On Target: Week 1

(Photo by Gavin Baker/Icon Sportswire)

Every season we think we know which teams will shine, and then the first game begins. Expectations are thrown out the window in some cases, and we try to adapt as quickly as possible to the new information. Luckily, I’m here to help. Each week, we will be taking a look at how many targets players received in the week’s games, and how much we should read into those numbers. For instance, Julio Jones led the way in week 1 with 19 targets. While I don’t expect such a monstrous number to continue, it is nice to see Julio involved early and often. We will also analyze who is rising, who is falling, and what the outlook is moving forward. Without further ado, let’s dig right into the week 1 numbers.

Rising

Player Team Targets Catches Yards
Corey Davis Tennessee 13 6 62
Jared Cook Oakland 12 9 180
Kenny Golladay Detroit 12 7 114
Emmanuel Sanders Denver 11 10 135
Jalen Richard Oakland 11 9 55
Quincy Enunwa NY Jets 10 6 63
Ryan Grant Indianapolis 10 8 59
Randall Cobb Green Bay 10 9 142
Jack Doyle Indianapolis 10 7 60
James White New England 9 4 38
Nyheim Hines Indianapolis 9 7 33

Corey Davis: It was nice to see Corey Davis peppered with targets in the opening week. Sure, Rishard Matthews wasn’t up to speed yet and basically was a decoy. However, with Delanie Walker out, I consider Davis to be the Titans best weapon, and I expect his targets to stay high—giving him a safe floor to go along with his high ceiling.

Jared Cook: I’m going to need more information here before I jump to a firm conclusion. Nevertheless, Jared Cook has to be one of the biggest week 1 adds right now. He was targeted early, often, and he looked good running with the ball. Don’t expect 10+ targets next week, but I think you could safely start him in Denver next week.

Kenny Golladay: The question with the Lions receivers all summer was if you wanted Golden Tate or Marvin Jones Jr. Well, there might just be a third candidate in Kenny Golladay. Matthew Stafford looked to Golladay early and often to the tune of 12 targets, 7 catches, and 114 yards. I would definitely add Golladay if I was thin at receiver, and he would have huge upside if either Marvin Jones or Golden Tate missed time.

Jalen Richard: Oakland came on strong and actually held an early 13-10 lead over the Rams. However, then the Rams turned it on and blew the doors off. I was surprised, though, at how much play Jalen Richard saw. He was looked to frequently once the Raiders fell behind, and I imagine he will be game script dependent moving forward. Jalen Richard could have PPR value, but I don’t trust him with Marshawn Lynch ahead of him on the depth chart.

Quincy Enunwa: The Jets looked good in week one. The defense was fierce, they made Matthew Stafford uncomfortable all game long, and Sam Darnold stepped up and shined in his first NFL game. The Jets leading receiver was Quincy Enunwa with 10 targets, 6 catches, and 63 yards. I wouldn’t call the Jets a high-powered offense, but it’s nice to know who the leading receiver is. I would add Enunwa if he isn’t owned and see how week 2 plays out. If he leads the way in targets again, I’d be happy to flex him moving forward.

Randall Cobb: Apparently the offseason rumors of Randall Cobb’s demise have been greatly exaggerated. Cobb had ankle surgery. He was on the trading block. He was on the roster bubble. Every bad thing that could be said about Cobb was at some point. He took it all in stride, posting a beastly line of 9 catches for 142 yards. I was certainly impressed, and I would add Cobb immediately if he is available. A healthy Aaron Rodgers wide receiver is always worth the roster spot. For what it’s worth, I feel the same way about Geronimo Allison right now.

Falling

Player Team Targets Catches Yards
Trey Burton Chicago 6 1 15
Duke Johnson Jr. Cleveland 6 1 8
Travis Kelce Kansas City 6 1 6
Evan Engram NY Giants 5 2 18
Chris Hogan New England 5 1 11
Tarik Cohen Chicago 4 3 16
Josh Gordon Cleveland 3 1 17
Amari Cooper Oakland 3 1 9
Calvin Ridley Atlanta 2 0 0
John Ross Cincinnati 2 1 3
Kyle Rudolph Minnesota 2 1 11
Cameron Brate Tampa Bay 2 0 0
Giovani Bernard Cincinnati 1 1 11
Robby Anderson NY Jets 1 1 41
Marquise Goodwin San Francisco 1 0 0
Rishard Matthews Tennessee 0 0 0

Calvin Ridley: We didn’t get to see much from the rookie wide receiver this week as he was targeted twice, but failed to register a catch. Julio Jones was targeted early and often, and Calvin Ridley seemed an after thought in his first contest. Hold tightly to Ridley, but maybe stash him on the bench for now…until he gets going.

Tarik Cohen: This first Bears game was a good reminder that Tarik Cohen will be boom/ bust this year. Cohen was targeted 4 times which is hardly anything to get upset about. However, he failed to do much with the targets and didn’t have one of his signature game-breaking plays. I think Cohen’s fortunes will improve, despite the week 1 dud.

Trey Burton: Trey Burton saw enough targets to be relevant in theory. However, many of them were bad looks from his young QB, and he only pulled in one for 15 yards. What was more troubling to me was that the offense did not seem to run through Burton like we had been promised all offseason. Maybe this was a fluke, but I would be worried if the same happens next week against Seattle. Hold tight for now, but be ready to move on after week 2 if this continues.

Duke Johnson Jr.: Duke Johnson saw 6 targets resulting in just 1 catch. Cleveland put up points (21) and moved the offense well enough. However, everything flowed through Jarvis Landry. It seemed like Landry vultured some of Duke’s typical value. I’m curious to see if this repeats in week 2, but I am willing to stand firm for now. If Duke if held in check again next week, though, be ready to move on.

Rishard Matthews: Rishard Matthews played 30+ snaps in week 1, but he might as well have not been there at all. Matthews was a non-factor as he is still learning the offense after missing most of training camp. This is troublesome for Matthews’ stock as it will give Davis plenty of time to gel with Marcus Mariota. There is an open role with the Delanie Walker injury, so there is still hope for this to rebound. Still, proceed with caution until we know Matthews is ready.

Chris Hogan: Chris Hogan was my second biggest disappointment of week 1. I was all over drafting him due to the Julian Edelman suspension, as well as every other player seemingly being dropped from the receiving corps. However, Rob Gronkowski and Philip Dorsett did enough to hold off Hogan, resulting in a stat line of 1 catch for 11 yards. I am hoping this was a fluke and I am still rolling with Hogan in week 2. That wasn’t pretty though.

Amari Cooper: Amari Cooper looked ready for a monster season. Sure, he was inconsistent last year. Sure, two games accounted for most of his accrued stats. Things would be different though: Michael Crabtree was gone. Martavis Bryant was dropped. Jordy Nelson is old and decrepit. Despite a beautiful situation, Cooper finished with 3 targets, 1 catch, and 9 yards. That is not going to cut it for a guy drafted like a high end WR2. I have to imagine this turns around next week, but part of me is a little terrified right now. Cooper is my biggest disappointment of week 1.

Michael Miklius

Mike is a lifelong Bears fan just waiting for the rise of his team's first ever stud quarterback. He's hoping Mitch Trubisky is that guy.

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Comments


Michael Miklius

Hey Nick! I believe Talib was on him most if not the whole game. What worries me is another tough matchup this week(Jacksonville and their corners), as well as the idea that Cooper is a big step down from what we thought. He has been treated like a WR1/ a premium WR2 his whole career and now we might find that certain corners will just completely blank him. Cooper has finished with less than 10 yards 6 times since the start of last season, and that scares me. I’d personally bench him this week.

Michael

To clarify, OAK is playing against DEN this week (not JAX). I’m not sure that warrants benching him, but I agree with all your other points.

Michael Miklius

Hey Nick! I believe Talib was on him most if not the whole game. What worries me is another tough matchup this week(Jacksonville and their corners), as well as the idea that Cooper is a big step down from what we thought. He has been treated like a WR1/ a premium WR2 his whole career and now we might find that certain corners will just completely blank him. Cooper has finished with less than 10 yards 6 times since the start of last season, and that scares me. I’d personally bench him this week.

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