Head2Head Sports

MenuSkip to content

Football

Pro Playoff Pick'em

Latest Player News

Aaron Burbridge, a sixth-round selection in the 2016 NFL Draft, has a shot to make San Francisco's final roster, the San Jose Mercury News reports.

Impact

Torrey Smith, Quinton Patton and Bruce Ellington (hamstring) are locks, but Jerome Simpson was released on Saturday. Though quiet during the preseason and unlikely to contribute much as a rookie, Burbridge could be kept around as a developmental project. At the very least, San Francisco will likely try to get him on the practice squad.

Shaun Draughn's teammate Carlos Hyde suffered a concussion in the first half of Friday's preseason loss to Green Bay, CSN Bay Area reports.

Impact

Draughn actually missed the game with a minor back/rib injury, despite going through warmups in uniform, Matt Barrows of The Sacramento Bee reports. Even after missing the past two preseason games, Draughn seems to have a strong hold on the No. 2 running back job, as Mike Davis and DuJuan Harris have failed to impress. Draughn may also replace Hyde on passing downs, which means he could have a three-down role if Hyde were to miss time with an injury. For what it's worth, Hyde doesn't have any confirmed concussions on his NFL track record.

Graham Gano converted his lone field goal attempt in Friday's preseason game against the Patriots.

Impact

Gano's 29-yarder gave him his only points of Friday's contest, when the Panthers' offense failed to move the ball and put him in scoring situations. When called upon, Gano has converted all seven of his field goal attempts across Carolina's three preseason tilts, although he did miss an extra point last week against Baltimore. Coming off a career-best 146 points last season, Gano's fantasy value currently sits at its highest level since he entered the league in 2009.

Keyarris Garrett caught one pass (on two targets) for 34 yards in Friday's preseason game against the Patriots.

Impact

Garrett's 34-yard gain on the Panthers' final offensive drive marked the team's longest play of the game. That came after Garrett, an undrafted free agent from Tulsa, had his best practice as a Panther earlier in the week, the Charlotte Observer reports. Although Carolina's wide receiving group for the regular season seems close to being settled, and doesn't figure to include Garrett, he at least flashed some big-play ability Friday and will have a last chance to show his skills in next week's preseason finale versus the Steelers.

Carson Wentz (ribs) is on track to return for Thursday's preseason finale against the Jets, Dave Spadaro of the Eagles' official site reports.

Impact

Although he isn't playing in Saturday's exhibition, Wentz threw passes on the field before the game, hinting at progress since earlier this week when he was held out of practice. If he does indeed suit up, Wentz could get an extended look in Thursday's game, as starter Sam Bradford will presumably be rested.

Mike Tolbert rushed once for seven yards and caught one pass for 11 yards in Friday's preseason game versus New England.

Impact

Tolbert did well with the couple of opportunities he got to touch the ball Friday. That being said, given Tolbert's fullback position, he can't be relied upon for a large touch total. That proved especially true Friday, when the Panthers' offense struggled mightily to move the ball, thus robbing Tolbert from being involved in the red zone, where his a large proportion of his fantasy value resides.

Jonathan Stewart rushed three times for 23 yards in Friday's preseason game against the Patriots.

Impact

Stewart only played during the first quarter, but was effective in his short time on the field. The veteran reeled off a game-long rush of 23 yards, even though he netted no yardage from his other two totes. The Panthers are focused on preserving Stewart for the long haul this season, so it wouldn't be surprising if he didn't play in their preseason finale, but his brief showing Friday should provide confidence ahead of the regular season.

Cam Newton completed 13-of-29 passes for 100 yards and threw two interceptions in Friday's preseason loss to the Patriots.

Impact

Newton endured a rough outing Friday night, leading the Panthers' offense to merely a field goal despite playing for the better part of three quarters. The reigning MVP sent a number of passes sailing above his intended targets and was intercepted twice during the first half. He also managed just nine yards on the ground. Overall, Newton won't be too bothered by a poor preseason showing, but he'll be eager to improve as the Panthers prepare for Week 1.

Mark Sanchez will be the third quarterback to enter Saturday's preseason game against the Rams, NFL Network's James Palmer reports.

Impact

This is yet another sign that Sanchez has fallen behind Trevor Siemian in the battle for Denver's starting quarterback job. While not necessarily out of the picture, Sanchez may not even make the final roster if the Broncos decide that Siemian is the starter and Paxton Lynch is ready to serve as the backup.

Paxton Lynch will be the second quarterback to enter Saturday's preseason game against the Rams, NFL Network's James Palmer reports.

Impact

Trevor Siemian will start for a second straight week, but Lynch may get some playing time with the first-team offense. Meanwhile, Mark Sanchez will work with the second and third units after halftime, though all three quarterbacks are expected to get approximately the same amount of playing time. This probably isn't a good sign for Sanchez, who seems to have fallen behind Siemian in the race for the Week 1 starting job.

Ben Watson suffered a torn Achilles on the first snap of Saturday's preseason game against the Lions. He'll miss the entire season.

Impact

Signed to a two-year, $7 million contract in the offseason, the 36-year-old Watson was locked in as Baltimore's starting tight end. The only good news for the team is that it boasts strong depth at the position, though Maxx Williams (undisclosed) and Dennis Pitta (finger) are nursing injuries of their own, with neither available for Saturday's exhibition. Crockett Gillmore, the starter for most of last season, figures to get the majority of first-team snaps in Saturday's game. Gillmore could take on a lot of Watson's planned workload in the regular season, as he's a much better blocker than Williams or Pitta.

Adam Humphries returned a punt for a 73-yard touchdown in Friday's preseason win over the Browns, also catching two passes for 39 yards on five targets.

Impact

Humphries worked as the No. 3 wide receiver, with both of his catches coming on Tampa's second offensive drive and all five of his targets occurring while Jameis Winston was under center. Seemingly a lock for the final roster, Humphries has positioned himself to open the season as the No. 3 wideout and top punt returner.

Doug Martin (hamstring) gained 18 yards on four carries in Friday's preseason game against the Browns.

Impact

Martin proved his health by making a brief appearance, and then took a backseat to the Jameis Winston-led passing game. The roles haven't changed since last season, with Martin dominating the rushing workload while Charles Sims handles passing downs.

Isaiah Crowell gained 39 yards on eight carries in Friday's preseason loss to Tampa Bay.

Impact

Crowell dominated early-down work on the first-team offense, with Duke Johnson mostly only playing on passing downs. While Johnson could eventually be a threat to mix in more often, the Browns' preseason gameplans suggest that Crowell will start the year handling the bulk of the rushing workload.

Kendall Gaskins was released by the 49ers on Saturday, CSN Bay Area's Matt Maiocco reports.

Impact

Even with Carlos Hyde (concussion) now injured, Gaskins didn't have a shot to stick on the final roster. Mike Davis, DuJuan Harris and Kelvin Taylor are competing for either one or two roster spots behind Hyde and Shaun Draughn (back).

Victor Cruz (groin) will play in Saturday's preseason game against the Jets, Newsday's Art Stapleton reports.

Impact

Hobbled by a groin injury through the first two weeks of the preseason, Cruz will finally return to game action for the first time since October of 2014. Despite the extended layoff, he hopes to lock down the No. 3 wideout job in a Giants receiving corps that lacks talent behind starters Odell Beckham and Sterling Shepard.

Eric Ebron (ankle) will not play in Saturday's preseason game against the Ravens, Kyle Meinke of MLive.com reports.

Impact

Ebron practiced Tuesday for the first time since early August, but he was then held out both Wednesday and Thursday. It's unclear if he suffered a setback, but if so, his Week 1 status may now be in danger. The 23-year-old tight end hasn't played in any preseason games and probably won't be ready for Thursday's exhibition finale against the Bills.

Head coach Chip Kelly said Colin Kaepernick is still competing with Blaine Gabbert for the starting job, ESPN's Nick Wagoner reports.

Impact

Kaepernick only played three drives in his preseason debut Friday against the Packers, completing two of six passes for 14 yards, with four carries for 18 yards. If he truly had a shot at the starting job, it would have made sense for the Niners to give him more playing time, though Kaepernick didn't exactly help his own cause by picking up just one first down on three drives. Meanwhile, Blaine Gabbert got the start and also threw for just 14 yards, but he he did lead the team to a touchdown on one of his two series. Jeff Driskel and Christian Ponder played the second half. Kaepernick could conceivably get an extended look in the preseason finale, but it's unclear if a strong showing would actually give him any shot to be the Week 1 starter. It does at least seem that his sore shoulder is no longer an issue.

The 49ers released Jerome Simpson on Saturday, the team's official site reports.

Impact

The 49ers have started the process of whittling down the roster from 90 to 75 players by Tuesday's deadline, jettisoning Simpson and fellow wideout DiAndre Campbell among others. Simpson experienced decreased usage as the preseason proceeded, following up five catches combined in the first two games with no stat line to speak of in Friday's exhibition against the Packers. The 30-year-old may have reached the end of his NFL life, but with 150 career catches to his name, another team may come calling in the coming weeks.

Maxx Williams (undisclosed) will not play in Saturday's preseason game against the Lions, the Baltimore Sun's Jeff Zrebiec reports.

Impact

Williams has missed more than a week of practice and will sit out a second straight preseason game. While there's been no indication his injury is serious, he's missing out on a valuable chance to make an impression. Williams, Dennis Pitta (finger) and Crockett Gillmore are all competing for snaps behind starter Ben Watson.