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Week 2 preseason grades, AFC: Will Fuller, Terrelle Pryor dazzle

Preseason football is here -- and while wins and losses mean nothing, individual performances can mean everything. As the preseason slate progresses, Bucky Brooks will be assessing the performances of notable players, handing out grades to provide context for the prior week's on-field action.

Below, find report cards for one key player from each AFC team following Week 2's preseason action.


BUFFALO BILLS: Cardale Jones, quarterback. The Bills are hoping to develop the gunslinger into a legitimate QB2, but Jones has a long way to go before he can step in and direct an NFL offense. The fourth-round pick continues to tease evaluators with his exceptional arm talent, but he needs to become more consistent with his footwork and fundamentals to improve his accuracy from the pocket. In completing 6 of 12 passes for 83 yards and an interception against the Giants on Saturday, Jones showed he could throw the ball over the top of the defense with pinpoint strikes down the boundary (see: his 31-yard pass to Walt Powell on a fade route). He also made an impressive throw on the move to Greg Little on a naked bootleg play. However, Jones repeatedly tossed the ball falling off his back foot and exercised poor judgment when forced to play off-script. Although his flaws are correctable, he needs to learn how to play winning football to enhance his chances of moving up the depth chart. GRADE: C

MIAMI DOLPHINS: Laremy Tunsil, offensive guard. The rookie made a strong impression in his first start at left guard for the Dolphinson Friday. The first-round pick is strong enough to push defenders off the ball, but he also flashes the quickness to climb to the second level to neutralize linebackers in the hole. With Tunsil also showing the agility, balance and body control to hold his own against a variety of interior rushers vs. the Cowboys, the Dolphins' top pick should be a permanent member of the starting unit from this day forward. GRADE: B+

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS: Anthony Johnson, defensive tackle. The Patriots always seem to find roles for players who have been overlooked in their previous destinations. After wreaking havoc against the Bears on Thursday as an interior pass rusher (two tackles, half a sack and a pass defensed), Johnson -- a rookie free agent with the Dolphins in 2014 who had a stint on the Redskins' practice squad in 2015 -- might be the next unheralded role player to emerge as a star in New England. He not only flashes outstanding first-step quickness and burst exploding through cracks at the line of scrimmage, but he displays the combative hand skills to escape blockers. On a defense full of role-specific specialists, Johnson's natural pass-rush ability could make him a fixture in the team's D-line rotation going forward. GRADE: B

NEW YORK JETS: Bryce Petty, quarterback. If the second-year pro can build on his solid performance against the Redskins on Friday (16 of 26 for 242 yards and a 117.8 passer rating), he could force coach Todd Bowles to reconfigure his quarterback depth chart heading into the regular season. Petty played with outstanding poise and confidence directing the Jets' offense in the second half on the way to tossing an impressive pair of touchdown passes to Zach Sudfeldand Robby Anderson, respectively. From his superb ball placement and touch to his sound judgment, Petty is starting to round into form as a solid developmental prospect. GRADE: B+


BALTIMORE RAVENS: Ronnie Stanley, offensive tackle. The rookie already looks like a seasoned vet at left tackle. Stanley held his own against the Colts' first-team defense Saturday, exhibiting quick feet and good body control in pass protection. Although Indianapolis rarely challenged him with complex stunts or games, the sixth overall pick neutralized his assigned defender in protection and provided the Ravens' quarterback with plenty of time to throw from the pocket. As a run blocker, Stanley created a little push and played on the other side of the line of scrimmage for most of his reps. Overall, it was a solid, workmanlike performance for a player who looks like a natural at the position. GRADE: B+

CINCINNATI BENGALS: AJ McCarron, quarterback. Teams in need of a starting quarterback should pick up the phone and dial Mike Brown or Marvin Lewis to see if the Bengals are willing to part ways with the third-year pro from Alabama. McCarron teased evaluators with his talent during a brief stint as the Bengals' starter last season (he saw significant action in four games in Andy Dalton's stead, racking up 832 yards and six touchdowns against two picks while posting a 97.4 passer rating). He will continue to intrigue scouts after a strong performance (10 of 15 for 95 yards and a score) against the Lions on Thursday that showcased his accuracy, anticipation and timing as a passer (see: a 12-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Boyd). If McCarron continues to light it up whenever the Bengals allow him to play, it won't be much longer until a quarterback-needy team pries the savvy backup away from the Bengals. GRADE: B+

CLEVELAND BROWNS: Terrelle Pryor, wide receiver. It's hard enough to make the NFL at one position, but the quarterback-turned-receiver is a virtual lock to make the Browns as their designated deep-ball specialist. For the second week in a row, Pryor blew past the opposing defense to pull in a bomb from Robert Griffin III. The way the 6-foot-4, 223-pound veteran sped past Pro Bowl CB Desmond Trufantfor a 50-yard touchdownagainst Atlanta on Thursday, it is time to pay closer attention to Pryor's emergence as a legitimate playmaker in the passing game. GRADE: A

PITTSBURGH STEELERS: Landry Jones, quarterback. Excuse me for being Captain Obvious, but the fourth-year pro deserves a failing grade after an absolutely awful performance against the Eagles on Thursday. Jones tossed four interceptions and failed to inspire any confidence in his skills as the Steelers' QB2. After watching him fail to seize the job for a second straight season, the Steelers might consider another option at the cutdown deadline. GRADE: F


HOUSTON TEXANS: Will Fuller, wide receiver. The Texans drafted Fuller to inject some sizzle into an offense that lacked pizzazz a year ago. The ex-Notre Dame standout certainly didn't disappoint with a four-catch, 73-yard performance against the Saints on Saturday that included a 19-yard touchdown on a fade route. Fuller's speed, quickness and acceleration make him a deadly weapon as a deep-ball specialist, but he also flashes solid route-running skills on short and intermediate routes. With the first-round pick starting to click with quarterback Brock Osweiler on the perimeter, the Texans' offense should be more explosive in 2016. GRADE: A-

INDIANAPOLIS COLTS: Ryan Kelly, center. The rookie pivot finally got a chance to experience game action with quarterback Andrew Luck -- who made his first start of the preseason against the Ravens on Saturday -- directing the show. Kelly was solid with his snaps and execution in the running game, exhibiting outstanding strength, power and body control at the point of attack. Most importantly, the first-round pick was stout in pass protection and did his part in keeping Luck upright for the most of his appearance (zero sacks in eight attempts). Considering how important No. 12's health is to the Colts' playoff aspirations, Kelly's solid performance should be encouraging to team officials. GRADE: B+

JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS: Jalen Ramsey, cornerback. The Jaguars' top pick (No. 5 overall) gave the football world a glimpse at his impact potential against the Buccaneers on Saturday when he tallied three tackles in less than a quarter of work. Ramsey was active and aggressive against perimeter runs (notching a 6-yard tackle for loss), exhibiting outstanding instincts, strength and tackling skills drilling runners before they could get to the corner. In addition, Ramsey was solid in coverage against the Bucs' Mike Evans. Ramsey effectively used his size, length and aggressiveness to disrupt the big-bodied receiver early in routes, and his snug positioning prevented Tampa Bay quarterback Jameis Winston from squeezing in throws to his top target. If Ramsey can avoid the injury bug and continue to refine his technique as a corner, he will capably fill the void as the Jaguars' CB1 in the secondary. GRADE: A

TENNESSEE TITANS: Tajae Sharpe, wide receiver. The rookie pass catcher continued to strengthen his hold on the starting job with a solid performance against the Panthers on Saturday. Sharpe, who finished the game with six receptions for 68 yards, looks like a quality WR1 when he's on the field with quarterback Marcus Mariota. From his polished route running to his dependable hands, the fifth-round pick is emerging as more than an offseason "hype bunny" for the Titans. GRADE: B


DENVER BRONCOS: Trevor Siemian, quarterback. The second-year pro didn't fully capitalize on his opportunity to wrest the QB1 job from Mark Sanchez during his first start of the preseason. Despite completing 10 of 14 passes for 75 yards and leading the Broncos to a touchdown on their opening drive against the Niners on Saturday, Siemian tossed a costly pick-six in the second quarter that energized San Francisco's defense. Of course, every quarterback in the league throws interceptions, but you would've liked to see Siemian bounce back from that miscue with a few pinpoint throws to demonstrate his resiliency or mental toughness. Instead, he failed to complete another pass. Considering the pressure awaiting whoever starts under center for the defending champs, Siemian has to show better ball security and grit to seize the job from his competitors. GRADE: B-

KANSAS CITY CHIEFS: Chris Conley, wide receiver. The Chiefs might've found a WR2 to complement Jeremy Maclin in the passing game, thanks to Conley's emergence as a legitimate playmaker. The second-year pro finished his night against the Rams on Saturday with three receptions for 66 yards, including a 37-yard catch down the boundary on a go-route that showcased his speed and quickness. As the Chiefs look to upgrade their big-play potential in the passing game, Conley could play a more prominent role as a potential deep-ball weapon. GRADE: B+

OAKLAND RAIDERS: Neiron Ball, linebacker. The preseason is all about seizing opportunities, and few players are doing it like Ball. The second-year pro notched three tackles and a sack in only nine defensive snaps against the Packers on Thursday, which is remarkable production in limited action. Ball's nose for the ball and his non-stop motor could make him an unlikely member of an ultra-talented roster at the end of the preseason. If he can make his mark as a special-teams demon, Ball could buy some more time to develop into a solid situational player. GRADE: B+

SAN DIEGO CHARGERS: Denzel Perryman, inside linebacker. The Chargers' defense is still searching for an identity, but Perryman definitely makes the unit a little nastier with his aggressive style between the tackles. He is an active playmaker with terrific instincts and a rugged approach in the hole. Perryman played well on the interior against the Cardinals on Friday, which is one of the reasons why the Chargers' run defense was stouter and more effective in Week 2 (the Bolts held Arizona to 63 rushing yards after allowing 288 to the Titansin the preseason opener) . GRADE: B

Follow Bucky Brooks on Twitter @BuckyBrooks.

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