Thu Aug 22 10:06pm ET
By JOE KAY
AP Sports Writer
Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Ryan Finley looks for a receiver during the first half of the team's NFL preseason football game against the New York Giants, Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Frank Victores)
New York Giants running back Rod Smith (45) celebrates his touchdown withteammates during the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Gary Landers)
Cincinnati Bengals tight end C.J. Uzomah (87) nears the end zone on the way to a touchdown, as New York Giants safety Jabrill Peppers (21) defends during the first half of an NFL preseason football game Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Frank Victores)
New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones (8) looks for a receiver during the first half of the team's NFL preseason football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Frank Victores)
Cincinnati Bengals tight end C.J. Uzomah (87) scores a touchdown against New York Giants safety Jabrill Peppers (21) during the first half of an NFL preseason football game Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Gary Landers)
New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones looks to pass on the run during the first half of the team's NFL preseason football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Frank Victores)
New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) calls out at the line of scrimmage during the first half of the team's NFL preseason football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Frank Victores)
Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton throws a pass during the first half of the team's NFL preseason football game against the New York Giants, Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Gary Landers)
CINCINNATI (AP) Daniel Jones completed a difficult week with an encouraging performance Thursday night, leading the New York Giants to a touchdown during a 25-23 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals in Zac Taylor's first home game as head coach.
In a GQ article published Tuesday , Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield said he was stunned that the Giants drafted the quarterback from Duke in the first round. Mayfield tried to tamp down the comment and texted Jones to explain his remarks.
Jones got into the game on the Giants' second series and went 9 of 11 for 141 yards the rest of the half. He had completions of 35 yards to Brittan Golden and 27 yards to Darius Slayton on a seven-play touchdown drive, a solid all-around showing for Eli Manning's eventual replacement.
Manning led an opening 15-play series that ended in a field goal and included five plays that gained at least 9 yards. Manning was 4 of 8 for 41 yards. In three preseason games, Manning is 9 of 13 for 86 yards with a touchdown and no interceptions.
Golden had a 63-yard punt return for a touchdown in the fourth quarter as the Giants pulled away.
The Bengals distributed 34,887 tickets for the game, fewer than for the first home preseason game last year. They had the second-lowest home attendance in the league last season, part of the impetus to fire Marvin Lewis and bring in Taylor to try to stir fan interest.
The Bengals' new offense under Taylor has struggled to find consistency. Andy Dalton played three series that ended with a couple of punts and a touchdown.
Dalton found tight end C.J. Uzomah down the right sideline - he beat safety Jabrill Peppers - for a 26-yard touchdown on his third and final series. Dalton was 7 of 10 for 104 yards behind a mix-and-match line. Andre Smith started at left tackle for Cordy Glenn, who missed practice this week, and moved to right tackle in the second quarter.
Rookie Ryan Finley finished the first half when Dalton left and was 14 of 20 for 155 yards with no interceptions and three sacks.
Giants: WR Golden Tate III (concussion) was out, along with RB Saquon Barkley. RB Rod Smith scored on a 1-yard TD run in the second quarter and missed the rest of the game with a groin injury.
Bengals: WR John Ross missed his third preseason game with a hamstring injury. Cornerbacks Dre Kirkpatrick and Darqueze Dennard and running back Joe Mixon were held out. WR Auden Tate suffered a left knee injury in the first half and didn't return.
Giants: Play at New England next Thursday.
Bengals: Host the Colts next Thursday.
Los Angeles Chargers RB Austin Ekeler had an 85.2 percent catch percentage last season, which was the best rate of anyone with 45 receptions.
Fantasy Spin: Ekeler had just one drop and 92 grabs for 993 yards. He rushed 132 times for 557 yards (4.2 yards per carry) as well, and with Melvin Gordon gone, he should remain one of the top five backs in PPR.
Las Vegas Raiders QB Derek Carr has seen his teammates drop 216 passes over the course of his six-year career - the most drops a quarterback has witnessed over that span.
Dallas Cowboys WR Michael Gallup was charged with 11 drops in 2019 - the second-highest total in the league.
New Orleans Saints RB Latavius Murray averaged 2.7 yards before contact per rushing attempt in 2019 - tied for the sixth-best average among qualified rushers last season.
San Francisco 49ers TE George Kittle was charged with only two drops on 107 targets in 2019. He was one of only five players in the league with at least 100 targets - regardless of position - to finish with a drop rate below two percent.
Las Vegas Raiders TE Darren Waller was credited with eight broken tackles on his 90 catches in 2019 - tied with George Kittle for the second-highest total among tight ends.
Denver Broncos LB Von Miller has forced 640 quarterback pressures over the past decade, which are 40 more than any other player within that time.
Updating a previous story, free-agent WR Cody Latimer (Giants) officially signed an undisclosed contract with the Washington Redskins Tuesday, April 7.
Fantasy Spin: Latimer set career-highs with 24 receptions and 300 yards with the New York Giants in 2019. He has a viable path to a notable role within the Washington offense and could become a streaming option by mid-season.
Updating a previous story, free-agent DB P.J. Williams (Saints) officially signed an undisclosed contract with the New Orleans Saints Tuesday, April 7.
Updating a previous story, Dallas Cowboys TE Blake Bell officially signed Tuesday, April 7. Terms of the deal weren't disclosed.
Updating a previous story, free-agent DB Damarious Randall (Browns) officially signed with the Las Vegas Tuesday, April 7. Terms of the deal weren't disclosed.
Updating a previous story, free-agent LB Reggie Ragland (Chiefs) officially signed with the Detroit Lions Tuesday, April 7. Terms of the deal weren't disclosed.
Updating a previous story, free-agent DB Ha Ha Clinton-Dix (Bears) officially signed with the Dallas Cowboys Tuesday, April 7. Official terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Arizona Cardinals WR DeAndre Hopkins has yet to take his physical with the team, but head coach Kliff Kingsbury said Tuesday, April 7, he has 'no doubt' the deal will get done before the 2020 NFL Draft (April 23).
Fantasy Spin: If the deal were to somehow fall through within the next two weeks, the Cardinals would be likely to target one of Jerry Jeudy, CeeDee Lamb or Henry Ruggs with their No. 8 overall pick. Of course, Hopkins would fill the Cards' need for a No. 1 receiver once the trade is finalized once and for all.
Free-agent LB Jadeveon Clowney (Seahawks) isn't like to re-sign with the Seattle Seahawks, according to Mike Garafolo of NFL Network Tuesday, April 7. 'I don't know if he's going to be back in Seattle. The chances are slim to none,' Garafolo said.
Jacksonville Jaguars DE Yannick Ngakoue stressed his desire to be traded again Tuesday, April 7. '(Talks on a long-term contract) kind of broke off,' he said. 'Everything happens for a reason, and not everything lasts forever. Things come to an end, and it's time for me to move on to the next chapter of my career. And I'm forever thankful for what Jacksonville has brought to me and my family, but it's time to move on.' Ngakoue added he wants to be traded to a team with a 'great culture.'
Washington Redskins head coach Ron Rivera said that tight ends coach Pete Hoerner is really excited about tight end Logan Thomas because of his smarts, savvy and athletic ability. Thomas made the switch from quarterback to tight end several years ago, but he's still in the process of learning the position. The 28-year-old former fourth-round pick of the Cardinals in 2014 had a career-high 16 catches for 173 yards and a touchdown in 16 games (three starts) for the Lions in 2019. Despite the departure of Jordan Reed, Thomas will likely be behind Jeremy Sprinkle for aerial targets in 2020, putting him off the fantasy radar in this rebuilding offense next season. But he's a name to mark down in dynasty/keeper leagues.
Washington Redskins head coach Ron Rivera made it sound as though the team is leaning heavily toward selecting Ohio State defensive end Chase Young with the second overall pick in this month's draft. It's been their expected pick all along ever since analysts starting doing mock NFL drafts. Will another team desperate for a quarterback step up and overwhelm the 'Skins with a trade to move back? It's possible, but we'll have to wait until later this month to find out. Washington could certainly use a game-changing pass-rusher off the edge, which is exactly what Young should be at the next level.
The Philadelphia Eagles tried to trade wide receiver Alshon Jeffery during the 2019 season, just after the team guaranteed Jeffery's salary for the 2020 season. The Eagles attempted to deal him when his production fell off and his injuries piled up. Jeffery was also the "anonymous player" that later criticized general manager Howie Roseman and the decisions he was and wasn't making. Jeffery is now rehabbing from a serious Lisfranc injury and is a question mark for the start of training camp and the 2020 regular season, so he'll be nearly impossible to trade now. There's no rush on a decision, but the Eagles could eventually release Jeffery, especially if his rehab isn't going well. The 30-year-old wideout caught just 43 passes for 490 yards and four touchdowns in 10 games in 2019. He has played a combined 23 games the last two years due to injuries, and his fantasy and real-life stock is falling quickly.
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (elbow) says that he'll be 100 percent for the start of his 17th NFL season after playing in just two games in 2019. "I was going to be ready to go for OTAs and the minicamps," Roethlisberger said. "That was going to be the plan. Now I don't know how much I was going to do, I don't know if I was going to be doing team stuff or stuff like that, but I would have been definitely going to be out there ready to go." Big Ben has been throwing pain-free and has no doubts that he'll be able to return and play at a high level. We probably won't be able to see him throw until this summer, at the earliest, due to the coronavirus, though. The veteran will be a risky QB1 selection coming off injury at his age, but he can definitely be a serviceable fantasy backup capable of QB1 outings if he stays healthy.