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2021 Dynasty/Fantasy Game Analysis Week 1: Broncos 27, Giants 13

Date:
September 17, 2021 7:25 PM
September 17, 2021 9:40 PM

2021 Dynasty/Fantasy Game Analysis Week 1: Broncos 27, Giants 13

 

The Giants scored a meaningless TD as time expired, or this would have been a 27-7 deemed blowout. The eventual 14-point win on the road is pretty impressive as it is.

Actually, rewatching this game…the Giants were a little better than the score indicated, but so many self-inflicted wounds. The Giants are just short of what it takes to be a consistent winning team. They have pieces. They play hard. They just don’t have the firepower on offense or the blocking to get to ‘winning’ consistently.

Denver is the aspiration of the G-Men…a stable QB with a good O-Line and a tough defense, an old-school good football team. The Giants wish they were the Broncos, but they are not. This was a solid win for the Broncos, but I wasn’t wildly impressed or blown away with them…they took care of business because they are better than the Giants. They should win this game more times than not. They did. The schedule is the Broncos friend Weeks 1-3, then we’ll see if they can start out (3-0) and then go (7-7) the rest of the way to get to 10 wins and a wild card.

*Note, I am writing this game report after having watched NYG-WSH on TNF Week 2. So, I will mix some live watch Week 2 perspective in on NYG notes here.

 

 

Fantasy Player Notes…

 

 -- The biggest FF-impression made on me from this game (and from watching Week 2) – Saquon Barkley (10-26-0, 1-1-0/3) is going to kill your FF teams, for those that took him as a ‘bargain’ in the 1st-round of redrafts 2021.

Barkley looks fine, but it’s the surrounding circumstances that are killing him. Defenses key on Barkley, and they want Daniel Jones to try and beat them…knowing he’s a high-turnover guy. Barkley is going to have the same issue David Johnson had in Arizona his final two years and his lone year in Houston after that – high-level of talent, but no O-Line and defenses keying on him, so he has no room to run. Every tote is a slog…every carry a disappointment watching him if you owned him for FF.

I don't own any Saquon Barkley, but I have owned DJ a lot the past few years…and been tortured seeing a talent go to waste. I can, you can, the world can do all the scouting of these prospects they want – but the O-Line and QB matters more than the talent, unfortunately. Talent is part of the equation but not THE dominant factor.

With all the bad results, THEY will say that Barkley must be still having lingering effects of his injury…but I think it’s just a surrounding NYG circumstances issue.

Barkley’s numbers in his last 16 games (to mimic a used-to-be full season) during the Daniel Jones era:

248 carries, 1,000 yards rushing (4.03 ypc), 6 rushing TDs

57 catches (82 targets), 492 rec. yards, 2 rec. TDs

93.3 total yards per game, 0.50 TDs per game, 3.56 catches per game…high-end RB2 work.

 

In 4 games with Joe Judge the past two seasons:

57 rushing yards for a high in a game, no TDs, 2.88 yards per carry on 42 carries.

 

I don’t see how Saquon magically springs to a top FF RB going forward, not in 2021. The O-Line is still bad and has lost a couple of starters to injury already. Teams will still be fine letting Daniel Jones try and beat them. When he’s played the whole game (not left early hurt), Jones is 7-20-0 as a starter in the NFL, a 35% win-rate.

If you’re counting on Saquon for FF 2021…you are probably in big trouble. The first two weeks have been a disaster.

 

  -- Speaking of Daniel Jones (22-31 for 267 yards, 1 TDs/0 INTs, 6-27-1)…he is looking better in 2021. Like…the better half of the bottom 10 QBs type of QB.

One of the reasons he is looking better is directly tied to Saquon – as defenses overplay Saquon, they thus dare Jones to beat them, and he is throwing into soft coverages or finding decent 1-on-1 matchups to heave prayers towards. It’s working not too bad, so far. He was OK here. He was good against Washington Week 2 TNF.

He still throws too many errant passes and throws into danger at the first sign of pressure, but when given enough time he can do what Mac Jones is doing for the Patriots – using the run game to help him quick-pass successfully like it’s a 7-on-7 throwing game. Only Mac Jones has a better O-Line, coaching, and is a better talent.

Jones is working OK as a passer, but then running more to suddenly make him an odd QB1 threat…a weak NFL QB who puts up good FF numbers.

If Saquon goes down, then Dan Jones is dead. He exists only by hiding behind Saquon.

 

 -- Teddy Bridgewater (28-36 for 264 yards, 2 TDs/0 INT, 3-19-0) is doing a better version of what Daniel Jones is trying to do. Teddy is working safe/smart behind a much better O-Line. Plus, Teddy is a better QB in general…and for sure more experienced. And Teddy is showing a desire to run with it when available.

Bridgewater is a solid QB2, and possible bye week flyer on a proper matchup. Better for the NFL than for FF.

 

 -- You’d rather have either of the Denver RBs for FF than Saquon. How FF-chilling is that statement? Again, O-Line rules.

What’s the status of the Denver backfield after one whole week?

Well, Melvin Gordon (11-101-1, 3-17-0/3) is definitely starting…but Javonte Williams (14-45-0, 1-0-0/1) is right there. This was not Gordon as the clear lead with Javonte sprinkled in. Javonte was into the game right away and sometimes was starting some series as the RB. It is only a matter of time before Javonte is the lead/main toucher…even if Gordon always ceremonially starts.

Three things to consider from these RBs in this game…

1) Gordon had a 70-yard TD run late…when the Giants were stacking the line to try and make a final stop to somehow stay in the game. Outside of that run, Gordon had 10 carries for 31 yards prior…3.1 ypc.

2) Javonte rushed 14 times for 3.2 ypc. The Giants might have a killer run defense in the making. They bottled up the WSH run game on TNF Week 2.

3) With Denver ahead 20-13 with 6+ minutes remaining, they got the ball back deep in their own territory. It was a key series where Denver could put NYG away (and they did). It was Javonte Williams in the game to start that key series – that’s a lot of faith for a rookie RB.

It’s only a matter of time.

My eyeballs saw there’s no comparison of Javonte and Gordon in 2021 Week 1…Javonte is way faster/quicker/better. It’s only a matter of time.

 

 -- We all want to chase the latest and greatest young WR who looks like the next Tyreek or the next Davante or next DeAndre or next Julio…and we laugh off and ignore boring old Sterling Shepard (7-113-1/9) as beneath our sensibilities. We shrug off a team’s #1 WR to chase rookie fairy tales.

We shrugged off a guy (Shepard) who will be a top 5 PPR WR for FF scoring after Week 2…you will wish your Stefon Diggs, and Davante Adams had the same YTD numbers as Shepard after Week 2.

Can this keep up? Sure, why not? He just lit up Washington’s defense. And if Daniel Jones is getting a free ride to throw because of Saquon paranoia by defenses – then Shepard is going for the ride with Jones. Shepard has been Dan’s #1 target ever since Jones has been a starter. The question is – can Shepard stay healthy? Otherwise…he’s a solid WR2+ all day long in PPR.

 

 -- The Denver #1 WR is Courtland Sutton (1-14-0/3)…and he got taken out by James Bradberry. Teddy didn’t even bother trying…there was plenty of opportunity elsewhere. Should be better days ahead for Sutton, but C.J. Henderson is no slouch Week 2. It’s not a gimme. Week 3 v. NYJ is the gimme.

Speaking of Denver WRs… You know their starters are Sutton-Patrick, right? That Tim Patrick (4-39-1/4) is the starter in 2WR sets…the 2WR/2TE sets that Fangio loves? It’s true.

Jerry Jeudy (6-72-0/7) came in on three WR sets and is working more like CeeDee Lamb now (and not just deep ball guy)…which is good for his FF purposes, but then he got landed on wrong/badly and hurt his calf. Watching that injury…I wouldn’t expect him back on the early estimates of his injury.

K.J. Hamler (3-41-0/4) was running as a #4 WR coming in and out as needed. He’ll be the #3 for a while with JJ gone

The main guys are Sutton-Patrick.

Don’t believe me?

 

Snap Counts for the WRs here:

53 = Sutton

46 = Patrick

31 = Jeudy

24 = Hamler

 

 -- Three notes on Giants’ receivers…

1) Kenny Golladay (4-64-0/6) is looking back to healthy/speed but doesn’t look like the right fit to work with Jones…not to take him back to his lofty DET levels.

2) Kadarius Toney (2-0-0/2) was a ghost. Barely knew he played. And after the game he was shooting his mouth off about his role. That guy is a bust…even faster than I said he would be.

3) If Daniel Jones is seeing more time to throw and looks better…might Evan Engram (DNP) be his best FF-self upon return? I’m just saying…the passing game isn’t as bad as it was last year. As long as Saquon takes the heat, this pass game is not the worst.

 

 -- I like the personnel and coaching on the NYG and DEN defenses. Both plausible NFL defenses to consider in the right matchups for FF DSTs.

However, NYG struggles more on offense…and doesn’t support the defense as well as what Denver does. Therefore, I like Denver better. BUT…neither is a candidate for some lockdown defensive greatness.

I always take a long look at DEN DST to see if THIS is the time Fangio rises up for a 2019 Bears defensive event. But I don’t see it here. The Denver defense is good, it’s not ‘wow’.

Either DST is slick/plausible in the right matchup. That’s why Denver was my go-to DST to start the year, when all else failed or the NE-BUF stream route wasn’t taken. Denver facing Jones-Lawrence-Z.Wilson is about as good as it gets these days. There are not many ‘great’ matchups for DSTs in the era of all good QBs…plus there is no ‘wow’ defense in the NFL anymore.

The only hope at ‘wow’ among DSTs seems to be Arizona since Washington $#!& the bed Week 2 vs. NYG.

 

 

Snap Counts of Interest:

 

29 = Barkley

24 = Booker

 

33 = Javonte

33 = Gordon

 

51 = Fant

37 = Albert O

22 = Saubert

 

Rookies:

16 = Surtain

08 = Brightwell

05 = Toney



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About R.C. Fischer

R.C. Fischer is a fantasy football player analyst for Fantasy Football Metrics and College Football Metrics. 

Email rc4metrics@gmail.com

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