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 Tom Brady, Patriots
If you’re wondering why Tom Terrific isn’t considered a must start it’s because he hasn’t had the start to the season that everyone is used to.
Is it age? Are there skills diminishing?
The answers to those questions are no. His weapons are not the best, but that might change with his favorite target coming off suspension in Julian Edelman. I believe he will have a great game as he’s going up against the Colts you just gave up 375 yards and two touchdowns to Deshaun Watson. Also, don’t discount the Josh Gordon impact.
This may be the game where Brady once again becomes a must start.
Projection: 343 yards passing and 3 touchdowns
QB Andrew Luck, Colts
Luck was back to his old self, throwing four touchdowns but more importantly averaging over 7 yards per attempt. With a running game presently sitting at 29th in the league, Luck is the Colts only hope at being competitive. If they’re going to have any chance to win this game he’s going to have to produce some good numbers which means a great fantasy day.
Projection: 275 yards passing, 3 touchdowns and 1 interception
RB Nyheim Hines, Colts
How is it possible to criticize the Colts running attack, and the recommend a Colts running back? Well, consider this a recommendation for the desperate.
Hines has at least shown some fantasy value. He is the third most targeted player on the team, registering 22 receptions for 119 yards and 2 touchdowns. If you’ve been hit by injuries and are looking for some production, pull Hines from the waiver wire.
Projection: 15 rushing yard, 6 receptions for 70 yards
RB Sony Michel, Patriots
Michel broke out last week with 25 rushes for 112 yards and one touchdown. He did this against a pretty run stout Miami defense. The Colts are fighting the injury bug on defense and it is quite possible the Patriots spend the 4th quarter just running out the clock.
Projection: 21 carries for 101 yards and 1 touchdown
RB James White, Patriots
White had two touchdowns one via catching one via rushing. Expec the touchdown trend to continue this week. With Burkhead going on IR it seems like White is really taking a bigger role in the Pats offense. I expect another 8 targets in the passing game.
Projection: 6 receptions for 75 yards and 1 touchdown along with 30 yards rushing on 6 attempts
WR Julian Edelman, Pats
Tom Brady‘s favorite target is back and boy did he come back at the right time. The offense is lacking playmaking ability, and with Gronk injuring his ankle he might at best be limited.
Open the flood gates of targets for Edelman. He will be a matchup nightmare for the Colts.
Projection: 10 receptions for 116 and 1 touchdown on 12 targets
WR Chester Rogers, Colts
T. Y. Hilton is inactive with a hamstring pull. I expect Luck to target Rogers. Last week he went for 8 catches on 11 targets for 85 yards. This game could be very well be a catch-up mode game for the Colts so I expect Rogers to have a sneaky fantasy day.
Projection: 7 receptions for 93 and 1 touchdown
TE Eric Ebron, Colts
He has scored in three of his first four games as a Colt, and I expect him to score in this game that could very well be a Patriots blowout. With Doyle inactive, Ebron will get the looks in a matchup that favors the tight end against a Patriots defense that does not guard the position well.
Projection: 4 receptions for 42 yards and 1 touchdown
They are ranked 8th against the pass and the Colts can’t run the ball. So while Luck may get touchdowns I expect a good amount of sacks and turnovers.
Projection: 24 points allowed with 3 turnovers and 4 sacks
K Stephen Gostkowski, Pats
The Colts gave up 37 points last week; so it’s safe to say their defense isn’t the best. I expect many kicking opportunities for Gostkowski.
Projection: 2 for 2 on field goals and 4 extra points
K Adam Vinatieri, Colts
Seriously. Great night for kickers.
He is currently averaging eight fantasy points per game this season and the Patriots happen to give up around 7.5 fantasy points per game to opposing Kickers. Pats also are a bend don’t break type of defense; so I project many field goal attempts
Projection: 3 for 3 on field goals and 3 extra points
RB Jordan Wilkins, Colts
I am very high on Wilkins; I said on my show way before he got drafted that he is someone to keep an eye on. He has potential but not in this game where the Colts could abandon the run early. Excluded from the passing attack, he is has no fantasy value.
Projection: 8 attempts 61 yards
WR Ryan Grant, Colts
He will play a ton as Hilton is out but he is not worth the start. He had 7 targets last week catching 5 for 64 yards. However he dropped easy slant passes and it seams Rogers and Pascal have better roles in this offense. He will be fighting for targets and he is a risky play even for my tastes.
Projection: 4 receptions for 62 yards
WR Chris Hogan, Pats
He had one catch last week!!! This was a guy I thought would breakout, especially with Edelman gone for the first four games, but he hasn’t. Dorset has been the guy and with Edelman returning I see him getting squeezed out of offense. Limited targets especially when you account for Josh Gordon. Wait and see how he is used.
Projection: 4 receptions for 43 yards
WR Josh Gordon, Pats
He definitely has more upside than Chris Hogan as he can easily take a catch to the house. I’m sitting him because I don’t know if he has yet to fully grasp the offense, and there is the question of his hamstring.
I want to see how he is being used as Edelman is coming back to this offense. You might get a big play out of him and that may be worth the risk, but consider how happy Brady is to have Edelman back.
Projection: 4 receptions for 65 yards
Take a look at their inactive list. Did I mention Edelman?
Projection: 35 points allowed, 2 sacks, 1 turnover