If you were writing for a major newspaper and needed a headline for your Week 1 NFL recap, what would you choose? “Fitz Gives Tantrums to the Saints”, “Brady and his Bunch Survive Texans”, “Resurrected Rodgers and Pack Ascend After Mack Attack”, “Ravens Feast on Bills”, or “Jets Propel to Victory Over Dysfunctional Detroit”. Week 1 was chock full of storylines, highlights, disappointments, comeback wins, breakout candidates, and even a tie game!
No analyst could have predicted that Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick would be the leading fantasy scorer with 417 passing yards and five total touchdowns. Pittsburgh Steelers’ backup running back James Conner may have quieted the “Bell” in Pittsburgh with a strong performance of 192 total yards and two scores. After a terrible pick six on his first pass attempt, New York Jets’ rookie quarterback Sam Darnold silenced critics and exceeded expectations as the Jets shocked the Detroit Lions in the Motor City. With far too many headlines and stories to dissect from Week 1, let’s take a glimpse at Week 2 so you can prepare for battle.
Take a dive with me as review several players and a defense ready to make their marks in Week 2.
QB Jimmy Garoppolo, San Francisco
One of the most hyped quarterbacks heading into the 2018 season was San Francisco 49ers’ quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. After winning all six of his starts last season, expectations for the young quarterback were sky high. However, a road matchup against the robust defense of the Minnesota Vikings proved no easy task in Week 1. Garoppolo threw three interceptions and ultimately disappointed his fantasy owners. With a home matchup against the Detroit Lions’ struggling defense, the San Francisco 49ers will regroup and Garoppolo should be a prime rebound candidate. Although wide receiver Marquise Goodwin is questionable, Garoppolo can count on wide receiver Pierre Garcon and tight end George Kittle in a solid home matchup against Detroit.
Week 2 projection: 200 passing yards; 2 passing TD
RB Chris Thompson, Washington Redskins
There were major concerns about Washington Redskins’ running back Chris Thompson’s health after his broken leg last season. Those worries were put to rest as he and Adrian Peterson seemed to be a dynamic running back duo in Week 1; Thompson totaled 128 total yards and a touchdown. With a home matchup against the Indianapolis Colts’ defense who allowed over five yards per carry in Week 1, look for Thompson to have an encore performance and serve as a low-end RB2 or FLEX with a high ceiling.
Week 2 projection: 100 total yards; 1 TD
WR Quincy Enunwa, New York Jets
The New York Jets’ offense appeared in mid-season form with a strong passing and run game during their Week 1 victory. With injuries shortening his breakthrough last season, wide receiver Quincy Enunwa appears to be rookie quarterback Sam Darnold’s top target as he caught six passes from 10 targets and scored a touchdown. Look for their chemistry to continue building with a home matchup against the Miami Dolphins in Week 2. Although Miami’s secondary played well last weekend, Darnold will lean on Enunwa much of the game as a security blanket. Consider Enunwa a WR3 or potential FLEX this weekend.
Week 2 projection: 75 receiving yards; 1 TD
TE Jared Cook, Oakland Raiders
Many fantasy owners have learned a lesson the hard way. As soon as you bench or drop Jared Cook, he has an epic performance. In Week 1, the Oakland Raiders’ tight end had a game to remember with 9 catches for 180 receiving yards from 12 targets. He was Derek Carr’s top target despite Oakland’s offensive tailspin in the 2nd half. With a road matchup against the Denver Broncos who struggled guarding Seattle’s tight end Will Dissly, Cook should continue to serve as a key target for Carr and maintain a significant role in Oakland’s offense.
Week 2 projection: 75 receiving yards; 1 TD
D/ST Los Angeles Chargers
If they are available in your league (which is probably a bit unlikely) or hopefully you may own them already, start the Los Angeles Chargers’ defense in Week 2. Unfortunately, the Buffalo Bills’ offensive struggles will likely continue into Week 2 if with rookie Josh Allen starting. The Chargers’ defense did not appear as potent as last season which is partially due to the absence of defensive lineman Joey Bosa, but they should rebound well despite a cross-country road matchup.
Week 2 projection: 12 points
Week 1 Results:
QB Kirk Cousins
Week 1 forecast: 225 passing yards; 2 passing TD
Week 1 results: 244 passing yards; 2 passing TD; 26 rushing yards
RB Matt Breida
Week 1 forecast: 80 total yards; 1 TD
Week 1 results: 51 total yards (bad call)
WR Allen Hurns
Week 1 forecast: 75 receiving yards; 1 TD
Week 1 results: 20 receiving yards (bad call)
Week 1 forecast: 60 receiving yards; 1 TD
Week 1 results: 25 receiving yards (bad call)
D/ST Baltimore Ravens
Week 1 forecast: 12 points
Week 1 results: 17 points (superb call)
Good luck in Week 2!