16 Things to Watch for Preseason Week 2 (2022 Fantasy Football)
Football is finally back! The 2022 NFL preseason officially got underway last week, and the fantasy football world has plenty to take away from the first week of games. While the regular season is still a few weeks out, fantasy football drafts are in full swing.
What should fantasy players keep an eye out for in Week 2? Here is one thing to watch from every Week 2 preseason matchup.
Beyond our fantasy football content, be sure to check out our award-winning slate of Fantasy Football Tools as you prepare for your draft this season. From our free mock Draft Simulator – which allows you to mock draft against realistic opponents – to our Draft Assistant – that optimizes your picks with expert advice – we’ve got you covered this fantasy football draft season.
CHI vs. SEA – The Chicago Backfield
David Montgomery missed last week’s matchup against the Chiefs with an injury, opening up questions in the Chicago backfield. Khalil Herbert played all the snaps with the starters. Meanwhile, sixth-round rookie Trestan Ebner averaged 5.2 yards per rushing attempt. Hopefully, Montgomery can play this week, so fantasy players can see how the Bears will split the starting snaps. If he finds himself splitting work with Herbert and Ebner, fantasy players will want to avoid using a third-round draft pick on Montgomery.
Carolina’s battle for the starting quarterback role has been one of the more talked about stories this month. Mayfield got the start and had a couple of impressive throws. Meanwhile, Darnold came in on the second series and scored the first touchdown of the game for the Panthers with an eight-yard pass to Rashard Higgins. The Commanders’ defense was very unimpressive early in the game. It will be interesting to see which quarterback gets the start and how they play against the New England defense this week.
NO vs. GB – Wherefore art thou Romeo?
The talk of training camp for the Packers has been Romeo Doubs. The fourth-round rookie pick has been on my radar since early May and has put together one impressive catch after another during camp. Furthermore, Doubs had a solid performance against the 49ers, pulling in a team-high three receptions for 45 yards and Jordan Love‘s first touchdown of the game. Hopefully, Aaron Rodgers plays this week. That way, fantasy players can take notes on which wide receivers are on the field and see targets from the reigning MVP.
HOU vs. LAR – The Dameon Pierce Show
While he had only five rushing attempts, Pierce averaged nearly 10 yards per attempt. He also showed good vision, burst, and contact balance. Furthermore, Marlon Mack had only six yards on three rushing attempts, while Rex Burkhead didn’t play. Pierce has been one of my favorite rookies to draft and should be the Week 1 starter. If he has another impressive performance this week, his ADP should rise even more.
— Mike Fanelli (@Mike_NFL2) August 15, 2022
DET vs. IND – Matt Ryan Bounce Back?
When Indianapolis made the trade for Ryan, many thought the Colts had solved their quarterback problem. However, Ryan struggled in the Week 1 matchup, throwing for only 58 yards on 10 attempts, and had trouble connecting with his wide receivers early in the game. While fantasy players shouldn’t panic, they should pay attention to how Ryan performs in Week 2.
DEN vs. BUF – Will the Starters Play?
Last week, neither team played their starters. Fantasy players are hoping that changes this week. Josh Allen and the Bills return most of their starters from a year ago, but the Broncos have a very different unit than in 2021. Before fantasy players spend a seventh-round draft pick on Russell Wilson, it would be nice to see him in live action alongside Courtland Sutton and Jerry Jeudy.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve heard about Gibson’s benching after he fumbled in last week’s matchup. After the fumble, leading to Carolina’s first touchdown of the game, Gibson got replaced by Robinson. The third-round rookie brought life to a struggling Washington running game and scored the first touchdown of the game for the Commanders. Furthermore, Gibson spent time with the third-string unit in practice this week. If Robinson starts this week for Washington, Gibson’s fantasy value will continue to sink.
OC Scott Turner on RB Antonio Gibson's fumbles: "You can't waste a possession; if you fumble the ball that's a waste of a possession. The first job is to protect the ball. It's something that has to be fixed."
— John Keim (@john_keim) August 16, 2022
TB vs. TEN – Throw the Ball Malik!
Malik Willis got the start in Week 1 with Ryan Tannehill not playing. The third-round rookie had some impressive plays. However, he took off running when the coaching staff wanted him to remain in the pocket. Furthermore, his day abruptly ended when head coach Mike Vrabel pulled Willis because he wasn’t throwing the ball enough. While he has very little fantasy value in redraft leagues, dynasty league players should pay attention to how Willis adjusts after last week’s benching.
SF vs. MIN – Elijah Mitchell‘s Backup
Mitchell didn’t play in last week’s preseason matchup against the Packers because of a hamstring injury. Furthermore, the hamstring injury could keep him out for the rest of the preseason. Last year Mitchell missed six games because of injuries, so fantasy players need to keep an eye on who will be his backup. Last week Tyrion Davis-Price led the team with 10 rushing attempts and 36 rushing yards. However, he didn’t enter the game until San Francisco’s fourth series. With Mitchell likely out again this week, fantasy players will want to see which backup is the most impressive with his touches.
PIT vs. JAC – George Pickens
While Pierce was the star of Week 1, Pickens was right there with him. Pickens has repeatedly flashed during training camp and has some convinced he will replace Chase Claypool as Pittsburgh’s No. 2 wide before the regular season. His touchdown reception from Mason Rudolph last week was impressive. If he has another positive performance against the Jaguars, his ADP might rise a round or two this week.
— FOX Sports: NFL (@NFLonFOX) August 13, 2022
LV vs. MIA – Superstar Wide Receivers
Tyreek Hill and Davante Adams were involved in two of the biggest blockbuster trades this offseason. However, in three combined preseason games, neither has seen the field. While all reports out of training camp have been positive, it would be nice to see them on the field in live action. Hopefully, Mike McDaniel and Josh McDaniels decide to give the starters a series or two.
While Austin Ekeler is secure in his No. 1 role for the Chargers, his backup is still to be determined. Spiller has been the popular choice all offseason after the Chargers used a fourth-round pick on him in the 2022 NFL Draft. Furthermore, he has put together a few impressive highlight plays in training camp. However, Joshua Kelley has reportedly pushed for the No. 2 role and played well as the starter last week. Which running back will get the start this week if Ekeler sits again?
PHI vs. CLE – The Jalen Hurts Show
Hurts has been a popular breakout candidate this offseason after the Eagles added A.J. Brown. Unlike many starting quarterbacks, Hurts played in Week 1. He only played one series but completed all six pass attempts for 80 yards and a touchdown to Dallas Goedert. Hopefully, he has another strong performance this week. If Hurts does, fantasy players should feel more confident drafting him earlier than his sixth-round ADP.
CIN vs. NYG – New York’s Receiving Core
Last year the Giants had arguably the worst receiving core in the NFL. Unfortunately for Daniel Jones, it hasn’t gotten much better this year. While Wan’Dale Robinson has flashed in practice, the rest of the receiving core has been injured or disappointing. Kadarius Toney has missed practice time and last week’s game because of a leg injury. Meanwhile, Kenny Golladay had one reception for six yards last week and showed a lack of effort in the game. Maybe things will turn around this week, but I wouldn’t bet on it.
No release just vibes pic.twitter.com/NElGcaWDRP
— Theo Ash (@TheoAshNFL) August 11, 2022
BAL vs. ARI – Is Mike Davis the RB2?
With J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards still recovering from their knee injuries last season, Davis got the start for the Ravens last week. He averaged a solid 4.4 yards per rushing attempt on five attempts and scored the first touchdown of the game for Baltimore. Nate McCrary also played well, averaging 6.2 yards per rushing attempt. After the Ravens released Corey Clement this week, Davis has a clear pathway to the No. 2 role until Edwards is healthy. However, keep an eye out for McCrary causing problems for Davis.
ATL vs. NYJ – An Encore for Desmond Ridder?
While Marcus Mariota got the start last week, Ridder played well. After playing one series, Mariota went to the bench, and Ridder finished the game. He completed only 10 of his 22 pass attempts. However, he played the entire game without rookie receiver Drake London after he left early with an injury. Despite a limited supporting cast, Ridder tossed a pair of touchdowns, including the game-winner to Jared Bernhardt with 30 seconds left in the game. While Mariota has already been named the Week 1 starter, Ridder could take over sooner than later if he keeps up this level of play.
The @AtlantaFalcons take a late lead! 😱
— NFL (@NFL) August 13, 2022
If you want to dive deeper into fantasy football, check out our award-winning slate of Fantasy Football Tools as you navigate your season. From our Start/Sit Assistant – which provides your optimal lineup based on accurate consensus projections – to our Waiver Wire Assistant, which allows you to quickly see which available players will improve your team and how much – we’ve got you covered this fantasy football season.