The opening weekend of the 2013 NFL season saw quite a few prolific performances by passers, making the projections for the quarterbacks who will put up the biggest points in Week 2 one of the hottest topics in fantasy football.
It's highly unlikely that Peyton Manning is going to throw for 462 yards or seven touchdowns again, so don't bank on him making it nearly impossible for your opponent to win.
Drew Brees will be tested against an improved Tampa Bay Buccaneers secondary in his second game. It could be a tough day for him and the New Orleans Saints, but he's still going to be productive.
Some of the top-scoring quarterbacks this week will be the usual suspects, but there may be a surprise on the list.
All points projections are for ESPN standard scoring leagues.
Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers
Nobody should be shocked to see Aaron Rodgers on this list. Although he lost in Week 1, he still threw for 333 yards and three touchdowns against the San Francisco 49ers. He did have an interception as well.
There are a few things going his way this week.
For starters, the Packers will be at Lambeau Field, where the team went 8-1 last season and Rodgers averaged 255.7 yards and two touchdowns per game.
Also, the 29-year-old has responded to losses quite well. The Packers haven't lost in consecutive weeks since 2010, and the quarterback has had big games following a loss. He averaged 287 yards with 13 touchdowns and only two interceptions in five games following losses last season. Following his only loss in 2011, he threw for 283 passing yards and five touchdowns.
His opponent this week, the Washington Redskins, just got torched on Monday night. Michael Vick threw for only 203 yards with two touchdowns in that game, but most of those yards came in the first half. The Philadelphia Eagles ran out the clock after going up 33-7 early in the second half.
Rodgers is in for a big day against an opponent that had trouble stopping a prolific offense in the opening week. A home game against Washington will lead to a big passing day.
Projection: 315 passing yards and four touchdowns (28 points)
Terrelle Pryor, Oakland Raiders
Here's the surprise on the list. Terrelle Pryor threw for 217 yards and a score and added 112 rushing yards against the Indianapolis Colts in his second career start. However, he did throw two interceptions, which hurt his numbers. Now, the Jacksonville Jaguars will be coming to Oakland, so look for Pryor to have a big game.
Alex Smith of the Kansas City Chiefs was able to throw for 173 yards and two touchdowns against the Jaguars last week. His team had a 21-2 lead midway through the second quarter, so he wasn't asked to throw the ball that much.
The Chiefs also ran for 121 yards in the blowout win. They were able to do whatever they wanted, and the Raiders should be the next team to beat up on the Jaguars.
Some fans will see this as an overreaction to one start, but Pryor was viewed as a sleeper before Week 1. That he's facing the Jaguars makes him especially appealing.
The 6'4" quarterback has good size, which makes him tough to stop, as he can break tackles and add yards after contact.
Pryor will continue to make improvements throwing the football, and he will again be able to use his legs to beat up on Jacksonville. The Raiders may not win many games this season, but this could be their best game of the year. Take advantage.
Projection: 210 passing yards, 80 rushing yards, 3 TD, 1 INT (26 points)
Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons
The Atlanta Falcons were put in a tough spot against the New Orleans Saints in Week 1, but Matt Ryan should have an easier time this week.
He still threw for 304 yards and two touchdowns with an interception against the Saints. The 28-year-old is dealing with a banged-up receiving corps. Roddy White was limited to two receptions for 19 yards due to a high ankle sprain, and Julio Jones has a knee injury. Both receivers missed practice on Wednesday, according to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk.
Ryan should have both in the lineup and will still have Tony Gonzalez at tight end. White is an unknown at this point, but Jones should be fine to put up his usual numbers. Those three targets will make it easy on the quarterback to move the football against the St. Louis Rams.
Arizona's Carson Palmer was able to torch the Rams' defense for 327 yards and two touchdowns in Week 1. Atlanta's offense is even better than the Cardinals', so Ryan will be able to pass at will against the Rams.
Projection: 290 passing yards and three touchdowns (23 points)
*All stats are courtesy of NFL.com
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