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Fantasy Football Rundown: Week 2

Thoughts on every single NFL game and every single player that’s fantasy relevant.

Getty Images/Pete Rogers Illustrations

Every week Nic hosts his Fantasy Football Rundown on Twitter were he hits on every single NFL game and every single player that’s fantasy relevant. Tune in every Thursday at 3 PM EST to watch the Fantasy Football Rundown live and join the conversation.

Buccaneers at Panthers

  • Ronald Jones outplayed Peyton Barber but Barber still announced as starter. Dare Ogunbowale out-snapped both.
  • Mike Evans popped on Hermsmeyer’s Buy-Low Air Yards model, Godwin was featured in the slot—CAR has vulnerable slot defense, and Howard is still the No. 1 tight on the team. Downgrade expectations but stick with them another week unless you’ve got a serious replacement.
  • There are likely safer options that Jameis Winston’s 0-floor possibility.
  • Trust Cam Newton to get back on track against the nonexistent defense. Christian McCaffrey is the season-long RB1—29 touches: 19 carries/ 2 TDs, 10/11 for 81 yards
  • D.J. Moore’s fantasy line is nerfed. 7/10 for 76 but had a fumbled.
  • Greg Olsen is expected to play.
  • Bench Samuel until we find out what he is. Only 4 targets.

Cardinals at Ravens

  • From Josh Hermsmeyer’s Buy-Low Air Yards model, the Ravens secondary is banged up after losing CB Jimmy Smith (knee) in Week 1 and CB Tavon Young (neck).
  • Christian Kirk was the No. 1 WR to pop on his expected-points Air Yards model. Stay strong with both him and Kyler Murray.
  • Stick with Kyler Murray, Larry Fitzgerald, and Christian Kirk, David Johnson is a no brainer.
  • “Kyler Murray had 41 dropbacks out of 10 personnel. The rest of the league had 24.”
  • Lamar Jackson is in yearly contention for overall QB1 -- were Mays and Clark right? Did Harbaugh dupe us? Only 3 rushes in Week 1.
  • Arizona’s Patrick Peterson-less secondary is a sieve. Marquise Brown is a stellar flex play with a high chance of scoring.
  • Trust Mark Ingram this week but look to sell high. He was out-touched by Gus Edwards who took over in the blowout and Justice Hill got time too. It’s a lightweight 3-way committee.
  • In the barren wasteland that is the fantasy TE hell hole, roll with Mark Andrews as a starter, he’s still a rotational player but has great upside.

Cowboys at Washington

  • The infusion of analytics and Kellen Moore into this offense can’t be understated.
  • Ezekiel Elliott will likely get more work than the 14 touches he had last week but he doesn’t need more than 17 to be an RB1.
  • Dak Prescott is a QB1, he’s gonna go off again here.
  • Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup are both set to pop off. Both cleared 100 yards last week, with Gallup going a perfect 7/7.
  • Fire up either tight end if you’re desperate. Blake Jarwin and Jason Witten. Jarwin caught a beautiful TD off of PA.
  • Terry McLaurin is the real deal, he’s just stuck in a terrible situation. He’s a safe PPR flex. Whichever TE plays is worth rolling out there, Reed is still in the concussion protocol
  • Prefer Chris Thompson to Adrian Peterson as they’ll be playing from behind, only like him in PPR.
  • Case Keenum went off last week but that isn’t likely to commonly occur.
  • Trey Quinn only had 4 targets.

Colts at Titans

  • Indy is Marlon Mack’s offense. 25 carries, 174 yards, 1 TD. He got work, no matter the game script.
  • Sell-high on T.Y. Hilton.
  • Don’t bother with either tight end.
  • With Devin Funchess on IR, I like Deon Cain more than Parris Campbell.
  • Marcus Mariota actually looked okay, we’ll need to monitor this because he has great rushing upside if he can just be solid through the air
  • Delanie Walker is a TE1, no questions asked.
  • Derrick Henry is finally being used like he should’ve been all along. He’s always had good hands, hopefully his 75-yard catch-and-run TD scamper gets more balls thrown his way. Ignore the haters w/ their bad athleticism takes.
  • A.J. Brown will be the No. 1 WR in this offense by year’s end. Add him now.
  • Corey Davis is a bust.
  • Dion Lewis? Dion Who-is.
  • Adam Humphries preseason balling is all for naught.
  • Per Evan Silva, Tennessee was Top-5 in PA rate. New OC Arthur Smith seems legit and this bodes well for Delanie as he’s the ex TE coach.

Seahawks at Steelers

  • Pete Carroll continued to try to establish the run even when losing, to the point that Chris Carson had more touches (21) than RW had attempts. He lead the team in targets with 7 which puts him 7th in the NFL (tied).
  • D.K. Metcalf’s Grand Day Out bodes well for Tyler Lockett this week.
  • Rashaad Penny is non-factors.
  • Russell Wilson likely a back-end QB1 against a paltry Steelers D.
  • Bounce back game for PIT’s passing game. Andy Dalton (with an intelligent coaching staff) wrecked the Seahawks D. Seahawks’ safety play is bad.
  • Per ETR, JuJu Smith-Schuster ran a majority of his routes in the slot and Donte Moncrief lead the team in targets. Both are in for good games and JuJu is one of the biggest buy-low targets of the season right now.
  • Vance McDonald drops a smidge in the TE ranks but not by much.

Bills at Giants

  • Josh Allen will finish as a QB1 this week and Mr. Pete M. Rogers is so high on John Brown that he’s benching Davante Adams for him.
  • Devin Singletary is the man in Buffalo. 3rd most targets. 98 yards on 9 touches. Gore 11 for 20.
  • John Brown, per ETR, ran just over half of his snaps in the slot en route to 7/10 for 123 yards and a score. He’ll beat those numbers this week.
  • Cole Beasley should also pop in PPR as he fielded second most targets on the team
  • Start Saquon Barkley, bench Eli Manning, start Evan Engram (11/14 for 116 and a score)
  • Cody Lattimer had 8 targets. Play him only if you hate yourself.

49ers vs Bengals

  • Matt Breida is the lead back and Raheem Mostert should be added in all formats. As long as no movement by Jeff Wilson Jr., Breida should ball. Tevin Coleman should be out multiple weeks w/ high ankle sprain.
  • George Kittle had 2 TDs called back, buy-low.
  • Don’t trust Richie James Jr.
  • Like that Deebo Samuel was looked for on the 2 PT conversion.
  • #PanicOnPettis or don’t… bad groin?
  • Jimmy Garoppolo has good matchups with Cincy, then PIT, but then on bye. If he looks good, you can scoop him up then.
  • Zac Taylor brought analytics to the Cincy Jungle running a high PA rate and throwing regularly on 1st and 2nd.
  • John Ross III had 12 targets, he’s the alpha Bengals receiver. Pete Carroll always feared diminutive speedsters against his big corners. Sherman will have a tough day ahead.
  • Tyler Boyd still went 8/11 for 60.
  • Ignore the TEs.
  • If Joe Mixon can’t practice Friday, he’s not playing. Gio slides in as a high-upside RB2.

Chargers at Lions

  • Austin Ekeler is a matchup-proof RB1. Justin Jackson is worthy of 2nd flex consideration.
  • With Mike Williams and Hunter Henry out, Keenan Allen’s workload just exploded.
  • Travis Benjamin and Dontrell Inman now has 3-wide set roles. I’d fade both.
  • Philip Rivers remains a steady, high-upside QB2.
  • Matthew Stafford likely had his best game of the year last week. Try to sell high on him.
  • Kerryon Johnson only had 7 more touches than CJA -- 18 vs. 11. Ty Johnson and JD McKissic both saw the field too.
  • Stop what you’re doing and add T.J. Hockenson. He’s extremely talented and Patricia is hell bent on having his own Gronk. His 131 yard TE debut was a record per Evan Silva’s matchups column.
  • Danny Amendola lead the team in targets (13!) but draws a tough matchup.
  • Kenny Golladay went 4/9 42 yards and score while Marvin wen 4/4 for 56. Ignore Marvin. Hope for boom to sell Kenny.

Vikings at Packers

  • Kirk Cousins only threw 10 times. Sell high on Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs ASAP.
  • Dalvin Cook is likely a Top 5 RB all year, seeing 25 or more touches per game.
  • Ignore Kyle Rudolph.
  • Aaron Rodgers is my QB15 this week, tough matchup and a worse head coach.
  • Davante Adams is secure as a WR1, Marquez Valdes-Scantling a flex and Geronimo Allison droppable.
  • Jimmy Graham is a boom/bust TE
  • Aaron Jones a shaky low-end RB2

Jaguars at Texans

  • Gardner Minshew billed as a short-to-intermediate thrower but looked great on his deep passes last week.
  • Love the upside of D.J. Chark and Chris Conley, running deep.
  • Dede Westbrook drops from a sneaky WR2 to a PPR flex.
  • Leonard Fournette a true 3-down player, looked great in all phases and tied for 12th-most targeted RB in the league
  • Gardner Minshew could Foles Foles
  • Deshaun Watson a top tier QB year-round.
  • DeAndre Hopkins had 2 drops but still in contention for overall WR1. Will Fuller, per ETR played 97% of the snaps. Keke and Kenny Stills neutralize each other.
  • Duke Johnson looked great and used in pass pro(!) Carlos Hyde will be a factor (8-10 touches per game)

Patriots at Dolphins

  • Fire the NE cannons. 3-man backfield is not great. Sony Michel will destroy Miami, not a ton of need for James White usage this week. Rex Burkhead a factor in blowouts
  • Josh Gordon and Antonio Brown both WR2s this week across all formats. Julian Edelman a PPR WR2.
  • Avoid all Miami players.

Chiefs at Raiders

  • Sammy Watkins a WR1 until Hill returns. CB Gareon Conley is day to day with a neck injury. S Jonathan Abram is on IR.
  • Mecole Hardman played 53 of 68 (78%) of the Chiefs snaps. Should be a blowout, great time to get him some run.
  • Travis Kelce the TE1, Patrick Mahomes the QB1
  • Damien Williams securely has passing game and RZ work—RB2 this week—but LeSean McCoy handily out-rushed him and should be a solid flex
  • Derek Carr a solid QB streamer against a vulnerable KC defense
  • Tyrell Williams a WR2 that has Top 12 upside this week
  • Darren Waller immediately leap frogs OJ Howard/Henry to takeover the TE5 spot
  • Josh Jacobs a fringe RB1/2

Saints at Rams

  • Drew Brees a QB1
  • Alvin Kamara a Top 3 RB, Latavius Murray a good flex
  • Michael Thomas a WR1, balling in the short-to-intermediate area. Ted Ginn Jr. has the home-field-deep-threat role.
  • Bounce back game for Jared Goff and the receivers.
  • Gerald Everrett is not a threat to Cooper Kupp.
  • Malcolm Brown is a 1st half RB who will see Flex-worthy work. Todd Gurley an RB2 lead back with Boom RB1 weeks. Drop Darrell Henderson if necessary.

Bears at Broncos

  • Mitchell Trubisky can’t be trusted/can’t throw to his left side.
  • Allen Robinson is a locked-in WR2.
  • Have to see it to believe it from David Montgomery now.
  • DaeSean Hamilton was the slot man. Emmanuel Sanders had a good box score but didn’t look great. Courtland Sutton played well but this is a tough spot.
  • Don’t start Joe Flacco or Noah Fant.
  • Near 50/50 split with Royce Freeman and Phillip Lindsay. Both are getting (roughly) equal work through the air and on the ground with Freeman soundly outplaying Lindsay.

Eagles at Falcons

  • DeSean Jackson ran 48% of routes out of slot, 119 of 154 yards from the slot. 8 catches on 10 targets 2 TDs. Ran Curls, among other routes, no longer just a deep threat. Is he a Hill/Watkins-esque X?
  • Per Mike Clay, Miles Sanders had 36 snaps. Howard & Sproles combined for 36. Had a 21-yard TD called back. He finished with 11 carries for 25 yards, caught 1 of 2 targets for 2 yards. If he had finished with 48-yards and a score, we’d be having a different conversation. What’s the rule for the Atlanta Falcons? Start the opposing team’s running back.
  • Zach Ertz still a great TE but it’ll be very tough this year with significantly fewer targets
  • Carson Wentz a QB1
  • Case Keenum shredded Philly so imagine what Matt Ryan can do.
  • Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley will go off as WR1s and 2s, respectively.
  • Austin Hooper proved to have a very high floor last week and that should continue here
  • Devonta Freeman is a “buy-low, then sell-high in a few weeks” candidate

Browns at Jets

  • Sam Darnold supposedly has already lost 5 lbs. Dr. David Chao thinks early October return is optimistic.
  • Jamison Crowder had 17 targets, however, Darnold gone blows this up.
  • Go add Ty Montgomery
  • Trevor Siemian steps in at QB.
  • Cleveland knows how to manhandle former DC Gregg Williams and his blitz-heavy defense. A boom PPR week for Landry incoming + the Beckham being the best slant route runner in the NFL.
  • Nick Chubb bounces back
  • Unfortunately, David Njoku has to stay home and block to help the O line out.

Tune in every Thursday on Twitter (@faketeams) at 3 PM EST to watch me cover the weekly matchups live and give me your questions!