What We Saw: Preseason Week 1

Catch everything you missed from a weekend chock full of football

Eagles @ Ravens

Final Score: Ravens 20, Eagles 19

Writer: Brett Ford (@FadeThatMan on Twitter)


The Baltimore Ravens extended their preseason winning streak to an NFL record 24 games as they held off the visiting Eagles for a 20-19 victory. It likely wouldn’t have been close if the Ravens hadn’t thrown a fourth-quarter pick six, but the Eagles had an opportunity to win the game, going for a two-point conversation after the score. The play call failed allowing the Ravens to hold on for a one-point victory.

There’s just one note that didn’t make it into the write-up below that will likely be fantasy relevant this season: Justin Tucker is still the GOAT.



Philadelphia Eagles




Marcus Mariota: 7/11, 58 Yards | 4 Carries, 29 Yards


Mariota looks like the perfect backup quarterback for this Eagles’ offense. Built for quick-hitting read plays, the once-great dual-threat quarterback should allow Philadelphia to keep most of its playbook intact if Jalen Hurts goes down at any point this season.


  • Showed no fear on a fourth and short read option where he kept and gained the first down
  • He displayed a tendency to target his tight ends and slot receivers as opposed to the outside guys. Greg Ward and Grant Calcaterra saw most of his targets.

Missed Opportunities

  • Overthrew tight end Grant Calcaterra on a middle crossing route that he had to drop over a linebacker, would have been a big gainer into the red zone on the opening drive, but the Eagles settled for a field goal instead.


Tanner McKee: 10/20, 148 Yards | 1 Carry, 7 Yards


He looked solid from his first snap of the game. Tall, imposing pocket quarterback. Somewhat antithetical to what the Eagles have in Hurts and Mariota, so I don’t anticipate him sticking in Philadelphia, but he did put some really solid throws together. He’ll have a really nice film of this game to send out to other teams if he doesn’t end up holding a clipboard on the sidelines at the Linc.


  • Made several really solid throws – looked like a veteran with his pocket presence
  • Accurate and decisive – he led the Eagles’ first touchdown drive in the second quarter

Missed Opportunities

  • McKee completed a long pass down the sideline, hitting his receiver in stride for what would have been a 25-yard gain, but the receiver was whistled for what appeared to be a relatively soft OPI call.
  • Nearly executed a successful two-minute drill at the end of the first half, but on third-and-four his receiver fell down near the top of his route after getting tangled with the DB.
  • Completed a pass to the end zone on 4th-and-2 in the third quarter, scrambling and making a good throw, but his receiver’s feet slid out of bounds as he made the catch.


Ian Book: 1/4, 11 Yards | 5 Carries, 24 Yards


In for the fourth quarter and seemed very hesitant to throw the ball and was mostly inaccurate when he did. He was extremely quick to tuck and run, looking generally uncomfortable in the pocket.


Running Back


Rashaad Penny: 9 Carries, 34 Yards | 1 Target


Philadelphia’s backfield will be difficult to decipher all season, and I don’t think we should jump to conclusions after week one. Penny came in after Swift came off the field (and never returned). In a normal circumstance, this would indicate that Swift is ahead on the depth chart. But this is Philly. We’ll wait and see.


  • Penny looked a baby-step slow on read option plays, as if he hadn’t developed confidence and chemistry with his quarterbacks quite yet. But when he got downhill (like on his 10-yard run to begin the Eagles’ second drive), he looked good.


Trey Sermon: 9 Carries, 21 Yards, TD | 2 Targets, 1 Reception, 9 Yards


Sermon was the clear third back and served as the kick return man as well. He didn’t look confident on the opening kickoff, only returning it to the 15-yard line. He did end up in the end zone, churning his legs through contact for a short-yardage score in the second quarter. Once upon a time there were lofty expectations, and if there’s any backfield which he could progress toward them it’s in Philadelphia.


  • I’m still in pain from two seasons ago.

Missed Opportunities

  • All of 2021


D’Andre Swift: 2 Carries, 24 Yards


Swift handled the first two carries of the game and was quickly sent to the sideline to avoid injury. He looked like the guy we all thought we were getting last season in Detroit, with a sleek jump cut and hard acceleration on a 22-yard gain. Fantasy managers would have liked to see him in the passing game, but it’s preseason week one. We can’t have everything.


  • Swift did run three routes in the passing game, but was never targeted. His lack of involvement on the stat sheet shouldn’t be indicative of anything in the passing game.


Kennedy Brooks: 4 Carries, 15 Yards, 1 Fumble (Lost)


Lost a fumble (and likely any chance at a roster spot).


Wide Receiver/Tight End


Tyrie Cleveland: 10 Targets, 5 Receptions, 68 Yards


Cleveland created solid separation on most of his routes and was targeted heavily as a reward.


  • Cleveland sat on the Denver Broncos practice squad for much of last year but signed with the Eagles in January 2023. A former seventh-round draft pick, Cleveland is long and athletic, and clocked a 4.46 40-yard dash at the 2022 combine.

Missed Opportunities

  • He nearly pulled down a circus-catch on a back shoulder throw in the second quarter for another 15 yard gain. It would have been a highlight reel type play.


Greg Ward: 5 Targets, 5 Receptions, 53 Yards


Ward looked to have a real connection with Mariota as the two linked up several times in the first few drives. If the Eagles target the slot in the regular season as often as they did in this game (or if we ever see Mariota in the regular season), Ward could be worth a spot start.


Jadon Haselwood: 4 Targets, 2 Receptions, 30 Yards


Haselwood made a nice third-quarter catch for 19 yards, beating the cornerback back to the ball on a deep hook route, easily his best play of the game. His other reception came on an extended play to the sideline where he gained 11 yards after the catch, making a player miss with a mean stiff arm.


  • An undrafted free agent out of Arkansas, Haselwood signed with the Eagles in the spring. He has an outside shot at making the team, but would likely need to shine on special teams.


Baltimore Ravens




Josh Johnson: 8/12, 45 Yards, TD


Johnson played the entire first half, potentially indicating that he has edged his way in front of Huntley for the backup quarterback gig.


  • Well-executed back-shoulder throw (first read) to Devin Duvernay for a seven-yard touchdown
  • Did a decent job of extending plays, but very rarely threw after pressure. A lot of tuck and run.


Tyler Huntley: 8/11, 88 Yards, TD | 2 Carries, 13 Yards


As a Ravens fan, I was kind of shocked that Huntley didn’t start this game after serving as the primary backup to Lamar Jackson all of last season. His touchdown pass came on a perfectly executed back-shoulder throw to Tylan Wallace, who made a great catch on a ball that was only catchable by the receiver. He looked to have maybe tweaked his knee on one of his escapes, but remained in the game.


  • First completion was a perfect touch pass over the head of a defender to the tight end on the flank – really nice play.
  • Used his legs to extend the play on multiple occasions, including a solid gain to continue an eventual touchdown drive.


Anthony Brown: 3/8, 7 Yards, INT | 4 Carries, 15 Yards


Brown looks like his best outcome for this preseason is to hang on for a practice squad spot.


Running Back


Justice Hill: 3 Carries, 48 Yards


With J.K. Dobbins on the sideline, Hill received the Ravens’ first three running back touches, toting the ball for 48 yards.


  • Hill escaped a clogged hole on one of the Ravens’ trademark counter runs and cut it back for a 37-yard gain to the outside. He looked really good out of the backfield and could be a factor in the Baltimore RBBC.


Gus Edwards: 4 Carries, 21 Yards | 1 Target, 1 Reception, 7 Yards


Edwards toted the ball four times and was targeted once in the first half two-minute drill. Typically a hard-nosed, power back, Edwards showed some finesse being utilized in passing situations quite a bit.


  • Edwards’ longest carry of the day came on a 3rd-and-long, where he toted a draw patiently for 10 yards.
  • It doesn’t make sense for the Ravens to use Edwards in the passing game when they have Justice Hill and Melvin Gordon currently on the roster, so this is likely just for reps.


Melvin Gordon III: 6 Carries, 16 Yards | 1 Target, 1 Reception, 9 Yards


Gordon received seven touches and had some spurts of good running, but looked a half-step slower than usual on most of his carries. He was stuffed on two of his three red-zone carries but did haul in the only pass he was targeted for.


  • A late signing in Ravens’ camp to make up for the hold-in of J.K. Dobbins, Gordon probably won’t stick on this Baltimore roster long into the regular season. As soon as Dobbins returns (IF Dobbins returns), I expect the Ravens to cut the veteran.

RAVENS RB NOTE: Keaton Mitchell had six carries for 11 yards late in the game. His 35-yard touchdown scamper was nullified by a holding penalty. Overall, the son of Ravens’ Super Bowl Champion Anthony Mitchell looked pretty good in his first taste of NFL action. He’ll likely land on the Baltimore practice squad.


Wide Receiver/Tight End


Zay Flowers: One carry, one yard


So Flowers TECHNICALLY wasn’t targeted, but he was heavily involved in the Ravens’ offense in the first quarter. Both times that the quarterback threw in Flowers’ direction, he drew a penalty on the defender, nullifying the target. His speed is generating problems for corners, and he could present a significant matchup problem. If he stays healthy, he could definitely see a significant role in this offense. And Lamar calls him “Joystick,” which is an awesome nickname.


Tylan Wallace: 2 Targets, 2 Receptions, 18 Yards, TD


A pair of grabs, including a filthy back-shoulder touchdown catch, Wallace likely put himself in the catbird seat for the sixth and final wide receiver position on the roster.




  • Wallace is among a litany of Ravens wideouts competing for the final spot on the roster behind Odell Beckham, Jr., Nelson Agholor, Zay Flowers, Rashod Bateman and Devin Duvernay.
  • A third-year wide receiver, Wallace is one of only two receivers selected by the Ravens in the draft competing for the final wide receiver spot (James Proche).


Sean Ryan: 7 Targets, 4 Receptions, 37 Yards


The undrafted rookie free agent showed good hands, awareness and chemistry with Tyler Huntley in the second half.


  • Ran mostly short routes underneath, shallow crossers, etc. but was fearless, catching the ball with his back to the defense and gaining yards after the catch
  • Could he be this year’s Khalil Shakir? Well, maybe. But probably not in Baltimore. The Ravens went out and signed a bunch of veteran guys and used their top draft pick to acquire Flowers. There’s likely no room for Ryan, but he’s got tools and put them on display in an NFL uniform on Saturday night.

Missed Opportunities

  • Earned a 14-yard gain on an underneath catch in the fourth quarter, but was called back for a penalty on the offensive line


Travis Vokolek: 2 Targets, 2 Receptions, 30 Yards


Rookie tight end Travis Vokolek made a pair of receptions, including one stellar grab on a TE wheel route that Huntley feathered over a mid-level defender. He didn’t miss any egregious blocking assignments and overall looked serviceable, albeit slow.


Charlie Kolar: 2 Targets, 2 Receptions, 14 Yards


So the Ravens used a fourth-round draft pick on Kolar last season and have only seen one or two flashes of the big tight end’s skill set so far. He was targeted near the sideline twice during Johnson’s two-minute drill, catching both but staying in bounds and fumbling one (nearly losing it). On his second catch, he wisely got out of bounds almost immediately, remedying his prior mistake.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.