Arizona Cardinals running back and consensus No. 1 fantasy player David Johnson’s wrist injury after one week, which could keep him out for most of the season, is a tough blow to any fantasy team. Below are four running backs to target as potential replacements.
▪ Johnson’s injury leaves Kerwynn Williams (Arizona) to draw the start this week. The matchup at Indianapolis is attractive. (Keep in mind that recently signed Chris Johnson could end up being the better long-term option for the Cardinals – and you).
▪ Tarik Cohen (Chicago) was explosive in Week 1, and he looks primed to be a major asset in the Bears’ offense. Jordan Howard’s stock took a hit with Cohen’s usage and play. Cohen had 47 more yards than Howard on three fewer touches.
▪ With Doug Martin suspended, Jacquizz Rodgers (Tampa Bay) should be a solid plug this week. In five games last season when Rodgers received a starter’s workload, he averaged 105.4 yards per game.
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▪ Javorius Allen (Baltimore) got a surprising 21 carries last week, and he should be busy again this week against Cleveland with Danny Woodhead (hamstring) out for several weeks. Teammate Michael Campanaro also would be a sneaky roster addition as he could ultimately replace Woodhead.
A couple of other things to know for Week 2:
▪ It’s hard to believe, but Tom Brady (New England) is dead last in quarterback completion percentage (44 percent) after one week. You have to imagine he will right the ship this week off the poor week and loss to Kansas City, especially against a porous Saints defense. A long score to Brandin Cooks, who is facing his old team, seems like a good possibility.
▪ Jimmy Graham (Seattle) comes off a disappointing 8-yard game, but he should bounce back strong this week at home against the 49ers. Last year Graham collected a 100-yard game and a score against the 49ers at home.
▪ Matt Ryan (Atlanta), in his past three games against the Packers (including last year’s playoff game), averages 351.7 passing yards and 3.7 TDs per game. This game has major shootout potential.
▪ Look for another productive game from Ty Montgomery (Green Bay), who played in 90 percent of the Packers’ Week 1 snaps. Montgomery looks locked in as the main back for the Packers, though you have to wonder if that workload can continue. Montgomery has battled ankle injuries in the past.
▪ Tyreek Hill (Kansas City) provides big-play opportunity, having scored a touchdown of 60 yards or longer in five consecutive games, an NFL record. Maybe he makes it six games in a row as the Philadelphia corners can be beaten, especially after losing starter Ronald Darby last week.
▪ It was quietly a very productive week for rookie Corey Davis (Tennessee) who led the Titans with 10 targets in Week 1. The Jacksonville defense looks suddenly formidable, but Davis remains a strong start.
▪ Tyrell Williams (L.A. Chargers) is a good option to get in the end zone this week. Quarterback Philip Rivers threw for three touchdowns when these two teams met last year, including one to Williams, who roasted the Dolphins for 125 yards.
▪ Kirk Cousins (Washington) should be an avoid again this week on the road against a stout Rams defense. You would think Rams head coach (and former Washington offensive coordinator) Sean McVay would have some inside knowledge of Cousins’ weaknesses.
▪ Paul Perkins (N.Y. Giants) had an ugly 2.3-yard average on seven rushing attempts in Week 1. Things should be better at home against Detroit, perhaps with Odell Beckham Jr. back to spark the offense, but Perkins has little appeal.
▪ Dez Bryant (Dallas) had two receptions in Week 1 and could have another below-average game this week against a tough secondary at Denver. It wouldn’t be crazy to bench him.
▪ Sammy Watkins’ (L.A. Rams) stock looks firmer after the team’s impressive win last week and a 300-yard passing day from quarterback Jared Goff. Watkins drops in the rankings, though, as he likely deals with Washington CB Josh Norman.
Alan Satterlee is in his fourth year of writing about fantasy football for The Charlotte Observer. Find him on Twitter at @Speedkills_DFW.