There was plenty of movement at the quarterback position around the league after Week Two. Some of the movement was based on great performances, but most of it was based on teams quickly deciding that their incumbent starters were not living up to expectations.
In coach-speak, the underperforming teams need a “spark”.
In fantasy-speak, the underperforming quarterbacks were “moving down”. In some cases, way down.
Time to jettison Trent Edwards, Matt Moore and Jason Campbell from your fantasy squads. Of the three, Campbell was the only one likely owned in standard 15-team leagues.
On the moving up side was Eagles quarterback Michael Vick with the surprising announcement that the team was benching new franchise quarterback Kevin Kolb. "New" as in nine short months ago.
That, my friends, is why they call it the Not For Long League.
We’re not going to state the obvious here. Rather the focus is on the mid-tier options as well as the tough matchups for some of the more talented quarterbacks in the league.
Michael Vick, Eagles vs. Jaguars
Vick is in as the Eagles starter with Philadelphia head coach Andy Reid making the surprising decision to put the Kevin Kolb era on hold after just two quarters.
Vick has been dynamite during his six quarters of action, with 459 passing yards, three passing touchdowns and 140 yards rushing. Philadelphia travels to Jacksonville this week to face a Jaguars team that ranks 29th in passing defence and
20thagainst the run.
Look for Vick to continue his string of solid performances in Week Three.
Brett Favre, Vikings vs. Lions
Favre has been perhaps the biggest fantasy bust of the season thus far at the quarterback position with just 396 passing yards and a touchdown with four interceptions after two games.
While his receivers have received a large part of the blame for his poor performance, Favre is clearly struggling with an injured ankle that may be hindering his accuracy.
The Lions come to Minnesota this week and if Favre doesn’t get it going against Detroit, then it might be time to pull the plug on him as a fantasy starter.
Donovan McNabb, Redskins at Rams
Bring all your Redskins to the party this week and watch them rack up the fantasy points against the Rams. McNabb tore the Texans secondary apart last week with 432 passing yards and a touchdown after a pedestrian performance in Week One against the Cowboys.
In St. Louis, he gets a Rams secondary that has given up 497 passing yards in two games to Derek Anderson, Jason Campbell and Bruce Gradkowski. If they can’t stop those guys, there’s no reason to think they can stop McNabb.
Sam Bradford, Rams vs. Redskins
While Bradford hasn’t put up big numbers during his first two professional starts, he has performed well, showing poise despite the lack of pass protection and the team’s lack of talent at the wide receiver position.
The Rams get the Redskins this week in a home matchup against a Washington team that has given up a whopping 745 yards and four touchdowns, ranking 31st in passing
defence. I’m not saying you should start Bradford over any of the elite fantasy signal callers but if you went the play the matchups route at quarterback, Bradford’s worth a look this week.
Alex Smith, 49ers at Chiefs
After nearly pulling off an upset of the Saints at home, the 49ers travel to K.C. to play a Chiefs squad that is surprisingly 2-0. However, they have given up 506 passing yards and three touchdowns over the first two weeks of the season, ranking 25th in passing defence.
Smith played well against New Orleans, with 275 passing yards and a touchdown against two picks, both of which came on tipped balls. Look for him to put together another solid fantasy performance in Week 2 against Kansas City.
Joe Flacco, Ravens vs. Browns
He’s a sit ‘em for the second week in a row. With the Browns coming to Baltimore this week. Resist the temptation to stick Flacco in the starting line-up.
After two weeks, he’s the 23rd ranked fantasy quarterback,
with 402 passing yards and a touchdown but with five interceptions. Unfortunately, Cleveland might not be the best team for him to turn his season around. The Browns rank a surprising eighth in pass defence, giving up 170.5 yards per game, but 25th against the run.
Look for the Ravens to beat up on the Browns using the run game this week.
After last week’s debacle on Sunday night in Indianapolis against the Colts, Manning will look to bounce back this week against the Titans.
Tennessee has faced a pair of teams with less than impressive passing offences in Pittsburgh and Oakland and ranks firstin passing defence. They have given up just 171 yards in two games. Clearly, the Giants passing attack is superior to that of the Steelers and Raiders in terms of talent at the quarterback and wide receiver positions.
However, Eli is clearly struggling, Steve Smith hasn’t lived up to preseason expectations and Hakeem Nicks might be slowed with an ankle injury again this week.
Mark Sanchez, Jets at Dolphins
Sanchez is coming off a solid performance against the Patriots in Week Two. He looked more like the Pro Bowl quarterback the Jets envisioned when they drafted him than the deer caught in the headlights quarterback they saw in Week One against the Ravens.
This week, the Jets travel to Miami for a key division matchup. Let’s keep this one simple.
The Dolphins just shut down Brett Favre and the Vikings in Minnesota. In Week Three, they get Sanchez and the Jets at home with Braylon Edwards likely seeing limited action courtesy of his benching from a DWI charge.