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Monday, September 11, 2017

2017 FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEK 1 WRAPUP: LATE AFTERNOON GAMES

-While Jonathan Stewart remained more than an annoyance as the goal-line back and part-time runner for the Carolina Panthers, rookie back Christian McCaffrey had an effective debut by rushing for 47 yards on 13 carries, while also catching 5 balls for 38 yards.  Scoring touchdowns may be tough to come by which hurts McCaffrey in standard leagues but in PPR formats the upside is significant.

-The offensive line problems that derailed the Seattle Seahawks offense last season is back and worse then ever.  With no time to drop back and throw, QB Russell Wilson had a very rough day in completing just 14-of-27 passes for 158 yards with 0 TD and 0 INT.  In other words Wilson did nothing for his fantasy football owners.  With the O-line figuring to be a weekly problem, Wilson's status as a clear QB 1 is now in question.

-While the first half was an abomination for the Green Bay offense, QB Aaron Rodgers rebounded to his typical excellent self in the second half in the team's comeback win.  Rodgers overall completed 28-of-42 passes for 311 yards with 1 TD and 1 INT.  While the TD total was a bit short, Rodgers has no peer when it comes to being the top fantasy football QB in the game.

-Very encouraging day for Packers running back Ty Montgomery who picked up 54 yards and a score on 19 carries, while also catching four balls for 39 more yards.  It was up for debate how much work Montgomery would receive but he was out for almost every offensive play and also for the goal-line snaps.  With a juicy matchup next week versus the Atlanta Falcons on tap, Montgomery is knocking on the RB 1 door in PPR formats and is fully now in the circle of trust.

-Wow does Eddie Lacy stink.  The Seahawks back failed to get any sort of revenge against his old team Sunday and instead humiliated himself to the tune of 3 yards rushing on 5 carries.  Meanwhile rookie Chris Carson once again showed the burst and acceleration he did in the preseason which means the latter needs to be picked up in all fantasy football leagues.  Lacy looks completely done not only as a starter but as an NFL player.

-Randall Cobb was mostly a forgotten man in a poor 2016 season for the Packers but he was tremendous Sunday in catching 9 balls for 105 yards.  We have seen big PPR years from Cobb in the past and this is evidence that he still has it when healthy.  Add Cobb wherever available.

-It was a complete joke of a performance for Indianapolis Colts QB Scott Tolzien who was benched after throwing 2 pick-sixes as part of his 9-for-18 for 128 yard day with no scores.  Jacoby Brissett figures to draw the start until Andrew Luck gets back but a wounded Arizona Cardinals defense should be licking their chops as they focus on Week 2.

-Marlon Mack seems ready to put some real heat on veteran Colts back Frank Gore as he rushed for 24 yards and a score on 10 carries, adding a catch for another 21 yards.  Gore was rested during the second half of the team's blowout loss to the Los Angeles Rams but this is a situation that bears watching.

-Maybe Sean McVay has the magic touch.  The youthful rookie coach already seems to be paying dividends for sophomore QB Jared Goff who was incredibly good in completing 21-of-29 passes for 306 yards and a score.  The accuracy really stood out here and Goff was decisive in his throws as well which are both great signs.  Count us as intrigued but Goff still is just for two QB leagues at best.

-While he kept himself afloat through the passing game, Rams running back Todd Gurley was once again brutal running the football as he picked up just 40 yards and a score on 19 carries. That comes out to 2.1 per tote and adds concern that Gurley's rookie debut in 2015 was a tremendous anomaly.  He did shine in the passing game catching five balls for 56 yards but Gurley should be treated only as a low-end RB 2.

-The hype seems to be justified for Rams rookie wideout Cooper Kupp who caught 4 balls for 76 yards and a score Sunday.  Kupp has been the sleeper talk of the summer and for one game, the glowing forecasts seem to be accurate.


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