Fantasy Football Monday Recap - Preseason Week 3
The third week of preseason concluded Sunday night when Denver beat Pittsburgh 34-17, and there’s a lot happening around the NFL. The regular season can’t get here soon enough for a lot of teams, but others would love to get more time to iron out their issues. We’ve got a league-wide injury update, and of course the always popular stories of who’s hot and who’s not.
THE HOT LIST
- Thursday night St. Louis quarterback Sam Bradford showed why the team drafted him first overall. He completed 15 out of 22 passes for 189 yards and two touchdowns as the Rams bested the Patriots.
- If Bradford is the new guard, than Tom Brady is the old guard. And the old guard looked awfully good against St. Louis, completing 18 out of 22 passes for 273 yards and three touchdowns.
- Brady and Bradford each had rookie tight ends helping them out. New England’s Rob Gronkowski caught three passes for 66 yards and two touchdowns, and Michael Hoomanawanui of the Rams hauled in four passes for 53 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
- New York Jets running back LaDanian Tomlinson found the fountain of youth against Washington, rushing for 86 yards, including a 43-yard dash.
- Speaking of actual youth, Detroit running back Jahvid Best had a dazzling 51-yard carry Saturday when the Lions bested the Browns. It was a good glimpse at the upside Best possesses.
- Cleveland quarterback Jake Delhomme has been a frequent target of the critics, but he had another good performance this week, completing 20 out of 25 passes for 152 yards and a scoring strike to fullback Lawrence Vickers.
- Buffalo rookie running back C.J. Spiller continues to impress. He rushed for 52 yards and two touchdowns against Cincinnati, and also caught two passes for 33 yards. The Bills also used Spiller in the Wildcat.
- Tampa Bay WR Mike Williams continues to look like the real deal, as he hauled in three passes for 83 yards as the Bucs dropped a 19-13 decision to Jacksonville.
- Houston running back Arian Foster is no stranger to this list, and continues to provide proof that he’ll be a fantasy asset. He rushed for 110 yards and a touchdown as the Texans dominated Dallas.
- If we played preseason fantasy football, New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz would be worthy of a very high draft pick. This sensation that’s sweeping the nation caught four more passes Saturday in Baltimore for 76 yards and a touchdown.
- There has been a lot of buzz about Ahmad Bradshaw getting more work in the New York backfield, but Brandon Jacobs rushed for 41 yards on six carries Saturday and served notice he’s not going away anytime soon.
- Panthers defensive end Charles Johnson had a pair of sacks in Carolina’s 15-7 victory over the Titans.
THE NOT LIST
- The Arizona Cardinals really should cut the chord with Matt Leinart. Leinart was dismal in the team’s exhibition game against Tennessee last Monday and then pouted when the team opted to start Derek Anderson Saturday in Chicago. Leinart came off the bench and performed much better, but there’s no reason to think he’s going to improve and become a long-term asset.
- While we’re on the subject of Arizona, Beanie Wells has been a popular fantasy sleeper, but he didn’t earn any points by losing a fumble and running for a paltry 14 yards on eight carries.
- Bears quarterback Jay Cutler struggled against the Cardinals, throwing two interceptions. In fairness to Cutler, his offensive line hasn’t given him much support, allowing nine sacks over the past two weeks.
- It was a rough Saturday for the Oakland Raiders, as quarterback Jason Campbell and running back Michael Bush each suffered injuries. Both could play in week one, so the Raiders may have dodged a bullet.
- Darren McFadden didn’t get hurt, but his preseason debut was pitiful, as he rushed for nine yards on seven carries.
- While Carolina’s defense had an impressive showing Saturday night against Tennessee, the Panthers offense had another dismal showing. Carolina’s first-team offense hasn’t scored a touchdown in the preseason. They are playing without Steve Smith and Jonathan Stewart, but this is still cause for concern in Charlotte.
- Speaking of dismal, the Dallas first-team offense struggled mightily against Houston.
- The Steelers have to be hoping that NFL commissioner Roger Goodell reduces Ben Roethlisberger’s suspension by a couple of games, as Dennis Dixon and Byron Leftwich faltered Sunday night in Denver. The not-so-dynamic duo collectively completed just nine out of 20 passes, with Dixon throwing a pair of interceptions.
- Brett Favre may be an icon, but he tossed two picks against a Seattle defense that isn’t anything special.
Arizona TE Ben Patrick (knee) – expected to be available in week one.
Arizona WR Early Doucet (abdomen) – played in team’s third exhibition game.
Arizona WR Larry Fitzgerald (knee sprain) – out for the rest of the preseason, but should be ready for opening day.
Atlanta WR Michael Jenkins (shoulder) – might not be available at the start of the regular season.
Baltimore WR Donte’ Stallworth (foot) could be out until the middle of the season.
Baltimore WR Mark Clayton (concussion) – probably will be ready for week one.
Buffalo RB Fred Jackson (hand) – might not be available at the start of the regular season.
Buffalo RB Marshawn Lynch (ankle) – status for opening day is uncertain.
Buffalo TE Derek Schouman (knee) – out 2-5 weeks.
Buffalo WR David Nelson (leg) – could return for team’s third preseason game.
Buffalo WR James Hardy (undisclosed injury) – returned to practice.
Carolina RB Jonathan Stewart (heel) – expected to be ready for week one of the regular season.
Carolina WR Steve Smith (arm) – should be ready for the start of the regular season.
Chicago QB Caleb Hanie (shoulder) – should be ready for the start of the regular season.
Chicago WR Earl Bennett (hamstring) – return date unknown.
Cincinnati RB Brian Leonard (foot sprain) – return date unknown, might not be available on opening day.
Cleveland RB Montario Hardesty (knee) – returned to practice on a limited basis.
Dallas WR Dez Bryant (ankle) – cleared to play in the team’s final preseason game Thursday against Miami.
Denver RB Correll Buckhalter (back) –returned to practice.
Denver RB Knowshon Moreno (hamstring) – not a lock to play in week one.
Denver WR Brandon Stokley (groin) – questionable for the beginning of the regular season.
Denver WR Demaryius Thomas (foot) – return date unknown.
Green Bay RB James Starks (hamstring) – may end up on the physically unable to perform list.
Green Bay RB Quinton Porter (knee) – could be a lengthy injury.
Houston RB Steve Slaton (turf toe) – at this point, there is no indication he’ll miss regular season time.
Houston TE Owen Daniels (knee) – will not be heavily involved in Houston’s offense early in the season.
Houston WR Trindon Holliday (thumb) – out for the season.
Indianapolis RB Joseph Addai (concussion) – returned to practice.
Indianapolis TE Dallas Clark (leg) – returned to practice.
Indianapolis WR Pierre Garcon (undisclosed injury) – played in team’s third exhibition game.
Jacksonville RB Deji Karim (thumb) – return date unknown.
Jacksonville RB Maurice Jones-Drew (knee) – not expected to miss any regular season time.
Jacksonville TE Zachary Miller (foot) – returned to practice.
Minnesota WR Percy Harvin (migraines) – played in Minnesota’s third exhibition game.
Minnesota WR Sidney Rice (hip) – will likely be out until at least the middle of the season.
New Orleans TE Jimmy Graham (ankle) – return date unknown.
New York Giants RB D.J. Ware (concussion) – return date unknown.
Oakland QB Jason Campbell (wrist/stinger) – neither injury is believed to be serious, but it’s not a lock that Campbell will play in week one.
Oakland RB Darren McFadden (hamstring) – played in team’s third preseason game.
Oakland RB Michael Bush (thumb) – status for week one is uncertain.
Oakland WR Chaz Schilens (knee) – recovery period could range from 3-6 weeks.
Philadelphia RB Mike Bell (calf) – played in team’s third preseason game.
Phildelphia WR DeSean Jackson (neck) – will be ready for the team’s week one clash with Green Bay.
St. Louis QB A.J. Feeley (thumb) – probably will be ready for week one.
St. Louis WR Donnie Avery (knee) – placed on injured reserve.
San Francisco RB Brian Westbrook (hamstring) – status is day to day.
San Francisco TE Vernon Davis (knee strain) – working out and is expected to play on opening day.
San Francisco WR Kyle Williams (sprained toe) – out several weeks.
San Francisco WR Jason Hill (groin) – out indefinitely.
San Francisco WR Michael Crabtree (neck strain) – returned to practice.
Tampa Bay QB Josh Freeman (thumb) – out for the remainder of preseason, at this point there is no indication he will miss any action in the regular season.
Tampa Bay WR Maurice Stovall (ankle) – still hasn’t seen action in the preseason and it’s uncertain as to when he’ll be back at full strength.
Washington QB Donovan McNabb (ankle) – status for week one could be in doubt.
Washington RB Clinton Portis (ankle) – could return to practice later this week.
Washington WR Malcolm Kelly (hamstring) – didn’t play in team’s third preseason game, return date unknown.
Arizona LB Gerald Hayes (back) – status is uncertain for week one.
Atlanta CB Dunta Robinson (hamstring) – missed Atlanta’s third preseason game but not expected to miss any regular season time.
Atlanta DT Corey Peters (knee) – return date unknown.
Atlanta G Mike Johnson (undisclosed injury) – out indefinitely.
Baltimore CB Ladarius Webb (knee) – may be available for week one of the regular season.
Baltimore S Ed Reed (hip) – return date uncertain.
Baltimore T Jared Gaither (back) – return date unknown, might not be available at the beginning of the regular season.
Baltimore T Oniel Cousins (concussion) – will be ready for the start of the regular season.
Buffalo LB Reggie Torbor (undisclosed injury) – might not be available in week one.
Buffalo S Jairus Byrd (groin) – out indefinitely.
Carolina S Aaron Francisco (hamstring) – return date unknown.
Carolina T Jeff Otah (knee) – might not be back by week one.
Chicago LB Brian Urlacher (strained calf) – has missed some practices and didn’t play in Chicago’s third preseason game, but is fully expected to play in the opener against Detroit.
Chicago LB Lance Briggs (ankle) – could be questionable for opening day.
Chicago LB Nick Roach (knee) – might not be available for week one.
Chicago S Craig Steltz (ankle) – his injury is classified as week to week.
Chicago S Major Wright (finger) – returned to practice on a limited basis.
Cincinnati DE Robert Geathers (foot) – exact return date unknown, but is expected to be available in week one.
Cincinnati S Gibril Wilson (knee) – placed on injured reserve.
Cincinnati T Andre Smith (foot) – returned to practice and played in team’s third exhibition game.
Cleveland G Floyd Womack (knee) – out for the remainder of the preseason.
Cleveland LB D’Qwell Jackson (strained pectoral muscle) – unlikely to play on opening day.
Cleveland NT Shaun Rogers (leg) – could begin the season on the physically unable to perform list.
Cleveland S Nick Sorensen (concussion) – return date unknown.
Dallas DE Marcus Spears (MCL) – status for the start of the regular season has yet to be determined.
Dallas G Kyle Kosier (MCL) – could be out during the early part of the regular season.
Dallas LB Keith Brooking (shoulder) – status for week one is up in the air.
Dallas T Marc Columbo (knee) – questionable for week one.
Dallas T Sam Young (knee) – probably will be out during the early part of the regular season.
Dallas S Gerald Sensabaugh (shoulder) – out another 2-3 weeks.
Denver T Ryan Clady (torn patellar tendon) – returned to practice.
Detroit DE Jared Devries (knee) – placed on injured reserve.
Detroit LB DeAndre Levy (groin) – injury is not believed to be serious.
Detroit S Louis Delmas (groin) – played in Detroit’s third preseason game.
Green Bay CB Al Harris (knee) – appears to be doubtful for week one.
Green Bay LB Clay Matthews (hamstring) – odds of playing on opening day still seem to be good.
Green Bay S Atari Bigby (ankle) – will be out for awhile.
Houston LB Xavier Adibi (groin) – availability for opening day is in doubt.
Indianapolis C Jeff Saturday (knee) – out indefinitely.
Indianapolis CB Jacob Lacey (concussion) – return date has yet to be determined.
Indianapolis CB Jerraud Powers (foot) – injury is considered to be day to day.
Indianapolis LB Gary Brackett (hand) – X-rays were negative and Brackett will be fine for opening day.
Indianapolis T Charlie Johnson (foot) – might not return until after the start of the regular season.
Indianapolis T Tony Ugoh (toe) – return date unknown.
Kansas City LB Cameron Sheffield (neck) – carted off the field Friday night, return date unknown.
Miami CB Will Allen (knee) – return date unknown.
Miami G Nate Garner (foot) – will miss time during the first part of the regular season.
New England DE Ron Brace (ankle) – injury is not believed to be serious.
New England LB Jermaine Cunningham (unknown injury) – return date uncertain.
New England T Nick Kaczur (back) – expected to be out awhile, possibly the entire season
New Orleans S Darren Sharper (knee surgery) – return date uncertain.
New York Giants C Shaun O’Hara (ankle) – status for week one is unknown.
New York Giants CB Aaron Ross (foot) – status for week one is uncertain.
New York Giants LB Adrian Tracy (elbow) – severity of the injury has yet to be determined.
New York Giants LB Chase Blackburn (knee) – may not be available for opening day.
New York Jets LB Calvin Pace (foot) – will miss several weeks.
New Orleans LB Jonathan Vilma (groin) – injury is not believed to be serious.
New Orleans LB Stanley Arnoux (ankle) – return date unknown.
Philadelphia DE Trent Cole (ankle) – considered day to day and will be fine for week one.
St. Louis S James Butler (sprained MCL) – opening day status could be in doubt.
San Diego C Scott Mruczkowski (ankle) – should be ready for week one.
San Francisco C Eric Heitmann (fractured fibula) – may not be available early in the regular season.
San Francisco CB Will James (high ankle sprain) – out 3-5 weeks.
San Francisco LB Ahmad Brooks (lacerated kidney) – could be sidelined when the regular season starts.
Seattle DE Nick Reed (knee) – injury could linger into the regular season.
Seattle LB Lofa Tatupu (hamstring) – returned to practice.
Seattle T Ray Willis (knee) – out indefinitely.
Seattle T Russell Okung (ankle) – return date unknown.
Tampa Bay S Sabby Piscitelli (concussion) – return date unknown.
Tennessee CB Cortland Finnegan (groin) – injury is not believed to be serious enough to cost him playing time in the regular season.
Tennessee DE Derrick Morgan (calf) – played in team’s third exhibition game.
Tennessee DE William Hayes (knee sprain) – could be ready for opening day.
Tennessee T Mike Otto (knee) – return date unknown.
Washington S Kareem Moore (MCL) – out indefinitely.