What We Saw: Week 6

Jaylen Waddle feasted and Jonathan Taylor beasted

Cardinals @ Browns

Final Score: Cardinals 37, Browns 14

Writer: Ryan Radel (@RadelFF on Twitter)

 

Another week, another win for the Cardinals, and another massive game given up by the Browns defense. Two former Sooner Heisman winners meet in what was expected to be an action-packed, high-scoring affair. It certainly delivered. Even without some key coaches, including head coach Kliff Kingsbury, due to Covid protocols, Kyler Murray played a nearly flawless game, distributing the ball to his playmakers just as the running game was cooking. The result was an early lead for the Cardinals and they never looked back. After a few more failed fourth-down conversion attempts, a prayer was answered for Baker Mayfield to end the first half. In the end, it simply wasn’t enough to overcome the early deficit. There were a few rough injuries in this game, most of which impacted the Browns. Kareem Hunt had to be carted off in the fourth quarter after what looked like a non-contact injury which is never a good sign.

 

Arizona Cardinals

 

Quarterback

 

Kyler Murray: 20/30, 229 yards, 4 TD, 2 Sacks | 7 carries, 6 yards

Colt McCoy: 3 carries, -3 yards

 

Even against one of the roughest pass-rushes in the league, Kyler Murray looked totally unaffected by the noise both in the pocket and from the Browns fans in First Energy Stadium as he put on a clinic. The Cardinals really didn’t need to throw by the half, so Kyler’s stats could’ve been even more impressive if the Browns managed to keep the game closer for longer. When there was a threat in the pocket, Kyler danced away from the pressure to extend the play and typically hit a downfield dart against what was some pretty bad coverage from Cleveland all game. This is just one of the absolute dimes Kyler put in the perfect window, on the run. This time to Christian Kirk:

 

 

Running Back

 

James Conner: 16 carries, 71 yards | 1 target, 1 reception

Chase Edmonds: 4 carries, 46 yards | 4 targets, 3 receptions, 4 yards

Jonathan Ward: 3 carries, 14 yards

 

Outside of a big 40-yard run early in the game from Chase Edmonds, the run game from the Cardinals was silent but deadly. James Conner got the majority of the carries and was running with power between the tackles all game. 4.4 YPC on 16 carries without a score doesn’t jump off of the stat sheet, but Conner was integral to several first downs throughout the game. You’d like to see a score out of one of these guys for fantasy purposes, but it was still a good sign to see the team average nearly four yards per carry on the day.

 

Wide Receiver/Tight End

 

A.J. Green: 6 targets, 5 receptions, 79 yards, TD

Christian Kirk: 8 targets, 5 receptions, 75 yards, TD

DeAndre Hopkins: 4 targets, 3 receptions, 55 yards, 2 TD

Rondale Moore: 4 targets, 3 receptions, 4 yards | 3 carries, 10 yards

 

Kyler did a fantastic job of spreading the ball around today, with four players having four targets or more. Rondale Moore even had a few run plays out of the backfield designed just for him. It’s great to see the playcallers whip up some plays specifically for the rookie playmaker out of Purdue. Christian Kirk and AJ Green both had nifty touchdown grabs to go with along with the targets, receptions, and yardage you would want to see if you started them on your fantasy team this week. In the end, DeAndre Hopkins had himself a day even with limited targets, securing two scores – one of which had some very fancy footwork after the catch:

 

 

Cleveland Browns

Quarterback

 

Baker Mayfield: 19/28, 234 yards, 2 TD, INT, 5 Sacks, 2 Fumbles

Case Keenum: 1/3, 6 yards

 

This game looks way better on paper than it actually was for Baker Mayfield. You can tell he is missing his starting offensive tackles. Pass protection was hard to come by and Baker paid the price for it today. The passing lanes just weren’t there. The Cardinals pass rush racked up five sacks, two of which resulted in fumbles that the Cardinals recovered. There was also a nasty injury scare where Baker went down hard on his already-injured left shoulder. After a few minutes in the tent, he somehow returned and looked like nothing happened. JJ Watt spent a lot of time in the backfield against the rookie right tackle of the Browns. Heading into a game missing your starting running back, starting wide receivers, and two of your best pass blockers is never a good situation to find yourself in. Without this rocket of a Hail Mary to end the first half, it’s a pretty ugly game overall for Baker and the Browns.

 

 

Running Back

 

Kareem Hunt: 14 carries, 66 yards | 3 targets, 3 receptions, 12 yards

D’Ernest Johnson: 1 carry, 2 yards | 1 target, 1 reception, 7 yards

Demetric Felton: 2 targets, 2 receptions, 14 yards

Johnny Stanton: 1 target, 1 reception, 6 yards

 

I’m going to get the bad news out of the way first. Kareem Hunt went down with what looks like a significant calf injury. We will know more after the MRI, but when a player is crying as they are being carted to the locker room, it’s usually a bad thing. The violent running I have referenced the last few weeks might have caught up to Kareem this week. He looked great when he was on the field and was involved throughout the entire game, but I don’t think we are going to see him in the box score for a little bit. Get well soon, Kareem! There was not a lot of time left in the game when Kareem went down, but the “next man up” would’ve been D’Ernest Johnson. Nick Chubb was out for the game but should be back next week, so I wouldn’t look too far into Johnson just yet.

 

Per Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski, the injury to Kareem Hunt is confirmed to be a calf injury and not an Achilles. He will miss time but the guaranteed time he would’ve missed due to an Achilles has been potentially avoided.

 

Wide Receiver/Tight End

 

Donovan Peoples-Jones: 5 targets, 4 receptions, 101 yards, 2 TD

Odell Beckham Jr.: 8 targets, 5 receptions, 79 yards

Anthony Schwartz: 3 targets, 2 receptions, 11 yards

David Njoku: 2 targets, 1 reception, 6 yards

Austin Hooper: 3 targets, 1 reception, 4 yards

Rashard Higgins: 3 targets

 

Odell Beckham Jr made a few splash plays on the day, even after briefly leaving due to injury early in the game. You’d like to see more out of eight targets, especially considering one of those targets was another fourth-down drop. He’s looking better but he still doesn’t look like the difference maker he once was. David Njoku was quiet after his massive game last week, and had a bad drop to his name as well. But the good news – it finally happened! The Donovan Peoples-Jones breakout game I have been expecting as referenced in my 2021 draft guide. One of the scores might’ve been a Hail Mary, but it still counts. His other score was just mean:

 

 

 

— Ryan Radel (@RadelFF on Twitter) 

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