Welcome to FantasySavvy’s Film Review. This article will be complementary for the first two weeks of the season, after that it will be available with a subscription. Please email FantasySavvy@gmail.com for more info on how to subscribe. Thanks for reading and for your support.
We will be breaking down a player or two, three + from several games from the previous week played. The information presented is based on watching every snap that player participated in for that week. Instead of relying on just statistics or an analysts breakdown of those statistics, or coach or analyst speak, we get to the root of the matter, the game tape. Mostly, we will try to focus on rookies, new players, but also some veterans as well as players of concern.
This will part 1 of a 2 part series, part 1 will be released tomorrow. Let’s get to it, as Hall of Famer Ed Reed once said, “The Tape don’t lie”.
Bengals @ Colts
I thought Andrew Luck was fine, made all the throws we are accustomed to seeing him make and should be back to his old self sooner than later.
Nyheim Hines was used frequently with the injury to Marlon Mack. He looked quick, and ran some good routes, most notably an angle route that he caught for a big gain. When Mack returns however it’s a wonder how he will be used. His talent doesn’t appear that he’s going to separate himself from Mack or Wilkins.
Jordan Wilkins looked pretty ordinary to me. Plain Jane runner. Nothing special from him in this game. Mack is probably the most talented runner on this team, but this could be a timeshare the whole year unless injuries change the situation.
Thought I would get to see a bit more from Tyler Eifert, but didn’t see too much. Most of his catches he was wide open and just ran free. In the redzone is where Eifert has made his money, so we will monitor in the coming weeks how he looks when he gets some looks there. Really couldn’t get a grasp if all the injuries he suffered over the years have slowed his game some. My first sense is no, but it remains to be fully seen. Be patient with him for now, while we await to see if the upside is still there.
Joe Mixon is no longer a rookie battling Jeremy Hill and Giovani Bernard, the job is now entirely his. A big addition this year is using Mixon in the passing game, as the Bengals used him on multiple screen plays. No doubt the Bengals coaching staff is trying to get their talented back more involved throughout, just like the Rams did last year with Gurley. Bernard was barely used, and this is where Mixon is going to be a big fantasy factor this year. He also had a fairly nice day on the ground, although the Colts D didn’t offer much resistance. Most of the runs I wasn’t overly impressed with, but he did have one nice patient run where he ran behind his blockers and quite a few runs he finished off strong. I do think his balance was a bit off and he lacked a little bit of explosiveness. He did seem to get stronger running as the game went on. Because Mixon looks to be a huge factor in the passing game this year, he should produce consistent numbers pretty much every week. However, as of now, I don’ think he’s ready to take a leap as one of the elite backs in the league, I need to see a little more juice out of him first. But safe to say 2018 is going to look a whole lot better than 2017. I wish I had at least a few shares of him this year, after owning him everywhere in 2017.
Titans @ Dolphins
Derrick Henry had a rough 1st game, gaining just 26 yards on 10 carries. Henry looked a little rusty and somewhat tentative and impatient running into one of his blockers on one run. He did have a 65 yard TD run that got called back, which looked like a bad call, as Delanie Walker was getting his facemask held. The played was well blocked but Henry displayed his impressive speed on the run. He just didn’t get a chance to really get into a flow and get into the 2nd level where he does serious damage. The constant game delays obviously weren’t a help, neither were Marcus Mariota playing horribly and Dion Lewis displaying his talents. As a Henry enthusiast and owner (multiple leagues) I am a little worried because Mariota’s play is concerning. Also Lewis threatens to take away his full capacity. However, Mariota is capable of putting together solid games and the Titans should lean on their run game going forward. Henry should maintain goaline status and he is always capable of big play. I am confident Henry is going to have some big games and produce a solid ROI for his owners. Henry does more and more damage as the game goes on and in Week one he didn’t get a chance to do that. Henry thrives off a chunk of carries as he wears down defenses. He’s not fun to tackle. It’s 1 week, let’s be patient and let Henry do his thing. I think he will be fine, we will reassess next week.
Corey Davis I thought looked good, found open spots in zone, ran some crisp routes, displayed good hands, it’s just Mariota and the Titans offense as a whole was in a funk. The talent is there, he should get a steady amount of targets now with the injury to Walker so let’s be patient. Mariota isn’t as bad as Mitch Trubisky, he can actually get guys the ball from time to time.
I like what I see from Jonnu Smith, fluid, athletic, seems like a fairly sound route runner. Smith could definitely be a factor in this offense for the rest of the year. Mariota loved Walker, and I have confidence Smith can fill Walkers shoes somewhat. He’s one my favorite Tight End pickups on the wire this week.
Kenyan Drake looked good, despite the sour stat line. He looked ultra quick and fast, his usual self. Big games are a coming, Frank Gore can still get it done as he showed Sunday, but Drake is still going to be the man.
Texans @ Patriots
Quick hit here on Philip Dorsett, thought he and Brady displayed solid chemistry. Dorsett was running some nice out routes and separating from defenders. Certainly when Edelman comes back things could change, but right now I think Dorsett will stay somewhat consistent in this offense as he looks like has improved his game some and Brady doesn’t seem to mind looking his way.
Bucs @ Saints
Chris Godwin sprouted up towards the end of last year and he did have a decent game in Week 1, catching three passes for 46 yards and a TD. He ran a few nice comeback routes, but I am not overly high on him at the moment. I am not willing to right him off yet, but just want to see a bit more, didn’t see anything truly special.
Theodore Ginn as John Hansen (The Guru) calls him, began where he left off last year, catching balls all over the field, running reverses, etc. A lot of talk of Cameron Meredith, Trequan Smith, but the ol vet displayed his talents again and maintained his presence in the WR corps. Ginn still has it and should continue to be a factor in this offense, granted he stays healthy. He is questionable for week 2 at the moment.
Chiefs @ Chargers
Austin Ekeler looks like the 2nd coming of Danny Woodhead. Decisive, burstful runs, good speed, agility, capable route runner, able to create mismatches and separation. Ekeler had a wonderful game in Week 1, finishing with over a 100 total yards and a TD. The Chargers would be foolish to leave him out of the offensive mix and I don’t see that happening. He should produce nice flex value for your teams.
Mike Williams, go and trade for him now. This kid just stands out. His route running was on par also, turning around a few corners in this game. He could be special and it could happen this year. This Chargers offense could be ultra explosive.
Patrick Mahomes displayed his big arm, poise in the pocket and some solid accuracy in this one. KC also used him on a few read options, which will only add to his value. Mahomes and KC are in for big things this year.
Tyreek Hill just looked incredible out there. He made a great leaping catch and continued to show his insane speed and agility. The fact that his route running is as good as it is getting, is scary. Hill could take a huge leap this year with Mahomes as his QB. They are truly a perfect match. I think I own him in about three or four leagues, I wish I had him in all of them.
Sammy Watkins only had three catches for 21 yards, also letting a pass bounce of his hands that could have been picked. He did make one nice diving grab. Mahomes is a great fit for Watkins, so I am willing to be patient for now. He was creating separation. Watkins has no excuses, he’s in the perfect fit, let’s see how this one plays out.
Seahawks @ Broncos
I thought Will Dissly looked capable. Big dude, not a lot of speed, but he’s a crafty player. He can find spots in the zone and it appears he has solid hands, also is tough to take down and can bounce of tackles as evidenced on his TD catch. He is a monster run blocker, so he is going to stay on the field and should be a decent weapon for Russ the rest of the season. A good grab if he’s out there still.
Pete Carroll said Rashad Penny looked rusty. Not sure if it was rust or that extra 20 lbs he put on since the combine, but Penny looked slow, was falling down without being touched and just looked flat out unimpressive. Chris Carson on the other hand looked like the guy we’ve seen, one play he had an awesome hurdle. Carson is the man right now and for the foreseeable future. Can Penny at some point get up to speed and match or take over Carson? I don’t think it happens this year without an injury. I expect Carson to get the majority of the carries in Week 2.
Not sure I am thrilled with Brandon Marshall, I see a lot of inconsistency forthcoming, I am passing on him. Didn’t see the old explosiveness really from Marshall, just him doing just enough to get open. Then again it’s Will Dissly, Tyler Lockett, Jaron Brown and David Moore as the other options, so maybe Marshall could be somewhat consistent. Just have my doubts.
I wasn’t overly high on Royce Freeman coming into the season, but I did end up drafting him in two leagues. I was a bit concerned after seeing his stat line and the fact that Philip Lindsay basically split the touches with him, but after watching the tape I feel confident in Freeman. He had some nice runs, looked good and I expect him to have some big games upcoming. Lindsay has earned his share of touches however and is also a capable player. Lindsay runs hard and is an excellent option out of the backfield. He is a sound runner also, who can hit holes and finish off his runs. Freeman is the more talented runner, but Lindsay should maintain a role and will have some decent flex value this year.
I didn’t see too much out of Cortland Sutton except one nice diving catch, so were going to have to wait and see how he fits in this offense led by Case Keenum. Certainly it was a poor debut for Keenum and with Sanders, Thomas as the top 2 options, will there be enough room for the talented Sutton to eat? Not sure yet, and I am not crazy about Keenum, but the talent is too much with Sutton, so hold for now, he could definitely pay dividends this year. They used him often so that’s a good sign as he played 44 snaps. That was much more than fellow rookies D.J. Moore, and James Washington who saw no targets and barely played.
Part 2 tomorrow, stay tuned. Any questions hit me on twitter @FantasySavvy or email FantasySavvy@gmail.com