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“Big Rigg” WR/RB Plays for Season-Long/DFS Week #2

Week 1 is in the books and we now have a week worth of data to help us make lineup decisions.  One week of data isn’t a lot, but some teams have shown their colors.  The Colts and Saints look to have absolutely brutal defenses while the Ravens and Jaguars look to be the real deal.  Heading into week 2, let’s try to learn from week 1 and make some good calls.

Brandin Cooks – Fanduel $7,900 / Draftkings $8,200 & Chris Hogan – Fanduel $6,200 / Draftkings $5,600 – New England @ New Orleans – On Monday Night Football, the Minnesota Vikings, with Sam Bradford as their quarterback, almost had two receivers go over 100 yards.  Stefon Diggs had 7 grabs for 93 yards and 2 touchdowns and Adam Thielen snagged 9 balls for 157 yards.  If Sam Bradford’s receivers can tear up a defense like that, then what will Tom Brady be able to do? Both Cooks and Hogan are extremely viable options in week 2 and should be rolled out in daily leagues.  If you don’t want to pay up for Cooks but still want a piece of the New England offense, Chris Hogan is that cheaper option.

Cooper Kupp – LA Rams vs Washington – Fanduel $5,400 / Draftkings $4,100 – Cooper Kupp led the Rams in targets in week 1 but not by much in what looks to be an even split between Kupp, Watkins and Woods.  However, Sammy Watkins will most likely be shadowed by Josh Norman in week 2, meaning Kupp will have a favorable matchup with Kendall Fuller who was absolutely scorched by Nelson Agholor in week 1.  Cooper Kupp is still dirt cheap and if you play him, you will be able to sneak some higher end options into your lineup because of the cost savings.

John Brown – Arizona @ Indianapolis – Fanduel $5,800 / Draftkings $5,000 – Jared Goff tore the Colts up last week.  If Jared Goff can tear up a defense, so can the elderly statesman, Carson Palmer.  Larry Fitzgerald should get his, but John Brown really figures to get some extra work especially with David Johnson set to miss significant time.  If Carson Palmer cannot get it done this week, it is time to hit the panic button on Palmer and all the Cardinals receivers.

Jordan Matthews – Buffalo @ Carolina – Fanduel $6,400 / Draftkings $3,900 – I don’t love any of the Bills wide receivers, ever, but I kind of like Jordan Matthews this week.  As I have said in several of my previous pieces, Rick Dennison deploys more of a horizontal passing game than vertical passing game and the Panthers play a lot of zone defense.  Given the Panthers defensive scheme, Matthews is likely to settle in and get some decent volume this week.  If Matthews can come through and get a touchdown, he will pay huge dividends for you.

Terrance West – Baltimore vs Cleveland – Fanduel $6,600 / Draftkings $5,100 – Danny Woodhead is out of the picture for at least a few weeks which loosens the cap on West’s upside.  West saw 19 carries against the Bengals last week before giving way to Buck Allen who closed out the game.  Against the Browns this week, West is a good bet to see a similar workload and achieve similar production.  The Browns slowed down Le’Veon Bell last week, but it looked like stopping Bell was their focus.  The Ravens appear to be extremely committed to the run this year and will continue to feed West.

Jacquizz Rodgers – Tampa Bay vs Chicago – Fanduel $6,600 / Draftkings $4,400 – Remember the Buccaneers? Hurricane Irma has come and gone and Doug Martin is still suspended.  Devonta Freeman didn’t explode against the Bears last week, but he did come through while sharing work with Tevin Coleman.  Rodgers doesn’t have much competition in the Tampa backfield and although he doesn’t have the frame to sustain a full workload throughout an entire season, we don’t need to worry about that right now, we just need him to be good against Chicago.

Ty Montgomery – Green Bay @ Atlanta – Fanduel $6,500 / Draftkings $5,800 – As we saw in the Super Bowl and against the Bears last week, the Falcons have trouble covering running backs out of the backfield.  Ty Montgomery showed us that he is Green Bay’s every down back last week and given his receiving his abilities, he is almost a lock to explode this week.  On top of that, this game might be a shoot out with two high-powered offenses going up against each other.  Ty Montgomery may be the #1 RB of the week and it looks like the daily sites haven’t adjusted his pricing yet to reflect his every down workload.

Gio Bernard – Cincinnati vs Houston – Fanduel $5,700 / Draftkings $4,400 – Leonard Fournette got his against the Texans last week, but he needed 26 carries to hit the 100 yard mark.  The Bengals offensive line may be one of the 5 worst units in professional football, and it is not very likely they will be able to push back the likes of JJ Watt and Jadeveon Clowney.  If the Bengals are going to move the ball on Thursday night, it will most likely be through the passing game.  Given the Bengals issues with protection, Dalton is likely to check the ball down quickly to Bernard in the passing game and he figures to factor heavily into the Bengals game plan.  Not to mention, Bernard is the only Bengals running back who you can bank on having a consistent role until the Hill and Mixon situation gets figured out.

Running Back Tandem of the Week

A lot of people in the fantasy industry seem to be hitting the panic button on Jordan Howard.  I am not.  Howard is the every down back, he is the foundation back.  Tarik Cohen is 5’6″ and weighs 179 and the fact is he would be unable to sustain a full workload if it were given to him.  In my view, both Howard and Cohen are viable options.  Howard is a low-end RB1 or high-end RB2, while Cohen offers upside in PPR leagues.  The Bears are likely to struggle this year, so we have to hope that Howard gets it done early before giving way to Cohen while the Bears play catch up.

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I've been coaching lacrosse since 2002 and playing fantasy football since 2006. I've racked up several championships over the years including a 4th place finish in the Kentucky Fantasy Football State Championship in 2016. I started drafting running backs late before it was cool.

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