Preseason is the age-old series of games deemed useless every year. Every year these games happen, and every year football fans around the league deem the series useless. While I somewhat agree with that statement, there are still reasons to pay attention to the preseason. The main one is rookies. Preseason is the first chance most people get to see the rookies in the closest thing to a real NFL regular season game. While preseason stats don’t mean everything, a good preseason by a rookie can be a point to his true skills in the NFL.
Now the first one everyone cares about is Dorian Thompson-Robinson or DTR. In the Hall of Fame game, DTR went 8/11 for 82 yards, and a touchdown. The play resulting in the touchdown wasn’t bad either, which was a good sign. In the second game against the Commanders (Football Team was better), DTR threw 9/10 for 102 yards and another touchdown. Once again a pretty solid outing considering he didn’t get very many snaps. In the game against the Eagles, DTR was the starter more now, going 13/25 for 164 yards. Not the best outing ever, but it was nice to see him get some increased work.
For the next one, Cedric Tillman is another man to follow. He is someone I have hyped up, and really am excited for him to play here. In the first game against the Jets, Cedric Tillman nagged two balls for 35 yards. While yes it may be unappealing on paper, two catches for 35 is what the normal number four receiver can expect to receive. In the Washington game, Cedric only got two catches for seven yards. Pretty mediocre, but once again we shouldn’t be expecting much from him in his slot right now. In the final game against the Eagles, Cedric caught two catches again, but this time for 50 yards. This is more what we want to see, and those numbers are a good sign.
For the final player, we have the breakout player Austin Watkins. Austin against the Jets pulled in two balls for 35 yards. Nothing insane, but his real breakout starts against the Commanders. In that game, Watkins had six catches for 71 yards. Shockingly, his real breakout hasn’t even happened. In the final game against the Eagles, Watkins went for seven catches and 139 yards and a touchdown. Just an incredible game from him which showed how well he was playing. With this play, Watkins may make the roster somewhere between the 6-8 on the core. From this performance alone, even if he doesn’t play well in the final game, I think Watkins managed to secure a spot on the 53-man, or at least the practice squad.
Even though preseason games are pretty boring and mostly useless, if you know where to look and what to look for they can be pretty interesting. If you’re casual, it will be pretty hard to convince you to watch preseason games. I succumb to it too, you want action, and to see the starters and your favorite players play. But if you can find where and what to look at, you’ll find preseason games aren’t as useless as they may seem.