Fantasy Football: Week two, start or sit?

Carolina Panthers running back Jonathan Stewart (28) celebrates after scoring a touchdown with running back Christian McCaffrey during the second half of an NFL football game against the San Francisco 49ers in Santa Clara, Calif., Sunday, Sept. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)

An injury-plagued week one is in the books and hopefully you have a backup plan for David Johnson. Before we jump into week two, here’s a quick recap of last week’s picks.

Last week’s “sits” Ben Roethlisberger, Joe Mixon and Davonte Adams all had disappointing performances, but luckily you left them on your bench. Roethlisberger finished as the 15th quarterback, Mixon had just nine yards on eight carries and Adams caught three passes for 47 yards.

In “starts,” I recommended starting Sam Bradford if you had a quarterback competition and he finished as the third highest quarterback. Corey Coleman lived up to my expectations by catching a touchdown and ending up as the WR15. Adrian Peterson was the odd man out of last week’s column, as he yelled at head coach Sean Payton for more time than he was on the field.

Now, for week two:

Start: RB Jonathan Stewart, Carolina Panthers

With all the hype for backfield-mate Christian McCaffrey, Stewart still received 18 carries in week one. The veteran goes up against the Bills this week in a game the Panthers should easily win, providing a game script in favor of Stewart rather than McCaffrey. The Bills gave up 200 yards to Jay Ajayi on two occasions last year and finished the season as the fourth worst rushing defense. Start the old man with confidence.

Sit: RB Mike Gillislee, New England Patriots

The Patriots are going to come out firing in an offensive shootout against the Saints. Normally, that’s a good thing for a running back that scored three touchdowns last week. But Bill Belichick is bound to shake things up and I expect more of pass-catching backs Dion Lewis, James White and Rex Burkhead. Gillislee could see five carries from the 1-yard line and end up with 10 yards and two touchdowns, but it’s a tempting risk that I’m staying away from this week.

Start: WR John Brown, Arizona Cardinals

With the injury to superstar running back David Johnson, the Cardinals are going to have to rely on the passing game. Brown battled a sickle-cell trait last year and missed several games, but the fourth-year wide receiver has proved in the past that he can excel in Arizona’s offense. Taking on the woeful Colts’ secondary, Brown is a sneaky good start off the waiver wire this week.

Sit: WR T.Y. Hilton, Indianapolis Colts

Hilton caught just three passes from Scott Tolzien in week one. When Brissett took over, Hilton didn’t see any targets. No matter who starts at quarterback for Indy, Hilton has an awful matchup going up against Patrick Peterson. Keeping your studs on the bench always hurts, but you won’t regret it this week with Hilton and his messy quarterback situation.

Start: QB Carson Palmer, Arizona Cardinals

For many of the same reasons as John Brown above, Palmer is a safe option this week against the Colts. Without a running game, Palmer will likely rely on Brown and possession receiver Larry Fitzgerald to move the ball against the Colts’ pass defense that ranked 27th in 2016. Despite a rough week last week, Palmer can be plugged into your lineup this week.

Sit: QB Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions

Stafford showed his worth as the NFL’s most expensive player in week one, putting up the second best score of the week. A road matchup with the Giants will prove much less rewarding for the Lions’ quarterback. Although the Giants looked horrendous on Sunday night, their pass defense is one of their strengths. Stafford might struggle under the bright lights of Monday Night Football and you might want to look elsewhere.


Josh Buser is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at joshua.buser@uconn.edu.