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Fantasy Recap: Week 1


It just wouldn't be the first week of fantasy football if a star or two didn't go down with a devastating injury, and Week 1 of the 2015/16 was no exception. The most notable injury from Week 1 was WR Dez Bryant, who fractured his fifth metatarsal in his foot. Bryant's expected return is Week 8 against the Seahawks, so you better go find other options on your waiver wire if you own him.

Cardinals RB Andre Ellington suffered a PCL injury, but the coaching staff is being elusive with his status. My guess is he will return around Week 4. The Ravens defense suffered a major blow this weekend when LB Terrell Suggs tore his left Achilles. Given the offense's lack of WR depth, the Ravens are going to lean on their defense even more this season. And last, but not least, Reskins WR DeSean Jackson suffered a hamstring injury which will keep him out 3-4 weeks. The reality is that hamstrings have a tendency to linger, so the 3-4 weeks may not be written in stone.

Waiver Wired

Donte Moncrief – Colts: With T.Y. Hilton nursing his knee, Moncrief makes for an interesting short-term speculation add for Week 2. While he does face the Jets next week, he showed that he has some chemistry with Andrew Luck by hauling in 6 passes for 46 yards and a TD this week.

Chris Johnson – Cardinals: With Ellington out for a month or so, CJ?K gets a chance to show he still has something left in the tank. I've seen where people are recommending you add David Johnson over Chris Johnson, but that makes little sense given the fact that Chris out-touched David 10-to-1 against the Saints. Don't expect him to relive his Titans glory days, but he is certainly worth a flex play against a porous Bears defense.

Terrence Williams – Cowboys: With Dez Bryant likely out until Week 8, Williams becomes a volume target for the Cowboys passing game. Since he's only owned in 57 percent of Yahoo leagues, and 17.5 percent of leagues, there's a more than decent chance he is on your waiver wire right now.

Dion Lewis – Patriots: Former Patriots RB Patrick Pass said Lewis reminded him of Kevin Faulk, which surely perked up the ears of fantasy players who saw the comment. But, what has me in a holding pattern with Lewis is the fact that he put up 69 yards rushing with LaGarrette Blount out due to a suspension. Blount is back now, which means Lewis' role will be reduced to passing down duties and the occasional change of pace carry. I'd be aware, and beware, about who and what Lewis is in fantasy terms.


Marcus Moriota – Titans: Mariota completed 13-of-16 passes for 209 yards and four touchdowns against the team that passed him up in the draft, the Buccaneers. Mariota was nothing short of spectacular in his NFL regular season debut, and has another choice match-up in Week 2 against the Browns. With that said, fantasy owners need to slow down on picking him up off the waiver wire (almost 7,000 adds since Sunday on Yahoo).

[Andy Daltoninternal-link-placeholder-0]– Bengals: Dalton finished with QB1 numbers this week after throwing for 269 yards and 2 touchdowns. Dalton is someone the national media and big-box websites love to ignore, regardless what kind of stats he puts up. [A.J. Greeninternal-link-placeholder-0] and Tyler Eifert are his No. 1 and No. 2 options in the passing game, then you have Giovani Bernard coming out of the backfield and [Marvin Jonesinternal-link-placeholder-0] as a redzone threat. With [Jeremy Hillinternal-link-placeholder-0] running the ball and opening the pass up with the run, Dalton has the weapons in place to put up weekly QB1 stats this season!

Chris Ivory – Jets: Ivory was one of my Start 'em players from this week, and he made me look a whole lot smarter than I really am. Ivory carried the ball 20 times for 91 yards (4.6 YPC) and 2 TDs, while reeling in 1 pass for 9 yards. Those stats were good enough to rank him #2 for fantasy RBs in PPR formats to open the season. Ivory entered this season a bit of a sleeper, but he won't get to face the Browns every week. He should settle in as a RB2 with RB1 weeks here and there.

Bishop Sankey – Titans: This week's strong showing was more of a indication as to how well Moriota did than how good Sankey is. But, I will give respect where respect is due, as Sankey was able to finish with 74 yards rushing, 12 yards receiving, and 2 touchdowns this week. I still believe the Titans are a mess than is better to be avoided, but those who trusted them this week reaped the rewards.

James Jones – Packers: When Jordy Nelson went down for the season everyone scrambled to the waiver wire and picked up Ty Montgomery (me included). Then, the Packers brought back a familiar face in James Jones and I ran to the waiver wire and dropped Montgomery for Jones. That move looked like the move of the season on Sunday as Jones rattled off 51 yards receiving and 2 touchdowns against the Bears helpless secondary. Next week the Packers get a Seahawks team that is looking for answers after losing to the Rams this week.

Donte Moncrief – Colts: I mentioned to you already that you should look to add Moncrief, but I didn't tell you the whole story behind his game this week. Luck targeted the sparingly owned WR 11 times on Sunday, proving that he is more than just a big body to throw to now and then. It is a little concerning that he only caught 6-of-11 balls thrown to him, but he still managed to pull off WR2 numbers as a back-up. If the Colts play it safe and sit Hilton this week, Moncrief will be worth playing as a WR3 off the waiver wire.

Tyler Eifert– Bengals: WHODEY! The only TE better than Eifert in fantasy football right now is Rob Gronkowski. Eifert put on his A-game this week and hauled in 9-of-12 passes for 104 yards and 2 TDs against the Raiders. I've been telling people to grab Eifert this year as he is my TE sleeper pick after missing last year with shoulder and elbow problems. The Bengals TE is sleeping as much now as I do after crushing a few Monster energy drinks!

New York Jets defense: I can't believe the Jets defense is owned in just 42 percent of all Yahoo leagues. Their run defense is ferocious, and their secondary can handle just about anyone in the NFL. Because of that, they held the Browns to just 10 points while racking up 4 fumble recoveries, 3 sacks, and 1 interception. The fumble recoveries aren't something you can count on most weeks, but the low scoring, sacks, and INTs are. I wouldn't play them against the Colts in Week 2 because Luck is a top-2 QB in the NFL.


Peyton Manning – Broncos: Those who drafted Manning have to be upset after his poor Week 1 outing, managing just 175 yards, no TDs, and 1 INT. There have been whispers all pre-season that he looks like he lost arm strength, and that was on display Sunday against a less than menacing Ravens secondary. The Broncos are going to do their best to hide his age with the running game this season, but Manning is looking less and less like a fantasy stud in my eyes.

Eli Manning – Giants: It's almost like the Cowboys had the Book of Eli wide open and reading his every thought this week! The Cowboys dominated the time of possession, limiting [Eli] Manning to just 193 empty passing yards. With all the weapons the Giants have in the passing game, it is a little surprising how they approached this game. One thing is certain, after a terrible redzone call that ended up losing them the game, the Giants coaching staff is going to make changes to how they gameplan for Week 2.

Adrian Peterson – Vikings: People went crazy during the draft thinking Peterson was going to turn back the clock and be that 2,000 yard rusher once again. Well, he didn't, and he isn't. The Vikings of today aren't the Vikings of 2012, and Peterson is on the wrong side of 30 [years-old]. He managed to finish with 31 yards rushing and 21 yards receiving. Peterson will no doubt have his RB1 games, but I have no faith in him giving back top of the 1st round value any more.

Darren McFadden – Cowboys: Now, I could have told you before this week's game that Run DMC was NOT worth owning in most fantasy formats. The truth is McFadden was, and still is, a bust in the NFL. The only reason he is even worth talking about is because he is owned in a ridiculous 90.7 percent of leagues at the moment. He managed just 16 yards rushing (2.67 YPC) and added 1 reception for 19 yards. Being that leagues are 10-team leagues, there is absolutely no reason whatsoever to own McFadden!

Frank Gore – Colts: Yes, I was 100 percent wrong about Gore, and I am appalled at his numbers this week! His 8 rushing attempts netted him 31 yards and no endzone visits in a shocking loss to the Bills this week. With Gore being 32-years-old this season, and showing nothing in Week 1, it is going to be next to impossible to use him next week when the Colts take on the Jets tenacious defense. If you HAVE to use Gore in Week 2, pray for a redzone score because that is his best bet to have fantasy relevance.

Tyler Lockett – Seahawks: Some will say this is unfair because in leagues where they count return yards, Lockett finished as a WR2. And while that is true thanks to his 119 return yards and a TD, I am looking at him purely as a WR and the hype surrounding him from those big-box websites. I've heard radio shows, TV shows, and countless websites saying how amazing Lockett is and how he should be picked up in every league he is available in. As a return man, Lockett has skills! But, as a fantasy WR, he was targeted 4 times, catching all 4, for a total of 34 yards. Had Lockett not taken a punt 57 yards to the house, nobody outside of Seattle would be mentioning his name this week. He just not worth burning a roster spot on until his role on offense is clearly defined.

Eddie Royal – Bears: There was a lot of hype made about Royal by those websites and radio broadcasts I mention so much to you, and he failed to live up to even a fraction of it in Week 1. So what went wrong you ask? Nothing, he did exactly what I expected of him (5 targets, 1 reception, 8 yards). He is the 4th option in the passing game behind Alshon Jeffery, Matt Forte, and Martellus Bennett, so if he doesn't break one loose for a big gain, he isn't going to be worth much in any format. Now if Jeffery were to miss time, Royal's stock would certainly spike. But, until that happens, he is bench fodder you can't trust enough to play.

Greg Olsen – Panthers: The Jaguars defense stepped up this week and held the Panthers TE to just 11 receiving yards. With Kelvin Benjamin out for the season, the Panthers passing attack is struggling to find their identity. Olsen is the only fixture Cam Newton can trust, so defenses are likely to blanket him all season long. With that said, the Jaguars defense is far better than people give them credit for, and they showed other teams a blueprint to handling him with their gameplan in Week 1.

Houston Texans defense: If you saw HBO's Hard Knocks this season, you would have thought their defense was locked, cocked, and ready to rock. Well, that simply wasn't the case this week as the Chiefs scored early and often. In the end the Texans gave up 27 points and managed just 2 sacks for fantasy owners. They finished as one of the worst fantasy defenses in Week 1, but should have a much better showing in Week 2 when they take on the Panthers.

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