What Have We Learned? Week 1
By Tim Lazenby
As we close the books on a thrilling Week 1, there is a lot to decompress here. Filled with shocking moments, disappointments, thrillers and straight up football euphoria, Week 1 certainly did not disappoint. Moving forward, as fantasy football managers, there is a lot to unpack in order to keep your team as tip top as it can be. Here are some thoughts about the NFL’s Week 1 in 2022.
The Bills are Legit
There were many unphased as Josh Allen and company straight up steam rolled the defending Super Bowl Champs in the Rams, but even I was left jaw agape. The Thursday night game was an old fashioned mollywhoppin’ for the Rams and I, for one, was surprised. Truth be told, I thought the Bills would take it, but not like that. But, despite all the success for the Bills and devastation for the Rams, here are my thoughts in fantasy.
Moving forward, I’d be selling Gabriel Davis and buying Allen Robinson. Davis is amazing, don’t get me wrong, but he only had one more target than Jamison Crowder and 1 less target than backup, Zack Moss. Only sell him if there is a truther in the wings who is willing to overpay. And don’t be misled by Robinson’s poor performance. People will panic that A-Rob is repeating last season, but Matthew Stafford did not play well overall. Take advantage of the panicked Robinson owner before they come to their senses.
The AFC West is Stacked
This should have surprised no one. Every AFC West team was popping in Week 1. The Las Vegas Raiders had the misfortune of losing to their division rival in the LA Chargers, but they still looked really good. Speaking of the Chargers, we all know how good the offense was last season, but that defense made Derek Carr look foolish so many times. Patrick Mahomes is also reminding people that he has a stake in the best in the business title, so virtually every Chiefs player is skyrocketing. And even though the Denver Broncos lost the revenge game for Russell Wilson, I’d expect more wins moving forward.
I would sell Clyde Edwards-Helaire after his two touchdown performance. His ten total touches don’t inspire trust as a manager. Hold tight on Hunter Renfrow. His usage wasn’t inspiring, but you had to expect a love-fest from Carr to Adams right away. I’d also be planning on putting in a bid for Gerald Everett if he’s still out there and DeAndre Carter. While I don’t think Carter’s value is sustainable, with Keenan Allen out, I’d take a chance on any weapon being used by Justin Herbert.
The Underdogs Were At It in Week 1
So many teams were winning at one point that shouldn’t have. And many of them surprised at the end by stopping the other team from getting that W. The Detroit Lions, Houston Texans, Chicago Bears, Atlanta Falcons and New York Giants all showed that they belong in the same league as the other teams that many thought would stomp them.
I’m making an attempt at DJ Chark if I can and even Jared Goff is good enough for a bench spot. I’m also not giving up on Kyle Pitts, Trey Lance or Cole Kmet. I’m sure it’ll be a quick rebound to dominance in Week 2. That being said, I am very worried about Justin Fields. While you can blame it on the rain, like Milli Vanilli and even his terrible offensive line, I do worry about him running for his life all season long.
The AFC North is No Joke
Win, lose or draw, the AFC North, in my opinion, is the second most thrilling division in football. You never really know what’s going to happen. And while most have the Bengals or Ravens pegged as the favourites to take the division, the Pittsburgh Steelers defense was nothing short of dominant against the Cincinnati Bengals. The Ravens also smacked around the NY Jets, but that’s a bigger task than it used to be with the draft the Jets just had. And let’s not forget the Cleveland Browns shutting Baker Mayfield’s mouth when Cade York took the lead back after the Panthers were certain they had it in the bag.
I’ve been preaching it since last season, but if you didn’t know, the Steelers player to own is Diontae Johnson. The fantasy points weren’t stellar but he owned 134% more targets than the rest of the Steelers’ wide receivers combined. I’d also be looking at picking up injury replacements for Najee Harris, Tee Higgins and JK Dobbins if they’re out there. And if there is anyone freaking out about Joe Burrow’s horrid performance, go and take advantage by acquiring the talented quarterback.
The Washington Commanders Are Way Better Than I Thought
I know they barely beat the Jacksonville Jaguars, but like the NY Jets, the Jags aren’t terrible any more. With all the new additions, when you play the Jags, it’s not a gimme moving forward. I had full faith, despite all the smack talk, in Antonio Gibson, but Carson Wentz, Terry McLaurin and Jahan Dotson all looked way better than I thought they would. I had the Commanders pegged as losing their division, but one game into the season, we’ll see if I was insane or not. Regardless, I want Commanders’ players on my roster.
I’m obviously making moves for Antonio Gibson moving forward, but I’d also recommend going for Curtis Samuel and Logan Thomas; both of whom I was sure were not worth the gamble. Hopefully in your league they are cheap, if not free. And, even though it was only one game, I’d recommend making a move for Carson Wentz. Most people probably took him as their second quarterback, so he’ll probably come at a reasonable price. I’m not suggesting he’s a top option, but definitely one I want as my backup, with a chance at fantasy gold here and there.
Should We Be Worried About Green Bay?
The potential of a loss to Minnesota wasn’t out of the question, but the way in which they lost speaks volumes. The Green Bay Packers didn’t just lose after all; they were demolished. In nearly every aspect of the game, the Vikings made the Packers look foolish. This hurts all the more when you consider the division rival-ness of it all. Let’s take a moment to breathe before we panic. The Vikings are a much better team than many think. After all, Justin Jefferson, Dalvin Cook and a good defense is scary. And also remember the Packers do not have their full roster yet.
If I can buy virtually any piece of the Packers roster, I’m going to. Aaron Rodgers’ performance in Week 1 this year was virtually identical in Week 1 last year. Christian Watson and Romeo Doubs are still only one game into their careers and Allen Lazard will be impactful upon return. Some people may be panicking on Aaron Jones as well, with AJ Dillon seeing twice the rushes and more targets, but do them a favour and take Jones off their hands. Aaron Jones isn’t the same as he once was, but he’s still an RB1 so he’s a steal if you can get him.
Week 2 Predictions
As I leave you, I figured I’d share that before the season began, I tried to predict every game as the schedule was released; before I even knew about injuries or anything like that. Week 1, I was 10-6. Here are my predictions for Week 2:
LA Chargers @ Kansas City Chiefs - LA Chargers win
Carolina Panthers @ NY Giants - Carolina Panthers win
New England Patriots @ Pittsburgh Steelers - Pittsburgh Steelers win
Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ New Orleans Saints - Tampa Bay Buccaneers win
NY Jets @ Cleveland Browns - NY Jets win
Miami Dolphins at Baltimore Ravens - Miami Dolphins win
Washington Commanders @ Detroit Lions - Detroit Lions win
Indianapolis Colts @ Jacksonville Jaguars - Indianapolis Colts win
Atlanta Falcons @ LA Rams - LA Rams win
Seattle Seahawks @ San Francisco 49ers - San Francisco 49ers win
Houston Texans @ Denver Broncos - Denver Broncos win
Arizona Cardinals @ LV Raiders - Arizona Cardinals win
Cincinnati Bengals @ Dallas Cowboys - Cincinnati Bengals win
Chicago Bears @ Green Bay Packers - Green Bay Packers win
Tennessee Titans @ Buffalo Bills - Buffalo Bills win
Minnesota Vikings @ Philadelphia Eagles - Philadelphia Eagles win
Tim Lazenby joined Dynasty Pros, after writing for a few years elsewhere, and is passionate about all things fantasy football. Tim has been playing fantasy sports for over twenty years now and takes his love of the game to every article he writes. Although he’s played a variety of fantasy football, he is especially in love with dynasty football. If you ask him for advice, whether you’re just joining or you’ve been playing for years, he wants nothing more than to help you succeed, than to keep that fantasy gold to himself. A lover of the game and ultimate competitor, Tim is just trying to spread the good news of fantasy football to all.