Fantasy News  

 

Things I Learned in Fantasy Football: Week 2

Print
Takeaways from Week 2 as told through @MarcasG's tweets.

This shouldn't have been a complete surprise but there were fantasy managers (understandably) concerned with what AB's usage would be in his first outing with the Patriots. Brown didn't play a ton -- just 32 percent of snaps -- but when he was on the field, Tom Brady went to him frequently. Brown had eight targets in his 21 plays and turned them into 4/56/1 and might have had another touchdown had Brady not underthrown him in the end zone. Working him in against the woebegone Dolphins couldn't have gone any better. Look for AB to see even more work next week against a banged-up Jets team.

The start to the season couldn't have been any better for Austin Ekeler -- or anyone who has him on their roster. The Chargers now-lead back was on the field for 74 percent of the snaps while logging 23 touches for 133 yards and a score. It's apparent that he's fully absorbed the role that has currently been abandoned by Melvin Gordon and nothing's going to change for the foreseeable future with Gordon standing firm in his holdout. With injuries to the wide receiver group, the Chargers are also lining him up outside which makes him harder to defend. At this point, there's no logical reason to not have him in your lineup.

The haters will say "But the Cardinals defense sucks!" I respond with "so what?" Yes, Jackson and the Ravens played a terrible defense this week but the second-year quarterback still made some amazing throws and his rookie receiver Marquise "Hollywood" Brown looks like he's as difficult to cover as his more famous cousin. If this feels like the same thing I said last week, you're right. BUT THIS WEEK ... Jackson ran for over 100 yards, reminding us all of what gave him incredible upside in the first place. Throw in the fact that the Ravens travel to Kansas City to face the Chiefs' questionable defense next week and Lamar could start the year with three straight weeks in the top three.

After two weeks, it's time to re-evaluate our beliefs about the 49ers offense. It doesn't matter who's in the backfield, Kyle Shanahan is going to use the full complement of running backs at his disposal. This week, it meant getting Raheem Mostert and Jeff Wilson into the mix. It's reassuring that Matt Breida was incredibly efficient with his touches but Mostert playing a plurality of the snaps (44.1 percent) should make him a popular waiver option this week. Next up is a home date with the Steelers, who didn't have the best time with the Seahawks' running game. All three Niners backs are in play in Week 3. As for Dante Pettis, he didn't see a single target in 33 snaps. This comes one week after Pettis was targeted just once in two snaps versus the Buccaneers. With Deebo Samuel and Marquise Goodwin asserting themselves in the passing game, it's getting harder to make a case for keeping Pettis on your roster.

In fairness, Harmon's theory is that drops don't matter if you can be great in other areas. Donte Moncrief isn't doing that. Through two weeks, the Steelers passing game has been dead on arrival and Moncrief is doing nothing with the opportunities he's been given. (3 recs, 7 yds, 0 TD on 11 targets) I don't know if this necessarily means James Washington gets an upgrade -- though Mason Rudolph potentially being a starter next week is reason for optimistm -- but it's probably safe to cut bait on Moncrief now.

This is something of an exaggeration but I don't know if anyone expected Hyde's role to be so large. He outsnapped Duke Johnson in Week 2 and continues to be the Texans lead back and through two weeks has been an effective runner with 173 yards on 30 carries. Duke struggled to find a defined role in Cleveland and it looks like the same thing is happening to him again in Houston. This definitely isn't what we signed up for.

The prevailing wisdom was that Kerryon Johnson was poised to be a workhorse back this season. Matt Patricia has made no secret of his desire to establish the run and it appeared that his second-year running back would be the beneficiary. Through two games, that hasn't quite been the case. Johnson is playing around 55 percent of the running back snaps and averaging 16 touches per game. That's not what you were hoping for when you spent a third-round pick on him. Part of what made Johnson intriguing last year was his great efficiency with the football. That hasn't really been the case so far (3.2 yards per carry). If Detroit isn't going to load him up with touches, his value is going to take a tumble.

This really depends on your perspective. If you drafted Gurley as an RB2, then you're probably not panicking. If you're hoping you drafted an RB1 late in the second round, well ... maybe you're concerned. Everyone will point to the Rams using him as the hammer to close out games but it's very obvious by now that Sean McVay is limiting his workload to keep him fresh for later in the season. Through two weeks, he's been a non-factor in the passing game and while he's been efficient with his reduced touches, it was his touchdown upside that made him a first-round fantasy stud. If that is going away in 2019, Gurley won't even return the second-round value you were hoping for.

Wait...what?


* Aaron Jones dominated the touches but Jamaal Williams still played 43 percent of the snap.

* Jacksonville's leading rusher was Gardner Minshew (6 rushes, 56 yards).

* The person who led the Giants receivers in snaps was ... Bennie Fowler?

* Through two games, the Dolphins have 63 total rushing yards. Dalvin Cook had a 75-yard run on Sunday.

* Last week, T.J. Hockenson and Danny Amendola combined for 22 targets. This week, they combined for four.

* Adrian Peterson had 12 touches on 16 snaps.

* James Conner hasn't played more than 55 percent of snaps through two games.

And one for the road...


Marcas Grant is a fantasy analyst for NFL.com and a man who will never be too old to eat chicken fingers. Send him your dining go-tos or fantasy football questions via Twitter @MarcasG. If you read all of that, congrats. Follow him on Facebook, and Instagram.

Print