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 not meant to be an exhaustive look at all the recent happenings around the league.
Note that this article is a living document and will be updated throughout the preseason. For the new blurbs, just scroll down until you see an update, which will be highlighted in blue.
July 10: Kansas City Chiefs star quarterback Patrick Mahomes II has been the popular topic of conversation this past week. Mahomes inked a 10-year contract extension worth an astonishing HALF A BILLION dollars if all incentives are realized. The prospect of Mahomes and coach Andy Reid together for another decade is enough to relieve even the most skittish of dynasty players. The quarterback is still improving and will be a factor in the AFC for many years to come. Ian Rapoport reported that the contract includes $477 million in "guaranteed mechanisms." These mechanisms are staggered throughout the deal, but it would be false to think that the $477 million will be guaranteed. The Chiefs still have several spots where the team can exit the contract. The new deal is an extension meaning Mahomes' 2020 and 2021 salaries are factored into the contract. In an odd view of the situation, Mahomes and Panthers passer Teddy Bridgewater are each scheduled to earn $63 million over the next three years. Kansas City has a great young (and fast) nucleus around Mahomes.
July 10: When the New England Patriots signed quarterback Cam Newton to the risk-free contract – with only $550,000 guaranteed, it left fantasy players uncertain about Newton's standing with the team. Ne has since passed the physical and joined the team officially. The contract is basically a one-year "prove it" deal with just a $1.05 million salary and $700,000 added as per-game bonuses. Still just 31 years of age, Newton adds veteran upside to New England. Multiple reports spoke to the narrative that coach Bill Belichick has not guaranteed the starting job to the veteran over sophomore Jarrett Stidham, but only the closest of Stidham's relatives would assume he has a fighting chance of being under center to kick off the season. Many beat reporters still believe the team "loves" Stidham ... and this could be true, but Newton should be locked in as the 2020 starter as long as he remains healthy. One caveat: do not have high expectations. Unless Newton is willing to run the ball often, his fantasy production will be limited. The receiving corps is weak, and the offense will need to adjust with limited practice times.
August 14:When beat reporter Joe Buscaglia stated that he believes Buffalo Bills coach Sean McDermott "could outlive" Josh Allen in Buffalo if the quarterback "doesn't show marked improvement in the next two seasons", it was not a surprise. We have been concerned about Allen's lack of passing efficiency for some time. His rushing ability has led many to overlook Allen's poor passing. Oddly, this comment by Buscaglia came one day after the Bills signed McDermott to a four-year extension through 2025.
Update August 21: Alex Smith has finally returned to the field. Many never thought it would happen; Smith playing football again. He was cleared for practice last Sunday. Field Yates tweeted out the Smith's journey, "Alex Smith's leg was shattered on November 18th, 2018. In the days following, he got sepsis, which nearly took his life. He spent the next month in a hospital, then 3 in a wheelchair, then 8 in an external fixator. He had 17 surgeries within 9 months." This was almost two full years ago. At this point, Smith should be considered a favorite to start games for Washington as the quarterback situation led by Dwayne Haskins is tenuous.
August 1:Dynasty players should keep an eye on the status of Washington quarterback Alex Smith. He will slowly see his activity increase over the next few weeks. Coach Ron Rivera loves veterans and Smith could surprise and overtake Dwayne Haskins for the starting gig. In deeper Superflex leagues, he is worth a wait-and-see stash.
July 24: Josh Jacobs flashed big-time upside as a rookie. He would have splashed even larger had Jacobs been more involved in the passing game. Beat reporter, Paul Gutierrez, opined this week that he expects the second-year back to be more integrated into the Raiders' passing game this season. While this sounds good, let's remember that as a rookie, Jacobs saw a whopping 27 pass targets while Jalen Richard only saw 43 targets while leading the backfield in the category. This was an offense devoid of wide receivers and the backs saw very few targets. With the addition of Nelson Agholor, Henry Ruggs III, and Bryan Edwards, it is a stretch to expect many more pass targets for Jacobs. This story is more noise than news.
June 13: Adam Schefter was the first to report that Todd Gurley passed his physical with the Falcons. Schefter tweeted, "After having an agreement with Atlanta for nearly two months, Todd Gurley finally was able to fly to Atlanta, where he took and passed his Falcons physical Monday, per source. With his physical behind him, Gurley now can focus on his preparation for a bounce-back season." There is little competition for touches in the Atlanta backfield. If truly healthy, Gurley could be huge for fantasy owners and his dynasty price is at an all-time low. While we still are unconvinced about Gurley's longevity, he could have a solid two-year stretch, so he is a buy recommendation depending on price. This is an explosive offense that will score points. Having the running back on these high-scoring offenses usually pays dividends for fantasy.
August 8: Confirming what we already assumed, coach Dan Quinn told reporters last week that the RB2 spot behind Todd Gurley will be shared between Ito Smith and Brian Hill. This is especially relevant given Gurley's history of knee issues.