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Miami’s Howard Limits Bateman’s Ceiling

Rashod Bateman
Rashod Bateman at Ravens OTAs (Photo Credit: Shawn Hubbard, Baltimore Ravens)
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With Week 1 in the books, the Ravens are 1-0. It wasn’t pretty at first, but hey, that isn’t how we play in Baltimore. After the Ravens were able to establish some rhythm, an initially concerning performance turned into a trampling of the Jets, as everyone expected. Although Joe Flacco was wearing green instead of purple, it was still heartwarming to watch him reunite with his former coaches and teammates. The love is clearly  still mutual between Baltimore and our former Super Bowl MVP!

Tuning into the fantasy takeaways from this game, there were plenty! But first, we need to give credit to the Ravens’ #2 receiver, Devin Duvernay! This man balled out and put some respect on the Ravens receiver corps name. His first TD along the corner of the end zone was nothing short of spectacular. If you’re from Baltimore, you already knew that Duvernay got that dog in him. And now the rest of the league is on notice.

We hit on all our Ravens/Jets picks in week 1 (excluding JK Dobbins, who was inactive). Corey Davis ended up being the Jets #1 receiver on the day, even without a deep catch or a touchdown. That is a player worth keeping your eyes on in deeper leagues. Breece Hall ended up having an okay game, but Michael Carter was the clear winner in the Jets backfield. Rashod Bateman had a slow day until Lamar Jackson dropped an absolute dime deep downfield to him for a walk-in touchdown. In Bateman’s defense though, the Jets DBs played better than many of us expected initially.

Across the league, our sleeper picks definitely did not meet expectations, but that is the struggle in Week 1. Going into the new season, there is always cloudiness and uncertainty regarding how new teams, schemes and coaches will utilize their playbook and players. On a brighter note, we hit almost all of our fire/ice picks! Aaron Rodgers had one of the most horrific stat lines of his career against a porous Vikings defense. Amari Cooper and Mike Gesicki were just total garbage. To top it off, D’Andre Swift & Jalen Hurts both had career days and look to be on the verge of breakout seasons.

Now, let’s get into this week’s plays!

Ravens – Dolphins Fantasy Outlook

Start ‘Em Sit ‘Em

Start ‘Em

Mark Andrews

Mark Andrews is a clear start every week, but I expect a big game from him here. The Dolphins defense is undoubtedly a tougher matchup than the Jets were. With Xavien Howard likely shadowing Bateman for most of the game, Andrews will be getting peppered with targets, especially down the middle of the field. Andrews will also be seeing mismatched coverage often throughout the game, as there is no one on the Dolphins defense that can contain a TE with the speed and power that Andrews possesses. This game will be tight going into the 4th quarter and the game script works in Andrews favor.

Chase Edmond

Chase Edmonds is coming off of a very average performance against the Patriots, taking 12 rushes for just 25 yards and catching all four of his targets for 40 yards. I expect Edmonds to get a bit more involved in the passing game this week, as the Dolphins try to squeeze out a late victory. We just watched Michael Carter and Breece Hall both have decent games on the receiving end. I expect the same from Edmonds this week, especially with the Ravens paying special attention to what is perhaps the leagues fastest receiver corps, with Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle.

Sit ‘Em

Rashod Bateman

While I do expect Bateman to draw more targets this season than he did in Week 1, it will not come this week. As I said, Howard will have his number all game long. Howard is a CB that you want to avoid throwing at, if you can. I think Jackson CAN avoid throwing his way, with Duvernay opening the field up a bit and having Andrews in ideal coverage. Bateman will need to score fantasy points from chunk plays or touchdowns. He will not score many points from receptions if you are in a PPR league.

Mike Gesicki

This one is simple. Gesicki is just not the fantasy option that he has been in recent years. The Dolphins want to use Gesicki primarily as a blocking TE. Last week, Gesicki caught all his total of one targets for one yard. Not only is he a sit, but an easy drop candidate. I don’t see his usage increasing any time soon, if this season at all.

Sleepin’ around the league

QB Trey Lance & WR Brandon Aiyuk

Trey Lance was on my sleeper list last week and it slid downhill fast. The same way players were slipping and sliding on the field. It was a monsoon in Chicago last week, to the point that broadcasters needed to put fake numbers on the screen because they were washing away. I am dumping that entire game down the drain. I am still a Lance truther and believe he will have a much better outing this week against Seattle. With normal weather conditions, Lance has the opportunity to put on a show with his legs and/or bazooka of an arm. I expect Brandon Aiyuk to get increased opportunities this week against a weak Seahawks defense that overperformed against an underperforming Broncos team. Lance & Aiyuk showed chemistry throughout training camp and it should lead to big things this week.

RB A.J. Dillon

After an impressive Week 1, A.J. Dillon may no longer be considered a sleeper. He averaged 4.5 YPA on his 10 carries with a TD and turned six targets into five receptions for 46 yards. With the Packers taking on the Bears this week, the game script will be perfect for Dillon as Green Bay will take a lead early and keep it throughout. Aaron Jones will obviously get his touches. But Dillon will be involved all game and especially as the game winds down.

TE Cameron Brate

With Chris Godwin likely sidelined for at least the next couple weeks, Cameron Brate should earn himself a few more targets and is always a red zone threat. I still do not expect a huge game, but I would not be shocked if he scores a touchdown and secures at least three receptions. It is well known that Tom Brady has enjoyed throwing to his tight ends throughout his career and I think this could be a solid week for Brate if you need a streaming option

Fire & Ice

(Players I expect to over/under perform)

Firing Squad

Derek Carr

Javonte Williams

Julio Jones

Zach Ertz

Icey Squad

Marcus Mariota

James Robinson

Rashod Bateman

Tyler Higbee

Tyler Huntley at practice
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