The 49ers signed Marquise Goodwin to a meager two-year, $6 million deal in March of last year. It was a total afterthought signing at the time after Goodwin managed just 49 career catches in four years with the Bills to open his career. But like most receivers who escape Buffalo — Robert Woods, Sammy Watkins, and Chris Hogan to name a few — Goodwin has been greeted with greener pastures at his next stop. He finished as fantasy’s PPR WR32 last season after setting career bests in catches (56), yards (962), and yards-per-catch (17.2), while scoring a pair of touchdowns. Obviously, the touchdowns number isn’t all that impressive, but Goodwin and Jimmy Garoppolo showed a real rapport the second half of the year.
Goodwin was fantasy’s WR18 from Weeks 9-16 after Pierre Garcon suffered a season-ending neck injury in Week 8. (Goodwin ended up missing most of Week 17 with a concussion.) With Goodwin’s strong finish to the season, he was rewarded with a three-year, $19.25 million extension. Garoppolo was Goodwin’s quarterback for five of those seven games from Weeks 9-16, and the two developed a real rapport, while Goodwin seemed to run a much more diverse route tree in San Francisco under coach Kyle Shanahan after being a strict deep threat, lid-lifter speedster in Buffalo.
Even with Garcon back to 100 percent health this summer, reports out of 49ers camp have continued to paint Goodwin as Garoppolo’s favorite target. ESPN 49ers reporter Nick Wagoner was just the latest beat writer to make the observation on Tuesday, saying Goodwin is “clearly” Garoppolo’s “favorite target” in camp. It has been the consisted word out of Niners camp all month. With Garoppolo under center late last season, Goodwin had a 16-game extrapolation pace of 93-1,229-3. Garcon’s return to health and the drafting of second-rounder Dante Pettis will likely prevent Goodwin from reaching those heights, but Goodwin still has the upside and skill set to smash his mid-to-late eighth-round ADP that has him coming off fantasy draft boards as WR38 in half-PPR leagues. His ADP has been hovering there all month as one of the true upside picks in the middle rounds.
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Allison Impressing in Green Bay
The Packers’ No. 3 receiver job is no small gig when it comes to fantasy leagues. In an offense with Aaron Rodgers at quarterback, this is a passing game that can support multiple receivers. Davante Adams and Randall Cobb are locked in as the top two wideouts with Jimmy Graham at tight end. But there’s enough to go around to make another player viable in deeper fantasy leagues. The Green Bay Press-Gazette’s Ryan Wood reports Geronimo Allison has “quietly established himself” as the team’s No. 3 receiver. The Packers drafted rookies J’Mon Moore, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, and Equanimeous St. Brown in April, while Jake Kumerow has drawn praise from Rodgers, but it’s Allison who is quietly taking hold of the gig after running as the No. 2 receiver behind Adams in the preseason opener with Cobb nursing an injury. Allison needs to be on deep-league and dynasty radars.
John Brown Rebounding in Baltimore
Signed to a one-year, prove-it deal in March, John Brown has been drawing praise from Joe Flacco and Ravens coaches on a near-daily basis throughout training camp. On Monday, Flacco credited Browns for the quarterback’s renewed success throwing the deep ball. On Tuesday, coach John Harbaugh said Brown has “been better than we expected.” And ace beat writer Jeff Zrebiec singled out Brown as the :standout” of Ravens camp, and “nobody has made more plays.” Brown has proven to be an electrifying playmaker when healthy, but he spent much of the past two years battling complications from his sickle-cell trait. If Brown is beyond that this season, he will be an ideal deep target for big-armed Joe Flacco, and quite possibly the Ravens’ No. 1 receiver. Brown isn’t even being drafted in 12-team leagues right now, but that’s sure to change if Browns keeps it up. He’s an ideal late-round flier, similar to that of Marquise Goodwin in 2017, who we talked about above.
The Colts have battled a number of issues in their backfield this summer, but Josh Ferguson (hamstring) returned to practice Tuesday. Marlon Mack (hamstring) remains out, Nyheim Hines has been struggling, and Robert Turbin is suspended the first four games of 2018. … Coach Marvin Lewis said he hopes Tyler Eifert doesn’t have to play 50 snaps in a game this season, suggesting the Bengals will limit the injury-prone tight end’s play counts, utilizing him mainly in scoring situations and third downs. … Ben Roethlisberger is in the league’s concussion protocol after taking a hit in Tuesday’s practice. It shouldn’t be an issue by the time Week 1 rolls around. … Derek Carr has been in “real command” of coach Jon Gruden’s offense as he looks to rebound after a bad 2017. … Free agent Dez Bryant will visit the Browns on Thursday. … The Jaguars are expected to feature Corey Grant more this season after he smashed on limited touches last year. … Dede Westbrook has remained a standout in Jaguars camp all summer. He and Marqise Lee appear to be the favorites to start in two-wide sets. … Coach Vance Joseph called out Paxton Lynch, saying “he needs to play better” after the Broncos demoted him to third string. … Cameron Meredith has missed multiple practices in a row with an undisclosed injury and sent out a cryptic tweet Tuesday. … Quincy Enunwa (thumb) returned to practice over the weekend. … Coach Doug Pederson downplayed Monday reports that Alshon Jeffery is in danger of starting the season on reserve/PUP due to shoulder surgery, which would cost Jeffery at least the first six weeks. … Nelson Agholor is battling a lower-body injury. … DeVante Parker suffered a broken finger and is in question for Week 1. Parker has had a relatively quiet summer after being talked up multiple times last training camp only to fall flat on his face in the regular season. … Tyler Higbee has been a standout at training camp. With Gerald Everett hurt, Higbee has been getting all of the first-team reps. … Eric Decker has struggled with drops early on in his days at Patriots camp. It was an issue for him last year in Tennessee.
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