NFL Yahoo DFS Lineup Advice: Week 2 (Main Slate)
The return to NFL football yielded a ton of fantasy value. Nine teams scored over 30 points in Week 1, including a thrilling overtime win for Cincinnati and an embarrassing blowout loss for Green Bay. Everything a football fan could desire was on display.
While it’s fun to react to the first weekend of the NFL season, it’s also important to avoid falling victim to the production produced by players. It’s a week-to-week league, meaning a lot of coaching schemes and game plans will adjust to their Week 2 opponent. Let’s take a look at which players and teams will generate significant fantasy production, especially with five games set at 50 points or more during an exciting Week 2 main slate.
Yahoo Daily Fantasy Sports uses a $200 budget to construct lineups.
Russell Wilson (QB – SEA): $35 vs. TEN
Russell Wilson draws the most favorable matchup in Week 2 against a porous Tennessee secondary. Wilson is coming off of a nearly flawless win on the road against the Colts, throwing four touchdowns and only five incompletions. The Titans surrendered the most fantasy points per game (FPPG) to quarterbacks in Week 1 (33.56), as Kyler Murray (QB – ARI) and the Arizona Cardinals feasted with four passing touchdowns and a rushing score.
Wilson may not be the elusive ball carrier he once was, however, the Seahawks’ new offensive coordinator Shane Waldron designed beautiful play-action pass attempts for Wilson to thrash a talented Indianapolis defense. In his 2021 home debut against the team that also gave up the most FPPG to wide receivers (48.6), Wilson is my favorite quarterback to insert into lineups and he is priced outside of the top-five, making him a must-add player in Week 2.
Jalen Hurts (QB – PHI): $26 vs. SF
Contrary to popular belief, the San Francisco 49ers’ defense did not look as formidable and stout in Week 1, giving up 430 total yards of offense to the Detroit Lions. While a lot of this yardage came during a comfortable three-possession lead, fantasy managers should not be afraid of running back to the well on Philadelphia Eagles quarterback, Jalen Hurts. His dual-threat nature and fluid passing in a decisive win over the Atlanta Falcons in Week 1 will transfer against a better defensive unit in Week 2.
Hurts’ passing, a topic of heavy scrutiny this offseason, looked markedly improved, completing 27-of-35 passes for 264 yards and three touchdowns. Hurts avoided turnovers and averaged 8.8 YPC to elevate his fantasy floor moving forward. A healthy offensive line led by Lane Johnson (OT – PHI) and Jason Kelce (C – PHI) will help stave off Nick Bosa (DE – SF) and company, giving Hurts the time needed to find an open receiver or to use his legs for a big gain. He’s $11 cheaper than Kyler Murray and plays with a similar style, making Hurts a fantastic value in his 2021 home debut.
Javonte Williams (RB – DEN): $21 @ JAC
Rookie running backs can be boom or bust, particularly early. However, Javonte Williams shared a 50 percent snap share percentage with Melvin Gordon III (RB – DEN) during their Week 1 win against the New York Giants. While Gordon rattled off a huge 70-yard touchdown run, Williams carried three more times (14) and is presented with a plus-matchup against the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jaguars gave up the third-highest FPPG to the running back position (32.4) during a blowout loss to the Houston Texans last week.
This is an encouraging sign for Williams, who is powerful and explosive near the goal-line, which projects to be a frequent location on the field for Denver on the road in Jacksonville. At $21, Williams is a discount due to his usage and opponent, making him a great running back to acquire in DFS during Week 2.
Kareem Hunt (RB – CLE): $21 vs. HOU
Despite playing second fiddle to Nick Chubb (RB – CLE) in Cleveland, Kareem Hunt still finished Week 1 as a high-end RB2 (RB13) in half-PPR formats, scoring a two-yard rushing touchdown late against the Kansas City Chiefs. Hunt saw the majority of targets in 2020 and out-targeted Chubb three to two on Sunday, turning it into three receptions for 28 yards.
Expect the Browns to lean heavier on their running game in their home opener against the Houston Texans in Week 2. As Cleveland began to lose the lead they built up in the first half against the Chiefs, Baker Mayfield (QB – CLE) was forced to pass more than head coach Kevin Stefanski prefers. As a result, Hunt was held to six carries but saved his day with a goal-line rushing touchdown. You won’t need to worry about this again in Week 2, as Hunt could easily see 10-12 carries and five-plus targets in a game that places the Browns as -12.5 point favorites. Insert Hunt into lineups with confidence, as he will certainly return value with his $21 salary.
DK Metcalf (WR – SEA): $32 vs. TEN
A popular strategy to maximize points in NFL DFS lineups is to “stack” a quarterback with one of their wide receivers. The cheaper stack to roster in Week 2 is Russell Wilson and DK Metcalf, who led the team in snap percentage (92.6%) and caught four of his five targets for 60 yards and a touchdown against a Colts defense that finished as one of the best in 2020.
Tyler Lockett (WR -SEA) had the multi-touchdown game in Week 1 but Metcalf will be running free often against a Titans defense that gave up the most FPPG to Arizona’s wide receivers in Week 1. Each of the Cardinals’ top two wideouts, DeAndre Hopkins (WR – ARI) and Christian Kirk (WR – ARI), racked up a pair of touchdowns and at least 70 receiving yards. This means Metcalf and Tyler Lockett are both primed to explode for WR1 finishes in an advantageous matchup at home in Week 2. Metcalf is a high-end wide receiver with a $32 salary but it’s worth spending here.
Antonio Brown (WR – TB): $26 vs. ATL
Fantasy managers who drafted Antonio Brown held their collective breath entering the opening game of the 2021-22 NFL season last Thursday. Reports from head coach Bruce Arians claimed Brown looked like he did during his time dominating opposing defensive backs in Pittsburgh. Two years of legal issues and hopping from the Raiders to the Bucs had many, including me, skeptical about whether or not Brown could return to elite WR1 production.
Brown confirmed Arians’ rumors from training camp in Week 1, catching five of seven targets for 121 yards and a 47-yard touchdown. He saw more targets than Mike Evans (WR – TB) (6) and played on just 64.6 percent of snaps, meaning that he could rack up double-digit targets against a vulnerable Atlanta defense that gave up three passing touchdowns to Jalen Hurts last week. Brown could easily finish as a fantasy WR1 again in Week 2, meaning he should be prioritized in lineups, particularly since he’s valued as a WR2 on Yahoo.
Allen Robinson (WR – CHI): $23 vs. CIN
It was an ugly debut for Allen Robinson in Week 1 but he was being covered by arguably the league’s best cornerback, Jalen Ramsey (CB – LAR). An encouraging takeaway from Robinson’s six receptions for 35 yards against the Rams is that he saw 11 targets. This is a healthy target share, as Robinson led the Bears with a 27.5 percent target share and 17.5 targets per snap percentage.
Robinson gets a plus-matchup at home against the Cincinnati Bengals defense in Week 2. This is a defensive unit that allowed the third-highest FPPG to wide receivers in Week 1, with Adam Thielen (WR – MIN), Justin Jefferson (WR – MIN), and K.J. Osborn (WR – MIN) accounting for 28 targets. Expect Andy Dalton (QB – CHI) to continue peppering Robinson with targets, which will lead to a high-end WR2 or low-end WR1 finish. A dismal Week 1 performance has Robinson sitting at a great value, which means you should take advantage before he explodes against Chidobe Awuzie (CB – CIN), who was one of Cincinnati’s top-paid free agents this offseason.
Noah Fant (TE – DEN): $18 @ JAC
The Denver Broncos played a great, methodical game against the New York Giants in Week 1, leaning on Noah Fant to pick up first downs and chew the clock. The third-year tight end led the Broncos with eight targets, turning them into six receptions for 62 yards. Fant ran 7.8 yards per target and 10.3 yards per reception in Week 1 and should have an even bigger role against a Jacksonville defense that allowed the fifth-highest FPPG to tight ends in 2020.
Don’t worry about Albert Okwuegbunam’s (TE – DEN) touchdown in Week 1, as he saw only 8.6 percent of Denver’s target share compared to a team-high 22.9 percent for Fant. He’s a top-four option at tight end in Week 2 but his usage with Teddy Bridgewater (QB – DEN) under center, combined with the plus-matchup in Jacksonville, makes Fant a potential top-five option at the position in Week 2.
Dallas Goedert (TE – PHI): $14 vs. SF
Many began fading Dallas Goedert as Zach Ertz (TE – PHI) made amends with the Philadelphia Eagles front office this offseason. However, in Week 1, Goedert saw the third-highest target share (15.6%) and found the end zone on a nine-yard reception from Jalen Hurts right before halftime. In comparison, Ertz only saw a 6.3 percent target share, catching both targets for 34 yards.
The 49ers surrendered the third-highest FPPG in Week 1 to Detroit Lions star tight end, T.J. Hockenson (TE – DET). It’s not their same defensive unit from 2019, despite rostering a Pro-Bowl caliber player at each level. A healthy Philadelphia offensive line could create time for Hurts to dissect the defense. If this doesn’t happen and they get overpowered by Nick Bosa and Javon Kinlaw (DT – SF) upfront, Hurts will be looking for Goedert as the safety valve. He’s inexpensive to insert into lineups and holds a high floor, making him a solid tight end at home in one of the most exciting Week 2 matchups.
Denver Broncos: $18 @ JAC
I’m exploiting Jacksonville’s young, inexperienced personnel and coaching staff as much as possible in Week 2. The Broncos’ defense looked stout against the New York Giants in Week 1, recording five TFLs, two sacks, and a forced fumble while limiting the Giants to 13 points on the road.
While the Giants aren’t a great offensive team, they showed their capabilities against Washington on Thursday Night Football, scoring 29 points against one of the most revered defensive units in the league. To me, this indicates that Von Miller (LB – DEN), Bradley Chubb (LB – DEN), Kyle Fuller (CB – DEN), and Justin Simmons (S – DEN) will be even better against Trevor Lawrence (QB – JAC), who faced constant pressure and threw three interceptions against a lesser Houston Texans defense in Week 1. Plug the Broncos D/ST into your lineup and reap the rewards.
Arizona Cardinals: $16 vs. MIN
The defensive unit that impressed me the most in Week 1 had to be the Arizona Cardinals. Chandler Jones (DE – ARI) racked up five of their six sacks, while the team forced two fumbles and an interception to blowout the Tennessee Titans on the road 38-13. Arizona held Derrick Henry (RB – TEN) to 58 rushing yards while also keeping star wideouts A.J. Brown (WR – TEN) and Julio Jones (WR – TEN) below 50 yards receiving.
The signing of J.J. Watt (DT – ARI) in free agency and Zaven Collins (LB – ARI) in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft seems to have improved the defense significantly. Minnesota has one of the weakest offensive lines with an immobile pocket-passing quarterback, so expect more of the same from the Arizona defense at home against the Vikings in Week 2. They are being valued at a discount, so if you spent up elsewhere, this is a great D/ST to insert into lineups for cheap.
QB – Russell Wilson ($35 vs. TEN)
RB – Javonte Williams ($21 @ JAC)
RB – Kareem Hunt ($21 vs. HOU)
WR – Adam Thielen ($27 @ ARI)
WR – DK Metcalf ($32 vs. TEN)
WR – Jakobi Meyers (WR – NE) ($17 @ NYJ)
TE – Austin Hooper (TE – CLE) ($16 vs. HOU)
FLEX – Ja’Marr Chase (WR – CIN) ($20 @ CHI)
D/ST – New York Jets ($11 vs. NE)
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