New York, New York: A Town So Nice, It Lost to Buffalo Twice. The Bills are 2-0 after beating both teams from NYC, but they still figure to miss the playoffs this year. The Giants, meanwhile, would be lucky to sniff a .500 record this season. Despite the grim prospects of reality for each squad, both the Bills and Giants have some promising players to offer in fantasy football.
For the Big Blue, it was none other than their bell-cow back Saquon Barkley. The sensational second year RB ran for over 100 yds and a TD against Buffalo, ending the day with 22.5 fantasy points off of 21 total touches. Barkley is New York’s best player by far so he will be given a hefty workload week in and week out. Combine that workload with Barkley’s superb talent and big play potential and you’ve got yourself one of the best players to own in all of fantasy football.
Buffalo QB Josh Allen, Barkley’s classmate in last year’s NFL draft, proved to be a fantasy stud Sunday. Allen put up 22.2 fantasy points as he threw for over 250 yds and a TD and added another 21 yards and a TD on the ground. Allen’s rushing ability grants him huge upside over many of the traditional pocket passers. He has rushed and thrown for a touchdown in each of the first two games. Allen’s play has improved from last season and his production thus far warrants some attention from fantasy managers. Add to that the slew of injuries across the league - including to Drew Brees and Ben Roethlisberger - and Josh Allen is definitely worth an add.
While Eli didn’t play well Sunday, he can’t really be called a dud because he was never expected to have a great performance. Evan Engram, however, was expected to ball out after scoring 28.6 points in Dallas week one. Engram still managed to crack double digits with 10.8 points Sunday, but it was a disappointing performance for a player widely considered to be a top 5 TE in fantasy. While it was a down day, fantasy managers should not devalue Engram going forward. Much like Barkely, he is talented and sure to have a high number of targets each week, especially as the Giants deal with a crisis of injuries and suspensions at WR. Engram will undoubtedly produce throughout the season is worth keeping in the starting lineup next week. His substandard performance against Buffalo could make him a good trade candidate to buy low on if his owner is skittish.
The Bills went dud-free Sunday as no player fell signifcantly below their projections.
Players to Watch
The Bills' RBs Frank Gore and Devin Singletary each rushed for a TD and put up double digit points, though Singletary finished slightly below his projection. WRs Cole Beasley and John Brown each also broke the double-digit mark. Singletary should have weekly value as a flex or fringe RB2/3 if he starts seeing more touches. The other three carry some more risk as flexes but have enough upside to be rostered and occasionally started. Frank Gore could prove to be a great add if the ageless wonder continues to see over 20 touches a game (and continues to get Fountain of Youth water on the sidelines).
With the Giants season already proving to be the dull enterprise fans expected, the start of the Daniel Jones era must be nearing. If Manning continues to fall short and the Giants continue to lose - both of which are quite likely - Jones could be worth an add as a backup. The aforementioned QB injuries make Jones more appealing as viable starters dwindle. Not to mention the upside potential of a talented rookie trying to give a struggling team a spark. Baker Mayfield turned out to be a valuable fantasy QB after taking over for the winless Browns last season. Of course the Browns had more talent than the Giants and Daniel Jones is no Baker Mayfield, but as the WRs get healthy and Golden Tate returns from his suspension the rookie could turn out to have some relevance even if his team doesn’t.