Week 2 QB Rankings, Projections and Analysis
Week 2 Quarterback Sleepers
Week 2 Start N' Sit
Week 3 Waiver Wire Tips



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Colts QB Andrew Luck
This is how we rank the QBs for Week 2 of the fantasy season. Our rankings aren't just based on name value or past performance - each week we take a comprehensive look at the match-ups and each QBs past performance and factor that into our projections. Just click on the links to read our rationale behind the ranking. The ratings are based on a standard league where 25 passing yards equal 1 point, passing and rushing TDs equal 6 pts. and INTs or fumbles deduct 2 points.

QB Rankings
  1. Andrew Luck
  2. Aaron Rodgers
  3. Nick Foles
  4. Peyton Manning
  5. Matt Ryan
  6. Russell Wilson
  7. Robert Griffin III
  8. Andy Dalton
  9. Jake Locker
  10. Tom Brady
  11. Drew Brees
  12. Cam Newton
  13. Alex Smith
  14. Ben Roethlisberger
  15. Tony Romo
  16. Matt Stafford
  17. Carson Palmer
  18. Colin Kaepernick
  19. Josh McCown
  20. Chad Henne
  21. Geno Smith
  22. Ryan Fitzpatrick
  23. Matt Cassel
  24. E.J. Manuel
Bengals QB Andy Dalton
Paying attention to the match-ups each week can help you identify less heralded players with the upside to surprise and help you avoid some potential land mines. This is our list of players we expect to surpass expectations, along with a few stud QBs who may fail to deliver:

Start
Andy Dalton
Bengals QB Andy Dalton
"The Red Rifle" is typically a sharpshooter as long as he's not facing tough opponents and the playoffs aren't on the line. Last week he turned in an uncharacteristic performance and was on-target against an above-average Baltimore pass defense, throwing for 301 yards and a TD. This week the enemy is the Falcons' 21st-ranked pass defense, which surrendered 244 yards a game last year. Atlanta was taken hostage by Drew Brees last week, allowing 333 yards but prevailing in a battle of offensive fireworks. We see a similar offensive explosion with plenty of bombs lobbed this week and see the field general, Dalton, throwing for at least 300 yards again.

Russell Wilson
Seahawks QB Russell Wilson
Wilson wasn't asked to do a lot last Thursday against the Packers, as the game plan revolved around using Marshawn Lynch as a one-man wrecking ball. This week should be different as the Seahawks take on a Chargers team that's stronger against the run than the pass. Last year San Diego allowed 259 passing yards a game, which was 29th in the league. This one should be a close contest, as the Chargers are coming off a disappointing loss where they frittered away a 17-6 lead in the fourth quarter, and should be out for redemption. Look for Wilson to throw for at least 250 yards and the 'Hawks to rely on his arm.

Matt Ryan
Falcons QB Matt Ryan
Ryan had an incredible game against Jairus Byrd and a talented Saints secondary, throwing for 448 yards and 3 TDs, in a contest that was high-scoring, just like we predicted. Don't be afraid to start him against a stout Bngals pass defense that ranked 5th in the league last year. The Bengals starting corners are either getting long-in-the-tooth (37-yr. old Terrance Newman) or coming off a serious injury (Leon Hall) and rookie 1st rounder, Darqueze Dennard, is battling a hip injury. The Ravens had some success throwing on them last week, amassing 345 passing yards on the back of Steve Smith's amazing game. I don't see Steven Jackson having any success moving the ball on the Bengals D-line and see Jacquizz Rodgers doing more damage on screen passes than runs, so if Atlanta wants to keep this one close, they'll have to take to the air. I think this one should be a humdinger with lots of scoring on both sides. Ryan's a very good start in spite of what looks like a tough matchup. Roddy White and Julio Jones should be a mismatch for the smaller Cincinnati corners so we expect Ryan to have another 300+ yard outing but are tempering our expectations just slightly, as the opportunistic Cincinnati secondary should be able to grab a couple of ill-advised throws.


Sit
Philip Rivers
Chargers QB Philip Rivers
Photo of Philip Rivers © Greg Buch
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Poor Philip Rivers. Fresh off a disappointing loss to a tough Cardinals defense, where he couldn't get the Bolts within FG range to salvage a game it looked like they had under control, he gets to square off against a top-ranked Seahawks pass defense, which limited opposing QBs to just 172 passing yards last year. We think this ought to be a competitive game, since its in San Diego, and Monday's loss had to leave a bad taste in his mouth, kind of he had kissed his sister. We're looking for a close contest with both teams scoring around 20 points. He probably won't be awful and may throw for around 250 yards but Richard Sherman and Kam Chancellor could end up with a couple of those receptions.

Colin Kaepernick
49ers QB Colin Kaepernick
Kaepernick, who had a productive game last week, scoring roughly 20 fantasy points against a soft Cowgirls defense, has what looks to be a nice matchup against a Bears defense that allowed 233 passing yards a game last year and allowed opposing QBs to complete over 62% of their passes. Don't be fooled: the 49ers will watch the tape of last week's game and see the success Buffalo had running up the middle of a porous Bears defense that had problems all last year stopping the run. So you can expect to see a lot of Frank Gore and Carlos Hyde in this game. Kaep should have some improvisational scrambles, which might be good for around 50 yards, but we don't see him putting up a lot of passing yardage. Start him at your own risk.

Jay Cutler
Bears QB Jay Cutler
Cutler put up some surprising stats against a Bills defense that ranked 4th in the league against the pass last year. He threw for 349 yards and 2 TDs with a couple of costly picks. This week he's got another tough match-up, facing a 49ers defense that picked off Romo 3 times and limited him to 281 yards. Since this game's on the road, we're not as optimistic about his chances to repeat those stats. The Niners ranked 7th in the league against the pass last year and should be able to run all day on the Bears and chew up the clock. We're not expecting a high-scoring game and doubt Cutler puts up more than 250 yards with a couple of his characteristic costly turnovers.


Jake Locker
Titans QB Jake Locker
Locker reminded us that he's a decent fantasy QB when healthy, throwing for 266 yards and a pair of TDs against an underrated Kansas City secondary that held opponents to a 56.4% completion rate last year. This week he has a home contest against a woeful Cowboys defense that makes every QB look like Peyton Manning on steroids. The Boys ranked 30th in the league last year against the pass, allowing 287 passing yards a game and an abysmal 64.7% completion rate. They limited Colin Kaepernick to just 201 passing yards last week but that was only because it was so easy for the Niners to run all over them. The Titans don't have the same caliber of running game as San Francisco so we expect Locker to have a nice game with around 275 yards. He's our sleeper of the week and a nice pick-up off the waiver wire.

Chad Henne
Jaguars QB Chad Henne
Henne had a nice game last week against a porous Philadelphia secondary and for a while it looked like the Jaguars might pull off an upset, before they came back down to Earth. This week they get another porous defense, as they travel to Washington to play the Native Americans. The 'Skins held Ryan Fitzpatrick to just 206 yards but it was only because Arian Foster was so effective and the Texans built an early lead. It's certainly possible the Jaguars could build an early lead again but we doubt they hold it, so expect them to rely on Henne's arm (especially since it's looking like Toby Gerhart may just be the slow, lumbering running back a lot of people said he was).

Geno Smith
Jets QB Geno Smith
Smith didn't deliver much in the way of stats last week, as the Jets built a lead and relied on their running game. This week should be a different story, as they travel to Green Bay to face a Packers team fresh off a humiliating loss in Seattle. The Packers had one of the weaker pass defenses in the league last year, allowing opponents to throw for 247 yards a game and complete around 62% of their passes. We expect the Jets to trail for much of this game, which should provide Geno with ample opportunity to pad his passing stats. Don't be surprised to see him throw for around 275 yards and scramble for his life for another 50.

Redskins QB Kirk Cousins
By Greg Buchphoto of journalist Greg Buch
Greg develops and updates FFSwami's website. He's played in various fantasy football leagues the last 15 years and is a life-long Cincinnati Bengals fan.
Don't get too discouraged if your draft didn't work out as you planned. Fantasy success isn't the exclusive result of a solid draft - often it's the in-season waiver wire moves that determines who makes it to the post-season. We've got some hot tips for you that should help you improve your roster and catch up to those lucky sons-of-guns who always seem to draft the right players:

Quarterbacks to Add

Kirk Cousins
Cousins is our top waiver wire add at the quarterback position this week. He replaced an injured RGIII in the first quarter and led the Redskins to a decisive victory against a poor Jaguars pass defense, throwing for 250 yards and 2 TDs with no picks. RGIII's X-rays have come back with no indications of a fracture but he's still expected to be out for 4-6 weeks with a dislocated ankle. There are some within the 'Skins organization who feel Cousins gives them the best chance to win and I think he's a better fit for the type of offense Gruden ran in Cincinnati. If he continues to play well filling in, I wouldn't be surprised if the Redskins stick with him even if RGIII is healthy. Washington has a great match-up against an Eagles defense that was ranked dead-last against the pass last year and Cousins is definitely worth starting.

Teddy Bridgewater
The Bridgewater watch has officially begun in Minnesota and even though Coach Mike Zimmer is insisting Cassel will be his starting quarterback this week, the leash is getting shorter by the week. Cassel was absolutely abysmal against the Patriots, throwing 4 picks that led to New England points. Teddy's certain to experience some rookie jitters but may be the most NFL-ready of this year's crop of rookies and would inherit an explosive running game and some decent weapons at the WR position. He's worth an add in leagues that have a deep bench but if you're limited in the number of back-ups you can carry, we'd wait until he gets passed the reigns.

Derek Carr
Carr is worth a flyer if you're in a deep league. The Raiders defense is not very good to put it mildly so he's going to get some opportunities to throw the ball late in games. He's got a decent match-up this week on the road against a Patriots defense that allowed 17 fantasy points a game to opposing QBs last year but looked pretty solid this past Sunday against the Vikings. Stash him on your bench as a developmental player and he might reward you later in the season.

Ben Roethlisberger
Big Ben is owned in around 90% of leagues but there will be a few players who give up on him after a poor showing on Thursday Night Football against a tough Ravens secondary. Definitely scoop him up if someone in your league loses their patience with him. He'll have better games but has a difficult match-up this week against an aggressive Carolina secondary that stuck to Detroit's receivers like glue.

Quarterbacks to Drop

Chad Henne
The Jaguars offense is just not very good and their O-line has both run-blocking and pass-protection issues. Henne was sacked 10 times against the Redskins and failed to do anything notable against a very suspect pass defense. He's not getting any help in the run game either, as Toby Gerhart's not having any more success running behind their line than Jones-Drew did last year. The Blake Bortles watch has begun in Jacksonville and it probably won't be long before the rookie sees the field.

Matt Cassel
Cassel may have been extended a life-line for one more week but the rope is unraveling. He failed to capitalize on an attractive home match-up against a Patriots defense that gift-wrapped a lot of fantasy points to opposing QBs last year and now gets to face Jairus Byrd and a stingy Saints defense in the Superdome. Since becoming a starter, he's never been anything more than a mediocre fantasy QB. I'd drop him in favor of an untested rookie like Carr who'll provide you with more upside.