Preseason Week 1 takeaways: Mayfield, Mahomes, Barkley and more

Preseason Week 1 takeaways: Mayfield, Mahomes, Barkley and more

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The NFL is back with the first full schedule of preseason beginning Thursday. How did the rookies look? What about players returning from injury? Here’s the biggest takeaway for each team:


While rookie quarterback Josh Allen continued to show flashes of potential in his preseason debut Thursday, he did not seem ready yet to leapfrog Nathan Peterman or AJ McCarron to be the starter. Peterman went 9-for-9 for 119 yards and a touchdown to open the game before an interception, while McCarron went 7-for-10 for 116 yards in the second quarter. The Bills do not want to rush Allen’s development and neither McCarron nor Peterman gave them a reason to do so Thursday night. — Mike Rodak

A solid first test for the Carolina quarterbacks as new offensive coordinator Norv Turner attempts to make Cam Newton into a more efficient player and find a young backup capable of winning. Newton, with a career 58.5 completion percentage, completed 66.6 percent of his pass attempts and engineered a scoring drive. Garrett Gilbert and Taylor Heinicke combined for the same percentage in the win at Buffalo. — David Newton


Aside from a Kyle Fuller pick-six that came after Bengals receiver John Ross slipped, there wasn’t much to write about. The first-team offense looked out of sorts as Mitch Trubisky — 2-for-4 for 4 yards — was sacked once in two series of work. Aside from Fuller’s highlight, the defense struggled to make much noise as the Bengals moved up and down the field with relative ease early in the game. New coach Matt Nagy has plenty of things to show his players on tape as they head into next week’s preseason contest in Denver. — Nick Friedell

There’s a lot to like about this Bengals’ offense. Outside of an Andy Dalton pick-six that could be attributed to John Ross slipping on his route, the first-team offense impressed. Joe Mixon broke two tackles and spun around for a touchdown, A.J. Green was his usual impressive self, and young receivers like Ross, Tyler Boyd and Josh Malone showed there’s a lot of potential for this team to right the ship after being one of the worst offenses in the league last year. — Katherine Terrell


The Browns have themselves some quarterbacks. Plural. No. 1 overall pick Baker Mayfield was impressive, showing playmaking ability in and out of the pocket while completing 11 of 20 passes for 212 yards and two touchdowns. He displayed nice touch, command and instincts. Mayfield is obviously the Browns’ future, but current starter Tyrod Taylor also had a strong outing. Taylor completed all five of his passes for 99 yards and a touchdown. Coach Hue Jackson is going to have a decision to make. It’s really a matter of when he turns to Mayfield, not if. — Ryan Isley

Saquon Barkley needed just one play in Thursday’s preseason opener against the Browns to show what he can add to the Giants offense. His 39-yard run on his first carry put his elusiveness (he avoided three tackles) and big-play ability on full display. That should have coach Pat Shurmur scheming and make the Giants’ offense scary, especially when Barkley eventually gets on the field in Week 1 with Odell Beckham Jr., who did not play in the contest. — Jordan Raanan


The preseason opener deepens the quarterback intrigue behind Ben Roethlisberger. Josh Dobbs looks ready to make things interesting after showcasing his big arm on a touchdown strike to camp standout Damoun Patterson. Mason Rudolph appeared in control of the offense and made some solid throws but couldn’t find the end zone and struggled with ball security, a theme for him early in training camp. And Landry Jones is still very much the leader for the top backup job unless it’s taken from him over the final three weeks. — Jeremy Fowler

Eagles rookie tight end Dallas Goedert continues to look the part. He had four catches for 66 yards and a touchdown in the preseason opener. He’s had a strong training camp as well. If Goedert stays on this track, coach Doug Pederson is going to find a role for the second-round pick out of South Dakota State. — Tim McManus


The backup QBs took center stage in New Orleans’ preseason opener while Drew Brees took the night off. Veteran newcomer Tom Savage was just OK as he started and completed a conservative 10 of 14 passes for 70 yards with no TDs and no INTs. Second-year pro Taysom Hill was more dynamic, completing 8 of 9 passes for 72 yards and running seven times for 52 yards and a TD. But he started a little shaky and may have relied on his legs a little too much. — Mike Triplett

The Jaguars traded for QB Cody Kessler in March to back up Blake Bortles and they have to feel pretty good about that move tonight. Kessler went 14-of-17 for 139 yards and a TD. Bortles has been durable, but not having the experienced Chad Henne was a bit of a gamble. This team is built to make a Super Bowl run and now they should feel a lot better if Bortles were to miss any extended time. — Mike DiRocco

NFL News

via http://www.espn.com – NFL http://www.espn.com

August 9, 2018 at 08:25PM

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