Sat Aug 24 10:56pm ET
By DAVE SKRETTA
AP Sports Writer
Players: Robbie Gould, Travis Kelce, Blake Bell, Jimmy Garoppolo, Jerick McKinnon, Gehrig Dieter, Damien Williams, C.J. Beathard, George Kittle, Trent Taylor, Nick Mullens, Matt Breida, Jeff Wilson, Patrick Mahomes, Byron Pringle
San Francisco 49ers fullback Kyle Juszczyk (44) is tackled by Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Damien Wilson (54) and cornerback Herb Miller, bottom, during the first half of an NFL preseason football game in Kansas City, Mo., Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019. (AP Photo/Ed Zurga)
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) dives to avoid a tackle by San Francisco 49ers cornerback Jimmie Ward (20) during the first half of an NFL preseason football game in Kansas City, Mo., Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) scrambles away from San Francisco 49ers defensive lineman Damontre Moore (92) and defensive end Solomon Thomas (94) during the first half of an NFL preseason football game in Kansas City, Mo., Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
San Francisco 49ers running back Matt Breida (22) scores a touchdown against Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Juan Thornhill, left, during the first half of an NFL preseason football game in Kansas City, Mo., Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (10) throws a pass behind offensive guard Mike Person (68) during the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the Kansas City Chiefs in Kansas City, Mo., Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) San Francisco quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo was impressive in his return to Arrowhead Stadium, and Chiefs counterpart Patrick Mahomes may have been even better, as the 49ers beat Kansas City 27-17 in their third preseason game Saturday night.
Garoppolo was 14 of 20 for 188 yards while playing the entire first half in a much better showing than his preseason debut against Denver last week. Garoppolo led the 49ers deep into Kansas City territory four times, throwing a nice TD pass to Matt Breida and getting two field goals from Robbie Gould.
It was an encouraging night for Garoppolo on another front: He was able to put to rest any lingering memories from last season, when he tore up his knee during a Week 3 game in Kansas City.
Mahomes finished 8 of 10 for 126 yards, highlighted by a 62-yard catch-and-run to Damien Williams in which the Chiefs' injury-prone running back raced right by the woebegone linebacker covering him.
Mahomes was so sharp in what was likely his final tuneup before the regular season that the league MVP even completed his first incompletion - it was just caught out of bounds. His only other misfire was a drop by backup tight end Blake Bell before coach Andy Reid gave Mahomes a visor to wear.
Garoppolo kept his helmet on, leading a two-minute drill that gave the 49ers a go-ahead field goal.
The 49ers clung to that 13-10 halftime advantage until Chiefs backup quarterback Kyle Shurmur led a 13-play, 97-yard drive that took up most of the third quarter. Byron Pringle capped it with a short TD run as the second-year pro tries to make the Chiefs as an extra wide receiver.
The 49ers answered with a 12-play drive. Nick Mullens, who is battling C.J. Beathard for their backup quarterback job, led the way and Jeff Wilson Jr. finished it with a TD run.
Wilson put the game away with another touchdown run with 3:41 to go.
STAR TIGHT ENDS ARE QUIET
The 49ers' George Kittle broke Travis Kelce's season yardage record for tight ends within hours of him setting it during Week 17 last season. But neither dented the stat sheet Saturday night. Kittle didn't play with a bothersome calf while Kelce did not have a catch for Kansas City.
Along with Kittle, the 49ers rested: CBs Jason Verrett (ankle), K'Waun Williams (knee) and Tim Harris; FS Adrian Colbert (hamstring); RB Jerick McKinnon (knee); DLs Dee Ford (knee), Nick Bosa (ankle) and Jullian Taylor (back); and WR Trent Taylor (foot).
The Chiefs sat SS Tyrann Mathieu (shoulder, CB Michael Hunter (groin) and WR Gehrig Dieter (back).
Chiefs LB Darron Lee left with a chest injury. ... CB Bashaud Breeland hurt his left shoulder while making a tackle along the sideline in the first half, though he eventually returned to the game.
RAIN, RAIN, GO AWAY
The Chiefs' game last week in Pittsburgh was delayed about an hour by lightning. Rain fell off and on Saturday night, too, though the game continued without any delays.
49ers: Wrap their preseason against the Chargers on Thursday night.
Chiefs: Visit Green Bay for their preseason finale Thursday night.
Five Sleepers: Week 3
Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen has been fantastic through the first two weeks of the regular season. In Week 2, Allen threw for 415 passing yards with four touchdowns in the victory over the Miami Dolphins. However, he'll face a tougher battle against the Los Angeles Rams this week. The tough Rams secondary held quarterback Carson Wentz to zero touchdowns. Allen has looked good this season, so we'll give him the benefit of the doubt. He should be treated as a low-end QB1 for this matchup.
Buffalo Bills running back Devin Singletary has been fairly average through the first two games of the regular season. He rushed 10 times for 56 yards in the victory over the Miami Dolphins in Week 2. He continues to split up the carries with rookie Zack Moss, which hurts his value. However, he'll get a favorable matchup against the Los Angeles Rams this week. The same Rams Defense that allowed Miles Sanders to nearly rush for 100 yards last game. Although, Singletary is likely only going to see around 10 carries, so he should be treated as a high-end RB3.
Buffalo Bills wide receiver Stefon Diggs gets a tough test in Week 3 against the Rams. Diggs will be going up against star cornerback Jalen Ramsey, who has traditionally limited most top receivers in his career. Diggs ranks in the top-five in targets and is tied for first in the league with 239 receiving yards, so he's certainly talented enough to win this matchup. However, the Rams have been a classic funnel defense in the first two games of the season, so expect Buffalo to have more success with the run than the pass. It's possible Diggs connects on a long shot with Josh Allen, though it's best to view him as more of a WR2 than the WR1 he's been through the first two weeks.
Buffalo Bills running back Devin Singletary will operate as the team's lead back in Week 3 with rookie Zack Moss (toe) declared out for the contest against the Rams. That should open up at least 15 touches for Singletary against a Rams Defense that ranks 27th in rush DVOA. It's a great opportunity for the second-year pro and it vaults him from flex-status up to the RB2 conversation. Singletary is a must-start at this point in redraft leagues and should also be considered a good option in DFS formats.
Los Angeles Chargers edge rusher Melvin Ingram (knee) was placed on the injured reserve on Saturday. The team will be without the services of Ingram- who has recorded at least seven sacks in each of the last five seasons- for the next three contests. It's certainly a downgrade for the Chargers' defensive unit as a whole, considering Ingram is one of their best pass-rushers. They could still be started in Week 3 against Carolina, though matchups against the Buccaneers and Saints, already shaky with Ingram, become matchups to avoid without him.
Las Vegas Raiders running back Josh Jacobs (hip) is listed as questionable for Week 3 against the Patriots. Tight end Darren Waller (knee) is also questionable. Both players were able to get limited practice sessions in on Friday after not being available earlier in the week and should be able to suit up Sunday. At first glance, it seems like a tough matchup for Jacobs, though New England ranks just 20th in rush DVOA. It's always a nerve-wracking experience starting a player against a Bill Belichick-defense, though Jacobs is currently seeing a ton of volume in this offense. If he's playing, you're starting him.
Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Sammy Watkins (concussion, neck) is questionable for Week 3 against the Ravens while running back Darrel Williams (ankle) will suit up. Watkins was able to practice in full on Saturday after getting in a limited session on Friday, so he's heading in the right direction. The veteran receiver is a risky start against Baltimore's tough secondary, considering he registered just one catch in Week 2 after posting a 7-82-1 line in Week 1. Williams will likely take a backseat to rookie Clyde Edwards-Helaire and won't have much fantasy value in Week 3.
Dallas Cowboys cornerback Chidobe Awuzie (hamstring) has been placed on the injured reserve by the team on Saturday. This means he'll miss the Cowboys' next three contests, which includes a big matchup against the Seahawks in Week 3. Rookie corner Trevon Diggs is also banged up with a shoulder injury, so this secondary is now far from healthy. It's bad news for Dallas because they'll be tasked with slowing down a red-hot Russell Wilson on Sunday. It's a safe bet to expect a lot of points to be scored in this game. Nearly every skill-position player should be started in this contest.
Detroit Lions cornerback Desmond Trufant (hamstring) has been ruled out for Sunday's game against the Arizona Cardinals. Trufant was able to get in a couple limited sessions after not participating in Wednesday's practice, though it appears he is not quite ready yet. It's a blow to a Lions' pass defense that has surrendered five passing touchdowns in two games. Cardinals wideout DeAndre Hopkins will now likely go toe-to-toe with rookie cornerback Jeff Okudah, which is a boost to Hopkins' already elite fantasy value this week.
Atlanta Falcons cornerback A.J. Terrell (illness) was placed on the COVID list on Saturday. The number-16 overall pick from the 2020 draft is the NFL's first positive case of the season, as the results came back from a Friday morning test. As of right now, the Falcons have no other positive tests, though this is obviously something to monitor up until kickoff on Sunday. The rest of the team was tested again Saturday morning and those results will come back Sunday morning. From a football perspective, this hurts an already-struggling Falcons' defense that has allowed the fourth-most passing yards in the NFL heading into Week 3.
Dallas Cowboys left tackle Tyron Smith (neck) isn't expected to play against the Seahawks in Week 3. Ordinarily, replacing a tackle of Smith's caliber with someone else would be an issue for any offense, but the Seahawks rank in the middle of the league this year in pressure percentage and the Cowboys passing and rushing offense should still be in fine shape in a game that many expect to be a shootout. Don't think Smith's absence means you need to downgrade Dak Prescott, Ezekiel Elliott, or any of the team's other options.
Free-agent CB Morris Claiborne (Chiefs) is not actively looking for work but is remaining in shape in case the ideal circumstance to return presents itself.
Indianapolis Colts tight end Jack Doyle (ankle/knee) is set to return on Sunday against the New York Jets. Quarterback Philip Rivers looked to tight end Mo Alie-Cox often in last week's game and with Doyle sliding into the lineup, Rivers should continue to target the tight end position. Doyle might not see the same snap rate we're used to from the reliable veteran, but he's a definite streaming option for fantasy managers who are looking for additional help at a shallow position.
The San Francisco 49ers are promoting running back JaMycal Hasty to the active roster for Sunday's game against the New York Giants. With injuries to their top two running backs, the Niners weren't going to go into Week 3 with only Jerick McKinnon and Jeff Wilson Jr. on the roster. McKinnon and Wilson should see almost all of the work, so don't get too excited about Hasty this week, who'll likely see just a handful of touches at best and shouldn't be on anyone's fantasy radar...yet.
The Carolina Panthers have promoted running back Reggie Bonnafon to the active roster ahead of Sunday's game against the Los Angeles Chargers. With Christian McCaffrey on the injured reserve, making this move seems like an obvious choice. Many expected Bonnafon to be the primary backup to McCaffrey this season, but he was passed by both Mike Davis and Trenton Cannon on the depth chart and wound up on the Carolina practice squad. Don't expect more than a handful of touches at most for Bonnafon, whose addition shouldn't impact Mike Davis's workload.
Philadelphia Eagles DT Fletcher Cox (oblique) is considered a game-time decision for Week 3's game against the Cincinnati Bengals, according to head coach Doug Pederson. He practiced on a limited basis Friday, Sept. 25, after missing the team's first two practice sessions of the week, and is officially listed as questionable on the injury report.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back LeSean McCoy was targeted seven times in Week 2, which is just enough times to make him semi-interesting as a rosterable option in deep leagues. His complete lack of involvement in the run game and 18 percent snap rate show just how risky of an option he is, though, and he should be barely on the fantasy radar in Week 3 against the Broncos. Maybe in a 16-team league, you throw the dart at him and hope the targets continue, but otherwise steer clear of the veteran rusher.
Miami Dolphins wide receiver Preston Williams was unable to make much of an impact during the Thursday night victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars. He hauled in both of his two targets for seven yards and one touchdown. It was a disappointing game for Williams, but quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick only had 20 passing attempts on the night. It has been a slow start to the season for Williams, but things should pick up next week. He'll get a favorable matchup against the Seattle Seahawks who have one of the worst pass defenses in the league.
Miami Dolphins tight end Mike Gesicki was able to score a touchdown for the second time in two weeks during the Thursday night victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars. Gesicki hauled in one of three targets for 15 yards and one touchdown. Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick only had 20 passing attempts in this one, so it was a bit of an odd game. Regardless, Gesicki carries TE1 value into a favorable matchup versus the Seattle Seahawks shaky pass defense in Week 4.
If you thought the Texans and their revamped wide receiver core would feature some wide-open, four-receiver sets this season, you were wrong. Houston hasn't run a single play this season with four receivers and has run just one play without a tight end. This is one of the reasons to stay away from the team's No. 4 receiver, Kenny Stills, in Week 3. Still a talented wideout, Stills is on the field less than half of the time and has just two catches for 16 yards this season. Unless there are injuries ahead of him, Stills is a fantasy afterthought right now.