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.

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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
11/20/2018

DE J.J. Watt, DE Jadeveon Clowney, S Tyrann Mathieu, S Justin Reed and S / CB Kareem Jackson were the catalyst of their last win. The Texans D isn’t a juggernaut but they’re playing some good ball now. They simply would not let the Skins get close enough to kick a game winning FG at the end of the game. The Texans prepare this week for a wounded Titans team on MNF.
With the bye behind him QB Deshaun Watson needed all the rest he got because he was constantly running for his life. His numbers against the Skins showed a turndown of his performance; two interceptions and three sacks.

The OL ran blocked better than they protected the passer. The Texans were able to rush for an average of 4.7 yards per carry. On a day when the O was struggling as a whole the runners did pretty well. Eat up the clock and pass just enough to win by two points. Again.

Watch RB Lamar Miller and RB Alfred Blue try to run on the Titans this week. Neither is a good week to week fantasy back. Miller will score at times but this QB looks for his receivers around the goal line.
WR Keke Coutee looked good in the slot with five receptions. He has fully recovered from a hamstring injury. WR Demaryius Thomas is trying to find his way. WR DeAndre Hopkins continues to catch passes and score TDs even if CB Josh Norman is shadowing him. Last week it was rookie TE Jordan Akins turn to make a 28 yard reception. Their rookie TEs are showing that they are natural receivers that are now learning to block.

The ST for the first time ever is playing solid ball. KR DeAndre Carter did not have a chance to show what he could do last week. Maybe this week.

The Texans have a chance to ruin the Titans Division chances this week on MNF. Look for another close game. The only dependable fantasy starter is Hopkins.

End.

David Trojanowsky


INDIANAPOLIS COLTS
11/20/2018

Here are my thoughts on the Colts’ fourth straight win, a surprisingly easy 38-10 win over the Titans on Sunday:

This game was as unbelievably dominant as it was satisfying. It was the Colts’ toughest test in their current streak, facing a familiar foe that was equally hot, and whose strength was in areas that could particularly cause issues for Indianapolis. However, the Colts kept rolling in the same ways that they have throughout this streak and really made it look easy. And – dare I say the word? – the Colts have actually pulled into a tie for the last AFC playoff spot with a win over one of the teams they are tied with (TEN). They have lost to the Bengals, but that is a team on a downward trend since a hot start; the Ravens are playing with a backup quarterback and backfield, and they get the Dolphins next week here at home. With the changes and perceived holes on this roster and the 1-4 start to the season, this is a miraculous turnaround.
QB Andrew Luck continued his white-hot fantasy play with just a tick under 300 yards on 23-29 passing, and yet another game with 3 TD passes. This is his 7th such game, with only Peyton and Brady ahead of him on that list. His high completion percentage shows how locked in he is, and it also is due to the fact that he remained unsacked for the 5th straight game, an unbelievable streak for such a young O-line. Heck, he almost caught a TD pass on the Indy version of Frank Reich’s “Philly Special” play, except that TE Eric Ebron led him a little too much (in the post game, Ebron claimed that Luck has “lost a step” since his Stanford days. LOL).

The running game was effective at times today, but not used a lot. RB Jordan Wilkins had another 1-carry, one long TD day…and RB Marlon Mack was solid but unspectacular with his 16-61-1 stat line. Of course, the day belonged to the receivers, and not just because Reggie Wayne was added to the Ring of Honor at halftime! WR TY Hilton had a monster game as he turned 9 targets into 9-155-2, including a huge bomb for 68 yards to break the game open. If you were listening here in the preview, you saw this big game coming as well as WR Dontrelle Inman also finding paydirt for the first time as a Colt, finishing with the 2nd most targets and catches. TE Jack Doyle also caught all of his targets, although it was only 4-43. The big surprise is that Ebron only touched the ball once all day on his failed passing attempt and did not get a single target. The reason for this is that the Titans put a nickel corner on him as a shadow all game and then doubled him over the top with safety help to take him out. Of course, this left T.Y. in single coverage a lot and he and Luck made them pay for that.

The defense also showed up, amassing 5 first half sacks and a pair of interceptions as well as shutting down the Tennessee offense. The special teams unit and WR Chester Rogers even returned a punt for a TD that was wiped out by a penalty behind the play, unfortunately, or else this might have been the top scoring fantasy defense for the weekend. Great effort by the defense today which had been called out in the media for failing to continue their torrid early season pace. They also knocked Marcus Mariota from the game right before halftime, squelching the Titans’ chances at a comeback. They gave away the long FG before the half due to a questionable 15-yard penalty or else they would have pitched a shutout for the first 30; indeed, the only TD they allowed was a garbage time score with the score 38-3 in the last few minutes of the 4th quarter. They were actually quite dominant today.

There were some injuries during the game today, and the potentially most damaging one would be OC Ryan Kelly who left the game with a knee injury and did not return; he will be examined on Monday to determine the severity of the injury. Starting DE Margus Hunt also left the game early with a knee injury and did not return.

That is all for now from the Crossroads of America for now. I will be back in a few days to give an early preview of the Colts gave against the Dolphins so you can have some insight for setting your lineup before the Thursday slate of games. Until then friends…..stay strong and GO COLTS!!!

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
11/20/2018

Bears at Lions

QB: It was pretty clear early against the Panthers on Sunday that the Lions weren’t going to let QB Matthew Stafford continue to get sacked like he had been 16 times in the previous two games. There was a strong emphasis on short quick throws. I think at one point Stafford was 12 of 13 for 51 yards. I mean, I get it, but that kind of football puts me to sleep. They will likely use a similar approach against Khalil Mack and the Bears on Thursday but my turkey coma usually doesn’t hit until the Cowboys game so I think I will get through it. Stafford ended up 23 of 37 for 220 yards and 1 TD pass, with no turnovers. With a thinned out group of receivers, there were some miscommunications that helped limit Stafford’s numbers. With virtually no practice time, expect a few more examples of players not being on the same page. It’s hard to see how the Lions will generate much offense on Thursday and Stafford will likely put up pedestrian numbers at best.

RB: Every week, RB Kerryon Johnson looks more and more like a stud running back. He was having a heck of a day on Sunday but left early with a knee injury. With the quick turnaround it will be likely he misses the game on Thursday, as it sounds like he was fortunate to avoid a more serious injury that could have required surgery. He had 87 yards and a TD on 15 carries, and added 2 for 10 in the air. On the other hand, RB LeGarrette Blount continues to show he has nothing left. I pointed out last week that he was last in the NFL in yards per carry by a wide margin. He had 7 carries for 1 yard on Sunday (not a typo) so that yards per carry is getting uglier. It’s down to 2.3. I have no idea how the Lions will generate an effective running game without Kerryon. RB Theo Riddick figures to catch some passes, but why not give RB Zach Zenner some carries? If you are making a Thursday only lineup in daily fantasy, maybe give Zenner a shot if he is priced at the minimum.

WR/TE: As expected, WR Marvin Jones (knee) missed Sunday’s game and it doesn’t sound like his return is imminent. WR Kenny Golladay is the last man standing of the trio that was so effective for the Lions early in the year. He had 14 targets and caught 8 for 113 as Stafford gave him chances to make some contested catches and Golladay rewarded that confidence. WR Bruce Ellington emerged on Sunday as a somewhat reliable option, with 6 catches for 52 yards. He is no Golden Tate, but he appears to be the short term answer in the slot. He should have some value in very deep leagues.

K/DST: It was a solid 2 and 2 day for PK Matt Prater. One of his field goals was a 54 yarder. No reason not to roll with him on Thursday. It’s been opposing kickers that have had issues against the Lions, including Graham Gano on Sunday. Prater has been fine. The Lions defense gave up a TD on the opening drive, then actually did a nice job until the 4th quarter. They have seen some much better results in run defense in the last few weeks. The recent game in Chicago got ugly quickly though as the Bears scored TDs on their first four possessions. There is a weird vibe with this game though, as many are talking about the Bears having a very short turnaround from playing Sunday night to playing Thursday afternoon. Throw in some uncertainty over Mitchell Trubisky along with Detroit possibly playing up in their traditional turkey day game, and who knows?

Happy Thanksgiving and good luck to everyone with their fantasy teams this week.

End.

James Hintz


GREEN BAY PACKERS
11/20/2018

Another week, another close loss on the road for the Packers. The Packers have a chance, but they need to beat the Vikings on the road to keep it alive. Meanwhile, fantasy football wise, the choices for Packer fantasy participant’s narrows.

Week 11 Review: As good as the Packers played against the Dolphins they played that bad against the Seahawks. Green Bay lost 24-27. It is a good thing that fantasy football is not based on team’s win-loss records. The Packers fell a couple spots and are now ranked 8th in the NFL in terms of yards overall. QB Aaron Rodgers completed 70.0% of his passes for 332 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 0 interceptions – with a 128.8 passer rating. Rodgers now projects to 4917 yards, 30 touchdowns, 2 interceptions, 232 rushing yards, a 61.8 completion percentage, and a passer rating of 104.0. Unlike last week the Packers ran 41 total plays. 30 of them were pass plays with 21 completions. This week RB Aaron Jones was more mortal. He had 11 carries but for only 40 yards and 1 touchdown. He also contributed 63 yards on 5 receptions for 1 touchdown. He totaled 104 yards overall. But Jones is still number one in the league in yards per attempt with 6.36 among players with at least 50 attempts. He also ranks third in the percentage of rushes over 10 yards with 21.4. Jones is on track to finish the season with 994 rushing yards, 262 receiving yards, and 11 total touchdowns. RB Jamaal Williams had 5 yards on 1 carry.

On the wide receiver front, WR Devante Adams had 10 receptions on 12 targets for 166 yards but no touchdowns. He is on track to finish the season with 115 receptions for 1525 yards and 14 touchdowns. Last week WR Marquez Valdes-Scantling and WR E. St. Brown made some rookie mistakes. Each had 1 reception but no touchdowns. St. Brown collected a penalty by extending his arms on a crack back block that negated a 18 yard run for Aaron Jones. St. Brown did not need to make contact on the block. For Rodgers, the problems with the rookie receivers come in the more difficult 3rd down situations or the red zone situations. In a couple of years those two will be making more of an impact on a consistent basis if Packer WR development history under McCarthy is any guide. TE Jimmy Graham has a injured thumb. If he plays it will be with a splint. The injury happened early in the game right after a 13 yard reception on the first Packer procession. For now he projects to 54 receptions, 7230 yards, and 3 touchdowns. The Packer defense did ok but had a bad 2nd quarter. This week the Packers held Seattle to 3 touchdowns and 1 field goal (27 points). They also produced 3 sacks, 7 tackles for loss, 5 quarterback hits, 1 interception, 2 passes defended, 2 forced fumbles, and recovered 1 fumble. This week K Mason Crosby made all 3 of his extra points and a 36 yard field goal. However, he missed a 47 yard try in the first half.

Week 12 Preview: This week the Packers play the Minnesota Vikings in Minnesota on Sunday night football. Another game on the road - the Packers have yet to win one. The Vikings have a 3-2 record at home – so it is possible to beat them there. But for the Packers it is just not likely. The Packers might have beaten the Vikings in GB in the first meeting this year if the refs had not called roughing the passer on LB Clay Matthews on what would be now a totally legal sack. That penalty negated an interception when the Packers had the lead. And that was in Green Bay.

Minnesota has the NFLs 14th ranked offense. Defensively the key for Green Bay is to get pressure on Cousins while making sure the 2 Vikings wide outs are covered. That would mean CB Kevin King would need to play for the Packers to have the best chance. But that hasn’t been determined yet. Also, it will be interesting to see how the Packer safeties adjust. Offensively the Packer will have to overcome the 5th ranked Viking defense. Arguably the best the Packers have to offer offensively is their passing game which plays to the Viking strength. For this game I would recommend starting; QB Aaron Rodgers, WR Davante Adams, RB Aaron Jones, and PK Mason Crosby.

Good luck this week!

End.

Michael Hankes


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

The report for this week has not yet been released.


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