Romo a strong fantasy play in Week 1
For those who missed it last season, the Matchups Machine narrows down ideal matchups from around the league on a weekly basis using the tools we have available at PFF, the Las Vegas odds, and insight from yours truly.
PFF has all the tools to break down each individual matchup. Do you want to know how your wide receiver is going to do? Well if he lines up as a split end on 90% of his snaps, we can pinpoint which cornerback he will be matching up with for those snaps. We can also tell you how that cornerback has performed.
Of course, as was the case last season, this column will become more accurate as the season goes on and we compile more grades for the players and get a feel for the tendencies and overall strengths/weaknesses of the 32 teams.
The goal of this column is to help you with those tricky decisions in year-long leagues, but also to help you narrow down your best options in daily fantasy leagues. You will see a mix of big name players and fringe starters. Without further ado, let’s get into it.
Tony Romo vs. Giants
Tony Romo opens the 2015 regular season as a back-end QB1 pick on most rosters, but he presents an excellent Week 1 option at home against the Giants. Entering the season, the Giants’ secondary looks like a battle-tested version that we would expect to see around Week 8. The Giants have lost defensive backs Nat Berhe, Mykkele Thompson, Bennett Jackson, Justin Currie and Josh Gordy to season-ending injuries. While they return both starting outside cornerbacks, they enter Sunday night with major question marks at nickel cornerback and both safety spots.
The Cowboys’ dominant offensive line is well documented, and it wasn’t difficult for observers of last year’s matchups between these teams to see how much time in the pocket Romo had. In the two meetings combined, the Cowboys allowed just 19 total pressures and four sacks. Jason Pierre-Paul was responsible for two of those sacks and five pressures, and he has been all but ruled out for this matchup.
In Giants defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo’s first run back in 2007, his defense allowed 45 points to Romo and the Cowboys in Week 1. Learning his scheme, it took that group time to gel into the dominant unit we saw in Super Bowl 42 against the Patriots. In 2015, he has a lot less talent to work with and he’s facing a more efficient Cowboys offense. Las Vegas has this game pegged with a 51-point over/under, the third-highest of the Week 1 slate. The Cowboys are 7-point favorites. Romo makes for one of the safest and most explosive Week 1 options at quarterback.
Dan Schneier is a staff writer at PFF Fantasy and he covers the NFC East beat for FOX Sports. You can find him on Twitter @DanSchneierNFL. You can also add him to your network on Google+ to find all of his past material.