San Francisco 49ers 41, Cincinnati Bengals 17
What you need to know
San Francisco 49ers
- Four things to take away from this game are as follows. First, rather than increasing Matt Breida
's workload, it appears Kyle Shanahan has chosen to replace Tevin Coleman
's 60 percent of snaps with a combination of Raheem Mostert
and Jeff Wilson
, the latter of which serving as the de facto goal line back. Second, although Jimmy Garoppolo
played better than he did in Week 1, he still left a ton of yards (and potential points) on the field with errant throws. Third, George Kittle
's quiet game was simply a matter of run-blocking more and playing more of a decoy role due to Cincinnati's hyper-attentive coverage. Finally, although left tackle Joe Staley's injury is going to hurt, the running game didn't falter at all after he left the game.
- -Andy Dalton
made a couple costly mistakes when the game was still competitive that put an end to promising drives deep in San Francisco territory.
-Almost every solid gain by Joe Mixon
was called back due to holding and he was visibly frustrated. He looked fully healthy.
-Through two games, the Bengals have just 59 rushing yards and are averaging 1.79 YPC.
was every bit as good as his 10 catch, 122-yard stat line would indicate. He had a touchdown called back due to a hold or would have had an even bigger day.
had a meaningless 66-yard touchdown catch in the final minute of the blowout loss to turn a forgettable performance into another big fantasy outing.
QB Jimmy Garoppolo
, 72 offensive snaps, Pass: 17 - 25 - 297 - 3 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 4 - 8 - 0 - Garoppolo's stats may have rebounded back to above-average against Cincinnati, but his non-box score performance did not. He can thank Kyle Shanahan's play design and play-calling for many of his long gainers, what with 49ers receivers running wide-open all over the field, and Bengals tacklers repeatedly engaging in defensive indifference. He also repeated many of his Week 1 mistakes, i.e., throwing behind receivers rather than hitting them in stride, as well as making incredibly ill-advised throws into double-(or triple-) coverage. Throwing for 297/3/1 was just about the floor of what Cincinnati offered up for the taking.
RB Raheem Mostert
, 34 offensive snaps, Rush: 13 - 83 - 0, Rec: 3 - 68 - 1 (4 targets) - Mostert actually out-snapped starter Matt Breida
against Cincinnati. On his receiving touchdown, which came on a deceptive, one-lineman screen pass, Mostert scored because he had three blockers against three defenders in front of him, and linebacker Preston Brown, who actually went mostly unblocked, gave a lackluster effort in his tackle attempt. Similarly, Mostert's 20-yard run in the third quarter resulted from a wide-open running lane off right tackle, as well as a feeble tackle attempt by cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick. He even ran untouched for a 29-yard score that was nullified by penalty.
RB Matt Breida
, 21 offensive snaps, Rush: 12 - 121 - 0, Rec: 1 - 11 - 0 (1 targets) - There are three main takeaways from Breida's performance against Cincinnati. First, although he started, he played only 29 pecent of snaps; fewer than "backups" Raheem Mostert
and Jeff Wilson
. Relatedly, Breida came off the field when San Francisco advanced into the red zone. Finally, and on a more positive note, what with play-calling producing wide-open running lanes and receiving routes on play after play, Breida had the single-most impressive display of individual skill among the 49ers' skill position players. On 3rd-and-1 at Cincinnati's 49-yard line midway through the second quarter, Breida took a handoff and immediately ran into the backside of center Weston Richburg. However, he saw a cutback lane to his right and took it, but cornerback William Jackson III had him dead to rights on backside contain. No worries, Breida jump cut to the right as Jackson III dove at his legs, then jump cut back to the left to juke linebacker Nick Vigil out of his shoes. After that Herculean effort to gain that first yard, the final 33 yards of the run were a relative piece of cake.
RB Jeff Wilson
, 15 offensive snaps, Rush: 10 - 34 - 2 - Wilson only played 21 percent of snaps, but an inordinate amount of them were in the red zone. With the 49ers advancing the ball easily against Cincinnati, it makes sense that Mostert would have two rushing touchdowns on only 10 carries. It should be noted, however, that, as was the theme of this team performance, the touchdown runs themselves weren't particularly difficult individually.
WR Deebo Samuel
, 29 offensive snaps, Rush: 2 - 7 - 0, Rec: 5 - 87 - 1 (7 targets) - No doubt Samuel had a productive game, especially for a rookie playing his second game in the NFL. Having said that, his gaudy stats owed more to Kyle Shanahan's play design and play calling than extraordinary individual feats of skill from Samuel himself. His first target was a play-action, throw-back pass off of his own jet-sweep action, which Shanahan had set up with several fakes on previous drives. All 49 yards of run-after-catch were due to the Bengals biting hard and having a caravan of blockers in front of him. Similarly, Samuel's 2-yard touchdown in the third quarter resulted from a broken coverage at the goal line. All of that said, one of Samuel's big plays was indeed a great individual effort. On the first play of the second half, Samuel had cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick spinning like a top on his deep dig route, such that his break inside created five yards of separation, which in turn allowed for 19 additional yards after the catch.
WR Marquise Goodwin
, 37 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 77 - 1 (3 targets) - Goodwin started once again, but ceded a higher percentage of snaps to San Francisco's backups than he did in Week 1. He was wide open on both of his long receptions, though one required enduring a hard hit from safety Jesse Bates III to hold onto the ball. On the other, his touchdown on San Francisco's first drive, Goodwin didn't have a Bengals defender within 15 yards of him in any direction when he caught the ball at Cincinnati's 15-yard line. This was a result of one of Kyle Shanahan's signiature play, called "receiver gets lost in the sea of scrimmage-line humanity on a play action; then emerges wide open on the other side of the field.
TE George Kittle
, 48 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 54 - 0 (3 targets) - Kittle had less fantasy production than in Week 1 because a) San Francisco repeatedly exploited his advantage as a run blocker over Cincinnati's outside defenders, and b) he was seemingly priority number one for Cincinnati's safeties regardless of what else was happening on the play. To this latter point, Marquise Goodwin
's wide-open, first-quarter touchdown was thanks in part to Jessie Bates III, who was the last line of defense as a single-high safety, biting hard on Kittle's short route across the middle.
QB Andy Dalton
, 70 offensive snaps, Pass: 26 - 42 - 311 - 2 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 2 - 2 - 0 - Penalties on the offensive line directly caused a number of drives to stall and were the biggest offensive problem for the Bengals. Dalton’s inconsistent play didn’t help matters. He made a couple poor choices late in the first half that contributed to the game getting out of hand. On a third and long from just outside the red zone, Dalton scrambled and could have picked up at least five yards to setup a short field goal attempt. Instead, he ran three yards past the line and then lofted it up over the head of a tight end down the middle of the field, drawing a five-yard penalty for an illegal pass. Instead of a 40-yard field goal, it was pushed back to a 53-yard attempt that was missed. It was a momentum swinging play. Dalton also threw an awful interception on a 2nd-and-5 just outside of the red zone near the end of the first half. He rolled to his right and threw it towards Tyler Eifert
who was bracketed with a safety over top and a linebacker underneath. The pass had no chance and was easily intercepted by Kwon Alexander. Dalton was lucky to have thrown just the one interception. A 49ers cornerback undercut a short out route along the sideline and should have had a pick six but dropped the ball. Dalton had an easy 1-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Eifert
off of play action and a meaningless 66-yard touchdown to John Ross
in the final seconds of the game. He had a touchdown pass to Tyler Boyd
that was called back due to holding.
RB Joe Mixon
, 38 offensive snaps, Rush: 11 - 17 - 0, Rec: 3 - 10 - 0 (5 targets) - Mixon barely practiced in the week leading up to the game due to an ankle injury he suffered in Week 1. He showed no ill effects from the injury, looking as quick and explosive as usual. Mixon had to work for every yard. Even when he made the first man miss, he was still picking up minimal gains. Mixon had a couple impressive runs down near the goal line in the first quarter to pick up positive yards. On 2nd-and-4 from the 5-yard line, he ran through an arm tackle in the backfield, juked a defender with a nice cut back to the inside and ran for a 3-yard gain. He powered through a defender to pick up a first down just short of the goal line on the next play. He was stuffed in the backfield for no gain on 1st-and-goal and missed out on a potential score when the Bengals scored on a 2nd-down play action pass. The few times a hole actually opened up and Mixon was able to break off a solid run, the offensive line was called for holding. He burst through the right side of the line for a 12-yard pickup that was called back due to a hold by the left tackle. He also had an 11-yard reception called back due to a hold. Mixon was visibly frustrated with some of the flags and the body language wasn’t great at times. His lone positive run that wasn’t called back was a 9-yard burst up the middle when the Bengals were backed up near their own end zone. Mixon played just 54% of the snaps but his usage was pretty typical until the game got out of hand. There was no reason for the Bengals to put him out there on a tender ankle in the fourth quarter while trailing by 30+ points.
RB Giovani Bernard
, 28 offensive snaps, Rush: 6 - 6 - 0, Rec: 1 - 7 - 0 (3 targets) - Bernard played 28 snaps but many of them came in garbage time. Three of his seven touches came late in the fourth quarter when the Bengals were trailing by 31 points. He did get a full drive to himself midway through the second quarter, carrying three times for eight yards on the field goal drive. Bernard managed just 13 yards on the day despite a game script that was just about perfect for him. In this offense, he doesn’t have much fantasy value while Mixon is healthy.
WR Tyler Boyd
, 55 offensive snaps, Rec: 10 - 122 - 0 (10 targets) - The lone offensive bright spot for the Bengals was the play of Tyler Boyd
. He was fantastic, catching every single target and consistently converting on third downs to keep the offense on the field. His first catch of the game was his easiest. The Bengals lined up with a bunch formation to the left and a busted coverage left Boyd wide open down the sideline for a 47-yard catch and run. Boyd setup the Bengals first touchdown with an 8-yard catch on 3rd-and-7 in the red zone. He held on with a defender draped all over his back. It was the first of many 3rd down conversions for Boyd. He was schemed open for an easy 9-yard catch on 3rd-and-1. Then went low to grab a pass over the middle for a 12 yard gain on 3rd-and-12. He picked up 15 yards on a 3rd-and-6 screen pass. Boyd’s big fantasy day could have been even bigger but he had a 16-yard touchdown catch wiped out by a holding penalty. Boyd played 79% of the snaps for the second straight week, which is a bit less than last season (when he had 8 straight games with 92% or more) but not a cause for concern.
WR John Ross
, 60 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 112 - 1 (8 targets) - Ross led the receivers by playing 86% of the snaps and is the clear No. 2 target in the offense behind Boyd while A.J. Green
is sidelined. He didn’t have much success against Richard Sherman, who was able to stick right with Ross on a couple deep ball attempts. Ross was credited with a short reception on a jet sweep that Dalton tapped forward into Ross’ hands as he cut across right in front of him. Ross had a long catch and run of 34 yards on a 3rd-and-2 slant catch. He was able to get inside the cornerback for the easy catch and then showed tremendous burst to pick up a big chunk of yards after the catch. He had a bad drop on a short pass but it probably wouldn’t have gained yardage anyway. Ross scored a garbage time 66-yard touch-down against the 49ers backups in the final seconds of the game. He caught the ball on a post route about 20 yards downfield and then accelerated past the safety and was off to the races.
WR Damion Willis
, 45 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 6 - 0 (3 targets) - Willis played 64% of the snaps (down from 90% last week), losing playing time to Auden Tate
. He made a short catch but wasn’t able to come up with either of his other targets. One was thrown low on a comeback route and would have been a tough catch. The other incompletion was on a deep ball down the left sideline that was fairly well covered where Willis wasn’t able to come up with the contested catch. The two incompletions weren’t exactly poor plays by Willis but he wasn’t able to make the play when given the opportunity. He has a limited window to make an impact while Green it sidelined and hasn’t been able to take advantage of the opportunity.
WR Auden Tate
, 25 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 6 - 0 (2 targets) - Tate played 25 snaps and ate into the playing time of Damion Willis
. He had a physical run for six yards on a quick screen in the red zone. With Willis not showing out early, Tate could see a few more opportunities next week to make his case for playing time once Green returns.
TE Tyler Eifert
, 19 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 9 - 1 (5 targets) - Eifert was targeted on 5 of his 19 snaps. We are seeing that when he is on the field, he is going to be one of Dalton’s first reads. Eifert caught a one-yard touchdown, leaking out into the flat after a play action fake and making the easy catch. His other two receptions were both short in the flat and he wasn’t able to make anything happen running after the catch. Eifert probably would have played a bit more but there was no reason to risk an injury to him in the fourth quarter with the Bengals trailing by 30+. Most of rookie Drew Sample
’s 19 snaps came in relief of Eifert in garbage time.
TE C.J. Uzomah
, 42 offensive snaps - Uzomah led the tight end group with 42 snaps but wasn’t targeted.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 20, Carolina Panthers 14
What you need to know
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- Tampa Bay's offense was serviceable, but the defense were the real stars of their week 2 victory over the Panthers. They hassled Cam Newton
all night and bottled up superstar halfback Christian McCaffery. Tampa Bay sacked QB Newton three times and recovered a Newton fumble late in the 3rd quarter. Carolina drove to the Tampa Bay goal line late in the 4th quarter, down by just six points, but CB Vernon Hargreaves forced McCaffery out of bounds on 4th and 1 from the goal line to save the game. Tampa Bay QB Winston looked much better than his week 1 performance, narrowly missing a couple of extra touchdowns to Mike Evans
and Breshad Perriman
- Carolina's offense is being bogged down by a combination of factors, but Cam Newton
's accuracy problems are a major reason. Newton's ability to throw from a firm base deteriorated as this game progressed, with pressure exacerbating things. He missed several straightforward passes, including a crucial third down late in the game against a five-man pressure that he seemed to rush, leaving the ball behind Curtis Samuel
. The play calling of offensive coordinator Norv Turner is more conservative than usual at times, with Newton a non-factor in the ground game. The offensive line was a major liability in this game, which did not help Newton's cause. Left tackle Daryl Williams gave up multiple sacks. It forced Carolina to keep Christian McCaffrey
in as a pass blocker, limiting his involvement in the passing game. The pass-heavy game script in the second half hardly involved McCaffrey, with Newton instead relying on Greg Olsen
and D.J. Moore
to win against man coverage, which they did quite often. Carolina continues to be plagued by an inability to convert short yardage and third down situations, which is putting a cap on this offense's upside.
QB Jameis Winston
, 65 offensive snaps, Pass: 16 - 25 - 208 - 1 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 4 - 9 - 0 - Winston improved vastly over his week 1 performance, as the offensive line did a much better job in pass protection and the run game. Winston and Evans nearly hooked up on an over-the-shoulder fade in the end zone in the 1st quarter, but Evans couldn't quite reel it in against tight coverage. The two did connect on a 41 yard deep ball down the left sideline later in the 2nd quarter, with Winston capping the drive with a wide-open post route to Godwin for a touchdown. Winston should have been intercepted on an underthrown crossing route to Perriman in the 3rd quarter, but LB Kuechly let the ball fall to the turf after hitting him squarely in the hands. Winston missed two scores late in the third as Mike Evans
stumbled on a well thrown corner route, and Perriman couldn't quite get under a post route that Winston had chucked into the end zone.
RB Peyton Barber
, 42 offensive snaps, Rush: 23 - 82 - 1, Rec: 1 - 7 - 0 (1 targets) - Barber looked solid in this one, making some impressive cuts at the line of scrimmage as he gashed the Panthers defense between the tackles several times. He scored in the third quarter, plowing through the secondary after carrying the ball through the middle of the offensive line untouched. The offensive line got a great push on the play and Barber did his part at the second level. Barber made an impressive catch on a low pass from Winston in the 2nd quarter while leaking out of the backfield, spinning away from a tackle as he collected the ball and dodged a second defender on his way to extra yards. Barber dominated snaps and backfield touches, with the other two halfbacks combining for just 5 touches.
RB Ronald Jones II
, 8 offensive snaps, Rush: 4 - 9 - 0 - It was a slow day for any Tampa Bay halfbacks not named Peyton Barber
. Jones had an impressive 12 yard carry off right tackle in the 3rd quarter, breaking several tackles and moving the pile for a first down, but he lost yards with his few other carries. Jones was not targeted in the passing game.
RB Dare Ogunbowale
, 16 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 9 - 0 (1 targets) - Ogunbowale didn't see many snaps on offense. His one target was a checkdown pass in the 2nd quarter on 3rd and 14.
WR Chris Godwin
, 62 offensive snaps, Rec: 8 - 121 - 1 (9 targets) - Godwin was again more effective than Evans, turning nine targets into a team-high eight receptions and 121 yards. Winston hit him on an out route for the first play of the game, with Godwin dodging a tackle and darting up the sideline for extra yards. The two connected on a skinny post for a nice gain later in the 1st. Godwin made a tough catch on a slant route that was thrown behind him at the end of the 1st quarter. Godwin found paydirt again as he split out wide right and got open on a post route for a touchdown late in the 2nd quarter. Godwin got loose on a deep crossing route in the 3rd for his biggest gain of the day, 24 yards.
WR Mike Evans
, 59 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 61 - 0 (8 targets) - Evans duked it out with Carolina CB Bradberry for much of the day. He caught a wide receiver bubble screen for a minimal gain on the Bucs' first drive. Winston targeted him with a fade route in the end zone later in the 1st quarter, but Evans couldn't reel it in in traffic. Evans broke loose down the left sideline for a 41 yard gain on a deep ball from Winston in the 2nd, snagging it against close coverage from rival CB Bradberry. Winston found him in the third quarter on a crossing route that converted 3rd down. Evans and Winston barely missed hooking up in the end zone on the next play, as Evans stumbled a bit on a well thrown corner route that would have gone for six. Godwin again looked like the number one receiving option on the stat sheet, but the two missed touchdowns could have really padded Evans stats for the day.
WR Breshad Perriman
, 31 offensive snaps (4 targets) - Perriman was targeted several times, but just couldn't get on the same page as Winston in this one. He had a step on his defender on a post route in the end zone late in the 3rd quarter, but Winston lofted the ball a little too far over his head.
TE Cameron Brate
, 18 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 10 - 0 (2 targets) - Brate caught an out route for a short gain before being pushed out of bounds in the 1st. Brate had one more tough catch in traffic to convert 3rd and 4 late in the 1st half.
TE O.J. Howard
, 60 offensive snaps - Howard had a brutally slow day. He was targeted once in the 2nd quarter, but was flagged for pushing off on the incompletion. He was flagged gain for a false start later in the 3rd quarter.
QB Cam Newton
, 79 offensive snaps, Pass: 25 - 51 - 333 - 0 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 2 - 0 - 0 - Cam Newton
started the game confidently, using play action to create clearer throwing windows to D.J. Moore
and Greg Olsen
. Newton ran the ball on a fourth down play early in the game, with a pitch option to Moore built in, but he was ruled short of the first down after a measurement. That setback seemed to be a kick in the teeth for the momentum of the offense. Newton picked himself back up, chucking a beautiful deep pass down the left sideline to a waiting Curtis Samuel
for 44 yards. Things began to turn soon after, with Newton missing some easy throws, either throwing too high or too short of the target. The offensive line began to surrender pressure, with left tackle Daryl Williams in particular bearing the brunt of the Tampa Bay pass rush. At times Newton didn't even have two seconds to survey the field. Newton's connection with Greg Olsen
on intermediate shots gave the offense some much-needed life, but a combination of Newton holding the ball too long and pressure quickly killed the momentum. An interception to a linebacker in underneath coverage was, fortunately for Newton, called back due to a defensive penalty ñ though it appeared pressure forced a quicker release than he would liked on the play. On the very next play, however, Newton had the ball knocked out of his hands after a strange read option keeper, with the Bucs jumping on it. Newton's accuracy deteriorated as the pressure increased; he nearly threw another pick on a hopeful pass down the middle with no receiver in the area. A crucial third down play late in the game saw him throw an easy pass behind Samuel, who was running a shallow cross. With only a five-man rush, Newton appeared to rush the throw and not set his feet properly. The play was emblematic of his evening's work.
RB Christian McCaffrey
, 79 offensive snaps, Rush: 16 - 37 - 0, Rec: 2 - 16 - 0 (6 targets) - Christian McCaffrey
was effectively blotted out of this game after the first quarter. The offensive line proved to be a huge liability against the Bucs pass rush, forcing a change in strategy. Rather than running pass patterns, McCaffrey was kept in to block on multiple snaps and, after showing good toughness and patience on some early carries, was a non-factor until the fourth quarter. Tampa Bay's defense did an excellent job of taking McCaffrey away, but the pass-heavy game script did not help his cause. In the fourth quarter, on the final drive, Cam Newton
hit McCaffrey on a swing pattern in the right flat. McCaffrey would be the last Panthers offensive player to touch the ball on the ill-fated final play. Taking a direct snap, the offense tried to use misdirection much like the Philly Special to move the play-side cornerback. The cornerback stayed put as McCaffrey ran towards his side, but an excellent tackled short of the first down marker put paid to Carolina's hopes.
WR D.J. Moore
, 75 offensive snaps, Rec: 9 - 89 - 0 (14 targets) - D.J. Moore
became a focal point of the offense ñ along with the ever-reliable Greg Olsen
ñ with the young receiver's success coming mostly on in-breaking routes. Moore took advantage of the Buccaneers' man coverage consistently, getting inside leverage on slant routes off play action. Cam Newton
peppered Moore with these passes, and the receiver showed excellent concentration and toughness on some where a defender met him with a tackle almost straight away. Moore and Newton showed excellent timing and understanding on a back shoulder pattern on the left sideline in the second half, the receiver spinning his body to catch the ball at the last moment. Moore was not used as a downfield threat, though a couple of targets his way were wayward due to Newton's inaccuracy and the Tampa Bay pass rush.
WR Curtis Samuel
, 77 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 2 - 0, Rec: 5 - 91 - 0 (13 targets) - Curtis Samuel
announced himself in this game with a deep 44-yard reception against man coverage, executing a beautiful double move to beat the defensive back. Samuel had plenty of room to work with, but with the ball thrown a little shy of where it needed to be, he had to wait on it and got tackled. A subsequent deep target right sailed out of bounds. In the short game, Samuel had less success than his counterpart D.J. Moore
, but he showed more variation in his routes. Samuel showed good understanding on a hitch route, running just past the sticks before planting his foot and turning back to Cam Newton
. Samuel was unable to haul in a pass on a shallow crossing route from Newton on third down, with the ball thrown behind him. With the Bucs blitzing on the play, it appeared Samuel would have had room to work with. Samuel stayed involved as the game reached its climax, managing to catch a pass even as his facemask was being yanked.
WR Jarius Wright
, 54 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 15 - 0 (6 targets) - Jarius Wright
ran some nice patterns to give his quarterback a safe, easy target ñ especially on third down. An early third down snag saw him tackled short of the sticks, but he made up for it with a beautiful pivot route on a later third down. Cam Newton
let Wright down with a couple of off-target throws, including a deep one that sailed out of bounds.
TE Greg Olsen
, 65 offensive snaps, Rec: 6 - 110 - 0 (9 targets) - Greg Olsen
rolled back the years and, in the process, gave Tampa Bay fits in an uneven offensive performance by Carolina. The veteran tight end's savvy route-running and chemistry with his quarterback were in play early, with the two connecting well on over routes across the field. Tampa's linebackers and safeties simply could not deal with Olsen on such patterns, and he would have caught even more passes if Cam Newton
's accuracy issues had not cropped up. Olsen offered very little as an after-the-catch threat, unable to put a move on a defender in the open field at one point, but his ability to get open was impeccable. Olsen offered the most consistent chunk play threat for the offense as route combinations involving speedsters Curtis Samuel
and D.J. Moore
allowed the tight end to sneak in behind the underneath coverage.
Chicago Bears 16, Denver Broncos 14
What you need to know
- The Bears struggled to a last-second field goal to beat the Broncos in a defensive affair. Mitchell Trubisky
struggled mightily in the passing game and was unable to elevate any pass catchers to meaningful fantasy games. David Montgomery
took the lead in the backfield after working in a timeshare last week with Mike Davis
- Denver's offense started off sluggishly, with the o-line plagued by costly penalties, but the entire offensive unit picked it up as Flacco manufactured a scoring drive late in the 4th quarter to take the lead. Denver's halfbacks Lindsay and Freeman split duties with similar stat lines in the rushing and passing game. Flacco extended the final drive with two 4th-down conversions to Courtland Sutton
before finding Emmanuel Sanders
on a corner route for the tying touchdown, and again on the go-ahead 2 point conversion. Chicago won the game on a miraculous 53-yard field goal after time appeared to have run out on the final play.
QB Mitchell Trubisky
, 61 offensive snaps, Pass: 16 - 27 - 120 - 0 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 1 - 8 - 0 - Mitchell Trubisky
struggled for the second consecutive week in a win against the Denver Broncos. The Bears kept Trubisky’s throws close to the vest, with Trubisky’s downfield targets only coming out of necessity in a comeback attempt. Fortunately for Trubisky, he was able to step up and make a couple throws to win the game on the final drive, including a ball across the middle to an inexplicably wide-open Allen Robinson
to set the Bears up for a game-winning field goal. Trubisky otherwise struggled, missing open throws and looking skittish in the pocket. Trubisky’s pocket awareness was lacking as he looked indecisive and struggled with accuracy under pressure. The Bears have a championship-caliber defense, but Trubisky needs to play better than 4.4 yards per attempt for the Bears to play at a high level and to support the fantasy prospects of Allen Robinson
RB David Montgomery
, 27 offensive snaps, Rush: 18 - 62 - 1, Rec: 1 - 6 - 0 (3 targets) - David Montgomery
drew the start against the Broncos after playing in a full-blown committee with Mike Davis
last week. Montgomery took over the backfield this week and had 18 carries to only 3 for Davis. Montgomery played swift laterally but continually spent time juking while pursuing defenders tackled him from behind. He got goal-line opportunities, punching in a touchdown on his threw point-blank attempt of the series. Montgomery drew three targets and caught one, while Tarik Cohen
had five targets working more in wide receiver alignment. The lack of a passing game is allowing defenses to cram the line of scrimmage and bottle up Montgomery’s carries, and without a top gear, Montgomery is unable to break off big gains to make defenses pay. Montgomery travels to Washington in week three.
RB Tarik Cohen
, 23 offensive snaps, Rush: 4 - 18 - 0, Rec: 2 - 7 - 0 (5 targets) - Tarik Cohen
played more of a traditional running back role than in week one, carrying the ball four times, but clearly a secondary option in the running game behind David Montgomery
. Cohen caught two of his five targets, both of them on screen plays. Cohen looked explosive on the first but tried to cut all the way back across the field on his second and took a massive loss. He did get free down the field for a target that was broken up by a defender who made an excellent play. With the Chicago offense limited by Mitchell Trubisky
, Cohen should remain a screen and short passing game target against Washington.
RB Mike Davis
, 15 offensive snaps, Rush: 3 - 1 - 0 - Mike Davis
worked in the second drive of the game behind David Montgomery
after leading the backfield last week. Davis played minimally in the game and only had three carries to Montgomery’s 18. His fantasy status cannot be trusted heading into week three.
WR Allen Robinson
, 55 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 41 - 0 (7 targets) - Allen Robinson
had a disappointing game against the Denver Broncos after a strong week one. Robinsons was limited to short area catches and one well-defended back shoulder fade target early in the game before making a strong catch across the middle to set the Bears up in field goal position. Robinson is capped by the limited Mitchell Trubisky
, so his fantasy prospects will be tough to project week to week. He faces Washington next week.
TE Adam Shaheen
, 21 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 24 - 0 (3 targets) - Adam Shaheen
was the leading tight end against the Denver Broncos in week two, but his targets were largely short-area flat patterns. He is off the fantasy radar in week three.
TE Trey Burton
, 26 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 5 - 0 (3 targets) - Trey Burton
returned after missing week one with an injury. He drew an end-zone target that was not catchable from Mitchell Trubisky
. His two catches were in the flat on dump offs. He will look to improve next week against Washington.
QB Joe Flacco
, 82 offensive snaps, Pass: 35 - 50 - 292 - 1 TD / 1 INT - Flacco and the offense both got of to a slow start in the first half, but picked it up after halftime with the Broncos trailing. Flacco was particularly effective with Emmanuel Sanders
, who he targeted a team-high 13 times. Flacco was nearly intercepted in the 2nd quarter on a deep slant that was undercut by Bears safety Eddie Jackson. Flacco's longest completion was a 24 yard gain to Noah Fant
in the 3rd quarter. With Denver down by 7 points late in the 4th, Flacco overthrew a short pass to Sanders in the end zone that was intercepted by Will Fuller
. Flacco bounced back with a clutch game-tying drive however, as Denver got the ball back with just a few minutes left in the 4th. Down by 7 points with the offense at midfield, he found Courtland Sutton
up the seam to convert 4th and 10. Flacco and Sutton converted 4th down AGAIN later in the same drive with a slant route on 4th and 3. Flacco capped the drive with a game-tying touchdown to Emmanuel Sanders
on a perfectly placed ball in the back right corner of the end zone. Flacco and the offense took the lead with a 2-point conversion to Emmanuel Sanders
on a short out route. Sadly their efforts were in vain as a last second Chicago field goal gave the Bears the win.
RB Phillip Lindsay
, 39 offensive snaps, Rush: 13 - 36 - 0, Rec: 4 - 30 - 0 (7 targets) - Lindsay split backfield duties with Freeman, who actually outgained him on the ground and in the passing game this week. Lindsay and the rest of the offense struggled to break any big plays. He had his longest run of the day called back for a holding penalty in the 2nd quarter. Lindsay converted 3rd down with a nice gain on an out route that he turned up the sideline in the 1st quarter. His most impressive play of the day was a 19 yard catch-and-run on a checkdown pass from Flacco that converted 3rd and 15 in the 2nd quarter. Lindsay got smacked hard behind the line of scrimmage by Leonard Floyd on a swing route out of the backfield in the 3rd. Lindsay got a carry from the Chicago 4 yard line late in the 4th, but didn't have room to do anything with it. Flacco hit Lindsay on a swing route to convert 4th and 2 in the 4th quarter. Lindsay had a slight edge in carries(13) over Freeman, but both had 7 targets in the passing game and Freeman was more efficient with his touches. It looks like this backfield timeshare isn't changing any time soon.
RB Royce Freeman
, 43 offensive snaps, Rush: 11 - 54 - 0, Rec: 5 - 48 - 0 (7 targets) - Freeman looked to the sharper of the two backs this week as he racked up more yards on the ground and through the air than Lindsay with a couple fewer carries. Freeman got some extended work in the passing game, drawing a career-high 7 targets. His first was a checkdown pass from Flacco early in the 1st. He split out wide left as a receiver and caught a curl route that he turned into a ten yard gain in the 2nd quarter. Freeman's longest play of the day was a 19 yard gain on a swing route during Denver's last offensive drive. Freeman didn't do anything flashy on the ground, picking up a couple of runs of 10+ yards in the 2nd and 4th quarter and finishing his day with a solid 4.9 ypc average.
WR Emmanuel Sanders
, 76 offensive snaps, Rec: 11 - 98 - 1 (13 targets) - Sanders dominated targets with 13, ahead of Sutton, Lindsay, and Freeman who all drew 7 looks from Flacco. He got right to work hauling in a slant route from the right slot on the first offensive play of the game. Sanders shifted over to the left slot and caught a similar looking pass two plays later. Sanders made an amazing catch between four defenders on a 3rd quarter out route. He narrowly missed a touchdown when he was tackled at the two yard line late in the 4th on a shallow drag route. He was the intended target on Flacco's late 4th quarter interception, but the fault lies with the QB who just overthrew the ball. Sanders tied the game up with a breath-taking, toe-tapping catch over tough coverage from CB Fuller on a corner route in the back of the end zone. Sanders also caught the ensuing 2-point conversion with a short out route.
WR Courtland Sutton
, 78 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 40 - 0 (7 targets) - Sutton started slow, but was clutch at the end of the ballgame. He didn't get on the board until the 4th quarter, when he lined up wide right and pulled in a deep comeback route for a first down. Sutton made a diving grab on a deep post route in the 4th quarter that picked up 16(his longest of the day) and set Denver up in the Chicago end zone. Sutton took a big hit on a deep seam route late in the 4th, but seemed fine after. He converted 4th and 10 with a seam route to extend the Bronco's tying drive with just over two minutes left, then converted 4th and 3 later in the drive with a slant route from Flacco, setting up the game tying touchdown to Sanders.
WR DaeSean Hamilton
, 54 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 15 - 0 (6 targets) - Hamilton worked as the third receiver behind Sanders and Sutton, pulling in a couple of short completions in the second half of the game. He was targeted in the end zone by Flacco on a deep crossing route in the 3rd quarter.
TE Jeff Heuerman
, 38 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 21 - 0 (5 targets) - Heuerman saw plenty of snaps in two TE sets with Fant. He drew five targets but wasn't able to get much going with his receptions. He had a short gain up the right seam in the 1st quarter, and then followed up with another short out route a couple of plays later. Heuerman got smacked hard on an out route that came up just short on 3rd and 5 later in the 1st. He collected one more short curl route early in the 3rd quarter.
TE Noah Fant
, 54 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 33 - 0 (4 targets) - Fant didn't have any receptions until the 3rd quarter, when he reeled in a short out route in the 3rd quarter than converted 3rd and 4. He got wide open on a deep out route in the 3rd quarter that picked up 24 yards, Denver's longest play of the day. Fant managed to pull in a "dying duck" for a short gain from Flacco as the quarterback was tackled while throwing in the 4th quarter.
TE Troy Fumagalli
, 14 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 7 - 0 (1 targets) - Preseason star Fumagalli got some limited work behind starting tight ends Fant and Heuerman. He caught a crossing route for a 7 yard gain in the 3rd quarter, his only target of the day.
Arizona Cardinals 17, Baltimore Ravens 23
What you need to know
- The Cardinals withstood the strong road test in Baltimore and even had a chance to win the game in the closing minutes as Kyler Murray
for a second straight week delivering a number of key throws as the offensive centerpiece. Michael Crabtree
made his Arizona debut but the passing game runs through Larry Fitzgerald
and Christian Kirk
as exhibited through two weeks. David Johnson
missed some time in-game with a wrist injury but returned to action. Despite the close game, Johnson was quizzically not involved in the offense with eight total touches, including a single target.
- The Ravens offense played well but couldn't find big plays as consistently as they could against Miami. Lamar Jackson
threw the ball well but didn't look as good as he did against Miami. Jackson missed a number of throws high and lacked touch on a couple of passes in the intermediate range downfield. Jackson also seemed hesitant to target players not named Marquise Brown
or Mark Andrews
. However, Jackson still made a number of excellent throws and made huge contributions with his legs. Mark Andrews
was the star of the Ravens offense. Andrews looked unstoppable for the second consecutive week making tightly contested catches and gaining separation with his speed downfield. Marquise Brown
made most of his catches near the line of scrimmage but was Jackson's favorite target and made two big plays. The Cardinals' defense seemed to be keying on Mark Ingram
allowing Jackson to gain the edge and put up big rushing numbers.
QB Kyler Murray
, 60 offensive snaps, Pass: 25 - 40 - 349 - 0 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 3 - 4 - 0 - Murray performed well in Baltimore, avoiding game-altering mistakes and delivering a number of ‘wow’ throws in the face of the Ravens’ defense. Murray’s mobility has a been a complete secondary trait for a second straight week as the rookie stands in the pocket, making reads, and accuracy passes. The entire field is unlocked due to Murray’s overt arm talent, including a deep corner route to Christian Kirk
for more than 30 yards, a back-shoulder throw to Damiere Byrd
, and an on-point deep sideline floater to a sliding Larry Fitzgerald
for another long gain. The biggest negative against Baltimore was bogging down in the red zone and settling for short field goals. Also, with four minutes to play and down six points, Arizona squandered their final opportunity to drive the field with penalties and miscommunication. Murray is off to a promising career start and gets the reeling Panthers at home in Week 3 for a chance at his first NFL victory.
RB David Johnson
, 36 offensive snaps, Rush: 7 - 14 - 1, Rec: 1 - 0 - 0 (1 targets) - While dominating the market share of the Arizona backfield, Johnson mired through a tough matchup and performance in Baltimore. Johnson missed a chunk of the second quarter with a wrist injury but returned to action. Johnson was stuffed on a screen pass, curiously his lone target of the game and was stifled on the ground outside of a walk-in goal line touchdown late in the second half. Johnson looks to rebound against Carolina next week.
WR Christian Kirk
, 56 offensive snaps, Rec: 6 - 114 - 0 (8 targets) - After a sluggish Week 1 on 12 targets, Kirk turned into an impact player against Baltimore this week. Kirk made two adjustments to the ball, a rare inaccurate throw from Kyler Murray
and another on a back-shoulder seam reception to highlight his performance. Murray also delivered a perfect deep corner route to Kirk for more than 30 yards. Kirk nearly added a touchdown as he took a swing pass down to the one-yard-line. Kirk has clearly been a top target (along with Larry Fitzgerald
) in the Cardinals’ wide receiver-centric offense through two weeks.
WR Damiere Byrd
, 56 offensive snaps, Rec: 6 - 45 - 0 (7 targets) - Byrd was a positive contributor on a hearty seven targets against the Ravens. Byrd converted a key third-down highlight back-shoulder reception as well as a fourth-down slant opportunity. Byrd added a goal line defensive pass interference penalty but also dropped a routine comeback route target. Byrd’s speed has not been on display through two games like it was in the preseason.
WR Larry Fitzgerald
, 57 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 104 - 0 (11 targets) - Fitzgerald led Arizona in targets against Baltimore, his second straight game of at least 11 targets. Fitzgerald’s performance centered around two long receptions, both of at least 40 yards. He was wide open, quizzically lost by the Baltimore secondary, for more than 50 yards and also made a highlight reel sliding catch down the sideline, one of Kyler Murray
’s better throws in the game. Fitzgerald added a one-handed grab going out of bounds. The overall volume of Arizona’s passing game as well as Fitzgerald’s involvement had been promising through two games.
WR KeeSean Johnson
, 19 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 31 - 0 (2 targets) - Johnson saw a mere two targets after his volume-infused NFL debut a week ago. Johnson adjusted well on a third-and-long target up-for-grabs play and added a crossing route two-point conversion to his log. Johnson was a clear ancillary target against Baltimore with Larry Fitzgerald
and Christian Kirk
the top targets.
QB Lamar Jackson
, 79 offensive snaps, Pass: 24 - 37 - 272 - 2 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 16 - 120 - 0 - Lamar Jackson
showed some inconsistency after being perfect against Miami. Jackson missed a number of throws and the Ravens were forced to settle for 3 field goals which kept the game closer than it should have been. Jackson played well as a passer but showed he's not a finished product yet. Jackson racked up rushing yards because the Cardinals' defensive ends were consistently crashing in to giving Jackson a free avenue to the edge. Jackson kept the ball on a read option play and glided along the sideline for 19 yards. The defensive ends crashed hard keying on Mark Ingram
and leaving Jackson unaccounted for. Jackson connected with Marquise Brown
3 times following the run and then found Mark Andrews
wide open down the sideline for a 27 yard touchdown on the Ravens opening possession. Jackson. Jackson converted a 3rd and 17 with a strike up the seam to Andrews for 28 yards. Jackson then kept the ball on another option play and escaped out of bounds after gaining 16 more. The drive stalled with a stuffed run play and an incompletion forcing a field goal. Jackson moved the Ravens down the field for a touchdown on their ensuing possession. Jackson connected with Andrew and Ingram each for a big play in the passing game and added 30 yards on the ground on 4 carries to move the Ravens into the red zone. Jackson found Hayden Hurst
off play action for a 1 yard touchdown. The Ravens went 3 and out before halftime because of a sack and a botched snap on consecutive plays. Jackson again moved the Ravens into the red zone but they were forced to settle for a field goal after a delay of game penalty on 4th and 1. Jackson picked up 19 yards running on 3rd and 20 with a spectacular run to set up the 4th and short but the penalty forced a field goal. Jackson again moved the Ravens into field goal range with his legs and completions to Miles Boykin
and Andrews giving the Ravens a 6 point lead with 9 minutes remaining, After a failed possession, Jackson sealed the game with a 41 yard dagger to Marquise Brown
down the sideline on 3rd and 11. Jackson's throw was perfect to beat excellent coverage.
RB Mark Ingram
, 46 offensive snaps, Rush: 13 - 47 - 0, Rec: 2 - 30 - 0 (2 targets) - Mark Ingram
found limited success running the ball. The Cardinals defensive ends consistently collapsed in in an effort to slow the Ravens rushing attack. This created avenues for Lamar Jackson
to run but resulted in a modest day statistically for Ingram. Ingram gained the edge off right tackle and followed Hayden Hurst
into the second level on a 16 yard gain. Ingram made a 20 yard catch up the sideline lined up at wide receiver but absorbed a hard hit to the back from DJ Swearinger forcing him out of the game for the remainder of the series. Ingram picked up 10 yards on a dump off out of the backfield. Ingram played well, ran hard, and made plays in the passing game. Ingram was also the back in the game when the Ravens were in the red zone so expect him to continue to lead the Baltimore backfield barring an injury. Ingram sealed the game for the Ravens with back to back carries of 11 yards and 1 yard fighting through heavy contact on each.
WR Marquise Brown
, 51 offensive snaps, Rec: 8 - 86 - 0 (13 targets) - Marquise Brown
was heavily targeted by Lamar Jackson
. Brown made his first catch crossing the middle of the field on an in breaking route for an 18 yard gain. Brown made a 6 yard catch running a quick out route. Brown made a 9 yard catch on the opposite side of the field the following play running the same route. Following two incompletions on underneath targets Brown released up the sideline from the slot and hauled in a 41 yard gain along the sideline against tight coverage to seal the game. Brown showed great concentration, awareness, and hands on the play. A number of Brown's targets were thrown in the area of Brown but a number of his targets were uncatchable throws from Jackson.
WR Miles Boykin
, 38 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 11 - 0 (3 targets) - Miles Boykin
dropped his first target underneath with room to run. Boykin appeared to be looking upfield as the ball arrived. Boykin made an 11 yard catch along the sideline running an out route.
TE Mark Andrews
, 42 offensive snaps, Rec: 8 - 112 - 1 (9 targets) - Mark Andrews
continues to look unstoppable. Andrews continues to show great hands, an ability to get open, and physicality at and after the catch. Andrews came wide open off of a fake screen and went uncovered down the sideline for a 27 yard touchdown. On 3rd and 17 Andrews released up the seam and made a 28 yard catch between defenders knowing he was going to get hit. Andrews was hit after securing the pass and fumbled but recovered his own fumble. Andrews made an 8 yard catch on 3rd and long forcing a field goal attempt. Andrews found a hole in the Cardinals' zone defense up the seam and made a nice move after the catch to pick up 24 yards. Andrews chews up yards after the catch with his speed and physicality. Andrews made a 9 yard catch over the middle on 3rd and 7. A few plays later Andrews made a nearly identical catch for 8 yards and a 3rd down conversion. Andrews picked up 10 yards running a quick out route and hurdling a defender along the sideline.
TE Hayden Hurst
, 33 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 1 - 1 (1 targets) - Hayden Hurst
caught his only target off of play action for a 1 yard touchdown.
Jacksonville Jaguars 12, Houston Texans 13
What you need to know
- The Jacksonville Jaguars (0-2) lost a heartbreaker on Sunday, falling 13-12 to the Houston Texans after a failed two-point conversion attempt on one of the game’s final plays. The offense struggled to move the ball for nearly the entirety of the game behind rookie quarterback Gardner Minshew
. Minshew did string together solid drives on the final two possessions of the game, however, giving the team a chance to win.
- The Texans tight ends are on the field, but there are not many targets headed their way. Darren Fells
and Jordan Akins
are the top tight ends for the offense but are non-factors in the passing game.
Wide receivers Kenny Stills
and Keke Coutee
are being worked into the offense and getting significant snaps. Stills had a 31-yard reception to set up a field goal, but he also had a reception wiped out due to a penalty. Coutee was worked back into the offense but it as a slow day for Coutee also who was a non-factor in the offense.
QB Gardner Minshew
, 67 offensive snaps, Pass: 23 - 33 - 213 - 1 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 6 - 56 - 0 - Minshew’s biggest struggles in his first career start came when the Texans were able to pressure him. Whether by sending extra blitzes or Whitney Mercilus whipping the left side of the offensive line, the Texans were in Minshew’s face early and often. The pressure forced Minshew to rush an early throw to a wide open DJ Chark, with the pass falling incomplete despite the nearest defender several yards away from Chark. Minshew also fumbled three times, losing one of them, partially due to holding onto the ball too long and partially due to poor blocking.
On the other hand, Minshew showed great poise and accuracy throughout the game. He escaped pressure to pick a first down with his legs on two pivotal third downs and one 4th and 10 at the end of the game. When throwing the ball, Minshew really didn’t throw an inaccurate pass outside of his miss to Chark and another miss to Leonard Fournette
our of the backfield. His downfield accuracy was on point and he gave his wideouts a chance to get yards after the catch.
Minshew finished the game 23/33 passing for 213 yards and a touchdown pass. He needs to cleanup the fumbling issues, but he showed more food than bad in week 2.
RB Leonard Fournette
, 65 offensive snaps, Rush: 15 - 47 - 0, Rec: 4 - 40 - 0 (6 targets) - Fournette has a disastrous day running the ball for Jacksonville. Despite a strong effort on the two-point conversion, he was stuffed at the goal line, a strong metaphor for his day against Houston. He ended the game with 15 carries for a meager 47 yards, partially due to poor run blocking and partially because of his poor vision and open field ability.
After a week where Fournette looked quick and decisive, he continued to run into the backs of his blockers and miss open rushing lanes on Sunday. His worst play came when he was able to get past the second level on an inside zone play for 14 yards, but he was tackled easily in space by Tashaun Gipson. If Fournette can break that tackle like he’s expected to, he probably scores a touchdown.
Fournette did however once again show great promise as a receiver, finishing the game with four catches for 40 yards. His after the catch ability is a big part of the offense and is a vital aspect of his game with a rookie quarterback at the helm.
WR D.J. Chark
, 55 offensive snaps, Rec: 7 - 55 - 1 (9 targets) - Chark turned in his second straight strong performance after a career day against the Kansas City Chiefs in week 1. He did not make any huge downfield plays against Houston, but he did show terrific ball skills on two separate third down catches, which is a big positive since ball skills were his biggest red flag in 2018. Chark was used all over the field for Jacksonville and is beginning to have the look of a WR1. He scored the team’s only touchdown by running a smart drag route into the hole in the Texans’ zone coverage on the team’s second-to-last offensive play.
WR Chris Conley
, 57 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 73 - 0 (5 targets) - Conley only saw five targets on Sunday but he largely made the most of them. He dropped one 3rd down pass on the offensive’s final drive, but the good far outweighed the bad as he turned in a four catch, 73-yard performance.
Conley’s best play came on a 31-yard deep shot connection from Minshew, the offense’s biggest gain of the day. He beat the defensive back on the release to gain separation and then battled physical coverage to not only catch the pass but also keep both feet in bounds. He has become a consistent contributor this far.
WR Dede Westbrook
, 58 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 3 - 0 (5 targets) - Westbrook was targeted five times but only ended the game with one catch for three yards. He was routinely open but penalties seemed to negate every big play he made — from a holding on the offensive line eliminating a 12-yard gain on a screen to a 28-yard gain being negated by a strange offensive pass interference call, yellow flags hurt Westbrook’s production more than anything.
WR Keelan Cole
, 9 offensive snaps - Keelan Cole
only played 9 snaps and was not targeted once, despite Marqise Lee
not playing due to a knee injury.
TE James OShaughnessy
, 44 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 28 - 0 (4 targets) - Until rookie Josh Oliver
is healthy, O’Shaughnessy is going to get the most reps and targets among the tight ends. He was mostly used as a checkdown target against the Texans, never once being a primary read.
QB Deshaun Watson
, 66 offensive snaps, Pass: 16 - 29 - 159 - 0 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 4 - 5 - 1 - It was a slow day for Watson through the air but mainly due to the Jaguars taking DeAndre Hopkins
out of the game. Watson struggled to get the offense going, and for the most part, his pass protection held up. Watson did not get much help from others, and he had two critical drops from Will Fuller
that would have been sizeable gains. Watson did throw some deeper routes to find Fuller for 28 and hit another deep ball to Kenny Stills
for 31. The two longest completions to DeAndre Hopkins
were on play-action passes to the middle of the field for 14 and 13 yards. Watson did have a 2-yard touchdown rush that was the only touchdown on the day for the Texans.
RB Carlos Hyde
, 40 offensive snaps, Rush: 20 - 90 - 0 - When the Texans needed a spark, they turned to Carlos Hyde
to handle the run game. 20 carries and the continues to get the bulk of the work in the running game. He had strong runs and no negative runs. Two of Hyde's longest runs of the night were 14 and 11 yards, and on both runs, he finished by running over defenders. The Texans went away from Hyde in the red zone, which is unfortunate with how well that ran the football.
RB Duke Johnson
, 26 offensive snaps, Rush: 6 - 31 - 0 (1 targets) - It was a slow day for Duke Johnson
, and he was only targeted one time in the passing game. His best run came on a 3rd and long call where Johnson had a 19-yard run that saw him use a spin move and break a tackle. Outside of that run, Johnson was a non-factor for the offense.
WR DeAndre Hopkins
, 62 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 40 - 0 (8 targets) - Hopkins ran into his arch-nemesis in Jalen Ramsey, who has had the most success covering him over the years. Hopkins had two receptions over 10 yards for 14 and 13 yards. He did have one target over 20+ yards, but it was not close to being completed. Hipkins did most of his work underneath against Ramsey but it, like most of the Texans skill players, a slow day at the office.
WR Will Fuller
, 60 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 40 - 0 (7 targets) - With Hopkins taken out of the game, the Texans turned to Will Fuller
to pick up the slack. Fuller had beautiful 28-yard reception off the arm of Watson to get the Texans out from deep in their territory. Fuller got down the right sideline, and Watson dropped a dime to him in stride. Fuller had two costly drops both that hit him in his hands that he could not haul in. Fuller had a couple of receptions for 7 yards but missed his big opportunities in the passing game with his drops.
Philadelphia Eagles 20, Atlanta Falcons 24
What you need to know
- The Eagles lost a tough road battle to the Falcons, a game which featured a roster-clearing number of skill position injuries. Dallas Goedert
, Alshon Jeffery
, and DeSean Jackson
all missed most of the game (and did not return) and Carson Wentz
even missed time but did return to action. Miles Sanders
took a step forward in Philadelphia’s intent for him as their starter and Nelson Agholor
, by necessity, had one of his bigger games in recent memory. Carson Wentz
battled, ultimately to the loss, through tough circumstances as the Eagles look to rebound at home against the Lions in Week 3.
- Atlanta lost starting right guard Caleb McGary in the middle of the second quarter to a knee injury but McGary returned in the fourth quarter. Despite the injury, Atlanta’s offensive line played slightly better despite a heavy Eagles pass rush and Matt Ryan
found Julio Jones
and Calvin Ridley
for multiple big plays, including a fantastic fourth-down screen play to Julio Jones
where Jake Matthews redeemed himself from last week’s debacle with a great block to set up Jones for the 54-yard score that would be the game winner. Ryan is beginning to trust Ridley enough to target him deep between two defenders. Ito Smith
and Devonta Freeman
and both had strong moments. Freeman out-touched Smith 14-6 this week.
QB Carson Wentz
, 75 offensive snaps, Pass: 25 - 43 - 231 - 1 TD / 2 INT, Rush: 3 - 3 - 1 - Wentz missed the late second quarter but returned in the third against the Falcons, a strange game where the Eagles were gutted by in-game injuries of DeSean Jackson
, Alshon Jeffery
, and Dallas Goedert
. Wentz battled but was questionable with his accuracy throughout the game. Wentz had two interceptions, one largely a punt as it floated downfield on third down, with the other an ugly decision to no one in particular. Despite being down by multiple scores in the second half and a shell of their typical weapons, Wentz brought the Eagles back with multiple touchdowns including a goal line laser to Nelson Agholor
on fourth down and a goal line sneak to take the lead with three minutes left. More than Wentz’s own injury status, the health of his supporting cast is the watch list heading into Week 3.
RB Miles Sanders
, 35 offensive snaps, Rush: 10 - 28 - 0, Rec: 3 - 9 - 0 (4 targets) - Sanders’ touch total was similar to his Week 1 debut, but the intent of the Eagles to have Sanders moving towards clear lead back status was different in the Week 2 loss in Atlanta. Sanders saw time as the hurry-up back late in the first half and showed nice cuts on a third-and-short conversion. It has been tough sledding for the rookie through two games, partly due to offensive line play and partly due to Sanders’ vision not optimizing lanes when available. Sanders has shown clear upside with an evolving at his best with Jordan Howard
ideally as a power-centric closer role and Darren Sproles
sprinkled in for ancillary snaps.
RB Jordan Howard
, 18 offensive snaps, Rush: 8 - 18 - 0, Rec: 1 - 8 - 0 (1 targets) - Howard struggled in Week 2 after bludgeoning Washington in Week 1 with his after-contact acumen. Howard added a dump-off reception to his rushing role, one which included a nice cut on the inside which was called back by penalty. Howard is the clear secondary option to developing rookie Miles Sanders
RB Darren Sproles
, 28 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 5 - 0 (3 targets) - Sproles barely played against Atlanta, a stark drop from his active role in Week 1. Sproles converted a third down in the closing minutes as his notable contribution but also dropped a pass. With Miles Sanders
and Jordan Howard
clearly ahead of Sproles in the backfield pecking order, Sproles is relying on optimal targets to log a decent game going forward.
WR Nelson Agholor
, 78 offensive snaps, Rec: 8 - 107 - 1 (11 targets) - With DeSean Jackson
and Alshon Jeffery
in-game injuries, Agholor was thrust into a critical role against Atlanta. Agholor was peppered with targets (11) on a myriad of different routes. Agholor controlled a laser fourth-down touchdown pass from Carson Wentz
and kept the Eagles alive in the closing minutes with a fourth-and-long heave downfield by Wentz. Agholor took a huge hit on another end zone target to break up a potential touchdown and dropped a long sideline target in the close game as missed opportunities. Agholor’s viability is connected to the health of Jackson and Jeffery in future weeks, but Agholor performed admirably in necessity Week 2.
WR Alshon Jeffery
, 6 offensive snaps - Jeffery left the game with a calf injury.
WR DeSean Jackson
, 11 offensive snaps - Jackson left the game with a groin injury.
TE Zach Ertz
, 81 offensive snaps, Rec: 8 - 72 - 0 (16 targets) - Ertz easily led the Eagles in targets (33% market share) against the Falcons as they lost DeSean Jackson
, Alshon Jeffery
, and Dallas Goedert
in-game to injury. Ertz mired through tight coverage and defensive attention overall, however, as he rarely found open field at, or after, the catch point. Ertz did not find any touchdown opportunities but did convert a two-point attempt. On the biggest play of the game, Ertz was stopped just short of the sticks on fourth down to end the Eagles’ last gasp comeback effort.
QB Matt Ryan
, 66 offensive snaps, Pass: 27 - 43 - 320 - 3 TD / 3 INT, Rush: 2 - 3 - 0 - Ryan faced pressure throughout the first quarter but it wasn’t as intense as the Vikings game. He managed to move Atlanta downfield with throws to Austin Hooper
, Calvin Ridley
, and Mohamed Sanu
that led to a field goal early. Fletcher Cox nearly intercepted Ryan in the middle of the second quarter on a zone blitz. Ryan followed up with a deep fade to Julio Jones
for 27 yards. Soon after, Ryan lost starting right tackle Caleb McGary in the middle of the second quarter to a knee injury but Ty Sambrallo held up in relief. Ryan overthrew two receivers in a row on targets in the endzone to Ridley and then Justin Gage
on a post route. This led to a 50-yard field goal attempt that Matt Bryant
missed. Still, Ryan showed emotional resilience. He delivered a good pump fake to set up a completion Ridley for the second of two passes to the receiver to get across midfield. A few plays later, Ryan found Ridley for a deep post for a 34-yard score. With 0:41 left in the half, Ryan threw the ball behind Sanu and Sidney Jones intercepted the pass. However, Ryan found Jones for the score on the third play of the third quarter on a designed roll and scramble drill in the back of the end zone. Ryan underthrew a deep go route up the right sideline while under pressure against an all-out blitz, leading to his second interception and a return into Atlanta territory. Ryan threw an interception in the end zone on a red zone play at the end of the third quarter when he tried to fit the ball into coverage he didn’t see because he was throwing over a line that had compressed Ryan’s pocket and a defender hit his arm during the release. Ryan threw off his back foot to Freeman on a third and three late in the game while fading away from pressure. Late in the game, Ryan connected with Jones on a screen pass for a game-winning, 54-yard play.
RB Devonta Freeman
, 41 offensive snaps, Rush: 11 - 22 - 0, Rec: 3 - 42 - 0 (4 targets) - He picked up nine yards on his first two plays, including six on outside zone where he veered away from penetration and cut downhill. He earned another nine on a reverse pivot pitch before leaving the game for a breather. He returned during the drive but tight end Luke Stocker
missed his crack-back block and Brandon Graham dropped Freeman in the backfield for a loss of six. He another lost five on a run to the left tackle where Graham also penetrated deep into the backfield. He then earned a minimal gain on a check-down thrown with Ryan under pressure, forcing a punt. Freeman took a shovel pass on the opening play of the second half for 29 yards to get inside the five. Freeman earned a nice run on first down early in the fourth quarter, spinning off contact at the edge of the line and earning four. Freeman began a late-game drive with a slant from a wide spot for nine yards.
RB Ito Smith
, 25 offensive snaps, Rush: 4 - 32 - 0, Rec: 2 - 13 - 0 (3 targets) - He weaved his way for a first down on a 2nd and 1 during the first drive after Freeman earned four carries early on. Smith dropped a high throw in the flat on 2nd and 16 during the first drive after taking a hit. He earned a quick five yards leaking from the backfield to begin the second drive with the offense backed up at its one yard-line. Smith later weaved his way through traffic for four yards on a screen pass late in the second quarter. Taking over for Freeman inside the 5 after Freeman’s 29-yard shovel-pas-and-runs to open the third quarter, Smith had the best run of the night late in the third quarter on a draw play where he made multiple defenders miss.
WR Calvin Ridley
, 42 offensive snaps, Rec: 8 - 105 - 1 (10 targets) - He earned a first down on 3rd and 5 on an out to the opposite side of the field. Ridley dropped a diving go route off a double move in the end zone on 2nd and 9. Ridley made the first man miss after running a short out and got the first down in the middle of the second quarter. He then caught a route crossing the middle for a first down and took a hard hit to his hip on the play that forced Ridley to leave the game (on his own volition) for a break. He scored a few plays later on a deep post where he sold the dig effectively to the coverage to run past. He worked back to the ball with an excellent extension to the ball over the middle for a first down with a minute left. Late in the game, Ridley nearly pulled down a post route between two defenders in the end zone.
WR Julio Jones
, 54 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 106 - 2 (10 targets) - Rasul Douglas tightly covered Jones throughout the night, thanks to the added confidence of having a safety playing over top with help. Douglas broke up a short out during the first drive and a slant late in the game. Jones and Ryan also had trouble connecting early for other reasons early on. Jones dropped a high-thrown skinny post on third down at the end of the first quarter after Rodney McCloud knocked the ball loose. However, Jones and Ryan rebounded. He caught the skinny post during the first quarter on a 1st and 20. He then made an excellent leaping grab at the right sideline for 27 yards, getting both feet in bounds. Jones came alive in the second half, scoring on the third play of the third quarter on a designed roll and a scramble drill in the back of the end zone and later, a receiver screen on fourth and three and found open field for a 54-yard game winner.
WR Mohamed Sanu
, 55 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 16 - 0 (7 targets) - He made two men miss on a quick throw-out during the initial drive to earn a first down near midfield. He recovered a Luke Stocker
fumble late in the third quarter and later made two men miss to earn a first down on a short pass later in the drive. Sanu worked back to the ball late in the game over the middle to set up a third and three.
WR Russell Gage
, 9 offensive snaps (1 targets) - He dropped a slant thrown high and behind him during the second drive of the first quarter.
TE Austin Hooper
, 50 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 34 - 0 (6 targets) - He earned a first down on a quick out route on the second offensive play of the game against tight coverage. Hooper’s second catch was a seam route with a half roll to the right by Matt Ryan
to create the open area. His next catch came on a flat route with a little more than a minute left for seven yards. Hooper ran around the first man on a tight end screen, but then took a huge hit at the end of a four-yard gain
TE Luke Stocker
, 30 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 4 - 0 (1 targets) - He fumbled a play action reception late in the third quarter and Sanu made a great effort to recover it. He also missed a crack back on a pitch play that led to a six-yard loss early in the game on a carry for Freeman
New Orleans Saints 9, Los Angeles Rams 27
What you need to know
New Orleans Saints
- All eyes were on the referees this week with the way that the season ended last year for the Saints against the Rams. While there was a major blown call involving a Cameron Jordan fumble recovery that should have been returned for a touchdown, the biggest story was the injury to Drew Brees
and how ineffective the offense was in his absence. The Rams bottled up Alvin Kamara
after Brees left on the second drive of the game and forced Teddy Bridgewater
to try and win the game through the air. Bridgewater did not get much help and was under constant pressure from the Rams defensive front. Between Jared Cook
dropping passes and the line not being able to block Aaron Donald, it was a very bad day for the Saints offense. The defense kept them in the game until late in the 3rd quarter, but the constant aerial attack from the Rams proved to be too much. It appears that the Saints will continue with Bridgewater for the time being, but we may see Taysom Hill
under center if the offense continues to struggle. The Saints travel to Seattle to take on the Seahawks as they try to rebound in week 3.
Los Angeles Rams
- The Rams were aided by a Drew Brees
injury to log a home win over the conference foe in Week 2. Jared Goff
improved on his anemic Week 1 start to the season with sharper accuracy and Todd Gurley
showed better than his question-inducing usage last week. Tyler Higbee
sustained an injury and Gerald Everett
took a step forward as an ancillary target. Cooper Kupp
and Brandin Cooks
looked fantastic as their key passing game weapons. The Rams did not need much on offense with the Saints looking toothless with Teddy Bridgewater
in extended relief of the in-game injured Drew Brees
QB Teddy Bridgewater
, 56 offensive snaps, Pass: 17 - 30 - 165 - 0 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 2 - 5 - 0 - Trying to fill in for Brees is a tough thing to do, and even more difficult when the rest of the offense is flat. Bridgewater came in on the 3rd drive of the game and saw the offense implode for the rest of the game. The running game came to a complete halt and Bridgewater saw his tight end drop key passes a commit penalties that cost the team points. He was also under constant pressure from the Rams defensive front and did not have time to push the ball down the field. His arm looked great as he zipped passes all over the field, but the Saints could not sustain drives or come away with touchdowns. Bridgewater got in a rhythm with Thomas late, but the Rams scored twice and the end of the 3rd and beginning of the 4th quarters to put this one away. Bridgewater did not turn the ball over but completed just 56% of his passes and was sacked twice for a loss of 16 yards. Bridgewater is still projected to be the starter next week but will need a much better showing to fend of Taysom Hill
from taking that job.
QB Drew Brees
, 9 offensive snaps, Pass: 3 - 5 - 38 - 0 TD / 1 INT - Continuing with the theme of not being the game that everyone was expecting, Brees had a very rough outing. On the first drive of the game he gave up a fluke interception where it looked like Jared Cook
had come down with the catch before the ball was jarred loose by a big Eric Weddle hit and landed on top of a few bodies on the ground before being picked up by John Johnson. Brees was then hit in the hand by Aaron Donald on the next series and his day was done. He remained dressed on the sideline with a wrap on his hand for the rest of the game, but it was reported that he could not grip a football and never got the chance to come back in. Brees even had his helmet on when the teams came back out after half time, but he did not see the field. There is no current time table for his return.
QB Taysom Hill
, 21 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 16 - 0 (3 targets) - In an interesting move, the Saints used Hill as a tight end only this week despite Brees going down and the struggles of the offense and Bridgewater. He never lined up in the back field as a wild cat quarterback and did not receive a single carry for the struggling Saints run game. Hill caught 2 of his 3 targets and looks to be the best tight end on the field for the Saints at the moment. He had a 12-yard first down catch called back due to penalty but remained quiet outside of that. Expect Hill to line up under center at some point, especially if the offense continues to struggle the way it did this week.
RB Alvin Kamara
, 42 offensive snaps, Rush: 13 - 45 - 0, Rec: 1 - 15 - 0 (3 targets) - It is not often that we see Kamara held to under 50 yards rushing or a single reception for 15 yards, but that is exactly what happened this week. When Brees went down, the offense should have gone through Kamara, but the line could not block anyone this week and the Saints were playing from behind. Kamara was met by a defender in the back field constantly and the one big pass play he had was brought back because of a holding penalty. His longest run of the game was a 12-yard burst off the right side and accounted for almost º of his total yards for the game. The Saints offense is going to have to play much better next week against Seattle if they want to get a win and the offense is going to have to go through Kamara if Brees is out for any period of time.
RB Latavius Murray
, 23 offensive snaps, Rush: 5 - 7 - 0, Rec: 1 - 16 - 0 (1 targets) - The Saints rushing attack totaled 20 carries for a total of 57 yards, and Murray did not play a major role in any of that. His 5 carries for 7 yards averages out to just 1.7 yards per carry and his lone reception more than doubled his yards on the ground. Murray also did not look good in pass protection as Bridgewater was hurried on almost every drop back Murray was in the game. The Saints abandoned the running game this week and that type of game script does not bring much value for Murray. The Saints are going to try and establish the run next week in Seattle to prevent a repeat of this week and Murray is going to have to play much better or he will see even more of his carries going to Kamara.
WR Michael Thomas
, 64 offensive snaps, Rec: 10 - 89 - 0 (13 targets) - It took a while to get going with Bridgewater, but Thomas ended the day with 10 receptions on 13 targets. Unfortunately, those receptions did not come with big chunks of yards like the usually do with Brees and Thomas was held to under 100 yards this week. His longest catch was a 19-yard catch across the middle, but the Rams did a great job tackling and limiting yards after the catch for Thomas. The volume was there this week, but the overall productivity was limited by an offense that just was not clicking. Thomas will take on a Seattle defense that let Andy Dalton
throw for more than 400 yards in week 1, but he will need the offensive line to protect the quarterback long enough to get him the ball next week.
WR TreQuan Smith
, 38 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 49 - 0 (3 targets) - With Ginn going without a catch or target this week, Smith got a chance to show he belongs. He caught all 3 of his targets and was the second leading receiver behind Thomas. He had the longest play of the day for the Saints with a 28-yard reception and had just under 50 yards for the day. The bulk of the targets went to Thomas and Cook this week with Thomas in a 3-way tie for 3rd most on the team. Bridgewater could build off of the success with Smith this week heading into their matchup with Seattle making him a sneaky value next week, but the Saints offense is impossible to predict outside of Thomas and Kamara each week.
WR Ted Ginn
, 39 offensive snaps - The entire offense was affected when Brees went down, especially Ginn. It was a very bleak day where he did not receive a single target after a big week 1. The target distribution outside of Thomas and Kamara has always been scarce, but if Brees misses an extended amount of time it will be a very rough season for Ginn.
TE Jared Cook
, 44 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 25 - 0 (7 targets) - It has not been a great start to the season for Cook in New Orleans. He was the big offseason acquisition, but he looks more like a fish out of water in this offense. Bridgewater tried to use him as a safety blanket this week after Brees went down but Cook only managed to catch 2 of his 7 targets, even dropping an easy pass that hit him right in the chest. Cook was also responsible for the Brees interception on the first drive of the game. Cook caught the ball up the seam only to have it jarred loose by a big hit from Weddle. The ball popped in the air and landed on top of Cook on the ground. After rolling around for a minute it was picked up by Johnson and ruled an interception since the ball was never fully caught and did not touch the ground. The Saints desperately want to use Cook, but he just does not look ready to be a big part of this offense right now.
QB Jared Goff
, 70 offensive snaps, Pass: 19 - 28 - 283 - 1 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 4 - -2 - 1 - The 2-0 start for the Rams has been despite an up-and-down season start for Jared Goff
and the passing game. Week 2 provided upward promise against New Orleans as Goff was more accurate than a week ago but sprinkled in a handful of quizzical decisions and inaccurate passes. Goff missed Cooper Kupp
down the seam, nearly added a second interception into double coverage towards Tyler Higbee
, and lost a fumble in the red zone, a play which was (incorrectly) fortunately blown dead by the officials as the Saints raced for the sure-fire defensive touchdown. Goff rebounded to pull away for the home win with a laser goal-line slant touchdown to Brandin Cooks
and a sneak rushing touchdown, but the Rams are still finding their way on offense through two weeks of the season. The Browns and Buccaneers are up next, both challenges for the Rams.
RB Todd Gurley
, 45 offensive snaps, Rush: 16 - 63 - 1, Rec: 3 - 4 - 0 (4 targets) - Gurley was used more regularly in the red zone against the Saints, an uptick in his offensive involvement from the season opener. Gurley’s passing game blackout continued, however, with a mere four yards through the air for the second week in a row despite the screen game being a Rams staple in previous seasons. Gurley added a drop but contributed a handful of strong rushing plays including a third-and-short conversion, goal-line touchdown, and a chunk run of more than 15 yards. Gurley’s status as the lead back for the Rams has not been in question through two weeks, but his highlight plays have turned from regularity over the past two seasons to flashing moments.
RB Malcolm Brown
, 25 offensive snaps, Rush: 6 - 37 - 0, Rec: 1 - 10 - 0 (1 targets) - Brown took a step back as starter Todd Gurley
moved forward in the Rams backfield rotation against the Saints. Brown did not see the field until the mid-second quarter and his game was highlighted by two strong runs later in the second half, totaling 20 yards. With Brown not seeing the red zone involvement like in Week 1, Brown needs a blowout game script to see a strong workload or stat line without a Todd Gurley
WR Cooper Kupp
, 66 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 6 - 0, Rec: 5 - 120 - 0 (9 targets) - Kupp nearly doubled any other Rams’ passing game target in the Week 2 win over the Saints. Kupp looked far more comfortable than his lack-of-yards-after-catch effort in Week 1, his first game back from injury. Kupp made a diving reception over the middle, plus two highlight runs and a myriad of missed tackles down to the goal line, essentially a game-clinching play for the Drew Brees
-less Saints. Kupp has yet to find the end zone but his 12 receptions over two games and after-catch uptick in Week 2 are positive signs to start the season.
WR Brandin Cooks
, 68 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 2 - 0, Rec: 3 - 74 - 1 (4 targets) - Despite a mere four targets against the Saints, Cooks bounced back from a sluggish Week 1 outing. Cooks was on the receiving end of two of Jared Goff
’s best throws in the game, a drop-in-the-bucket deep ball on third-and-down and a laser goal-line touchdown amidst several defenders with a slant route. Cooks dropped a deep crossing route target, his lone missed opportunity in the game. Cooks’ target volume has been a concern through two weeks (10 total) but he is on the right track after finding the connection with Goff in Week 2.
WR Robert Woods
, 69 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 9 - 0, Rec: 2 - 33 - 0 (2 targets) - Woods’ offensive involvement shriveled against the Saints after a hearty 13 targets in Week 1. Woods took a jet sweep for a solid gain on the ground, but his looks as a receiver were minimal. Woods converted a deeper crossing route and took advantage for strong blocking on a screen pass for nearly 20 yards. Woods drew a defensive pass interference penalty and had a red zone touchdown called back by penalty.
TE Gerald Everett
, 50 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 0 - 0, Rec: 3 - 21 - 0 (5 targets) - Tyler Higbee
sustained a lung injury against the Saints, fueling an uptick for Gerald Everett
. Everett was stuffed on back-to-back red zone receptions but churned through a tackle attempt for a chunk gain on his third reception. Everett is an ancillary weapon for the Rams but potential missed time from Higbee makes Everett a more consistent projection for a handful of targets per week.
TE Tyler Higbee
, 24 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 21 - 0 (3 targets) - Higbee corralled a deep crossing route against the Saints as his highlight contribution but sustained a lung injury and was hospitalized as a precaution. If Higbee misses time, Gerald Everett
stands to benefit in the wide receiver-centric Rams passing game.
Cleveland Browns 23, New York Jets 3
What you need to know
- The Browns got lucky as they took on an injury-ravaged Jets team that wound up using their third-string quarterback, Luke Falk
, for much of the game after Trevor Siemian
suffered a season-ending ankle injury. The Cleveland offense continues to look disjointed as Baker Mayfield
is not showing the quick decision-making and accuracy that he did during his rookie year. Mayfield was bailed out on an electric 89-yard touchdown by Odell Beckham
, Jr. where the receiver took an eight-yard pass to the house while reaching 21.7 MPH according to NextGen stats. Before that, Beckham dealt with calf cramping toward the end of the second quarter and went to the locker room early to receive an I.V. He returned for the beginning of the third quarter. The defense was solid, with Myles Garrett leading the way with a career-high three sacks. It wasn't all good for Garrett as he also drew two roughing the passer penalties.
New York Jets
- Putting aside the numerous injuries and a case of mono, two weeks in a row have shown us nothing of the supposed offensive acumen of head coach Adam Gase. Despite knowing he would be without Sam Darnold
, there was no real clear adjustment to lean on whatever strengths Trevor Siemian
had. Add in a porous offensive line and a sudden absence of any use of Jamison Crowder
, and you can only feel confident in the production of Le’Veon Bell, who was solid this week, and even moreso in PPR formats.
QB Baker Mayfield
, 69 offensive snaps, Pass: 19 - 35 - 325 - 1 TD / 1 INT - Mayfield's final stat line looks solid but he didn't play as well as it appears. He held onto the ball too long at times and suffered from some accuracy issues. Onlookers have yet to observe the quick decision-making and accuracy that was evident during Mayfield's rookie campaign. An 89-yard touchdown pass to Odell Beckham
helped Mayfield out greatly, even though Beckham did most of the heavy lifting on that play. Mayfield got off to a good start, escaping the pass rush and finding D'Ernest Johnson for a 27-yard gain. The pass was a bit underthrown as Johnson had to slow down and wait for it. The play could have gone for a longer gain if it was thrown deeper. He hit Beckham with a 33-yard dart down the right sideline. Beckham made an impressive one-handed catch with a defender draped all over him. The first drive brought Cleveland into the red zone. Mayfield threw a pass to Jarvis Landry
around the Jets' five-yard line but Landry dropped it. He would have been tackled right away even if he made the grab. On the next play, no one could get open in the end zone so Mayfield had to scramble and wound up throwing the ball away. On the second drive, Mayfield threw a high pass to David Njoku
. Njoku leapt high to catch it but was upended and landed on his head, dropping the pass in the process. He then had Beckham open deep in the middle of the field but threw too high. In the second quarter, Mayfield threw high to Beckham again. This time the receiver was able to make the leaping catch. On the second drive of the second quarter Mayfield had two passes tipped at the line of scrimmage. At the end of the half, Mayfield took a deep end zone shot to Beckham, who was double-covered. Beckham couldn't secure what would have been a 41-yard touchdown. He bounced back to find Landry for a 25-yard gain and then rushed the team to the line to spike the ball, leaving just enough time for a field goal before halftime. In the third quarter, Mayfield missed an open Beckham on third-and-two, stalling out the first drive of the half. It is possible Mayfield didn't see Beckham, although he was looking in his direction. The 89-yard touchdown pass only traveled about eight yards in the air, with Beckham doing the rest of the work. His interception came on the first drive of the fourth quarter on a pass down the middle that got tipped into the air.
RB Nick Chubb
, 42 offensive snaps, Rush: 18 - 62 - 1, Rec: 4 - 36 - 0 (4 targets) - Chubb continues to see a lead-back workload with D'Ernest Johnson seeing just three carries in the game. He left the field a few times in passing situations but is doing enough through the air to offset concerns. His first carry was an eight-yard gain where he used good vision to find an opening. He got a red zone carry at the Jets' four-yard line at the end of the first drive but lost a yard. On the third drive of the first quarter, he had a seven-yard run to the right and tacked on a six-yard reception. At the beginning of the second quarter, Chubb lined up out wide on the left and hauled in a 13-yard reception. A week after Dontrell Hilliard
vultured a touchdown from him, Chubb made sure that wouldn't happen again by ripping off a 19-yard run for the score in the second quarter. He trucked a defender attempting to tackle him around the New York four-yard line. He received excellent blocking from the left side of the line on the touchdown run. In the third quarter, he ran for eight yards while breaking two tackles along the way. In the fourth quarter, Chubb went for a 15-yard gain to the left. He ran right through a tackle just past the line of scrimmage on the run. Chubb is better than advertised in the passing game and has been breaking tackles at a consistent rate.
RB DErnest Johnson
, 27 offensive snaps, Rush: 3 - 8 - 0, Rec: 3 - 42 - 0 (4 targets) - Johnson got additional playing time with original third-down back Dontrell Hilliard
failing to get cleared from the concussion protocol in time for the game. The undrafted rookie has shown excellent hands in the passing game. He hauled in a 27-yard reception on the first drive that could have been a longer gain had the pass not been underthrown. Johnson did drop a short pass in the second quarter. He was hit just after making contact with the ball and couldn't hold on. He had a six-yard carry later on the same drive where he lost his footing on a cut back and fell. That could have gone for a much longer gain if he stayed upright. It remains to be seen if Johnson retains a role in the offense when Hilliard returns but if nothing else, he has proven to be a usable asset in the passing game.
WR Odell Beckham
, 63 offensive snaps, Rec: 6 - 161 - 1 (10 targets) - In his return to the Big Apple, Beckham made two exceptional plays in the win. On the first drive of the game, he hauled in a 33-yard, one-handed catch down the right sideline with a defender draped all over him. He got open deep on the left side of the field on the team's second drive but was overthrown. In the second quarter, he made a leaping 21-yard reception in which he held on after being sandwiched by two defenders. At the end of the second quarter, he drew a deep end zone shot but was unable to make the catch against double coverage. He came up limping and ended up heading to the locker room early with calf cramping. He received an I.V. during halftime and was able to return for the start of the third quarter. Beckham made the play of the game on an 89-yard touchdown reception during the third quarter. He took a pass that traveled about eight yards in the air and outran the Jets defense for the score, reaching a 21.7 MPH sprint according to NextGen stats. Beckham finished off the evening with 12 and six-yard catches in the fourth quarter.
WR Jarvis Landry
, 68 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 32 - 0 (7 targets) - Landry had yet another slow game, which is becoming the norm since Freddie Kitchens took over as play-caller in 2018. He started the game off with a short, seven-yard catch on the first drive. Baker Mayfield
went right back to him but this time the pass was a bit too high and Landry couldn't corral it. He saw a red zone target at the New York five-yard line but he dropped a catchable pass. Even had he made the catch, Landry had no chance at scoring as there were several Jets defenders in the vicinity. He was quiet until the final drive of the second quarter when he bobbled and then dropped what would have been a seven-yard catch. He then hauled in a 25-yard pass to set up a half-ending field goal. Not coincidentally, Odell Beckham
was in the locker room getting an I.V. at the time. His final catch didn't come until the fourth quarter on a short reception that went for no gain. Not that it comes as a surprise but Landry has really taken a backseat to Beckham in the passing attack which is not good for his fantasy value.
TE Demetrius Harris
, 54 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 4 - 0 (1 targets) - Harris caught just one pass, a four-yarder during the first quarter. He presumably would become a bigger part of the offense if the concussed David Njoku
is unable to play against the Rams in Week 3 but the Browns didn't use him much even after Njoku left in Week 2.
TE David Njoku
, 10 offensive snaps (1 targets) - Njoku had a scary fall on his lone target in the game. In the first quarter, Njoku leapt up to catch a high pass. It looked like he was going to make the athletic grab but he was undercut by a defender while in the air. He flipped upside-down and landed on his head. Njoku wound up being concussed on the play and was placed in the concussion protocol. With the Browns on a short week, he will have a hard time getting cleared in time to play in Week 3.
QB Luke Falk
, 48 offensive snaps, Pass: 20 - 25 - 198 - 0 TD / 0 INT - Pressed into service when Trevor Siemian
went down, Falk played adequately, albeit with a curtailed playbook. He did manage two of the longest throws the offense had on the night. The first was a deep pass to Robby Anderson
in the third quarter for 36 yards. Anderson had a step on the coverage along the right side but Falk underthrew him. Anderson did a good job slowing for the ball and keeping his feet in for the pass. At the time, the Jets had -12 passing yards. The second long pass was to a crossing Jamison Crowder
who found an open seam against the zone defense for a 30 yard catch. It was a decent throw, and Crowder was wide open between the defenders, and it could have gone for more yards but he stumbled. Unlike Siemian, head coach Adam Gase seemed OK with Falk uncorking some longer passes, though it might have been because the Browns were in control and sitting back on defense.
QB Trevor Siemian
, 20 offensive snaps, Pass: 3 - 6 - 3 - 0 TD / 0 INT - Things were bad for the former Denver Broncos starter before Myles Garrett bent his ankle the wrong way in what appeared to be a horrific injury, which forced him from the game. Siemian threw very few passes, most of which was behind the line of scrimmage. There was still a lot of game to go, but from what we saw, head coach Adam Gase didn’t trust his starter to throw downfield.
RB LeVeon Bell
, 61 offensive snaps, Rush: 21 - 68 - 0, Rec: 10 - 61 - 0 (10 targets) - Bell is now the lone bright spot on an offense which is mired in conservative mediocrity. The offensive line is struggling terribly and not opening holes for him, so it’s a good thing that he’s capable of creating production on his own. That said, he had a hard time breaking off runs, especially early. Where Bell’s value truly shone Monday night was in the passing game, which he led in targets, receptions and yards, as he caught every single ball thrown his way. One of his better plays was when he broke off a 17-yard catch and run at the end of the third quarter. On the play, he chipped in on a quick block to help out the right tackle, then popped out into the open where Luke Falk
hit him with the pass. Bell turned upfield, juked a defender and then hopped over another one on his way to a first down and then some. Unfortunately, for all the good he did, the evening was marred by a fumble in the fourth quarter with just over 7 minutes left. As with the previous play, Bell took a pass – this time on a screen play – and headed up field, dodging one tackler at the 24 yard line and hauling tail into the red zone. When lowered himself to deliver a hit at the five yard, however, the ball popped out and Cleveland recovered. The game was likely out of reach, but considering how hard Bell had been playing, it was a disappointing note.
RB Ty Montgomery
, 24 offensive snaps, Rush: 3 - 25 - 0, Rec: 3 - 15 - 0 (3 targets) - Aside from the possibility that Montgomery could be pressed into service as a backup quarterback if Luke Falk
was hurt, Montgomery didn’t see much action. He did have a pair of nice runs up the middle, one in the second quarter and one in the fourth, but he’s not seeing much use right now and after two games it’s clear hopes it would be otherwise are growing dim.
WR Robby Anderson
, 67 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 81 - 0 (6 targets) - Despite a decent statline, it’s worth noting that Anderson had just two targets in the first half, both off which were wiped out due to penalties. In other words, he was not much in the gameplan. That changed a little with Luke Falk
under center in the second half, as the Jets opened things up a little more. He had a couple of good catches, including a nice effort to come back on an underthrown ball by Falk in the third quarter.
WR Jamison Crowder
, 67 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 40 - 0 (6 targets) - After a massive amount of targets in Week 1, Crowder disappeared in Week 2. He saw just one target in the first half, and like Robby Anderson
, only saw real action when the playbook opened up with Luke Falk
. What was most baffling about the day for Crowder is that his ability to find the open middle of the field on quick slants seems like it would have been an ideal way for the Jets to overcome a fearsome Browns pass rush. He did have one very nice catch in the second half when he used the cushion afforded by a zone defense to split two defenders, make a catch and gain some more yards before stumbling and getting tackled.
WR Josh Bellamy
, 45 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 5 - 0 (2 targets) - Bellamy didn’t see much action, and only made one catch in the fourth quarter. With so many screens being thrown, it didn’t seem like Bellamy was part of the gameplan.
WR Demaryius Thomas
, 7 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - -1 - 0 (2 targets) - Despite not practicing with the team all week, Thomas was active, but ended up leaving early as he re-aggravated his hamstring. His night was notable for being the only wide receiver with a catch at halftime.
Minnesota Vikings 16, Green Bay Packers 21
What you need to know
- There was no sense of panic in Minnesota when Kirk Cousins
did not look great in a week 1 win. Everyone thought the with how effective the running game was he just did not have to throw the ball. That all fell apart this week when Cousins was the sole reason the team lost to the Packers. Dalvin Cook
did his part on the ground and currently leads the NFL in rushing yards. The defense battled the Cousins turnovers and shut out the Packers after they scored a touchdown at the start of the 2nd quarter. The offense had every chance to get back into the game and take a lead, but Cousins squandered every opportunity, including a red zone interception and several over thrown balls on what should have been easy completions. The Packers also helped bail him out when 2 easy interceptions bounced off the hands of a defender. It was a disastrous day for Cousins and the Vikings offense. They are going to have to figure something out on offense before the Raiders come to town next week with their new look offense.
Green Bay Packers
- Aaron Jones
looks extremely comfortable finding the cutback lanes and getting downhill in this running game and he was very polished as a receiver. Aaron Rodgers
is taking shots downfield off of play action but was conservative once the team built a 21-0 lead. The VIkings strong plays on the ball in the air and tackling kept Rodgers from a bigger day. Davante Adams
was the ace in the hole on key conversions and he is gliding around the field in top form. No other pass catcher was targeted enough to make a fantasy impact in a low volume passing game.
QB Kirk Cousins
, 65 offensive snaps, Pass: 14 - 32 - 230 - 1 TD / 2 INT, Rush: 2 - 17 - 0 - Everyone thought last week was just an outlier and that Cousins could merely manage a game when Dalvin Cook
takes over. This week the Vikings dug themselves a 21-0 hole and Cousins did everything possible to not climb out of it. His lone job saving play was a perfectly thrown 45-yard pass to Diggs for a touchdown. The ball landed just over his outside shoulder in stride for the touchdown. Diggs proceeded to take off his helmet and was called for an unsportsmanlike penalty that pushed the extra point back and Dan Bailey
proceeded to miss the kick. Cousins also had a 3-yard touchdown to Diggs nullified by an offensive pass interference call on Dalvin Cook
that he proceeded to turn into a field goal. There were a few other big plays, including a 61-yard catch and run by Chad Beebe
and a 30-yard catch by Thielen. There were also the 2 interceptions thrown. The first he tried to force a ball across the middle to Diggs in a crowd of Packers defenders and the ball was tipped and intercepted. The second was the worst play of the game where Cousins fled a collapsing pocket, back pedaled away from the goal line, and threw up a lame duck that was an easy interception in the corner of the end zone. Rather than throw the ball away and have another red zone try, he forced the ball towards the end zone and came away with no points. The Vikings paid Cousins a lot of money and are unlikely to move off of him after 2 bad games, but if this trend continues this season the Vikings may want to think about drafting the quarterback of the future in Minnesota.
RB Dalvin Cook
, 47 offensive snaps, Rush: 20 - 154 - 1, Rec: 3 - 37 - 0 (3 targets) - There is only so much a single player can do for a team each week. Cook currently leads the NFL in rushing yards and looks fully healthy for the first time in his NFL career. He has been rewarded by terrible quarterback play and the Vikings currently sit at 1-1 on the season. Cook had nearly 200 all purpose yards this week, including a 75-yard touchdown run when the Vikings were down 21-0. Cook burst off the right tackle and sprinted all the way to the end zone for a play that should have energized the entire offense. Unfortunately, the next 3 drives for the Vikings went punt, punt, and interception. Cook chipped in 3 catches on 3 targets and did everything he could in the 4th quarter to give Cousins a chance to take the lead. The one lapse for Cook was an offensive pass interference call that came on a 3-yard Diggs touchdown catch. The play was challenged, reviewed, and the offensive pass interference call was added after the original play was called a touchdown. Cook averaged 7.7 yards per carry on 20 touches and is not threatened by Mattison behind him at all. With the struggles of Cousins under center, look for the Vikings to run the ball early and often next week against the Raiders.
RB Alexander Mattison
, 8 offensive snaps, Rush: 4 - 25 - 0 - Cook was not the only one to have success on the ground, Mattison chipped in 25 yards of his own on only 4 carries. He had another first down run nullified by a penalty but has shown that he is the clear number 2 in Minnesota right now. Ameer Abdullah
was given a single carry, but Mattison is not in any jeopardy of losing his backup role. Mattison did not have a single target in the passing game, but Cousins would have probably over thrown him like he did almost all of his other receivers anyway. The Vikings are rising Cook hard early this season and we should see more carries for Mattison in the coming weeks as they try to manage his workload. The offensive line is doing a great job run blocking and Mattison should have several holes to run through when given the chance.
WR Adam Thielen
, 64 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 75 - 0 (8 targets) - It is hard being a receiver when your quarterback cannot seem to hit the broad side of a barn. Thielen made the best of his situation this week and caught 5 of his 8 targets. Every catch seemed to be contested or thrown just a little behind or too far in front of him this week. Thielen had a single big play with a 30-yard catch and run down the sideline, but he also had to make a play on an overthrown ball by Cousins that was almost intercepted. Thielen is not enjoying the same success that he had the beginning of last season and did not continue the streak of 100 yards and a touchdown against the Packers he had in both games last season. Thielen continues to stress that he is not worried about personal numbers as long as the team is winning, but that may change if Cousins continues to struggle under center.
WR Chad Beebe
, 16 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 61 - 0 (2 targets) - If you are only going to get a single reception in a game, you might as well take it for 61 yards and set up a 1st and goal situation for the offense. Beebe had 2 targets this week but only had 1 catch. He made the most of his catch across the middle when he turned it up field and took it 61 yards down field to the Green Bay 3-yard line. Beebe had a good preseason but has not factored into the Viking offense in the first 2 weeks outside of this play. Look for his usage to go up until Doctson takes the field later this year.
WR Stefon Diggs
, 58 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 49 - 1 (7 targets) - The SpongeBob ‘ight imma head out’ cleats went viral before the start of the game this week and Diggs did everything he could to live up to the hype they created. He caught a beautifully thrown 45-yard touchdown pass that landed just over his outside shoulder in stride but proceeded to be flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct when he took his helmet off in celebration. The penalty pushed the extra point try back and Dan Bailey
missed again after an earlier field goal miss. This ended up being the only catch for Diggs after he had a 3-yard touchdown catch across the middle nullified after a successful offensive pass interference challenge by Green Bay. The call came against Dalvin Cook
and the Vikings had to settled for a field goal rather than a touchdown that drive. Diggs was targeted 7 times this week and only wound up with a single reception. It was a rough day for all Viking receivers with Cousins struggling under center. Diggs should see plenty of volume next week with the Vikings taking on an Oakland team that was picked apart by the Chiefs through the air.
TE Kyle Rudolph
, 65 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 9 - 0 (5 targets) - After failing to have a catch in the first game, Rudolph at least had a reception this week. He had less than 10 yards receiving on 3 catches, but that came from the ineffectiveness of Cousins this week more than anything else. We did see Irv Smith
have a reception this week and if his snap count continues to increase it will be at the expense of Rudolph. The Vikings look like a team that is preparing to move off of their long-time tight end and see what Smith has to offer. Rudolph is going to have to get things clicking with Cousins and quickly if he wants to keep his starting job.
QB Aaron Rodgers
, 74 offensive snaps, Pass: 22 - 34 - 209 - 2 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 1 - 0 - 0 - Rodgers was successful on a downfield shot to Davante Adams
off of play action to open the game and stayed hot through the first quarter as the team opened up a 21 point lead. He was passing well to the backs, including an inside screen to Jamaal Williams
that resulted in the first score of the game. He had time to throw on third down on the second scoring drive, hitting Marquez Valdes-Scantling
and Davante Adams
on third down before finishing with a touchdown that Geronimo Allison
climbed the ladder to get. The offense was more conservative after the Packers opened up that lead and the Vikings pass defense was much tighter. Rodgers did get a long pass interference to Davante Adams
that won't show up in the box score. He played well and should be even better against easier defenses.
RB Aaron Jones
, 43 offensive snaps, Rush: 23 - 116 - 1, Rec: 4 - 34 - 0 (6 targets) - Jones was a natural in the zone running game, regularly finding cutback lanes and getting yards after contact. His burst, decisiveness, and ability to make adjustments behind the line while running with urgency stood out. He was sharing with Jamaal Williams
, but getting carries on many of his snaps and playing a large role in the passing game. He was very smooth bringing in the ball when it was off target and he almost had a huge gain on a wheel route were it not for a fingertip pass breakup. The game script was perfect for his workload and he was getting the drop on the Vikings consistently after they had a few stuffs early with inside penetration. Jones Week 1 was due to a flat performance by the whole offense and good Bears defense. He's hitting his stride now.
RB Jamaal Williams
, 35 offensive snaps, Rush: 9 - 28 - 0, Rec: 3 - 13 - 1 (4 targets) - Williams was able to score on an inside screen out of a two back set to open the scoring, but otherwise was quiet on his touches. He got a good helping of carries and targets, but was unremarkable with the ball in his hands. Williams did run efficiently and fell forward on most carries, but he is clearly the inferior runner and won't have relevance unless Jones goes down.
WR Davante Adams
, 71 offensive snaps, Rec: 7 - 106 - 0 (9 targets) - Adams is in midseason form, moving around the field and making plays on the ball in the air with ease. He got open downfield on the first pass of the game and was Aaron Rodgers
preferred target on third down. He came up with multiple key conversions in the game and Adams last catch iced the game for the Packers. He also drew a long pass interference and another long pass took a great defensive play to break up. He's fine after a quiet Week 1.
WR Geronimo Allison
, 34 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 25 - 1 (5 targets) - Allison went up high to get a score, but was a liability on his other receptions, fumbling on one and failing to convert with passive running on another. He was a dumpoff pressure release valve on two of his catches and still isn't a key part of the pass offense.
WR Marquez Valdes-Scantling
, 65 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 19 - 0 (6 targets) - Valdes-Scantling had some downfield targets broken up and gave back yards on a wide receiver screen so his box score was underwhelming. He is still getting downfield targets and could be a better play in a more wide open high scoring game script.
WR Jake Kumerow
, 6 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 12 - 0 (1 targets) - Kumerow's one reception came on a third and 28 that was basically a play to set up a safer punt.
TE Jimmy Graham
, 54 offensive snaps (2 targets) - Graham was called for offensive pass interference on his one reception. He doesn't appear to be a key part of the game plan.
Buffalo Bills 28, New York Giants 14
What you need to know
- The Buffalo Bills beat the New York Giants to improve to 2-0, with two road wins at MetLife Stadium. Josh Allen
played well and limiting his mistakes after an error-prone game last week. John Brown
and Cole Beasley
dominated the work for the wide receiving corps, while Frank Gore
was the leading rusher for the offense. Devin Singletary
played the lesser role in a committee but made multiple big plays, including a rushing touchdown in the red zone.
New York Giants
- 1. The depleted receiving corps was evident on Sunday as Manning was forced to hold the ball or throw it away a lot.
2. Barkley was a stud as always and still somewhat underused. Engram was invisible for a lot of this game and wasn't the threat over the middle the Giants needed.
3. The offensive line continues to look respectable. The weapons for the Giants aren't getting it done, separation was tough to come by. Perhaps it will improve when Tate/Shepard returns.
QB Josh Allen
, 76 offensive snaps, Pass: 19 - 30 - 253 - 1 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 7 - 21 - 1 - Josh Allen
had a strong performance in a week two win at the New York Giants. Allen has improved this season as a passer, showing more comfort in the pocket and the ability to make multiple progressions in the passing game. Last season, when Allen was forced to scramble, he frequently ran and was prone to bad decisions. Against the Giants, he made better decisions on the move, keeping his head up when he scrambled and made on target throws on multiple occasions. Allen scored a touchdown on the ground and through the air, the first a designed quarterback run in the red zone and the second an easy shovel pass to Isaiah McKenzie
on an end-around. Allen could have had a bigger day, as Zay Jones
dropped a touchdown in the end zone, and he overthrew John Brown
on a 52-yard touchdown. He remains a threat on the ground, with 21 yards rushing, including a third down conversion scramble, but his growth as a passer and a strong relationship with John Brown
can open the offense up to go with a strong defense. The Bills play their home opener against the Cincinnati Bengals in week three who were shredded this week by the 49ers.
RB Frank Gore
, 45 offensive snaps, Rush: 19 - 68 - 1, Rec: 2 - 15 - 0 (2 targets) - Frank Gore
led the Buffalo Bills backfield against the New York Giants in week two. Gore drew the start and played ahead of rookie Devin Singletary
throughout the game, out-touching Singletary 19 to 6. Gore was successful behind the Bills offensive line early in the game, but the offense became predictable, and Gore was contained in the second half. Gore did convert a red zone touchdown on his second attempt on the goal line. He is playing ahead of Singletary, but Singletary looks consistently more explosive and should see an increase in playing time in future games. Gore will face the Cincinnati Bengals and should be a home favorite in week three.
RB Devin Singletary
, 25 offensive snaps, Rush: 6 - 57 - 1 - Devin Singletary
had a strong performance for the second consecutive week. Singletary has had 2018 Phillip Lindsay
-like efficiency, playing against 8-man boxes on only 10% of his carries, and has benefitted by creating big plays. He scored a red zone touchdown on a well-blocked misdirection play to the perimeter where he got into the end zone untouched. Singletary played behind Frank Gore
and only saw 6 touches to Gore’s 19, so he is far from an every-down player at this point in the season. Singletary gives the Buffalo an added dimension, but his numbers are likely to regress towards normal efficiency with more touches. In week three, he faces the Cincinnati Bengals who gave up three touchdowns to 49ers running backs in week two.
WR John Brown
, 60 offensive snaps, Rec: 7 - 72 - 0 (8 targets) - John Brown
was terrific again for the Buffalo Bills in a win against the New York Giants in week two. Brown consistently made plays including multiple third down conversions to help out Josh Allen
. He could have had an enormous fantasy day but was overthrown by Josh Allen
on what would have been a wide-open 52-yard touchdown. Brown has been the leading target receiver in both games of the season and has shown a good rapport with Allen. Brown will look to continue his strong play at home against the Bengals in week three.
WR Cole Beasley
, 37 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 83 - 0 (4 targets) - Cole Beasley
led the Bills in receiving in a week two win against the Giants. Beasley has been a strong target for Josh Allen
in the short area of the field and was successful Sunday on multiple third downs. Beasley’s big play was a busted coverage where he set the Bills up in the red zone with a big run after the catch. The Buffalo wide receiving corps has been centered around Beasley and John Brown
through two weeks with minimal involvement from ancillary wide receivers. Beasley will look to continue his strong role in the offense next week against the Bengals.
QB Eli Manning
, 70 offensive snaps, Pass: 26 - 45 - 250 - 1 TD / 2 INT, Rush: 1 - 2 - 0 - Eli Manning
was dealing with a short handed receiving corps as the Giants already thing unit was missing some starters. This was evident throughout the game as Manning was forced to hold the ball when he was afforded good pass protection. He broke the pocket and bought some time also but frequently had to throw the ball away so still his receivers struggled to get separation. Manning mostly played it safe with short throws underneath and rarely tested the Bills deep. When he was afforded protection and the receiver was open, he made the throw but these were often minimal gains. The play big never happened. Manning hit Fowler along the sideline with a very accurate throw but it was slightly late which allowed the defender to deliver a big hit that knocked the ball free. A bizarre tipped ball lead to an interception as the Buffalo defender caught it via a deflection. Manning eventually scored on a great throw but even better catch in the endzone. He put it up high and away from the defender, his receiver made a great play to keep his feet in bounds. Manning began to force balls as the game continued as the Giants were behind on the scoreboard. He overthrew Fowler deep and was picked off towards the end on an absolute prayer of a ball that was clearly forced. Manning could have been picked off a few other times in the game as a Bill undercut the route on one occasion. Manning's pass protection was adequate, his receivers just really struggled to gain separation. There appears to be a lack of talent at this position with a heavy reliance on unproven young players. When Shepard returns and Tate joins, perhaps Manning could see his numbers improve. Daniel Jones
is waiting behind him however and it seems inevitable that he'll be replaced at some stage in the season.
RB Saquon Barkley
, 61 offensive snaps, Rush: 18 - 107 - 1, Rec: 3 - 28 - 0 (7 targets) - Saquon Barkley
was highly productive as always and the only legitimate weapon on Sunday against the Bills. He was difficult to take down as always and always manages to fall forward. Barkley read the gaps very well and typically hits the correct gap. Defenders had a tough time taking him down on first contact. Barkley got some great blocking in the first quarter and managed to rip off a few big runs up the middle. He later scored on a well blocked inside run play. Barkley found the first gap and then bounced it outside where he was able to outrun the defender to the pylon. Barkley looked very dangerous in open field and he exploited any room his offensive line gave him.
He showed quick feet and an ability to 'dance' away from the first tackle attempt to gain extra yards. Barkley was generally productive any time he got the ball. The Giants didn't have a lot of redzone attempts and fewer goal line attempts which prevented a bigger day for the young back.
WR Bennie Fowler
, 55 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 20 - 0, Rec: 5 - 51 - 0 (10 targets) - Bennie Fowler
had the most receiving yards as he looked to make a name for himself with the opportunity he was given due to the injuries the Giants have sustained at wide receiver. Fowler made a splash early on with an end around, getting separation from the first tackle attempt and picking up the first down. Fowler is fast in the open field and showed consistent hands for the most part. He did drop one pass on the outside but it would have been short of the first down. Fowler got his hands on a deep ball along the sideline but it was late. This allowed the defensive back to deliver a big hit which caused the ball to become loose and it fell incomplete. Fowler got open on some short plays, slants and curls to give Manning an option if he felt pressure. He did a good job working with Manning, creating space when the play broke down or when Manning was forced to hold the ball. Manning took a deep shot in Fowler's direction as the game was winding down but this was overthrown by a lot.
WR Cody Latimer
, 40 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 30 - 0 (5 targets) - Cody Latimer
didn't manage much in this game and was forced to leave in the second half due to a concussion he sustained on a big hit. The Giants and Manning struggled to connect downfield and this is something Latimer can excel but it didn't happen on Sunday. Manning missed him on a comeback play where he was wide open. Latimer made a nice grab in traffic on a curl route. His day ended on a sour note however as he took a big hit in the second half. Latimer got the first down on a nice slant play inside on fourth down but the defensive back hit his head awkwardly. Latimer left the game straight away and did not return.
TE Evan Engram
, 55 offensive snaps, Rec: 6 - 48 - 0 (8 targets) - Evan Engram
was mostly invisible in this game as the Giants struggled to get the ball to the tight end. A lot of his yards came on one big play down the field in the fourth quarter. Engram managed to get away from the secondary and was wide open for a pass he had to wait for. He was open early in the game on a corner route but Manning overthrew him. The Bills keyed on him as one of the limited threats the Giants had. He didn't get open downfield often and he failed to pose a legitimate threat throughout the game. He remains a decent play in PPR leagues as he will get the ball but the overall lack of productivity in this offense will likely prevent any massive performances.
Indianapolis Colts 19, Tennessee Titans 17
What you need to know
- The Colts offense did not play well against the Titans. The Colts struggled to protect Jacoby Brissett
, were called for numerous penalties, and Brissett did not take care of the football. Brissett could have easily had 3 turnovers in this game. The Colts struggled whenever they were behind on the down and distance. Their rushing attack did not find the same success it had against the Chargers. Marlon Mack
was frequently stopped for no gain or a minimal gain forcing the Colts to throw on 3rd down where they struggled. TY Hilton remains the team's top weapon who Brissett looks to frequently especially in critical situations. The tight ends Eric Ebron
and Jack Doyle
saw more involvement than last week but were not heavily targeted in the passing game. Jordan WIlkins made some nice plays including a 55 yard run on the Colts game winning drive. Parris Campbell
caught his only target for a touchdown.
- The Titans offense often sputtered with shoddy play from Marcus Mariota
and a rough performance by the offensive line to keep him protected. Derrick Henry
had a respectable showing, finishing with 93 yards and a touchdown from 17 touches. Delanie Walker
led the team in receiving while Corey Davis
had another disappointing performance. Rookie A.J. Brown
continues to stay involved in the offense, but Adam Humphries
has been a non-factor for two straight games.
QB Jacoby Brissett
, 72 offensive snaps, Pass: 17 - 28 - 146 - 3 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 7 - 25 - 0 - Jacoby Brissett
did not play well against the Titans. Brissett struggled to complete passes downfield, seemed distracted by the pass rush at times, had a couple of ugly turnovers, and missed a few easy throws but still did enough to win. The run game struggled for periods of time against the Titans forcing Brissett to throw on 3rd downs with mostly poor results. Brissett took the Colts down the field for a touchdown on their opening possession. Brissett connected with tight ends 3 times on the drive. The biggest play was a 46 yard pass interference penalty drawn by Deon Cain
. Brissett capped the drive with a 3 yard touchdown on a shovel pass to Eric Ebron
. After a failed possession Brissett again let the Colts down the field. Brissett scrambled away from 3 defenders and converted a 3rd and 7 with his legs to keep the drive alive. Brissett then converted a 3rd and 15 with a 19 yard strike to TY Hilton. Brissett capped the drive with a nice 15 yard touch pass to Parris Campbell
for a touchdown. On the Colts ensuing possession Brissett was intercepted by Logan Ryan targeting Hilton. The pass was behind Hilton who had very little separation on a crossing route. The Colts moved the ball into Titans' territory but Brissett again turned the ball over. Brissett attempted to pump fake and fumbled the ball backwards. Brissett was nearly intercepted on his next pass attempt. After a long running play by Jordan WIlkins put the Colts in the red zone, Brissett punctuated the drive with a nice throw to TY Hilton for a 4 yard touchdown on a fade route. Brissett showed good touch and accuracy on the throw.
RB Marlon Mack
, 49 offensive snaps, Rush: 20 - 51 - 0, Rec: 2 - 12 - 0 (3 targets) - Marlon Mack
struggled to find room to run against the Titans. Mack was frequently stopped at the line of scrimmage or for minimal gain. It seemed like the Titans were keying on Mack in an effort to make Brissett score points and throw the ball. Mack had a 22 yard carry negated by a holding penalty. Mack slipped out of two arm tackles running inside for a tough 10 yards. Mack made a 9 yard catch on a check down from Brissett. Mack had a pair of impressive carries back to back. First Mack picked up 9 yards running inside through heavy traffic. Then was hit behind the line of scrimmage on 3rd and 1 but still managed to convert. Mack was outrushed by Jordan Wilkins
who looked great on his limited opportunities but I would expect Mack to continue to see the majority of the work.
RB Jordan Wilkins
, 11 offensive snaps, Rush: 5 - 82 - 0, Rec: 1 - 4 - 0 (1 targets) - Jordan Wilkins
rushed for more yards than Marlon Mack
on one fourth of the carries. In fact Wilkins topped Mack's yardage total on a single run of 55 yards. Wilkins gained the edge off left tackle for a 15 yard gain showing nice burst. Wilkins got a number of nice blocks including a key block from Braden Smith to break WIlkins into the open field for a 55 yard run. Wilkins showed his speed and physicality on the play and seemed disappointed he didn't score after going out at the 4 yard line. It remains to be seen if this performance will earn Wilkins more carries but for now he is at the very least the clear back up to own if Mack gets injured.
WR T.Y. Hilton
, 65 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 43 - 1 (6 targets) - TY Hilton played well against the Titans. Expect Hilton to continue to produce on a weekly basis. Brissett looks to Hilton frequently, with good reason, and Hilton is the type of playmaker who can put up points against anyone. Hilton sees heavy involvement in the red zone and on underneath passes to give him a solid floor of production week to week. Hilton made his first catch on a screen pass for 11 yards on 3rd and long. Hilton drew a 9 yard pass interference penalty on 3rd and 7. Hilton picked up 19 yards running an in breaking route to convert a 3rd and long. Hilton had 4 defenders in his vicinity but still managed to get open. Hilton made a 9 yard catch running a curl route underneath. Hilton sold an inside release with Malcolm Butler in coverage just to break back outside and gain separation for a 4 yard touchdown on a fade route. Hilton got behind Butler on the Colts ensuing possession but Brissett just missed him for a potential big play or touchdown.
WR Parris Campbell
, 18 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 12 - 1 (1 targets) - Parris Campbell
shook his man running a corner route and made an over the shoulder catch for a 15 yard touchdown.
WR Deon Cain
, 33 offensive snaps (1 targets) - Deon Cain
had Adoree Jackson beaten deep for a potential 54 yard touchdown but Jackson committed a blatant pass interference penalty preventing the catch. The penalty netted the Colts 46 yards. This was Cain's only target on the game.
TE Eric Ebron
, 34 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 25 - 1 (4 targets) - Eric Ebron
was more involved against the Titans but still only saw 3 targets. Ebron will continue to be a red zone threat but the lack of efficiency from Brissett makes it hard to trust Ebron for fantasy from week to week. Ebron caught a pass in the flat and made a nice run after the catch to gain 13 yards on 3rd and 12. Ebron motioned across the formation post snap and caught a shovel pass from Brissett for a 3 yard touchdown. Ebron made a 9 yard catch running a curl over the middle.
TE Jack Doyle
, 51 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 21 - 0 (3 targets) - Jack Doyle
saw more involvement than against the Chargers but still did not see the volume of targets needed to make him fantasy relevant. Doyle made an 8 yard catch on the Colts' first offensive play of the game off of play action. Doyle made a catch in the flat and got up the sideline for a 13 yard gain.
QB Marcus Mariota
, 60 offensive snaps, Pass: 19 - 28 - 154 - 1 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 5 - 32 - 0 - Marcus Mariota
has an efficient start to this game, completing 8-of-10 pass attempts for 68 yards and a touchdown in the first quarter. His touchdown came from the goal line on a well-designed play that allowed for an eligible tackle lined up at tight end to leak out and be left wide open in the end zone. Mariota decided to tuck and run to convert a third-down near the end of the first half as he questionably vaulted himself in the air to get the needed yardage. Unfortunately for Mariota, the play was called back due to a holding penalty. On the very next play, Mariota was then sacked and fumbled with one of his linemen recovering it. The offensive line would prove to be problematic for Mariota throughout the game, as he was given shoddy protection which led to five hits and four sacks. Mariota led off the second half strong, though, as he marched the Titans downfield to a touchdown. This drive was highlighted by a big throw for 21 yards to Corey Davis
, set up well by Mariota via play fake. Mariota would use his legs again on the next drive to help pick up seven yards on a long third down to get the Titans into field goal range.
RB Derrick Henry
, 30 offensive snaps, Rush: 15 - 81 - 1, Rec: 2 - 12 - 0 (3 targets) - Derrick Henry
saw another solid workload with 15 carries for 81 yards and a touchdown. He had a relatively quiet first half outside of a busy third drive, where Henry busted off a couple of long runs of eight and 12 yards while also taking a screen pass for nine yards. He would fumble on the goal line near the end of that series though, with one of his linemen recovering it to save the Titans’ scoring chances. Henry would redeem himself after halftime though, finding the end zone on the first drive from two yards out. He followed up the touchdown with a 12-yard carry on his first run of the next drive. Henry would also string together three great runs to close out the third quarter, rushing for 11, 6, and 18 yards on consecutive plays. All but one of Henry’s runs went to the right side of the offensive line in this game, as it was clear the Titans are not comfortable with the left side of their line with Taylor Lewan still serving his four-game suspension.
RB Dion Lewis
, 30 offensive snaps, Rush: 3 - 9 - 0, Rec: 1 - 5 - 0 (1 targets) - The first touch for Dion Lewis
came on a flukey pass on a third-and-long that Marcus Mariota
barely got off, allowing Lewis to run for five yards before easily being brought down. He would finish with just three rushes and that one single reception for a total of 14 yards.
WR Corey Davis
, 50 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 38 - 0 (5 targets) - Corey Davis
had another underwhelming performance as he saw just five targets--one fewer than Delanie Walker
and the same amount as rookie A.J. Brown
. After coming up short with no receptions in Week 1, Davis had his first reception of the season come on the third drive of this game as he grabbed a simple short pass for six yards. He would haul in another short pass for seven yards to finish a very quiet first half. His highlight of the game came to start the second half as Davis found separation to get open for a 25-yard reception. The cornerback in coverage came up injured on that play, which helped Davis to be left wide open downfield. This would be his final reception of the game.
WR A.J. Brown
, 27 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 25 - 0 (5 targets) - A.J. Brown
was targeted five times, catching three for 25 yards. His first reception came on the Titans’ second drive as he was targeted with a short pass on third down, failing to convert. His second reception didn’t come until the fourth quarter, but it was a nice catch as Brown worked the sidelined and showed great focus to hang on to the ball for an 11-yard gain. Brown would have another target in the fourth quarter bounce right off his hands as he was under tight coverage. He caught one more short pass on the final drive to finish his day.
WR Adam Humphries
, 34 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 1 - 0, Rec: 2 - -1 - 0 (2 targets) - Adam Humphries
was a non-factor in this game, hauling in two of two targets for negative yardage.
WR Tajae Sharpe
, 32 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 24 - 0 (2 targets) - Sharpe made a spectacular catch for his first reception of the season. Coming on the third drive of the game, Sharpe was targeted on the left sideline and made the catch while falling out of bounds, but just managed to drag both toes while maintaining control. It would be a 15 yard gain and a first down. Sharpe would not be targeted again until late in the fourth quarter as he did a great job coming back to a wobbly pass from Mariota, but instead cut backward instead of forwards to the first down marker and was subsequently ruled short.
TE Delanie Walker
, 34 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 39 - 0 (6 targets) - Delanie Walker
was the top target again in this game as he got started early as the recipient of the Titans’ first two targets. He couldn’t turn his body in time to make the catch on the first one, but he did haul in the second one on a long third down, coming up just two yards short of converting. Walker added another easy eight-yard reception on the third drive. His longest catch of the game came near the end of the first half as Walker worked the coverage on a 15-yard out route, making the catch in traffic to keep the chains moving. Walker saw a deep target that fell incomplete along with a four-yard short reception as his only action in the second half.
Seattle Seahawks 28, Pittsburgh Steelers 26
What you need to know
- The Seahawks offense was, if not fearsome, at least well-rounded. The Steelers defense couldn’t focus on stopping any one aspect of their game, so in the end, it was a slow burn, but a very effective one. Russell Wilson
took a few sacks, but his arm was in vintage form, hitting his wide receivers, tight ends, and running backs with uncanny accuracy. Chris Carson
had his troubles with fumbles – giving the Steelers points – but looked good otherwise. Rashaad Penny
also had a good game, however, so if the fumbles continue, we could see a more even split going forward. The highlights of the game go to TE Will Dissly
, who snagged two TD passes on the day, and should be shooting up everyone’s waiver list in week 3.
- Under Ben Roethlisberger
's tenure as the Steelers quarterback, the Steelers were 10-2 for home openers. Naturally, the Steelers came out with a lot of confidence with the home crowd working for them and one of the most penalized and aggressive defenses in the NFL. The Seahawks did manage to get pressure on Ben Roethlisberger
early and were stifling James Conner
for little to no gain out of the backfield. In the first half, if it wasn't for a defensive pass interference call in the end zone the Steelers would not have been able to keep the game so close in the second half. When the second half started Ben Roethlisberger
was sidelined for the rest of the game with an apparent elbow injury. The Steelers, with Moncrief benched and Roethlisberger sidelined, were moving the ball pretty well against the Seahawks and brought the score within two points of tying after a timely Russell Wilson
fumble and quick touchdown for the offense. Unfortunately, the defense could not come up with another turn over or stop, allowing the Seahawks to hold the ball for over five minutes to run out the clock.
QB Russell Wilson
, 79 offensive snaps, Pass: 29 - 35 - 300 - 3 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 6 - 22 - 0 - Wilson came out with a pass first mentality, and it seemed to kick the Seahawks into a gear that they failed to find in week 1. He showed a lot of confidence in rookie DK Metcalf
, targeting him on the opening two plays. Later, he placed a perfect TD pass over his shoulder while he was in very tight man coverage. Tyler Lockett
was still his favourite play, as he found him on short patterns all over the field. Early on, Wilson was sacked a little too easily as the pocket disappeared on him, which stalled a couple of drives. But when the running game finally got untracked, the passing game opened up as well. Notable, Wilson found TE Will Dissly
on two separate but very similar TD plays, hitting him with a well-timed pass up high after Dissly broke off the line freely. It was pretty sweet looking, and it would be a surprise if Wilson’s rapport with Dissly doesn’t continue. But, Wilson’s heroics weren’t finished yet. On an option handoff out of the shotgun, Wilson got ahead of Rashaad Penny
and blocked for him all the way to the end zone. Holding a two point lead in the final minutes, Wilson used his legs with great success, finding huge gains on draw plays to move the chains and keep the clock running. Probably the best sign that Wilson has found his groove is that he was back to spreading the ball around to several targets, which is when he’s at his best.
RB Chris Carson
, 43 offensive snaps, Rush: 15 - 60 - 0, Rec: 3 - 27 - 0 (3 targets) - Carson had a hard luck game, with two costly fumbles deep in his own territory. If you take those gaffes away, he looked good on the ground and also contributed as a receiver – even lining up wide for a hitch play. He seemed to be seeing the field well, but the Steelers did a formidable job of clogging the middle of the field. When the blocking was there, however, he took advantage. On his third carry, he followed the left tackle, who was pull blocking on a right side run, for a 24-yard gain. And so it went. Carson was either stuffed at the line, or put up a big gain, there wasn’t much in between. After his second fumble, he was not on the field for the final drive as the Seahawks held their lead. Probably nothing to worry about, but if the fumbles continue to be a problem, then Rashaad Penny
, who played well, would be in line to take more of the workload.
RB Rashaad Penny
, 26 offensive snaps, Rush: 10 - 62 - 1, Rec: 1 - 3 - 0 (1 targets) - Penny did not see the field much in the first half, but picked up steam as the game went on. He was used at first to give Carson a breather, but late in the game was given the call after Carson’s second costly fumble. His TD play was quietly a thing of beauty as he took the shotgun handoff up the middle, and, because it was an option play, when he had to bounce back outside, found himself running right behind Russell Wilson
, who promptly blocked for him all the way to the end zone, a 37 yard score! The combination of good play and Carson’s ball security issues could give him a window to more playing time next week.
RB C.J. Prosise
, 10 offensive snaps, Rush: 2 - 7 - 0, Rec: 3 - 13 - 0 (3 targets) - Prosise was used situationally. He’s still the most reliable receiver out of the backfield, and so he came in for the 2-minute drill in the first half. And he really does add a new dimension to the team, as an adept receiver who can also run it up the middle when necessary. He was leaned on somewhat heavily for that drive, but of course, that also made up the bulk of his playing time.
WR Tyler Lockett
, 70 offensive snaps, Rec: 10 - 79 - 0 (12 targets) - Lockett’s line tells the story. Ten catches, but no big gains. He was Russell Wilson
’s security blanket underneath, and was targeted unsuccessfully on a couple of deeper routes. The Steelers did a great job of closing in after the catch, limiting his overall yardage. He did take one catch for about 20 yards, a quick out in the flats, which gave him some open field to work with.
WR Malik Turner
, 16 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 54 - 0 (3 targets) - Turner was the clear third WR, and showed excellent awareness after the catch. He made a nice spin move away from the defender on one short catch to get a few yards. His second catch was short, on a 3rd and long, so he had no chance to get anywhere. And later, another catch and run over the middle, for a good gain. His competition on the depth chart, Jaron Brown
, was charged with two penalties early in the game, which likely gave Turner more snaps than usual. If that continues, he could be a valuable cog in the wheel for the Seahawks.
WR DK Metcalf
, 70 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 61 - 1 (7 targets) - Let’s say this again, shall we: Metcalf, for the most part, did not look like a rookie out there. On the first play from scrimmage, he worked the defender expertly on the sideline, coming back for a slightly underthrown ball, and an easy first down. He was not targeted for a while after that, and in the 2-minute drill, finally reminded us that he is a rookie after all, when his second offensive Pass Interference call in as many games stalled the drive. In the second half, he really used his size advantage. After a short mid-field catch, he manhandled the smaller D players for extra yards. Coverage was tight on him all game, but he did a beautiful job tracking the ball on his TD catch. It came over his shoulder in the end zone for a 28 yard score.
TE Will Dissly
, 47 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 50 - 2 (5 targets) - Dissly’s had a great game on paper, but it was even better to witness. Before the two scores, he got open downfield for a 43-yard catch and run, but it was negated by a holding call. Then, he made an excellent high catch in the end zone on a well-timed throw. The second score was essentially the same play, as he cruised off the line untouched and Russell Wilson
timed it perfectly for him to catch it and walk in. Dissly also snagged a first down catch late in the game, and was used heavily in crunch time, moving the chains and reminding us how very hard he is to take down. Move him up your charts, folks, he looks like the real deal.
QB Mason Rudolph
, 28 offensive snaps, Pass: 12 - 19 - 112 - 2 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 1 - 7 - 0 - His performance wasn't without its flaws, but Rudolph stepped in and looked like a serviceable NFL starting quarterback. Rudolph showed good accuracy to all levels of the field and enough arm strength to drive the ball to the outside hashes. If it wasn't for Donte Moncrief
's tipped pass, Rudolph would have likely finished the day without a turnover on his resume. On the day, Rudolph had three highlight throws. The first was his first touchdown to Vance McDonald
. Rudolph could have thrown the ball when he first saw pressure, but instead he hung in the pocket and allowed the deeper sections of the secondary to uncover enough for McDonald to have room to operate. Rudolph's second highlight throw came in the third quarter. It was a flea flicker play. The ball came back to Rudolph and he hit Juju Smith-Schuster as he was pulling away from his defender. If Rudolph had a little more juice in his arm he might have been able to hit Smith-Schuster in stride for a touchdown, but it was still a nice deep throw. Finally, Rudolph's second touchdown was a thing of beauty. On a play action play, Rudolph completely turned his back to the opposing defense. When he turned around, Rudolph delivered an accurate and on time pass to Vance McDonald
and brought the Steelers within two points.
QB Ben Roethlisberger
, 29 offensive snaps, Pass: 8 - 15 - 75 - 0 TD / 0 INT - Ben Roethlisberger
, coming into his 2019 home opener, had a 68.9% completion percentage and a 22-7 touchdown to interception ratio. Unfortunately, his sterling track record did not carry over into this game. Roethlisberger was seeing extreme pressure as early as the second play of the game. He took a sack where he landed awkwardly on his elbow. Similar to Week 1, Roethlisberger did take his deep shots against the Seahawk's secondary. Also similar to Week 1, Roethlisberger targeted speedy wide receiver, Johnny Holton
. Holton, this time, was open as he split his defenders deep, but Roethlisberger overthrew the ball. Roethlisberger's best pass of the game came just before half time. Roethlisberger looked the defender inside so Juju Smith-Schuster could gain outside leverage and work in space. Roethlisberger went to the locker room with a couple minutes left in the first half and did not return the rest of the game.
RB James Conner
, 31 offensive snaps, Rush: 11 - 33 - 1, Rec: 3 - 12 - 0 (4 targets) - It looked like early on in the game James Conner
was going to be a focal point of the game. The Steelers were using the Seahawks aggressiveness against them as Roethlisberger, and Rudolph, were allowing oncoming rushers to get close and then hit Conner in the flat when they over pursued their angle. James Conner
, by both quarterbacks, handled significant punishment when targeted. On a reception in the third quarter Conner didn't catch, he was hit hard immediately after missing the catch and again late in the third quarter before leaving with a knee injury. Conner had multiple runs where he was close to breaking off a bigger run than what he had. Conner's best run of the night came on a run up the middle. It looked like there wasn't any room, but Conner got small and navigated himself through the Steelers line for a 10+ yard run.
RB Jaylen Samuels
, 22 offensive snaps, Rush: 3 - 18 - 0, Rec: 1 - 13 - 0 (1 targets) - Involved early to give James Conner
a breather, Samuels looked explosive in the open field, reliable in the passing game, strong in pass protection, and able to be a playmaker downfield when the opportunity arises. Samuels notable play of the game will not show up in the box score. As he was being covered by a defender, Samuels worked downfield and went to make a play on the ball in the end zone. The defender did not turn around and Samuels was able to draw a defensive pass interference penalty putting the Steelers in position for their first touchdown of the game. It should be noted if James Conner
is dealing with a knee injury which would lead to him missing time, Samuels will likely receive a larger workload. Benny Snell
did not receive any additional work after James Conner
RB Benny Snell
, 2 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 23 - 0 - It was only one touch, but Snell showed why he was picked in the fourth round and how he earned a game day active. On his first carry, Snell had excellent blocking ahead of him, was in his lineman's back pocket as he approached the line, and made a simple cut to find his running lane. Snell accelerated quickly through the hole and evaded multiple arm tackles through the pile.
WR JuJu Smith-Schuster
, 47 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 84 - 0 (8 targets) - After combatting all night with Stephen Gilmore in Week 1 against the Patriots, Juju Smith-Schuster saw a much easier day against the Seattle Seahawks who don't have a traveling shutdown cornerback. The downside is Ben Roethlisberger
didn't target him until halfway through the second quarter. When Smith-Schuster was targeted he was a reliable target for Ben Roethlisberger
and getting good opportunities after the catch. Smith-Schuster's had two prominent receptions on the night, one with each quarterback. The first, with Ben Roethlisberger
, came in the second quarter. Smith-Schuster used his eyes to work the defender inside in tandem with Roethlisberger and was able to work his route outside for a great opportunity in the open field. In the third quarter, with Rudolph in, Smith-Schuster sprang free on a flea flicker play. Smith-Schuster tracked the ball well, slowing down and made a strong hands catch over the defender. However, if Rudolph would have led his receiver better, Smith-Schuster would have a touchdown on the night.
WR James Washington
, 34 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 23 - 0 (3 targets) - Washington wasn't involved much, but his highlight catch came in the second quarter. The Steelers offense had two first downs from a defensive holding on Juju Smith-Schuster and a Smith-Schuster reception. On a crossing route, Roethlisberger threw the ball behind Washington. Washington displayed excellent body control and hands as he reached behind him for the pass and immediately turned up field.
WR Donte Moncrief
, 18 offensive snaps (1 targets) - Being targeted only once should be bad enough for Moncrief, but he did maximum damage with his target on the day. On a routine catch, Moncrief missed the reception and tipped the ball in the air with a defender waiting behind him. The defender showed better hands than Donte Moncrief
, securing the tipped ball and intercepting Mason Rudolph
on his first drive. Moncrief was benched immediately. Moncrief's drop count currently rests at five going into Week 3.
TE Vance McDonald
, 52 offensive snaps, Rec: 7 - 38 - 2 (7 targets) - After not seeing a target until the fourth quarter of Week 1, the Steelers were making an effort to get McDonald involved early and often. In fact, Vance McDonald
's first reception came on the first play of the game. While it was only a simple screen, McDonald almost broke away from potential tacklers. McDonald provided good yards after the catch ability, which Ryan Switzer
was lacking in Week 1, and a good end zone presence once Mason Rudolph
entered the game. In fact, both of Vance McDonald
's touchdowns on the day were from Mason Rudolph
. On the first touchdown, Vance McDonald
sat down in a soft spot of the coverage. After he made the reception, McDonald turned into a running back and carried defenders into the end zone with him. If McDonald's first touchdown catch was a class on power running after the catch, we should consider McDonald second touchdown reception a class on hands and being where you are supposed to be. After turning his back to the defense, Mason Rudolph
turned around to find Vance McDonald
in position for an easy touchdown pass.
Kansas City Chiefs 28, Oakland Raiders 10
What you need to know
Kansas City Chiefs
- The Kansas City Chiefs beat the Oakland Raiders 28-10 to improve their record to 2-0 on the season. Quarterback Patrick Mahomes
completed 30 of 44 passes for 443 yards and four touchdowns. LeSean McCoy
led the Chiefs with 11 carries for 23 yards while also catching three passes for zero yards. Damien Williams
did not fare much better on the ground, rushing nine times for eight yards. He did continue to be a force in the passing game though, catching three passes for 48 yards. Sammy Watkins
caught six passes for 49 yards while rookie Mecole Hardman
made an impact, catching four passes for 61 yards and a touchdown in relief of the injured Tyreek Hill
. The offensive hero of the day was Demarcus Robinson
, as he caught six passes for 172 yards and two touchdowns. Travis Kelce
also had a big game, catching seven passes for 107 yards and a touchdown.
- -The Raiders moved the ball pretty well but penalties and a couple turnovers stalled momentum and allowed the Chiefs to take over the game.
ran extremely well but wasn’t targeted at all. He should have re-ceived more touches.
is the clear top receiver and came away with one of his two end zone targets.
looked incredible running after the catch. His athleticism is off the charts.
QB Patrick Mahomes
, 76 offensive snaps, Pass: 30 - 44 - 443 - 4 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 1 - -1 - 0 - Patrick Mahomes
had a monster day in the Chiefs win over the Raiders, completing 30 of 44 passes for 443 yards and four touchdowns. With Tyreek Hill
injured, Mahomes has once again proven he is a playmaker and much more than a distributor. DeMarcus Robinson
was the next man up and Mahomes completed all six of his passes to him for 172 yards and two touchdowns. The first of these touchdowns came with the Chiefs down 10-0 late in the first quarter and facing a first and 10 from the Raiders 44 yard line. Mahomes took the snap out of the shotgun and looked to his left the entire time. Robinson ran a straight go-route from the left inside slot position and the Raiders blew the coverage completely. Robinson was left wide open and Mahomes dropped a lob pass into him for an easy 44 yard touchdown. Mahomes second touchdown pass of the second quarter came after he had completed seven passes on the drive, and the Chiefs were facing a third and 20 from the Raiders 42 yard line. Hardman was lined up in the inside left slot position and ran a deep post to the middle of the field. He blew by the Raiders safeties and Mahomes threw a perfect ball to Hardman in stride for a 42 yard touchdown. Mahomes wasn’t done yet in the second quarter though, as the Chiefs started their next possession from their own six yard line. After completing consecutive passes to Damien Williams
(32 yards) and DeMarcus Robinson
(43 yards), Mahomes found himself facing a second and 17 from the Raiders 27 yard line after an illegal block penalty on the offensive line. Mahomes took the snap out of the shotgun with Travis Kelce
bunched in the slot to his left. Kelce faked out his defender off the line and got outside position on him, leaving him room to run a go route up the left sideline. Mahomes looked straight to Kelce the whole way and dropped an absolute dime into his hands at the two yard line. The ball was in the perfect spot for only Kelce to catch it, resulting in a 27 yard touchdown and Mahomes third of the second quarter. He still wasn’t done though. The Chiefs got the ball back with 47 seconds left in the second quarter and at the Oakland 39 yard line. Mahomes took the snap out of the shotgun with Robinson lined up on his left. Robinson ran a go-route up the left sideline, maintaining outside position the entire time. Mahomes got time in the pocket to go through his progressions and then uncorked a bomb to Robinson, which he threw at Robinson’s back-shoulder. Robinson turned around at the last second and snatched the ball for a 39 yard touchdown. It was a perfect pass from Mahomes, and a fantastic catch from Robinson. It also happened to be Mahomes fourth touchdown pass of the second quarter, setting another NFL record for the third year quarterback.
RB LeSean McCoy
, 31 offensive snaps, Rush: 11 - 23 - 0, Rec: 3 - 0 - 0 (3 targets) - LeSean McCoy
rushed 11 times for 23 yards and caught three passes for zero yards in the Chiefs 28-10 win over the Raiders. Unlike in week one, McCoy was unable to find any running room against a Raiders defensive front that was attacking the Chiefs running backs in the backfield. McCoy took over the lead back duties after Williams injured his knee, but McCoy did not las long either, exiting the game in the fourth quarter with an ankle injury. McCoy underwent an MRI on Monday which showed no significant damage to his ankle and he has a chance to play on Sunday against the Ravens. If he and Williams are both out with injuries, rookie Darwin Thompson
would be in line for first team duties.
RB Damien Williams
, 39 offensive snaps, Rush: 9 - 8 - 0, Rec: 3 - 48 - 0 (5 targets) - Damien Williams
rushed nine times for eight yards, while catching three of five targets for 48 yards in the Chiefs win over the Raiders. Williams has found himself in a full-blown timeshare with veteran LeSean McCoy
, with McCoy receiving more touches in the run game, while Williams continues to operate as the Chiefs third down back. The Raiders did a very good job of containing the Chiefs running backs, as Williams averaged .9 yards per carry and actually lost yardage on three of those rushes. Williams fared better in the passing game though, with his long reception of the day being a 32 yard catch that set up the Chiefs for their third touchdown of the second quarter. With the Chiefs facing a second and 11 from their own five yard line, Mahomes lined up in the shotgun with Williams to his right. Williams immediately broke off into the flat after the snap and made it look like he was setting up for a screen pass. Instead, Williams turned the corner and took off up the field. Mahomes threw a great pass to his running back in stride, with Williams gaining yards after the catch and if not for a desperation tackle by a Raiders defender, might have gone all the way for a 95 yard touchdown. Williams would have to settle for the 32 yard reception, and unfortunately that was his only play of consequence on the day. Williams injured his knee late in the fourth quarter, although is not known how serious the injury is at this time.
WR Demarcus Robinson
, 69 offensive snaps, Rec: 6 - 172 - 2 (6 targets) - With Tyreek Hill
out with an injury, DeMarcus Robinson
and Mecole Hardman
were given extended snaps against the Raiders. While Hardman played very well and scored a touchdown, it was Robinson who stole the show, catching all six of his targets for 172 yards and two touchdowns. Robinson’s first touchdown catch came with the Chiefs down 10-0 in the second quarter. Robinson ran a straight go-route from the left inside slot position and found himself wide open running up the center of the field. The Raiders blew the coverage, allowing Mahomes to drop a lob pass into Robinson for an easy 44 yard touchdown. Robinson played a big part in setting up the Chiefs third touchdown as well, catching a 43 yard pass from Mahomes where he burned the Raiders coverage on a deep post-route. Robinson scored the fourth touchdown of the second quarter for the Chiefs as well. Robinson lined up out-wide on the left side of the formation and ran a straight go-route up the sideline. Robinson set up his defender perfectly, maintaining outside position the entire time which allowed Mahomes to throw a deep pass to his outside shoulder. Robinson sold the route like a veteran by not looking back until he was ready to turn and catch the ball. He faced some contact from the Raiders defender but still managed to come down with the catch for a 39 yard touchdown. Robinson was the difference maker in this game, catching passes of 28 and 43 yards and touchdowns of 39 and 44 yards. Tyreek Hill
’s place in the lineup is secure, but I don’t see how Andy Reid can keep Robinson off the field after a performance like this. Through two games, the Chiefs have had receivers gain 199 yards with three touchdowns and 172 yards with two touchdowns, and neither player was Hill or Kelce. That is some serious depth.
WR Sammy Watkins
, 70 offensive snaps, Rec: 6 - 49 - 0 (13 targets) - Sammie Watkins caught six passes on 13 targets for 49 yards in the Chiefs win over the Raiders on Sunday. After setting the NFL on fire in week one, Watkins came down to earth against a Raiders secondary that was hell bent on shutting him down and allowing every other Chiefs receiver to run free all over the field. It was hardly Watkins fault that he attracted double coverage from the Raiders safety, especially over the top, but it was still shocking to see him finish with one more target than Robinson and Hardman combined, only with four less catches, 84 less yards and three less touchdowns. Watkins was essentially a decoy in this game, and Mahomes kept that going by targeting him often in the short passing game, while looking him off to go deep to his other receivers in single coverage. This was apparent on Robinson’s first touchdown catch, as he ran straight down the field uncovered while the defense was shading coverage toward Kelce and Watkins. Going forward, Watkins won’t attract this much attention when it is clear that the Chiefs have plenty of other pieces that can take advantage of this type of coverage.
WR Mecole Hardman
, 56 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 61 - 1 (6 targets) - Mecole Hardman
caught four passes for 61 yards and a touchdown on six targets in the Chiefs win over the Raiders on Sunday. Hardman saw extended time with the Chiefs first team offense due to Tyreek Hill
injury and he took full advantage of his playing time by scoring a 42 yard touchdown. On this play, the Chiefs were facing a third and 20 from the Raiders 42 yard line. Hardman was lined up in the inside left slot position and ran a deep post to the middle of the field. Hardman got a step off the line of scrimmage and continued to increase that separation, especially when he reached the apex of his route and curled towards the middle of the field. He blew by the Raiders safeties and Mahomes threw a perfect ball to Hardman in stride for a 42 yard touchdown. Hardman was drafted in part because of his elite speed, as well as his ability to run the type of routes that the Chiefs have designed for Hill. With that said, Hardman is much more than insurance policy on Hill as he has the type of speed and agility that the Chiefs can use when opponents try to limit Hill, Kelce, Watkins and Robinson. The Chiefs offense is an embarrassment of riches, and I fully expect Hardman to continue to get better as the year progresses.
TE Travis Kelce
, 65 offensive snaps, Rec: 7 - 107 - 1 (9 targets) - Travis Kelce
caught seven passes for 101 yards and a touchdown on eight targets in the Chiefs win over the Raiders on Sunday. Kelce did what he does best, as he was a monster in the middle of the field that continuously beat the Raiders in the intermediate passing game. The Raiders gameplan was to let anyone other than Watkins and Kelce beat them, and this showed when the Chiefs receivers were constantly either left open, or in one on one coverage on the left side of the field. Kelce still managed to have a big game because the Raiders linebackers could not contain him at the line of scrimmage. Kelce is too quick off the line and his size gives Mahomes a massive target radius to throw to. Kelce’s touchdown catch came with the Chiefs facing a second and 17 from the Raiders 27 yard line. Mahomes took the snap out of the shotgun with Kelce bunched in the slot to his left. Kelce faked out his defender off the line and got outside position on him, leaving him room to run a go route up the left sideline. Mahomes looked straight to Kelce and the ball was thrown out in front and to the sideline directly over Kelce’ left shoulder. The pass was in the perfect spot, and Kelce did a great job of setting up the route and converting the 27 yard touchdown reception. With the Chiefs having so many weapons on the outside, Kelce will continue to make defenses pay for trying to cover him with linebackers, especially when they do not give their linebackers help from their safeties over the top.
QB Derek Carr
, 65 offensive snaps, Pass: 23 - 38 - 198 - 1 TD / 2 INT, Rush: 2 - 18 - 0 - Carr was hot to start the game. Even with a pair of costly drops, he marched the offense down the field for a field goal on the opening drive. He came right back with a long touchdown drive on the next possession. The big play was a 43-yard pass interference on a play-action deep pass to Ryan Grant
. Carr finished the drive off with a 4-yard touchdown strike to Tyrell Williams
in the back of the end zone to stake the Raiders to a 10-0 lead. It was all downhill from there. On a 3rd-and-11 in the second quarter, Carr scrambled and sacrificed his body trying to leap over a defender to stretch the ball for the first down but came up a yard short. While the Raiders struggled to move the ball in the second quarter, the Chiefs poured it on with four touchdowns. On the opening drive of the second half, the Raiders quickly pushed deep into Chiefs territory but a 1st-and-goal pass intended for Tyrell Williams
was picked off. Carr threw the fade to Williams who was in single coverage and the cor-nerback was able to stymie Williams and position himself to pick it off. Carr had a strange interception on the next drive. His wide receiver was running a quick slant and collided with a Chiefs defender, knocking them both to the ground. He was Carr’s target and the pass in his direction was easily intercepted. The refs called pass inter-ference on the Raiders, feeling that the play was a designed pick to open up the crossing route to the tight end. Though considering Carr was targeting the receiver, it was a strange call. The two interceptions ended any realistic chances of a Raiders comeback.
RB Josh Jacobs
, 30 offensive snaps, Rush: 12 - 99 - 0 - Jacobs looked great again. He showed nice burst on a 7-yard run on the first play of the game. He pushed the pile for four yards on another 7-yard run up the gut on the opening drive. However, the Raiders had to settle for a field goal on the drive when Jacobs was stacked up behind the line on a 3rd-and-1 in the red zone. He took the first offensive snap of the second half for a 51-yard gain down the right sideline, showing a nice combination of burst and power, running through a couple arm tackle attempts to break loose into the secondary. Gruden is probably kicking himself for not using Jacobs more. He was picking up chunks of yardage and the decision to pass on 1st-and-goal from the 4-yard line early in the third quarter looks especially bad. Jacobs had just picked up six yards right up the middle and instead of pounding away near the goal line, he tried to throw for the score and it was intercepted. While Jacobs has looked great as a runner, he has been surprisingly quiet as a receiver despite looking great in that facet of the game all offseason.
RB DeAndre Washington
, 15 offensive snaps, Rush: 3 - 9 - 0, Rec: 2 - 26 - 0 (2 targets) - Washington was the second back into the game, handling the third series of the game, which was a three-and-out. After a couple mistakes by Richard, Washington took over in the two-minute drill before halftime and made a sweet catch and run over the middle, grabbing the ball on the run below his knees.
RB Jalen Richard
, 20 offensive snaps, Rush: 2 - 3 - 0, Rec: 2 - 2 - 0 (3 targets) - Richard was in for the two-minute drill before halftime and caught a short dump off. He fumbled it but was luckily able to jump back on it. His ball control is atrocious and makes it hard for the team to trust him. He made another bad mistake late in the half on what should have been an easy completion along the sideline. Nobody was near him but he lost track of where he was and wasn’t able to get both feet down inbounds.
WR Tyrell Williams
, 61 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 46 - 1 (7 targets) - On the opening drive, Williams was targeted deep down the right sideline but the ball drifted out of bounds. Carr came back to him the next play on the other side of the field and Williams made a spectacular leaping grab over the cornerback for a 16-yard gain. Williams scored a 4-yard touchdown on a sweet stutter and go move. He faked like he was going to cut to the outside and broke the cornerbacks ankles with his cut back to the inside, getting wide open in the back of the end zone for the easy catch. Williams had one-on-one coverage down near the goal line in the second half and Carr again looked his way. This time, the cornerback was able to cut Williams off along the sideline to cut off the fade route and then make a play on the ball for the interception. It was hard to tell whether Carr or Williams was more at fault but the inability for the duo to hook up was extremely costly.
WR Hunter Renfrow
, 49 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 30 - 0 (8 targets) - Renfrow led the team with eight targets. He dropped what should have been a 15-yard gain over the middle on the opening drive. He had an 6-yard catch and run on a quick pass that he took down to the 4-yard line. Renfrow probably should have drawn a pass interference penalty on a 3rd-and-10 over the middle. He was grabbed by the defender coming out of his break and the Raiders challenged. It was ruled that the holding wasn’t egregious enough to overturn the call on the field.
WR Ryan Grant
, 49 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - -2 - 0 (5 targets) - Grant drew a 43-yard pass interference penalty on a deep play action pass in the first quarter to setup the Raiders only touchdown.
TE Darren Waller
, 62 offensive snaps, Rec: 6 - 63 - 0 (7 targets) - Waller didn’t get targeted until late in the second quarter. He caught a short crossing route and turned on the jets to get down the sideline for a 16-yard gain. His speed just pops off the screen on plays like this one. He showed off some impressive run after the catch skills on a 12-yard catch and run on third and long a few plays later. He caught it short, made the first man miss and nearly weaved his way for the first down. Waller again showed off his ability after the catch on a 7-yard gain. He hurdled a defender near the sideline to pick up the first down.
TE Derek Carrier
, 9 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 33 - 0 (5 targets) - Carrier was the target of Carr’s first two throws of the game. He had what should have been an easy 7-yard catch bounce right off of his hands on 2nd-and-4 but came right back the next play with a 25-yard catch and run down the left sideline. He looked smooth, catching the ball above his head in stride and accelerating down the sideline for a big pickup.
Dallas Cowboys 31, Washington Redskins 21
What you need to know
- Dak Prescott
’s red-hot start to the season continued in Week 2, another sound divisional win. Prescott is completing more than 80% of his passes and the new look Cowboys offense is suddenly carving opponents more through the air than on the ground. Ezekiel Elliott
was back to his typical workload after been scaled back in Week 1 with a late report to the team with his contract negotiations. Michael Gallup
injured his knee in the win over Washington as a skill position question mark entering Week 3, one where they face a hapless Miami opponent in Dallas as they seek a 3-0 start.
- Washington is facing several challenges on offense and defense. Neither side is helping each other as the offense can't extend drives and the defense can't get off the field on third downs. Until one of those areas are shored up it will be tough for them to play consistent football. If the offense could run the ball effectively it would take some pressure off the defense. The defense isn't generating turnovers and so far is being hung out to dry in the second half of games. Simply put, the Redskins need more talent on both sides of the ball to start making a bigger impact.
QB Dak Prescott
, 70 offensive snaps, Pass: 26 - 30 - 269 - 3 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 5 - 69 - 0 - Prescott’s follow-up to his career day (405 yards, four touchdowns) in Week 1 was an 87% completion rate, three more scores, and adding his commonplace impact as a runner. Prescott’s interception, his first of the season, was due to a drop by Randall Cobb
, tipped into the air. Prescott used all parts of the field against Washington, including a deep post touchdown to new weapon Devin Smith
and several rushing forays like his 40-yard zone read scamper. Two of Prescott’s mere four incompletions against Washington were a should-have-been interception on a rollout near the goal line and missing a long touchdown opportunity to Michael Gallup
as Prescott threw it over the wrong shoulder of Gallup. Prescott looks to continue his hot start against the struggling (putting it mildly) Miami Dolphins in Week 3.
RB Ezekiel Elliott
, 53 offensive snaps, Rush: 23 - 111 - 1, Rec: 2 - 9 - 0 (2 targets) - Elliott resumed his typical workload against Washington in Week 2 with 25 total touches. Elliott padded his box score late in the game as Dallas iced the win with a goal line touchdown and a rush of more than 25 yards, exhibiting nice cuts in the process, in the closing minutes. Elliott has been a secondary story to Dallas’ overt offensive success through two weeks as Dak Prescott
has been the engine and massive uptick from a season ago. Elliott could be in for a managed workload against Miami in Week 3, a likely comfortable win, to find work for promising rookie Tony Pollard
RB Tony Pollard
, 17 offensive snaps, Rush: 4 - 22 - 0, Rec: 1 - 3 - 0 (1 targets) - Pollard did not see an offensive touch against Washington until the second half as starter Ezekiel Elliott
was up to his typical workload in Week 2. Pollard’s highlight run, showing nice burst down to the goal line and then plunging in for a short-range score, was called back by penalty. Pollard is the clear backup to Elliott and could be poised for a decent workload in Week 3 against the struggling Dolphins.
WR Randall Cobb
, 53 offensive snaps, Rush: 2 - 11 - 0, Rec: 5 - 24 - 0 (6 targets) - Cobb produced a modest stat line against Washington, operating near the line of scrimmage for his targets. Yards after the catch is where Cobb wins and he converted two receptions into post-catch yardage of note. Cobb did drop a pass, tipping it into the air and ultimately and interception, marring his performance and bobbling a screen pass. Cobb has filled the previous-season Cole Beasley
role in the offense with a limited weekly ceiling but solid floor of offensive involvement.
WR Michael Gallup
, 47 offensive snaps, Rec: 6 - 68 - 0 (8 targets) - Gallup led the Cowboys in targets against Washington and logged a second consecutive impressive game to open his sophomore NFL season. Gallup showed nice hands on a contested reception and later missed a potential long touchdown as Dak Prescott
threw a deep pass over Gallup’s wrong shoulder. Gallup’s progression from his rookie season, adding more intermediate route success has been a noteworthy trend through two games. Gallup limped off the field late in the game with a knee injury and is being evaluated early in the week in advance of their Week 3 matchup against Miami.
WR Amari Cooper
, 64 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 44 - 1 (5 targets) - Cooper’s five targets were third among Dallas’ wide receivers against Washington. Cooper was efficient on his opportunities, however, with a red zone touchdown (defender jumped the route, whiffed on the interception attempt, and Cooper walked into the end zone) and deep in-cut reception as his highlights. Cooper did log a holding penalty on a Tony Pollard
touchdown run to wipe off the scoring play and had a comeback route drop.
TE Jason Witten
, 54 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 25 - 1 (4 targets) - Witten made a big play yet again for the Cowboys for the second consecutive week. Witten secured a small window target on a goal-line rollout for the short-range touchdown, but also caught his lone target of the season downfield on a deep in-cut this week. Witten’s range of route-running has shrunk considerably over the years, but Witten is one of the dedicated chain-movers and ‘staying ahead of the chains’ targets within the Cowboys suddenly-dynamic passing game.
TE Blake Jarwin
, 24 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 22 - 0 (1 targets) - Jarwin is simmering as a secondary tight end offense for the Cowboys but flashed for a second consecutive week behind the short-range-centric Jason Witten
. Jarwin corralled his lone target, a corner route, for a chunk gain against Washington. Jarwin offers more upside for impact plays if Jason Witten
were to miss time.
QB Case Keenum
, 62 offensive snaps, Pass: 26 - 37 - 221 - 2 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 1 - -1 - 0 - Case Keenum
played a steady game although it resulted in a loss. The offense started slow with a few 3-and-out possessions, but Case finally put together a scoring drive at the end of the first quarter. The touchdown drive was run dominated with eight runs and two passes. To cap off the drive, Case handed the ball off on the goal line and Washington was on the board to start the second quarter. After halftime, Case orchestrated an eleven-play drive that ended with a twelve-yard pass on a hook route where the receiver did most of the work. Case didn't have many possessions to do much damage in the second half, but he did manage one more scoring drive as the game was mostly already decided. The defense struggled to get off the field, so the offense was stalled. Case took care of the ball and made plays, but not enough to get a win.
RB Adrian Peterson
, 18 offensive snaps, Rush: 10 - 25 - 1, Rec: 2 - 7 - 0 (2 targets) - Adrian Peterson
only was given ten carries in this game as he got Washington on the board with the first touchdown. Most of his carries came on that scoring drive and the offense was out of sync most of the game moving forward. Long drives by Dallas and playing from behind most of the second half limited Adrian's rushing opportunities. He only averaged 2.5 yard per carry but as a volume-based runner these are expected stat lines when he can't be fed. The offensive line is also under-performing so consistent production is a challenge for all running backs.
RB Chris Thompson
, 28 offensive snaps, Rush: 2 - 3 - 0, Rec: 5 - 48 - 0 (8 targets) - Chris Thompson
tied for the most receptions in this game with five. The receptions didn't come with much yardage, but he was very involved in this game as Washington played from behind. Chris also got two carries but only resulted in three yards. He had eight targets on the day and Chris' big play ability will pay off as long as he stays involved.
RB Wendell Smallwood
, 16 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 4 - 0, Rec: 2 - 9 - 0 (2 targets) - Wendell Smallwood
received one carry in today's game. He was activated today as Derrius Guice
was put on IR.
WR Terry McLaurin
, 56 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 62 - 1 (9 targets) - Terry McLaurin
looks to be Washington's top target in the passing game. He has the most targets today with nine and Case made a decisive effort to look his way. He was only able to haul in five of those eight receptions and much of his production came when the game was decided. Including the touchdown, he scored. Washington dialed up a couple of deep shots for him today but couldn’t connect.
WR Trey Quinn
, 49 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 36 - 0 (7 targets) - Quinn was the third most targeted receiver for Washington today, but it resulted in less than forty yards. Trey is more of a short to intermediate target for Washington so it will take a few breaks for him to accumulate big yardage. His targets are a good indication of his involvement, but he is utilized as more of a chain mover.
WR Paul Richardson
, 54 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 16 - 1 (3 targets) - Paul Richardson
only had three receptions on the day but managed to score one of Washington's three touchdowns. It was an impressive score as he took a hook route reception and turned up-field to gain an additional ten yards. Paul hasn't been a big part of this offense so far early in the season.
WR Kelvin Harmon
, 6 offensive snaps - Kelvin Harmon
was not targeted and did not record a catch.
TE Vernon Davis
, 46 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 29 - 0 (4 targets) - Vernon Davis
recorded three catches on four targets against Dallas. However, all his targets were in short areas so the impact for him was minimal. Vernon hasn't seen many opportunities up the seams as a vertical threat taking advantage of his speed. He will likely fall back into his backup role next week with Jordan Reed
New England Patriots 43, Miami Dolphins 0
What you need to know
New England Patriots
- • Tom Brady
’s offensive line. With Marcus Cannon, Isaiah Wynn, and Joe Thuney all banged up, the hope is this won’t be a huge detriment. If it is, expect a lot of runs and quick passes.
• The offense will settle in once Antonio Brown
integrates, but target share is going to be hard to predict on a weekly basis. His presence would seem to hurt James White
and Josh Gordon
the most, but that’s not completely certain.
- There is absolutely nothing going right in Miami right now. Despite having recent success against New England at home, the Dolphins were unable to put any points on the board this week. Miami has been outscored by a staggering 102-10 in the first 2 weeks of the NFL season and the schedule does not get any easier in the next 2 weeks. Ryan Fitzpatrick
looked atrocious and was pulled after his 3rd interception only to see Josh Rosen
come in and throw another. Things really got out of hand with 2 interceptions returned for touchdowns in the 4th quarter and the offense failed to produce anything positive this week. The rushing attack was held under 50 yards and averaged 2.8 yards per carry and the passing attack completed less than 50% of their passes. Earlier in the week, Minkah Fitzpatrick was granted the right to explore trade options with other teams and everything is falling apart for the Dolphins. Miami will take on a hot Cowboys offense in Dallas next week and try to avoid an 0-3 hole to start the season.
QB Tom Brady
, 72 offensive snaps, Pass: 20 - 28 - 264 - 2 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 2 - 1 - 1 - In what would be doing the word “annihilation” a disservice, the Patriots…annihilated…the Dolphins in a complete team effort. It took a mere 28 pass attempts for Tom Brady
, including several with the game well in hand in the 4th quarter, to put up 264 yards and 3 total touchdowns. While it was easy sailing against a team like the Dolphins, it is important to note Brady’s offensive line was hit with a number of injuries during the game, which could have ramifications against a more competitive defensive front. That said, early going, the name of the game was getting Antonio Brown
involved, with a number of purposeful throws in his direction. Some timing was off, but some throws were on target, including the touchdown on a short go route from about 20 yards out. Brady’s other touchdown was late in the game on a screen to James White
that looked like there were no defenders within a country mile of the play. Brady also had an easy sneak for a short touchdown, something he usually converts anyways. It was tough to take much away in such an uncompetitive game, but again, the weapons and OL bear watching going forward.
RB Sony Michel
, 35 offensive snaps, Rush: 21 - 85 - 1 - To no one’s surprise, the Pats made a concerted effort to run the ball against the Dolphins, especially since the game was out of hand by the second half. Behind a makeshift offensive line for much of the game, Michel looked relatively ordinary, though again, blocking was hit-or-miss. His lone touchdown was of the short variety for the first score of the game, and was a relatively easy one. His biggest blemish was a fumble, though Belichick didn’t bench him for the error. Unsurprisingly, Michel was not involved in the passing game, and though his usage should remain consistent as the Pats look to balance their attack in games, it’s a reminder that he won’t play in hurry-up or pass-heavy games.
RB Rex Burkhead
, 17 offensive snaps, Rush: 5 - 21 - 0, Rec: 2 - 47 - 0 (2 targets) - Similar to James White
, Burkhead’s role is going to be highly volatile as long as other RBs and WRs are healthy. He can do it all, but isn’t the main option in the running or passing game, so a handful of touches per game will be the norm.
RB James White
, 22 offensive snaps, Rush: 3 - 10 - 0, Rec: 3 - 19 - 1 (4 targets) - White wasn’t super involved against the Dolphins, as there were a plethora of pass-catching options and Sony Michel
dominating rushing carries. His fantasy day was salvaged by a garbage time screen touchdown, but it’s clear his role may be highly volatile as long as the Pats have their WRs healthy and at their disposal.
WR Julian Edelman
, 66 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 1 - 0, Rec: 4 - 51 - 0 (4 targets) - With the Pats purposely getting Antonio Brown
involved early, Edelman didn’t see huge volume in the passing game. He caught each one of his targets, and should see more consistent volumes in competitive games where Tom Brady
needs someone to trust.
WR Antonio Brown
, 24 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 5 - 0, Rec: 4 - 56 - 1 (8 targets) - Controversy aside, the Patriots made a concerted effort to get Brown involved early, and it worked on his 20 yard pitch and catch with Tom Brady
. He was beating coverage with regularity, but it was clear that timing between he and Tom Brady
needs ironing out. Brown didn’t play a full complement of snaps, but it was clear against an inferior opponent, a part of the day was integrating him into the offense. In more competitive games, his role may need be as voluminous until that trust grows.
WR Josh Gordon
, 57 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 19 - 0 (5 targets) - With Antonio Brown
and the lopsided game, it was Gordon who saw the biggest drop in action. Though he did see 5 targets, he only converted 2 of them for catches. It’s clear as long as AB is part of the game, his targets and yards could be volatile, though it’s also worth noting a theme of the first half against the Dolphins was getting AB integrated into the offense.
QB Ryan Fitzpatrick
, 38 offensive snaps, Pass: 11 - 21 - 89 - 0 TD / 3 INT, Rush: 1 - 6 - 0 - The Fitz-Magic era in Miami is off to a very rocky start and the veteran QB has not been benched in favor of josh Rosen twice in as many games. He was sacked 4 times for a loss of 23 yards and left with a QB rating of 23.8. Fitzpatrick failed to surpass 100 yards through the air and completed just over 50% of his passes. The first drive was a 3 and out that went for -3 yards and then 4 more punts before half time. The first drive of the 2nd half saw some bad luck when a pass intended for DeVante Parker
was tipped by Stephon Gilmore and pulled in by Devin McCourty. The next interception was returned 54 yards for a touchdown by Gilmore and then the 3rd by Jamie Collins and returned 69 yards for a touchdown. It was at this point that Rosen took over and the quarterback turmoil continues. There has been no indication as to who will be the starter next week against Dallas.
QB Josh Rosen
, 24 offensive snaps, Pass: 7 - 18 - 97 - 0 TD / 1 INT - For the second week in a row, Rosen got a chance to take over in the 4th quarter when Fitzpatrick had struggled. Unfortunately for Rosen, the results were not much different. Rosen completed less than 50% of his passes, was sacked 3 times for a loss of 21 yards and posted a QB rating of 33.8. The first 2 drives resulted in turn over on downs and then the 3rd and final put the nail in the coffin with the 4th interception of the day. Rosen had a 1st and goal from the 8-yard line and tried to force the ball to Mike Gesicki
for a game ending interception by Jamie Collins. To that point, Rosen had put together a good drive, but he was unable to cap it off with any points. Rosen has been given a chance the last 2 games and has not looked any better than Fitzpatrick. There has been no decision made on who will start at QB next week for the Dolphins.
RB Kenyan Drake
, 34 offensive snaps, Rush: 6 - 19 - 0, Rec: 5 - 29 - 0 (6 targets) - It was a slow start for the Patriots and the Dolphins should have had an entire first half to try and run the ball and establish an offense. Instead they could not get anything going and Drake had another bad day. Drake had less than 20 yards on the ground and averaged 3.2 yards per carry. He was targeted 6 times and came down with 5 of them for just under 30 yards. The Dolphins offensive line could not protect anyone, and Drake was used as a safety outlet underneath. It is going to be a long year for Drake with Miami playing from behind. There is still some value catching the ball out of the back field, but do not expect many rushing yards for Drake.
RB Kalen Ballage
, 21 offensive snaps, Rush: 4 - 6 - 0, Rec: 1 - 6 - 0 (5 targets) - It is tough being the back up running back on a team that is unable to even utilize their starting running back. Ballage was given the ball 4 times and averaged 1.5 yards per carry. He was targeted 5 times but only came down with a single reception. Both Fitzpatrick and Rosen were under heavy pressure and rushed the passes towards Ballage. Drake is still the starter in Miami and at the current rate of the offense there will not be a lot of opportunity for Ballage.
WR Preston Williams
, 42 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 63 - 0 (6 targets) - With the way the offense is going, Williams may have the first and only touchdown for quite some time. This week he brought in 4 of his 6 targets for a team leading 63 yards. He was the only player that seemed to be able to move the ball down the field and averaged 15.8 yards per reception. Williams has not supplanted Parker as the top receiving option but certainly has the best number on the team so far this season. His longest catch was 17 yards this week and he continues to move the chains on drives where Miami actually moves the ball.
WR Jakeem Grant
, 38 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - -4 - 0, Rec: 3 - 22 - 0 (7 targets) - With how much both Rosen and Fitzpatrick struggled, it was not surprising to see Grant struggle as well. He was targeted 7 times and caught 3 of them. The 7 targets tied for the team lead and he was given a carry in the run game. Grant was stopped for -4 yards on the carry, but he did have a long 16-yard catch down the middle that accounted for the majority of his 22 yards. It has been a slow start for Grant since signing his extension and it looks like it will be a long season for everyone in Miami.
WR Allen Hurns
, 28 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 13 - 0 (2 targets) - With Wilson out this week, Hurns was given a bigger role in the offense. He managed to turn that into a single reception for 13 yards and was targeted only one more time for the rest of the game. Hurns will be the odd many out when Wilson returns from injury and does not hold much value.
WR Albert Wilson
- Wilson did not play this week as he continues to nurse a lower body injury. He would not have made much of an impact for an offense that struggled in all aspects of the game this week.
WR DeVante Parker
, 57 offensive snaps (7 targets) - It was not a good day for Parker against the Patriots. He had 7 targets come his way but did not come down with a single one of them. Parker was blanketed in coverage all game long and could not seem to break free. Fitzpatrick and Rosen were under duress the entire game and had to deal with a collapsing pocket and limited time to throw the ball. Parker is the top option at receiver for Miami right now but he will need a quarterback to throw him the ball.
TE Mike Gesicki
, 35 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 11 - 0 (2 targets) - The struggles continued for Gesicki this week with only 2 targets in the offense. He caught 1 ball for 11 yards and the other was intercepted on the last play of the game. Had it been a better throw, Gesicki could have had a garbage time touch down and salvaged his day but it was intercepted by Collins to end the game. Gesicki was pushed by OíLeary more this week than last week, but he is still the clear starter.
Los Angeles Chargers 10, Detroit Lions 13
What you need to know
Los Angeles Chargers
- The Los Angeles Chargers squandered a great opportunity to win on the road against the Lions. They outplayed the Lions, but Austin Ekeler
fumbled a ball at the goal line, Michael Badgley missed two second half field goals, and Philip Rivers
threw an interception in the end zone on the final drive. Rivers was inconsistent, missing on several throws, including two attempts to Keenan Allen
that could have made a big fantasy day. Despite his fumble, Ekeler had a solid fantasy game on 23 touches.
- The Detroit Lions won a sloppy game against the Chargers, where the Chargers missed two fields goals and turned the ball over twice in the second half. The Lions capitalized to win with a Matthew Stafford
touchdown pass to Kenny Golladay
for a go-ahead touchdown. Kerryon Johnson
led the backfield with twelve carries and scored a receiving touchdown on a screen pass, but only had half of the running back carries in the game.
QB Philip Rivers
, 67 offensive snaps, Pass: 21 - 36 - 293 - 0 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 1 - 12 - 0 - Philip Rivers
was inconsistent on the road against the Lions in week two. Rivers targeted Keenan Allen
heavily throughout the game but missed overthrew him twice on plays that could have gone for big gains. He targeted Mike Williams
in the end zone twice, but Williams could not catch either target before the Chargers gave the ball to Austin Ekeler
to convert a touchdown. Rivers also threw a bad interception into double coverage to Allen in the end zone on the final Chargers drive of the game. Rivers was not helped by his teammates, as he had a touchdown pass called back by penalty, and had multiple drops by teammates. With Williams nursing an injury, Hunter Henry
out, and Melvin Gordon
continuing to hold out, Rivers is missing critical weapons in the offense and will need to elevate his play. He will look to bounce against a tough Texans defense in week three.
RB Austin Ekeler
, 49 offensive snaps, Rush: 17 - 66 - 1, Rec: 6 - 67 - 0 (6 targets) - Austin Ekeler
was terrific in a game where he could have had a massive day. Ekeler converted a goal-line touchdown early in the game, but had a reception for a long touchdown called back by a holding and fumbled at the goal line on a point-blank opportunity. He was elusive throughout the game, consistently making life difficult for the first defender. Ekeler out-touched Justin Jackson
23 to 8, a continued sign of his lead back role in the Melvin Gordon
-less Chargers offense. Ekeler projects to be the lead back against Texans in week three.
RB Justin Jackson
, 18 offensive snaps, Rush: 7 - 59 - 0, Rec: 1 - 5 - 0 (1 targets) - Justin Jackson
played the lesser half of a committee against the Detroit Lions. He could have had a significantly better day but had a big gain called back by penalty, a consistent trend by the Chargers throughout the day. Jackson was out-touched 23 to 8 by Austin Ekeler
and is the clear second option in the backfield without Melvin Gordon
. Jackson is a serviceable player, but Ekeler is clearly the more explosive and dynamic player. Jackson will face the Texans in week three.
WR Keenan Allen
, 61 offensive snaps, Rec: 8 - 98 - 0 (15 targets) - Keenan Allen
was a target monster against the Lions, leading the game with 15. Allen was peppered throughout the game, making catches all over the field. He could have had a bigger day but was overthrown twice by Philip Rivers
. Allen got easy separation from defenders throughout the game. He was targeted in double coverage on a bad interception by Philip Rivers
at the end of the game. With Mike Williams
nursing an injury and the offense without Hunter Henry
and Melvin Gordon
, Allen should see no shortage of targets next week against the Houston Texans.
WR Mike Williams
, 41 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 83 - 0 (5 targets) - Mike Williams
had an up and down day against the Detroit Lions. He drew two end zone targets and could not catch either early in the game. He made up for it making a spectacular play at the end of the half to set up a field goal attempt. He also had a good catch on a dig in a tight window across the middle of the field. Williams missed practice time during the week with an injury, so but came out of the game unscathed. His status during the week is important to monitor as the Chargers head to Houston in week three.
QB Matthew Stafford
, 61 offensive snaps, Pass: 22 - 30 - 245 - 2 TD / 2 INT, Rush: 4 - 13 - 0 - Matthew Stafford
played well in a win against the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday. Detroit established the run early with a backfield led by Kerryon Johnson
and a game plan that largely played close to the vest. Stafford threw a touchdown early on a terrifically designed screen to Kerryon Johnson
, that Johnson initially bobbled, but secured and ran in for a long touchdown. Stafford closed out a comeback win with a big-time touchdown throw to Kenny Golladay
on a post while covered by Casey Hayward. Stafford was sharp, exploiting the perimeter with well-placed throws to Marvin Jones
and Golladay. Stafford threw two interceptions, one a deep ball to Golladay that Golladay got overpowered on, and a second on a throw into coverage to Jones. Stafford was otherwise efficient and made plays in critical spots, including a fourth down conversion to Jones in the fourth quarter. He also ran for a third down conversion where he took a big hit at the end of the play. With a history of injuries, his health is important to monitor during the week.
RB Kerryon Johnson
, 33 offensive snaps, Rush: 12 - 41 - 0, Rec: 2 - 47 - 1 (3 targets) - Kerryon Johnson
was the focal point of the offense early in a win against the Chargers. He had back to back carries on the first two drives and was the beneficiary of a great play design on a screen pass for a long touchdown. Johnson bobbled the ball but secured the catch and had a caravan of blockers on the play. Johnson later dropped an out and up pass on third down. His hands have been shaky dating back to the preseason, so the trend is a troubling one. Johnson was less used later in the game, with a committee of C.J. Anderson
, Ty Johnson
and J.D. McKissic
employed throughout the game. While Johnson had more than twice as many carries than any other Detroit running back, he only had half of the backfield’s carries. Johnson was consistently elusive, making life hard for any first defender, but his upside continues to be capped by Detroit’s insistence in running a committee approach in the backfield. Johnson will face a tough test next week at Philadelphia.
WR Kenny Golladay
, 56 offensive snaps, Rec: 8 - 117 - 1 (10 targets) - Kenny Golladay
had one of his better days as a pro against the Chargers in a week two win. Golladay scored the game-winning touchdown on a post against Casey Hayward late in the fourth quarter. He was targeted frequently and led the Lions in both targets and receiving yards. Golladay drew a good stylistic matchup as the Chargers frequently employed off coverage which allowed Golladay room to work without facing press coverage where he struggles. Golladay could have had a monster day, but he was outplayed on a deep pass in the end zone that resulted in an interception. He has tantalizing measurables, but this was an example of how he frequently plays smaller than his size. Golladay will travel to Philadelphia in week three.
WR Marvin Jones
, 56 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 43 - 0 (6 targets) - Marvin Jones
had a quiet start to the game for a second consecutive week, before playing better later in the game. Jones had a highlight diving catch on a corner route and was targeted on an underthrow deep heave where the Chargers were drawn offsides. He also had a critical catch for a fourth down conversion on a quick out from the slot. Jones was targeted on a quizzical throw into coverage by Stafford that was intercepted. Jones has been down in volume through two games but has established himself as a go-to receiver for Matthew Stafford
in high leverage situations. He will look to increase his volume in a tough matchup at Philadelphia in week three.
WR Danny Amendola
, 35 offensive snaps (1 targets) - After a big week one, Danny Amendola
dropped his only target on a third down pass. Amendola will look to bounce back against Philadelphia in week three.
TE T.J. Hockenson
, 48 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 7 - 0 (3 targets) - T.J. Hockenson
had a quiet week after a week one breakout. His only catch was a short route on the second series of the game. Detroit schemed Hockenson a target where he sold a block an escaped out the backside of a play, but the play was well defended by the Chargers. Hockenson will look to rebound against the Eagles in week three.