Antonio Brown is a no-brainer every time he takes the field, as we saw him turn a matchup against Josh Norman and Bashaud Breeland into an 8/126/2 line while mostly working against the latter. Ben Roethlisberger didn’t need Martavis Bryant, Markus Wheaton or Le’Veon Bell to post 300 yards and three touchdowns, and that ceiling remains even against a sturdy Bengals defensive unit. He can be considered a low-end QB1 for Week 2.
DeAngelo Williams continues to be a revelation in the twilight of his career, scoring more fantasy points than any other running back in Week 1. His 171 yards and pair of touchdowns showcase his ceiling, but his floor is high as well, as the Steelers have given him nearly 24 touches per game without Bell in the backfield in games dating back to 2015. Fantasy owners who invested in Williams better get their money’s worth before Bell returns in Week 4 because Williams’ current RB1 value will plummet once he does.
Eli Rogers had a nice debut on Sunday, catching six of seven targets for 59 yards and a touchdown that bounced off the hands of another receiver. Maybe things won’t always go Rogers’ way, and it’s also fair to question his productivity upon Wheaton’s return. The same could be said for Jesse James, who also had seven targets in Wheaton’s absence and had a sure touchdown batted away by David Bruton Jr. Fantasy owners would be advised to look elsewhere for receivers and tight ends in Week 2.
A.J. Green could be Brown’s biggest competition to lead all receivers in fantasy points this season, and his performance in Week 1 indicated as much. Green was force-fed targets, finishing with a robust 12/180/1 line with Tyler Eifert out of the lineup. It’s not unreasonable to assume that trend will continue. Fantasy owners don’t have to give a second thought to inserting him into lineups.
Though the Steelers’ secondary has gotten off to a good start in 2016, its run defense is much more to be reckoned with. After ranking fifth in rushing yards allowed in 2015, the Steelers continued to dominate by allowing just 55 to Washington on Monday night. Jeremy Hill and Gio Bernard can be considered boom-or-bust flex options who likely need to find the end zone to have any fantasy relevance for Week 2.
Brandon LaFell made the most of his four targets in his Bengals’ debut, turning them all into catches and totaling 91 yards. He will need more than four targets to cash in for his fantasy owners, but if the Steelers can somehow force Andy Dalton to look elsewhere than Green, LaFell could provide decent flex value.
Fantasy owners can likely find better options at quarterback than Dalton, due to the lack of supporting cast surrounding Green.