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*Quick notes, moving fast on them...forgive any typos*
**One set of notes this SUN-MON-TUE this week before we go full tilt, all day, with the blizzard of activity from the preseason games.**
Camp Notes, of interest to me, that I’ve seen from bootleg tape or heard from my ‘secret’ sources (no particular order):
NY JETS (thank you to the FFMers attending practice and shooting over observations)
-- Everyone I’ve communicated with about Jets practices has said the same thing – Teddy Bridgewater looks like the team’s best QB. The team leader. Like, if you didn’t know the names and circumstances, you’d assume Bridgewater was the starting QB and captain.
And as I’ve said to the Jets’ fans/observers…leave it to the Jets to have stumbled into a nice QB and the media’s first inclination is “Oooh, great! Maybe the Jets can trade him.”
How about they keep him and try not to look like a terrible football team for once?
-- Chad Hansen is taking full advantage of the Enunwa-Pryor injuries and is working like a well-integrated, capable starter. He will start if Enunwa or Pryor can’t go. He may ever start over Pryor regardless.
-- Observers think Sam Darnold looked fine, but in easy throwing drill situations. He’s not really working into the full fire yet.
CINCINNATI (Family night, scrimmage)
-- John Ross is working as the #2 WR with Tyler Boyd always in the slot.
Ross is seeing a lot of work but what I’ve seen when ‘contact’ is introduced – Ross wilts. He has bad hands…but is really fast.
Tyler Boyd is really stepping up. He is definitely Dalton’s 2nd option on passing downs. Could be a WR3 year in PPR for Boyd ahead.
-- Cody Core seems to be running as the #4 WR…he’ll step in when John Ross fails and/or gets hurt.
-- Rookie Center Billy Price was eventually pulled from the scrimmage to talk to Marvin Lewis…about 3 bad snaps from Price. After Lewis ‘coached him up’, Price went back in and had another bad snap.
-- Rookie Jesse Bates is get a lot of time rotating in and out with the starting safeties.
-- Tra Carson went beast mode again. That guy…actually, I should say, ‘this NFL’…
If you want one of the greatest examples of NFL teams having terrible scouting and either never scouting the preseason seriously OR they have no idea what to look for if they are watching (I assume they are more plotting out what bar they are going to that night on the company dime) – look no further than Tra Carson. The guy has flashed in preseasons. He should have been poached from Cincinnati years ago.
He’s been buried behind Hill-Gio (and Carson is 10x the RB talent that Jeremy Hill ever was) and now buried behind Joe Mixon. Will someone in the NFL personnel departments please wake up!
Actually, don’t. It helps my business that you’re so blind in your jobs.
-- Evan Engram dropped a long, wide open TD in practice…which prompted the media’s favorite subject on receivers to arise -- ’drops’. Because if I know anything, it’s that beat writers are super smart and in-tune and never prone to simplistic hysteria.
So what if Evan Engram has some drops, and maybe even ‘above average’ drops? He’s an explosive tight end weapon like no other. He makes great catches and stellar moves after the catch to gain yards…and that is ignored to discuss something that happens 5-7% of the time.
Engram is a weapon and is getting passes over the middle, in traffic, he’s got blazing after the catch ability…he’s gonna drop some throws among all his great plays. You live with it. Like you do with Odell Beckham Jr., but he had that cool one-handed catch that one time so none of his drops matter.
Drops happen when you’re heavily targeted especially in tight quarters. It’s why Julian Edelman has a lot of drops…and a lot of catches.
If I know Roto notes, they’ll all bring up the Engram drops issue today because of the ‘drop’ in practice. I PRAY that they do to drive Engram’s ADP down. They copy enough of my notes as it is without giving me credit, so do me a favor – help a brother out with ‘fake news’ on Engram for me today.
-- SAF Darian Thompson looks like he’s back as the starter after a promising 2017. He tends to get overlooked because of Landon Collins. He’s an IDP sleeper.
-- I’m going to go ahead and predict the Redskins trade or release Samaje Perine. I pray that they do because he’s a starter-level RB talent if he can land in the right situation. His 2017 crime was getting his starting shot late in the season when Washington had their entire O-Line decimated with injury and the team was swirling down the drain – and Perine still flashed some moments of his work horse-like skills.
At his recent press conference, Jay Gruden seemed to hint a battle for a final roster spot between Rob Kelley (who he inexplicably loves) and Perine. I believe he went so far as to discuss moves to fullback with both. That’s the kiss of death for Perine. He might as well move on.
I do believe the rumors I’ve been hearing are true – the Redskins are looking to move Perine (he’s the only one of value here, no one like Kelley but Gruden). They will wait for teams to get the bad injury in upcoming preseason games to a starting RB, and then try and make their move. They won’t get much but they’ll get something. Landing in Cincy to go with Joe Mixon would be very wise…the former Oklahoma teammates. Perine is a great influence/human to mentor Mixon.
-- Jay Gruden talks about WR Maurice Harris like he’s Jerry Rice, and that makes me want to take notice for deeper roster fantasy leagues…BUT, I remember Gruden talking about Ryan Grant like he was the second coming too – and then never/rarely played him for years.
When I saw the transcripts of Gruden’s latest presser he seemed fine with Paul Richardson, a little more glowing on Jamison Crowder, and over the moon with Harris.
-- Ex-Packers/Raiders WR James Jones was giddy about the Patriots signing Eric Decker and thought it was such a great move because Decker was a better fit for the Pats than Brandin Cooks.
He seriously talked himself into Decker better than Cooks for New England. OK, brilliant.
-- Charley Casserly topped that with denigrating Nick Foles by saying the ever-present from the football elitists “They did all those RPOs.”
OK, well if everyone is so smart and the RPO is SOOOO paralyzing to opponents – WHY HASN’T ANYONE THOUGHT TO DO THEM BEFORE?
And if the RPO is lethal, so indefensible…why isn’t EVERY TEAM running RPOs this season as a primary offense? I mean, it’s so simple…take a horrible, terrible, no-good QB like Nick Foles, draw up RPOs and you’ll win a Super Bowl.
That’s what we’re all led to believe, right?
The depths they go to try to explain away Nick Foles being great in 2014 and 2017-18 knows no bounds. At the same time, they are pushing a narrative on how focused Jameis Winston will be this season and that will finally make him a great player this year.
The emptiness and agenda-pushing and group-think of football analysis on the NFL Network is breathtaking.
Coming up on FFM and CFM
-- 2019 NFL Draft safety prospect preview posts Monday on CFM
-- Top 350 dynasty rookie draft rankings update on Tuesday night.
-- Next draft guide update Monday afternoon (possibly late tonight)
-- Xavier Cromartie and my top 3 over/under win total bets for 2018 posts Monday
-- Friday on will be total mayhem with game recaps on daily basis the rest of August.
-- Posted yesterday: 1.5+ hours of podcast for your commutes and walks…me as a guest on the Fantasy Forensics Podcast. I think it was pretty good. I never listen to myself back on podcasts because I’ll be nothing but critical and hate hearing myself speak on recordings or radio.
At minimum, you will find out my favorite TV Show and Movie as the first question about fantasy football discussed by the group. Me, Katz and MD and Fonz going all over the map here, which is the way I like it…but pretty entertaining I thought. I had a good time, hope you enjoy it.
-- The 14,000+ word mock draft chat between Katz and I posted yesterday (see Draft Guide tab).
*The 2018 Draft Guide package of reports and ever-updating projections/rankings are now available from the FFM home page. Fantasy Football Metrics
*Note: my new football email email@example.com, as I ditch corporate email.
*Note: Dynasty Stash reports from FFM 2017 are posted on CFM 2018 (Date 1/7/18, under Scouting Reports tab or search via the searchbar tool).
See more of our football work at College Football Metrics – dedicated to the NFL Draft and Dynasty Rookie Draft scouting and valuations all preseason. Celebrating our 7th season covering all things draft. Go to (link): College Football Metrics