Sep 17, 2020
Bengals vs. Browns Fantasy Football Start Em Sit Em for Week 2 Thursday Night Football
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There wasn’t a lot of viable production from either the Bengals or Browns in the teams’ respective Week 1 losses, so let’s hope the mediocre defenses of both teams will wake up the offenses for more pleasing stats. Fantasy owners are undoubtedly wondering about whether to start Odell Beckham Jr., Kareem Hunt, an injured Jarvis Landry, and Tyler Boyd, among others, and SN’s Vinnie Iyer is here to help with the first bit of start ’em, sit ’em lineup advice for Week 2.
Things kick off in Cleveland at 8:20 p.m. ET on NFL Network. We’ll get official word on Landry’s injury status at around 6:50 p.m. ET. We’ll be updating our Landry injury post with news throughout the day, so check there for the latest. All other key offensive players are healthy and expected to play. Now, let’s find out which ones should be in your fantasy lineups.
WEEK 2 FANTASY: Sleepers | Busts | Start ’em, sit ’emBengals: Who to start or sit in fantasy football on Thursday night
Start: RB Joe Mixon
Mixon was held in check by the Chargers’ suddenly improved run defense (19 carries, 69 yards) and Giovani Bernard also got more run as expected in the passing game. Mixon also lost a fumble in the game.
The Browns’ run defense was putrid last season, but it had a decent effort selling out against the Ravens. Mixon averages 20 carries for 101 yards in his short career against Cleveland, so we can expect the volume to be there with game script staying reasonable. Mixon should rebound well and also find the end zone.
MORE TNF: DK Showdown lineup | Landry injury update
Start: WR A.J. Green
Considering he was facing the Chargers’ tough, savvy cornerbacks, Green looked healthy and good again after missing all last season. The Browns are down Greedy Williams (shoulder) at cornerback again and had trouble with Hollywood Brown downfield last week. Green has owned the Browns in the past, but he hasn’t played against them in three years. He’ll have a good receiving night with steady targets.
Start: WR Tyler Boyd
The Browns also looked bad in the slot in Week 1, allowing a touchdown to Willie Snead. Boyd ran into Desmond King and couldn’t break free enough for a quiet opening afternoon, but he was locked in with his rookie QB in training camp. He should get healthy targets, too, with the results being something like six catches for 80 yards.
Start: QB Joe Burrow
Burrow did his best to hang in there against a tough Chargers pass defense, starting with intense pressure up front. He looked impressive running with 46 yards and a TD, but the No. 1 overall pick didn’t hit 200 yards passing in his debut. He’s facing a weaker, banged-up defense, which should lead to more efficiency, and Mixon, Green and Boyd will help him get there with better matchups. Burrow shouldn’t be forced into lineups in 10- and 12-team leagues, but he’ll come through nicely in two-QB/superflex formats and is a viable streamer in deeper leagues.
Sit: TE C.J. Uzomah
Uzomah did some decent work against the Chargers, supplementing Green and Boyd more than any extra wideout. But even though the Browns got badly burned by Mark Andrews, Uzomah is nothing like Andrews. You can find better streaming tight ends this early in the season.
Sit: Bengals defense/special teams
They had a couple of sacks of Tyrod Taylor, but they’re without linchpin Geno Atkins up front for a second straight game. The Browns’ pass protection looked better in the opener, and their running game should pound away to wear down the Bengals from making any big plays on the QB.
Sit: K Randy Bullock
We’re still covering our eyes and ears after Bullock pulled up lame with sore calves and missed that game-winning field goal try in Week 1
WEEK 2 STANDARD RANKINGS:
Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight end | D/ST | Kicker
Start: RB Nick Chubb
Chubb owners started to panic, no doubt, when they saw he wasn’t the leading ball-carrier or rusher against the Ravens. He made the most of his 10 touches, rushing for 60 yards, but he didn’t work in the passing game at all once the Browns fell behind big. Talent isn’t the issue, however — it’s simply coaching and game script. Chubb will match Mixon with a solid straight-up rushing night and also find the end zone.
Start: RB Kareem Hunt
Hunt had 13 carries for 72 yards in Week 1 to lead the Browns, fresh off getting a pricey contract extension. He also had four catches for nine yards. He is arguably up to a RB2 in PPR leagues and consistent flex play in standard leagues. The Browns won’t be in trail checkdown mode here, but Hunt should mix in well behind Chubb and looks like he’s flying solo catching passes out of the backfield, too. The Bengals had trouble with both Austin Ekeler and Joshua Kelley in Week 1, which bodes well for the Browns’ dynamic duo.
Start: WR Jarvis Landry
Landry (hip) should play after catching five passes for 61 yards on six targets in Week 1. The good news is that his quarterback still has good eyes for him. The matchup in the slot with Mackensie Alexander is tough, but Landry can deliver a fine PPR night with a high floor but limited ceiling.
Start: WR Odell Beckham Jr.
Beckham was fully healthy again in the opener, but he had just three catches for 22 yards. He did have 10 targets in the game but faced some veteran coverage from Marlon Humphrey and Marcus Peters. The Bengals, with Trae Waynes out, have William Jackson and Darius Phillips on the outside. If he gets the same kind of volume, Beckham should have a strong bounce-back game with higher upside than Landry.
Sit: QB Baker Mayfield
The range of outcomes are wide for Mayfield in this game. He could easily have another clunker, even against a lesser division foe at home. The Browns also will be more run-oriented to try to get a win with what should be semi-positive game script. There’s a chance he could have a big game, but that low percentage of the reward isn’t worth the risk with so many better options in Week 2.
Sit: TE Austin Hooper
David Njoku (knee) had a big Week 1, only to get hurt again and land on short-term injured reserve. Does that mean one is inspired to go after Hooper, especially after the Bengals had some trouble with Hunter Henry last week? Between Hunt, Landry, OBJ and other targets, it’s hard to trust Hooper until you see him produce notably in the new offense.
Sit: Browns defense/special teams
This will be tempting against a rookie QB with the extra emotional boost of prime time at home, but this feels like a trap with the Browns’ defense having several injuries around Myles Garrett. The Bengals won’t light them up like the Ravens, but a better Burrow can spoil what looks like a sneaky streamer.
Sit: K Cody Parkey
Keep Parkey parked in his first game for the Browns replacing Austin Seibert.
WEEK 2 PPR RANKINGS:
Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight end | D/ST | Kicker
Captain: RB NIck Chubb ($11,400)
FLEX: QB Joe Burrow ($10,800)
FLEX: WR Odell Beckham Jr. ($8,200)
FLEX: RB Kareem Hunt ($7,400)
FLEX: WR Tyler Boyd ($7,000)
FLEX: RB Giovani Bernard ($3,000)
Chubb could easily explode for the biggest game, so we’re comfortable giving him the C. Let’s attach Hunt to him and also go for the OBJ big play at home in prime time. To balance it out, expect Burrow to throw often and make Boyd his go-to guy. Bernard gives a part of the backfield as an extension of Mixon in trail mode with what money have left.
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Fantasy Football Week 3 Rankings: Biggest questions on the waiver wire, injuries, who to drop, and more
Firefighter who died in El Dorado fire is ID’d as crew boss The best cheap burger in every state Fantasy Football Week 3 Rankings: Biggest questions on the waiver wire, injuries, who to drop, and more
I've never seen anything quite like the injury situation around the NFL in Week 2, and I've been doing this Fantasy football thing for a decade now. Injuries happen every week, but we lost at least 10 potential Fantasy contributors in one week, including the top two picks in most drafts in Christian McCaffrey and Saquon Barkley. That's going to make this week's waiver wire one of the busiest ever as everyone scrambles to find replacements, and it's going to make figuring out who to start and sit an even bigger headache than usual.© Provided by CBS Sports
September 13, 2020; Santa Clara, California, USA; Arizona Cardinals wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins (10) catches the football against the San Francisco 49ers during the fourth quarter at Levi's Stadium.
It's a ton to keep up with, and it's hard enough to keep up with everything that's going on around 16 games when there aren't this many injuries, which is why I like to reach out to the Fantasy FootballToday team to guide me. Every week on Tuesday morning, we do a survey on some of the biggest storylines and rankings dilemmas of the week. Here's what we're expecting for Week 3, beginning with a look at the waiver-wire options and what to expect from the Panthers and Giants without their stars.Who is your top waiver-wire target for Week 3?
- Jamey: It has to be Mike Davis since he should step into the starting role for the Panthers with Christian McCaffrey (ankle) out. You have to like that he got eight catches in Week 2, and he has 20-touch potential. I like Darrell Henderson a lot, but we don't know how long Malcolm Brown (finger) and Cam Akers (ribs) could be out. If they're back in Week 3, the Rams backfield will again be crowded.
- Dave: Because I don't have a ton of confidence in Wayne Gallman as a season-saving running back, particularly on a Giants team that struggled to create rushing lanes for Saquon Barkley, I'll tab Davis as the best short-term running back on waivers. Henderson is a close second.
- Heath: It's Henderson. No, Davis. No, definitely Henderson. Probably. I lean Henderson due to his upside and potential to be useful for the rest of the season. But just barely.
- Adam: Davis seems like the RB with the clearest path to touches. If it's not Davis, I'm looking at Henderson pending some Rams injury news.
- Chris: I think the consensus is going to be Davis, who figures to see a lot of work over the next month or so. Davis is no McCaffrey, obviously, but he locked up the backup job pretty quickly in training camp, and figures to see plenty of work in both the passing and running game. I think Davis could be a top-15 back in McCaffrey's absence.
- Jamey: See above on Davis. As for the Giants, I hope they sign Devonta Freeman, because I have little faith in Dion Lewis and Gallman. Of the two, I'll take Lewis based on his expected role in the passing game.
- Dave: Gallman will work rushing downs and Lewis will fill in on passing downs. That split might actually make Lewis kind of interesting in full PPR, but it's just an assumption of how they'll be used. The Panthers only have Trenton Cannon on their active roster right now to help Davis out, so the hunch is Davis will handle a ton of snaps. I think Davis could work his way into the top-24 running back discussion in PPR for however long McCaffrey is out.
- Heath: I'd rather have Davis than any Giants, unless Freeman becomes a Giant. Davis could be a borderline top-25 running back with upside if he doesn't have to share. Lewis could be a PPR flex.
- Adam: For the Giants, I think Gallman could be a flex assuming he is getting the majority of the carries. I'm not so interested in Lewis, and of course there are free agent RBs like Freeman and Lamar Miller looming. And for Carolina, Davis is probably a low-end RB2 or flex for now. He needs to be rostered and potentially started if you are weak at RB.
- Chris: Figuring out what to expect from the Giants backfield is a much tougher question. First of all, Gallman was a healthy scratch in Week 2, but could very well be the starter in Week 2 over Lewis. Plus, the Giants are reportedly bringing Freeman in for a tryout and could sign him. I'll make it easy for you: In all likelihood, none of the there will be much more than a fringe starting option until one of them proves it.
- Jamey: Cam Newton. He's back as a top-five quarterback if he can stay healthy. I said that prior to the season, and you've now seen the upside through two games. Let's just hope he doesn't get hurt.
- Dave: I was probably the last person on the planet who didn't buy into Newton as a must-start Fantasy quarterback. I can't help but be impressed by how well he threw the ball on Sunday. If he's going to keep doing that and be the Patriots' goal-line solution, then how can you not be excited to get him in your lineup?
- Heath: I'll say Henderson. Yes, Akers and Brown were injured, but Henderson shined. He has good pedigree, and if Akers misses another week or two Henderson may just become a feature back.
- Adam: Chris Carson is the man in the Seattle backfield and there never should have been any doubt. And as a nice added bonus, Carson has three TD catches this season! He had three career TD catches entering 2019!
- Chris: It has to be Leonard Fournette, who benefited from a Ronald Jones fumble — technically a Tom Brady fumble, but not in Bruce Arians' eyes — for a big breakout game. Is he guaranteed to be the starter moving forward in Tampa Bay? Not necessarily. But it feels like Arians is looking for any reason to give the job to Fournette, and he may have found it.
- Jamey: If you haven't cut Rob Gronkowski yet, now's the time. It's highly doubtful he's ever going to be a consistent Fantasy option for Bruce Arians.
- Dave: I can't feel confident in starting Jarvis Landry moving forward. The Browns run game is clearly a priority and Odell Beckham has his role as the top target in the offense. Honestly, what's left for Landry that Fantasy managers can feel good about?
- Heath: Jones is the obvious answer right? We were just waiting for something like this and Fournette didn't waste the opportunity.
- Adam: I'm done with Gronkowski. The end.
- Chris: I'm going to go with Preston Williams, who was unable to take advantage of DeVante Parker's injury in Week 1 and struggled again in Week 2, including a dropped touchdown in the Dolphins failed comeback effort. He deserves some time to get his feet under him as he comes back from his ACL injury, but that doesn't mean you need to hang on to him while he does. Parker is the No. 1 option here, and that isn't changing anytime soon, it looks like.
- Jamey: Joshua Kelley, James Robinson and Diontae Johnson. Kelley, one of my favorite sleepers, is getting a lot of work in tandem with Austin Ekeler. Robinson has emerged as a standout running back for the Jaguars. And Johnson leads the Steelers in targets through two games.
- Dave: You mean besides Newton? Johnson, Robinson, and Kelley
- Heath: Minshew, Henderson, Johnson
- Adam: Minshew deserves a look against Miami, particularly with Byron Jones hurt. I can't get away from Johnson, and I like CeeDee Lamb in what should be another high scoring game against Seattle.
- Chris: Kelley, Russell Gage, Gardner Minshew. Kelley looked like a lotto ticket that you might have to wait on back in draft season, but through two weeks, he's tied with Ekeler for the fifth-most carries in the NFL. He looks like a legitimate No. 2 Fantasy RB for Week 3 against the Panthers.
- Jamey: I didn't draft any of these guys in the leagues I'm playing out, but three players you should drop are Gronkowski, Tevin Coleman and Austin Hooper. See above on Gronkowski, and Coleman is easy to move on from now that he's hurt. Hooper has struggled through two games and doesn't look like someone who will be a consistent stat producer.
- Dave: I'm pretty patient, so I'm not dropping anyone I took with one of my first eight picks who's not done for the year. Maybe the only exception is Jordan Howard.
- Heath: Matt Breida, Howard, Christian Kirk.
- Adam: Barkley! Also Evan Engram, Carson Wentz and Kerryon Johnson (even with the TD) are worth considering.
- Chris: Gronkowski, Emmanuel Sanders, Breida. We could throw Austin Hooper in there with Gronkowski, too. There are just too many interesting tight ends out there, most notably Mike Gesicki, who is a must-add after his massive Week 2 breakout. But I would also drop either for Mo Alie-Cox, Jordan Reed, or Jonnu Smith for Week 3.
- Jamey: Minshew is the free space at quarterback, and you should be adding Dalton Schultz in all leagues. He's more than just a streamer as the starting tight end for the Cowboys. And I'll go back to the Colts DST with the matchup against the Jets.
- Dave: Minshew, Gesicki, Colts.
- Heath: Minshew, Gesicki, Chargers.
- Adam: Minshew, Schultz, Colts.
- Chris: Minshew, Mo Alie-Cox — if Gesicki isn't available — and the Buccaneers. If the Bucs aren't available, then the Colts or Chargers.