Fantasy Football: Week 1 Recap
Hold on to the damn ball! Week 1 was rough for RBs across the board, but even worse for those that had fumbling issues. Two backs were benched most of the game for fumbling (Ridley, D. Wilson) and others missed multiple drives due to temporary benching (Lacy, Spiller, Redman). Even those that held on to the ball were mostly disappointing as only 2 RBs broke the 100 yard mark (McCoy, Vereen). Terrell Pryor is currently 2nd in the league in rushing yards. If anyone predicted that, you should be reading their column instead.
Week 1 was a bad one for running backs, but tight ends were dominant. 16 TEs scored over 10 fantasy points in yahoo leagues. If you drafted one of the ones who didn’t (I’m looking at you Gates), feel free to cut bait and grab one of week 1 surprises (Thomas, Cameron, Myers, Cook, Bennett) if by some chance they are still available.
Here is a recap of Week 1’s Studs & Duds and some advice on what to do with them moving forward.
Anquan Boldin – WR: A late round flyer in most leagues, Boldin established himself as Kaepernick’s go-to guy and broke the 200 yard barrier for the 2nd time in his 11 year career. Boldin got 17 targets Sunday and while the 49ers won’t need to score as much most weeks, no other Niner had more than 9. It’s clear Boldin has replaced Crabtree as the go-to guy in SF and if he is still available in your league he is worth a $20-$25 waiver bid. Bump that up a $5-10 in a PPR league.
Jordan Cameron – TE: I own Cameron in multiple leagues and admit to getting nervous as the hype train rolled out of control late in the preseason. It’s hard not to be nervous about any fantasy asset tied to Brandon Weeden , but Cameron showed his preseason performance wasn’t a fluke (9/108/1) and his 13 targets prove Weeden’s comfort level with his tight end. Cameron has the athleticism of a wide out and on a team like Cleveland with few reliable WR options, I see no reason he can’t keep this up even after Josh Gordon comes back.
AJ Green – WR: Green was the top non-QB fantasy performer in week 1(33.7!) and the fact that he did it against the Bears and Pro Bowl corner Charles Tillman is even more impressive. Most of his match-ups will be more favorable and Dalton seems more willing to throw the deep this year which could mean more huge games in Green’s future. Green owners should pat themselves on the back for money well spent. Non-owners (myself included) should debate paying the high trade price it will take to get Green. It’s just going to get higher.
Victor Cruz – WR: Cruz didn’t play in the offseason and after what Hakeem Nicks put his owners through last year, I think Cruz was downgraded by association. He was dealt straight up in one of my leagues for Gio Bernard (Ridiculous!). Cruz rewarded his owners with a monster 3 TD game in week 1 and didn’t show any signs of the heel injury that kept him out of preseason action. Cruz is the Giants clear #1 option moving forward.
Shane Vereen – RB: When I started writing this article Vereen looked like he had earned the starting gig for week 2 after gaining a combined 159 yards in 3 quarters. Everyone knew Vereen was a solid receiver out of the backfield and was lining up as a WR in the preseason, but what surprised me was how well he ran between the tackles. Remember, Vereen was actually chosen a round before Ridley, so it’s possible the NE front office sees Vereen as more than a 3rd down back. Unfortunately for Vereen he will be out 3-4 weeks with a broken forearm, but unless Ridley has a monster stretch the next few games I expect Vereen to be in the mix for the #1 job when healthy. Update: It was his wrist that was broke, which is considerably more serious and will keep Vereen out till week 11. Unless your team has IR spots or an extra large bench, Vereen is droppable in most formats.