Pickens got a lot of hype during the preseason, but the rookie
has done little through two games, managing just one reception
for 23 yards in Week 3. Could the winds of change be blowing,
though? Mitch Trubisky indicated he wanted to push the ball down
the field more often in the wake of their loss to New England,
and he singled out Pickens as someone that could get more looks.
Mike Tomlin has preached patience, but Trubisky is acutely aware
that Kenny Pickett is waiting in the wings. Playing Pickens would
be a roll of the dice to be sure but given how much Cleveland
struggled to cover the Jets itís a risk that carries upside.
While Claypool continues to log a lot of snaps, his receptions
arenít going anywhere with eight grabs covering a paltry
44 yards (5.5 YPR). He gained 36 yards on the ground in Week 1
to make up for it, but last Sunday he didnít have a carry.
The Steelersí passing game isnít currently doing enough
to support two viable fantasy wideouts, much less three, so itís
a leap of faith to play anyone beyond Johnson. This Thursday Iím
thinking a changeup might be in order, hence Pickens ahead of
PIT FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.13
PIT FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.11
PIT FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.4
PIT FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.27
In Week 1, JaíMarr Chase logged 10 receptions, 129 yards, and
a TD against Pittsburgh. This past Sunday it was Nelson Agholor
posting a 6-110-1 line. After a quiet Browns debut, Cooper caught
nine passes for 102 yards and a score in Week 2. In the process
he more than doubled anyone else on the team in both receptions
and yards, and he had the lone passing TD from Jacoby Brissett.
Cooper would make a solid WR3 on Thursday Night Football and might
even push into WR2 territory.
Two weeks in and we still haven’t seen any sign of the expanded
receiving role that many projected for Njoku when he inked a massive
contract to stay in Cleveland. Don’t bet on that changing
in Week 3, either, after the Steelers held New England’s
tight end combo of Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith to zero catches
on four targets in Week 2. Even with the tight end position in
general being down thus far in fantasy, Njoku doesn’t belong
in your starting lineup this week.
Even with Swift (ankle) dinged up, Williams played just 21 snaps
to Swiftís 31 this past Sunday. In terms of usage, however,
the former Packer compiled 13 total touches to seven for Swift.
With Detroitís stud back not practicing on Wednesday, we
could be looking at another week where the team leans more heavily
on Williams, though Dan Campbell did indicate that Swift was feeling
better this week than last. The Vikings have struggled against
the run through two games, allowing 137 per outing and 5.3 per
carry. That gives Williams flex value.
Itís been years since Goff was a consistent source of fantasy
value, and while he hasnít been airtight this season, he did throw
for four touchdowns last Sunday. As it happens, it was Goffís
best performance since he last faced this weekís opponent, having
passed for 296 yards and three TDs last December when the Lions
picked up their first win of the 2021 season. That, combined with
Minnesotaís inability to defend Jalen Hurts on Monday night, makes
Goff a viable QB1. Still, would it shock anyone if he fell flat?
DET FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.4
DET FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.1
DET FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.8
DET FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.13
After a strong opener, Cousins was abysmal in primetime (a phenomenon
weíve seen more than once during his career). The Eagles applied
steady pressure and the veteran tossed three interceptions --
and there were almost others, too. Detroit had its issues with
Carson Wentz last Sunday, and theyíre unlikely to be able to apply
that same kind of heat on Cousins, who threw for 340 yards and
a pair of TDs in that December loss to the Lions. Look for Cousins
to bounce back in Week 3 and carry top-10 value.
Thielen actually led the Vikings in receiving in Week 3, hauling
in four passes for 52 yards, though most of that seemed to come
in garbage time with the Eagles playing soft coverage. The 32-year-old
did little in two meetings with Detroit a season ago, managing
just three catches for 40 yards combined. Despite his struggles,
Thielen could be rolled out as a WR3 given the state of the Lionsí
pass defense. Only five teams have allowed more passing yards
than Detroit, which has had three WRs go for at least 75 yards
in a game already.
Shut out in Week 1, Smith was on the receiving end of Minnesotaís
lone touchdown on Monday night, finishing with a 5-36-1 line.
He also had a critical drop, however, of what likely wouldíve
been a long TD. While the Lions did allow Commanders TE Logan
Thomas to score in Week 2, Smith, who has only played 43 percent
of the snaps to date, hasnít shown enough to be inserted
into your fantasy lineup this Sunday.
The volume hasnít quite been there yet for Bateman to truly be
considered a ďno-brainer,Ē but so far through two games as the
Ravensí top wide receiver option, Bateman appears to be filling
the shoes left by Marquise Brown. Bateman has scored long touchdowns
in each of his two games so far and his 12 targets are double
what any other wide receiver in Baltimore has seen. Bateman has
a matchup this week against a solid Patriots defense, but they
struggled to contain Jaylen Waddle and Tyreek Hill in Week 1,
so a fellow field-stretcher like Bateman looks like a good bet
to produce for fantasy this week.
Dobbins continues to practice in full this week and while there
are no guarantees that heíll suit up, it seems likely that
heíll return to his role as the teamís top running
back right away. The other backs in Baltimore havenít done
anything to separate themselves and Dobbins is by far the most
talented of the bunch. Heíll almost certainly still be splitting
touches even when he does return, but this is an offense that
excels at running the ball, so heís not a bad Flex option
in deep leagues if he is active.
Whether Dobbins is active or not, the rest of the Baltimore backfield
looks every bit like the committee disaster that we expected it
to be in his absence. Drake somewhat surprisingly dominated the
running back snaps in Week 1 and just when we were ready to consider
him a potential fantasy contributor, he suddenly fell to third
on the team in running back snaps behind both Mike Davis and Justice
Hill. This was despite the Ravens leading by multiple scores throughout
most of the contest, so there isnít even a game script excuse.
This is just a situation to avoid altogether, if possible, especially
if Dobbins is back.
BAL FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.1
BAL FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.14
BAL FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.1
BAL FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.8
The Patriots have scored just 24 points through two games, so
thereís not much to be excited about in this offense, but
one player who continues to be slept on for fantasy purposes is
wide receiver Jakobi Meyers. Meyers quietly continues to operate
as New Englandís top wide receiver option and heís
now seen nearly a 30 percent target share through two games. He
hasnít scored a touchdown yet so his numbers are a bit deflated,
but Meyers has two double-digit fantasy games already and looks
in line for a potential smash day against a Baltimore defense
that was horrendous against the Dolphins wide receivers in Week
Baltimore has allowed the most fantasy points to opposing QBs
so far, including a six-touchdown day to Tua Tagovailoa this past
week, so if thereís any opponent that can get this Patriots offense
moving in the right direction, it might just be the Ravens. Mac
Jones has obviously been disappointing so far, but this is almost
certainly a game where heíll need to sling the ball early and
often in order to stay close on the scoreboard. Look for him to
surpass 40 pass attempts for the first time this season and that
should make him a borderline starter against this bad Baltimore
Henry was many fantasy managersí safety valve during draft season
as he has been an excellent source of touchdowns during his time
in New England, but thus far things couldnít be much worse for
him. Not only has he been targeted just four times through two
games, but Henry has also actually been out-targeted and out-produced
by fellow tight end Jonnu Smith. While this looks like a potentially
nice day for the Patriots' passing game as a whole, there are
probably better fantasy options on your waiver wire who are at
least being utilized by their teams in the passing game.
Landry came back to earth in Week 2 with four catches for just
25 yards after a breakout performance in Week 1. After watching
QB Jameis Winston throw three picks and recklessly heave ill-advised
pass after ill-advised pass downfield against the Bucs, I expect
HC Dennis Allen to reel in his QB in Carolina this week. Allen
is a defensive guy, and defensive guys break out in hives when
the ball starts flying all over the place on offense. Look for
more ball control and more quick read stuff from Winston, which
will put Landry and Michael Thomas in rebound territory. Landry
is a solid WR3 with some back-end WR2 potential this week, especially
if RB Alvin Kamara is limited at all.
Rib injuries are tricky and really painful. Every slight movement,
every twist, every breath has pain potential attached to it. Then
you throw in football contact and the potential for re-injury
and itís not hard to envision a scenario where, even if
he plays this week, he could be limited. Heís a flex option
for me this week until I know heís really ready to go.
Olave is talented as a player and gifted as an athlete, but I
just canít see the Saints targeting him 13 times a game
as they did last week. With Winston still getting up to speed
after his ACL tear last season, and now dealing with back and
ankle injuries, itís clear heís not ready to play
his best. The Saints coaching staff needs to protect him Ė
from defensive pressure and himself Ė and go back to the
short and intermediate passing game, which is going to limit Olaveís
opportunities as the deep threat in this offense.
NO FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.20
NO FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.23
NO FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.20
NO FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.28
HC Matt Rhule said Marshall is coming off his best week of practice.
The uptick in performance coincides with fellow WR Shi Smithís
groin injury. That could mean some WR3 action for Marshall. It
was college, but he excelled out of the slot at LSU, and with
a stout Saints defense coming to town with plans to shut down
WRís D.J. Moore and Robbie Anderson, there could be some favorable
matchups for Marshall, particularly on 3rd down. Heís a sneaky
flex option this week.
Moore has been a 1,000-yard receiver each of the last three seasons
despite some pretty uneven QB play in Carolina. Unfortunately,
even by Panthersí standards this passing attack is faltering.
Moore is the best receiver on the team, and QB Baker Mayfieldís
arrival was supposed to be a boon for Mooreís fantasy value, but
it hasnít shaken out that way. Until this offense gets on track,
he no more than a low-ed WR2.
Mayfield has completed just 53% of his passes through three games
at a clip of just 6.8 yards per attempt. Thatís not the
stuff explosive passing attacks are made of, and itís certainly
not a formula for success for a receiver whose job it is to take
the top off a defense. Andersonís value is linked to his
ability to make plays downfield and thatís just not happening
on a consistent basis right now.
Watching the Packers run around and through the Bears defense
on Sunday night one can only wonder what the 49ers mightíve done
in Week 1 had: a) the field conditions not been atrocious, and
b) Elijah Mitchell not suffered a knee injury. Chicago had no
answer for Aaron Jones, both as a runner or receiver, and Pierce
should get plenty of opportunities after running for 69 yards
on 15 carries in Week 2. You can consider plugging the rookie
in as a low-end RB2 or strong RB3.
After logging 19 combined touches and 70 total yards in the opener,
Burkhead didnít have a carry against the Broncos this past Sunday
and finished with just two grabs for nine yards. If the Texans
want to copy Green Bayís attack they could plug the veteran into
the AJ Dillon role, sending him primarily between the tackles
to wear down the Bearsí interior. Itís a risky play, but Burkhead
might offer flex value.
HOU FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.19
HOU FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.6
HOU FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.10
HOU FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.18
Through two games, Herbert is averaging 6.4 yards per carry. Heís
not seeing anywhere near the volume of snaps as Montgomery, who
has played 99 to Herbertís 24, but the Bears need something offensively.
The Broncos found some success against Houston by running the
tandem of Javonte Williams (15-75-0) and Melvin Gordon (10-47-0),
so perhaps this is the week Herbert gets more opportunities. You
could roll him out in a flex slot if youíre in need.
Itís hard to even make sense of Chicagoís passing
attack right now. In Week 1 it was easy to chalk it up to bad
weather. This past Sunday night, however, the conditions were
just fine, and the Bears only attempted 11 passes. Their lone
gain of more than 20 yards came off a flea flicker, and even in
limited drop backs Fields was sacked three times and tossed an
interception. With the passing game going nowhere, Mooney and
Kmet have been nonfactors with the tight end having yet to record
a catch in 2022. Itís not that all three of them donít
have talent and some level of weekly upside, but right now the
smart move is to stay clear of the lot until the Bears join the
21st century offensively.
Against a Colts defense that is allowing just 2.7 yards per rush
through two games, I expect the Chiefs to use their backs out
of the backfield as receivers in the short passing game. That
fits more of what HC Andy Reid wants to do anyway, and it should
put McKinnon in line for a more significant work load this week.
Clyde Edwards-Helaire has split the touches in the passing game
with McKinnon, but the latter has been a main target in the red
zone outside of TE Travis Kelce.
Despite the opportunity to do so, Smith-Schuster has failed to
establish himself as the clear WR1 on this team. He is second
on the team to Kelce with 11 targets through two games, and he
averaged over 13 yards per catch in Week 1. However, a good Chargers
defense shut him down in Week 2, and the Colts defense is another
good unit. That being said, Mahomes will go to the air, and Smith-Schuster
has as good a chance as any to be the top dog this week.
CEH is averaging a ridiculous 7.7 yards per rush and 10.9 yards
per reception. But through two games he has just 22 total touches.
Thatís not enough volume to make him fantasy relevant, and
a solid Colts defense will be keying on him. I think Iím
looking elsewhere for my RB2 this week.
KC FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.9
KC FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.2
KC FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.9
KC FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.16
Hines is third on the team in targets and leads the Colts with
10 receptions and 8.7 yards per catch. With WRís Michael Pittman
and Alec Pierce in questionable health, and KC allowing just 3.9
yards per carry and stacking the box against RB Jonathan Taylor,
Hines could be a top target for an offense that could have to
throw the ball 40 times this week. His ability to align in the
slot or in the backfield gives him enough versatility to contribute
significant value in Week 3.
Pittman opened the season with an impressive nine catches for
121 yards. But then he was sidelined by injury in Week 2. He figures
to draw some tough matchups with this Chiefs secondary this week,
and Matt Ryan has been spreading the ball around, even to the
other team four times in the past two weeks. He could step right
back into the leading role, or he could disappoint.
Speaking of disappointing, Ryan has been that. He threw three
interceptions against a bad Jaguars team last week and is completing
just 60% in a highly friendly system for QBís over the last
two weeks. Now, in comes a Kansas City defense that is allowing
less than 6.0 yards per attempt and can take the ball away. Ryan
is barely bringing QB2 value in this one.
After a couple of years of frustrating usage, we might finally
be seeing Miles Sanders emerge as a strong fantasy option here
in 2022. While Sanders still only played just over 50 percent
of the teamís running back snaps in Week 2, he completely
dominated the backfield touches for the second week in a row.
His usage in the passing game continues to fluctuate, but Sanders
is the clear RB1 in this committee and heís now touched
the ball 35 times through two games while producing nearly six
yards per carry. Look for that to continue this week against a
Commanders defense that has been beaten up by opposing running
backs so far this season.
The Eagles made it a point to get Smith involved in Week 2 after
he dropped a donut on fantasy managers in Week 1, as he caught
all seven of the passes that came his way for 80 yards in the
Eaglesí blowout win over the Vikings on Monday night. Smith
now faces a Commanders defense that has struggled against opposing
passing games so far this season, although theyíve really
only been truly beaten up by opposing teamsí WR1s. With
Smith solidly behind A.J. Brown in the pecking order, look for
him to have a solid, albeit not huge fantasy day.
The Eagles backfield is very much a committee, but things are
beginning to lean more in Sandersí direction after Week
2. Kenneth Gainwell didnít help his case, either, as he
dropped a pass that led to a fourth-quarter interception against
the Vikings. Thankfully the game was already well in-hand at that
point so coaches might overlook it, but both he and Scott are
far behind Sanders in snaps and touches right now and they would
need a goal-line touchdown to have any fantasy value.
PHI FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.22
PHI FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.7
PHI FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.17
PHI FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.7
Samuelís surprising Week 1 performance became even more
interesting as he followed it up with another big game in Week
2. Samuel now leads the Commanders in receptions (15), and targets
(20), and is tied for the team lead in receiving yards (133) as
he currently ranks as a fantasy WR1 through two games. Obviously,
we canít expect this type of usage to continue, but even
if it takes a step back, Samuel remains an interesting option
for fantasy purposes. Washington is clearly drawing up plays specifically
to get him the ball and heís even getting carries, so thereís
a decent chance that he remains a weekly fantasy starter for the
Gibson has given fantasy managers two usable weeks, but the Week
2 performance leaves much more to be worried about than we had
coming out of Week 1. Gibson gained just 28 yards on the ground
on 12 carries while catching two passes for 13 yards, but he saved
his fantasy day against the Lions by scoring a touchdown. His
lack of usage in the passing game should be concerning for fantasy
managers and while heís still probably a starter in most
leagues, donít be surprised if he falls back to being a
frustrating player to own, starting this week against an Eagles
defense that looked lights-out against Minnesota.
Fading a player whoís scored three touchdowns through his
first two professional games sounds crazy on the surface and certainly
there are plenty of situations where he should still be in fantasy
lineups, but the peripheral numbers for Dotson are a bit concerning
for this week. Dotson has caught just seven passes so far this
season, three of which went for touchdowns, which is clearly an
unsustainable rate, but heís also been targeted just 10
times thus far. With Washington leaning so heavily on Curtis Samuel
and Terry McLaurin, there just arenít many opportunities
to go around for Dotson. He may get into the end zone again this
week, but if he doesnít, thereís a pretty good chance
that he duds in this one against an Eagles defense that completely
locked up the Vikingsí wide receivers this past week.
Gabe Davis put fantasy managers in a bind this past week when
he missed the Billsí game against the Titans. While Buffalo won
anyway, we got some usable fantasy information in his absence
as it was veteran Jake Kumerow who started in Davisí place on
the outside, opposite Stefon Diggs, while both Isaiah McKenzie
and Jamison Crowder continued to play almost exclusively out of
the slot. Thereís no question that the team views Davis as the
second option in their passing game. Davis has practiced early
this week so itís looking good that heíll be back on the field
on Sunday against the Dolphins. Field-stretching wide receiver
Rashod Bateman went for 108 yards and a touchdown against Miami
in Week 2 and Davis should be in line for plenty of work down
the field if heís able to go.
A foot injury kept tight end Knox on the sidelines during practice
on Wednesday and heís currently listed as questionable heading
into Sundayís contest. In Week 2, Knox did see increased
volume from his Week 1 dud but still was only targeted four times
in a game where Gabe Davis sat out, which leaves open some serious
concerns that he is purely a touchdown-or-bust type of tight end.
Sure, most non-elite tight ends essentially are touchdown-or-bust,
but Knox looks to be even more dependent on a score to be useful
for fantasy. Thankfully this is a game that could end up being
a shootout and that would likely mean more passes coming Knoxís
While Devin Singletary is still operating as his teamís
RB1, the Bills are telling us with their actions that this is
a full-blown committee backfield on a team that runs the ball
at one of the lowest rates in the league. To make matters worse,
that trend continued even when the Bills got out to a huge lead
against the Titans in Week 2. With Singletary seeing just under
10 percent of his teamís targets through two games, itís
hard to justify putting Singletary in fantasy lineups right now.
The volume just isnít there.
BUF FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.32
BUF FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.30
BUF FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.24
BUF FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.25
Week 2 might just have been Tua Tagovailoaís coming out
party as not only an NFL quarterback, but also a viable weekly
fantasy asset. He threw for a whopping 469 yards and six touchdowns
in the come-from-behind victory over the Ravens, primarily making
use of speedster wide receivers Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle
to torch the Ravensí secondary. This week he faces a Buffalo
defense that has been excellent against opposing quarterbacks,
but this is a much different-looking Dolphins team than in years
past and head coach Mike McDaniel has found a way to get his receivers
open at a higher rate than any team in the league so far. Donít
expect another huge game from Tua, but there are quite a few fantasy
QBs who were drafted ahead of Tua that should be on the bench
in favor of him this week.
The Dolphins' backfield is likely to be annoying for fantasy
this season, but we got an interesting glimpse into what might
happen when the team falls behind on the scoreboard. Most fantasy
analysts believed that Chase Edmonds would be almost exclusively
on the field if the Dolphins fell behind in games, due to his
pass-catching expertise, but it was Raheem Mostert who actually
out-snapped and out-touched Edmonds despite the fact that the
Dolphins were behind by 21 points at half-time. Mostertís 10.9
fantasy point performance was not anything special, but his usage
is interesting and heís a player whoís certainly on the rise,
even against a very good Buffalo defense.
The tight end position has been a dumpster fire throughout the
league so far so itís easy to get caught up in impressive individual
plays and allow them to cloud your judgment on players. One of
those players is Mike Gesicki. Gesicki made one of the most athletic
catches youíll see all year when he scored his first touchdown
of the season against the Ravens. With that said, heís still actually
second on his team this season in snaps at the tight end position,
behind Durham Smythe. The problem is that Gesicki is a notoriously
poor blocker and the Mike McDaniel offense prioritizes that out
of its tight end position, so it leaves him watching from the
sidelines in a lot of situations. Until his usage increases, we
should be fading Gesicki for fantasy purposes and not chasing
After leaving Week 1 with a concussion, Higgins bounced back
in nice fashion in Week 2, catching six passes for 71 yards and
a touchdown on a team-leading 10 targets against the Cowboys.
While Chase is still the alpha in this passing game, Higgins has
not fallen so far behind that he canít be considered a strong
fantasy option. The Jets have already given up quality fantasy
days to Rashod Bateman, Devin Duvernay and Amari Cooper and thereís
no reason to think that Higgins wonít again see a heavy target
share in this game.
Thereís no question that Chase and Higgins are the top
two pass catchers for the Bengals, but if youíre looking
for a sneaky third option, tight end Hayden Hurst is interesting.
Hurst has already been targeted 15 times this season, catching
10 of those passes. While heís only accumulated 70 yards
and hasnít scored a touchdown yet, his usage makes him interesting
at a position that lacks much consistency as it is. The Jets did
contain Mark Andrews to just five catches for 52 yards, but that
was partially because Rashod Bateman and Devin Duvernay combined
for three touchdown receptions and the game was over relatively
early. Hurst is a decent low-end TE1 option this week.
While weíre confident that Chase and Higgins will deliver usable
fantasy numbers, the likelihood of a shootout in this game does
not seem strong. The Bengals have benefited from playing against
some pretty bad quarterbacks so far, but theyíve only allowed
two total passing touchdowns and their Week 3 opponent is Joe
Flacco, so this could end up being a blowout in their favor. The
Bengals are five-point road favorites, and thereís a decent chance
that this will become the first big Joe Mixon game of 2022. Burrow
wonít likely give you an awful fantasy day, but there might be
better options available that is more likely to shoot out.
CIN FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.27
CIN FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.22
CIN FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.27
CIN FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.17
Wilson broke out this past week, catching eight passes for 102
yards and two touchdowns in the Jetsí victory over the Browns.
He has now out-targeted Elijah Moore by 10 and Corey Davis by
eight through two games and it is becoming clear that heís Joe
Flaccoís favorite weapon in the passing game. The Bengals have
been excellent against opposing wide receivers so far this season,
but theyíve also faced Mitchell Trubisky and Cooper Rush, so there
might not be a ton to take from that. Flacco really isnít much
better than those players, but at least heís shown a strong connection
with Wilson and this could be another game where the Jets need
to pass to keep things close.
Carter is splitting carries almost equally with rookie Breece
Hall, but whatís important is that heís seeing more
work in the passing game. The Jets could fall behind in this one,
which might lead to a game script similar to Week 1 which saw
Carter catch seven passes. Heís potentially usable, but
only in PPR formats.
The rookie scored a receiving touchdown on his only target in
Week 2 but otherwise had a weak fantasy output with only seven
total rush attempts. The Jets just arenít a good enough
offense that two running backs can be useful weekly fantasy options.
Itís worth noting that Hall did catch six passes in the
Jetsí Week 1 loss to the Ravens and that he might again
see work in the passing game, but heís playing behind Carter
in those situations so his opportunities will be limited.
Jacobs is averaging almost 4.5 yards per carry this season, yet
still seems like the forgotten step child in this offense, averaging
less than 15 carries a game. However, this week the Raiders face
a Tennessee team that is yielding an uncharacteristic 6.0 yards
per rush, among the worst in the NFL. Even in this ďBradyĒ offense
that lives on the short passing game over the run, it makes sense
to exploit that. Look for Jacobs to get a little bigger load carrying
the mail, and with Brandon Bolden and Ameer Abdullah injured and/or
ineffective, Jacobs could stay on the field on 3rd down. Heís
shown some receiving chops with two catches for 28 yards this
Hunter Renfrow is feeling the effects of Isaiah Simmonsí
hit at the end of last weekís game against the Cardinals
and is still not practicing. He seems headed for the inactive
list this week, which would elevate Hollins to WR2 status. Heís
actually coming off a game in which he led the Raiders in receiving
with seven catches on eight targets. But while he has been on
the field and running a high percentage of routes, it still feels
like any additional targets created by Renfrowís absence
will going first to Davante Adams and Darren Waller. I donít
expect more than a slight uptick for Hollins, but as he showed
last week, he could surprise.
Fade: All RBís NOT Named Josh Jacobs
was supposed to be HC Josh McDanielsí answer for the ďJames White
RoleĒ in this offense. But he produced minimally in Week 1 before
going down with a hamstring injury. Ameer
Abdullah would seem to be next in line, but despite being
active in both games, he has just one reception and two targets.
had a strong showing in the preseason after a stellar career at
Georgia, but he too has been limited to a single carry. This looks
like a one-pony show in the run game.
LV FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.8
LV FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.3
LV FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.16
LV FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.4
HC Mike Vrabel said after this weekís blowout loss to the Bills
that his team would get back to work, back to basics, and try
to go win a football game. Thatís coachspeak for, ďweíre going
to be physical, and weíre going to run the ball down their throats.Ē
Henry is due for a breakout game after a slow start, and the Raiders
will stack the box with eight and nine defenders until QB Ryan
Tannehill and company get back on track. But look for Vrabel to
stay committed to the run and his marquee back. Henry is their
best player. If they are going to get right, itís going to be
on his back.
In 2018 and 2019 with the Falcons, Hooper posted over 70 catches
per season, averaged nearly 10 yards per catch and recorded 10
TDs in that span. The guy is an athletic seam-stretcher who can
catch and run. He split time with David Njoku for two years in
Cleveland, but this guy can play. Despite that, he has just two
catches on seven targets through two games. With QB Ryan Tannehill
playing panicked behind a banged up and ineffective o-line, Hooper
is the guy who can provide an outlet against a Raiders pass rush
that can be dangerous. Hooper is also the guy who can pull a safety
out of the tackle box and free up running room for Henry with
his ability to run the seam, but he needs to be given a chance.
Tannehill is now 0-2 and coming off a terrible performance against
the Bills. It appears he has lost his franchise left tackle Taylor
Lewan for the season, and the rest of the o-line has been inconsistent
at best. Job one this week is going to be to run the ball and
Tannehill wonít be asked to be anything more than a game
manager. Thatís the best plan this week against a Raiders
defense that hasnít gotten to the QB yet this season, but
will apply constant pressure on the pocket, which has been Tannehillís
More time was spent this offseason talking about Kirkís
contract than his actual talent on the field. He and the Jaguars
have used the first two games to justify that money. Kirk is averaging
9 targets a game, 21.3 FPts/G and scored twice on Sunday. So far
so good! The money-where-your-mouth-is moment might be this weekend.
The Chargers have only allowed 122 yards and 1 TD to WRs in the
first two games, so be warned. He is emerging as their number
one, so expect him to cash in this week.
Is this the point when Lawrence turns the corner? Or does this
only happen when the Jags play the Colts? I guess we will have
to wait for Week 6 to test that theory. Lawrence has averaged
16 FPts/G this season and is trending in the right direction as
his QB rating jumped from 75 to 121.6 between week 1 and 2. The
positives are there, but the fence-sitting is related to the Chargers
defense, which allowed only 17.3 points to Patrick Mahomes last
Thursday. Lawrence is getting there, but this isnít the
week for him to make the leap.
Pre-season speculation had Etienne as the third-down receiving
back who could also steal some carries from an ďailingĒ James
Robinson. The speculation was just that and now those who spent
an early draft pick on Etienne are the ones who are feeling lousy.
Robinson hasnít missed a beat and has secured lead back status.
He is averaging 17.9 FPts/G to Etienneís 8.4. The 25-12 touch
disparity this past Sunday should let us know where this ďcompetitionĒ
stands. Play Robinson, sit Etienne and try not to play the ďI
passed on who?Ē draft day game with yourself.
JAC FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.15
JAC FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.20
JAC FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.11
JAC FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.21
If Keenan Allen (hamstring) is out again, Williams should garner
the bulk of the targets. He was the center of attention Thursday
night, as he saw ten targets and cashed in with an 8-113-1 stat
line en route to 25.3 points. He hopefully will be ready for action
as the Jags have given up 4 TDs already this season to WRs, sixth
most in the league. Even if Allen returns, Williams has come back
to life and to say he will be a factor the rest of the year isnít
When Ekeler said he wouldnít be a fantasy star this offseason,
we should have listened. He hasnít found the endzone yet
this year, which is ok, slow starts happen to everyone. But against
KC he wasnít even getting his chances. He only handled 58%
of the rushes to the tune of 14 for 39 yards. He did rally in
the 4th quarter and finished with nine catches for 55 yards. But
14.8 FPts/G isnít what players signed up for by taking him
in the first round. The match-up against Jacksonville is a mixed
bag. The Jags have not allowed a TD to an RB yet this year. They
rank seventh in yards allowed (117 yards total) against RBs but
in yards receiving (138 yards) they are dead last. Ekeler has
to show-out in this one or the sheer volume of panic trades/offers
early next week might break the internet.
With Allen out, it was good seeing Williams step up, but did anyone
else use this chance to their advantage? Josh Palmer (4-30-1)
had the best day, seeing the most targets with 8. DeAndre Carter
(3-55) caught all targets thrown his way. The Jags allow 35.9
FPts/G which is 19th, which will leave room for one of these two
to fill the void. Palmer should be on your roster, but I would
stay away from starting either of them until someone claims the
spot for their own.
London calling! I assume he is calling to let us know he has arrived,
but we get it, we saw the game Sunday. The rookie did not look
like one against the Rams, leading the team with 12 targets, 8
snags for 86 yards and a TD reception. The game plan has been
to move the ball around and London has been enjoying the spread.
He sits 15th in the league in targets and is averaging a robust
18.5 FPts/G. Seattle is 8th in the league allowing 30.7 points
to WRs, but London looks like the real deal and I might just be
calling his shot on Sunday.
For everyone waiting for the Pitts breakout game, could this be
it? People have been spitting mad after Pittsí sputtering
start. His line has been awful, four catches for 38 yards on 10
targets. Those are his season totals! The ball is being spread
around, much to his chagrin. London has quickly become the center
of the offense and Arthur Smith cares not for your complaints,
fantasy fan. Iím not sure why pundits think Seattle is going
to make it all better, they are 23rd against TEs, but where are
the targets? His PFF grade was 80.3 in his high utilization rookie
year, but he is dragging along with a grade of 52.1 in 2022. Smith
has two impact weapons now and only seems to be using one. Iím
afraid the wait continues, so take a load off.
Patterson looked like a maniac in the season opener against the
Saints. But we might have missed the injury to fellow RB Damien
Williams and how that resulted in Patterson getting the bulk of
the carries in Week 1. New week, new game plan. Tyler Allgeier
(10-30) split carries equally with Patterson (10-41) and Patterson
saw only one target and didnít haul in a single catch. The time-share
is now upon us. Seattle is 23rd against RBs, so the small portion
might now have to be equally distributed. The needle is pointing
up on Allgeier and down for Patterson, which Iím sure he isnít
ATL FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.11
ATL FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.27
ATL FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.3
ATL FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.5
Kind of hard to get happy after your offense gets shut out. Metcalf
only saw six targets for a 4-35 day. I donít pretend to
understand people, but you know what always cheers up WRs? Generous
pass defenses at home. The Falcons are 3rd in points allowed to
WRs at 50.6 FPts/G. Plenty of meat there for several people to
feast (see below). Expect plenty of targets, explosive plays and
a weird shade of green you donít know or like.
It was Lockettís day on Sunday, leading the team with 11 targets
and a 9-107 stat line. That was a marked improvement after his
3-28 start to the season on Monday night. As stated above, the
Falcons are very generous to the WR position and are tied for
the league lead with TDs allowed (5) and are seventh in yards.
The opportunity seems to be there on Sunday, but Lockett notoriously
runs hot and cold. Letís hope that he and Metcalf turn up the
heat and give Geno Smith a chance to thrive.
If you get blanked as an offense, normally there are multiple
places to look at to find the struggle. A 48.2 PFF run-blocking
grade might have something to do with why Penny never getting
started against SF. He could have saved time and just run into
a wall, rushing six times for a whopping 15 yards. Kenneth Walker
is now healthy and will also syphon off carries as well. Things
donít look any better as the Falcons have been stout against runners
this year, only allowing 13.9 FPts/G which is sixth best. Penny
will not have it easy for a second week in a row. Letís hope this
doesnít become a pattern which might lead him to start banging
his head against the wall.
I feel like we have to pay respect to Higbee right now as he has
been quietly ascending the TE ranks. No, seriously, look at his
numbers. He is the seventh leading scorer and leads all TEs with
20 targets. Donít we all want a TE getting 10 targets a
game? Ask Kyle Pitts drafters for a profane-laced answer to that.
Higbee walks into Arizona to face a Cardinals D that has allowed
29.1 FPts/G to TEs this year, dead last in the league and are
also dead last in TDs allowed with three. Higbee is your low-key
play this week.
Good to see Robinson get off the mat and show everyone that the
reports of his demise were premature. But letís not be too quick
here. Cupp (14) and Higbee (9) still dominated the targets to
Robinsonís five. His stat line was solid (4-53-1) and he saw his
yards per target increase from 6 to 10.6. The question remains
if he is third in the pecking order at this moment, or for the
remainder of the season?
That was an emotional 10-day roller coaster for those rostering
Henderson or Cam Akers. The by-committee approach is official
now, with Akers back in the driver seat. Akers (15-44) outrushed
Henderson (10-47) but Henderson did see four of the five goal
line carries, which resulted in a touchdown. Akers also took over
the receiving duties will three targets to zero for Henderson.
He is not to be thrown away, it is just a new day and expectations
need to be adjusted, so letís keep our composure here.
LAR FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.5
LAR FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.28
LAR FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.2
LAR FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.31
You get the impression the Cardinals are ready for an offensive
explosion and this might be the week. The Rams have surrendered
the 2nd most fantasy points to receivers at 52.1 FPts/G and have
also allowed the third most yards. Brown was solid against the
Raiders (6-68) and tied for the team lead with 11 targets. They
have been looking for him, but the connection hasnít exploded.
Yet. Somebody has to get this offense going, so let Brown light
With the Cardinals struggling to find available pass-catchers
the first two weeks, Ertz seems to be thriving with the attention
he has been getting. He led the team with 11 targets, 8 catches
and 75 yards in the chaotic fourth quarter and OT win in Vegas.
This story tracks as he is fifth overall in TE scoring and tied
for seventh in targets. This will be put to the test against the
Rams, who have allowed four receptions total to TEs in the first
two games. Overall, LA gives up a stingy 3.45 FPts/G to the position,
second best in the league. I think Ertz can bust that trend, just
donít expect the numbers to come in the first three quarters.
Where is the drama in that?
His ankle injury places him on this list. How healthy will that
ankle be? Darrel Williams (8-59-1) and Eno Benjamin (8-31) split
carries in his absence with Benjamin racking up 3 catches for
20 yards. It might be moot as the Rams allow 10.7 FPts/G to RBs,
the third-least in the league and is one of 11 teams that havenít
surrendered a rushing TD. At full strength, I would give him a
punchers chance, but in this scenario, I am throwing in the towel.
Dillon has actually out-carried Aaron Jones to this point, 28-20.
Jones has been explosive, averaging a ridiculous 9.1 yards per
carry, but Dillon continues to be the battering ram in this offense,
and will be a primary red zone and goal line runner. The run game
will come into play this week against a Bucs defense that is surprisingly
allowing 4.5 yards per carry. Get Dillon on your roster and heíll
give you some volume and scoring opportunities.
The feel-good story of the Packers season two years ago, Tonyan
came back to earth in 2021 and then suffered a torn ACL. But he
has made a nice return to form over the first two weeks, actually
ranking third on the team in targets. With QB Aaron Rodgers working
with a re-vamped receiving corps, he has looked to Tonyan, especially
in the red zone. Expect that to continue early in the season as
Rodgers develops some chemistry with the new guys, but also recognize
that Rodgers is trying to find ďthat guyĒ and is spreading the
ball to a lot of receivers, which will put a ceiling on Tonyanís
Rodgers is searching for some chemistry with a large group of
new receivers and playing behind an offensive line will see the
debut of left tackle David Bakhtiari. Rodgers has already been
sacked 7 times on 59 pass attempts, a rate more than twice of
what he took last year. That could make for a tough day against
Tampaís league leading pass rush (13 sacks). Expect a run-first
approach from the Pack this week, and donít be surprised
if it takes a few more weeks for Aaron Rodgers to look like Aaron
GB FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.24
GB FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.21
GB FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.28
GB FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.29
WRís Chris Godwin (out) and Julio Jones (knee) are both battling
injuries and Mike Evans is suspended as a result of his on-field
fight with Marshon Lattimore last week. That leaves Gage in the
ďnext man upĒ spot. This past offseason we heard a lot about the
chemistry that was building between Gage and Tom Brady. Well,
weíre about to find out. I expect a heavy emphasis on the run,
but Gage should be the first option in the passing game this week.
Heís been in this spot before in Atlanta when he took over as
WR1 when the Falcons lost Jones and Calvin Ridley and he responded
With so few receivers available, everyone was asked to step up
last week and Perriman did with three catches for 45 yards and
a touchdown. He can be explosive and has averaged over 16 yards
per catch over the last four years. Again, Iím looking for a heavy
dose of the run from the Bucs this week, and I donít know that
Perriman is a high-volume target, but if the Packers start overplaying
the run, QB Tom Brady wonít be afraid to take a couple shots over
the top to Perriman.
Brady hasn’t been bad in my mind by any stretch. I would
call his early season performance a bit workman-like. I think
that’s just knocking off the early season rust, and I expect
it will continue for another game or two. But with most of his
regular receiving corps sidelined, and the struggles this Green
Bay defense has had against the run, I see a focus on the ground
game this week with Brady filling in the blanks with an efficient
passing attack. If you have him, you’re starting him, and
if you need one, he’s probably a high end QB2 this week.
I wish Trey Lance a quick and healthy recovery, but if there is
a silver lining, I think the change at QB should jumpstart Deeboís
season. Week 1 was hard to gauge due to all the rain. Last week,
he seemed get it going. He claimed a 22 percent target share,
broke off a 51-yard run and snared 4 catches for 53 yards. His
PFF grade jumped 23 points to 73.3 and he looked like the weapon
he was last year. He will need all his tools as Denverís defensive
backfield allows 28.6 FPts/G to WRs, the ninth lowest number in
the league, although they might be without Patrick Surtain II.
The offense will find a way to scheme him open and Jimmy G will
help bring back the continuity from last year. I think he is back!
Everyone wants George Kittle (groin) back on the field, unless
you are playing against him. Maybe Denver doesnít want him back
so soon either. I can see why. They are 30th against TEs, allowing
19.8 FPts/G and surrender the fourth most receptions. If Kittle
is held out again, Ross Dwelley might be a streaming option. He
had one catch last week, but he turned it into a 33-yard TD. Keep
an eye on the medicals for Kittle. It looks like he is creeping
closer to a return.
I swear Iím not a ghoul by saying injuries have helped some players,
but they have. Wilson turned in a solid performance (18-84) and
caught two passes for 19 yards as the lead dog Sunday. Tyrion
Davis-Price did carve out a role with 14 carries, but he suffered
a high ankle sprain which will sideline him for the next few weeks.
Jordan Mason and Marlon Mack will now back Wilson up, so it looks
like Wilson is back in business. Denver will look to shut him
down, as they allow 10.2 FPts/G to RBs, the second fewest in the
league. Wilson will get the attention as the number one back,
if he likes it or not.
SF FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.31
SF FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.26
SF FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.29
SF FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.32
After Jerry Jeudy took the lead role in Week 1, Sutton took his
star turn Sunday. He had a great line (7-122) and a 33% target
share after Jeudy went down early with a rib injury. If Jeudy
canít go, look for Sutton to corral the team lead in targets once
again. He will earn those stats against the 49ers, who allow 27.3
FPts/G to WRs, the fourth lowest amount. Russell Wilson and the
offense are looking for some consistency, and Sutton has been
the only constant this year. He is the best bet through the air,
so he is a must play.
If Jeudy is out, Hamler will continue to round back into form
after a knee injury ended last season for him. He will fill the
slot role and hope to have a bigger impact than he did in Week
1, where he received one target and did not record a catch. So
you are saying there is some room for improvement? You hate to
compare players, but Russell Wilsonís connection with Tyler
Lockett should give Hamler some optimism. SF is stingy against
WRs, and have only given up 18 catches to them all year, tied
for the fewest in the league. You can be optimistic, but also
be realistic and let him pass this week.
The Cowboys might not be completely dead quite yet, but thereís
really only one player in this offense who fantasy managers can
have any real confidence in right now and thatís wide receiver
CeeDee Lamb. Yes, his 4.9-point performance against the Bucs in
Week 1 was a disaster, but the 11 targets he saw gave us hope
that he might be able to bounce back despite the quarterback downgrade.
We got our answer in Week 2 as Lamb again saw 11 targets, this
time catching seven of them for 75 yards. While heís failed
to get into the end zone, Lambís 22 targets still leave
him in the top 10 at the position so far and there remains very
little competition for him in this Dallas offense. He does face
a Giants defense in Week 3 that has done a great job against opposing
wide receivers, but Lambís monster target share should give
him an opportunity to deliver start-worthy fantasy numbers, even
if heís not going to be the top five option that we had
hoped for during draft season.
In addition to injuries along the offensive line, a banged-up
wide receiver group, and being without their starting quarterback,
we can now add tight end Dalton Schultz to the list of injuries
to this Cowboys offense. Schultz is dealing with a PCL sprain
in his right knee and fantasy managers will need to be careful
as he could be ruled out. This game will be played on Monday night,
so that makes things even more dangerous. The backup whoís played
the most snaps for the Cowboys thus far is Jake Ferguson, but
heís yet to record a target in 2022 so thatíd be an extraordinarily
desperate add. Pay close attention to the practice reports later
this week and any news that we get heading into Sundayís games,
but Schultz is a weekly starter at fantasy tight end if heís healthy.
A blowout Cowboys loss in Week 1 meant that fantasy managers
could largely write off Elliottís low usage due to game script.
Unfortunately, even though he got 16 touches in a Week 2 victory
over the Bengals, Elliott failed to deliver for fantasy purposes,
rushing for just 52 yards while catching just one pass for the
second straight week. Elliott is simply conceding way too much
passing game work to Tony Pollard and the offense is not good
enough to give him his old 20-plus carry games. Jerry Jones came
out this week and essentially said that he wants the team to ďFeed
Zeke,Ē so thereís some hope here, but this looks like another
disappointing game for Elliott against a Giants defense that just
got done locking up Dalvin Cook in Week 2.
DAL FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.25
DAL FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.25
DAL FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.12
DAL FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.26
There was a lot of off-season discussion about which Giants wide
receiver would emerge to start the season, but very few expected
that veteran Sterling Shepard would be that player. Shepard was
all but written off due to his season-ending Achillesí injury
in 2021, but heís been the Giantsí best pass-catching
weapon thus far. His 14 targets lead the team and heís the
only Giants wideout whoís caught a touchdown thus far. This
is still a low-volume passing game and theyíre facing a
very good Cowboys defense, but Shepard is a solid WR3 option as
long as heís healthy.
The Cowboys have been very good against opposing quarterbacks
thus far in 2022 despite playing against Tom Brady and Joe Burrow,
and now they get to face a quarterback in Daniel Jones who has
struggled so far in 2022 and really throughout most of his NFL
career. Jones still has those occasional huge performances, but
this looks like a game that’s likely to be a low-scoring,
defensive battle and we typically want to avoid that for fantasy.