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Former New York Jets coach Walt Michaels dies at 89

Thu Jul 11 8:12pm ET

NEW YORK (AP) Walt Michaels, the former New York Jets coach who retired following the 1982 season after leading the team to the AFC title game, has died. He was 89.

The Jets said Thursday that Michaels died Wednesday. The team did not immediately provide a cause or location. The New York Times said Michaels died at a nursing home in Plains, Pennsylvania.

The former Cleveland Browns linebacker was the defensive coordinator of the Jets' Super Bowl-winning team in the 1968 season. He was head coach from 1977-82, going 39-47-1 and making the playoffs in the 1981-82 seasons. The Jets reached the AFC title game after the 1982 season before losing to the Miami Dolphins in a rain-soaked Orange Bowl.

He later coached the New Jersey Generals of the USFL for two years in 1984-85.

''We are very sad to hear about the passing of Walt Michaels. Walt was a great leader who inspired players to take their games to another level,'' Jets CEO Christopher Johnson said in a statement.

''A defensive mastermind, he had one of his finest moments when he coordinated our unit in the Super Bowl III victory over the Colts. Later as a head coach, Walt led us to back-to-back playoff berths in 1981-82. Walt had a tireless work ethic and took an honest approach with his players. He will have a lasting impact on our organization and our thoughts and condolences go out to his family and friends.''

Michaels starred as a fullback and linebacker at Washington and Lee University and was a seventh-round draft pick of the Browns in 1951. He was a five-time Pro Bowl player and helped the Browns reach five NFL title games, winning championships in 1954 and 1955.

Player Notes
Trey Quinn Aug 21 7:40pm ET

Washington Redskins wide receiver Trey Quinn (thumb) will not play in the preseason game on Thursday against the Falcons, while wide receiver Paul Richardson (quadriceps) will "probably not" play either. Richardson played in just seven games and caught 20 passes for 262 yards and two touchdowns in his first year in D.C. He continues to be bothered by injuries and can be left alone in standard-sized leagues. Quinn, 23, had nine catches in three games in his rookie season. He is slightly more attractive in the slot in PPR leagues with quarterback Case Keenum likely to be the starter, but Quinn is no more than a late-round deep sleeper.

From RotoBaller

Damon Harrison Aug 21 7:40pm ET

The Detroit Lions agreed to a one-year, $11 million extension with defensive tackle Damon Harrison on Wednesday. Snacks Harrison won't do much in the sack column -- he has just nine total sacks in his six years in the league -- but he's most known for being an elite run clogger up the middle with his size (6-foot-3, 353 pounds). The Lions run defense was much improved after they acquired Harrison from the Giants at midseason last year.

From RotoBaller

Marcus Kemp Aug 21 6:50pm ET

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Marcus Kemp (knee) is done for the season after suffering a torn ACL and MCL. Kemp suffered the injury during the second preseason game versus the Pittsburgh Steelers on Saturday. He was great for the Chiefs on special teams last season, so losing him will hurt the team. He wasn't going to make an impact in fantasy leagues, but this will hurt the special teams unit for Kansas City.

From RotoBaller

Kevin White Aug 21 6:20pm ET

The Arizona Cardinals released wide receiver Kevin White on Wednesday, according to a source. White was a former first-round pick with the Bears and had recovered from a hamstring injury that kept him out the last week. It remains to be seen if another team will take a chance on the oft-injured wideout. His release is good news for rookies Andy Isabella and Keesean Johnson behind Larry Fitzgerald and Christian Kirk on the depth chart.

From RotoBaller

Adam Vinatieri Aug 21 6:00pm ET

Indianapolis Colts kicker Adam Vinatieri (knee), who has missed the first two preseason games and the last six practices, said he expects to return to practice on Thursday. Rookie Cole Hedlund has made four of his five kicks in Vinatieri's absence this preseason. The 46-year-old Vinatieri doesn't need many repetitions to be ready for the regular season at this point. On a Colts team that could be even better offensively, depending on the health of quarterback Andrew Luck, Vinatieri should have fantasy appeal as a low-end starting kicker if he's completely healthy.

From RotoBaller

Noah Fant Aug 21 5:30pm ET

Denver Broncos head coach Vic Fangio said that rookie tight end Noah Fant (ankle) will be ready for Week 1 after he suffered a minor ankle injury in the preseason game against the 49ers on Monday, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. That's great news for the Broncos, as they drafted Fant in the first round hoping that he could make an immediate impact in his rookie season alongside Jeff Heuerman and Jake Butt (if healthy). Fant easily has the most pass-catching upside of the group, but temper your expectations in Year 1 despite the fact that quarterback Joe Flacco often leans on his tight ends. Fant is a low-end TE2, at best. He's much more attractive in dynasty formats.

From RotoBaller

D.K. Metcalf Aug 21 5:10pm ET

Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said that rookie wide receiver D.K. Metcalf's knee surgery showed minimal injury, and he's listed as week-to-week as the regular season approaches. Metcalf could miss a game or two to begin the regular season, which drops his fantasy value some, but when healthy he's expected to be a starter across from Tyler Lockett and has considerable upside in his first season. The hype is real and his size and athleticism are off the charts, but be careful not to overvalue him in fantasy drafts. The lost time this preseason could easily cause him to start out slow in his rookie year. RotoBaller has Metcalf ranked as the No. 64 fantasy wideout. Take a chance on him in the later rounds.

From RotoBaller

Vance McDonald Aug 21 4:20pm ET

Pittsburgh Steelers tight end Vance McDonald has never played a full season in his six-year career, and the team doesn't plan on using him extensively in order to keep him healthy. McDonald played a career-high 564 snaps last year and split time evenly with Jesse James, who is now with the Lions. "He still won't," offensive coordinator Randy Fichtner said of McDonald's playing time increasing substantially this season. "He's never going to play the full game. That's never going to happen." That means that the Steelers plan to use Xavier Grimble quite a bit as the No. 2 tight end. While McDonald is still worth an investment as a low-end TE1, his production could be spotty and inconsistent.

From RotoBaller

Mike Evans Aug 21 4:16pm ET

Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians said that wide receiver Mike Evans (quadriceps) will not play in the third preseason game against the Browns on Friday. He has been out all week with what is believed to be a quadriceps injury. Evans' injury isn't believed to be serious, but the Bucs are playing it cautious with their No. 1 wideout. It's unlikely he'll see any preseason action in the final week of exhibition games, so we probably won't see Evans again until Week 1. He's a strong WR1 choice in Arians' aggressive offense and is ranked as the No. 18 overall fantasy player at RotoBaller.

Drew Brees Aug 21 4:16pm ET

New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton said that quarterback Drew Brees will start in the preseason game this weekend against the Jets. Brees is unlikely to play more than a half in the team's third preseason game. The 40-year-old hasn't shown any signs of slowing down, throwing for 3,992 yards and 32 touchdowns in another Pro Bowl season in 2018. While Brees should be solid once again this year in an explosive offense, the Saints could be more running-back centric to take some of the pressure off of him, which gives him a much lower ceiling as he nears the end of his career. The future Hall of Famer is still a QB1, but don't expect gaudy numbers week in and week out.

Todd Davis Aug 21 4:13pm ET

Denver Broncos LB Todd Davis (calf) is a bit behind schedule in his recovery from a calf injury, according to head coach Vic Fangio.

From TheHuddle

Melvin Gordon Aug 21 3:40pm ET

Los Angeles Chargers running back Melvin Gordon's contract holdout is expected to continue into the season, according to sources. Contract talks between Gordon and the team haven't progressed as hoped, and he'll continue to train in Florida for the foreseeable future. There's still time left, but it's looking like Gordon will miss regular season games for the Bolts. That will obviously hurt his fantasy stock quite a bit, as he came into the year as a surefire RB1 in an explosive offense. As a result, Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson are set to become much more attractive, although Gordon is still worth a selection around the fifth round of drafts in case he misses minimal time.

From RotoBaller

Melvin Gordon Aug 21 3:33pm ET

Los Angeles Chargers RB Melvin Gordon is expected to continue his holdout through the start of the regular season since there has not been any progress made in contract talks, according to sources.

Fantasy Spin: Gordon's fantasy value will take a big hit if he decides to sit out regular season games and will drop on draft boards. Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson will handle the carries while Gordon holds out, and both players had success last season. Ekeler can be considered a No. 2 or No. 3 fantasy back, while Jackson could be a possible handcuff or late-round option.

From TheHuddle

Joe Haden Aug 21 3:23pm ET

Pittsburgh Steelers CB Joe Haden (foot) is still considered day-to-day because of a foot injury.

From TheHuddle

LeSean McCoy Aug 21 2:33pm ET

Buffalo Bills RBs LeSean McCoy and Frank Gore will both see more playing time during the third preseason game Friday, Aug. 23.

Fantasy Spin: McCoy probably will keep the starting job this season, but Gore should also have a solid role in the running game. McCoy probably can be a No. 3 running back, while Gore could be a handcuff to McCoy or a No. 4 or No. 5 back on a fantasy roster.

From TheHuddle

Sam Darnold Aug 21 2:30pm ET

New York Jets head coach Adam Gase is still impressed with a throw that quarterback Sam Darnold made in last Thursday's preseason game against the Falcons. "The throw to Quincy, I dont know if Ive seen many that were better in my career," Gase said Tuesday. Darnold went 10-for-15 with no turnovers in practice on Tuesday. He's expected to play at least the first half of the preseason game this Saturday against the Saints. Darnold had his fair share of ups and downs in his rookie season, throwing for 2,865 yards, 17 touchdowns and 15 interceptions in 13 games. He should be better in his second year with Le'Veon Bell in the backfield, but he'll need to show more before fantasy owners use him for anything more than a low-end QB2.

From RotoBaller

David Moore Aug 21 2:10pm ET

Seattle Seahawks wide receiver David Moore has been quiet overall in training camp and seems to be behind rookie D.K. Metcalf on the depth chart when he's healthy. Jaron Brown also played with the first-team offense over Moore in the last preseason game. Moore had 26 catches for 445 yards and five touchdowns last year and caught just four passes for 32 yards over the final five weeks. NBC Sports Northwest's Joe Fann doesn't think Moore will have much more than the 53 targets he saw in 2018. The 24-year-old could be useful in deeper leagues to begin the year if Metcalf isn't ready, but you can probably ignore him in standard-sized leagues.

From RotoBaller

Rashaad Penny Aug 21 2:00pm ET

Seattle Seahawks running back Rashaad Penny has just 13 yards on 12 carries through two preseason games and hasn't shown much burst. The 2018 first-rounder could still have a breakout campaign in his second season, but he's falling further behind Chris Carson as the No. 2 option. Head coach Pete Carroll has blamed Penny's lack of production in the preseason on the team's offensive line. The 23-year-old looked pretty explosive at the end of last season, and he's more attractive in PPR leagues, but don't reach for him solely based on Carson's injury-prone ways. RotoBaller has Penny ranked as the No. 35 fantasy running back, and you should consider drafting him around the eighth or ninth round.

From RotoBaller

Tarik Cohen Aug 21 1:50pm ET

Chicago Bears head coach Matt Nagy regrets using running back Tarik Cohen so much down the stretch last season. The running back was used in the backfield, as an outside receiver and inside in the slot. We moved [Cohen] around a lot last year, and I do feel like there was a time probably later in the season where we probably gave him a little bit too much, Nagy said before practice Tuesday. And when you mentally drain them, it pulls them back physically. It's not to say that Cohen won't get his opportunities this year, but Chicago may elect to keep him fresh, especially with tons of other weapons in rookie David Montgomery, Mike Davis, Cordarrelle Patterson, Allen Robinson, Trey Burton and Taylor Gabriel. Cohen is a home run hitter on any given play, but be careful not to overvalue him in an offense that has a ton of moving parts.

From RotoBaller

Rashaad Penny Aug 21 1:23pm ET

Seattle Seahawks RB Rashaad Penny has 13 yards on 12 carries in two preseason games, and he has fallen further behind RB Chris Carson, in the opinion of NBC Sports Northwest's Joe Fann. Head coach Pete Carroll backed Penny by saying: 'We've got to block for him better. He didn't have a chance.'

Fantasy Spin: Penny will need a strong second half of the preseason to be worth more than RB5 or handcuff at this point. Carson looks like a solid RB2.

From TheHuddle