The following is a list of the Week 1 leaders in looks and touches. It defines those running backs and receivers who received the most attention this past weekend.
Touches is defined as the number of times a running back carried or caught the football.
Looks is defined as the number of times a player was the intended target of a pass.
• Matt Forte's rookie season couldn't have gotten off to a better start – if you want to get technical, he actually could have if Jason McKie hadn't poached a fourth quarter TD, but you get what I mean. He tied for the league lead with 26 touches (23 carries, 3 receptions) and produced 141 yards of offense (123 rushing, 18 receiving), including a 50-yard scoring run. Even if you thought Forte was in for a decent year before this past Sunday, remember to remain objective before drastically adjusting your season projections – the Bears managed just 3.1 yards per carry as a team in 2007 (albeit with some different personnel).
• Perhaps Willie Parker's demise was greatly exaggerated? He dominated the Steelers' carries in the early going of the 38-17 blowout (just 1 of Rashard Mendenhall's 10 carries came in the first half) and stayed on the field for most short-yardage and goal-line opportunities. With three scores in Week 1, Parker has already surpassed his season TD total from 2007 (2), and he believes that he's got the inside track on those opportunities moving forward.
• Reggie Bush turned 22 touches (14 carries, 8 catches) into 163 yards of offense (51 rushing, 112 receiving), which was good for second among RB for the week – it was an auspicious start for a player who was more dedicated this offseason than the months leading up to his disappointing 2007 campaign.
• Chris Perry's first game as a featured back wasn't exactly a sparkling success – on the road against a tough Baltimore defense, he managed just 42 yards (37 rushing, 5 receiving) on 19 touches (18 carries, 1 catch). I have my doubts that Perry is a better option than Kenny Watson as a rusher (clearly he's a better hands player, though), and things don't figure to get much easier for Perry and the Bengals in the short term (next two games are vs Ten and at NYG).
• The platoon watch notes when a team's RB2 is given at least half as many touches as the RB1, regardless of the reason. Platoon watch for Week 1 included: Atlanta (Michael Turner 23, Jerious Norwood 16), Baltimore (Ray Rice 25, Le'Ron McClain 21), Carolina (DeAngelo Williams 19, Jonathan Stewart 10), Chicago (Matt Forte 26, Kevin Jones 13), Denver (Andre Hall 10, Selvin Young 7, Michael Pittman 7), Green Bay (Ryan Grant 12, Brandon Jackson 10), Houston (Steve Slaton 16, Ahman Green 9), Jacksonville (Fred Taylor 10, Maurice Jones-Drew 9), Miami (Ricky Williams 14, Ronnie Brown 9), New Orleans (Reggie Bush 22, Pierre Thomas 12), New England (Sammy Morris 15, Laurence Maroney 10), NY Giants (Brandon Jacobs 22, Derrick Ward 11), Oakland (Justin Fargas 20, Darren McFadden 10), Tampa Bay (Earnest Graham 13, Warrick Dunn 9), and Tennessee (Chris Johnson 18, LenDale White 15).
• Michael Turner got the season off to a bang, turning 23 touches (22 carries, 1 catch) into 226 yards of offense (220 rushing, 6 receiving) – his average of 9.8 yards per touch led all RB with at least 10 touches. Earnest Graham (9.1), Frank Gore (8.4), Ryan Grant (7.7), Reggie Bush (7.4), and Chris Johnson (7.1) also made the most of their workloads. Chris Perry came in at just 2.2 yards per touch (42 yards of offense on 19 touches), the lowest mark among RB with double-digit touches. LenDale White (2.7), Fred Taylor (2.7), Ricky Williams (2.8), Rashard Mendenhall (2.8), and Brandon Jackson (3.0) all found themselves on the low end of the spectrum.
• Reggie Wayne started the season in fine fashion, garnering a league-high 17 looks en route to 10 catches for 86 yards and a score. The looks weren't exactly hard to come by for any of the Colts' top three wideouts – Marvin Harrison had 11 (8 catches, 76 yards) and Anthony Gonzalez had eight (5 catches, 48 yards) as Peyton Manning attempted 49 passes in the team's 29-13 loss.
• Muhsin Muhammad and D.J. Hackett saw plenty of action in Steve Smith's absence, combining for 27 looks on Jake Delhomme's 41 passing attempts. They totaled just 11 catches for 104 yards, however, as Dante Rosario was the star of the day (8 looks, 7 catches, 96 yards, 1 TD).
• Only two of the top seven TE in looks for Week 1 were among the top 20 at the position in terms of ADP in drafts. Jason Witten (9 looks) and Tony Gonzalez (7) were the popular picks, while the others who saw the most action in the season's first game included L.J. Smith (10), Anthony Fasano (9), Dante Rosario (8), Randy McMichael (7), and Visanthe Shiancoe (7).
• It's not hard to believe that the Browns' offense struggled on a day when Braylon Edwards was only able to convert nine looks into two catches for 14 yards. Edwards had fewer than three catches and 49 receiving yards just once during the 2007 season.
- Reggie Bush
- Ricky Williams
- Brandon Jackson
- Chris Johnson