The first week of preseason is in the books, and the air is filled with anticipation. Don’t worry my friends, actual football is almost here. In the meantime, let’s glean what we can from the preseason games. Before we begin, I’d like to remind you that preseason games are not, you know, real. There is important information to be had by analyzing these games, but don’t lose your head. We don’t want another Ameer Abdullah situation on our hands after all. Here’s what I saw.
Cardinals vs. Cowboys
- Backup Alfred Morris out-carried and out-gained presumed starter Darren McFadden 7/42 to 3/-6. It would be super awesome if one of these guys could run away with the job and save us all a fantasy headache.
Texans vs. Panthers
- Tom Savage looked lost in the pocket. I got the feeling that in a real NFL game he might actually die. Not sure if this is because of a talent deficit on his part or terrible line play. Either way, I’m concerned.
- Kelvin Benjamin was pleasantly dominant. He broke several tackles on one play, and later showed off his size with a full-extension TD catch.
- Christian McCaffrey is going to be a stud in the NFL if all the pieces fall into place (though probably not this year). McCaffrey stayed low and showed incredible balance through contact. On two big gains he touched the ground with one hand before violently lurching forward for several yards.
Falcons vs. Dolphins
- Devonta Freeman looked good, but we already know who he is and what he can do.
Vikings vs. Bills
- The Vikings line looked awful, and Sam Bradford took at least one nasty sack.
- Dalvin Cook was hesitant, and he went down on the first whiff of contact. His bread and butter is going to be on short dump-offs, where he got a few good runs in.
- Jonathan Williams ran like a wild man. Yikes. Come to think of it, so did Mike Tolbert, who straight up juggernauted some poor D-back.
Redskins vs. Ravens
- Terrance West was beastly. Keep an eye on him as a value RB candidate in the mid to late rounds.
Jaguars vs. Patriots
- Leonard Fournette had a cute quote after the game about the NFL not being as fast as his college division. This was a an odd thing to say, since he didn’t really do much in this preseason game. Fournette did gain a few yards after contact on nearly every play, which is a good sign.
Broncos vs. Bears
- Rookie QB Mitchell Trubisky looked sharp, especially on several throws he made when flushed from the pocket.
- Apparently Victor Cruz is still in the NFL (and he’s a Bear now).
Saints vs. Browns
- Deshone Kizer was awful. He looked perpetually panicked, and wow was he inaccurate.
Eagles vs. Packers
- Ty Montgomery didn’t look great, and fumbled the ball on one of his few carries. Ruh Roh.
Steelers vs. Giants
- Not much of interest here. Pity.
Buccaneers vs. Bengals
- Mike Evans and Cameron Brate flashed, just like last year.
- Joe Mixon ran hard. Kid is special talent.
49ers vs. Chiefs
- Spencer Ware looked solid. Keep an eye on him if you need some mid-round value.
Titans vs. Jets
- Taiwan Taylor had an incredible catch.
- With Quincy Enunwa out, some guy named Robby Anderson is in line to be the Jet’s WR1. He’s picking up some hype after a very solid game.
Cowboys vs. Rams
- This game featured no fewer than eight fumbles. Yay, preseason!
Cardinals vs. Raiders
- The Cardinals were firing on all cylinders. If Carson Palmer can recover his 2015 form, Arizona could be a thing this year.
Colts vs. Lions
- Kenny Golladay was all over the field, scoring two TDs. He’s a guy to keep an eye on if you need a late round dart throw.
- Marvin Jones had a ball bounce right out of his hands for an interception. He was a total non-Golladay the whole game.
Seahawks vs. Chargers
- Russell Wilson looked like he’s lost a step after last season’s series of injuries. He was easily caught from behind on what should have been an easy seven yard first down scramble.
- Paul Richardson had a really nice diving catch. Alas, he got ‘crunched pretty good’ on the play, and is now week to week with a shoulder injury.
- Antonio Gates might just have another season in him somewhere. He looked great on the 1’s only drive, scoring a TD.