The Chargers will host the defending Super Bowl Champions, Kansas City Chiefs, on Sunday. Both teams will come into the game 1-0, although under slightly different game scripts.
Week 1 Recap
If not for a missed 31-yard field goal, the Chargers game may have had a very different ending. But as it sits now, the Chargers are 1-0, and that’s all that matters, right?
In the first half, the Chargers outgained the Bengals 232-88 total yards and yet went into halftime behind 6-7. Can’t possibly blame it on the defense who had three sacks and allowed only five first downs in the first half.
The Chargers only touchdown came in the fourth quarter thanks to rookie running back Joshua Kelley. A forced fumble by Denzel Perryman, a fumble recovery by Nick Vigil, and an interception by Melvin Ingram were the highlights of the second half.
The fantasy highlights on the offensive side were few and far between.
The Chiefs are an 8 and a 1/2 point favorite; the over/under is 47 according to BetOnline.ag.
Week 2 Fantasy Preview
First, let me say I do not want to live in a fantasy football world where Austin Ekeler sees only one target in the air.
QUARTERBACK, TYROD TAYLOR, SIT: Taylor didn’t lose his job last week, but he didn’t set any hearts on fire either. He was 16-of-30 for 208 yards, zero touchdowns, zero interceptions, two sacks, and six rushes for seven yards. He finished the game with a 75.4 passer rating.
Watching the Chiefs last week, I am still unsure if their front seven is that good or Houston’s offensive line is that bad. Deshaun Watson literally spent most of the game running for his life and was sacked four times.
This doesn’t bode well as Pro Football Focus has the Chargers offensive line ranked 30th, well below the Texans 19th ranked offensive line.
There will be times when Taylor is in play, just not this game.
RUNNING BACK, AUSTIN EKELER, START: It is disheartening from a fantasy football perspective to know that head coach Anthony Lynn has stated that Ekeler will receive much less targets in the passing game. It is even more disheartening that it came true.
Ekeler did have 19 carries and 84 yards but he was only good for 8.7 fantasy points in standard leagues and 9.7 fantasy points in PPR (compared to week one last year where he had 13.8 standard and 19.6 PPR) it is a downgrade. That and he apparently is giving up goal-line carries to Joshua Kelley.
There is some hope. The game script is one that: a) you want to keep the Chiefs off the field so RUN and/or b) down behind the explosive offense that is the Chiefs necessitates the ball being thrown by the Chargers, a lot. Either scenario looks good for Ekeler remaining on the field. And everyone knows the best friend to fantasy is opportunity.
RUNNING BACK, JOSHUA KELLEY, SIT: Having talked up Kelley’s short-yardage and goal-line potential it is odd that he is a sit? Kelley was on the field for only 18 offensive snaps. He did well. And you should definitely pick him up and stash for a better match-up. But this is a game where Kelley’s usage is dependent on not only game script, but the health of Justin Jackson. If Jackson is once again ruled out, Kelley’s flex appeal has a little more positive juice…but only slightly more. There are better options for this week.
WIDE RECEIVER, KEENAN ALLEN, START: Allen was underwhelming in week one. He had eight targets, four receptions, and 37 yards. The good news is that Taylor appeared to target Allen whenever he was looking for first down yardage. There should be plenty of that this game.
WIDE RECEIVER, MIKE WILLIAMS, START: Williams was a surprise start week one. He finished the game with nine targets, four receptions, and 69 yards. What is more beneficial is that Williams had the fifth most air yards for wide receivers in week one. He is Taylor’s deep threat. In a game that has the potential of 48 total points and the Chargers a decided underdog, having a reliable deep threat option is good.
TIGHT END, HUNTER HENRY, START: There is a trend here, any pass-catchers or potential pass catchers for the Chargers are a start this week. Hunter is especially so, having scored 14.05 average fantasy points against the Chiefs last season. Add that the Chiefs allowed nine targets per game to the tight end position last season; and they allowed Houston Texans’ Jordan Akins 11.9 fantasy points in their match-up week one.
DEFENSE: This is a sit or start depending on how your league scores defenses. In one league I had to sit the Chargers defense because the points that are subtracted for opponents touchdowns. If your league values sacks, quarterback hits, and takeaways, this defense is always a start.
Good Luck and come talk at me on Twitter @neverenoughglt