James Morris hails from Rio Rancho, NM and has been playing fantasy sports for just over 15 years. Not only does he write the Bengals fantasy section, but he also does the Miami Dolphins fantasy section. Crossing over, Morris writes the fantasy sections for the Minnesota Timberwolves in the NBA. Just send him an email and he will reply back the same day with your answer. Or, find him on Twitter (Fantasyguy23) and get all your NFL news before it hits the national media.
We learned a few things in Week 2 of the NFL season, the main thing being that you should never chase points from Week 1 success. Far too many people ran to the waiver wire and picked up Terrelle Pryor and started him simply because he faced the Jaguars. What ended up happening is he caused those who rolled the dice to lose thanks to his 176 total yards with no touchdowns. The moral of this story is to know the difference between a one-week flash in the pan and a waiver-wire gem.
Then there is a legit talent like Roddy White who has disappointed his owners thus far due to an ankle injury that is worse than we initially thought. The truth of the matter with White is that the ankle IS a problem and you should consider benching him until after he has his first big game. Yes, you will miss out on those points with him on the bench, but you also will save a lot of points by not playing him and leaving points on your bench from healthy WRs.
And finally some news that merges fantasy with reality; there appear to be problems in Tampa Bay with the team and QB Josh Freeman, and the rumor mill says Freeman could possibly be traded. This concerns fantasy football because that would mean Mike Glennon would move into the starting role, and then the values of Vincent Jackson, Mike Williams and even Doug Martin would be affected. Here is what I see: Glennon hasn’t shown starting-caliber ability, and Dan Orlovsky can’t overtake Glennon for the No. 2 role, which means Freeman is going to stay. Those who own a Buccaneers player need not worry; I don’t see anything happening here.
Philip Rivers – QB, Chargers: Rivers and the Chargers passing attack is going to be up and down because the running game is not what their fans expected it to be when they drafted Ryan Mathews. You can be sure that Rivers’s 419 passing yards and 3 TDs will go down as season highs, which isn’t a good thing in Week 2 of the NFL season. Nevertheless, Rivers is sure to see a jump in ownership (18.9 percent) following this game.
Sam Bradford – QB, Rams: Bradford has always had the skills to excel in the NFL, but what he has lacked is the weaponry to do so. Now Bradford has Chris Givens, Jared Cook, Austin Pettis and Tavon Austin to throw to. On Sunday he was able to hook up with them for 352 passing yards and 3 TDs, which was good enough to finish with the fourth-most points for a fantasy QB on Sunday. Bradford is a quality QB2, but will struggle to produce QB1 numbers like this most weeks.
James Starks – RB, Packers: Eddie Lacy was forced from the game after he suffered a concussion on his first carry (it did go for 10 yards though), and proceeded to run all over the Redskins to the tune of 132 yards on the ground, 36 yards via the air and a touchdown. Those numbers were good enough to rank him No. 1 in NFL.com standard scoring formats as of Sunday evening for RBs. Lacy will remain the Packers No. 1 RB when he is cleared to return, but Starks is certainly going to be a must-grab RB off the waiver wire just in case Lacy misses time.
Knowshon Moreno – RB, Broncos: Moreno is owned in 48.5 percent of NFL.com leagues, and despite that he finished No. 2 for RBs behind Starks thanks to his 93 yards rushing and 2 TDs on Sunday. As long as he can hold onto the starting job in Denver, Moreno is worth owning because Peyton Manning will do what he has always done and put plenty of points on the board, allowing the Broncos to utilize the running game.
Eddie Royal – WR, Chargers: Royal pulled off the NFL hat-trick with 3 TDs, and hauled in 7 passes for 90 yards for good measure. Those numbers were good enough to thrust him into the No. 1 WR spot for Week 2 as of Sunday night. Because of that he is most certainly going to be the most-added player in fantasy football come Tuesday when waiver wires open up, but I wouldn’t be so quick to do so. You see, Malcom Floyd went down with an injury and tests showed no serious damage and he flew back to San Diego with the team. On top of that the Eagles secondary has more holes than a golf course and makes WRs look better than they really are. If you do add Royal, don’t go chasing points in Week 3 like a big box website did in Week 2.
DeAndre Hopkins – WR, Texans: Hopkins was someone I actually took late in the draft because the Texans have been looking for that WR2 that would allow Andre Johnson to stop being double-teamed on every play. It looks like the Texans got that with Hopkins as he finished Sunday’s game with 117 receiving yards and a touchdown. He is owned in 52.5 percent of NFL.com leagues, but that could change with Johnson leaving with a possible concussion, and the Ravens defense not being what it once was. He is worth adding in all formats just in case Johnson does miss Week 3.
Mike Wallace – WR, Dolphins: Wallace was brought in to be the game-changing WR that would allow Tannehill to develop his game and become a franchise QB. And, that is just what he did this week as he reeled in 9 passes for 115 yards and a touchdown against the Colts. OC Mike Sherman was able to vary the routes Wallace ran on Sunday, which allowed him to be that big-game WR the Dolphins fans hoped he would be. If this continues, Wallace should have no problems being an every-week WR2 in all formats.
Martellus Bennett – TE, Bears: Bennett was my sleeper pick in the preseason and he showed why on Sunday as he caught 7 passes for 76 yards and 2 TDs. The TE position in fantasy football is all-or-nothing, so weeks like these are a welcomed break from the frustrating ones owners see all too often. Bennett says he “messed up his shoulder” in the game, so check back mid-week to see if we know more about his status for Week 3.
Minnesota Vikings Defense: And the No. 1 defense for Week 2 after Sunday night’s game was, the Vikings. Yes, they gave up 25 points to the Bears, but they also racked up 2 INTs, 2 fumble recoveries, a sack, a defensive touchdown, and a return touchdown. All totaled they scored 21.00 points in NFL.com standard scoring, and the 3.5 percent of people who started them this week have to be ecstatic.
Cincinnati Bengals Defense: I said it in the preseason; both the Steelers and Ravens aren’t the teams they used to be. Because of that I feel the division is the Bengals to lose. They showed some of that last night as they held the Steelers to just 10 points and put up 2 sacks, an INT and a fumble recovery to finish 9th in NFL.com fantasy football with 10.00 points. The Bengals defense is one you can pretty much stick into the starting defense role and forget about until their bye week.
Terrelle Pryor – QB, Raiders: Pryor managed to throw for just 126 yards, and run for another 50 yards on his glorious fantasy sleeper day according to Michael Fabiano of NFL.com. I’ve bashed Pryor enough already, so I won’t go into it further now. What I will say is that you should leave Pryor on the waiver wire in even the deepest of leagues because at some point this season you can be sure that Matt Flynn will enter the picture in Oakland.
Josh Freeman – QB, Buccaneers: Freeman managed what I thought was impossible, to do worse than both Pryor and whomever the Jaguars run out there at QB. On Sunday, Freeman managed just 125 passing yards with a TD and an INT, numbers bad enough to make him the third-worst QB through Sunday evening. Geno Smith was the worst thanks to him playing for the Jets and throwing 3 INTs, no TDs and 214 passing yards, and Kaepernick was in front of him barely.
Colin Kaepernick – QB, 49ers: Kaepernick matched up against one of the best defenses in the NFL in the Seahawks, and he failed miserably. In the end, he finished with 127 yards passing, 87 yards rushing, no TDs and 3 INTs, numbers bad enough for the second-worst QB in the NFL this week. Kaepernick will have better days as this was ALL about the Seahawks defense.
David Wilson – RB, Giants: I can say that I don’t own Wilson in any of the leagues I play in because I just don’t trust him as a workhorse RB. On Sunday he disappointed the 97.1 percent of people who own him on NFL.com by rushing for 17 yards with no receiving yards and no endzone visits. He finished with a whopping 1.70 fantasy points (FP) and dead last for RBs that actually played.
Mark Ingram – RB, Saints: I remember in the preseason a New Orleans newspaper writer suggested that Ingram was going to be a fantasy sleeper and would surprise people this season. More proof as to why people should leave fantasy predictions to the real experts like me. The Saints are a pass-heavy team, and Ingram is not a receiver. So, when he steps on the field the defense knows instantly that it is a running play and they stack the line. Through two games this season he has 31 yards rushing and a 1.85 YPC average. If you are one of the 87.3 percent of people who own him, see what you can get on name value alone before he has no value whatsoever.
Mike Williams – WR, Buccaneers: Any time a QB makes the loser list, a WR on his team is sure to follow. In this case it is Williams, who is owned in 97.9 percent of NFL.com leagues and managed just two catches in Sunday for a whole 9 yards, not even enough to give him a point in standard scoring formats. Because NFL.com uses fractional scoring, he did manage 0.90 points this week, but that was still dead last for WRs.
Lance Moore – WR, Saints: As I mentioned before, the Saints are a pass-heavy team. So, one would naturally assume that any of their top 3 WRs are worth owning, and even starting in the flex spot at worst right? Wrong. Moore has just 3 catches for 38 yards and no TDs this season, yet is owned in 89.1 percent of leagues. He’s managed just 4 targets in each of the first two weeks, and is little more than WR depth that should never be played unless you like to live life on the edge. He is a true boom-or-bust play, with more busts than booms.
Jason Witten – TE, Cowboys: Witten is normally a guy you can leave in the TE spot for the season and only replace on his bye. This week the Chiefs decided Brandon Flowers could handle Dez Bryant 1-on-1 and the Cowboys took full advantage of it. The problem for fantasy owners is that it cost Witten as he finished with just 3 catches for 12 yards and no TDs. He will bounce back next week against the Rams, but will be more of a mid-range TE1 against their stout pass defense. After this week, and possibly next, Witten will be a prime buy-low candidate.
New York Giants Defense: The Giants faced off against the Broncos, in what was dubbed as the Manning Bowl because of brothers Eli and Peyton Manning. When all was said and done, the Broncos put 41 points on scoreboard and allowed the Giants defense just a lone fumble recovery. No sacks, no INTs, nothing. Because of their lack of stats, the Giants finished with a rare -2.00 fantasy points this weekend. They are owned in 24.1 percent of NFL.com leagues, which makes them the 13th-most owned defense. They do face the Panthers and Chiefs in Weeks 4 and 5, so don’t cut them loose just yet.
This week’s winner of the Madden25 game was longtime emailer, Clinton Ignarski. He will be sent a copy of Madden25 for the PS3 console courtesy of EA Sports. He won the game Tweeting and liking the article on Facebook, then getting his friends to retweet it and click on his link via Facebook, then liking the article on the Bengals webpage. Not the article on Facebook, but the link inside the article on the Bengals website itself.