2013 Fantasy Football Notes: Cleveland Browns-Indianapolis Colts Preseason Game
The Cleveland Browns left Fantasy Football GMs with more questions than answers Saturday night. Is the Indianapolis Colts defense really that good, or is this a more realistic reflection of the Browns offense? Was it an off night for Brandon Weeden or were his previous two games more a fluke and less indicative of the second year quarterback’s skill sets? Do the real Browns fall somewhere in between Saturday’s effort and their previous two?
Regardless, those individuals confident of taking the likes of Josh Gordon, Jordan Cameron and maybe even to a degree Trent Richardson have to be second guessing themselves this morning.
Will the real Cleveland team please stand up?
Weeden finished the night 12 of 25 for 105 yards and no scores. Cameron caught two balls for seven yards and Gordon caught two balls for 24 yards, these stats on a night when the starters played in to the third quarter.
The Browns would need three quarters and then some to get on the board Saturday night. After a 48-yard drive in which the Cleveland offense was playing mostly Colts second string defense the Browns would get three points off a 50-yard Shayne Graham field goal.
Does Saturday night’s effort lead you to cross Browns’ offensive weapons from your league draft lists? No, it shouldn’t as you are drafting all Browns’ weapons late in league drafts – with the exception of Richardson – but it will serve as a reminder to GMs expecting instant stats of grandeur that the Browns are a young offense still trying to find their proverbial wings.
The Colts and second year quarterback Andrew Luck had zero problems moving the rock Saturday night versus the Browns defense. Luck was – surprise, surprise – solid again for Indianapolis finishing the night 16 of 25 for 164 yards and two scores in two quarters of work. To my benefit and those like me, this stat line will once again not gain Luck any fantasy love and you will still have an opportunity to grab him in the fifth or sixth round of your league drafts.
The intriguing story line surrounding the Colts offense to date is the battle between Darrius Heyward-Bey and T.Y. Hilton for the second wide receiver slot opposite All-Pro receiver Reggie Wayne. Heyward-Bey finished the night with three grabs for 33 yards making his combined preseason production seven receptions for 75 yards.
Hilton would only grab two balls for 17 combined yards however he once again found the end zone. In three preseason games, Hilton has three Indianapolis touchdowns, which has to lead us to believe he is becoming somewhat a red zone preference of Luck. Hilton’s preseason combined stat line is seven receptions for 114 yards and three scores.