Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (2024)

Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (1)

Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (2)

Nick Chubb

Cleveland Browns • #24 • RB

Browns' Nick Chubb (knee) uncertain for Week 1

Cleveland Browns running back Nick Chubb (knee) expressed uncertainty when asked about his expected availability for Week 1 of the 2024 season.

What It Means

Chubb suffered a devastating knee injury just two games into the 2023 season. He subsequently underwent two separate surgeries to repair the damage, including a late September procedure to address his torn MCL, as well as a second surgery in mid-November to repair his torn ACL. While the star back has reportedly been cleared to run in straight lines again, he still seems to be a fair ways away from rejoining his team on the field.

That said, Chubb will have the whole summer to get up to speed as the Browns prepare for the season. We will hopefully get a clearer picture regarding his timeline to return when the Browns reconvene for training camp in August. Fantasy managers may remember Jets back Breece Hall returning for Week 1 of the 2023 season after suffering his own ACL tear in Week 7 of the previous season, though it's fair to note that Chubb has already dealt with a similar injury in the past and may take longer to recover.

If Chubb is not ready for Week 1, expect Jerome Ford to lead the backfield. The team added Nyheim Hines and D'Onta Foreman to their roster this offseason, but it remains to be seen whether either will have a role in the offense by the time the season rolls around.

Written by

Aidan McGrath

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Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (3)

Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (4)

Brock Purdy

San Francisco 49ers • #13 • QB

49ers' Brock Purdy enjoying "first full offseason"

San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan praised quarterback Brock Purdy, adding that it has been "great to have him for a first full offseason".

What It Means

According to those around him, Purdy seems poised to guide the 49ers to another deep playoff run in the 2024 season after putting in his first full offseason of work as the team's starter. The former "Mr. Irrelevant" was the QB3 at best entering his rookie year behind Jimmy Garoppolo and Trey Lance, and then subsequently missed the majority of the 2023 offseason after suffering a brutal elbow injury in the NFC Championship game. Now, he'll enjoy a full offseason of work as the team's undisputed QB1.

Purdy has led to the 49ers to an awe-inspiring 17-4 record in his regular season starts, leading hyper-efficient offenses in point guard fashion. After losing in the NFC Championship in 2022, he took San Francisco to the Super Bowl this past season. Now, their +600 Super Bowl odds are tied with the Chiefs for the shortest in the league for the 2024 season.

Our model projects Purdy to finish as the QB10 in fantasy football this season, with 4,181.9 passing yards to go with 31.2 touchdowns and 11.2 interceptions.

Written by

Aidan McGrath

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Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (5)

Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (6)

A.J. Brown

Philadelphia Eagles • #11 • WR

Knee now "an afterthought" for Eagles' A.J. Brown

Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver A.J. Brown (knee) has been training with no setback after finishing the 2023 season with a knee injury.

What It Means

According to Brown's trainer, Brown's MCL sprain is now "an afterthought" after the star receiver put in multiple weeks of training and rehab almost immediately after the conclusion of the season. By his own admission, Brown is now reportedly in the best shape of his life as NFL teams take their summer respites.

Brown has been among the most productive players in the league since joining the Eagles in a trade two seasons ago, with over 1,450 yards in each season and a combined 194 catches and 18 touchdowns. He has reportedly been putting in the work this offseason with his eyes set on earning his first first-team All-Pro nod.

If he can meet the stats numberFire's model projects him for, he should have another shot of reaching that goal. He's numberFire's WR7 for the upcoming fantasy season and is slated for 100 grabs on 162 targets, with 1,306 yards and 9 touchdowns. His +1300 odds to finish with the most regular season receiving yards are the fifth-shortest on FanDuel Sportsbook's Season Leaders Betting Odds market.

Written by

Aidan McGrath

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Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (7)

Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (8)

Jalen Nailor

Minnesota Vikings • #83 • WR

Vikings' Jalen Nailor could step up to WR3 role

Minnesota Vikings head coach Kevin O'Connell praised wide receiver Jalen Nailor, saying "he shows up on every single opportunity he's gotten."

What It Means

It's high praise from the head coach of the team, but was given with a caveat: O'Connell also pointed out that Nailor has struggled to stay on the field since entering the league as a sixth-round pick in 2022, and challenged him to stay healthy for 2024.

The Vikings allowed veteran wideout K.J. Osborn to walk in free agency this offseason, leaving a pretty glaring hole at WR3 behind Justin Jefferson and Jordan Addison on the depth chart. With tight end T.J. Hockenson (ACL) expected to be sidelined into the season, that role could be worth paying attention to in fantasy football this year.

That said, it remains to be seen whether Minnesota will continue to operate as a pass-heavy team now that it will be leaning on Sam Darnold and rookie J.J. McCarthy at quarterback. Former quarterback Kirk Cousins led high-volume passing offenses in previous years, but with Cousins now in Atlanta the Vikings could slow things down in 2024. If Nailor is going to break out for fantasy, he'll need the team's passing volume to stay elevated.

Source:

ESPN

Written by

Aidan McGrath

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Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (9)

Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (10)

Caleb Williams

Chicago Bears • #18 • QB

Bears' Caleb Williams drawing praise from defensive teammates

Chicago Bears rookie quarterback Caleb Williams has been drawing praise from his teammates per ESPN's Courtney Cronin.

What It Means

Cronin's report included quotes from linebacker T.J. Edwards, who noted that Williams has done things "you don't really expect a rookie to do" and that Williams was able to move the defense with his eyes, as well as from safety Kevin Byard, who praised the rookie's resiliency after making mistakes.

Williams will have an enviably strong group of pass-catchers around him for his first NFL season and has reportedly been working on his mastery of the Bears' offense since before his name was officially called on draft night -- a unique advantage of being the unanimous first overall pick, Cronin points out. Expectations will be sky-high for Williams in his NFL debut.

Williams' passing yardage line is set at 3,450.5 yards on FanDuel Sportsbook -- highest among this year's rookies and just shy of the Bears' single-season franchise record of 3,838 passing yards. The projections at numberFire have him throwing for an impressive 4,023.9 yards, exceeding both of the totals, and finishing as the QB12 overall in fantasy.

Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (11)

Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (12)

Isaiah Likely

Baltimore Ravens • #80 • TE

Ravens' Isaiah Likely could be "hard to keep off the field" in 2024

According to The Athletic's Jeff Zrebiec, Baltimore Ravens tight end Isaiah Likely "looked like a player who will be hard to keep off the field" this season.

What It Means

Likely has been a consistent role player for the Ravens since entering the league as a fourth round pick in 2022, catching 36 passes for 373 yards and 3 scores as a rookie before turning 30 receptions into 411 yards and 5 scores as a sophom*ore. Tight ends often have a tough time hitting the ground running in the NFL, but Likely has looked good when called upon behind Mark Andrews.

While most NFL offenses aren't capable of producing multiple fantasy-relevant tight ends, the Ravens' lack of established wide receivers could help likely become a reliable option at the position in 2024. And with Derrick Henry joining Lamar Jackson behind the line, the team could utilize more formations with multiple tight ends to throw off opposing defenses.

Even with Andrews clearly ahead of him on the depth chart, Likely still projects as the TE21 for fantasy this season -- ahead of the TE1 options for multiple NFL franchises. He averaged 3.5 catches for 53.7 yards and 0.8 touchdowns per game once Andrews left the lineup and could grow into a similar role alongside Andrews if he can take another step forward.

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Aidan McGrath

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Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (13)

Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (14)

Keon Coleman

Buffalo Bills • WR

Bills "could end up leaning on" Keon Coleman in 2024

The Athletic's blank blank notes that the Buffalo Bills "could end up leaning on Keon Coleman quite a bit" throughout the 2024 season.

What It Means

The Bills are headed into the 2024 season without either of their top two receivers from the past few years, leaving them with one of the most wide open depth charts in the league at the position. That gives second round pick Keon Coleman a great opportunity for immediate playing time in his rookie season.

Coleman was the first pick of the second round of the 2024 NFL Draft. As a sophom*ore with Michigan State he outproduced future Packers wideout Jayden Reed with 58 catches, 798 yards and 7 touchdowns, and as a junior he compiled 50 catches for 658 yards and 11 touchdowns as Florida State's WR1. At 6'3" and 213 lbs, the Bills are clearly hoping Coleman can develop into their own WR1 as soon as possible.

In their pass-heavy offense, Coleman is projected to finish as the WR47 in fantasy -- sixth-best among rookies. The projections have him catching 60.5 passes for 760.5 yards and 5.3 touchdowns. If he can establish himself as a reliable option for Josh Allen, Coleman could become a solid playmaker in fantasy football as a rookie.

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Aidan McGrath

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Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (15)

Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (16)

Demario Douglas

New England Patriots • #3 • WR

DeMario Douglas "by far" the Patriots' best playmaker in OTAs

The Athletic's Chad Graff reports that second year wide receiver DeMario Douglas was "was by far the [New England] Patriots’ best and most explosive playmaker" this offseason.

What It Means

Douglas was the Patriots' most productive pass-catcher in his 2023 rookie season, though he faced little competition on the team's barren depth chart during the season. He finished his debut campaign with 561 scoreless yards on 49 catches.

Douglas' athleticism flashed off the screen amidst an offense that otherwise lacked it, and it seems like he has since leveraged his solid rookie year into an impressive offseason as well. It's encouraging to hear that he has continued to look like a difference maker despite the team's additions to the wide receiver room via the draft, with both Ja'Lynn Polk and Javon Baker joining their ranks.

The projections at numberFire have Douglas finishing as the Pats' top wideout again in 2024, with 50.9 grabs, 635.8 yards, and 2.4 touchdowns for a WR59 finish in 0.5-point per reception leagues. He could be a late round wide receiver target in season-long fantasy drafts later this summer.

Written by

Aidan McGrath

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Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (17)

Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (18)

D.K. Metcalf

Seattle Seahawks • #14 • WR

Seahawks plan to make D.K. Metcalf a “moving target”

Seattle Seahawks wide reciever D.K. Metcalf will be a "moving target" in the team's offense this season, according to new head coach Mike Macdonald.

What It Means

Asked about Metcalf, McDonald said that the new Seahawk staff plans to make him a "moving target" for defenses. Adding "I can tell you this: We want to get DK the ball a lot, too."

This would appear to hint at a role that sees Metcalf involved from different spots in formations, not just the boundary. With a new staff in Seattle, including offense coordinator Ryan Grub, the offense could look different than it did under Pete Carroll and Shane Waldron. An increase in routes out of the slot, with higher percentage targets, would be a plus for Metcalf's outlook.

Written by

Zack Bussiere

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Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (19)

Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (20)

Bijan Robinson

Atlanta Falcons • #7 • RB

Falcons plan to get Bijan Robinson the ball "as much as they can"

Atlanta Falcons running back Bijan Robinson will be heavily utilized in the team's first year under new head coach Raheem Morris.

What It Means

Asked about their plan for Robinson this season, Morris said "In as simple of a form as you can possibly make it, it's 'get the ball to Bijan as much as you can in as many ideal situations that you possibly can." Morris added "For him (Robinson), he's so talented you don't want to limit the things that he can do, but you also don't want to water it down so much that he's not doing anything that he can do great."

As a rookie under former head coach Arthur Smith, Robinson was heavily utilize in the passing game, with 58 receptions on 86 targets -- well above Tyler Allgeier (18 receptions on 23 targets). In the run game, however, Robinson's utilization was much closer to Allgeier's. He handled 214 carries to Allgeier's 186 despite being more efficient on his touches (4.6 yards per carry to 3.7).

This season, it sounds like that won't be the case. Robinson said "I'm going to be more of a runner, that does everything else like not as much. It's run first, like what I did in college, and then still having that access to go to receiver and still having that access to do creative things out the backfield."

Source:

Terrin Waack

Written by

Zack Bussiere

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Latest NFL Player News, Insights and Analysis | FanDuel Research (2024)
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