New England Patriots
The Patriots have placed WR Mohamed Sanu on the PUP list. (Source: Field Yates on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: Sanu had offseason ankle surgery and was reportedly out of his boot in May, but he still finds himself on the PUP list to begin training camp. This isn’t a good sign for Sanu, but N’Keal Harry now has a golden opportunity to see a high volume of snaps as the clear-cut WR2 behind Julian Edelman. Also give Jakobi Meyers a look in deeper leagues.
The Patriots placed RB Sony Michel (foot) on the active/PUP list Sunday. (Source: Field Yates on Twitter )
Fantasy Impact: Michel is recovering from offseason surgery on his foot and remained a question mark heading into camp. He was placed on the active/PUP list Sunday. There is no timetable for his return and fantasy owners should continue to monitor the situation. Look for RB Damien Harris to see more opportunities with the first-team offense. Michel logged 247 carries for 912 yards and seven touchdowns across 16 games in 2019.
Category: Injury Updates
Patriots TE Matt LaCosse is opting out of the 2020 NFL season due to concerns amidst the coronavirus pandemic. (Source: Field Yates on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: LaCosse by default was being listed as the TE1 in New England after just catching 13 balls for 131 yards and one TD last season. With him now out of the picture, third-round draft choices Devin Asiasi and Dalton Keene figure to be more involved in the offense. Asiasi is more of the pass-catching tight end of the two, and could have some sneaky value this season.
WR Marquise Lee has elected to opt out of the 2020 season. (Source: Mike Reiss on Twitter )
Fantasy Impact: Lee becomes the latest Patriot to opt out of the 2020 season. He joins Marcus Cannon, Brandon Bolden, Patrick Chung, Dont’a Hightower, Danny Vitale and Najeen Toran. Lee became a first time father in February. “We just feel like it wasn’t smart for us to go out and play this year,” said Lee. The 28-year-old’s one-year contract will roll into 2021. Lee hauled in three catches for 18 yards on four targets across six games for the Jaguars in 2019.
Patrick Chung will not play in 2020 due to the COVID pandemic. (Source: Mike Reiss on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: Chung joins five other Patriots (including Brandon Bolden and Dont'a Hightower) in choosing to opt out of this season. Those three players were integral to the Patriots' defensive prowess in 2019 and the team will certainly take a huge blow playing without them in 2020.
Category: Injury Updates
OT Marcus Cannon has decided to opt of the 2020 season. (Source: Karen Guregian on Twitter )
Fantasy Impact: Cannon joins fellow Patriots Brandon Bolden, Dont’a Hightower, Danny Vitale and Najee Toran to voluntarily opt out. He overcame Non-Hodgkins’ lymphoma before his pro career. Cannon has been a regular starter for the Patriots, including a All-Pro 2016 season. The NFL deadline to opt out is August 3rd.
RB Brandon Bolden has decided to opt out of the 2020 season. (Source: Adam Schefter on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: Bolden becomes the fifth Patriots player to choose to opt out. He joins Dont’a Hightower, Marcus Cannon, Danny Vitale and Najee Toran to voluntarily opt out. Bolden was mainly used on special teams and provided the Patriots depth at RB. The NFL deadline for players to opt out of the 2020 season is August 3rd.
LB Dont'a Hightower has decided to opt out of the 2020 season. He was scheduled to make $8 million in base salary. (Source: Adam Schefter on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: Hightower has decided to opt of the 2020 season. He had a baby in mid-July and becomes one of four Patriots to voluntarily opt out. Hightower is a three-time Super Bowl champ and former Pro Bowler. The NFL deadline to opt out of the 2020 season is August 3.
Mon, Jul 27th 6:04pm EDT
By Mike Maher
Patriots fullback Dan Vitale has opted out of the 2020 season due to coronavirus concerns, according to a report from Jarrett Bell of USA Today. (Source: USA Today on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: Vitale played in 15 games for the Packers last season and signed with the Patriots this offseason, who may have seen him as a replacement for James Devein, who retired from the NFL in the Spring. Now, New England will have to look elsewhere for a lead blocker for the likes of Sony Michel, James White, Damien Harris, and Rex Burkhead.
The Patriots elected to trim their roster down to 80 players in advance of the August 16th deadline, and Smith was one of nine causalities. He played college ball at Louisianna Tech and was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Patriots on May 5th. (Source: CBS Sports)
Fantasy Impact: Smith will hope to land on a practice roster player for the 2020 season. The Patriots will enter training camp with Cam Newton, Jarrett Stidham and Brian Hoyer at quarterback.
Brian Lewerke became expendable following the signing of Cam Newton on July 8th. Lewerke was signed by the Patriots as an undrafted free agent out of Michigan State where he started three seasons for the Spartans. (Source: CBS Sports)
Fantasy Impact: Lewerke will likely be a practice roster player for the 2020 season as he needs to improve on his accuracy in order to make it at the professional level. The Patriots will enter training camp with Cam Newton, Jarrett Stidham and Brian Hoyer at quarterback.
LG Joe Thuney is expected play under the franchise tag for the Patriots. (Source: Mike Giardi on Twitter )
Fantasy Impact: Thuney is set to make $14.78 million and will be a free agent next season. He is considered one of the best interior lineman in the NFL and is looking to secure a long-term deal. The Patriots and Thuney were reportedly not close to an extension when contract talks began during the off-season. The former former 2016 third-round pick is a vital piece of the Patriots’ offensive line.
Wed, Jul 8th 5:16pm EDT
By Adam Koffler
Cam Newton has officially signed his one-year deal with the New England Patriots. (Source: Field Yates on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: Newton is now officially a member of the New England Patriots and will compete to become the starting quarterback right out of the gates. Jarrett Stidham has been in the Patriots system for over a year and will be given every opportunity to prove he’s worthy of the starting gig as well. It will be an interesting training camp in New England to say the least.
Tue, Jul 7th 10:00am EDT
By Adam Koffler
Patriots RB Rex Burkhead has agreed to rework the final year of his contract that drops his base salary from $2.5M to $1.05M in a cap saving move by New England. (Source: Field Yates on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: Burkhead will earn $550K as a signing bonus instead with $400K available in roster bonuses. The reworking of his contract creates almost an additional $1M in cap space for a team that was tight against the cap to begin with. Burkhead will compete for touches amongst a crowded group of RBs in New England that includes Sony Michel, James White, Damien Harris, and Brandon Bolden. He won’t have much fantasy value heading into the final year of his contract unless other guys get hurt.
Sun, Jul 5th 8:47pm EDT
By Brad Camara
Brian Hoyer could be the odd man out of the Patriots' QBs. "Hoyer finds himself in an interesting spot with Cam Newton and Jarrett Stidham in New England," per Mike Reiss of ESPN. (Source: Mike Reiss of ESPN.com)
Fantasy Impact: Hoyer was released by the Colts earlier this off-season once the team signed QB Philip Rivers. With the Patriots signing Newton, Hoyer once again finds himself in a similar spot. New England could opt to keep only two quarterbacks, making Hoyer the odd man out. This decision will most likely depend on Newton's health. Hoyer will enter camp competing with Stidham for the backup QB spot.
Mon, Jun 29th 10:25am EDT
By Brendan Tuma
Jeff Howe of The Athletic reports the Patriots have implied that their signing of Cam Newton has "nothing to do" with Jarrett Stidham's performance. (Source: The Athletic)
Fantasy Impact: Stidham was viewed as the team's starting quarterback entering the summer after New England chose not to pursue Andy Dalton, Jameis Winston, or Newton (initially) following Tom Brady's departure. Mike Reiss of ESPN mentioned Sunday night that he didn't view Newton as the bonafide Week 1 starter. It is clear that the Patriots like what they have in Stidham, but at some point Newton became affordable enough to lock down and bolster the team's QB depth chart. Assuming he's healthy it would be a shock if the former MVP didn't start in Week 1 against Miami. Stidham is no longer in play as a late-round option in best ball leagues.
Sun, Jun 28th 9:11pm EDT
By Brad Camara
The New England Patriots were fined $1.1 million and will lose a 2021 third round pick for the filming of the Bengals’ sideline. (Source: Mike Garafolo on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: A Patriots' staffer was seen filming the Bengals' sideline from the press box during Week 14's contest between Cleveland versus Cincinnati. New England said it was an "unintended oversight." The NFL concluded it's investigation and once again punished the team for violating the rules. The Patriots ended up being fined $1.1. million and forfeiting a 2021 third-round pick. Also included in the punishment, the Patriots production crews will not be allowed to shoot any games for the 2020 season. Senior club officials will have required training on league operation and game policies.
Tue, May 26th 2:00pm EDT
By Brendan Tuma
Jeff Howe of The Athletic writes the competition for the Patriots' fourth and fifth receiver jobs is "wide open". (Source: The Athletic)
Fantasy Impact: This locks in Julian Edelman, Mohamed Sanu, and N'Keal Harry into the team's top three spots. Jakobi Meyers, Gunner Olszewski, Marqise Lee, Damiere Byrd, and Jeff Thomas are possibilities to round out the position. Meyers, a preseason star last year, should be viewed as the most likely to earn playing time of the bunch.
Fri, May 22nd 11:00am EDT
By Matthew Judd
When responding to Twitter questions Doug Kyed from the New England Sports Network (NESN) suggested that Jeff Thomas has the best chance to make the roster of the four undrafted Patriots wideouts. Despite receiving the smallest amount of guaranteed money of the four Kyed believes that Thomas' raw talent will push him over the other three (Isaiah Zuber, Will Hastings, and Sean Riley). (Source: Doug Kyed on NESN)
Fantasy Impact: Julian Edelman, N’Keal Harry, Mohamed Sanu, and Jakobi Meyers have the inside track on the top four places on the depth chart. The four undrafted rookies will have to compete against at least five other veterans in order to make the roster, highlighted most notably by Marqise Lee who joined in April as a free agent (previously from the Jaguars). Given his talent Jeff Thomas is worth a stash in dynasty leagues, but don't be surprised if he spends his rookie season on the practice roster.
Tue, May 19th 7:25am EDT
By Adam Koffler
2019 third-round pick OT Yodny Cajuste is finally “healthy and good to go” according according to ESPN’s Mike Reiss. (Source: NBC Sports Boston)
Fantasy Impact: The former West Virginia Mountaineer missed the entire 2019 season for New England after undergoing quad surgery in March of last year. He’ll provide depth on the offensive line in 2020 for a group that is looking much stronger than it was just a season ago.
Category: Injury Updates