Week 2 Lineup calls: Quarterback's top starts, sleepers and flops

BY foxsports • September 17, 2010

Lineup calls: QB | RB | WR | TE | K | D/ST

The first week of the NFL season yielded a mixed bag of fantasy production from the quarterback position.

We watched David Garrard rank among the week’s leaders with a three-touchdown effort against the Broncos. Peyton Manning and Carson Palmer posted huge fantasy numbers, but fans anticipating romps toward and AFC Championship showdown were left scratching their heads.

Young guns Matthew Stafford and Kevin Kolb were injured in their matchups against the Bears and Packers, respectively. Stafford’s backup, Shaun Hill, struggled markedly before that final controversial toss to Calvin Johnson. Kolb tried to shake off a barrage of hits from the Packers while watching Michael Vick reclaim some past glory.

That’s where I begin the second round of “Lineup Calls.” Vick likely gets his shot at an injured and porous Detroit secondary.

Top 10 Quarterbacks

Quarterback Sleepers

Jason Campbell vs. St. Louis

There were times last week when I wondered aloud whether I’d missed the re-signing of JaMarcus Russell. Campbell failed to leave a good impression in the opening drubbing against the Titans. I’m cautiously optimistic that he finds more success against the Rams. Despite his shaky accuracy, Derek Anderson still put up nearly 300 yards against this squad in Week 1. Campbell should find space to work the ball to Louis Murphy, Zach Miller and company over the middle.

Matt Cassel at Cleveland

I don’t know that there was much to see in the Week 1 win over San Diego. The weather certainly didn’t help matters, and Cassel finished with a paltry 68 passing yards. Dwayne Bowe and Chris Chambers barely registered in the box score (you don’t get points for Bowe’s block on the Jamaal Charles sprint to daylight). We saw Josh Freeman succeed against this defense last week, and Cassel should be aided in field position by Romeo Crennel’s unit against Jake Delhomme or Seneca Wallace.

Chad Henne at Minnesota

Henne guided the Dolphins to a Week 1 win and avoided costly turnovers against a solid Buffalo secondary. He’ll certainly have his hands full with the Minnesota defensive front, but a solid effort from his offensive line should open opportunities downfield. I’m expecting Henne’s timing with Brandon Marshall to improve in short order (they did connect eight times last week) and for Davone Bess and Anthony Fasano to effectively work the middle of the field.


Quarterback Flops

Carson Palmer vs. Baltimore

Palmer looked shaky early, but finished with a fantastic fantasy effort against the Patriots in garbage time. He faces another difficult test this week against the Ravens, and the secondary that we’ve questioned this preseason will certain be in the spotlight (Mark Sanchez certainly didn’t show us anything). Palmer rates no better than a QB2 this week. The potential is there for production given his receiving corps, but I’m not betting against the run defense that puts Palmer in bad situations against Ray Lewis and Terrell Suggs.

Vince Young vs. Pittsburgh

Young posted a phenomenal first game against the Raiders (repeat the last three words back to yourself for a second), but this is a different beast. He’ll square off with a Pittsburgh defense that effectively shut down the Atlanta offense, containing Turner and keeping Ryan out of the end zone. I’m certainly not insinuating that the Steelers shut down Chris Johnson in the same fashion, but Troy Polamalu, Aaron Smith and company should slow the passing attack. Fantasy owners looking to start Young have to bank on him posting a big rushing total.

Alex Smith vs. New Orleans

I was excited about the potential of the San Francisco offense coming into 2010. After watching last week’s disaster against Seattle (I’m taking up a collection for new electronics), I’m a little scared. New Orleans flew around against Brett Favre in Week 1, though Favre’s issues with the receiving corps clearly were as much to blame as the Saints defense. Still, I need to sit back and watch this unit in action for another week before Smith creeps back into contention for an “active” slot.