Per the report, Amendola's new deal holds a maximum value of $7.35 million over two years, but more importantly, it allows the receiver to remain with the franchise, as his prior agreement had made him a candidate to be a salary cap cut. By staying put, Amendola, who recorded 65 catches for 648 yards and three touchdowns in 14 games last season, retains a degree of value in PPR formats, though his target volume tends to spike any time the Patriots' top wideout, Julian Edelman, miss action. This coming season, the team's wideout corps will also include free agent additions Chris Hogan and Nate Washington, returnees Keshawn Martin, Aaron Dobson and Chris Harper, as well as promising draftee Malcolm Mitchell. It's a crowded situation to be sure, but given the trust the Patriots' coaching staff and QB Tom Brady have in Amendola, when he's healthy, the 30-year-old should remain a key cog in the team's passing game in 2016.
Despite this endorsement of health, Dorsey is almost certainly slated for the PUP list to start training camp. However, he won't necessarily begin the season there. Dorsey suffered the torn ACL last season against the Seahawks on Nov. 22, and although occurring late in the season, he could certainly be "ready to roll" come opening day. Comparatively, DT Geno Atkins suffered an ACL tear in Week 9 of the 2013 season, and was good to go for Week 1 of 2014.
Lynch has not filed retirement papers with the league, though he intends to retire. The Seahawks' move was procedural, having to do with the salary cap. They still retain his rights should he decide to play this season. Thomas Rawls enters training camp as the starter, but the Seahawks drafted three running backs and re-signed Christine Michael to give him competition.
The Broncos applied an exclusive rights franchise tag to their Super Bowl MVP in March but Miller has yet to sign the tag. The two sides are expected to hammer out a long-term deal before the season gets underway. Miller has been absent from voluntary team workouts as a result of the contract dispute, but it appears both sides are eager to get the deal done as General Manager John Elway told KDSP-AM, "We want Von to be a Bronco for life too."
The belief that he could able to play this season goes a long way towards explaining why Jones and the Cowboys were willing to select Smith as early as they did in the draft. Until the nerve in his knee actually shows signs of re-firing, however, any attempt to put a timetable on his recovery is fairly futile. If IR is off the table, expect the team to put a NFI (non-football injury) designation on Smith, which would sideline him for the first six weeks of the season and then give Dallas another six weeks to determine whether they want to activate him or not.
The Seahawks selected three running backs in the 2016 NFL Draft, including C.J. Prosise (third round) and Alex Collins (fifth). The former fits in as a pass-catching complement to Rawls, whereas the latter will probably just provide depth. The real challenge for Rawls will be recovering from the broken ankle he suffered in Week 14, as he should otherwise have a clear path to the lead-back role. Seahawks GM John Schneider said in mid-April that Rawls should be ready by Week 1.
The Browns surprisingly didn't select any running backs in the recent NFL Draft, leaving Johnson and Isaiah Crowell as the main threats out of the backfield. Although the position appears to be a major weakness, Johnson's pass-catching ability and quickness could help change that perception. At the very least, he figures to have a key role as a passing-down back and change-of-pace runner -- but he might also threaten Crowell's hold on the starting job.
Given that he tore an ACL in December, Smith is highly unlikely to be ready for camp. The real question is whether he'll be ready for Week 1, as it's possible he'll open his season on the PUP list, which would require him to miss the first six weeks. The 2015 second-rounder could still have a key role in the Jets' wideout-dependent offense once he's healthy.
The Browns are apparently confident that Crowell and Duke Johnson will form an effective duo, as the team surprisingly opted not to select any running backs in the 2016 NFL Draft. Johnson impressed as a pass-catcher last season, but there's nothing from Crowell's first two years in the league to suggest that he's anything more than a low-end starter, if that. Regardless, he's the favorite to serve as Cleveland's featured runner, with Johnson likely slated for a third-down and chance-of-pace role. It is possible the team could let its two running backs compete for the starting job.
The Cowboys recently used a fourth-round draft pick on Dak Prescott, who will be groomed as Tony Romo's future backup and possible replacement. The team apparently expects Prescott to spend his first season as the No. 3 quarterback, but he'll probably still get a shot to compete with Moore for the top backup job. Offering neither running ability nor a strong arm, Moore is nothing more than a care-taker.