Arizona Cardinals 16 Indianapolis Colts 13
The big question coming into the week was who would replace David Johnson at running back for the Cardinals. The answer after one game is no one. The newly re-signed Chris Johnson led Arizona in rushing with 44 yards on 11 carries (4.4 YPC). He’s likely to be the guy going forward. Johnson is the best of an uninspiring group of running backs.
Extra Points: J.J. Nelson was the Cardinals fantasy star on Sunday. Playing more snaps with John Brown injured, Nelson caught 5 of 7 targets for 120 yards and a touchdown. Brown has had trouble staying healthy, so Nelson is worth picking up if he’s still available in your league…The Colts offense continues to struggle without Andrew Luck. Frank Gore scored a short touchdown but finished with only 46 yards on 14 carries (3.3 YPC)…Tight end Jack Doyle was the recipient of Jacoby Brissett settling for a lot of short passes. He caught eight balls for 79 yards.
Kansas City Chiefs 27 Philadelphia Eagles 20
Kareem Hunt didn’t have quite the performance he did in Week 1 but fantasy owners will certainly take it. Hunt racked up 109 total yards and scored twice. The rookie proved he’s a weekly Top 10 running back play for the rest of the season.
Extra Points: Alex Smith came back to earth after his big game versus the Patriots in the opener. Smith threw for 251 yards and one score. He will continue to be a QB2/streaming option for fantasy purposes…Despite injuries to the Eagles secondary, Tyreek Hill only caught four passes for 43 yards. Hill’s fantasy value is still largely tied to big plays. Luckily, he produces a lot of big plays…Alshon Jeffery had his first big game with the Eagles. Jeffery registered a team-high 13 targets, catching seven passes for 92 yards and a touchdown…Zach Ertz got helped by a lucky bounce before halftime but he’s now had two strong performances to start the year. Ertz caught 5 of 10 targets for 97 yards.
New England Patriots 36 New Orleans Saints 20
Tom Brady wasn’t hitting on all cylinders in the opener versus the Chiefs. How did he solve that problem? Brady played the Saints defense. Brady ripped the helpless Saints for 447 yards and three touchdowns, as the Patriots offense moved the ball at will. The Saints have allowed 777 passing yards in their first two games.
Extra Points: Brady wasn’t the only one who rebounded against the Saints. Rob Gronkowski caught (6/116/1) and Chris Hogan (5/78/1) both had big games after being quiet in Week 1. However, they also both left the game with injuries…The Patriots showcased three of their running backs on Sunday. James White caught eight passes for 85 yards, Rex Burkhead caught a touchdown pass before leaving with an injury and Mike Gillislee ran for 69 yards and a score. Expect the Patriots to continue to be diverse with their running backs…Sean Payton needs to figure out what he’s doing with his running backs. Mark Ingram got 12 touches, Adrian Peterson eight and Alvin Kamara four. Meanwhile, none of the Saints running backs were effective. It’s not youth flag football. Everyone doesn’t have to get on the field. Figure it out.
Pittsburgh Steelers 26 Minnesota Vikings 9
Le’Veon Bell buried fantasy owners last week. A new week brought new hope. Unfortunately, it also brought similar results. Bell rushed for 87 yards on 27 carries (3.2 YPC). He also caught four passes for four yards. The good news is Bell got 31 touches and he topped 10 fantasy points in PPR leagues…barely.
Extra Points: Ben Roethlisberger has been solid, not spectacular through two games this season. He threw for 243 yards, two scores and no interceptions against the Vikings…Fantasy owners have been waiting for Martavis Bryant to return and have a big game. Bryant was quiet in Week 1. Not so in Week 2. Bryant hauled in 3 of 4 targets for 91 yards and a touchdown…The Vikings offense was put in a hole before the game when it was announced Sam Bradford was out with a knee injury. With Case Keenum starting, Stefon Diggs was held to 27 yards on two receptions…Dalvin Cook rushed for 64 yards on 12 carries (5.3 YPC). Cook had a touchdown called back when it was determined he was down at the one. On the next play, fullback C.J. Ham ran it in for the score. Sometimes the fantasy football Gods aren’t fair.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 29 Chicago Bears 7
The Buccaneers had an unexpected bye last week because of Hurricane Irma. Some might say they got another bye this week against the lowly Bears. The Buccaneers offense didn’t have to do much on Sunday. Mike Evans still delivered by catching 7 of 9 targets for 93 yards and a touchdown.
Extra Points: Jacquizz Rodgers was a popular play while he fills in for a suspended Doug Martin. Rodgers only gained 67 yards on 19 carries (3.5 YPC) but a short touchdown run saved his fantasy day…DeSean Jackson made little impact in his first game with the Bucs. Jackson finished with three receptions for 39 yards. One bright spot going forward is Jackson was second on the team behind Evans in targets with seven…The Bears have little on offense outside of rookie running back Tarik Cohen. Cohen contributed as a receiver for the second straight week, catching eight passes for 55 yards. He’s the Bears top offensive weapon…Jordan Howard is the early leader for fantasy bust of the year. Howard finished with only seven yards on nine carries (0.8 YPC). He now has 21 carries for 59 yards through two games. Howard entered the game with a shoulder injury and was seen leaving with his arm in a sling.
Carolina Panthers 9 Buffalo Bills 3
If you prefer games dominated by defense and poorly played offense, this was the game for you. LeSean McCoy was a non-factor against the Panthers defense. McCoy was held to just nine yards on 12 carries (0.8 YPC). He did catch six balls for 34 yards, turning a disastrous fantasy day into a bad one.
Extra Points: The big story out of this game is Greg Olsen left with a broken foot. He’s going to be sidelined indefinitely. It’s a huge blow to an offense that is already struggling to score points…Cam Newton has had two tough games to begin the year. Newton had shoulder surgery in the offseason and barely threw all summer. It shows. He’s missing some wide-open receivers. Newton threw for 228 yards and no touchdowns on Sunday. He was also sacked six times…After a promising first game, Christian McCaffrey disappeared in Week 2. He touched the ball 12 times for a total of 44 yards. Newton did miss him for a wide-open touchdown late in the fourth quarter. So far though, McCaffrey has been average in his two NFL games…The Bills had almost no offense to speak of against the Panthers defense. Tyrod Taylor only accounted for 125 passing yards. That’s not good enough.
Tennessee Titans 37 Jacksonville Jaguars 16
The Titans didn’t run the ball like most people expected them to do in their Week 1 loss to the Raiders. They ran it better this week but Demarco Murray was held to only 25 yards on nine carries (2.8 YPC). It was Derrick Henry who led the way. With the Titans protecting a big lead, Henry rumbled for 92 yards and a score on 14 carries (6.6 YPC).
Extra Points: Marcus Mariota has yet to heat up in 2017. After a poor performance in the opener, Mariota threw for 215 yards, one touchdown and one interception against the Jaguars…Leonard Fournette saved his fantasy day with a late score. Fournette was held to 40 yards on 14 carries (2.9 YPC) in the blowout…The Jaguars passing game struggled with Allen Robinson until garbage time. Allen Hurns (6/82/1) and Marqise Lee (7/76) did little until the game was out of hand in the fourth quarter.
Baltimore Ravens 24 Cleveland Browns 10
Javorius Allen was one of the top free agent pickups last week. If you spent the money, it paid off. Allen led the Ravens in rushing (14/66) and caught three passes for 35 yards and a touchdown. Danny Woodhead is out for two months. It doesn’t matter because Allen looks like the Ravens starting running back.
Extra Points: Benjamin Watson usually shows up a couple of times a year. Sunday was one of those days. Watson caught all eight targets for 91 yards. He led the Ravens in catches, yards and targets. Watson is a streaming option for owners who lost Olsen…Jeremy Maclin only caught four passes but one went for a score. Maclin now has a touchdown in each of his first two games with the Ravens…The Ravens defense dominated for the second week in a row, making life miserable for rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer. Kizer was 15 of 31 for 182 yards, no touchdowns and three interceptions. He left the game for a while with a migraine and was replaced by Kevin Hogan. Overall, the Ravens defense recorded four interceptions and three sacks.
Oakland Raiders 45 New York Jets 20
This game looked like a blowout on paper. It was one in real life too. Michael Crabtree scored three times in the Raiders route over the Jets. Crabtree finished with six receptions for 80 yards and the three touchdowns.
Extra Points: The Raiders didn’t rely on one guy at running back. Three different players (Marshawn Lynch, Jalen Richard and Cordarrelle Patterson) scored rushing touchdowns. Lynch led the way with 12 carries. The Raiders won’t pile up carries on Lynch in blowouts to keep him fresh for later in the year…The Jets predictably struggled on offense for the second week in a row. Jermaine Kearse was the only Jets player to make a fantasy impact. He caught four balls for 64 yards and two touchdowns. Kearse is worth a look if you need help at receiver…Much like the Jets, Bilal Powell has fallen off the face of the earth.
Miami Dolphins 19 Los Angeles Chargers 17
The Chargers keep finding ways to lose games. For the second week in a row, rookie kicker Younghoe Koo missed a field goal in the final seconds. Philip Rivers threw for 331 yards and a touchdown but it wasn’t enough, as the Chargers drop to 0-2.
Extra Points: Melvin Gordon got shut down as a runner by the Dolphins defense (9/13). However, Gordon did score a rushing touchdown and contribute as a receiver. He caught seven passes for 65 yards to finish with a strong fantasy day in PPR leagues…One week after getting shutout by the Broncos defense, Hunter Henry rebounded with seven receptions for 80 yards…Jay Ajayi doesn’t care who is under center for the Dolphins. He looked fantastic in his first game of the year, rumbling for 122 yards on 28 carries (4.4 YPC)…DeVante Parker had a good first game with Jay Cutler. He caught four passes for 85 yards. Parker looks primed for a big season…Jarvis Landry finished with his typical 13-catch, 78-yard day.
Denver Broncos 42 Dallas Cowboys 17
How bad was it for the Cowboys offense on Sunday? Ezekiel Elliott tied Rod Smith with eight running yards. It’s Elliott’s lowest rushing output of his career by far. Denver’s defense completely stymied the usually potent Dallas offense. Dak Prescott was harassed all game long, finishing with 238 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. Prescott only averaged 4.8 yards per completion and led the Cowboys in rushing with 24 yards.
Extra Points: While Dak was struggling, Trevor Siemian had his second big fantasy game in a row to start the season. Siemian threw for 231 yards, four touchdowns and one interception. He now has seven total touchdowns in his first two games…There were questions about the Broncos backfield entering the season. Those questions have been answered. C.J. Anderson ran over the Cowboys defense for 118 yards and a touchdown on 25 carries (4.7 YPC). He’s clearly the Broncos lead back with Jamaal Charles playing a change-of-pace role…Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders each caught 6 of 8 targets but it was Sanders who had the bigger fantasy day by hauling in two scores.
Washington Redskins 27 Los Angeles Rams 20
Todd Gurley has fantasy relevance again. All it took was for Jeff Fisher to leave town. Gurley racked up 138 total yards and scored two touchdowns. New Rams coach Sean McVay is using Gurley as a receiver more this year through two games. Apparently, Fisher couldn’t figure out Gurley can catch.
Extra Points: Jared Goff looked like he was progressing last week against the Colts. He took a step back on Sunday. Goff completed just 15 of 25 passes for 224 yards, one touchdown and an interception…Both Sammy Watkins and Cooper Kupp were bottled up by the Redskins defense. They combined for five receptions and 63 yards on just 10 targets. Some were projecting Kupp to catch 90 balls this year. He has seven in two games…Rob Kelley got off to a good start (12/78) but left with a rib injury. Chris Thompson scored twice (3/77/2) but it was Samaje Perine who saw the bulk of the work in his absence. Perine finished with 67 yards on 21 carries (3.2 YPC). Both will be hot waiver wire pickups if Kelley is out for an extended period.
Seattle Seahawks 12 San Francisco 49ers 9
This game was flat-out ugly. The Seahawks have problems on offense that can’t be overlooked but the 49ers haven’t scored a touchdown in two games. Brian Hoyer has been beyond bad. Against the Seahawks he completed 15 of 27 passes for 99 yards, no touchdowns and an interception. He averaged a ridiculous 3.7 yards per completion. Hoyer has faced two of the best defenses in the NFL (Carolina and Seattle) but he must be better if he wants to keep the starting job.
Extra Points: Carlos Hyde was the only player who made a fantasy impact from this game. Despite a tough matchup, Hyde broke loose for 124 yards on 15 carries (8.3 YPC). He also caught three passes for 19 yards…One thing to take away from the Seahawks side is it appears Chris Carson has mercifully taken control of the Seattle backfield. Carson has been the Seahawks best running back all summer. On Sunday, he ran the ball 20 times for 93 yards (4.7 YPC). Carson should be owned in all leagues now.
Atlanta Falcons 34 Green Bay Packers 23
The Falcons offense keeps rolling at home. Devonta Freeman exploded after being held in check last week. Freeman ran for 84 yards and two scores on 19 carries (4.4 YPC). Tevin Coleman added 42 yards rushing and a short touchdown reception.
Extra Points: The Falcons receivers hurt the Packers secondary in both meetings last year. It was more of the same this time around. Julio Jones caught 5 of 9 targets for 108 yards, while Mohamed Sanu hauled in 5 of 6 targets for 85 yards…Jordy Nelson killed many fantasy owners. He hurt his quad early in the game and didn’t record a catch…Davante Adams picked up the slack with Nelson out. Adams caught eight balls for 99 yards and one touchdown…Ty Montgomery had a huge game. He racked up 110 total yards, six receptions and two touchdowns. Montgomery is turning out to be a draft-day steal as the clear No. 1 back in the Packers offense.