Week 1 of the NFL Season was great and we saw some surprises now we can look at some bold fantasy football predictions for Week 2.
Last week my predictions didn’t go so well as I hit on only two of my bold predictions. The fantasy football world is a crazy beast with all sorts of surprises popping up around the corner. However, it’s always fun to go out on a limb and make some predictions.
It was very bold of me to predict that Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Rodgers would struggle in week 1. However, they both had tough matchups and the setting was for a down performance.
Rodgers did have a terrible start to the game against the Chicago Bears. His injury almost helped my prediction come true. Unfortunately for Bears fans, Rodgers came out after half time and put on his Superman cape.
Mike Wallace having a big game was another one of my failures. However, I didn’t expect Nick Foles to have such a terrible performance. Foles looked very hesitant and uncomfortable in the pocket.
On a positive note, James Conner had a huge day scoring some major fantasy points. The Pittsburgh Steelers didn’t hold anything back and used him just as the would’ve Le’Veon Bell. It appears that we could expect the same thing for Week 2.
Andy Dalton had himself a solid game and provided passable fantasy numbers. His interception early in the game wasn’t his fault. He saw his throwing motion interrupted by an offensive lineman getting pushed right into his body.
Dalton was able to quickly rebound from the turnover and help lead his team to victory.
Patrick Mahomes will come back down to earth
Mahomes had a terrific Week 1 performance that made many fantasy football owners very happy. He was able to put a ton of points on the board and help ease any concerns about how ready he was to produce.
However, things look a little different if you take a deeper dive into his performance. Two of his touchdown passes came from the one yard line while another was a short pass to Tyreek Hill who exploded for 58 yards.
This type of touchdown production isn’t going to happen each week. There will be weeks where Kareem Hunt gets the carry in those goal line situations. Hill may be extremely explosive, but you can’t expect him to break off a long touchdown each week.
The Chiefs face a tough test this upcoming week as they travel to face the Pittsburgh Steelers. Pittsburgh has a solid pass rush with T.J. Watt coming off the edge. That type of pressure could force a young quarterback to make mistakes.
Their secondary is also underrated and more than capable of limiting separation. It wouldn’t be much of a surprise to see Mahomes struggle in his first road start of the season. Pittsburgh is a very tough environment.
Saquon Barkley a top-3 running back in Week 2
The New York Giants faced an extremely tough Jacksonville Jaguars defense in Week 1. Jacksonville was able to keep Saquon Barkley under wraps for a little, but eventually the rookie running back broke free.
This week, the Giants face the Dallas Cowboys who allowed 147 yards on the ground to the Carolina Panthers.
New York showed in the first week of the season that they are committed to establishing a running game. They kept feeding Barkley the ball despite his limited success. Their faith in his talent eventually paid off.
The Giants aren’t going to change their plan of attack against the Cowboys. They will look to get Barkley going early and ride him to a victory.
Against the Panthers, the Cowboys didn’t have to worry about their pass catching options. It will be different against New York with Odell Beckham Jr. on the outside. The Cowboys won’t be able to stack the box in order to keep Barkley in check.
Barkley was also involved in the passing game last week receiving six targets. He was only able to register two catches, but look for his efficiency to improve as the season progresses.
Jordan Howard remains involved in the Chicago Bears passing game
The Chicago Bears came out Sunday night with plenty of creative plays developed by Matt Nagy. He got everyone involved which included using Jordan Howard as a pass catcher out of the backfield.
Since entering the league, Howard has been seen as a run-only back who offers little to nothing as a pass catcher. He worked hard this offseason to change that narrative and it is paying off.
The Bears targeted Howard five times in the passing game which resulted in five catches and 25 yards. These aren’t eye-popping numbers but it shows that Howard will be involved in the passing attack.
This is great news for those who have Howard in PPR leagues. His value takes a major jump if Chicago is going to use him in different ways.
Chicago takes on the Seattle Seahawks this week and will look to take advantage of some of their injury problems. Linebacker K.J. Wright missed Seattle’s first game and is still uncertain for the matchup against the Bears.
Wright is one of the linebackers who would have been responsible for handling a running back in the passing game. Instead, the Seahawks will use Shaquem Griffin and Barkevious Mingo in that role.
Brandon Marshall works his way into a top-25 receiver for Week 2
The Seattle Seahawks were dealt a major blow in Week 1 with Doug Baldwin going down with a knee injury. He has been the team’s top receiver and Russell Wilson’s main target for the past few years.
His absence will cause issues for the offense and force someone like Brandon Marshall into a larger role.
Marshall had himself a solid debut for the Seahawks and still has enough in the tank to be fantasy relevant. His game has long been about physicality rather than speed and quickness. He produced a touchdown, three receptions and 46 yards on six targets in Week 1.
This week the Seahawks face Marshall’s former team the Chicago Bears. He will see this as a chance to exact some revenge on his former team.
Chicago’s defense had a strong performance in Week 1, but the secondary fell apart in the second half. There’s an opportunity here for Marshall to have a big fantasy week and who he’s still a force in this league.
The Bears stout run defense could force Seattle into a more pass-heavy attack. It may not be pretty, but Russell Wilson finds a way to put points on the board.
George Kittle finishes week two as a top-3 tight end
It’s obvious that George Kittle is a major part of what the San Francisco 49ers want to do on offense. He is someone who has quickly emerged as Jimmy Garoppolo’s favorite target and someone he looks to in the red zone.
Kittle is not only a reliable target, but also offers some big-play ability. He was able to put up strong numbers in week 1 facing the stingy Minnesota Vikings defense.
San Francisco faces a more favorable matchup in Week 2 as they take on the Detroit Lions. The Lions are coming off an embarrassing loss Monday night and have to travel cross country on short rest.
This situation plays out well for the 49ers who are looking to steady their offense after several mistakes in Week 1. Kittle will absolutely be involved in the game plan and someone they target early and often.
Keep an eye on the injury situation for wide receiver Marquise Goodwin. He was forced out of last week’s game and is questionable for this week.
I’d start Kittle over everyone expect for Rob Gronkowski and Zach Ertz this week. Those two are healthy and producing, but Kittle is slowly working his way into the conversation as a top fantasy football tight end.