That was quite an opening weekend. Raise
your hand if you had the Bucs, Jets and Ravens leading the league
in scoring with over 45 points. Those of you who raised their
hands can lower them. I don’t believe you. And the Browns
Quincy Enunwa saw 10 targets on only 21
pass atempts from rookie Sam Darnold in Week 1.
“Truth is the secret of eloquence and of virtue, the
basis of moral authority; it is the highest summit of art and
of life.” - Henri-Frederic Amiel
1) Opportunity is more important as
an evaluator than a one-week fantasy total this early in a season.
Whether a player had success in the first weekend is based on
many factors, among them, weather, opponent, defensive strategy
and game situation. But if you keep getting plenty of opportunities,
the rest should even out over the long haul.
Eighteen receivers saw double-digit targets. I won’t name
them all, but two of them particularly intrigue me. Kenny Golladay
of Detroit (54% owned) looked like the best Lions receiver and
considering they have Golden Tate and Marvin Jones, that’s
saying a lot. Golladay posted seven catches for 114 yards. Matthew
Stafford can’t be any worse.
The second player was Jets wideout Quincy Enunwa (10 % owned).
It was unknown before Week 1, but it’s clear now that he
was Sam Darnold’s favorite target. Enunwa should be high
or your waiver wire list.
3) Many casual players will see Seattle
rookie tight end Will Dissly’s numbers and jump to claim him,
but that would be a mistake.
True. A fourth-round rookie, he’s more a blocker than the
next Rob Gronkowski. He ran just a 4.87 “40” at the
combine. Here is what was said about him on the official NFL draft
site – “Seattle adds the best blocking TE in the draft
in Dissly, and boy could they use him. His inclusion in the formation
will be like having an extra offensive linemen on the field with
enough receiving ability to move the chains a couple times each
game.” - Mark Dulgerian.
4) Kansas City Chiefs second-year quarterback
Patrick Mahomes is the “real deal.”
Sitting a year and learning from Andy Reid and veteran Alex Smith
has paid huge dividends. Mahomes looked completely under control
against the Chargers. True, they had no pass rush without injured
Joey Bosa, but Mahomes wasn’t fooled by anything. He also
has the benefit of Reid turning the “jet sweep” handoff
into a passing stat by making it a tiny shovel pass and that will
pad his totals all season.
5) I love the six hours of the NFL Network’s
True, true, true. When the countdown clock starts at just before
1 pm (ET), I actually get excited. It’s more than just getting
the results, it’s seeing how it happened and that doesn’t
come from a box score.
“I do not mind lying, but I hate inaccuracy.” –
1) Ryan Fitzpatrick will throw for 6,672 yards and 64 touchdowns
and rush for 576 yards and 16 more scores.
“Reductio ad absurdum”. This is my annual Week 2
message. Don’t go overboard based on one week’s worth
of observations. No, Fitzpatrick won’t score 46.5 FPts/G
and set a season record of 744 points. It’s called a fluke.
While some Week 1 data was real, most players, both good and bad,
will regress back toward the mean. In other words, they will return
to their normal production level. In the case of Fitzpatrick,
he averaged 16.5 FPts/G in 14 starts over the past two seasons.
Plus, he goes up against the defending champions in Week 2.
2) Russell Wilson can continue to produce
even without Jimmy Graham and an injured Doug Baldwin.
False. It’s not the loss of receivers that will stop Wilson
from posting big numbers - Tyler Lockett, Brandon Marshall and
Jaron Brown can get the job done until Baldwin returns (2-3 weeks?).
It’s the six sacks that concerns me. Wilson’s not
a big guy (5-11, 215) like Ben Roethlisberger or Cam Newton. Seattle
plays the Bears next (Khalil Mack), the Rams twice, the Chargers
and the Vikings this season. That’s a lot of big, fast,
mean guys trying to dismember him.
3) Don’t worry about the Cowboys
offense, “Zeke” is back for 16 games this season.
I’d worry if I had anyone on the Cowboys, which I don’t.
Dak Prescott can’t pass and if not for a late touchdown,
Ezekiel Elliott would have been ugly too. The vaunted Dallas OL
is a mess. Prescott has no receivers that scares a defensive coordinator
and his security blanket (Jason Witten) is gone.
4) Rookie Royce Freeman had a solid opening
effort – 15 carries and 71 yards.
The numbers look OK, until you dive deeper. Freeman saw just
29-of-74 snaps. Worse news, Phillip Lindsay (it’s OK to
say who?) saw 26 snaps and produced 71 yards on the ground too
and also caught two balls for 31 yards and a score. Devonte Booker
got 19 snaps. What we thought was Freeman as the main guy, might
actually be a RBBC. To be continued …
5) Tom Brady has made Phillip Dorsett (5%
owned) a viable fantasy option worth of a waiver claim.
Not completely true, but I’ll give you 20 percent. I did
like his wide-receiver leading seven targets, but Gronkowski and
James White still saw more targets. And Julian Edelman is back
in three weeks. If you need a 2-3 week fill-in for the previously-mentioned
Baldwin, Dorsett is viable, but not long-term as the Patriots’
Steve Schwarz served as the fantasy sports editor of The Sports Network and is the 2014 FSWA Football Writer of the Year.