The preseason is incredibly critical in dynasty leagues. After all, this is the first glimpse most of us have in regards to seeing our prized current or future rookie draft picks. It’s also the first chance we have to view many veteran players battle it out for certain positions or even a valuable roster spot in fantasy or reality.
The third week is always the most critical in the preseason. After all, this is where we get to see the “dress rehearsal” from just about every team. In addition, all the speculation about some of the rookies and younger players actually getting meaningful playing time in the regular season comes to light a little more as we see if they’re mixed in with the starters this week. We’ll break this out into several parts this week so you can stay up-to-date with all the latest happenings. We started with the two games last night, so make sure you check out the Dynasty Fantasy Football Preseason Notebook: Week Three, Part One.
Patriots 30, Lions 28
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The Patriots looked to be in mid-season form already as they jumped out to a 24-0 lead after the first quarter that included two Chris Hogan touchdown receptions and a scoring run by Mike Gillislee. Unfortunately, the big news from this game is all about Julian Edelman, who caught three quick passes for 52 yards but endured a non-contact knee injury as he was trying to add some extra yards after his third catch. Edelman limped to the sideline and looked to be favoring his right knee. He then went into the injury tent and was subsequently carted into the locker room. Reports are surfacing now that indicate the Patriots suspect Edelman has indeed torn his right ACL. If he was to miss significant time (he’s certainly out for the year if the suspicions of New England are indeed proven to be correct), players like Hogan, Malcolm Mitchell and Danny Amendola would all get an uptick in short-term value. Brandin Cooks could also be a beneficiary of some slot work and that could even increase his already lofty value. Edelman will also be in a tough spot – he’s under contract for the next two years but could be coming off a torn ACL at age 32 at this time next year, which would most certainly cloud his future. Elsewhere, Tom Brady completed 12-of-15 passes for 174 yards, with two touchdowns and one interception. Gillislee also looked to be the running back of choice (though Dion Lewis actually started and played the first series) but assuming that’s how it’s going to play out each game is playing with fire. All in all, the Patriots look like a team who truly needed nothing to do with the preseason and have little to show for it outside of possibly losing one of their best weapons in Edelman.
For the Lions, Matt Stafford completed 15-of-22 passes for 190 yards with two touchdowns and one interception of his own. With all the Kenny Golladay hype, folks are likely undervaluing Golden Tate (five catches for 62 yards) and Marvin Jones (four catches for 62 yards and a score) a little – those two are clearly the two top dogs in the pecking order for the Lions. Ameer Abdullah had a nice game as he posted 60 yards on 13 carries and also added 39 yards on three catches. If Abdullah can stay healthy, he’s likely a bargain in dynasty leagues at the moment. However, that’s a big “if.” If I owned Abdullah, I’d be sure I also owned Dwayne Washington (41 yards and two touchdowns on nine touches), who continues to show improvement.
Seahawks 26, Chiefs 13
This game is also going to be remembered for a significant injury as Spencer Ware injured his right knee and had to be carted off the field. Again, we can’t report the exact severity of the injury but this one also didn’t look very good. Kareem Hunt’s rookie ADP has been creeping up from the late first round to the middle of the first round of rookie drafts over the past month or so and this is just going to set that in stone. It looks like Hunt is going to be in line to take this job and make it his own for the long-term. The last time a #27 for the Chiefs took over the reigns at that position, we had a few magical fantasy seasons. I’m not saying Hunt is the next Larry Johnson, but this could be a very big development in dynasty leagues tonight. After taking over for Ware, Hunt posted 39 yards on nine carries, showing a tremendous amount of power. If Ware is out for an extended amount of time, Charcandrick West and even CJ Spiller are also going to get a minor uptick in short-term value. In other Chiefs news, Alex Smith had his worst start of the preseason by far as he failed to move the offense at all while completing just 7-of-17 passes for 44 yards. Tyreek Hill also had a disappointing night as he caught just one pass for 11 yards and simply dropped three more. Patrick Mahomes had an up and down night as well, completing 8-of-15 passes for 70 yards. He’s certainly elusive and has great arm talent but he didn’t really do anything that would make the Chiefs re-assess their stance on Smith being the starter and having a pretty long leash to start the year. If you want another long-term deep sleeper, Jehu Chesson certainly looks the part. He’s buried on the depth chart and may end up on the practice squad, there’s something about him that’s intriguing.
The Seahawks looked pretty sharp as Russell Wilson completed 13-of-19 passes for 200 yards and had one touchdown pass. Eyes were again on the running backs as both Thomas Rawls and CJ Prosise sat out due to injuries. Eddie Lacy got the start and looked the best he had all preseason with 21 tough yards on four carries, though that really isn’t saying much as he’d really struggled so far this preseason. Chris Carson rotated in on the second play and promptly caught a 37-yard pass. On the night, Carson posted 46 yards on eight carries and added 44 yards on two catches. He’s been the surprise of the preseason thus far and belongs on dynasty rosters even though the Seattle running back rotation is going to be a fantasy nightmare all season. Kasen Williams was quiet tonight with just one catch for four yards. Other than that, there really weren’t too many developments on the Seattle side, outside of the fact they may not have a backup quarterback. Trevone Boykin was awful as he completed a total one pass…to the Chiefs.
There were only two games tonight but their impact is likely going to felt all season long with the injuries to Edelman and Ware. We’ll be back tomorrow to run down a monster set of preseason games.
Ken is on Twitter at DLF_KenK
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