Week 2: Sleepers of the Week
If one of your normal starters is injured or facing a tough match-up, here are some players you might consider starting in their place. While these players may not be every week starters, they are good bets to perform well this week. Most of the players that will be listed are on fantasy rosters, but not normally starters.
Josh Freeman and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers travel to New York to face the Super Bowl Champion Giants in week two. Freeman and the Bucs got off to a good start this season in a 16-10 win over the Carolina Panthers. While Freeman's numbers were not spectacular (16/24, 138 passing yards, and one touchdown), he played a mistake free game that allowed the Bucs to dictate the tempo and time of possession. The young quarterback will be asked to carry more of the load this week against a Giants team that will likely be able to put up points against the Bucs defense. The Giants secondary was awful in week one, allowing Tony Romo to complete 22 of 29 passes for 307 yards and three touchdowns. While Freeman can not be counted on to put up the same numbers as Romo, he should be good for at least 200 passing yards and one touchdown, making him a good start in 2 QB leagues or if you are looking for a good spot starter at the quarterback position.
Andrew Luck and the Indianapolis Colts return home to take on the Minnesota Vikings in week two. The number one overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft got off to a rocky start in week one, throwing for 309 yards, one touchdown, and three interceptions in a blowout loss to the Chicago Bears. Luck did show good chemistry with Reggie Wayne and Coby Fleener, with each catching at least six passes for more than 80 yards. The Colts have an easier matchup this week against a Vikings defense that allowed 260 passing yards and two touchdowns to Blaine Gabbert and a weak Jacksonville Jaguars offense in week one. Andrew Luck should be able to put up similar numbers, making him a good fantasy start this week. Fantasy owners can start the rookie this week and can expect at least 225 passing yards and one touchdown in his home debut.
BenJarvus Green-Ellis and the Cincinnati Bengals return home to take on the Cleveland Browns in week two. Green-Ellis was one of the Bengals lone bright spots on Monday night, rushing for 91 yards and a touchdown in a blowout loss to the Baltimore Ravens. The former Patriots running back was the only Bengals rusher to carry the ball more than three times, making it clear that the Bengals will count on him to carry the load on a weekly basis. The Browns rush defense struggled mightly last season, and allowed 150 rushing yards against the Eagles in week one. The Bengals should come out looking to establish the run this week, making Green-Ellis an excellent start in fantasy leagues. Fantasy owners can start BenJarvus Green-Ellis this week and can expect at least 90 total yards and one touchdown.
Mark Ingram and the New Orleans Saints travel to Carolina to face the Panthers in week two. The Saints and Ingram got off to a dreadful start to the season, losing at home to the Washington Redskins. The second year running back rushed for just 15 yards on six carries, while backup running back Pierre Thomas rushed for 17 yards on four carries. The Saints ran the ball only ten times the entire game, a trend that must not continue if the Saints are going to start winning games. The Saints should try to run the ball more this week, with Ingram being the favorite to lead the team in carries in addition to getting all the work inside the red zone. Ingram should be able to run the ball effectively against a Panthers defense that allowed 130 yards on the ground to the Buccaneers in week one. Fantasy owners in need of a Flex play can roll the dice on Mark Ingram and can expect at least 80 total yards and a touchdown from the former Alabama running back.
Alfred Morris and the Washington Redskins travel to St. Louis to take on the Rams in week two. Morris got the start at running back for the Redskins in week one and was tremendously impressive, rushing for 96 yards and two touchdowns on 28 carries against the Saints. Morris will be the Redskins primary ball carrier again in week two, making him a good start in fantasy leagues. The Rams allowed less than 100 rushing yards in week one, but the Lions did not look to establish the run game, something Washington definitely will do this week. Morris is probably not the best bet for the entire season, as Mike Shanahan is incredibly fickle with his running backs, but as long as he is the starter, he should put up good numbers. Fantasy owners who drafted Morris, or were able to pick him up this week should start him this week and can expect at least 85 total yards and one touchdown from the rookie running back.