NFL stars looking to rebound from a rough 2018

Whether it was due to injury, age or just subpar play, many NFL players are looking to rebound after disappointing 2018 seasons. Here’s a look at 25 players hoping to bounce back.

Ezekiel Ansah, DE, free agent

Ansah had an injury-plagued year in 2018, likely his last in Detroit. He played only seven games, recording four sacks, and he struggled to find a market as a free agent this offseason due to a shoulder injury.

Vic Beasley, DE, Falcons

Beasley led the league with 15.5 sacks in 2016, but that production looks more like a fluke after his last two seasons. He had only five sacks in each of the last two seasons and also had just 20 tackles last year as a situational pass rusher. Atlanta desperately needs a rebound from him this year.

Randall Cobb, WR, Cowboys

At one time Cobb was Aaron Rodgers’ top receiver, but he’s struggled in Green Bay over the last three years. After playing only nine games due to injuries last season, he signed with the Cowboys to replace Cole Beasley as the team’s slot receiver.

Andy Dalton, QB, Bengals

Dalton’s last winning season as a starter was 2015. Last year he went 5-6 in 11 starts before a season-ending thumb injury. He also threw 11 interceptions during his time on the field. Bengals fans hope new head coach Zac Taylor can help Dalton take a step forward.

Joe Flacco, QB, Broncos

The writing was on the wall for Flacco in Baltimore after the team drafted Lamar Jackson. Despite adding several new receivers, Flacco went 4-5 as a starter with just 12 touchdown passes before giving way to Jackson due to a hip injury. Denver traded for Flacco in the offseason, but he’s in a similar situation after the Broncos drafted Drew Lock in the second round.

Leonard Fournette, RB, Jaguars

Jacksonville’s return for selecting Fournette fourth overall in the 2017 draft hasn’t been great thus far. He had more than 1,000 yards rushing in his rookie season but averaged only 3.9 yards per carry. Last season was worse, as he played only eight games mostly due to injuries and had a terrible 3.3 yards per rush attempt. Fournette also had minor legal issues during the offseason.

Devonta Freeman, RB, Falcons

Freeman has struggled to stay healthy over the last two seasons and played only two games last year due to foot and groin injuries. He’s still young enough to rebound going into his age 27 season, and the Falcons need him to be healthy after Tevin Coleman left in free agency.

Jimmy Graham, TE, Packers

Green Bay expected big things from Graham after signing him last offseason, but he was a relative disappointment with only 636 yards receiving and two touchdowns. Graham deserves credit for gutting out a thumb injury late in the year, but the expectation that he’d replace Jordy Nelson’s production didn’t come to fruition.

A.J. Green, WR, Bengals

Green has missed significant time in two of the last three seasons, sitting out seven games last year due to a toe injury. For the second straight year, Green’s production when he did play was also down significantly with only 77 receiving yards per game after averaging at least 80 yards from 2012-2016.

Full 25

By: Seth Trachtman

 

Most overpaid NFL player at every position

With the requirements of the NFL salary cap, teams can ill afford to be wasteful in their attempt to build a Super Bowl contender. Here’s a look at the most overpaid players at every position in the NFL entering the 2018 season. Salaries are cap hits, according to Spotrac.com.

Quarterback: Joe Flacco, Ravens

The Ravens are taking a cap hit of nearly $25 million from Flacco in 2018, fourth highest in the NFL, yet fans can’t wait to see him depart. He had only 3,141 yards passing and 18/13 TD/INT last season, and Baltimore drafted Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson in the first round to be his successor.

Running Back: Latavius Murray, Vikings

Murray filled in adequately last season after rookie Dalvin Cook got injured, but he still lacked consistency with less than four yards per carry. The former Raider also lacks great versatility as a receiver, yet he counts $5.2 million against the cap this season, 10th most at his position. Minnesota hopes he does more sitting behind Cook this season.

Fullback: Kyle Juszczyk, 49ers

Juszczyk blew away the fullback pay scale when he signed a four-year, $21 million deal with the 49ers before last season. With a cap hit of more than $4.4 million, he makes almost double that of the second-highest-paid fullback. No matter how much he helps the 49ers, it’s clear they overpaid.

Wide Receiver: Randall Cobb, Packers

At his best, Cobb is a true playmaker, but that hasn’t been the case over the last few seasons. He’s averaged around 10 yards per reception over the last three years, among the worst at his position, and had just 66 receptions for 653 yards and four scores in 15 games during 2017. However, he’s the eighth-highest-paid wideout against the cap this year, making nearly $12.8 million.

Full List here

By Seth Trachtman