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2013 Draft Prep: Busts, 2.0

Senior Fantasy Writer
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The first time writing about busts prior to the start of training camp proved, unfortunately, to be prophetic about one player. Danario Alexander was on the list, and he's already out for the season with a torn ACL.

As I said in my initial look at potential busts a few weeks back, this isn't a fun story to write.

But as always, we have to share our thoughts with you about why some players could potentially struggle this season.

Then it's up to you on how to proceed on Draft Day. With that in mind, here are 10 additional bust candidates for 2013.

Russell Wilson, QB, Seahawks: I originally listed Wilson at the bottom of my breakouts column as another option to consider, but that was when Percy Harvin was healthy. Since then, Harvin had hip surgery and will miss the majority of the season. Along with that, Sidney Rice had to go to Switzerland during training camp for a procedure on his knee. While Golden Tate is a breakout candidate -- he's the only receiver you can trust right now -- Wilson could struggle with two of his top targets banged up. The Seahawks also remain a run-first team, and Wilson and Robert Griffin III were the only Top 25 Fantasy quarterbacks with fewer than 400 pass attempts (393). He was incredibly efficient at 64.1 percent passing with just 10 interceptions, but replicating those stats will be difficult. He also said he doesn't want to run as much, and he had 489 rushing yards and four touchdowns last season. I don't expect Wilson to be a Top 10 Fantasy quarterback again, and he's just outside my Top 12 as a high-end backup.
I'd rather draft: Andrew Luck, Eli Manning, Colin Kaepernick

Arian Foster, RB, Texans: Calling Foster a bust is painful because not only is he a great running back, he's also a good guy in general. But we're talking about his Fantasy value here, and it's not looking good. There are too many red flags based on where you have to draft him. He practiced for the first time on Friday heading into the third preseason game, first because of a calf injury and now with a back problem, which has caused pain in his legs. He's also coming off a season where he had 405 carries, including the playoffs, and 460 total touches, which is an unreal workload for any running back. He's also averaged 372 touches over the past three seasons, so a further breakdown is possible. Going one step further, the Texans have a quality backup in Ben Tate, who could help ease Foster's workload. He remains a first-round pick, for now, but I wouldn't draft him before No. 10 overall. And getting Tate as a handcuff in Round 6 or 7 is a must if you draft Foster.
I'd rather draft: Trent Richardson, Marshawn Lynch, Ray Rice

Ahmad Bradshaw, RB, Colts: The hope is Bradshaw will be ready for the start of the season, but he just started practicing this week heading into the third preseason game because of right foot surgery -- which took place in January. He's had a history of foot problems, and it may just be catching up to him. Even when he does return, there's no guarantee he'll stay healthy for a full season. When healthy, Bradshaw is solid with at least 1,200 total yards and six touchdowns in two of the past three seasons, with 25 total touchdowns over that span. He's expected to start for the Colts, but he's becoming a risky commodity with each passing day. You can also expect to see him on the injury report on almost a weekly basis. He might not be worth the pick where he's going, which is the end of Round 6 based on his Average Draft Position.
I'd rather draft: Eddie Lacy, Rashard Mendenhall, Daryl Richardson

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DeAngelo Williams, RB, Panthers: Some owners may consider Williams a sleeper with Jonathan Stewart (ankle) banged up, but Stewart hasn't been ruled out for the year. Coach Ron Rivera also remains hopeful he could return for the season opener, although that seems unrealistic. Regardless, I have little faith in Williams even if he does start 16 games. He struggled as the starter for the majority of the season in 2012 when Stewart battled injuries. Williams had 10 games with double digits in carries but managed just one game over 100 rushing yards (Week 17 against lowly New Orleans) and five games with double digits in Fantasy points (two against the Saints). He also has minimal receiving skills with fewer than 16 catches in each of the past three years. On top of all that, he's 30 and plays with a quarterback in Cam Newton who dominates the offense, especially rushing the ball near the goal line. I'd rather gamble on a younger running back with upside than take Williams if I could avoid it.
I'd rather draft: Ben Tate, Ronnie Hillman, Mark Ingram

Bryce Brown, RB, Eagles: Brown had some sleeper potential when training camp started with the addition of coach Chip Kelly and his run-based offense. But Brown has been outplayed by Chris Polk in practice, and he's also dealt with a quad injury. Oh, and by the way, he's just the No. 2 running back at best behind LeSean McCoy, who isn't expected to sit much. Brown had two great games in 2012 when McCoy was dealing with a concussion for four games, but he also had two miserable ones. Brown should beat out Polk for the backup role behind McCoy, and he's worth drafting as a handcuff. But any thoughts of Brown being a potential flex option as long as McCoy is healthy because Kelly will run the ball a lot should be gone by now. It doesn't look like that's going to happen, and Brown is only worth a late-round pick.
I'd rather draft: Pierre Thomas, Bernard Pierce, BenJarvus Green-Ellis

Reggie Wayne, WR, Colts: Wayne is still going to produce at a high level, but if you're expecting him to be a Top 15 Fantasy receiver like he was last year that's not likely to happen. In 2012, Wayne was rejuvenated with the addition of quarterback Andrew Luck and offensive coordinator Bruce Arians. The latter called the fifth-most pass plays in the NFL last year, which allowed Wayne to be the second-most targeted receiver behind Calvin Johnson at 194. It's unlikely new offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton will give Wayne that many attempts. Along with that, Wayne had just two touchdowns and one 100-yard game in the final eight outings and just five total touchdowns on the year. He's being drafted toward the end of Round 4, which is too soon in standard leagues, and this could be the point where Wayne's production starts to decline since he'll be 35 in November.
I'd rather draft: Danny Amendola, Pierre Garcon, Eric Decker

Steve Johnson, WR, Bills: Johnson has been the model of consistency the past three seasons with at least 76 catches, 1,000 yards and six touchdowns over that span. But I'm nervous about him this year. He's had a rough offseason and training camp with a broken back and hamstring problem, which he said continues to be an issue heading into the third preseason game. The Bills also have a new coach in Doug Marrone, who is committed to running the ball with C.J. Spiller. Buffalo also added two rookie receivers in Robert Woods and Marquise Goodwin to take targets from Johnson. But the X-factor in all this is the quarterback situation for the Bills. If EJ Manuel (knee) is forced to miss any time, Kevin Kolb would be the starter. Remember how good Kolb was for Larry Fitzgerald the past two years? Yeah, I'd rather forget that as well.
I'd rather draft: Kenny Britt, Josh Gordon, Chris Givens

Cecil Shorts, WR, Jaguars: Shorts is an extremely talented receiver, and he's entering his third season, which could be a breakout year. But I'm nervous about his injuries and quarterback situation. Shorts dealt with two concussions in 2012, and hopefully that doesn't continue to be a problem this year. He also missed time in training camp with a calf injury. And then there's his quarterback. Blaine Gabbert is going to open the season as the starter, and that doesn't inspire confidence in Shorts posting quality stats. Now, Shorts could be great to start the year with Justin Blackmon (suspension) out, but keep in mind the majority of Shorts' production last year (nine games with double digits in Fantasy points in a standard league) came when Maurice Jones-Drew was hurt. The standout running back is healthy now, and he will be the focal point on offense. I don't have a problem with his ADP, which is Round 7 as the No. 30 receiver. But anyone considering him a starter could be left disappointed.
I'd rather draft: Antonio Brown, Jordy Nelson, Torrey Smith

Kyle Rudolph, TE, Vikings: Last year, Rudolph was tied with Jimmy Graham for the second-most touchdowns among tight ends with nine, trailing only Rob Gronkowski (11). But Rudolph had just 53 catches for 493 yards. The yardage was the lowest among the Top 15 Fantasy tight ends. And he was just No. 11 among targets for tight ends at 93. Rudolph had five games with double digits in touchdowns in 2012, with three of them coming after Harvin was lost for the season with an ankle injury. The Vikings have replaced Harvin with Greg Jennings and rookie Cordarrelle Patterson, and they will take targets away from Rudolph. He was great in the red zone last year with eight touchdowns in 15 targets, and he should do well down there again. But if his touchdowns decline and he doesn't bring up his catches and yards then this could be a down year. Consider him a low-end starting tight end on Draft Day with a late-round pick.
I'd rather draft: Jermichael Finley, Antonio Gates, Greg Olsen

Owen Daniels, TE, Texans: This mention is strictly being made because of ADP, since Daniels is being drafted as the No. 11 tight end. That's too high. I like Daniels as a Top 15 tight end, but I don't want him as my starter. He was good last season with 62 catches for 716 yards and six touchdowns, but that's about his ceiling, especially since the touchdowns were a career high. He had just four games with double digits in Fantasy points, but none after Week 9. And now the Texans appear to have the second receiver they've coveted for seemingly the past 10 years since Andre Johnson was drafted in rookie DeAndre Hopkins. In 14-team leagues or more you should consider Daniels a starter. But in 12-team formats you should only use Daniels as a bye-week or injury replacement. He's a safe Fantasy option, but there are tight ends out there with more upside this season.
I'd rather draft: Martellus Bennett, Jordan Cameron, Zach Sudfeld

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us via Twitter @CBSFantasyFB . You can also follow Jamey at @JameyEisenberg .

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Player News
Titans' Massaquoi rehabbing shoulder, to miss OTA's
by Ruben Palacios | Staff Writer
(4:34 pm ET) Outside linebacker Jonathan Massaquoi will not participate in the Titans' first organized team activities, per ESPN.com.

Massaquoi, who was claimed off waivers from the Falcons earlier this year, is recovering from shoulder surgery. He had a bone spur removed from the area, but the procedure was categorized as a minor cleanup.

Massaquoi recorded 22 tackles in 15 games with Atlanta last season.


Entering third season, 49ers' Lawrence Okoye eyeing roster spot
by Ruben Palacios | Staff Writer
(4:04 pm ET) This might finally be the year Lawrence Okoye can crack a spot on the 49ers' roster, per the Bay Area News Group.

Okoye, a former British Olympics discus thrower and rugby player, is feeling confident about his improvements and feels like his potential is worth a roster spot.

“It’s very different from the first time I came here. I’m feeling very good about things,” Okoye said Thursday while sitting at his locker. “I’m just happy I was given the opportunity to stay here so long, so I could catch up. I have a good opportunity to show what I can do.”

Okoye has worked under new head coach Jim Tomsula for two years and with Justin Smith's retirement, his emergence might be rewarded.

“You’re going to get lots of people telling you things. But the main thing is to just keep yourself motivated, despite what people say about you," Okoye said. "People will write you off. People will say this or that. Just keep yourself motivated, keep going every day and you’ll be good.”

 


Bengals' Terrelle Pryor still dreams about winning it all
by Ruben Palacios | Staff Writer
(3:45 pm ET) Terrelle Pryor's chances of taking the Bengals to the Super Bowl and winning it are slim, but that won’t stop him from dreaming.

Pryor -- in his fourth year in the league -- dreams about winning the Super Bowl with quite some frequency, he just isn't sure what team he's doing it with.

“I don’t know the team. It’s always in black uniforms,” Pryor said. “I didn’t see any orange. No, it’s not the Raiders. But I believe it can happen because I can visualize it like that. I’m into visualization.”

Pryor hasn't played a down since the 2013 regular season, when he passed for 1,798 yards, seven touchdowns and 11 interceptions in 11 games.


Flowers' college position coach thinks he can fill in for injured Beatty
by Ruben Palacios | Staff Writer
(3:18 pm ET) Things are moving really fast for Giants offensive lineman Ereck Flowers. The eighth overall pick in the draft, because of an injury to Will Beatty, might have inherited a huge workload this season, per nj.com.

Art Kehoe, Flowers' offensive line coach at the University of Miami, thinks Flowers will be up to the task of protecting quarterback Eli Manning.

"I'm sure he raised his level up a notch or two, but I think he plays every week, I think he plays hard in practice," Kehoe said. "He's an unproven commodity at the next level, and he's a high draft pick, [the Giants] drafted him to be a fixer, so I'm sure he's going in there to do what he did in Miami — scrap his ass off every day in practice, and if you're supposed to be a badass the next weekend [against] your opponent, he's gonna be there and he's gonna bring everything he's got. That's what he does. He wants to know that there's a dude, and he has to take care of him, and he'll be up to the challenge.

Giants' 2013 first-round pick, Justin Pugh is also a top candidate to fill in for the injured Beatty.


Union: Goodell must back off hearing of Patriots QB Tom Brady
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(3:00 pm ET) NFLPA head DeMaurice Smith is growing impatient awaiting word from Roger Goodell on the request of the NFL commissioner to recuse himself as arbitrator of the appeal hearings ofPatriots quarterback Tom Brady.

The league suspended Brady for the first four games next season for his alleged role in the Deflategate scandal, claiming that he likely knew that game balls were being deflated for his benefit before the 2014 AFC title game.

Smith is claiming that neither Goodell nor the Wells Report, which investigated the incident, could legitimately claim impartiality. He added that the NFLPA will "advance the volume" of the request if they don't hear from Goodell by next week. Part of the union's press release reads as follows:

Given a process that has contained procedural violations of our collective bargaining agreement, the Commissioner's role as a central witness in the appeal hearing and his evident partiality with respect to the Wells report, the Commissioner must designate a neutral party to serve as arbitrator in this matter. The players also believe that the Commissioner's history of inconsistently issuing discipline against our players makes him ill-suited to hear this appeal in a fair-minded manner.

As for the Wells Report, Smith stated that "you can't really have credibility just because you slap the word independent on a piece of paper." He offered into evidence the findings in regard to NFL official Walt Anderson, who was a key figure in the investigation, citing one part of the report questions his memory and another credits it.


Zimmer happy with progress of Vikings WR Cordarrelle Patterson
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(1:32 pm ET) Mike Zimmer has expressed optimism that underachieving Vikings wideout Cordarrelle Patterson is gaining a better understanding of route-running and the nuances of playing the position in the NFL, which would allow his talent to result in greater productivity.

Patterson took a step back in 2014 after a mediocre rookie year. He played in every game, but managed just 33 receptions for 384 yards and one touchdown. He has since stated that 2015 is his make-or-break year and is apparently acting like it in the offseason.

"He's done real well," Zimmer told Fox Sports North. "He's running routes good. He's working hard. So we just need him to continue to do those things and continue to keep getting consistent and keep improving. I've been impressed."


GM: Dolphins LT Branden Albert should be fine for Week 1
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(1:22 pm ET) Dolphins general manager Dennis Hickey has expressed optimism that left tackle Branden Albert will be ready to roll by the regular season opener.

Albert has been rehabbing from a torn ACL and MCL sustained last November against Detroit. He had signed a five-year, $46 million contract the previous March and had been performing particularly well before going down.

"It's been a long rehab and he's really attacked it every day," Hickey told SiriusXM NFL Radio, adding that there was a "reasonable explanation" that he would be ready for Week 1. "We really like his progress. He's out there with his team working out. We're really encouraged by what we're seeing with him."

Ja'Wuan Williams was forced to move to left tackle following the Albert injury in 2014. But he struggled at that position and is expected to move to his more familiar right tackle spot this year.


Report: Bills still want to extend Marcell Dareus
by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(1:15 pm ET) The Bills still want to extend the contract of defensive tackle Marcell Dareus, according to a report by NFL Network's Ian Rapoport

Despite the one-game suspension levied by the league against Dareus on Thursday, the team still hopes to have an extension wrapped up before the start of training camp. 

2015 is scheduled to be the last season of Dareus' current contract. He'll make $8.06 million.


Shanahan: Struggles of Robert Griffin III unrelated to injury
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(1:13 pm ET) Former Redskins coach Mike Shanahan does not believe injuries have prevented quarterback Robert Griffin III from maximizing his potential in the NFL. Rather, he feels it was the team not creating an offensive system that best fits his talents and his own belief that he could play a traditional role at that position.

Griffin sustained a serious knee injury in the 2012 playoffs. He then struggled in 2013 in an offense designed to transform him into a drop-back quarterback rather than one that took advantage of his mobility. He suffered another knee injury last year and did not perform well in the offense of new coach Jay Gruden.

"I don't think getting hurt has anything to do with it," Shanahan told 106.7 The Fan. "In college he didn't have a route tree, didn't have a playbook. That does take some time. ... If you take a quarterback like that you must run the kind of system that allows him to be successful. ... I really believe Robert thought he was more of a drop-back quarterback. He hasn't done things the NFL asks you to do. It does take some growing pains. You better really work on it inside and out."

Some have wondered why the Redskins went so hard after Griffin if they weren't willing to create an offense that maximizes his skill set.


Sheldon Richardson not at Jets' OTAs because 'I have a life'
by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(1:05 pm ET) Jets defensive end Sheldon Richardson is skipping the team's OTAs this week, a decision that earned him criticism from fans and media. 

Richardson's explanation isn't likely to win anyone over. 

Richardson went on Twitter and told fans he missed the workouts because, "I have a life outside of football."

"I chose to enjoy my family a little longer," he continued. "So to (you) fans that know everything, please worry 'bout yourself."

Richardson pointed out in another tweet that he "jus' wasn't at practice," but that he was still "putting in work tho'"


 
 
 
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