2013-09-02 11:00:00 EDT
It’s been a pretty slow holiday weekend around the NFL, but now that most of the fantasy drafts have been completed, it’s now time to gear up for the start of the season on Thursday. With that in mind, let’s take our daily look around the league at some of the noteworthy fantasy names out there and see what we can be expecting when Week 1 opens up. Here’s the latest.
Steelers Running Backs: Pittsburgh’s cloudy RB situation gained a little more clarity yesterday, with Isaac Redman running with the first-team offense in practice. Since the team got rid of Jonathan Dwyer, and since Felix Jones and LaRod Stephens-Howling haven’t been super-impressive, that was pretty much expected.
The latest on rookie and projected starter Le’Veon Bell is that he’s going to try and get back in action for Week 2. That sounds overly optimistic to us, but hey, it could happen we suppose. In the meantime, Redman is the one to go with in fantasy. We’ll keep you posted.
Ahmad Bradshaw, RB, Indianapolis Colts: We haven’t been able to see Bradshaw at all this preseason, thanks to an ongoing foot injury. That said, he’ll reportedly be able to jump right in for Week 1, as he’s expected to be ready by the weekend. The team really needs him, as backup Vick Ballard hasn’t been too impressive.
We’re not sure how much work Bradshaw will get on Sunday, but if you drafted him he’s probably on your bench anyway. A wait-and-see approach is probably best here.
Rob Gronkowski, TE, New England Patriots: This Gronkowski situation is looking better and better each day. The Pats’ star TE has been making big steps in his recovery recently, coming off the PUP list over the weekend and participating in 11-on-11 drills yesterday.
Gronkowski’s original target date was somewhere around Week 6 or so, but it’s looking like he’ll be back way sooner than that. There are reports floating around out there that say his back may be healthy enough by Week 2. If that’s the case, he’ll be the steal of the fantasy draft.
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Victor Cruz, WR, New York Giants: We’ll check in with Cruz quickly here, as he’s made headlines recently with his bruised heel. The good news is that he was back in practice yesterday, and seems to be on track for a Week 1 return. Cruz and the Giants will be facing their division rival Cowboys on Sunday night.
Rams Defense: Just a note to those of you who picked up the Rams’ D in your fantasy draft and are expecting big things from the much-improved squad this year. They’ll be facing the Cardinals in Week 1, which is just about the best matchup they could have gotten. The QB play will be better this season, but St. Louis was great against the Arizona offense last year, posting a pair of interception return touchdowns in their second meeting alone. It should be a nice opener for St. Louis.
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