Foxy’s Fantasy Forecast – Week 2
Andy Dalton (QB)
Projected Points: 19.34
Last week’s game plan was clear; dink and dunk passes to control the ball, control the clock and minimize Aaron Donald’s impact on this game. The result was just over 200 yds passing with 0 TDs and an INT in the red zone. The offense looked very familiar to what we saw with Mitch Trubisky over the last few seasons. This week I anticipate that Nagy will open up the playbook more and allow Dalton to make more downfield throws. Cincinnati allowed Kirk Cousins and Adam Thielen to go crazy last week but still pulled out a victory. If Dalton can get on the same page as Allen Robinson, they might be able to do the same. This is a revenge game for the Red Rifle, so I’d think he’ll be ready to go.
Verdict: Sit (again, he shouldn’t be on your roster)
Justin Fields (QB)
Projected Points: 2.55
We got our first brief look at Justin Fields last Sunday night and it was glorious. You could see how the team went nuts after he punched in that short TD run. While this won’t be the week he takes over (barring any sort of injury to Dalton), I expect that we’ll see a few more snaps, packages and designed plays for him in this game as well. Fields’ time is coming, it’s just not quite yet (unfortunately).
Verdict: Sit (but it’s only a matter of time before he starts)
David Montgomery (RB)
Projected Points: 16.32
David Montgomery looked like an absolute stud on Sunday night against one of the toughest front 7s in the league. He broke tackle after tackle, led the league in YAC (Yards After Contact) and is putting the NFL on notice that he wants to be considered one of the best backs in the NFL. Coming home to Chicago to face an inferior opponent like the Bengals is a much better matchup for him that will really give him the opportunity to showcase his skills. After the game Dalvin Cook had against them last week, Monty is likely licking his chops in excitement for the 2021 home opener. I am too. I’m firing Montgomery in multiple DFS lineups and you should too.
Verdict: Start (with extreme confidence)
Damien Williams (RB)
Projected Points: 6.36
Williams was a lot more involved in last week’s game than I think anyone thought he was going to be, myself included. While Montgomery went out for a few series later in the game, Williams showed he can be a competent, capable RB2 for this Bears team after taking a year off due to the pandemic. Should anything happen to Monty, like it did in the 3rd quarter Sunday night, Williams can confidently step into that role moving forward. If this game becomes a blowout (like many of us hope it will), I think we may see a lot of Williams in the 4th quarter to give Monty a break. With 17 games this season, the coaching staff should take a cautious, long term approach with these two backs. It’s likely we’ll see a similar distribution of touches in the Bengals game as we saw in the Rams game.
Verdict: Sit (but maybe start him in DFS as a dart throw hoping for positive game script)
Allen Robinson (WR)
Projected Points: 17.69
A-Rob had a tough night last Sunday which was due in part to the high quality secondary of the Rams and in part due to the terrible game plan by Matt Nagy. Robinson did not run a route beyond 10 yds the entire game which is just awful. I understand Nagy wanted to get the ball out of Dalton’s hands quickly to neutralize Aaron Donald, but come on, that was awful. This week is a much better matchup for A-Rob and he’ll be hungry to improve upon his stat line from last week. Looking at Adam Thielen’s stat line against the Bengals last week, Robinson should eat just like Thielen did. Start him with confidence.
Verdict: Start (always)
Darnell Mooney (WR)
Projected Points: 10.85
Mooney was, like Robinson, the victim of a terrible game plan that did not stretch the field at all last Sunday against the Rams. With his speed, he needs to be getting shots downfield rather than running short routes. That’s where he sets himself apart, by using his speed to attack downfield. With the better matchup, the Bears will be taking more of those shots downfield than they did last week (yes, one shot downfield would be more than last week). The Bears OL will play a big role here as they need to provide Dalton (more so than Fields if he were to enter the game) a clean pocket to take those deep shots.
Verdict: Start (and hope Dalton completes those shots downfield)
Cole Kmet (TE)
Projected Points: 10.55
It’s pretty clear after last week’s game that Cole Kmet is the TE1 in Chicago. He out-snapped and out-targeted Jimmy Graham by about 2-to-1 against the Rams. That trend should continue this week and throughout the season. Kmet is a good blocker and a good receiver, but there’s nothing great about his game. He is just above average. He may get better at both areas of his game over time, but he’s likely never going to be a Kelce, Waller or Kittle type of TE. He’s a TD dependent TE in a middle of the road to below average offense.
Verdict: Sit (unless you think he’s a lock for a TD this week)
Jimmy Graham (TE)
Projected Points: 5.61
Jimmy had a few targets in last week’s game and only played about 30% of total snaps against the Rams. It’s clear as day that Kmet is the guy and Graham is there as a player/coach type that is helping develop Kmet. Graham has had a hell of a career and it appears we are in the twilight of that potentially HOF career.
Verdict: Sit (for the season unless something happens to Kmet)
Joe Burrow (QB)
Projected Points: 22.26
Joe Burrow is back and looked pretty damn good in Week 1 against the Vikings. He led the Bengals back to an OT win after trailing most of the game in exciting fashion. While I was in the camp that the Bengals should’ve addressed OL in the draft to protect their #1 pick, they went with Jamar Chase and Burrow fed the rookie WR in Week 1. That LSU connection is alive and well in Cincinnati. Similar to Stafford last week, Burrow has a number of toys to play with on the offense (Chase, Higgins, Boyd, Mixon, etc.) which should make Week 2 a real tough matchup for the Bears D. It will be interesting to see how Sean Desai schemes against a team with this many weapons after what happened last week. I like Burrow to have a big game Sunday just like Staffor had last week.
Verdict: Start (he’s a #1 pick w/ tons of weapons)
Joe Mixon (RB)
Projected Points: 17.00
For those of you who were burned in fantasy by Joe Mixon last season, I’m sorry. I’m one of you. It sucked. Coming into the season, I was confident he’d come back just as strong as previous seasons and he did not disappoint in Week 1. Joe Mixon was the NFL’s rushing leader in Week 1 with over 120 yds on 20+ carries. He was also targeted out of the backfield proving once again he is a true three down back. The Bears have a great front seven that gets even better this week as Eddie Goldman is expected to return from missing Week 1. Goldman is one of the best run stuffers in the entire league and should be fresh considering he was a Covid opt-out for the 2020 season. Mixon will be heavily involved in the game plan and should see 25+ touches which makes him a must start. I might avoid him in DFS, but if he’s on any of your fantasy rosters, start him.
Verdict: Start (volume, volume, volume)
Ja’Marr Chase (WR)
Projected Points: 14.07
After just one week, it looks like the first WR taken in the 2021 draft is the WR1 for his team. I was hesitant to invest any draft capital in Chase after seeing him drop so many balls in preseason, but he’s proven that was just a blip on the radar. Chase led all rookie WRs in yards in Week 1 and firmly placed my foot in my mouth. He looks like the real deal in his route running and has great rapport with Burrow from their time together at LSU. He’s going to be a tough cover for the Bears secondary. Especially with two other WRs who are pretty darn good in their own right.
Verdict: Start (with confidence)
Tyler Boyd (WR)
Projected Points: 13.24
If you’ve been playing fantasy football for the past couple of seasons, you should know who Tyler Boyd is. He’s been a productive slot WR for the Bengals and for fantasy owners. His ability to get open quick and get yards after the catch have made him a great fantasy asset. As a slot WR, he’s a target hog and catches mostly everything thrown his way. Him and Tee Higgins are two reasons I thought it was stupid to draft Jamar Chase this year. The Bengals already had two quality WRs and needed to address the OL, but here we are. The Bengals three headed monster of WRs is going to eat every week. While one WR of the three may have a down week, Boyd is typically pretty safe (especially in PPR) due to his target volume.
Verdict: Start (expect a lot of targets with the Bears nickel likely covering Boyd)
Tee Higgins (WR)
Projected Points: 14.66
Higgins was a high draft pick at WR in 2020, so it was a bit of a head scratcher when the Bengals picked Jamar Chase in 2021 (aside from the Burrow/LSU connection). Higgins had a real nice rookie year opposite of Boyd and put up some big weeks. With three WR mouths to feed, there is typically going to be one guy who doesn’t hit his projected fantasy points each week as there are only so many targets to go around. After the way the Bears secondary looked last week, I think all three Bengals WRs can eat this week. If Jaylon Johnson is matched up with Jamar Chase (like I suspect he will be), it could open up Higgins for some big catches downfield.
Verdict: Start (the Bears secondary hasn’t given me any reason to have confidence in them)
CJ Uzomah (TE)
Projected Points: 8.31
The Bears D has not performed well against TEs the last few seasons. Uzomah is a decent TE but nothing special. He caught both of his targets last week for a combined 35 yds. With the WR depth the Bengals have, I don’t see him getting many targets unless the Bears blow the coverage bad on a few routes. I’d anticipate similar numbers to last week making him a non factor in the offense.
Verdict: Sit (there are much better options out there)
If you’re strapped for a defense this week, you can start the Bears. I’d personally look elsewhere as we just saw the Bengals beat up on the Vikings and the Bears D did not look great in Week 1. As a Bears fan, I’m hoping that Desai can put together a quality game plan against this Bengals offense that’s stocked with weapons. In fantasy, I’ll take a wait and see approach with the Bears D. On the Bengals side of the ball, I don’t want any part of the Bengals D. Though the Bears offensive gameplans have been awful lately, Montgomery, Robinson and Co are too good not to score points in their home opener.
Good luck to all you fantasy football players in Week 2. Check back next week for another fantasy forecast against the Browns. This will be a tough matchup for the Bears on both sides of the ball.