By Keving Long
After a week of grueling injuries in the NFL, I can help fill your empty roster spots.
The week two curse of injuries strikes again in the NFL, with numerous notable players being taken out for weeks or potentially the whole season. To fill the roster spots left open by injuries or players who continue to prove their lack of value, I have compiled this week’s list of potential stars to target and duds to avoid.
Teddy Bridgewater (Vs. NYJ)
Bridgewater has proved to be a serviceable starter for the Broncos, putting up two TDs in each game the first two weeks of the season. Now, he faces the Jets defense which has given up an average of 22 points over their two games. Expect Bridgewater to have a great game this week.
Chase Edmunds (Vs. JAX)
The Cardinal’s offense has been exploding under QB Kyler Murray. The only position which held questions going into the year was running back. The departure of Kenyan Drake and the addition of James Conner posed questions about the role of Chase Edmunds. But over the course of the past two weeks, Edmunds took over. Going into an easy matchup against Jacksonville, Edmunds is set up for a large role.
Marquise Brown (Vs. DET)
Marquise “Hollywood” Brown has quietly had a great start to the season, boasting nearly 200 receiving yards and two touchdowns over the first two weeks. Brown’s chemistry with QB Lamar Jackson alone is enough to warrant starting him, but after an electric game in which Jackson returned to MVP form, starting Brown became a must. But keep an eye on the slight injury he has been dealing with. Should he be out, I suggest picking up Sammy Watkins for your Flex.
Robert Tonyan (Vs. SF)
Following a quiet week one, Tonyan seems to be coming back to life just like the rest of the Green Bay Packers team. While he only had three receptions, he did manage to haul one in for a touchdown, which speaks to his red zone value. It is worth watching how he does in week three to see if he has truly returned as a top TE, but picking him up sooner than later is a smart move.
Titans D/ST (Vs. IND)
The Titans’ defense is in store for a favorable matchup this week as they face the injury-riddled Colts. This matchup only merits consideration due to Indiannapolis’ QB situation. It seems Jacob Eason will be taking over for an injured Carson Wentz. Considering the chances the rookie has a poor first game, the Titans defense seems like a serviceable streaming option for this week.
Greg Zuerlein (Vs. PHI)
Greg the Leg managed to pull off a game-winning kick for the Cowboys, showing his ability to make long distance field goals, while also showing high fantasy value. The Cowboys are likely to rely on Zuerlein often this week against the Eagles.
Matt Ryan (Vs. NYG)
Ryan has been far too inconsistent to start the season — either posting unimpressive stats or huge numbers coupled with numerous interceptions. Ryan’s ceiling is high with all the weapons he has at his disposal, but starting him, or even having him as your backup for a Bye week, seems to be a bad move. Should he gain consistency later this season, I would consider him. But for now, leave him in free agency.
Leonard Fournette (Vs. LAR)
The Buccaneers have been leaning more and more on the passing game under Tom Brady, using backs Ronald Jones and Leonard Fournette less and less. This has given them a similar role to what James White had during Brady’s time in New England. Don't touch any of Tampa Bay’s backs this week. It's better to risk it with one of their receivers due to their high ceiling.
Lions Wide Receivers (Vs. BAL)
Between injuries and the departure of Kenny Golladay, the Lions and QB Jared Goff have been left with few good options at the receiver position. Against a Baltimore secondary which took Tyreek Hill out of the game almost entirely in week two, I cannot recommend starting any Lions receivers. The only pass catcher on this team worth looking at is T.J. Hockenson, as the Ravens struggled against tight ends the past two weeks.
Mike Gesicki (Vs. LV)
Gesicki is a great pass catcher, I have no doubts about that. But with Tua Tagovailoa dealing with a rib injury that could affect his QB play, which even while healthy was not producing elite numbers, Gesicki should remain benched. Hold onto Gesicki though, as he has the potential to be a top tight end this season.
Bears D/ST (Vs. CLE)
The Browns’ offense has been dealing with injuries as of late, which could make this matchup seem more appealing than it really is. Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt are still healthy though, and they can tear up almost any defensive front in the league on their own. It is best to keep the Bears’ defense on the bench this week in a potential blowout against Cleveland.
Matt Amendola (Vs. DEN)
It is rare that anyone would look to start a player on the Jets, and that rarity should continue at the kicker position with Matt Amendola. Maybe he will merit consideration when QB Zach Wilson gets comfortable in the NFL and turns the ball over less, but for now I would suggest not even considering Amendola.