Player News

Date: Team: Pos:

Stepfan Taylor rushed seven times for 26 yards in the Cardinals' Week 17 loss to the 49ers.

As Kerwynn Williams (17 carries) showed a hot hand, Taylor took a backseat in this one. He's been outplayed by Williams for the most part since Andre Ellington went down. Expect the Cardinals to keep a committee in the Wild Card round, but with Williams at the head of the pack. Taylor brings very little to the table as a runner and isn't dynamic in the passing game.
Dec 28 - 7:39 PM

Brent Celek caught one pass for a one-yard touchdown in Sunday's Week 17 win

It was Celek's first touchdown of the season. Relegated to a strict blocking role, he finishes his fifth NFL season with just 32-340-1. Celek will still likely be back at his $4.725 million salary because he's a valuable on-field piece outside the box score.
Dec 28 - 7:39 PM

Brandon Myers caught 4-of-6 targets for 21 yards in the Bucs' Week 17 loss to the Saints.

Myers caught just 22 passes between Austin Seferian-Jenkins injuries this season, but restructured his contract earlier this weekend. Going on 30, he should be back with the Bucs in 2015.
Dec 28 - 7:39 PM

Kerwynn Williams rushed 17 times for 67 yards in the Cardinals' Week 17 loss to San Francisco.

Williams served as Arizona's primary back in this one and has outplayed Stepfan Taylor late in the season. An excellent find by GM Steve Keim, Williams is a quick between-the-tackles runner and can also be very useful as a receiver, although he wasn't used there much in Sunday's game. Expect Williams and Taylor to continue sharing work in the postseason, with Arians deciding which back to ride based on whom he deems is displaying the "hotter hand." The Cards visit the Panthers in the Wild Card round.
Dec 28 - 7:37 PM

Josh Huff caught one pass for six yards in Sunday's Week 17 win over the Giants.

An Oregon product taken in the third-round by former Oregon coach Chip Kelly, Huff was a bit contributor for the Eagles as a rookie. He caught eight passes for 98 yards, lost a fumble and returned 13 kickoffs. Even if Huff is given a chance to compete for the No. 3 job in 2015, he's unlikely to make a big impact.
Dec 28 - 7:34 PM

Russell Wilson completed 17-of-25 passes for 239 yards, zero touchdowns, and one interception in the Seahawks' 20-6, Week 17 win over the Rams.

With the win, the Seahawks have clinched the No. 1 seed in the NFC and a first-round bye. With Seattle playing so well and every team having to come through the Pacific Northwest, it's hard to see anyone other than the Seahawks going to the Super Bowl from the NFC. The Rams gave Wilson and Co. a run for their money in the first half, taking a 6-0 lead into the locker room and picking off Wilson to go along with three sacks. But Shaun Hill doomed the Rams with a couple horrible interceptions. Wilson and the Seahawks get two weeks to rest up for another title run.
Dec 28 - 7:34 PM

Ryan Lindley completed 22-of-39 passes for 316 yards, two touchdowns, and three interceptions in the Cardinals' Week 17 loss to San Francisco.

Cardinals coach Bruce Arians caught a lot of flak for attacking the Seahawks' defense aggressively, allowing Lindley to pile up over 40 pass attempts in last week's loss. Arians stuck with his plan against the 49ers, allowing Lindley to sling it all over the field. It worked early in the game as Lindley twice found Michael Floyd for long first-half TDs, but fell to pieces as Lindley turned the ball over to kill Arizona's chances. The Cardinals will be Wild Card round underdogs to the red-hot Panthers, who will host next week's playoff game.
Dec 28 - 7:33 PM

Bobby Rainey was held without a touch in the Bucs' Week 17 loss to the Saints.

Bobby Rainey heads into the offseason with zero touches over Tampa's final three games. Rainey showed some juice in between Doug Martin and Charles Sims injuries this season, averaging 4.31 yards per carry while catching 33 passes, but wasn't a favorite of the coaching staff. Now 27, Rainey will be a restricted free agent in the offseason. It's not a guarantee he's tendered a contract by the Bucs.
Dec 28 - 7:33 PM

Riley Cooper caught two passes for 37 yards in Sunday's Week 17 win over the Giants.

Just a blocker in this Chip Kelly offense, bad things happened all year when the ball went Cooper's way. So even though he signed a "five-year" contract last offseason, it was structured in a way the Eagles can get out cheaply. They are a decent bet to do just that, letting Jordan Matthews spread his wings as an outside receiver in two-wide sets. Cooper's 55-577-3 line is brutal for an every-down player in a Kelly offense, but it doesn't even say how bad he is.
Dec 28 - 7:30 PM

Charles Sims rushed 18 times for 69 yards and a touchdown in Tampa's Week 17 loss to the Saints, adding a six-yard reception.

Both the carries and yards were the most of Sims' rookie season, while the touchdown was his first. Sims spent the first eight weeks of the year stashed on injured reserve/designated to return as he recovered from a broken ankle. Once he returned, he averaged a pitiful 2.8 yards on 66 carries, but was slightly more effective as a pass catcher, notching 19 receptions across eight games. Sims will likely be tabbed for change-of-pace duties as a sophomore, but could earn a bigger role with an impressive preseason. Doug Martin's grip on between-the-tackles work is tenuous.
Dec 28 - 7:28 PM

Cam Newton completed 10-of-16 passes for 114 yards, one touchdown, and zero interceptions in the Panthers' division-clinching, 34-3, Week 17 win over the Falcons, adding 51 rushing yards and another touchdown on six carries.

The 7-8-1 Panthers end the regular season on a four-game winning streak and have clinched the No. 4 seed in the NFC. They'll host the Cardinals next weekend and have a good chance at pulling out the victory against the Ryan Lindley-led Arizona squad. On Sunday, the Panthers got off to a soaring start, jumping out to an early 10-0 lead with a field goal and touchdown on their first two possessions. Matt Ryan then tossed a pick-six before the Panthers then recovered a fumble at the Falcons' four-yard line. On the next play, Newton and the Carolina offensive line bullied their way into the end zone to stake themselves to a 24-3 lead. On Cam's touchdown pass, he found Ed Dickson in the flat in the front right corner of the end zone from five yards out. Cam is playing his best football of the season at the moment.
Dec 28 - 7:25 PM

Jeremy Maclin caught three passes for 49 yards in Sunday's Week 17 win over the Giants.

Coming off a 2013 ACL tear, the NFL market asked Jeremy Maclin to "prove it." So he signed a one-year deal with the Eagles and did just that. Maclin came out on fire with Nick Foles at the helm, recording eight of his 10 touchdowns and three of his four 100-yard days in the first eight games. His production tailed off with Mark Sanchez falling in love with Jordan Matthews, but that's no matter. Maclin, clearly healthy, is a borderline No. 1 wideout in the NFL and the Eagles will likely pay him as such this spring.
Dec 28 - 7:24 PM

Zach Ertz caught four passes for 56 yards in Sunday's Week 17 win over the Giants.

One of our favorite preseason breakout candidates at tight end, Ertz was not utilized in a fantasy friendly fashion. Chip Kelly treated him as a complementary piece instead of a featured player, limiting snaps to certain packages and not getting red-zone looks. We still saw major ability in the supremely athletic Ertz, who had a 15-catch game in Week 15 and finishes with 58-702-3. His 2015 offseason progress in the scheme will be well worth watching as he heads into his third NFL season.
Dec 28 - 7:18 PM

Doug Martin rushed 19 times for 108 yards in the Bucs' Week 17 loss to the Saints.

Martin wasn't targeted in the passing game. Astoundingly, the 100-yard game was Martin's first of the year. That includes yards from scrimmage. Martin showed some juice in the open field, but his game-best, 45-yard run in the second quarter likely would have gone for a 52-yard touchdown two years ago. Banged up for long stretches this season, Martin ends up with a 3.68 YPC. He's the owner of a 3.63 mark on 261 carries since his electrifying rookie year. Martin will be the favorite for Tampa's between-the-tackles duties in 2015, but it's not a given. He's no longer a serious factor in the passing game.
Dec 28 - 7:16 PM

Jordan Matthews caught eight passes for 105 yards with one touchdown in Sunday's Week 17 win over the Giants.

Possibly working with impending free agent Mark Sanchez for the last time, Matthews celebrated the occasion with a team-high 10 targets. It caps an eye-opening campaign for a 6-foot-3 rookie that exclusively played out of the slot. Matthews finishes with 67 catches for 872 yards and eight touchdowns, showing far more chemistry with Sanchez than likely 2015 starter Nick Foles. That's not a big concern though, as Mathews could very well take over on the outside for Riley Cooper in two-wide sets and he'll have the whole offseason to work with Foles. Matthews, clearly a plus player in one of the league's best offenses, has major 2015 upside.
Dec 28 - 7:13 PM


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