- Jamaal Charles
Charles will make his debut in week 3 of the preseason against the Green Bay Packers. Mixed reports have come out of Denver. Some say that he looks like he’s in great shape and that his knees are holding up and others say that he walks with a little bit of a limp and looks old. Additional reports coming out of Broncos camp state that if Charles doesn’t do well in this upcoming game that he will be cut from the team.
I honestly can’t see this happening. C.J. Anderson has been injury prone, Booker is out, so who else would be left that could do damage? All Charles needs to accomplish is one good run on Saturday night against the Packers and the team, front office, and city of Denver will call for his name to be the starter. I believe he will manage to show some type of spark when he gets out there. Nonetheless, Charles is on the bubble and judgement day is coming for him.
2. LaGarrette Blount
A similar situation is happening with LaGarrette Blount. Lets be real, Blount has looked bad so far in practice and in preseason. Reports have come out that Blount is overweight, which isn’t surprising and the gap of him being the starter is closing.
The Eagles cut Ryan Matthews anticipating that Blount would assume the role and be more productive. Well he hasn’t show that thus far. Last preseason game against the Buffalo Bills, Blount had 5 carries for 8 yards. In week 1, against the Packers, he managed 9 yards on 4 carries. I know its just preseason, but a guy who scored 18 touchdowns last year should have a little more success. Doug Pederson has come out and stated that Blount is going to be a crucial piece to their offense, which puts me at ease a little bit. However, Philadelphia’s backfield has been crowded for a little bit now and even Wendell Smallwood is being talked about like he’s going to get the job. Maybe the Eagles are running a misdirection play on the media here, but whatever the case is, I still haven’t fully committed to Blount just yet.
3. Spencer Ware
Kareem Hunt has looked amazing. He got time with the starters last preseason game and dominated his touches. He had 8 carries for 40 yards and 3 receptions for 23 yards. He looked very impressive. Ware will mostly be named the starter at the beginning of the season, but they drafted Hunt for a reason and he’s already ahead of West on the depth chart. Hunt will chip away at stealing touches from Ware this season, especially if Ware played like he did towards the end of last season. I would be extremely cautious about drafting Ware in fantasy drafts this season. If you do take him, make sure to get Hunt as a Handcuff.
4. Rob Kelley
I hate to be writing about this since I’m a Redskins fan, but Kelley has looked downright awful. He averaged 1.0 YPC against the Packers. He had 9 rushes for 9 yards, which is absolutely pitiful. He hasn’t looked like he’s improved at all this offseason and doesn’t seem to have any chemistry with the offensive line. Samaje Perine will take the job from Kelley, it’s only a matter of time. He’s had a little trouble holding on to the football, which is why Kelley will be the opening day starter, but the Redskins will soon realize that they can’t move the ball on the ground with Kelley. Perine and Thompson look much better than Fat Rob. Ideally as a Redskins fan, I would like Perine to be the early down back and Thompson to take over the 3rd down duties. Then next season the Skins can hand the reigns off to Perine.
5. Jonathan Stewart
Everyone knows how I feel about Stewart. He’s become irrelevant in the Panthers backfield. McCaffrey has stolen the job and the hearts of everyone in Carolina. Stewart will be named the starter as well, but will only be involved on first downs. Second and Third downs will go to McCaffrey and since Newton loves to line up in the shotgun formation, McCaffrey has to be in. Stewart did have a productive season last year, but the Panthers are looking to take some pressure off Newton and Stewart doesn’t provide that. His time as a NFL starter is fading. On the brighter side of things, since he won’t get as many touches this season he most likely will be healthy and able to play 16 games. However, he will only be a serviceable back-up, so only draft him as a handcuff to McCaffrey.
A new era has begun in Carolina…