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Week 1 Game Recap: New York Jets 48, Detroit Lions 17
What you need to know
While itís fair for Jets fans to be excited by Sam Darnold
ó even with some blemishes on the performance ó Fantasy GMs should continue to be wary. Ziggy Ansah was absent for most of the game with a shoulder injury and while the absence of one guy shouldnít have led to the disintegration of the Lions defense, it didnít help. This is still a work in progress. Quincy Enunwa
seems like a potential PPR option, but even he is a bit too risky to rely on frequently as more than a depth wide receiver. Isaiah Crowell
is intriguing, but we still see a RBBC here, and looking at the split in carries (12 for Bilal Powell
, 10 for Crowell), itís hard to rely on them as any more than a flex.
The Detroit Lions struggled mightily against the New York Jets on Monday night. Matthew Stafford
was inaccurate and struggled with reads, which led to four interceptions, and a fifth by Matt Cassel
. LeGarrette Blount
was the lead back but Kerryon Johnson
was the more effective. The passing game saw Kenny Golladay
leading the offense, showing range and wider variety of route usage than last season.
New York Jets
|QB Sam Darnold, Pass: 16 - 21 - 198 - 2 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 6 - -1 - 0|
Things couldnít have gotten off to a worse start for the rookie quarterback Monday night, as his very first throw was picked off and returned for a touchdown. It was a questionable play call which saw Darnold rolling out to his right and then throwing across both his body and the entire field into what should have been an obvious safety. The Jets did a poor job of setting their quarterback up for success on that first play, and Darnold did a poor job of recognizing the play was going poorly and adjusting. In some ways, though, it seemed to take the pressure off Darnold, who came back and played, if not flawlessly, well enough for both the Jets and their fans to be happy. Darnold showed a lot of his good aspects ó resiliency, mobility, an ability to read defenses and adjust ó throughout the game. He also showed some flaws, whether it was underthrowing receivers or missing open routes. His 41-yard touchdown throw to Robby Anderson
showed both the bad and the good. On the plus side, he correctly baited the safety into stepping forward, costing the player time, which allowed Anderson to gain a few steps on him as the receiver ran his route downfield. On the negative side, the ball was underthrown, and required Anderson to leap up and fight the defender for the ball. The good far outweighed the bad for Darnold though, and he showed tremendous poise and tenacity in overcoming early miscues to execute the offense.
|RB Bilal Powell, Rush: 12 - 60 - 0, Rec: 1 - 5 - 0 (2 targets)|
Powell started the game on six straight plays but had to leave with an eye issue. While Isaiah Crowell
ís numbers might make it tough to notice, Powell had a good day as well, averaging 5 yards per carry. He showed some good burst and the ability to run for tough yards as well. Powell and Crowell look like they are going to split carries, even when one has the hot hand, which Crowell seemed to.
Crowell didnít get the start but looked very good in his first regular season game with the Jets. He finished off a critical drive in the first quarter with a 6-yard touchdown run and put the final nail in the Lionsí coffin with a late 62-yard score to finish off a 31 point third quarter. On that play, Crowell took the handoff and went right, finding a big hole opened by the Jets offensive line, which played very well Monday night. Crowell ran for the sideline, then followed it to the end zone, out-running the Lions defenders trying to catch him. On the first touchdown, Crowell showed determination and toughness in fighting his way and then stretching for the goal line while being tackled. Itís clear Bilal Powell
will get plenty of carries ó he actually had 12 to Crowellís 10 ó it certainly looks like Crowell will be a very effective runner when in the game.
Cannon came in when the game was pretty much over and performed relatively well, though he didnít have the success the other two Jets backs had. A somewhat undersized player, Cannon isnít going to drag defenders very far, and has to make his yards by getting into open space which was not easy to come by when he was in the game. He was targeted once for six yards and showed good hands on the play.
After a year off, plus some missed time during both the preseason and training camp, Enunwa seems to be back on track as the Jets go-to guy on short and intermediate routes. He definitely has rookie quarterback Sam Darnold
ís trust, receiving 10 targets with the next closest getting just three. Enunwaís touchdown came on a short out route, which the receiver then turned upfield on after he received the pass. While a Lions defender caught up with him at the 10-yard line, Enunwa spun through his grasp and slipped a different tackler on his way to the end zone. Itís very clear that Darnold trusts Enunwa and will probably look to him early and often in games.
While Pryor was virtually invisible during the first half, he was targeted three times in the second half and caught all of them. His best catch of the night was on a 2 & 8 play where Pryor went deep and quarterback Sam Darnold
hit him for a big gain. Pryor had to extend to catch the high throw which resulted from Darnold having to scramble, and held onto the ball when he took a big hit to send him out of bounds.
Anderson only had one target but he made it count. On his 41-yard touchdown reception, Anderson was released by the corner, but the deep safety had been baited into stepping forward, not backpedaling, so by the time he caught up to Anderson, the receiver had prime position. The throw was a little short, but Anderson did an excellent job of leaping up and yanking the ball away from the defender.
The Jets used all of their tight ends about the same amount of snaps during the game, but Sterling got the most snaps. He also the most targets with three, though all of them came in the first half. In fact, no tight end was targeted in the second half where they were used more as blockers or decoys.
Tomlinson had just a single target on the day, a short out route for seven yards in the first quarter. He saw the field a fair amount throughout the game but the Jets didnít target their tight ends often, and not at all in the second half.
had a terrible start to the season. He was inaccurate and made bad reads, which led to four interceptions. Stafford appeared injured twice. First, Stafford looked like he sustained a knee injury where his left tackle looked to clip his knee. Stafford hobbled for a few plays, but was able to remain in the game, and maintained his movement ability. The second injury was where he got hit while he was throwing by two defenders. He remained on the ground for a period but was able to return on the next series. The injury looked more like he had the wind knocked out of him than a risk for a head injury. Stafford was inaccurate and looked to be rusty after similar struggles in the third preseason game. Stafford could have saved his fantasy day in garbage time, but the team stalled out in the red zone including a T.J. Jones
drop in the red zone. Several Jets defenders commented after the game Stafford was tipping his plays based off their knowledge of his hand signals and calls at the line, a trend that will likely require an adjustment.
|RB Theo Riddick, Rush: 4 - 20 - 0, Rec: 5 - 15 - 0 (7 targets)|
saw extended time with the Lions playing in garbage time but was largely ineffective. He averaged just over two yards per target and three yards per catch on check down type passes. Riddick was the clear passing game player with Abdullah inactive.
With Ameer Abdullah
inactive, Kerryon Johnson
was the clear second back behind LeGarrette Blount
. Johnson did not get large volume in a game that got out of hand early but looked good in limited carries. He was able to get to the edge and offer more versatility than Blount in the running game. Johnson was also used in the receiving game, where he made a good one-handed catch on a ball behind him. With Blount leaving the game with an injury, Johnson could be in line for a larger role in coming weeks.
earned the start against the Jets but was limited to only four carries for negative three yards. Blount has taken over the early down role for the Lions, but his usage is largely predictable for opposing defenses. Blount left the game with an injury in the second half but returned to the sideline later in the game with his helmet. However, Blount did not return to the game. He appears to be the starter in Detroit, but his usage was severally curtailed by bad game script.
scored the Lions lone offensive touchdown on a beautifully designed play. Tate and Marvin Jones
lined up in the slot in an empty set. The Lions chose to show heavy personnel on first down, and split Blount and two tight ends wide, allowing Tate an ideal matchup against New Yorkís base defense. The rest of Tateís night was limited to short routes, and totaled an inefficient seven catches on 15 targets, including several off target throws by Stafford.
was the most effective Lion on a disastrous night. Golladay ran with Marvin Jones
in multiple two receiver sets, ahead of Golden Tate
. He showed his range and size catching a couple of high balls from Stafford. Golladayís package last season was a limited route tree of screens and deeper routes and the first game showed more extensive route usage.
was the third most targeted receiver against New York. Jones had a solid run after catch for 28 yards and was overthrown on a deep ball into the end zone. Jones continued to run as a first team receiver, despite being out targeted by Golladay (12 to 8) and should remain a focal point of the deep passing game
Off season acquisition Luke Willson
was limited to one target and no catches against New York. With Kenny Golladay
taking a step forward in week one, Willsonís passing game usage may be more limited than expected entering the season.