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In most years, the status of Tennessee Titans receiver Kenny Britt would draw a lot of attention. This year, he's kind of under the radar thanks to the Maurice Jones-Drew trade talk. Britt isn't even the biggest fantasy football story in Titans camp, with Jake Locker getting the starting job and Chris Johnson's hoped-for bounce back year in progress earning plenty of ink.
Two seasons ago, Britt was a top 25 fantasy receiver and appeared to be on his way to making the leap into the Top 10 last year when he tore the ACL and MCL in his right knee in Week 3. Britt has yet to get back onto the practice field, but he told a reporter that the issue is actually his left knee, which underwent surgery in June to remove damaged cartilege. Because Britt's major injury happened early in the season, there's a good chance that he's had enough time to get the knee back into shape. If only he could get back to work.
There's also the issue of any possible suspension that Britt could receive from the league. He says he's not worried about any punishment that might come his way. Rest assured, Kenny, plenty of fantasy owners are worried on your behalf. He's currently coming off the board in the 11th round. That's a good risk/reward spot for Britt, especially in keeper leagues. If he can pick up where he left off last season, you'll have found a gem.
Beanie Wells to play Thursday
One week after Ryan Williams' return, Beanie Wells is coming back to the Arizona Cardinals backfield. Ken Whisenhunt confirmed that Wells, the presumptive starter, will play in Thursday's game against the Titans. The former Ohio State standout probably won't see many plays since Whisenhunt said Wells will be used in a similar fashion to Williams last week (five carries).
After reportedly looking hesitant early on in practice, coaches have been pleased with what they've seen from Wells. He's shown an ability for big games, going for 138 yards and three TDs in Week 4 and a huge 228-yard performance in Week 11. Unfortunately, those were the only times he surpassed 100 yards. The next step for Wells in his fourth season will be showing a little more consistency. Improving his game as a pass-catching back wouldn't hurt, either.
Having Williams on his heels could spur him to bigger production in 2012. Either that or Wells will find himself with fewer touches before season's end. He's a low-end No. 2 RB most fantasy football leagues.
The general attitude concerning Peyton Manning's fantasy value has been "wait and see", but reports that the Denver Broncos quarterback is having problems throwing to the right side aren't encouraging. Because of his body of work, I believe Manning will either work the issues out or figure out how to work around them. But until then, it's hard to recommend him as anything more than a backup option...
Cleveland Browns RB Trent Richardson is moving closer to a return after knee surgery. Mike Holmgren says the rookie will run in a pool Wednesday and could run outside next week. The Browns are still hopeful that Richardson will be ready for the season opener, but it's hard to imagine he'll immediately jump back in and take the bulk of the carries. In the short term, that should fall to Montario Hardesty. Richardson has huge upside, after two knee surgeries and no official carries, don't think about taking him anytime before the third round...
New York Jets receivers Santonio Holmes and Chaz Schilens appear unlikely to play Sunday against the Carolina Panthers. That leaves Jeremy Kerley, Stephen Hill and Patrick Turner next on the depth chart. Stay away from them all. I know I keep harping on the Jets lack of fantasy options, but I feel like someone needs to play the Buzz Kilington role here. Don't buy into the "someone has to make all the catches" philosophy. Just don't...
Rod Streater has been one of the few bright spots for the Oakland Raiders offense this preseason. The undrafted rookie has formed an early rapport with quarterback Carson Palmer and is being rewarded for his work with a start in Saturday's game against the Detroit Lions. Streater will start in place of Jacoby Ford, who's struggled with drops in the preseason. Keep an eye on Streater's targets, especially with Denarius Moore out of action and Darrius Heyward-Bey just returning after dealing with a sore shoulder. Right now, Streater doesn't figure to get drated in many leagues, but if the Raiders start to figure things out on offense, he could have waiver wire sleeper potential...
St. Louis Rams receiver Brandon Gibson returned to practice Monday after dealing with a hamstring injury. He was pulled back on Tuesday, but whether that was intentional or due to an aggravation is unclear. Gibson was trending toward the top of the depth chart a couple of season ago, but a glut of similarly-producing WRs could make it hard for him to get back there. Battling with Steve Smith, Danny Amendola, Brian Quick and others will sink Gibson's draft value. The problem is, none of those other options do a lot to excite me, either...
Darren Sproles (sore knee) was limited in practice Tuesday, but New Orleans Saints interim coach Joe Vitt told reporters that the multi-talented back would be able to play this week if it were a regular season game. As I mentioned on this week's NFL Fantasy LIVE podcast, I'm really high on Sproles this year, so I have no problem with the Saints taking a cautious approach right now...
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