Week 2 around the NFL was something we have never seen before. It is hard to remember the last time so many premier players — including fantasy football players — were forced to leave their games due to an injury. The news came out about Saquon Barkley suffering a torn ACL on Monday. Other names like Nick Bosa and Christian McCaffrey are expected to miss time.
These injuries will impact the teams on the field and your fantasy football teams at home. The quarterback position did not survive Week 2 without any injuries. Jimmy Garoppolo suffered a high ankle sprain and is questionable for next week. Tyrod Taylor was forced to miss Sunday’s game with a chest injury while Drew Lock will be out two to six weeks with a sprained AC joint.
Fantasy football managers will immediately head to the waiver wire after a crazy week like the one we just saw. When searching the quarterback position, here are some options to consider.
5. Philip Rivers, Indianapolis Colts
This is a fantasy football matchup play entering Week 3.
Philip Rivers is not the fantasy football option that he used to be throughout his career with the then San Diego Chargers. The Colts will host the New York Jets on Sunday which makes for a good matchup for Rivers.
Against the Minnesota Vikings in Week 2, Rivers threw for 214 yards with one touchdown and one interception. That made it three interceptions over his first two games in Indianapolis. That is a trend that is going to continue but he also put up 363 yards and a touchdown in the opener. The Jets have not been able to put anything together on either side of the ball which means it could be a big day for Rivers.
This is not to say that Rivers should be trusted as a fantasy football starter for the remainder of the season but if your quarterback is hurt, Rivers is a name to remember.
4. Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans
There were still some nonbelievers in Tannehill entering the 2020 season. It could have been because of his days in Miami. It could have been because of his massive four-year, $118 million contract. Whatever the reason was, it is getting hard to stay on that train after two weeks.
The fact remains that Tannehill has the Titans playing some good football. They are 2-0 after a 33-30 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars. In this win, Tannehill finished with 239 yards and four touchdowns. This put him at 488 yards on the season with six touchdowns and no turnovers. Tannehill is completing 70.1% of his passes early on in the season.
The Titans seem to have found something. Tannehill has completely resurrected his career in Tennessee and has plenty of help in the run game with Derrick Henry. If he is not owned in your league, he will be soon.
3. Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers
Taylor was a pregame scratch for the Chargers which allowed Herbert to make his professional debut. Head coach Anthony Lynn said after the game that Taylor is the starter when healthy, but that might not be the case if Herbert keeps performing like he did on Sunday. Taylor is currently week-to-week.
Herbert finished 22-33 for 311 yards and a touchdown in an overtime loss to the Kansas City Chiefs. He also ran for a touchdown and threw one interception. Herbert is an intriguing fantasy add this week, especially for leagues that allow two quarterbacks in the starting lineup. Los Angeles is a team with some dynamic skill position players such as Keenan Allen, Hunter Henry, and Austin Ekeler. There is some talent for Herbert to work with both on the outside and in the backfield.
It is hard to imagine that Herbert will go back to the bench and if he does, it will be for a short period of time. The Chargers are a rebuilding team and it begins with their young quarterback. In his first game, he showed that he is capable of putting up good numbers.
2. Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals
Burrow was on full display during the Thursday night game in Week 2. The No. 1 overall pick showed poise and growth from his debut to his second game in the league. Of course, the Cleveland Browns do not have the strongest defense in the league, but fantasy football numbers do not lie.
Burrow finished with 316 yards and three touchdowns in a losing effort. He did not throw an interception but did lose a fumble deep in his own territory. Burrow logged a 90.6 quarterback rating for his performance. The Bengals will be facing a Philadelphia Eagle team that allowed Jared Goff to get comfortable early in Week 2. The Los Angeles Rams scored 37 points and Goff threw for 267 yards and three touchdowns with just seven incompletions.
The Bengals are going to be trailing in most games, we know that. As the season progresses, they will gain more and more trust in their rookie quarterback and he will improve. This will lead to bigger numbers both through the air and on the ground. If Burrow is not owned already, he is a good option to have on your bench in the case of injury or to start in a favorable fantasy football matchup such as this one.
1. Gardner Minshew, Jacksonville Jaguars
Minshew and the Jaguars had plenty of skeptics surrounding them entering the season and rightfully so. This is a team that was expected to be the worst in football by a wide margin. That has not been the case through two games and it is because of the play of Minshew.
In Week 1, Minshew played an incredible game but did not see enough volume by a fantasy football standard. In Week 2 against the Titans, Minshew threw the ball 45 times and finished with 339 yards and three touchdowns. He turned the ball over twice but it looks as though the Jaguars will be throwing the ball a lot thanks to their trust in Minshew. Also because they could be trailing in some games moving forward.
The decision making and production we have seen from Minshew has been very good. Who knows if the 2021 season will have Trevor Lawrence or Justin Fields in a Jaguars’ uniform, but as for 2020, Minshew is off to a hot fantasy football start.