Demaryius Thomas will hopefully experience a bounce-back year in 2018 now that Case Keenum is the quarterback for the Broncos. After struggling through two seasons without Peyton Manning, which included catching passes from Trevor Siemian, Paxton Lynch and Brock Osweiler, Thomas should finally have a capable quarterback in Keenum, who just helped Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs finish as top-20 Fantasy receivers in Minnesota in 2017. Thomas' production in 2017 were his fewest targets (140), catches (83), yards (949) and tied for his fewest touchdowns (five) since 2011. Now, it's hard to expect Keenum alone to help Thomas return to his dominant form -- Thomas had at least 92 catches, 1,430 yards and 10 touchdowns from 2012-14 -- but he should improve on his performance from last year. He remains a quality No. 2 Fantasy receiver in the majority of leagues, and he's worth drafting in Round 4 in all formats.
Denver's starters, including Thomas, figure to play between a quarter and a quarter and a half Saturday against Chicago, Mike Klis of 9News Denver reports. Thomas caught just one pass in limited action during the team's preseason opener. The arrival of Case Keenum has led to some hope that Thomas can rebound after one of the worst seasons of his career, a 2017 marked by nagging injuries and terrible quarterback play. For those looking to see if those hopes will come to fruition, Saturday's extended action should be revealing.
Thomas credited a new diet and weight-free regimen for re-invigorating him after he privately pondered retirement following the 2017 season, James Palmer of NFL.com reports. Thomas admits that volatile fan opinions and hip and neck injuries have weighed on him in recent seasons, rendering the former catch-and-run dynamo a shell of himself. After a tough 2017 campaign, Thomas said the changes he made this offseason have strengthened his resolve and enthusiasm for the sport, and the Broncos' selection of two receivers in the early rounds -- Courtland Sutton and DaeSean Hamilton -- provided additional fuel for the veteran to prove he still has something left in the tank. Avoiding injury will be essential for Thomas to trend closer to his early-career form, but the offseason adjustments he has made along with what's expected to be an improved quarterback situation with Case Keenum under center could set the stage for a bounce-back season for the wideout.
Thomas has been moving all around the formation in the early days of training camp, Lindsay Jones of USA Today reports. Predominantly an outside receiver throughout his career, Thomas could get some work in the slot to help create favorable matchups against undersized nickelbacks. He still figures to take the vast majority of his snaps outside, but it's encouraging that the Broncos are at least making an attempt to be less predictable in the passing game. Thomas doesn't seem to have any lingering issues with the toe injury that held him out for the final two days of June minicamp.
Thomas (toe) will sit out the final two days of the Broncos' mandatory minicamp, Mike Klis of 9News Denver reports. Thomas tweaked his toe during Tuesday's session and is apparently dealing with some soreness. The wideout did indicate that he wanted to practice Wednesday, but it sounds like the Broncos opted to hold him out so he didn't experience a setback heading into training camp. Thomas shouldn't face any limitations by the time camp opens in late July.
Coach Vance Joseph said Thomas "tweaked" his foot Tuesday, which caused him to miss the team drills, Zac Stevens of BSNDenver.com reports. Joseph didn't seem to indicate any concern about the issue, but it's worth monitoring the star wideout's availability as minicamp rolls along. Assuming the issue doesn't impact him in the long run, Thomas should lead the revamped Broncos receiving corps with a good opportunity to reach 140 targets after doing so in each of the last seven seasons.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|4||10/02||Kansas City Chiefs||30||23.35|
|5||10/07||@New York Jets||19||20.00|
|6||10/14||Los Angeles Rams||11||18.47|
|8||10/28||@Kansas City Chiefs||30||23.35|
|11||11/18||@Los Angeles Chargers||7||17.00|
|14||12/09||@San Francisco 49ers||23||20.38|
|17||12/30||Los Angeles Chargers||7||17.00|
Red Zone Trends
|3 Year Avg||154||93||1112||5||55||11.96||137|