As the first week of training camps come to a close and we sit back and enjoy the numerous feel good stories flooding the Internet from every division. It’s important to note that there are more significant things going on in the league, besides coaches talking about how "far ahead" their rookies are. While we certainly have to take the news about "Peyton’s arm looking great" with a grain of salt (because after all it is only training camp) we mustn’t forget that the draft is coming. You won't find premature feel good fluff here, what you will find are injuries to monitor and notable stories to follow. Here is some news from around the league from the first week of training camp.
- Houston Texans: Running back Arian Foster is set to have surgery after suffering a severe groin injury in training camp. The recovery time for the required surgery is anywhere from two to three months, and will have Foster missing significant playing time this season. Texans owner Bob Mcnair didn’t seem to be surprised by the news that his number one running back was injured. "Can’t say I’m surprised. It seems like every year he’s had a soft tissue injury," McNair said in an interview with the Houston Chronicle’s John McClain. One thing is sure for fantasy owners. If you had hopes of drafting Arian Foster this season you might be better off thinking Blue. Backup Alfred Blue’s fantasy value just increased significantly.
- Indianapolis Colts: This may seem like non-news, but the Colts really like to pass the ball deep. It looks like this season will be no exception to that stigma as the Colts are concentrating on the deep ball early and often in training camp. This season, several weapons like T.Y. Hilton, Donte Moncrief, Philip Dorsett, and Duron Carter will surround Andrew Luck. With the newest being Dorsett and Carter (son of Cris Carter). Early reports out of camp say that first-round pick Philip Dorsett is everything the Colts could hope for in a rookie wide receiver. Dorsett will still be battling for a lot of targets this season so while this positive news sounds good for the colts super bowl hopes, he may not be having a breakout fantasy year anytime soon. As for reports about Andrew Luck throwing some interceptions on Wednesday, in the words of Aaron Rodgers… Relax. Training camp rust is a real thing.
- New York Giants: The Giants signed veteran wide receiver James Jones to a one-year contract just in time for training camp. The addition of Jones adds to an already impressive group of wide receivers ready hear their number called by Eli Manning this season. Jones shouldn’t scream fantasy relevance to too many people, but he might be worth consideration in much later rounds now.
- Washington Redskins: De'Sean Jackson suffered a separated shoulder this week during training camp. I would like to say that he was laying out for a jaw-dropping touchdown catch on the deep ball toward the end zone, but his story is much more breathtaking. Breathtakingly stupid, He collided with a blocking sled during practice. He should only be out for a couple of weeks, but fantasy owners should keep an eye on the number one receiver in case this injury causes him more problems down the line.
- Philidelphia Eagles: A quick update on Sam Bradford’s knee. Everything seems to be going well for the QB on his second reconstructed knee, but then again that’s what they said last year before he tore his ACL for the second time in the preseason.
- San Fransisco 49ers: Aldon Smith really did have a "bomb" this time and he dropped it all over the 49ers coaching staff, team, and fans after he was arrested on Thursday for DUI, hit and run, and vandalism charges. Smith has seen several off the field incidents over the past few years. From multiple DUI’s, house party stabbings, and bomb threats at the airport Smith has been a loose cannon since he was drafted. This time the 49ers decided that they could no longer employ Smith, but they vowed to continue to try to help him moving forward. "This is a day that doesn't have anything to do about football. ... Although he won't be playing football for the San Francisco 49ers, he will be supported and helped, and he will not have to walk this path alone. That comes from our ownership down. ... We're not worried about football. This has nothing to do with football," said 49ers coach Jim Tomsula.
- St. Louis Rams: If you were looking forward to catching a glimpse of Todd Gurley in the preseason before you draft then you might be disappointed. Gurley is still recovering from an ACL tear that he sustained last season while playing for Georgia. "It’s unlikely that you’ll see him in a preseason game because he’s still got some work to do," said Coach Jeff Fisher in an interview with NFL Networks Andrew Siciliano. "There’s a significant difference between eight months and ten months, and he’s about eight and half months right now. So he’s a few weeks away."
In other news from St. Louis, it seems that the Rams believe they have found a franchise quarterback in Nick Foles as they extended his contract by two years and $24.5M on Friday.
- Seattle Seahawks: Safety Earl Thomas passed his physical on Wednesday and was taken off the physically unable to perform list after having offseason shoulder surgery. This news comes at a great time for fans, as the Seahawks have been without either of their starting safeties during the OTA’s and training camp. While Thomas has been injured, Safety Kam Chancellor has been holding out hoping for more cash. It looks like Thomas will at least be ready for week one.
In other Seahawks news, it sounds like the addition of Jimmy Graham, while good for red zone and third down scenarios, will be primarily for blocking. Graham himself believes he will be blocking about 75% of the time. It makes sense when you have a proven running game that few teams can stop. So fantasy owners shouldn’t expect Saints caliber receiving totals this season for the tight end.
- Buffalo Bills: Fred Jackson will be out for the next couple of weeks due to a hamstring injury. It will be in his best interest to get back to the practice field soon. The Bills aren’t exactly experiencing a shortage at the running back position, so there are no guarantees for Jackson’s roster spot. Le’Sean McCoy has the number one spot locked up, and as of right now Jackson has the number two spot, but that becomes a bigger question mark the longer he is out.
In other news from the Bills camp: A starting QB still hasn’t been named, and likely won't be until week one.
- Chicago Bears: The Bears 7th round pick Kevin White might end up starting the season on the physically unable to perform list due to severe shin splints. "He hasn’t done any running on hard ground," said Ian Rapoport on NFL Network’s Inside Training Camp. "From my understanding he may not be back anytime soon. Actually, a real chance right now that he will not be ready." The Bears will be looking to get White on the field as quickly as possible, but not at the expense of his long-term health. If your fantasy strategy involved drafting the rookie wide receiver you might want to be monitoring this situation.
- Atlanta Falcons: Whatever hope there was of some healthy training camp competition had to be paused after running backs Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman both went down with hamstring injuries this week. The injuries won't be enough to keep either out for a significant period of time, but they are still adding to the suspense down in Atlanta as to which back will be starting week one. In the meantime, the Falcons signed running back Michael Ford, who adds some additional depth at the position, and might be able to state his case for a final roster spot while Freeman and Coleman heal.
Stay tuned for more updates next week and throughout the preseason as we inch closer to the start of the regular season.