Fri Aug 16 5:54pm ET
By ARNIE STAPLETON
AP Pro Football Writer
Former Denver Broncos head coach Mike Shanahan, center, looks on as his son, San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan (not shown), directs his team during a combined NFL football training camp with the San Francisco 49ers at the Broncos' headquarters Friday, Aug. 16, 2019, in Englewood, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo throws a pass during a combined NFL football training camp with the Denver Broncos at the Broncos' headquarters Friday, Aug. 16, 2019, in Englewood, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Denver Broncos quarterback Joe Flacco throws a pass during a combined NFL football training camp with the San Francisco 49ers at the Broncos' headquarters Friday, Aug. 16, 2019, in Englewood, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Retired Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning greets former teammate Von Miller during a combined NFL football training camp with the San Francisco 49ers at the Broncos' headquarters Friday, Aug. 16, 2019, in Englewood, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo walks past reporters after chatting following a combined NFL football training camp with the Denver Broncos at the Broncos' headquarters Friday, Aug. 16, 2019, in Englewood, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Denver Broncos offensive coordinator Rich Scangarello, front, and head coach Vic Fangio look on during a combined NFL football training camp with the San Francisco 49ers at the Broncos' headquarters Friday, Aug. 16, 2019, in Englewood, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo talks with reporters after a combined NFL football training camp with the Denver Broncos at the Broncos' headquarters Friday, Aug. 16, 2019, in Englewood, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
San Francisco 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman talks to reporters after a combined NFL football training camp with the Denver Broncos at the Broncos' headquarters Friday, Aug. 16, 2019, in Englewood, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo runs during a combined NFL football training camp with the Denver Broncos at the Broncos' headquarters Friday, Aug. 16, 2019, in Englewood, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) Jimmy Garoppolo relished lining up against another team Friday, and not just because his own defense intercepted five consecutive passes off him at their last practice.
''I love these crossover practices that we have. It's a change-up to training camp,'' Garoppolo said after the San Francisco 49ers' joint workout with the Denver Broncos that attracted Peyton Manning and several other former players.
Garoppolo hadn't faced an opponent since his season-ending left knee injury at Kansas City last September, and while coaches Vic Fangio and Kyle Shanahan had agreed to forbid tackling during their two days of joint workouts, the competition represented another milestone in the quarterback's comeback.
He's expected to take another big step by playing at least a series in the teams' preseason game Monday night.
Niners cornerback Richard Sherman said he's also a fan of these joint workouts, so long as everyone keeps their composure.
''If it's clean like it was today, two teams just completing and getting after it and perfecting their craft against guys who are different and not all the fights and excess, then it's fine,'' Sherman said.
That's not always the case across the NFL .
''A lot of these joint practices, there's fights all over the place, there's extra intensity, there's guys going to the ground, there's guys getting hurt,'' Sherman said. ''And that's the stuff you don't want.''
Especially when your quarterback is coming off an ACL injury.
''Anytime you have a D-line getting close to the quarterback and they don't have a vested interest in the quarterback's health, you know, they're not as concerned about falling away from him or not touching him, etc., etc.,'' Sherman said. ''So, those are things you've got to be careful about.''
Garoppolo was much safer with the football Friday, when his only interception came when he was pressured by Von Miller and hung a 20-yard pass that safety Justin Simmons snared.
That was nothing like Wednesday, when he threw interceptions on five straight pass attempts , by far his worst session since returning from the torn ACL that cut short his 2018 season after three games.
''You guys are seeing me a couple of days removed, but that day I was pretty ticked off,'' Garoppolo said. ''The defense got the best of me that day. We've had battles back and forth. And it's good for us, good for them, and it's only going to lead to a better football team.''
The 49ers are hopeful Garoppolo's poor performance that day showed that maybe they will have a more opportunistic defense this season after setting NFL records for futility with just two interceptions and seven takeaways all last season.
''I think it was less about Jimmy and him having a bad day and more about us executing and guys getting on the same page and us making better breaks,'' said Sherman, who had one of the five interceptions.
San Francisco defensive coordinator Robert Saleh said that although Garoppolo ''got a lot of flak, not all of them were his fault, believe it or not. But I'm pumped up any time we get the ball. ... Shoot, Jimmy went all camp with what, two interceptions? So, I think it's OK, personally, to excuse him for one bad day.''
As if often the case in joint practices, the defenses had the upper hand Friday.
Although the 49ers were missing pass rushers Dee Ford (knee) and Nick Bosa (ankle), they stymied the Broncos offense, which wasn't surprising given their familiarity with Denver offensive coordinator and Shanahan protege Rich Scangarello , who was the 49ers' QB coach the last two seasons.
''It's a good day because I think we've got a young team and it's good to come out against a new team,'' Broncos quarterback Joe Flacco said. ''I think they brought a lot of energy. So, I think it was good for our team to go up against that. I think we can definitely do a better job than we did today.
''But that's what this is all about; it's about getting good work against some high intensity guys and some different looks.''
Facing the Broncos was just like going up against their own offense any other day, said 49ers linebacker Kwon Alexander.
''They use Coach Shanahan's offense, so we kind of know much of the stuff, the ins and outs,'' Alexander said. ''Just new guys to hit.''
Notes: The 49ers signed CB Quinten Rollins and waived/injured CB Greg Mabin. ... Mike Shanahan also attended the joint practice and briefly chatted with 49ers GM John Lynch and Broncos GM John Elway.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Jameis Winston (foot) appeared as a full participant on the injury report Wednesday, Sept. 18, but will start in Week 3 against the New York Giants.
Fantasy Spin: Winston would be a high-end QB2 under standard circumstances with a nice matchup in Week 3, but he could be the best available option for fantasy managers who've already lost a quarterback early in the season.
Los Angeles Rams kicker Greg Zuerlein was perfect during the teams 29-7 Week 2 victory over the New Orleans Saints with two field goals and three extra points. Zuerlein was able to show his range in Week 1 with a 56-yard kick against the Carolina Panthers, quieting any health concerns after the veteran had suffered a leg injury during the latter half of last year. Lock in Zuerlein as a top option in all leagues thanks to the explosiveness of the Rams offense.
Indianapolis Colts WR T.Y. Hilton (quad) was limited in practice Wednesday, Sept. 18.
Fantasy Spin: Hilton played 90% of snaps and caught four of six targets for 43 yards and a touchdown in Week 2. There isn't yet any concern this early in the week, and he should stay locked in as a WR1.
Indianapolis Colts QB Jacoby Brissett (knee) was listed as a full participant in practice Wednesday, Sept. 18.
Fantasy Spin: Brissett has been held below 200 yards passing in each of the first two games of the season. He has thrown five touchdowns against one interception. He's a low-end QB2.
Carolina Panthers S Rashaan Gaulden (groin), OT Brandon Greene (neck), LB Bruce Irvin (hamstring) and DT Kawann Short (shoulder) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Sept. 18.
Indianapolis Colts LB Darius Leonard (concussion) didn't practice Wednesday, Sept. 18. CB Pierre Desir (knee), DE Al-Quadin Muhammad (shoulder), DE Jabaal Sheard (knee), DE Kemoko Turay (neck) and RB Jonathan Williams (rib) were all limited.
Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp appears to be the WR1 in Los Angeles two weeks into the season thanks to his rapport with quarterback Jared Goff. Kupp enters Week 3 leading the team in receptions, yards and targets, an impressive feat considering he had torn his ACL just one year ago. In Week 3, Kupp will be matched up against the Cleveland Browns, a team with a young but talented defense that could apply heavy pressure on the Rams offensive line. If the O-line collapses, expect Goff to continue to look Kupps way when under pressure, as the wide receivers average depth of target has been just 5.9 yards (84th in the NFL). Lock Kupp in as a high-end WR2, as his chemistry with Goff will keep his floor stable and his ceiling sky-high.
Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Robert Woods struggled in the teams Week 2 29-7 victory over the New Orleans Saints. After all, he only had two receptions on two targets for 33 yards. However, fantasy owners should treat Week 2 as an anomaly; Woods had multiple plays called back due to holding penalties and the game script aligned with a run-focused offensive scheme with the Rams leading for the majority of the contest. With a Week 3 matchup against the Cleveland Browns on the horizon, he should see a larger target share in what could end up being a high-scoring, offensive duel thanks to a potent Browns offense. Woods remains a mid-tier WR2 across all formats.
Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Brandin Cooks rebounded in the teams Week 2 29-7 victory over the New Orleans Saints with three receptions on four targets for 74 yards and a TD. However, his five receptions through two games remains extremely concerning and indicates that the veteran could very well be the WR3 on the Rams depth chart. Still, Cooks should be a WR2, as he is the teams best deep threat and faces a Browns secondary that gave up chunk-yardage plays during Week 1 to rookie wideout A.J. Brown of the Tennessee Titans. Be wary, though, that Cooks could be behind both teammates Cooper Kupp and Robert Woodsin target share.
Los Angeles Rams quarterback Jared Goff saw some success in the teams 29-7 Week 2 victory over the New Orleans Saints, completing 19 passes on 28 attempts for 283 yards and two TDs (one passing, one rushing). While Week 2 was a definite improvement over his subpar Week 1 performance, unfortunately Goff remains plagued by issues with accuracy. Entering a Week 3 matchup against the Cleveland Browns, the quarterback will most likely face heavy pressure from a strong defensive front led by Myles Garrett and Sheldon Richardson. As long as Goff remains composed in the pocket, the upside of the Rams offense should keep his ceiling as a high-end QB2.
Miami Dolphins S Reshad Jones (ankle) and WR Albert Wilson (hip/calf) didn't participate in practice Wednesday, Sept. 18. LB Trent Harris (foot), S Bobby McCain (shoulder) and CB Ken Webster (illness) were all limited. DE Charles Harris (wrist) was a full participant.
Miami Dolphins QB Josh Rosen (knee) participated in full in practice Wednesday, Sept. 18.
Fantasy Spin: Rosen has replaced starter Ryan Fitzpatrick in each of the Dolphins' first two games of the season. He's still listed as the backup, but it seems to be only a matter of time until the sophomore is handed the starting job. He's worth stashing in dynasty leagues.
Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton (foot) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Sept. 18.
Fantasy Spin: Newton is questionable for Week 3, so fantasy players should monitor the situation during the week. Players will need other options available in case Newton is ruled out.
Carolina Panthers TE Greg Olsen (back) was limited during practice Wednesday, Sept. 18.
Fantasy Spin: Olsen was able to play last week despite the injury and posted 110 yards in the game. He may be playing with a new quarterback this week but has a chance to still be a low-end No. 1 fantasy tight end.
Indianapolis Colts RB Marlon Mack (calf) didn't participate in practice Wednesday, Sept. 18.
Fantasy Spin: Mack played 68% of the Colts' offensive snaps in Week 2 and rushed for 51 yards on 20 attempts after going for 174 yards and a touchdown in Week 1. It won't be surprising to see him rest early in the week at practice in order to keep him ready for such heavy workloads on Sundays.
Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey will play on Thursday against the Titans, according to head coach Doug Marrone. Ramsey is unhappy with his contract situation in Jacksonville and requested a trade Monday night. He's expected to get dealt as early as this Friday for a pair of first-round picks, so Thursday's game is shaping up to be his last in a Jaguars uniform. The shutdown corner will likely shut down Titans receiver Corey Davis on the outside. Against a slow-paced, run-first Titans offense led by inconsistent quarterback Marcus Mariota, the Jaguars Defense is in play as a low-end starting option in Week 3.
Jacksonville Jaguars left tackle Cam Robinson (knee) will start on Thursday against the Titans. It's an upgrade for rookie quarterback Gardner Minshew's blind-side protection in Week 3, but Jacksonville's offense is still likely to struggle to move the ball consistently without Nick Foles (collarbone) under center. You should only be looking to start Minshew if you're desperate in deep two-QB leagues.
Buffalo Bills TE Tyler Kroft (foot) fully participated in practice Wednesday, Sept 18.
Fantasy Spin: Kroft appears to be on track to play in Week 3 and could take over the starting tight end job. He should not be a starting fantasy option this week, but fantasy players could keep an eye on him because he could be a waiver wire option down the road.
Buffalo Bills WR John Brown (non-injury) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Sept. 18.
Fantasy Spin: Brown has become the team's main target in the passing game and should continue to see plenty of target during games. He can be at least a No. 3 receiver in fantasy leagues this week.
Buffalo Bills LB Lorenzo Alexander (non-injury), CB Taron Johnson (hamstring) and OT Ty Nsekhe (non-injury) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Sept. 18. WR Andre Roberts (quadriceps) and CB Tre'Davious White (neck) were limited during practice.