Guest of the League
ANEZ LEAGUE Est. 2017
NFL Playoffs League - FFL: Week 1 | NFL: Week 2

Preseason News and Notes: Week 1

Tue Aug 13 1:47pm ET
By JEFF PAUR
Sr Fantasy Writer

Daniel Jones has great debut


Fantasy football season is quickly approaching. We have already had our first week of preseason action. Each week we will give a recap of the preseason games, giving you a look at some of the most important fantasy notes coming from the action. So without further ado, here is our look at this past week. . . . . . 

The big news from camp this week is all the drama surround Raiders receiver Antonio Brown. He is still dealing with his nasty foot injury and is yet to return to practice. But the other news is Brown is bent out of shape over not being able to use his old helmet. He actually threatened retirement over the issue, but has since recanted after losing his appeal. Either way, you have to worry about all the craziness surrounding Brown. Is he worth a high draft pick? He could end up being a boom or bust pick for fantasy teams. 

Giants quarterback Daniel Jones had a great debut in New York, causing quite the buzz. He was a perfect 5-of-5 for 67 yards and a touchdown. Jones showed why the Giants used a first-round pick on him, hoping to have found their quarterback of the future. Sure, this was just one preseason game, but it was an encouraging performance from a pick that was really questioned on draft day. Jones could be moving closer to unseating Eli Manning as the starter. 

The Browns got great results from their first-team offense, seeing Baker Mayfield easily move the team down the field. Mayfield was 5-of-6 for 77 yards and a touchdown. He looked great and ready to take the big step forward many hope he will this season. Mayfield is getting a lot of fantasy love in early drafts and this showing could boost his stock even more. Mayfield looks ready to explode.  

It is looking more and more like a true timeshare in Denver this year. Second-year back Royce Freeman has looked very good camp and carried that over to his first preseason game, rushing three times for 49 yards. Phillip Lindsay had a breakout rookie year but don’t discount Freeman to get a lot of work this season. He is ready to take a big step forward in year two, splitting work with Lindsay at the running back spot. 

Rookie running back Devin Singletary had nine carries for 27 yards and three receptions for 21 yards in his first preseason action. The Bills are getting the rookie back a lot of early looks in the running and passing game. He has a chance to play a big role this season, especially if the veteran backs ahead of him show any signs of slowing down. It would not be a surprise to see Singletary starting at some point this season for the Bills. 

There are reports in Steelers camp that receiver James Washington is falling behind Donte Moncrief in the race for the starter’s job in Pittsburgh. Washington had a great showing in the first preseason game, though, catching four passes for 84 yards and a touchdown. We would not count Washington out to start just yet. He is the younger option of the two with more longterm potential. Keep him on your radar the rest of camp and preseason action. This is a position battle to watch for fantasy teams. 

The rookie receiver that is supposed to be the difference maker for the Seahawks this year is D.K. Metcalf. But for now, undrafted rookie Jazz Ferguson is the rookie making waves for Seattle. He had four receptions for 54 yards and a touchdown in the preseason opener. Ferguson is a huge target with plus speed. He has a chance to not only make the roster but be the most productive rookie receiver for the Seahawks if he keeps progressing. 

Another undrafted rookie receiver that is playing well is Patriots receiver Jakobi Meyers. He is actually outplaying N’Keal Harry at the moment, performing better than the first-round pick in camp and preseason action. Meyers was the top receiver for the Patriots in their first game, catching six passes for 69 yards and two touchdowns. You never know with Patriots receivers but Meyers could be playing his way into a role with the Patriots this season. Put him on your radar for a late-round pick.

Don’t forget about Eagles tight end Dallas Goedert come draft day. He might be No. 2 on the depth chart but he is going to get his chances and if Zach Ertz were to get hurt, Goedert’s fantasy value would skyrocket. He had three receptions for 50 yards in the Eagles first preseason game. Goedert just makes plays. He has value as a backup tight end for fantasy teams.  

Jeff Paur is a two-time finalist for FSWA Fantasy Football Writer of the Year and won the FSWA award for Best Fantasy Football Article on the Web in 2011. He also was the most accurate expert in 2012, winning the FSTA Fantasy Football Accuracy Award. If you have any questions for Jeff, email him at jeff@rtsports.com. Follow Jeff on Twitter @jeffpaur.

Player Notes
Joe Mixon Sep 18 12:30pm ET

Cincinnati Bengals running back Joe Mixon ran for 46 yards off of 16 carries during the loss to the Browns. He also added four catches for 40 yards. Mixon trended in the wrong direction on the ground after posting 69 yards against the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 1. However, he did make his PPR fantasy managers a little more comfortable by providing an uptick in receptions and receiving yards. Nonetheless, opposing defenses may start paying additional attention to rookie signal-caller Joe Burrow after his three-touchdown performance on Thursday night. As a result, the door may open a little wider for the former Sooner to get some extra breathing room moving ahead, so fantasy managers should continue to give him a few more chances to turn things around before even considering benching him.

From RotoBaller

C.J. Uzomah Sep 18 12:30pm ET

The Cincinnati Bengals fear that tight end C.J. Uzomah (Achilles) suffered a torn Achilles during the Thursday night loss to the Browns, according to a source. Uzomah had been one of rookie quarterback Joe Burrow's most effective targets in the early going through two weeks, but he was carted off the field on Thursday night. He'll undergo an MRI exam on Friday. The 27-year-old has eight catches on 11 targets for 87 yards and a touchdown through two games, but this had the looks of a season-ending injury. In a best-case scenario, Uzomah will probably be out for multiple weeks, which would make Drew Sample the team's top pass-catching tight end. If that's the case, Sample would merely be a low-end TE2 for fantasy gamers.

From RotoBaller

Jamison Crowder Sep 18 11:40am ET

New York Jets wide receiver Jamison Crowder (hamstring) will miss his team's Week 2 contest against the San Francisco 49ers. This leaves the Jets really shallow at receiver, with Breshad Perriman taking on the role as the team's No. 1 option this week. Perriman becomes an intriguing flex play, though the 49ers Defense is really good and the Jets passing attack as the ability to be really inconsistent. We might also see more of Braxton Berrios, but he's not really a fantasy option outside of being a cheap punt play in DFS contests.

From RotoBaller

Michael Thomas Sep 18 11:00am ET

New Orleans Saints wide receiver Michael Thomas (ankle) "felt fantastic" at practice on Thursday and there is a "little glimmer of hope" that he can play on Monday night against the Raiders, according to a source. It's still unlikely that Thomas plays with his high ankle sprain, but the Saints were pleased with Thomas' progress even though he didn't actually practice. With the Saints playing on Monday this week, you almost have no choice but to bench the All-Pro wideout this week. The 27-year-old is making good progress, though, so there's an outside chance he could be back for Week 3. With Thomas likely out, Emmanuel Sanders and Jared Cook should be quarterback Drew Brees' go-to targets through the air against Las Vegas.

From RotoBaller

Joe Burrow Sep 18 10:20am ET

Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow had a terrific showing against the Browns in his Thursday night debut. The rookie threw for three touchdown tosses and 316 yards on 37-for-61 passing. He also had seven attempts for 19 yards. While the first-year signal-caller had issues with ball security by fumbling twice, the Bengals' coaching staff and front office personnel were likely ecstatic with Burrow's overall performance in this one. The former Heisman trophy winner has now racked up four total scores on the year in addition to demonstrating maturity and game management well beyond his years. Fantasy managers in all formats, especially those in need of a quarterback, should take notice, as he likely has some more positive outings in the works throughout the rest of the 2020 campaign.

From RotoBaller

Joshua Kelley Sep 18 9:30am ET

Los Angeles Chargers No. 2 running back Joshua Kelley is coming off of a nice Week 1 performance and will look to solidify himself as part of the backfield in Week 2 versus the Kansas City Chiefs. Although starting running back Austin Ekeler led the team with 67% of the snaps, Kelley chipped in with 24% and made the most of the opportunity presented to him. The rookie rushed 12 times for 60 yards and a touchdown in his Week 1 matchup versus the Bengals. Kelley has been making a strong impression on the coaching staff since training camp and has leap frogged Justin Jackson for the number two spot behind Austin Ekeler. Jackson did have 11 snaps, but that could decrease with the way Kelley is running. Kelley is shaping up to be one of the better insurance policies for managers and should be considered in leagues of 10-12 managers. He also makes for a cheaper option in DFS leagues for the time being.

From RotoBaller

Keenan Allen Sep 18 9:30am ET

Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Keenan Allen had a rough opening week against the Bengals and will look to get back on track versus the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 2. Allen was only able to muster four catches for 37 yards on eight targets in Week 1 with his new quarterback Tyrod Taylor. Allen is coming off of a 104-catch season and has consistently been one of the better options at his position. The loss of quarterback Philip Rivers to the Colts is expected to impact Allen, but he should still be able to put up strong numbers with Taylor behind center. The Chiefs are an 8.5-point favorite versus their division foe and thats a good sign that the Chargers could be behind and more likely to pass the ball. Allen also will be going up against a young Chiefs secondary and that could play to his advantage. He should be considered a WR2 heading into Sunday.

From RotoBaller

Mike Williams Sep 18 9:30am ET

Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Mike Williams will look to build off of a solid Week 1 performance with a matchup against the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday. Williams was dealing with a shoulder injury last week, but was still able to grab four catches for 69 yards on nine targets. The most important part of that line is that quarterback Tyrod Taylor was looking for his big target a bunch. Taylor isnt the most accurate quarterback, but Williams has shown flashes of being able to make spectacular catches in his young career. With the Chargers likely to be playing behind on Sunday, they may have no choice but to pass and Williams could be a part of that attack. Williams will be going up against a young secondary and could be considered a for the flex position in deeper leagues.

From RotoBaller

Hunter Henry Sep 18 9:30am ET

Los Angeles Chargers tight end Hunter Henry will look to build off his Week 1 performance with a date against the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday. The injury prone tight end put together a team-high 73 yards with five catches and saw eight targets in Week 1 versus the Bengals. Henry was a favorite of new quarterback Tyrod Taylor and is likely to continue to see a decent share of targets in Week 2 as the Chargers could potentially be battling an uphill fight. Henry has shown the ability to be a top-10 tight end when he is healthy and should be rostered in all formats. He will compete with Austin Ekeler, Keenan Allen and Mike Williams for touches this season and already looks like a favorite of Taylor in the offense.

From RotoBaller

Cleveland Browns Sep 18 12:20am ET

The Cleveland Browns Defense picked up three sacks in a 35-30 win over the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 2. Cleveland also recovered a Joe Burrow fumble near the Cincinnati goal line in the game, which wasn't as close as the final score indicates. Myles Garrett led the way as he was the one who forced the Burrow fumble on a sack in the third quarter. The Browns offense cashed in on that turnover two plays later on a Nick Chubb one-yard touchdown run. Cleveland's defense has another plus matchup in Week 3 against the Washington Football Team.

From RotoBaller

Odell Beckham Jr. Sep 18 12:10am ET

Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. caught four of his six targets for 74 yards and a touchdown in a 35-30 win over the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 2. Beckham and Baker Mayfield connected for a pretty 43-yard touchdown in the second quarter to give Cleveland their second TD of the evening. That went in the books as Beckham's first score of the 2020 season. The star receiver has now drawn 16 targets through the first two games of the season, totalling seven catches for 96 yards. He will be a solid WR2 in Week 3 when he faces the Washington Football Team.

From RotoBaller

Michael Pittman Jr. Sep 18 12:10am ET

Indianapolis Colts rookie wide receiver Michael Pittman Jr. (toe) was a limited practice participant on Thursday after not showing up on the injury report on Wednesday. Pittman should be good to go on Sunday against the Vikings as long as he doesn't have any setbacks. The talented big-bodied receiver played fewer snaps than Zach Pascal in the season opener, finishing with two catches for only 10 yards in his NFL debut. Even if tight end Jack Doyle (ankle, knee) doesn't play, Pittman is too far down the pecking order in Indy's passing game to be considered a viable fantasy starter in most leagues.

From RotoBaller

Jarvis Landry Sep 18 12:10am ET

Cleveland Browns wide receiver Jarvis Landry caught three of his four targets for 46 yards in a 35-30 win over the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 2. It was a quiet game for Landry, who can normally be counted upon to see more than four targets in most games. That being said, the Cleveland offense under new head coach Kevin Stefanski wants to be run-heavy, which will cut into Landry's looks. Landry has caught eight of 10 targets for 107 scoreless yards through the first two games of the season. He will take on the Washington Football Team in Week 3.

From RotoBaller

Duke Johnson Sep 18 12:10am ET

Houston Texans running back Duke Johnson (ankle) practiced on a limited basis on Thursday for the second straight day. Johnson was listed as week-to-week after suffering an ankle injury last Thursday in the season opener, but it looks as though he's made some quick progress. However, even if the 27-year-old winds up playing against a nasty Ravens Defense this week, he'll be a desperation flex play in PPR leagues. Buddy Howell is set to be the primary backup to David Johnson if Duke Johnson has to sit this one out.

From RotoBaller

Austin Hooper Sep 18 12:10am ET

Cleveland Browns tight end Austin Hooper caught two of four targets for 21 scoreless yards in a 35-30 win over the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 2. It was another quiet game for Hooper, who only caught two passes for 15 yards in the season opener against the Baltimore Ravens. There was some hope he would have more chances in Week 2 after David Njoku was placed on injured reserve earlier in the week. It didn't help that the Browns only attempted 23 passes in a game that wasn't as close as the final score indicates. With just four catches for 36 yards through two games, Hooper is slipping into low-end TE2 territory in fantasy. He will look to rebound in Week 3 against the Washington Football Team.

From RotoBaller

Nick Chubb Sep 18 12:00am ET

Cleveland Browns running back Nick Chubb carried the ball 22 times for 125 yards and two touchdowns in a 35-30 win over the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 2. Chubb also tacked on a nine-yard reception on the way to Cleveland's first win of the season. It was an excellent performance for Chubb, who had a quiet game in the season opener against the Baltimore Ravens. He capped off Cleveland's first drive with an 11-yard TD run and then scored on a one-yard plunge in the third. Chubb now has 185 rushing yards and two touchdowns after the first two weeks of the season. He will be a strong play in Week 3 against the Washington Football Team.

From RotoBaller

Kareem Hunt Sep 18 12:00am ET

Cleveland Browns running back Kareem Hunt had a big day in a 35-30 win over the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 2. Hunt carried the ball 10 times for 86 yards and a score while adding two catches for 15 yards and another TD in the winning effort. Hunt got wide open behind the closest defender on his touchdown reception, an easy six-yard grab near the right pylon toward the end of the second quarter. He later tacked on what would be Cleveland's final score on a one-yard run in the fourth quarter. The veteran running back has been busy over Cleveland's first two games, racking up 23 rushes and six receptions. The new Cleveland coaching staff seems more inclined to use Hunt than the previous regime did in 2019, which bodes well for his fantasy value going forward. Hunt will be a solid option in Week 3 against the Washington Football Team.

From RotoBaller

Jack Doyle Sep 18 12:00am ET

Indianapolis Colts tight end Jack Doyle (ankle, knee) missed his second straight day of practice on Thursday. The Pro Bowl tight end is now in serious doubt to play in Week 2 against the Vikings. With Trey Burton already on the shelf with an injury, Mo Alie-Cox would be forced into a starting role if Doyle can't suit up this weekend. Doyle played 54 offensive snaps in the Week 1 loss to the Jaguars and was targeted four times, finishing with three catches for 49 yards. For now, consider Doyle a very shaky TE2 this weekend. He'll need to get in at least a limited practice on Friday to have a shot at playing. Receivers T.Y. Hilton, Parris Campbell and rookie Michael Pittman Jr. could see more targets if Doyle is inactive.

From RotoBaller

Diontae Johnson Sep 17 11:50pm ET

Pittsburgh Steelers running back James Conner (ankle) and wide receivers JuJu Smith-Schuster (knee) and Diontae Johnson (toe) all returned to practice on Thursday. Conner, who was an injury disappointment in 2019, was injured in the season opener and gave way to an efficient Benny Snell Jr. If Conner can avoid setbacks on Friday, he should be ready to go for Week 2 against the Broncos, although it's fair to wonder how much time he'll split with Snell. Snell will be the more attractive RB3/flex for fantasy managers until the Steelers show that they're willing to go back to Conner as the featured back. Smith-Schuster and Johnson should both be fine and could both feast against a young and inexperienced Denver secondary. Smith-Schuster had two touchdowns in Week 1 and is a must-start WR1. Johnson is more of a WR3/flex with upside now that Ben Roethlisberger is back and healthy.

From RotoBaller

Baker Mayfield Sep 17 11:50pm ET

Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield completed 16 of 23 passes for 218 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception in a 35-30 win over the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 2. Mayfield was effective in the win, finding Odell Beckham Jr. for a 43-yard score in the second quarter and a wide-open Kareem Hunt for a six-yard touchdown right before the half. It was a much-needed outing for Mayfield, who had begun to hear whispers that his starting job wasn't safe after a Week 1 loss. Mayfield heads into Week 3's showdown with the Washington Football Team with three touchdowns and two interceptions through two games.

From RotoBaller