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Recent News Updates:
Adrian Peterson: Set up for starting job
Peterson will take on a bigger role in the Washington backfield after the team released Derrius Guice, ESPN.com''s John Keim reports.
Our take: Washington entered training camp with four running backs that played significant NFL snaps last season, plus 2019 fourth-round pick Bryce Love and 2020 third-round pick Antonio Gibson. The team now figures to have roster spots for four of the five remaining players, with Peterson presumably a lock and also the favorite for the Week 1 start. He''s 35 years old and entering the final season of his contract, but the future Hall of Famer said in June that he hopes to play four more seasons in the NFL. He was a bit more conservative in a recent interview with Good Morning Football, saying he was looking forward to playing "a couple" more seasons. He''ll likely share snaps with some combination of Gibson, Love, J.D. McKissic and Peyton Barber.
August 10, 2020 6:06 AM EST
Alex Smith: Could compete for starting job?
Coach Ron Rivera believes Smith (leg) could enter the Washington Football Team''s quarterback competition, Nicki Jhabvala of The Athletic reports. "If Alex is healthy and continues to get healthy and we do activate him, he''s going to be in the throes of this competition," Rivera said. "It''s going to unfold, I think, very nicely for us as a football team."
Our take: The idea of Smith playing in 2020 has largely been described as a long shot, but Rivera seems to be treating it as a real possibility, and recent reports suggest the 36-year-old has looked good during on-field workouts. It isn''t clear if Rivera is referring to the competition for the Week 1 start or a midseason return, but either way, it can''t be assumed Smith will sit out another season. The veteran quarterback missed all of last year while rehabbing from a severe injury, one that nearly caused him to lose his right leg. Most discussion of the Washington QB spot has pegged Dwayne Haskins as a strong favorite for the starting job, but with Kyle Allen having a chance to make his push during training camp.
August 10, 2020 6:27 AM EST
A.J. Green: Strengthens ankles during offseason
Green''s offseason training focused on injury prevention and strengthening his feet/ankles, ESPN.com''s Ben Baby reports.
Our take: Personal trainer Curtis Winters says Green''s surgically repaired left ankle is as strong as it''s ever been, and the wideout added some new workouts intended to reduce his odds of another similar injury. The 32-year-old is set to play out 2020 under the franchise tag in Cincinnati, where rookie quarterback Joe Burrow has a strong receiver group that also includes Tyler Boyd, John Ross, Auden Tate and Tee Higgins. The Bengals might use their depth to take Green off the field at times, but he and Boyd are the safe bets to see steady targets early in the season. Green believes he can play at a high level for at least four more years, hoping his performance in 2020 will earn him another long-term contract in Cincinnati.
August 10, 2020 8:10 AM EST
T.Y. Hilton: Expects to be cleared soon
Hilton downplayed his hamstring injury Monday, George Bremer of The Anderson Herald Bulletin reports.
Our take: With that in mind, Hilton believes that he could be cleared within a couple days, though the team''s training staff could elect to play it safe with the wideout and give his injury up to a week more of recovery time. In any case, as long as there aren''t any setbacks, Hilton''s Week 1 availability is in no danger. Indy''s top pass-catching option missed six games last season, mostly due to a partially torn calf, per Stephen Holder of The Athletic, but prior to that, he sat out just four contests over the course of his first seven NFL campaigns.
August 10, 2020 10:14 AM EST
Evan Engram: Set to practice
Engram is ready for training camp after a "very strong and very aggressive rehab" from surgery to repair a Lisfranc sprain in his left foot, Matt Lombardo of The Newark Star-Ledger reports. "Each and every day I was just trying to find ways to get better," Engram said Monday.
Our take: Engram has been saddled with injuries during his three-year career, with 2019 serving as the low point. Appearing in just eight games, he still managed to tally 44 catches (on 68 targets) for 467 yards and three touchdowns. Following his December surgery, Engram progressed to on-field work at full speed by June and seemingly is set to participate in practice later this week.
August 10, 2020 12:20 PM EST
Lamar Miller: Signs with New England
The Patriots have signed Miller (knee) to a one-year deal, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.
Our take: Miller, who is bouncing back from a torn ACL that he suffered last August, gives the Patriots some added depth at running back, with Sony Michel on the PUP list with a foot injury. Also in the team''s backfield mix are James White, Rex Burkhead, Damien Harris and J.J. Taylor, a context that doesn''t provide an immediate path to steady carries for the 29-year-old Miller, who last saw regular-season action with the Texans in 2018.
August 10, 2020 2:57 PM EST
Sony Michel: Uncertain for Week 1
The Patriots'' signing of Lamar Miller may be related to uncertainty regarding Michel (foot) being ready for Week 1, Jeff Howe of The Athletic reports.
Our take: The foot surgery Michel had in May initially was said to be minor, but it''s now fair to question that sentiment as he lingers on the PUP list through the second week of team activities. The Patriots are scheduled to begin practicing Wednesday, and Michel won''t be able to join his teammates until/unless he''s activated from the list. In addition to Miller, the Patriots have James White, Damien Harris and Rex Burkhead as solid options to take backfield reps with the first-team offense.
August 11, 2020 6:14 AM EST
Alvin Kamara: Reveals severity of 2019 injury
Kamara played through an MCL tear last season, Master Tesfatsion of Bleacher Report reports.
Our take: He hurt his knee Week 6 and missed the next two games, with the Saints'' injury reports also listing an ankle issue. Kamara then rejoined the lineup after a Week 9 bye and went on to play the final eight games of the regular season, averaging 5.0 yards per carry but only 5.4 per reception. He said in March that he was back at full strength, noting that he''d played most of the 2019 campaign "on one leg, at 75 percent." The versatile running back is now entering the final season of his rookie deal, but he told Nick Underhill of NewOrleans.Football he isn''t worried about his contract situation.
August 11, 2020 7:21 AM EST
Jimmy Garoppolo: No longer using brace
Garoppolo isn''t wearing a knee brace at practice this year, David Lombardi of The Athletic reports.
Our take: Garoppolo wore a brace last season in his first year back from an ACL tear, perhaps limiting his mobility. He''s never been one to contribute rushing stats, but it''s possible he navigates the pocket more easily now that he''s coming up on two full years removed from the severe knee injury. His bigger concern, at least for the moment, is a receiving corps that will lack established playmakers if Deebo Samuel (foot) isn''t ready for Week 1. The 49ers figure to lean on their defense and running game, much as they did last season en route to the Super Bowl.
August 11, 2020 12:56 PM EST
Sam Darnold: Stuck with questionable roster
Darnold should have an improved offensive line in front of him this season, but the Jets'' receiver group still appears shaky, Connor Hughes of The Athletic reports.
Our take: The Jets appear to have turned over four of the five spots on their O-line, and while center Connor McGovern is the only one proven to be an above-average starter, the group should at least be less of a disaster than it was last year. On the other hand, it isn''t clear if newcomer Breshad Perriman will be an upgrade or downgrade from Robby Anderson (Panthers) out wide, nor is it clear that second-round pick Denzel Mims will be ready to contribute out of the gate. Darnold may once again find that slot receiver Jamison Crowder is his most reliable target, especially if tight end Chris Herndon doesn''t rebound the way the Jets are hoping. All in all, it''s one of the weaker rosters in the league, but there is at least reason to think Darnold can improve his own play in his age-23 season.
August 11, 2020 1:11 PM EST
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