A first-round pick in most formats, Ekeler stumbled out of the
gate as he delivered a pedestrian 11.2-point performance in Week
1. He could only manage 36 yards on 14 carries (2.6 per carry)
but he did catch four passes for 36 yards. They face the Chiefs
young(er) defense this week, who did allow 103 rushing yards to
Arizona. A good amount of these yards came after the game was
out of hand and the dogs had been called off. I look for Ekeler
to get back at it in a potential shootout, using the passing game
as a separator as the Chiefs did allow eight catches for 62 yards
to RBs. Ekeler was the primary runner on short yardage and goal
line work, so he finds the end zone this week.
Everett’s continued improvement continues! He only received four
targets last week, but made the most out them. He caught three
for 54 yards and a TD to finish 4th among TEs with 14.4 points.
Will it continue? Who knows?!?, but with the Chargers missing
Keenan Allen, I see Everett having another solid, if not flashy
game Thursday night. To growth!
When Keenan (hamstring) left the game in the first half, it looked
like great positioning for Williams to seize the moment. Instead,
he produced only two catches for 10 yards. Questions linger about
his play over the past 12 games where he’s had just two 100-yard
games and scored only 3 TDs. He will now draw No.1 coverage with
Allen likely out. Having him produce seems like a stretch; put
him on the bench. Or really temper your expectations.
LAC FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.11
LAC FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.18
LAC FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.14
LAC FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.2
JuJu received 8 targets last week and a 20.5% target share – highest
among all the Chiefs’ wide receivers. He’s locked into two-wide
receiver sets with Marquez Valdes-Scantling and is setting up
to be Mahomes’ security blanket outside of Kelce. LA had a bit
of trouble with Davante Adams last week (10-141-1) and while JuJu
isn’t on the same level, the targets should be there in the highest
game total (54.0) of the week.
If the goal was to get CEH going early, it worked. He caught 2
short TDs before halftime en route to a 22.4-point performance
against the Cardinals. He also rumbled for 42 yards on seven carries.
Falling behind early, the Raiders never really got the run going
last week (13-64) against a Chargers team that give up the 5th
most fantasy points to RBs last season. CEH is firmly entrenched
as top RB cat for the Chiefs and that should keep his backfield
competition at the door for this week.
Sometimes the stats are the stats, until they aren’t. Yes,
Pacheco led the team in both attempts (12) and yards (62) against
Arizona and added a TD to boot. The only caveat in this scenario
is that TD and yardage came in the 4th quarter after KC had already
opened up a 3-touchdown lead as the starters rested. The Chargers
offer up a stronger defense, so I’d expect a normal game
flow to take place to balance out the ledger. Let’s check
on that team-leading status next week, shall we?
While the final outcome of the Panthers’ Week 1 game against
the Browns was a disappointment, one player who fantasy managers
should be paying some attention to is wide receiver Robbie Anderson.
Anderson was a major disappointment in 2021, but his five-catch,
102-yard performance in Week 1 puts him well on his way to getting
back to the breakout season he had with the Panthers in 2020.
Anderson led the team with eight targets and also caught Baker
Mayfield’s only touchdown strike of the afternoon. While
he’s not a must-start by any means, those in deeper leagues
who are in need of a wide receiver might be able to scoop him
off of waivers and immediately start him against the Giants.
As exciting as Anderson’s big Week 1 game was, D.J. Moore’s
was equally as concerning. Moore was targeted just six times on
Sunday, catching three of those passes for 43 yards, while adding
a seven-yard rush. We shouldn’t overreact because of one
game in which he still ran a route on every Panthers’ passing
play, but Moore will have to create a rapport with Mayfield quickly,
or there will be a lot of disappointed fantasy players this season.
He’s still likely the player we want to own in this passing
game, but he’s a shaky start this week against a Giants
defense that did a great job shutting down the Titans’ perimeter
wide receivers in Week 1.
Baker Mayfield’s debut in Carolina got off to a rocky start as
the quarterback was sacked four times, had multiple passes batted
down, and was generally harassed throughout the afternoon in a
loss to his former team. While very few teams have a pass rusher
anywhere near the caliber of Myles Garrett, there remains a general
concern that the Panthers’ offensive line is just terrible and
that it’ll be a problem all year. Mayfield’s fantasy numbers weren’t
a disaster in the end in Week 1, given that he passed and ran
for a touchdown, but we can’t rely on a rushing score from him
very often. He’s facing a Giants defense that surprisingly did
a great job against the Titans offense in Week 1 and this is not
the time to be trusting him other than as a deep QB2 in Superflex
CAR FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.31
CAR FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.4
CAR FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.32
CAR FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.27
A second-quarter injury to rookie Wan’Dale Robinson might
have played a part in Sterling Shepard being relied upon more
heavily than they had intended to, but we got some valuable information
because of it. Perhaps the most important bit of info was that
Shepard ended up playing as both a starting outside wide receiver
in two-wide sets and in the slot when the team put more receivers
on the field. This is pretty normal usage for Shepard who missed
most of the 2021 season with an Achilles’ injury, and it’s
a great indication that the team has full confidence in him. He’s
probably not ever going to be a WR1 or even a weekly WR2 for fantasy,
but Shepard is a reliable option in deep leagues and could be
considered for a WR3 role this week, especially if Wan’Dale
Robinson misses the game, as is currently expected.
The Giants’ Week 1 snap leader at wide receiver was veteran
Kenny Golladay, while second-year receiver Kadarius Toney was
shockingly under-utilized, playing just seven total snaps despite
an injury to fellow receiver Wan’Dale Robinson. These numbers
should both be disturbing for fantasy managers, as Golladay continues
to be on the field constantly while seeing almost no usage in
the passing game throughout his tenure in New York, meanwhile,
Toney seems to be in the dog house for some reason. Both players
are unusable for fantasy until we at least see some peripheral
numbers that indicate things are changing.
There weren’t many bright spots offensively for the Pats in Week
1, but Harris made things happen when he got the chance, gaining
48 yards on nine carries (5.3 YPC) and adding a pair of receptions
for 10 yards. The Steelers didn’t give Bengals RB Joe Mixon much
room to maneuver as a runner (27-82-0), but he finished Week 1
with 145 total yards by virtue of catching seven passes for 63
yards. Granted, that hasn’t been Harris’ game, but with Ty Montgomery
(knee) on IR maybe he’ll pick up some slack. Harris can be used
as an RB3.
No one is going to mistake Meyers (4-55-0) for Ja’Marr Chase
(10-129-1), but the former still looks to be operating as Mac
Jones’ top option on the outside. Meyers played 50 of the team’s
57 offensive snaps, which was 17 more than the next-highest receiver,
and he was targeted a team-high six times. Odds are the Patriots
and Steelers are both going to play conservative offensively,
but Meyers might do enough to deliver adequate value as a low-end
No. 3 fantasy wideout.
NE FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.23
NE FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.24
NE FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.8
NE FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.29
Freiermuth led the way in Week 1 with 75 yards receiving, and
he finished second to Johnson in both receptions (5) and targets
(10). The second-year tight end is a safe destination for Mitch
Trubisky’s throws as the team continues to work a lot of stuff
underneath. Backup Zach Gentry added 40 yards on two grabs, meaning
the tight end position accounted for 115 of Trubisky’s 194 yards
passing. Although Miami never got anything going with their own
TEs, Freiermuth carries top-10 appeal.
Outside of Johnson and Freiermuth, Claypool was the only other
player to be targeted more than three times. In addition to his
six looks, the Notre Dame product also ran the ball six times
for a team-leading 36 yards. Even though his 10 combined touches
only led to 54 yards, his involvement at least appears encouraging
-- he led all skill players in snaps in Week 1 with 58 (of 63).
There’s some low-end WR3 potential for Claypool this Sunday and
perhaps in the weeks ahead.
Pickens was on the field for 45 of the club’s 63 offensive
snaps, which was third amongst the receivers behind Claypool and
Johnson (51). The rookie never got going, though, making just
one catch on three targeted passes for three yards. There was
a lot of buzz surrounding Pickens during the preseason, so it's
far too early to cut bait, but you’d do well to leave him
on your bench for the time being.
Landry’s homecoming featured seven grabs on nine targets for
114 yards. He led the Saints in receptions, targets, and yards,
and his 40-yarder in the 4th quarter was the longest play of the
day for New Orleans. Landry has always been a high-volume receiver
in both Miami and Cleveland. Working out of the slot, with Michael
Thomas and speedster Chris Olave working the perimeter, I would
expect that to continue. Thomas will likely overtake the reins
as the WR1 and be the more prolific scorer over time, but Landry
should be a solid WR2/WR3 pickup, especially this week against
a very tough Bucs’ front that will force QB Jameis Winston to
make quick decisions and get the ball out of his hands.
Kamara got banged up in Week 1, playing through a rib injury.
His backup Mark Ingram also tweaked his ankle, forcing the team
to re-sign Latavius Murray. There is some question about whether
Kamara would be able to go this week, but he did practice on Wednesday.
That’s the good news. But ribs are tricky, and one shot could
send him to the sideline. Even if he does get through this one,
the Buccaneers are allowing just 4.7 yards per catch and held
the Cowboys Ezekiel Elliott and company to 71 yards on the ground
last week. If Kamara is healthy and playing, you’re rostering
him as RB1/RB2. I just don’t know if this is the ideal matchup.
Hill is exciting to watch and a talented athlete, but he’s not
a true TE. He’s not even the best TE on this team. That honor
goes to Juwan Johnson (a sneaky back end TE1 if anyone needs).
If Alvin Kamara is limited, Hill could end up providing some playmaking
ability against a vaunted Tampa Bay pass rush. But his fantasy
value is linked to random gadget plays that may or may not work.
If I’m forced to pick, I’m rostering Johnson and leaving Hill
on the sidelines.
TB FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.32
TB FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.30
TB FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.28
TB FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.8
Over the past couple seasons, the Buccaneers have brought several
backs into the fold, both veterans and draft picks. Presumably,
the idea has been to complement Fournette, and in some cases,
ultimately replace him. Well, I learned a couple things last week
in the game against Dallas. One, Fournette is going to be just
fine (21-127 rushing), and Rachaad White (6-14 rushing) isn’t
the heir apparent – at least not any time soon. With most of the
Bucs’ receiving corps on the injured list in some capacity, and
Tom Brady potentially playing without his starting LT, look for
Sunday to be Funday for Fournette. He’s a RB1 in all formats.
Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Julio Jones, and Russell Gage are ALL
on the Buccaneers injury report this week. It looks like Evans
and Gage will play, but Godwin likely won’t, and Jones is a question.
LT Donovan Smith could also be out. That’s not good news for Brady
owners who have watched TB12 lose four-straight to the Saints.
In those games he has been sacked 13 times and thrown eight interceptions
to just six touchdowns while averaging less than 7.0 yards per
attempt. Everyone knows betting against Brady is bad business,
but something seems off. Between the offseason and training camp
ruckus and the uneven start last week, I’m going to stay on the
sidelines here and let Tom shake it out before I get too invested.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are simply not going to throw the ball
to their tight ends unless they are wearing a Gronkowski jersey.
That’s basically what this amounts to. Even with the receiving
corps completely banged up, the passing attack will be overshadowed
by the run game, and when it’s not, the ball will go to
the 5th and 6th WR’s on the roster and the backs before
it goes down the seam to the TE. Despite, demonstrated ability
and flashes of production, Brate is destined to be a fantasy non-entity.
Of New York’s 80 offensive snaps in Week 1, Carter was on the
field for 50 of them, which was a dozen more than rookie Breece
Hall. Carter was the more effective of the two as well, turning
10 carries into 60 yards and adding another 40 on a team-high
seven receptions. With Joe Flacco expected to start at quarterback
once again while Zach Wilson (knee) recovers from arthroscopic
knee surgery, Carter may be in for a significant number of looks.
He could fill an RB3/flex slot.
With Flacco putting the ball in the air 59 times against the
Ravens, a lot of guys were thrown a lot of passes, thus it happens
that Moore’s seven targets trailed four other players in Week
1. Don’t get dissuaded. He’s still the top Jets wideout to play
at the moment, ahead of Corey Davis and even rookie first-rounder
Garrett Wilson. To that end Moore played 75 snaps in Week 1 compared
to 57 for Davis, and 41 for Wilson. You can deploy Moore as a
As noted above, Hall played 38 snaps in Week 1 compared to Carter’s
50. He ended up with a dozen total touches (six carries, six receptions)
for 61 yards. Cleveland did a good job of locking down Christian
McCaffrey last Sunday, and it feels optimistic to think that the
Jets will be able to produce two viable fantasy RBs against them
this weekend. As such, Carter gets the favorite, and Hall gets
the fade, though he could still be used as a flex if you’re
NYJ FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.7
NYJ FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.27
NYJ FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.12
NYJ FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.15
Fresh off signing a monster contract in the offseason, Njoku caught...
one pass... for seven yards... on one target. Woof. The Ravens
featured the tight end position in their matchup with the Jets,
collectively targeting Mark Andrews and Isaiah Likely 11 times.
Maybe the Browns will copy Baltimore’s gameplan and call Njoku’s
number on some of their throws. It’s a long trip from 1-7-0 to
viable fantasy production, but this is at least a week you could
roll the dice on Njoku as a fringe TE1.
A half-dozen passes from Jacoby Brissett went to Cooper, who
finished with three catches for 17 yards. For at least one Sunday,
Donovan Peoples-Jones showed the most chemistry with the journeyman
signal caller. This week, shying away from both seems like the
prudent choice. Baltimore hit a handful of big plays on New York,
but primary receiver Rashod Bateman was quiet. Cooper is likely
to draw the Bateman coverage and is no more than a desperation
No. 3 fantasy wideout this week.
Signed in the offseason to add some juice to Miami’s dormant
running game, Edmonds never got out of neutral in Week 1, managing
just 25 yards on his 12 carries. He did add 40 yards on four receptions
to offset some of his struggles on the ground, but it still wasn’t
a great showing. In terms of snaps, Edmonds played 38 of 60 with
Raheem Mostert logging 25 as the top backup. While the Jets struggled
to finish drives against the Ravens, Michael Carter did cobble
together a 100-yard day. Consider Edmonds a high-end RB3 or flex
Tagovailoa was solid in Week 1, passing for 270 yards, but the
Dolphins only scored one offensive touchdown and barely cracked
300 yards of total offense. The southpaw seemed to acclimate well
to Tyreek Hill (12 targets), but no one else was thrown to even
half as much, including Jaylen Waddle (5). Until Tagovailoa starts
finishing drives in the end zone his fantasy profile will remain
that of a backup.
MIA FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.26
MIA FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.16
MIA FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.30
MIA FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.14
Coming off a torn ACL last season, Dobbins (knee) couldn’t answer
the bell in Week 1, and in his absence the Ravens’ ground attack
struggled against the Jets: 21 carries, 63 yards, 0 TDs. The good
news is that the Ohio State alum was a full participant in practice
and looks to be on track to play in Week 2. Dobbins, who averaged
6.0 yards per carry as a rookie, was a popular breakout candidate
entering 2021, and he should be the lead back in Baltimore this
year. Of course, the team is unlikely to give him a full workload
right off the bat, so viewing Dobbins as an RB3 (if he’s active)
is the way to go.
Duvernay had a big game this past Sunday, hauling in four passes
for 54 yards and a pair of touchdowns. He played just a shade
over half of the offensive snaps, however, and tied with two others
for third on the team in targets (4). It’s certainly an
encouraging first step from Duvernay, who has done little since
being selected in the third round in 2020, but it’s far
too early to consider him a trustworthy option.
Welcome back, Mr. Samuel! After missing most of 2021 due to injury,
Samuel was a featured piece of Washington’s offense in Week
1, playing 55 of 77 offensive snaps. While that was third among
the wideouts, Samuel led the team in targets (11) and finished
with 72 total yards and a touchdown. He fumbled as well, which
is always a negative, but against a suspect Lions defense you
could plug him as a WR3.
For at least one week, Wentz kinda sorta resembled the guy that
made a run at the MVP award back in 2017. In fact, Week 1 was
the first time he threw four TD passes in a game since he suffered
the season-ending injury that ended that MVP push. Wentz still
made a couple of mistakes, shades of his final year in Philly,
but he draws a second straight plus matchup this Sunday. With
Detroit’s offense looking like it has some firepower, this
has a whiff of shootout potential. That gives Wentz fringe QB1
The rookie was on the receiving end of two of Wentz’s four touchdowns,
but don’t jump at the low hanging fruit. Dotson saw just five
targets in 68 snaps. That put him behind Gibson, Samuel, and Logan
Thomas. He did finish ahead of McLaurin, but I’d be more apt to
think there’ll be a focus on getting McLaurin the ball this week
at the expense of Dotson than anything else. Starting him feels
WAS FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.22
WAS FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.11
WAS FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.10
WAS FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.25
With St. Brown moving into the no brainer section this week,
Chark moves onto the map courtesy of a solid Week 1 that saw him
finish second only to St. Brown (12) in targets with eight --
Hockenson finished with seven. Signed to a one-year deal after
an injury-filled season in Jacksonville, Chark worked well ahead
of Josh Reynolds in an offensive plan that saw far fewer checkdowns
to backs than in 2021. He’s still dwelling more in WR4 territory,
but if you’re hard up and looking for someone with a little juice,
Chark could fit that bill.
While Swift ran wild on the Eagles in Week 1, Williams managed
just 30 yards on a dozen combined touches. He swooped in to score
a pair of short touchdowns, though, punching it in from a yard
away each time. That short-yardage/goal-line role can deliver
some value, though it’s exceedingly volatile, especially when
Swift (46 snaps) is seeing twice as many snaps as Williams (23).
If you wanted to roll Williams out in a flex role this Sunday,
it might pay off, but the downside is notable.
I’m sticking to my guns on this one. I had Ryan in this
spot last week and he posted 352 passing yards and a touchdown
and even ran for 12 yards, which is house money when it comes
to Ryan. He clearly has some chemistry with WR Michael Pittman
Jr., and the presence of RB Jonathan Taylor makes the play action
game work, which puts this attack right in Ryan’s wheelhouse.
The Colts need to develop some secondary, but Ryan will bring
that piece of the offense out, and it could happen this week.
Matty Ice goes up against a Jags defensive unit that gave up over
300 yards and four touchdowns to Carson Wentz in Week 1.
Hines had a respectable six catches for 50 yards in Week 1. As
expected, he filled the 3rd down role as a receiver out of the
backfield, but what was a little concerning was that he was more
of a check down option than an actual route runner, which is certainly
within his skill set. If that’s a long-term plan, he will
have some PPR value, because he will get the volume work. But
I’m not sure his yards and scoring opportunities are going
to be there, especially as it seems HC Frank Reich and company
are looking to develop some young players in the receiver group.
Pierce is in concussion protocol and may not suit up this week,
but even if he was, we might need to pump the brakes on his ceiling
a little bit. He had just two targets in Week 1, and one of them
he dropped in the end zone. He’s got the speed to stretch
the defense on the perimeter, and he is a talented receiver, but
he’s a rookie. Let’s give him some time to get up
IND FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.17
IND FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.22
IND FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.26
IND FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.3
Just the fact that Robinson took the field after tearing his
Achilles late last season was eye-opening to say the least. To
see him carry the load against Washington was next level. He is
clearly the RB1 for the Jags, and while Travis Etienne is certainly
stealing some touches, Robinson is getting his share of work around
the goal line as well. It may be tough sledding this week against
a Colts team that allowed just 2.8 yards per carry a week ago,
but that was against the Texans, who really don’t have a lead
back to speak of. Robinson is a good play as a mid-level RB2.
Lawrence was 24 of 42 passing last week, but he really struggled
with his accuracy on some big plays, overthrowing receivers on
some potential scoring throws. We’ll have to see if he can
clean that up. The biggest jump for most players comes between
year one and year two. I’m hopeful that Lawrence will show
that, it just didn’t show up in Week 1. The Colts present
more challenges than the Commanders. Indy can get after the QB
a little bit and they allowed just 6.5 yards per attempt last
week against the Texans.
WR Christian Kirk was the star of the passing attack, and it
looks like Zay Jones could develop into a solid WR2 in a system
that will accentuate his athleticism. That leaves the veteran
Jones as the WR3 at best, and RB Travis Etienne figures to just
take on more target share as the season moves on. Jones is a bench
stash at best at this point.
Those looking to bury Patterson might need a new hobby as he looked
strong running between the tackles against the Saints, finishing
with a career-high 120 yards and scored a TD on 22 carries. He
added three catches for 16 yards to finish fifth with 22.6 PPR
fantasy points. Taking away Josh Allen running reckless for 56
yards against the Rams, LA allowed 65 yards on 15 carries (4.3
average) to the Rams RBs. Even if rookie Tyler Allgeier is active,
I see Patterson staying above ground and continuing his strong
This really is a “On the Fence” moment. The Rams allowed a mobile
QB to get loose and wreak havoc in Week 1, will it happen in Week
2? Mariota, who had been on mothballs for the past few years,
was a surprise against a vaunted New Orleans defense. He was the
9th highest scoring QB, completing 60 percent of his passes for
215 yards. He ran the option and racked up 12 carries for 72 yards
and a TD, finishing with 19.8 FPts. The Falcons can have success,
but with a week of tape available, this will bring me down off
the fence. Which is good, the cross-breeze up there is surprisingly
brisk. Mariota comes back to earth this week against a Rams team
looking to get a bad Week 1 taste out of their mouth.
I know, I know, you drafted Pitts too early to see his meager
stat line of two catches for 19 yards; compounded by the fact
he didn’t have a second half catch. I will try to reign you in
a bit and say brighter days are ahead. Just not this week. (Duck!)
The Rams allowed 1 catch to Dawson Knox last week and they will
be looking at Pitts as priority number one. Seattle awaits in
Week 3, so let’s hang on and understand the ups and downs of the
season and the parable about not shooting the messenger.
ATL FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.13
ATL FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.29
ATL FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.4
ATL FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.4
As everyone watched the Bills take apart the Rams, some might
have wondered, “What’s wrong with the Rams?” However, anyone watching
at some point did have to ask, “What’s wrong with Stafford?” He
finished with 240 yards, one TD and three bad looking INTs. His
7.8 fantasy points were 30th out the 32 starting QBs. The Falcons
played well for three quarters, but let Jamies Winston come alive
in the 4th quarter and finish with 21.6 points, sixth most for
the week. Coach Sean McVay will be most certainly be ready, so
I’m not going to count out Stafford and this game plan at home.
Wrongs will be righted!
Sure, Cooper Kupp is unstoppable, but Robinson looked like he
stopped in the season opener. The two targets did not help his
cause and the one catch for 12 yards helped him finish fourth,
on his own team with 2.2 FPts. Expect a better early gameplan
by McVay to help Robinson to get his groove back. The Falcons-D
allowed decent fantasy points to the 2nd receiving option for
the Saints (Jarvis Landry 7-114-0). I expect Robinson, who was
on the field for all but two of LA’s offensive snaps last week,
to get going early and often.
After Akers dropped a 0.0-point performance in the prime-time
season opener, fantasy players are nervously wondering if taking
him was the first step in a lost season. He had three carries
for no yards and that was it. Saying he has nowhere to go but
up is like saying, technically, The Hindenburg is no longer flammable.
His always positive coach called him out for his lack of urgency
and accountability on each play. Perhaps the injury to Kyren Williams
and the Falcons-D offer a different path for Week 2, for his sake,
I hope so.
If you were told before Week 1 that Metcalf would have seven receptions
in Week 1, I am sure you would have been excited by that prospect.
The only problem is those catches accounted for only 36 yards.
What you are left with is a pedestrian week and a “friend” who
can see into the future but only gives you lame fantasy crumbs.
This might be the new-look Geno offense with 28 attempts, but
Metcalf did receive the lion share with 7 targets to Tyler
Lockett’s 4. He is going to get his looks, so stick with him
one more week to see if those looks are actually downfield.
So, if this is the new-look, ball-control offense, Penny should
be a steady play. He rushed 12 times for 60 yards and caught two
passes It might not be pretty, but it is 14 touches a game and
he played twice as many snaps as Travis Homer. My concern is the
likely return of Kenneth Walker (hernia) and Seattle walks into
an angry SF team that was upset in the Chicago rain by the Bears.
His 14 touches this week might be him checking his body to see
if everything is still intact.
Fade: All those TE’s
If you were watching Monday night, you had to wonder, “That was
a nice catch. Who is Colby
Parkinson?” The TE’s are going to be a three-headed monster
in Seattle this year. Between Parkinson, Noah
Fant and Will
Dissly, they combined for seven catches and 102 yards and
one TD. Dissly led the trio with 13.3 FPts, but until one of these
guys distances himself from the crowd, stay away.
SEA FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.16
SEA FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.7
SEA FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.20
SEA FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.7
You don’t want to give any player a pass, but we might want to
think about it in Lance’s case. Awful field conditions, steady
to heavy rain, losing your starting RB to injury and missing one
of your starting tackles are not perfect conditions. Through the
air, he was 13 for 28 for 164 yards and an INT. Meh. He will make
his hay this season running the ball. He ran 13 times (!) for
54 yards on a very sloppy field. On a dry track, against a Seattle-D
that gave up 340 passing yards (third most in Wk1), Lance will
get his lift-off moment and help bring Seattle back to earth.
With Elijah Mitchell out two months with a strained MCL, Wilson
will get his chance to shine. Well, he will get his chance after
Deebo gets all the interesting running plays. Wilson finished
second on the team in carries with nine, but only picked up 22
yards, where Deebo ran 8 times for 52 yards with their lone touchdown
on the day. I will give everyone the benefit of the doubt with
the weather last week. The team runs the ball (third most rushing
attempts Wk1) and he is the lead back, so let the chips falls
where they may.
It looked like there might be a chance that Kittle would play
Week 1 as he made the trip with the team to Chicago, but his groin
wouldn’t let him go. It could be a good matchup for Kittle as
Seattle allowed seven catches for 85 yards to the Denver tight
ends. As hardcore as Kittle is, I can’t imagine a scenario where
he is healed enough to cut loose and play like the player you
drafted. Even if he plays, I think you have to wade into your
streaming options and give him one more week to heal.
You never know what to make of the Houston offense, but the one
thing everyone understands is that Cooks is still their best weapon
- 12 targets against the Colts Week 1. He caught seven of them
for 86 yards to lead the team in both categories. He will draw
plenty of coverage from Patrick Surtain and a Denver-D that is
number one against fantasy WRs. Yes, he will get a dozen more
targets and will finish with comparable numbers. He is consistent,
but sadly, so is his ceiling.
So much for the Dameon Pierce hype train. It was derailed by a
grizzled old Patriot. Did it take place near Valley Forge? Burkhead
did what he always does on Sundays, a little of everything. He
led the team with 14 rushes for 40 yards and was second on the
team with 5 catches for 30 yards. Pierce was second on the team
with 11 carries, so it isn’t like he was eliminated from the game
plan completely. Burkhead faces Denver which is ranked No.1 against
fantasy RB’s according to ESPN. (Both #1 against RBs and WRs?
Didn’t they lose?) Zero-RB drafters might need to go after him,
but let him pass. That fare might be a bit too much at this point
of the season.
Is this the season Howard is finally put in a position to succeed?
He never seemed to get a fair shake in his five years in Tampa.
Could a fresh start be what he needs? What he really needs is
more targets. He caught two touchdowns on Sunday to send tight
end needy teams into a flutter. He played on 17% of the snaps
and those were his only two targets of the game. I don’t think
that is sustainable. The team deployed three TEs, but only threw
four passes to them. Not great. Can he succeed here? He could,
but until more targets become available, I say let someone else
pick him up this week.
HOU FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.10
HOU FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.3
HOU FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.6
HOU FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.16
No Brainers: Their clock management at the end
of the game.
Even if this time share continues with Melvin Gordon, I don’t
think it will be an issue for Williams. In an odd mix Monday,
Gordon had more carries (12 for 58 yards) than Williams’ seven
for 43 yards. But Williams dominated the receiving game, leading
the team with 11 catches and finishing with 65 yards. He finished
as RB 12 for the week and now draws the 30th-ranked Texans. There
is a lot to like in this matchup, including lessons about being
a good teammate and the importance of sharing.
Nobody is really sure how the ride is going to go for the receivers
in Denver this year. Jerry Jeudy and Sutton both had seven targets
and reeled in four catches on Monday night. Jeudy had the long
TD catch and 102 yards and Sutton ended with 72 of his own. Houston
was unable to stop Michael Pittman Jr. in Week 1 to the tune of
nine catches for 121 yards and a touchdown and the Texans allowed
the sixth most fantasy points to WRs. Sutton could be the alpha
this week or he could be keeping time and playing second fiddle.
Temper your expectations and expect plenty of starts and stops
Falling behind by three scores can really upend your game script.
The Cardinals sluggish start quickly slowed down Conner’s day
against KC. His stat line, 10 carries for 26 yards and a touchdown
and five grabs for 29 yards, accurately surmises the blandness
of Arizona’s overall performance. On a more positive note, he
finished 14th in scoring with 16.9 FPts and dominated carries
and receiving while the game was still close. The Raiders aren’t
projected to be stout on defense but they did hold the Chargers
RBs to 26-71-0 on the ground and 8-56-1 through the air.
The red carpet has been rolled out, it is now up to you Rondale.
It is really up to his hamstring, but you understand my point.
With DeAndre Hopkins suspended and Christian Kirk counting his
money in Jacksonville, Hollywood Brown needs a running mate to
help open up this offense. Moore, who was a jack of all trades
at Purdue, had flashes his rookie year with 54 catches and seems
poised to take over Kirk’s position in the slot. His arrival will
help restructure the offense. He just needs to find the field.
He is flex-worthy if he suits up in Week 2.
Sadly, Moore’s arrival will signal Dortch’s departure. Dortch
was very active against Kansas City, leading the team with seven
catches for 63 yards. The team’s struggles on both sides of the
ball were not his fault. Moore will quickly commandeer his targets
and relegate him back to the bench. Dortch did secure his place
on the roster and will add depth to a thin receiver group. Hang
in there, kid.
ARI FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.1
ARI FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.1
ARI FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.15
ARI FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.1
I didn’t realize that target share travels from team to team.
The big question surrounding Adams this offseason was if he would
get the 10 targets he averaged in Green Bay. We quickly found
out the answer to that. He was targeted 17 times, most in the
league, and finished with 10 catches for 141 yards and a TD last
week against the Chargers. His 30.1 FPts were the 3rd most in
Week 1. He has quickly entered the “No Brainer” category. It was
fun while it lasted. Now go sit over there by Cooper Kupp and
Adams’ arrival, and his potential stranglehold on targets, suddenly
becomes a problem for the other pass catchers. Waller and Renfrow
each ended last week with six targets, with varying degrees of
success. Waller had a solid game, four catches for 79 yards and
finished ninth in scoring for TEs. Renfrow, on the other hand,
had to deal with leftovers, ending with three catches for 21 yards.
In an injury shortened season last year, Waller still averaged
8.4 targets a game and in Renfrow’s 103-catch season last year,
averaged 7.5 per game. The targets might be slightly off, but
the quality of them is what is going to shape their seasons going
forward. Waller is a must start, but Renfrow’s season could be
upended already. Hold off as long as you can with him. I hope
you don’t get choked out.
Wide receiver Tee Higgins was knocked out of Sunday’s game
against the Steelers, which led to some interesting pass-catching
usage in Cincinnati. Perhaps most interesting was the eight targets
that came tight end Hayden Hurst’s direction. Hurst was
an off-season acquisition for the Bengals after a mediocre run
in Baltimore and Atlanta but he was by far and away the tight
end snap leader for Cincinnati in Week 1, which certainly could
have some potential for fantasy value this season. The tight end
position was a complete disaster in Week 1 and many managers will
be searching for a replacement to the one they drafted as we head
into Week 2, so don’t sleep on Hurst and his potentially
elevated target share.
The concussion suffered by Tee Higgins led to elevated snaps
for both Tyler Boyd and Mike Thomas. Thomas was predictably useless
for fantasy, while Boyd stepped up and scored a touchdown on four
catches for 33 yards. While that touchdown was nice, it’s almost
impossible to believe that he’ll continue to be a red zone threat
even if Higgins were to be miss time. Boyd scored just five touchdowns
in all of 2021 while delivering just three games with more than
five receptions. He might see increased usage if Higgins is unable
to play with the concussion lingering, but he’s a fade for fantasy
against a Cowboys defense that played fairly well in Week 1.
CIN FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.27
CIN FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.28
CIN FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.29
CIN FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.6
A humiliating Week 1 loss to the Buccaneers meant some ugly performances
for the Cowboys fantasy options, but there are still some positives
to take away if you’re a manager who’s rostering Ezekiel Elliott.
While Elliott narrowly out-snapped Tony Pollard by the end of
the game, he was utilized much more heavily at the beginning of
the game when the Cowboys were still staying close on the scoreboard.
Once it got to garbage time, that’s when Pollard saw more playing
time. This tells us that the off-season rumors of a committee
share in this backfield were greatly exaggerated and while Pollard
will still be involved, he’s still very much the “B” to Elliott’s
“A” in the Cowboys’ coaching staff’s eyes.
Dallas will not be an elite offense with Cooper Rush behind center,
but they should lean heavily on their backs to be involved both
in carrying the ball and in the passing game, which should allow
Elliott to deliver at least RB2 numbers.
It’s hard to look at the first two rounds of fantasy drafts
and find a more disappointing performance than Cowboys top wide
receiver CeeDee Lamb. With Amari Cooper gone and injuries up and
down the wide receiver room, Lamb was in line for a huge game.
While he failed to deliver, catching just two passes for 29 yards,
the reality is that the peripheral numbers were still there. Lamb
led the Cowboys with 11 targets on the night while playing nearly
every snap. There’s no question that he is the top target
in this offense and with other players still injured, he should
be in line for another heavy target share game.
The obvious worry here is that Cooper Rush just won’t be
able to get the ball to anyone and the passing game is going to
be so bad that we want no part of it, but it’s also true
that backup quarterbacks often rely more heavily on their top
wide receiver than even starting quarterbacks do. If Lamb can
maintain even a 25-percent target share, even in a mediocre passing
game, he should be a viable fantasy option as a WR2.
Pollard has been a mid-round draft darling for praying on Ezekiel
Elliott’s demise for a few years now, but it just continues
to not happen. Pollard touched the ball just eight times in Week
1, totaling a measly 22 yards with those touches while playing
behind Elliott early in the game and throughout the game, even
on passing downs.
You’ll hear some fantasy experts selling the narrative that the
Cowboys are just going to run the ball all game long and Pollard
should see an increased workload because of that, but the problem
is that if they’re not scoring enough points, they’re going to
fall behind in games, especially against teams with good offenses
like the Bengals whom they face here in Week 2. Pollard may have
his time to shine at some point this season, but the usage just
is not there yet for us to justify putting him in lineups, especially
when the Cowboys offense as a whole is expected to be pretty bad
in the absence of Dak Prescott.
Coming into the season, Mooney was viewed as the clear-cut No.
1 option in Chicago’s passing game, and his one-catch, eight-yard
showing last Sunday does nothing to change that -- especially
since it was pouring rain. The Packers have a strong secondary,
though, even if Justin Jefferson was able to exploit them, and
they should be able to make things tough on Mooney. You could
talk yourself into rolling Mooney out as a shaky WR3 based on
his status as Justin Fields’ top option, but if you have talented
backups with better matchups you should consider those carefully.
Kmet was generating some breakout momentum toward the end of
the preseason, and while that may still happen, he was M.I.A.
in the opener, going without a catch while only being targeted
once. The Packers put the clamps on Irv Smith in Week 1, and their
ILB duo of De’Vondre Campbell and Quay Walker (shoulder) cover
a lot of ground. This could be a good week to keep Kmet on your
CHI FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.29
CHI FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.31
CHI FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.16
CHI FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.28
Rodgers passed for just 195 yards and a TD in Week 1, though
his day would’ve been different had Christian Watson hauled in
an easy 75-yard bomb. As expected, the sky is falling in Green
Bay. How quickly people forget. The Packers laid an egg in Week
1 last year as well, and the following Monday Rodgers threw for
255 yards and 4 TDs in a win over the Lions. It’s no slam dunk,
as Green Bay’s passing attack remains a work in progress, but
No. 12’s history against the Bears suggests he’ll figure it out.
Don’t hesitate to use Rodgers as your QB1 on SNF.
One of three starters missing in Week 1, along with both tackles,
Lazard (ankle) was back at practice on Wednesday and looks to
be on track to make his 2022 debut this Sunday night against the
Bears. While the Packers have some potential outside, most notably
Watson and Romeo Doubs, Lazard is the closest thing that have
to a No.1 receiver now that Davante Adams is gone. Don’t be surprised
to see Rodgers focus in on Lazard, who offers low-end WR3 value
with more upside than you might think.
While Treylon Burks stole the headlines during the NFL Draft
and throughout training camp, it was another rookie wide receiver
- fifth-round pick Kyle Phillips - who showed up in a big way
for the Titans in Week 1. Phillips was targeted nine times, catching
six of those passes for 66 yards, and he’s already starting to
draw comparisons to Raiders’ slot wide receiver Hunter Renfrow.
Phillips played primarily out of the slot in Week 1, which is
where Cooper Kupp also lined up for the majority of his snaps
against the Bills and absolutely torched them. Phillips certainly
cannot be mentioned in the same breath as Kupp from a production
standpoint, but the usage is what we’re interested in and
this looks like it could be a sneaky-good opportunity for the
rookie to turn in his second impressive, under-the-radar fantasy
day. He’s only an option in very deep formats, but he’s
someone who is probably available on waivers in just about every
seasonal league and he could be a plug-and-play option in those
deeper PPR formats.
The Titans struggled to move the ball on the ground in Week 1,
but their passing game actually got off to a pretty decent start
despite some less-than-stellar performances from Robert Woods
and Treylon Burks. Ryan Tannehill spread the ball around, throwing
for 266 yards and a pair of touchdowns on the day against a better-than-advertised
Now in Week 2, the Titans head to Buffalo to face a Bills defense
that really did a number of the defending Super Bowl Champion
Rams in Week 1. This isn’t a great matchup as the Bills
defense looks excellent, but if the Bills are able to contain
Derrick Henry like the Giants were able to in Week 1, there’s
also a great chance that they’re going to be able to score
points themselves and force the Titans to throw the ball in order
to keep up. This could mean a higher-than-usual volume day for
Tannehill and while the efficiency might suffer a bit, he should
be able to deliver a fairly solid fantasy day. Tannehill is probably
only a real option in SuperFlex formats right now, but you could
do a lot worse than him in those situations.
No one is making the argument that Dontrell Hilliard is earning
himself a timeshare with Derrick Henry, but after out-scoring
the bruiser on limited touches in Week 1, Hilliard’s fantasy
ownership numbers jumped significantly heading into this week’s
contest. Hilliard is one of the more obvious “fades”
on the board, however, as he played on less than 20 percent of
Tennessee’s snaps. Not only that, but he had never really
been a big-time passing game participant for the Titans or any
other team he has been a part of. In fact, prior to his two against
the Giants in Week 1, Hilliard had never caught an NFL touchdown
pass in his four-year career.
TEN FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.18
TEN FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.6
TEN FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.17
TEN FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.23
The hot streak for Gabriel Davis from 2021 continued into 2022
as he has now caught a ridiculous 10 touchdowns over his past
eight starts, including the playoffs. While he has only seen more
than five targets in four of those games, Davis has established
himself as the true every-down starter opposite Stefon Diggs in
what is looking like it will again be one of the league’s
top offenses. He played almost every single snap for the team
in Week 1, far exceeding any other receiver in the offense, including
Davis’ five targets in Week 1 are a bit of a concern, but
he’s a player who doesn’t necessarily need a large
target share in order to deliver fantasy points. The Titans are
a good defense, but they did allow a long reception to Sterling
Shepard in Week 1 and there’s no reason to think that Davis
can’t do something similar here in Week 2.
The Titans did a fairly good job of containing the Giants wide
receivers in Week 1, but they did allow one of the big guys -
tight end Chris Myarick - to sneak into the end zone for a touchdown.
This is too small of a sample size to really extrapolate much
from, but we know that Knox is more of a touchdown-or-bust type
of tight end to begin with, so having a chance to play against
a team that already gave up a touchdown to a much less-talented
player at the position seems to bode well for Knox’s chances to
score here in Week 2.
Just about everything went well for the Bills in Week 1 as they
absolutely humiliated the Rams in the first game of the 2022 NFL
Season. But despite the blowout win, one player who did not deliver
from a fantasy standpoint was running back Devin Singletary. Singletary
saw just 10 touches on the night, while Zack Moss had 12 and rookie
James Cook even got some work when the score was still relatively
None of this bodes well for Singletary’s chances to be
an every-down workhorse back for the Bills this season. Sure,
the game was out of control and that likely played a factor in
Moss playing more snaps, but Cook actually fumbled early in the
contest and became a non-factor in the game immediately thereafter.
If we assume that Cook will be out of the dog house after a week
of practice, there’s a very real chance that this could
end up being a full-on committee. Singletary is almost certainly
the best player to own in that committee, but the Bills remain
one of the league’s most pass-heavy offenses to begin with
and they really haven’t utilized their backs in the passing
game enough to make up for their lack of carries.
Yes, Saquon Barkley lit up the Titans in Week 1, but Devin Singletary
is not Saquon Barkley. Fade him and this entire Buffalo backfield
until we see some more clarity.
With an injury to Dak Prescott and multiple top quarterbacks
failing to deliver in Week 1, many fantasy managers will be looking
for another option in Week 2. Minnesota’s Kirk Cousins is
still available in quite a few leagues and he’s one of the
better backup QBs in fantasy heading into Week 2 – so good,
in fact, that he might be moving into “every week starter”
Cousins looked great in Week 1, throwing for 277 yards and two
touchdowns and that could have been even more if the Packers lived
up to their end of the bargain on the scoreboard. Week 2 will
see the Vikings face another offense that performed very well
in Week 1, the Eagles, and also a defense that gave up a ton of
points and yards to the Lions. This could be a legitimate shootout
on Monday night and it’s always good to have quarterbacks
in those types of games.
Veteran Vikings wide receiver Adam Thielen saw just four passes
come his way in Week 1, but it’s worth considering that
the Vikings really did not need to utilize him much in what was
an easy blowout victory. There’s no question that Jefferson
is the top receiving option on this team, but Thielen should still
be the second option in the passing game most weeks. If you look
back to Week 1, the second option for the Lions was D.J. Chark,
who caught four passes for 52 yards and a touchdown on eight targets.
This is a defense that is definitely exploitable through the air
and while we need to be a bit worried that Thielen might be getting
phased out of the offense, he’s still a player who should
probably be in most fantasy lineups this week.
Irv was a late-round tight end target by many fantasy managers,
but he absolutely flopped in Week 1, catching zero passes. What’s
worse is that Smith didn’t even see many opportunities as he was
targeted just twice in the entire game, while fellow tight end
Johnny Mundt got the start and was targeted three times. Normally
it’s not great to panic and drop a player after one game, but
Smith is someone you can probably feel safe getting rid of - and
certainly not starting - right now in most formats.
MIN FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.30
MIN FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.8
MIN FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.27
MIN FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.9
The Eagles running back situation was a big point of contention
in fantasy circles this offseason, but we got a pretty good indication
of what the Eagles plan on doing this season in Week 1, when Miles
Sanders played over 50 percent of snaps. His 13 carries were also
significantly more than Kenneth Gainwell’s five and Boston Scott’s
This is still a committee backfield, but Sanders is the lead
back of that committee. With this game expected to be a high-scoring
contest, look for Sanders to be heavily involved with a good opportunity
to make it two straight games with a touchdown after not scoring
even once in all of 2021.
The newly acquired A.J. Brown was the apple of Jalen Hurts’ eye
in Week 1, but don’t expect that to be the case every week. Brown
out-targeted the other Eagles pass catchers with 13 targets, while
Smith and Goedert were targeted just four times in what was a
high-scoring contest with the Lions.
Both players are shaky starts given that we don’t know
for sure that they’re going to see a lot of targets in what
has been a run-heavy offense since Hurts took over, but they are
easily the best two options in this passing game after Brown.
Goedert, of course, plays tight end, which was a disaster in Week
1, so don’t start looking for replacement options for him.
With Miles Sanders playing over 50 percent of the snaps for the
Eagles in Week 1, Kenneth Gainwell was left to under a 30 percent
snap share against Lions. While he was able to score a touchdown,
that type of minimal usage is just not something that can be relied
upon going forward. Gainwell will have games with bigger workloads,
especially if Sanders gets banged up, but he needs to be on fantasy
benches for now.