Another week of preseason football is in the bag, but is there really anything substantial we can ascertain? This week I would like to offer a slightly different format to you all, as I highlight and recap this past week’s games.
The reason for this is rather simple.
The early portions of preseason offers very little to NFL fans and fantasy football fans. The majority of what we all gain is a lot of info on players who will probably never grace the field. If not that, we tend to find preseason coverage to be spotty at best when it regards the players we are most interested in.
Today, I would like to take a more compact approach. I don’t think you need to know that 9 different teams had encouraging play from the starting lines—albeit from what? 15 minutes of play at best?
Rather, I want to highlight what I feel is important to you, the fan. This will come from a fantasy standpoint and from a traditional NFL fan standpoint, all the while disregarding the information you can do without.
Alright, let’s take a look!
The Highlights: Best of the Best:
I’ll start the best of the best with a guy who many of us here at Fantasyknuckleheads feel—and have felt for a while now—is this year’s top sleeper candidate: TE Jordan Cameron.
Cameron continues to show his dominate side, and Cleveland continues to show they really are giving this guy much more work and faith than ever before. Cameron capped off the night with 3 catches for 42 yards and 2 TDs. It’s becoming obvious that the Browns view Cameron not only as an integral part of the offense (finally), but they also view him as a top endzone target….perfect for fantasy owners looking to sure up their roster at TE.
My second BOTB highlights the Eagles versus Carolina. Despite this contest being a low scoring affair, the Eagles looked very, very good. Mike Vick looked nearly pristine sans a lone INT, and LeSean McCoy had a tiny coming out party; one of which that reminded us all why he is called “Shady” McCoy.
QB Nick Foles also had another solid outing, but did show his rookie side. Philadelphia played fast and sharp on offense and even did a much better job on defense this week.
Under Chip Kelly, it’s looking more and more as if the Eagles are going to benefit sooner rather than later as many initially thought.
Honestly folks....just look at this run if you missed it!
My third and final BOTB entails Green Bay’s performance against St. Louis. If I’m not mistaken, Sam Bradford and the starting offense for the Rams were the only group to play a full two quarters in Week 1, and for the first “game of the year”, they didn’t look all that bad.
This week, they didn’t look all that great.
Green Bay on the other hand barely gave fans a blink-of-an-eye moment’s glance at the starters in Week 1, but just like St. Louis, played very well.
This week we finally saw Packers’ new RB Eddie Lacy who simply looked spectacular. It wasn’t just his running, it was his ability to move the ball after initial contact that struck me. In all, GB showed more effectiveness after the initial point of contact on offense which actually outshined the pin-point accuracy of Aaron Rodgers and company.
The Silent But Deadliest:
New Orleans is starting to scare me. We all know this offense could rack up 400 yards with two monkeys and a circus midget on the field, but what we haven’t been used to seeing is a dominate defense in a few years.
The Saints played VERY WELL on defense particularly the starting line, hence the fear-factor, because if this trend becomes the norm, the Saints fall back into “super-team” status.
Continue to keep a strong eye on WR Lance Moore. I continue to believe Moore finally plays a much bigger role on offense than in years past, and if I am right, fantasy owners will find a relatively cheap WR whose return will fully outweigh his cost.
Secondly in the SBD category is the Buffalo Bills. Grant it, it has now only been two games, but the Bills continue to look better than advertised. QB E.J. Manuel had another strong outing after playing second fiddle to Kevin Kolb who looked horrible.
The Bills are a difficult team to read right now with so many options being explored from week to week. But as a collective, the team looks solid and very well prepared each week. Another two weeks of strong play and we will all be forced to look deeper into what Buffalo has to offer.
And finally, I want to take a brief look at the Seattle Seahawks. This is yet another team that is quietly putting together a strong preseason showing, despite a few questions on offense.
What I really like from a fantasy standpoint is the continued play of Brandon Browner who owned Denver this past week. Browner is a strong IDP consideration who is only going to get better and better.
From the Denver camp, we saw another week of focus upon TE Julius Thomas. I’m not sure just yet what this heavy focus will translate into, but as it stands right now, I am keeping a closer eye on his progression, and I recommend you do the same.
Quick Hits and Drills:
- The Bears defense had another foundational outing against San Diego, but QB Jay Cutler continued to struggle. Are we overestimating Cutler and his O-line at this point?
- Kansas City continues to focus on TE Anthony Fasano in the passing game which is curious to me. Fasano is not known for his speed, but he is known for his reliable hands. I’m beginning to wonder if Fasano will see more action this season than what we are used to seeing from him.
- And finally, the Falcons were able to get Julio Jones on the field in their second preseason game, and they were also able to get RB Steven Jackson going after a lethargic WK1 outing. I have no issue with what’s to come from Atlanta’s offense this season.