As has been the theme all week long, Week 1 was great, but there’s no need to overreact on what you saw. You shouldn’t be starting Sam Bradford over Tom Brady. You’re not benching Maurice Jones-Drew because he ran for 45 yards. You’re not starting Jerome Simpson because he blew up for seven catches at an average of 20 yards per catch. Too many times I see owners give up on players too soon or create high expectations for someone after just one week. Kevin Ogletree had eight catches for 114 yards and two touchdowns in Week 1 last year. He had 24 catches, 322 yards, and two touchdowns the rest of the year. That’s not exactly setting the world on fire.
As always, if you’re curious about guys you don’t see listed here, you can always find me on Twitter (@MrT_BroBible) to ask questions, but remember to mention league specifics like PPR.
You Know Who You Should Start?
Jay Cutler (QB - Chicago)
Every fantasy quarterback seemed to have a strong performance last week, with numerous guys throwing for either 300 yards or two touchdowns -- some even did both. It didn't really matter who you rolled out at QB; they all performed. (Hint: that's exactly why you shouldn’t overspend on a QB at the draft.) Cutler was one of those guys, looking strong in his debut under new coach Marc Trestman. He should shine in his second game as well against Minnesota, who gave up 357 passing yards to Detroit last week. Minnesota didn’t manage any sacks either, so Cutler's historically maligned offensive line should survive for another week.
DeAngelo Williams (RB - Carolina)
I never thought I'd say this, but one of Carolina's overpaid ball carrier actually impressed me last week. Williams averaged over four yards a carry against a stout Seahawks' defense. The Bills showed no strength against the run last week and I don't expect this week to be any different.
Eddie Lacy (RB - Green Bay)
Everyone expected Lacy to get shut down by the 49ers' defense last week and he was to a certain extent given that he only put up 41 rushing yards. But Lacy did score on a carry from two yards away and should find running room easier this week. Washington won't give up 182 yards to Lacy like they did LeSean McCoy, but there are yards to be had and Lacy will get all the goal-line carries.
Julian Edelman (WR - New England)
You didn't think we'd leave out this week's hottest waiver pickup, did you? It looks like Danny Amendola is out, Rob Gronkowski isn't back and Kenbrell Thompkins isn't any good. Tom Brady still has to throw the ball to somebody. Since Edelman generally works out of the slot, the Jets likely won't choose to shadow him with Antonio Cromartie and won't be able to double team his as easily. If there are any weeks to play Edelman, this would be one of them.
Marlon Brown (WR - Baltimore)
I'm definitely taking a flyer on this selection, but that's what this space is for. Brown became Baltimore's second-best wide receiver last week when Jacoby Jones went down with a freak injury. Torrey Smith will see a lot of Brandon Flowers, one of the best cover corners in the game, this week. That will encourage Joe Flacco to look elsewhere and Brown will be covered by lesser talents. Brown impressed during the preseason so the coaching staff is already high on his ability.
Jermichael Finley (TE - Green Bay)
I'm not the biggest Finley fan, but I will accept that he generally looked good outside of one silly drop last week. Aaron Rodgers showed faith by going back to Finley, which was encouraging for his owners. Look for Finley to have a similarly productive game as the Packers continue to spread the ball around. Washington gave up a couple seam routes to Brent Celek last week, so the opportunities for success will be there.
You Know Who Should Sit?
Matt Schaub (QB – Houston)
Schaub has toyed with fantasy football owners historically. He’s had strong games like last week’s 346-yard and three touchdown effort before and it gets people all riled up. There are a few issues here. The Texans are a run-first team. They’re not paying Arian Foster all that money to be second fiddle. (Although Ben Tate is supposed to get more carries this week, but that’s another story.) Secondly, the Texans won’t always be down 21 points by halftime. They should be able to get a lead at home against Tennessee on Sunday and even if they don’t, Tennessee’s secondary is better than you think. They only gave up 163 passing yards to Pittsburgh last week.
Joique Bell (RB – Detroit)
People are getting super-excited about Bell after his 20-point standard scoring performance last week. I like what Bell can do, but let’s dial things back a bit. He’s still second to Reggie Bush on the depth chart and a big reason for his success last week was the two touchdowns. He’s not going to score 32 touchdowns this year, so you need to dial back expectations. Arizona also has a pretty strong defense, so Detroit’s offensive statistics will be depressed overall.
BenJarvus Green-Ellis (RB – Cincinnati)
I feel like I pick on the Law Firm a lot, but there’s good reason to. His less than two yards a carry last week highlight his lack of talent. He couldn’t even reach double digits with his touchdown. Giovanni Bernard has the clear talent edge and also gets the third down work. The Steelers may be battered, but they still limited Tennessee to 2.7 yards per carry last week. Leave the law books at home this week.
Torrey Smith (WR – Baltimore)
For the same reason I like Marlon Brown above, I don’t like Smith here. Remember how pissed Mike Wallace was that he wasn’t featured in the Dolphins’ game plan last week? That’s because Joe Hayden was all over his ass and the Dolphins didn’t wanna fuck around. John Harbaugh’s a smart guy and he’ll likely do the same. Smith isn’t good enough to overcome great coverage.
James Jones (WR – Green Bay)
Two targets: that’s all you need to know about James Jones. Oh, no wait there’s another thing you need to know about James Jones: zero catches. Jones is clearly the fourth option in the Packers’ offense. He was only a factor last year because of his touchdowns and that was partly due to Jordy Nelson being banged up. In case you missed it last week, Nelson’s healthy enough to make ridiculous sideline catches. Jones should stay benched until further notice.
Brandon Myers (TE – N.Y. Giants)
Myers only had one catch before halftime of last week’s Giants game, but ended up with seven grabs for 66 yards and a touchdown. Those that didn’t watch the game would see Myers’ stats and think that he’s a large part of the Giants’ game plan, but that’s not necessarily the case. Myers did his best work underneath when the Cowboys were in a prevent defense in the 4th quarter. The Giants’ wide receivers are the true gems of this passing game and Myers still needs to stay in a block on a large portion of plays because the Giants’ offense line is strug-ga-ling…