Team Profiles- Cincinnati Bengals

Team Profiles- Cincinnati Bengals by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles

Marvin Lewis has been the head coach for the Cincinnati Bengals since 2003, making him the 2nd longest tenured head coach in the NFL, behind only NE Bill Belichick. The Bengals battled the Colts 26-10 in the first round of the playoffs, losing 26-10. This was the Bengals fourth straight lose in the playoffs. I guess you could call them the “Buffalo Bills’ of the playoffs. (Between 1991 and 1994, Buffalo reached the Superbowl 4 straight times, and lost 4 straight times.) Lewis has a record of 40-23 over the past 4 years, so unlike HC John Fox, he won’t lose his job for not winning the Superbowl.

2015 Team Outlook – Every year the Bengals have to contend with the Steelers and the Ravens in the AFC North. All three of these teams ended the 2014 season over .500, and all went the playoffs. (The Ravens beat the Steelers in Week 1 of this playoffs, but lost the Patriots in Week 2.) Both the Steelers and Ravens have quarterbacks that have won a Superbowl, so this will again be a very competitive division in 2015. (Oh, the Browns are in the AFC North as well.)

2015 Fantasy Outlook –

QB– The Bengals starting quarterback is Andy Dalton, and he reminds me of Scott Mitchell, from the Detroit Lions QB -1994 to 1997. Detroit’s big receiver at the time was WR Herman Moore, and Mitchell would lock in on Moore, waiting for him to get open. When the opposing defense came crashing in around around him, he’d let the ball fly, usually with disastrous results. Dalton ended the 2014 season with 19 TDs and 17 INTs, worst in the NFL for a starting QB. Dalton locks in on big Cincinnati receiver A J Green every game, usually with disastrous results. It’s one of the reasons no other receiver in Cincinnati can make a name for himself. In 2014, The Browns really had Dalton’s number! In Week 10, he went 10 of 33 for only 86 yards, 0 TDs and 3 INTs. In Week 15, Dalton went 14 of 24 for only 117 yards, 0 TDs and 1 INT. Although there are plenty of teams in the NFL with worst quarterback situations, the Bengals will never go far with with Dalton. Fantasy owners won’t go far with him either.

RBs– The Bengals have one of the best one-two punch running back combos in the league. Prior to the 2014 season, RB Gio Bernard was touted as “the main running back threat” in Cincinnati. Rookie RB Jeremy Hill however, drafted in the second round of the 2014 NFL Draft, wasn’t going to let any opportunity slip away, and he ended the 2014 season as the 9th ranked running back in the league. Hill totaled 1376 yards from scrimmaged and scored 10 TDs. RB Gio Bernard also had an impressive year, ranking 18th among RBs, with 1081 total yard and scoring 7 TDs. This young dynamic duo will be fun to watch in 2015.

WRs–
As previously mentioned, the wide receiver that Dalton can’t help but lock in on every game is 6’4″ WR A J Green, drafted by the Bengals fourth overall in the 2011 NFL Draft. In Green’s rookie season, he recorded four 100-yard games and led all NFL rookies in receptions and receiving yards, catching 65 passes for 1,057 yards in 15 games. His seven touchdown receptions was second among rookies. Unfortunately WR Green was injured for most of the 2014, missing 4 of the 16 regular season match ups, and played at less than 100% for the entire second half. He ended the season ranked #23 among wide receivers with 1041 receiving yards and 6 TDs. One of the wide receivers ignored in Cincy’s offense is WR Mohamed Sanu, who ended the 2014 season with 821 yards and 5 TDs. Even these meager stats were skewed in large part because Dalton had to throw to someone in WR Green’s absence. 2 of WR Sanu’s 5 TDs, came in games in which WR Green had to sit out. Sanu’s other 3 TDs came in games in which WR Green was active, but not productive due to a concussion he suffered, or a bicep injury Green sustained late in the season. WR Marvin Jones is listed as the Bengals #2 wide receiver, but he’s only played in 11 games since 2012. UPDATE: Re-signed WR Brandon Tate and sign former Raider WR Denarius Moore.

TEs– The only TE offense weapon listed on the Bengals roster right now is Tyler Eifert, because Jermaine Gresham is currently a free agent. Neither is a weapon really, because they too are not involved enough in the offense. TE Gresham’s best game in 2014 came in Week 11 vs the Saints, where he had 13 yards and 2 TDs. Eifert missed almost the entire 2014 season from a week one injury.

K– Mike Nugent has been the Bengals place kicker since 2010. In 2014, he only knocked in 27 of his 34 field goal attempts, and 5 of those came in one game (week one). He’s a terrible option for fantasy owners. Cincinnati may try to replace him, as Nugent is a free agent this year.

DEF– Cincinnati usually puts a pretty strong defense on the field every year, but in 2014 they ranked #14. (They were the 5th ranked defense in 2013) Linebacker struggles played a big role in Cincinnati’s 2014 weakness versus the run and Cincinnati ranked dead last in sacks.) They will try to find help in this years draft. UPDATE: Bengals sign former GB LB A J Hawk. Sign CB Brandon Ghee and DT Pat Sims to 1 year deals.

2014 Cincinnati Fantasy Surprises – Despite QB Dalton’s erratic and poor play in 2014, he still managed to rank #18 among starting QBs. He basically beat out QB Alex Smith and a handful of rookie or back up quarterbacks in the NFL. RB Jeremy Hill was a pleasant surprise as a 2nd round drafted rookie, and should rank in the top 10 again in 2015.

2015 Free Agents that Cincinnati Needs to Address – QB Jason Campbell- RB Cedric Peerman (re-signed)- TE Jermaine Gresham-WR Dane Sanzenbacher- OT Eric Winston- OT Marshall Newhouse-G Clint Boling (re-signed)- MLB Rey Maualuga (re-signed)- CB Terence Newman-S Taylor Mays- CB Chris Lewis-Harris (re-signed)- K Mike Nugent (re-signed)

2015 NFL Draft – The early needs of Cincinnati are help on the front seven, a stronger pass-rush, getting a strong back-up QB for Dalton and help at the wide receiver position. The Bengals struggled mightily against the run last season (LB) and they couldn’t sack anyone (DL). All 3 wide receivers mentioned earlier are in contract years, and only WR A J Green is assured a roster spot in the future (WR). UPDATE: Cincinnati’s’s entire 2015 NFL Draft can be seen at this link- CINCINNATI’S DRAFT

Did You Know – that the franchise takes its name from an earlier Cincinnati Bengals team, which played from 1937–1941? The Bengals are one of the 13 NFL teams that have never won a Superbowl. Also, did you know that the team’s cheerleading squad is known as the “Ben-Gals’?

Team home page: www.bengals.com

Team Profiles Buffalo Bills

Team Profiles Buffalo Bills by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles

Rex Ryan is now the new head coach of Buffalo. I actually like the guy. He’s the funny uncle you always want to hang around with at family reunions. But how good of a head coach is he? He managed to land a head coaching job with Buffalo, with the words of “You’re fired’ still ringing in his ears from the brass in New York. His last year with the Jets, he led the team to only 4 wins. He had a winning record in New York only 2 out of 6 years, and those were the first two years, when the personnel of the team wasn’t of his making. Sons of Buddy Ryan, the Ryan brothers (Rex & Rob) are the Nicky and Paris Hiltons of the NFL. Two things are almost certain year one in Buffalo…….1) the players will love him 2) the team will have a losing season.

2015 team outlook- Buffalo always gets stampeded by the New England Patriots AFC East Division. Miami, Buffalo and New York Jets try not to come in last. One of the real reasons that Rex Ryan got the Buffalo head coaching gig was his familiarity with all the teams in the division. Keep your friends close and your enemies even closer. Ryan is a fun guy and the NFL loves having him around. Buffalo won’t in 4 years. MAYBE….if Rex Ryan ever went to a team with a quarterback, he could manage a winning season….but then, if they already had a good quarterback, then they’d probably have had a winning season, and therefore, there wouldn’t be a HC vacancy for Ryan to fill. Buffalo 6-10 in 2015

2015 Fantasy outlook-

QB- Retired/ Unretired QB Kyle “I stuck it to Jerry Jones” Orton is retired again, leaving only E J Manuel. E J manuel needs to read a QB manual on how to play the quarterback position without throwing interceptions. He’s not very good. Another college quarterback drafted in the 1st round who was thrown into action way too soon, as usual. What ever happened to holding a clipboard for a while and LEARNING? Tom Brady did it. Drew Brees did it. Aaron Rodgers did it. I was recently in a 20 round- 16 team fantasy draft and E J manuel went in the 19th round, the 36th QB selected. That’s about right.

RBs- Everyone has the list of “I’ll never draft that guy ever again”…..and I guarantee you, C J Spiller is on a ton of them, not just mine. I’ll draft extra wide receivers before I draft him ( or Reggie Bush) ever again. He’s a free agent anyways, so he may not even be back in Buffalo. RB Fred Jackson is an old school running back who always leaves everything on the field. I like his hard running style and his grit. You can wait on him in drafts because he won’t go too early, but he’s solid, and hopefully he can stay heathy. The #2 RB listed on the Buffalo roster is Anthony Dixon, but I am not a big fan. I do like RB Bryce Brown however, and hopefully Rex sees what a talent he could be if ever given the chance that he was promised when he left Philadelphia. UPDATE: HC Rex Ryan signed former Eagle RB LeSean McCoy and give McCoy as many touches as he can handle. RB McCoy is in a better place for himself, for Buffalo and for fantasy owners.

WRs- Prior to the 2014 season, I wrote an article about being “All In’ with the rookie class of wide receivers coming into the league, and although I didn’t like where he landed, WR Sammy Watkins topped my list. (Oh, how I wanted Detroit to draft Sammy Watkins, and see him line up opposite Calvin Johnson and Golden Tate. Instead, Detroit threw away another 1st round selection, which they always do with regularity) Watkins will make any QB look good, but his fantasy value will always have to be tempered because he’s in Buffalo. Even the die-hardest of NFL and fantasy footballers struggle to remember who the other wide receivers are in Buffalo. They are WR Robert Woods, Marquise Goodwin and Chris Hogan. They had a combined 9 TDs all of last year.

TEs– Scott Chandler is the only name worth mentioning here. He’s a big, tough guy and could be a huge part of an offense somewhere else. He’ 6’7″ and 260 pounds and a serviceable TE but has been in the league side 2007. UPDATE: Buffalo snagged TE Charles Clay and huge a huge upgrade for the team at that position, but fantasy-wise, I am not bumping him up from last year. His TE ranking drops because of the QB situation in Buffalo.

K- Former Miami Dolphin Dan Carpenter was Buffalo’s top scorer in 2014, but more because the offense was bad, rather than because he was so good. He did knock in 34 of 38 field goals, which ranked 10h for place-kickers in the NFL-2014

DEF- The Buffalo defense kept the team in many games during the 2014 season. They quietly ranked in the top 5 of NFL defenses, and with defense-minded Rex Ryan running the show now, they likely won’t fall off that top 5 list in 2015.

2014 Buffalo Fantasy Surprises- When Buffalo pulled QB Orton off the streets and threw him in as the immediate QB starter, this actually helped the team and WR Watkins’ productivity, at least for a few games. Watkins later would play at less than 100%, but he played in all 16 regular season games his rookie year. RB Bryce Brown is a talented running back and it was surprising that Buffalo didn’t use his talents much in 2014. I don’t like RBBC ( running back by committee) especially if it’s a big committee, rotating 3 & 4 running backs all in the one game like Buffalo did last year. HC Ryan won’t surprise us and start doing that. He will rotate two, but he’ll pick one of them as his workhorse.

2015 Free Agents that Buffalo need to address- RB C J Spiller- WR Marcus Easley- WR Deonte Thompson- TE Lee Smith- G Erik Pears- S Da’Norris Searcy

2015 NFL Draft- The early needs of Buffalo are Quarterback, OL , and TE. The Bills haven’t had a quarterback throw over 25 touchdown passes in a season since Jim Kelly threw 33 in 1991( QB), Buffalo’s right guard and right tackles were a glaring weakness in 2014 (OLB), and although Scott Chandler plays hard, he isn’t the big-time playmaker that any Buffalo QB will need (TE).

Did you know-
Buffalo drafted RB Marshawn Lynch with their 1st round -the 12th overall NFL selection in 2007? Lynch played for Buffalo from 2007-2010 and only scored a total of 17 TDs in those years. On October 5th, 2010 in mid-season, Buffalo had seen enough of Lynch and traded him to Seattle for two draft picks, a 4th round in 2011 and a 5th round in 2012.

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

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 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