Buccaneers Fantasy News
Thursday, July 17, 2014, 8:25pm
"Evans steps into a great situation as the No. 2 wide receiver. He will start opposite Vincent Jackson, who will draw most of the attention from opposing defenses. That means there should be plenty of opportunities for Evans. His size should give him a big advantage in one-on-one matchups with cornerbacks."
We currently project Evans for 64 carries for 879 yards and five TDs, making him the #43 receiver on our board. Rookies are generally overdrafted, but Evans is in a great situation and could be starter-worthy (top 36) this season.
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Thursday, July 17, 2014, 8:11pm
One of the biggest myths of the offseason has taken on a life of its own because coach Lovie Smith said a team needs more than one quality back. He is serious about that and there will be some sort of rotation. But the fact is Doug Martin still is the feature back and will get most of the carries. He just won’t get almost all the carries like he did under former coach Greg Schiano. There will be room for Charles Sims, Bobby Rainey, Mike James and Jeff Demps to compete for touches.
Martin was the #3 fantasy running back as a rookie, but his PPG dropped from #3 to #22 during his sophomore season. His stock has taken a hit due to the new regime in Tampa adding rookie Charles Sims to a stacked backfield that already includes Bobby Rainey and Mike James. He’s still going to be the RB1 for the Bucs but probably won’t see the 79.5% share of the carries that he received in his first 21 games. He’s still likely to be a high-end RB2 in both standard and PPR formats.
Friday, July 11, 2014, 10:14pm
Buccaneers HC Lovie Smith has compared RB Charles Sims – as a type of player – to the Bears' Matt Forte, and draft analyst Rob Rang makes the same link. The author praises Sims' "impressive burst," "hand-eye coordination," "body control" and "soft mitts" and says those traits fit in well with the system new Offensive Coordination Jeff Tedford is installing in Tampa. The reason that Rang believes Sims could contribute significantly early on isn't necessarily positive, but it's a fair point: Josh McCown will need good protection up front to allow his crew of huge pass-catchers to get downfield, and it's not yet known how strong the Bucs' offensive line will be.
Rang would not be surprised if Sims, who was seen as something of a head-scratcher of a pick in early May, looks like a steal instead a month or two into the season.
The arrival of Sims has taken a good amount of wind out of Doug Martin's sails, causing his ADP to slip into the 2nd/3rd rounds. This is a new regime, so Martin's role is far from safe, though we still see him as the lead back in Tampa.
Tuesday, July 8, 2014, 9:17am
He's been called a journeyman and a survivor.
Hagan didn't play in 2013 after the Buccaneers released him following training camp. He continued to train, but wondered whether he'd get another shot. Then the Titans, who saw a couple of their undrafted wideouts go down with injuries, asked him to town for a workout. They signed him to a one-year deal.
Is it realistic to think Hagan could make the roster? Anyone who watched the 6-foot-2, 210-pounder participate in minicamp last month saw that he definitely looked the part.
"You can just tell he knows what he is doing," cornerback Blidi Wreh-Wilson said. "He knows how to get open and things like that. He really impressed me right off the bat."
According to the story, one thing working in Hagan's favor is there are no locks to make the Titans roster after Nate Washington, Kendall Wright and Justin Hunter. Michael Preston and Marc Mariani are considered next in line, while another journeyman, Brian Robiskie, also is trying to continue his career. Hagan is a ways away from being fantasy relevant, however.
Bucs WR Mike Evans (hamstring): "I feel 100 percent."
Thursday, July 3, 2014, 10:39am
WR Mike Evans now has just three weeks until the Buccaneers report for preseason training camp, even less until rookies are due back in town, but the first-round pick from Texas A&M is hard at work at getting himself in shape for the 2014 season.
"Physically, I'm not in tip-top shape. I'm getting back into my game shape," said Evans, who is training in Miami with a group of players that includes Bears receiver Brandon Marshall. "As far as injury-wise, I feel good. I've been running, and I feel 100 percent."
Evans missed much of his first month of practice with the Bucs with a hamstring injury suffered on the first day of voluntary minicamp on May 20. He was able to return in a limited capacity for the team's mandatory minicamp last month, and he expects to be fine when camp starts July 25 at One Buc Place.
Evans is training for two weeks in Miami at Fit Speed Athletic Performance, and he said his focus is dropping "7 to 10 pounds" with a goal of playing at about 230 pounds this fall.
Evans looks likely to start opposite Vincent Jackson and could very well turn into a fantasy starter as a rookie, though we are generally less bullish on rookies than other fantasy sites. Still, Evans certainly has the opportunity necessary to make an impact. If he has a healthy and productive training camp, he'll move up our rankings.
Wednesday, July 2, 2014, 6:01pm
Before the draft, Mike Evans got compared to two current NFL wide receivers more than any others.
Buccaneers teammate Vincent Jackson and the other was Bears wide receiver Brandon Marshall have the same imposing size and impressive athletic ability that Evans showed while he was at Texas A&M, leading many to point to the duo as a sign of what Evans could become once he hit the NFL. Evans got to spend the spring working with Jackson and he’s spending the early part of his summer working with Marshall.
Both men are training with Fit Speed Athletic Performance in Florida.
Bucs 'want to use a rotation' at RB
Friday, June 20, 2014, 6:20pm
Martin was not drafted by this regime, so he potentially could find himself in a timeshare, especially after a lackluster start to his second season (prior to getting injured).
Austin Seferian-Jenkins might not play right away
Friday, June 20, 2014, 6:18pm
Buccaneers rookie TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins might be the long-term answer. But he might not get a lot of playing time in the short term. Seferian-Jenkins wasn’t allowed to take part in the offseason program and that could put him behind the competition. Brandon Myers, Tim Wright and Luke Stocker all have more experience.
Rookie tight ends generally don't make much of a fantasy impact, but the Bucs definitely need a playmaker at the position.
Nick Foles rekindling chemistry with Jeremy Maclin
Wednesday, June 18, 2014, 10:01am
Lost in the disappointment of the 2012 Eagles season was the fact that Nick Foles and Jeremy Maclin established excellent chemistry in short order. In fact, in the seven games that Foles played, Maclin caught 37 passes for 479 yards and three touchdowns, including the last-second game-winner against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Extrapolated over an entire season’s worth of games, Maclin’s stats with Foles totaled 85 catches for 1,095 yards and seven touchdowns. Also consider that those numbers came during the worst season for the franchise in 15 years. Now, think about Foles and Maclin rekindling their on-field chemistry in Chip Kelly’s prolific offensive machine that set a host of franchise records in its first season.
For the first time in three seasons, Foles and Maclin will have the chance to begin the season together as starters – and healthy. Maclin says he feels 100 percent healthy, and Foles’ face lights up with excitement when he talks about his top target.
"He looks great,” Foles said of Maclin. "I can’t tell a difference at all. He’s a guy who’s going to give it his all every day. Coming out of breaks and everything, going downfield, I think he’s looked great. Obviously he’s working every day to get better, but he’s the same Jeremy and that Jeremy is a guy who wants to get better every day, no matter what. That’s a big injury, any time you hurt your knee, and he’s done everything that he can to get back on the field, so it’s exciting to have him back out there and healthy, and we just have to keep him that way.”
Maclin was the #13 WR in 2010, #31 in 2011 and #27 in 2012 before tearing his ACL last summer. The Eagles don't throw as much under Kelly as they did under Andy Reid, but Maclin has the talent and opportunity -- DeSean Jackson is gone -- to be a fantasy starter in 2014, provided his knee is good to go.
Bucs QB Josh McCown throwing with accuracy and pace
Tuesday, June 17, 2014, 12:36pm
New Buccaneers starting quarterback Josh McCown looked particularly adept at dropping passes into tight spaces between coverage last week. When it came to timing patterns, particularly on the sideline, McCown often slung darts that looked like they were headed to empty space before the targeted pass-catcher suddenly sprinted into the picture.
If McCown can get into sync with his receivers quickly, he could work his way into a QB2/streaming role by the time fantasy draft season is in full swing.
Buccaneers see Alshon Jeffery in Mike Evans
Sunday, June 15, 2014, 11:11am
As Buccaneers QB Josh McCown said, WR Mike Evans has to learn the playbook before he’ll be truly effective. And he’s been bothered by a hamstring injury, which has limited his time in OTAs. But watch him go up and effortlessly pluck the ball with a one-handed grab in OTAs and the comparisons to Alshon Jeffery become even more apparent.
“Oh yeah, he’s missed a lot [of offseason work], there’s no other way to sugarcoat it,” HC Lovie Smith recently said. “We wanted Mike taking every rep — as a rookie you need to take every rep. Around the league, it happens, especially with a lot of new guys that those last couple of weeks they’re doing a lot of traveling, don’t work out exactly how they should, but we saw enough and we know who Mike is. He’s going to help us win a lot of games, [and] he’s gotten better. We need him, we can’t let him re-injure that hamstring, so we’ll be cautious with him.”
The article does a nice job of breaking down how the Bears use Jeffery, and how the Bucs might use Evans. As a rookie, Jeffery struggled to a 24-367-3 season in 10 games, missing time due to a broken hand and an injured knee. Jeffery is now a top 10 wideout after an excellent second season, but the struggles in his first year are a reminder that rookie wideouts rarely live up to expectations.
Friday, June 13, 2014, 11:43am
Seferian-Jenkins missed almost the entire offseason program. The only portion he did make was the rookie camp and he was limited because he still was recovering from foot surgery. Other than that, Seferian-Jenkins wasn't allowed to be around the Bucs this spring.
Rookie tight ends don't often make a fantasy impact, and Seferian-Jenkins is at a disadvantage due to the rules prohibiting him to practice while he finishes up his responsibilities at school.
Wednesday, June 11, 2014, 1:32am
Buccaneers OC Jeff Tedford on rookie WR Mike Evans: "Mike obviously tweaked his hamstring a little bit but he'll be back. He showed his first couple days he's a real talent, there's no doubt about it."
Evans is likely to start opposite Vincent Jackson. He should be fantasy relevant provided the Bucs' passing offense is competent.
Saturday, June 7, 2014, 11:55am
Underwood posted the #10 FP/T in a limited workload as the Buccaneers de facto WR2 after Mike Williams went down. Now he joins the Panthers, who are desperate for WR help. He has world class 4.31 speed and should fill Ted Ginn’s role in the Panthers’ offense. Plus, he’s getting a major QB upgrade from Mike Glennon to Cam Newton.
Bucs want to 'alternate' running backs
Tuesday, June 3, 2014, 5:12pm
Bucaneers offensive coordinator Jeff Tedford said he believes in alternating running backs and the Bucs have no shortage of ballcarriers. In addition to Doug Martin, Mike James and Bobby Rainey also rushed for more than 500 yards last season. And Tampa Bay used a third round draft pick on West Virginia running back Charles Sims.
“I think you have to alternate,'' Tedford said Tuesday. "Even when we had two, 1,000-yard rushers (at California), J.J. Arrington was a 2,000-yard rusher and and we had a couple times guys had a thousand yards apiece. But I don’t believe that one back can carry the load. It’s just too physical. I think you probably need to have two to three guys to bring different things to the table. But I think you at least need to have two to be able to spell them here and there and keep them healthy and that type of thing.
"That's the goal to try and create some depth right there where there's not a dropoff when one guy comes in and another guy goes out. There's no dropoff. We just keep going.''
Anytime a new OC is in town it throws some uncertainty into the mix. It's not clear just how many carries Martin will see when compared to the other backs. We currently project him to see 339 touches, but there's some downside from there if Tedford gives one of the other backs gets more than a 'change-of-pace' type of a role.