Marcas Grant | Tags: Three and out, Andrew Luck, DeSean Jackson, Eric Decker, Indianapolis Colts, Jeremy Maclin, LeGarrette Blount, LeSean McCoy, New England Patriots, Nick Foles, Philadelphia Eagles, Reggie Wayne, Riley Cooper, Shane Vereen, Stevan Ridley, T.Y. Hilton
Eagles sign Cooper, talking with Maclin: The Philadelphia Eagles are putting their offensive ducks in a row. The team signed Riley Cooper to a new five-year contract and is in talks with Jeremy Maclin on a new deal. Add that to new deals for offensive linemen Jason Kelce and Jason Peters and Philly’s offense appears ready to fly high once again. One problem: Someone’s going to be the odd man out. Last season, Cooper was the No. 2 receiving target, behind DeSean Jackson. Meanwhile in 2012, it was Maclin who led the team in targets and receptions. From an efficiency standpoint, both Maclin and Cooper are about equal, hauling in about 56 percent of the passes thrown their direction. The difference could be that Cooper was able to build a rapport with quarterback Nick Foles last season while Maclin was on the shelf. Oh, and there’s the little issue of LeSean McCoy still being the focal point of the offense. If Maclin does return to Philadelphia, it’s likely to downgrade both him and Cooper to WR3 status.
Decker, Colts a good fit: It could be difficult for the Denver Broncos to find room in their plans for Eric Decker. In which case, the veteran receiver could land elsewhere — possibly Indianapolis. Both the Colts and Decker reportedly have interest in a pairing, which would add another weapon to Andrew Luck’s arsenal. Decker has averaged 86 catches over the past two seasons with Peyton Manning and could fare just as well with the heir apparent to the league’s quarterbacking throne. On paper, Reggie Wayne would appear to be the Colts No. 1 target after his return from a knee injury. But Decker has the skills to usurp T.Y. Hilton as the second option in the passing game and could be the new No. 1 when the 35-year-old Wayne moves along. The initial thought was that leaving Denver could put a crimp in Decker’s draft value. But if his next stop is Indianapolis, that hit wouldn’t be as drastic as first believed.
Blount back to N.E.?: There appears to be mutual interest between LeGarrette Blount and the Patriots in an encore in 2014. The bruising back became a much larger part of the New England offense as the season went along. He became the leading ballcarrier, averaging 17 rushing attempts per game over the final three weeks of the regular season before having a huge postseason performance against the Colts. Of course, this will give the Patriots more chance to be, well … the Patriots. Blount would likely continue to rotate through the backfield with Stevan Ridley and third-down specialist Shane Vereen. That’s good for the New England offense. Not so much for fantasy owners.
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