This week was kind of crazy in general, and in the NFL, it was similarly so. There were some great performances across the board for the rookie class, and its going to be a great rest of the season watching them close out their initial campaign. With some of the teams sinking faster than the Titanic, its going to be interesting to see how the teams adjust to use the rookies to their advantage.
Mike Williams (SCU Rookie of the Week)
Tampa’s whole year has been a surprise, and Williams has been a huge part of the success. He has been their go to guy, and he managed another impressive 47 yard score yesterday to add to his rookie leading total. He is on his way to be the first rookie in a long time to have 1000 yards receiving, and if he makes it, could give Bradford a run for his money if the Bucs end up in the playoffs.
I am continually surprised by how great he is playing, especially considering how bad the Rams were last year. Bradford managed 191 and 2 scores again yesterday, this time against a terrible Panthers team. Regardless the rams are sitting at 4-4 and actually could make the playoffs if they can win a few games against teams they shouldn’t beat. Bradford has all but sewn up rookie of the year so far, and I expect that he will continue to play at a ridiculous level for a rookie.
So far, Orton has played great despite his team sucking. That doesn’t spell well for Tebow who is only getting looks in rushing situations. He did manage a 1 yard TD run, but I don’t think I would bank hundreds of dollars on one yard runs on the goal line, yet. As long as Orton performs at a high level, Tebow is going to be on the bench, and for collectors who are STILL going nutso over him, that is the opposite of what they want.
Hall managed 71 yards, a TD and two picks before being knocked out of the game, and I think its safe to say that his miracle run didn’t turn out as expected. The guy has still out performed many of the expectations he had walking into his first couple starts, but when you throw two quick picks and get replaced by Derek Anderson, its tough to shake something like that.
The Lions beat a semi-good Redskins team yesterday, and Best had an okay game. He hasn’t had the success of the first few games over the last month, and yesterday, fellow rookie Ndamukong Suh was definitely the headline grabber over him. Best ended with close to 80 total yards, but only managed 48 on the ground. His card values were shaping up to be a great pull whenever he was in your box, but the D-town curse looks to be catching up with him.
Wow. When I said Spiller would do absolutely nothing in Buffalo, I didn’t expect it to be as bad as it is. He is such a small part of the offense that he can barely be considered for a guy to buy cards of, regardless of potential. Buffalo is a black hole for offensive players, and it only shows further how much they needed to take a guy like Bulaga or one of the other linemen over a guy like Spiller. At this point, I would guess that Spiller feels the same way only getting 6 carries or less per game. He ended yesterday with 45 total yards, but Jackson is still the guy.
Its tough to fault Mathews for lack of Touchdowns when you see that the Chargers continually run Mike Tolbert out there like he is Adrian Peterson. Mathews did get a score yesterday in the win against Tennesee, but its easy to see that the run game isnt working as well as it used to in San Diego. Mathews had 55 total yards yesterday, and continues to have problems living up to the hype. He is a great guy and I collect him because of it, and hopefully my investment will pay off when the Chargers get their act together on the ground.
Ivory has filled in nicely in New Orleans considering he wasn’t drafted, and im sure that Sean Payton is loving it. He had a very rough game on Sunday night, but he gets a mention here because he has done well in the last few weeks. Ivory may not even get a Contenders auto, which shows how far down the charts he was to start the year, but thus is par for the course with the NFL.
The Albino Rhino has had some injury issues this year and hasn’t gotten many looks with Peterson TEARING it up, but he made some nice plays yesterday in the loss to the Pats. Gerhart will never be Chester Taylor, but he did catch five balls for 67 out of the backfield. Not bad. He was stopped six inches short of his first TD, and he was given some time on third down to pick up the pieces. Looks like he has a lot of potential to be a solid backup in years to come.
What a freak of an athlete he is, especially last week with 3 TDs in the game. This week he had 7 catches for 84 yards, a good performance, despite his team being the dogs of the year. Bryant is a player I would not sleep on, and if there is football next year, I have no doubt he will end up being that much better. Now, Bryant may have 3 TDs receiving with 2 special teams TDs, but he did struggle a lot to get the ball early in the season. That is what sets him back from guys like Mike Williams who has played well the whole time.
Thomas has been a ghost this year, other than one game, and its mostly due to him being banged up. He had 1 reception yesterday for 31 yards, but only has 3 receptions and 1 TD over the last 3 games. That isnt going to cut it when you were drafted to partially replace Brandon Marshall. I said before that Bryant would be a much better receiver, and I think that its still very early to determine who is was the better choice, but this year Bryant has done much better.
Much like Williams, LaFell hasn’t had much to celebrate in Carolina. David Gettis, another rookie has mostly taken the time away at the number 2, and with the QB troubles, nothing has gone right. LaFell caught his first TD yesterday, along with three other balls, and im sure there were a lot of happy people when he crossed the line into the endzone. The Panthers still lost, and their troubles look to be multiplying as long as their offensive line prevents their QB from getting time to throw. Moore had another 3 picks yesterday, and that never bodes well for his receivers.
Rookie of the Year Tracker
Come week 8, it becomes more about who will end up with the trophy come Week 17, and this year, the contest may be over before I can even talk about it.
1. Sam Bradford (QB, St Louis) – Not even contested at this point with 1674 yds, 11 TDs and 8 INTs.
2. Mike Williams (WR, Tampa Bay) – Great production out of a guy who was not a first rounder
3. Dez Bryant (WR, Dallas) – 5 Total TDs puts him in the lead for Rookie Receivers
4. Jahvid Best (RB, Detroit) – Still riding the first week’s production to this spot
5. Chris Ivory (RB, New Orleans) – Has averaged five yards per carry in a fill in situation.