Last season, rookies stole the show, especially at receiver, leaving big shoes to fill for the 2015 class. Here are 10 rookies across the NFL that likely impacted their fantasy football teams, either positively or negatively, in Week 2.
Jameis Winston – Starting with the top overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft, Winston turned in a Week 2 performance that was significantly better than his NFL debut against Marcus Mariota and the Titans. Winston threw for less yards this time around (207, 210), but he turned the ball over just once on a lost fumble, threw for a touchdown and ran for a score as well. Winston and the Bucs take on the Houston Texans next week, which should be the toughest challenge defensively that he has seen thus far in his short NFL career.
Marcus Mariota – Mariota was the best rookie in Week 1, no question about it. He threw four touchdowns in the first half against Tampa Bay and finished with a league best QBR and a perfect passer rating. Despite throwing for 48 more yards in Week 2, things were much different for Mariota and the Titans against a tough Cleveland defense. Mariota got better as the game progressed, but the Titans offensive line allowed Mariota to get sacked seven times, two of those leading to fumbles. His six touchdowns through two weeks ties Dan Marino for the most touchdowns thrown in a player’s first two starts in NFL history by a rookie.
Matt Jones stole the show in Week 2 for the Washington Redskins, carrying the ball 19 times for 127 yards and two touchdowns. He also added three catches for 23 yards out of the backfield as well. Although he lost a fumble, Jones had a huge day for the Redskins and has appeared to battle Alfred Morris for a split in carries moving forward. Should Morris ever get injured, Jones has shown that he is more than capable of being a very serviceable running back for the Redskins moving forward.
Melvin Gordon – Gordon has yet to find the end zone for the Chargers but has been running well, averaging 82.5 yards per game through two weeks. The Chargers are a pass heavy team and Danny Woodhead has clearly solidified himself as the passing down back, which doesn’t bode well for Gordon’s season long value. Gordon will likely have a breakthrough week and explode on the ground every now and then, but he will also have weeks where he is a big disappointment. Most people said that Gordon should have been the first rookie drafted because of his health compared to Gurley, but it appears that the Chargers have not yet committed to making Gordon their featured every down back.
TJ Yeldon – Yeldon has been much like Melvin Gordon so far through two weeks, putting up solid rushing numbers to make you believe that there is something more coming. The difference between Yeldon and Gordon is that the Jaguars appear to be more committed to Yeldon than the Chargers are to Gordon. Yeldon carried the ball 25 times against the Dolphins for 70 yards and chipped in with three catches as well. Yeldon’s per carry average is not what fantasy owners or the Jaguars want to see through two weeks, but 25 carries in a game is an encouraging sign.
Ameer Abdullah – Abdullah shined in Week 1 for the Detroit Lions making him a popular play in Week 2. He followed that up with nine rushing yards on six carries and caught one pass for nine yards as well. He looks like a flex option at best going forward unless the Lions can commit to Abdullah getting the main bulk of the work in the backfield.
Tevin Coleman – Coleman got his first career touchdown on Sunday against the Giants but finished with just 32 yards on nine carries. The story for Coleman, unfortunately, is not about his touchdown, but that he will miss at least a couple of weeks with broken ribs.
Amari Cooper -Cooper was fantastic in Week 2 for the Oakland Raiders, hauling in seven catches for 109 yards and a touchdown against the Ravens. Cooper had five catches in week one but only managed 47 yards and didn’t find the end zone. Cooper will likely continue to be the go-to guy for Carr in Oakland, so he should be a very trustworthy fantasy option going forward as their chemistry will only improve.
Nelson Agholor – Agholor was one of the top rookie receivers drafted in most leagues, and big things were expected in what we all expected to be a high-powered offense in Philadelphia. Agholor had just one catch for five yards in Week 1, and had just three catches for 31 yards in Week 2. The Eagles offense as a whole has struggled through two weeks, as Jordan Matthews has been the only player that is fantasy relevant so far in 2015.
Dorial Green-Beckham – DGB caught his first pass in the NFL on Sunday from Marcus Mariota in the 4th quarter that was a nine-yard touchdown. Green-Beckham appears to be coming along through the Titans system very slowly, but he has the raw skills to be able to burst onto the scene at any moment.