Willis McGahee, Chris Ogbonnaya fantasy players to pick up after trade

Willis McGahee BroncosThe Cleveland Browns traded former No. 3 overall draft pick Trent Richardson to the Indianapolis Colts on Wednesday for a first-round pick, leaving them with a huge void at running back. As soon as a trade like this is made, the fantasy impact must also be analyzed.

Richardson was the only back to carry the ball for the Browns this season, so what will they do to fill that position?

Chris Ogbonnaya and Bobby Rainey are the likely in-house options, but CBS’ Jason La Canfora reports that the team will sign Willis McGahee as long as he passes his physical.

McGahee is the top guy to target as long as the deal goes through. The Browns wouldn’t have traded Richardson unless they felt they had some sort of adequate replacement, and McGahee is just that. McGahee played 10 games with the Broncos last season and was released in the offseason. He must be recovered from his broken leg if the team made the trade and is planning to sign him.

McGahee turns 32 next month and averaged 4.4 yards per carry last season with Denver. Though he lost four fumbles, he still looked like an effective back prior to his injury.

Cleveland’s offense has its limitations in terms of productivity possibilities, but if you’re a fantasy football owner looking for a flex option who can give you yards and maybe the occasional touchdown, McGahee is a recommended pickup.

Ogbonnaya is more of a player to pick up for this weekend’s game at Minnesota. He’s familiar with the offense and will likely see the most carries among Cleveland’s backs, if we had to make a guess. He also could cut into McGahee’s load for the future. He’s the guy you probably want this weekend, while Willis is the longterm back to own.

Temper your expectations here because the Browns offense didn’t run the ball much even with Richardson, but like we said, if you need a back, McGahee should be satisfactory.

Giants will reportedly work out Brandon Jacobs, Willis McGahee, Joe McKnight

David Wilson GiantsEither the New York Giants are trying to send a message to second-year running back David Wilson, or they are legitimately nervous about his fumbling problem. Wilson, who was expected to be a major part of New York’s offensive attack in 2013, put the ball on the ground twice during a loss to the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday night. Because of that, the Giants may be looking to add a veteran to their backfield.

According to CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora, New York is planning to bring in Brandon Jacobs, Willis McGahee and Joe McKnight for a workout this week. Jacobs became irrelevant after leaving New York in 2011, McGahee was phased out by the Denver Broncos last year and McKnight was a failure with the New York Jets, but the trio could bring veteran stability to a backfield that is littered with question marks.

Prior to Andre Brown suffering a broken leg, he and Wilson were expected to share the workload in New York this season. Still, Wilson was seen as a far superior talent who would get the bulk of the carries. On Sunday night, he was benched after losing two fumbles in his first seven rushing attempts.

Third-year running back Da’Rel Scott replaced Wilson and rushed for 23 yards on five carries, but he also failed to handle an Eli Manning pass that was intercepted by Dallas and returned for a touchdown.

The Giants really have no option talent-wise aside from Wilson, so they need him to figure out a way to secure the ball. Last season, Wilson infamously cried on the sidelines after losing a fumble on his second career carry. You have to believe his fumbling issue is as much mental as it is physical at the moment. New York has dealt with this before with Tiki Barber, who lost six fumbles in 2002 and 2003. The Giants may need to take a similar approach with Wilson and tweak his ball carrying style.

Willis McGahee: Defense deserved the credit for Broncos’ success last season

The Broncos’ success last season had many fans pleased, but it was also a touchy subject for many of the team’s players. A lot of people quietly felt that the team’s defense is what carried them to victories even though Tim Tebow received most of the attention, headlines, and credit. Willis McGahee certainly agrees.

“As a player just sitting back and watching you have to expect that to happen. The quarterback is going to get all the praise if we win and he’s going to get the blame if we lose,” the Broncos running back said on WQAM in Miami on Thursday. “You really can’t argue about that but we know as a team what we did on the football field and me personally, I think the defense deserved basically all the credit because they were playing lights out football.”

Champ Bailey expressed a similar sentiment in January, but he said he didn’t mind the defense being overshadowed as long as the team was winning. We think it probably was a touchy subject the entire time, but the players just kept quiet about it for the most part.

It’s easy to see how having Tim Tebow on your team can create an uncomfortable environment for the rest of the players because he’s such a central figure. But I will remind both McGahee and Bailey that stats showed that Tebow’s play actually led to an improved defense.

Photo credit: Ron Chenoy-US PRESSWIRE

Jake Ballard, Willis McGahee, Matt Moore Were the Unsung Heroes of Week 9

LBS is lucky enough to be sponsored by Chevy this week, which is fantastic given that we’re big American car guys. LBS writer Del even proudly rolls in a Chevy truck. When they asked to write a post highlighting the unsung heroes for Week 9 of the NFL season, we were stoked; there are so many players who put together commendable performances each week but get overlooked for one reason or another. With that in mind, we’re proud to recognize Jake Ballard, Willis McGahee, and Matt Moore as the unsung heroes of Week 9.

Giants tight end Jake Ballard had four catches for 67 yards and a touchdown in his team’s comeback win over the Patriots Sunday. Eli Manning is the one receiving most of the recognition for the team’s comeback. Most of the headlines have talked about Eli making good on his preseason declaration that he was an elite quarterback. They’ve talked about how he’s been clutch, and how he’s come up big to beat the Patriots in two big games (the other being the Super Bowl of course). But we’d like to remind you that in order for a quarterback to succeed, he needs someone to be on the receiving end of his passes. Ballard was that guy Sunday.

On a 3rd and 10 from their 39 with 1:07 left, the undrafted tight end from Ohio State speared a ball in double coverage to give the Giants a first down at the Patriots’ 33. Then on a 3rd and goal from the 1 with 19 seconds left, Ballard beat linebacker Tracy White on an out route and grabbed the game-winning touchdown. Ballard has three touchdowns in his last five games and 19 catches for 308 yards in that span. He’s more than filling Kevin Boss’ role for the Giants, and his awesome clutch performance in week 9 needs to be recognized.

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Tim Hightower, Willis McGahee, Earnest Graham, Beanie Wells All Injured in Week 7

If you’re a running back and you play in the NFL, chances are you gut hurt on Sunday. Tim Hightower and Earnest Graham suffered season-ending injuries, while Willis McGahee and Beanie Wells sustained injuries that could keep them out a few weeks. Additionally, Marshawn Lynch, Mark Ingram, and Darren McFadden also got nicked. We’ll explore the status of each running back.

Tim Hightower, Redskins: Hightower injured his left knee after planting to make a cut against the Panthers Sunday. Anytime a running back or receiver gets carted off a field with a knee injury, you have to worry about a torn ACL. That was the case for Hightower who is done for the season. Ryan Torain is expected to become the lead back with Roy Helu mixing in as the change of pace guy.

Willis McGahee, Broncos: McGahee broke the fourth metacarpal in his right hand during the third quarter of Sunday’s win at Miami. He had 18 carries for 76 yards before leaving the game. Willis needs surgery on the hand and is likely to miss two weeks. Knowshon Moreno and Lance Ball split carries after the injury, and we expect that to continue with Willis out. Moreno may see slightly more action because he’s also a good pass catcher.

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Kyle Orton’s Incomplete Pass Hits Windshield of Willis McGahee’s Porsche

We weren’t joking when we said John Fox was messing with fire by demoting Tim Tebow to third string on the Broncos’ quarterback depth chart. If this isn’t a sign from above, I don’t know what is.

During Broncos practice Thursday, quarterback Kyle Orton threw an incomplete pass in the end zone that hit a car in the players’ parking lot. Turns out it hit the windshield of Willis McGahee’s Porsche. Broncos beat writer Lindsay Jones tweeted about the incident.

Inc pass into the end zone just cracked windshield on Porshe in players parking lot. Whoops. Came in fast and hard, off the bounce. For what its worth, only about 10 yards from back of end zone to the players’ parking lot. No fence. Not some crazy errant pass here.

Mystery solved: The Porsche belongs to Willis McGahee. Insurance will cover it. Broncos employees already taking care of it.”

The best part of the story was Willis’ response. According to Andrew Mason, “Willis McGahee came over to examine the damaged windshield on his Porsche. He said it’s no big deal because he needed a new car, anyway.” Ahh, now that’s the life, isn’t it? Just replace your entire sports car if the windshield gets damaged, right? Can’t imagine why some players end up broke. I think the Broncos may need to look at doing what the Braves did with their parking lot as a solution.

Helmet knock to Shutdown Corner for the story

Willis McGahee Wants Championship Ring from 2003 Miami-Ohio State Title Game

Former Miami Hurricanes running back Willis McGahee is still chapped about a delayed call in the 2003 National Championship Game against Ohio State and wants his title ring. Asked by Dennis Dodd of CBS Sports for his reaction if it is found out that Ohio State won the game with ineligible players, McGahee told him he would “like to have my ring.”

McGahee then changed his focus from the ineligible players aspect of the issue to the pass interference/holding call made in overtime. “I feel we were cheated anyway. We beat them. The pass interference with the eligible, ineligible players. It wouldn’t have made any difference. I can’t get my money back that I missed out on a second ring. If they did [cheat] I’d like to have my ring.”

Here is the call in question in case you forgot about the issue. Jimmy Sharpe was called for pass interference on the play against Chris Gamble, but the officials later said the real infraction was defensive holding:

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