Week 2 Fantasy Football Start/Sit Candidates: Wide Receivers
Wondering who to start and sit at quarterback this week? Below are two top-notch start and two sit options at the wide receiver position for Week 2 of the 2022 NFL season.
Week 1 Review – half-PPR scoring
- WR Marquise Brown, Arizona Cardinals vs. Kansas City Chiefs – 12.3 (WR26)
- WR Christian Kick, Jacksonville Jaguars @ Washington Commanders – 14.7 (WR19)
- WR Allen Lazard, Green Bay Packers @ Minnesota Vikings – Out (ankle)
- WR Kenny Golladay, New York Giants @ Tennessee Titans – 3.2 (T-WR83)
Wide Receivers - Starts
JuJu Smith-Schuster (Kansas City Chiefs) vs. Los Angeles Chargers
JuJu Smith-Schuster kicked off his Kansas City tenure with an average depth of target (aDOT) of 10.2, 4.2 yards deeper than the 6.0 he averaged over the last two seasons in Pittsburgh. Per 4for4’s NFL Player Stat Explorer, Smith-Schuster’s 20.5% target market share rate led Kansas City’s wide receiver room by a margin of 5.1%. The fifth-year slot receiver rocketed back to respectability in both yards per route run, 2.47, and targets per route run rate, 25%, finishing 12th and 16th, respectively, among all NFL wide receivers with at least eight Week 1 targets.
4for4’s Connor Allen noted on Twitter that this matchup leans heavily in favor of Kansas City’s explosive pass play potential.
Obviously just one week of data here but some notable disparities here when matching up the Chiefs offense and Chargers defense...
KC: 2nd in explosive pass rate
LAC: 32nd in explosive pass rate allowed pic.twitter.com/1Yb2zeqJZV
— Connor Allen (@ConnorAllenNFL) September 13, 2022
Smith-Schuster’s newfound intermediate-depth usage bodes very well against Los Angeles’ pass-defense deficiencies.
*4for4’s full WR rankings can be found here.
Amon-Ra St. Brown (Detroit Lions) vs. Washington Commanders
Through Weeks 13-18 of the 2021 NFL season, Amon-Ra St. Brown produced league-highs in both target market share (41.4%), and average targets per game (11.2), finishing as the half-PPR WR2 during that span. Detroit had suffered a rash of offensive injuries, causing some to doubt St. Brown’s ability to produce once the Lions’ offense had returned to full strength. St. Brown silenced all doubters in Week 1, corralling 8-of-12 targets for 64 yards and one touchdown. The 12 targets have him tied with Houston’s Brandin Cooks for the eighth largest target market share in the NFL at 33.3%.
St. Brown might seem like an obvious Week 2 start, but the context of the start is important to understand. This elite manner of usage cemented St. Brown’s status as a top-12 fantasy wide receiver moving forward. He is no longer a high-value mid-round pick, he is a fantasy football WR1 from here on out. The fact that he gets the Washington Commanders’ defense currently sitting bottom-10 in both explosive pass play coverage, defensive play success rate, and defensive drive success rate is the cherry on top.
Wide Receiver – Sits
Robert Woods (Tennessee Titans) @ Buffalo Bills
Robert Woods needs to stay on fantasy benches against the Buffalo Bills this week after earning just two targets, catching one, despite running a https://www.4for4.com/nfl-player-stat-explorer team-high 26 routes. Rookies Treylon Burks and Kyle Phillips made far more of their opportunities. Phillips ran five fewer routes than Woods produced team highs in targets, nine, receptions, six, and receiving yards, 66, though he did lose one fumble. Burks parlayed just 13 routes into five targets, three receptions, and 55 receiving yards. Respectively, the two men produced monstrous targets per route run rates of 43% and 38%, dwarfing Woods’ 8% mark.
Buffalo’s stifling front seven suffocated the Los Angeles Rams offensive line with the league’s seventh-ranked quarterback pressure rate, 30.0%, and Tennessee’s revolving door-blockers graded out as just the 23rd best unit in pass protection. Woods was outplayed by a pair of rookies and is stuck in a low-volume passing offense, with a terrible matchup looming.
CeeDee Lamb (Dallas Cowboys) vs. Cincinnati Bengals
CeeDee Lamb cannot be trusted as anything more than a shaky fantasy WR3 this week he has absolutely no floor. Dallas has suffered injuries at both quarterback and left tackle, which leaves the team with “never-was” quarterback Cooper Rush and 41-year-old Jason Peters as their respective starters. Lamb will command targets but Rush will struggle to get him the ball.
|Player||Completion % Over Expectation (Rank)||EPA per pass (Rank)||On-Target % (Rank)|
|Cooper Rush||-3.5% (20th)||-0.582 (33rd||69.2% (18th)|
Rush is a largely inaccurate passer who often fails to connect, even when a receiver is wide open. It is going to be awfully hard for him to deliver the ball to Lamb, playing behind a subpar offensive line vs. the Cincinnati Bengals and their second-ranked six-defender blitz rate of 13.5%.