Dynasty League Football


The Talented Mr. Ridley

Thursday night finally brought us some football. It’s time for dynasty owners across the globe to rejoice as you finally get to see more game action to evaluate your rosters. Stevan Ridley of the Patriots was the star of the night, but there were many other storylines as well.  We’ll take it game by game and highlight the performances that stood out the most from night one of NFL action.

Patriots 47, Jaguars 12

Leave it to the Pats to be the first team to run up a score in preseason action as they whipped up on the Jags. A few performances like this and Jacksonville fans will be happy to see them go to Los Angeles.

For the Patriots, Stevan Ridley showed his practice hype was no joke as he finished with 64 yards on 16 carries and another 47 yards on seven receptions. Oh, and he also scored THREE times. In fact, he could have had four touchdowns if he wasn’t stopped at the two yard line after a sixteen yard gain and was replaced for the next play.  Ridley showed surprising elusiveness and proved he’s more than just a power back.  This was a great start, but remember, there were very few starters in the game.

Ridley wasn’t the only star for the Pats, though. Taylor Price had five catches for 105 yards and a score. Both backup quarterbacks looked sharp. Brian Hoyer and Ryan Mallett combined for 335 passing yards, two touchdowns and zero interception.

For the Jaguars, all the talk is going to revolve around Blaine Gabbert. He finished 9-for-16 for 85 yards with no touchdowns and no interceptions. He didn’t look comfortable, but didn’t look overwhelmed, either. His grade for the night was likely a “B,” but you can see he does have the ability to command an offense.

Eagles 13, Ravens 6

For the Eagles, Michael Vick completed 4-of-6 passes for 74 yards and a touchdown. He’s still pretty good. Ronnie Brown did most of the heavy lifting at running back and finished with 22 yards on 9 carries.

As far as the Ravens go, the one thing that was very evident is the tight end battle to replace Todd Heap is far from over. Dennis Pitta finished with four catches for 47 yards while playing with the first team offense.

Seahawks 24, Chargers 17

The big news from the Chargers side has everything to do with Mike Tolbert and Ryan Mathews. They both suited up and played, but it’s obvious to anyone who watched this game that this is going to be a time share situation. In fact, Tolbert looks like running back 1A right now. Yikes.

As far as Seattle goes, Tarvaris Jackson looked awful. He only played a short while, but did nothing to make Seattle fans forget that Andrew Luck will be available in the draft. Charlie Whitehurst completed 14-of-20 passes for 115 yards and actually looked like the much better quarterback. To make matters worse, it looks like Russell Okung has a high ankle sprain again.

Oh boy.

Cowboys 24, Broncos 23

For Dallas, the star of the night was sixth round rookie Dwayne Harris who had five catches for 127 yards and two scores. He’s worth keeping an eye on in subsequent weeks.  Stephen McGee also threw three touchdown passes.

For the Broncos, they have to feel good about their running attack as Knowshon Moreno and Willis McGahee combined for 40 yards rushing on the first series. Both looked rejuvenated after disappointing seasons.

Tim Tebow actually played fairly well and finished with 91 passing yards on 8-for-9 passing. He also had an impressive rushing touchdown called back by a penalty. Keep in mind there was an interception called back because of a penalty as well. While Tebow did nothing to close the gap to Kyle Orton, he still showed his trademark athletic ability and seemingly played much better in the game than in any practice thus far.

Cardinals 24, Raiders 18

Kevin Kolb made his Cardinals debut and finished 4-for-7 for 68 yards. One thing is certain – he’s going to force feed the ball to Larry Fitzgerald. Beanie Wells finished with 22 yards on six carries, but got stuffed on the straight goal line chances. Andre Roberts didn’t exactly sew up the second receiver job as he caught just one pass for nine yards, then fumbled it away. Ryan Williams made his debut and had a nice night with a combined 44 yards on five touches.

Two of our suggested players to watch played in this game as well. Denarius Moore led the Raiders with three catches for 37 yards in limited action. DeMarco Sampson of the Cardinals had 47 yards on two catches.

Before we put a cap on night one, there are a few wide receiver news and notes items to get out of the way.

  • Jerricho Cotchery has signed on with Pittsburgh.  While it may seem significant, it really isn’t. The only thing Cotchery may do in Pittsburgh is stunt the growth of Antonio Brown. He’s no threat to Mike Wallace, Emmanuel Sanders or even Hines Ward.
  • Lee Evans is rumored to be on the move. It looks like he could be sent away in the next 48 hours. Teams like the Ravens, Cardinals, Titans and Browns are said to be interested. So, that means he should be traded to Philly by around noon tomorrow.
  • David Gettis has torn his ACL and is out for the season. Tough break for a kid who likely could have nailed down a starting gig. That’s going to open the door for either Legedu Naanee or Brandon LaFell to start for a team who may never actually throw them the ball. Gettis can be dropped in pretty much every league.
So, what did YOU take out of Thursday night’s action?
Ken Kelly
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A Bietz
11 years ago

Keep us informed on whats happening in Ridleys and Vereens fantasy value. All the pre seasom hype has been Vereen but how do they compare now?

Reply to  A Bietz
11 years ago

No change after last night. Things need to be kept in perspective. The first preseason game means very little. Players can move down the ladder more than up this early.

That being said, Vereen is still the rookie back to own for the Pats, but it’s clear this is going to be a mess of a committee.

The next two games will be big for each of them to carve out a significant role.

Reply to  DLF_KenK
11 years ago

I have always preferred Ridley to Vereen. I see Ridley as more of a BJGE type back and Vereen as a Kevin Faulk type back. For long term I think Ridley is the best bet IMO

11 years ago

I watched the Pats/Jags game. Ridley looked very average I thought. He showed some nice versatility but to me appears to be a typical NE swiss army knife player. Also…He didn’t get in the endzone for his first TD IMO.

11 years ago

Taylor Price worth a stash in a deep keeper league?

Reply to  Ken
11 years ago

A deep dynasty league, yes. A deep keeper league, maybe. He’s still pretty far down the depth chart.

11 years ago

Like most, I watched the ESPN game (SDC/SEA). I’m very concerned that Mathews is going to have limited value in 2011. Serves as a good reminder about how talent overcomes situation (or vice versa). Mathews went so high last year because of the situation but now Tolbert has pulled even because Mathews just isn’t all that. Daniel Thomas fans should take heed.

Y. O. P. P.
11 years ago

I think ridleys performance is more an indictment on how shallow the talent pool is on jacksonville defense than anything else. The sheep will flock on the bandwagon after a few preseason plays. Do not be fooled just pick up the players previously deemed rosterable that did not play because they are already higher on the depth chart and had the night off those are guys the sheep drop to reach for these preseason flashes in the pan.

That is smart managing

Reply to  Y. O. P. P.
11 years ago

I would echo those sentiments and even take it one step further. For the first two weeks of the preseason, you’re likely looking for more red flags than anything else.

Had Ridley NOT looked good last night with that many touches against Jacksonville backups, it would have been concerning. The fact he did just reinforces his status as a decent rookie pickup.

11 years ago

Though I know it was just the first preseason game and we can’t suddenly fall in love with a player just based on that. But, when I look at the RB situation in New England, I see a RB rotation that is not set yet. We all knew that the Pats needed to upgrade their running backs. So, Vereen going in the 2nd immediately made him a very interesting rookie to pick up.

But, let me ask this.

Hypothetically, if the Pats had picked some defensive player in the 2nd round instead of Vereen and the first RB they selected was Ridley, how much higher would he be in our rankings? Would he be a late 1st round pick like Vereen is now? Very possibly.

Now, I like Vereen quite a bit still. But, because of the uncertainty of the RB situation in New England, I wouldn’t just pass this game off as an anomaly. I wouldn’t rush out and trade a 1st round pick for him. But, if I had room, I’d certainly look at trading a 2nd right now for him. He’s definitely worth a roster spot right now.

11 years ago

why no talk about portis the qb for sea, i was more impressed with his play then anyother person out of the 1st preseason games

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