What We Learned: Week 2 (Fantasy Football)
Here’s a look at what we learned from Week 2.
Tom Brady still has some football left in him!
Any reports of Brady’s demise after Week 1 proved to be greatly exaggerated after he came out with a dominant performance in Week 2. Despite losing a myriad of weapons in the passing game, Brady came out slingin’ the pigskin all over the field in the first quarter, throwing all three of his TDs in the first quarter as he threw his way to nearly 450 yards passing on the day. There is reason to pause moving forward, however. He won’t get to line up against the Saints defense again, and there are also a couple more injury concerns for Week 3. It will be worth monitoring the status of Rob Gronkowski this week, as that could pose a problem to the Brady-led offensive resurgence, but for now, it’s safe to say that any talk of retirement should be put to rest.
It was a painful week to be a top TE (not named Travis Kelce)
Week 2 left a painful mark on four of the top six ranked TEs this week and may result in a busy week on the TE waiver wire. Rob Gronkowski, Jimmy Graham, Jordan Reed, and Greg Olsen all left at some point of their respective games, with Olsen being substantially injured and slated to miss an extended period of time. Gronk had a huge game prior to leaving with a groin injury, and his status will need to be monitored throughout the week. Graham was quiet yet again, possibly due to a knee injury that caused him to miss some action after getting rolled up from behind. Injured or not, Graham should slide way down the TE rankings for Week 3 after being ranked a top-five option each of the first two weeks. Reed has been recovering from a fractured toe, but owners can now add a chest injury to his list of wounds. He left the game for a couple series but was able to finish the game. Given his injury history, his status for Week 3 will need to be monitored. The major injury was to Olsen, who was knocked out with a broken right foot and is out indefinitely.
Cam Newton is off to a sluggish start
The stats don’t show the true story here, as a quick glance doesn’t reveal any major flaws. But Newton continues to miss wide-open receivers on what should be relatively easy throws, including a simple throw from the two-yard line intended for Christian McCaffrey that ended up being airmailed well out of reach. Perhaps it’s only a matter of needing to “knock off some rust”, but the fact that there have been repeated struggles in two seemingly soft matchups provides plenty of reason for concern. Newton has another chance to “get right” next week as the Panthers play host to New Orleans. If his struggles continue against the Saints then it is time for your fantasy team to move on.
Carson Wentz is entering weekly QB1 status
Wentz has posted back-to-back QB1 performances, and given the Eagles offensive situation, there’s no reason to think he won’t continue to be a top QB option going forward. The Eagles running game is non-existent. The Eagles signing of LeGarrette Blount continues to be puzzling as he appears to be nothing more than the goal line/short-yardage back at best, and he didn’t even get a single carry in Week 2. The entire offense rests on the shoulder of Wentz. Well, also his legs, as he was under constant pressure and had to scramble and produce on the ground as well as through the air on Sunday. There aren’t any obvious solutions to fixing the run game so it looks like the offense will continue to flow through Wentz, allowing him to continue to post QB1 numbers.
Todd Gurley looks like Todd Gurley again!
Gurley appears to be enjoying life without Jeff Fisher. New head coach Sean McVay has provided a jolt to the offense and has Gurley looking more like the top-flight talent he appeared to be during his rookie year and not the mess that ‘meandered through the 2016 season. In Week 2 Gurley hurdled over would-be tacklers on a couple of different occasions on his way to 136 total yards and two scores. McVay has Gurley much more involved in the passing game than in the past, resulting in greater opportunities for Gurley to produce fantasy results, as shown in an 18-yard catch and run for a TD on Sunday. Gurley looks rejuvenated and capable of being a high-end RB1 week-in and week-out this season.