Greetings, Falcoholics! It’s time to talk fantasy football. Last week, the Atlanta Falcons lost the home opener to the Seattle Seahawks. Fantasy-wise, it was a great day for anyone who had Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley or Russell Wilson.
Before we look at this weekend’s game against the Dallas Cowboys, let’s review Week 1. As mentioned, the Falcons’ wide receivers went off. Jones, Ridley and Gage finished last weekend top-7 in receiving yards. A decent amount of it did come in junk time, but in the world of fantasy football, none of that matters.
Against the Seahawks, I said of Gurley that “I can see him rushing 14 times for 60 yards and a touchdown in this early season warmup.” I came close to being accurate, as Gurley rushed 14 times for 54 yards and a touchdown. I was also high on tight end Hayden Hurst who fell flat, as Gage seemed to eat up most of the target share left behind by Austin Hooper’s departure. We’ll see if that balances out in the weeks to come.
We turn our attention to Week 2, where the Falcons take on the Cowboys. This game has a lot of fantasy football relevancy. I was high on Gurley last week, and I’m high on him again this week. I’d like to see more passing game usage out of him, but he ran very well in the first half last week. The Cowboys allowed running back’s to average 17.2 fantasy points in 2019, and although their defensive front is improved, Los Angeles Rams’ running back Malcolm Brown did well against them last week. I could see Gurley scoring twice this weekend, if all goes well.
We know Jones and Ridley will get theirs, but what about Russell Gage? Hurst received most of the Falcons’ No. 3 hype this offseason, but Gage was by far Ryan’s third receiving option in Week 1. I’m excited to see if he continues, and although I don’t fully recommend him as a starter just yet, he’s definitely worth adding to your roster if still available. I expect some regression to the mean, something like 5 receptions for 53 yards.
If you have Hurst, I’d still start him. Week 1 had me nervous, as 6.8 fantasy points is a let down. I’m willing to give him another chance as the Cowboys have some defensive injuries as it is, Hurst could have a sneaky good day on Sunday, given the lack of top-shelf safeties and linebackers to cover him. I’ll say 7 receptions and a touchdown against the Cowboys.
Turning our sights to the national spotlight, if you have any Cowboys, don’t hesitate to put them out there. Several Seahawks players feasted last week, and you have to separate your fandom and fantasy football leagues from each other. I think this could be a big game for wide receiver Michael Gallup.
Another one to watch out for is Washington’s running back Peyton Barber who is currently rostered in only 29% of fantasy leagues. In Week 1, Barber got 17 carries and scored twice. If you’re in a bind and need a sneaky flex play, Washington is facing the Arizona Cardinals, who are allowing an average of one rushing touchdown over the last 8 games.
Well that does it, folks. I wish everyone who took the time to read this the best of luck in their Week 2 fantasy matchups. Every week I’ll be doing a fantasy football preview, so send me some questions before every Thursday and I’ll answer them here. You can ask by commenting below, emailing [email protected] or on Twitter at @EvanBirchfield.
As always, when it comes to fantasy football – always go with your gut!