SATURDAY, SEPT 24
There is no sure thing in fantasy, except to say that there is no sure thing.
Every season is a new era. It introduces us to new players, and makes us forget about others with a single completion. We all remember where we were when we watched Odell Beckham Jr. make that three finger catch. We likely all had those friends who thought it was just a one time thing. A brief moment in the spotlight. And then he went on to have game after game with stats that made us dread facing whoever was lucky enough to have him on their fantasy team. That first year he led my friend Steve to a Super Bowl appearance in the Mantasy League, scoring over twenty points and leading to one in a series of anxiety attacks I had since all my players were finished. The lead was almost completely erased. This one player could’ve taken the Championship when I had it all but won.
It was this same week that saw Matt Asiata run for two touchdowns and fifty yards. On the opposite end of the field, Mike Wallace brought in two touchdowns and fifty yards himself. Tony Romo decided to light up the field with four touchdowns in the first half, one of which going to Dez Bryant along with seventy-three yards. All of these things existed solely in that one week, a culmination of the season it existed in.
Injuries, like the numerous ones that hit players last week, are all a part of the story. They create branching paths that only a handful of people will experience. Because you can’t play Doug Martin or Adrian Peterson or Keenan Allen, you’re introduced to others who just might make an impact on your season, giving moments as unforgettable as the ones described above.
Sam Bradford (MIN) – Here I am, doing something I never would’ve thought I’d be doing. It’s as if last week’s bad calls and the years of watching Sam Bradford prove he can’t be trusted (or consistent). But trust him I am. He looked great on Sunday, completing 71% of his passes for nearly 300 yards and touchdowns. Carolina may not be the best matchup for him to be looking at, but there’s a story brewing in Minnesota. Sam Bradford and Stefon Diggs aren’t going to let it end here.
Ryan Tannehill (MIA) – He made me eat my words last week, so consider this a lesson learned. Sure, it was a slow start, but it’s the points that matter. Blake Bortles has proven that much. With Parker coming out big with over 100 yards, I expect Tannehill to come up with another great performance against a more exploitable secondary in Cleveland.
Tyrod Taylor (BUF) – Taylor is king of the big plays, and may be dependent on them for games like last week, but he’s also a quarterback with a lot of talent. I see this week as a continuation of that, a return to form for the Buffalo quarterback.
Russell Wilson (SEA) – With Baldwin, Lockett, Rawls, and Russel himself not at 100%, this offense is in tatters. We saw it in Week 1 against Miami, and I don’t see it getting much better.
Melvin Gordon (SD) – He carried the ball 14 times for 57 yards and 2 touchdowns in Week 1, with Danny Woodhead to take some of the red zone targets. Last week, without Woodhead (who will be out the rest of the season with an ACL tear) he carried the ball 24 times for 102 yards and a single touchdown. The touches are going to be there for Gordon and he has the talent to make something of them. Especially against a Colts team who average 125 rushing yards a game.
Jeremy Langford (CHI) – Cutler is out. Hoyer is in. Expect the passing game to suffer and the Bears to rely a little more on the run. Langford has scored a touchdown in each of the last two games. Let’s make it three.
Bengals (CIN) – Don’t trust any of them. Jeremy Hill hasn’t hit double digits yet, and Giovani Bernard would need to reproduce the performance he did last week for me to even start to think he’s consistent.
Seahawks (SEA) – Basically the same reason as the Bengals, only neither running back has had even an 8 point game.
Quincy Enunwa (NYJ) – He’s been a consistent (and successful) part of the Jets’ offense since Week 1. Both Marshall and Decker were banged up after last week’s game against the Bills, and while I don’t think either of them will take any sort of significant dip in production, Enunwa is the guy to benefit should they miss a few extra snaps.
DeVante Parker (MIA) – Coming into this season I was high on Parker. He closed out the last six games of the season last year (coming back from an injury, sound familiar?) scoring in three and averaging over 80 yards in four. The kid’s got talent and he’s in the position to make the most of it.
Stefon Diggs (MIN) – You’ve seen what he can do. This is the last time he’ll make the list, because you should be starting him from here on out. He’s a stud. Treat him like one.
Mike Wallace (BAL) – This is not a fluke. During his last year in Miami, Wallace finished with 67 catches for 862 and 10 touchdowns, tying for the most scores in his career. He has 3 touchdowns and 132 yards in the first two games. You’re starting him.
Alshon Jeffery (CHI) – It’s nothing against him. He’s played outstandingly since the start of the season, only lacking in the end zone department. It’s having an issue with Brian Hoyer. I’m prepared to be proven wrong, but Hoyer won’t be the man to do it.
John Brown (ARI) – Benched until further notice. He may make an impact later in the season, but you need to actually make the playoffs in order for that to help you, and right now Brown is not helping you do that.
Gary Barnidge (CLE) – He’s pretty much all they have. He may have had a rocky start, but I have faith that the “Barnkowski” of old, the one we all fell in love with, is not gone. With the position so thin, he’s worth the risk.
Vikings (MIN) – I’m a believer in this defense. With 33 points totaled after the first two games (14 of which coming against the Packers, no less) they’re going to emerge as a top spot contender. Booth would be killed before the night was done.
Dolphins (MIA) – They’re facing a Browns team starting a 3rd string QB, without Coleman who was arguably the big pass-catcher. You know what to do.
Eagles (PHI) – Steer clear of Big Ben and the hands that tell you exactly what time it is.
What you do in the face of injuries is where the true championship caliber teams are revealed. Weather the storm. Come out on top. And, as always, may the calls be ever in your favor.
– Derek Feuti (@djcreso)
(Untamed Ocelots 1-1)