NFL Preseason Week 2 Recap: 15 Must-Know Facts
Are we done with the preseason yet? Getting through a whole game at this juncture isn’t the easiest of tasks, as most of the fantasy-relevant guys are barely on the field, but at least we saw more than in Week 1. As fantasy managers, we do need some clarity before the bulk of drafting starts, so that's where I come in. Here's a position-by-position look at how Week 2 went down, so you can plan and adjust accordingly for the onslaught of upcoming drafts.
Note: All player ADPs mentioned are courtesy of 4for4's Underdog ADP Tool.
Seattle’s QB competition is not over: Drew Lock was sidelined due to COVID-19, and Geno Smith had a chance to separate himself but didn’t really make it happen. Smith orchestrated five punts in the six possessions he was a part of, with one series ending in a missed field goal. The lackluster performance wasn’t entirely Smith’s fault; there were dropped passes and penalties, which added to the poor showing. Lock will need a strong outing next week with Smith faltering again to win the job, but the bottom line here is that Seattle is probably not going to be a great football team to invest in for fantasy purposes in 2022.
Carson Wentz may be best left on the waiver wire: I doubt many of you were rushing to draft Wentz in single-QB leagues, but if there was a flicker of thought to do so, it’s best that you don’t. The 29-year-old finished 6-of-9 for 64 yards in three series and was 0-for-3 on third downs. Yikes.
Zack Moss is not going away quietly: Why can we never have shiny things like a clear Buffalo backfield? Moss returned from the depths of cutsville to score two touchdowns on Saturday night and operated as their main back in short-yardage situations. Rookie James Cook was also effective when his number was called, rushing four times for 38 yards, with one catch on one target for another 12 yards. Cook and Devin Singletary are both ninth-round picks right now, with Moss being drafted as RB72 in the 18th round.
The backup RB role behind James Conner in Arizona may have gotten cloudier: We hate muddy RB rooms for fantasy football purposes, and Jonathan Ward is putting in the work to make things less clear for us during draft season. Eno Benjamin was out in front as the Cards RB2, but Ward’s performance of three rushes for 11 yards, a catch for 27, and three kickoff returns for 90 yards may have earned him a seat at the Arizona RB table this season. Both Benjamin and Ward are late-round best ball stabs.
Chris Olave is still out there balling: After turning heads at the joint practices with the Packers earlier in the week, Olave caught a 20-yard touchdown for his first NFL score on Saturday night. With limited competition for targets behind Michael Thomas who hasn’t played an NFL snap since December of 2020 and has a hamstring injury currently, Olave could have a highly productive rookie campaign in New Orleans and is currently leaving draft boards as WR43 with an ADP of 88.
Don’t sleep on Jahan Dotson: Training camp hype favored oft-injured Curtis Samuel as the Commanders' WR2, and Dotson’s ADP has been stagnant in the 12th round. Washington showed their faith in the first-round rookie on Sunday, as Dotson tied Terry McLaurin with 18 first-team snaps and 10 routes with the ones, as well. It’s tough to get too excited about targets from Carson Wentz after his pre-season action, but Dotson’s inexpensive price tag (WR63) makes him worthy of draft consideration in all formats.
We may need to care about Nelson Agholor again (at least for best ball): The recent tradition of trying to figure out the Patriots' weapons both via ground and air is alive and well for 2022. While most drafters are trying to decide between Jakobi Meyers, Kendrick Bourne, DeVante Parker, or rookie Tyquan Thornton (who now has a collarbone injury) , Nelson Agholor has been the forgotten man as the sixth NE WR off boards with an ADP of 215.3 as WR105. QB Mac Jones connected with Agholor on a critical seven-yard third down, then again on a 45-yard bomb down the sideline. While the former Eagle and Raider is not advisable for redraft purposes, a dart throw Agholor’s way could provide a few big-play-oriented spike weeks a la DeSean Jackson in best ball formats.
Josh Palmer is who we think he is: The Chargers WR3 has been a staple for me this summer as a fantasy WR4/5, with an Underdog ADP of 128. We want pieces of high-scoring offenses, and Palmer is a player sitting in a great spot to outperform his draft stock. Both Keenan Allen and Mike Williams have dealt with injury and inconsistency issues, so if anything were to happen to either, Palmer’s role could spike even higher. The 22-year-old had a solid outing on Saturday night, posting a 3-75-1 line in LAC’s loss to the Cowboys.
We finally have a WR1 in Jacksonville: It’s been a minute since the Jags have had a clear alpha in the WR room, but it appears they have their man in Christian Kirk. The wideout signed a four-year deal worth $72 million in March which indicated their intentions, then targeted Kirk a team-high eight times on Saturday, including twice on third downs, which led to five catches for 54 yards.
Prepare the bust in Canton for Gabriel Davis: Well, maybe not, but he did have a pretty good day against the Broncos' backups, catching two of three targets for 47 yards and a touchdown. Davis has been one of the most polarizing players this offseason in terms of draft spot and, for now, is still a fourth-rounder as the 21st WR off draft boards.
Wan’Dale Robinson is worth drafting: For the second week in a row, the rookie played the majority of slot snaps for New York in 11 personnel and saw three balls on Sunday against the Bengals. It appears the Giants want him involved, so his floor should be fairly safe. Daniel Jones looked more confident under center this week, and if this offense takes any steps forward, which shouldn’t be too difficult, Robinson could outperform his WR72 ADP at spot 159.9.
Jody Fortson is looking like he could be a thing: As if the Chiefs' pass-catching group was not crowded and foggy enough, we now have Jody Fortson playing his way into possible fantasy relevancy. Operating as a legitimate red zone threat for KC, Fortson caught two touchdowns from Patrick Mahomes against the Commanders, one of which was a very tight window, indicating the confidence his QB has in the sophomore TE. While Travis Kelce is still their TE1, Fortson could be a sneaky best ball dart for those looking to diversify.
Create another HOF bust for Ravens TE Isaiah Likely: One of the biggest surprises of 2022 so far, Likely has 12 catches this preseason which includes eight receptions for 100 yards and a touchdown from Sunday night’s contest against the Cardinals. The TE in the body of a WR showed he can get open in coverage and break tackles, most likely earning himself that third pass-catching spot behind Mark Andrews and Rashad Bateman in the Ravens offense.
Will Lutz is back, baby: After missing the 2021 season due to a core muscle injury, the Saints kicker easily stuck a 59-yard field goal on Friday night after nailing his only attempt in their first preseason game, as well.
Giants kicker Graham Gano left with a concussion: After diving to make a tackle, Gano was diagnosed with a head injury and did not return to Sunday’s on-field action. He could be ready to play by Week 1, but with concussions, it’s tough to rely on a set timetable. The Giants will likely seek out a replacement if things don’t look promising.