Forgot Log-in or  Password? |  Help  Not a member, Register Now!
      
Fantasy Football Today
Fantasy Football Today Blog
Gameday Inactives
2014 Draft Prep Guide
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Get Your Draft Board
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Scores
Fantasy Games
Playoff Challenge
Commissioner
Prize Leagues
Free
Office Pool Manager
Game Pick'em
Player Challenge
Fantasy Baseball Today
Fantasy Baseball Today Blog
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Rankings
Projections
Schedules
Probable Pitchers
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injuries
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Message Boards
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Downloadable Draft Kit
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
No Fantasy Teams Found
 
 
 

2014 Fantasy Outlooks: Jacksonville Jaguars

Senior Fantasy Writer
  •  

Momentum is building in Jacksonville after a long stretch of ineptitude. That's thanks to a very busy offseason in which Gus Bradley's crew turned over the roster and brought in a slew of new players via free agency and the draft. It should help turn the Jaguars into a contender ... eventually.

The biggest splash was the drafting of quarterback Blake Bortles with the third overall pick in the draft. The Jaguars insist they'll bring him along slowly, so his impact might not be felt until the second half of the upcoming season. But the impact of veteran rusher Toby Gerhart and rookie wideouts Allen Robinson and Marqise Lee should be felt much sooner. Jacksonville also beefed up its offensive line with the signing of guard Zane Beadles. Defensively they brought in ex-Seahawks Red Bryant and Chris Clemons along with Steelers castoff Ziggy Hood to help re-populate the defensive line. Linebacker Dekoda Watson also should help.

But not everything is coming up jaguar-spotted roses. Justin Blackmon, arguably the team's top weapon, remains suspended for a substance abuse violation. Even though he sat out the final eight games of last season, Jaguars general manager Dave Caldwell has said he does not expect Blackmon to contribute this year. He backed up that statement by drafting a pair of receivers within his first three picks. But only one selection was made to help a slumping secondary that ranked 25th against the pass and 21st in passing touchdowns allowed last season. That suggests that the Jaguars are hoping that coaching can help turn an inexperienced secondary around.

So it's probably going to be another year full of growing pains. Worse yet, the team might finish in the basement of the AFC South this season -- last year they finished in third (thank you, Houston). That difference meant games against the Chargers and Dolphins instead of the Raiders and Bills this season. Would have helped this growing team.

Late-round flier ... Cecil Shorts

As prepared as we might be to say something strong on Toby Gerhart, our focus here is on Cecil Shorts. He's become sort of an afterthought after tanking last season despite posting a career-high 66 catches. Should he be? If the Jaguars can cultivate outside receivers then Shorts could move into the slot, or at least move all over the field. We've always fancied Shorts as a Victor Cruz clone and if the team can get him in a position to be that guy then he'll perform well, if only because he's the most reliable outlet for the quarterbacks. A calf injury continues to hamper him, but assuming he heals up and participates in training camp, he'll be worth a pick as a capable reserve and Top 50 Fantasy receiver.

Late-round flier ... Allen Robinson

If you're in a dynasty league, Allen Robinson should be on your rank list as a potential second-round choice in your rookie-only draft. If you're in a more traditional Fantasy league, Robinson should be on your late-round pick wish list. As the roster stands now in Jacksonville, Robinson will be the only receiver with size -- he's 6-foot-3 and 220 pounds, the same height and nearly the same size as Houston's Andre Johnson. He doesn't have bursting speed but he's got hops (42-inch vertical) and enough muscle to box-out smaller defensive backs for end-zone jump balls and third-down seam routes. Playing in Bill O'Brien's pro-style offense at Penn State last year, Robinson caught 97 passes for 1,432 yards, setting Big Ten Conference records. He's a perfect target for an inconsistent quarterback like Chad Henne or an inexperienced passer like Blake Bortles to target. Expect him to start right away.

Dynasty-league target ... Marqise Lee

2013 Touches Leaders
727 total touches
Maurice Jones-Drew 277 (234 car., 43 rec.) 38.1%
Jordan Todman 80 (76 car., 14 rec.) 11.0%
Cecil Shorts 66 rec. 9.1%
Ace Sanders 53 (51 rec., 2 car.) 7.3%
All Others 251 34.5%

Lee is a polarizing Fantasy rookie. In 2012 he was a monster for Southern Cal, posting 1,721 yards on 118 catches (14.6 avg.) with 14 touchdowns. In 2013 he had 57 catches for 791 yards (13.8 avg.) and four touchdowns along with a left knee injury. Which Lee will show up in Jacksonville? Might depend entirely on the kind of playing time he earns in training camp. If Lee can stay healthy and show he can get what's being asked of him, he definitely has the potential to help Fantasy owners out this year. But it's probably more likely that he struggles this season and doesn't play as much as his rookie counterpart does. That's why we're not expecting Lee to be worth taking in a 2014 Fantasy draft. But if we're talking long term, it's clear Lee has major potential, making him worthy of an early-round pick in rookie-only formats.

Schedule analysis

The first five games the Jags have are against strong offenses. That's bad for the defense but it should force the offense's hand to throw the ball. That might mean competitive games or it might mean garbage time, but that's the kind of stuff that leads to good in-game experience for a team with young receivers. Matchups that might better benefit Gerhart come right after that with the Titans, Browns and Dolphins on the slate around the halfway point. Their Thursday game comes in Week 16 vs. Tennessee, a late-season tilt that should make for a huge game for Gerhart, assuming he's healthy and productive that late into the season. Two showdowns against the Texans in their last four (including at Houston in Week 17) punctuate what is otherwise a tough but not unbearable schedule for the Jaguars.

Training camp battles

Can Bortles win? We know the Jaguars' plan is to let Blake Bortles watch Chad Henne play quarterback and develop slowly. But we're not buying that Bortles will sit for the entire season. Remember, Jags coach Gus Bradley was with the Seahawks when Russell Wilson catapulted from third string to starter in one camp, and general manager David Caldwell was an executive on the Falcons when they drafted and started Matt Ryan and a scout for the Colts when they made Peyton Manning their starter right away. Maybe it's not fair to put Bortles in the same class as Wilson, Ryan and Manning, but the team has enough brains to know that if the rookie is legit they might as well start him.

Who's backing up Gerhart? The Jaguars asked for Denard Robinson to put on weight this offseason and he has. But the Jags also have Jordan Todman coming back and drafted a nice runner in Storm Johnson, who played with Bortles at Central Florida. This competition should not only bear out who's backing up Gerhart but who also can work third downs, which is a role many anticipate the Jaguars filling so that Gerhart's not on the field for every down.

Who's starting at receiver? As intriguing as the rookie wideouts are, neither one is promised anything in terms of work. Cecil Shorts is still the best receiver on the team, Ace Sanders is a good slot option and Mike Brown showed some flashes as an outside receiver last year. The Jaguars are going to use training camp to figure out who will play where.

Bold prediction

There's a lot of skepticism about Gerhart becoming a capable, productive starting running back after being a backup behind Adrian Peterson for four seasons. But the guy is a human bowling ball, knocking over defenders and running with the fierce, violent style that fans love to watch. The coaching staff has stuck behind Gerhart since signing him and envision him as their primary workhorse. Judging by the lack of other backs they brought in, Gerhart should get a great opportunity in Jacksonville. Moreover, the team finally has a back they trust at the goal line -- last year they called just 12 handoffs from inside the 5-yard line out of 35 opportunities. Gerhart will be gone before the middle of Round 5 and get over 1,200 total yards and score at least seven times.

Injury report

Cecil Shorts (calf), probable for start of training camp. ... Clay Harbor (leg), questionable for start of training camp. ... Luke Joeckel (leg), questionable for start of training camp. ... Roy Miller (shoulder), questionable for start of training camp. ... Geno Hayes (knee), probable for start of training camp. ... Mike Brewster (leg), probable for start of training camp.

Get player news notifications, manage your team and check scores
- all updated in real time. Download the CBS Fantasy App.

  •  
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
 
 
Player News
Falcons QB Matt Ryan falls flat in make-or-break game
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(7:26 pm ET) Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan took a step back in a make-or-break game at home against Carolina in Week 17, throwing a pair of pick-sixes in a 34-3 defeat.

Ryan was picked off by Roman Harper, who took it back 31 yards for a touchdown in the first half. Tre Boston picked Ryan off in the fourth quarter and returned it 84 yards for a score. Ryan completed 29 of 47 passes for 260 yards with no touchdowns and two interceptions. He was sacked six times and finished with a 58.8 passer rating.

Ryan finishes the year with 4,694 passing yards with 28 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.


Broncos' David Bruton gets stretchered off Week 17
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(7:22 pm ET) Broncos safety David Bruton had to be stretchered off the field Week 17 against the Raiders.

Bruton took a brutal hit on a late punt return, and was tended to by team trainers. Shortly after he was taken off the field, the team diagnosed Bruton with a concussion. He will not return to the game. Bruton was immediately put in an ambulance, and will be evaluated further at a local hospital. 


Seahawks' Jordan Hill will not return Week 17
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(7:15 pm ET) Seahawks defensive tackle Jordan Hill will not return Week 17 against the Rams.

Hill is dealing with a left knee injury. He was removed from the contest, and looked at by trainers on the sideline before the decision was made. Hill was credited with one tackle and half of a sack before leaving the game.


Steelers list Week 17 inactives vs. Bengals
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(7:15 pm ET) The Steelers have listed the following players as inactive for Sunday night's Week 17 showdown with the Bengals: cornerback Ike Taylor (shoulder, forearm), safety Troy Polamalu (knee), tight end Michael Palmer (groin), quarterback Landry Jones, wide receiver Justin Brown, defensive end Clifton Geathers and guard Chris Hubbard.

Taylor, Polamalu and Palmer were all listed as questionable to play Sunday but none of the three will be available for the regular-season finale. The three players listed as probable to play in Week 17 are all active, including tackle Kelvin Beachum (back), tight end Matt Spaeth (elbow) and linebacker Vince Williams (ankle).

Pittsburgh is a 3 1/2-point favorite at home against Cincinnati.


Bengals WR A.J. Green (biceps) active for Week 17 vs. Steelers
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(7:12 pm ET) Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green (biceps) is active for Sunday's regular-season finale agains the Steelers after being listed as probable on the final injury report for Week 17.

The Bengals will also have five other probable players active for the game, including guard Clint Boling (illness), kicker Mike Nugent (illness), defensive end Wallace Gilberry (hamstring), linebacker Chris Carter (knee) and cornerback Darqueze Dennard (shin).

Four of the team's six questionable players are also active in Week 17, including cornerbacks Adam Jones (illness) and Chris Lewis-Harris (illness), safety Reggie Nelson (illness) and linebacker Emmanuel Lamur (hamstring).

Cincinnati is a 3 1/2-point underdog in Pittsburgh in Week 17.


Bengals list Week 17 inactives vs. Steelers
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(7:07 pm ET) The Bengals have listed the following players as inactive for Sunday night's Week 17 matchup with the Steelers: cornerback Terence Newman (illness), wide receivers James Wright (knee) and Greg Little, quarterback AJ McCarron , guard T.J. Johnson, tackle Tanner Hawkinson and defensive tackle Devon Still.

Newman and Wright were both listed as questionable to play in the regular-season finale. The team will have four other questionables available to play against the Steelers.

Cincinnat is a 3 1/2-point underdog in Pittsburgh in Week 17.


Report: Redskins' Tom Compton set to have MRI on knee
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(7:04 pm ET) After leaving Week 17’s game against the Cowboys after suffering a knee injury, Redskins offensive lineman Tom Compton will undergo an MRI on his injured knee on Monday, reports csnwashington.com.

The injury is not considered serious.


Seahawks' Jeron Johnson ruled out for Week 17
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(7:02 pm ET) Seahawks safety Jeron Johnson will not return Week 17 against the Rams.

Johnson injured his elbow, and was quickly ruled out for the rest of the game. He injured himself during a special teams play, and appeared to be in a lot of pain. He was surrounded by teammates while team trainers looked at him, and was taken back to the locker room.


Eagles K Cody Parkey sets NFL rookie record for points scored
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(7:02 pm ET) Eagles kicker Cody Parkey hit a pair of field goals and four PATs in the win over the Giants, setting the NFL rookie record for points scored with 150. Bears kicker Kevin Butler set the old record of 144 in 1985.

Parkey converted 32 of 36 field goals, making a franchise-record four from 50-plus yards. The undrafted free agent out of Auburn, named a first alternate to the Pro Bowl, benefited from a potent Philly offense that often bogged down in the red zone.


Chiefs' Jamaal Charles suffers hamstring injury Sunday
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(6:54 pm ET) Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles suffered a hamstring injury near the end of the Chiefs’ 19-7 victory over the Chargers Sunday, reports ESPN.

Charles finished with 54 rushing yards on 13 carries. Charles was able to crack 1,000 rushing yards for the fifth time in his career which is a franchise record. He was also had two receptions on three targets for eight yards.


 
 
 
Rankings