Welcome to week two FanDuelers. Here are my top 25 quarterbacks for week 2 of the NFL season. Good luck with your teams!
1. Aaron Rodgers – GB vs. Was – Washington was bit pretty hard by the Eagles on Monday night and even though they didn’t throw much, the Eagles and Michael Vick completed 15 of 25 (60%) of his passes for 200+ yards and 2 touchdowns. Rodgers will be home after a loss to San Francisco. He’s going to play well.
2. Peyton Manning – Den at NYG – The Manning Bowl should be another opportunity for Peyton Manning to put up big numbers. Tony Romo didn’t put up huge fantasy numbers on the Giants week 1, but he did complete a whopping 36 passes on 49 attempts for 73.5%. Manning will do similarly.
3. Drew Brees – NO at TB – The Bucs are much better with Darrelle Revis, but the Saints have too many weapons to be shut down. Brees can put up numbers on the best of defenses and the Bucs are still working on getting better.
4. Michael Vick – Phi vs. SD – Until Vick is hurt he has to be considered a top quarterback. The Eagles are going to be a run first team, but they will also not always have a big lead to milklike they had in Washington and Vick is also running to pad his stats. San Diego’s pass defense put up a fight against Houston early, but also gave up 345 yards passing and 3 touchdowns.
5. Andrew Luck – Ind vs. Mia – I love Luck’s ability. I just hope they let him throw more. I think they will and Miami will shut down the Colts running game enough to force his hand.
6. Matt Ryan – Atl vs. StL – I like the Rams defense enough to be worried, but Palmer was able to play well against them and now they go on the road to Atlanta against a team coming off a loss. If Roddy White doesn’t practice I’ll drop Ryan a few rungs.
7. Matthew Stafford – Det at Ari – The continued commitment to the pass is great news for Stafford. Now with Reggie Bush he has a great outlet to gain him some easy yards and of course there’s that guy named Calvin Johnson.
8. Tom Brady – NE vs. NYJ – The Jets have always played Brady tough. In 22 games for his career Brady has averaged 235 passing yards and 1.4 touchdowns against them. But last year he stepped up and averaged 291 yards and 2.5 TDs in two games. This season though, his main targets will be Edelman, Thompkins, Boyce, and maybe Dobson. He will get the job done, but don’t expect huge numbers.
9. Colin Kaepernick – SF at Sea -- Kaepernick is for real, but so are the Seahawks at home (and the road). Last year Kap had his worst game of the season against the Seahwaks completing 19 of 36 passes for 244 yards with 1 TD and 1 INT. He also rushed 7 times for just 31 yards. Will that happen this time around? Probably not, but I’m knocking him down my ranks a bit.
10. Robert Griffin – Was at GB – RGIII went from huge dud in the first half against the Eagles to back to his old self in the second. He does have to go into Lambeau after the Packers just lost, but Green Bay’s pass defense was just smoked by Kaepernick for 412 yards and 3 touchdowns and a 69% completion percentage.
11. Russell Wilson – Sea vs. SF – Last season Wilson had one horrible game and one huge game against the 49ers. The huge game where he threw for 4 touchdowns was in Seattle and came later in the season when he was given more passing responsibilities. The 49ers gave up 333 yards and 3 TDs to Rodgers and even though they allowed a rushing touchdown they held Green Bay running backs to just 2.9 yards per carry. Seattle will throw.
12. Cam Newton – Car at Buf – Ron Rivera lamented his conservative approach in week one so we should see a little more out of Cam this week. I would like to see more out of him before I rank him too high though. His matchup against the Bills is a good one, so he’s still a start in 12 team leagues.
13. Tony Romo – Dal at KC – The Chiefs shut down Blaine Gabbert on the road, which frankly I think my high school team could do, but they do have a strong defense. I like Romo as an every week start even in tougher matchups on the road, but he does have bruised ribs and he could drop even further if Dez Bryant isn’t able to go this week.
14. Jay Cutler – Chi vs. Min – Cutler may move up my rankings even further as the week goes on as I study the tape and stats a little more. Right now I really like him after a strong performance against a tough Bengals defense and now a matchup against the Vikings who just gave up 357 yards, 2 touchdowns and a 65% completion percentage to Stafford. Marc Trestman’s offense may be for real.
15. Terrelle Pryor – Oak vs. Jac – The Jaguars are a hot mess and have to travel across the country to the Black Hole. They allowed Alex Smith to throw two quick touchdowns last week and then coast to a win while Pryor went into Indianapolis and gave the Colts all they could handle. I like him to do the same on the ground as last week and maybe even better through the air.
16. Carson Palmer – Ari vs. Det – Looking at Pro Football Focus data Carson Palmer graded out as the best quarterback in week 1 and that came on the road against a tough pass rush in St Louis. This week they get a Detroit pass defense that had an easy Christian Ponder to deal with, so weren’t really tested. Suh will harass Palmer, but he should still get his.
17. Eli Manning – NYG vs. Den – Eli put up big numbers against Dallas and now gets to come home to play Denver who held Joe Flacco to 5.8 yards per attempt (for comparison Peyton had 11 per attempt). Denver may also have Champ Bailey back. I’m weary of him against what looks like a pretty good Broncos defense even without their pass rushers from last season.
18. Sam Bradford – StL at Atl – Bradford had a nice game against a tough Cardinals pass defense completing 27 of 38 passes (71%) for 299 yards and 2 TDs. It could have been 3 touchdowns if Jared Cook had secured the ball better at the goal line. The Falcons pass defense gave up a 74% completion percentage to Drew Brees and company week 1.
19. Matt Schaub – Hou vs. Ten – Schaub was in come back mode week 1 so we saw more passing out of him than normal. He gets a nice matchup at home against the Titans, but I suspect the run game and defense will rule this one.
20. Philip Rivers – SD at Phi – Rivers did more than I thought he would in week 1 with 4 touchdowns, but he also completed less than 50% of his passes, didn’t reach 200 yards passing and was completely shut down in the fourth quarter. He does get a great matchup against the Eagles, but the Chargers travel cross-country and I’m not sold yet on their offense.
21. Ryan Tannehill – Mia at Ind – The Colts faced pretty much a hybrid QB/RB in Terrelle Pryor week one so it’s hard to get a read on their pass defense, but I think they’ll be soft, and Tanny could do some work.
22. EJ Manuel – Buf vs. Car – Manuel looked decent against the Patriots week one in a limited passing game plan. If he can use his legs more his floor will keep rising.
23. Josh Freeman – TB vs. NO – In his first game against the Saints last season he threw for over 400 yards and had 3 touchdowns but in his second game he threw for 279 yards, no TDs and 4 interceptions. He’s just not very good and even in a plus matchup he’s unreliable.
24. Joe Flacco – Bal vs. Cle – Flacco threw the ball 62 times against the Broncos and still finished as the 15th best fantasy quarterback for week 1. The Browns defense could be better than the Broncos and I think the Ravens will commit more to the run since they won’t have Weeden throwing 7 touchdowns against them.
25. Chad Henne – Jac at Oak – Henne has no qualms with chucking the rock early and often and the Raiders pass defense is slim at best. They allowed Andrew Luck to complete 78% of his passes. He has some upside in 2QB leagues, but with Blackmon still out he’s probably too risky.