September 19, 2022, 7:33 pm
Dolphins 42, Ravens 38 (Dolphins covered +3.5, O 44.5)
Jets 31, Browns 30 (Jets covered +6.5, O 39)
Commanders 27, Lions 36 (Lions covered -1.5, O 48.5)
Colts 0, Jaguars 24 (Jaguars covered +3, U 45.5)
Buccaneers 20, Saints 10 (Buccaneers covered -2.5, U 44)
Panthers 16, Giants 19 (Giants covered -1.5, U 43.5)
Patriots 17, Steelers 14 (Patriots covered -2.5, U 40.5)
The truly elite fantasy football managers will do in-depth research on every game of the slate to determine who their best options are for their starting lineup moving forward and which players are worth benching for one reason or another. In this recap, we’ll be looking at any noteworthy storylines from the seven early games and how the results may change the fantasy landscape ahead of Week 3.
Dolphins @ Ravens
Key Postgame Stories
Well, this was quite the affair from a reality and fantasy perspective with a season-high 80 total points scored. Lamar Jackson became the first QB in NFL history to record a rushing and passing touchdown of 75-plus yards in the same game and surpassed Michael Vick for the most games (11) with greater than 100 rushing yards from the QB position. However, Tua Tagovailoa and the Dolphins were unstoppable in the fourth quarter as Tua threw four of his career-high six touchdowns in the final frame. The Ravens had no answer on defense for the Dolphins in the fourth as the Dolphins overcame a 21-point deficit.
The Ravens’ secondary severely disappointed in a major way as they allowed Tyreek Hill to get behind them on two long-bomb touchdowns from Tua in the fourth quarter. CB Marlon Humphrey was able to gut it out despite not practicing on either Thursday or Friday while the Ravens hope to get CB Brandon Stephens back from injury after he sat out of Week 2. Most notably, however, was how rusty CB Marcus Peters was in his first game back since tearing his ACL in the 2020 season. The veteran corner allowed six receptions on the seven passes that he defended during the contest for 90 total yards which included a touchdown.
The Ravens will hope to get back Ronnie Stanley from the ankle injury that has kept him sidelined for the first two games of the year.
LT Terron Armstead (toe) was able to play through the injury and that was huge for a Dolphins offensive line that was without RT Austin Jackson due to an ankle injury he suffered during Week 1. Greg Little was a downgrade on the right side as expected. Hopefully, the Dolphins can get back to full strength on the offensive line ahead of their difficult Week 3 matchup vs. the Bills.
After severely disappointing in Week 1 with just 2.1 yards per attempt, Chase Edmonds took a backseat to Raheem Mostert on Sunday. Mostert out-carried the former Cardinal 11-5 while they were both targeted three times (Mostert caught all three vs. Edmonds lone reception). Both backs are uninspiring for fantasy purposes with the timeshare, but Mostert has supplanted Edmonds as the lead back after this performance. He has low-end flex appeal in Week 3, but there are likely better options as long as both backs remain healthy.
QB Lamar Jackson
21-for-29 for 318 yards & three touchdowns, nine carries for 119 yards & one touchdown
This is what I wrote before the game and it remains true moving forward. Jackson’s dual-threat ability should allow him to continue to be one of the league’s safest starts around the league, and his passing ability elevates him above the rest of the young dual-threat QBs around the league. Start him with confidence.
WR Rashod Bateman
4-of-7 receptions for 108 yards & one touchdown
I was right on the money with this pregame analysis and it remains true moving forward. Devin Duvernay was targeted on just two of his 17 routes vs. Bateman’s seven targets on 22 routes. Duvernay might have outshined Bateman in Week 1 with his two receiving touchdowns, but Bateman was the team’s clear-cut WR1 as he ran a route on 25 of the team’s 35 snaps compared to just 18 for both Duvernay and Demarcus Robinson. Bateman is the set-it and forget-it type. Don’t overthink it.
TE Mark Andrews
9-of-11 receptions for 104 yards & one touchdown, one carry for three yards
Again, let’s take a look at what was written pregame with the league’s reigning top fantasy performer at the TE position from 2021. As expected, Andrews was the most involved player in the passing game for Jackson and the Ravens as he ran a team-high 32 routes in Week 1 and followed it up with 26 routes on Sunday. He may have disappointed in Week 1, but the stats dictate that better days are ahead for the reigning top tight end for fantasy. And that he did.
WR Tyreek Hill
11-of-13 receptions for 190 yards & two touchdowns
WR Jaylen Waddle
11-of-19 receptions for 171 yards & two touchdowns
Again, hit the nail right on the head with this one pregame. These guys are the clear top-two targets for Tua and the injured CB room that the Ravens will have on Sunday should allow plenty of room for the duo to operate. Start both of these guys with confidence across formats.
QB Tua Tagovailoa
36-for-50 for 469 yards with six touchdowns & two interceptions, one carry for one yard
I missed on this one in the pregame analysis and boy, did Tua show me up. He had an absolute field day against the Ravens secondary, specifically in the second half. After coming out of Week 1 with some question marks, Tua showed out as a clear QB1 on the week. He’ll have a much more daunting task agains the Bills in Week 3 but the weapons he has makes him a borderline QB1 even in a tough matchup.
TE Mike Gesicki
4-of-4 receptions for 41 yards & one touchdown
Gesicki made this list because of the score on Sunday, but I still wouldn’t rely on him as anything other than a desperation TE play on a weekly basis. If not for a very high-scoring affair, Gesicki likely wouldn’t be talked about here.
RB Chase Edmonds
Five carries for 33 yards, 1-of-3 receptions for eight yards
As we talked about in our key postgame storylines, Edmonds was out-carried by Mostert and they each had three targets in the passing game. This makes it very difficult to trust either back moving forward, but Mostert now has the leg up over Edmonds.
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Jets @ Browns