Friday Night Football Recap: What We Learned
Another night of NFL preseason action is in the books, as give games went off on Friday night. With week three being the traditional “dress rehearsal” for teams and their key players, we saw some nice performances and a good amount of scoring.
We also learned a few things. Rather than just talk about how great Eddie Lacy, Aaron Rodgers and Russell Wilson looked (they really looked awesome), let’s dig a little deeper and see what we really learned from last night’s preseason action:
Reggie Bush Still Has It
There has been a good amount of chatter over the summer that Bush will lose touches in favor of his backup, Joique Bell. That might be somewhat true due to Detroit’s plan to be more balanced on offense, but it clearly has nothing to do with the erosion of Bush’s natural talent. He showed us all as much on Friday night, as he busted off an 86-yard touchdown run and finished the night with 95 rushing yards on just two carries. As explosive as ever, Bush is going to remain a key part of Detroit’s offense as long as he can stay healthy.
Maurice Jones-Drew Might, Too
MJD didn’t bust an 86-yarder, but he did hit a nice hole, shed two tackles and ripped off a solid 40-yard touchdown. In just that one run, Jones-Drew showed he still has the ability to hit holes, break tackles and bust long gains. He might just have some juice left in those 29-year old legs, after all.
Shane Vereen Has a Big Role
Everyone talks about Tom Brady, Rob Gronkowski or Stevan Ridley, but it’s Shane Vereen who could be a monster in New England’s offense in 2014. He’s had health issues in the past, but if healthy Vereen might be in for a true breakout season. His role last night suggested as much, as he touched the ball 11 times for 87 yards and two scores.
Kelvin Benjamin is Looking Good
Many were wondering what the chemistry between Cam Newton and his new wide receivers would be like. So far, not so bad. The rookie Benjamin has looked solid throughout preseason play, and also looked good last night while securing four of five targets. He may struggle with consistency as a rookie, but he figures to be a major red-zone factor. If Benjamin is any indication, Carolina’s new-look passing game won’t be as bad as originally feared.
Ryan Nassib is Making Progress
Eli Manning has looked pretty bad this preseason, so with the slight chance moving forward that the Giants could bench the 33-year old passer, it might be good to know what they have in second-year quarterback, Ryan Nassib. While he has been up and down, Nassib mostly looked solid last night, as he tossed three touchdowns and led the Giants to a win over the Jets. Hopefully it’s a sign of good things to come.
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