BOSTON — Week 1 of the 2022 NFL season has arrived, which not only marks the return of real football, but also the fantasy variety that is beloved by millions.
Everyone has a shot at winning it all before the season kicks off (minus that one owner who inevitably crashes and burns every year), but we could all use a little bit of help to begin the quest for a fantasy title. For that, we turn to CBS Sports fantasy football analyst Heath Cummings, whose weekly positional previews will put you in the best spot to build a winning roster.
Here are his previews for Week 1:
Cummings has Patrick Mahomes (@ Arizona), Justin Herbert (vs. Las Vegas), Josh Allen (@ L.A. Rams), Jalen Hurts (@ Detroit), and Lamar Jackson (@ N.Y. Jets) as his top projected scorers at quarterback. But he also likes 49ers quarterback Trey Lance and his matchup against the Chicago Bears defense.
“He has Kyle Shanahan calling plays and he’s throwing to Deebo Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk, and George Kittle,” Cummings wrote.
Chicago’s Justin Fields — albeit against a stingy 49ers defense — could also be a solid waiver wire pickup if you don’t like who your quarterback is playing against.
“Rushing quarterbacks like him (and Lance) are exactly the type of players who emerge from the double-digit rounds to become league-winners. Even with his lack of weapons, Fields has that upside,” Cummings notes.
Fun reminder that Fields was QB5 in Week 8 against the 49ers with 175 passing yards, 103 rushing yards, and 2 total TD. Completed 70% of his passes and averaged 10 yards per rush. https://t.co/CN29eddf8Z
— Heath Cummings (@heathcummingssr) September 6, 2022
Check out Cummings’ full Week 1 Quarterback Preview here.
Jonathan Taylor (@ Houston), Derrick Henry (vs. N.Y. Giants), Christian McCaffrey (vs. Cleveland), Austin Ekeler (vs. Las Vegas), and Dalvin Cook (vs. Green Bay) are Cummings’ top running back plays for Week 1. He also really likes both Green Bay running backs — Aaron Jones and A.J. Dillon — in their road matchup against the Vikings.
“This week I have both Jones and Dillon projected for 12 carries against the Minnesota Vikings, which gives them a projection of 50-60 rushing yards. I also have Jones projected for five targets and Dillon for three. If Allen Lazard is unable to play, those numbers will likely increase. I also have both backs projected for a touchdown.”
Check out Cummings’ full Week 1 Running Back Preview here.
Cooper Kupp, (vs. Buffalo), Justin Jefferson (vs. Green Bay), Ceedee Lamb (vs. Tampa Bay), Davante Adams (@ L.A. Chargers), and Ja’Marr Chase (vs. Pittsburgh) top Cummings’ receiver list for Week 1. If you don’t like your receiving group — or their matchups in Week 1 — he likes Texans wideout Nico Collins as a potential waiver wire pickup.
“Collins was under-drafted all offseason, so it’s no surprise that he’s under-rostered in September,” Cummings wrote. “He’s the clear No. 2 option for a Texans team that should be chasing the score in Week 1. He ranks as a borderline No. 3 wide receiver for me and a good flex in full PPR leagues where you start three wide receivers.”
Check out Cummings’ full Week 1 Wide Receiver Preview here.
Travis Kelce (@ Arizona), Mark Andrews (@ N.Y. Jets), Darren Waller (@ L.A. Chargers), Kyle Pitts (vs. New Orleans), and Dallas Goedert (@ Detroit) are Cummings’ top tight ends for Week 1, and he also likes Jacksonville’s Evan Engram as a streamer for Week 1 with some extremely high potential for the season.
“This game will be the first hint as to how much Doug Pederson’s new offense looks like his old offense. Engram looks like the clear No. 1 tight end on a team without a target-dominating No. 1 wide receiver,” he wrote. “It’s possible a month from now we view him as a must-start tight end.”
Check out Cummings’ full Week 1 Tight End Preview here.