Week 1 Recap: Welcome To The Dog House
September 8, 2013 | Jeff
Welcome to the dog house. Despite numerous impressive week one performances from Sunday, Stevan Ridley owners are left shaking their heads as their stud back was promptly benched after repeated issues with holding onto the ball as the Patriots played a tight game with Buffalo. Ridley’s day ended early with just 46 rushing yards, and the New England back didn’t see another touch as Shane Vereen excelled with the extra opportunity. The fantasy world knows Belichick well, and one thing he doesn’t tolerate is coughing up the football. Hopefully week two is more kind to our pal Stevan Ridley, but old Bill B. will most certainly be sending him to bed without dessert. Let’s take a look at some of the top and bottom performers from Sunday’s fantasy action:
Anquan Boldin: Old man Boldin tossed his walker aside and led the NFL in both targets and receiving yards on Sunday. I was squarely in the “skeptical of Boldin” camp (don’t’ send your kids there for the summer) but it looks like the old man is still rolling with Kaepernick chucking him the rock. 13 grabs for 208 yards and a score is a nice way to begin the season.
James Jones: Two targets and zero catches. Not the way Jones’ fantasy owners envisioned the season starting. I am willing to give him a pass due to the defensive matchup, but the rest of Green Bay’s receivers managed decent games, so pay close attention in coming weeks.
Eddie Lacy: The Packers rookie began the game in rough fashion, getting repeatedly stuffed by the 49ers defense before coughing up a fumble and getting a mini-Ridley treatment. After Lacy sat out a few drives (replaced by the always underwhelming James Starks), he responded with a few nice carries and a score. Lacy still has plenty of upside in store for the 2013 season, so don’t be too harsh on him after facing San Francisco.
Adrian Peterson: So “All Day” rips off a 78 yard touchdown run on his first touch of the season. Of course he did. Thank your lucky stars you got the first pick in your snake draft. Peterson ended up with 111 total yards and three scores.
Jared Cook: The Rams had plenty of pass catching options heading into the 2013 season, and it appears that Cook has the early lead in the heart of Sam Bradford. Cook received 10 targets on Sunday and finished with seven catches for 141 yards and two touchdowns. Cook’s huge day could have been even bigger if the Honey Badger didn’t pull his best Don Beebe impression and knock the ball from him before he crossed the goal line on a long reception. The tight end position could have a new star.
Larry Fitzgerald: Whether you own Larry Fitzgerald or not, you’ve gotta be happy to see the man back doing what he does best. Carson Palmer tried his hardest to bury the ghosts of John Skelton and Ryan Lindley, and Fitz benefitted from his new quarterback as he snagged eight balls for 8o yards and two touchdowns. Fitz is back, ladies and gents! This has got to be the most excited anyone has ever been to see Carson Palmer.
Reggie Bush: Reggie lived up to every ounce of preseason buzz, as he sliced and diced his way to 191 total yards and a score. His output could have been higher if not for a couple close goal line challenges, but either way, Bush is a perfect fit for the Detroit offense and will be a monster PPR force this season.
Terrelle Pryor: Leading the NFL in rushing yards on Sunday was….Terrelle Pryor! Alright! Pryor gave us a “2011 Tim Tebow-esque” performance, as he ran all over the Indianapolis Colts to the tune of 13 carries for 112 yards. Pryor did toss two picks, but threw for a score and ended up with 217 passing yards. This is your classic case of “better in fantasy than real life” quarterback play, so get those waiver bids ready.
Jordan Cameron: In case Julius Thomas and Jared Cook didn’t satisfy your thirst for super athletic tight ends having huge games, Cameron chipped in with nine catches for 108 yards and a score. Cameron was hyped all summer long as an ultra-athletic weapon for Brandon Weeden, and it appears he will be just that. As long as Weeden can throw the ball to the right team, Cameron owners should be in business.
Shane Vereen: The beneficiary of Stevan Ridley’s fumblitis, Vereen got a chance to run the ball in addition to his involvement in the New England passing game. By the time the Patriots booted a game winning field goal to knock off the mighty Bills, Vereen was staring at a stat line that included 159 total yards and seven catches. Whether Vereen continues to receive this much work in the ground game or not, his receiving skills will be on display all season long.
***UPDATE*** After a great week one performance, Vereen’s fantasy owners will be without his services for the next 2-3 weeks, as the Patriots running back underwent surgery Monday for a broken wrist. Vereen was one of the lone shining stars in an odd week one, which makes this news even more disappointing. Can’t we ever have anything nice?!? Thankfully, it doesn’t sound like the injury will impact Vereen long term, so let’s hope for a speedy recovery.
Trent Richardson: T-Rich got off to a nice start Sunday, but ended up drastically underutilized in Cleveland’s offense, as he received a mere 15 touches while the Browns offense stumbled. Let’s hope this does not start a trend, because a back as good as Richardson needs to be fed carries Old Country Buffet style.
Kenbrell Thompkins: In what was a great opportunity for a breakout, Thompkins received 14 targets from handsome Tom Brady and promptly took them to the pawn shop and traded them in for just four catches and an old stack of vinyl AC/DC albums. Thompkins will have to get on the same page as Brady here soon, or his opportunity may pass him by, especially when The Gronk returns. There is still enough upside here to trot Thompkins out in week two, but keep an eye on his performance.
David Wilson: New York’s shiny new starting running back watched the New England game closely on Sunday afternoon, and decided that he wanted part of that sweet dog house action. Wilson gave a swift gut punch to those who invested in him early in 2013 fake football drafts, as he gave away two fumbles to the Cowboys and was promptly benched. Somebody needs to buy these NFL teams some new gloves. Or glue. Or something artificially created in a lab that prevents running backs from doing this to us poor fantasy football souls. Keep tabs on this situation during the week.
Victor Cruz: Cruz is off to a hot start after a trio of salsa dancing performances on Sunday night. The work was pretty evenly split among Giants receivers, but Cruz found the painted portion of the field three times. Five catches, 118 yards and three scores was the final line for Victor as he tucked fantasy teams in with a big time Sunday night display.