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NFL fantasy football: Fitzgerald's poor value a reality

Peyton Manning, QB, Denver Broncos

Week 2 stats: 241 pass yards, TD, 3 INT (7.54 fantasy points)

There are no two ways about it, Manning was awful on Monday night. He threw three interceptions on the Broncos' first three possessions and looked nothing like the guy who carved up the Pittsburgh Steelers the week before. One big week from Manning was certainly promising, but no guarantee that he was all the way back to being pre-2011 Peyton. Similarly, one bad game doesn't mean it's time to give up on him. Manning is still one of the smartest QBs in the league and he'll figure out how to fix any issues with the offense. I'll be surprised if he finishes the season as a top-five quarterback, but he'll be fine long-term.


On NFL Replay
NFL Replay
will re-air the St. Louis Rams' 31-28 win over the Washington  Redskins in Week 2 on Wednesday, Sept. 19 at 9 p.m. ET.

Sam Bradford, QB, St. Louis Rams

Week 2 stats: 310 pass yards, 3 TDs, 1 INT (23.40 fantasy points)

The Rams have made a commitment to getting the ball out of Bradford's hands quickly through short passing. It certainly benefitted Danny Amendola in Week 2. But over the long haul, it should have a positive impact on Bradford as well. St. Louis doesn't have a slew of big, game-breaking receivers (Brian Quick is the tallest wideout at 6-foot-3), so the offense will have to survive on a lot of short throws and yards after the catch. That last part could be critical to Bradford's fantasy success and fantasy football owners should be prepared for some week-to-week inconsistency.


Brandon Weeden, QB, Cleveland Browns

Week 2 stats: 322 pass yards, 2 TDs (21.48 fantasy points)

Weeden looked very good against the Bengals on Sunday -- a far cry from his abysmal outing against the Eagles to start the season. A large part of Weeden's problem is a distinct lack of receiving threats. Through two games, Mohamed Massaquoi is Cleveland's leading receiver with eight catches for 131 yards. Both Hakeem Nicks and Victor Cruz surpassed that in one game. At this point, the best advice is to use Weeden as a matchup-based option. He's too much of a riddle for anything else right now.


Brandon Tate, WR, Cincinnati Bengals

Week 2 stats: 71 rec yards, TD (13.10 fantasy points)

Have the Bengals found a new No. 2 receiver to pair with A.J. Green? Possibly, but I'm not sold that it's Tate. In his previous three NFL seasons, Tate has been primarly a kick returner and has never caught more than four passes on one game (he caught three on Sunday). It was a nice week for Tate, but Andrew Hawkins seems more likely to become Andy Dalton's second WR option -- and not just because they have the same name.


Dante Rosario, TE, San Diego Chargers

Week 2 stats: 48 rec yards, 3 TDs (22.80 fantasy points)

Who knew that Rosario would start for the Chargers on Sunday -- let alone catch three touchdown passes in a win over the Titans? In his previous five seasons, Rosario hauled in a total of five touchdown passes. And while it's fun to joke about Antonio Gates getting Wally Pipp'd (or as Adam Rank would say, Drew Bledsoe'd), no right-thinking head coach would sit one of the league's best tight ends for a one-week flash in the pan. Not even Norv Turner.


Trent Richardson, RB, Cleveland Browns

Week 2 stats: 109 rush yards, TD; 36 rec yards, TD (26.50 fantasy points)

Now that's more like it. The highly touted Cleveland Browns rookie put on a performance worthy of the No. 3 overall draft pick. That train shouldn't slow too much this week against the Buffalo Bills. Until the passing game is more consistent, the Browns should lean on Richardson. He won't score two touchdowns every week, but he'll have plenty of opportunities to produce for fantasy owners.

Verdict: Reality

Brent Celek, TE, Philadelphia Eagles

Week 2 stats: 157 rec yards (15.70 fantasy points)

When we talk about top fantasy tight ends, Celek tends to get overlooked. He reminded us this week that he is still a commodity. Going back to last season, the Philadelphia Eagles tight end has scored double-digit fantasy points in four of his last five games. With injuries and inconsistency plaguing Philly's wideouts, there will be opportunities for Celek to succeed. Maybe not at a 150-yards-per-game clip, but he'll be productive.

Verdict: Reality

Jackie Battle, RB, San Diego Chargers

Week 2 stats: 69 rush yards, 2 TDs (18.90 fantasy points)

See: Rosario, Dante. When Ryan Mathews is healthy, he's back to being the Chargers' bell cow.


Danny Amendola, WR, St. Louis Rams

Rank: Fear the stats correction

Adam Rank appears to have won his fantasy matchup this week. His Monday Nightmare is a warning to all fantasy owners. **More ...**

Week 2 stats: 160 rec yards, TD (20.00 fantasy points)

If Sam Bradford can be helped by a short passing game, then it can make Amendola into a fantasy star -- especially in PPR leagues. Before suffering a season-ending injury early in the 2011 season, Amendola was one of the league's most targeted WRs. He was also a favorite target of Bradford in the red zone. Now that he's healthy, Amendola is resuming his role as Wes Welker Lite.

Verdict: Reality

Larry Fitzgerald, WR, Arizona Cardinals

Week 2 stats: 4 rec yards (0.40 fantasy points)

Say Larry Fitzgerald's name in a group of fantasy football enthusiasts and someone's likely to start pulling out their hair in frustation. Not every week will be as bad as Sunday's one-catch, four-yard letdown -- Ken Whisenhuntsays so. Good intentions aside, Fitzgerald is still stuck in a stagnant, generally unproductive offense. He'll have better games, but until there are big changes in the desert, his fantasy value is severely diminished.

Verdict: Reality

Follow Marcas Grant on Twitter @MarcasG

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