What We Learned: 2021 Preseason
Check back here every week to listen to Tim: analyze what we saw, discuss who's trending up or down, and jump to some wild conclusions.
1. Is it time to panic on Tom Brady ?
Nobody can change the fact that Tom Brady has more Super Bowl rings than he can fit on one hand. He is, and always will be, the greatest quarterback of all time. But in two games as a Buccaneer, things have not been pretty.
It's tempting to sound the panic alarm, heck I've seen some do it already. Before you do, just keep in mind nobody had a full preseason to prepare, and we're only two weeks in.
I understand that judging based off this small sample size, it's looking like the guy we all viewed as a top-ten fantasy QB this season, is going to fall short of those expectations. But is it really his fault?
In week two, with Chris Godwin out of the lineup, it became apparent that Mike Evans (seven catches, 104 yards, one TD) was the only receiving weapon Brady could count on.
TE 'Sit of the Week' Rob Gronkowski (widely drafted as a TE1 in fantasy land) has been an absolute non-factor through two games. So far this season, he’s drawn just three targets. In week two, he finished with zero catches on one target.
Scotty Miller seemed like he would step into an expanded role after catching five balls for 72 yards in Tampa's season opener, but he finished with just two catches on three targets for 11 yard in week two. His only other target was a would-be TD pass that Brady gave him an opportunity to make a play on. Needless to say, he failed to make the grab.
Shady McCoy was second on the team with five receptions for 26 yards on seven targets, but also dropped a (very well placed) would-be TD.
The Bucs pulled off the victory in week two because they were bailed out by an exceptional 2-TD performance from Leonard Fournette who, by the way, is exactly what this offense needs to open things up. (More on that later)
Brady could’ve had a much bigger fantasy day if not for those two dropped TD's. But the fact is, things played out how they did, Brady turned the ball over twice and only finished with 8.6 fantasy points in week two.
Here is a list of notable QBs that outscored Brady in week two:
Brady had a cake matchup against a brutal Carolina defense, and he failed to deliver. But does that mean we should hit the panic button?
I say no.
Those looking at week two, strictly from a fantasy perspective, probably think Brady's final stats mean he played poorly. But the truth is, ProFootballFocus has Brady graded as the third-best QB in the league (87.8) through two weeks.
What you have to understand is that PFF player grades add in layers of context that cannot be captured by conventional stats.
They take into account a lot of external factors such as: whether or not passes are perfectly thrown or put in a spot where the receiver has to do all the work, defensive pass interference yards (which he had a surprising amount of in week two), plays called back by offensive penalties, etc.
Only Aaron Rodgers (95.6) and Russell Wilson (92.7) rank higher than Brady so far.
After two weeks of NFL football, there are a lot of wild conclusions being jumped to. People jumping ship on Tom Brady seems to be popular one.
I'd just like to say, there are 16 games in an NFL season. If two weeks was a reliable sample size, we'd be making a bigger deal about the fact Mitchell Trubisky is on pace to throw for 40 TD's. Or the fact the Raiders are undefeated. Or the fact Russell Gage is on pace for 308 fantasy points. "Who?" you ask. Exactly.
There's still plenty of time for Brady and the Bucs to recover and figure things out. Now, if he continues to turn the ball over and be hampered by the play of his teammates, then I'd say there is definitely cause for concern. But as of now, I firmly believe Tom Brady will have a few massive games this season.
So, to recap, I'm not necessarily panicking on Brady, I do think he figures it out at some point this season. BUT... It could take a while to iron out the kinks.
I personally am going to ride it out. I may not start him until I see it consistently, but I definitely would not drop him. If he starts to click with the weapons around him, it's going to be scary.
If there's one thing I've learned consistently, for as long as I've been watching football, it's that the absolute last player you want to bet against is Tom Brady.
Photo courtesy of gettyimages.com
Tom Brady cheers in excitment after throwing his first TD pass as a Buccaneer.
2. Leonard Fournette is the guy in Tampa
Bruce Arians and friends can act like Ronald Jones is their guy all they want but at the end of the day, it’s clear to see Leonard Fournette is the superior player. Plain and simple, he gives them the best chance to win.
Uncle Lenny finished with 100+ yards and two TD's on just 12 carries in week two. His second touchdown came at a critical moment for the Bucs late in the fourth quarter. His 46-yard scoring dash effectively iced the game for the Bucs who were only up by one score at the time.
He also drew a lot of attention from TB12 in the pass game, catching four passes on five targets.
Personally, I believe what Fournette provides as an explosive runner, is exactly what this offense is missing. Ronald Jones has flashed talent, but overall his efficiency has left something to be desired (3.7 YPC). The fact is, RoJo just isn't a player that strikes fear into the heart of an opposing defense.
During his time in Jacksonville, Fournette faced stacked boxes at a higher rate than any other running back in the league. That should tell you all you need to know about how defenses feel about him.
Unlike the Jaguars for the past couple years, the Bucs actually have a passing game that needs to be respected.
Leonard Fournette + Brady, Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, and two very talented TE's = a defenses worst nightmare.
If they get defenses into a position to commit to stopping the run, Brady will eat them alive with his arm. If they commit to playing the pass, Fournette will eat them alive with his legs.
In week three, the Bucs play the Broncos who are well-aware of what Fournette is capable of. Last season, in his one game against the Broncos, Lenny rushed for a career-high 225 yards on 29 carries (7.8 YPC). If you don't think they're terrified of him, you're wrong.
Forget what he offers as a rusher, the intimidation factor he provides is what is going to keep defenses honest.
Don't even get me started on how he has developed into a reliable pass-catcher. (Career-high 76 receptions in 2019)
I suspect the Bucs come to their senses as early as next week and commit to Fournette as an every down back. And if not next week, well... It's only a matter of time.
3. The age of the mobile QB is upon us
It seems like this season more than any other has made it increasingly clear that mobile quarterbacks are the key to success in fantasy football.
Kyler Murray, Dak Prescott, Russell Wilson, Cam Newton, and Josh Allen all went off for over 30 fantasy points this past week. They each had an excellent game as a passer, but none (except Allen) would have scored over 30 without the production they provide as rushers.
The thing about non-mobile QB's like Tom Brady, Drew Brees, or Matt Ryan is, if the passing production isn't there, the fantasy points aren't either. You are then left with a low floor.
For example: it wasn’t a good fantasy week for Lamar Jackson (by his standards) he threw for less yards than, and as many touchdowns as, Brady in week two. BUT thanks to rushing for 50 yards (and not turning the ball over twice) he outscored him by nine points.
Two QB's could finish with the same amount of passing yards and passing TD's but it is the guy who picks up yards and TD's with his legs that can afford to slack as a passer.
4. Jonathan Taylor does not disappoint
In his first game as a starter, Jonathan Taylor proved to the world he could be a true workhorse at the NFL level.
In week two, Taylor took his 26 carries for 101 yards and a touchdown, making guys miss and passing the eye test on his way to a 19.0 (PPR) point performance.
After seeing the way things played out (backfield touches-wise) it's probably safe for us to pump the brakes on Nyheim Hines, myself included. After an impressive week one where he was an integral part of the running and receiving game, he received just one touch in week two, taking a backseat to Taylor.
I suspect that Hines will be an up-and-down producer all season having seven catches when you decide to sit him and only touching the ball five times when you decide to use him.
Taylor, on the other hand, remains a must-start for the rest of the season. He is currently a top 10-15 back for me at the moment with the opportunity to firmly establish himself in the top-10. I personally am excited to watch it play out.
5. Josh Allen = elite
The athleticism was never in question, it was always his capability as a passer. He went from never throwing for 300+ yards in a game, to beginning the season by doing it twice in a row, stacking back-to-back 30-point fantasy performances in the process.
He already provided you with a high-floor as a rusher, but this leap forward as a passer makes him un-sittable. I know he played two brutal defenses in the Jets and Dolphins, but in my opinion, Allen has shown more than enough as a passer to trust him as a top-five QB moving forward.
New addition Stefon Diggs and trusted weapon John Brown are providing Allen with all the production he could possibly ask for.
Diggs currently has the fifth-most receptions in the league and is WR4 in fantasy through two games. From what we've seen, he is easily one of the best draft-day bargains this season.
Brown has at least 70 yards, a TD, and 18.0 fantasy points in both games this season. He is currently WR9 in fantasy. He was a PPR machine last season, and it looks like that is going to carry over into 2020.
There was concern (on my end) about whether or not there would be enough volume to go around for these two, considering Allen's history as a lackluster passer. But those concerns have been laid to rest.
As a Jets fan, it pains me to say this, but if what we've seen is an indication of things to come, I'm all-in on the Bills-mafia's passing attack this season.
After a week where so many players went down (some for the season) with significant injuries, fantasy owners everywhere are left feeling distraught. Although things may seem grim at the moment, its important to know: there’s still time to recover.
Even if you lost your best player, or more than one of them, it’s imperative (now more than ever) to keep your head up.
After seeing the Cowboys pull off the most miraculously electrifying improbable win in modern football history in week two, you have to realize: even the most impossible-seeming comeback can be completed. All you have to do is show up and believe.
I've said it before but I'll say it again: now is no time to be feeling sorry for yourself soldier! The season is still young. The last thing you should be doing is throwin' in the towel. You've got a league to win.
Without further ado, I will break down (by position) players that should be available in your league that could help you fill the potential holes left in your roster after week two.
DISCLAIMER: This list will only feature players rostered in less than 50 percent of ESPN leagues. I have them listed in order of my own personal preference, but I will provide you with enough info for you to make an informed decision for yourself.
1. Joshua Kelley (LAC)
Kelley has been receiving a surprisingly generous amount of volume these past two weeks. He's finished with at least 60 yards rushing and 12.0 (PPR) points in both games this season. In week two, Kelley was given a staggering 25 touches and finished with 113 total yards.
Although Austin Ekeler was clearly more efficient with his touches, and is still a low-end RB1 in my opinion, he received seven carries less than Kelley in week two. If things continue this way, Kelley could work his way into the RB2 discussion if it turns out he's filling the Melvin Gordon role for the Chargers. Which appears to be the case.
He's owned in just 27.9 percent of ESPN leagues. Based on volume alone, he is an ideal plug-and-play for an RB-needy team.
2. Jerrick McKinnon (SF)
McKinnon has already been solid this season, scoring a TD and at least 13.0 PPR points in back-to-back games. He has just six carries for 106 yards so far. With Raheem Mostert expected to miss at least two weeks with an MCL sprain, McKinnon will be even more involved than he has been already.
As I write this, it has come to my attention that Tevin Coleman is also dealing with a knee injury. I just received the notification that he’s expected to miss “multiple weeks,” which makes McKinnon that much more valuable.
Think about it... He will be the RB1 in a Kyle Shanahan offense for the next two weeks.
He is rostered in just 19.3 percent of ESPN leagues. Go scoop him now.
3. Mike Davis (CAR)
With Christian McCaffery expected to miss at least 4-6 weeks thanks to a high-ankle sprain, Mike Davis becomes the panthers RB1.
He only had one rush in week two, but that could be attributed to negative game script and the fact that McCaffery plays 97 percent of the Panthers snaps. After McCaffery exited however, Davis was heavily involved, catching all eight of his targets for 74 yards. He finished with 15.5 (PPR) points on receptions alone.
To recap, Davis is a good receiving back, currently atop the depth chart on a team that is top-six in RB targets per game, with a QB who likes to throw it short. At this moment, he is available in 99.2 percent of ESPN leagues.
4. Myles Gaskin (MIA)
The fact he’s on the Dolphins is the only reason he isn’t higher on this list. I was skeptical after week one, but Gaskin has now put together back-to-back games of at least 10.0 (PPR) points, 40 rush yards AND four receptions.
Gaskin has displayed promise as a rusher and a pass-catcher so far. He’s averaging 5.3 YPC and 6.2 YPR on the season... behind the Dolphins offensive line...
Granted, it is a small sample size, but an encouraging one nonetheless. He is currently owned in just 13 percent of ESPN leagues.
5. Jamaal Williams (GB)
Williams has proved in the past he is a more-than-capable receiver out of the backfield. Last year, there were times when both Aaron Jones AND Williams were start-able.
In 2019, Williams had seven games with three or more catches, and five games with four or more. At one point, he had a four-game receiving-TD streak. During those four weeks, he logged fantasy finishes of 23.6, 13.1, 18.6, and 16.9 (PPR) points.
Davante Adams could potentially miss some time with an apparent hamstring injury, and since the Packers other pass-catchers have proved to be less than stellar, Williams could be in line for an increase in touches. Last week, he rushed for an impressive 63 yards on just eight carries.
Williams is a talented player on a very good offense. If he resumes his role from a season ago, he would be a solid PPR flex/RB3. He is currently owned in just 12.6 percent of ESPN leagues.
6. Dion Lewis (NYG) / Devonta Freeman(NYG?)
Lewis is the first in line to see an expanded role now that Saquon Barkley is out for the season with a torn ACL. He found the end-zone last week and finished with 15.6 PPR points.
The only reason I don’t have him higher, is because the Giants are reportedly bringing in Devonta Freeman for a workout. I find it hard to believe they don’t sign him. Even without having played in a while, he’d be a vast improvement over the G-men's current RB2 Wayne Gallman.
Both Lewis and Freeman have been VERY fantasy relevant in the past, but while splitting reps, I’m not exactly confident in either as anything more than a TD-dependent flex for now.
Others to keep an eye on: Darrell Henderson (LAR), Frank Gore (NYJ), Giovani Bernard (CIN)
1. N'keal Harry (NE)
For the second straight week, Harry tied Julian Edelman for the team-lead in receptions. In a game where the game script called for Cam Newton to pass, Harry had 12 targets, eight receptions and over 15.0 (PPR) points.
I wish I had more evidence to support this theory, but I expect Harry takes the leap forward this year and provides consistent production as one of Cam’s clear favorite targets.
He is owned in just 39.6 percent of ESPN leagues, and if my gut is correct, this will likely be most people’s last week to snag him.
2. Russell Gage (ATL)
Gage is in a very crowded WR room, and yet he has drawn 9+ targets and scored over 16.0 (PPR) points in back-to-back games to begin the 2020 season.
Matt Ryan has been lighting it up lately and he’s been looking Gage’s way quite a bit. There are few WR's on the waiver-wire that have received as much love as Gage this season.
There’s no guarantee this production continues with the amount of exceptional pass catchers on the Falcons offense, but what if it does? So far it’s been working out. Why not ride the train while you can?
Gage is currently available in about 80 percent of ESPN leagues.
3. Corey Davis (TEN)
Davis has stacked back-to-back respectable fantasy performances to begin the 2020 season. In week one, he finished with 101 yards and 17.1 (PPR) points. In week two, he made an impressive TD catch and finished with 12.6 (PPR) points.
For those of you that haven't noticed, Ryan Tannehill has playing like an elite quarterback since week 10 of last season. Davis is a former first-round talent, and if this is the year he finally figures it out, you're going to want him on your team.
I’m not necessarily saying that’s the case, BUT he has played well enough to warrant flex consideration.
Once AJ Brown returns, it’s likely that Davis's production will take a hit. But that might not be for several weeks. For now, he appears to be the Titans WR1. He is owned in just 35.3% of ESPN leagues
4. Keelan Cole/Laviska Shenault (JAX)
Cole has a TD, and at least five catches/15.7 points in back-to-back games to begin 2020. With Gardner Minshew looking like a seasoned pro in his second season (six passing TD's in two games) Cole has been enjoying flex-level productivity.
If he emerges as Minshew's second favorite target, he could become very fantasy relevant. With DJ Chark reportedly dealing with an injury of his own, he just might be Minshew's first favorite target this week.
Cole is currently available in 98 percent of ESPN leagues.
Another one of Minshew's weapons, Shenault now has 9.0 (PPR) points in back-to-back weeks. What’s interesting about him is that the Jags have been using him as a gadget player.
He already has a receiving TD this season and in week two, he carried the ball five times for 37 yards (just over 7.0 YPC). It’s clear to see the Jags are trying to get him the ball, and considering the talent, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a few multi-TD games this season.
He is currently owned in just 13.1% of ESPN leagues.
5. Chase Claypool (PIT)
He's currently third in line behind JuJu and Diontae Johnson for Steelers WR targets, but he showed off his big play ability in week two on a 70-yard TD pass from Big Ben. He finished with 17.8 (PPR) points on just three catches. He's currently averaging 25.4 yards per reception, which has me thinking he could end up being the new Martavis Bryant...
Big Ben certainly has the pedigree as a passer to see to it that three of his receivers finish with over 1,000 yards, but as of now I would only feel comfortable playing Claypool in a very deep league.
The talent is definitely there, it’s just a question of volume for him until we see consistent production. But if you wanted to take a shot on someone based on talent alone he’s your guy.
He's currenrtly available in 92.6 percent of ESPN leagues.
6. KJ Hamler (DEN)
With Courtland Sutton out for the season with a torn ACL, and Jerry Jeudy dealing with an apparent concussion, the rookie Hamler is primed to step into an expanded role.
Noah Fant is currently the teams top pass-catcher with Melvin Gordon as a close second. After that, it’s anyone’s game.
Of course Jeff Driskel might be a bit of a downgrade over Drew Lock, which makes this pick less appealing. But there is opportunity for Hamler to step up.
He did finish with the team lead in targets (7) in week two (his rookie debut). He is available in 98.9 percent of ESPN leagues.
Others to keep an eye on: Hunter Renfrow (LV), Scotty Miller (TB), Brandon Aiyuk (SF)
Photo courtesy of NFL.com
Fantasy owners took a big hit in week two as Saquon Barkley and Christian McCaffery (among several others) suffered significant lower body injuries.
1. Joe Burrow robbed of game-winning drive
2020 first overall selection Joe Burrow struggled at times during his NFL debut. Being the competitor he is, Burrow graded his own performance with a D after the game. But, aside from a highly questionable shovel pass that went directly to Chargers all-pro linebacker Melvin Ingram, there wasn’t anything egregious about his performance.
In fact, it could be argued that when it mattered most, Burrow played like a vet.
With no timeouts left and the game on the line, Burrow showed the world why he was the first player off the board in 2020.
Joe Cool began his first NFL two-minute drill with a rush for seven yards. He then proceeded to go 8 for 10 for 79 yards, leading the Bengals all the way down to the three-yard line before throwing the would-be game winning TD to AJ Green.
"That guy doesn't flinch. The way he handled himself in that last drive was unbelievable," Green said. "We've got a special one in Joe."
It is impressive to receive that kind of praise from a ten-year veteran, it's even more impressive to play the way Burrow did, in crunch time (of your first pro game), against one of the most talented secondaries in the NFL.
Unfortunately for Burrow, the Bengals didn't win that game thanks to (arguably) the softest push-off call of all time. The call was against Green, who was playing in his first game since week nine of 2018. But the call wasn't to blame for the Bengals loss.
Burrow put them well within field goal range to tie the 13-16 game and send it to OT. But ultimately, it was out-of-shape kicker Randy Bullock that biffed a game-tying chip shot and subsequently hurt himself on the same play.
The Bengals walked away devastated. But NFL fans and fantasy owners walked away encouraged.
Green proved to be Burrows favorite receiver, leading the team with nine targets. And Burrow proved to be more than capable of getting him the ball.
On paper, there was nothing spectacular about Green's week one game. But when it counted, Burrow knew where to look. On the aforementioned last drive of the game, Green made a beautiful catch. It was the type of eye-popping catch that would silence anybody claiming he had lost a step. It ended up being just out of bounds. If things went slightly more his way, Green would have finished with about 18 PPR points in week one.
Not bad for someone who hasn’t played in two years. Especially considering it was against (arguably) the best CB tandem in football.
Green is a high-end WR3 at this point, with the potential to shoot all the way up the ranks in a few weeks time. If the Green owner in your league didn't pay close attention on Sunday, chances are he's available for a discount price.
Burrow is more exciting for real-life football purposes than he is for fantasy, at least in the short term. BUT after seeing the way he handled himself in the most crucial moments of the game, I wouldn't be surprised to see him finish with a few top-ten weeks this season.
I'm willing to bet he'll get another shot at a game-winning drive, and when he does, he'll complete it.
Photo courtesy of sports.yahoo.com
Burrow evades defenders on his way to a 23-yard rushing TD in his NFL debut.
2. James Robinson is legit
This guy James Robinson joined the Jaguars team (within the last month) as an un-drafted rookie and locked up the starting running back job. You knew he had to be some type of dog right then and there.
He confirmed that to be quite clear after hurdling a defender and picking up 28 yards on his only catch of the day.
Robinson handled 100 percent of the Jaguars carries on Sunday. He was the only player in the league to do so in week one.
To be fair, he is on the Jaguars where there clearly isn't much competition, and the offensive line is beyond questionable. So, it's not surprising that he didn't garner much fantasy attention (rostered in just 29.1 percent of ESPN leagues at the moment) but he definitely should be on your radar now.
If you find yourself in need of an RB after week one (Le'Veon Bell and James Conner owners) you could do a lot worse than Robinson.
3. Super Cam is back!
Cam Newton began his Patriots career with a bang in week one. But, honestly, was anyone surprised?
Considering the wonders Pats OC Josh McDaniels has worked with QB's like Tim Tebow, Jacoby Brissett and Matt Cassel, what did you think was going to happen when you handed him a former league-MVP? An incredibly mobile former league-MVP at that.
In week one, Newton led his team in carries (15) and rush yards (75), finding the end zone twice with his legs. It could have been three times if he wasn't stuffed on the one-yard line before ultimately ceding the TD to Sony Michel.
Considering the amount of designed runs the Pats had for Newton, it’s not unreasonable to expect him to lead the team in rush TD’s this season.
Cam only threw for 155 yards in week one (15/19) and still scored 25.7 fantasy points. Imagine what happens when the game plan calls for both.
I don't think I saw one picture of Newton this offseason where he didn't have an ear-to-ear smile. This may be a moot point, but the last time I remember him being so smiley was 2015. He scored 45 total TD's and finished as QB1 that season.
With a coaching staff like New England's, and all the talent in the world, Super Cam has a legitimate shot to finish as a top-five QB this season.
I know it's early, but It’s beginning to look like Super Cam may have been THE single most undervalued player on draft day. (Round-13 ADP)
Hopefully you weren’t afraid to reach.
4. Starters outperformed by their depth chart inferiors
Zach Ertz, Nick Chubb, Marlon Mack, Antonio Gibson. One thing these players all had in common in week one? They were outplayed by their depth chart inferiors.
In Mack's case, he suffered a season ending injury that opened the door for his backup Johnathan Taylor to step into a prominent role. But even if that wasn't the case, Nyheim Hines still would have been on this list.
Even before Mack left the game, Hines had already scored a TD on the ground and through the air. I listed Hines as my top waiver claim for this week because not only do the Colts have the best O-line in football, Phillip Rivers also loves his pass catching RB's. (See Austin Ekeler, Melvin Gordon, Danny Woodhead, etc.) 37 percent of Rivers passes in week one went to a RB.
Hines had caught 107 passes in the two seasons prior to Rivers arrival. We probably should have seen this one coming from a mile away.
Speaking of seeing things coming from a mile away, Kareem Hunt yet again outscored Nick Chubb in fantasy.
Chubb is a great real life player, and if he had the backfield to himself, I firmly believe he is a true top-five fantasy RB. Unfortunately for his fantasy owners, he shares the backfield with another player I feel the exact same way about.
In week one, Hunt finished with more carries, yards, targets AND receptions than Chubb despite playing a fewer percentage of snaps. It was even more concerning for Chubb owners that this was not the case until AFTER Chubb fumbled the football.
Since week 11 last season, this has been a maddening split for anyone hoping for meaningful production out of Chubb. I mean, don't you just hate when they list a guy as the starter on the depth chart and then feed someone else? Kind of like Antonio Gibson and career-vulture Peyton Barber.
Gibson was a popular play this week as the Washington Football Team's (alleged) starting RB. But who was it that received the bulk of the carries despite playing the least amount of Washington's backfield snaps? That's right. PEYTON F@$#%N BARBER.
It's not that I was even using Gibson on any team this week, because I wasn't. But I have to say, Barber just grinds my gears. It seems like it doesn't matter where he is, or how buried he is on the depth chart. He'll find a way to steal the TD's.
I personally think he is one of the most average running backs I've ever seen (career AVG: 3.5 YPC). I cannot fathom why he got 17 carries on Sunday, but I can certainly fathom the fact he only picked up 29 yards (1.7 YPC) on those carries.
Yet, Barber manages to stay relevant once again because, apparently, he has some sort of hypnotic power that convinces the coaching staff of whatever team he's on to give him infinite carries inside the five. And wouldn't you know it? He scored twice and doubled Gibson's fantasy point totals.
Barbers YPC and catch percentage have declined in each season he's played as a pro, he's never made a significant impact as a receiver, and failed to impress the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 16 games as a starting running back.
I just. Don't. Get it.
Gibson did fine, (nine carries, 36 yards, two receptions, eight yards) but obviously you would have liked to see him get a little more love. Just like you would have liked to see Ronald Jones get more a little more love, all of last year.
I don't even want to think about the Washington/Philly game anymore, but I have to because I need to talk about the Eagles TE situation. So let's get this over with.
On Sunday, Zach Ertz caught Philly's first TD of the day in the first quarter. But that was about all we saw from him for the rest of the game. Ertz finished with just three catches for 18 yards.
Instead, it was Dallas Goedert who led the way against the Football Team with eight catches for 101 yards and a TD of his own, scoring 24.1 (PPR) fantasy points as opposed to Ertz's 10.8.
The TD came on a deep route where Goedert made an impressive speed turn adjustment that could make you say, "He's really a tight end?" Considering the fact Goedert finished as TE10 last season, and injuries to the Eagles receiving corps, it was no surprise to see him in an expanded role.
He impressed enough to leave many fantasy owners wondering, "Is this going to be a thing?"
Unlike Ertz, Goedert actually gets down the field. He showed in week one he's capable of outproducing Ertz, especially with defenses are keying on Ertz as the Eagles top weapon.
I listed Goedert as one of my top waiver claims this week because I believe this is legit. Ertz is still locked in as a TE1, no doubt about it. But so is Goedert, at least as far as I'm concerned.
5. Aaron Rodgers is a bad man... Again.
In week one, Aaron Rodgers reminded us exactly what he's capable of. Despite a lot of criticism surrounding his fantasy value this season (his ADP was QB14 on ESPN) Rodgers proceeded to throw for 364 yards and four TD's against a Vikings team that he had thrown just four TD's against in their last four meetings.
Many fans are wondering, is Rodgers back?
My answer? He never left.
Sure he's been lackluster the past two seasons as a fantasy QB. But as a real life QB, he has never shown signs of being anything but elite.
Despite concerns about declined production, Rodgers has never dipped below 62 percent completion percentage or a 93.8 QBR in a season. He hasn't throw for double-digit INT's in a season since 2010 (six total 2018-2019). He has also thrown for 25+ TD's in back to back seasons now.
In what many viewed as a down year for Rodgers last season, he finished as QB10 in fantasy, went 13-3 and made it to the NFC Championship.
After the Packers drafted a QB instead of a skill player in the first round of the 2020 NFL draft, anyone who knows anything about Aaron Rodgers had to see this one coming. He's going to use this season to make it clear: he's not going anywhere.
I'm not saying he plays like this every week, because a lot of this huge game has to do with the fact that the Vikings have an inexperienced secondary. BUT I am saying I expect him to once again finish as a top-ten fantasy QB.
Tim Brosnan, Fantasy Sports Analyst/Freelance Journalist
Tim Brosnan is a college-educated sports journalist from the New Haven, Connecticut area.
Brosnan earned his Bachelor's Degree from Castleton University where he majored in Media & Communication, with a focus in Journalism.
During his tenure as the sports editor of the Castleton Spartan newspaper, Brosnan created the segment 'Tim's Fantasy Tips'. It began as a simple weekly start/sit column, but since then, the idea has grown into so much more.
Brosnan has taken his experience/passion for fantasy football and combined it with his journalistic know-how in order to bring you a completely original, well-informed, multi-layered fantasy football advice experience.
We hope you enjoy.