Training camp fantasy players to monitor: AFC North
There’s a new (but familiar) head coach in Cleveland. With a new scheme and an essentially brand new wide receiver corps, Hue Jackson’s Browns are the team to watch in the AFC North. But they’re not the only intriguing team. The Ravens are more unsettled at the skill positions than they’ve ever been, the Steelers have a Martavis Bryant-sized void to fill, and the Bengals have nothing set in stone at wide receiver behind A.J. Green.
Over the next four weeks, we will preview every division and pinpoint four to five players to track during training camp and the preseason (catch up on the divisions so far here). From now until the start of the season, the only real information we’ll need to gather is about a player’s role and chemistry within his offense. Let’s jump in.
Sammie Coates, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers
Just one full NFL cycle after being viewed as an afterthought — not even in the same conversation as guys like Nelson Agholor — Coates is now viewed as a premier flier target for 2016. Not so fast, though. The flaws in Coates’ game (drops, route running, creating separation) may have not magically disappeared. And either way — one strong postseason game is no sample size to make that judgment on. But with Martavis Bryant suspended for the year, there are targets, touchdowns and big plays to be had in one of the most prolific passing games in the NFL.
The narrative: Coates will take over Bryant’s role