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FFL: Preseason | NFL: Week 1

Contract extension in hand, Edelman can get down to business

Thu May 23 2:51pm ET
By MARK FARINELLA
Associated Press

New England Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman (11) wears a Boston Bruins hat as he heads to the field at NFL football practice in Foxborough, Mass., Thursday, May 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)


New England Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman catches a pass during a drill at NFL football practice in Foxborough, Mass., Thursday, May 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)


FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) On the day after his 33rd birthday, a newly enriched Julian Edelman was doing what he loves best: practicing with his fellow New England Patriots.

''We got something done,'' the veteran wide receiver said Thursday after the Patriots concluded an organized team activity on the practice field behind Gillette Stadium. ''Business is business, and we're done with that, and all I know is that we're here and I'm going to be here for a few more years. I couldn't be any more happy.''

The Patriots gave Edelman a three-year contract extension worth $21 million with an $8 million signing bonus and $12 million in guaranteed money. The new pact should allow Edelman, entering his 11th NFL season out of Kent State, the opportunity to conclude his career with the team that selected him in the seventh round of the 2009 draft. The Patriots converted him from college quarterback into one of the most effective slot receivers in the league.

''I was born here in my football career and I'm going to have a few more years here,'' Edelman said. ''I love being here. I don't want to be anywhere else. I'm excited for this upcoming year, and I'm excited about this spring and to work on our fundamentals and mold our team and keep it going.''

Edelman enters 2019 with 499 career catches in the regular season for 5,390 yards and 30 touchdowns. Last season, despite serving a four-game suspension for violating the NFL's policy on performance-enhancing substances, he finished with 74 catches for 850 yards and six touchdowns. He capped a strong playoff run with a 10-catch, 141-yard performance in the Patriots' 13-3 triumph over the Los Angeles Rams in the Super Bowl, earning the game's MVP award.

''I've accomplished goals in the past, and when you do that, you set new goals,'' he said. ''I've been blessed and fortunate to attain and reach a lot of my dreams, but I still have a lot of other things that I want to go for. So I've got a big chip on my shoulder still, and I'm looking forward to coming out here and to contribute to this team, and working hard each day, helping younger guys and doing what I have to do to contribute.''

The Patriots went through the paces of the noncontact workout for about two hours Thursday, acclimating themselves to new teammates and new assistant coaches following an offseason of considerable turnover. Veteran special teams coach Joe Judge has also taken on the responsibility of coaching receivers this season.

''Yeah, we've had some coaching changes,'' Edelman said. ''But just like every other team, there's always turnover. Coaching staff, players . that's part of this business. Now we're more focused on who we have here, and who's here right now, and who's going to help us.''

The Patriots generally take an all-business approach to their practices, but they still were able to show support for another Boston-based team beginning a championship quest. Edelman and several other Patriots wore caps or other attire emblazoned with the logo of the Boston Bruins, who will start their Stanley Cup Final series with the St. Louis Blues on Monday.

''It's exciting, man,'' Edelman said. ''The city has just always got some crazy sports vibes going. Right now it's the Bruins' turn, and it's exciting to see a young team, a new team, go out there with some of the older guys that have been around, and compete at the highest level. I'm excited for them and I'll be at the games.''

Player Notes
Derrick Henry Jul 15 4:40pm ET

The Tennessee Titans and running back Derrick Henry agreed to a four-year deal worth $50 million on Wednesday, according to a source. Two years will basically be guaranteed. Henry capitalized after winning the NFL's rushing title in 2019 with 1,540 rushing yards and 16 touchdowns on 303 carries. The bruising downhill runner is a perfect fit in Tennessee's run-first offense and will be a first-round pick as an RB1 in 2020 drafts, but he might be one of the more volatile high-end running backs because of his lack of involvement in the passing game with just 18 receptions in 2019 and 57 total in his four seasons with the Titans.

From RotoBaller

Tom Brady Jul 15 4:30pm ET

A source reported that everything is "all quiet" on the front for New England Patriots offensive guard Joe Thuney on Wednesday, the deadline for the two sides to work out a long-term contract extension. He is likely to play under the franchise tag this season, which will pay him $14.78 million. Thuney has been one of the best interior offensive lineman since he entered the league as the No. 78 overall pick in 2016. He's also been able to stay healthy and start every game for the Patriots. His presence on the offensive line will help New England as they transition to life after Tom Brady.

From RotoBaller

Mason Rudolph Jul 15 4:30pm ET

The Cleveland Browns are finalizing a five-year contract extension with star pass-rusher Myles Garrett worth $125 million, according to a league source. The deal will be worth a total of $144 million over seven years, which would make Garrett the highest-paid non-quarterback in the league. The 24-year-old is expected to sign the deal as early as Wednesday after passing a physical. Garrett was the No. 1 pick out of Texas A&M in 2017 and had 10 sacks in 10 games last year before he was suspended for the final six games for hitting Steelers QB Mason Rudolph with his own helmet on Nov. 14. He's absolutely worth targeting in IDP leagues, as he ranks fourth in sacks per game (0.82) since 2017.

From RotoBaller

Yannick Ngakoue Jul 15 4:10pm ET

The Jacksonville Jaguars have received multiple offers for defensive end Yannick Ngakoue, including one involving a Pro Bowl player that doesn't fit their system, but it hasn't been enough value for them to deal a player of Ngakoue's caliber, according to sources. Teams have been told that the pass-rusher would play on the $17.788 million franchise tender, but the Jaguars are in no rush to trade him despite his wishes to play elsewhere. Ngakoue has been flexible about playing on the tag in another city, but the COVID-19 pandemic has made any long-term deals very challenging. If nothing is worked out, Ngakoue will play for the Jags under the tag in 2020. The 25-year-old has become one of the best young pass-rushers in the league and is definitely in play in IDP formats.

From RotoBaller

Kenny Stills Jul 15 4:00pm ET

Houston Texans wide receiver Kenny Stills was arrested on Tuesday night and charged with felony intimidating participant in a legal process, misdemeanor disorderly conduct and criminal trespass for peaceful protest outside of the home of Attorney General Daniel Cameron. The protest was demanding action for Breonna Taylor's case. This will become a situation to watch to see if Stills is disciplined at all by the NFL, but it seems unlikely. Stills has familiarity with Houston's offense, but it's tough to predict his current role with Brandin Cooks, Will Fuller V and Randall Cobb all in the picture. But he should see playing time with DeAndre Hopkins out of town. He just won't have much upside unless injuries ahead of him thrust him into a prominent starting role.

From RotoBaller

Patrick Mahomes Jul 15 3:50pm ET

The Kansas City Chiefs signed defensive tackle Chris Jones to a four-year contract extension worth up to $85 million on Tuesday. It comes after the Chiefs signed superstar quarterback Patrick Mahomes for 12 years and $503 million. If a long-term deal hadn't been reached between the Chiefs and Jones by Wednesday, July 15, Jones would've had to play the 2020 season on the franchise tag. Kansas City is now the only team in the NFL with three contract with at least $60 million in guarantees. Opposing QBs had a 32 QBR against the Chiefs when Jones was in the game and a 59 QBR when he wasn't. He's 26 years old and in his prime after recording 24.5 sacks in the last two seasons with the Chiefs.

From RotoBaller

Kelvin Harmon Jul 15 3:30pm ET

Washington Football Team wide receiver Kelvin Harmon suffered a torn ACL while training on his own prior to camp. The former sixth-round pick, who had developed a bit of hype heading into the season after his 30-catch rookie season, will now be out for all of 2020 and will set his sights to 2021. He may be a sneaky throw-in target for any dynasty trades, but is of course off the radar in redraft formats.

From RotoBaller

A.J. Green Jul 15 2:40pm ET

Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green is unlikely to sign a deal with the team ahead of the franchise tag deadline, according to ESPN's Jeremy Fowler. Green was franchise tagged by Cincinnati earlier in the offseason but it is unlikely he plays on a new contract barring "a final-hour, surprise push." Green has technically not actually signed his franchise tag but he is fully expected to play on it this season. The veteran star wideout is primed for a big bounce-back this season, provided he can stay healthy. That, however, is a bit of a question as he has appeared in just nine of a possible 32 games over the past two seasons. If healthy, Green can be treated as an upside WR2 in fantasy drafts.

From RotoBaller

Dak Prescott Jul 15 1:20pm ET

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott is not expected to agree to a long-term deal with the team before this afternoon's deadline. Prescott will play under the franchise tag this season, becoming the third quarterback to play under the tag (along with Kirk Cousins and Drew Brees). Prescott will earn $31.4 million this year before attempting negotiations again at a later date. Reports have stated that Prescott has turned down close to $100 million in guaranteed money. If he and the Cowboys can't agree to a deal next year, they'll have the option to tag him again for $37.69 million, but the two sides will likely try to work things out again before then.

From RotoBaller

Dalvin Cook Jul 15 11:40am ET

Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook is still without a new contract and will not report to the team until a deal is done. With Cook having issues remaining healthy over the years, the team's personnel are still at a crossroads regarding his future with the organization moving ahead. The 24-year-old had a breakout season in 2019 and finished with 1,135 yards on the ground and 13 rushing touchdowns. Cook's presence also contributed toward quarterback Kirk Cousins 69.1 completion percentage as he was featured heavily in the team's passing attack. Nonetheless, unless an agreement is made between the two sides, fantasy managers will be taking a risk by opting to use a first-round draft selection on him.

From RotoBaller

Alvin Kamara Jul 15 11:20am ET

New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara was featured in a workout video posted on social media by Dr. Sharif Tabbah of Athletix Rehab and Recovery, a facility located in Miami, Florida. This isn't the first video that Kamara has been highlighted in over the last few months, and it's a good sign that he is back on track after battling ankle, knee, and back injuries throughout 2019. Even with his nagging ailments, the 24-year-old still had a decent season despite taking a step back in several statistical categories. Though his preseason ranking has him behind Christian McCaffrey, Saquon Barkley, Ezekiel Elliott, and Derrick Henry (in most cases), he has a legitimate shot of exceeding expectations. The Saints also have one of the best offensive lines in the league, and with Drew Brees back under center, Kamara could make some noise on the fantasy end.

From RotoBaller

Alshon Jeffery Jul 14 4:00pm ET

Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Alshon Jeffery (foot) is "almost certain to start" the season on the PUP list according to Jimmy Kempski of Philly Voice. Eagles coach Doug Pederson said that Jeffery still does not have a set timetable for a return, and with time running out before training camp starts, Jeffery is almost a sure thing to be at best working off to the side. It remains to be seen if he will recover quickly enough to be ready at the start of the season, but if he does indeed land on the PUP list, he'll miss at least six games. Jeffery has been hyped up to have a big role this season, but if he misses that many games and the Eagles offense works well with DeSean Jackson and their rookies starting at wide receiver, Jeffery could find himself without much playing time even if healthy.

From RotoBaller

Carson Wentz Jul 14 10:50am ET

The Philadelphia Eagles re-signed offensive lineman Jason Peters to bolster their already formidable line. The nine-time Pro Bowler has been the team's left tackle since 2009, but will reportedly play guard under his new one-year contract. The Eagles seemed comfortable letting Peters walk as they have 2019 first-round pick, Andre Dillard, to protect Carson Wentz's blindside. However, right guard Brandon Brooks (Achilles) suffered a season-ending injury so Philadelphia turned to an old friend to fill the void on the right side. Peters will now play between fellow Pro-Bowlers Lane Johnson and Jason Kelce giving the Eagles arguably the best offensive line in the league which is good news for Wentz and second-year running back Miles Sanders.

From RotoBaller

Derrick Henry Jul 14 9:13am ET

Tennessee Titans RB Derrick Henry is unlikely to strike a long-term deal by the franchise tag deadline Wednesday, July 15, according to a source. He's scheduled to make $10.27 million and become a free agent next offseason.

Fantasy Spin: Henry is a stud RB1 in fantasy, but he suffers in PPR formats and may drop closer to a midrange RB1.

From TheHuddle

Michael Thomas Jul 14 8:40am ET

New Orleans Saints wide receiver Michael Thomas is the top-ranked wideout on Sports Illustrated's Big Board for the upcoming campaign. Thomas finished 2019 miles ahead of the No. 2 receiver in all formats. While contributor Bill Enright doesn't foresee another record-breaking season for the 27-year-old, he expects him to lead the league once again in many statistical categories. Thomas will hopefully be catching passes from Drew Brees for an entire 16-game stretch in 2020, with the future hall of fame signal-caller also having the luxury of playing behind one of the most efficient offensive lines in the league.

From RotoBaller

Saquon Barkley Jul 14 8:10am ET

New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley could be the league's leading rusher this season, according to Bleacher Report's Maurice Moton. Barkley is predicted to run for nearly 1,500 yards and could benefit immensely from the arrival of former Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett. The 23-year-old struggled in 2019 after dealing with a high-ankle sprain that cost him three games. He still managed to exceed 1,000 yards on the ground but took a step back in scoring production. If Barkley can remain healthy in 2020 and the offensive line holds up, the former Nittany Lion could be in store for his best campaign to date. Though Christian McCaffrey is the consensus No. 1 overall back in fantasy rankings, the case could be made for Barkley to be selected ahead of him.

From RotoBaller

Dak Prescott Jul 13 10:00pm ET

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott and the team have no scheduled talks ahead of Wednesday's deadline for franchise-tagged players to sign contract extensions. Things can change with a quick phone call, but there has not been urgency to get a deal done. It has been reported the Cowboys offered Prescott a five-year deal, but Prescott's side would prefer a four-year deal with options. Prescott is scheduled to make $31.4 million under the tag this season, but may look elsewhere if he is allowed to test the market next winter. Prescott would be just the third quarterback to play a season under the franchise tag and the previous two- Drew Brees and Kirk Cousins- signed with different teams after their seasons. Prescott's dynasty value would be less certain without a guarantee of playing in Dallas's high-octane offense.

From RotoBaller

Leonard Williams Jul 13 9:50pm ET

New York Giants defensive lineman Leonard Williams is expected to play the 2020 season under the franchise tag. According to Ian Rapoport, the two sides are on the same page that Williams will play under the tag ahead of Wednesday's deadline for franchise-tagged players to sign extensions. The hope is he excels in a new system and becomes a big part of New York's future after they traded for the former first-rounder in the middle of last season. Williams is an excellent run defender, but doesn't provide much IDP value as he has just 17.5 career sacks since entering the league in 2015.

From RotoBaller

Jadeveon Clowney Jul 13 6:13pm ET

Free-agent DE Jadeveon Clowney (Seahawks) is not receiving interest from the Dallas Cowboys because of his expensive asking price, according to a source.

From TheHuddle

Tyreek Hill Jul 13 3:23pm ET

Kansas City Chiefs WR Tyreek Hill said he wants to post 2,000 receiving yards this upcoming season.

Fantasy Spin: Hill finished the 2019 season with 1,479 receiving yards, so 2,000 yards is an unlikely goal to reach. He will still be part on one of the top offenses in the NFL and should be a No. 1 receiver in all fantasy leagues.

From TheHuddle