Adam Levitan

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Week 1 Live Blog

Sunday, September 09, 2012


Welcome to the glory that is Week 1. After roughly seven months of preparation, we finally get a first look at how our opinions will play out on the field.

We'll have a Rotoworld staffer watching every game today, keeping an eye on in-game injuries, depth chart changes and potential breakout players. We'll also be watching to see why a certain player is under- or over-performing. If you have a specific question about something going on in a specific game, ask me on twitter (@adamlevitan) and we will try to get you an answer in this space.

So check back often as we'll be constantly updating this page through the late games. You can also hang out with other fans in the Rotoworld Forums.

Editor's Note: For exclusive projections, early rankings, IDP strategies, chats with Evan Silva, the Running Back Report and tons more, check out the Season Pass!

1PM GAMES
INACTIVE NEWS
* Arian Foster is active and starting. Ben Tate still figures to get plenty of work as the Texans monitor Foster's sore knee.
* Stevie Johnson (groin) is starting. He's in a tough spot though as he's less than 100 percent and facing a motivated Darrelle Revis.
* The Colts are holding Austin Collie (concussions) out. He's inactive.
* Adrian Peterson (knee) is active and starting. He'll share the load with Toby Gerhart.
* Marques Colston (foot) is ready to rock. He usually plays well through lower-leg injuries.
* Trent Richardson (knee) will start, but he's a dicey play. The Browns could fall behind big and Brandon Jackson is the third-down back.
* The Chiefs will be without top CB Brandon Flowers and OLB Tamba Hali (suspension). Hello, Julio.

FIRST HALF OBSERVATIONS
* As expected, Joe Haden is shadowing DeSean Jackson. Sheldon Brown is matched up with Jeremy Maclin. Jackson has been eating up Haden throughout the first half.
* Michael Vick isn't going to change who he is just because people think he's "injury prone." He just took off running up the middle on a third-and-long, diving head-first for a first down.
* We may have mentioned this Julio Jones guy once or twice in the offseason. How's this for a first drive of the season: Three catches, 44 yards, one TD. Hello. UPDATE: 4/58/2 through 1.5 quarters. Yes sir.
* We suspected that Darrelle Revis would fare better vs. Stevie Johnson today. So far, Revis has the edge after jumping an out pattern and picking off a Ryan Fitzpatrick pass intended for Johnson. By the way, Fitzpatrick has looked just as bad as he did at the end of last year. He just doesn't have the arm to make all the NFL throws -- especially the out pattern.
* Bad break in the first quarter for Brandon Lloyd owners. He was wide open for an easy touchdown behind the Titans' secondary and Tom Brady just overthrew him.
* Matt Forte looks great early, but his owners greatest fears are being realized. Michael Bush came in for the goal-line work and pounded in a 1-yard touchdown.
* Stevan Ridley was in the game for nine of the Patriots' first 10 offensive snaps.
* The Jaguars started the game with a 17-play drive. Maurice Jones-Drew got one touch and Rashad Jennings got six.
* Kevin Smith got a shot from the 1-yard line and didn't convert. Then Joique Bell came in and converted the goal-line chance.
* Pierre Garcon looks special as RG3's No. 1 wideout early. He is also down with a foot injury and questionable to return.
* Fred Jackson got a scare when he took a rough shot to the leg from LaRon Landry. But he walked it off and appears fine. Still, C.J. Spiller used the opportunity to break off an impressive 56-yard TD run. Spiller is too explosive to hold down. UPDATE: Jackson has been led to the locker room by trainers.
* Adrian Peterson looks strong. He's making hard cuts on his knee and powering off well. Vikings coaches apparently agree as he had seven first-half carries -- and punched one in for a TD.
* LeSean McCoy is playing even better than his stats show in the first half. He's had had three good runs and one good catch called back by penalty.
* This Colts secondary is going to be one to pick on. Nickel corner Justin King just can't stop anyone.
* Jay Cutler has supreme confidence in Brandon Marshall. He'll target Marshall no matter what the situation or coverage. Recipe for fantasy success.

SECOND HALF OBSERVATIONS
* Rashad Jennings has a leg injury and is questionable to return. Maurice Jones-Drew is breaking in as the feature back.
* Per Chris Wesseling, the Chiefs' offense and Matt Cassel looks much improved. There's going to be plenty of fantasy value here.
* Reggie Wayne is looking like Andrew Luck's favorite target by far. Nine targets in the first half. No other WR or TE had more than one.
* The Bills have ruled Fred Jackson out for the rest of the game. Hope you handcuffed C.J. Spiller, who is now working as an every-down back.
* Strange stuff so far from the Browns' passing offense. Greg Little isn't being featured (two targets, no catches in first half). Travis Benjamin and Mo Massaquoi getting all the looks from an uncomfortable, woefully inaccurate Brandon Weeden.
* Jets rookie WR Stephen Hill is going to be a hot pickup this week. He is a total FREAK athletically, but I don't trust this Jets' passing offense to have consistency. Hill is abusing Bills rookie CB Stephon Gilmore.
* Trent Richarson's workload hasn't been limited at all. He's been in for just about every early-down snap, but just can't find a crease. Brandon Jackson is playing on third downs.
* Jake Locker tried to make a tackle after an interception (that was later ruled an incompletion). He injured his left (non-throwing) shoulder. Matt Hasselbeck is in.
* Jeremy Maclin is known for being a drama queen about injuries. He's been in and out of the lineup today with a right hip injury and is now in the locker room getting an IV. Neither issue appears serious.
* Per Pat Daugherty, Kevin Smith looks 100 percent healthy. He has two noticable drops in the passing game, though.
* Michael Vick looks like a rookie in the pocket. He's staring down receivers, making late throws and throwing across his body toward the middle of the field. It's resulted in four interceptions. Nick Foles is about to be the most popular guy in Philly.
* Alfred Morris' stock took a major leap today. He's rushed 25 times already, has scored twice and hasn't fumbled. It says a lot that Mike Shanahan named the sixth-round rookie the starter out of the gate for Week 1. We know better than to say Morris will run with the job, but Morris has the look of a Shanny back. One-cut runner, keeps his legs moving.


4PM GAMES
INACTIVE NEWS
* Marshawn Lynch (back) is expected to be active, but he may not carry a full workload. UPDATE: Yes, Lynch is active.
* Jonathan Stewart (ankle) has tweeted that he will not play vs. the Bucs.
* Even if Beanie Wells (hamstring, knee) plays, Ryan Williams is likely to get more carries. UPDATE: Yes, Wells is active.
* Brandon Jacobs (knee) is inactive. Perhaps Frank Gore gets some extra goal-line work.

OBSERVATIONS
* First carry of the game goes to Frank Gore. Second carry goes to Kendall Hunter. No surprise there.
* Ryan Williams, not Beanie Wells, draws the start for the Cardinals. Cards probably getting very frustrated by Wells' ever-present nagging injuries. Williams proceeds to fumble on the second play of the game.
* Note from the 1pm games: If you're wondering what happened to Chris Johnson, check out our recap here.
* Not looking good for anyone that started Beanie Wells. He's nowhere to be found early on despite Williams' fumble.
* Randy Moss is doing damage early with a touchdown. That said, he's been in for five of the Niners' first 20 snaps. It's not a good formula for consistency.
* The Packers are using Randall Cobb in the backfield a ton. We thought they'd be hard-pressed to keep him off the field no matter where he lines up.
* DeAngelo Williams got two early chances on read options and lost seven yards. He hasn't been featured since and now the Panthers are down 13-0. Mike Tolbert is the passing-down back.
* Interesting move by the Cardinals. Now Beanie Wells is starting the second half. Perhaps Williams starting initially didn't have as much to do with injury as we thought.
* Doug Martin has gotten stuffed at the goal-line twice. But he's dominating touches and getting a lot of looks on check-downs. Positive debut so far.
* Jermichael Finley is having a nice game, but he just had a bad third-down drop. That's the problem that crippled him last year.



Adam Levitan is in his sixth season covering football and basketball for Rotoworld. He won the Fantasy Sports Writers Association award for Best Series in 2011 and 2009, and ESPN's overall fantasy football title in 2000. Find him on Twitter.
Email :Adam Levitan



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