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2022 Week 1: Commanders 28, Jags 22 (Dynasty/Fantasy Analysis Game Report)

September 16, 2022 9:08 AM
September 16, 2022 9:07 AM


2022 Week 1: Commanders 28, Jags 22 (Dynasty/Fantasy Analysis Game Report)


This was an entertaining game of two below average QBs duking it out. The better below-average QB won.

Both teams are not good. Washington is OK-ish, the Jaguars are bottom five level again…because of Trevor.

Lots of clues to these teams and their preferences and desires here, so let’s get right into it. These teams showed us things that we can choose to ignore…or accept as their initial 2022 handshake greeting of who they are/what they want to be.



Fantasy Player Notes…


 -- MAJOR TELL/CLUE #1…Curtis Samuel (8-55-1/11, 4-17-0) IS the center of the Washington offense. That fact was quite clear…from the tape, not just the box score.

The 2nd-play of the game was Curtis Samuel lined up in the backfield with J.D. McKissic…and CSam got the handoff. A few plays later, Antonio Gibson finally got a handoff.

Samuel had 11 targets…the next closest receiver was Logan Thomas with 6 (Antonio Gibson with 8 at RB was the true 2nd). Dotson + McLaurin = 9 targets combined. Samuel with 11 targets…and another 1-2 lost to penalty. He was clearly Wentz’s guy.

Samuel also took 4 carries…which is a great confirmation of their desire to get him touches.

Washington shouted at us: Curtis Samuel is OUR guy.


Targets + carries in this game:

22 = Gibson

15 = Samuel

06 = Dotson

06 = L Thomas

06 = McKissic

05 = McLaurin


You may know that I have loved Samuel since his rookie season and been pushing for him and complaining about his usage…then he’s hurt…then they draft a similar rookie…it looked like Samuel would be relegated to spike up/down performer again in 2022.


He is the centerpiece of the offense. And he’s not a fly by night thing…he’s one of the best athletes at WR, and he’s one of the best technicians at WR in the NFL. One of the 10-12 best WRs on the planet…but always overlooked...by the people who are supposed to know better -- NFL coaches and scouts and analysts.

I think it’s urgent you dive in and try to get him at a WR2-3 valuation…most people DO NOT trust him, for good, historical reasons. THEY do not think they have a star here, don’t let them convince you otherwise. What do you have that you can swap…what do they have to maybe do a multiplayer and hide him into it?

You’ve been burned before by Samuel, right? Long time FFMers? You know you’ll get burned again because I always go bonkers on Samuel. In the past we’ve gotten hyped, and it works for a week or four but then injury or targets move away or QB. All reasonable thoughts, and I cannot make you do anything. All I am doing is my job -- I see ‘it’…and ‘it’ is on sale for reasonable prices.

Jahan Dotson is nice, but he’s not overthrowing Samuel anytime soon...if ever. But he will have moments of beating Samuel or chopping into CSam a bit -- but outside of the top five WRs, what WR doesn’t have other WRs on the roster who will take targets?

While you are looking at deals for all these other WR names, especially like Darnell Mooney in a trade…or hoping ARob bounces back or wondering if Allen Lazard might really work or Jarvis Landry off waivers or DeAndre Carter for a night -- Curtis Samuel SHOULD come cheaper and easier in a deal than most all of the WR2-3 gaggle. He’s not a rookie, so he’s not a magical unicorn (like Dotson is if you tried to trade for him for some reason).

Samuel is on a WR1 track again…which is where he was late/2nd-half of 2020…but then gone (most) all 2021.

This is a big opportunity for the cost. Don’t get too hyped if you go for him. Remember -- they don’t know what they have. Samuel does come with all the risks of the past. We want to buy low or buy reasonably…not assume he’s Tyreek Hill for this deal. Play it cool. In our heads, assume they don’t really believe but they saw the box score.

If you say, I wish I knew this renewed enthusiasm before waivers…I’ll answer that in like the next 24-100 hours…but an answer right now I can give is: We know it now. So, live and act in the now…or don’t. It’s your call. Everything has risk.  

The other Commander WRs…

Jahan Dotson (3-40-2/5) looked good but was used nothing like CSam…it was the CSam night that helped the other guys get freed up.

Terry McLaurin (2-58-1/4) is ‘deep ball guy’ running on the outside with a very-not-great deep ball QB, but Wentz did push one out deep that hit TML for a bomb TD. That will be a rare event. The rise of CSam is not good news for McLaurin for FF…nor is the usefulness of Dotson…nor the rise of Gibson in the passing game.


 -- MAJOR TELL/CLUE #2…Travis Etienne (4-47-0, 2-18-0/4) is not a big love of the new staff.

So, say this story out loud…

Travis Etienne is healthy and participating all preseason…while James Robinson (11-66-1, 1-3-1/2) is not able to do the same because he is rehabbing from a 2021 injury (achilles) that ends RB careers. So, the new staff sees ALL Etienne all preseason…and only sees JRob in August on the side doing movement drills. JRob gets fully cleared like a week ahead of the season, and he is immediately the main/lead back for the Jags. Not a ‘share’ or ‘spilt’ or ‘we’ll see how he looks’ or ‘we don’t want to rush him back’ -- but, instantly ‘the guy’.

Does that scream to you that the Jags think Etienne is a great RB? He couldn't beat out or demand split touches with the guy who never practiced all year and is coming off an achilles!

Etienne has his role…pass game back, and occasional ballcarrier. He looked pretty spry to me, but Doug Pederson SHOUTED to us what he thinks of the situation. JRob the heavy and Etienne in support and could have some big passing game moments/heavy targets but they will be sporadic and unpredictable but with JAX likely losing a lot…he might get great 4th-quarter garbage targets.

And remember how an achilles tear ends RB careers, and we should stay away from these guys for at least two years? James Robinson is back in less than a year and doing fine.

Re-read that RC Ruins Everything report about injuries…


 -- MAJOR TELL/CLUE #3…Antonio Gibson (14-58-0, 7-72-0/8) is not going to be the lead RB when Brian Robinson is ready.

Gibson looked good, but he was not a desired plan/feature. Seven plays into the first series, AG got his first carry. At the end of the first quarter, Gibson was tied for the team lead in carries (one carry) with CSam and Dotson each with one.

Gibson is going to be a 3-6 carry per game back and a giant J.D. McKissic (3-8-0, 3-20-0/3) for the backfield pass game when Brian Robinson returns, and I expect Robinson to be back for Week 5 and be taking over by Weeks 6-7-8…but sharing a good amount with Gibson and McKissic.

And…we haven’t even seen what happens if Gibson were to fumble at any point the next 1-3/pre-BRob return games. We haven’t gotten ‘punished’ Gibson yet…and maybe we won’t but the moment he fumbles, look out.


 -- MAJOR TELL/CLUE #4…Christian Kirk (6-117-0/12) is Trevor’s #1 WR.

This is not a shocking acknowledgement, but it is clear that he is the first look. Zay Jones (6-65-0/9) is his #2.

I think this output, Week 1, is better than what will happen normally…but good garbage time could give a few 5-7 catch games this season. Good defenses will shut Kirk down easily. But late prevent defense garbage passing could open it back up. You’re just gonna get a Jakobi Meyers lack of TDs with good catch counts…so, whatever that is worth to you.


 -- The TE report…

Logan Thomas (3-45-0/6) is back. He looks creaky coming off ACL rehab. UDFA rookie Armani Rogers (1-23-0/1) was playing early and had a sweet catch-and-run play early but got hurt and was gone the rest of the game.

Evan Engram (4-28-0/4) had an Evan Engram stat line, but I wouldn’t bury him yet. There were some moments of positive here…not enough to drop everything to get/hold him, but enough for me not to kill him off (in my mind). When Kirk starts getting heavy coverage…Engram is an easy throw for Lawrence, and it started happening after the 1st-quarter+ in this game.


 -- The QB report…

Carson Wentz (27-41 for 313 yards, 4 TDs/2 INTs) is not a 4 TD a game QB now in Washington, but he’s got a good crew of WRs to work with in Washington. He’ll be an OK back end QB2, possible bye week option in a good matchup.

Trevor Lawrence (24-42 for 275 yards, 1 TD/1 INT)…well, same old Trevor. Play action. Set up in the pocket. Lock onto his predetermined throw…and let it rip. If it’s open…great, a possible completion between the 20s. If it isn’t, well…trouble.

The media is just now starting to have the thought that Trevor may not be that good at all. I’m seeing the first articles/discussions of it…or just the question raised (which they quickly shoot down with all the excuses). It won’t be long before the world knows what we all knew a year ago.



Snap Counts of Interest:


69 = McLaurin

68 = Dotson

55 = Samuel


49 = Gibson

31 = McKissic

01 = J Williams


50 = Engram

25 = Manhertz

11 = Arnold


36 = Etienne

34 = J Robinson


48 = Logan Thomas

42 = Bates

04 = Arm Rogers 


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

Learn more about RC and the Fantasy Football Metrics system >>