There are a lot of big fantasy questions after just two weeks this year, and there are the annual surprises. Usually, after Week Two, quick-trigger owners start making decisions they regret by Week Eight.
To start 2009, there are a lot of receivers that are raising eyebrows in the NFL, and some that are disappointing. There are a couple that are falling off fantasy rosters, and two that are being swept up, that are all moves that are clearly symptoms of widespread fantasy panic.
Slow your roll, owners.
Let's take a look at some one-time fantasy sleeper receivers, and some hot new names, and some reasons why an owner shouldn't jump on, or off, the bandwagon just yet.
BUY? Mario Manningham, New York Giants
Though two weeks, Manningham has 13 receptions for 208 yards and two touchdowns. He currently ranks third in the NFL in receiving yards, trailing Carolina's Steve Smith and Pittsburgh's Santonio Holmes by only six yards.
Let's not be too excited to jump all over this bandwagon, though. The Giants are, and will continue to be a running football team. Just because Manningham caught ten balls against the Cowboys doesn't mean Brandon Jacobs has lost all of his fantasy value, and that the G-Men are going to become the Arizona Cardinals.
Manningham might develop into Eli Manning's number one option, and produced well as the go-to receiver at Michigan in college. But when the temperature drops on the Jersey shore and the balls get heavier, it's going to be Jacobs, not Manningham, that are scoring fantasy points.
Slow your roll.
SELL? Bernard Berrian, Minnesota Vikings
So many owners assumed Berrian was going to have an enormous season catching balls from Brett Favre that his draft status was probably inflated too much coming into this season.
But now, after two weeks that have been full of Adrian Peterson and Percy Harvin, Berrian has lost some of the love that had him going too high in drafts. With only six catches for 46 yards and no touchdowns, owners are unloading Berrian with regularity.
Looking down the stretch, though, there are a few thoughts that should give Berrian owners pause before clicking the dump button. Traditionally, rookie receivers slow down in December, which would theoretically effect Harvin in time for fantasy playoffs. The other reality is that the Vikings still have games against teams (St. Louis, Chicago, Detroit) that should give Berrian opportunity for a big day.
Slow your roll.
BUY? Johnny Knox, Chicago Bears
Much like the Giants, the Bears entered this season looking for a number one receiver (except the Bears weren't sending theirs to jail; they didn't have one). After two weeks, lots of fans and members of the Chicago media are ready to name Knox the man in Jay Cutler's offense.
Just like Manningham in Dallas, Knox had a big second week for fantasy owners (or the waiver wire, as is mostly the case for him). Certainly the Bears were looking to not only exploit a Pittsburgh secondary that was without Troy Polamalu, but also wanted Cutler to look better in the home opener than he did in Green Bay seven days prior.
Knox is undeniably fast; he ran the third fastest time at this year's combine. And his hands have been impressive thus far in traffic as well. There is certainly an upside to Knox looking forward in Chicago.
But the Bears, like the Giants, are a running team. They haven't been able to get Matt Forte off this year, but should have plenty of opportunities with games against Seattle and Detroit coming up. An owner also needs to consider that Cutler looked at Earl Bennett 14 times in the opener, and then turned his attention to Knox this week. What's to say Greg Olsen or Devin Hester won't get a week or two with their number on Cutler's speed dial?
Slow your roll.
SELL? Nate Washington, Tennessee Titans
Washington was a trendy sleeper coming into this season after getting some money thrown at him by the Titans to be their number one receiver. He had a productive, albeit limited, statistical career in Pittsburgh, but gave indications that he was ready to take that next step.
After two games, Washington has only five catches for 44 yards and one touchdown, though. There are a lot of fantasy owners that are trying to trade Washington right now, and many that are willing to just dump him to waivers if they can replace him with someone like Knox or Manningham.
The reality for the Titans is that they are going to continue running the ball. With Chris Johnson and LenDale White being an effective tandem still, there will be plenty or runs called for them. But Kerry Collins wasn't retained because he hands the ball off well. If the ball is going to be in the air, which it will be considering the Titans' schedule, the best bets on this offense to gain fantasy value over the coming weeks are Washington and tight end Bo Scaife.
Slow your roll.