Wide receiver Andre Johnson makes a nice fantasy option - this week and every week.
In Week 2 of the Home Team Challenge, the free fantasy football game with great prizes on HoustonTexans.com, the winning player will take home a Texans mini-helmet autographed by Amobi Okoye.
Here's my weekly fantasy advice, with a few players I like and a few players I don't:
PRICE IS RIGHT (a player I like who's among the five most expensive at his position)
WR Andre Johnson, HOU, 37 points (vs. BAL): The Ravens may have a menacing defense, but that defense ranked 20th in the league against the pass last year. The Steelers ranked third against the pass in 2007, and Johnson still found his way to 10 receptions for 112 yards against them in Week 1 even when the Texans as a whole struggled mightily. There just doesn't seem to be a bad time to play Johnson in fantasy. He had a league-leading 94.6 receiving yards per game in 2007 and torched the Kansas City Chiefs for seven receptions, 142 yards and a TD in last year's home opener.
VALUE PICK (a player I like who's not among the 10 most expensive at his position)
RB Brandon Jacobs, NYG, 31 (@ STL): Derrick Ward and Ahmad Bradshaw are there lurking to steal carries, but Jacobs showed he's the clear No. 1 option for the defending Super Bowl Champs with 116 rushing yards on 21 carries against the Redskins in the NFL season opener. His Week 2 opponent, St. Louis, gave up 108 yards rushing and two rushing TDs in their 38-3 loss to Philadelphia last week. If New York can build an early lead, Jacobs could be running even more often in this one.
NOT WORTH IT (players I don't like because of price tag and/or risk) QB Peyton Manning, IND, 69 (@ MIN): I won't be surprised if Manning has a big game, but it's not worth the risk with the big price tag based on his underwhelming Week 1 performance. After minor knee surgery this offseason, Manning was 30-for-49 for 257 yards and a TD against the Bears last week. Not bad numbers, but not worth 69 points. His timing with receivers was off on deep patterns, and with center Jeff Saturday's status in question on Sunday, this week may not be the one in which the Colts' offense gets back in sync as it faces off against a potentially ferocious Vikings defense on the road.
WR Randy Moss, NE, 45 (@ NYJ): With Tom Brady out for the season, Moss' prospects to repeat his 1,493-yard, NFL-record-23-TD season of a year ago went down in a hurry. He had six receptions for 116 yards and a TD in Week 1, but it's hard to justify spending more points on Moss than any other receiver this week when his quarterback is Matt Cassel, making his first career start on the road against a heated rival. Cassel was surprisingly solid when Brady went down last week, going 13-of-18 for 152 yards and a TD. But nobody's going to argue at this point in his career that Cassel is anywhere near Brady's level, and that hurts Moss' value.
SLEEPER SPECIAL (a player I like from way off the radar)
QB Kerry Collins, TEN, 1 (@ CIN): Collins will be the Titans' starting quarterback for at least the next 2-4 weeks with Vince Young out. You won't find many one-point starting quarterbacks in this league. Cassel, a career backup filling in for Brady in New England, costs 42 points this week. The Titans don't have Moss or Wes Welker, but Collins is a proven NFL quarterback who went 50-of-82 (61 percent) for 531 yards in spot duty for Young last year. He faces the Bengals' defense, which was 26th in the NFL versus the pass in 2007. And with Collins in your lineup, you could max out and take the most expensive players at every position (except for kicker, but you'd still be able to grab a Rob Bironas or Kris Brown there). We're talking about Brian Westbrook, LaDanian Tomlinson, Terrell Owens, Reggie Wayne, Jason Witten and either the Chicago or Tennessee defense. And that's just downright sick.