Team Profiles Arizona Cardinals 2015

Team Profiles Arizona Cardinals 2015

by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles

Head Coach Bruce Arians was recently named 2014’s AP Head Coach of the Year, and brother, did he earn it. His starting quarterback, Carson Palmer, went down in Week 10 with a torn ACL and was placed on IR soon afterwards. Week 11, QB Drew Stanton took over until he was injured in Week 15. Arizona was then forced to start back up QB Ryan Lindley for weeks 16 & 17. Is that all? No. Starting running back Andre Ellington was lost Week 14, and place on IR Dec.7th. Despite all of this, the Cardinals finished the 2014 season with an 11-5 record and were the #5 seed in the NFC. The 11 wins tied a Cardinals franchise record for most wins in a season. (The Cardinals were eliminated by the Panthers in the first round of the NFL 2015 playoffs, 27-16.)

2015 team outlook-
The Cardinals are in a tough division, the NFC West. Hard to see them ever topping the defending West champs Seahawks in the near future, but anything is possible with Arians at the helm. If the team can stay healthy, I can see them beating up SF & St Louis, and having another 11-5 season.

2015 Fantasy outlook-

QB- Carson Palmer should be ready for June’s mandatory mini camp, and offers great upside if drafted late in fantasy drafts. Because of his history of injuries, he’s currently being selected 22nd of available QBs, but still ahead of names like QBs Kaepernick, RG3, Derek Carr and Alex Smith. In a 12 team league, I’d wait until round 10 or later to draft him, and only as your 2nd QB.

RBs– Andre Ellington is a little guy. He’s only 5’9″, 199 pounds, but they worked him like he was a lot bigger, which is why he broke down late in the season. Nice thing about HC Arians is that he’s a one RB kinda guy, and anywhere you can avoid RBBC, is value in fantasy. For now, Kerwynn Williams is the #2 RB in Arizona, and is a must hand cuff, because HC Arians will run Ellington until he drops…again. 2015 NFL Draft- Arizona drafted 6′ 1″ David Johnson in the 3rd round. RB Ellington was over-used in 2014,so RB David Johnson will surely vulture 7-12 touches per game as a rookie this year.

WRs-
Larry Fitzgerald Fitzgerald is coming off one of his worst statistical seasons, recording just 784 yards in 14 games and only 2 TDs. The Cardinals want Larry Fitzgerald back and say restructuring contract is the team’s top priority. WR Michael Floyd is the big young stud in Arizona however, and is going into his 4th year. I will be drafting Floyd and John Brown (one of the rookie WRs from the 2014 class) before I draft Fitzgerald. No disrespect to Fitzgerald, but I expect about 784 yards and 2 TDs again from the future hall of famer, even if there is QB stability in 2015. 2015 NFL Draft- Arizona drafted 5′ 10″ WR J J Nelson in the 5th Round.He won’t bump Floyd, Fitz or Brown for playing time. His biggest rookie impact should come on special teams.

TEs-
Darren Fells/John Carlton are not center pieces in the Cardinal offense, and probably never will be. It’s not Arians style. The two totaled 5 TD between them, and should only be drafted by fantasy owners in deep, deep leagues.

K- Rookie K Chandler Catanzaro started the season off with 14-of-14 field goals, and ended the 2014 season with 29 of 33 attempts. He ranked as the #17 kicker overall. He will likely remain the Cardinal kicker for quite some time.

DEF-
Arizona ranked #7 defense in 2014, with a smash-mouth mentality that will rank in the top 10 again in 2015, most assuredly.

2014 Arizona Fantasy Surprises-
Two jump out. One being RB Ellington’s durability. Through the first 10 games he averaged almost 20 carries a game and 5+ receptions, and he took a pounding. It was surprising that he lasted as long as he did. Second, being a fan of WR Larry Fitzgerald, I didn’t expect him to have such a disappointing season, but the carrousel at the QB position was also to blame. The team played as expected with a very tough defense, a commitment to running the ball, and keeping a balanced offense.

2015 Free Agents that Arizona need to address-
TE Darren Fells- CB Antonio Cromartie- G Paul Fanaika- QB- Ryan Lindley
2015 NFL Draft Needs- The Arizona Cardinals early on, will try to select a linebacker, a corner back and running back. The Cards need an edge-threatening pass rusher (LB), the only Arizona corner locked into 2015 playing time is Patrick Peterson (CB) and the back ups to Ellington were not very effective when thrown in the line up, so Arizona will try to solidify there (RB). UPDATE: Arizona’s entire 2015 NFL Draft can be seen at this link- ARIZONA’S DRAFT

Did you know- Bruce Arians was the Peyton Manning’s first QB coach? IND Colts-1998

All team reports can be seen at this link- TEAM REPORTS

Team Home Page: www.azcardinals.com

Can Fantasy Football Be Won in Preseason

Can Fantasy Football Be Won in Preseason by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles

The NFL preseason games might be boring for some to watch, because the starters rarely play much, but I think it’s the best place to find little known players that can make your fantasy season.

2009– In the preseason of ’09, I saw flashes of something special in a 2nd year blazer out of ECU, Chris Johnson of the Tennessee Titans. He first peaked my interest at the end of the 2008 season and I thought…“I really want this guy!”. The beauty of discovering a player like this, is that you don’t have to draft him in the first couple rounds. In my 2009 fantasy draft with the other guys, I waited until the fifth round to get Johnson, but was nervous waiting that long. You never know if someone saw what you saw. That move made me…2009 “Fantasy Heaven”. In Week Two, playing Houston, CJ had 284 total yards and 3 TDs. I was instantly hated by the entire league. A time to treasure. Being hated is the best, along with coming in 1st that year. (Some consider the 2009 season of Chris Johnson to be one of the best ever in NFL history for a running back.)
2010- Week 3-Preseason game vs Dallas, I saw a Houston RB rack up 110 yards on 18 carries and 1 TD. Who is this guy I said aloud ??? His name was Arian Foster, and I took notice. I ended up getting him in the 4th round of the draft that year, and remember one guy at the table saying… “that’s an interesting choice.” He saw what I saw, but didn’t pull the trigger. Haha, I did. Week One of that Regular Season Foster had 231 yards rushing and 3 TDs. I was instantly hated by the entire league. Another time to treasure. Being hated is the best, along with coming in 1st that year.

2011- Week 3- Preseason vs Atlanta, I watched a kid named Antonio Brown catch 4 passes for 137 yards and 2 TDS. The first thing I thought of was how quick he was in his routes. I drafted him for most of my fantasy teams, and although his year was great with 1108 yards, he disappointed with only 2 TDs. Still, he was a player to watch. 2011 was a break out year year for NE Rob Gronkowski and N.O. TE Jimmy Graham, I admit that Gronk got by my as far as his potential and fantasy star power. I did not draft him on any team in 2011. However, thanks to the preseason, in Week 3 vs Oakland, the Saints quarterback Drew Brees focused on TE Jimmy Graham and I took notice- 5 catches for 73 yards. I drafted him on 2 of my fantasy teams that year. Here BTW is a great link to year’s of past Preseason NFL Games- NFL PRESEASON GAMES

2012- In 2012, QB Peyton Manning was a Denver Bronco. Like everyone else, seeing the Sheriff in orange and navy blue, rather than white and navy blue, took sometime to get used to. And who would QB Manning get used to, in his new receiving corps? Week 3 of the 2012 Preseason was a good indicator for me. Against the 49ers at home, Manning connected with WR Eric Decker 4 times, for 38yards and 2 TDs. It was clear that there was instant chemistry. Perhaps not in the same sense that CJ and Adrian Foster were, but by Week 3 of the 2011 season I was hated ( and you know by now how much I loved that ) Decker and Gronkowski ( I learned from my 2011 mistake) were a couple reasons that I came in 1st that year, in more than one league.

2013- I have always been a fan of QB Jay Cutler, ay least when it comes to fantasy football. He’s a great guy to get in the later rounds, and can provide some huge games as a #2-#3 QB. In Week 3 of the Preseason season ’13, I saw something. I saw a growth between QB Cutler and 2nd year WR Alshon Jeffrey. The young wide receiver hauled in 7 reception for 77 yards, which was top the team that preseason week. In 2012, WR Jeffery showed glimpses, ending the season with 367 yards and 3 TDs, but I liked what I saw in this game. Jeffery ended the 2013 NFL season with 1421 yards and 7 TDs. ( also intriguing me in Week 3 were WR K Stills -2 catches for 54 yards/1TD, and WR Jerrel Jernigan- 5 catches for 66 yards/ 0 TDs.) I did not have as great a fantasy year as I am use to in ’13, so I wasn’t as hated as I would have liked to be.

2014- One of my regrets from 2014 was not being able to see WR Odell Beckham JR play in preseason. Pre-Preseason in ’14, I was huge on the wide receiving class drafted last year in the NFL Draft, and implored fantasy owners to draft them. From my article in early 2014- Shuffle Up and Draft– I was especially high on 6’5″ WR Kelvin Benjamin, despite the baggage that he brought with him. ( and that’s rare for me, because if they are trouble, I usual ignore them….but how do you ignore 6’5″??? Benjamin was huge on my fantasy teams, but I missed out on Odell Beckham, even when he came back from injury. The hamstring troubled me. No matter, as I was already hated in many leagues for having having RB LeVeon Bell and many of the other rookie WRs, so I was happy.

The scoring is SO high now in the NFL, maybe it’s dampened the possibilities that one or two little known players can make a huge difference anymore, as much as it did it 2009 and 2010. In 2013, there were just too many players that had big fantasy stats. (Players like P Manning, A.P., L McCoy, J Graham, Julius Thomas. Demarius Thomas, J Charles, D Brees, Brandon Marshall, C J Green, Dez Bryant, Julio Jones and M Forte….just to name just a few.) You never know however, when the next Josh Gordon is going to come along, ( 1646 yards and 9 TDs in only 14 games) and sometimes it’s preseason that you can discover them.

I hope this article motivates you to pay more attention to preseason games, and if you do, maybe you’ll become as hated as I am! ( I would love that. )

Note: After each Preseason Week coming up in August, I’ll be writing a comprehensive break down of what I saw. ( and if you see something I did not…please share :)

Whose Fantasy Stock Took Big Hits 2

Whose Fantasy Stock Took Big Hits 2 by Utter-Fantasy Writer & illustrator Doug Bowles

HC Jeff Fisher surprised everyone on day one of the NFL Draft by selecting RB Todd Gurley with the Rams #10 overall pick of the 1st round. Running back Zac Stacy was more than surprised by the selection…..he was “pissed”, and immediately requested to be traded. RB Stacy, who was 3rd on the St. Louis depth chart after having entered the 2014 season as the Ram’s starter, suddenly became inconsequential. His request was granted BTW, and Stacy is now a Jet.

Many veteran player’s fantasy stock took big hits the weekend because of the NFL Draft, some took minor hits and Utter-Fantasy has decided to take a look at some of them, team by team.

MIAMI- WR Jarvis Landry/ WR Kenny Stills- ( Medium hit)- The Dolphins selected WR DeVanta Parker in the 1st Round, with the 14th overall selection. ( Miami had perhaps more pressing needs to address in Round One, but Parker’s talent may have been too irresistible to pass up) Johnson was the 3rd overall ranked WR by Utter-Fantasy in this year’s draft. Parker’s selection does hurt any WR on Miami’s roster in particular, it simply deletes everyone’s value. RB Lamar Miller- (Medium Hit)- The Dolphins selected RB Jay Ajayi in the 5th Round (shocking that he lasted til the 5th, and slipped due to knee concerns) Lamar Miller had an incredible 2014 season, but is in a contract year and Miami may already have his replacement.

MINNESOTA- TE Kyle Rudolph- ( little/ no hit)- The Vikings did not select an player on offense until the 5th round ( TE MyCole Pruitt) and he won’t threaten current #1 TE Kyle Rudolph unless there is an injury. The Vikings also selected WR Stephan Diggs in the 6th round, but Minnesota is loaded at with WRs. Diggs currently has very little fantasy value.

NEW ENGLAND- Pat’s offense players ( little/no hit)-
The Patriots had 11 selections in the 2015 NFL Draft. Out of those 11 picks, only one was devoted to a player at skill position, TE A J Derby. The rookie tight end was picked in Round 6, and will not threaten any player currently on the Pats roster. TE Derby White was Utter-Fantasy’s #23 ranked TE in this year’s draft.

NEW ORLEANS- Saint’s offense players ( little/no hit)-
The Saints had 9 selections in the 2015 NFL Draft, and used only two of their selections for their offense. QB Garrett Grayson was selected in Round 3 by the Saints, and he’ll spend the 2015 season holding a clipboard. RB Marcus Murphy was selected by New Orleans in the Round 7, and he’ll end up being a low end #4 RB. Murphy was the 25th overall ranked RB by Utter-Fantasy in this year’s draft.

NEW YORK GIANTS- Giant’s offense players ( little/no hit)- The Giants only had 5 picks in the 2015 NFL Draft, one in each round except for Round Four. The only player selected for their offense was WR Geremy Davis, who was selected in Round Six. Davis was not in Utter-Fantasy’s top 25 WR prospects for 2015 NFL Draft. He will have to success early to have any fantasy value on a crowded WR depth chart.

NEW YORK JETS- WR Jeremy Kerley- (Big Hit)- The Jets selected WR Devin Smith early in Round Two with the #37 overall pick. New York is trying to get as many explosive players as they can to help this offense. Smith was Utter-Fantasy’s #8 ranked WR in this year’s draft. He is 6’0″ and weighs 196 pounds. He is quick with deceptive speed. WR Devin Smith will become the Jets #3 WR early in the season, and will dilute the stats of WRs Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker in 2015. QB Bryce Petty was selected by New York in Round 4, but he’ll only be a developmental quarterback in 2015.

OAKLAND- WR James Jones/ WR Michael Crabtree- (Huge Hit)- The Raiders selected WR Amari Cooper with the #15 overall selection in Round One. Cooper was Utter-Fantasy’s #1 ranked WR in this year’s draft, and a true #1 WR for Oakland. WRs Crabtree and Jones weren’t going to be fantasy stars regardless, but with Cooper’s addition, they will now have even far less fantasy value. Cooper in Oakland will be similar to WR Kelvin Benjamin’s addition to the Carolina receiving corps in 2014.

PHILADELPHIA- WR Josh Huff/ WR Riley Cooper-(Huge Hit)-
The Eagles’s selected WR Nelson Agholor with the #20 overall pick in Round One. He was Utter-Fantasy’s #10 ranked WR in this year’s draft. The selection of WR Agholor doesn’t hurt WR Jordan Matthew’s fantasy stock, as he needed someone opposite him to draw away coverage, but the rest of the Philly’s receiving corps were crushed by the selection.( Utter- Fantasy didn’t think WR Miles Austin had any fantasy value regardless.) Agholor is 6’0″, weighs 198 pounds and has great quickness & balance. He should be able to grab the #2 WR spot for Philadelphia early on.

PITTSBURGH- WR Marcus Wheaton- (Big Hit)- The Steelers selected WR Sammy Coates in Round Three, and they were probably surprised that he was still available. Coates was Utter-Fantasy’s #7 ranked WR in this year’s draft. He is 6’1″, weighs in at 212 and has crazy fast speed. He likely fell in the draft due to the fact that he is not always sure-handed. WR Wheaton had a productive 2014 rookie season, but only caught 2 TD passes. WRs Antonio Brown and Martavis Bryant are locked in as Pittsburgh’s #1 & #2 WRs, so WR Wheaton is the worst hit by this addition. ( TE Jesse James was selected in Round 5 by Pittsburgh, but won’t threaten TE Heath Miller’s fantasy value in 2015)

SAN DIEGO- RB Brandon Oliver/ Donald Brown- (Huge Hit)-
The Chargers selected RB Melvin Gordon in the 3rd Round of the NFL Draft. Gordon was Utter-Fantasy’s #1 ranked RB in this year’s draft. The Chargers let RB Ryan Mathews sign with Philadelphia, and RBs Oliver and Brown were never going to be the #1 RB for San Diego in 2015. Danny Woodhead is going to handle most passing downs, but Gordon has a chance to make a big fantasy impact in his first year.

SAN FRANCISCO- 49er’s offense players ( little/no hit)- The 49ers first three selections went to help their defense. San Francisco selected a tackle, a safety and an outside linebacker. In Round Four, the 49ers selected TE Blake Bell, who was Utter-Fantasy’s #9 overall TE prospect for the 2015 NFL Draft. The 49ers have a rebuilding offense, therefore, it will be difficult for any rookie to have a fantasy impact in 2015. (also in Round Four, SF selected RB Mike Davis, but he’ll only be a handcuff for starting RB Carlos Hyde)

SEATTLE- WR Doug Baldwin/ WR Jermaine Kearse- (Medium Hit)-
The Seahawks selected WR Tyler Lockett with the #69 overall pick in Round Three. Lockett was Utter-Fantasy’s #12 ranked WR in this year’s draft. Lockett is one of the best punt and return men in the country, so how he will be used exactly in Seattle’s offense is unknown right now. WRs Baldwin and Kearse have been servicable for Seattle, but neither can be considered a true #1 WR in the NFL. If Lockett has chemistry early with QB Russell Wilson, Baldwin and Kearse’s fantasy stock could take a bigger hit. (also remember, the Seahawks now have TE Jimmy Graham)

ST LOUIS- RB Tre Mason- (Medium Hit)- As mentioned above, HC Jeff Fisher surprised everyone on day one of the NFL Draft by selecting RB Todd Gurley with the Rams #10 overall pick of the 1st round. Gurley was Utter-Fantasy’s #2 ranked RB in this year’s draft. Coach Jeff Fisher confirmed the Rams will take a “conservative” approach to No. 10 pick Todd Gurley’s return from November ACL surgery. If Gurley was completely healthy, he could take over as the Rams #1 RB immediately. RB Cunningham may still be the St Louis third-down back this season, but his fantasy value is hit hard as well.

TAMPA BAY- QB Mike Glennon- ( Huge Hit)-
As expected when the Bucs didn’t resign QB McCown, Tampa Bay selected Florida State QB Jameis Winston. Winston will begin the 2015 season as the Buc’s starting quarterback, and only an injury or weeks of atrocious play, will get Glennon back on the field.

TENNESSEE- WR Kendall Wright/ Justin Hunter/ WR Harry Douglas- (Big Hit)-
The Titans selected WR Dorial Green-Beckham with the #40 overall pick in Round Two. Green-Beckham was Utter-Fantasy’s #4 ranked WR in this year’s draft. He is huge at 6’5″ with freakish talents. If he can keep his nose clean ( some character issues) Green-Beckham could challenge as the Titans top receiver. QB Jach Mettenberger- ( Huge Hit)- As expected, the Titans selected Oregon QB Marcus Mariota. Tennesse was shopping their #2 NFL Draft selection, but were asking too much from any team that inquired to make the trade. Mariota will begin the 2015 season as the Titan’s starting quarterback, and only an injury or weeks of atrocious play, will get Mettenberger back on the field.

WASHINGTON- RB Alfred Morris (Small hit)- Washington’s first player on offense wasn’t drafted until Round Three, RB Matt Jones. Jones was Utter-Fantasy’s #17 ranked RB in this year’s draft. Following the draft, coach Jay Gruden has already confirmed that RB Morris “will still be getting the bulk of the carries.” Washington drafted WR Jamison Chowder is Round 4. Chowder will likely compete for a slot/return role for Washington and has big time punt return ability. He won’t threaten the fans sty value of WRs DeSean Jackson or Pierre Garcon.
Who’s Fantasy Stock took the Biggest Hits- PART ONE

Fantasy Football Rookie Landing Spots

Fantasy Football Rookie Landing Spots by Utter-Fantasy writer & illustrator Doug “feet on the ground” Bowles

Sometime before the 2015 NFL Draft, I wrote an article about where I would like to see Rookie WR Amari Cooper get drafted, regardless of the draft order. Here were my top 3 favorite landing spots for him…#1- Atlanta…what a 3 receiver set this would be…Julio, Roddy White and Amari Cooper! (and all 3 Alabama alums)…#2- Baltimore…WR Torrey Smith left for the 49ers, so they were in need of a top wide receiver, WR Steve Smith is a year older and QB Flacco can throw a ball 80 yards…#3- Carolina…The Panthers only have rookie WR Kelvin Benjamin, who had a monster rookie season with QB Cam Newton and they desperately needed a top receiver opposite Benjamin.

I also gave an example of a wide receiver whose career was slow to take off because he did not land on a rookie friendly team, and it was WR Cody Latimer. A 2nd round pick by the Denver Broncos in 2014. While other rookie wide receivers last season were getting great opportunities to shine and show off their abilities, WR Latimer was buried on the Denver depth chart. If the Broncos didn’t have Emmanuel Sanders and Demaryius Thomas, who’s to say that WR Latimer wouldn’t have been the 2014 Rookie of the Year? Pittsburgh’s Rookie WR Martavius Bryant ended the 2014 season with 26 receptions/549 yards and 9 TDs, despite being drafted 2 rounds after Latimer. Bryant landed on a team that had a weak wide receiver corps, and therefore jumped immediately into the starting line up.

So here is a list of some of rookie stars drafted this year, the teams where they landed on, and if I believe it’s a good place or bad place for them.

WR Amari Cooper – Oakland Raiders (Bad Place) – Before I dwell on the negatives, I’ll preface by saying that WR Cooper is an exceptional talent and will make the most of the situation (just as WR Sammy Watkins did, going to QB-less Buffalo). Cooper will be the clear #1 and will get many opportunities. Oakland is still Oakland however, and QB Derek Carr won’t have the success that he did in his rookie season, because very intelligent defense coordinators now have a year to have studied Carr’s strengths and weaknesses. RG3 had a strong rookie season, and has never looked the same since. QBs Kaepernick, Sanchez, and Locker are some other examples.

QB Jameis Winston – Tampa Bay Bucs (Good Place) – This is an interesting one…just because I think that Winston landed in a good place, it doesn’t mean that I think he will succeed. I doubt he does. I think QB Marcus Mariota was the best QB in this draft, but the Florida connection with Winston was too hard for the Glazer family (owners of the Bucs) to pass up. They’ll sell tons of jerseys, but won’t win tons of games.

QB Marcus Mariota – Tennessee Titans (Good Place) –
One of the best things going for Mariota, is the division that he’s in, having been drafted by the Titans. They are in the AFC South, and 4 of their games will be against Houston and Jacksonville. Indianapolis will be 2 tough games, but Indy’s defense is atrocious…at least it was in 2014. Another good thing going for Mariota going to Tennessee is that his only competition is 6 rounder QB Zach Mettenberger. Lastly, except for Sankey being the #1 RB, the Titans have some decent talent surrounding Mariota. (The Titans drafted WR Dorail-Green-Beckham for Mariota in Round Two.)

WR Kevin White – Chicago Bears (Bad Place) –
It’s a funny thing, but some players in the NFL can be bad for the team they play on, but great for owners of fantasy teams. QB Jay Cutler is the perfect example. He’ll put up fantastic fantasy numbers each week, but drive Bear fans crazy by losing tons of games. We have to believe that new HC John Fox will employ a balanced game plan, but ultimately will have Cutler throwing the ball 35-40 times a game. White will benefit greatly from Cutler’s arm, and the departure of WR Brandon Marshall.

RB Todd Gurley – St Louis Rams (Bad Place) –
When HC Jeff Fisher was in Tennessee, he had RB Eddie George and he ran George a ton. Fisher has gotten way from the one running back workhorse, and runs more by committee (something we fantasy owners HATE!) The Rams also play in the NFC West division. You are crazy if you think RB Gurley is going to rack up a ton of yards and TDs, while fighting RB Tre Mason for carries and facing Seattle, San Francisco and Arizona each twice.

WR DeVante Parker – Miami Dolphins (Bad Place) – With WRs Mike Wallace and Brian Hartline both on new teams in 2015, the Dolphins needed a #2 WR opposite WR Jarvis Landry (a rookie in 2014) and they got one in Parker. However, Miami loaded up with WRs Kenny Stills, Greg Jennings and got a fabulous weapon in TE Jordan Cameron. TOO many mouths to feed. Also, I am not a big fan QB Tannehill. He struggles to make reads and struggles badly on deep balls, which is why WR Mike Wallace’s seasons there was lack luster. Tannehill throws short passes accurately however, so Parker could see 8-10 receptions a game. Parker is also 6’3″…where as WR Landry is only 5’11″…so count on Parker as the strong red zone target.

RB Melvin Gordon – San Diego Charger- (Great Place) – Love, Love, Love this selection by San Diego, and love where Gordon landed (only Dallas would have been a better landing spot for him). There is no competition for Gordon in San Diego…the #1 RB is his on a golden platter. Although the Chargers will mix in some other running backs on 3rd downs, Gordon will have the opportunity to be the workhorse there, and will get the goal line runs. Only an unfortunate injury will prevent Gordon from having a monster 2015 season.

WR Nelson Agholor – Philadelphia Eagles (Great Place) –
This is almost a carbon copy of the write up on WR Devante Parker, who went to Miami. With WR Jeremy Maclin now in Kansas City, the Eagles needed a #2 WR opposite WR Jordan Matthews (a rookie in 2014) and they got one in Agholor. As in the case of WR Sammy Watkins, WR Kelvin Benjamin and rookie WR Amari Cooper…opportunity is a big key for early success. Time will tell whether new Eagle QB Sam Bradford can stay healthy, and be the QB that he has shown potential for.

WR Breshad Perriman – Baltimore Ravens (Great Place) – Love, Love, Love this selection by Baltimore, and love where Perriman landed. With WR Torrey Smith now playing for the 49ers, the Ravens have their next deep threat receiver in Perriman. This is where, as mentioned at the beginning, a place I thought WR Amari Cooper would thrive. Instead, it’s Perriman’s place.

WR Philip Dorsett – Indianapolis Colts (Bad Place) – This landing spot for WR Dorsett is “WR Cody Latimore Deja’ Vu”. This selection by the Colts was an odd one, to say the least. The Indianapolis defense was awful in 2014, QB Luck has plenty of weapons and their first pick was a wide receiver??? WR Dorsett will move into the #3 WR position, and might…MIGHT establish himself enough to bump WR Donte Moncrief for playing time, but I doubt it.

RB TJ Yeldon – Jacksonville Jaguars (Bad Place) – Regardless of the landing spot, I am not a fan of Yeldon’s and not a fan of the Jaguars offense. An Alabama Alum, so TJ Yeldon is either going to be an “Eddie Lacy” or a “Trent Richardson”, and I am leaning toward the latter. Pick this guy if he is available in later rounds in your fantasy drafts, but NOT EARLY. It will be a wasted pick if you take him too early.

WR Devin Smith – New York Jets (Bad Place) – Here is the Jets QB Depth Chart…Ryan Fitzpatrick– Geno Smith- Bryce Petty- Matt Sims (sorry if I hit you with that right after you ate something). The Jets already have WR Brandon Marshall and WR Eric Decker, so it couldn’t be much worse.
Dorial Green-Beckham – Tennessee Titans (Bad Place) – The worst place a wide receiver can go is on a bad team or with a rookie quarterback. Green-Beckham got both. It’s also a crowded WR depth chart, so I am not expecting much from this rookie in 2015. WR Devin Funchess was drafted only ONE spot later, to the Carolina Panthers, where I am sure Green-Beckham would have rather have gone. He must be sick about it.

WR Devin Funchess – Carolina Panthers (Great Place) – As written earlier, The Panthers only have rookie WR Kelvin Benjamin, who had a monster rookie season with QB Cam Newton and they desperately needed a top receiver opposite Benjamin…and now they have one in Funchess. Like WR Benjamin (6’5″)…WR Funchess (6’4″) is a huge receiver and he will get plenty of targets in the red zone. This wide receiver corps will look a lot like the Tampa Bay receiving corps with Vincent Jackson and Mike Evans, except with a better quarterback.

RB Ameer Abdullah – Detroit Lions (Bad Place) –
I HATE, HATE, HATE this selection by Detroit, and hate where Abdullah landed. I understand the pick and know that the Lions needed depth at the RB position, but strictly fantasy wise, this stinks. RB Abdullah’s addition not only sinks his own fantasy value, but RB Joique Bell’s as well. There is no longer a #1 RB in Detroit, and a bigger RBBC situation than we had with Reggie in 2014.

Women Love Fantasy Football Too

Women Love Fantasy Football Too by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles

Fellas, Females love Fantasy football Too

30 years ago in a Manhattan restaurant, a group of guys who loved sports and athlete statistics, came up with the idea of fantasy football. For a while, the phenomenon grew only amongst the “stat geeks”, and was not a part of the sports mainstream. For decades, even the NFL was hesitant to endorsed the product. Things have changed over the last five years however, and the league now clearly supports and benefits greatly from fantasy football.

In 2012, the number of participants in fantasy leagues rose to a record 33 million Americans, or roughly 10% of the U.S. population. Today, that number has grown to over 42 million. Not only has the number of participants grown, but so has the demographics. It’s not just a bunch of nerdy guys drafting in someone’s mancave anymore. Women have come into the fantasy fold in droves, and have quickly become 20% of the the players in fantasy sports. The Fantasy Sports Trade Association (FSTA) estimates that women will comprise 1/3 of all fantasy football players in the very near future. Along with the joy of competition, women interviewed reported by that fantasy football facilitated staying in touch with friends, being a part of the draft day experience, being part of the water cooler talk, and being able to hang with the guys as incentives to participate.

Fantasy football is a multi-billion dollar industry, and aiding fantasy football’s popularity is the ever growing stream of daily fantasy sports websites. A few years ago, the only type of fantasy football available was the standard season-long league where you have the same players on your team the entire year. Instead, these daily websites allow you to choose new players (hence a new team) each week. FanDuel has more than 1 million paying users and is valued at more than $1 billion during its last investment round, according to a source familiar with the company’s finances. Additionally, women are joining FanDuel twice as fast as men, according to the company’s chief executive, Nigel Eccles. The next-biggest site, DraftKings, based in Boston. This year the daily fantasy-sports industry will collect more in entry fees than all the sports books at Vegas casinos combined, according to research conducted about the gaming industry.
Utter-Fantasy-Football

Fantasy football owners, men and women alike, might be surprised to know that there are now websites that offer real insurance that provides coverage when players on their teams have season-ending injuries. Fantasyplayerprotect.com is available for a fee (premium), and the coverage is intended to replace the league entry fee, plus research expenses such as magazine or online subscriptions. Since fantasy football has become a legitimate part of the most sports, it makes sense that these insurance products will also grow in popularity. An estimated $2 billion dollars was spent on fantasy league fees last year.

So fellas, the next time you are heading out the door to a fantasy draft, don’t be surprised if instead of asking when you’ll be home, she instead asks you to hold that door, because she’s heading out for one herself.

Joining a Fantasy Football League

Joining a Fantasy Football League by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles

 

Or Starting Your Own

We have new players ask us about how to start their own leagues, so we
thought we would cover the subject as a bonus chapter, for those who are
interested.

There are countless internet sites that you can play
on, and keep track of your fantasy leagues. Many
popular sites don’t charge a fee. It is
free to park your leagues there. The most
recommended ones are NFL, ESPN and Yahoo.

When you decide to play fantasy football, joining
one of these sites is easier than you might think.
Let’s say you want to have Yahoo host your league.
(You’ll be asked to sign into your Yahoo! Account if you haven’t already.)

· Go to Yahoo.com.

· Select the Sports tab from the list of Yahoo services.

…Next click on the “Fantasy” tab in the Sports Section.

· Scroll down to “Fantasy Football” or click this link…YAHOO FOOTBALL FANTASY SPORTS

· There you will find two choices…”Join a League” or “Create a League”.

To Join a League – Simply click this link – you will see open leagues that
need teams.

To Create a league – Click this link and a window will appear. It will ask
you for your League name – Type of league you want (Points vs HD2HD) –
How & When you want to draft – Click “Finish” and voila!– You can even
customize your league settings right there.

ESPN also hosts Free Fantasy Leagues and offers
• Existing Leagues
• New Leagues
• Previous Leagues
Click this link to Go to ESPN Fantasy here- ESPN FANTASY FOOTBALL

As a league, decide on rules for trades, player moves each week and for
submitting weekly line ups. You’ll also need to decide how long your season
will last and if your league will have playoffs. These are decisions every team
member should vote when starting a new league.
If you’re invited to join a friend’s league, you’ve probably received an e-mail
with a link to the sign-up page. Just click on the link, accept your spot, pick
a team name and logo. This type of league works exactly like a public league
when the season begins, but the league’s commissioner can customize the setup. Yahoo has a certain set of standard defaults for roster requirements,
scoring, free agency, and so on.

So, there you have it…setting up your league with a Free Fantasy Football
Hosting Site is as easy as taking a ride on the Reading Railroad!
To learn more about your new obsession and get more advanced
fantasy tips and advice, be sure to visit us at
Utter-Fantasy.com often.

Greatest Fantasy Team Ever Assembled

Greatest Fantasy Team Ever Assembled by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles

QB Peyton Manning
RB Ladainian Tomlinson
RB Emmitt Smith
WR Randy Moss
WR Calvin Johnson
WR Jerry Rice
TE Rob Gronkowski
K Adam Vinatieri
DEF Balt Ravens
FLEX…?

When I joined my first fantasy football league, it was back in 1985, and it was back before we had any fancy fantasy football websites or fancy fantasy football apps. We didn’t know how our teams did until each of us got our own Monday morning newspaper and scanned the sports section to find out. Then, we had to wait for the commish to send out a newsletter in the mail (not e-mail) to find out how we did compared to everyone else in the league. It is from this history of fantasy participation that I put together this ultimate team. I wasn’t that difficult….what I mean is, I didn’t crunch numbers to do it, like I usually do. These are the guys each year I either said “Damn it, I wish I had that guy” or “I’m damn glad I have that guy.”

(It would be interesting to dig out each of these guy’s best game ever, and see just how big a score in fantasy it would come out to be, if scored in the same week. Maybe I’ll add an addendum to this article if I get so inspired.)

So, above is my “Greatest Fantasy Team Ever Assembled”, and here’s why…

QB- Other names obviously pop into mind for the quarter back…Drew Brees, Tom Brady, and Dan Marino etc, but Peyton’s last couple years wins it for me. He broke the NFL record of throwing for more than one touchdown pass in 14th consecutive games and in 2013, he threw 55 TD passes. (7 TDs in Week 1) In 2014, he threw 39 more TD passes. Manning has also averaged over 31 TDs a year over his 17 year career.

RBs- Ladainian Tomlinson & Emmitt Smith were the solid pieces of any person’s fantasy team that drafted them. They produced every week, and had many multiple TD games over their career. 2 names that one could easily make a case for being here are Adrian Peterson & Marshall Faulk, possibly over Emmitt Smith. Smith I would like to remind you however, had 2 back-to-back seasons over 20 TDs while AP had none.

WRs- Randy Moss single-handedly helped me win more than one fantasy championship, so he has to be here. Oh those days of Culpepper to Moss. Tom Brady threw him a few as well. I remember one snowy game in Foxboro that the Brady/Moss connection got me 3 TDs of the long variety…nice! Although Calvin seems to be at the end of his career, there’s no denying that he is #1 WR in fantasy football over the past 8 years. When it comes to fantasy consistency, the only other wide receiver that comes to my mind other than Jerry Rice, is Larry Fitzgerald. Unfortunately Fitz didn’t always have great QB like Rice did, so Rice gets my 3rd spot.

TE- Gronk is the best TE ever to play the game, in my opinion. He’s unstoppable when healthy. Antonio Gates and Tony Gonzalez are/were great and they get the credit for changing the position. Jimmy Graham is a beast, but I still have to put Gronk on my Greatest Fantasy Team.

K- After 42 year old Adam Vinatieri recently nailed a 53 FG during a playoff game vs the Bengals, he was summoned to take a drug test, the following day! He passed. Two long careers, one with the Patriots, the 2nd with the Colts, this future Hall of Famer is my choice for the Greatest Fantasy Team.

DEF-
Over the past 20 years, when you say great NFL Defense of all time…you have to be talking about Baltimore. In 2001, they won a Superbowl with Trent Dilfer as their quarterback…that’s how great they were that year. Seattle is who you think of today, but the Seahawks don’t have the reputation Baltimore has, since the year 2000.

FLEX-
For all the greats that I have mentioned, but who didn’t make the The Greatest Fantasy Team Ever Assembled, pick one and put them in the flex position…icing on the Greatest Fantasy Team Ever cake.

NFL 2015 Quarterback Rankings

NFL 2015 Quarterback Rankings

1. Andrew Luck IND
2. Aaron Rodgers GB
3. Drew Brees NO
4. Peyton Manning DEN
5. Ben Roethlisberger PITT
6. Tom Brady NE
7. Russell Wilson SEA
8. Tony Romo DAL
9.  Philip Rivers SD
10. Matthew Stafford DET
11. Matt Ryan ATL
12. Eli Manning NYG
13. Cam Newton CAR
14. Jay Cutler CHI
15. Joe Flacco BALT
16. Carson Palmer ARZ
17. Ryan Tannehill MIA
18. Nick Foles ST L
19. Sam Bradford PHIL
20. Derek Carr OAK
21. Teddy Bridgewater MIN
22. Colin Kaepernick SF
23. K Cousins WASH
24. Blake Bortles JAX
25. Alex Smith KC
26. Andy Dalton CIN
27. Brian Hoyer HOU
28. Josh McCown CLEV
29. Tyrod Taylor BUFF
30. Ryan Fitzpatrick NYJ
31. Marcus Mariota – Rookie Tennessee
32. Jameis Winston – Rookie Tampa Bay
33. Jimmy Garoppolo NE
34. Matt Cassel BUFF
35. Mike Glennon TB
36. Mark Sanchez PHIL
37. Colt McCoy WASH
38. Zach Mettenberger TEN
39. Ryan Mallett HOU
40. Brock Osweiler DEN
41. Geno Smith NYJ- Out 6-10 Weeks broken jaw
42. A.J. McCarron CIN
43. J Manziel CLEV
44. Christian Ponder OAK
45. RG3 WASH
46. Tom Savage HOU
47. Austin Davis STL
48. Aaron Murray KC
49. Ryan Nassib NYG
50. Logan Thomas ARZ

•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Running Back Rankings
•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Wide Receiver Rankings
•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Defense Rankings
•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Tight End Rankings

2015 Player Rankings Tight Ends

2015 Player Rankings Tight Ends by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles

 

1. Rob Gronkowski- Patriots
2. Greg Olsen – Panthers
3. Jimmy Graham – Seahawks
4. Martellis Bennett – Bears
5. Jason Witten – Cowboys
6. Travis Kelce – Chiefs
7. Jordan Cameron- Dolphins
8. Dwayne Allen – Colts
9. Ben Watson- Saints
10. Owen Daniels – Broncos
11. Ladarius Green – Chargers
12. Coby Fleener – Colts
13. Delanie Walker – Titans
14. Zach Ertz – Eagles
15. Kyle Rudolph – Vikings
16. Heath Miller – Steelers
17. Charles Clay – Buffalo
18. Larry Donnell – Giants
19. Jordan Reed- Wash
20. Josh Hil- Saints
21. Austin Seferian-Jenkins – Bucs
22. Richard Rodgers – Packers
23. Jordan Reed – Washington
24. Mychal Rivera – Raiders
25. Brent Celek – Eagles
26. Rob Housler – Browns
27. Maxx Williams- Rookie- Ravens
28. Jacob Tamme – Falcons
29. Tyler Eifert – Bengals
30. Jared Cook – Rams
31. Julius Thomas – Jaguars- Out until likely Week 5 ( finger) then Bye Week 8
32. Garrrett Graham – Texans
33. Antonio Gates – Chargers- suspended four games
34. Eric Ebron – Lions
35. Luke Wilson – Seahawks
36. Jace Amaro – Jets
37. Jermaine Gresham – Bengals
38. Anthony Fasano – Titans
39. Andrew Quarless – Packers
40. Clive Walford – Rookie
41. Lance Kendricks – Rams
42. Troy Niklas – Cardinals
43. Jordan Reed- Washington
44. Gavin Escobar – Cowboys
45. Brandon Myers – Bucs
46. Joseph Fauria – Lions
47. John Carlson – Cardinals
48. Marcedes Lewis – Jaguars
49. Tony Moeaki – Falcons
50. Dion Sims – Dolphins
51. Jeff Cumberland – Jets
52. Crockett Gilmore – Ravens

 

•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Quarterback Rankings
•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Running Back Rankings
•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Wide Receiver Rankings
•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Defense Rankings

NFL 2015 Player Rankings Defenses

 

NFL 2015 Player Rankings Defenses by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles

Here are the Top preseason NFL 2015 Player Rankings Defenses ranked for the upcoming NFL season based on their success in 2014. It also takes in account every NFL team’s strength of schedule for the upcoming season. In 2014, the seattle seahawks were ranked #1 for NFL defense, while the Atlanta Falcons were ranked #322, dead last in the NFL

NFL 2015 Player Rankings Defenses

1. Seattle Seahawks – #1 NFL ranked defense 2014
2. Houston Texans
3. Arizona Cardinals
4. Buffalo Bills – #4 NFL ranked defense 2014
5. St Louis Rams
6. Green Bay Packers
7. Carolina Panthers
8. Denver Broncos- #3 NFL ranked defense 2014
9. Baltimore Ravens
10. New England Patriots
11. New York Jets
12. Miami Dolphins
13. Kansas City Chiefs
14. Detroit Lions- #2 NFL ranked defense 2014
15. Dallas Cowboys
16. Philadelphia Eagles
17. Minnesota Vikings
18. Pittsburgh Steelers
19. Cleveland Browns
20. Indianapolis Colts
21. New York Giants
22. Cincinnati Bengals
23. San Francisco 49ers
24. Tampa Bay Bucs
25. Chicago Bears
26. San Diego Chargers
27. Atlanta Falcons- #32 NFL ranked defense 2014
28. Tennessee Titans
29. Washington
30. Jacksonville Jaguars
31. New Orleans Saints
32. Oakland Raiders

•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Quarterback Rankings
•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Running Back Rankings
•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Wide Receiver Rankings
•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Tight End Rankings

About Utter-Fantasy Football

About Utter-Fantasy Football by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles

1987. There was one game on TV. Kansas City Chiefs vs the Los Angeles Raiders. I didn’t have anyone playing. I almost got Raider Craig Ellis, who had a big game, but Hotujac freakin’ took him right before my pick. I swear he read my mind. So now I am hoping that the RB I ended up getting, did well on Sunday, Pittsburgh Steeler Earnest Jackson. I won’t know until Monday however, when I walk up to the corner gas station and get a newspaper out of the vending box. That’s how it went back then. Watch what little you could on Sunday, then check the newspaper Monday morning ( and even then you didn’t know how you did the league, because the letter from the commish, who added up all the scores each week, wouldn’t come in the mail, until Friday.)

You young punks out there are so spoiled now. Scores rolling across ESPN every minute, instant updates on CBS Sportsline and countless APPs. In 1987, your Sunday Ticket was to see Lethal Weapon at 1:00 pm at the Cinema. Of coarse, you young punks helped to make FF as popular as it is right now, so kiss my butt for being spoiled and thank you for playing.

And unlike most of you young punks, I happen to be in a position where I can retire (a little) and spend some of my time now, doing what I love. I have 4 loves actually, and they are the NFL football, talking about NFL football, fantasy football (FF) and art. (Drinking alcoholic beverages should be listed in there somewhere, but I am trying to be a better roll model.) Put all these together, and you get a new fantasy football website. Sure, there already are some, but with my buddy Phil E. Stake, we think there’s room for another. A better one, Utter-fantasy.com. A site barely alive. But gentleman, we can build it. We have the technology. We have the capability to build the world’s first bionic fantasy football website. Better, stronger, faster. (OK, maybe not bionic or faster, but funnier…definitely funnier)

We are not all chuckles and grins however. I take my FF very serious as well. I have won more leagues than I have lost, and I think that what I have to say might help you and your teams. I also think that I can learn something from all of you as well, so together, lets kick some ass.

Players Whose Team Will Miss Them

Players Whose Team Will Miss Them by Utter-Fantasy writer & illustrator Doug Bowles

 

 

Dear ___________ (player’s name here)

I remember how it used to be 
when nothing else mattered but you and me

music, country roads, and Super Bowl dreams.

I miss you, I wish you could see
 that without you here, I miss you and me.

Love,
Coach
Utter-Fantasy’s Top 10 Missed Players:

#1) Jimmy Graham – Oh, the players the Saints had to part with, to make sure Drew Greed got all of the $100 million he demanded.
 ( Remember, he held out of camp and the team has gone down since) Graham is a FREAK, and he made teams afraid. I do not like that he went to Seattle however. He won’t be the same fantasy star there unfortunately.

#2) Revis/ Browner – I know Belichick is a wizard at getting the most from players, but New England’s defense took a big hit, no matter what. Their weak division however, will likely make this manageable.

#3) Andre Johnson – Andre clearly was sick of being a Texan with lousy quarterbacks, so the move was excellent for him, and I love that he is in Indianapolis ( WR Sleeper), but the Texans now have a receiving corps full of young kids, albeit talented ones, and I think his veteran leadership will be missed most.

#4) Frank Gore – I remember watching a game Nov. 30th, 2010, where he came out injured in early second half, and since I had him on my fantasy team I desperately wanted him back in. Gore was clammering to get back in on the sidelines, so I was screaming at the TV/ HC Singletary to let him. Turns out he had a broken hip. That guy had a broken hip and wanted back in!  You want guys like that on a team. Love him now in Indy as well. ( RB Sleeper)

#5) Brandon Marshall – Despite all the trouble he created in his early years, Marshall has since become quite the mentor, and not unlike Houston, Chicago has now a receiving corps full of young kids, albeit talented ones, and I think his veteran leadership will be missed most. He won’t do much as a Jet.

#7) Jeremy Maclin– Chip Kelly has gotten too big for his too big britches. You can’t cast off every talented person because you think you’re a creative genius, because maybe you’re not. You haven’t won anything, not even a playoff game. I would have sucked up some humility and I would have kept Maclin, and I would have kept McCoy. We’ll see how 2015 plays out.

#8) Dwayne Bowe – I do not include him because I think he’s great- he’s not. But he is a talented wide receiver in the NFL, and for the life of me, I will never understand KC’s ridiculous stubbornness to avoid having TWO good wide receivers on a KC roster. Finally…..Bowe gets some to line up opposite him, when good bye Bowe, you’re off to Cleveland. Welcome to KC Maclin, but I bet you’ll hate it there.

#9) Julius Thomas – I do not think Denver will miss Julius, just the opposite, and had to put this in. Of all the players to find new teams, I think Julius Thomas will miss his old team the most. Remember that game when he caught his 2nd TD, and was heard yelling “This is too easy!” Bet you 20 bucks he never yells that in Jacksonville.

#10) Brian Hoyer – Think what you want, but the Browns were winning until that spineless head coach caved, and put in Mr. Rehab Manziel. They could have gone to that playoffs that season. I think Hoyer is a gamer ( not heading to Canton mind you, but decent) and I don’t think McCown is the answer ( and certainly Manziel clown isn’t )

BONUS) Trent Richardson– Just kidding- The Browns don’t miss him, the Colts don’t miss him, for now the Raider’s don’t miss him and I wouldn’t miss him if he left the NFL altogether. Rough I know, but he stinks! ( McFadden does too! I wouldn’t miss him either)

NFL Preseason Week Three Fantasy Review

NFL Preseason Week Three Fantasy Review by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator & Doug “happy it’s finally started” Bowles

The Dress Rehearsal

WASH vs BALT ( 31-13 )

• WASH QB K Cousins started with RB A Morris and out performed injured quarterback RG3 and Out. K Cousins threw 20/ 27 for 190 yards with an interception and a one flukey touchdown. QB C McCoy came in for the 2nd half- HC J Gruden has named QB Cousins the starter for 2015
• WASH starting WRs were A Roberts, Ryan Grant and P Garcon with TE Jordan Reed. WR Garcon was held without a reception- WR R Grant was targeted often by QB Cousins-
• WASH RB C Thompson came into the game after RB Morris, but it was RB Matt Jones who again, came in for WASH later and added a spark- He is one to watch
• WASH’s first TD of the preseason came in the 2nd qtr when QB K Cousins pass from the 22 yard line was deflected by WASH Roberts, right into the hands of WASH Crowder’s hands who then easily ran into for essentially a 22 yard TD pass

• BALT QB Flacco started with RB Forsett and vet WR Steve Smith. Flacco still has a cannon for an arm and was very accurate in this game- ( anyone ranking one of these rookie QBs ahead of him…… is laughable)
• BALT WR Steve Smith put on a show before being tossed out of the game near the end of the first half- WASH player #52 Robinson illegally piled drived BALT WR Aiken and caused an on-field fight between the teams- ( Even HC Harbaugh and HC Gruden got into with words) – #52 Robinson WASN’T ejected but this cheap shot will get it in the wallet for certain
• BALT WR K Aiken started opposite Steve Smith- Rookie Perriman did not play
• BALT WR Steve Smith’s 63 TD pass and 2 Tucker FGs were the only Balt scores
• BALT RB Forsett played much of the 1st half, ending with 8 carries for 19 yards

PITT vs BUFF ( 19-43 )

• PITT QB Roethlisberger started- he only attempted 4 passes- completing 2 for 30 yards-  QB M Vick came in after Roethlisberger- his first pass went for 63 ards to WR M Bryant ( Bryant is suspended for the 1st 4 games)
• PITT WR was targeted often but only came away with 1 catch- 20 yards
• PITT LeVeon Bell was in with the 1dt stringers for a very short time, before giving way to DeAngelo Williams. Williams showed burst of speed and will have the 1st two games of the reg season as the starter- He went 3/15 yards and 1 TD run- he also had one reception for 10 yards

• BUFF QB EJ Manuel made his case to reclaim the starting job by going 7 of 8 for 170 yards and two touchdowns in a 43-19 preseason win over the Steelers on Saturday. Manuel hit TE Charles Clay for 67 yard TD pass near the end of the 1st qtr
• BUFF RB Fred Jackson started behind QB manuel and his 1st run went for 41 yards. Jackson loves to play and loves to play hard. It wouldn’t be surprising if he go most of the goal line carries- RB McCoy did not play
• BUFF WR Sammy Waktins- Rovert Woods and ( Of Course) Percy Harvin did not play- the starters were WRs Andre Davis and M Goodwin
• BUFF started their 1st string O-Line into the 3rd qtr
• BUFF K D Carpenter is struggling this preseason

MINN vs DAL ( 28-14 )

• MINN QB Teddy Bridgewater continued his impressive preseaosn by going 7 for 7 for 76 yards ( I still don’t get how he throws “better” with gloves on, but he does)- He played 3 series, one ended with a other two in FGs
• MINN RB Peterson did not play- Some sites have this guy as their #1 overall- I don;t get that either- I know the child abuser is a super human athlete, but he hasn’t played a down since Week One of 2014 and it’s not like he hasn’t been injured before- Too risky for me for 1st pick, even first round
• MINN RB McKinnon stared- nothing great for sure- 6 carries for 10 yards- Later RB M Asiata had 3 carries for 2 yards
• MINN WR Charles Johnson had been QB Bridgewater’s favorite target in previous games, but wasn’t targeted in the Preseason Week 3 game. WR Wallace had 3 receptions for 50 yards

• DAL QB Tony Romo played 5 series. He hit WR T Williams on a beautiful slant that went 60 yards for a TD ( over half YAC)
• DAL WR Bryant has dealt with a strained hamstring throughout camp and hasn’t played since signing his new $70 million, five-year contract in mid-July
• DAL O -Line did not look like the O-Line that was making giant holes for RB DeMarco Murray last year
• DAL TE J Witten started but was held without a catch
• DAL WR Cole Beasley heard it from QB Romo on the 2nd series for running the wrong route, but made up for it later with a 40 yard punt return- WR C Patterson in the 2nd qtr had a 107 kickoff return TD run
• DAL QB Vaughan came in for Romo in the 2nd half, as well as QB J Showers- QB Weeden did not play

ARI vs OAK ( 30-23 )

• ARI QB C Palmer started with RB Ellington, WRs Larry Fiyz and John Brown – with TE D fells- WR M Floyd did not play- Coach Bruce Arians is “optimistic” Michael Floyd (fingers) will play Week 1
• ARI QB Palmer threw 2 interceptions and was sacked three times in a rough first half – 8/22 for 103 yards- Game of FGs the entire first half
• ARI RB Chris Johnson did not play
• ARI back up QB Drew Stanton fared OK against Oakland’s starting defense, going 8 for 9 for 58 yards in his only drive and threw an 8-yard TD pass to rookie Davis Johnson

• OAK 2nd year QB Carr also struggled- 18/34 for 213 yards and one INT-
• OAK RB Lat Murray also started and couldn’t find any room- 7 carries for 1. You know you had a bad day when back up RB Trent Richardson out rushes you ( 5 for 19 yards) even if Richardson was against 2nd-3rd string DEF
• OAK right tackle Menelik Watson Out for the season to a ruptured Achilles.
• OAK WR Amari Cooper had four catches for 62 yards, his longest went for 36-yards- WR Crabtree started opposite Cooper- 1 catch for 6 yards
• OAK K S Janokowski kicked 5 field goals in the first half

HOU vs NO ( 27-13 )

• HOU QB B Hoyer was given the start- he attempted 11 passed, completing 7 for 82 yards- No TDs. His first series ended with a RB A Blue 1yd TD run- QB B Hoyer played into the 3rd qtr- He was followed by QB R Mallett- ( RB A Blue con’t to play w/ Mallett
• HOU A Blue had 4 carries for 12 yards- 1 TD run. 1 reception
• HOU starting WRs were De Hopkins, Cecil Shorts and Nate Washington ( WR Sleeper)
• HOU WR rookie J Strong had a 6 yard TD pass from QB Mallett in the 3rd qtr

• NO Brees played only one series, which ended with a Z Hocker FG
• NO QB L McCown followed Brees and went 8/14 for 117 yards – No TDs- No INTS
• NO RB M Ingram started and has been featured plenty in the Saint’s passing game ( Ingram gets a bump in PPR legaues)
• NO offense isn’t the same without big threat TE Jimmy Graham- New Orleans’ first two trips inside Houston’s 20 produced only 3 points
• NO Wr B cooks is having an outstanding preseason and is shaping up as a true #1-#2 WR
• NO K Z Hocker and D Hopkins are battling for the Saint’s kicking job-Dustin Hopkins has a stronger leg and has been more accurate and is outperforming Zach Hocker so far

SF vs DEN ( 12-19 )

• SF QB C Kaep started and struggled mightily vs a tough DEN defense- he went2/5 for 143 yards and no TDs- No INTs- He did have 3 nice runs for 53 yards, but his job is to throw the ball, and he’s not doing it
• SF RB C hyde did his best with an O-Line that looks bad ( which is a big part of QB Kaep’s problems) Hyde did go 4 carries for 28 yards and was targeted in the passing game but held without a reception
• SF RB K Hunter was rotated in occasionally with RB Hyde- RB Reggie Bust Bush had his first preseason work- 1 carry
• SF WR Torrey Smith had one reception for 5 yards- WR A Boldin stared opposite WR T Smith and was held without a reception- hard to get excited about this offense

• DEN QB P manning started and was 14 for 21 for 124 yards and was sacked three times- there is no zip on his passes at all, and Peyton may struggle to be a top 15 QB this year
• DEN offense, with HC Kubiak, is now a run first team, and they seem committed to #1 C J Anderson, then #2 R Hillman- RB M Ball is only getting carries at the end of preseason games
• DEN WR Emmanuel Sanders did not play. WR starters were Dem Thomas, Andre Caldwell. J Norwood and Cody Latimer. With P Manning struggling, Dem Thomas will struggle to come anywhere close to his stats in 2014- Emmanuel Sanders (hamstring) is expected to resume practicing next week
• DEN WR J Norwood seems to have grown into the “Wes Welker” role for the Broncos
• DEN TE O Daniels had only 1 catch for 3 yards despite QB Manning playing the entire first half

TENN vs KC ( 10-34 )

• TENN M Mariota started for the Titans and got off to a slow start for Tennessee missing on his first three throws. The first-round pick went 7 of 8 for 99 yards the rest of the half
• TENN RB B Sankey couldn’t add to his preseason week 2 success, going 6 carriesfor 17 yards and 1 fumble. Fantasy owners should not have taken his preseason week 2 success as anything but a fluke
• TENN starting WRs were K Wright, H Nicks and J Hunter with TE Delanie Walker- TE Walker was targeted on a deep pass which was incomplete- K Wright ended the game with 3 receptions for 60 yards
• TENN offense only scored a Fg and a 2yard TD run by RB A Andrews, all in the 2nd qtr- With a rookie QB and an RB no defense is afraid of, this offense will likely struggle all season

• KC QB A Smith threw for 171 yards and two touchdowns in less than a half- Smith targetd WR J Maclin early and often- The first drive ended with a TD pass to Maclin for 29 yards
• KC RB J Charles started behind QB Smith an quickly chalked up 41 total yards on 5 touches ( 3 runs, 2 receptions)- RB K Davis was rotated in with the starters
• KC TE T Kelce finally showed up for anxious fantasy owners- 2 catches for 42 yards and a TD pass from QB Smith
• KC WR A Wilson stared opposite WR Maclin- 1 catch for 16 yards
• KC second year QB Aaron Murray was QB Smith’s back up and secured the win- 15/20 for 146 yards and 2 TDs

CLEV vs TB ( 31-7 )

• CLEV QB J McCown stared against his former team and was impressive- 17 for 23- 117 yards and 2 TDs- No INTs. McCown played into the 3rd qtr, hitting TD passes to WR B Hartline and TE Gary Barnidge- He also had 3 runs for 20 yards
• CLEV RB I Crowell started in the ridiculous RB music chairs that HC pettine has been famous for since getting the coaching job- Pick an RB already!- QB McCown likes to target RB Crowell in the passing game
• CLEV WR D Bowe finally decided to play and Dwayne Bowe failed to catch any of his three targets in the Browns’ third preseason game- WRs T Gabriel and T Benjamin each had 4 catches
• CLEV RB T West came in later and had 7 carries for 26 yards- 1 reception- CLEV scored 4 TDs in this game

• TB QB J Winston struggled as a rookie will and was 6 of 15 for 90 yards. He threw one interception and was sacked four times before leaving after one series in the third quarter- He should be ranked #32 QB and nothing higher
• TB RB Doug Martin built on his previous preseason success, running the ball 9 times for 40 yards and a TD run ( 19 yards)- no receptions- RB martin’s TD run was Tampa Bay’s only score-
• TB RB C Sims had a quiet day- 3 carries for 9 yards- 1 reception for 12 yards
• TB WR V Jackson had 2 receptions for 38 yards- WithQB Winston under center, both TB star receivers should be dropped in rankings- WR M Evans did not play
• TB has signed former DEN K Connor Barth due to K P Murray’s recent struggles

DET vs JACK ( 22-17 )

• DET QB M Stafford completed 11 of 15 passes for 173 yards and 2 TDs in his start vs the Jags- Stafford played the entire 1st half
• DET RB A Abdullah got the start with QB Stafford and wasn’t as impressive- 3 carries for 8 yards- 1 reception for 21 yards- DET insists that QB J Bell is still their starter
• DET WRs in the 1st half were WR G Tate, Greg Salas and J Ross- Detroit played without star WR Calvin johnson for the third consecutive game
• DET RB Zenner- co MVP with G Tate for the preseason will likely make the team and play special teams for the most part

• JACK QB B Bortles is having a great preseason and has excelled in his 2nd year- He completed 20 of 29 passes for 245 yards and a touchdown. He also ran for 38 yards, including two third-down scrambles that kept scoring drives alive
• JACK RB T J Yeldon– welcome to the NFL- 8 carries for only 10 yards, but he did have a 1 yard TD run
• JACK WR A Hurns had a 13 yard TD pass from QB Bortles-  Wr A Robinson started opposite WR Hurns and caught 2 balls for 14 yards in the Jaguars’ third preseason game. (Robinson caused a scare when he briefly left the game with a first-half shoulder “contusion” (bruise)
• JACK TE Julius Thomas once again did not play
• JACK had 14 players record a reception in Preseason Week 3- Although it was a mix of 1st-2nd-3rd stringers, they do spread the ball around in that offense

SEA vs SD ( 22-17 )

• SEA QB R Wilson played into the 3rd qtr but only threw 7/15 for 56 yards – No TDs- No INTs- SEA back up QB later came in for Wilson and threw almost identical stats
• SEA RB M Lynch stared but barely played – 2 carries for 6 yards- SEA RB R Turbin came in for Lynch as he has done all preseason. RB C Michael always come in after Turbin
• SEA WR starters were D Baldwon and J Kearse with TE J Graham- Graham had 2 rec- 24 yds in Preseason Week 3 & on a missed throw by QB Wilson, Graham looked VERY frustrated- I doubt he’s happy this year in SEA
• SEA WR rookie T Lockett is tearing it up special teams in this preseason and took another punt return to the house- 67 yard TD
• SEA K Hauschka nailed a 60 yard FG in the 4th qtr

• SD QB P Rivers was efficient as always- 13 for 19- 140 yards- No TDs – No INTS
• SD RB Melvin Gordon wasn’t spectacular— 14 carries for only 34 yards- No TDs
• SD RB D Woodhead was featured once again in the SD offense, getting 9 total touches- SD RB B Oliver had an impressive 70 yard TD pass from back up QB K Clemens in the 3rd qtr
• SD TE L Green has been a disappointment this preseason- only one catch in this game- QB Rivers doesn’t look for him like he has Gates

ATL vs MIA ( 19-43 )

• ATL QB Matt Ryan played the entire first half- In the 4 series that Ryan played, 4 ended with punts and 1 FG- Ryan was 3/7 for 49 yards- No TDs- No INTs
• ATL RB rookie Tevin Coleman started RB D Freeman did not play- Coleman found no running room because of Miami’s stout defense led by N Suh- Coleman had 4 carries for 2 yards- no receptions- RB T Ward saw some action late
• ATL WRs that started with QB Ryan were Julio, L Hankerson ad Devin Hester- Julio did not have a catch- Hankerson had the most yardage ( 50 yards receiving )
• ATL offense only managed 3 FGs by K M Bryant

• MIA QB R Tannehill played most of the first half- He was productive going 15/19 for 145 yards and 1 TD pass- no INTs- Like ATL, the first half was filled with plenty of Miami punts- ( 5)
• MIA RB L Miller was featured for much of the 1st half- 6 carries for 22 yards and 5 receptions for 31 yards- He’s a must own in PPR leagues
• MIA WR Jarvis “Greg” Landry is by far and away QB Tannehill’s favorite weapon, and Landry had some great plays in this game- 5 catches – 84 yards
• MIA TE Jordan Cameron did not get his first target/catch until QB Tannehill’s  3rd series- he ended the day with 1 catch
• MIA WR K Stills was not in the game until late in the first half- 2 catches-26 yards- WR DeVante Parker did not play

IND vs STL ( 24-14 )

• IND QB A Luck started with Rb Dan “Boom” Herron as tailback- RB F ore did not play- Luck was 12/21 for 161 yards and 1 TD pass ( to WR Andre Johnson)
• IND RB B Herron ran 9 times for 25 yards- 1 catch for 10 yards
• IND TY Hilton started opposite WR A Johnson, and sustained a concussion in this game- Hilton had 3 receptions for 44 yards
• IND TE D Allen had 2 receptions for 25 yards- I do not think I have seen TE C Fleener play once this year- The Colts are expected to play more “three- and four-receiver formations” this season, so TE Fleener’s role could be cut drastically
• IND D Moncrief spent time with the 1sr string, particularly on 3rd downs- his role has been cut drastically with the signing of WR Andre Johnson

• STL QB N Foles was in control of the offense thru the first half although he did not atttempt anything deep until the the 3rd series- Foles reminds me of QB Flacco with his accuracy and arm strength
• STL RB T Gurley did not play again, which gave the start to RB Tre Mason- Mason was 4 carries for 12 yards ( 2 catches for 19 yards) before suffering leg injury right at the end of the 1st qtr- STL RB B Cunningham took over
• STL WR C Givens, on the very first play of the 3rd series, caught a nice 44 yards pass in the endzone thrown by QB Foles- Givens ended this game with 2 catches
• STL TE J Cook was the starting TE- 1 catch for 5 yards- STL usually has a TE produce a great game every 4-5 games during the regular season- They become waiver wire darlings, the do nothing for the next 4 games
• STL offense’s only other score was a 3 yard TD run by back up RB T Watts in the 3rd qtr

NE  vs CAR ( 17-16 )

• NE QB Tom Brady played the first half, and wasn;t very good until the last series when he lobbed a nice 18 yrad TD pass to TE Scott Chander with a minute left in the 2nd qtr- His 3rd series was the first time this preseason that QB Brady led the offense even across mid-field. Brady ended 7/13 for 84 yards- 1 TD and 2 INTs
• NE RB J Gray started with QB Brady and averages 2 yards a carry- 5 for 11 yards- RB B Bolden wa rotated in- RB L Blount did not play until the 3rd qtr when QB J Garoppolo took over ( maybe HC Belichick wants Blount playing with the QB that will likely be starting Week 1)
• NE players that did not dress for this game were WRs Edleman and LaFell- TE Gronk
• NE WR Reggie Wayne was targeted a couple times, but looked lost in this offense- no receptions

• CA QB Cam Newton started and it was obvious he missed WR K Benjamin- His chemistry with everyone else ( except Olsen ) wasn’t there
• CAR RB J Stewart had 7 carries in the first half, that totaled 12 yards. He had no receptions
• CAR TE Greg Olsen dropped a couple passes but still ended the game with 6 receptions for 51 yards which was by far the most of any CAR receiver
• CAR WR J Cotchery may not be flashy or a big name, but he is going to get targets- WR Corey Brown was terrible in this game, and may have cost himself playing time – WR Ted Ginn Jr will be their #3-#4 Wr and return man
• CAR rookie RB C Artis-Payne hasn’t been impressive- 6 carries for 15 yards vs 2nd-3rd string defenses

PHIL vs GB ( 30-23 )

• PHIL QB S Bradford looked sensational in his 1st start and was 10 of 10 for 121 yards with 3 TD passes-backup QB M Sanchez in the second quarter for Philadelphia (3-0).
• PHIL RB DeMarco Murray started with QB Bradford nad had 6 carries for 28 yards. PHIL DeMarco Murray fantasy owners should be concerned however- RB Murray was taken out -3 of 3 times when Eagles were inside the 10 in Preseason Week 3- Twice for RB Ryan Matthews and once for RB D Sproles- RB Sproles had a 8 yard TD reception from QB Bradford in the very first series
• PHIL WR J Matthews was targeted often by QB Bradford- 3 catches for 51 yards
• PHIL rookie WR N Agholor had his first reception in the 4th series, thrown by QB Sanchez

• GB QB Aaron Rodgers did not play, allowing 5th rd rookie QB Brett Hundley to get a lot of playing time- He went 22/31 for 315 yards and 2 TD passes. He had 1 INT
• GB RB Eddie Lacy started, but only played one series. RB J Starks came in one the 2nd series and scored a TD run from the 1 yard line
• GB WR R Cobb left after landing on his right arm while trying to catch a pass near the sideline on Green Bay’s first offensive series, but it isn’t reported to be serious
• GB WRs in the 4th series were Janis, Ty Montgomery and M White. All had receptions in this game. 2nd year player WR M White ended the game with 9 receptions for 89 yards. 2nd year player WR J Janis ended the game with 3 receptions for 72 yards and a TD from back up QB Blanchard
• GB TE R Rodgers started this game and had 1 catch for 10 yards

NYJ vs NYG ( 28-18 )

• NYJ QB Ryan Fitz started and went 9/14 for 127 and 2 TDs. He did not throw an INT. QB Fitz 1sts series ended with a punt- His 2nd series began with strong running by RB C Ivory, then capped off with an 18 yard TD pass to WR E Decker- QB Fitz played 5 series- the entire first half
• NYJ RB C Ivory had 6 carries for 38 yards and had been featured in NYJ passing game, but did not have a reception in Preseason Week 3- Former Ram RB Z Stacy had a 24-yarder TD screen pass from QB Fitz in the 2nd qtr
• NYJ WRs E Decker and B Marshall were both starters and both had 3 receptions

• NYG QB Eli Manning has not had a great preseason and did not score in this game until his 3rd series, which was a 1 yard TD run by RB R Jennings- The first 2 drives resulted in punts. In QB Manning’s 5th series with 19 seconds left in the 1st half, Eli was picked off by NYJ A Cromartie who scored a DEF TD on the play- Manning was 12/16 for 91 yards- No TDs
• NYG RB R Jennings started at tailback and had 28 yards on 9 carries- 1 TD- NO receptions- RB A Williams only had 2 carries for 0 yards
• NYG WR O Beckham was QB Mannings main target- WR James Jones has been the #2 WR for the Giants in the absense of Wrs R Randle and V Cruz- WR Cruz recently stated that he may not be ready for reg season Week One
• NYG RB Sh Vereen  continues to be rotated into the game – 3 carries and 3 receptions
• NYG TE L Donnell started and was targeted but did not record a reception

CHI vs CINN ( 10-21 )

• CHI QB Jay Cutler started this game and was efficient- 13/17 for 98 yards- No TDs- No INTs- QB Cutler played 6 series that went into the 3rd qtr- QB Clausen followed Cutler- It’s reported that Clausen suffered a concussion in this game
• CHI RB M Forte also started Preseason Week 3- He had 6 carries for 16 yards- No receptions- RB Jacquizz Rodgers has been playing behind Forte but only had 3 touches total
• CHI WRs A Jeffery, E Royal and M Wilson all sat this game out- With all the injuries to CHI’s receiving corps….HC J Fox could ill-afford to lose anyone else in a meaningless game
• CHI TE M Bennett had 7 receptions for 45 yards ( as the only starter to throw to by QB Cutler )
• CHI’s offense only generated a FG in this game- also the Bears offense has managed five field goals and no touchdowns in the preseason

• CINN QB A Dalton started and went 6/6 for 52 yards before sneaking in a touchdown on Cincinnati’s opening drive, then came out of the game as a precaution with a sore neck – former Alabama QB back up A McCarron was impressive during his first stint with the starting offense completing his first 7 passes, including a 31-yard TD pass to WR Marvin Jones
• CINN RB J Hill carried the ball 11 times for 46 yards and 1 yard TD run in the 2nd qtr
• CINN WR A J Green stared opposite WR M Jones- WR Mohamed Sanu was held without a catch in the Bengals’ third preseason game
• CIN  TE T Eifert ended the game with 2 receptions for 30 yards
• CINN’s offense generated 3 TDs in the first half and was shut out in the second half

Utter-Fantasy’s Preseason Week Two Review-WEEK TWO

Utter-Fantasy’s Preseason Week One Review-WEEK ONE

All scores can be seen at this link- PRESEASON WEEK 3

 

NFL Preseason Week Two Fantasy Review

NFL Preseason Week Two Fantasy Review by Utter-Fantasy writer & illustrator & Doug “happy it’s finally started” Bowles

In less than 3 weeks we will be watching the NFL season regular season kick off with the Pittsburgh Steelers at the New England Patriots Thursday Sep10th. Probbably the most disappointing injury so far for fantasy owners is CAR WR Kelvin Benjamin Out for the Season. Let’s hope there aren’t many more like his. (Spoke too soon- WR Jordy Nelson Out for the Season)

DET vs WASH ( 17-21)

• DET QB Matt Stafford stared and went 6/8 for 78 yards- No TDs- no INTs[ Stafford’s offensive drive ended with a M Prater FG
• DET QB D Orlovsky followed Stafford and was 13/17 with 2 TDs ( 1 TD pass to WR J Ross- 1 TD pass to RB Z Zenner )- QB D Orlovsky looked very good • DET WR C Fuller started in place of WR Cal Johnson, but did not record a reception
• DET WR J Ross could find his way into the starting line up if their are any significant injuries to the DET receiving corps
• DET TE E Ebron had one reception for 13 yards and is not a fantasy favorite of Utter-Fantasy

• WASH QB RG3 was hit hard on 6 of his 8 passing plays, and suffered a concussion on a down while retrieving his own fumble-
• WASH QBs Colt McCoy and Kirk Cousins came into the game following RG3s injury and both had impressive outings
• WASH WR LeSean Jackson did not play and during an interview w/ former     WASH C Portis, stated that he is currently at 85 % healthy
• WASH RB A Morris started and racked up only 10 yards on 3 carries- no receptions- RB Matt Jones came in after Morris and was a spark to the offense- 8 carries for 44 yards and 1 TD run. He also had 2 catches for 25 yards-Jones looked very good and should end up as Morris’ handcuff

BUFF vs CLEV ( 11-10 )

• BUFF QB Tyrod Taylor started and although his stats don’t show it, he had command of the offense and impressed – 7/10 for 65 yards
• BUFF QB M Cassel did not play • BUFF • BUFF HC Pettine did his usual musical RBs, starting West this time, and rotating in RB I Crowell
• BUFF RBs Seale and Hill were just signed to play in this game due to all the injuries to BUFF RBs
• BUFF defense was relentless, going after CLEV QBs McCown and Manziel

• CLEV QB J McCown started and played the entire first half. 7/10 for only 57 yards- no TD passes- 2 INTs-
• CLEV O-Line looked very bad most of the game- McCown was under duress nearly every down
• CLEV HC Pettine did his usual musical RBs, starting West this time, and rotating in RB I Crowell
• CLEV WR D Bowe once again did not play and “hopes” to play in Preseason Week 3
• CLEV QB J Manziel came in the 2nd half, and attempted mostly short high percentage plays ( 10/18- 118 yards and 1 TD pass vs BUFFs 3rd-4th stringers )

SEA vs KC  ( 13-14 )

• KC QB Alex Smith started with RB J Charles- 1st play was a “token” deep incomplete pass by QB Smith for the 2nd straight week.
• KC RB J Charles did not carry the ball once, but had 3 receptions for 7 yards
• KC RB Knile Davis handled the rushing duties in the 1st half- 11/ 29 yards- 2 receptions for 6 yards
• KC WR J Maclin started- WR J Avant was the starting #2 WR- Maclin had 2 receptions for 22 yards and 1 (3 yard) TD pass- which was the 1st TD pass reception by a KC WR since 2013
• KC offense was ultra-conservative as usual- even on a 3rd down and a long 14 yards- QB Smith only threw a pass for 3 yards, resulting in a 4th down punt
• KC TE T Kelce was targeted in the 1st 4 series- he ended with only one catch- 23 yards

• SEA  QB R Wilson started- no offense was slow- 1st 3 series were 3 and outs- 4th series ended in a Hauschka FG
• SEA RB R Turbin started his 2nd Preseason game ( not C Michael) 6 carries for 4 yards- RB M Lynch did not play
• SEA TE J Graham wasn’t targets in the 1st 3 series- he ended this game with 3 receptions for 39 yards
• SEA WRs that started were Doug Baldwin and rookie T Lockett
• SEA back up QB R Archer played the 2nd half for Seattle. No TD passes for either Seattle QB

ATL vs NYJ  ( 22-30 )

Game officiated by Pete “the Cheat” Morelli

• ATL QB Matt Ryan started with RB T Ward- ( RBs T Coleman and D Freeman did not play) – Ryan finished 4 of 5 for 75 yards, including a 60-yard completion to fullback C Mooney
• ATL WRs Julio Jones and Roddy White started with WR L Hankerson ( who is carving himself a spot in this offense as the 3rd WR – 3/15 and 1st qtr TD pass from QB M Ryan)- TE Tamme started but did not record a reception
• ATL WR Devin Hester nearly took his 21 st punt return for a TD- instead- 61 yards to the 5 yard line
• ATL QB T Yates ( formerly from Houston) took over after QB Ryan
• ATL WRs Julio Jones and Roddy White did not record a reception

• NYJ  QB R Fitzpatrick started with RB C Ivory- 1st 4 series ended without a score
• NYJ starting WRs were B Marshall and E Decker- TE J Cumberland
• NYJ RB C Ivory was featured in the passing ( which he isn’t known for) 3/20 yards… a bonus for PPR leagues- RB Ivory had a nice 33yd TD run in the 2nd qtr- (the man has some wheels!)
• NYJ QB Fitzpatrick found WR B Marshall for a 2-point conversion that cut New York’s deficit to 14-10.
• NYJ defense was tough all night and recorded a safety (sack in the endzone)

BALT vs PHIL ( 17-40 )

• BALT QB Joe Flacco started with RB J Forsett at tailback- Flacco was 3/7 for 23 yards- RB Forsett carried the ball 5 times for 29 yards- he had 1 reception
• BALT QB M Schaub followed Flacco into the game with 10 minutes left in the 2nd qtr- neither Flacco nor Schaub produced any points
• BALT RB T Magee ( 5th on BALT’s RB depth chart ) had the bulk of the carries for BALT in this game- 11/ 44 yards- no TDs
• BALT’s TDs all came in the 4th qtr with QB back up B Renner
• BALT TE rookie Maxx Williams had 3 receptions for 25 yards

• PHIL  QB S Bradford started for the Eagles 3/5 for 35 yards and no TDs
• PHIL QB M Sanchez took over after Bradford- 14/20 for 118 yards – no TDs
• PHIL RBs De Murray- Ryan Mathews and D Sproles were all participants as starters in the 1st qtr- Mathews and Murray both had TD runs- Murray was featured as the goal line back.
• PHIL return specialist Kenjon Barner took a punt return to the house- 68 yards- Barner also returned a punt 92 yards for a touchdown in Preseason Week One
• PHIL WR N Agholor continued to impress catching 4 passes for 49 yards, most by Philly WRs in Preseason Week Two

NE vs N.O. ( 26-24 )

• NE QB Tom Brady  started with RB LeGarrett Blount- Brady played 3 series in the 1st qtr- all were 3 & outs resulting in punts- Brady was 2/5 for 13 yards
• NE QB J Garroppolo finished the game, as he did in Preseason Week One- obviously getting a lot of reps with Brady’s looming suspension- after starting out slow- Garroppolo finished completing 28 of 33 for 269 yards and 1 TD pass
• RB Blount played most of the 1st half, rotating with RB D Lewis who was used for the most part in NE passing game- although Lewis did have a TD run in the 3rd qtr- NE RBs could do little in this game as the Saints run DEF was outstanding
• NE only scored in the 1st half with 54 seconds left in it- a TD pass from Garroppolo to WR C Harper
• NE TE Gronk did not play

• NO  QB D Brees & company had their way with NE for the entire 1st half- Brees hit WR B Cooks- RB M Ingram and RB K Robinson easily and often
• NO RB M Ingram played the 1st half with Brees and back up QB McCown
• NO QB L McCown ( brother to CLEV’s new QB J McCown) came in following Brees and went 4/6 with 1 TD pass to rookie TE J Hill
• NO WRs starting this game were B Cooks- M Colston and B Coleman ( Saints coach Sean Payton singled out second-year WR Brandon Coleman as the player who’s impressed him most in training camp )
• NO TE Benjamin Watson started with the 1st string- and caught a 10 yard TD pass from Brees

OAK vs MINN ( 12-20 )

• OAK QB Carr started with RB Lat Murray- Carr played 3 series and went 4/8 for 78 yards – No TDs – No INTs
• OAK starting WRs were rookie Amari Cooper- Michael Crabtree and Kenbrell Thompkins ( former NE Pat)- Crabtree did not have a reception
• OAK starting WRs were rookie Amari Cooper- Michael Crabtree and Kenbrell Thompkins ( former NE Pat)- Crabtree did not have a reception
• OAK Latavius Murray had 4 carries for 20 yards and a 2 yd TD run- his TD run was set by a 40 yard reception by WR A Cooper from QB Carr
• QB C Ponder came in after Carr- working with RB T Richardson- WRs Seth Roberts, A Holmes and K Thompkins- RB Richardson was 5 carries for 5 yards

• MINN  QB Teddy Bridegwater started with RB McKinnon and WRs Charles Johnson, Mike Wallace and J Wright- Bridgewater’s passes were sailing high on him- TE Rudolph and WR Wallace missed catching a couple of them  ( QB Shaun Hill has had a strong preseason as Bridewater’s back up)
• MINN RB Peterson did not play
• MINN WR Ch Johnson was targeted often and ended the game  4/40 yards and an outstanding 10 TD reception in the back of the endzone
• MINN  TE K Rudolph started for the Vikings- 1/4 yards
• MINN K Blair Walsh continued his kicking struggles, missing a 35 FG attempt and an extra point- Walsh is 2/ 4 on FG s this preseason and was 26/35 in 2014

GB vs PITT ( 19-24 )

• GB QB A Rodgers started with RB Eddie lacy and WRs J Nelson and R Cobb
• GB QB A Rodgers went 4/5 for 57 yards- No TDs- No INTs- Rodgers was sacked in the endzone during the 1st qtr
• GB RB E Lacy was very productive on 6 carries- 30 yards  with a 7 yard TD run
• GB WR Jordy Nelson may be out for the season! Nelson landed awkwardly while trying to cut after making an 8-yard reception on Green Bay’s opening drive and it’s feared that he my have torn his ACL
• GB WR Davanta Adams now becomes the #2 Wr in Gb and a must add in every league

• PITT  QB Ben Roethlisberger had a stellar outing, going 11/14 for 100 yards and 1 TD pass ( to WR M Wheaton)
• PITT’s WRs were Antonio Brown, Markus Wheaton  and Martavis Bryant- QB Ben Roethlisberger has been raving about Wheaton much of the preaseason
• PITT RB LeVeon Bell started and 6 carries for 16 yards- 2 receptions for 16 yards
• PITT Pro Bowl center Maurkice Pouncey left with a left ankle injury in the first quarter and expected to miss 8 + weeks
• PITT new kicker G Hartley ( K Suisham Out for the Season) connected on a 46 FG

DEN vs HOU ( 10-14 )

• DEN QB Peyton Manning started 4 series for the Brncos and went 8/14 for 52 yards- NO TDs- No INTs- Manning will always be very accurate, but despite an off-season to rest, there lacks a “zip” to his passes. With Denver’s new emphasis on the running game with HC Kubiak, Manning may struggle in 2014 to be a top 10 QB
• DEN RB C J Anderson started with QB M and racked up 24 yards on 4 carries-
he left the game with an apparent leg injury- RB R Hillman had 8 carries for 54 yards after Anderson
• DEN WR Dem Thomas played for the 1st time this preseason- Manning targeted him often- TE Owen Daniels was another Manning favorite ( Daniels- 4 catches – 25 yards)
• DEN WR E Sanders did not play- Emmanuel Sanders has been sidelined the last 11 days with a hamstring injury.
• DEB QB B Osweiler took over in the 5th series ( 2nd qtr) and threw a nice 57 TD pass to WR A Caldwell- throwing the ball 60 yards looked effortless for Osweiler-

• HOU  QB R Mallett got the start and was not great- he couldn’t generate any offense- 5/7 for only 23 yards- No TDs- No INTs- he played 2 series
• HOU QB B Hoyer came in on the 3rd series and wasn’t great either- 7/11 for 32 yards- both QBs seemed content dropping short passes off to RBs, although Hoyer did try a few time s to get the ball to TE G Graham- HC O’Brien is doing his best CLEV HC Pettine impression and won’t name a starter going into Pre Week 3
• HOU RB A Blue started this game-4 for 10 yards- he was followed by RB Grimes- Grimes added some spark to the offense
• HOU rookie WR J Strong didn’t come into the game until the 3rd qtr
• HOU WR N Washington ( former Titan) is making a strong case as HOU’s #3 WR

DAL vs SF ( 6-23 )

• DAL QB T Romo got his 1st Preseason action, but Romo’s day was done after one three-and-out series then Dallas turned to QB B Weeden who left with a possible head injury- Dallas did not core any points until a TD pass from back up late in the 4th qtr
• DAL RB D McFadden started this game in from of RB Randle, and had 7 TOTAL yards rushing and receiving- DMC stands for “Draft McFadden Cataclysmic”- RB J Randle started the 3rd series
• DAL WRs T Williams and Devin Street- WR Dez did not play
• DAL RB Gus Johnson sustained a shoulder injury preseason Week 1, but played in this game – 3 carries for 24 yards
• DAL RB L Dunbar only came in on 3rd downs- 2 receptions- 3 yards

• SF QB C Kaep started with 1st stringer RB C Hyde- WRs A Boldin, Torrey Smith and TE Vernon Davis- only RB C Hyde recorded a reception
• SF offense showed many new looks including running RB Hyde out of the i-formation with full back Bruce Miller ( and TE V Davis even helped as fullback on a play)
• SF WRs Boldin and T Smith were both targeted in the redzone/endzone by QB C Kaep, but both attempts failed- SF FG
• SF QB B Gabbert came in after QB Kaep- 6/6 for only 21 yards- RB M Davis was featured as the running back w/ Gabbert ( Davis 8 carries for 34 yards)
• SF RB Reggie B did not play….again

CINN vs TB ( 11-25 )

• CINN A Dalton played 6 series vs TB and zero points- Reminiscent of Dalton’s horrific game last year ( Week 10 vs Cleveland- 10/33 for 86 yards and 3 INTs)- Dalton couldn’t get anything going- one INT ( not his fault- AJ Green let it going thru his hands)- went for a DEF TD- Dalton’s 2nd INT was just bad
• CINN RB J Hill started with Dalton but he couldn’t get going witht eh offesne goig “3 and out” on the 1st 3 series- Hill had a costly fumble- RB Gio B was used in punt returns again
• CINN WRs starting were AJ Green- M Sanu and Marvin Jones ( Jones was targeted once in this game- zero catches and his ADP is too high
• CIN  offense generated 17 total yards in the 1st half
• CIN QB A J McCarron finally saw action- 11/15 for 97 yards- no TDs

• TB rookie QB J Winston started with RB Doug Martin- Wrs Mike Evans and V Jackson- TE A Seferian- Jenkins
• TB had a strong 1st series- most of it was RB Doug Martin finding holes in the ST L run defense- at the 1 yards line Winston bootlegged around right side for TD run- This one series will have QB Winston and RB D martin drafted higher than they should be- Winston sustained a twisted ankle but seemed OK on sidelines
• TB WR E M Evans was targeted twice- one a deep pass that Winston over threw- Evans had zero receptions- WR V Jackson was targeted a couple times by Winston- 1 REC-16 yrds- Mike Evans exited the Bucs’ second preseason game Monday night with a strained hamstring
• TB QB M Glennon followed Winston into the game- faired well- 10/15 and a nice TD 22 lob to WR R Shepard

JACK vs NYG ( 12-22 )  Game of FGs

• JACK QB B Bortles started, and like Preseason Week One, Bortles did a nice job of spreading the ball around, although his go-to-guy is clearly 6’3″ WR Allen Robinson- Bortles- Bortles, who was 11 of 15 in a preseason opener, hit 8 of 16 passes for 98 yards
• JACK RB Den Robinson stared with QB Bortles- RB Yeldon did not play- Jaguars HC Gus Bradley said rookie RB T.J. Yeldon will work with the first-team offense in the team’s third preseason game
• JACK starting WRs were Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns
• JACK TE Julius Thomas did not play
• JACK offense with the starters produced 3 FGs

• NYG QB Eli Manning started with RB Rashad Jennings and WRs Odell Beckham and Preston Parker- over-rated WR Rueban Randle did not play which is frustrating HC Coughlin
• NYG RB R Jennings started, but did not have his 1st touch until 8 minutes left in the 2nd qtr- RB A Williams and Sh Vereen were rotated in often- a RBBC for certain
• NYG WR O Beckham was targeted 6 times by QB E Manning in the 1st 3 series but had no catches and one red-zone drop- Eli isn’t sharp
• NYG J Brown ended the day with 5 FGs
• NYG QB R Nassib finished the game after Eli Manning- 19/35 for 217 and 1 TD pass early in the 4th qtr

MIA vs CAR ( 30–31)

• MIA QB R Tannehill started and put on a Tannehill performance- very efficient- completing 12 of 15 passes for 102 yards and a touchdown to 2nd yr RB Damien Williams- Williams scored twice for the Dolphins- 1yd TD run and 11 yard TD pass
• MIA RB L Miller got the start but was used sparingly- 3 for 5 yards
• MIA WR J Landry started along with Kenny Stills and R Matthews- Landry was/is Tannehill’s primary target- TE J Cameron also started- 1 catch for o yards
• MIA offense has so many weapons ( 14 players had a reception for Miami in this game) that most won’t ever get a chance to be fantasy stars- except L Miller- J Landry and possibly TE J Cameron

• CAR QB Cam Newton started struggled without WR Kelvin Benjamin ( Out for the Season) and temporarily without rookie WR D Funchess who did not play
• CAR RB Jon Stewart started with QB Newton and had 2 carries for 2 yards- Stewart was targeted once by Newton- incomplete
• CAR starting WRs were Corey Brown, Ted Gin Jr and TE Greg Olsen- Corey Brown was targeted 3 times by Newton- all incomplete- TE G Olsen ended this contest with 3 receptions for 27 yards- Olsen will be featured more in this offense with KB out, but defenses will game plan more for him as well- CAR loss of KB is bigge than GB’s loss of WR J Nelson
• CAR 5th-round RB rookie RB Cameron Artis-Payne was the No. 2 back through after Stewart and had four carries for 33 yards in Carolina’s second preseason game. Artis-Payne should be owned as a handcuff to injury-prone Jonathan Stewart
• CAR K G Gano went 3/3 FGs …all in the 2nd qtr- it will be interesting to see if CAR ends up kicking more FGs this year due to a struggling offense

STL vs TENN ( 14-27 )

• STL QB N Foles started and did not look comfortable all night, probably due to not enough reps in real action- I still like him fantasy-wise this year, but he’s going to have to do better than 3/7 for 18 yards and 1 INT- ( TENN DEF TD)
• STL RB T Gurley did not play- RB Tre Mason got the start 3 for 6 yards- the first string team did not score at all- RB B Cunningham was rotated in with Mason every other series- something HC Fisher …unfortunately… has been a lot of
• STL WRs starting were K Britt, T Austin and TE Jared Cook- I did not see T Austin targeted even one time by QB Foles and he did not have a reception- K Britt had 2 passes from Foles- 2 for 15 yards
• STL C Keenum came in for Foles in the 3rd qtr and hit WR C Givens on a 80 deep TD pass

• TENN QB M Mariota started and looked better than I thought he would- He started nder center occasionally and hit a roll out pass to TE C Stevens for 35 yards- Mariota seems to have a nice rapport with WR K Wright
• TENN RB B Sankey started and had a productive outing- 6 carries for 45 yards- I still wouldn’t get excited about him
• TENN WRs for Mariota were K Wright, J Hunter and Harry Douglas-TE Del Walker (thumb) did not play
• TENN M Mariota would have had a TD pass to RB McCluster but McCluster simply dropped it
• TENN QB Z Mettenberger came in the 2nd qtr- he hit WR H Nicks for a 40 yard catch & run ( Nicks only reception- he has little/no fantasy value)

CHI vs IND ( 23-11 )

• CHI QB Jay Cutler started and led Chicago to three first-half field goals- he went 8/9 for 69 yards- No TDs- No INTs- Cutler played 4 series- The Bears have won their first two preseason games under new coach John Fox
• CHI RB M Forte began the game w/ QB Cutler and played quite a bit- 8 carries for 24 yards- 1 reception for 12 yards- his clear back up is RB Jacquizz Rodgers ( former Falcon)- 9 carries- 34 yards
• CHI WRs with Culter were Eddie Royal and Mar Wilson- Alshon Jeffery did not play- Cutler targeted Wilson early
• CHI QB J Clausen came in after Cutler

• IND QB Luck started with WRs T Y Hilton and Andre Johnson- Johnson has immediately gone into the starting line up opposite Hilton- Luck-5/9 for 71 yards- No TDs- No INTs- Luck had a 5yd TD run in the 2nd qtr
• IND RB Frank Gore started but only had 2 carries- 10 yards- RB Dan “Boom” Herron came in for Gore and ran 5 times- 16 yards
• IND WR T Y Hilton dropped an easy slant pass from Luck, but redeemed himself with a 45 yard catch early in the 2 qtr whci set up luck’s TD run
• IND first-round draft pick WR Philip Dorsett had the most receptions for IND WRs but left in the third quarter with an injured right knee

SD vs ARI ( 22-19 )

• SD QB Rivers did not play- QB K Clemens started this game and played the entire first half- the first 4 drives ended with punts
• SD RB Melvin Gordon did not play- Gordon missed this game due to an ankle issue – He is expected to get “ample” carries in Saturday’s Preseason Week 3 game against the Seahawks
• SD RB D Woodhead got the start- 3 carries for 5 yards- no receptions- RB B Oliver had a 3 yard TD run in the 2nd qtr, which was set up by a SD INT from back up ARI QB D Stanton
• SD Starting WRs were Keenen Allen and M Floyd with TE A Gates- Gates had 1 reception for 9 yards and is suspended for the first 4games of the reg. season

• ARI QB C Palmer started and played less than one quarter going 3/7 for 88 yards and had a 17-yard TD pass to WR John Brown
• ARI RB A Ellington started with QB Palmer- he had 2 carries for 12 yards RB David Johnson got most of the RB work in this game-
• ARI RB rookie David Johnson got most of the RB work in this game- the 4th round pick ( who had been out most of training camp with a hamstring injury) rushed for 66 yards in 13 carries in his NFL debut
• ARI WR John brown was the go-to-guy in this game and is a favorite target of QB Palmer and should put up solid fantasy stats in 2015
• ARI WR L Fitz was not targeted by QB Palmer but did have a 5 yard completed pass from back up QB Stanton

More reviews to come as games are played

Utter-Fantasy’s Preseason Week One Review- Week One Review

All scores can be seen at this link- PRESEASON WEEK 2 SCORES

NFL Preseason Week One Fantasy Review

NFL Preseason Week One Fantasy Review by Utter-Fantasy writer & illustrator &  Doug “happy it’s finally started” Bowles

Well my fellow FFers…I have some good news, and I have some good news. The good news is, Preseason Week One finally got here, and has been fun to watch. Now for the good news….there were only a few significant injuries so far- WASH TE Niles Paul- ankle fracture- Out for season- K S Suisham out for season and JACK TE Julius Thomas has stable fracture on back of hand. ( TE Thomas out for rest of the preseason)

PITT vs MINN- HOF Game ( 3-14)

• PITT No Starters ( because they play again Aug 15th)
• PITT Shakim Phillips- signed as an 2015 undrafted free agent- nice one-handed catch
• PITT K S Suisham injured on kick-off coverage- Out for season
• PITT RB L Bell did not play
• PITT RB D Archer and RB C Stingily handled running duties- RB Archer is fast and elusive, but only 5’8″ 173 lbs

• MINN- QB T Bridgewater started ( 5/44 no TDs )- missed a wide open target on a bootleg pass- Bridgewater still needs work
• MINN- WR C Patterson returned kickoff and looked so slow- WR S Diggs is more exciting
• MINN- TE M Pruitt looks impressive if TE Rudolph is ever hurt ( 4/51 and TD )

Week One Preseason

DAL vs SD  ( 7-17 )

• DAL QB Romo didn’t play- QB Weeden started
• DAL RB Gus Johnson had solid outing- ( 13/35 and TD run) -injured shoulder but not serious
• DAL WR Devin Street has been filling in as a starter during OTAs. Looks promising

• SD RB M Gordon started- nothing special yet ( 6/11)
• SD RB D Woodhead scored a TD run ( 8 yds)
• SD RB B Oliver nice zig-zag 10 yd TD run- ( 10/53 yds)

MIA vs CHI (10-27 )

• MIA RB L Miller- Picked up where he left off last season as league average rushing leader ( 3/32)
• MIA RB D Willlams followed RB Miller, then RB L James
• MIA QB Tannehill’s promise of deep passes never happened. ( 6/7 for 56 yds) – QB M Moore 2nd QB
• MIA WR J Landry- 2 yard TD pass

• CHI QB Jay Cutler started, but was without his 2 top weapons WR Alshon Jeffery and WR K White. Cutler targeted WR Eddie Royal and has chemistry Royal from Denver days
• CHI RB J Rodgers started for Forte- he was not impressive
• CHI WR Alshon Jeffery is expected to miss another week w/ mild calf strain
• CHI QB J Clausen followed QB Cutler into the game and played until the closing minutes and was 17 of 27 for 151 yards
• CHI once-famous defense was not impressive nor has it been for the past couple years- #24 ranked in 2014

GB vs NE ( 22-11 )

• GB QB A Rodgers started and ended with 11 of 19 for 117 yards- no TDs- his back ups were QBs Tolzien and Hundley
• GB WRs J Nelson and R Cobb started with QB Rodgers, as did RB Eddie Lacy
• GB RB Eddie Lacy had 5 carries for 36
• GB RB back up A harris ripped off a 25 yard TD run in the 3rd qtr

• NE QB T Brady played in the 1st 2 series- going 1/4-10 yards and no TDs
• NE QB J Garoppolo played the remainder of the game- HC Belichick obviously wants him to get plenty of reps in light of Brady’s looming suspension- Garoppolo ended the day 20/30- 159 yards and no TD passes- he was sacked 7 times
• NE RB Le Blount did not play
• NE RB J Gray (7/74) started and ripped off a 55 yard TD run early in the 2nd qtr- RB J White was also mixed in and only managed 12 yards on 8 carries- he did however have 4 receptions for 52 yards
• NE K S Gostowski had one FG- 56 yards

DET vs NYJ ( 23-3 )

• DET QB M Stafford and WR G Tate jelling early ( Tate 2/57 and 35 yd TD pass )
• DET WR Calvin Johnson did not play- DET RB J Bell (knee) did not play
• DET RB Ameer Addullah- quick and agile- ( 7/67 ) – RB Theo Riddick mixed in often
• DET Announcers glowing about TE Ebron- Don’t believe it …QB Stafford doesn’t like throwing to TEs

• NYJ RB C Ivory 6 carries for 25 yards early- HC T Bowles seems committed to the run and Ivory
• NYJ Jets didn’t convert a 3rd down until end of 2nd qtr- offense looks weak

TENN vs ATL ( 24-31 )

• TENN QB Rookie M Mariota was rough as expected. He threw an INT on his 3rd pass- then lost a fumble which was returned for a DEF TD by ATL-
• TENN RB Sankey was “stankey” as expected- ( 8/15 )- RB D Cobb and RB A Andrews came in after Sankey
• TENN RB D McCluster bolted on an end around quick 6 yd TD run
• TENN Z Mettenberger came in after Mariota and had some good plays ( 8/11 for 129 yes- 1 TD – 1INT)

• ATL QB M Ryan wasted no time getting the ball to WR Julio Jones- 4 quick passes for 61 yards and 13 TD pass ( most YAC)
• ATL QB T Yates came in after QB Ryan
• ATL WR L Hankerson seems to be the new #3 WR
• ATL RB Ant Smith ran a lot- scored a TD run, but aggravated his hamstring

WASH vs CLEV ( 20- 17 )

• WASH QB RG3 started and looked bad- quick to get rid of ball rather than examine the field
• WASH QB K Cousins came in after RG3 and was the best QB on the field, for both teams ( 12/14 for 154 )
• WASH WR Ryan Grant started opposite WR P Garcon
• WASH WR P Garcon dropped a easy would-be 68 TD pass on the 1st series

• CLEV QB J McCown started ( 5/5 and 1 TD pass) – Seemes to have chemistry with WR T Benjamin ( 2/10 and 1 TD rec)
• CLEV QB J Manziel- came in after McCown- ONLY short high percentage passes- he’s terrible ( 7/11 for 42 yards)
• CLEV RB I Crowell started, but HC Pettine is known for changing starters week-to-week- no consistency
• CLEV WR D Bowe did not play

DEN vs SEA ( 22 -20 )

• DEN QB B Osweiler started ( QB manning did not play) – Denver really wants Manning rested as much all season
• DEN C J Anderson started- looked quick- RBs M Ball and R Hillman both got 8 carries a piece after RB Anderson
• DEN WR Dem Thomas did not play
• DEN WR Cody Latimer ( 4/49 ) was targeted often by QB Osweiler

• SEA QB R Wilson started- his only pass- 12 yards to TE Jimmy Graham
• SEA TE Jimmy Graham caught 12 pass from QB Wilson to the 10 yard line- then taken out- NOT used in goal line package- ??
• SEA WR T Lockett very impressive w/ returns ( 103 TD return in 2nd qtr)
• SEA RB R Turbin played all 1st qtr- RB C Michael didn’t enter game until 7:20 left in 2nd qtr ( 7/15 yards )

ST L vs OAK ( 3-18 )

• ST L QB N Foles started and looked comfortable- ( 3/5 for 69 yards )- played 2 series-  Sleeper QB w/ speedy receivers
• ST L RB Tre Mason stared- RB T Gurley did not play
• ST L RB B Cunningham followed RB Mason ( 3/12 )
• ST L WR WR Britt and WR T Austin started for ST L
• ST L QB C Keenum followed Foles and seems to have chemistry w/ WR Bailey

• OAK QB D Carr played a couple series- went to rookie WR A Cooper often
• OAK QB D Carr signaled to WR Cooper at the goal line ( telegraphing the play) and was easily picked off in the end zone
• OAK WR M Crabtree started opposite A Cooper
• OAK RB L Murray started and ran well- He looked explosive on a 17-yard run in the first series and another long run on a quick cut back

NYG  vs CINN ( 10- 23 )

• NYG QB Eli Manning started and stayed in for 4 series, because the Giants couldn’t generate any offense
• NYG RB R Jennings started and but alternated series with RB A Williams
• NYG WR O Beckham started but had zero receptions
• NYG RB Sh Vereen came on 3rd downs ( 2/4 -no receptions)
• NYG S Mykkele Thompson carted off the field

• CINN QB A Dalton started one series, led team to first TD
• CINN WR M Sanu started opposite WR A J Green- Sanu ( 1/3 – a TD reception)
• CINN WR M Jones one catch- by back up QB
• CINN RB Gio Bernard ineffective as RB after RB J Hill ( who only played one series)- CINN seems are trying other ways to get Gio the ball- lined up as WR- returning punts- RB J Hill could see 20+ carries a game this season

CAR vs BUFF ( 25-24 )

1st Qtr w/ starters- BUFF- Punt…CAR- Punt…BUFF- Missed FG…CAR- PUNT

• CAR QB Cam Newton started w/ WR K Benjamin and RB Jon Stewart ( although RB Stewart didnt record a carry)
• CAR QB Newton targeted WR K Benjamin ( 3/36 ) a lot- final pass- 2 yd TD
• CAR WR Corey Brown started opposite WR K Benjamin ( Brown did not record a reception)
• CAR RB F Whitaker came in after RB J Stewart and was very in-effective
• CAR WR D Funchess came in game at end of 2nd qtr. He’s going to be exciting in 2015

• BUFF QB M Cassel started and proved to be competent. He will be a good game manager- QB T Taylor finished 2nd qtr- E J Manuel didn’t come in until 2nd half
• BUFF LeSean McCoy started, had a couple nice runs, and ended w/ 6 receptions
• BUFF WRs- #1 S Watkins….#2 R Woods…#3 C Hogan to start game
• BUFF TE Charles Clay had a nice 17 yard 3rd down conversion- great throw by QB Cassel

PITT vs JACK ( 21-23 )

• PITT QB B Roethlisberger started, along W/ RB LeVeon Bell and WR A Brown- one series
• PITT offense w/ starters marched down the field lik an oiled machine and scored w/ 44 yd TD pass to WR M Bryant
• PITT RB LeVeon Bell had 3 touches in a row- A reception, followed by 2 carries
• PITT RB DeAngelo Williams replaced RB Bell and was mediocre- ( 6/28 )
• PITT QB L Jones came in after Roethlisberger and finished the game ( 24/46 )

• JACK QB B Bortles started and was impressive spreading the ball around ( he connected with WRs Allen Robinson-Allen Hurns- T Washington- A Benn- TE Lewis- TE C Harbor- RB Gerhart- RB B Pierce) Bortles played almost 1st half and score on a TD run
• JACK RB Denard Robinson started the game returning 1st kickoff, then started at tailback- Do not fall asleep on versatile RB Robinson this year- RB SLEEPERS
• JACK RB Gerhart still running occasionally- looked good in this game
• JACK RB Rookie T.J. Yeldon (finger) did not play in the Jaguars’ preseason opener Friday night.

KC vs ARI ( 34-19 )

• KC QB Alex Smith played into the 2nd qtr. His first pass was a token deep pass try to WR J Maclin. Incomplete and Smith doesn’t have a cannon for an arm- The rest of his attempts where “Dink & Dunk” as usual ( 6/10- 42 yards)- On a 3rd down & a long 12, Smith threw an INT- “flag on the play” but picked up- How? Pete “the Cheat” Morelli is still officiating and was in this game!
• KC RB Knile Davis started- RB Charles did not play. Davis had one nice 20 yard run
• KC WRs Albert Wilson and F Hammond started with Maclin. WR J Maclin had one catch for 12 yards
• KC TE T Kelce had two swing out receptions- both short -KC’s conservative offense hasn’t changed and Kelce won’t be high on our rankings until it does
• KC QB Chase Daniels was very effective in after QB Smith- 17/21- 189 yards and 3 TDs- ( a QB controversy??)

• ARI QB C Palmer looked great- connecting with WR John Brown and RB A Ellignton twice ( one of which weas a quick slant that went for 57 yards setting up a TD run also by Ellington. Only one seeries by Palmer- replaced by QB Drew Stanton
• ARI WR M Floyd did not play- Floyd (dislocated fingers) is “hopeful” he’ll be ready for Week 1. I did not see WR Fitz in the game
• ARI RB Ellington only played one series, and was followed by RB Kerwynn Williams, who only went 7/ 20 yards
• ARI only scored a safety and a late TD pass after the 10 points in 1st qtr.

TB vs MINN ( 16-26 )

• TB QB J Winston started and played the entire 1st half- He did not look ready for the NFL ( whatever happened to holding a clipboard for a year?)
• TB WRs Mike Evans, V Jackson and L Murphy started. WR Evans was targeted only once, but Winston missed badly on the throw. V Jackson hauled in a 43 yard pass on broken coverage by MINN.
• TB RB Doug Martin started, followed by RB Ch Sims and Rainey. MINN stacked the box constantly so none of them had room to run
• TB offense will take a lot of time to produce with Winston, so fantasy owners beware- even a star like WR M Evans won’t have a good season. I’m steering clear of all TB players
• TB QB M Glennon came in 2nd half- rough start- ended with 9/17- 98 yds- no TDs

• MINN QB T Bridgewater started and played two series, scoring on both- a FG and 1 yd TD run by MINN fullback Z Line
• MINN WRs starting were Ch Johnson, M Wallace and J Wright. QB T Bridgewater seems to have nice chemistry with WR Wright- at least in this game
• MINN RB J McKinnon started, followed by RB M Asiata. AP did not play
• MINN QB Shaun Hill came in after Bridgewater and was very efficient going 8/9 for 104 yards and 2 TDs
• MINN There should be concern for the Vikings O-Line as RT Phil Loadholt suffered torn Achilles. Loadholt, 29, hadn’t missed a start in more than 5 years before a torn pectoral muscle sidelined him for the last five games in 2014. T.J. Clemmings, a rookie fourth-round pick out of Pittsburgh, took over at right tackle after Loadholt’s injury

SF vs HOU ( 10-23 )

• SF QB C Kaepernick started and played one series with other starters RB C Hyde, WR A Boldin and Torrey Smith Kaepernick failed to move the offense on his only drive, going 1/ 3 for 14 yards before the 49ers punted
• SF QB C Kaepernick missed on a 65 yard bomb to WR Torrey Smith, which was over-thrown…but should be a hint of nice things to come
• SF RB C Hyde only had 2 carries for 6 yards. He was followed by former-Australian Rugby player RB J Hayne, who reeled off a strong 53 yd run
• SF QB B Gabbert followed Kaepernick and went 8/11 for 86 yards and 1 TD to TE G Celek
• SF QB B Gabbert seemed to have chemistry w/ WR J Simpson, targeting him often

• HOU QB B Hoyer played one strong series which resulted in a nifty 58 yard TD pass to WR Cecil Shorts. WR Shorts started opposite WR D Hopkins.
• WR De Hopkins did not record a reception, but caught a 2pt conversion from QB Hoyer
• HOU QB R Mallett came in after QB Hoyer’s only series. Mallett was proficient going 10/11 for 90 yards- no TDs. QB T Savage finished the game
• HOU RB Alfred Blue was the starting running back and 9/59 yards. He looked good- Blue was eventually replaced with rookie RB Hilliard then RB Grimes
• HOU WR rookie Jaelen Strong ( 3rd round) reeled in a 10 yard TD pass from QB T Savage in the 3rd qtr

IND vs PHIL ( 10-36 )

• IND QB A Luck played approx. two series ( 5/6 for 43 yards ) and was followed by back up QB M Hasselbeck
• IND RB F Gore did not play, nor did WR T Y Hilton or CB Vontae Davis
• IND RB Z Tipton started at running back- an unimpressive 16/34
• IND only scored a FG in the 1st qtr, then a 9 yd TD run by sixth-round RB J Robinson. The rookie easily outplayed Tipton and should have no problem beating him out on the depth chart
• IND WR Andre Johnson had one catch for 9 yards- WR P Dorsett had four catches for 51 yards, but lost a fumble.

• PHIL QB M Sanchez started this contest and ended his outing with 2/7 and 1 TD pass. It was a rough start for him, but his stats were saved by a great catch and run by rookie WR N Agholor for a 34 yard TD
• PHIL RB Ryan Mathews started for Philly (2/18) RB D Murray did not play
• PHIL WR Jordan Matthews started with WR Agholor
• PHIL WR M Austin had 2 catches for 41 yards playing witht the 2nd string
• PHIL K Cody Parker missed an extra point and a FG in this game

NO vs BALT ( 27- 30 )

• NO QB D Brees did not play- NO QB L McCown started- the Saint’s offense was held to back-to-back three-and-outs. and only netted 11 yards on their first two drives
• NO RB Mark Ingram started but only carried 4times for 15 yards. RB K Robinson had 2 carris-35 yards and 3 receptions for 37 yards ( one TD pass from back up QB R Griffin)
• NO RB Tim Hightower, recently signed, has been out of the league since 2011 after tearing him ACL, and had the bulk of the carries in this game (12 for 31 yards) Saints obviously trying to keep their RB depth chart fresh
• NO RB C J Spiller did not play and is a fantasy player to avoid- C.J. Spiller underwent arthroscopic knee surgery on Friday and will likely miss all of the preseason
• NO WR B Cooks looks ready and ended with 1 catch- a 28yard TD pass from QB McCown
• NO TE J Hill had 3 receptions for 40 yards ( most on the team for this game)

• BALT QB J Flacco started and went 5/6 for 33 yards and a 17-yard carry. His series end with a RB L Taliaferro 1 yard TD run-
• BALT RB L Taliaferro came in after RB J Forsett, who only had 2 carries for 3 yards
• BALT QB M Schaub played the majority of this game as Flacco’s back up, going 11/18 for 134 and one TD pass- ( a 45 yard TD pass to WR M Campanaro- a candidate to play a bigger role in Marc Trestman’s offense than most expect)
• BALT rookie TE Maxx Williams had 2 catches for 36 yards. Maxx was the first TE selected in this NFL Draft

All game and boxscores can be seen with this link- PRESEASON WEEK ONE

 

 

2015 Running Back Rankings

2015 Running Back Rankings

1. Marshawn Lynch SEA
2. Eddie Lacy GB
3. Jamal Charles KC
4. LeVeon Bell PITT- suspended 2 games
5. Matt Forte CHI
6. Adrian Peterson MINN
7. C J Anderson DEN
8. Mark Ingram NO
9. Jeremy Hill CINN
10. Justin Forsett BALT
11. Frank Gore IND
12. Carlos Hyde SF
13. LeSean McCoy BUFF
14. Lamar Miller MIA
15. DeMarco Murray PHIL
16. Melvin Gordon SD – rookie
17. Alfred Morris WASH
18. LeGarrett Blount NE
19. Joseph Randle DAL
20. Latavius Murray OAK
21. Andre Ellington ARI
22. Joique Bell DET- injured
23. Chris Ivory NYJ
24. Jonathan Stewart CAR
25. Isaiah Crowell CLEV
26. Rashard Jennings NYG
27. Doug Martin TB
28. Ameer Abdullah DET
29. Gio Bernard CINN
30. T J Yeldon JACK- rookie
31. Todd Gurley ST L
32. Tevin Coleman ATL- rookie
33. Alfred Blue HOU- May be the starter in Houston
34. DeAngelo Williams PITT
35. Tre Mason ST L
36. Andre Williams NYG
37. Davonta Freeman ATL
38. Danny Woodhead SD
39. C J Spiller NO
40. Ryan Mathews PHIL
41. Shane Vereen NYG
42. Denard Robinson JACK
43. David Johnson ARI
44. Fred Jackson BUFF
45. Darren Sproles PHIL
46. James Starks GB
47. Bishop Sankey TENN
48. Knile Davis KC
49. Reggie Bush SF
50. Chris Johnson ARI
51. Montee Ball DEN
52. Benny Cunningham ST L
53. Terrance West CLEV
54. Duke Johnson CLEV- injury hammy
55. Jacquizz Rodgers CHI
56. Charlie Sims
57. Roy Helu OAK
59. Robert Turbin SEA
59. Jerick McKinnon MINN
60. Lorenzo Taliferro BALT
62. Chris Johnson- ARI
63. Arian Foster HOU- Out 8 weeks of reg. season
64. Theo Riddick DET
65. Branden Oliver SD
64. Dan Herron IND
66. Zac Stacy ST L
67. Toby Gerhart JACK
68. Jeremy Langford CHI
69. James White NE
70. Jay Ajayi- MIA- broken ribs sustained Pre Wk 4
71. Darren McFadden DAL
72. Khiry Robinson NO
73. Kerwynn Williams ARI
74. Daniel Thomas CHI
75. Brandon Bolden NE
76. Bryce Brown BUFF
77. Bernard Pierce JACK
78. Deon Lewis NE
79. Anthony Dixon BUFF
80. Marcel Reece OAK
81. Chris Polk HOU
82. Travaris Cadet NE
83. Matt Asiata
84. Donald Brown SD
85. Knowshon Moreno- unsigned free agent
86. Trent Richardson- released by OAK
87. Steven Jackson- unsigned free agent
88. Shonne Greene- unsigned free agent
89. Pierre Thomas-unsigned free agent
90. BenJarvus Green-Ellis-unsigned free agent

 

 

•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Quarterback Rankings
•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Wide Receiver Rankings
•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Tight End Rankings
•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Defense Rankings

The Amazing 2014 Rookie Wide Receivers

The Amazing 2014 Rookie Wide Receivers by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles

We tend to forget, that in 2013, some pretty good wide receivers were drafted. The first wide receiver drafted was Tavon Auston – 1st round St Louis selection at #8. He was followed by DeAndre Hopkins (Houston) and Cordarrelle Patterson (Minnesota) also in the first round. 2nd round wide receivers drafted were – Justin Hunter, Robert Woods & Aaron Dobson. 3rd round – Terrance Williams, Marquise Goodwin, Markus Wheaton & Stedman Bailey. In the 5th round, Kenny Stills was drafted by New Orleans and Baltimore later landed un-drafted wide receiver Marlon Brown…an impressive list of stars in the NFL.
If not for the class of 2014 wide receivers, the 2013 rookie accomplishments would be the bench mark for wide receivers coming into the league. The class of 2014 however, blew their numbers out of the gator-aid barrel and made for a new crazy-high standard which will make rookie WRs think twice before getting cocky on their way up the NFL draft podium.

A few of the TOP rookie WRs in 2013:

1) Cordarrelle Patterson – 627 yards & 7 TDs – ranked 38th among all WRs
2) Terrance Williams – 736 yards & 5 TDs – ranked 40th among all WRs
3) Kenny Stills – 641 yards & 5 TDs – ranked 47th among all WRs
4) Marlon Brown – 524 yards & 7 TDs – ranked 48th among all WRs
5) DeAndre Hopkins – 802 yards & 2 TDs – ranked 50th among all WRs

Another large class of rookie wide receivers came into the league in 2014. Five wide receivers were drafted in round one on the NFL draft – Sammy Watkins, Mike Evans, Odell Beckham Jr, Brandon Cooks and Kelvin Benjamin. 2009 is the last year that 5+ WRs went in the first. In the 2nd round, seven more wide receivers were drafted – Marqise Lee, Jordan Matthews, Paul Richardson, Davante Adams, Cody Latimer, Allen Robinson and Jarvis Landry. Josh Huff, Donte Moncrief and John Brown in round 3. Martavius Bryant of the Pittsburgh Steelers made the biggest splash of the 3 WRs drafted in round 4.
Let’s take a look at some of the astounding stats of the TOP rookie WRs in 2014:

1) Odell Beckham Jr – 1305 yards & 12 TDs – ranked 5th among all WRs
2) Mike Evans – 1051 yards & 12 TDs – ranked 11th among all WRs
3) Kelvin Benjamin – 1008 yards & 9 TDs – ranked 16th among all WRs
4) Jordan Matthews – 872 yards & 8 TDs – ranked 24th among all WRs
5) Sammy Watkins – 982 yards & 6 TDs – ranked 25th among all WRs

To give you even more perspective on what this WR class achieved, in his rookie season in 2007, Calvin Johnson finished with 756 yards and 5 total touchdowns. He finished his 2nd year in the NFL 1331 yards and 12 TDs which is comparable to that numbers Odell Beckham put up in his rookie season. However, Megatron played all 16 games in 2008- Beckham amassed 1305 yards and 12 TDs in only 12 games.

The 2015 WR rookie class offers up once again, size and talent:
1) Amari Cooper – Alabama – 6’1″
2) Kevin White – West Virginia – 6’3″
3) DeVante Parker – Louisville – 6’3″
4) Dorial Green-Beckham – Oklahoma – 6’5″
5) Jaelen Strong – Arizona State – 6’3″
6) Sammie Coates – Auburn – 6’2″
7) Devin Funchess – Michigan – 6’5″

The expectations for these young men will be daunting however, because few will tend to forget the extraordinary year of the rookie WRs – 2014.

2015 Wide Receiver Rankings

2015  Wide Receiver Rankings

1. Antonio Brown – Steelers
2. Odell Beckham Jr – Giants
3. Dez Bryant – Cowboys
4. Julio Jones – Falcons
5. Demaryius Thomas – Broncos
6. A J Green – Bengals
7. Randall Cobb – Packers
8. Calvin Johnson – Lions
9. Brandon Cooks- Saints
10. T Y Hilton – Colts
11. Alshon Jeffery – Bears
12. Jordan Matthews- Eagles
13. DeAndre Hopkins- Texans
14. Golden Tate – Lions
15. Mike Evans – Bucs
16. Emmanuel Sanders – Broncos
17. Davante Adams – Packers
18. Charles Johnson – Vikings
19. Jarvis Landry- Dolphins
20. Steve Smith Sr – Ravens
21.John Brown – Cardinals
22. Amari Cooper – Oakland Rookie
23. Jeremy Maclin- Chiefs
24. Sammy Watkins- Buffalo
25. DeSean Jackson WASH
26. Torrey Smith – 49ers
27. Devin Funchess – Carolina Rookie
28. Markus Wheaton – Steelers
29. Andre Johnson- Colts
30. Julian Edelman- Patriots
31. Nelson Agholor – Rookie Eagles
32. Keenan Allen – Chargers
33. Pierre Garcon – Washington
34. Marques Colston – Saints
35. Michael Floyd- Cardinals- Likely out Week 1
36. Vincent Jackson- Bucs
37. Terrance Williams – Cowboys
38. Malcolm Floyd – Chargers
39. Anquan Boldin – 49ers
40. Martavius Bryant- Steelers- 4 game suspension
41. Eric Decker – Jets
42. Roddy White – Falcons
43. Mike Wallace – Vikings
44. Eddie Royal – Bears
45. Victor Cruz – Giants- Likely will not play Week 1
46. Kendall Wright – Titans
47. Larry Fitzgerald – Cardinals
48. Doug Baldwin- Seahawks
49. Marvin Jones – Bengal
50. Breshad Perriman – Rookie Baltimore- Likely will not play Week 1
51. Brandon LaFell – Patriots
52. Cecil Shorts – Texans
53. Danny Amendola – Patriots
54. Michael Crabtree – Raiders
55. Leonard Hankerson – Falcons
56. Dwayne Bowe – Browns
57. Mohamed Sanu – Bengals
58. Brian Hartline – Browns
59. T Y Montgomery- Packers
60. Kenny Britt – Rams
61. Jermaine Kearse – Seahawks (injured)
62. Allen Hurns – Jaguars
63. Jericho Cotchery- Panthers
64. Rueban Randle – Giants
65.  Jeff Janis – Packers
66. Chris Givens – Rams
67. Greg Jennings- Dolphins
68. James Jones- NYG
69. Marguess Wilson – Bears
70. Donte Moncrief – Colts
71. Stevie Johnson – Chargers
72. Nate Washington – Texans
73. Cody Latimer – Broncos
74. Cole Beasley – Cowboys
75. Percy Harvin – Buffalo
76. Kenny Stills – Dolphins
77. Jaelen Strong – Rookie Houston
78. Reggie Wayne- New England
79. Brian Quick – Rams
80. Harry Douglas – Titans
81. Sammie Coates – Rookie Steelers
82. Ted Ginn Jr- Panthers
83. DeVante Parker – Rookie Miami
84. Dorial Green-Beckham – Rookie Tennessee
85. Riley Cooper – Eagles
86. Robert Woods – Buffalo
87. Andre Holmes – Raiders
88. Jarrett Boykin – Panthers
89. Jeremy Kerley – Jets
90. Nick Toon – Saints
91. Cordarrelle Patterson – Vikings
92. Andrew Hawkins – Browns
93. Corey Brown – Panthers
94. Stedman Bailey – Rams
95. Andre Caldwell – Broncos
96. Brandon Lloyd – 49ers
97. Josh Huff – Eagles
98. Jacoby Jones – Chargers
99. Aaron Dobson – Patriots
100. Marquise Goodwin – Buffalo
101. Denarius Moore – Bengals
102. Andre Roberts – Washington
103. Paul Richardson – Seahawks-(injured)
104. Rod Streater – Raiders
105. Justin Blackmon – Jaguars
106. James Wright – Bengals
107. Taylor Gabriel – Browns
108. Devin Smith – Rookie Jets-(injured)
109. Robert Herron – Bucs
110. Santana Moss- Free Agent
111. Wes Welker- Free Agent

112. Donnie Avery- Free Agent

 

•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Quarterback Rankings
• Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Running Back Rankings
•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Tight End Rankings
•Utter-Fantasy’s Preliminary 2015 Defense Rankings

NFL Injury Reports

NFL Injury Reports by Utter-Fantasy Football Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles

 

Arizona Cardinals-

Atlanta Falcons- ATL WR  Julio Jones (leg) is “expected to be fine” despite missing the final drive of Atlanta’s Week 2 win over Oakland

Baltimore Ravens- Breshad Perriman (knee) said he has “no doubt” he will be ready for Week 2. ( Breshad Perriman caught 2-of-5 targets for 32 yards in the Ravens’ Week 2 win over the Browns._

Buffalo Bills- WR Sammy Watkins played in Week 2, but his foot injury is undeniably effecting his game

Carolina Panthers-

Chicago Bears- With his sprained thumb, CHI QB Jay Cutler expected to miss 2-3 weeks, source said. Timeline depends on how he heals over the next 3 days

• Bears OLB Lamarr Houston has been diagnosed with a torn left ACL, and is done for the season.

Cincinnati Bengals- TE Tyler Eifert (ankle) is out and will be until at least Week 4

Cleveland Browns- QB Josh McCown’s shoulder injury is believed to be serious. CLEV QB Josh McCown apparently suffered a broken left collarbone in Week 2. ( an injury that is likely to have him out  two months. Tony Romo missed nine weeks with a similar injury last season)

Dallas Cowboys-

Denver Broncos- DEN LB DeMarcus Ware suffered an ulnar fracture Sunday  in the Broncos’ Week 2 win over the Colts and is expected to miss 3-6 weeks

• Broncos TE Virgil Green will have an MRI on his injured right calf

Detroit Lions- DET RB Ameer Abdullah’s injured foot came back negative, but Abdullah likely will miss some time. RBs Theo Riddick and rookie Dwayne Washington should carry the load

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans-

Indianapolis Colts-  IND WR Donte Moncrief will have an MRI on his shoulder Monday. If serious, WR Phillip Dorsett would become a must-start option

•IND DEF without three starting DBs Week 3-

Jacksonville Jaguars– ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports RB Chris Ivory (illness) remains hospitalized.

KC Chiefs-

LA Rams-

Miami Dolphins-

Minnesota Vikings- Adrian Peterson’s knee will likely force him now to miss the rest of the season. Waiver RB McKinnon and Asiata

New England Pats- NE QB J Garropolo left Week 2 with a shoulder injury

New Orlean Saints

New York Giants- RB Rashad Jennings’ left wrist and thumb were “heavily wrapped” as he left the locker room after Week 2’s game

New York Jets- WR Brandon Marshall (knee) was not seen at the start of practice on Monday, following getting banged up Sunday Week 2

Oakland Raiders- 

Philadelphia Eagles- TE  Zach Ertz is week-to-week with a rib injury. ( Update: Zach Ertz (ribs) has been ruled out for Week 3 against the Steelers.)

• Eagles CB Leodis McKelvin exited the Eagles’ Week 1 win over the Browns with a hamstring strain. He’s week-to-week

Pittsburgh Steelers

San Diego Chargers– SD TE Antonio Gates (hamstring) didn’t practice Wednesday. Probably not a good idea to start Gates Week 3

•SD RB Danny Woodhead exited the Chargers’ Week 2 game against the Jaguars with a knee injury. Woodhead undergoes an MRI on Monday

• Chargers WR Keenan Allen was lost for the season Week 1

San Francisco 49er

Seattle Seahawks-  WR Tyler Lockett suffered a sprained knee Week 2 against the Rams. Lockett sat out most of the second half in Week 2

•SEA RB Thomas Rawls suffered a leg bruise in the Week 2  loss to the Rams. Should play Week 3

• With RB Thomas Rawls still recovering from an injury, the Seahawks featured a committee approach

• QB Russell Wilson said he “hopes” his injured ankle “will feel amazing” when he plays the 49ers in Week 3

• The MRI on Doug Baldwin’s knee came back negative. Baldwin may be limited in practice…he’s day to day

Tampa Bay Bucs- TB RB Doug Martin said he suffered a “slight tweak” to his hamstring in the Week 2 loss to the Cardinals. Martin left Martin left and never returned. RB Charles Sims should be owned in all leagues- expected to miss 2-3 weeks

Tennessee Titans

Washington-

 

The Cursed Heisman Trophy


The Cursed Heisman Trophy
by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator & Believer in Curses Doug Bowles

It’s summer, but we had to get past a football-less spring, which can be a depressing time for fantasy leaguers. It meant that the NFL regular season was over, and even staring at a couple new fantasy football trophies on the mantle doesn’t help.
 April did give us some melancholy relief by giving us the 2015 NFL Draft, and in it, two Heisman trophy winners were on top of draft boards… Florida State QB Jameis Winston (2013) & Oregon QB Marcus Mariota (2014). QB Winston went to Tampa Bay as the #1 overall, and QB Mariota #2 to Tennessee, as the #2 overall, as expected.

You wouldn’t know it from the their stat lines in the 2015 Rose Bowl, but neither QB was particularly impressive, and neither gave me a very good feeling about their success in the NFL, at least as rookies.

Winston has potential, but I see more of a cross of QB Josh Freeman and QB Vince Young, and they weren’t great. QB Vince Young ( who ironically, was selected by Tennessee in 2006) and Winston are both 6’5″ ish, 230 pounds, not particularly fast, and have cannons for an arm. What would be perfect for this article, is if Young had also won the Heisman Trophy. He did not. In 2005, he came in 2nd to RB Reggie Bush. Although Vince Young’s 5 year NFL career wasn’t completely void of adequate performances, he didn’t come close to being worthy of the 3rd overall pick in the 2006 NFL Draft, and certainly was not a franchise quarterback.

Mariota has plenty of potential, but his mechanics are bad and he would be well served to hold a clipboard for a year, and learn. He throws nearly every pass off his back foot, and in the Rose Bowl I mentioned, there were really only two passes that had any “wow factor”. The first was a “dart of a pass” 15 yards down field to WR Darren Carrington that turned into a 56 TD. ( It was set up nicely from a previous play ) The second was a perfect 30 yard “touch pass” also to a streaking WR Darren Carrington, that also turned into a TD. Other than those two passes, the rest were boring screen passes, bubble passes and quick slants. QB Mariota wasn’t the story of this game, the 5 Florida State turnovers in the 2nd half was. QB Mariota might have been great, but he didn’t have to be.

I don’t know what it is about the Heisman, but like the Madden Cover, the success rate of anyone getting the Heisman Award is not good. Here’s 15 years worth….

2000-QB Chris Weinke
…..In 2001, he was the starter when the Panthers finished with a 1-15 record. Back up QB the rest of his career. Out in 2007

2001- QB Eric Crouch…..Drafted by St. Louis, but seen by the NFL as too short to play QB and better suited for playing wide out. Because of the injury, Crouch left the team before playing a single game

2002- QB Carson Palmer…..successful as the starting QB in Cincinnati and Arizona, but injuries have limited what Palmer might have been able to accomplish

2003- QB Jason White…..Despite a strong college career, White was not selected in the 2005 NFL Draft and did not receive a tryout from any NFL team

2004- QB Matt Leinart…..famous for his rookie season “hold-out”, Leinart spent four seasons with the Cardinals, primarily as backup for Kurt Warner

2005- ( RB Reggie Bush- Trophy & Award Forfeited )

2006- QB Troy Smith…..In the NFL from 2007 to 2009. Smith wasn’t drafted until Day 2, and was finally selected at the end of the fifth round by the Baltimore Ravens.

2007-
QB T Tebow….A ridiculous 1st round selection by Denver, and began the 2011 season as the Denver backup QB, behind Kyle Orton. Traded to the Jets in 2012 and a short stint with the Patriots, he was out of the NFL by 2013.

2008- QB Sam Bradford…..Drafted in 2010 by St. Louis. Expectations have been high for often-injured Bradford. In 2011, he went 4-0 in the preseason, but the Rams finished a dismal 2-14

2009- RB Mark Ingram….. Selected by the New Orleans Saints in the 2011 NFL Draft. Ingram’s best season so far is 2014. In prior seasons, Ingram never topped 602 yards or 5 TDs.

2010- QB Cam Newton…..most successful of Heisman trophy winners since 2000. Starter for the Carolina Panthers since 2011. 82 TDs vs 54 INTs

2011- QB Robert Griffin III…..has only 12 wins since starting in 2012

2012-
QB J Manziel…..1st NFL start for the Browns’ Week 15 game vs Cincinnati. He completed 10-of-18 passes for 80 yards and 2 INTs for a 27.3 passer rating. The Browns lost 30-0.

2013- QB Jameis Winston

2014-
QB Marcus Mariota

The end of any regular NFL season is pretty darn depressing, but perhaps not as depressing as this pitiful list. I’ll be happy when one Heisman trophy winner actually comes along and really makes a lasting mark in the NFL. Perhaps one or both of these two young men will and prove me wrong. I hope so.

Can You Lick the Wonderlic

 

Can You Lick the Wonderlic by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles

 

April showers bring May flowers…excitement for the upcoming NFL Draft…and Wonderlic Tests. Whether you think these tests are a valid benchmark for a player’s intelligence or not, they are interesting. The test is used to measure players’ aptitude for learning and problem solving. The possible score range is 1 to 50. The average football player scores around 20 points and scoring at least 10 points suggests a person is literate.
Jameis Winston and Marcus Marita, the two top QB prospects in this year’s draft recently completed the test, and recorded the scores of 27 & 33 respectively. Here is a sampling of some there notable QB Wonderlic scores:

Pat McInally – 50
Ryan Fitzpatrick – 48
Colin Kaepernick – 37
Tony Romo – 37
Aaron Rodgers – 35
RG3 – 24
Jeff George – 10
Vince Young – 6

Now it’s your turn to see how you’d stack up. The following link is a shortened version of the test, but a good sampling of the questions found here- the Wonderlic Exam.

You’ll have 3 minutes and 36 seconds to answer 15 questions.

…and if you are feeling really ambitious, here is a link to the long version, which gives you 12 minutes to answer 50 questions- the long Wonderlic Exam.
…and if you are feeling really proud of your score, please share with us!

The Trent Richardson Bust

The Trent Richardson Bust By Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles

No, I don’t think Trent is going to Canton. It’s called “Illustrated Sarcasm”.

A 1st Round draft pick by the Cleveland Browns in 2012, the 3rd overall pick to be exact. The Brown’s brilliantly selected Brandon Weeden with their next valuable ( and wasted) pick also in Round One. I’ll actually admit to drafting him early that fantasy season, when he went to Cleveland. Backs from Alabama usually do well in the NFL, so I wasn’t alone in that fantasy fiasco.

Well, we know how it turned out in Cleveland, or rather, how it didn’t, and for some reason Richardson stayed employed with a trade to Indianapolis. The Colts gave up their 2014 1st Round draft pick to get Richardson.

Well, we know how it turned out in Indianapolis, or rather, how it didn’t, and for some reason Richardson stayed employed when on March 17, 2015, Richardson signed a two-year, $3.9 million contract with the Oakland Raiders.

Well, if you haven’t heard how it that out in Oakland, or rather, how it didn’t, the Raiders placed RB Trent Richardson on the active/NFI list. No explanation has been given yet, but we should get details soon. It seems likely Richardson failed to pass his conditioning test.

Well, what do you want to bet that some team picks him up this month? This guy is like a cat with 9 lives, and I do not understand what Cleveland saw, ( at least not for a 1st round- 3rd overall pick), I do not see what Indianapolis saw, I do not see what Oakland saw, but I do know what I saw- a career 3.3 rushing average and 17 rushing TDs in 4 years!

 

Shuffle Up and Draft

Shuffle Up and Draft by Utter-Fantasy Writer and Illustrator Doug “the Vet” Bowles

On May 8th, 2014, New York City will again host the NFL Draft where all teams will buy in and come to the table ready (and hoping) to hit the jackpot as they select their favorite NFL prospects.

* For the record, I want to say that a couple thousand hands ago, I was a cub scout, and later a boy scout. In college I was a beaver scout, and in 1994 I saw a movie called The Scout (which was like someone calling my queen high, crap hand fluff…it sucked) I am NOT an NFL scout nor do I do consider myself an NFL scout. Not “sort of” an NFL scout, not remotely an NFL scout. Not an NFL scout! All I am is a professional football enthusiast, who has an opinion, no more valid than your own.

That being said, as far as fantasy football goes, I have to say I am folding on this 2014 class of QBs coming out of college….but…I am “All In” on this 2014 class of wide receivers.

(Perhaps a team will catch a card on the river with one of the 2014 QB prospects, but I think you’re probably drawing dead. If I am on the big blind and have to play, I think the best starting hand is with Derek Carr. He’s fourth on most scout’s lists, but I like him at the top, with Blake Bortles. Carr is a decent 6-2 and 215 pounds, he has great accuracy and do not under-estimate the advantage he has being mentored by his older brother David Carr. With some of the others, I don’t like the accuracy problems, and I am just not a believer in small, scrambling QBs who come with a circus. Names like B Weeden, B Gabbert, B Quinn, J Russell, M Leinart and V Young remind GMs and head coaches that it’s already risky to gamble your first round pick on a QB in any year, because the odds of them panning out, is the same as a red or black card coming up…..50-50.)

This group of wide receivers on the other hand, are the real deal.…
Clemson’s Sammy Watkins is another NFL ready WR like Julio Jones and A J Green were, and I am “All In ” on this guy pre-flop. He’s 6-1, 200 pounds, very fast and here’s the kicker, he’s smart. (I know the Detroit Lions have made some bad sucker bets in the past on first round wide receivers…i.e. Charles Rogers 2003, Roy Williams 2004, and Mike Williams 2005…but if you are a Lions fan like I am, wouldn’t you love to see this guy opposite Calvin Johnson!)

The other wide receivers I’m betting heavy on are…( and you should as well )

Texas A & M Mike Evans (Height 6-5 Weight 225 and Project 40 time 4.55)
Florida State Kelvin Benjamin (Height 6-5 Weight 234 and Project 40 time 4.55)
LSU Odell Beckham (Height 6-0 Weight 225 and Project 40 time 4.40)
USC Marquise Lee (Height 6-0 Weight 190 and Project 40 time 4.40)
Vanderbilt Jordan Matthews (Height 6-3 Weight 212 and Project 40 time 4.46)

As for the RBs in this year’s draft, I would have no problem check-raising with…

Ohio State’s Carlos Hyde (Height 5-11 Weight 230 and Project 40 time 4.66)
LSU Jeremy Hill (Height 6-0 Weight 233 and Project 40 time 4.66)
They are big, fast and would help a weak hand like Oakland or Tennessee right away.

Houston has the first pick this year, and trading away Matt Schaub may be a “tell” that Houston is looking at the draft for a franchise QB, and that Oakland isn’t!

Update 4/22/2014:

Earlier we wrote, “That being said, as far as fantasy football goes, I have to say I am folding on this 2014 class of QBs coming out of college”…but I am “All In” on this 2014 class of wide receivers. In the past few weeks, the 2014 class of QBs are spiraling out of the 1st round even, proving that:

1) No team is likely willing to risk an early 1st round pick on any of them.
2) That teams are taking a lesson from Seattle, who took Russell Wilson in the 3rd round of the 2013 draft and won a Super Bowl with him. They are willing to wait.

I hereby, and happily, remove any and all QBs from my top 10. Bump up Mack, and after that, it’s just quality picks, and there are good ones in the first round.

Utter-Fantasy Buffalo Wing Recipe

Utter-Fantasy Buffalo Wing Recipe by Utter-Fantasy writer & illustrator & chef Doug Bowles

Ingredients
Chicken wings (usually one pound per person)
Franks RedHot Original Hot Sauce-Lg 23 oz bottle
Chili Powder
Butter Salt Seasoning
Pepper
Celery AND carrots
Marie’s Chunky Bleu Cheese Dressing
Directions for Wings
(Do not skip any of these steps, for the best wings you’ve ever had.)
I use a Fry Daddy. Fill to mark inside with vegetable oil and let it get hot.
Cut wings at joints (Wing tips can be saved for making stock.)
Don’t over-crowd the Cooker. A medium-sized Fry Daddy should cook about 10 wing pieces at a time.
They will turn golden brown and float when cooked.
Remove from fryer and pat dry with paper towels.
Put cooked wings in Refrigerator, as you go. (You want them cool when coating with hot sauce.)
Continue frying until all wings are cooked.
Let ALL wings cool in Refrigerator for at least 15 minutes. (This let’s the wing grab the sauce, instead of melting it off, which it does when hot.)
Directions for Sauce
•    While wings are cooling, preheat oven to 350 degrees.
•    Put entire bottle of Franks RedHot Original Hot Sauce in a medium mixing bowl.
•    Add 1 tablespoon Chili Powder.
•    Add 1 tablespoon Butter Salt Seasoning.
•    Add 1 tablespoon Pepper.
•    Wisk together.
Putting it all Together
Take cooled wing pieces, dunk into sauce and place on cookie sheets (More than one cookie sheet may be required.)
Do not let the wings touch each other. Keep them an inch apart on pan if possible.
When all wings are coated and placed on cookie sheets, place in preheated oven.
Bake for 35-45 minutes. The wings should be caramelized and dry, as well as the excess sauce on bottom of pans. – (dry)
You may need to rotate pans on oven racks half way thru, to bake all wings evenly.
Remove from oven, scoop hot with spatula, dunk in Marie’s Chunky Bleu Cheese Dressing and ENJOY!