Usually you may’t accuse this column of any form of East Coast bias. However the New York Giants modified that this week by turning into the middle of the fantasy universe. For higher and for worse.
We misplaced the consensus No. 1 draft decide, Saquon Barkley, to a excessive ankle sprain for an estimated Four-Eight weeks. However we gained “Danny Dimes,” because of the surprisingly explosive debut of rookie quarterback Daniel Jones — which must also increase the worth of tight finish Evan Engram and receivers Sterling Shepard and Golden Tate, in line with ESPN Giants reporter Jordan Raanan.
“Engram and Shepard, they’re like on Cloud 9 proper now,” mentioned Raanan, who mentioned it’s no coincidence that each of them had 100-yard video games in Jones’ debut — as a result of not solely does he throw the ball deep with accuracy, however he additionally retains performs alive together with his legs longer than earlier QB Eli Manning did.
Raanan had an amazing breakdown of how Jones’ mobility performed such an enormous function within the Giants’ 32-31 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, through which he threw for 336 yards and two touchdowns and ran for 28 yards and two extra TDs.
Raanan stopped in need of predicting Shepard will change into a top-20 fantasy receiver, as a result of he thinks Shepard and Tate may very well be considerably interchangeable when Tate returns from a suspension in Week 5.
Nonetheless, Raanan does imagine that Jones himself is usually a professional fantasy asset going ahead — particularly whenever you throw in these bonus factors he can present within the run recreation.
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“I imply, he’s finished it fairly persistently,” Raanan mentioned. “He accomplished 85% of his passes within the preseason. That’s actually good irrespective of who you’re taking part in in opposition to. And he’s not throwing dink and dunks — he’s prepared to throw it down the sector. That’s in all probability the factor he does finest. He averaged 9.Eight air yards per try.
“And he’s gonna put up numbers as a result of their protection shouldn’t be superb. So that they’re gonna have to attain factors.”
Raanan did supply some notes of warning, although. For one factor, fumbling has been an Achilles’ heel for Jones, with three of them within the preseason and three of them already in restricted regular-season motion. And, after all, the Giants offense will lose some efficiency whereas Barkley is sidelined, particularly once they face high defenses like New England and Minnesota in Weeks 5-6.
As for changing Barkley, Raanan mentioned he thinks third-year RB Wayne Gallman is “their man” and that he ought to see round 15 carries per recreation. He definitely received’t change the manufacturing degree of Barkley — and Raanan doesn’t suppose he’ll see almost as a lot work within the passing recreation, a few of which might go to fullback Elijhaa Penny. However Raanan mentioned he’s a bit greater on Gallman’s working capability that others appear to be and thinks he might have average success as a result of the chance might be there.
Now for the remainder of our weekly tour with ESPN’s NFL Nation reporters:
Baltimore Ravens: Lamar Jackson revealed that he “hates” working the ball, in line with Jamison Hensley. Thankfully for the Ravens and for his fantasy house owners, he’ll nonetheless do it when vital — and fairly successfully.
Carolina Panthers: Greg Olsen is re-establishing himself as one of many league’s high tight ends, wrote David Newton. That ought to stay the case whether or not Cam Newton returns at QB or the Panthers stick to final week’s breakout, Kyle Allen.
Denver Broncos: Second-year receiver Courtland Sutton appears “oh-so-close” to a breakout. And the Broncos want it, wrote Jeff Legwold.
Detroit Lions: Michael Rothstein wrote about why receiver Marvin Jones’ reemergence means good issues for Detroit’s offense.
Jacksonville Jaguars: DJ Chark is extra snug in his second season, which has allowed him to change into Gardner Minshew’s big-play receiver, wrote Michael DiRocco.
Sadly Chark’s former LSU teammate, Leonard Fournette, is considered one of many who’re disillusioned within the Jaguars’ run recreation to date.
Chris Berman and Tom Jackson recap the weekend’s video games with prolonged highlights and evaluation.
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Kansas Metropolis Chiefs: Rookie receiver Mecole Hardman has given Patrick Mahomes one other speedy toy, as Adam Teicher wrote.
Los Angeles Chargers: Melvin Gordon will virtually definitely be restricted if he winds up taking part in straight away this Sunday after ending his holdout this week.
However as Eric D. Williams wrote, as soon as Gordon will get again up to the mark, coach Anthony Lynn mentioned he’ll resume his function because the workforce’s beginning working again.
“He was our starter for a cause,” Lynn mentioned. “[Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson] will nonetheless have a serious function on this offense, however as quickly as Melvin’s prepared, he’ll return to being our No. 1 man.”
Additionally from Williams: Keenan Allen is turning into extra seen as one of many high receivers within the recreation.
Los Angeles Rams: So, wait, how did the Rams go to the Tremendous Bowl with out Cooper Kupp final yr? As a result of as Lindsey Thiry wrote, it’s clear that QB Jared Goff views the receiver as his safety blanket.
Additionally from Thiry: Rams coach Sean McVay instructed reporters that RB Todd Gurley shouldn’t be on any form of a load-management program.
Minnesota Vikings: Dalvin Prepare dinner is off to a roaring begin because the NFL’s main rusher, as Courtney Cronin detailed.
New England Patriots: The Patriots have been holding on throughout a roller-coaster season at extensive receiver, per Mike Reiss. Phillip Dorsett’s versatility has helped.
New Orleans Saints: Teddy Bridgewater proved the Saints can survive with out Drew Brees — because of a conservative strategy that relied virtually completely on Alvin Kamara and Michael Thomas. However the QB’s job received’t get any simpler in his second begin in opposition to a Dallas protection that shut these guys down final yr like no different protection has.
Seattle Seahawks: Working again Chris Carson has misplaced a fumble in every of his first three video games — however he has not misplaced the boldness of his head coach, wrote Brady Henderson.