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The Top 10: Week 5

Matt Waldman's weekly film notebook includes a progress report on Carson Wentz, Evan Engram emerging, and Todd Gurley becoming a complete weapon.

Late cuts

This Top 10 could be the Top 12 or Top 15 every week. Here are some quick thoughts on some of these late cuts from the feature: 

  • Alvin Kamara remains exactly what I thought he was pre-draft: He runs hard, displays excellent balance through contact when he generates momentum, catches the ball well, and operates best in space. When the Saints don't get him the ball on screens and other passes beyond the line of scrimmage, the offense hands Kamara the ball when opposing defenses are expecting the pass. It doesn't mean that Kamara won't develop into a complete runner, but he hasn't proven that he's an every-down back as a rookie. Fantasy owners should remain thankful that he's matched with a team that understands who he is as a player and how to use him. 
  • I've said this for a couple of years, but Tevin Coleman is exactly how the Bills described him to the CBS broadcast crew before the game: A one-cut runner who can't produce with multiple moves the way Devonta Freeman sets up opponents or avoids trouble. What Coleman has is speed and momentum-generated power. Atlanta is using Coleman more often with a fullback lead and it's a productive pairing. If and when Coleman is a free agent, hope that there's a good match for him with a team that understands this and has the personnel to support it. 
  • The Patriots defense is so bad that I was wrong on Sunday morning's Audible to expect them to at least stop Cam Newton and a struggling Panthers offense. In addition to what I'll share about Devin Funchess in this column, Carolina used a lot of misdirection and pre-snap motion concepts that the Chiefs used in the season opener and it often confused New England's defense. While I was wrong to underestimate how bad the Patriots defense is, I'm not doing a 180 on the Panthers unit, either. 
  • Christian McCaffrey looks good as a runner, receiver, and pass protector. However, the Panthers need more reliable weapons that will open the field for McCaffrey. I don't think it happens this year, which means the chunk plays for breakaway scores that the rookie is capable of delivering won't come as often this year. 
  • It was a sample size that I fear is too small to act upon with any level of confidence, but Aaron Jones looked more comfortable as a runner than Jamaal Williams. Jones demonstrated a patience and looseness that I was used to seeing both backs show as collegians. Williams has been stiff and more likely to ram into the line of scrimmage as if he's bought into the simplistic characterization that team and the media have described him to be this summer. Jones may still have a short-term opportunity to earn more playing time, but I would look at Jones as no more than a change-up worth 4-6 touches if he can displace Williams as the No. 2 and prove his pass protection has improved since his career at UTEP. 

For film examples of these items and more, you can follow my Instagram account that I use to research this column. 

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