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Josh McCown already fitting in well with Eagles

Sun Aug 18 3:30pm ET
By ROB MAADDI
AP Pro Football Writer

Players: Josh McCown, Nick Foles, Alshon Jeffery, Cody Kessler, Carson Wentz, Nate Sudfeld, Clayton Thorson

In this Dec. 31, 2018, file photo, New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown talks to reporters in the locker room in Florham Park, N.J. McCown's retirement lasted two months. The Philadelphia Eagles signed the 40-year-old quarterback to a one-year deal on Saturday, Aug. 17, 2019, a person familiar with the deal told The Associated Press. He is coming out of retirement to join his 11th team and play his 17th season. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)


PHILADELPHIA (AP) Josh McCown was talking to reporters when Alshon Jeffery stepped up on a chair, hit record on his phone and asked the newest Philadelphia Eagles quarterback a question.

''How's No. 17 as a basketball player?'' Jeffery inquired.

McCown, who played a lot of hoops with Jeffery when they were teammates on the Chicago Bears, gave his best evaluation.

''He's not bad. He's got some skills, but I can lock him down if it was one-on-one,'' McCown replied, adding he chose to wear No. 18 on the Eagles so he could stand next to Jeffery in team pictures.

The 40-year-old McCown was coaching his son's high school football team and preparing for a new career as an NFL analyst on ESPN when the Eagles called Friday with an offer he couldn't turn down. He signed a $2 million, one-year deal that could be worth up to $5.4 million.

McCown provides insurance behind Carson Wentz, who has finished the past two seasons on the sideline because of injuries. The Eagles already lost two quarterbacks in the first two preseason games. Nate Sudfeld broke his left wrist and is expected to return in September. Cody Kessler left Thursday night's game with a head injury. Rookie Clayton Thorson was the only healthy quarterback on the roster behind Wentz before McCown ended his brief retirement.

''It was good for me to spend a great amount of time with my family and go through an offseason where I wasn't traveling and having to go back and forth from a city doing OTAs and stuff like that, so that was beneficial for me,'' McCown said Sunday. ''There were only a certain number of teams I think I would be interested in and that met the criteria I talked about, and this was certainly one of them. It was cool when this opportunity came up and we started to talk about it as a family. They were excited, and they were like, `Man, you gotta go.'''

McCown was 23-53 as a starter, including 5-11 with the New York Jets over the past two seasons. He has completed 60.2% of his passes, has thrown 98 touchdowns and 82 interceptions and has a 79.7 passer rating.

McCown's best season came in 2013 with Chicago. He was 3-2 as a starter and completed 66.5% of his passes for 1,829 yards, 13 TDs and only one pick with a passer rating of 109. Jeffery also had his best season that year, catching 89 passes for 1,421 yards and seven TDs.

Jeffery said McCown was the first player to call him after the Bears drafted him and the two formed a bond off the field on the basketball court.

''Great player, great human being, great all-around person,'' Jeffery said. ''Josh can hoop, too.''

Nick Foles backed up Wentz the past two years and led the Eagles to four playoff wins, including the franchise's first Super Bowl title following the 2017 season. But the 2018 Super Bowl MVP left for Jacksonville in free agency.

McCown is entering his 18th season with his 11th team. Eagles coach Doug Pederson isn't ready to name his backup and his No. 3 quarterback yet. Sudfeld has thrown 25 passes in the regular season but showed promise. Kessler was 2-10 as a starter for Cleveland and Jacksonville over the past three seasons.

''Listen, he's a veteran quarterback,'' Pederson said. ''He's been around. He's seen a lot. He's a guy that just can add a lot of knowledge and depth in that room. Obviously, he played this position and started a ton of games in this league. Excited to get him going and get him up to speed.''

Asked if the team considered Colin Kaepernick for the backup role, Pederson said: ''We consider everybody and do what's best for the Eagles.''

Player Notes
Phillip Lindsay Sep 20 1:50am ET

Denver Broncos running back Phillip Lindsay has been reduced to nearly equal snap count share with colleague Royce Freeman. That being said, it truly is a toss-up between which running back will see more production in Week 3 as they will likely receive the same volume once again. The Broncos face off with the Green Bay Packers, who have not had an overly intimidating run defense to start the year in 2019. If you absolutely need to play Lindsay in a deep league flex role, especially in PPR setting, he most likely will suffice with decent production, but don't expect anything crazy.

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Royce Freeman Sep 20 1:50am ET

Denver Broncos running back Royce Freeman has seen significant time in the start of the 2019 season compared to where he ended last year. Freeman and teammate Phillip Lindsay have been sharing time out of the backfield and neither of them has been able to have a standout game yet this year. Therefore, it can be expected they will share duties once again in Week 3. If you need a player to throw in due to injuries in a deep league, Freeman poses an option with the potential of a breakout game or a few touchdowns looks to get some points on the board.

From RotoBaller

Noah Fant Sep 20 1:10am ET

Denver Broncos tight end Noah Fant has shown signs of promise to start the year, but he still needs to prove himself before he can be trusted to put up consistent numbers week-to-week. That being said, we have yet to see signs that Fant can have a breakout game and he should stay on waivers and benches in most leagues for Week 3.

From RotoBaller

DaeSean Hamilton Sep 20 1:10am ET

Denver Broncos wide receiver Daesean Hamilton has been a disappointment to start the 2019 season. He has struggled the last two weeks, and there is no reason that owners should give him the benefit of the doubt to flip the script against a stout Green Bay Packers Defense. If Hamilton is still on your bench in hopes he can figure things out, keep him there this week and out of your starting lineup.

From RotoBaller

Courtland Sutton Sep 20 1:00am ET

Denver Broncos wide receiver Courtland Sutton has put up a solid start to his 2019 campaign, most likely to the satisfaction of many owners. However, his Week 3 matchup makes him a tough play, as the Green Bay Packers Defense has locked down most receivers outside of their opposing team's number one target. With Emmanuel Sanders most likely getting the highest target share in Week 3 for the Broncos, Courtland Sutton and company are likely to struggle, much like Anthony Miller and Stefon Diggs have when their teams faced the Packers in previous weeks. If able to avoid putting Sutton in your lineup this week, it is probably a safe choice.

From RotoBaller

Emmanuel Sanders Sep 20 12:50am ET

Denver Broncos wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders looks to follow-up a strong Week 2 performance as the team heads to Green Bay for a matchup with the Packers. While the Packers Defense has been a strong collective unit in 2019, they don't necessarily have a lockdown corner that Sanders will be matching up with all game. With that being said, it may be hard to see Sanders having a league-leading game, but he should have no problem getting solid receptions and yardage, making him a solid flex play in most 10 and 12 team leagues.

From RotoBaller

Joe Flacco Sep 20 12:40am ET

Denver Broncos quarterback Joe Flacco has kicked off his campaign in the mile-high city with a slow start, currently producing low-end QB2 numbers. The narrative will stay the same for Week 3, as he lines up against a strong Green Bay Packers Defense who have held the likes of Mitch Trubisky and Kirk Cousins in check the previous two weeks. Avoid Flacco this week in all leagues.

From RotoBaller

Dede Westbrook Sep 20 12:10am ET

Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Dede Westbrook caught five of his nine targets in Week 3, finishing with 46 yards while also adding four rushing yards. This was Westbrook's highest yardage total of the year, and while he found the end zone in Week 1, it's still been a tough start to the season for the promising wideout. His value in standard scoring leagues is virtually nonexistent right now, though his target share does give him upside still in PPR. It's not quite time to panic and drop Westbrook, but fantasy owners should be concerned by his usage.

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T Y Hilton Sep 20 12:00am ET

Indianapolis Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton has been solid throughout the first two weeks of the season, but he hasn't done anything spectacular. In Week 3, he'll likely continue to be quarterback Jacoby Brissett's favorite target, but he still has a limited ceiling. It only takes one play for him to have a big week. As a result, he's a must-start. After a very grim outlook following the retirement of quarterback Andrew Luck, Hilton has proved that it doesn't matter what QB is throwing him the ball.

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D.J. Chark Sep 20 12:00am ET

Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver D.J. Chark found the end zone for the third week in a row, hauling in four catches for 76 yards in Thursday's win over Tennessee. Chark is becoming the favored end zone target for rookie quarterback Gardner Minshew, and that mixed with his speed has made him a valuable fantasy option who is able to produce even with a fairly low target total. If he's still on waivers in your league, it's time to add the second-year wideout.

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Nyheim Hines Sep 19 11:50pm ET

Indianapolis Colts running back Nyheim Hines has been held mostly in check for the first couple weeks of the season. In Week 3, he has more upside than we've seen thus far. Starting running back Marlon Mack has been battling an injury all week, and the Colts will likely have to put up points to keep up with the Atlanta Falcons. If Mack is unable to go or is limited in any way, Hines earns strong flex consideration as a result. In PPR formats, he's a strong possibility.

From RotoBaller

Gardner Minshew II Sep 19 11:50pm ET

Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Gardner Minshew threw a pair of first quarter touchdowns in Thursday's win over the Tennessee Titans. He ended up with 204 passing yards on 20-for-30 passing and also added 18 rushing yards on four carries. It was a solid game for Minshew, though one of those touchdowns was made easy by the Jaguars starting a drive at the Titans' seven-yard line. Minshew is making crisp throws and avoiding mistakes so far in his Jaguars tenure and looks like a solid QB2 at this point.

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Leonard Fournette Sep 19 11:50pm ET

Jacksonville Jaguars running back Leonard Fournette had 11 carries for negative-eight yards at one point in Thursday's win over the Tennessee Titans, but a 69-yard run late helped him finish with the game with 15 carries and 66 yards. He also added six receptions for 26 yards. Fournette was having a nightmarish game before that long run, and fantasy owners should feel discouraged despite the final stat line. Fournette and the Jaguars' offensive line just couldn't create room for him to run.

From RotoBaller

Marlon Mack Sep 19 11:30pm ET

Indianapolis Colts running back Marlon Mack is his team's lead back. He's far and away the best player at his position on his team. In Week 2, he was stifled by the Tennessee Titans. In Week 3, he has a matchup that is advantageous for him to have a good outcome. The Atlanta Falcons got ran over by the Minnesota Vikings in Week 1, and the Colts have an even better offensive line. With the speed to hit a big play at any time, Mack belongs in lineups this week with a good amount of confidence.

From RotoBaller

Jacoby Brissett Sep 19 11:20pm ET

Indianapolis Colts quarterback Jacoby Brissett has been quietly steady through the first two weeks. In the team's Week 3 matchup, he has another positive matchup. The Atlanta Falcons Defense has a lot of speed, but they haven't been shutting opponents out through the air. Unless Brissett gets an amazing matchup, he'll consistently be a QB2, but he has a lot of upside this week. This game has some shootout potential, and Brissett could benefit as a result.

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Tavon Austin Sep 19 11:20pm ET

Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Tavon Austin (concussion) remains in the concussion protocol, but head coach Jason Garrett said he is improving. Austin doesn't have a very good chance of being cleared for Sunday against the Dolphins at this rate. He's not much of a fantasy consideration as mainly a kick returner and gadget player on offense, although the Cowboys could use him a little more when he returns with Michael Gallup out two to four weeks.

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Tre'Quan Smith Sep 19 10:30pm ET

New Orleans Saints wide receiver Tre'Quan Smith (ankle) missed practice for the second straight day on Thursday. Smith injured his ankle late in the Week 2 loss and appears primed to miss Week 3 on the road against the Seahawks. With Drew Brees (thumb) out at least the next six weeks, Smith doesn't have much redraft value at the moment despite the injury. If he sits out, rookie Deonte Harris and Austin Carr will battle for work behind Michael Thomas and Ted Ginn. All Saints pass-catchers need to be downgraded with Brees on the shelf.

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Damien Williams Sep 19 10:20pm ET

Kansas City Chiefs running back Damien Williams (knee) has missed practice the last two days with a bruised knee and was limping considerably on Thursday. Meanwhile, LeSean McCoy (ankle) was limited on Thursday, so it's looking like Williams will sit out in Week 3 against the Ravens. If McCoy is active, he'll have RB2 upside in what will likely be a fast-paced and high-scoring game. Rookie Darwin Thompson and Darrel Williams could step in behind McCoy for some touches. Thompson would have some flex appeal in deeper PPR leagues. If you own Damien Williams, you should prepare as if he won't play this Sunday.

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Michael Badgley Sep 19 10:20pm ET

Los Angeles Chargers kicker Michael Badgley (groin) was a full participant in practice on Thursday after being limited on Wednesday. After missing the first two games of the season, it looks like Badgley has a good chance to make his season debut in Week 3 against the Texans. He's trending upwards as a fantasy booter, but we'd recommend a wait-and-see approach until he proves his health. The Bolts are hoping he's back full time, as they can't afford anymore special teams miscues that cost them wins. When Badgley is healthy, he can be a decent streaming option in good matchups.

From RotoBaller

James Conner Sep 19 10:10pm ET

Pittsburgh Steelers running back James Conner (knee) and tight end Vance McDonald (back) were both full participants in practice on Thursday. Conner missed practice entirely on Wednesday, so it appears that he will play in Week 3 against the 49ers. Still, Conner could share more work with backup Jaylen Samuels with Mason Rudolph now at quarterback, making him more of a low-end RB2 against an improved 49ers Defense. McDonald had two touchdowns when Rudolph spelled Big Ben last week and could be a safety blanket for the second-year signal-caller. Consider McDonald a low-end TE1 on the rise.

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