Some players are must starts (Aaron Rodgers, Alvin Kamara, and Rob Gronkowski, to name a few), but here we work to give you value and over-performers, depending on what type of fantasy format you are playing. At this point we are breaking up start/sit for Thursday and Sunday/Monday games. We apologize to those who must have complete lineups in by Thursday’s game.
Matt Phillips is a multiple fantasy football champion, and co-host of the podcast “Pigskin Dynasty: Your Podcast for All Things Fantasy Football”. You can find him on iTunes, Google Play, Spotify, Podbean, and other podcast mediums. He also has live episodes on Facebook every Sunday morning at 9:00 am EST.
QB Jamieis Winston, Bucs
The time has come to put Winston on the start list. Coming off the bench wasn’t ideal for Winston, but having a full week of practice and going up against the Atlanta Falcons is going to get them back on track. The Falcons defense gives up around 32 points per game and roughly 277 passing yards. Add that together and it should be a nice fantasy day for Winston.
He’s my start of the week for the quarterback position.
Projection: 312 yards passing, 4 touchdowns, and 1 interception
QB Russell Wilson, Seahawks
Wilson has been a fantasy disappointment this season. He was once a tier one quarterback and was drafted pretty high. He showed fantasy hope by producing a great fantasy day against the Rams last week. He is going up against the Oakland Raiders in London. The Raiders defense isn’t good as they have given up 10 touchdowns to opposing signal callers.
He’s definitely a low end QB1 this week.
Projection: 305 total yards with 3 total touchdowns
QB Baker Mayfield, Browns
Mayfield has proven that he can handle the starting job for Cleveland. He is making rookie mistakes, but that is a given. That being said, the match up against the Los Angeles Chargers is very good. They have given up the ninth most fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks, and I feel like the Browns will have to throw the ball to keep up with the them.
Projection: 275 yards passing, 2 touchdowns and 1 interception
QB Aaron Jones, Packers
Give the ball to Aaron Jones Mike Mccarthy!!!!
It baffles me how they are limiting his snaps. It is absurd he is getting compliments from Aaron Rodgers and the rest the team, and he’s by far the most explosive back. He makes forces missed tackles about 38% of the time, and his yards per carry is 6.1!
Feed the beast!
The matchup is pretty good as a 49ers defense have allowed 94 rushing yards per game, I believe Jones proves to the Packers he’s the running back to start and to feed this week.
Projection: 94 yards rushing and 1 touchdown
RB Alfred Morris, 49ers
Alford Morris had 21 touches last week filling in for the injured Matt Brieda. Brieda hasn’t practiced this week, and missed Friday, which is a pretty good indication that he’s not going to play. Morris’s workload should increase and therefore giving him the opportunity to produce a stellar fantasy performance on Monday night football
Projection: 95 total yards and 1 touchdown
RB Marshawn Lynch, Raiders
Let me be straight with you guys, I’m starting Marshawn Lynch because he’s playing his former team and when players play against a former team they always seem to break out. However, let me give you some stats to better assure yourself in starting Lynch. The Seattle Seahawks have allowed 4.7 yards per carry ringing 26th in the NFL and they are playing in London so maybe the travel might affect the passing game as well as opposing defense.
I think Lynch finds pay dirt this week.
Projection: 70 total yards and 1 touchdown
WR Julian Edelman, Pats
He comes back from a four-game suspension and racks up a team high 9 targets. He is Brady’s go to guy and in a game which I expect to be very high scoring. Brady has a lot of weapons, but you have to expect these two to begin that rhythm, and once that happens Julian becomes a must start.
Right now In PPR he is a must start, but in standard scoring he’s a borderline wide receiver 1 - 2 with high upside.
Projection: 9 receptions for 113 yards and 1 touchdown
WR Chester Rogers, Colts
I advise all fantasy football players to pick up Chester Rogers if he is available. He has proven to be the wide receiver 1 on the team with Hilton out. He had 8 catches for 66 yards last week and I believe he has a similar stat line.
Ebron might be the pretty pick based on last week’s stats but I don’t see him duplicating that against the Jets. Until Jack Doyle or TY Hilton comes back Chester Rogers is a wide receiver two with good upside.
Projection: 9 receptions for 74 yards and 1 touchdown
WR Sammy Watkins, Chiefs
Watkins has produced at least 13 fantasy points per game in three of the last four games. With De’Anthony Thomas out with a fractured leg, Watkins targets are set to increase a bit. He’s also going up against the New England Patriots defense that isn’t the best, and is playing a game in which I suspect to be very high-scoring.
Projection: 6 receptions for 69 yards and 1 touchdown
TE Kyle Rudolph, Vikings
I know your hesitation as the Cardinals held Jordan Reed, Trey Burton, and George Kittle In check. The Cardinals have averaged 62 yards per game against the Tight-end position but that’s not the reason why I’m starting him. I’m starting him because of his consistency and his touchdown potential. He has consistently been getting five and six catches a game for around 40 or 50 yards, and Cousins typically looks for him in the red zone.
I have no doubt in my mind that the Vikings will move the ball quite easily.
Projection: 6 receptions for 54 yards and 1 touchdown
TE Cameron Brate, Bucs
Cameron Brate is set to be the starting tight end again this week with OJ Howard being out for the Buccaneers. He has tremendous rapport with Winston in a game which I expect to be high scoring as the Falcons defense and Buccaneers defense are both subpar.
Projection: 5 receptions for 53 yards and 1 touchdown
TE Austin Hooper, Falcons
Did I mention that this game is going to be high scoring? Hooper had a career day last week nine catches for 77 yards. Does he get that every game.... no. However, in a game where I expect a lot of throwing, I believe has a nice performance and finds the end zone.
Projection: 6 catches for 72 yards and 1 touchdown
K Ka’imi Fairbarn, Texans
Bar bet time! Do you know who ranks second in fantasy points for kickers? It’s Fairborn from the Texans. He is a must start for me in the kicking position, especially against the Buffalo Bills who surrendered 10 field goal conversions, and are averaging around 9 points per game against opposing kickers
Projection: 2 for 2 on field goals and 3 extra points
This one is all Matt. I’d sit the Cowboys defense, but that’s just me.
I’m streaming the Cowboys defense this week, their defense is dramatically underrated they stopped Houston several times in the red zone and are only allowing 19 points per game. I expect them to load the box and stop Yeldon. So the only question you should really be asking is which Bortles is going to come out and play? I believe it’s closer to the Bortles that played against Kansas City
Projection 17 points allowed, 4 sacks, and 2 turnovers
QB Derek Carr, Raiders
The Seattle Seahawks surrender the fifth Fewest fantasy points per game against opposing quarterbacks. Add that with the fact that they traveling to London and typically players underperform when they go to London due to the travel, I am fading on Derek Carr this week.
Projection: 285 yards passing, 2 touchdowns, and 2 intercpetions
QB Marcus Mariota, Titans
Mariota was a superhero week 4 against the Eagles, then he came back down to earth last week. His inconsistent play scares me, and he is going up against the Baltimore Ravens who have given up a mere 13.5 fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks.
It’s not looking good for Mariota as a fantasy option.
Projection: 205 total yards, 1 touchdown, and 1 interception
QB Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins
He was non existent last week in the second half, and I don’t see much hope for Tannehill this week as he gets the Chicago Bears . I expect a lot of pressure and not many opportunities for him to succeed. Kahlil Mack is going to have a field day with him.
UPDATE - Sit Tannehill because he’s not playing.
Projection: 234 yards passing, 1 touchdown, and 1 interception
RB Alex Collins, Ravens
He was supposed to be the guy, but he keeps fumbling that stone ball. Allen appears to be taking over as Collins is losing snaps to him on a consistent basis. Buck Allen actually leads the Ravens back fields in touches and snaps. The Titans are also very stout run defense not allowing much fantasy points to opposing running backs (17 PPG).
Projection: 64 total yards
RB Peyton Barber, Bucs
Barber had such a tremendous opportunity to take the starting job but he failed. He proved why the Bucs drafted Ronald Jones in the second round. I believe Jones actually starts this game as he out touch barber 11 to 8. I believe the organization invested a second round pick on Jones and they’re going to give him every opportunity. I’m really, really low on Barber to a point where I’m dropping him in most of my redraft leagues.
Projection: 50 total yards
RB Derrick Henry, Titans
He was also supposed to be the guy. He was supposed be the workhorse...what happened?
He’s consistently getting out touched and out played by Dion Lewis, and he’s a volume type running back so he needs volume for him to finally give you fantasy numbers. At this point he’s an every week sit until proven otherwise. Also the Ravens have only allowed 14.7 fantasy points per game to opposing running backs, some more incentive to sit Henry.
Projection: 52 yards rushing
WR Allen Robinson, Bears
I know it will be hard to sit Robinson, as you probably drafted him high, but he’s been such a disappointment. The Miami Dolphins have pretty good cornerbacks, especially Xavien Howard who is proving to be a shut down type player. The Dolphins have only allowed one touchdown to wide receivers who play primarily on the outside. So unless Robinson lines up in the slot I’m not excited for his match up
Projection: 5 receptions for 54 yards
WR Robby Anderson, Jets
This man is not going to catch touchdowns every game. He had 3 catches and two of them for touchdowns. He has been very inconsistent this year and the fact that he needs touchdowns to be desirable really stresses your fantasy day.
I’m not liking it.
However, the match up is pretty decent against the Colts yet I’m looking at the past performances and it seems like Donald more and more targets Enunwa. Anderson is a touchdown or bust candidate.
Projections 4 receptions for 64 yards
WR Michael Crabtree, Ravens
Crabtree goes to the Ravens in the off-season to be the number one wide receiver and he is getting outplayed by John Brown. Brown has been the leading target for the Ravens and I don’t see Crabtree doing anything moving forward. His best performance this year has been week one we where he got 13.8 fantasy points, and that’s it that’s not really exciting to me. Start Crabtree at your own risk
Projection: 5 receptions for 65 yards
TE David Njoku, Browns
The Chargers have been really good against opposing tight ends only allowing 9.6 fantasy points per game. Don’t be surprised if he struggles as the basis of me sitting him is purely match up.
Projection: 5 receptions 64 yards
TE Geoff Swaim, Cowboys
I’m actually shocked that I wrote Geoff Swaim on one on my list. But I have to give props when they are due. He’s been the most reliable fantasy receiver for the Cowboys. Never-the-less he is going up against Jacksonville jaguars defense who have been a stout defense against opposing tight ends. They have only allowed one touchdown to the position this year.
Projection 3 receptions for 25 yards
TE Antonio Gates, Chargers
Maybe you’re one of the last group holding out hope Gates still has something. He looked at least efficient for a two week run, but unless you are desperate it’s time to call in the dogs. He may be a future Hall of Famer, but he is no longer a relevant fantasy tight end. He’s only playing 35% of the snaps.The usage isn’t there and he is purely touchdown or bust.
Projection: 2 receptions for 21 yards
New England and Kansas City Defense
This game has the highest over/under this week and rightfully so. Both offenses are amazing. I expect a very high-scoring affair, with minimal mistakes, and therefore rendering both defenses a must sit in fantasy football.
Projection for Pats: 35 points allowed, 2 sacks, 1 turnover
Projection for Chiefs: 38 points allowed, 4 sacks, 1 turnover
K Adam Vinatieri, Colts
Another one where Matt and I disagree. I trust Andrew Luck to move the ball against the Jets. I’d start him.
For Matt, this is purely matchup-based. As the New York Jets of only allowed 6.2 fantasy points per game. I don’t know if he will have many opportunities to kick the football.
Matt’s Projection: 1 for 1 on field goals and 1 extra point
Brian’s Projection: 2 for 2 on field goals and 3 extra points