The season opener saw most rookies struggle or get their feet wet with life in the NFL. In week 2, we saw a number of these players step up and embrace the roles they have on their respective teams a bit more. The result was better performances across the board. There are some big movers this week in the standings.
1. DeAndre Hopkins, WR of Texans, originally drafted 27th: Hopkins jumps in the standings from #5 to 1st overall after a monster performance against the Titans. He had 7 receptions for 117 yards and the game winning touchdown. The Texans finally found their explosive complement to Andre Johnson in the passing game.
2. Star Lotulelei, DT of Panthers, originally drafted 14th: He's up two spots from #4 last week after yet another huge game. Don't blame C. J. Spiller going off on him as he was one of the few defenders on the Panthers that played extremely well, particularly against the run. Pro Football Focus graded him at +4.3 for the game. He had 3 tackles, including one for a loss.
3. Sheldon Richardson, DE/DT for the Jets, originally drafted 13th: He had 5 tackles, including one for a loss, to add to his already shockingly high tackle total. This guy is all over the field. He drops from #1 in the rankings, but remains firmly in the top 3 based on his rock solid performances the first two weeks.
4. Alec Ogletree, LB of Rams, originally drafted 30th: He's up from #6 last week because he continues to be all over the field. He led the Rams with 8 tackles this week and consistently seems to field the ball. He also had a tackle for a loss, and gave the Rams some coverage by defending two passes. That's now 15 tackles in two games for the rookie.
5. Eric Reid, S of 49ers, originally drafted 18th: He drops from #3 because he didn't play a full game, but Reid left his imprint once again by getting his second interception already this season. He had two tackles and was concussed.
6. Ziggy Ansah, DE/LB of Lions, originally drafted 5th: He's up from #10 after bulding off a good week one performance. This week his pass rushing skills and diverse ability were on full display. He had 2 quarterback knock downs, played the run well, and had a tackle.
7. Tavon Austin, WR of Rams, originally drafted 8th: He is up from #9 after yet another promising game, this time with 6 catches, 47 yards, and 2 touchdowns. Austin's average per catch is quite low for a receiver for the second straight week, though, so he'll look to get more explosive plays going. His special teams returns weren't impressive this week.
8. Tyler Eifert, TE of Bengals, originally drafted 21st: Less catches but more yards this week for Eifert, who drops a spot from #7 last week. He had 3 catches for 66 yards. Not bad for a #2 tight end.
9. E. J. Manuel, QB of Bills, originally drafted 16th: Like Eifert he dropped a spot this week, but stays in the top 10 with another noteworthy performance. He struggled for much fo the game but got his team their first win with a clutch touchdown pass with just 2 seconds left in the game. He went 27-39 for 296yds, 1 touchdown and 1 pick. He also rushed for 13 yards.
10. Kyle Long, G of Bears, originally drafted 20th: Long vaults from 22nd to the top 10 with the biggest jump in the standings this week. After struggling last week he was utterly dominant in the run game mauling defenders.
11. Kenny Vaccaro, S of Saints, originally drafted 15th: He's up a spot after another pretty steady performance. The Saints stuck him on Vincent Jackson most of the game and he did pretty well. He finished with 5 tackles and had a couple of monster hits. He was also fortunate a jump ball touchdown pass where he was embarrassed was called back due to a penalty.
12. Lane Johnson, RT of Eagles, originally drafted 4th: I have Johnson rated as 29th out of 32 1st round picks in week 2, so it's fair to say this is a major fall from grace after his incredible debut. He drops 10 spots from #2 overall after this disaster showing. His protection was poor and he almost got Michael Vick killed twice. He was flagged twice as well, once getting a long touchdown pass to DeSean Jackson called back. Quite the dichotomy between his performances in week 1 and 2.
13. Desmond Trufant, CB of Falcons, originally drafted 22nd: He's up a spot after another promising start. He had 3 tackles and a defended pass. He fared pretty well in coverage yet again.
14. Xavier Rhodes, CB of the Vikings, originally drafted 25th: He may be one spot behind Trufant, but he was by far the best corner in week 2. A very impressive performance by Rhodes in coverage which vaults him 9 spots to 14th overall after a poor showing last week. He had 1 tackle.
15. Jarvis Jones, LB of the Steelers, originally drafted 17th: He's down a couple spots but had another stable performance. While he did have 8 tackles, that was because a lot of plays were coming his way as the Bengals tried to expose him.
16. D. J. Fluker, T of Chargers, originally drafted 11th: Fluker bounced back in a major way from a disastrous week 1 performance. He jumps 11 spots in the standings, the second best jump behind Kyle Long. He did give up a sack but was otherwise excellent in pass protection.
17. Dion Jordan, DE of Dolphins, originally drafted 3rd: He played limited snaps this week but still managed to get some pass rush and notch 2 tackles. He did draw the ire of the coaching staff for missing a makeable sack on Andrew Luck that resulted in the quarterback scrambling for a 1st down on 3rd and 11. He is down two spots.
18. Justin Pugh, G/T of Giants, originally drafted 19th: He stayed in the exact same spot at 18 after playing a decent game. He did give up some pressure but overall he held up.
19. Cordarelle Patterson, WR of Vikings, originally drafted 29th: Another very quiet day in the passing game with just 2 receptions for 14 yards. He does jump 5 spots in the rankings thanks to a terrific 105 yard kickoff return for a touchdown to open the game.
20. D. J. Hayden, CB of the Raiders, originally drafted 12th: He also jumps 5 spots in the rankings thanks to a much improved performance in week 2. He had 5 tackles, a defended pass, and held up well in coverage against a woeful passing team in the Jaguars.
21. Luke Joeckel, T of the Jaguars, originally drafted 2nd: He drops 5 spots from 16 after having a rough game. He gave up a sack, had 2 penalties and struggled in run blocking.
22. Chance Warmack, G of the Titans, originally drafted 10th: He had the biggest drop of the week, down 11 spots after a horrific perforamance. The rookie gave up 2 sacks and couldn't seem to do anything right as he got pushed around for the majority of 60 minutes.
23. Barkevious Mingo, LB of Browns, originally drafted 6th: He was ranked 31st last week by virtue of not playing, but he showed his pass rushing potential in his first game back from a bruised lung. Depsite limited snaps he showed the elite edge speed that made the Browns fall in love with him. He had 2 tackles and his first career sack.
24. Sharrif Floyd, DT of Vikings, originally drafted 23rd: A very quiet performance this week with just 1 tackle and not much involvement in the game. He's down 5 spots.
25. Bjoern Werner, DE/LB of Colts, originally drafted 24th: A much better performance after the disaster last week. He had 3 tackles and a half sack. Something to build on. He's up 4 spots.
26. Eric Fisher, T of Chiefs, originally drafted 1st: He's not looking like a top pick so far. Another lackluster performance drops him 6 spots in the rankings. He gave up a sack and had a penalty.
27. Sylvester Williams, DT of Broncos, originally drafted 28th: He had 1 tackle and continues to provided little added value so far. The season is young though.
28. Travis Frederick, C of Cowboys, originally drafted 31st: After an ok week 1 he drops 11 spots in the rankings because of frankly this kind of play won't cut it for the Cowboys. He gave up 2 sacks up the middle and was penalized once. The Cowboys' rookie started had a rough time acclimating himself this week.
29. Matt Elam, S of Ravens, originally drafted 32nd: He played a lot more this week and had 5 tackles and a penalty. He stands to move up a lot in the coming weeks, just victim of a numbers game with two subpar weeks but he wasn't nearly as bad as some this week.
30. Dee Milliner, CB of Jets, CB of Jets, originally drafted 8th: He had two tackles and was beat a fair amount. Through two weeks he seems like the weakest cover corner of the four drafted in the first round, despite going first of them. Lots of football left in the season though.
31. Datone Jones, DE of Packers, originally drafted 26th: Very unimpressive first two weeks by Jones that frankly just doesn't look like a first round talent. He had 1 tackle and struggled in all areas.
32. Jonathan Cooper, T of Cardinals, originally drafted 7th: Out for the year with a broken leg.
Kyle Long up 12 spots
D. J. Fluker up 11 spots
Xavier Rhodes up 9 spots
Barkevious Mingo up 8 spots
Chance Warmack down 11 spots
Travis Frederick down 11 spots
Lane Johnson down 10 spots