Fantasy Football Week 2: What you missed, with David Johnson replacements, Danny Woodhead's injury, and DeShaun Watson and (maybe) Jacoby Brisset starting
Chris Towers catches up on the latest news from around the Fantasy football world.
What's this? Every Tuesday through Friday, Chris Towers will catch you up on the previous day's biggest news first thing in the morning. Here's what you missed Monday:
The Cardinals hope to have David Johnson back by Christmas, according to head coach Bruce Arians, which doesn't provide much hope for Fantasy players. Johnson will have surgery on his wrist, and a "by Christmas" timetable would put Johnson back on the field in Week 16 or 17. If you have an IR slot, Johnson is worth stashing in all leagues, and it will still be hard to justify cutting him in the event he makes an earlier return. However, it looks like his Fantasy season is effectively finished, sadly.
And it doesn't look like there is much clarity in Arizona as far as replacing him. The Cardinals re-signed veteran Chris Johnson less than two weeks after releasing him; they are also expected to add D.J. Foster from the Patriots' practice squad. Add those two together with Kerwynn Williams and Andre Ellington, and it's anyone's guess what the Cardinals' running game will look like.
Williams was the guy everyone went out to add on waivers Tuesday, but Chris Johnson may make more sense as the long-term replacement here. Though he is 31, he is familiar with the Cardinals' offense, and is the only player here with experience as a three-down back. He held David Johnson off for nine games in 2015, ultimately rushing for 814 yards in 11 total appearances with the Cardinals. He was barely used in 2016, but could end up a darkhorse candidate to be the feature back. He isn't a bad person to use some FAAB on, though you shouldn't splurge either.
Woodhead aggravated the injury early in Week 1, and it looks like he won't be back anytime soon. He is considered a candidate for injured reserve, but will miss at least the next month, if not more. The Ravens have been decimated by injuries already this season, and Woodhead's is the latest player. Javorius Allen figures to pick up extra work in passing downs, though it is worth keeping expectations in line; he had just one target in Week 1, and only touched the ball 12 times in 2016. He isn't necessarily the most natural Woodhead replacement.
Though he is nursing a knee injury, Watson is expected to be named the starter for Thursday Night Football, per reports from NFL.com. Watson wasn't great in relief of Tom Savage in Week 1, but his mobility gives a team that struggled to protect against the pass rush a chance. He was at least able to get the ball out ahead of the pass rush, and found DeAndre Hopkins for a scorer, he also averaged just 4.4 yards per attempt. Watson is not a recommended Fantasy start for Week 2, even in 2QB leagues, and you're probably best off avoiding everyone but Hopkins and Lamar Miller for against the Bengals.
File another one under "It Can't Be Worse." Brissett has size, athleticism and a strong arm, but it's not clear he is ready to be an NFL quarterback yet. He acquitted himself well enough in his first start for the Patriots last season, a 27-0 win over the Texans, but was exposed badly in his second vs. the Bills. That the Colts are even considering starting him just a few weeks after acquiring him in a preseason trade says a lot about Scott Tolzien's relative merits as a starting QB. It might not be worse, but there's little reason to think Brissett will jumpstart the Colts' offense either. It might be best to avoid this one for the time being.
- The Colts signed Matt Jones to the practice squad… Jones has shown flashes in the past, but there's a reason he lost his job and was ultimately cut by Washington – fumbles. He likely needs multiple injuries in Indy to get a chance.
- John Ross (knee) practiced in full Tuesday… The Bengals can use all the help they can get after Week 1, so we may see the speedy rookie make his debut this week. He's one to watch.
- Adam Jones was activated from the reserve/suspened list… Speaking of the Bengals needing help, they'll get a little bit of it with Jones back in Week 2. They aren't a bad DST play against Watson.
- Colts RT Denzelle Good placed on IR… It isn't yet clear what the injury is, but this is just more bad news for an offense that isn't exactly overflowing with talent.
- Saints RT Zach Strief (knee) will miss a few weeks… The Saints' running game was a disaster in Week 1, and the offense in general wasn't super sharp. Losing a key pass protector isn't a great sign, but I wouldn't downgrade Drew Brees yet. Those running backs may not be worth the time no matter who is blocking.
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