Monday, September 28, 2009

NFL Rookie Battle Royale: Week 3

All of you know how awesome of a week this has been, especially with the Bungals beating the Steelers, Manning destroying the Cardinals on Sunday night, and the crazy ending to the Vikings game. The rookies decided to show up too, with a few of them having some great games.

Matt Stafford

How could I not lead with the Lions winning? Im still in shock that they were able to put it together for a full 60 minutes. Stafford played pretty well too, as he showed he is starting to gain that confidence he needs to grow in such a horrible offense. Stafford threw a TD that started everything off for the Lions, thus bringing his total to two in three games, but he didn’t throw an interception, so that is like icing on the cake for a rookie QB. I still say its not a good idea to hold his cards, but at least it’s a LITTLE more promising now that the streak is over.

Mark Sanchez

Sanchez played another great game and came away with another win. It was another great defense, the best arguably, but he was calm and collected even during a bad second half. He had a great TD pass to Cotchery in double coverage and ran one in from 14 out. He ended with with 3 total TDs and is making a few people wonder why they may have passed on him at picks 2-4 in the draft. Sanchez cards are at the peak of their value right now, so if you have them, it may be good to sell and rebuy later, if there is a later. Looks like he will be the Matt Ryan value of his class this year.

Percy Harvin

Harvin was great in the Vikings win, scoring his third TD in as many games. He played great during the second half especially, running back a kick 101 yards and catching some key passed on the final drive that led to the score. He ended up with his best game in terms of yardage, but the return was the spike the Vikings needed to stay in the game after being shut down time after time by the Niners' Defense. Like Sanchez, Harvin's cards are at the peak of their value, so it’s a great time to sell if you arent a fan.

LeSean McCoy

Im thinking that Brian Westbrook doesn’t feel so bad he missed that game anymore as McCoy sure picked up the slack with ease. The Eagles routed the Chiefs and McCoy got his first TD of the year. He also racked up 80+ yards and a YPC avg over four yards in the effort. McCoy should be pretty good in the long run, though he will always be overshadowed by Westbrook. Keep his cards for right now, as his value has a lot of potential to go up from here.

Knowshon Moreno

Welcome to the NFL Mr. Moreno. Nice to see you. Glad you put up 90 yards and a TD, bout time a running back in Denver does well, right? Knowshon looked pretty good in his first game with a focus over Buckhalter, and I would expect by week 8 he will have 70-80% of the carries. He is a great back, and should continue to put up numbers week after week. As with all the first round running backs, his value is high due to the Peterson effect, but as it starts to come down, it should be a good idea to pick some of his stuff up.

Donald Brown

That 72 yard scamper was pretty impressive wasn’t it? Well, it helped him put up the first 100 total yard game for a non-QB rookie this year, and jumped his value pretty high as a result. Brown doesn’t have the luxury of a huge college following like Wells, but he showed why he needs a pro following. Wells managed -2 yards on 2 carries, while Brown did great. This guy is a keeper.

Johnny Knox

Another game, another TD for Knox, despite the fact that it was his only catch of the game. He sure has been a pleasant surprise for the Bears, as the rest of their receiving corps is almost as inexperienced as he is. Because of the fact that he has done as well as he has, sell as fast as you can. Its not going to go much higher than it is unless he goes for 150 and three TDs somewhere later in the season. That’s a risk I would be willing to take.
The Rookie Graveyard

Here is where I want to talk about some rookies that Im sure are making a few of you guys pretty angry with their lack of contributions to their teams.

Jeremy Maclin - Where the hell have you been? Having 6 receptions for 46 yards on the season is a crap start for a guy I thought would be the star receiver of his class. Wow.

Darrius Heyward-Bey - Im sure having a QB like Jamarcus Russell is a contributing factor, but 1 reception for 18 yards on the whole year is poop. We all know he shouldn’t have been drafted so high, but hot damn, get moving!

Beanie Wells - I think a lot of people are pretty happy that Beanie isnt doing great so far. They say he was a beneficiary of playing at OSU, and it may be starting to show.

Hakeem Nicks - 2 receptions for 19? Doing worse than Hey Bey, but his team doesn’t need him as much. EDIT: Looks like he was injured week 1, my page on didnt show that, my fault on this one...

Next week is looking pretty good, especially with Harvin going up against the Packers on Monday night. Now that the rookies are pretty secure in their roles, it could be interesting to see how values respond. Glen Coffee will have his first game against a defense that he can take advantage of, and may have a great game in Gore's absence, Sanchez looks like he may be in for his first test as he faces the Saints, and with the Bears going up against Detroit, who knows.

Also, be sure to check out my rookie of the week write up on the Upper Deck Blog as soon as the player is announced. You can also enter your cards to track the performances of a few of the guys I talk about here and possibly win some prizes if you have the ROW in your portfolio. Pretty cool.

Even if the rookies didn’t come to play, this season has still been a great ride so far. I hope it will continue to be as exciting as it has been, as there have already been some great stories. Next week is when things start to get interesting, so don’t miss it under any circumstances. Trust me, it only gets better from here.


  1. FYI - Hakeem Nicks was hurt in game one and is out 2-3 weeks.

  2. nicks has been out the last two weeks with an injury.

  3. Rex Ryan: All right, first order of business: nicknames. Sanchez, yours is Chimichanga.
    Sanchez: I thought my nickname was Dirty.