Week 2 Quick Grades (2022 Fantasy Football Start or Sit Advice)
Welcome to Week 2, friends. As always, we’re here to provide you with some Quick Grades (or Start/Sit Grades, if you prefer) for the week.
We tapped into our consensus projections and rankings and Derek Brown’s weekly Primer to generate this week’s Quick Grades. See below for the results and accompanying notes.
Week 2 QB Start/Sit Grades
|2||A||Patrick Mahomes II||KC||LAC|
Carson Wentz: Sweet Christmas. Wentz was the QB3 in fantasy in Week 1. Yes, you read that correctly. No, it wasn’t a typo. Wentz chucked the pigskin for 313 yards with four passing scores. Wentz walks away from Week 1ee seventh in catchable pass rate and 14th in clean pocket accuracy. Carson Wentz could realistically stack back-to-back top five games to open this year. Detroit was 27th in pass defense DVOA last year, allowing the 13th highest adjusted completion rate and second-highest yards per attempt. They specifically struggled against play-action passing which is a Wentz staple. Detroit permitted the fifth-highest play-action yards per attempt and second-highest play-action passer rating last year. Wentz led the NFL in play-action passing attempts in Week 1. Jalen Hurts logged a 90.9% adjusted completion rate on play-action throws in Week 1.
Jalen Hurts: Hurts is coming off a QB4 performance last week where he failed to even throw for a touchdown. Hurts now lines up against a pass defense that blanketed Aaron Rodgers last week, but that doesn’t frighten me in the least. The Vikings allowed the eighth-highest yards per attempt and ninth-most passing touchdowns last year. They were also eighth in deep passing yards and deep passer rating. Hurts is a top three fantasy quarterback this week.
Kyler Murray: Murray finished last week as the QB9 in fantasy, but it was gruesome. Murray managed 5.7 yards per attempt (27th), ranking 23rd in PFF passing grade. Murray is primed for a much better game in Week 2. The Las Vegas secondary was 14th in adjusted completion rate and ninth in passing touchdowns allowed last year. They also let go of arguably their top two corners in the offseason. It showed in Week 1 as they were third in success rate per drop back and fourth in EPA per drop back.
Justin Fields: Do I think the Packers are as bad as their 26th pass defense DVOA and third-highest net yards per pass attempt ranking right now? No. Does that mean they are a shutdown secondary coming off a bad week? No, again. Green Bay’s 2021 resume was littered with inconsistencies as they allowed the seventh-lowest yards per attempt while also giving up the sixth-most passing touchdowns. They had the 17th-lowest success rate per dropback and 14th-lowest EPA per dropback allowed last year. In his final start against this pass defense last year Justin Fields completed 54.5% of his passes with 6.7 yards per attempt while chipping in nine rushes for 74 yards on the ground. The production with his legs and two passing scores led him to QB10 for the week. Fields has a similar upside this week in a better offensive scheme.
Aaron Rodgers: In his last two meetings with Chicago, Rodgers has completed 76.6% of his passes with 8.9 yards per attempt and a 6:0 passing touchdown to interception ratio. He was the QB3 and QB9 in fantasy in those weeks. Yes, Davante Adams isn’t in town anymore, but it’s premature to write off Rodgers after one week when his most talented receivers are still attempting to find their way in the NFL. I don’t want to take anything away from the Bears’ upset win in Week 1, but this defense is probably closer to the 2021 version than last week suggests. In 2021 they were 16th in success rate per dropback, 20th in EPA per dropback, and 22nd in EPA per play allowed. If Rodgers can check his ego at the door and continue to target his receivers through miscues and he gets Allen Lazard back, a high ceiling is still attainable in Week 2.
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.
Week 2 WR Start/Sit Grades
|11||A||Amon-Ra St. Brown||DET||WAS|
|34||C+||Allen Robinson II||LAR||ATL|
|47||C||D.J. Chark Jr.||DET||WAS|
|69||F||Marvin Jones Jr.||JAC||IND|
|81||F||Richie James Jr.||NYG||CAR|
|85||F||Cedrick Wilson Jr.||MIA||BAL|
|87||F||Equanimeous St. Brown||CHI||GB|
|106||F||Terrace Marshall Jr.||CAR||NYG|
|124||F||James Proche II||BAL||MIA|
|136||F||Phillip Dorsett II||HOU||DEN|
|144||F||David Sills V||NYG||CAR|
|147||F||Demetric Felton Jr.||CLE||NYJ|
|149||F||Laviska Shenault Jr.||CAR||NYG|
Gabriel Davis: In Week 1, Davis played 98% of the snaps running a route on every dropback. Yes, he only garnered a 16.1% target share, but he also saw 37.3% of the team’s air yards. With 2.67 yards per route run and as the 31st highest graded receiver per PFF (minimum five targets, total of 56 wide receivers in sample), fading him at this point is lunacy. He’ll run about 89% of his routes against Fulton and McCreary.
DeVante Parker: Parker and Jakobi Meyers were the only full-time wideouts for the Patriots last week. No other wide receiver eclipsed a 55% route per dropback clip. Parker could only command two targets in Week 1 (6.6% target share). Parker ran 94% of his routes on the perimeter. This means he’ll see Akhello Witherspoon and Cameron Sutton this week. Witherspoon allowed a 77.8% catch rate and 94.7 passer rating in Week 1, but last year he was electric, holding opposing receivers to a 48.6% catch rate and 48.0 passer rating. I expect a bounceback performance from Witherspoon here. Sutton was a liability last season, giving up a 68.9% catch rate and 108.8 passer rating, but he started the season dominating (37.5% catch rate and 50.0 passer rating). Fade Parker this week in all formats.
Courtland Sutton: Sutton enters Week 2 after a WR40 week where he saw a 17.1% target share and 39.9% of the team’s air yards (tenth-highest). He ran a route on 100% of Wilson’s dropbacks. He saw three deep targets and one look in the red zone. Out of 56 wideouts with at least five targets in Week 1, he was 32nd in yards per route run and PFF receiving grade. He’ll match up with Steven Nelson and Derek Stingley on nearly 80% of his routes. Nelson allowed a 69.1% catch rate and 108.0 passer rating last year. In his first NFL action, Stingley gave up a 66.7% catch rate (nine targets) and 95.1 passer rating in coverage.
Mike Evans: Last week, Evans gobbled up a 25.9% target share and he’s poised to get close to that number again in Week 2. The biggest deterrent to Evans having a smash day is Marshon Lattimore. Last year Lattimore followed Evans on 65% of his routes as he finished with four targets, two receptions, 48 receiving yards and a score. In his last four games against the Saints, Evans has only once surpassed 50 yards receiving (one receiving touchdown). Brady will lean on him with Chris Godwin on the shelf. Over the last two years Evans has played six games without Godwin averaging 5.6 receptions, 71.3 receiving yards, and 1.1 receiving touchdowns.
Julio Jones: Jones ran a route on 75.8% of Brady’s dropbacks garnering an 18.5% target share while running about 63% of his routes on the outside. If Lattimore does follow Evans for the entire game then Jones could be in for a big game lining up against Bradley Roby on the perimeter and Justin Evans in the slot. Roby looked cooked last year allowing a 74.4% catch rate and 103.9 passer rating. Evans covered the slot for New Orleans in Week 1. Last year in coverage he allowed an 85.0% catch rate and 121.0 passer rating.
D.J. Moore: Last week, Moore saw a 24.0% target share while running about 82% of his routes on the outside. Moore is still finding his way with Mayfield, so patience is advised. Moore is still the insanely talented receiver who was tenth in route wins last year. Moore is best viewed as a mid to low-end WR2 as a possible volume play in a tougher matchup. The outside tandem of Adoree Jackson and Aaron Robinson held up well in Week 1. Last year Jackson allowed a 55.7% catch rate and 73.4 passer rating in coverage. Robinson was similarly tough, giving up a 57.1% catch rate and 84.4 passer rating.
Elijah Moore: Moore was the only wide receiver that eclipsed 80% of routes per dropback in Week 1 for New York. That said, he and Corey Davis are the only wide receivers that can be started from this receiver depth chart. If you’re not getting the full-time route role, then we depend on high target per route run rates which is a slippery slope to base your fantasy hopes on in any week. Moore didn’t pop off against the Ravens with an 11.8% target share (0.89 yards per route run) and only one red zone target. He’ll see Denzel Ward and Martin Emerson on about 67% of his routes. Ward allowed a 62% catch rate and 74.8 passer rating last year. Emerson defended four targets in his first NFL action allowing receivers to secure 75% of them with a 92.7 passer rating.
Week 2 RB Start/Sit Grades
|20||B||Darrell Henderson Jr.||LAR||ATL|
|28||C+||Travis Etienne Jr.||JAC||IND|
|30||C||Jeff Wilson Jr.||SF||SEA|
|31||C||Melvin Gordon III||DEN||HOU|
|49||F||Mark Ingram II||NO||TB|
|51||F||Ken Walker III||SEA||SF|
|81||F||Demetric Felton Jr.||CLE||NYJ|
|87||F||Benny Snell Jr.||PIT||NE|
|88||F||Pierre Strong Jr.||NE||PIT|
|90||F||Tony Jones Jr.||NO||TB|
Jeff Wilson: Last year, Wilson started four games, averaging 70% of the snaps played, 18.2 touches, and 72.5 total yards. Last week he played 58% of the snaps with a 32% route participation mark. He logged only 11 touches and 30 total yards. Wilson isn’t a sexy fantasy option, but he’s a good bet for 17-20 touches and a smattering of red zone work. Passing down work could be his by default, as I doubt Kyle Shanahan will pull him off the field for an untested rookie, but weirder things have happened. Last year among 58 rushers with 75 or more carries, Wilson ranked 30th in yards after contact per attempt and 56th (yuck) in PFF’s elusive rating. The jury is out on Seattle’s run defense. Last year they were elite with the ninth-lowest yards after contact per attempt and lowest explosive run rate. They were more permeable inside the 20, ranking 20th in red zone rushing defense. After facing off against Javonte Williams and Melvin Gordon, they are 31st and 32nd in adjusted line yards and second-level yards allowed. Wilson isn’t anywhere close to the talent level of either back. It’s a shame Wilson has only seen more than five targets in one career game because the real Achilles heel for Seattle is against receiving backs. Last year they were 32nd in DVOA, allowing the most receptions and receiving yards to running backs. This showed up in a big way in Week 1 as they gave up a combined 13 receptions and 79 receiving yards to Williams and Gordon. Wilson is a volume-dependent low-end RB2 or high-end RB3 this week.
Saquon Barkley: Barkley is back, baby! Oh, it is beautiful. Oh, so beautiful. Barkley played 83% of the snaps last week, rolling up 24 touches with 194 (WOW!) total yards. He ran a route on 75% of dropbacks with a stunning 33.3% target share. Barkley faces a Panthers’ run defense that was gashed for 187 yards on the ground last week by Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. Carolina ranked 27th in explosive run rate allowed last year. This week they get to face Barkley, who reeled off a whooping 6.83 yards after contact per attempt (first) while recording PFF’s seventh-highest elusive rating (minimum ten carries). Barkley could break this week’s slate with a mind-blowing encore.
Michael Carter: Carter was discussed as the “heartbeat” of the team before Week 1. Apparently, the Jets meant to say that their offense beats with two hearts. Carter took the lead from a snap perspective and with a small volume edge, but overall this backfield feels very Denver Broncos-esque. Carter was his usual efficient self in Week 1, ranking 12th in PFF’s elusive rating and 15th in yards after contact per attempt (minimum ten carries). He was also 11th in yards per route run (minimum four targets). The matchup is brutal this week for Carter and Breece Hall. While Cleveland did allow the 11th-highest yards after contact per attempt last year, they were eighth in DVOA against receiving backs, 14th in adjusted line yards, and ninth in second-level yards. They gave up the ninth-lowest explosive run rate in the NFL last season. The Browns held Christian McCaffrey to 3.3 yards per carry and six yards per reception last week, so it looks like last year’s defensive data is still relevant this year. The one silver lining is if the Jets can get near paydirt, Carter and Hall could punch in some short totes. Cleveland was 29th in red zone rushing defense in 2021. Carter is an RB3 like Hall, but his snap edge gives him the slight push here.
Breece Hall: Hall didn’t own the backfield like many had hoped walking into this season, but that doesn’t mean he wasn’t valuable in fantasy. While Carter was RB14 in fantasy (PPR) last week, Hall also squeaked in at RB33. Hall was effective with his touches ranking eighth in yards after contact per attempt and 13th in yards per route run (minimum six carries, four targets). As the 1B in the Jets’ committee backfield that’s staring down a bad matchup, he’s a good bet for 10-12 touches weekly as a low-end RB3.
James Robinson: Robinson was a pleasant surprise from Week 1. He soaked up 49% of the snaps with 12 touches, 69 total yards, and two scores, propelling him to RB11 for the week. Robinson split the red zone role down the middle with Etienne with two red zone carries and a target (Etienne had three red zone targets). He looked like Robinson of old with 4.18 yards after contact per attempt and three missed tackles forced on his 11 carries. The Colts’ run defense is a problem, though. They looked like last year’s stellar unit in Week 1, holding Rex Burkhead and Dameon Pierce to 2.9 yards per carry. In 2021 they allowed the fourth-lowest yards after contact per attempt and were 12th in red zone rushing defense. They ranked top 12 in second-level and open field yards.
Travis Etienne: This game has Travis Etienne written all over it. Etienne played 51% of the snaps last week, turning his six touches into 65 total yards. While he saw a 10.5% target share, his route participation (50%, 17th) implies better usage could be ahead for Week 2. The Colts were 27th in DVOA last year against receiving backs with the 13th-most receiving yards (21st in receptions). Getting him into space this week should be a priority for Pederson’s game plan.
Week 2 TE Start/Sit Grades
|21||D-||Irv Smith Jr.||MIN||PHI|
Kyle Pitts: Despite finishing as the TE35 with 19 receiving yards, Kyle Pitts had a 21.9% target share and 33% of the team’s air yards. He lined up in the slot or out wide on 57.1% of his snaps. That rate could climb this week. Last year Pitts logged 11 games with over a 40% slot rate, and he could easily get there in Week 2. The Rams were fourth in DVOA against tight ends last year, but Pitts is no ordinary “tight end.” Getting Pitts matched up with the 5’11” Troy Hill in the slot makes too much sense. Last year Hill allowed a 76.6% catch rate and 125.7 passer rating.
Tyler Higbee: Higbee is the ultimate ugly volume bet. Higbee had the second-highest snap share and fourth-highest route participation at the position in Week 1. He saw a 26.8% target share (second) while running the fourth-most routes among tight ends. He finished as the TE15 with five receptions and 39 receiving yards. After tying for the most red zone targets at tight end last year, he’s a good bet to score against Atlanta, who was 22nd in DVOA last year, allowing the fourth-most receiving touchdowns.
Albert Okwuegbunam: Okwuegbunam is a fringe starter this week. In Week 1, he saw a 14.6% target share (12th) and a 17.6% target per route run rate (23rd) while seeing 81% route participation. His efficiency was disappointing with 1.00 yards per route run, but he saw a red zone target. Houston was 32nd in DVOA against tight ends last year, allowing the 12th-most receiving yards.
Darren Waller: As Davante Adams‘ main running mate last week, Darren Waller finished as the TE9 in fantasy. He commanded a 17.6% target share and 16.3% of the team’s air yards which are light by his standards, but with a target hog like Adams in town, it’s to be expected. Waller can pop off any week, but this matchup sets up well for Renfrow and not Waller. Arizona was second in DVOA last year, allowing the fourth-fewest receiving yards and fewest receiving touchdowns to tight ends.
Hayden Hurst: Hurst saw the type of usage in Week 1 that we covet from tight ends in fantasy, although he only finished as the TE13. Hurst was third in routes run, tenth in target share, and 21st in target per route run rate. He also saw two red zone targets. Snaps, routes, and red zone work. The holy trinity of tight end usage. Dallas isn’t insurmountable for tight ends, ranking 16th in DVOA last year with the 13th-most receiving yards allowed. Hurst is a top streaming option this week and a good bet to sneak into the top 12.
Week 2 D/ST Start/Sit Grades
|1||A+||San Francisco 49ers||SF||SEA|
|5||B+||Green Bay Packers||GB||CHI|
|8||B||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||TB||NO|
|9||B||Los Angeles Rams||LAR||ATL|
|11||B-||New Orleans Saints||NO||TB|
|13||C+||New England Patriots||NE||PIT|
|16||C-||New York Giants||NYG||CAR|
|18||D+||Los Angeles Chargers||LAC||KC|
|19||D||Kansas City Chiefs||KC||LAC|
|23||D-||Las Vegas Raiders||LV||ARI|
|25||F||New York Jets||NYJ||CLE|
Week 2 K Start/Sit Grades
If you want to dive deeper into fantasy football, be sure to 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 – that allows you to quickly see which available players will improve your team and by how much – we’ve got you covered this fantasy football season.