Dose: Busted Backfield

Dose: Busted Backfield
Chet Gresham goes through the preseason NFL fantasy football news with updates on Le'Veon Bell, LeGarrette Blount, Johnny Manziel and more.
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Pierre Thomas expects his pass-game role to expand this season.

Aug 21 - 9:32 AM

Peyton Hillis (foot, ankle) has been out of practice for more than two weeks.

Hillis is in a battle with Michael Cox and Kendall Gaskins for the third running back spot behind Rashad Jennings and Andre Williams. He won't win the job without getting back on the field soon. The painfully slow Hillis has averaged 3.58 YPC over his last 319 NFL carries.
Source: NJ.com
Aug 21 - 9:16 AM

NJ.com believes UDFA WR Corey Washington will "almost certainly" make the final roster.

The 6'4/215 Washington has come from tiny Newberry College to emerge as one of the stars of Giants camp. Per beat man Jordan Raanan, people inside the organization are intrigued by his unique ability to make plays in the air. We've seen that in each of the three preseason games, as Washington has posted a 7-116-3 line on seven targets. He'll likely open the season as the Giants' No. 5 wideout and should be on deep Dynasty radars.
Source: NJ.com
Aug 21 - 9:05 AM

Miles Austin remains penned in as a starting outside receiver.

While Josh Gordon is suspended, Austin will be the No. 1 outside receiver. That alone makes him a deep-league sleeper, but expectations should be held in check. Austin has been ineffective even when on the field over the last few years, and the Browns are going to play a Ground 'N Pound ball control style. Austin has played on 36 preseason snaps and produced one catch for 13 yards on three targets.
Aug 21 - 8:45 AM

ESPN Cleveland isn't sure if Nate Burleson will make the Browns' final roster.

The 33-year-old Burleson has been bothered by a hamstring issue for a couple weeks now. Of course, the competition for roster spots in this wideout corps is not exactly fierce. The only locks are Josh Gordon, Andrew Hawkins and Miles Austin, leaving Burleson to battle guys like Charles Johnson, Travis Benjamin, Anthony Armstrong and Taylor Gabriel. It's hard to see the desperate Browns dumping a veteran leader with experience like Burleson, even if he'll be playing a bit role.
Aug 21 - 8:40 AM

The Bucs have used "12" personnel on 32 percent of their preseason snaps, well above the NFL average of 21 percent.

Last year, the Bucs used two-tight end sets less than 10 percent of the time, according to Football Outsiders. The Lovie Smith regime has come in and made the position a priority, drafting Austin Seferian-Jenkins 38th overall and signing Brandon Myers. At 6'5/262 with unique leaping ability, ASJ has a real shot to emerge as the No. 3 target for Josh McCown -- especially in the red zone.
Aug 21 - 8:26 AM

Bucs DL Da'Quan Bowers is in danger of getting cut.

The oft-injured Bowers entered camp on the bubble and has been sidelined by a groin strain for more than a week now. The 2011 second-round pick is "off scholarship" as he was not drafted by GM Jason Licht or coach Lovie Smith. "You can't get Wally Pipped," said Smith. "Da'Quan is trying to get back. Again, I think he has a future in the league, whether it be as a defensive end outside or more of a third down rush guy inside."
Aug 21 - 8:19 AM

Coach Mike Pettine said there are no plans to develop a package of plays for Johnny Manziel off the bench.

Pettine has no intention to go down a Michael Vick/Donovan McNabb path with Manziel and Hoyer. It makes sense, as Johnny Football's running skills are far better suited to improvisation than script. Pettine declined to tip his hand as to when Manziel will make his NFL debut "You could see a scenario where he doesn't play this year, and then there are other scenarios that are absolutely possible as well. It's hard to tell," the first-year coach said.
Source: ESPN.com
Aug 21 - 8:01 AM
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