The Cardinals and Eagles soared above all others in week one, while the Raiders and Bucs were swabbing the deck. In week two, look for the Eagles to continue their aerial assault joined by the Colts. The Broncos, Bengals and the incomparable Frank Gore will continue to find success on the ground in week two.
When using this list, try and remember a couple basic rules:
1) Studs – Always play your studs. Each position will include a list of players that are considered studs and should not be benched. If you have the luxury of needing to decide between studs, check out the matchups or feel free to let the shark tank assist you in your decisions. This list will change from week to week. The first week, the studs will consist of the preseason top “tier” at each position.
2) Depth – Every fantasy team is different and some have more depth than others. Only follow the recommended moves if your team depth allows you to make such a move.
Enough of the chit-chat, onto the list!!
Peyton Manning, Indianapolis vs. Houston
Carson Palmer, Cincinnati vs. Cleveland
Matt Hasselbeck, Seattle vs. Arizona
Tom Brady, New England vs. N.Y. Jets
Marc Bulger, St. Louis vs. San Francisco
Donovan McNabb, Philadelphia vs. N.Y. Giants
Eli Manning, N.Y. Giants vs. Philadelphia
Kurt Warner, Arizona (vs. Seattle): A healthy Warner is a dangerous Warner. Seattle will present more challenges for Warner than the 49ers could muster, but expect Warner to find his stud receivers often enough for another worthy start in your lineup.
Rex Grossman, Chicago (vs. Detroit): I know, I know, it’s a stretch. But if you are the unlucky owner who held off on drafting a QB and ended up with Trent Green and Grossman, you’ll be better off starting Grossman than picking up Damon Huard and riding the Kansas City passing attack.
Aaron Brooks, Oakland (vs. Baltimore): I’ve got two words for the Raiders performance on Monday night: UG-LY. The level of stinkitude was at an all-time high in the wee-hours of the night on the east coast. Things don’t get any easier for Brooks who was sacked seven times in week one as the Raiders head to Baltimore.
Jake Plummer, Denver (vs. Kansas City): We don’t know who will be running the ball for the Broncos, but we do know they’ll be able to run it and run it well. The Chiefs won’t have much of an answer for the Denver rushing machine which will limit Plummer’s involvement in the offense. After three INTs in week one, the Jay Cutler watch has officially begun.
LaDainian Tomlinson, San Diego vs. Tennessee
Shaun Alexander, Seattle vs. Arizona
Larry Johnson, Kansas City vs. Denver
Edgerrin James, Arizona vs. Seattle
Tiki Barber, N.Y. Giants vs. Philadelphia
Ronnie Brown, Miami vs. Buffalo
Steven Jackson, St. Louis vs. San Francisco
Removed from Studs list:
-Lamont Jordan, Oakland: Things look bad in Oak.
Rudi Johnson, Cincinnati (vs. Cleveland): Johnson had a solid game in week one and has a favorable matchup at home against the Browns this week. Look for Johnson to once again carry the load for the Bengals keeping Palmer out of harm’s way.
Frank Gore, San Francisco (vs. St. Louis): The fantasy stud of week one makes the start list for week two. Playing at home against the Rams means plenty of touches for Gore who not only ran for 87 yards, but his six catches for 83 yards makes him a very valuable commodity.
Jamal Lewis, Baltimore (vs. Oakland): Despite the question marks heading into the season, Lewis posted a very solid game against a tough Buccaneers defense in week one. As LT and Michael Turner found out on Monday night, the Raiders are soft against the run and Lewis will take full advantage this week.
Carnell Williams, Tampa Bay (vs. Atlanta): The combination of back spasms, a mediocre offensive line, and playing on the road in Atlanta should be enough to leave the Cadillac in the garage this week.
Fred Taylor, Jacksonville (vs. Pittsburgh): Fabulous Fred posted very respectable numbers in week one surpassing 110 all-purpose yards with a TD. Taylor won’t be hurt this week but he’ll struggle, as Ronnie Brown did in week one, to find openings against the defending Super Bowl champs.
Kevin Jones, Detroit (vs. Chicago): As mentioned last week, Jones will have value in the Detroit passing game, but the matchup cancels out any added value this week. Don’t be fooled by the 100-yard game the Bears allowed last week to Ahman Green.
Torry Holt, St. Louis vs. San Francisco
Chad Johnson, Cincinnati vs. Cleveland
Terrell Owens, Dallas vs. Washington
Anquan Boldin, Arizona vs. Seattle
Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona vs. Seattle
Randy Moss, Oakland vs. Baltimore
Marvin Harrison, Indianapolis vs. Houston
Reggie Wayne, Indianapolis vs. Houston
Chris Chambers, Miami vs. Buffalo
Removed from Studs list:
-Steve Smith, Carolina: bad hamstring
Donte Stallworth, Philadelphia (vs. N.Y. Giants): I still believe that Reggie Brown will emerge as the #1 WR in Philly, but you can’t ignore the 141 yards on six catches and a TD from Stallworth in week one. The G-Men had their difficulties with the Harrison/Wayne combo last week. Stallworth and Brown are certainly a few notches below that super duo, but McNabb will see to it that Stallworth posts another strong week in the Philly home opener.
Matt Jones, Jacksonville (vs. Pittsburgh): Jones had a solid week one and I’m expecting Leftwich to air it out often against the Steelers. Reggie Williams and Ernest Wilford will see their time, but Jones will be the standout WR this week for the Jags on the road.
Darrell Jackson, Seattle (vs. Arizona): Deion Branch is coming to town which will give Hasselbeck and the Seahawks passing attack a huge boost. Look for Jackson to benefit immediately as his knowledge of the offense will work in his favor against the Cards finding the openings early and often.
Hines Ward, Pittsburgh (vs. Jacksonville): All this consummate professional did after suffering a hamstring injury all preseason was catch five passes for 53 yards and a TD in the opening game. Whether it’s Batch or Roethlisberger, you can bet that Ward will remain a focal point of the Steelers passing attack and he’ll make his presence felt against Jacksonville.
Joey Galloway, Tampa Bay (vs. Atlanta): Zero catches? I know he was held without a catch in two games last season, but that’s still disturbing. Simms and the Bucs passing attack will struggle again this week in Atlanta. Keep Galloway and your Bucs on your bench it at all possible.
Braylon Edwards, Cleveland (vs. Cincinnati): Edwards proved he was healthy enough to play last week, but the Browns offense struggled big time. The blitzing Bengals playing their home opener will make things very difficult for Charlie Frye and the rest of the Browns passing attack.
Roddy White, Atlanta (vs. Tampa Bay): Michael Jenkins, not Ashley Lelie stole the bulk of the catches away from Roddy White in week one. Vick will find Crumpler open this week, but they’ll be little space for the WRs to post big numbers. Rowdy Roddy should sit again this week.
Keyshawn Johnson, Carolina (vs. Minnesota): No Steve Smith = bad news for Keyshawn. The Panthers won’t need to abandon the run against the Vikings, which means good news for Deshaun Foster owners but not so good news for owners of Keyshawn.
Antonio Gates, San Diego vs. Tennessee
Tony Gonzalez, Kansas City vs. Denver
Jeremy Shockey, N.Y. Giants vs. Philadelphia
Todd Heap, Baltimore vs. Oakland
Heath Miller, Pittsburgh (vs. Jacksonville): Don’t expect an 87-yard TD pass every week, but Miller will play an integral role in the passing attack for the Steelers until rookie Santonio Holmes figures things out.
L.J. Smith, Philadelphia (vs. N.Y. Giants): McNabb looks strong and he’ll continue to lean on Smith until someone proves they can stop him. The Giants watched Dallas Clark catch a TD in week one and Smith will add 5-6 catches with a score.
Marcus Pollard, Detroit (vs. Chicago): The Mike Martz offense isn’t very friendly to the TEs. No one is friendly on the Bears defense. Look for Pollard to spend most of his time blocking trying to keep Grossman on his feet.
Ben Troupe, Tennessee (vs. San Diego): Troupe is a solid TE in a very unstable situation. The Titans offense is one to avoid especially this week considering how the Chargers simply dismantled the Raiders on Monday night.