Hello again, internet! I’ve been gone for about a week. Did I miss anything? Everybody good? Good! Anybody in need of a midweek diversion? Then let’s get right to this week’s edition of "That’s Some Next Level," and see how our former Baylor Bears are holding up in the NFL.
Robert Griffin III (WAS)
(2/5 for 8 yds, 0 TD, 0 INT). And you thought you had a rough week…
Griffin left the Redskins preseason affair with the Lions with 3:45 remaining in the second quarter, after suffering a concussion (and a shoulder stinger). During the four series RG3 played, the Skins dialed up 9 pass plays. 3 resulted in sacks. Two of those sacks resulted in fumbles, including the last one, where he was injured. 3 other pass plays resulted in huge hits on Griffin. Here’s a quick sample of how his night went.
There’s a great breakdown of all six hits by Mark Bullock at the Washington Post here. Griffin returned to practice on Monday, so he’s presumably cleared to play.
I’m not saying Gruden is trying to get Griffin killed. But I’m not saying he’s not, either. The Skins O line looks atrocious. At best, it could be a long year for Griffin. At worst, a short one. Next Game: @BAL Sat., 8/29 6:30PM CT
Bryce Petty (NYJ)
(12/19 for 168 yds, 1 TD no 0 INT). But a week can make a big difference! Petty played from midway in the 2nd quarter through midway through the 4th and put together a couple of very nice drives, including an 8 play, 57 yd drive that resulted in a TD. The Jets signed veteran Matt Flynn this week. That’s no threat to Petty’s roster spot. It’s probably more of an indication that Geno Smith’s recovery is going to be at the 10 week end of the 8-10 week estimate. Next Game: @NYG, Sat., 8/29 6:00P CT
Lache Seastrunk (DAL)
Lache’s time as a Dallas Cowboy is over. He was waived last Thursday. If you read last week’s TSNL (or just about any other coverage), the only surprise is that he lasted this long. Reports indicated the coaching staff was "frustrated" and "infuriated" with his in ability or unwillingness to do what was asked of him.
Let’s hope he gets one more chance somewhere, but that’s not how these things usually work out, especially when, as ESPN’s Adam Caplan noted:
Seastrunk now has been cut by 4 teams in 15 months.— Adam Caplan (@caplannfl) August 20, 2015
As an aside, might this speak volumes about TGCAB/Monty/Kendall? Seems like they were the only coaches who could manage him and help him meet his potential.
Kendall Wright (TEN)
As expected, Wright played into with the first team into the early second quarter and that was it. He caught 2 for 15 with no TDs. Wright is really emerging as a solid pro and a leader on the titans team. Next Game: @ KC, Fri., 8/28 7:00P CT
Terrance Williams (DAL)
Williams was on the field, but saw no targets vs. San Francisco. By just about every account, Williams is having a great camp. His only challenge will be getting enough looks during the regular season. Next Game: v. MIN, Sat., 8/29 6:00P CT
Antwan Goodley (DAL)
Goodley appears to have recovered from the hamstring injury that kept him out for the last two weeks. He lined up, but had no catches on one target in the opening drive of the 4th quarter. My sense is that Devin Street is a lock for one of the remaining two WR slots at Dallas. That leaves Goodley to compete with Lucky Whitehead and A.J. Jenkins for the final WR spot. Let’s hope he’s huge v. Minnesota this weekend Next Game: v. MIN, Sat., 8/29 6:00P CT
Levi Norwood (CHI)
Norwood caught 1/1 for 5 yds in the Bears second to last drive of the game v. the Colts. It might be telling that Levi had no KR/PR stat line. Special teams play is his best opportunity to make this roster. Next Game: @ CIN, Sat., 8/26 6:30P CT
Tevin Reese (CIN)
Reese didn’t play vs. the Bucs. He continues to nurse a hamstring injury. No other details available. Next Game: v. CHI, Sat., 8/26 6:30P CT
Cyril Richardson (BUF)
J.D. Walton (MIA)
O line was a key concern for the Dolphins coming into preseason. And so far, it still seems to be in disarray. They’ve got starters with injuries, C’s moving to G’s and RTs moving to LT’s. Walton’s play has been described as "inconsistent," and in Sunday’s game against Carolina, Walton had only 18 offensive snaps, most coming in the 4th quarter. Neither of those are good signs. But chaos sometimes yields opportunity. I think Walton might be our most "on the bubble" alum. Whether he makes or misses the roster, it'll be by the narrowest of margins and depend on way too many externalities. Next Game: v. ATL, Sat., 8/29 6:00P CT
Kelvin Palmer (PIT)
I couldn’t find any mention of Palmer this week and couldn’t tell if he got any snaps against Green Bay on Sunday. I didn’t see any in the highlights. But the Steelers website still shows him as the 4th string left tackle. To put that in airline terms, that’s like being 25th the standby list. You’re not getting on that flight. Next Game: @ BUF, Sat., 8/29 3:00 P CT
Bryce Hager (STL)
Hager again saw lots of playing time in the Rams second preseason game. He played 45 defensive snaps (the most of any player - 63% of total) and 8 on special teams. He totaled 4 tackles, including 3 solo. No update on Daren Bates, Hager’s primary competition, who suffered an MCL strain last week. But it feels like Hager’s chances of sticking around are improving. Next Game: @ IND, Sat., 8/26 6:30P CT
Phil Taylor (CLE)
It doesn’t appear Taylor saw any action v. the Bills on Sunday, though I can’t find any reason why. It’s safe to assume it was a precautionary, given Taylor had two separate knee surgeries last season. He did practice Monday, and the Browns released an unofficial depth chart that has Taylor as the starting NT. Next Game: @ TB, SAT: 8/29 6:00P CT
Demetri Goodson (GB)
Goodson missed this week’s game vs. the Steelers with a calf injury. No word on if he’s returned to practice this week. Not a good sign for a player that just barely made the roster last year. Next Game: v. PHI. Sat., 8/29 7:00P CT
Chance Casey (IND)
– Casey recorded no tackles vs. Chicago. At the Colt’s website, he’s listed as day-today with a groin injury. Next Game: @ STL, Sat., 8/29 7:00P CT
Matt Bryant - (ATL)
0/0 FG, 2/2XP. Only interesting note, Falcons made a 2pt conversion after their final TD. Not to say that’s any reflection at all on Bryant. After all, it was Q4 of a preseason game in which they trailed by 15. You could argue they were saving his leg. Next Game: @ MIA, Sat., 8/29 6:00P CT
Jon Weeks (HOU)
Texans were again perfect on FG and XP attempts. Next Game: @ NO, Mon., 8/30 3:00P CT
BTW item of the week:
During the preseason, all players get room and board and earn the same per diem; $1,000 per week for rookies and $1,800 for veterans. This is set out in the CBA, and one of the reasons the pre-season is so lucrative for the owners. So if a rookie makes it through camp and is cut on the last day, he’ll earn about $5,100. By comparison (and they’re not really comparable on any dimension) the average Power 5 COA Stipend is about $3,800 annually. Still wanna leave early and try your luck in the pros?
Cutdown day looms large:
On Tues. 9/1, teams must reduce their rosters from 90 to 75. Check back here for the list of casualties. Until then, good luck to all Baylor Bears on the Next Level everywhere. That includes you!