Week 1 Observations

I don't want to read too much into Week 1 as there's so much variance in 60 minutes of football, and teams are still just getting in sync. In fact, you might be better off approaching Week 2 as if Week 1 never happened. That said, there are a few things that struck me.

  • There's no quarterback who should even have been drafted in the same round as Drew Brees. Brees is the Steve Nash (in his prime) of the NFL, and Sean Payton is Mike D'Antoni. You can also start any Saints receiver with the reasonable expectation of a touchdown catch. And Jeremy Shockey could be a top-5 TE for as long as he's healthy. Pierre Thomas when healthy should be Shawn Marion - a decent player who could be a monster in that system. There's no Amar'e Stoudemire as none of the Saints skill players besides Brees is anything special.

  • Maurice Jones-Drew got all the carries Sunday - maybe he really will be the 300-carry, 50-catch guy that merited his No. 2 ADP.

  • Jones-Drew's solid game notwithstanding, Adrian Peterson is on another planet from the rest of the first-round running backs.

  • Willis McGahee is not washed up and will be in the mix for as long as he stays healthy, and Le'Ron McClain will vulture some goal-line carries.

  • LenDale White and Larry Johnson both slimmed down and look a lot quicker. Nevermind their meager stats as both faced terrible match-ups in Week 1.

  • Ahmad Bradshaw will see just as significant a role as Derrick Ward did for the Giants last year.

  • Jake Delhomme is the Brad Lidge of quarterbacks - still shellshocked from last year's playoffs, and capable of huge swings in performance.

  • This is why I was touting Tim Hightower so highly in PPR leagues (12 for 121). Seriously, it might not be a complete fluke if teams blanket Fitzgerald all year and leave the flat open.

  • Joe Flacco could be a Pro Bowl-level quarterback this year if the defense takes a step back. Of course, he'll never actually make the Pro Bowl with Manning, Brady, Rivers and Roethlisberger in his conference.

  • Brodie Croyle, who had a good camp, played very well in Baltimore. You have to wonder if the Chiefs are already regretting the Matt Cassel trade/signing.

  • Tony Romo can sling the ball downfield, with or without T.O. It remains to be seen whether Roy Williams emerges as a true No. 1, or Dallas spreads it around more or less unpredictably week to week.

  • Brady Quinn averaged less than 10 yards per completion and six per attempt. Braylon Edwards had just five targets - he should be getting closer to 10, though he did have a long TD called back. I'd prefer Derek Anderson to Quinn, but it's just one game, so I'll withhold judgment for now.

  • Tight end is incredibly deep this year with the usual suspects (Tony Gonzalez, Antonio Gates, Jason Witten, Dallas Clark, Chris Cooley, Kellen Winslow) and rising stars (Dustin Keller - 94 yards, John Carlson - 95 yards, 2 TD, Zach Miller and Greg Olsen) as well as solid options like Visanthe Shiancoe, Kevin Boss, Brent Celek, Owen Daniels and Heath Miller. And it looks like Todd Heap and Shockey are back from the dead - at least for now.

  • Cadillac Williams had 13 carries for 97 yards and a touchdown, but I'd still rather have Derrick Ward (12 carries, 62 yards, TD, two catches for 21 yards) as Williams is still a major risk to get hurt or wear down.

  • Leon Washington's 15 carries and four catches bode very well, as does Mark Sanchez's strong showing. Thomas Jones should still be the primary between the tackles guy - but he and not Washington could lose carries to Shonn Greene eventually. It remains to be seen how effective Washington will be when taking 20 hits a game instead of 10.

  • Most of the top backs did very little Sunday from Steven Jackson to DeAngelo Williams, Michael Turner, Brandon Jacobs, Matt Forte, Brian Westbrook, Frank Gore and Steve Slaton. Gore had two TDs, but he had very little room to run, and he's never been a reliable source of touchdowns before. Give it 2-3 more weeks before you panic, but at least three of these guys will disappoint you severely.

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