Skip to main content

Boys Making Noise in the Preseason

Every year, players dominate the preseason, but rarely do they make an impact in fantasy land. However, with so many teams running with a committee in the backfield and holding on to those extra receivers to spread the field, some of these guys might actually be able to help during the regular season.

Click to see Jadeveon Clowney highlights on


Blake Bortles - Bortles followed up his NFL debut with an even better performance, completing 11 of his 17 passes for 160 yards against the Chicago Bears.  His 277 yards ranks 5th in the NFL preseason.  It appears that it is not "set in stone" that Bortles will ride the pine all season.

Jaguars offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch said it's not set in stone that rookie quarterback Blake Bortles will spend this season watching veteran Chad Henne take the snaps. Bortles is enjoying an impressive preseason and finally got a chance to work with the first-string offense Monday.
  • Week 1 - The #3 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft completed 63% (7) of his 11 attempts, gained 117 yards (31 long) and was sacked once.  Scouts loved his performance.  The Jaguars intend on keeping him benched the entire season behind Chad Henne.

Johnny Manziel - Both Johnny Football and Brian Hoyer looked terrible last night on Monday Night Football against the Washington Redskins.  Combined they went 9 for 22 for just 81 yads.  Manziel did hook up with Dion Lewis for a TD.
  • Week 1 - It won't be Week 1, but it could be as soon as Week 5 (Browns have Week 4 Bye) that Manziel is starting for Cleveland, sending Brian Hoyer to the bench.  His 1st NFL start was OK, going 7-11 with for 63 yards and did not get sacked.  He gained 27 yards on the grond, including a long of 16.

Teddy Bridgewater - Teddy looked great in his 2nd NFL start, going 16 of 20 for 177 yards, completing 2 touchdowns, one to Allen Reisner and the other to Rodney Smith.
  • Week 1 - The Vikings rookie QB completed just 6 of his 13 attempts and picked up just 49 yards while being sacked twice.  Matt Cassel will have to be dreadful for Bridgewater to start a game for the Vikings this season.

Jimmy Garoppolo & Ryan Mallett - It should be noted that the Patriots beat the Eagles 42-35 in this contest, and 0 points were scored in the 4th quarter.  Tom Brady opened the scoring by throwing a Pick 6 before a 15 yard TD to Kenbrell Thompkins.  Mallett and Garoppolo combined to go 13 for 23, picking up 164 yards and throwing 3 TDs.  Mallett matched Garoppolo in total TDs by rushing for one.  Garappolo connected with James Develin and Brandon LaFell for scores.
  • Week 1 - Garoppolo shined in his NFL debut while Mallett looked like a career backup.  Jimmy completed 9 of his 13 attempts for 157 yards and a touchdown, including a 53 yard play to Brian Tyms, who later caught the TD from 26 yards out.  Mallett was 5 of 12 for 55 yards against the Redskins.

Ryan Nassib - Eli Manning's backup has looked great in the Giants 3 preseason games, and finished the G-Men's 4th quarter comback against the Colts, with 27 points in the 4th quarter.  The Giants were being shutout 26-0 before the start of the final quarter.  Nassib is now 30 of 48 (62.5%) for 378 yards and 2 TDs.

Ryan Griffin - Played his College by close by at Tulane and is pushing Luke McCown for the #2 spot on the depth chart.  He has completed 69% (29) of his 42 attempts for 358 yards and 3 touchdowns, one to Brandin Cooks, one to Mark Ingram and the other one to Seantavius Jones.  Only Nassib has more passing yards, but has played in an extra game!

Zach Mettenberger - Completed 20 of his 25 passes in Week 2 for 269 yards, 2 TDs and 1 INT.  Jake Locker is the guy in Tennessee but if things unravel, or if Locker misses any time, Mettenberger and Charlie Whitehurst (finger injury) will battle for playing time.  It was a much better outing than his NFL debut.

Running Backs

Lorenzo Taliaferro - Now leads the NFL in Preseason rushing yards, if Bernard Pierce can't get it done with Ray Rice suspended, Taliaferro is in for a big Week 2 against the Pittsburgh Steelers!  Pierce averaged 7.9 yards per carry, thanks to a 30 yard dash, against the Cowboys.
  • Week 1 - This beast of a back is going to fight Bernard Pierce (37 yards on 10 carries) for playing time with Ray Rice sidelined for the first 2 Baltimore Ravens games.  The 4th round draft pick out of Coastal Carolina is 6'0 226 lbs and could be valuable at some point this season if Rice can't return to form, or if Pierce suffers an injury.  Remember this name!

Mark Ingram - One of just 7 RBs with 100+ rushing yards, is he finally ready to be the Saints workhorse? Doubtful with Pierre Thomas and Khiry Robinson on board, but 102 yards on just 13 carries will get you some playing time.  He has caught a pass in each of the 2 Saints games, and even took one 23 yards for a score.  Ingram is the only RB in the NFL with 2 rushes for 20+ yards!

Denard Robinson - Is looking for playing time behind Toby Gerhart and Jordan Todman, Robinson has led the Jaguars in rushing in each of their 2 preseason games, picking up 70 yards on 13 carries and 1 TD.

Ben Tate - Picked up 51 yards on MNF against the 'Skins on 10 carries, and will have to continue to average 5 yards per carry to keep Terrance West off the field this season.
  • Week 1 - The Cleveland Browns added Ben Tate this offseason, and figure to run the ball a ton with an iffy QB situation in Brian Hoyer and Johnny Manziel, and the eventual loss of Josh Gordon. Terrance West was rumored to be having a great camp and could take snaps from Tate, but his first 10 carries have gone for just 22 yards, including a 10 yard run!

Jonathan Grimes - After being shutout by the Cardinals in the Texans 1st preseason game, Grimes totaled 77 yards on 12 touches (3 rec) vs the Falcons.  His 81 rushing yards leads the Texans, who cut Andre Brown. An injury to Arian Foster and the job is Grimes.

Joseph Randle - Leads the Cowboys in preseason rushing yards with 91 on 20 carries, and will battle Lance Dunbar to be 2nd on the depth chart behind DeMarco Murray.

Wide Receivers

Corey Washington - 3 straight games with a 4th quarter TD, the 6'4 WR out of Newberry is seriously pushing for regular playing time with teh Giants and a legit red zone threat.

Justin Hunter - Hunter exploded for 111 yards on just 4 catches, with TD receptions thrown by both Locker and Mettenberger.  Huge fantasy football sleeper here!  Watch his 64 yard TD.

Jordan Matthews - After catching 4 of his 7 targets for just 14 yards in the Eagles Week 1 game, Matthews exploded for 104 yards on 9 catches.  Somehow, he did not find himself in the endzone in a game the Eagles scored 35 points, and had just a long of 25 yards.  The opportunity is there for the rookie to shine in Philly.

Joe Morgan - Lost last season due to a knee injury thanks to teammate Kenny Vaccaro, Morgan proved what he is worth with 3 catches for 108 yards.

Tight Ends

Travis Kelce - A 3rd round pick from the 2013 draft, Kelce is 2nd in the NFL in receiving yards with 136 on just 6 receptions!  He is averaging 22.7 yards per catch!  He has TD receptions of 43 and 69 yards. Anthony Fasano should not keep Kelce off the field.  A knee injury kept him on the sideline his rookie season.  Deep league sleeper!

Kyle Rudolph - After 1 catch in the Vikings preseason opener, Rudolph caught 4 of his 5 targets, including a 51 yard TD from Matt Cassel.  Great TE with a bad QB situation.