Fantasy football: What to do with floundering top picks

Cowboys WR Dez Bryant has eight catches for 110 yards and no touchdowns through two games this season.
Cowboys WR Dez Bryant has eight catches for 110 yards and no touchdowns through two games this season. Photo Credit: Getty Images for WSJ. Magazine 2 / Dimitrios Kambouris

Two weeks have come and gone in the NFL, meaning fantasy football owners are getting a sense of how their season might go.

For some, that means your team is sitting pretty at 2-0 or in the mix at 1-1. And then there’s the group to which I belong — the Walking Winless.

If you’re wondering why you should take fantasy football advice from the guy who’s in dead last of his own league, I can’t fault you there. But know that I kept three players from last year — Odell Beckham Jr., Todd Gurley and Alshon Jeffery, which cost my top three draft picks — who aren’t pulling their weight as a whole.

Good teams on paper can perform poorly, but it’s too early to throw in the towel. I’m not, and neither should you.

If you, like me, are still searching for a first win, there’s a good chance your top picks aren’t reaching their potential. Here’s a look at the players among my preseason top 30 who are struggling the most, and what to do about them. Note that Steelers RB Le’Veon Bell (ranked sixth) returns from suspension in Week 4 and Chargers WR Keenan Allen (ranked 28th) is lost for the season due to a torn ACL.

Adrian Peterson (ranked fifth, 4 points)

He’s 31 and battling a torn meniscus. Sell if you can get an RB1 or RB2 because this might be the beginning of the end for the star Vikings RB.

Todd Gurley (ranked third, 10 points)

The Rams RB has some softer matchups coming up. Be patient with the young talent.

Dez Bryant (ranked 21st, 10 points)

I wrote about my concerns regarding Bryant last month, so I’m not shocked. Don’t give up entirely, but maybe shop the WR to a Cowboys fan if you can get a decent return.

Mark Ingram (ranked 16th, 11 points)

The Saints RB isn’t seeing many touches, but he’s averaging 4.2 yards per carry and is involved in the passing game. Stick with him for the time being.

Doug Martin (ranked 18th, 11 points)

A hamstring injury knocked the Buccaneers RB from Sunday game. Details are scarce right now, but these injuries can linger. Seek short-term replacements.

Rob Gronkowski (ranked eighth); Jamaal Charles (ranked 17th)

Both are nursing injuries with undetermined season debut dates. Once Gronk returns, expect the Patriots TE to dominate. Charles, the Chiefs RB, should be OK as long as he doesn’t lose too many touches to Spencer Ware.