Coaching matters and fantasy football has skewed the definition of a quality quarterback. Please, I beg of you… watch the games.
Texans at Patriots
- I’ve never been a fan of Bill O’Brien. I can forgive you for losing to a rookie, 3rd string quarterback. I can certainly forgive you for losing to Bill Belichick on the road. What is unforgivable is being shutout, as your ridiculously overpaid quarterback pooped the bed despite you being considered a “QB Whisperer.” The fact that the Patriots played a 2-deep shell and you couldn’t draw up a play to take advantage of the void behind the linebackers and in front of the safeties; I cannot excuse that. Your refusal to run down hill against a 6-7 man box, utilizing a lead blocker; instead you run from the pistol over and over not allowing your running back to get his shoulders square to the line of scrimmage. This is unacceptable. This was embarrassing and O’Brien (and Brock Osweiler) were exposed. O’Brien has since reclaimed play calling duties we’ll see if it makes a difference.
- Speaking of Osweiler… 24 of 41, 196 yards, and 1 INT. $72 million, $37 million guaranteed…
- You know what…? I’m not done with Osweiler. The Patriots could not have been more vanilla in their scheme. They simply took away the big play by sitting in a conservative 2-deep shell while playing aggressive man-to-man coverage underneath. It forced Osweiler to work through his progressions and take what the defense was giving him and he performed miserably. Inaccurate, indecisive and he clearly had no clue how to attack the defense.
- The Patriots didn’t make the mistake of using a finesse rushing attack; rather they dotted the I, put a fullback in front of LeGarrette Blount as he racked up a 24/105/2 line.
- Nuk was quiet on 8 targets reeling in four of them for 56 yards but you have to appreciate the hands and body control. Nothing came easy in this one.
- Jamie Collins (14 tackles, 1 pass defended, and 1 INT) is so good.
- BIG Vince Wilfork (7 tackles from the nose) seemed like the only Texans defender that came to play.
- Jabaal Sheard (2 sacks) is part of the reason why Chandler Jones was expendable.
Cardinals at Bills
- What do you know… Rex and his brother are still employed.
- It wasn’t all on Carson Palmer (26 of 50, 287 yards, 4 INTs, 2 fumbles and sacked 5 times) but he was pretty awful in this one.
- Tyrod Taylor (14 of 25, 119 yards, 1 INT, 2 fumbles and sacked 4 times) was pretty bad too but he was on winning side of things.
- If the Cardinals had kept this one competitive David Johnson (19/83/2) may have ended up with 30 carries. Workhorse.
- Shady (17/110/2) got loose.
- Big game for the Bills defense but Bruce “B.A.” Arians is going to have to adjust. I know how demanding his offense is and appreciate a true vertical attack; but too many throws are of the low percentage variety. The offense is getting behind in down and distance and hanging their defense out to dry at times. I expect B.A. to get it fixed.
Raiders at Titans
- The Oakland Raiders are the 31st ranked pass defense in the NFL. Only the Miami Dolphins are worst and they have already played their Week 4 game.
- Hence, Marcus Mariota (17 of 33, 214 yards, 2 INT, and 1 lost fumble) he was…. unimpressive. I know, I know. He’s lacking weapons but aside from the occasional first read throw, down the seam, he looks completely lost and lacking in arm strength.
- Did you know that Demarco Murray (16/114/1) is averaging 6.0 yards per carry? Much improved offensive line in Tennessee. Makes Mariota’s performance thus far very concerning.
- Speaking of offensive lines, the Raiders have the best offensive line no one talks about. Oakland rushed for 25/123/1 as a team.
- Believe it or not Michael Crabtree (8/102) has been Oakland’s best receiver thus far in 2016.
- Rookie 1st round selection, Karl Joseph, in his first career start had 10 tackles (6 solo) to lead the Raiders in Week 3. Not sure why they waited to start the young man until Week 3. Had it not been for Joseph as the last line of defense, Demarco may have ran for 200.
- Remember when Washington gave David Amerson (3 tackles, FIVE passes defended) his walking papers? The 6’1 corner has been terrific in Oakland. Ask PFF.
Browns at Dolphins
- I know Ryan Tannehill (25 of 39, 319, 3!!! TDs, 2 INTs, and 1 fumble lost) pooping on himself this past Thursday is fresh in your mind. But if you recall Week 3 or most of his film from 2012-2015 you already know he’s average at best. Had it not been the snake bitten Browns, Tannehill would have cost the Phins the win.
- Did you know that the Cleveland Browns are 4th in the NFL in rushing and their 5.7 yards per carry is good for 2nd best in the NFL? As a team the Browns rushed for 32/169/1 yet rookie QB Cody Kessler threw 33 passes and WR Terrelle Pryor, former college QB I know… had five attempts of his own. If they could play a little defense the Isaiah Crowell/Duke Johnson combo could be lethal behind an underrated offensive line.
- You heard about Josh Gordon right? No real surprise. But, Terrelle Pryor (8/144) who is just scratching the surface as a receiver has been a pleasant surprise.
- I know fantasy owners aren’t on speaking terms with Jarvis Landry (7/120/1) after the Week 4 TNF matchup but he was fantastic in Week 3 and after I check the film we’ll know if you should be upset with Landry or Tannehill.
- I’ll take Reshad Jones (10 tackles, 9 solo, 0.5 sacks, 3 TFLs, and 1 pass defended) and Ndamukong Suh (6 tackles, 4 solo, 1.5 sacks, and 1 TFL) on my team any day.
Ravens at Jaguars
- Joe Flacco (29 of 40, 214 yards, and 2 INTs) is the worst 3 – 0 QB in the NFL. Joe Cool in the postseason; mediocre during the regular season.
- You know why Blake Bortles’ (24 of 38, 194 yards, 2 TDs, 3!!! INTs, and sacked 4 times) numbers in this contest were so unimpressive? It’s because the Jags were actually in this game from start to finish. Sultan of Garbage Time.
- The Jaguars are the 31st ranked rushing offense… averaging 2.8 yards per carry. But I won’t cut Bortles any slack. You told me repeatedly how great he was after 2015 so he’s fair game.
- Apparently Steve Smith Sr. (8/87) and the Jags 2016 first round selection Jalen Ramsey (5 tackles) got into it a bit. Ramsey did a good job against Senior when matched up against him. Certainly a confidence booster for the young defensive back, but tread carefully, Senior will beat that ass!
- That’s two more for Allen Robinson (7/57/2).
- Sizzle with 2 more sacks and Elvis Dumervil is expected back in Week 4.
- Timmy Jernigan (2 tackles, 1 sack, 1 TFL, and 2 passes batted down) thriving as a 5-technique.
Lions at Packers
- A-A-RON was vintage Rodgers in the 1st half (15 of 24, 205 yards, and 4 TDs). Then he put it in neutral in the 2nd half as the Packers only scored three points.
- I think Eddie Lacy (17/103) needs more touches.
- Last week I said Marvin Jones is paying dividends. Turns out he was just getting warmed up. Completely obliterated an undermanned Packers defense with 6 catches, 205 yards and 2 TDs.
- Dare I say… Jordy Nelson (6/101/2) is back!
- Meanwhile Randall Cobb (1/33) has been missing since 2014.
Broncos at Bengals
- It’s probably way too soon, but I’m going to say it. Trevor Siemian (23 of 35, 312 yards, and 4 TDs) is better (and cheaper) than Brock Osweiler.
- Andy Dalton’s (21 of 31, 206 yards, and 1 INT) performance is typically indicative of the quality of opponent. Broncos play D.
- Jeremy Hill’s (17/97/2) best performance this season aided by a 50-yard scamper. I like Hill. He wasn’t very good last year but he I think that was a symptom of immediate success and not understanding how much work he continuously had to put in. This season he’s running hard but outside of a couple of touts the Bengals offensive line isn’t getting much of a push up front.
- Fantasy relevance for Emmanuel Sanders (9/117/2) and Demariyus Thomas (6/100/1).
- Carlos Dunlap (3 tackles, 1 sack) doesn’t get enough credit.
- The Broncos are successful defensively in large part because they have waves and waves of pass rushers including Shane Ray (6 tackles, 3!!! sacks and 2 TFLs).
Vikings at Panthers
- Killa! Almost was slain in this one. Cam Newton was battered and bruised to the tune of 21 of 35, 262 yards, 3!!! INTs, and sacked 8 times including a safety. Vikings play D.
- Kelvin Benjamin held catchless. Vikings play D.
- Kyle Rudolph (7/70/1) the self-proclaimed best tight end in the NFL is actually rated as the Top TE entering Week 4 according to Pro Footballl Focus. But slow your roll… Gronk and Brady will be joining forces soon.
- Kuechly (13 tackles, 9 solo) and Davis (10 tackles, 7 solo, 1 sack and 2 TFLs) so good. Dynamic duo.
- But the Vikings have a fleet of defenders: Eric Kendricks (12 tackles), Harrison Smith (7 tackles, 6 solo, and 1 sack), Linval Joseph (7 tackles, 1 sack), Anthony Barr (7 tackles, 1 sack), Danielle Hunter (5 tackles, 1 sack) and Everson Griffen (4 tackles, 3!!! sacks).
Redskins at Giants
- I really hate saying positive things about Kirk Cousins (21 of 35, 296 yards, and 2 TDs) but I will give him a compliment, promptly followed by what could be construed as an insult. This was a solid performance on the road against a division foe. But he’s still not good.
- I’m not ready to panic regarding Eli Manning’s (25 of 38, 350 yards, 1 TD, 2 INTs and 2 fumbles) performance in 2016 just yet. But things aren’t getting any easier against Minnesota in Week 4.
- In the big matchup between Odell Beckham Jr. (7/121) vs. Josh Norman (6 tackles, 5 solo, and 2 passes defended) I’ll say this one went to a decision with Norman getting the edge as #HTTR got the win and Odell got split by a kicking net.
- SNACKS (10 tackles, 9 solo) earning his keep from the interior defensive line.
- JPP (8 tackles, 6 solo, 1 sack, 2 TFLs, and 1 pass batted down) really starting to look like a difference-maker again.
Rams at Buccaneers
- I expect Jameis Winston (36 of 58, 405 yards, 3!!! TDs, 1 INT, 1 fumble lost) to have a lot of games like this in losing efforts this season.
- Did you know Todd Gurley (27/85/2) going into this Week 3 matchup only had 98 yards rushing? I’m sure you did if you own him in fantasy. But did you know that he had 101 yards after contact. Rams have little to no passing game and can’t run block for shit. Don’t tell me Ezekiel Elliott is better than this guy…
- Jameis has to throw it to somebody. Mike Evans with a 10/132/1 line.
- Oh, and Adam Humphries (9/100) too.
- 124 total yards and a TD for Charles Sims. He’s looked like the best back in Tampa this season.
- Time to put Vincent Jackson out to pasture… 3 catches for 37 yards on 6 targets; averaging 3/33 per game thru three weeks.
- I’d like the record to show that I ranked Cameron Brate (5/46/2) among my Top 30 Fantasy tight ends a list Austin Sefarian-Jenkins could NOT crack.
- Mark Barron (9 tackles, 6 solo, 1 pass defended, and 1 INT) has found a home at linebacker.
- For every Lavonte David (8 tackles, 7 solo, 1 sack, and 2 TFLs) and Kwon Alexander (7 tackles, 6 solo, 1 TFL, and a pick SIX) there is a Chris Conte or Bradley McDougald.
- How’s that 2nd round kicker you traded up for working out Tampa Bay!?! Missed field goal and point after attempt; 1 for 3 on FG attempts thru three weeks.
49ers at Seahawks
- DangeRUSS (15 of 23, 243 yards, 1 TD) is really banged up. Didn’t finish the game but expected to play Week 4.
- Carlos Hyde (21/103/2) just has to stay healthy.
- Christine Michael (20/106/2) looks real good. When you’re putting spin moves on defenders in the backfield to turn a certain loss into a 4 or 5 yard gain it’s time for Mr. Rawls to have a seat and heal properly.
- Put some RESPECK on Doug Baldwin’s (8/164/1) name.
- Good to see my late round fantasy pick Jimmy Graham’s (6/100/1) role in the offense growing. You see while you were busy over-drafting Josh Gordon, I was laying in wait adding Jimmy Graham to the queue.
Jets at Chiefs
- Ryan Fitzpatrick threw SIX Picks!!!!!! Damn! For a Harvard educated man he’s manic under-center.
- The reality is that there could have been more INTs. The Chiefs defense got their hands on 22 of Fitzpatrick’s 44 pass attempts.
- Derrick Johnson (10 tackles, 8 solo, 1 sack, 1 TFL, 1 pass defended, and a pick SIX) is as good as ever at 33-years-old.
- Marcus Peters (2 INTs, 2 passes defended) now has 12 INTs in 19 career games. Wow!
Chargers at Colts
- Phillip…. 26 of 39, 326 yards with no TDs or INTs and 1 fumble lost is an empty line particularly in defeat.
- Luck (24 of 37, 331 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT and 1 fumble lost) wasn’t markedly better but the Colts did manage the “W.”
- Nothing comes easy but Frank Gore (21/82/1) is reliable.
- T.Y.!!! 8/174/1
- Hunter Henry looks the part. 5 catches for 72 yards on 5 targets and 1 costly fumble unfortunately.
- Take a good look at Denzel Perryman (10 tackles, 8 solo, 1 sack) and rookie Jatavis Brown (6 tackles, 5 solo, 1 sack, 2 TFLs, and 2 passes defended) this should be the inside linebacker duo in San Diego. Sorry Manti.
Steelers at Eagles
- Carson Wentz (23 of 31, 307 yards and 2 TDs; he wasn’t sacked) has grabbed all the headlines but Jim Schwartz and his defense holding the Steelers to 3 points was most impressive in this game. Since the media has decided Wentz should be enshrined in Canton already I’m going to continue to point out the “not so obvious” in this fantasy driven era and nitpick. The Steelers’ defense was supposed to be a “real” test for Wentz. The reality is Pittsburgh’s pass defense is still suspect primarily due to their anemic pass rush (1 sack total thru three weeks). The Eagles offensive line deserves a lot of credit. Doug Pederson and Frank Reich deserve a lot of credit. If you read Week 1 and Week 2 of “The Film Says…” and watched this game you’d realize that Wentz has yet to face any adversity, pass rush, or work thru his progressions. His scramble to find Darren Sproles (Sproles did most of the work) was his most impressive play of the game. Pre-snap he’s impressive but I can’t truly get a read on him yet after the snap. It’s been pitch and catch.. no wow throws or reads. Receivers and backs running free in the secondary every week. Still waiting to see Wentz against a team with a quality pass rush/defense and the upcoming suspension of right tackle Lane Johnson looms big.
- Ben Roethlisberger (24 of 44, 257 yards, 1 INT, 2 fumbles, 1 lost; sacked 4 times) was awful. Now of course everyone thinks Wentz is the best QB in Pennsylvania… smh.
- Antonio Brown (12/140) #Boomin.
- Did you know that Darren Sproles (6 rec. 128 yards and a TD) was on the trade block during the offseason/preseason?
- The Eagles know how good Fletcher Cox (5 tackles, 2 sacks and 1 TFL) is. Now that he can hunt the QB on a consistent basis you will too soon enough.
Bears at Cowboys
- Steady Dak…. steady. Things aren’t going to get easier. 19 of 24, 248 yards, and 1 TD (1 rush TD).
- I knew Ezekiel Elliott (30/140) would eat in this matchup. Bright lights, and a weak opponent missing Eddie Goldman, Lamar Houston and Danny Trevathan in the front seven. He’s good, that offensive line may make him great, but he’s not a generational talent as some would have you believe. Also, I find LeGarrette Blount hurdling a defender at his size more impressive than Elliott who was a decorated hurdler in high school. I’d also like to point out that despite his big night he’s still only averaging 3.9 yards per carry behind the best o-line in the NFL and is on pace for 379 carries… Dallas needs to use Alfred Morris a bit more or they are going to run Elliott into the ground.
- Dez (3/40/1) suffered a hair line fracture in his knee. No bueno.
- Zach Miller (8/78/2) finally got involved against Byron Jones no less who I think is the best defensive player Dallas has… better than Sean Lee.
- Neither team had a sack. We know Dallas has no pass rush. Randy Gregory’s full suspension has been upheld by the way. And, I saw Leonard Floyd, the Bears first round selection and talented pass rusher in coverage far too much. I expect better from John Fox and Vic Fangio.
Falcons at Saints
- Much to CPGM Headley’s delight the Falcons finally exercised the Steve Gleason demons. In large part due to the Falcons offense humming and the Saints defense being non-existent.
- Matt Ryan (20 of 30, 240 yards, and 2 TDs) didn’t break a sweat.
- If I told you that your future 1st ballot Hall of Fame QB thru three games led the NFL in passing yards, and was tied for the lead with 8 TD passes and has only thrown 1 INT; you’d think your team would have at least won one game right..? Drew Brees (36 of 54, 376 yards, 3!!! TDs and 1 INT) as the Saints sit at 0 – 3.
- Mark Ingram (15/77 and 1 TD reception) is averaging 12 carries a game… but a healthy 4.6 yards per carry. A little defense please N.O.!?! I guess not…
- Really impressed with the utilization and performance of Atlanta’s top two backs. Of course carving up the Saints defense is like running a hot steak knife through room temperature butter. Devonta Freeman (14/152; 5/55/1) and Tevin Coleman (12/42/3; 3/47).
- Julio… 1 catch for 16 yards on 7 targets but the Saints still allowed 45 points. LOL.
- Brandin Cooks… 2 catches for 13 yards on 8 targets got the Desmond Trufant treatment. Trufant has become one of the better corners in the NFL.
- For your fantasy football team’s sake I hope Coby Fleener (7/109/1) continues to pick it up. He actually left some meat on the bone in this one. I’m not surprised.
- Michael Thomas (7/71/1) had to step up in Willie Snead’s absence and he played pretty well. I like what I see from this rookie.
- My guy Spoon (10 tackles, 8 solo, and 1 TFL) turned back the clock and the young gun Deion Jones (9 tackles, 8 solo, 2 passes defended and a pick SIX) flashed his play-making ability in a homecoming game.