Week 1’s in the books and hopefully you’re 1-0. If you read last week’s column and left guys like Antonio Gibson and Cam Akers on your bench, congrats (but if you benched J.K. Dobbins, I’m sorry!). Even if you got the “W,” an unexpected hole probably cropped up in your lineup, causing you to question all of your preconceptions going into this season. The temptation to make a change is stronggggg. But don’t overreact! Trust your guys!! One game is simply not big enough of a sample size to make drastic changes to your lineup, so resist the temptation.
START: The guys you drafted to start
As a D.J. Moore owner myself, I understand the disappointment watching Robby Anderson go off, while Moore ended with a pedestrian 4-54 line. But next week Moore could end up with more high-leverage targets. You drafted A.J. Brown because you believed he could breakout in Year Two, but the Titans offense looked sluggish on Monday. However, next week Derrick Henry could get out to a stronger start against the Jaguars defense, and next thing you know Ryan Tannehll and Brown are killing the Jags with the play-action. If you drafted Odell Beckham Jr. and Nick Chubb you can’t bail on them because they failed to produce against one of the best defenses in the league. Do NOT sit Saquon Barkley for his paltry rushing numbers against the Steelers. He’s still one of the premier running backs in the league, and he didn’t lose his talent overnight.
A couple of exceptions: Mark Ingram and Keenan Allen. In Ingram’s case, receiving only 21 offensive snaps, while J.K. Dobbins received 23 snaps is a bit concerning. Factor in Gus Edwards’ 15 snaps, and Ingram was relegated to just over a third of the running back work on Sunday. That’s a huge drop off from last year when Ingram had a 45% snap share on offense. Sure, the Ravens may have simply taken the opportunity to give the rookie more snaps with the game out of hand, but Dobbins performed so well that he may have earned a true third of the timeshare.
For Allen, it’s more a case of the Chargers looking ineffective on offense entirely. QB Tyrod Taylor only managed to complete 16-30 passes for 208 yards, and didn’t throw a passing touchdown. In Week 2, the Chargers go against the fierce Chiefs pass rush, so don’t expect much better numbers for Taylor-- and by extension Allen.
SIT: That trendy guy who boomed Week 1
It’s the other side of the same line of reasoning here. One game is simply not a big enough sample size to judge a guy that didn’t figure to be a big fantasy contributor before Week 1.
Nyheim Hines is going to be a popular choice after he scored two touchdowns in Marlon Mack’s absence. But with an extra week of preparation we could see an uptick in Jonathan Taylor’s usage. Give the Colts backfield another week to see how it sorts out. Russell Gage went 9-119 as the Falcons’ third receiving option, but when Matt Ryan throws for 450 yards there’s plenty of fantasy points to go around. What about when he throws for a meager 350? Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley still figure to be significantly higher in the pecking order than Gage. You watched T.J. Hockenson catch five balls, including a touchdown, against the Bears, so you rushed to claim him on waivers. But, Kenny Golladay figures to return in Week 2 and will command a handful of targets from Matthew Stafford.
This is not to say you should be bummed if you snagged any of these guys on waivers. It would simply be prudent to wait another week to see if any of the players who fit this bill can replicate their Week 1 success before plugging them into your starting roster.
STREAMS OF THE WEEK
Ok, I fully struck out in this section last week (even though Eric Ebron looked like he should’ve had a bigger game), but I’ve gone back to work, spent time in the film room, and I’m dedicated to doing better this week.
QB: Kirk Cousins - 34% rostered
There’s always a risk starting Cousins at QB, because the Vikings could always decide to give Dalvin Cook 30 carries, especially if they’re ahead. But Gardner Minshew was able to complete 19-20 passes for three touchdowns against the Colts last week, and Cousins is a similarly efficient QB. He could put up solid fantasy numbers without throwing the ball 30 times.
TE: Logan Thomas - 14% rostered
I see some of you read Tuesday’s waiver wire column, as Logan jumped from 2% ownership to 14% on Wednesday morning. In case you missed it, Logan has a decent shot to develop into a TE1 option this season if Washington’s offense is better than expected. There aren’t many passing options outside Terry McLaurin on the Football Team, and Logan actually ended as Washington’s target leader in Week 1. I know, I know, I just said don’t overreact to an impressive Week 1, but in this case the path for Logan to repeat is there. The Cardinals offense should put up points, forcing the Football Team to throw the ball more. Add in the fact that Arizona’s defense surrendered the most fantasy points to tight ends in 2019, and Logan makes for a solid streaming option.
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