Sunday, September 17, 2017

Fantasy Football Start'em, Sit'em: Week 2 Fantasy Running Backs

Ultimately, the decision of which player to start is largely determined by the composition of your roster (as well as your league's settings).

As an example, Terrance West is listed below as a "start" for Week 2. And I'd feel comfortable going into Week 2 with him as one of my starting running backs.

That said, he may be a sit for your team.

In other words, if you owned Le'Veon Bell, Marshawn Lynch and West and only start two running backs, you should start Bell and Lynch -- and in turn, bench West.

So, while you won't find absolute start-sit recommendations below (use my Week 2 Fantasy Football Rankings for that instead), the goal here is to highlight some players that I like (and would feel comfortable starting) as well as some players that I dislike for this week (and would prefer to keep on my bench).

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Week 2 Fantasy Football RB Start'em

RB - Ty Montgomery, Green Bay Packers (at ATL)

In Week 1, Montgomery had 23 touches for 93 total yards and a touchdown as he finished the week as fantasy's RB7 despite a tough matchup against the Seahawks. While the Packers drafted three running backs including Jamaal Williams in the fourth round, it was (almost) all Montgomery on Sunday. Monty out-touched the rookie by a 23-to-two margin and was on the field for 74 snaps compared to just six for Williams.

Getting a more favorable matchup this week, no team allowed more receptions to opposing running backs last season than the Falcons. To begin this season, Chicago rookie Tarik Cohen led all running backs with 12 targets as he had eight catches for 47 yards and a touchdown. Look for Aaron Rodgers to target Montgomery often on Sunday night, making him a top-five option in both PPR and standard-scoring formats for Week 2.

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RB - Terrance West, Baltimore Ravens (vs. CLE)

One year after leading the NFL in pass attempts (679) and ranking last in the league in running-play percentage (34.01%), the Ravens opened the season with a 42-to-17 run-to-pass ratio. Clearly they won't be able to do that every week and last week's blowout victory (20-0) over the Bengals allowed them to keep the ball on the ground. But they are big favorites (-8.0) as they host the Browns on Sunday. If the game script follows suit, it could be another massive workload for West, who had 80 yards and a touchdown in Week 1.

RB - Jacquizz Rodgers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (vs. CHI)

Poised for a substantial workload due to Doug Martin's three-game suspension, Rodgers had 15-plus touches in the last five games he played without Martin. In those five games, Rodgers had 107 carries for 462 yards and two touchdowns to go along with 10 catches for 65 yards. In addition, he scored double-digit fantasy points in four of those five outings. Chicago's front-seven is more talented than their secondary, but Rodgers should get in the neighborhood of 20 touches this week.

RB - Marshawn Lynch, Oakland Raiders (vs. NYJ)

After taking a season off, Lynch dominated backfield touches for his hometown Raiders in the season opener. Beast Mode had 18 carries for 76 yards and a 16-yard reception compared to 11 total touches for the team's other backs combined. Nearly two-TD home favorites against the worst team in the league, few running backs have greater probabilty to score in Week 2 than Lynch. In fact, it wouldn't be a surprise if he rushed for 100-plus yards and scored multiple touchdowns after LeSean McCoy and the Bills ran for a massive 190 yards against the Jets in Week 1. Only the Patriots (31.50) and the Falcons (29.50) have higher Vegas implied totals than the Raiders (28.50) this week.

- Related: Our contributors provide their Favorite Week 2 DraftKings Plays

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Week 2 Fantasy Football RB Sit'em

RB - Frank Gore, Indianapolis Colts (vs. IND)

Blown out on the road last week, Gore and rookie Marlon Mack split workloads evenly -- 11 touches each. Gore turned his 10 carries into 42 yards and added a 10-yard reception. The Colts shouldn't lose by 39 points again, but the matchup isn't any more favorable this week and the Colts are 7-point underdogs at home. With Andrew Luck ruled out early in the week, there is no reason to expect the Colts to sustain many drives. If it turns into another blowout, it wouldn't surprise me if Mack gets another sizable share of the workload. In either event, neither Gore nor Mack is worth a start this week.

RB - Adrian Peterson, New Orleans Saints (vs. NE)

Higher than most on Peterson entering the season, my "bold prediction" is admittedly off to a bad start. At some point, Peterson should become more involved although the MNF fiasco has led some to wonder if he will be on a different roster by the end of the season. I wouldn't go that far, but it seems more likely than not that it's another frustrating outing for Peterson and his fantasy owners with the Patriots coming to town this week. A touchdown underdog to Tom Brady and the Patriots, the Saints running back rotation likely features the duo of Mark Ingram and rookie Alvin Kamara more than Peterson (again).

RB - LeGarrette Blount, Philadelphia Eagles (at KC)

One target. One catch. One yard. One touchdown. Not much of a factor in the passing game, Blount was able to catch a one-yard touchdown in addition to gaining 46 yards on 14 carries.

As a six-point road underdog with a implied total in the bottom 12 this week, Blount may not get many opportunities to score a touchdown. And if the team is playing from behind (unlike last week), it's possible that Blount also sees fewer than the 14 carries that he had last week and isn't any more than a flex play this week.

RB - Paul Perkins, New York Giants (vs. DET)

Perkins ran the ball seven times for 16 yards and added two catches for nine more in the team's Sunday Night Football loss to the Cowboys. Perhaps Odell Beckham will return for Monday Night Football and help open things up for the offense in general, but the team's offensive line is bad and that will be a concern for the running game all season long.

- More Fantasy Football Start'em, Sit'em for Week 2

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