NFL Week 2 preseason winners and losers: Doctors, rookie QBs among top performers – CBS Sports

NFL Week 2 preseason winners and losers: Doctors, rookie QBs among top performers - CBS Sports

Week 2 of the NFL preseason is almost over, with only Monday night’s Falcons-Jets contest still on the docket. That means we’re well over halfway through the entire exhibition slate, and about a week away from final rosters. The real games are just around the corner. But which players and teams took clear steps in the right (or wrong) direction this week?

Here are our biggest winners and losers from the second week of 2022 preseason action:

KaVontae Turpin

SATISFACTION

The cowboys already had high-quality offensive weapons in CeeDee Lamb, Dalton Schultz and Tony Pollard. But they may have to find a way to include Turpin as well, after the minor league veteran and recent USFL star recorded not one but two return touchdowns in Dallas’ win over the. Chargers. Even if only as a kick or punt returner, he likely locked up a roster spot.

Speaking of offensive weapons in the NFC East, Gibson really seems to be losing his grip on the Commanders‘ peak back work. The former rookie standout, now entering Year 3, has rotated with the second- and third-team units at practice recently. Against the bosseshe stood on the sidelines while rookie Brian Robinson Jr. started in the backfield, then tallied just two carries while being relegated to kick return duty.

Kenny Pickett

SATISFACTION

The Pittsburgh product will always be the fan favorite in the Steelers‘QB competition, but he was decisive and unruffled in limited action against the Jaguarsmaking the case with a seamless up-time scoring drive that he deserves genuine consideration as the Week 1 starter over Mitchell Trubisky, who is more experienced but perhaps not more talented.

Not all of the young AFC North QBs had a good weekend, and Rosen will be the first to admit it after completing just seven of 20 throws against the Eagles‘ third strings. Failing in each of his career stops, his shot at claiming No. 3 QB duties for the Browns behind Deshaun Watson and Jacoby Brissett is pretty much shot after Joshua Dobbs showed both an effective arm and game-extending mobility to keep Cleveland competitive.

Winner: The running game

James Cook

SATISFACTION

If you played preseason fantasy football with second- and third-string running backs this week, congratulations. The Invoices rolled all over the Broncos deploying every member of their deep backfield: Devin Singletary, Zack Moss, James Cook and Duke Johnson. The Eagles got a steady burst from Boston Scott and Kenny Gainwell with Miles Sanders absent. The lions‘ trio of Justin Jackson, Craig Reynolds and Godwin Igwebuike combined for over 100 yards against the foals. Who says the ground game is dead?

Being damaged is not necessarily his fault, but the star’s saints receiver is trying to return to the field for the first time since 2020, and two days after sitting out his second straight preseason game, he missed practice with a hamstring problem. All while first-round rookie Chris Olave continues to rise and approach 2022 as New Orleans’ most likely No. 1 target.

Malik Willis, right

SATISFACTION

No one expects the third-round rookie to be a polished passer at this point in his career, so just witnessing his electricity as a scrambler and occasional side-armed pitcher should be enough to entice. Titans fans are getting impatient with Ryan Tannehill under center. No, Willis is not going to take over at QB, but you can see, after his mobility and arm angles against the pirateswhy Tennessee stopped its draft day drop.

Loser: Cliff Kingsbury

I’m just kidding. Or should we? The Cardinals coach jokingly allowed his QB, Kyler Murray, to experiment with play calling this summer since Murray made it difficult for him to run the offense. But after Murray took over the headset late in Arizona’s preseason loss to the Crows, the Cards’ offense was decidedly more efficient, even threatening a comeback after an option touchdown run by backup Trace McSorley. Now let’s see if Kliff surrenders responsibility when it matters.

Winner: Isaiah Likely

Isaiah Probable

SATISFACTION

Looking for a sleeper that will likely have a bigger impact on the Ravens offense this year than expected? A guy who will likely guarantee some red zone targets from Lamar Jackson? And maybe even Likely to share photos with Mark Andrews? We can’t get enough Probably after the rookie fourth-rounder exploded with eight catches for 100 yards and a touchdown against the Cardinals, constantly finding or creating space against Arizona’s defense.

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