As exciting as the first NFL Sunday was after the long offseason, there's always some anticipation remaining for Monday night. Monday night is when prime time football really takes the stage. It feels like an encore but can oftentimes prove to be the headliner. For fantasy football owners, it serves as a night to grasp at any chance to win their week or an extra nail in the coffin as you stand proud in your Sunday dominance.
Either way, there are two Monday Night Football games to enjoy in Week 1. Let's take a look at what we can expect in fantasy football.
Michael Vick, QB: It feels like ages since Vick has been in starting QB discussions for fantasy football. He's a fringe top ten fantasy quarterback for Week 1 and could certainly be in 12-team league discussions. Many people drafted Vick as a streaming option for weekly match ups. If you drafted Vick as your QB1, it's time to start him until he gives you reason not to.
Desean Jackson, WR: Jackson should at least be considered a starter in leagues that roster three wide receivers. Jackson is always capable of a big play, and Washington's defense allowed its share of big plays last year. As long as Michael Vick stay healthy, Jackson is typically a strong WR3 option.
Lesean McCoy, WR: Of course McCoy should be started in 100 percent of leagues on Monday night. At this point, it's just a matter of how much production he'll offer. McCoy has operated well with Chip Kelly's up-tempo offense in preseason, and he's easily in the discussion as a top-five fantasy running back in Week 1.
Brent Celek, TE: Celek is certainly worth keeping an eye on this week. Washington was very generous to opposing tight ends last season as they allowed the most fantasy points. Coming off a very productive preseason, Celek tops the depth chart at his position and should see his share of targets on Monday. If anything, put Celek on your watch list. He's owned in only 18 percent of Yahoo! leagues.
Eagles Defense/ Special teams: Steer clear of Philadelphia's defense in Week 1. Any defense facing the Redskins is in for a tough battle. Washington allowed the second fewest points to team defenses in 2012. Philadelphia's defense is owned in only two percent of Yahoo! leagues, so it's doubtful many of you are losing sleep over this decision.
Robert Griffin III, QB: We've questioned how much Washington will limit Griffin's designed runs all offseason. Because Griffin may default to the pocket more often and because of his lack of preseason reps, it's likely you drafted him at proper value. Now it's time to start Griffin. He should have a good outing against the Eagles defense regardless of his rushing totals. Eliminate RG3's rushing production against the Eagles in 2012, and he's still putting up strong QB1 numbers.
Pierre Garcon, WR: He's finally healthy and facing a defense that hovered within the top-ten of points allowed to fantasy wide receivers. When Garcon is on the field, he's RG3's No. 1 target. The concern here is Garcon's lack of touchdowns against the Eagles in both contests last year. Regardless, he's a strong WR2 play this week.
Alfred Morris, RB: Morris ran for a total of 167 yards against the Eagles in 2012. He has both a rushing and receiving touchdown against Philly's D in two games. Expect top 10 numbers for Morris against a Philadelphia defense that has appeared porous both in the secondary and at the line. If Washington gets a healthy lead around halftime, Morris could easily put up top-three RB production.
Fred Davis, TE: Davis could finally have a breakout season after dealing with a torn achilles last season. However, Davis' potential doesn't necessarily warrant a start on Monday night. Take a "wait-and-see" approach with Davis. Even though he's owned in the majority of Yahoo! leagues (87 percent), he wasn't drafted until double-digit rounds by many. His late round value is great, but he's a risky start in Week 1. Start a safer option, and hope that Davis plays healthy moving forward.
Redskins Defense/ Special teams: Washington's output will rely on turnovers from Philadelphia's offense. Vick threw ten interceptions in as many games started last season. We have yet to see how lethal Chip Kelly's offense will be and how it will protect the ball in Vick's hands. The Redskins should have around a top-15 defense simply because of Vick's penchant for tossing a few passes into the hands of opponents. Regardless, there should be better options in most leagues.