Bears

Fantasy Football Start/Sit: Week 2

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Fantasy Football Start/Sit: Week 2

It's so great to have fantasy football back in our lives on a daily basis. It makes the water cooler a more interesting place at any office.

But Week 1 was nuts, with so many different storylines coming out of the woodwork that had our heads spinning just like Shea McClellin's:

But don't worry, just like McClellin (who was the highest-rated Bears defensive player in Week 1 according to ProFootballFocus.com), we're back on the right track.

[Fantasy Football: Bengals WR A.J. Green: Fantasy football is great for the NFL]

Week 2 is upon us and we're pleading with you all not to get too caught up in Week 1 numbers. They don't matter anymore. The past has passed.

So check out our Week 2 Start/Sit picks:

START

Ameer Abdullah, RB, DET (@ MIN) - The matchup is solid, even if I expect the Vikings to play better run defense than they did Monday night when Carlos Hyde gashed them and Abdullah proved in Week 1 that he is nearing must-start status. He's the guy in Detroit, making the most out of his seven carries (to Joique Bell's six) and four targets (catching all four for 44 yards). Oh, and Abdullah returns kicks for those of you in leagues where that matters. (Tony Andracki)

Vernon Davis, TE, SF (vs. PIT) - The Steelers are still trying to figure out how they had NOBODY COVERING GRONK during some plays last Thursday. While I'm hoping they realize that they should have at least one defender covering a tight end, I don't know if it'll be enough to slow down Davis. The Steelers secondary is a mess and Davis is already doing better in one week than he did all of last year. 47 yards against the Vikings in Week 1 would've been his season-high for a game last year. He's bouncing back this year and he should perform well against the Steelers. (John "The Professor" Paschall)

Percy Harvin, WR, BUF (vs. NE) - I'm so happy Harvin is back to being fantasy-relevant. Opposite Sammy Watkins, Harvin is an underrated asset for the Bills with big-play capability (as evidenced by his 51-yard touchdown in Week 1) and loads of talent. He also has a good matchup this week against the Patriots, if only for the fact that the Bills may need to pass a lot if they're playing from behind all game. Also, his quarterback is awesome. (Andracki)

Colin Kaepernick, QB, SF (@ PIT) -  Will Kaepernick ever get back to being the fantasy stud he once was during the 2013 season? It's hard to tell, but he could take a step towards fantasy relevance again with an impending matchup against a struggling Pittsburgh Steelers defense. Kaepernick looked like a more controlled quarterback than he has in over 12 months during his team's Week 1 victory. Look for Kaep to continue to rack up enough yards on the ground to go along with decent enough passing stats making him a must-start against Pittsburgh. (Scott Krinch)

[RELATED: Fantasy Football Podcast: Assessing the overreactions from Week 1]

Eli Manning, QB, NYG (vs. ATL) - Eli disappointed in Week 1 (only 9 fantasy points), but all the preseason points hold up about his weapons and second year in Ben McAdoo's offense. Expect a rebound this week, going up against a Falcons defense that admittedly looks better under Dan Quinn, but still not good enough to stiffle opposing QBs. (Andracki) 

Joseph Randle, RB, DAL (@ PHI) - If you drafted Randle over any of the other Cowboys running backs, you had to like what you saw in Week 1. Randle totaled 107 yards on 19 touches compared to Lance Dunbar and Darren McFadden's combined 14 touches. Randle is the clear leader in Dallas' running back-by-committee approach and with Dez Bryant sidelined for at least six weeks, the Cowboys will rely on him more than ever. The Eagles pedestrian run defense (105 total yards to the Falcons in Week 1) poses as an intriguing matchup for Randle on Sunday. (Krinch)

Austin Seferian-Jenkins, TE, TB (@ NO) - I don't think I recommended starting a single tight end in 2014, and now this is the second straight week I've suggested a player at the position. A breakout candidate going into the 2015 season, ASJ looked the part in Week 1 after hauling in five receptions for 110 yards and two scores against the Tennessee Titans. The Buccaneers will likely be in many shootouts due to their miserable defense and Week 2 will likely be no different against a Saints defense that just allowed Arizona Cardinals tight end Daniel Fells to have the best game of his career. (Krinch)

Steve Smith, WR, BAL (at OAK) - I understand, Steve Smith owners. You're probably bitter and angry with the way that he performed in Week 1. But he still tied Justin Forsett with a team-high seven targets and was in a very difficult matchup against the Broncos defense. This week should be much easier against a bad Raiders defense that is also losing both of its starting safeties. Smith should blow the top off of the defense and rebound in a big way. Get him in your lineup. (Professor)

[MORE: Get more Fantasy Football coverage here]

Terrance Williams, WR, DAL (at PHI) - Hopefully you won the waiver fight for him because he's going to be hot for a while. This matchup in particular makes Williams a must play. The Eagles secondary is still not great as we saw not only super-human Julio Jones dominate them but also "old man" Roddy White have a solid game. Williams is suddenly Tony Romo's No. 2 guy after Jason Witten and should produce immediate results. He's a great FLEX option this week. (Professor)

SIT

Nelson Agholor, WR, PHI (vs. DAL) - Count me as one of the guys expecting big things from Agholor this season. But with rookies, especially early in the year, I need to build some trust with them. It wasn't a good start for Agholor and myself in Week 1. The Cowboys defense is still solid (not spectacular) and I do expect the Eagles offense to go wild in Week 2, but I don't know if I can take a chance on Agholor again this week as a FLEX or WR2 option. Keep him on the bench until he shows us something. (Professor)

CJ Anderson, RB, DEN (@ KC) - As if his "questionable" label all week hadn't scared you off enough, I have very little confidence in Anderson no matter how much he plays. His toe/foot injury limited him to just 29 rushing yards on 12 carries (2.4 ypc) and 19 yards on four receptions. Ronnie Hillman was more productive and is healthier and looks to be the guy to own in the Denver backfield for this week, at least. (Andracki)

Tom Brady, QB, NE (@ BUF) - I know, this seems crazy. Telling you to sit Brady? Am I out of my mind? Maybe a little bit, but I just don't like this Week 2 matchup. The Bills defense held Andrew Luck in check in Week 1, which is no fluke considering their defense the NFL in fewest passing touchdowns allowed (16), sacks (54) and Total QBR (36.2) since the start of the 2014 season. Rex Ryan gave Brady fits when he was the head coach of the New York Jets, and I expect it no be no different now that he's with the Bills. (Krinch)

Amari Cooper, WR, OAK (vs. BAL) - Here we go with Cooper again. The Ravens didn't allow an offensive TD in Week 1 against the Broncos, who have a much better offense than the Raiders, even amid all the concerns over Peyton Manning. Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders were held to just 125 yards on 15 catches (8.3 yards per catch). Do you really think Amari Cooper - playing in just his second NFL game - can do better with an injured Derek Carr as his QB? I'm thinking not...(Andracki)

[ROTOWORLD: Your home for all the latest Fantasy Football news]

Melvin Gordon, RB, SD (at CIN) - Can you believe Danny Woodhead stole this guy's thunder to start to the season? Oh well. Gordon will have better weeks. But it just won't be this week. The Bengals completely shut down the Raiders run game and while the Chargers are much better than the Raiders, the threat of Woodhead scares me as a Gordon owner. I don't think Gordon will have his breakout game against the Bengals so if you have other options, look that way this week. (Professor)

Frank Gore, RB, IND (vs. NYJ) - All the reports say the Colts will try and get Gore going on Monday night against the Jets. Good luck. The last time the Colts had a runner go for 100 yards in a game was 2012. That's insane. This offensive line is really bad at run blocking and it won't get any better against a stout Jets defense. Don't give up on Frank the Tank, Fantasy owners. Just need to be patient as he rides out these first couple of tough weeks. (Professor)

Cam Newton, QB, CAR (vs. HOU) - As a general rule of thumb, I don't enjoy playing any fantasy quarterback against J.J. Watt. I just have horrible visions of a helmet-less Watt leveling my QB and knocking him out of the game and I lose my matchup as a result. On top of that, Newton had a really disappointing showing in Week 1 (175 yds, TD), seemingly proving everybody right that he is not a solid option with so few weapons with Kelvin Benjamin out. (Andracki)

DeAngelo Williams, RB, PIT (vs. SF) - Who had Williams as the NFL's No. 3 rusher (127 yards) after one game? Probably not many. Williams, starting in place of the suspended Le'Veon Bell, looked like his old self against the Patriots, but it will be tough sledding against a stout 49ers front seven this week. If Adrian Peterson could only manage 31 rushing yards against San Francisco there's no way that Williams could give you a respectable fantasy output, right? (Krinch)

Chicago Bears Training Camp: Veteran and rookie report dates

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USA Today

Chicago Bears Training Camp: Veteran and rookie report dates

Chicago Bears training camp is right around the corner with the first practice (non-padded) scheduled for July 21. 

Bears veterans and rookies will report a few days ahead of that first session to acclimate themselves to their new (for some) surroundings. Rookies report on July 16, with veterans coming three days later on July 19.

All eyes will be on QB Mitch Trubisky and the potentially high-flying offense under coach Matt Nagy. Training camp will take on extra importance because of the plethora of new faces on the roster and coaching staff as well as the installation of a completely new offensive scheme. It's critical that Trubisky builds chemistry with wide receivers Allen Robinson, Taylor Gabriel, Anthony Miller and Kevin White, all of whom he's never thrown a regular-season pass to. Add Trey Burton to that mix and a lot of miscues should be expected in the preseason.

The rookie class is led by linebacker Roquan Smith, who remains unsigned. With less than 30 days until rookies are required to report, a greater sense of urgency -- even if it's not quite a panic -- is certainly creeping in. Assuming he's signed in time, Smith should earn a starting role early in training camp and ascend to one of the defense's top all-around players. 

The Bears have higher-than-usual expectations heading into the 2018 season making fans eager for summer practices to get underway.

Leonard Floyd picked as potential Pro Bowler in 2018

Leonard Floyd picked as potential Pro Bowler in 2018

The Chicago Bears need a big season from outside linebacker Leonard Floyd. He's the team's best pass-rush option and the only legitimate threat to post double-digit sacks this year.

Floyd joined the Bears as a first-round pick (No. 9 overall) in 2016 and has flashed freakish talent at times. The problem has been his health; he's appeared in only 22 games through his first two seasons. 

Floyd's rookie year -- especially Weeks 5 through 9 -- showed a glimpse of the kind of disruptive force he's capable of becoming. He registered seven sacks and looked poised to breakout in 2017. Unfortunately, injuries limited him to only 10 games and four sacks.

Despite his disappointing sophomore season, NFL.com's Gil Brandt has high hopes for Floyd in 2018. The long-time NFL personnel executive named Floyd as the Bear with the best chance to earn a first-time trip to the Pro Bowl.

CHICAGO BEARS: Leonard Floyd, OLB, third NFL season. Floyd had seven sacks as a rookie in 2016, but missed six games last season due to a knee injury. He's a talented guy who can drop into coverage or rush with his hand on the ground and should play much better this season. He also has become much stronger since coming into the league.

The Bears will be in a heap of trouble if Floyd doesn't emerge as a Pro Bowl caliber player. There aren't many pass-rushing options on the roster outside of Floyd aside from Aaron Lynch and rookie Kylie Fitts. Neither edge defender has a resume strong enough to rely on as insurance.

It's a critical year for Floyd's future in Chicago, too. General manager Ryan Pace will decide whether to pick up Floyd's fifth-year option in his rookie contract next offseason. If he plays well, it's a no-brainer. If not, Pace could be looking at two straight first-round picks (see: Kevin White) that he's declined the extra year.

We're a long way from that decision. Until then, the Bears' season may sink or swim based on its pass rush. It begins -- and ends -- with Floyd.