SATURDAY, SEPT 17th
Can you feel it? The cool autumn air wafting in through the window. An assortment of nachos and wings sitting tantalizingly on the table across from you. Michaels and Collinsworth’s melodic voices describing, in detail, the amazing drive that ended with LeGarret Blount bulldozing into the end zone, simultaneously gifting my opponent points while also taking them from me and all but cementing an 0-1 start because hey, the Arizona defense was pretty good last year and the Pats are going in without Brady OR Gronk.
That was just me? Fortunately the ESPN App was up and working flawlessly so we could all keep track of… Oh, right.
Football is back! And with it the usual anxiety-fuelled, frustration-ridden excitement of another fantasy season. Fortunately you aren’t alone. I’m here to help you through these tough times, absorbing all the stats so you won’t have to. (But you probably should anyway. At least some of the stats. This is your fantasy team after all.)
Let’s have a look at Week 2 with the Fantasy Do’s and Don’ts!
Eli Manning (NYG) – Derek Carr torched the Saints secondary for 319 yards. Eli has one of the best receivers in the league with Beckham Jr. and the man who used to be a number one in Victor Cruz. Expect both to help take Manning into the promise land.
Aaron Rodgers (GB) – We all saw what he did last week. The Vikings defense may be what won them their otherwise lackluster game, but that was against Marcus Mariota. No disrespect to the young QB, but he’s no Aaron Rodgers. Look for the hero of Green Bay to do what he does best.
Jameis Winston (TB) – Those 4 touchdowns were no fluke. The Falcons don’t boast the greatest secondary in the league, but Winston has the talent. He also has the support around him to make something of it. With Martin posing a threat on the ground and Evans still racking up the numbers, this season will cement Winston as one of the best in the league.
Cam Newton (CAR) – Against the Broncos Newton was able to pull in 194 yards and a touchdown in the air, adding 54 yards and another score with his legs. Next he’ll be facing the 49ers. Need I say more?
Derek Carr (OAK) – Last week he hit over 300 yards against the Saints and the Falcons won’t provide much more of a threat. The touchdowns weren’t there for him, but he still managed 22.4 fantasy points in standard league scoring. With the likes of Amari Cooper and Latavius Murray playing support, the Raiders QB should continue the season with another great outing.
Ryan Tannehill (MIA) – This one hurts, considering my #FinsUp status every Sunday, but man if the kid doesn’t deserve to be here. Yes, they were playing against the Seahawks, but nothing about their offense provides a sense of confidence.
Blaine Gabbert (SF) – If anyone managed to make it through that Monday night game without falling asleep they’d understand his placement on this list. There’s nothing particularly impressive about the 49ers QB. 170 yards and a single score won’t amount to much against Carolina.
Whoever Starts for the Browns (CLE) – *see last 4 seasons*
CJ Anderson (DEN) – He proved himself to be not only the Anderson of two years ago, but also the focal point of the Broncos’ offense. With Demarius Thomas dealing with a hip injury that, while not serious enough to stop him from practicing, could see him play a diminished role with the risk of missing time, Anderson is only going to see his role increase.
Demarco Murray (TEN) – There were many who spoke out against the fact that Murray was even that great of a running back. At the time his only success came behind the great offense line that made Darren McFadden look good last season. His performance last week should silence them all. He may not be the stud that he was in Dallas, but he has plenty of talent to go around and the Titans know it.
Spencer Ware (KC) – Should Jamaal Charles miss another game, which it’s likely he will, Ware is primed for another heavy workload. His 11 rushes for 70 yards and a score was impressive, but what’s even more so is his involvement in the passing game. At 7 catches for 129 yards, he’s a must-play.
DeAngelo Williams (PIT) – Every day without Le’Veon Bell is a great day for DeAngelo Williams owners. The Steelers seem to enjoy involving their running backs in every aspect of their offense, and with Antonio Brown keeping the defense spread, it allows more chances for Williams to shine.
Lamar Miller (HOU) – His first game as a Texan proved that he was being held back in Miami, and their own demise. Miller finished with the most rushes of his career (28) and over 100 yards. The Chargers gave up 3 scores to the Chief’s backfield, so that level of production is bound to lead to a good day for the former Dolphin.
Thomas Rawls (SEA) – After breaking his ankle last season, Rawls avoided the preseason with promises from coach Pete Carroll that he’ll be playing Week 1. He did, but he also split his carries with rookie Christine Michael. I doubt he’ll be much more productive this week, giving Michael another opportunity to prove himself.
Devonta Freeman (ATL) – Following a fantastic season last year that ended less than spectacular, Freeman seems to be continuing where he left off. Tevin Coleman’s injury gave Freeman the green light, but now that Coleman is back and playing well (though it wouldn’t take much to outperform Freeman’s 11 for 20) it’s more than likely he’ll be taking his starting position back over the next few games.
Doug Baldwin (SEA) – As much as I may not like him, he has a connection with Russel Wilson. Add that to the fact that the last time he faced off against the Rams he walked away with 8 catches for 118 yards and a touchdown and you have as favorable a matchup as you can get.
Kelvin Benjamin (CAR) – He came out in the season opener with a spectacular performance and he’s only going to get better.
Stefon Diggs (MIN) – Diggs brought down 7 catches for 103 yards and looked good doing it. With Sam Bradford taking the helm for Week 2, I expect him to continue his push for the #1 spot on the Vikings WR chart. Adrian Peterson won’t have as many bad games as he did last week, which will allow Diggs to take advantage.
Larry Fitzgerald (ARI) – I expect the Bucs to come out swinging and Palmer is going to need to throw to keep the Cardinals alive. Fitzgerald’s 8 for 81 and 2 touchdowns last week will be more of the same moving forward. I’m not promising multiple scores a game, but he’s going to be a prominent force of this team’s offense.
Emmanuel Sanders (DEN) – With Demaryius Thomas not at 100%, Sanders will have to take charge as the leader of their receiving core. Against a less-than trustworthy Colts’ secondary and with Anderson running so well, Sanders should be able to take full advantage and find that end zone.
Dez Bryant (DAL) – He’s been held to five or less catches the last 6 games against the Redskins. Coupled with his poor performance last week and Ezekiel Elliot’s likelihood to make up a good chunk of the offense, it’s difficult to see this game as Dez’s return to glory.
Julius Thomas (JAX) – Blake Bortles tends to throw the ball more often than not. While his touchdowns weren’t exactly up there, the sole score thrown was to his tight end Thomas, who looked good pretty much all game.
Delanie Walker (TEN) – The Lions gave up three scores to a tight end last week and I expect someone as talented as Walker to take full advantage of that fact.
Jimmy Graham (SEA) – He’ll be on my Don’t List from now until the end of the season. That’s how confident I am that his glory days are far behind him. I’d love for him to prove me wrong, but until that day comes, there are other, better tight ends worth your time.
Panthers (CAR) – *see Blaine Gabbert* I don’t expect the 49ers to have nearly as much success as they did against the Rams, and the Panthers are going to come into this game angry, starting the season 0-1.
Ravens (BAL) – This is just as much as who they’re facing as any of their own defensive talent. The Browns are lacking much in the way of an offense. Future stream team?
Dolphins (MIA) – They may have held the Seahawks to a 12-point outing, but that was just as much on Seattle, if not more, than anything the Dolphins did. Garoppolo showed that he’s more than capable even without Gronkowski, and he’s sure to have a field day with the added possessions the Dolphins are likely going to give him.
Cardinals (ARI) – The Patriots all but had their way for a good portion of yards and scores and that was without their best weapons. The Bucs are coming in with Winston, Evans, and Martin all looking to extend their Week 1 success.
Saints (NO) and Giants (NYG) – Expect this to be a shootout.
I’ve been a firm believer in two rules when it comes to fantasy football.
1. Always start your studs.
2. Give a player at least 2 weeks to improve before benching them.
And demoting a player from WR1 to WR2 after consecutive poor performances is a viable strategy. They need to know you’re a strict GM.
Good luck this week. May the calls be ever in your favor.
– Derek Feuti (@djcreso)
Untamed Ocelots (0-1)