Start 'Em, Sit 'Em Week 2: Making the Call on Fantasy Football Fringe Starters
Every NFL team knows it's better to start a season with a win than a loss. Fantasy football managers know the feeling, too.
With Week 1 of the 2022 campaign complete, half of the fantasy managers are thrilled to be 1-0. They drafted their teams with success in mind, and they set their lineup in such a way that they defeated their opponent to open the season.
The other half of fantasy managers are less excited. They're 0-1, and they may be worried about some underperforming players on their roster. Should they cut ties with them early, or wait it out and see if they can get on track in the weeks to come?
No matter which side you fall on, the focus is now on Week 2. And everybody wants to get a win, whether it's their first of the season or to move to 2-0.
Here's some start/sit advice for a handful of fringe players heading into Week 2.
Start 'Em: Darrell Henderson Jr., RB, Los Angeles Rams
Nobody quite knew what to expect from the Rams' backfield entering the season, with both Darrell Henderson Jr. and Cam Akers in the mix. It didn't help that both dealt with injuries during training camp, so it wasn't clear how they'd split up the work.
In Week 1, it was clear that Henderson is Los Angeles' RB1 for the time being. He had 13 carries for 47 yards and five catches for 26 yards in a loss to the Buffalo Bills. Akers, meanwhile, had three carries for no yards and zero receptions.
Akers is likely to get more work as the season progresses, but for whatever reason, Henderson appears to be the Rams' clear-cut starter at this point. So that bodes well for him heading into a Week 2 road matchup against the Atlanta Falcons, who allowed the New Orleans Saints to average 7.9 yards per rushing attempt (19 carries for 151 yards) in Week 1.
Sit 'Em: Dameon Pierce, RB, Houston Texans
Dameon Pierce's stock skyrocketed throughout training camp and the preseason. Then, when the rookie was named the Texans' starting running back, fantasy managers began to consider starting the 22-year-old in their lineups.
That ended up not being a wise decision in Week 1. Despite being atop the depth chart, Pierce had only 11 carries for 33 yards and one catch for six yards, while veteran Rex Burkhead had 14 carries for 40 yards and five receptions for 30 yards.
If Burkhead is going to be this involved early, then Pierce isn't a reliable lineup option. And with a difficult road matchup against the Denver Broncos in Week 2, this won't be the time for Pierce to have a breakout performance.
Start 'Em: Jahan Dotson, WR, Washington Commanders
The Washington Commanders are going to pass the ball quite a bit more this season with Carson Wentz at quarterback. That was evident in their Week 1 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars, when wide receivers Terry McLaurin, Jahan Dotson and Curtis Samuel all got involved, with the trio combining to score four touchdowns.
Dotson, a rookie who was selected with a first-round pick in the 2022 NFL draft, was the only Commanders player to get into the end zone twice. He had three catches for 40 yards and a pair of scores. He also showcased his great hands on his game-winning TD grab, which came with 1 minute and 46 seconds to go.
With a Week 2 matchup against the Detroit Lions, Washington's passing attack should have more success. Dotson's involvement should only increase as he gains experience, but he already has a large enough role to merit starting consideration in fantasy.
Sit 'Em: DK Metcalf, WR, Seattle Seahawks
The Seahawks' offense fared better than many expected during their Week 1 win over the Denver Broncos. That included the solid play from quarterback Geno Smith, who completed 23 of his 28 attempts while throwing for 195 yards and two touchdowns.
However, it wasn't a great start for several of Seattle's top receivers, such as DK Metcalf, who had seven receptions for 36 yards. He may have led the team in catches and targets (also seven), but the Seahawks' offense isn't going to be an explosive unit capable of putting up big plays, which is when Metcalf is most dangerous.
In Week 2, the Seahawks could have a tougher time moving the ball on the road against the San Francisco 49ers. So there are better fantasy options at wide receiver than Metcalf, who likely won't have a huge showing.
Start 'Em: Gerald Everett, TE, Los Angeles Chargers
Gerald Everett's Chargers debut was an impressive one, as the 28-year-old tight end had three catches for 54 yards and a touchdown in a win over the Las Vegas Raiders. Los Angeles lost wide receiver, Keenan Allen, to a hamstring injury, which led to more targets for Everett and others.
According to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero, Allen is "unlikely to play" in the Chargers' Week 2 matchup against the Kansas City Chiefs on Thursday night. So that makes Everett one of the best tight end streaming options of the week.
Even once Allen returns, Los Angeles' offense is potent enough that Everett will still have solid fantasy value. So he's definitely a tight end who should be started, particularly this week.