was spectacular. Chris Godwin is expected to miss a few games due to a hamstring injury, which would increase Miller’s usage.

Tennessee Titans: WR Kalif Raymond

The speedy veteran receiver Kalif Raymond has been impressive so far, he had a huge game last week, he had 3 catches for 118 yards.

Hon Mention: RB Darrynton Evans, TE Anthony Firkser, WR Cam Baston

Washington Football Team: WR Dontrelle Inman

The veteran Inman who spent the majority of his career with the Chargers, he’s been a reliable starter on the other side of Terry McLaurin. He scored twice last game against Cleveland, and had 8 targets thrown his way.

Hon Mention: WR Antonio Gandy-Golden & Isaiah Wright

One Key Week 1 Fantasy Stat From Every NFL Team

Arizona Cardinals: Newly acquired All-Pro WR DeAndre Hopkins received a whopping 16 targets against San Francisco, no other AZ player received more than 5 targets. Hopkins finished Week 1 with 2nd most targets in the league; trailing only Packers WR Davante Adams by one target.

Atlanta Falcons: Despite losing in Week 1, the Falcons manage to have three wide receivers record over 100 receiving yards. The one surprise was Russell Gage who received 12 targets, the same amount as teammates Julio Jones & Calvin Ridley.

Baltimore Ravens: Former Ohio State standout rookie RB J.K. Dobbins received the most touches of any Baltimore RB with 14, and received more snaps than presumed starter Mark Ingram.

Buffalo Bills: The Bills have two talented young running backs in Devin Singletary and Zack Moss, who both split majority of the snaps. Singletary received 51 snaps and Moss had 39.

Carolina Panthers: The Panthers have three very talented wide receivers in D.J. Moore, Curtis Samuel, and newly acquired free agent Robby Anderson who all received a pretty much even share of targets. Moore had 9; Samuel and Anderson each had 8.

Chicago Bears: Rookie 5th-round WR Darnell Mooney received a lot of snaps in his first NFL career game. Mooney received 6 targets and finished second among Chicago receivers in snaps; trailing only Allen Robinson.

Cincinnati Bengals: Veteran WR A.J. Green proved in week one he is their number one target, as he led all players in targets with nine; Tyler Boyd only saw 3 targets.

Cleveland Browns: The Browns have arguably the most talented RB duo in the NFL with Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. Nick Chubb was expected to be their main back, but Hunt received 17 touches on Sunday; which was 6 more than Chubb (11).

Dallas Cowboys: The Cowboys have three very talented receivers with Cooper, Gallup and Lamb.. Surprisingly, rookie CeeDee Lamb received the most snaps in Week 1 with 84 snaps; Gallup had 69 and Cooper had 68.

Denver Broncos: Rookie 1st-round WR Jerry Jeudy demonstrated the talents we all saw at Alabama, and he led all Broncos’ receivers with 8 targets.

Detroit Lions: The Lions #1 WR Kenny Golladay missed last game, and surprisingly rookie 5th-round WR Quintez Cephus led all Lions’ receivers with 10 targets, but only had 3 receptions.

Green Bay Packers: Green Bay drafted rookie RB A.J. Dillon in the second round, despite having Aaron Jones who led the NFL in rushing touchdowns last season. Aaron Jones proved he is still their bell cow back as he received 20 touches, while Dillon received 2 and Jamaal Williams received 11.

Houston Texans: TE Jordan Akins received 23 more snaps than projected started Darren Fells – Akins (48 snaps) > Fells (25 snaps).

Indianapolis Colts: RB Marlon Mack left last game after suffering a torn Achilles and will miss the remainder of the season. Rookie 2nd-round RB Jonathan Taylor and the elusive Nyheim Hines each received 15 touches in week one, so expect both of them to share time and receive a lot of work.

Jacksonville Jaguars: Undrafted rookie RB James Robinson out of Illinois State proved he’s without a doubt their starting running back going further. Robinson received 24 touches, while the only other RB to receive a touch was Chris Thompson who only received two touches.

Kansas City Chiefs: WR Sammy Watkins has a lot of talent and is a notable name, but he’s somehow forgotten in this offense because they’re is so damn talented. Watkins had a very impressive Week 1 performance; leading all Chiefs receivers with 8 targets.

Los Angeles Chargers: The Chargers starting RB Austin Ekeler is poised to have another breakout season, but with the departure of Melvin Gordon, the question is who will step up to be their #2 back? The answer to that question appears to be rookie 4th-round pick Joshua Kelley, who received 12 touches and scored a touchdown, while his competition for carries Justin Jackson only received 2 touches.

Los Angeles Rams: With the departure of Todd Gurley, there have been many fantasy owners questioning who the feature back for the Rams would be. After their SNF win against Dallas, it appears veteran RB Malcolm Brown has the upper-hand after scoring 2 rushing touchdowns, leading all backs with 21 touches. Also, keep an eye on rookie 2nd-round pick Cam Akers who received 15 touches.

Las Vegas Raiders: Second-year RB Josh Jacobs had a very dominant game against Carolina, scoring 3 rushing touchdowns. The key stat for his performance that should speak volumes on his potential for this season; is that he received 12 targets. The lack of targets Jacobs that received in his rookie year was a major concern for fantasy owners who were debating whether to select him in the last first round. To put this into perspective how significant this is, Jacobs only received 27 targets his ENTIRE rookie season. The most he ever received in a game was 5, and he already saw 12 his first game, so he’s almost half way at his total from last season..

Miami Dolphins: Despite how they added Jordan Howard & Matt Breida in the offseason, last year’s 7th-round pick Myles Gaskin was their feature back in Week One. He received 39 snaps and led all running backs with 13 touches, while Howard and Breida only combined for 23 total snaps.

Minnesota Vikings: Second-year RB Alexander Mattison surprisingly took a lot of touches away from Dalvin Cook in Week One; Mattison only received 3 less touches than Cook, and had 2 more targets than Cook.

New England Patriots: Rookie undrafted RB J.J. Taylor tied Sony Michel for the most touches for a NE RB in week one, while James White and Rex Burkhead also split time with them.

New Orleans Saints: Newly acquired free agent Emmanuel Sanders did not waste any time contributing in this offense, as he score a touchdown and tied Thomas for the most WR targets with 5, and now Thomas is expected to miss a few weeks.

New York Giants: Second-year WR Darius Slayton looked very solid in his sophomore season debut against Pittsburgh scoring 2 touchdowns and receiving a team-high 9 targets. It’s a good to see Slayon take advantage of an opportunity with Golden Tate out.

New York Jets: There were not too many bright spots whatsoever for the Jets in their loss against Buffalo. The one bright spot was the always reliable veteran slot receiver Jamison Crowder – who received 13 targets and capitalized on them.

Philadelphia Eagles: With a lot of injuries including starting RB Miles Sanders and WR Alshon Jeffrey, there were a couple notable key stats to highlight, but since we’re just listing one it would have to be the emergence of rookie 1st-round WR Jalen Reagor. Reagor, led all receivers with 8 targets and looked very impressive, especially considering he is recovering from a preseason injury.

Pittsburgh Steelers: RB James Conner left the game early with an injury and 2nd-year RB Benny Snell Jr. looked very impressive stepping in place racking up over 100 rushing yards. Snell Jr. received 19 touches and should be a must-add waiver wire pickup heading into Week 2.

San Francisco 49ers: RB Raheem Mostert proved he is their go-to starting back as he led all backs with 19 touches and 37 snaps.

Seattle Seahawks: Seattle’s new running back duo Chris Carson and Carlos Hyde both looked very solid together, each scoring touchdowns. Carson received 28 snaps and 12 touches, Hyde had 21 snaps and 7 touches.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Second-year WR Scotty Miller received 6 targets which was 2 more than Mike Evans, who had to deal with a hamstring injury and CB Marcus Lattimore matched up against him.

Tennessee Titans: Former top-10 pick WR Corey Davis who was hampered by a groin injury throughout last season tied 2nd-year standout receiver A.J. Brown with 8 targets.

Washington Football Team: Looking for a sleeper waiver wire TE to add going into this week? Look no further than Logan Thomas, a former Virginia Tech QB – who after several years transitioning to tight end in the NFL, now earned a starting job here in Washington. Thomas received 8 targets and scored a TD in his debut.

Deion Sanders is Joining Barstool Sports

Former NFL Hall of Fame cornerback Deion “Prime” Sanders has officially announced he has joined Barstool Sports, according to Barstool Sports podcast Pardon My Take.

This news comes just one day after John Ourand from Sports Business Journals reported that Sanders is leaving NFL Network. Since 2006, Prime has been an on-air NFL analyst for the NFL Network for the past 14 years. His contract with NFL Network had expired and now is moving on to join Barstool Sports.

During the Pardon My Take episode, co-host Dan “Big Cat” Katz preview during the introduction of the interview about what Sanders role at Barstool will look like.

Deion will be launching his own podcast through Barstool called, ’21st & Prime’.

He also will be contributing in several other areas for Barstool, such as covering the NFL with film breakdowns which will include former NFL players, and will appear weekly on Pardon My Take for 15-min recaps after NFL Sundays.

There’s no question, this is a major addition for Barstool Sports. Adding Prime to their team will immediately open plenty of new doors – especially when it comes to covering the NFL. Barstool has demonstrated that have strong connections with some a ton of current and former NFL players, but adding Sanders opens up a pipeline of possible new connections. The biggest reason why this is a huge success for Barstool, is that they now have the expertise from somebody who is considered one of the greatest player in NFL history, and arguably one of the greatest athletes of all-time.

This is not the first time Barstool has hired a former or current NFL player. Most notably former employee and Indianapolis Colts punter Pat McAfee, who retired from the NFL and immediately announced he is joining Barstool. Since McAfee left, they currently have at least three current or former NFL players on their roster. Former NFL offensive linemen and Barstool Breakfast co-host Willie Colon and most recently Bussin with the Boys co-hosts Taylor Lewan (Tennessee Titans left tackle), and veteran free agent linebacker Will Compton (played last year for the Raiders).

Sanders will now have the opportunity through Barstool’s platform to freely speak his mind and offer his opinion without having being restricted by a cable television network. He will be able to discuss what’s going on and off the field. This ultimately will be such a unique opportunity for listeners, most importantly the younger generation of athletes. They will receive unfiltered advice from the perspective of one a legend.

The impact of this move from Barstool Sports is quite significant, one that ultimately could start shifting the landscape in sports media. Fans are increasingly getting tired of reading filtered-out content from the same media outlets. Perhaps this could influence other former professional athletes to join smaller platforms, or start their own, because there will able where they can share their unfiltered opinion.

2020 Fantasy Football Breakout Candidate: Steven Sims Jr.

There is a lot of uncertainty in Washington D.C. – as they announced on Monday that they are removing the team name. The latest news in Washington today actually does not have to do with the team name for once, but unfortunately it is still not positive news. WR Kelvin Harmon – who was selected in the 6th round of last year’s 2019 NFL Draft, tore his ACL during camp and will miss the entire 2020 regular season, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.

Harmon, was a highly-productive player out of NC State, he recorded 30 receptions for 365 yards in 8 starts. It’s a huge disappointment for Washington, as Harmon was a strong candidate to potentially start on the opposite side of another rookie from last year; Terry McLaurin

Now that Harmon is out for the entire season, the question is who will be the player to capitalize on the opportunity and be the breakout fantasy player, that is not named Terry McLaurin. 

Steven Sims Jr.

Steven Sims Jr. was another rookie from last year, but the only difference was he went undrafted out of the University of Kansas. Sims Jr. burst onto the scene last year for Washington, demonstrating his elite athletic ability. It seemed like every Sunday if you were watching the NFL RedZone last season, host Scott Hanson would show a quick highlight of Sims Jr. busting out a huge touchdown out of nowhere.

When you look at Steven Sims receiving numbers from last season – 34 receptions, 310 yards, 4 touchdowns.. it might not appear to be anything special, but when you look into it more there’s a lot to like.. 

Last year’s first-round pick QB Dwayne Haskins started seven games last season (Week 9-16). 

Before Haskins started (1st 8 Games): 

Sims: 9 REC-33 YDS-0 TD.

Games Haskins Started (Final 8 Games, The Last Game Haskins didn’t start): 

25 REC-277 YDS-4 TD

Sims Final 3 weeks (all division games):

5 REC-45 YDS-1 TD (11 Targets) against Philadelphia Eagles

6 REC-64 YDS-2 TD (10 Targets) against NY Giants

5 REC-81 YDS-1 TD (8 Targets) against Dallas Cowboys.

Sims Jr. had some very impressive games last season for Washington, and with a full season as Haskins as a starter, he really could be the breakout fantasy player for them. Not to mention, Sims Jr. also was an extremely dynamic kick returner last season, recording 819 yards and 1 touchdown on 32 returns (25.6 avg.).

The competition for playing time is pretty open for Sims, especially now with the loss of Harmon, he really should have a chance to receive a ton of targets in this offense. Terry McLaurin will obviously be the No. 1 receiver, Trey Quinn will see time in the slot, and his only real other competition for snaps is free agent signing rookie 4th-round pick Antonio Gandy-Golden (who is a completely different type of receiver), and Cody Latimer (who just was arrested in May).

Keep your eye on Steven Sims!

Top 10 Revenge Games of the 2020 NFL Regular Season

The 2020 NFL Regular Season schedule has officially been released. We’re here to provide you with the Top 10 Revenge Games for the 2020 regular season, as well as some honorable mentions.

1. Odell Beckham Jr. vs. New York Giants 

Odelll

This game is our No. 1 Revenge Game of the Year for a couple of different reasons. The main reason is of course, Odell Beckham Jr. return to MetLife Stadium. While it’s unclear whether or not there will be fans in attendance, one thing for sure is that this game will be MUST WATCH TV. It was only just a few years ago, when OBJ was the face of the NY Giants and NY sports, where that ended once Giants GM Dave Gettleman traded him to the Browns last offseason.

In addition to Odell going to Cleveland, the Giants included pass-rusher Oliver Vernon in the trade, meanwhile the Giants received a 1st-round pick, as well as former 1st-round safety Jabril Peppers and starting right guard Kevin Zeitler. Odell, Vernon, Peppers, and Zeitler will all play against their former team for the first time. Another player in a revenge game is Giants WR Corey Coleman, a former Cleveland 2016 first-round pick.

The last two reasons why this is the number one revenge game of the year; Baker Mayfield started a feud with the Giants organization last season, taking shots at their fan base in direct response about the Beckham trade.

“He’s here (in Cleveland) to play in front of fans who actually care, who will actually show up to every game and pack the stadium and love him for who he is.”Mayfield on reaction on Beckham trade (USA Today).

Last, but not least, the Giants new TE coach is none other than the Browns most recent former head coach; Freddie Kitchens.

2. Jimmy Garoppolo vs. New England Patriots

Jimmy G

Tom Brady has moved on to Tampa Bay, and now the new quarterback and replacement for Brady in New England is unclear. Jarrett Stidham appears to be the favorite to start, but one guy that’s quite familiar with the possibility of replacing Brady is San Francisco 49ers QB Jimmy Garoppolo.

There was a lot of chatter surrounding the Patriots in the past that Bill Belichick regretted trading Jimmy G, and that it was something that he never completely wanted to do. Jimmy G might be the “one that got away” for Bill, he just came off a Super Bowl loss, and defeating Bill Belichick would be a great way to show him what he could’ve had.

3. Jason Garrett vs. Dallas Cowboys x2

Jason G

The new offensive coordinator for the New York Giants is Dallas Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett. This revenge game speaks for itself.. We’ll have the pleasure of catching this twice a season, as Garrett will look to take down his former team led by new head coach Mike McCarthy.

4. Ron Rivera vs. Carolina Panthers

Ron

The same narrative for Garrett goes here for Riverboat Ron. Rivera was fired by the Panthers after taking them to a Super Bowl and having one of the best records of the past decade. It’s a new era in Washington D.C. and Rivera is looking to start it off the right way by defeating his former team led by his dominant defensive front.

5. Melvin Gordon vs. Los Angeles Chargers/Chris Harris Jr. vs. Denver Broncos:

Melvin

In recent years, we’ve seen a ton of NFL contract holdouts right before the start of the regular season. There have been players that have done this very successful; using their leverage to earn a higher contract. While on the other side, there are others we’ve seen become a very ugly situation, and that’s exactly what happened with these next two revenge games…

Former 2016 first-round pick Melvin Gordon was nothing but productive his first 3 years with the Chargers, so last year while entering his final-year of his rookie contract he sat and out and it completely backfired.

Gordon did not receive anywhere near the value he expected, ultimately signing a 2-year, $18M deal with the division-rival Denver Broncos. Now, twice a season we get to see Gordon against his former team, and the same goes for All-Pro CB Chris Harris Jr. who signed with the Chargers this offseason.

6. Trent Williams vs. Washington Redskins

trent

The Washington Redskins finally traded 7x Pro Bowl LT Trent Williams during the NFL Draft, in exchange for a 2020 5th-round pick. Williams was arguably one of the most dominant offensive tackles in the past 20 years, he earned seven-straight Pro Bowl selections and anchored an offensive line for the past decade.

Williams demanded a trade after he lost all trust he had in Washington’s medical staff, he revealed he had cancer after the staff misdiagnosing him. Washington did not accept his request for the past year, forcing him to sit out the entire 2019 season. Now Williams is the starting LT for the NFC Champs, replacing veteran OT Joe Staley, and he gets his revenge against his former team.

7. Teddy Bridgewater vs. Minnesota Vikings/New Orleans Saints

Teddy

Is third time the charm? Teddy Bridgewater at age 27 now joins his third NFL team, signing a 3-year, $63 million contract with the Panthers. Almost 1/4 of his games this year will be against one of his former team, as he plays the Vikings and Saints twice.

8. Atlanta Falcons vs. Tom Brady x2

28-3

The Atlanta Falcons are still trying to get over their 28-3 blown lead in the Super Bowl vs. the New England Patriots.. One thing that sure can help cope with getting over that loss is defeating Tom Brady. Well, looks like Matty Ice and the boys will have at least two more opportunities to conquer that this season..

9. Calais Campbell vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

Calais

With the amount of star players the Jacksonville Jaguars have released the past couple of seasons since their AFC Championship loss, it’s totally not surprising that you’ll see a couple of potential revenge game lined up on the schedule.

Calais Campbell was traded this offseason to the Baltimore Ravens in exchange for a 2020 5th-round pick. Campbell immediately upgrades Baltimore’s much needed interior defensive attack, which got shredded for 180+ rushing yards to Tennessee Titans RB Derrick Henry in the AFC playoffs.

10. Joe Burrow vs. Dwayne Haskins:

Dwayne

This isn’t a “hateful” revenge game, the two of them are most likely good friends, but there is definitely a bit of some revenge narrative here for Joe Burrow. Before Burrow won a National Championship and Heisman Trophy award at LSU, he was the backup QB for Ohio State. He got beat out by Haskins, which ultimately was the reason why he transferred to LSU.

Like mentioned above, the two of them are probably good friends, but I’d imagine there has to be some sort of chip on Burrow’s shoulders about re-trying to prove that he’s better than Haskins. The two of them will face off in the regular season for the first time as opposite teammates.

Honorable Mentions:

Here are some honorable mentions to include because some of these games are unclear if the game could happen; due to whether a QB will be the starter or not, and while some just missed the list.

Some of these games ultimately may never happen due to a player being the backup quarterback and that he’s most likely not actually playing in the game, but still want to mention them because they would be HUGE revenge game narratives if they occurred.

Andy Dalton vs. Cincinnati Bengals:

Obviously Dak Prescott is the starter, but if something were to happen forcing Dalton to start this game, it arguably would make this one of the top revenge games of 2020. Dalton spent nine seasons as the Bengals starter, and this would face him up against his succeeder; No. 1 overall pick Joe Burrow.

Jameis Winston vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers x2:

Former 2014 No. 1 overall pick Jameis Winston just spent the past five years as the Bucs starting QB, and while it’s unlikely he’ll get this opportunity to face his former team, you never know.. Teddy Bridgewater did start five games for them last year due to Brees hand injury, but barring injury we might not get this one unfortunately.

Nick Foles vs. Jacksonville Jaguars:

The Jaguars acquired former Super Bowl winning MVP QB Nick Foles in the 2019 offseason, and one season later they shipped him to Chicago, handing the keys over to fan-favorite Gardner Minshew. While it’s unclear if Foles will be the starter, there is definitely a good chance he could beat out Mitch Trubisky for the starter, making this revenge game very intriguing and possible.

Jurrell Casey vs. Tennessee Titans:

5x Pro Bowl DT Jurrell Casey played nine seasons for the Titans. He was traded to the Denver Broncos, in exchange for a 2020 7th-round pick. Now, Casey receives an opportunity in the first game of the season against his former squad.

Emmanuel Sanders vs. Denver Broncos & San Francisco 49ers:

Emmanuel Sanders spent six years with the Broncos, where he won Super Bowl 50. He then got traded last season during the year to the San Francisco 49ers, where he lost the Super Bowl. Now he receives the opportunity to play both of his two former teams during the regular season.

Myles Garrett vs. Pittsburgh Steelers:

No need to explain this one…

Justin Herbert vs. Miami Dolphins:

Miami Dolphins had the opportunity to select Herbert at No. 5 overall but went with Tua Tagovailoa. Perfect chance for Herbert to seek revenge on the Miami organization and prove he’s a better QB. Herbert also gets No. 1 overall-pick Joe Burrow in Week 1.