Week 2 Rankings Analysis - Pierre Camus vs. Industry Consensus

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Don't overreact. Don't overreact. Fantasy owners need to repeat this many times before making lineup decisions after one week of regular season football. The same goes for ranking the players and trying to judge relative value. This week, I'll resist temptation to put Kareem Hunt as overall RB1, steer clear of Carson Palmer, and try to figure out what to do with Jay Cutler.

Weekly rankings are a lot easier to read and react to than they are to actually make. Without them, there would be no way of making those tough lineup decisions accurately, unless you count closing your eyes and throwing a dart at your computer screen "valid and reliable."

As an expert ranker for RotoBaller and FantasyPros, I'll put my own personal rankings out on the table for you here and show you how they stack up against the consensus of the other 100+ experts at FantasyPros. Rather than list every player in the league, you'll simply see the Top 10 per position, plus a few notable players that may have fallen in my rankings this week. Note: all rankings are for standard leagues.

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Week 2 Quarterbacks - Rankings Analysis

Top 10, plus notable outliers (deviation from consensus)

There are two things I am almost certain of this week: Tom Brady will be fired up and New Orleans has a pitiful defense. Throw in the Brandin Cooks "revenge game" factor (yes, I know that's not really a thing) and you have the recipe for a high-scoring Pats offense. Drew Brees himself should also do much better at home against a Pats defense that actually looked worse than the Saints' D last week. I have Derek Carr sandwiched in between and rated a touch higher than Brees because he has better weapons than Brees and, well, he's playing the Jets. As I predicted last week, the Raiders didn't prioritize Marshawn Lynch in the red zone, opting to force it into Amari Cooper's hands instead. This is a great look if you're a Cooper owner and should pay off again in Week 2.

In Jameis Winston's first game of the season, I have high hopes that he'll utilize new weapons Desean Jackson and O.J. Howard quite a bit. Russell Wilson should have an easy time against San Fran, but he didn't do much of anything against a mediocre Packers defense last week. Newton isn't playing the Niners this week, so he drops down a few spots but Buffalo won't present much more of a challenge. Roethlisberger was my top QB last week and fared well enough, but I don't see him doing any better than Brees did against a tough Minnesota pass defense.

I'll buy into Bradford's Week 1 performance - his record-setting completion percentage last year was glossed over by many an expert. If he's healthy, he's a QB1 in any format. It may be homerism, but I think Cutler will look good in Adam Gase's offense and should be fine against a Chargers defense that let Trevor Siemian pass for two TD and run one in. Siemian himself may continue climbing up the rankings if he can string together a couple more quality games.

Although one could argue that Carson Palmer will be throwing the ball a lot more now that David Johnson is out, which could increase his point totals, I have a counterpoint to that. Palmer is done. He had a rough 2016, throwing 14 picks, taking 40 sacks and seeing his completion percentage and yards per attempt drop to their lowest points since arriving in Arizona in 2013. He piled up most of his yards by relying on short passes and dump-offs to Johnson, who isn't around to bail him out. With the running game no longer a huge threat, I have a bad feeling Palmer is in for a world of hurt. This may be the last week where he is a borderline starter in one-QB leagues, only because he's facing Indy.

 

Week 2 Running Backs - Rankings Analysis

Top 10, plus notable outliers (deviation from consensus)

Denver has one of the toughest defenses in the league, but that's primarily against the pass. They ranked 23rd in rushing yards allowed last season and allowed Melvin Gordon to collect 79 total yards and a touchdown. DJ's gone, Bell has a tough matchup, so Zeke is my top RB this week with Shady following. I ranked Fournette just ahead of Hunt, but not purely based on matchup. Philly's shackling of the Redskins' run game doesn't mean much to me, but Fournette's heavy usage figures to increase with Allen Robinson out, while I still don't completely trust Andy Reid's offense.

While I realize Javorius "Buck" Allen won't necessarily be a featured back with Terrance West in the mix (for the Cleveland revenge game no less), I still think he's being undervalued all around for several reasons. First, the Ravens will continue to throw the ball plenty and that includes to the running backs. Woodhead had three catches in the first quarter alone before going down with his hamstring injury. West can't catch the ball to save his life. Second, the team already showed they are willing to utilize Allen heavily. He finished top-10 in RB touches in Week 1 despite only playing three quarters. Finally, they're playing Cleveland, which was second-worst against RB fantasy points last season. West is a borderline top-15 RB in standard leagues while Allen approaches top-20 in PPR.

 

Week 2 Wide Receivers - Rankings Analysis

Top 10, plus notable outliers (deviation from consensus)

I really don't know where to put Odell Beckham Jr. this week, even if he does play. Will he be 100% and how often will he be targeted? Detroit has a highly-rated corner in Darrius Slay that could make things tough for him anyway. There's a good chance OBJ gets lowered a couple of notches as we get closer to Sunday. The key matchup to watch this week is Brandin Cooks vs. Michael Thomas. Cooks should get the better of this one, but both are surely high-end WR1 this week.

If I like Cutler, I have to like DeVante Parker as well. In PPR leagues, I have him a few spots lower, but don't be surprised if he becomes the red zone darling in Miami. Marqise Lee is the Jacksonville receiver to own in my book - he came on at the end of last year even with A-Rob still around.

I think it might take some time for Terrelle Pryor and Kirk Cousins to gel, so I'm tempering expectations for now. If he draws Trumaine Johnson in coverage this week, that would make things hard enough. In terms of season-long value, I see Davante Adams as someone whose value will keep dropping. Cobb is healthy and re-establishing himself as the number two target, while Martellus Bennett will also draw some attention. He's simply a flex play in deep leagues for me this week.

 

Week 2 Tight Ends - Rankings Analysis

Top 10, plus notable outliers (deviation from consensus)

It would seem that the top two tiers of the tight end position will consist of the exact same players slightly moved around each week. Eifert is one who will be most likely to disappoint again, as he's more TD-dependent than the others.

The only waiver wire tight end with a truly tasty matchup based on last year's stats would appear to Charles Clay, but Carolina's pass defense won't be as porous as last year. MLB Luke Kuechly missed much of the season and they were breaking in a pair of rookie CBs. Buffalo will still be a ground and pound offense and Clay's Week 1 touchdown shouldn't cause an overreaction. On the plus side, A.J. Derby caught all three of his targets and was targeted in the red zone. He's a nice sleeper play to hit paydirt this week.

 

More Week 2 Lineup Prep


Check out all of RotoBaller's 2017 fantasy football rankings. Staff rankings are updated regularly for all positions and include standard formats, PPR scoring, tiered rankings and dynasty leagues.