2018 EYE IN THE SKY NFL SCOUTING REPORTS

Once again in 2018, we are bringing you in-season NFL Team Reports from our "Eye in the Sky" correspondents. These reports represent a local point of view which isn't readily available on the web. We remind everyone, the views expressed within these reports contain speculation as well as fact. It's just another extra bonus from FFMastermind.com to keep all fantasy football fanatics well informed.

 
 

MIAMI DOLPHINS

The report for this week has not yet been released.


PITTSBURGH STEELERS

The report for this week has not yet been released.


HOUSTON TEXANS

The report for this week has not yet been released.


INDIANAPOLIS COLTS
9/25/2018

Here are my thoughts and observations on the Colts’ frustrating 20-16 loss in Philadelphia to the Eagles on Sunday:

This game was a hybrid of the first two games in just about every way possible. Like week 1, the Colts had a chance for a game inning TD deep in the red zone in the closing minutes, only to come up short. Like week 1, the Colts defense was thoroughly unable to get off the field in crucial second-half drives – this week, surrendering a demoralizing 17-play, 11-minute drive that sealed the game for Philly; on that drive there were numerous defensive penalties including several on 3rd down to extend the otherwise-ending drive. Like week 1, the offense was reduced to dinking and dunking down the field all game (although they did not run enough plays to actually have any stellar fantasy stats). But like week 2, the Colts’ defense played surprisingly well and really shut down the opposing offense despite looking far overmatched on paper. They got two turnovers and gave the Colts’ offense a short field (which they unfortunately did not convert to TDs) and also got to the quarterback a lot, despite that passer being somewhat elusive again this week. Veteran DE Margus Hunt (3 TFL and a fumble recovery) and rookie LB Darius Leonard (13 tackles) continued their aggressive play and continued to exceed early season expectations of their production. SS Clayton Geathers added a solid 10 solo tackles as well for an impact performance worthy of IDP consideration going forward.

The only real fantasy star again this week was veteran PK Adam Vinatieri who banged through all three of his FG attempts to tie the all-time NFL record for most FGs. At this pace he could actually eclipse the NFL’s career scoring mark by the Colts’ week 9 bye! TE Eric Ebron had the chance to do some serious fantasy damage with a choice opponent and TE Jack Doyle out of the lineup, but he never could really quite connect with Andrew Luck despite getting 11 targets on the afternoon. Luck was not real good this week, but did not get a lot of help from his receivers getting free nor from his line giving him a great deal of time; nonetheless, when he did have time he was inaccurate and forced more than a few throws into coverage. Luck did have a really nice 33 yard scramble for the bulk of the Colts’ rushing yards on the day via his one big play. WR TY Hilton (like Ebron) has his streak of TD scoring games end and only had 5-50 despite 10 more targest, and sadly his biggest impact play was drawing a 33-yard pass interference penalty on an early drive. WR Ryan Grant did score his first TD as a Colt but was mostly invisible on the afternoon otherwise. And as expected, none of the running backs showed any real signs of life on the day and were fundamentally an afterthought in the game plan and for fantasy owners.

Coming into the game, the Colts led the NFL by a wide margin in 3rd down efficiency, but was very poor this week. Part of the reason is that for two games they were consistently in 3rd-and-under-five yards, but this week was a spate of 3rd-and-long situations. Their red zone efficiency was particularly upsetting to HC Frank Reich, who bemoaned the one TD in five red zone opportunities, and the atrocious 13 yards on 16 plays inside the Philly 20 yard line. On the plus side….the only significant injury suffered during the game was an ankle injury to RT Joe Haeg who did come back into the game briefly and I would guess will be okay by next Sunday’s home game against the Texans.

That is all for now from the Crossroads of America. I will be back later in the week to preview the important AFC South showdown with the 0-3 Texans from the LOS in Indy. Until then friends…..good luck in all your fantasy games and scouring the waiver wire as the bye weeks begin!

End.

Chris Rito


DENVER BRONCOS

The report for this week has not yet been released.


KANSAS CITY CHIEFS

The report for this week has not yet been released.


LOS ANGELES CHARGERS

The report for this week has not yet been released.


NEW YORK GIANTS

The report for this week has not yet been released.


DETROIT LIONS

The report for this week has not yet been released.


GREEN BAY PACKERS

The report for this week has not yet been released.


ARIZONA CARDINALS

The report for this week has not yet been released.


SEATTLE SEAHAWKS

The report for this week has not yet been released.


LOS ANGELES RAMS
9/25/2018

RAMS KEEP ROLLING! Los Angeles put on an impressive offensive showing gaining over 500 yards as they defeat the Chargers 35-23 to remain undefeated. It was a tough battle and the Rams defense lost CB Marcus Peters and CB Aqib Talib to lower leg injuries. It is a short week for Los Angeles as they host the Vikings on Thursday Night Football. Let’s review the numbers for Rams players against the Chargers and their potential against the Vikings.

QB: QB Jared Goff (29-36 for 354 yards with 3 touchdowns and 1 interception) had another stellar game and matched his yardage from week two. Jared’s biggest mistake was throwing a red-zone interception but he was clutch for most of the game. Jared is utilizing all of his weapons, making it difficult for the defense to stop this offense. After three games the Vikings are ranked 9th against the pass at 218 yards per game. They have allowed 3 passing touchdowns while recording 3 interceptions and 10 sacks. The Vikings were embarrassed by the Bills in a week two upset so they will be focused in this game. Hopefully the short week and being at home will give the Rams an advantage. If the good pass protection continues, Jared should continue his 300-yard game streak and pass for 2 or more touchdowns again. I am comfortable starting Jared as my QB1.

RB: RB Todd Gurley (23-105 with 1 touchdown rushing and 5-51 receiving) had another impressive game and should be the leading Fantasy running back in all formats. RB Malcom Brown (5-42 rushing) has done a good job spelling Todd and is the clear handcuff. The Vikings are ranked 14th against the rush at 105.3 yards per game. They allow an average of 3.6 yards per carry and have allowed 2 rushing touchdown in three games. The Rams will continue to feature Todd in both the running and passing game and he is averaging a little over 125 yards from scrimmage per game with 5 total touchdowns. You are playing Todd and getting RB1 numbers every week.

WR: WR Bradin Cooks (7-90) continues to put up good numbers even though he has yet to score a touchdown. WR Cooper Kupp (4-71 and 1 touchdown) mad a tremendous play on his touchdown catch and run. WR Robert Woods (10-104 and 2 touchdowns) was the star of this group and had a monster game. This offense is very diverse and any or all of the starting Rams receivers could put up big numbers. This group did even better than I predicted against the Chargers and I am confident playing any or all of the three as a WR2. I think Cooks scores his first touchdown this week.

TE: TE Tyler Higbee (2-38) and TE Gerald Everett (1-3) are slowly getting involved in the offense but not enough to warrant Fantasy value. Keep an eye on Higbee. He has been making some nice plays when given the opportunity.

K: PK Sam Ficken (0-1 field goals and 5-5 extra points) missed his only field goal attempt as the replacement for PK Greg Zuerlein. Sam missed his first attempt last year but was better after that so hopefully he improves again. This offense will provide many opportunities for Sam so he needs to perform to keep his job and have Fantasy relevance. If you had Greg, you could replace him with Sam; however, the productivity will not be the same, especially with the long distance field goals.


DEF: The scoreless streak not surprisingly came to an end for the defense as the Charger offense is very good. LB Ramik Wilson (6 solos and 3 assists) and LB Cory Littleton (5 solos, 5 assists, and a blocked punt) were the leading tacklers and Littleton’s blocked punt led to a special teams touchdown. DT Ndamukong Suh (2 solos, 1 assist, with 1 sack and 1 fumble recovery) recorded the only sack for the Rams and recovered one of the two forced fumbles. FS Lamarcus Joyner (2 solos, 2 assists, and 1 fumble recovery) recovered the other fumble. Unfortunately, CB Aqib Talib and CB Marcus Peters both suffered lower leg injuries. Talib has a high ankle sprain and will require surgery so he will be out a while. Peters is day to day with a calf injury. DL Aaron Donald (1 solo and 1 assist) has been playing at a high level even if the statistics don’t show it. With the starting cornerbacks out against the Vikings, the Rams will need everyone else to step up. This game would be a perfect time for the D-line and linebackers to dominate and controls the line of scrimmage while putting pressure one Kirk Cousins. Littleton has established himself as the most reliable IDP for the Rams, while as a team defense; this unit should be considered one of the top, especially if special teams play is included.

The Rams are 3-0 and can take a commanding lead in the division if they can beat the Vikings on Thursday. The team has been playing at a high level in all three phases but the defense must overcome the injuries to Talib and Peters. I will be in Los Angeles for the game and looking forward to a big Rams victory. I am 2-1 in my Keeper League and need a win this week also. Love and blessings to my family. Miss you Pops! Aloha!

End.

Layton Pang


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