Ben Roethlisberger, Robert Griffin III and two unsettled backfields are four things worth watching this week. ASL's Neal Dalal gives his insight on week 3 preseason fantasy news.
Steelers in trouble if Ben Roethlisberger gets hurt
Ben Roethlisberger has been known as a big, strong quarterback that is capable of playing through nagging injuries for the benefit of his team. Last season, a sprained MCL and bone bruise as well as a left mid-foot sprain forced the 2004 draft pick to start in a career low eleven games. Should history repeat itself in 2016, Pittsburgh may not be in good shape with their backup quarterback. Oklahoma’s Landry Jones threw four interceptions in just 20 pass attempts in the Steelers preseason bout against the Eagles. Although it may be an outlier, Jones looked rattled and not ready to lead a team to the playoffs in a moment’s notice. The Steel City probably hopes more now than ever that their prestigious Big Ben stands tall throughout the year. Should Jones have to play, Antonio Brown’s fantasy value takes a hit, while Le’Veon Bell’s stock could improve.
Wait, is Robert Griffin III actually viable?
Some questioned Hue Jackson’s judgement to name Robert Griffin III the starting quarterback when Josh McCown is a more consistent and known product, while the 2012 Rookie of the Year winner has been a mess since then. In the Brown’s Thursday preseason game against the Falcons, Griffin threw for two beautiful touchdowns. One was a deep ball to receiver Terrelle Pryor for a 50-yard score, while the second was a dime to tight end Gary Barnridge from 22-yards out. Both throws displayed terrific touch along the boundary and hope for continued growth from Griffin. The Baylor star also added 36 yards on three rushing attempts including a 22-yard scamper where he displayed a much improved sliding technique. Griffin could develop into a player you can start when the Browns are facing a nice matchup during the fantasy season.
The Dallas Cowboys have potent backups
The football news sirens went off in Big D when quarterback Kellen Moore went down in training camp with a potential season-ending ankle injury. The Cowboys tried to land then-free agent Nick Foles but were not attractive enough to the former Eagles and Rams quarterback. In reality, Dallas may be just fine in the hands of rookie Dak Prescott should Tony Romo miss time with injury. The Mississippi State product threw for two touchdowns for the second straight week, while adding another two on the ground. Complementing Prescott was Alfred Morris who is in the lead dog role with Ezekiel Elliott and Darren McFadden sidelined with injuries. The former Redskins sixth round pick looks revitalized behind the Dallas offensive line as he ripped apart the Miami defense to the tune of 85 yards on 6.5 yards a pop and a score. Should something happen to Romo or Elliott, Prescott and Morris are in play for spot fantasy football starts.
Little clarification in the Ravens crowded backfield
In Baltimore’s preseason loss to the Colts on Saturday, none of the Ravens running backs stood out from the pack. In fact, it was backup quarterback Josh Johnson that led the team in rushing with just 40 yards. Terrance West, who was impressive during training camp, got a team-high nine carries, which he turned into 33 yards. Kenneth Dixon gained 22 yards on 3.1 yards a carry, while likely starter Justin Forsett struggled at 11 yards on five rushes. To make things even more jam-packed, Javorius Allen took four carries for 14 yards. Seeing who receives the majority of first team carries in next week’s regular season dress rehearsal will be the best information. However, with Baltimore carrying as many as four running backs on their roster, none may be worth drafting high if the team goes running back by committee.