For the most part, the third week of the preseason is always kind of boring. The starters get the most playing time, and the rookies and unknowns get pushed into the background. Still, there were a few things that I thought were noteworthy.
Who is the only player that made this list every week so far? Glenn Foster! The undrafted DT from Illinois had another sack this week, making that his 4th in three preseason games. He only played for a short time this week, but from what I've read this miniature J.J. Watt clone isn't only going to make the roster, but is being considered for real playing time. Currently, Foster leads all rookies in sacks during the preseason, and is in second place overall.
Who leads the league in rushing yards so far? Why it's the computer's favorite 2013 running back prospect, Christine Michael. With 11 carries for 97 yards (8.81 avg), 1 TD, and 1 Rec, 25 yards, Michael, had another productive weekend. Even if you removed his long run of 43 yards, he still would have been averaging 5.4 yards per carry. So far, he has totaled 186 rushing yards in just 2 games, with a 6.9 yard average. Much like a boy named Sue, I think his parents set him up to be a badass. Now I just have to prepare myself for a season where he will sit on the bench behind Marshawn Lynch, completely wasting his talent. Similarly, the talented Robert Turbin had 10 carries for 50 yards, and 4 rec, 22 yards.
Alshon Jeffery, one of the computer's favorite prospects from last year, had 77 yards on 7 receptions this weekend. His Stat Score was 0.443 (quite good), and his Athletic Score was 0.509 (again, quite good). While he got off to a relatively slow start as a rookie, his numbers suggest he should still develop into a rather solid wideout.
Michael Ford, undrafted running back for the Bears, had 58 yards on 9 carries, 1 TD, 2 rec. for 16 yards. He's actually a fairly interesting prospect, though I never mentioned him in the list of 2013 running backs, because I wasn't including undrafted players in that list. This 5'9", 210#, running back ran a 4.42 forty yard dash (110 Speed Score), with a 1.040 Kangaroo Score, and an Agility Score result of 0.449. So, he is fast, powerful, and pretty agile. Seems like a good guy to keep an eye on, though opportunities for him to demonstrate these abilities may be rare.
I've recently had my eye drawn towards Stephen Williams, who had 2 receptions for 58 yards, and 1 TD, this weekend. So far, I think he has been one of the real stars of the preseason. Frankly, I think the chances are slim that the Seahawks will give him a real opportunity, but his college stats and measurables do suggest he could be quite good if he is given a chance. Through three games, he leads the league in receiving yards with 186.
I'm really kind of suffering through this situation in Philadelphia. Nick Foles completed 10 of 11 passes (91% completion rate) for 112 yards, but is going to be stuck as the backup to the dog murderer as long as the team runs this option offense they are infatuated with. In three preseason games, he has completed 21 out of 25 passes for 208 yards (84% completion rate), yet people still cling to the idea that Vick will save the day (and not get injured along the way). The degree to which people seem determined to show no respect to Foles is perplexing to me. Hopefully, someone will decide to trade for him.
Do you know how frustrated I am by the Bills' decision to cut Da'Rick Rogers? I'm about as annoyed by that, as I am ecstatic about Ryan Spadola's recent ascent (nope, I'm lying. I'm still slightly more annoyed about Rogers getting cut). Currently, this undrafted wide receiver from Lehigh University is leading all rookies with 169 receiving yards.. Granted, he is playing with the stunningly talented Jets' quarterbacks, so he probably has an unfair advantage. This past weekend he had 3 receptions for 110 yards and 1 TD. Overall, I'm quite pleased with how things are going for the computer's highest rated 'Small' wide receiver. Now I'll just have to wait and see how many passes Stephen Hill needs to drop before Spadola will get a chance to play in the regular season. It will probably be a long wait.
While he's not a rookie, I also wanted to mention the Buccaneers recent acquisition of LB/DE Trevor Scott. This week he had 3 sacks and 1 forced fumble. For the most part, I think this was a very good pickup by the Buccaneers, and hope that Scott will continue to be given an opportunity to play. While he only has a 0.001 Kangaroo Score (suggesting extremely average explosive power), he has an Agility Score that is 1.216 standard deviations above average for players in his position group. This would put him in with the high agility pass rushers. In his first three years in the league this 6th round draft pick (169th overall) had 13.5 sacks while only starting 16 games, before suffering an ACL injury. Since then, he has mostly been a backup. I still think he would do better as a 3-4 OLB, where he would have more space to utilize his agility, but beggars can't be choosers.
It should also be mentioned that Louis Nzegwu was cut by the Panthers this week, despite producing 3 sacks in two games,and scoring rather well (+5.8 overall) with the game charters at Pro Football Focus. I'll say it again, Nzegwu is freakishly gifted. Now, people tend to say that about all sorts of players, but Nzegwu is on a whole other level. In terms of physical potential he is among the top 10 DEs and 3-4 OLBs to come out in the last 10 years. On the other hand, his college stat sheet is just average (though I blame some of this on his possibly playing the wrong position). If there was one team who could conceivably have the luxury of cutting a player like him, it would be the Panthers, who have two very good DEs already. I would be very excited if a team running a 3-4 defense acquired him (Hello Saints, need an OLB?).
In case anyone is wondering, the Chosen One didn't play much this week, though he still leads the league in tackles. Maybe he was feeling merciful.