By Jeff Hicks, 4for4
Special to Yahoo Sports
Schedule-adjusted fantasy points allowed, or aFPA, is 4for4’s answer to biased statistics. By removing bias, we can level the playing field and compare matchups in an "apples-to-apples" manner. As the season moves along, the data will change. Once we reach Week 4 we will have an initial data set to work with, and at Week 12 the data will be a 10-week rolling set.
Until Week 4, this weekly article will focus on the best plays without aFPA as it marinates. Here are Week 2’s best matchups.
Jared Goff vs. Washington Commanders
A mix of competent coaching and increased offensive talent helped the Lions stay competitive against an excellent Eagles defense in Week 1. 215 pass yards on 37 attempts is not efficient, but a smart mix of D'Andre Swift, Amon-Ra St. Brown, D.J. Chark and co. will offer the ability to change that. Trevor Lawrence finished Week 1 with 6.55 yards per attempt and 11.46 yards per reception. That would be a bump from Goff’s Week 1 performance. Credit to the Lions offensive line for also battling against a tough Eagles front four. Their matchup this week is easier.
Darrell Henderson vs. Atlanta Falcons
Henderson out-snapped Cam Akers 54-12 and out-touched him 18-3 in Week 1. That wasn’t just game script, either. Rams head coach Sean McVay said after their loss that Akers needs more urgency, and it showed in how he ran compared to Henderson. The Falcons travel to Los Angeles this week. They allowed 141 total rushing yards to three different Saints players (including Taysom Hill), and while trickery is Hill’s schtick, Henderson has the explosiveness to break off chunk runs and allow the Rams offense to tenderize the Falcons' defense.
Julio Jones @ New Orleans Saints
Chris Godwin is out for Week 2 (and beyond), which is a positive for the free-agent signee Jones. A slow start/absence from Godwin was the reason Jones was brought in to begin with. Tampa travels to New Orleans to face a secondary that was challenged by Atlanta to start the season. The second and third options for the Falcons combined for seven receptions and 87 yards.
Russell Gage and Jones are better than Olamide Zaccheus and KhaDarel Hodge and will be in a position to top those numbers. Jones also was targeted more than Gage despite the latter getting a nice payday. It was clear the Buccaneers struggled in Week 1 but should be in a better position in Week 2 in an already important divisional matchup.
Juwan Johnson vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
On the other side of the field in this game, Juwan Johnson surprised in the season lid lifter. Taysom Hill ran for glory, but Johnson was the clear pass-catching tight end. Johnson ran the most routes amongst the trio of Saints tight ends and get a defense that allowed Dalton Schultz to finish with a 7/62 line despite being one of the obvious players to give more attention to in the Cowboys offense.
With so many passing options for the Bucs to pay attention to, Johnson could be in for another good day.
Miles Sanders vs. Minnesota Vikings
As good as the Vikings were in shutting down Packers receivers in Week 1, they allowed the Packers backfield to dominate (despite the outcome). Aaron Jones and A.J. Dillon combined for 23 total touches and for 174 yards. Sanders has 100-plus total yards once again in his range of outcomes in Week 2, even with Jalen Hurts running wild and Kenneth Gainwell a distant RB2. The Vikings' defense has improved, but their Week 1 performance was more the exception than the rule, as we’ll find out during this season.
Trey Lance vs. Seahawks
Matt Ryan at Jaguars
Josh Jacobs vs. Cardinals
Patriots RBs at Steelers
Jahan Dotson at Lions
Robbie Anderson at Giants
Steelers WRs vs. Patriots
Dalton Schultz vs. Bengals
Tyler Conklin at Browns
Jeff has played fantasy sports since 2001. He has covered fantasy and traditional sports at the pro, semi-pro, and amateur level for the better part of a decade. Born in Illinois and currently living where James Robinson made a name for himself in college, Jeff enjoys running (establish it), followed by doing absolutely nothing.
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