Injuries dominated headlines around the NFL Sunday, to the point where it might have been hard to tell what else actually happened. Fourteen games went down Sunday, and not all of them were marred by injuries, but it would be understandable if you missed something key from some of them.
The goal here every Monday is to make sure you don’t miss anything before moving on to the next week, so here’s a breakdown of every game from Week 2 so far, focusing on one winner and one loser for each game, plus one number to know and one thing you might have missed if you weren’t able to watch the game. This is your guide to catching up on everything that happened in Week 2.
The Bears offense fell apart in the second half, which means it looks like what the Giants offense looked like the whole game.
- Injuries: Saquon Barkley (knee) — Likely out for season. … Sterling Shepard (toe)
- Winner: David Montgomery. Montgomery looked OK in Week 1, and he looked excellent against the Giants. The two defenses he has faced so far are pretty bad, but Montgomery faced plenty of bad defenses last year and I don’t think he ever looked this good. He has 201 total yards in his first two games, a mark he only bested once as a rookie — and he needed 48 touches for his 223 yards in that stretch, compared to just 33 touches for 201 yards to open this season. I feel pretty good about Montgomery as a No. 2 RB at this point.
- Loser: The whole Giants offense. Maybe Daniel Jones will reach the point where he’s the kind of quarterback who can elevate an offense of subpar pieces, but he isn’t close to being there yet. That’s not necessarily a knock on him — there aren’t many QBs who would be good in this offense — but there just isn’t much here to be optimistic about with Barkley likely out for the season. Dion Lewis should be a PPR flex, and Evan Engram is a starting-caliber Fantasy tight end … maybe Darius Slayton is a WR3 or flex option. But there’s no must-start players here until further notice.
- One number to know: Montgomery was seventh in the NFL among running backs in air yards in 2019, and among players with at least 35 targets, none had a higher average depth of target than Montgomery’s 3.7. Most running back targets come at or behind the line of scrimmage, but Montgomery showed the value of getting targeted down the field on his touchdown catch and run. He may not get a ton of targets, but the ones he does get do tend to be pretty valuable.
- One thing you might have missed: Jones had a pick-six called back on a penalty, but he still turned the ball over twice, the third straight game he has done so. He still hasn’t fixed that part of his game.
Would you believe it, the Falcons blew a seemingly un-blowable loss late.
- Winner: Hayden Hurst. Hurst struggled to earn many targets in Week 1, but that wasn’t an issue Sunday. He saw eight go his way, catching five for 72 yards and a touchdown. The emergence of Russell Gage makes Hurst’s breakout somewhat less likely, but this was still a nice reward for those of us who kept the faith.
- Loser: Michael Gallup. Gallup has been close to a big game in each of his first two, but at least so far, the addition of CeeDee Lamb has cost him. He has had just five targets in each of the first two games, after having at least six in all but two of his games in 2019. Lamb has 15 targets through two games, while Amari Cooper has 23; even tight end Dalton Schultz had 9-88-1 on 10 targets Sunday.
- One number to know: Calvin Ridley leads the NFL receiving touchdowns since 2018 with 21 in 31 games — Julio Jones has 21 in his past 61 games.
- One thing you might have missed: Russell Gage’s solid game (6-46-1 on nine targets) could have been even better, but Julio Jones just flat out dropped what would have been a 41-yard touchdown from Gage. Heartbreaking if you had Julio on your team, too.
Another huge game from the Packers offense.
- Injury: Davante Adams (hamstring) — He was on the sideline with his helmet, so this one doesn’t seem too serious — the Packers were up big at the time.
- Winner: Aaron Jones. Aaron Rodgers was the big storyline from Week 1, but Jones did the heavy lifting Sunday. This was at least somewhat about the Lions offense, but Jones is making those of us who said he wouldn’t repeat look pretty foolish. Right now, the Packers look like they can dominate a game any way they like.
- Loser: Adrian Peterson. You shouldn’t ever have expected Peterson to be a viable starting option, he went from 17 touches in Week 1 to just seven Sunday. This is a three-headed backfield, but if D’Andre Swift is going to dominate passing work and Peterson is going to cede goal-line work to Kerryon Johnson, there’s no real reason he needs to be on your roster.
- One number to know: Through two games, Matthew Stafford is down to 7.88 air yards per attempt, compared to 10.68 in 2019. That aggressiveness made him a better Fantasy QB, so hopefully the eventual return of Kenny Golladay gets him back to there, but there’s one factor to keep in mind: Through two games, 20% of his passes have gone to running backs, compared to 16.2% last season.
- One thing you might have missed: Rodgers could have had an even bigger game, but he overthrew Marquez Valdes-Scantling in the end zone in the third quarter — MVS got his hands on it, but it would’ve been a tough catch.
The Titans just managed to hang on in a game they probably should’ve won easily for the second week in a row.
- Winner: James Robinson. Robinson is looking like a real find for the Jaguars, and obviously for Fantasy players, too. Robinson is basically the only game in town for the Jaguars on the ground, and he had more targets Sunday than Chris Thompson. He looks like close to a must-start back in Week 3 against the Dolphins and should be an RB2 moving forward.
- Loser: Corey Davis. A touchdown saved him and the folks who started Davis in Fantasy, but this was definitely a disappointing showing after he was so good in Week 1. Maybe he’s overmatched as a top option and needs A.J. Brown around, but it’s hard to see anyone really wanting to start him in Week 3 even against a Vikings defense that has looked terrible so far.
- One number to know: Laviska Shenault, a wide receiver, was second on the Jaguars in carries with five for 37 yards. He has seven through two games, to go along with 10 targets. The Jaguars clearly want to get Shenault involved early and often.
- One thing you might have missed: Jonnu Smith broke off a 60-plus yard catch on Tennessee’s first drive and they rewarded him with the touchdown to cap off the drive.
The Vikings defense might be in real trouble, which sorta messed up their whole vibe.
- Injury: Parris Campbell (Knee) — Had to be carted off, but is not believed to be a torn ACL.
- Winner: Jonathan Taylor. I knew Taylor would be a huge part of the Colts game plan, but I didn’t expect him to dominate work the way he did. Taylor had 28 touches, compared to just 10 for the rest of the running backs. My expectation that Nyheim Hines would still have a sizable roll may have been unfounded, though I would still try to hang onto him through Week 3 just to confirm.
- Loser: Adam Thielen. The problem with playing in such a low-volume passing offense is the margin for error is so slim. Thielen still got 30.7% of the Vikings’ targets, but that came out to just eight in a game the Vikings trailed by double digits for three full quarters. Thielen will typically catch more than three of eight targets, but these kinds of games will be a fact of life in this offense.
- One number to know: Jonathan Taylor played 75% of the Colts snaps in this one, while Hines and Jordan Wilkins each played 13.8%. If that remains the case moving forward, Taylor might be a top-five back.
- One thing you might have missed: Phillip Rivers didn’t play great, but he played better than the stat line. The interception was on a pass that hit Mo Alie-Cox in the chest before bouncing into a defender’s arms, and T.Y. Hilton dropped a 44-yard touchdown late in the game.
- Winner: Josh Allen. Coming into Week 1, Allen had zero career 300-yard passing games. Now he has two, including his first 400-yard game Sunday. Allen has dropped back to pass 96 times through two games, after averaging just 36.0 last season. Surely, games against the Jets and Dolphins helped, but so, too, has Stefon Diggs, who has 16 catches for 239 yards and a touchdown through two games. Allen sure seems like he’s taken a significant step forward, though a matchup against Aaron Donald, Jalen Ramsey, and the Rams will be his first true test.
- Honorable mention: Mike Gesicki. He went for 8-130-1 on 11 targets, and this was the game we’ve been waiting for from him since last season. Gesicki has always had the physical tools, and last season he had a vertically-oriented slot role that should have led to more production, but he left points on the field. He didn’t do that Sunday. You want to see more than one game of it, but Gesicki has wide receiver skills and a wide receiver role, and he finally truly showed us how valuable that can be.
- Loser: Preston Williams. Williams deserves a pit of patience coming off his knee injury, but any thought that he might push DeVante Parker for the No. 1 role has to be well in the past. Parker managed to play 68 of 74 snaps despite leaving last week’s game with a hamstring injury, and put up 16.3 PPR points against a tough matchup. He’s been basically matchup proof for his past 10 games, while Williams has three catches on 12 targets so far. I still love Williams potential, but he’s droppable in 12-team leagues at this point.
- One number to know: The Bills split work nearly down the middle in Week 2, and now Devin Singletary has played 84 snaps through two weeks to Zack Moss‘ 67.
- One thing you might have missed: Preston Williams had a chance to salvage his game in the fourth quarter, but he dropped a touchdown on fourth down from the Bills 1-yard line to end a drive. He’s still shaking off the rust.
A slew of high-profile injuries render this a somewhat pyrrhic victory.
- Injuries: Nick Bosa (Knee) — feared ACL tear. … Jimmy Garoppolo (Ankle) — High-ankle sprain, multi-week absence possible. … Raheem Mostert (Knee) — MRI sprain, further testing needed. … Solomon Thomas (Knee) — Further testing needed. … Breshad Perriman (Ankle)
- Winner: Jordan Reed. Any 49er who made it through this one without injury is a winner, but Reed especially so. I thought he might continue to have a limited role even with George Kittle sidelined, but he played 29 snaps and ran 20 routes, the latter of which led tight ends for the 49ers. And, he showed he can still make plays!
- Loser: Everyone else. That’s only a slight exaggeration. Even with the 49ers entering the game beat up and losing multiple defensive linemen, the Jets offense looked as hapless as ever. Frank Gore got 21 carries and showed just how much better he is than Le’Veon Bell by rumbling for 63 whole yards! Chris Hogan and Braxton Berrios led the Jets in receiving, which is as bleak as it sounds. On the 49ers side, Brandon Aiyuk was finally healthy but didn’t make much of an impact — not that they needed him to. Tevin Coleman played a bunch of snaps and did nothing with them while Jerick McKinnon barely played but broke several big plays. So, good luck figuring out who to add if Mostert is out — I’d bet on Coleman.
- One number to know: Chris Herndon played 48 snaps (second among skill players for Jets ) but ran just 22 routes. That means he was used primarily as a blocker, because when you’re Adam Gase and all of your playmakers are missing, that’s what you do.
- One thing you might have missed: Jerick McKinnon’s 77 yards mostly came on one 55-yard run on 3rd and long that sort of exemplified why the Jets are such a mess. I don’t want to think about this game anymore. The Jets offer nothing for Fantasy players until Le’Veon Bell and Jamison Crowder are healthy, and it’s hard to say how much we can take away from the 49ers success against them given all of the injuries.
The Eagles don’t look good on either side of the ball; the Rams look different, but pretty great so far.
- Injury: Cam Akers (ribs) — No updates after game. … Malcolm Brown (Finger) — No sign this is a particularly serious issue yet.
- Winner: Darrell Henderson. Henderson went from a non-factor in Week 1 to the Rams go-to back in the second half. Sure, the absence of Akers and the fact Malcolm Brown was dealing with a finger injury helped, but he wasn’t just in there by default; Henderson was making plays consistently. If Akers is out, Brown and Henderson are both viable starts; if all three are healthy, it’s going to be a headache.
- Loser: Carson Wentz. Maybe the situation around him will get better eventually, but Wentz is not playing well. He has four picks and is averaging 6.0 yards per target. He has a get-right opportunity against the Bengals in Week 3 before facing an absolute murderer’s row of defenses: at San Francisco, at Pittsburgh, vs. Baltimore. View him as a streamer for Week 3 and then plan on another option.
- One number to know: Miles Sanders played a whopping 55 snaps. By all accounts, he could have played in Week 1 if needed, so they clearly waited until he was 100% past his injury to play. That’s a good sign.
- One thing you might have missed: Jalen Reagor earned a target near the end zone and couldn’t hang on to it — though he did draw an unnecessary roughness penalty on the hit that knocked the ball out. He’s playing a ton (60 snaps, tops among Eagles WR) and he’s earning trust. A big breakout could be coming soon.
A surprisingly competitive game — either a good sign for the Broncos offense or a bad sign for the Giants last week.
- Injury: Drew Lock (Shoulder) — Likely to be a multi-week absence. … Courtland Sutton (leg/knee) — Likely out for the season with a torn ACL.
- Winner: James Conner. Some folks drew a lot of sweeping conclusions last week based on the six carries he got before suffering an ankle injury. He got past that injury and went right back to dominating the backfield as usual. Benny Snell played just 10 snaps in the game compared to 50 for Conner. Make fun of how he got caught from behind on that long run late if you want, Twitter, but this is Conner’s job and only injuries are going to take it from him. Also, shout out to Diontae Johnson, who really might be Ben Roethlisberger‘s favorite target already.
- Loser: Sutton/Noah Fant/Jerry Jeudy. There’s plenty of talent in this offense, but it was questionable whether they’d all be able to contribute for Fantasy with Drew Lock at quarterback. It’s even less likely with Jeff Driskel at QB. Driskel can make plays with his feet and might be good for Melvin Gordon, but he lowers the collective floor and ceiling for the rest of the offense.
- One number to know: Courtland Sutton was eased back in his first game, playing 31 snaps — fewer than Tim Patrick, K.J. Hamler, Jerry Jeudy and DaeSean Hamilton. Now, the question is whether this knee injury will keep him off the field further. Jeudy looked a bit overmatched as a No. 1 option with Sutton out in Week 1, and with Driskel in at QB, you’ll want to see someone here prove they can produce before relying on anyone if Sutton sits out.
- One thing you might have missed: There was a lot of good for Roethlisberger — especially on the 84-yard touchdown to Chase Claypool — but there are more rough patches here then we’re accustomed to, including a dropped interception on a target to Johnson early and an actual pick on an ugly, ugly forced throw to JuJu Smith-Schuster on the first drive of the second half. Still more good than bad, for sure, but he’s not in vintage form.
He’s not Touchdown Tom yet, but it didn’t matter here.
- Injury: Christian McCaffrey (Ankle) — Expected to miss 4-6 weeks.
- Winner: Leonard Fournette is the obvious winner, but it’s more about how Ronald Jones lost, so we’ll hold that for now and go with D.J. Moore and Robby Anderson. Teddy Bridgewater threw the ball more this time around and the Panthers consolidated targets between those two, as they combined for 23 of the team’s 40 targets. Curtis Samuel, who was right there with them last week, had just two. Moore remains a must-start option, but Anderson is hard to ignore given how he’s started his season with consecutive 100-yard games. He’s worth adding anywhere he is available.
- Loser: Like I said, Fournette is the big winner, but this is more about how Jones lost in heartbreaking fashion. Jones and Tom Brady botched an exchange on a handoff in the second quarter that resulted in a turnover, and Jones basically disappeared. He had two more touches in the first half to three for Fournette, and then Fournette out snapped him 14-6 in the second half and out-touched him 8-3. It just feels like Bruce Arians will play Jones as long as he’s perfect, but loses faith immediately. This doesn’t mean Fournette is the No. 1 back in Tampa Bay, but it just reminds us how thin Jones’ margin for error is.
- One number to know: Rob Gronkowski once again ran more routes than O.J. Howard on Sunday, though neither is anything like a full-time part of the passing offense.
- One thing you might have missed: Brady continues to look a lot less than perfect, and the Gronk connection especially isn’t there. His pick Sunday came on a play where he overthrew Gronkowski, who didn’t seem to realize the ball was coming his way.
We’re witnessing Kyler Murray‘s ascendance.
- Winner: Kyler Murray. He’s got a legitimate, matchup-proof No. 1 wide receiver and the Cardinals can finally play the way they want. That meant 77 offensive plays in Week 2 after 82 in Week 1. This is a high-volume offense that can finish drives now, which means Murray is going to have a ton of opportunities to put up huge numbers.
- Loser: Christian Kirk. Last week, I said I wanted to see how the Cardinals approach this week to see if they spread the ball around before I start worrying about Kirk. They did spread the ball around Sunday, just … not to Kirk. The running backs combined for six, Dan Arnold got four, Andy Isabella got two and Kirk got … four. Kirk came off the field for 13 passing snaps and played just 47 out of 77 overall, as the Cardinals ran fewer three-WR sets. The role we hoped for just hasn’t been there yet, and I can’t blame anyone who drops Kirk.
- One number to know: Peyton Barber played just one snap this week, to pick up a short-yardage first down. It was all Antonio Gibson (43 snaps) and J.D. McKissic (27) in this one, and that will hopefully continue moving forward, because both looked great running the ball. The fact that they combined for two targets, one catch, and -3 yards in the passing game is a bit of concern, given their supposed strengths.
- One thing you might have missed: Kyler Murray should’ve had three rushing touchdowns in this one — his 8-yard scamper in the first quarter was called back by a Dan Arnold hold. Of course, the drive ended with a touchdown pass to DeAndre Hopkins, so it’s hard to complain.
Can Houston get one easy matchup? Please?
*checks schedule, sees “at Steelers” in Week 3*
Ah, well, nevertheless.
- Winner: Brandin Cooks. Not much went right for the Texans in this one, but Cooks was a legitimate bright spot. He led the team in routes run with 43 on 47 drop backs total and hauled in five of eight targets for 95 yards. Cooks had an average depth of target of 15.5 yards, a healthy number and a good sign that his lingering quad injury isn’t exactly slowing him down too much.
- Loser: J.K. Dobbins. This could be a Miles Sanders situation, where Dobbins just keeps dominating in a small role until he gets a consistent opportunity, but it’s worth noting that after leading the running back group in snaps in Week 1, he was behind Gus Edwards on Sunday. Dobbins actually played the same number of snaps as Edwards, but only six came on rushing plays. The Ravens don’t use their running backs in the passing game enough for Dobbins to be a Fantasy starter if he’s running third in rushing attempts.
- One number to know: With Duke Johnson sidelined, David Johnson played 56 of 59 snaps and ran 36 routes, per PFF and TruMedia. This was a disappointing performance after his impassive Week 1, but I’m not discouraged.
- One thing you might have missed: Will Fuller was a non-factor, but the Texans didn’t announce any kind of injury despite the fact that he played just 62.7% of the team’s snaps. He was apparently spotted on the sideline getting his hamstring stretched, so that could be the issue. C’mon Will, just stay healthy, please.
The Chargers got a glimpse of the future, and it was bright.
- Injury: Tyrod Taylor (Chest) — Was taken to the hospital with chest tightness and shortness of breath, which is obviously scary. We don’t know much beyond that, but Anthony Lynn did say after the game Taylor is 100%” the team’s starting quarterback when healthy. … Darrel Williams (ankle) — No details yet. … Sammy Watkins (Head) — Left for locker room and didn’t return. Concussion protocol possible.
- Winner: Austin Ekeler and Joshua Kelley. I guess it’s maybe a not-great sign that Ekeler split work nearly evenly with Kelly (47 snaps to 43), but they were also on the field together several times and combined for 39 carries and seven targets. Tyrod Taylor simply didn’t look their way in Week 1, opting to scramble when pressured instead. This is more like the situation we expected to see, with two viable Fantasy options playing together.
- Loser: Mike Williams. This is one of those situations where there isn’t really a “loser” — at least not someone who Fantasy players should be re-evaluating. However, after Tyrod Taylor peppered him with deep targets, Justin Herbert wasn’t nearly as aggressive in looking for Williams. If the Chargers make that switch, it may take a while for Williams to develop that rapport.
- One number to know: If you were worried about Clyde Edwards-Helaire‘s passing role after he was targeted just once in Week 1, he played 35 snaps on passing downs and ran 33 routes, compared to 20 for the other two backs on the team.
- One thing you might have missed: And Edwards-Helaire’s six-catch, 32-yard showing could have been even better, as he was targeted downfield for a 25-yard catch late in the fourth quarter the would have put the Chiefs inside the 10-yard line, but it was nullified by a penalty. There’s a lot to like about how the Chiefs are using Edwards-Helaire, even in a game where his numbers weren’t great.
You don’t “let” Russ cook. Russ just cooks.
- Winner: Cam Newton. We knew there was one top-five Fantasy QB playing in this game, but the question now is whether the guy on the other side is one, too. In the most literal sense, Newton is unequivocally a top-five QB right now — with Monday Night Football left, he’s the No. 4 QB in Week 2 — but it’s worth asking whether he should be considered one moving forward, especially after a near-400-yard game Sunday night. You’ll take Patrick Mahomes, Lamar Jackson and Russell Wilson over him, but Newton might be right there with Aaron Rodgers, Kyler Murray, and Dak Prescott in that next group.
- Loser: Carlos Hyde. There was some concern about Chris Carson‘s role after Week 1, when Hyde got more carries in the blowout win. Carson got 17 to Hyde’s five Sunday, in addition to a 3-2 edge in receptions. Hyde will have a role, but there’s no controversy here.
- One number to know: Julian Edelman set a new career-high in receiving yards for a game with 179 on eight catches Sunday, and he nearly had a truly massive game — he dropped one touchdown on a tough catch and was down at the 1-yard-line on another catch.
- One thing you might have missed: Wilson took some heat for his deep incomplete pass attempt to Tyler Lockett on a pivotal 3rd and 1 right after the two-minute warning, but it ward hardly his fault, as the first routes in the progression were covered and Wilson had to deal with a bad snap that put Wilson on the move immediately. It’s also worth noting that the Seahawks didn’t just immediately abandon the pass after an early pick-six. Baby steps!