Brandon Marshall - WR - Chicago Bears
New York Jets WR Brandon Marshall could be in line for a breakout season in 2015, according to head coach Todd Bowles. Bowles said he thinks Marshall remains a 'top-flight receiver.' 'He understands the game. He's a student of the game. He understands when he has small guys on him. He can get vertical when he needs to get vertical. He's a sharp route runner. He has great hands. He knows how to block. He brings a work ethic and he brings a fire to us that we need on the other side of the ball,' Bowles said.
Huddle Up: Partly due to injury and missing three full games, Marshall hit eight-year lows in targets (106), receptions (61) and receiving yards (721) this past season. He's certainly capable of a decent stat uptick, but given the Jets' QB situation and the toll he's paid as a physical WR, his 100-plus catch, 1,300-yard days likely will remain on hold.
Oregon QB Marcus Mariota is a realistic option for the Tennessee Titans with the second overall selection in this year's NFL Draft, and head coach Ken Whisenhunt is impressed enough with Mariota that he would feel confident with him as the team's starting quarterback over QB Zach Mettenberger right off the bat in 2015. 'If we pick him at No. 2, you definitely think he can be the Day 1 starter,' Whisenhunt said. 'He was impressive. ... Just the short time we spent with him on the board, he was very good.' Whisenhunt dismissed the notion that he needs a pocket-based quarterback in his offense to succeed.
Huddle Up: While Mariota doesn't fit the mold of a typical Whisenhunt QB, the two sides would almost certainly be able to come to beneficial offensive working arrangement if it came down it. That aside, though, what's most likely happening here is a typical, time-tested smokescreen by the Titans to generate trade interest in the pick with the draft a little more than a month away. Stay tuned to see if anyone bites ...
Geno Smith - QB - New York Jets
New York Jets QB Geno Smith will be the starting quarterback ahead of QB Ryan Fitzpatrick entering training camp this summer, according to new head coach Todd Bowles. 'You can't have equal first-team reps with a quarterback,' Bowles said. 'Geno will start out taking them, but that doesn't mean that Ryan can't take his spot if Ryan's playing better and performing better.' Bowles continues to say that it's too early to judge Smith off his tape alone.
Huddle Up: Sound familiar? New offseason, same challenge ahead for Smith, who's now trying to hold off Fitzpatrick instead of Michael Vick. This time around the Jets have better WR weapons with Brandon Marshall added to the mix -- but that only puts more of an onus on the QB to get the ball where it needs to go.
Lance Dunbar - RB - Dallas Cowboys
Dallas Cowboys RBs Darren McFadden, Lance Dunbar and Joseph Randle figure to see a good amount of work in 2015. Head coach Jason Garrett said the team would like to continue their emphasis on inside running after losing RB DeMarco Murray to the Philadelphia Eagles. 'Absolutely,' Garrett said. 'It has to be replaced. It was a good style of football for us to play. We will try to continue to do that.'
Huddle Up: The Cowboys finished third in the league with 508 rushing attempts, with Murray accounting for all but 116 of them. With the team's offensive front is still intact, look for the 'Boys to continue to rely on the run -- only with more of a committee approach which could also include a rookie back selected from the deep and talented incoming class of RBs.
Johnny Manziel - QB - Cleveland Browns
Cleveland Browns QB Johnny Manziel is expected back with the team for offseason workouts April 20 after completing more than two months of treatment.
Huddle Up: Hopefully, Johnny Football can now focus on football, and he's going need to all the work, prep and reps he can get with the Browns already signing veteran Josh McCown and hinting that they'll draft another QB in a month.
Greg Jennings - WR - Free Agent
Free-agent WR Greg Jennings (Vikings) is a player the Jacksonville Jaguars have an interest, general manager David Caldwell said. However, the two sides have not scheduled a visit yet.
Huddle Up: The Jags could use a veteran to anchor their WR kiddie corps, but the Panthers and Dolphins remain the front-runners to land Jennings at this point.
Andrew Luck - QB - Indianapolis Colts
Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck likely will not be a candidate for a contract extension until next offseason, according to owner Jim Irsay.
Huddle Up: Fantasy's top QB is doing just fine on and off the field for now, and Irsay and the Colts can use to extra time to plan how they want to structure their pending mega-deal.
Adrian Peterson - RB - Minnesota Vikings
Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson's agent, Ben Dogra, said Monday, March 23, that he doesn't think 'it's in Adrian's best interest to play in Minnesota' in 2015 and beyond. Peterson remains under contract with the Vikings, and the team brass expects him to remain in Minnesota. Dogra also refused a meeting with general manager Rick Spielman several days ago.
Huddle Up: The Vikings have already indicated that, in essence, it's not in their best interest to give Peterson away for nothing. So unless Dogra wants to negotiate a reasonable trade offer for Peterson or wants AP to sit out another season, he may want to re-evaluate what's in the best interest of his client.
Colin Kaepernick - QB - San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick has a backer in new head coach Jim Tomsula. 'Statistically and all that kind of stuff, people throw those out there -- Colin had his best year, OK. Colin is working down in Arizona. He's a great dude. He's a real good dude. He's a good teammate. He's a neat cat. Colin's going to do real well. Colin's a great football player and even better person. We're really excited about Colin,' Tomsula said.
Huddle Up: Good for the head coach to have your back, especially since the 49ers have spent the offseason watching Kaepernick's weapons leave town. Expect the Niners' offense to revolve around Kaepernick this season, with an uptick in running that should boost his fantasy productivity.
Ryan Tannehill - QB - Miami Dolphins
Miami Dolphins QB Ryan Tannehill's fifth-year option will be picked up if the team is not able to sign him to a contract extension over the next six weeks, according to sources. Tannehill would make $16 million in 2016 if his option is picked up. It is believed the Dolphins have talked about signing Tannehill to a six-year deal worth more than $100 million.
Huddle Up: The Dolphins have options with regards to keeping Tannehill in Miami, and the option year gives them additional time to negotiate a long-term deal as well. Now look for the Dolphins to add some weapons to Tannehill's arsenal.
Adrian Peterson - RB - Minnesota Vikings
Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson is expected to be part of the Vikings next season, according to general manager Rick Spielman. 'Adrian's a member of our football team,' Spielman said. 'He is under contract with us, and we are focused on the 2015 season and expect Adrian to be a part of that.' Peterson has met with team officials twice this offseason to discuss his future. Spielman would not say if Peterson has asked for a trade or if the team has received interest from other teams.
Huddle Up: This has been the Vikings' party line all along. Peterson is under contract, so his options are pretty limited if the Vikings don't intend to release him and don't like any of the lowball trade offers being bandied about: he could hold out, in which case (unlike last year) he wouldn't get paid for a second straight season of inactivity, or he could retire. If Peterson wants to return to football, right now the Vikings hold all the cards.
Russell Wilson - QB - Seattle Seahawks
Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson could play out the 2015 season in the final year of his rookie deal without a contract extension. Wilson and the Seahawks have had no real progress on a long-term contract extension. Wilson is highly unlikely to accept a short-term deal. Wilson is preparing and budgeting as if he'll be on a bargain deal in 2015. It could take another year for both parties to agree on a long-term extension, and Wilson knows a franchise tag in 2016 would likely be for over $20 million.
Huddle Up: Wait, didn't the last set of reports have Wilson on the cusp of inking a fully-guaranteed long-term extension? Wilson is apparently in no hurry to sign a deal, but you have to believe the Seahawks will find a way to keep him in Seattle.
Peyton Manning - QB - Denver Broncos
Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning is more of an immobile, shotgun-positioned quarterback at his age, but general manager John Elway is unconcerned with how he'll fit into new head coach Gary Kubiak's and offensive coordinator Rick Dennison's plans. 'Gary Kubiak's one of the easiest guys to get along with,' Elway said. 'He's very smart. Plus, Rico is a very smart coach. (Gregg) Knapp is the same (quarterbacks) coach. They're going to get along fine. They'll get a feel for it. We're going to put in what Peyton likes to do offensively with what Gary has always done.'
Huddle Up: There's no reason to think Kubiak will force Manning out of his comfort zone; the Broncos will run what Peyton wants to run as long as he's in Denver.
Brady Quinn - QB - Free Agent
Free-agent QB Brady Quinn (Dolphins) was in attendance for the first ever veteran combine this past weekend, and he believes he can have a career revival in the NFL. Quinn said he feels great and is in a better place mentally. He has yet to have any private workouts with teams, however.
Huddle Up: With teams desperate for quarterbacks, it's telling that Quinn has not drawn any interest as of yet. But hey, it only takes one team.
Drew Brees - QB - New Orleans Saints
Huddle Up: The Saints traded Brees' top target, so regardless of what they say it's apparent no one on their team is untouchable. That said, it will be difficult to find takers for a quarterback of Brees' age with his accompanying salary.
Greg Jennings - WR - Free Agent
Free-agent WR Greg Jennings and the Miami Dolphins will discuss a deal if the two meet for an already planned visit.
Huddle Up: Jennings already has met with the Panthers and the Dolphins might need to decide on a course of action fairly quickly as Carolina is said to have strong interest. Free-agent Michael Crabtree (49ers) also is in the picture for Miami.
Felix Jones - RB - Free Agent
Free-agent RB Felix Jones didn't show the 'burst' he was known for early in his career during his drills at the 2015 NFL Veteran Combine Sunday, March 22, according to Daniel Jeremiah of the NFL Network.
Huddle Up: Jones last played for the Steelers in 2013, rushing for 184 yards on 48 carries, and likely is facing an uphill battle just to land a training-camp invite.
Adrian Peterson - RB - Minnesota Vikings
Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson's future remains unclear, but head coach Mike Zimmer recently said that the Vikings are 'excited' to have him back. Zimmer had previously said that if Peterson wanted out of Minnesota that the Vikings would accommodate the request.
Huddle Up: Perhaps Zimmer is now going along with the sentiments of the Vikings' front office. In any case, the talk and posturing are growing stale on both sides, and the time for some actual news on the AD front may actually be growing near.
Anthony Spencer - DE - Dallas Cowboys
Free-agent DE Anthony Spencer (Cowboys) is not expected to re-sign with the Dallas Cowboys this offseason.
Huddle Up: Spencer only had a half-sack and 27 total tackles in 13 games in his return this past season, and with Greg Hardy coming on board, it appears as if the 2007 first-round pick will be looking for a new team.
Greg Jennings - WR - Minnesota Vikings
Free-agent WR Greg Jennings (Vikings) has drawn interest from the Carolina Panthers. Jennings visited the team on Saturday, March 21.
Huddle Up: Jerricho Cotchery, who finished with a pedestrian 48-580-1 stat line this past season, is currently penciled in as the starter opposite second-year stud Kelvin Benjamin so the Panther definitely could use another wideout.
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