We scour the news around the NFL to bring you what matters most to you and your dynasty team: the most current news on players, both superstars and the relative unknowns, and analysis to decipher the respective situations. These are many of the major stories and are not meant to be an exhaustive look at all the recent happenings around the league.
When New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston went down with a knee injury, it was reported that he hurt both his ACL and MCL. Jeremy Fowler had an interesting tweet regarding Winston’s surgery, “Jameis Winston's ACL surgery last week by Dr. Neil ElAttrache did not include an MCL repair, per source. Despite damage, ligament was considered strong enough to heal. That's good news for Winston, who rehabs in L.A. and projects to start non-contact drills in about six months.” While reports have emerged that Winston will not be back with the Saints next season, there are ample teams without an answer at the position who might be interested in Winston’s services. We are buyers depending on price. Winston played relatively well in Sean Payton’s offense.
Monday afternoon, Adam Schefter was the first to report on the new Taysom Hill contract, "New Orleans’ QB Taysom Hill signed a unique four-year, hybrid-type of contract extension that could be worth anywhere between $40 million and $95 million, depending on the position he plays, and includes $22.5 million guaranteed, sources tell ESPN." He followed it up with, "Taysom Hill’s hybrid deal is unique and unlike other contracts because it pays him a $40 million base salary for the role that he’s currently playing, and up to an additional $55 million if he does become the Saints’ starting QB for the next four seasons." This is bad for Saints fantasy managers and the team as a whole. The future will depend on how quickly New Orleans can identify and procure its starting quarterback of the future. Paying Hill may make it more difficult to sign free agent quarterbacks or wide receivers.
The loss of Derrick Henry has changed the Tennessee Titans offense. Fantasy managers who were holding out hope of a return before the end of the season are seeing that slimmer of hope erode. Dianna Russini reported last week that there is optimism Henry will return from the foot injury in early January. For context, Week 17 – the Fantasy Super Bowl in many leagues – is Sunday, January 2. Sitting at 9-2 and atop the AFC playoff chase, Tennessee may not feel obligated to rush Henry back if the top seed is locked up early. Expect D'Onta Foreman and Adrian Peterson to continue to look like blunt objects trying to carve a sculpture. They are far from their previously refined selves.
Seattle Seahawks coach Peter Carrol LOVES to run the ball. He rode Chris Carson as long as he could before the durable back was sidelined with a neck injury. Carson has missed several games and the Seahawks offense dearly misses him. Ian Rapoport tweeted an update Friday, “Sources: #Seahawks RB Chris Carson, who has been sidelined with a neck injury, is expected to have season-ending surgery and will be placed on Injured Reserve. His 2021 season ends after just 4 games, as his neck never improved enough for him to get back on the field.” This may be the end of the road for Carson as neck injuries are difficult to return from. We would not be surprised to see the team invest in the position in the offseason.
Last Wednesday, San Francisco 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan told reporters that rookie tailback Trey Sermon still remains behind Elijah Mitchell and Jeff Wilson. This explains why we have not seen much of Sermon in a while. Shanahan went on to say, “Trey had an opportunity (earlier this season) when guys got hurt and I thought he got better in each game with that. But he didn’t do enough for us to put him ahead of Elijah or Jeff.” History has shown that anything can happen with the 49ers backfield, but it appears that Sermon is buried deep on the depth chart.
Friday, Tom Pelissero reported that the Denver Broncos were inking receiver Tim Patrick to a new contract, “The #Broncos are signing WR Tim Patrick to a three-year contract extension worth up to $34.5 million with $18.5M guaranteed, per source. Many thought this might be the end of Courtland Sutton’s days in Denver as he is in the last year of his rookie contract. But, on Monday morning, Ian Rapoport broke the news of Sutton’s new contract, “The #Broncos reached an agreement on a big-time extension for standout WR Courtland Sutton, his agency @milkhoneysport tells me and @TomPelissero. It’s a 4-year $60.8M extension with $34.9M guaranteed. After a torn ACL in 2020, he’s back as a star and was rewarded like one.” Ace beat writer Mike Klis added context, “Had Patrick/Sutton waited for FA in March, they could have got deals worth $12m/18m per, respectively. They took $10m/$15.2 by signing now. But what price:
1. Avoiding injury risk final 7 games?
2. Staying where you’re happy?
Good deals all the way around. #9sports”
The Broncos are fortifying the offense with the receivers locked up and a good young back in Javonte Williams. Jason Fitzgerald of Over the Cap offered more context to the Sutton contract, “Really thats a steal for the #Broncos the more I think about it. He's your number 1 and he will make (at least on a per year basis) less than your top safety. Will rank 16th among wrs, just about a Landry deal signed ages ago.” With a good defense and skill-position players, the only missing piece is quarterback. We expect the team to make a strong run at Aaron Rodgers in the offseason.
Last Friday, Mike Garafolo was the first to report on Philadelphia Eagles tight end Dallas Goedert’s new contract extension. Garafolo tweeted, “The #Eagles and TE Dallas Goedert reached agreement on a four-year contract extension, sources say. The deal ranks top three amongst tight ends on an average-per-year basis. Goedert, who was slated to be a free agent after the season, is now under contract in Philly thru 2025.” Adam Schefter followed it up with, “Compensation update: Eagles gave Dallas Goedert a four-year, $59 million extension that includes $35.7 million guaranteed, per source.” To give context, Ari Meirov tweeted out the top tight end salaries, “Highest paid TEs on a per-year basis:
George Kittle: $15M
--> Dallas Goedert: $14.75M
Travis Kelce: $14.3M
Mark Andrews: $14M
Jonnu Smith: $12.5M
Hunter Henry: $12.5M”
After the departure of Zach Ertz, this investment in Goedert should speak volumes about his future with the team. With three high first-round picks in the coming NFL Draft, the Eagles will look to solidify the many other holes on both sides of the ball.
Almost a non-event for the fantasy world, Atlanta Falcons tight end Hayden Hurst was placed on injured reserve Thursday with an ankle injury. Hurst had been relegated to primarily a blocking role after the selection of Kyle Pitts in the 2021 NFL Draft. The Falcons offense looked lost and void of talent Thursday night against the New England Patriots. Hurst would not have made much difference in the outcome of the contest.
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