Things I learned this weekend, Preseason week 1
The Jacksonville Jaguars should seriously think about starting Luke McCown over David Garrard at quarterback. McCown is known for having strong pre-season play but Garrard looked horrible only managing 35 yards passing. McCown was 11-15 244 yards and three touchdowns.
Did the Philadelphia Eagles pull off a coup by signing Martell Mallett? Mallett, 5’11″ 200 pounds, showed exceptional speed and accounted for nearly 80 yards with 18 touches and a touchdown. He looks very much at home in the Eagles offense. Mallett was the CFL’s Outstanding Rookie of the Year in 2009 while playing for the Montreal Alouettes.
I know many of you don’t take the time to watch all of the preseason games, that’s why I’m here for you. Those of you who didn’t watch late in the game between the Atlanta Falcons and Kansas City Chiefs, you missed some very good quarterback play from backup John Parker Wilson. Wilson, an undrafted rookie free agent out of Alabama, led the Falcons on a very impressive 20 play drive which ate up over 10 minutes on the clock. Wilson appeared calm and cool while leading the Falcons, someone to keep an eye on in years to come for sure.
The Patriots don’t need no stinking Wes Welker. Well, actually they do but replacement WR Julian Edelman sure has filled in nicely. Edelman caught everything thrown his way against the Saints, logging 6 receptions for 90 yards.
Atlanta Falcons RB Michael Turner certainly looked good in limited action. Turner has lost some weight and looked to be running especially hard getting 4 carries and racking up 29 total yards.
2nd year RB Ryan Torian from the Washington Redskins got the bulk of the workload for the ‘Skins in their 42-17 over the Buffalo Bills. Tired veterans Larry Johnson and Willie Parker saw no action but Torian looked sharp. He had 17 carries for 62 yards and caught one pass for 22 yards. Larry Johnson better worry about his job.
Did somebody bother to tell Houston Texans DE Mario Williams he was supposed to have a hip injury? Williams has been hobbled in training camp but you couldn’t tell it last night. In 12 plays, he recorded 3 tackles and 2 sacks. Could we be watching the single season sack record fall this season?
Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Josh Freeman end the night with a 158.3 passer rating? Before you go ruining your fantasy draft, Freeman was only 4-4 53 yards and a 13 yard touchdown on a quick slant at the goalline. Nothing to get that excited about, especially for a game played in miserable conditions.
What is it about Houston Texans running backs? Rookie Ben Tate who was poised to play a big role this season is now lost for the season with what is being reported as a broken ankle. Tate’s running style would have complemented the Texans offense perfectly.
There must be something in the water in the land of 10,000 lakes. Brett Favre resurrected his career last season and now Sage Rosenfels busts onto the scene last night with a 23-34 310 yard and 3 touchdown performance. Rosenfels, 32, will be dueling it out with Tarvaris Jackson for the starting nod in Minnesota if Brett Favre doesn’t return for his 20th season.
Welcome to the NFL Rook! 50 million dollar in guaranteed money rookie Sam Bradford was welcomed into the league last night. St. Louis was pummeled by the Vikings 28-7 and only managed to score on a 93 yard punt return for a touchdown. Bradford saw first hand just how bad the Rams are as he was sacked 4 times in limited action. Start buying the Ben-Gay by the case Sam, it’s going to be a long season.
My surprise team of the year, the Oakland Raiders, beat the Cowboys on Thursday night 17-9 but the offense looked anemic. The Raiders receivers lacked separation and when they did get separation, they dropped a lot of balls. This will be a work in progress as the season moves along I’m sure.
There are three games remaining and I’ll weigh in on those tomorrow, along with my review of what a Mr. Tim Tebow happens to do in Denver tonight.