Sun Aug 18 7:14pm ET
By JOE REEDY
AP Sports Writer
New Orleans Saints wide receiver Austin Carr, left, runs into the end zone for a touchdown during the second half of a preseason NFL football game against the Los Angeles Chargers, Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019, in Carson, Calif. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull )
Los Angeles Chargers running back Troymaine Pope (35) returns a punt for a touchdown against the New Orleans Saints during the first half of a preseason NFL football game Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019, in Carson, Calif. (AP Photo/Kelvin Kuo )
Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Andre Patton, left, makes a touchdown reception against the New Orleans Saints during the first half of a preseason NFL football game Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019, in Carson, Calif. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Andre Patton (15) celebrates after a touchdown reception against the New Orleans Saints during the first half of a preseason NFL football game Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019, in Carson, Calif. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull )
Los Angeles Chargers defensive back Jaylen Watkins (27) intercepts a pass during the first half of a preseason NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints, Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019, in Carson, Calif. (AP Photo/Kelvin Kuo)
New Orleans Saints quarterback Teddy Bridgewater fumbles during the first half of a preseason NFL football game against the Los Angeles Chargers, Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019, in Carson, Calif. (AP Photo/Kelvin Kuo )
New Orleans Saints quarterback Teddy Bridgewater (5) is pressured by Los Angeles Chargers linebacker Uchenna Nwosu (42) during the first half of a preseason NFL football game Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019, in Carson, Calif. (AP Photo/Kelvin Kuo)
CARSON, Calif. (AP) Taysom Hill had 191 yards of offense and directed three second-half scoring drives to help the New Orleans Saints rally for a 19-17 exhibition victory over the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday.
In a game where Philip Rivers and Drew Brees were sideline observers, Hill supplied most of the quarterback highlights. The third-year, all-purpose player was 11 of 15 for 136 yards and a pair of touchdowns and ran for 55 yards. New Orleans trailed 17-3 at halftime.
Hill threw a 27-yard TD pass to Austin Carr with 3:10 remaining in the third quarter to bring the Saints (1-1) to 17-10.
He then directed an 11-play, 69-yard drive midway through the fourth quarter that culminated in a 1-yard TD pass to Devine Ozigbo. The Saints went for 2, but Hill was sacked by Anthony Lanier II.
Following a Chargers punt, Hill drove the Saints into field goal range, where Will Lutz made a 28-yarder with 1:08 remaining.
Troymaine Pope returned a punt 81 yards and Andre Patton had five receptions for 62 yards for the Chargers (0-2).
The Chargers led 10-3 late in the second quarter when Pope ran back Thomas Morestead's punt with three seconds remaining. Pope - a second-year running back - made three New Orleans defenders miss within the first 15 yards before finding an opening up the left sideline and outrunning Dwayne Washington to the end zone.
Patton, who did not play in the Aug. 8 preseason opener at Arizona due to injury, gave the Chargers a 7-3 lead with 5:32 remaining when he got past New Orleans cornerback P.J. Williams and hauled in a 26-yard pass from Cardale Jones to complete a 10--play, 98-yard drive.
Jones, who is in a battle with fifth-round pick Easton Stick for the third quarterback spot, was 10 of 14 for 111 yards and a touchdown.
Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson, who have been getting most of the snaps at running back while Melvin Gordon holds out, struggled.
Ekeler was held to nine yards on three carries while Jackson had eight rushes for 33 yards. Both backs didn't have many clean rushing lanes as the Saints' defensive line had the advantage over the Chargers' offensive line.
New Orleans moved the ball well at times but had two critical turnovers in the red zone. Washington had a ball bounce off his hands and into the arms of safety Jaylen Watkins at the Chargers' 2-yard line for an interception during the second quarter. Los Angeles would take advantage and drive for a touchdown.
During the fourth quarter, linebacker Denzel Perryman forced Ozigbo to fumble and it was recovered by Adarius Pickett at the LA 9.
Chargers first-round pick Jerry Tillery played in his first game and recorded a sack during the second quarter. The defensive tackle, the 28th overall selection in April's draft, got past two offensive linemen to bring down Teddy Bridgewater.
Saints: Visit the New York Jets next Saturday as Brees is likely to get his only snaps of the preseason.
Chargers: Host Seattle next Saturday.
Carolina Panthers tight end Greg Olsen(back) continues to be a top performer at his position in 2019. Despite not having a touchdown catch thus far, the veteran has still racked up 10 receptions (18 targets) for 146 yards. With the struggling Cam Newton (foot) possibly unable to play, Olsen has a chance to get some looks from potential starter Kyle Allen on Sunday against a lousy Cardinals Defense. The 36-year-old can still be found on waivers in some leagues and is worth a start (if he plays), especially in Week 3, regardless of who is under center. Keep an eye on his status.
Carolina Panthers wide receiver Curtis Samuel may have to play without quarterback Cam Newton (foot) against the Cardinals. With the veteran signal-caller still without a touchdown toss on the year, Samuel may actually benefit without Newton in the lineup in Week 3. Throughout two starts in 2018, Kyle Allen, who is projected to take over if Newton isn't available, made Samuel a priority during his time under center as he led the team in looks while finishing with nine receptions (17 targets) for 113 yards and a score. As a result, Samuel should be on the minds of fantasy managers as his outlook is favorable against a weak Cardinals Defense on Sunday despite having an inexperienced quarterback.
Carolina Panthers wide receiver D.J. Moore will look to keep things going on Sunday in Arizona. Moore has been one of the focal points for Carolina this season, currently leading the team in targets (24), receptions (16), and receiving yards (165). Despite the potential start of sophomore quarterback Kyle Allen, who would fill in for Cam Newton (foot) if he is unable to go, Moore will still likely produce. The 22-year-old racked up six receptions (15 targets) for 100 yards with Allen under center in 2018. He should remain a starter in a majority of fantasy leagues even if Newton isn't able to suit up on Sunday against a lousy Cardinals Defense.
Carolina Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey will surely rebound in Week 3 against the Cardinals. After a dismal performance against the Buccaneers that saw the 23-year-old rush for just 37 yards on 16 attempts, the Panthers will next square off with one of the lousiest defensive teams in the league on Sunday. With the Cardinals allowing a league-worst 30.38 fantasy points per game to opposing backs this season, McCaffrey is a must-start in all fantasy formats in addition to being featured in daily contests. Get him in your lineup.
Detroit Lions RB Paul Perkins is learning his new team's playbook this week, and he is excited about the chance and wants to be explosive. 'I'm going to go home and look over some stuff,' he said Wednesday, Sept. 18. 'But the offense seems pretty dope and it seems it can get a lot of guys the ball.'
Fantasy Spin: Initially Perkins is likely to see a bulk of his action on special teams, where he has excelled. He missed the 2018 season due to a pectoral injury. For now, avoid Perkins in all fantasy formats, but stash the name away. He might not be quite done yet, and could re-emerge as a fantasy option if injuries strike in the Motor City.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers DE Shaquil Barrett earned NFC Defensive Player of the Week honors for his three-sack performance in Week 2 against the Carolina Panthers.
New Orleans Saints QBs Teddy Bridgewater and Taysom Hill will both play in Week 3 against the Seattle Seahawks, with head coach Sean Payton declining to name a starter Wednesday, Sept. 18.
Fantasy Spin: Bridgewater is likely to play more snaps, with Hill subbing in for his regular assortment of Wildcat formation plays, especially in short-yardage situations and plays near the goal line. For those looking for a streaming option in fantasy, Bridgewater is certainly the better bet.
Detroit Lions wide receiver Kenny Golladay is in line to have a big day Sunday when the Lions take on the Eagles in Philadelphia. Golladay is coming off a 117-yard, one-touchdown performance and should be able to build off those numbers against a leaky Eagles secondary. Through the first two games of the season, the Eagles have already allowed three 100-yard receiving performances and six passing touchdowns and are seemingly not able to stop anything through the air. That bodes well for Golladay's chances in this matchup. Golladay can be considered a solid WR2 and has a very good opportunity to exceed the 100-yard mark for a second straight game.
Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr failed to capitalize in a juicy Week 2 matchup, making him difficult to trust with a grimmer task ahead in Week 3. The team will travel to take on a stout Vikings Defense who finished third-best in 2018 giving up 196 passing YPG. Carr has looked more comfortable overall in year two under Head Coach John Gruden, but the deck is stacked against him this week as eight-point underdogs. He could save face with some late garbage time points, but he shouldn't be relied upon in any fantasy format in Week 3.
New Orleans Saints wide receiver Tre'Quan Smith (ankle) did not practice on Wednesday. Smith got his legs caught underneath him at the end of the Week 2 loss to the Rams and could be questionable for Week 3 against the Seahawks. The 23-year-old has only five receptions for 75 yards and a touchdown through two weeks and is fourth in the pecking order behind Michael Thomas, Ted Ginn and Jared Cook, making him extremely inconsistent for fantasy owners in much deeper leagues. With Teddy Bridgewater now at quarterback with Drew Brees (thumb) out at least six weeks, Smith should be planted on benches where he's owned.
Oakland Raiders tight end Darren Waller has displayed a positive chemistry between himself and quarterback Derek Carr, and it should only grow stronger throughout the season. He currently leads the team with 13 catches and 15 targets through two games while showing a slick pair of hands and a dynamic athletic ability. With the Raiders playing a tough road contest this week versus the Vikings, Waller's ceiling isn't as high, but he should see plenty of volume as eight-point underdogs. Minnesota gave up a 9/77/0 line to Falcons tight end Austin Hooper in Week 1 while they played catch-up, giving Waller a projection somewhere in this neighborhood for Week 3.
The Oakland Raiders acquired wide receiver/kick returner Trevor Davis from the Packers on Wednesday, according to a source. The speed demon is one of the league's better punt and kick returners and should compete for a spot on the receiver depth chart in Oakland. The 26-year-old had just one catch for 28 yards in two games this year in Green Bay and has nine receptions for 122 yards and one touchdown in 29 career games played. He'll mainly be used on special teams in his new home and can be ignored for fantasy purposes unless you're in a really deep league that counts return yardage.
Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford will look to rebound after a so-so Week 2 performance when the Lions take on the Eagles in Week 3. Stafford faces an Eagles secondary that has allowed 680 yards through the first two weeks of the season, which places them just above the Raiders for second-most yards allowed through the air. He has also thrown the ball a healthy 75 times through two games, and this matchup is lining up to follow that trend. Stafford's floor can be considered in the high-upside QB2 range this week in a matchup where he should have no problem moving the ball.
Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Keenan Allen (knee) and kicker Michael Badgley (groin) were both limited in practice on Wednesday. Allen should be fine to play in Week 3 against the Texans against a secondary that consistently gets burned deep. The Chargers top wideout ranks third in the NFL after two games with 25 total targets. Allen is a top-five fantasy receiver this Sunday. Badgley has yet to kick in a game this year but is getting closer to making his season debut. He can't be trusted in fantasy until he proves his health. Ty Long has been filling in but has made just two of his four field-goal attempts, including two big misses in the Week 2 loss to the Lions.
Cleveland Browns tight end David Njoku (concussion, wrist) has a broken wrist that could require surgery, according to a source. Njoku was also knocked out of the Monday night game after suffering a concussion. He is seeking more opinions to determine if surgery is necessary and how long he'd be sidelined if he goes under the knife. It's a tough break for Njoku's owners, as they'll be without him for multiple weeks at least. Demetrius Harris is Cleveland's backup tight end, but he's unlikely to become a big part of the weekly game plan. Quarterback Baker Mayfield takes a slight hit in value, while wide receiver Jarvis Landry could be used more underneath and in the middle of the field.
Los Angeles Rams C Austin Blythe (ankle) and TE Tyler Higbee (chest) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Sept. 18. RB Malcolm Brown (ankle) and DT Aaron Donald (back) were limited during practice.
San Francisco 49ers RB Tevin Coleman (ankle), DE Dee Ford (quadriceps), S Jaquiski Tartt (ankle), WR Jalen Hurd (back), OT Joe Staley (leg) and WR Trent Taylor (foot) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Sept. 18. DE Nick Bosa (ankle) and S Jimmie Ward (hand) were limited during practice.
Detroit Lions running back Kerryon Johnson could be in line for a big Week 3 performance against an ailing Philadelphia Eagles squad. Johnson should be able to do some damage through the air against an Eagles Defense that has allowed 15 receptions to running backs through the first two weeks of the season, and with Eagles defensive tackle Tim Jernigan sitting out this week, finding holes on the ground will be an easier task as well. Johnson has the chance to see an expanded workload after the recent release of C.J. Anderson and will slot in as a high-upside RB2 in what could be a shootout at the Linc.
Carolina Panthers quarterback Kyle Allen is trending toward starting over Cam Newton (foot) in Week 3 against the Cardinals. Newton aggravated a foot injury he initially suffered in the preseason and missed practice on Wednesday. He was also seen in a walking boot, so it's looking doubtful that he plays this Sunday in Week 3. If Newton is inactive, it'll be a downgrade to all Panthers receivers, while running back Christian McCaffrey will likely be heavily utilized to take pressure off Allen. Even in a good matchup with Arizona's soft secondary, Allen would be a last-gasp QB2 for fantasy purposes.
Seattle Seahawks WR Tyler Lockett (non-injury) was limited during practice Wednesday, Sept. 18.
Fantasy Spin: Lockett caught 10 of his 12 targets last week and finished with 79 yards. He will continue to be the main target in the passing game for the Seahawks and can be a No. 2 or No. 3 fantasy receiver.