What We Saw: Week 2

Did your QB survive the week?

Patriots @ Jets

Final Score: Patriots 25, Jets 6

Writer: Ben Brown (@BenBrownPL on Twitter)


Bill Belichick came into this game 1-6 against rookie QBs before Week 10. Both teams were missing key offensive linemen, Trent Brown for NE and Mekhi Becton for the Jets, leaving gaping holes at tackle that could have proved disastrous for both teams. Both Jamison Crowder (groin) and Denzel Mims were also inactive for the Jets, leaving Corey Davis and Elijah Moore as the top two receivers on the field for New York.

New England barely won the first quarter of this game, thanks in large part to two interceptions from Zach Wilson and 10 points that were a result of the turnovers. New York had no problem getting to Mac Jones and forcing pressure, nor did they have any difficulty gaining yards on the ground when they chose to run it. Early on, it looked like New England was in trouble.

The Jets’ issues stemmed from Zach Wilson‘s struggles in the passing game. Wilson threw four interceptions on the day, each one getting progressively worse in the decision-making department. He was clearly the Achilles heel for the Jets in this one, and the Patriots scored 17 points off his four turnovers.

On the New England side of the ball, Mac Jones was efficient overall but once again didn’t really test the Jets’ defense downfield. New England had trouble moving the ball on offense at times, and if it wasn’t for two big plays from James White and Damien Harris this game would have been a lot closer. The loss of Trent Brown, and the insertion of Yasir Durant at RT, nearly proved disastrous for New England as he was personally responsible for two of the three sacks and had himself a no good very bad day. There wasn’t much running room for New England either, and through two weeks it looks like the Patriots’ most important offensive player may be Trent Brown, so hopefully, he can return soon.

Let’s break down each position for fantasy purposes.


New England Patriots




Mac Jones: 22/30, 186 yards, 3 Sacks, Fumble


Mac Jones wasn’t given much of a leash in this one. He was constantly under pressure thanks to the struggling offensive line, resulting in his needing to consistently dump the ball off. He rarely tested the Jets’ secondary downfield, but he didn’t really need to. Once New England was up by double digits he was in game-manager mode.

He was 6/6 for 26 yards on New England’s first drive that ended up in a punt. Late in the first quarter, New England ran a trick play that resulted in a short completion to Jonnu Smith for a first down. Nice play, right?



We didn’t get to see a replay, but on the broadcast, Trent Green said that Nelson Agholor was wide open downfield but Jones didn’t even look his way. This has been the most frustrating part of the Mac Jones era so far – a lack of shots downfield that has led to a conservative offense settling for field goals more often than not.



Jones nearly lost a fumble deep in his own territory early in the second quarter, but it was recovered by Yasir Durant, the right tackle that started in place of Trent Brown. He was also the reason why the defender was able to strip the ball out of Jones’ hands in the first place.



Two plays later, Durant let another defender get by for a sack on Jones.



When your offensive line is unable to keep you on your feet against a four-man rush, you’re gonna have a bad time.

It wasn’t all negatives for Jones, however. As he’s done in pretty much every game he’s played (including the preseason), he had another absolute beauty of a throw that not many QBs in the league are able to make.



On Damien Harris‘ beast mode run (which you’ll see below), Jones was seen helping push the pile into the end zone. He also helped throw a block on an end-around late in the third quarter.



This effort will not go unnoticed by his teammates. From a fantasy perspective, these plays don’t matter. And it was ultimately a poor day fantasy-wise for anyone who rolled with Jones. I’m starting to become a bit concerned with the conservative choices by Mac and with the lack of protection upfront, but it’s still been more good than bad in the first two games of his career. He’s got two tough matchups coming up against New Orleans and Tampa Bay, respectively, so be sure to bench him in all but the deepest 2QB leagues.


Running Back


Damien Harris: 16 carries, 62 yards, TD | 1 target, 1 reception, 2 yards

James White: 5 carries, 20 yards, TD | 6 targets, 6 receptions, 45 yards

J.J. Taylor: 2 carries, 3 yards


After his untimely fumble in Week 1, Rhamondre Stevenson is officially in Bill Belichick’s doghouse and was inactive for this matchup. Additionally, the Patriots were without starting right tackle Trent Brown, who is nursing a calf injury and is considered day-to-day. This kind of injury can linger, so all signs point to New England being extra cautious with their best lineman.

Damien Harris didn’t have his best day overall, but it was his insane 26-yard run that will be on the highlight reels all season long.





I counted six missed tackles on this play alone. Besides this run, he didn’t have much room all day. 16 carries are down from the 23 he had last week, but New England ran fewer plays overall and he was still the lead dog in this offense. The offensive line struggled all day long to open up holes for him, but when Trent Brown returns it should be better. Based on his usage through two weeks, Harris is an RB2 this year, and when Brown returns he should have RB1 upside most weeks for fantasy purposes.

James White‘s resurgence has been a key storyline for New England’s offense through two games. He’s once again involved in the passing game and is the clear RB2 in this offense behind harris. While his skillset isn’t exactly that of your prototypical between-the-tackles back, he’s been used in that fashion whenever Harris needs a breather. He vultured a touchdown from Harris today on a nice run where he bounced it outside and then back inside to evade a defender.



This came just a few plays after he broke the Jets defense on a long reception on a screen.




White was the recipient of a few designed screens and also a few throws when Jones needed to be bailed out while under pressure. If he’s going to keep seeing this type of volume he’s going to be a Flex option on a weekly basis.

Besides a couple of carries for J.J. Taylor, that was it for the New England running game this week.


Wide Receiver/Tight End


Nelson Agholor: 3 targets, 3 receptions, 21 yards

Jakobi Meyers: 6 targets, 4 receptions, 38 yards

Jonnu Smith: 5 targets, 4 receptions, 28 yards

Hunter Henry: 4 targets, 2 receptions, 42 yards

Kendrick Bourne: 3 targets, 2 receptions, 10 yards | 1 carry, 16 yards


Kendrick Bourne fumbled the ball on the second play of the game, but the Pats caught a break and the play was whistled dead prior to the ball coming out.



Honestly, the game could have been completely different if this was called properly. Luckily for New York, the resulting drive resulted in a punt, but they got shafted by the non-call. Bourne was quiet for the rest of the day.

There really isn’t much to talk about with this crew. With Jones checking down as often as he did, there simply weren’t enough risks taken that would have resulted in solid fantasy days for any of these targets. Jonnu Smith once again out-targeted Hunter Henry, though Henry nearly doubled the amount of Smith’s snaps (49-28). The majority of Henry’s yards came on one play where the Jets chose to simply not cover him.



With New Orleans and Tampa Bay up next, it’s going to be a tough go of it for New England’s offense. Keep an eye on Trent Brown’s health in the comping weeks as that could be the key to how well these weapons perform for your fantasy team.


New York Jets




Zach Wilson: 19/33, 210 yards, 4 INT, 4 Sacks | 3 carries, 19 yards


Yikes. This was an absolutely brutal showing by the rookie QB, and from a fantasy perspective, it doesn’t get much worse than this. It would have looked much, much worse if not for garbage time where he put up 55 yards on the final drive of the day, but it was still an awful day for Wilson and anyone who started him in fantasy will be severely disappointed with the outcome.

Wilson’s day started with an interception on his first pass of the game, though it wasn’t totally his fault. Ja’Whaun Bentley was all over the field in this game and he went unblocked up the middle, forcing Wilson to throw it early. J.C. Jackson made an excellent play to tip it in the air, then dive for the interception.



On the second play of their next drive, Wilson rolled out and threw it to Corey Davis, who let it slip through his hands for another interception.



The throw was high, but it wasn’t totally Wilson’s fault. Davis should have caught the ball.



Wilson helped drive the Jets down the field for a field goal on their third drive, but I honestly wasn’t impressed. The biggest play of the drive was this pass to Elijah Mitchell but Wilson threw it to a spot that led Mitchell out of bounds.



Wilson has happy feet in his throwing motion more often than not. You can see it in this throw. It’s poor mechanics and I can’t help but think that it will come back to bite him at some point.

On their next drive, Wilson made a bonehead decision that led to his third interception of the day. Honestly I have no idea why he made this throw at all.



Wilson was under pressure often, throwing off his back foot and many throws were inaccurate as a result. He’s really good at evading pressure, though, and his athleticism helps him extend plays with his feet and gives him some extra time to operate in the backfield. It’s clear as day on this play despite the incompletion.



Here’s Wilson’s fourth interception of the day. Just… no words.



Overall it was an awful showing for the young QB. He’s got a long way to go before he’s a star in this league. He clearly has the talent, but he is in no way shape or form ready to produce in a big way for this Jets offense. For fantasy purposes, you’re better off leaving him on waivers until he starts to improve his decision-making.


Running Back


Michael Carter: 11 carries, 59 yards | 3 targets, 2 receptions, 29 yards

Ty Johnson: 12 carries, 50 yards

Tevin Coleman: 5 carries, 24 yards


The Jets had no problem running the ball against the Patriots in this game. If it weren’t for the turnovers through the air, and the points scored by New England as a direct result of said turnovers, this game would have been a lot different and these backs likely would have been the beneficiaries.

Michael Carter was the standout in my opinion and he looked better than both Ty Johnson and Tevin Coleman despite similar YPC on the ground. He often hit holes quickly with impressive burst and made defenders miss on multiple occasions.






On New York’s third drive, Carter was the featured back and he ran well. He got around the edge for a long gain on third down and made some moves on a run up the middle. He was removed for Ty Johnson on third and goal, who was immediately stuffed.



Regardless of the runner, they gashed the New England defense in the first half, but Carter is the guy I would want long-term in this offense.


Wide Receiver/Tight End


Corey Davis: 5 targets, 2 receptions, 8 yards

Elijah Moore: 8 targets, 4 receptions, 47 yards

Braxton Berrios: 11 targets, 7 receptions, 73 yards

Jeff Smith: 2 targets, 1 reception, 35 yards

Ryan Griffin: 2 targets, 2 receptions, 10 yards

Tyler Kroft: 2 targets, 1 reception, 8 yards


Unless your name was Braxton Berrios, it was a tough day to be a Jets WR. Therefore, unless you’re one of the three people on the planet who started Berrios in this game, you likely were disappointed with the result of this one for this crew. As I mentioned in the opening blurb, both Jamison Crowder and  Denzel Mims were inactive so Elijah Moore and Corey Davis should have feasted. They didn’t. New England did a good job of covering both guys downfield and seemed content with letting Berrios beat them underneath. Considering it’s up to the QB to get the ball to the receivers, and Wilson made poor decisions all day long, the lack of production by this group shouldn’t be surprising.

I wouldn’t run out to add Berrios this week despite the blowup, and I definitely wouldn’t drop Moore or Davis either. Stay put with both guys and hopefully Wilson can improve in the next few weeks.


Ben Brown (@BenBrownPL on Twitter)

One response to “What We Saw: Week 2”

  1. Voucher Sort says:

    thank you this is great. I just thought I’d let you know there’s a typo in yyour title though?

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