Your Best Fantasy Football Matchups Include Many Titans
Hope you're following along this year because wow, just wow. I don't want to sound like I'm self-back-patting too much here, but the metrics were near perfect in Week 1. Seriously though, I even pointed out the accuracy for these metrics are in the 75-80 percent range, so I know they aren't perfect, but you likely dominated if you followed them last week. Let's hope that the Fantasy Football Matchup Rankings for Week 2 continue the trend… and that I didn't just jinx myself by gloating (slightly).
|Quarterback Points Allowed|
|1||Cleveland Browns||NO||31.4||17||Indianapolis Colts||PHI||17.4|
|2||Arizona Cardinals||NYG||30.0||18||Jacksonville Jaguars||WSH||13.2|
|3||New Orleans Saints||CLE||18.4||19||Minnesota Vikings||NE||13.9|
|4||Tennessee Titans||DAL||17.1||20||Atlanta Falcons||CIN||17.5|
|5||Philadelphia Eagles||IND||22.5||21||Houston Texans||OAK||13.6|
|6||Denver Broncos||KC||20.0||22||Oakland Raiders||HOU||8.9|
|7||New York Jets||GB||18.5||23||New York Giants||ARI||13.5|
|8||Seattle Seahawks||SAD||21.1||24||Green Bay Packers||NYJ||13.9|
|9||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||STL||14.5||25||Washington Redskins||JAX||15.9|
|10||St. Louis Rams||TB||18.2||26||Chicago Bears||SAF||12.2|
|11||Pittsburgh Steelers||BAL||18.3||27||Buffalo Bills||MIA||10.3|
|12||Cincinnati Bengals||ATL||16.5||28||San Diego Chargers||SEA||10.6|
|13||San Francisco 49ers||CHI||17.8||29||Detroit Lions||CAR||16.0|
|14||Miami Dolphins||BUF||20.0||30||Dallas Cowboys||TEN||12.7|
|15||Kansas City Chiefs||DEN||28.7||31||New England Patriots||MIN||8.8|
|16||Baltimore Ravens||PIT||13.0||32||Carolina Panthers||DET||8.5|
HOLD ‘EM OR FOLD ‘EM
The Cowboys defense is like a eating a Twinx. A what? Oh, just a Twinkie stuffed with Twix wrapped in bacon and deep-fried. Oh, and topped with powdered sugar.
It doesn't have to make sense on paper, but it fills you with an abundance of deliciousness. That is why Jake Locker gets the slight edge over Jay Cutler this week… and this is coming from someone who is the furthest thing from a Locker fan. I’ve borderline blasted the guy since his final college season.
However, when you get the Cowboys, while Cutler is off facing the 49ers, things change. To be fair, Locker changed a bit too this offseason, as he's become more comfortable in the pocket. Although, improving a frenzied squirrel look doesn't take much.
The 49ers aren't as dominant on defense as last year, especially with Aldon Smith suspended, but they did hold Tony Romo to just one touchdown while forcing three interceptions, and Romo has plenty of weapons. Locker isn't far behind Romo in weapons, as Kendall Wright, Justin Hunter, Delanie Walker and Nate Washington give him plenty of options along with Dexter McCluster catching passes out of the backfield. Take Locker this week, especially over a quarterback like Philip Rivers facing the Seahawks.
Other matchup-boosted QBs: Carson Palmer, Drew Brees, Nick Foles, Peyton Manning, Geno Smith, Russell Wilson
|Running Back Points Allowed|
|1||New York Jets||GB||34.6||17||Seattle Seahawks||SAD||18.1|
|2||Cincinnati Bengals||ATL||36.3||18||Buffalo Bills||MIA||17.1|
|3||Cleveland Browns||NO||30.1||19||Atlanta Falcons||CIN||13.8|
|4||Minnesota Vikings||NE||31.2||20||Washington Redskins||JAX||26.0|
|5||Baltimore Ravens||PIT||29.5||21||San Diego Chargers||SEA||16.2|
|6||San Francisco 49ers||CHI||26.2||22||Pittsburgh Steelers||BAL||12.9|
|7||New Orleans Saints||CLE||32.3||23||Kansas City Chiefs||DEN||13.6|
|8||Tennessee Titans||DAL||17.6||24||St. Louis Rams||TB||12.6|
|9||Oakland Raiders||HOU||21.4||25||Detroit Lions||CAR||13.0|
|10||Philadelphia Eagles||IND||17.0||26||New England Patriots||MIN||10.2|
|11||Houston Texans||OAK||31.7||27||Jacksonville Jaguars||WSH||10.2|
|12||Chicago Bears||SAF||20.4||28||Carolina Panthers||DET||16.5|
|13||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||STL||10.9||29||New York Giants||ARI||12.9|
|14||Arizona Cardinals||NYG||18.4||30||Indianapolis Colts||PHI||6.8|
|15||Denver Broncos||KC||17.6||31||Dallas Cowboys||TEN||4.9|
|16||Miami Dolphins||BUF||17.3||32||Green Bay Packers||NYJ||4.5|
HOLD ‘EM OR FOLD ‘EM
This is back-to-back great matchups for the 49ers running game. Frank Gore actually came away as a disappointment last week with just 66 yards, as Carlos Hyde stole the touchdown on his 50 yards. Still, it's hard not to like Gore as a high-end RB2 this week, even with the constant threat of Hyde stealing touches to keep Gore fresh. The Bears picked up where they left off last year against the run. Fred Jackson, C.J. Spiller and even Anthony Dixon combined for 174 yards on just 27 carries! There is enough of an opportunity for both Gore and Hyde to put up big numbers. That is why I'm starting both over the Lions duo (Gore over Reggie Bush and Hyde over Joique Bell).
Granted, it appears as though Bush will be the focal point in the run game if we are to take anything away from the Giants game – besides the Giants making that frenzied squirrel look like a sloth. Bell didn't see much use until the game was nearly out of hand, and even so, Bush has the unenviable task of going against the Panthers defense. The Panthers kept the Bucs from scoring on the ground (Bobby Rainey scored via the pass) and limited the running backs to 75 yards. Gore has a much easier slate this week and is set to "bounce back" from a Week 1 Fantasy disappointment.
Other matchup-boosted RBs: Chris Johnson and Chris Ivory, Gio Bernard, Terrance West, Adrian Peterson, Mark Ingram, LeSean McCoy, Arian Foster
|Wide Receiver Points Allowed|
|1||Cleveland Browns||NO||39.6||17||Chicago Bears||SAF||29.0|
|2||Arizona Cardinals||NYG||38.1||18||Atlanta Falcons||CIN||27.4|
|3||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||STL||33.1||19||Kansas City Chiefs||DEN||24.4|
|4||New Orleans Saints||CLE||31.5||20||San Francisco 49ers||CHI||14.5|
|5||Denver Broncos||KC||23.7||21||Carolina Panthers||DET||4.8|
|6||Tennessee Titans||DAL||15.7||22||Green Bay Packers||NYJ||20.8|
|7||Seattle Seahawks||SAD||26.7||23||Washington Redskins||JAX||23.5|
|8||Cincinnati Bengals||ATL||24.5||24||Houston Texans||OAK||14.1|
|9||Pittsburgh Steelers||BAL||27.5||25||Minnesota Vikings||NE||15.6|
|10||New York Jets||GB||22.0||26||Oakland Raiders||HOU||15.2|
|11||Indianapolis Colts||PHI||33.9||27||New York Giants||ARI||16.6|
|12||Baltimore Ravens||PIT||21.0||28||San Diego Chargers||SEA||20.1|
|13||St. Louis Rams||TB||18.4||29||Buffalo Bills||MIA||16.9|
|14||Philadelphia Eagles||IND||15.2||30||New England Patriots||MIN||17.2|
|15||Jacksonville Jaguars||WSH||24.3||31||Detroit Lions||CAR||15.3|
|16||Miami Dolphins||BUF||22.0||32||Dallas Cowboys||TEN||10.6|
HOLD ‘EM OR FOLD ‘EM
It’s time to focus on two letdowns from Week 1. Why? Well, because I believe one of them rebounds this week. Rueben Randle and Doug Baldwin finished with a combined one point! If you started either and still won, we'll you escaped with your Fantasy life and should be thankful... all Indian Jones-y and stuff.
Randle had zero points thanks to two catches for one yard, and Baldwin had three catches for 14 yards. Which one is worth your time this week? Let me ask you this. Which quarterback do you trust more right now, Eli Manning or Russell Wilson? Actually, I have a second question for you. Which defense would you rather face, the Chargers or Cardinals?
Even if both teams were facing favorable matchups, I'd still take Baldwin. No one on the Giants offense appears to be on the same page, and Manning is basically in mid-run after snapping the ball thanks to his offensive line. Baldwin finished as the 37th best receiver last year, and Randle 45th, which is only due to six touchdowns. Randle still has problems with his route running, and if you're not where you need to be in the 13 milliseconds Eli has to throw the ball, you can forget about finishing with more than one yard. Back to the matchups, the Chargers gave up 205 yards and a touchdown to the Cardinals, which held the Chargers to 107 yards and a score. This isn't even that close in my opinion, as the Giants need to get their offense in sync before I'm comfortable even using Victor Cruz, let alone Randle.
Other matchup-boosted WRs: Josh Gordon, yes, maybe?, Cardinals, Vincent Jackson and Mike Evans, Marques Colston and Brandin Cooks, Broncos, Kendall Wright and Justin Hunter, Percy Harvin, A.J. Green, Antonio Brown and Markus Wheaton
|Tight End Points Allowed|
|1||Tennessee Titans||DAL||16.4||17||Oakland Raiders||HOU||7.0|
|2||Philadelphia Eagles||IND||29.2||18||Seattle Seahawks||SAD||3.6|
|3||Cleveland Browns||NO||7.9||19||Washington Redskins||JAX||15.2|
|4||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||STL||9.8||20||San Francisco 49ers||CHI||0.0|
|5||Denver Broncos||KC||12.1||21||Minnesota Vikings||NE||4.3|
|6||Arizona Cardinals||NYG||5.5||22||Houston Texans||OAK||5.7|
|7||St. Louis Rams||TB||14.3||23||Buffalo Bills||MIA||11.5|
|8||New York Giants||ARI||10.5||24||Jacksonville Jaguars||WSH||0.6|
|9||Cincinnati Bengals||ATL||8.2||25||Indianapolis Colts||PHI||3.5|
|10||Baltimore Ravens||PIT||9.0||26||Dallas Cowboys||TEN||13.8|
|11||Miami Dolphins||BUF||14.2||27||Carolina Panthers||DET||12.3|
|12||New Orleans Saints||CLE||2.6||28||Green Bay Packers||NYJ||4.3|
|13||New York Jets||GB||4.3||29||Chicago Bears||SAF||1.4|
|14||Pittsburgh Steelers||BAL||5.3||30||New England Patriots||MIN||7.2|
|15||Kansas City Chiefs||DEN||14.5||31||San Diego Chargers||SEA||2.6|
|16||Atlanta Falcons||CIN||11.7||32||Detroit Lions||CAR||7.5|
HOLD ‘EM OR FOLD ‘EM
No, Zach Ertz won't find the end zone three times like Julius Thomas, but he should absolutely be in all lineups this week. And you should certainly use him over the duo in San Diego. The Chargers had the favorable Cardinals matchup last week, which helped a hobbled Antonio Gates continue to have value. I wouldn't expect Gates or Ladarius Green to do much against the Seahawks. Meanwhile, the Colts defense could have used some Orange Julius of their own to douse their defense, which was set ablaze by Thomas. The Colts struggled to defend tight ends last year as well, so this is not a new concern for them. Make sure you have Ertz locked in, even over more proven options such as Jason Witten and Martellus Bennett.
Other matchup-boosted TEs: Delanie Walker, Jordan Cameron, Julius Thomas, Larry Donnell (risky still), Dennis Pitta
(Reminder: You’ll notice the rankings are not in exact order of points allowed. Other metrics are calculated in along with just straight points. It allows for better analysis so one off-week doesn’t skew the opponent difficulty too greatly.)
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