“Mahomes is the real deal, you’ll see,” Gruden said in an interview with NFL Network this week. “This guy is a talented gun-slinging quarterback.”
Fantasy football drafters weren’t high on Chiefs running back Kareem Hunt entering last season. Many experts’ fantasy football rankings had Hunt well outside of the top 30 running backs and he was largely ignored until late in drafts. However, Hunt quickly made a name for himself as one of the biggest fantasy football breakouts of the season.
As good as Ertz and Reed can be, if anyone unseats Gronkowski atop the tight end rankings this year, it will be Kelce. He has 168 catches for 2,163 yards and 12 scores in the last two seasons, topping 80 grabs and 1,000 yards in both years.
Kansas City Chiefs: CB David Amerson
After trading away star corner Marcus Peters, the Chiefs need someone to step up—and in the early part of camp, it looks like the newly acquired Amerson could be the man for the job. But that’s no sure thing, as Amerson’s been anything but a model of consistency in his five-year career. The former second-rounder was released by the Redskins in 2015 after just two years with the team, then caught on in Oakland, where he played well enough to earn a four-year, $38 million extension in 2016. But Amerson failed to live up to that deal, posting atrocious numbers in 2017 (surrendering an opponent quarterback rating of 156.3, dead last among corners who played 25 percent of their team’s defensive snaps, per PFF) before being released in February. Now on a one-year, $2.25 million deal, he’s slated to start on the outside for Kansas City’s new-look defense. The way he plays could have massive implications for the Chiefs.
Brad: PATRICK MAHOMES (127.6 ADP, QB16). “Rollin’ with Mahomies” is sure to be a popular fantasy football team name this season, and for good reason. Before Deshaun Watson morphed into Thanos and shattered all defenders into a million pixelated pieces, Mahomes sat atop dynasty and keeper-league wish lists. The Texas Tech product was my favorite passer among last year’s draft class. He’s athletic, mobile, fires the ball accurately all over the field and features a Brett Favre-like Howitzer. Unlike other Red Raider alums before him, he’s far from a system-only quarterback. The kid owns major star qualities. His Week 17 audition against the Broncos (8.1 YPA, 62.9 completion percentage) was merely an appetizer.
Placed onto a silver platter, Mahomes is sure to serve up delectable fantasy results. With Travis Kelce, Tyreek Hill, Sammy Watkins and Kareem Hunt as primary weapons, the QB is surrounded by speed, versatility and reliability. KC’s expected woeful execution on defense only increases the likelihood the sophomore surpasses 500 attempts. Knowing Mahomes’ skill set, I seriously doubt Andy Reid pigeon holes him into a conservative approach previously instituted with Alex Smith. Negative game scripts will force him to exercise his arm. Streak connections to blazers Hill and Watkins will be frequent. His interception tally could easily climb into the 15-18 range, but his opportunistic wheels will offset any mistakes.
KANSAS CITY CHIEFS: Patrick Mahomes could be the best quarterback Andy Reid has ever had.
Or at least the most exciting player since Michael Vick. I don’t mean to say Alex Smith isn’t exciting -- oh, wait, that’s what I’m saying. But I don’t mean that in a bad way. Alex is good. But that’s about it. Alex Smith is like when your buddy says he’s stopping for beers on the way over to your house and he shows up with Bud Light. You know exactly what you’re going to get, and most likely it’s going to get the job done. Mahomes is like a jalapeno-pineapple IPA that could be the greatest thing you’ve ever had in your life, or it’s going to be something you take two sips of and leave behind the couch for somebody to find six months later. High risk, but definitely exciting.
“I can just focus on football and not worry about no injuries, just focus on football. That’s life-changing, right there. To go through what I went through last year, and now this, it’s a huge blessing. I can put extra work in. Instead of rehab, I can put extra work in. That’s huge for me.”
Around the league
In a league that is notoriously anti-labor, Smith’s situation is the silliest example thus far of a team’s tricky negotiation tactics. Only a portion of the money in an NFL contract is guaranteed, but in recent years, teams have begun inserting language into rookie contracts that erases guaranteed money.
NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported the contract is a five-year deal worth $72 million, with an $81 million max salary and $40 million in guarantees. Diggs received a $15 million signing bonus plus this year’s base is guaranteed ($16.9 million), Rapoport added.
It wasn’t that long ago when Bridgewater’s football future was in doubt. After missing all of the 2016 season, he took the field in a blowout of a Week 15 home game, threw two passes and had one picked off. That didn’t stop the fans in Minneapolis from cheering him on. It didn’t mean that Teddy was back to take his crown as the starting quarterback of the Vikings, but it meant that he was healthy enough to play again.
“We were trying to ask questions to get a better understanding, and yet they couldn’t really give us an answer,” Eagles linebacker Nigel Bradham said. “They couldn’t give us what we were looking for.”
More than $500 million in claims were approved as of Monday under the NFL’s concussion settlement, nearly a decade earlier than league officials estimated they would reach that amount.
“I never felt at home at any of the places that I played, honestly,” Bennett said on the Dave Dameshek Football Program Podcast. “I looked at myself as a consultant. So my job was to go into wherever this place was that needed a tight end and I would consult at the tight end position until they found another tight end better than me or my consultation was over, then I had to go consult somewhere else.
“I just wanted to be in a dark room by myself with nobody. My room, I won’t say was a frequent occurrence, but it was something I would do. My faith back then wasn’t that strong, so I listened to the other voice in my head, and that’s where suicidal thoughts came in, and then actually planning out how I would go about it in such a way that Connie [his wife] and my son would get the money from my insurance policy.”
You can expect to see everyone on the team continuing to increase their flexibility as yoga will be a regular part of the Cowboys training camp this year.
He is facing eight felony counts, which include kidnapping and raping two homeless women in their 50s and raping an unconscious, 17-year-old female in 2003 when Winslow was 19.
In case you missed it at Arrowhead Pride
With a number of injuries at the linebacker position, the Kansas City Chiefs have signed free agent inside/outside linebacker Otha Peters, according to his agency.
We’re also just like you, in that when there’s football to watch, there’s also football to overreact about!
Williams is from Kansas City and attended Grandview High School. Now he’s playing for the NFL team he grew up cheering for.
“When Brett Veach was trying to get me from the Cowboys last year, it made my decision a lot easier when he told me the kind of players he wanted, and I fit in that category,” he said. “He wanted hard-nosed players that work hard — ones that are aggressive and love to play ball. That’s exactly what I wanted in a team.
Chiefs fans couldn’t be more excited about Mahomes. Over at Arrowhead Pride, they’ve created “Pat Tuesday,” to share Mahomes’ best college plays on a weekly basis. The hype is no joke. They say there’s a “mania” in KC over Mahomes.
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