Vannett cleared the NFL's concussion protocol and returned to practice Sunday, Jeff Legwold of ESPN.com reports. Vannett suffered this concussion Wednesday but made a quick recovery. Heading into his fifth NFL season, Vannett is learning a new system but could secure the No. 2 role behind Noah Fant with a strong training camp.
Vannett is in the concussion protocol Wednesday, Mike Klis of 9News Denver reports. Vannett will need to fully clear the league's concussion protocol before retaking the practice field. The Broncos are relying on him to provide a veteran presence in an otherwise extremely youthful tight end room.
The Broncos have parted ways Jeff Heuerman, Brandon Krisztal of KOA News Radio reports. The move leaves Vannett as the veteran in the Broncos' tight-end room. Heuerman's exit seemed inevitable back in March as Vannett's signing tied up a fair amount of money in two reserve tight ends. Cutting Heuerman had less cap repercussions. Vannett is a good bet to make the roster as a TE2 or TE3, but he is unlikely to be a big factor fantasy-wise. Both 2019 first-round pick Noah Fant and 2020 fourth-rounder Albert Okwuegbunam figure to be more involved in the passing game than the veteran, who is the superior blocker.
Vannett signed a two-year contract, $5.7 million contract with the Broncos on Saturday, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports. It's an odd decision by the Broncos considering they've invested a first-round (Noah Fant), third-round (Jeff Heuerman) and two fifth-round picks (Jake Butt and Troy Fumagalli) in the tight end position over the last five years, but Vannett profiles as a more reliable blocking option behind the obvious starter, Fant. Vannett caught just 17 passes combined last season between stints with the Seahawks and Steelers, but the fourth-year player has missed just two games over the past three years despite playing at least 500 combined offensive and special teams snaps each season.
Vannett wasn't targeted on any of his 15 offensive snaps in Sunday's 28-10 loss to the Ravens. With starting tight end Vance McDonald playing 44 of the Steelers' 50 offensive snaps in Week 17, there was little opportunity for Vannett to take the field. While splitting his season between Seattle and Pittsburgh, Vannett produced 17 receptions (on 22 targets) for 166 yards in 13 games. An unrestricted free agent this offseason, Vannett could explore opportunities elsewhere if he's not willing to return to Pittsburgh as a No. 2 or 3 tight end.
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|3||09/27||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||9||4.00|
|4||10/01||@New York Jets||24||10.00|
|5||10/11||@New England Patriots||2||1.00|
|7||10/25||Kansas City Chiefs||20||10.00|
|10||11/15||@Las Vegas Raiders||13||6.00|
|11||11/22||Los Angeles Chargers||22||10.00|
|12||11/29||New Orleans Saints||30||15.00|
|13||12/06||@Kansas City Chiefs||20||10.00|
|16||12/27||@Los Angeles Chargers||22||10.00|
|17||01/03||Las Vegas Raiders||13||6.00|
Red Zone Trends
|3 Year Avg||27||19||186||1||9||9.79||24|