Some comings and goings to consider heading into fantasy season

MCT Adrian Peterson will have bigger role in Vikes' passing game.
MCT Adrian Peterson will have bigger role in Vikes' passing game.
Posted: July 25, 2014

FROM THE NovaCare Complex to Earth City, Mo. (Rams) to Oxnard, Calif. (Cowboys), thousands of players are gathering this week for the start of the season.

Their purpose is to reach Arizona for Super Bowl 49 in February, but along the way they will settle scores of fantasy football leagues, as well. As training camps commence, here are just a few things to keep an eye on from a fantasy perspective:

* The Broncos lost a pair of key cogs in the offseason with running back Knowshon Moreno heading to Miami and wide receiver Eric Decker signing with the New York Jets. Montee Ball gets a crack at being the primary running back in Peyton Manning's offense, providing he can be trusted as an occasional pass blocker.

* Denver added Emmanuel Sanders from Pittsburgh and drafted Cody Latimer to help compensate for Decker's loss at wide receiver.

* Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski is predicting he will play a full season this year. In the last 2 years, Gronk has missed 14 games.

* Cleveland wide receiver Josh Gordon is looking at a lengthy suspension, possibly season-long, for numerous transgressions. He reportedly will meet with NFL officials on Aug. 1 to appeal his sentence.

* Rashad Jennings, who had a career-best 733 rushing yards in part-time work with the Raiders last season, is now with the Giants. David Wilson, fourth-round rookie Andre Williams and even veteran Peyton Hillis also are in the mix.

* Marshawn Lynch is still the lead back in Seattle, but backup Christine Michael could eat into his carries.

* It appears Lions running back Reggie Bush will share more of the workload with Joique Bell.

* Noted offensive coordinator Norv Turner is now in Minnesota and one of his pledges has been to get running back Adrian Peterson more involved in the passing game. Peterson had just 29 catches last season.

* Another beneficiary to Turner's arrival will be second-year wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson, who will be used all over the field. Matt Cassel heads to camp as the No. 1 quarterback with rookie Teddy Bridgewater hovering.

* Rookie Sammy Watkins, the fourth overall pick out of Clemson, is in line to be Buffalo's No. 1 receiver. In fantasy, that would make him a WR3. Mike Evans (Tampa Bay) and Jordan Matthews (Eagles) are a couple of other rookie wide receivers on the radar.

* HBO's "Hard Knocks" will be documenting Falcons camp, which should provide an idea of how Atlanta is going to fill the void left by Tony Gonzalez's retirement. Gonzalez was second among tight ends last year with 121 targets. Not bad for a guy who was 37.


On Twitter: @EdBarkowitz

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