Fantasy Focus: Week 2 Hot & Not
Week 2 serves as a chance to see whether each player's week 1 performance was an anomaly or a representation of the season to come. It also gives us another set of players who either broke out and shined or broke down and flopped. It's time to take a look at this week's "Hot and Not."
Hot Fantasy Updates
Matt Jones- RB- Washington- Jones had his coming out party on Sunday against St. Louis, as he went for 123 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 19 carries. Jones even added three catches and 23 receiving yards in the win. It’s time to consider Jones an equal or greater fantasy force than his running mate Alfred Morris, as Jones earned four more carries than Morris in this week’s game. It will be interesting to see how the carries are divided in the next few weeks, but Jones’ value is continuing to rise after a strong preseason, and he may be getting the lion’s share of carries sooner rather than later.
Antonio Brown- WR- Pittsburgh- If you used your first-round pick (even your first overall pick) on Antonio Brown, you are probably feeling good right now. Brown followed up a Week 1 performance in which he caught 9 of 11 targets for 133 yards and a touchdown with a 9 catch, 195 yard game which included a receiving touchdown and a caught two-point conversion. The Steelers’ top wideout is absolutely on fire right now. Ben Roethlisberger provides him with plenty of targets every week, and Brown has feasted on two solid pass defenses, having played his first two games against the Patriots and 49ers, respectively.
Larry Fitzgerald- WR- Arizona- Fitzgerald showed that he still has what it takes to be elite at least every so often in Sunday’s win against the Bears. He found the end zone three times with eight receptions on nine targets, totaling 112 receiving yards. The veteran receiver served as QB Carson Palmer’s top target for the game, catching all but one of Palmer’s TD passes and pacing the team in targets. Between the first two games, Fitzgerald has caught 14 of 16 targets thrown to him this season and has taken advantage of injuries that have limited the action of fellow receiver Michael Floyd and running back Andre Ellington. Expect Fitz to regress a bit next week vs. the 49ers, but you can rely on him as a volume target in the Cardinals’ offense.
Tom Brady- QB- New England- If you drafted Brady as a late-round flyer in light of his sporting news “Deflate-Gate” scandal, you must be patting yourself on the back. Brady has shown he is still a high-end QB1 this season, totaling 754 passing yards and seven total touchdowns so far, including 466 yards and four TD’s over the air Sunday against the Bills. Brady had one fumble, but other than that, registered a remarkable performance this week, racking up 38 completions on an astounding 59 pass attempts. Brady shredded the notoriously stingy Bills defense and has staked a strong early claim to being this year’s #1 fantasy QB. Expect Brady to continue racking up the numbers next week at home vs. the Jaguars.
Not Fantasy Updates
C.J. Anderson-RB- Denver- Anderson is continuing to lead the disappointing fantasy news outpour. Many owners likely drafted Anderson with a first or second round pick, but the second year back has been far from that so far this season. Anderson had just 27 yards on 12 carries Thursday night vs. Kansas City, just failing to match his underwhelming Week 1 performance of 29 yards on 12 carries. PPR owners saw a silver lining in Week 1 when he caught 4 passes for 19 yards, but this week Anderson had only one reception for two yards. Anderson has only three more carries and eight more touches than backup Ronnie Hillman so far this year, as it looks like Anderson has been hampered by his early season toe injury. Watch the running back situation here, as Hillman may start eating into Anderson’s load as early as next week if Anderson does not improve.
Keenan Allen- WR- San Diego- Expectations were high for Allen after he put up a 15 catch, 166-yard clinic in Week 1, but Allen put up a dud this week against the Bengals. The second year receiver caught only two of four targets for 16 yards. The Bengals contained Allen and prevented him from gaining yards after catch. He also fumbled a punt early on in the game and also committed a badly timed drop. Allen should be able to do a better job getting targets next week vs. the Vikings, but we will still have to see whether Week 1 or Week 2 will be better representative of his season.
Ameer Abdullah- RB- Detroit- Abdullah matched the preseason hype in Week 1, including a TD run on his first professional touch, but failed to keep it up in Week 2. Abdullah had just 6 carries for 9 yards vs. the Vikings this week, and although Abdullah was perceived as a PPR dynamo, he only hauled in one catch for nine receiving yards. Although Abdullah had only six carries, his primary competition for the job, Joique Bell had only two yards on four carries. Abdullah should still feature as a solid back especially in PPR leagues, but certainly didn’t help his owners this week.
Rashad Jennings- RB- New York Giants- Jennings was and probably still is the starting running back for the G-Men, but he had an abysmal day on Sunday, accumulating only 12 yards on 9 carries. Jennings still led the Giants’ rushing attack by number of carries, although he was outgained on the ground by Andre Williams, Shane Vereen, and even Eli Manning. The Giants abandoned the ground game early, so it left little opportunity for anybody to rack up rushing yardage. On the bright side, Jennings caught both of his targets for 12 yards. Neither Williams nor Vereen have a serious shot of taking the starting job from Jennings just yet, but Jennings will have to find the end zone to find fantasy relevance.