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Week 1 Rookie Report: A Disappointing Start

Photo Credit: Gabriel Argudo Jr

Welcome back, NFL. Your fans all missed you.

Week 1 provided so much excitement, not to mention tremendous Fantasy scoring from some of the NFL’s top stars.

When it comes to rookies, however, this week was disappointing. Players that were hyped up in the offseason such as Calvin Ridley and Royce Freeman fell flat for the most part.

There was one bright spot, and you may have heard of him: Saquon Barkley. Barkley showed why he was drafted so high by the Giants.

How did the other NFL rookies fare this week? Well, let’s dive in to the Week 1 Rookie Report.

Week 1 Rookie Report


Sam Darnold, New York Jets

Things didn’t get off to a great start for Sam Darnold when he threw a pick-six on his first career NFL pass. Darnold recovered, however, and turned in a nice game, throwing for just under 200 yards and two touchdowns.

While Darnold shouldn’t be rostered in Fantasy leagues, he’s worth keeping an eye on. Darnold looked competent running the Jets offense which boasts some capable pass catchers and two good running backs.


Running Back

Saquon Barkley, New York Giants

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From one New York team to another, Saquon Barkley was excellent in his Giants debut. Barkley ran 18 times for 106 yards and one touchdown and hauled in two catches for 22 yards.

Of Barkley’s 106 yards, 68 came on a long touchdown. Barkley is a top-tier NFL running back, and he proved it against a tough Jaguars defense.

Royce Freeman, Denver Broncos

This one is a bit disappointing. The Broncos backfield appears to be a running back committee, with Royce Freeman getting the same amount of carries as undrafted free agent Phillip Lindsay, and both rushing for 71 yards. Lindsay also figured into the passing game, catching two passes for 31 yards and a touchdown.

Freeman was chosen by some as the next Kareem Hunt, but if this backfield continues to shake out as it did in Week 1 it is tough to see Freeman being a useful Fantasy commodity.

Sony Michel, New England Patriots and Ronald Jones, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Both rookie running backs didn’t play in Week 1. Sony Michel is still nursing an injury, so this was expected to a degree.

Ronald Jones is a different story. Jones was a healthy scratch in Week 1 in a game where the Buccaneers put up 44 points of offense without him.

If you own Jones, you should be concerned.


Wide Receivers

Calvin Ridley, Atlanta Falcons

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No. Catches. Calvin Ridley is perhaps the most disappointing rookie this week. Ridley saw the field a decent amount, but he failed to catch a single pass.

Though it is just one game, Ridley will continue to struggle to see targets behind Mohamed Sanu and Julio Jones.

Ridley will show why he was a first round pick eventually, we just don’t know when.


Nothing else really stood out in terms of rookie receivers. Christian Kirk, D.J. Moore, Courtland Sutton and Anthony Miller all disappointed in their rookie debuts and will look to bounce back in the coming weeks.


Tight End

Will Dissly, Seattle Seahawks

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The Seahawks are devoid of pass catchers, and Jimmy Graham left in the offseason, so it is not surprising to see Will Dissly emerge as a legit option for Russell Wilson.

Dissly caught three passes for 106 yards and a touchdown. With Doug Baldwin expected to miss a few weeks, Dissly could continue to be a reliable option for Russell Wilson.


While  this was a disappointing week for NFL rookies, there is always next week and someone else could emerge. We will check back in next week in the rookie report for week two.

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