Remember Kevin Ogletree? He opened last season with eight receptions for 114 yards and two TDs. Most people ran to their waiver wire thinking they had the next great Cowboys receiver on their team. Two months later he scored his third TD of the season and just under two months from then he scored his fourth and final of 2012. In Week 2 against the Seahawks he had one reception for just 26 yards. It’s easy to overreact on one great game, most bad players have them, but it hurts the most when you grab that Week 1 stud and dump your 8th round pick who goes on to make the Pro Bowl after a tough start to their season. There’s also the case of Dez Bryant and Calvin Johnson, top-notch wide receivers who severely underperformed out of the gate but hold a strong track record. Each of the following players are rated from 1-10 on the Ogletree scale where a 1 means a future of success and a 10 means a future of failure and frustration for fantasy owners.
1 – Calvin Johnson and Dez Bryant, WRs, Detroit/Dallas: It’s tough when such high profile players come out of the gate with a thump but DO NOT trade these guys because of one bad game. They are key pieces to their offense and will publicly demand the ball if it isn’t going their way this Sunday. This also goes for anybody you picked in the first five rounds. Don’t be stupid, keep them on your team.
2 – Julius Thomas, TE, Denver: This virtually unknown TE will continue to be a target for Peyton Manning and although he may put up a much weaker two reception, 40-yard Week 2, he’s much more likely to remain a consistent threat in this offense because of his incredible quarterback.
3 – Joique Bell, RB, Detroit: We saw bits and pieces of his skill set this week and even last season as a serviceable by-committee running back. The only problem is that he’s now behind Reggie Bush as opposed to sharing time with Mikel Leshoure. He’s someone you want on your team in case Bush gets hurt but is not a strong week-to-week starter.
5 – CJ Spiller, RB, Buffalo: Spiller hasn’t proven himself a long-term workhorse back and is spelled by a former first-round fantasy pick in Fred Jackson. I’d be a little worried about Spiller’s job if he continues to struggle and Jackson is able to perform better than him while on the field. But like I said earlier, he was your first round pick, don’t trade him after one bad week.
8 – Jerome Simpson, WR, Minnesota: His quarterback is Christian Ponder, need I say more? This is a team whose first priority is to hand the ball to Adrian Peterson and even when teams contain him he’ll still run for 125 yards and two TDs. Simpson pulled in seven receptions for 140 yards but I expect both of those to be season-highs, especially with Greg Jennings lining up beside him. It’s only a matter of weeks before Ponder and Jennings develop a strong in-game chemistry.
9 – Philip Rivers, QB, San Diego: After a stellar first three quarters that made you wonder if he’s “back”, Rivers sputtered out in the fourth and the Chargers lost the game. The four touchdowns is great but the 195 yards passing is a huge concern. If you’re desperate for a QB he’s a mediocre pickup and I’d rather have guys like EJ Manuel, Geno Smith or Terrelle Pryor who will get you points running the ball.
10 – Leonard Hankerson, WR, Washington: Do you really think that this guys is going to be the hot-shot of the Redskins offense? He’s easily this year’s Kevin Ogletree. Alfred Morris and RG3 will be doing most of the work and even while Griffin’s knee is still healing he’s going to be looking down the field for Garcon or dump it off to Morris. Hankerson will not have another multiple score game and will likely not have a 100-yard game at all this year.