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Welcome to Week 2 of the NFL season. I think the biggest question mark coming into Sunday’s games will probably be Larry Fitzgerald. We most likely won’t know his status until the late games, which is always a pain for us fake footballers. I suspect he plays based on him being the super human Larry Fitzgerald, but we’ll have to wait and see. And thankfully we'll be here for you! The Rotoworld News Page will be on top of everything all Sunday long to bring you the latest.
We also have rankings from Mr. Pat Daugherty, Jeff Ratcliffe’s take on D/ST’s, Nick Mensio’s sleeper picks, and Evan Silva's detailed look at every game in his Matchup Column.
Rams at Falcons
* Julio Jones (knee) was limited in practice Thursday and Friday and is listed as questionable.
* Roddy White (ankle) returned to a limited practice on Friday and is listed as questionable. He will start, as is his norm, but like last week you have to wonder how much and at what level he will play.
Chargers at Eagles
* Cornerback Bradley Fletcher (concussion) has been ruled out.
Cowboys at Chiefs
* Dez Bryant (foot) has put in three days of practice this week and by all accounts looked good doing so. He’s a go against the Chiefs.
* Jamaal Charles (quad) put in a full practice on Friday and when asked how close he was to 100% he responded, “I’m ready-to-play percent.” He is listed as probable.
* Anthony Spencer (knee) returned to practice this week and is questionable to play. His status could impact Jamaal Charles’ upside.
Dolphins at Colts
* Dwayne Allen (hip) is questionable, but did not practice this week and is unlikely to play. Upgrade T.Y. Hilton and Coby Fleener a smidge.
* Vick Ballard has been put on I.R. after tearing his ACL in practice. Ahmad Bradshaw will handle the lead back duties.
Titans at Texans
* Owen Daniels (back/groin) is listed as probable after putting a full practice in on Friday.
* Shonn Greene (knee) is listed as questionable and missed Friday’s practice. Jackie Battle should take goal-line carries again.
Redskins at Packers
* Kicker Kai Forbath (groin) is questionable and the team is auditioning replacements. Be sure to get him out of your lineup.
* Jermichael Finley (toe) is probable to play after practicing Thursday and Friday.
Browns at Ravens
* Bernard Pierce (thigh) is questionable, but should play in this one.
* Tackle Michael Oher (ankle) is probable after missing some of the season opener.
* Linebacker Barkevious Mingo (lung) is probable and will make his rookie debut.
Panthers at Bills
* Cornerbacks Ron Brooks (foot), Stephon Gilmore (wrist) are out and safety Jairus Byrd (foot) is doubtful. This will help Cam Newton and company.
* Guard Amini Silatolu should return after missing week one with a hamstring injury, which should help the Panthers running game.
Vikings at Bears
* No significant injuries to report.
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Saints at Buccaneers
* Guard Carl Nicks (infection) is questionable, but returned to practice this week and could see time. Doug Martin and his fantasy owners should be happy about that news.
Lions at Cardinals
* Larry Fitzgerald tweaked his hamstring in practice on Wednesday and is being listed as a game time decision. If you own him prepare for a late game backup plan.
* Rob Housler (ankle) is out.
* Reggie Bush is listed as probable after injuring his groin and finger in week one. He should be a full go.
* Defensive tackle Nick Fairley (shoulder) returned to practice Friday and should be able to play on a limited basis in Arizona.
Jaguars at Raiders
* Blaine Gabbert (thumb) is out. Chad Henne will take his place.
* Cecil Shorts (groin) is listed as probable and should play in a good matchup.
* Marcedes Lewis (calf) is doubtful.
Broncos at Giants
* Champ Bailey (foot) has been ruled out as well as tight end Joel Dreessen (knee).
* Cornerback Prince Amukamara (concussion) is listed as questionable, but has been cleared to play and practiced fully on Friday.
* Linebacker Dan Connor has been placed on IR with a neck injury.
SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
49ers at Seahawks
* Cornerback Brandon Browner is doubtful, which helps the prospects of the 49ers passing game.
* LaMichael James is questionable, but wouldn’t get much work if healthy.
MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
Steelers at Bengals
* No significant injuries to report.
MY TOUGHEST DECISIONS OF THE WEEK
Robert Griffin III vs. Cam Newton
This is the same league as last week, same problem, but different matchups. This week RGIII goes into Lambeau Field while Cam Newton goes into Ralph Wilson Stadium. Last week I chose RGIII and we saw him start off the game like he had never seen a football before, but in comeback mode in the second half he got into a groove and put up good numbers. This week he faces the Packers who were just torched by Colin Kaepernick for 400+ yards and three touchdowns. So that sounds like a decent matchup, but we do have to take into account that the Packers are at home and have no intention of going 0-2.
Cam Newton did about as little as possible last week and it was mostly on the coaching staff. Ron Rivera lamented the lack of a vertical passing game afterward. That makes sense with Newton only throwing six passes over 10 yards with all six passes catchable according to Pro Football Focus. And that was against the Seahawks. This week he faces the Buffalo Bills who are hurting on an already weak defense. They will be without defensive backs Ron Brooks, Stephon Gilmore and Jairus Byrd all out for this one.
I expect Washington to try to slow the game down and keep Aaron Rodgers off the field as much as possible with Alfred Morris and I’m not sold on Robert Griffin III being 100% in the run game, which helped him produce many of his fantasy points last season, so I’m going to lean Newton in this one against a Bills defense that should be ripe for fantasy points.
SURVIVOR PICK OF THE WEEK
I’m fairly new to the survivor game so I don’t have the muscle memory of a seasoned veteran, but I feel good having escaped week one with a Colts win. My “pick against the Raiders on the road” philosophy may not look as stupid at the end of the season, but I will be careful of them going forward.
And almost picking the Steelers at home against the Titans? Well, you learn from your mistakes and thankfully I skirted that one. This week there aren’t many no-brainers, not that there ever are as we witnessed last week, but here are my three possibilities I’ll be looking into for Week 2: Baltimore over Cleveland, Philadelphia over San Diego and Green Bay over Washington.
As I write this I’m still not sure who I want. The Ravens get their homecoming Super Bowl festivities in Week 2 this year, but face a division rival. The Browns are a good team that has yet to find its bearings with their #1 receiver on the shelf for the first two weeks. I think the Ravens win, but I also hate picking a division game.
Philadelphia looked strong in their opening win at Washington in primetime and now they return home to face a Chargers team who is traveling cross-country to play an early game after a Monday night tilt. The Chargers also looked undeniably awful in the second half against the Texans, who are of course a much better defense than the Eagles.
Green Bay put up a fight against the 49ers week one, but were outmatched on the road. But now they head home looking to keep from going 0-2 with an offense that now has a strong running back in Eddie Lacy and their #1 receiver Jordy Nelson healthy again.
So it looks like I’m choosing between the Eagles and the Packers. And the winner is, the Eagles. Well, I hope that’s the winner. Washington is a good team who looked like they put some things together in the second half of Monday night’s game. If they build on that and get Alfred Morris running downhill they could make a game of it. Here’s to an uncomfortable flight for the Chargers.