Week 2 Studs and Duds
The Week 2 Thursday night game was an eyesore. Julian Edelman was probably the lone highlight, as he had an amazing game, especially in PPR leagues. Although he didn’t have much yardage, he had 13 catches on a whopping 18 targets. Aaron Dobson caught a touchdown pass on a blown assignment, but was dropping passes the rest of the night. Kenbrell Thompkins just doesn’t look like a starting caliber NFL receiver at this point. To make matters worse, Stevan Ridley was once again invisible and almost had a key fumble when he bobbled a toss from Tom Brady late in the game. Even Brady himself played poorly, as he only threw for 185 yards. Unless Gronk and Amendola come back quickly, he may not be a QB1 for much longer.
On the other side, the Jets didn’t look much better. Geno Smith showed great physical tools, but had poor decision making all night that led to three interceptions. Bilal Powell scored the lone Jets TD, but he still isn’t worth starting unless you’re in a pinch. Santonio Holmes and Stephen Hill had flashes of good play, but nothing sustainable. Kellen Winslow was a non-factor, which showed his week one effort may have been a fluke. All in all, this was a very forgettable game.
Now that the opening game of Week 2 is in the books, I’ll try to channel my inner Nostradamus again with my studs and duds for the remaining games:
Demaryius Thomas, Denver WR-After that performance last week, all Denver WRs are must-starts, even Eric Decker because I think that game was a total fluke. It certainly helps that the Broncos play the Giants and their poor excuse for a secondary. To make it even worse, they may be without the services of Prince Amukamara, who was injured against Dallas last week. Thomas should have a field day. Prediction: 9 catches, 160 yards, 1 TD
Arian Foster, Houston RB-There’s been a lot of talk this week about Foster ceding more touches to Ben Tate. I just don’t see that happening. He had his touches reduced last week and still had 26, including 6 receptions. Plus, he was clearly unhappy at not being in the game during crunch time, so I have a feeling the coaching staff will continue giving him the ball in the red zone to try and give him a touchdown or two. The Tennessee defense isn’t outstanding, so he should have room to run. Prediction: 90 rushing yards, 50 receiving yards, 2 TDs.
Eli Manning, New York Giants QB-The Denver offense should be scoring on the below average Giants defense all game. I don’t expect Peyton to throw for another 7 TDs, but they will probably score over 30 points. If that happens, Eli will be throwing the ball A LOT. He may not have a great game in real life, but I think he will put up a bunch of fantasy points as he tries to mount a comeback against Denver. Prediction: 415 yards passing, 3 TDs
Brandon Myers, New York Giants TE-Myers had a solid debut last week and was able to rack up stats as the Giants mounted a furious comeback. Any recent Giants TE has been serviceable because Eli relies on them heavily. Myers was solid in Oakland and I expect even better things over the course of this year. You saw how well Myers performed last week when the Giants were trailing, so expect more of the same this week. Prediction: 6 catches, 90 yards, 1 TD.
Eddie Lacy, Green Bay RB-Lacy had a rough debut last week, but that needs to be put into context because he faced a stout Niners run defense. His fumble certainly didn’t help, as it caused him to be benched for a short period of time. This week, he gets a Redskins defense that was absolutely gashed by LeSean McCoy last week. Lacy won’t put up those type of video game numbers, but he will have his first 100 yard rushing game as a pro. Prediction: 105 yards rushing, 20 yards receiving, 1 rushing TD.
Ray Rice, Baltimore RB-Aside from this touchdown last week, Rice didn’t look too good. Granted, he did catch a number of passes out of the backfield, but his running game was nonexistent. Now, he faces a very underrated Cleveland run defense, and I don’t expect him to have a monster game here. He may score on a short touchdown run, but he will be held in check for the most part. Prediction: 50 yards rushing, 30 yards receiving, 0 TDs.
Marshawn Lynch, Seattle RB-Lynch faces a stout 49ers defense in the marquee matchup of the week. However, he has had their number recently, having rushed for over 100 yards in the past three meetings between these powerhouses. I am putting him on the dud list this week for two reasons. First, the Seattle offense didn’t look too good last week against a solid Panthers defense, and I would say the Niners D is better against the run. It may take some time for the Seahawks to get rolling on offense. Second, I think the law of averages comes into play and Lynch is due for a poor game against his arch-rival. He may very well have another monster game, but I predict he doesn’t come close to 100+ yards again. Prediction: 65 yards rushing, 10 yards receiving, 1 short TD run.
Dez Bryant, Dallas WR-Dez started off the year with a whimper, having a very quiet game against the Giants. He now faces an underrated Chiefs secondary, which is no picnic, while also having to deal with a mild foot sprain. He was lucky to avoid major injury, as it didn’t look good when it happened, but I’m sure he isn’t close to 100% and there is a strong chance he may re-injure it. You also have to factor in that Tony Romo has bruised ribs, so one more bad shot to that area may knock him out of the game. If that happens, it’s Kyle Orton time, and no Dallas fan wants to see that. Dez may get a few catches, but he will still be shut out of the end zone. Prediction: 5 receptions for 45 yards, 0 TDs.
Jared Cook, St. Louis TE-His Rams debut was excellent, as he had 2 TDs and over 100 yards receiving, and would have had a third if not for an amazing play by rookie Tyrann Mathieu. He’s been a streaky player over the course of his career, and I think the Atlanta defense is much better equipped to slow him down. I have a feeling he will be started in many leagues, and I don’t think it will work out this week. Prediction: 4 receptions, 45 yards, 0 TDs.
Dwayne Bowe, Kansas City WR-Bowe had a forgettable first game with Alex Smith under center, as he only caught 4 passes for 30 yards. He is more of a deep threat, and Smith is known as a check-down QB. He is a very efficient QB and minimizes risk at every opportunity. That means you won’t see him throwing a deep ball to Bowe in tight coverage very often. I think that they will eventually develop better chemistry and Bowe will rebound, but I don’t expect him to do it against Dallas this week. Prediction: 5 receptions, 50 yards, 0 TDs.