Week 2 Fantasy Football Target Report

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Now that Week 2 is wrapped up, we finally have a valuable fantasy tool for the first time this season: trends. It may be a small sample size, but with two games in the books, we can use target trends and start to glean how teams intend to feature the players in their offenses. Here are the most noteworthy target performances of Week 2. 

Zach Ertz: 16 targets, 8 rec

Ertz was the top target of Week 2 and it really shouldn’t be very surprising. After all, he did set the NFL record for targets to a tight end in 2018. It seemed like it might be a different story this season after he only saw seven targets in Week 1, but with Alshon Jeffery and DeSean Jackson exiting early in the game with injuries Ertz once again became the focal point of the offense. If Jeffery and/or Jackson miss extended time, Ertz will continue to be peppered with targets. 

It should also be noted that Nelson Agholor saw a healthy 11 targets and will be a top waiver option if Jeffery and Jackson are out for any amount of time.

Keenan Allen: 15 targets, 8 rec

It’s pretty obvious that with Hunter Henry injured and Melvin Gordon still holding out, Keenan Allen is the focal point of the Chargers offense. Through the first two games of the season, he has a 35.7% target share and is on pace for 200 targets. On top of that, he’s also leading the league with 329 air yards through the first two games. With the current state of the Chargers, there’s no reason to think he won’t keep up that pace for the foreseeable future.

Marquise Brown: 13 targets, 8 rec

After Week 1 it was tough to gauge how trustworthy Brown would be in the Ravens offense, given that he only saw five targets on limited snaps in the debut. Those concerns were put to rest in Week 2 when Hollywood led Baltimore with 13 targets and was on the field for 65% of the Ravens offensive snaps. If you didn’t add him to your roster last week, you’re probably out of luck. His heavy involvement and big-play ability make him one of the most exciting fantasy players to own in 2019. 

Tyler Lockett: 12 targets, 10 rec

While Lockett didn’t find the end zone in Week 2, his performance should still be considered reassuring. The target volume was one of the main concerns for Lockett headed into the season. He had never seen double-digit targets in any game of his four-year career and only logged two in Week 1, so the 12 targets this week were a welcomed sight for his fantasy owners. Seattle still wants to be a run-heavy team, but it appears Lockett will be the target hog when they do need to pass. 

DJ Chark: 9 targets, 7 rec

How the Jaguars receiving corps would shake out in 2019 was one of the biggest unknowns for fantasy football this offseason. In the first game started by Gardner “Secret Garden” Minshew, Chark easily led the way with nine targets, converting them into seven catches for 55(!) yards and a touchdown. The Jaguars spent a second-round draft pick on the uber-athletic Chark in 2018 and if he continues to be Minshew’s favorite target, he’ll be worthy of fantasy attention.

Royce Freeman: 7 targets, 5 rec

Phillip Lindsay is touted as the pass-catching back in Denver, but Freeman and Lindsay saw the same number of targets against the Bears. Not only that, but Freeman was more productive with his targets, logging more receptions and receiving yards. Freeman was a solid receiving option during his college days at Oregon, and if he continues to gain more work in the Broncos passing game he’ll be the back to own in Denver. 

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T.J. Hockenson: 3 targets, 1 rec

After lighting the fantasy world on fire in Week 1, Hockenson’s coming-out party was doused with cold water in Week 2. He was even out-targeted by teammate Jesse James, who saw three targets for 18 yards. Hockenson is a big athletic target and is sure to have some more nice fantasy weeks this season, but he’ll also have plenty of games where he frustratingly disappears, as rookie tight ends typically do.

Rober Woods: 2 targets, 2 rec

Woods’ practical disappearing act on Sunday was one of the biggest letdowns of the young fantasy season. However, if you go back and check the tape, he was just a few penalty flags from a more useful fantasy output. He had a hard-to-believe five targets nullified by penalties, which would have resulted in three more receptions for an additional 39 yards and a touchdown. It was a frustrating week for Woods, but don’t hesitate to keep him in your lineup next week. 

David Johnson: 1 target, 1 rec

Things were looking up for Johnson in Week 1 when he saw seven targets and brought in a touchdown reception. Those high hopes came crashing down in Week 2. He only saw one target despite Kyler Murray chucking the ball 40 times. He did miss part of the game as he had his wrist checked, but was able to return. Hopefully, for fantasy owners, this is just a temporary dip and not a sign of things to come in Arizona’s air raid offense.

O.J. Howard: 0 targets, 0 rec

It’s officially time to panic on O.J. Howard. Pegged as an offseason breakout candidate by many, the athletic tight end has not been heavily used in Bruce Arians and Byron Leftwich’s version of offense in Tampa Bay. In fact, he was completely ignored in the passing game, despite being on the field for 92% of the offensive snaps Thursday night. Fellow Buccaneer tight end Cameron Brate was targeted twice in Thursday’s game, adding even more concern for Howard owners.

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