- Kansas City Chiefs 23 @ Chicago Bears 7– Surprisingly, the standout QB in this game was the Bears’ 3rd-stringer, Connor Shaw (5-6, 68 YD, TD). The Chiefs’ leading rusher was QB Alex Smith, and the Bears’ second-leading rusher was QB Connor Shaw=WOW. WR Cameron Meredith CHI (4 REC, 64 YD, TD) was the leading receiver, and the only receiver to score a TD. The starting DTs (Dontari Poe KC and Eddie Goldman CHI) both had a FF. CB Deiondre’ Hall CHI had an INT. Overall, a very boring game from two boring teams. Neither team is currently known for being splashy in terms of big plays. Although, clearly, boring works much better for Kansas City, even in the preseason.
- Detroit Lions 9 @ Baltimore Ravens 30– QB Matthew Stafford DET (14-23, 95 YD, INT) played a very Stafford-esque game, while QB Ryan Mallett BAL (10-15, 112 YD, TD) played a very UnMallett-esque game, and he also had a rushing TD. RB Theo Riddick DET (3 CAR, 35 YD) seems to be running away from fellow DET RBs Ameer Abdullah (4 CAR, 16 YD) and Zach Zenner (3 CAR, 13 YD) in the RB competition, and he is also an elite pass-catcher out of the backfield. Meanwhile, the Ravens RB competition continues to remain cloudy, as RBs Terrence West (7 CAR, 43 YD) and Kenneth Dixon (6 CAR, 41 YD) are playing well, while previous starters Justin Forsett (2 CAR) and Javorious Allen (8 CAR, 15 YD) are struggling. WR Jeremy Butler BAL (4 REC, 43 YD, TD) was the game’s leader in REC, REC YD, and REC TD. The two teams combined for 6 SAC; Detroit had 2 (DT Haloti Ngata and DT Khyri Thornton); Baltimore had 4 (CB Anthony Levine (also had INT), LB Matt Judon (also had FF), DE Timmy Jernigan, LB Victor Ochi). Detroit also a FF (DT Anthony Zettel). The RBs definitely surprised me the most. I’m not surprised to see Theo Riddick taking the lead in Detroit, but I am surprised to see Terrence West taking the lead in Baltimore. I am SHOCKED that Justin Forsett hasn’t come to play at all, and he could be facing his release from Baltimore.
- New York Giants 21 VS New York Jets 20– YES! FINALLY, THE GIANTS WON! AGAINST THE JETS IS A BONUS! This game was about the passing attacks, and the Giants defense. QB Ryan Nassib NYG (6-19, 69 YD, 2 TD) was the leading scorer, despite having a poor completion percentage. QB Christian Hackenberg NYJ finished with a TD and an INT. QB Ryan Fitzpatrick NYJ finished with a TD, as well. QBs Eli Manning NYG and Bryce Petty NYJ both had an INT. Three WRs scored in the game (Tavarres King NYG (2 REC, 38 YD, 2 TD), Robby Anderson NYJ (4 REC, 65 YD, TD), and Eric Decker NYJ (REC, 22 YD, TD)), including each team’s leader in receiving yards. CB Darrelle Revis NYJ had an INT, but the rest of the turnovers were forced by the Giants defense, which had 3 FF (DT Damon Harrison, DE Jason Pierre-Paul, and DE Romeo Okwara) and 2 INT (CB Andrew Adams and DE Kerry Wynn (returned for 72 YD TD)). Noteworthy: WR Victor Cruz NYG (REC, 4 YD) played in his first NFL game since October of 2014, when he tore his patellar tendon. I’M SO EXCITED!!! If he can come close to his pre-injury production, the trio of him, Odell Beckham Jr, and Sterling Shepard should take the league by storm this season. Secondaries beware!
- Philadelphia Eagles 33 @ Indianapolis Colts 23– Noteworthy: RB Robert Turbin IND (4 CAR, 24 YD) was the top performer on the ground for the Colts. He outperformed fellow RBs Frank Gore (4 CAR, 6 YD) and Josh Ferguson (5 CAR, 4 YD). After fizzling out in both Seattle and Dallas, Turbin suddenly has a realistic shot at beating out an old Frank Gore and a struggling Josh Ferguson.
- Tennessee Titans 27 @ Oakland Raiders 14– Noteworthy: For the Titans, WR Andre Johnson (3 REC, 65 YD) is doing everything in his power to hang on in Tennessee. This will likely be his last gig, whether he decides to retire, or he is forced to retire. I was shocked when I heard that the Titans traded WR Dorial Green-Beckham to the Philadelphia Eagles. Kendall Wright is a lock for the WR1 position. Rishard Mathews (REC, 19 YD) and rookie Tajae Sharpe (REC, 60 YD) are fighting for the WR2 spot, with Sharpe likely leading the way due to his higher ceiling. That leaves Johnson and Justin Hunter (REC, 6 YD) fighting for the WR4 spot, and Johnson is winning. I suspect the loser will not make the Titans final, 53-man roster. For the Raiders, RB DeAndre Washington (8 CAR, 55 YD, 3 REC, -1 YD, TD) is quickly dethroning current starter, Latavius Murray, as expected. Despite Washington’s strong showing, I suspect that he will still share the backfield with Murray in a committee approach. In addition, I don’t think Washington will start at the beginning of the season, but he might earn the starting role during the season. For Both Teams, the offensive lines were monstrous. Each team allowed just one sack. It appears the additions of C Ben Jones TEN and G Kelechi Osemele OAK are panning out quite nicely. Especially for the Titans, who kept Oakland OLBs Khalil Mack and Bruce Irvin at bay.
- Los Angeles Rams 9 @ Denver Broncos 17– Noteworthy: For Los Angeles, I’m really concerned about their defense. Denver’s offense isn’t very good right now, yet the Rams defense had just 1 TO (INT from CB Cody Davis), and 0 SAC. For Denver, the QB struggles continued, but Trevor Siemian (10-17, 122 YD, TD, INT) played well enough for the Broncos to declare him the starter, today. Mark Sanchez didn’t play at all.
- San Diego Chargers 10 @ Minnesota Vikings 23– Noteworthy: For San Diego, the great news came away from the game, as the team FINALLY signed first-round, 3rd overall pick, DE Joey Bosa. Bosa has been very stubborn, and wouldn’t sign his new four-year deal until the Chargers agreed to give him the largest amount of up-front money they have ever given to a player in team history. That amount was a $17 million signing bonus. For Minnesota, their defense was sensational. They held San Diego to just 10 points, on the effort of 3 INT (CB Mackensie Alexander, S Jayron Kearse, and S Harrison Smith) and DE Justin Trattou (4 TAC, 2 SAC, FF).
- Arizona Cardinals 24 @ Houston Texans 34– Noteworthy: For Arizona, 3 WRs (Brittan Golden (6 REC, 80 YD), Chris Hubert (3 REC, 72 YD, TD), and Jaxon Shipley (3 REC, 21 YD, TD)) stepped up to fight for roster spots behind Larry Fitzgerald, Michael Floyd, and John Brown. With those three stepping up and the silence of Jaron Brown, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him cut. That also leaves the future of JJ “Fire” Nelson clouded. I could also see an angle where Arizona ships Michael Floyd out of town, though that is less likely, as he is their best ‘hands’ player. For Houston, their most improved position group appears to be one that they didn’t focus on during the offseason: their defensive secondary. The group had 2 INT (S Andre Hal and CB Terrance Mitchell), with the LB group adding in 2 more INT (LBs John Simon and Shakeel Rashad). For the record, offseason additions QB Brock Osweiler free agency (11-13, 146 YD, TD) and WR Will Fuller draft (3 REC, 67 YD, TD) are also playing well, while offseason addition RB Lamar Miller free agency (4 CAR, 4 YD, TD), is not.
- Cincinnati Bengals 21 @ Jacksonville Jaguars 26– Noteworthy: For Cincinnati, their defense was VERY quiet, allowing 26 points and only having one ‘splashy’ play (INT from LB Rey Maualuga). I fear that could be a result of the loss of S Reggie Nelson during the offseason, who provided great, veteran presence on the Bengals defense. For Jacksonville, RB TJ Yeldon (5 CAR, 34 YD) is aiming to keep his starting gig from last season, over free agent-acquisition RB Chris Ivory (4 CAR, 4 YD). I personally believe Yeldon deserves to start. He will likely get the third down opportunities, for sure, while Ivory is a lock to get goal-line carries. The toss-up occurs when trying to figure out who will get the 1st and 2nd down opportunities. Jacksonville will probably just ride the hot hand in each game throughout the season.
Instead of a daily quote today, I’d like to share this personal story that I wrote for my college orientation next week. This isn’t the original version, as it has been modified to exclude some personal information, but the moral of the story is the same:
That’s all for TheHaysWay today, make sure to leave a comment on the game analysis and/or on my shared personal story and/or on whatever is on your mind, along with a much-appreciated like. If you like what you read and you are not yet a follower, become a follower to make me feel like the winners that Tennessee and Oakland are for improving their o-lines. 🙂 Have a pleasant tomorrow.