New England Patriots News and Rumors
The latest NFL news and rumors from the England Patriots. Stay up-to-date on Patriots rumors, breaking news, player reports and whispered gossip from around the league
Sony Michel Hurts Knee, Will Miss Time
August 4th | 2018
ESPN Boston reports Sony Michel is expected to be ready for the start of the 2018 NFL season. However, he will miss at least the next ten days with a procedure after an injury to his knee.
While the length of the time missed isn’t substantial, it’s the quality of missed reps throughout preseason and training camp that will hold him back. Michel was having a rough training camp to being with, so missing time won’t help his chances of getting onto the field early this season.
Burkhead has already been dubbed the RB1, and with the depth the Patriots already have at the running back position, Michel should be viewed as a slow starter to find his place on the team in 2018.
I’ll be moving Sony Michel down my running back rankings slightly, and may even slide him down my dynasty rookie rankings. The Patriots rarely lean on rookies in their first season, so most fantasy owners should have had modest expectations for Michel to begin with. That being said, Michel could be a nice buy-low candidate in September as he works his way into a role with the team after missing valuable time throughout training camp.
Julian Edelman Struggling at Camp
August 3rd | 2018
ESPN is reporting New England Patriots WR Julian Edelman (knee) is struggling through the early portion of training camp and that his recovery from a torn ACL has been a rough one.
“I feel like I got to get my legs under me a lot more”, Edelman told ESPN following Friday’s practice. “I don’t have my camp legs, I don’t have football legs, and it’s evident out there.” He later added that “You get tired, you create bad habits, you don’t run your routes right and you get yelled at in meetings for it. I’m expecting to do that because I got to pick it up. I wasn’t as good as I want to be today and feeling that’s because I’m not in the best shape right now.”
While were are only entering the first week of August, plus, the fact that Edelman will open 2018 serving a four-game suspension for a PED violation, you would think this report wouldn’t alarm me. However, it does. What if Edelman was good to go for Week 1 and he continued to struggle in his recovery? Is this a situation that could ultimately lead him to the PUP list? And while I don’t believe it will, perhaps this question should be asked — is age catching up with him?
If it is, the Patriots could be in trouble at wide receiver, even more so than I believe they are now. I mean think about it, if Edelman isn’t himself upon his impending Week 5 return as the team is likely banking on, it could be a bumpy road for the duration of the year. Yes, Tom Brady has gotten the job done with less, but that was a long time ago in football years and from a fantasy perspective, how the hell do we value the Patriots wide receiving corps?
They signed Eric Decker this week to replace Jordan Matthews, who was placed on IR with a significant hamstring injury. But let’s not jump for joy just yet. I’m not a fan of the Decker acquisition. If you don’t believe me, take a look at his year with the Titans in 2017. And then there is Kenny Britt, Phillip Dorsett and Cordarrelle Patterson — all three are viewed busts with their former clubs. The lone bright spot on the Patriots WR depth chart is Chris Hogan but at his late-fifth-round ADP (5.11), the risk is too high for my blood, especially when I can target wideouts with greater upside around him that includes Marvin Jones (5.08), Golden Tate (6.04), Jarvis Landry (6.10) and even Michael Crabtree (7.03) a full round later.
While running back is usually the position-to-avoid on the Patriots, I believe wide receiver has taken its place in 2018. There is not one WR I trust at this point. However, I don’t think the Patriots are finished shuffling their roster. Although the signed Decker, they could also bring in a Dez Bryant or even a Brandon LaFell, who posted a career-best 74-953-7 stat line with New England back in 2014. If you do feel inclined to take a shot on a Patriots receiver though, target one late at a no-risk ADP. And for you Dynasty players out there, don’t overlook Braxton Berrios. He fits the Patriots mold and could be Edelman’s heir-apparent sooner rather than later.
Patriots sign Eric Decker, Jordan Matthews to IR
August 2nd | 2018
Eric Decker has signed with the New England Patriots to replace Jordan Matthews who was injured and has been placed on IR. The 31-year-old veteran has played eight NFL seasons with the Denver Broncos (2010-13), New York Jets (2014-16) and Tennessee Titans (2017). Decker is 6’3, 210lbs, and will come in to see if he can find a role with the team.
Fantasy owners will overreact to this signing in my opinion. If Decker catches on or there is any news of him moving up the depth chart maybe you could think about adding him late in a deep league, but overall there are just too many mouths to feed in New England right now.
Burkhead to Open Season as Patriots RB1
July 18th | 2018
New England Patriots ESPN reporter, Mike Reiss, noted: “(Burkhead) has a good chance to enter the season as the team’s No. 1 option from a traditional running-back perspective, with his versatility as a pass-catcher adding to his value and opening up more options for coordinator Josh McDaniels.”
Reiss went on to mention rookie running back, Sony Michel, “Fits a similar profile from a versatility perspective.”
We all know to expect a full-blown committee from the Patriots backfield, as they have operated this way for quite some time. Reiss noting Burkhead as the number one option to start however does carry some serious weight. Dion Lewis finished as the RB15 in PPR leagues last season with an average of 12.3 points per game but was actually outperformed by Burkhead who managed 13 points per game, albeit over only a 10 game course. Burkhead is currently one of the greatest steals in fantasy drafts considering his current ADP of 7.09 on FantasyFootballCalculator.com is a full three rounds later than Sony Michel who currently sits at 4.11. Even with Michel expected to see heavy usage, Burkhead is a good bet to greatly pay off his draft price.
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