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 Joe Flacco, Ravens
Why do I have this weekly romance with Joe?
This is not your father’s Steelers defense. They are not getting to the quarterback. The three they have faced all went over 20 fantasy points, and two of the three (Fitzpatrick and Mahomes) went for over 30! I see the Ravens playing keep up with the Steelers offense.
Projection: 324 yards with 3 touchdowns and 1 interception
QB Andrew Luck, Colts
His arm strength is still a concern, and he performed a very lackluster stat line last week (164 yards and a touchdown) against the Eagles, but I’m all in on Andrew luck this Sunday. I think he rebounds against the Texans at home. He has produced at least 18 fantasy points in 9 of his last 11 home games. He plays better at home!
Projection: 251 yards with 2 touchdowns and 1 interception
QB Baker Mayfield, Browns
Mayfield fever is taking over Cleveland and it’s obvious why. He led a comeback victory last week and I see that good game carryover here against the Raiders who surrender over 8 yards per passing attempt and have only 5 sacks (man I bet they miss Mack!).
His mobility adds to his fantasy value.
Projection: 310 total yards, 3 total touchdowns (2 pass, 1 rushing) and 1 interception
RB Aaron Jones, Packers
I know people are worried about the backfield in Green Bay, but look for Jones to exploit this matchup. While the Bills rate as a top 10 rushing defense, the opportunity is there for Green Bay to exploit Buffalo looking pass.
Jones had 6 carries for 42 yards last week, and more importantly, he is running laps around Jamal Williams! It’s only a matter of time before Jones eventually wins the starting job.
Call this more of a gut pick than a stat pick. If you haven’t grabbed him in waivers, do it and thank me later.
Projection: 15 carries, 85 yards, 1 touchdown with 1 catch for 8 yards
RB Carlos Hyde, Browns
Hyde proved to me, once and for all, that I should never sit a player on his birthday. Also, when his child that player is going to explode like he did last week. The game against the Oakland Raiders is a fantastic matchup as the Raiders have given up the seventh most fantasy points to opposing running backs. I think it’s another touchdown performance for Hyde.
Projection: 18 carries, 92 yards and a touchdown, with 2 catches for 19 yards.
RB Lamar Miller, Texans
It’s Miller time! Never gets old.
Miller is going up against a Giants team that is absolutely horrible against opposing running backs. They have given up 29.9 fantasy points per game in PPR format. After having a great game last week, I think he continues that trend.
Projection: 15 carries for 52 yards and a rushing touchdown, with 5 receptions for 35 yards
WR John Brown, Ravens
You already know I’m all in on Flacco so it’s no surprise I’m all in on his best receiver.
John Brown has proven to be the most reliable receiver for the Ravens. He goes up against a Steelers defense giving up the 10th most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers.
Projection: 6 receptions for 92 yards and 1 touchdown on 8 targets.
WR Sterling Shepard, Giants
Shepherd will most likely be the biggest beneficiary to Evan Engram being out. I believe the targets normally going to Engram will go to Shepherd.
He is also going against a Saints pass defense who have given up 360+ passing yards per game, which is ranked 30thin the league. This can very well be another shoot out type of game, and Eli is going to have to throw it. I believe Shepherd will find the end zone of this week.
Projection: 6 receptions for 72 and 2 touchdowns
WR Kenny Golladay, Lions
Golladay Is coming out of his shell. I believe you take him over Marvin Jones as a Fantasy wide receiver. He has seen at least six targets in the last three outings, and scored twice over that span. The Cowboys defense is absolutely horrible, and I believe Matthew Stafford’s going to have a field day.
Projection: 6 catches for 72 yards and a touchdown
TE Eric Ebron, Colts
Ebron Falls on my start list again this week as Jack is expected to miss his second game due to a hip injury, Ebron is currently tied up for most red zone targets on the Colts with the six. With Doyle out, I expect his targets to increase in a game that has the makings of a high scoring affair.
Projection: 5 receptions for 72 yards and 1 touchdown
TE Zach Ertz, Eagles
Ertz lead the team with targets last week with 10, catching five. He seems to be the team’s number one wide receiver, and I believe that will continue going into this week against the Tennessee Titans. I’m not worried about Dallas Goedert as he is not stealing targets. I’m going bold as I believe he finds the endzone not once but twice.
Projection: 7 receptions for 72 yards and 2 touchdowns
TE Jimmy Graham, GB
Besides his week one dud, Graham has been seeing steady volume. Look for that to continue against the Bills. He breaks his touchdown drought.
Projection: 5 receptions for 55 yards and 1 touchdown
Los Angeles Chargers Defense
The 49ers have lost Jimmy G for the remaining of the season with a torn ACL and the 49ers are starting CJ Beathard. Need anything else?
Projection: 10 points allowed with 3 total turnovers and 3 sacks
Philadelphia Eagles Defense
What did we learn from last week? A competent offense will force the Titans to win by the arm of Mariota. He can’t grip the ball!
Projection: 13 points allowed with 2 turnovers and 2 sacks.
K Will Lutz, Saints
Last week Lutz posted a monster stat line of 13 fancy points. He is going up against the New York Giants who have been favorable to opposing kickers, edging around nine fantasy points per game.
Projection: 2 for 2 on field goals with 4 extra points
QB Marcus Mariota, Titans
The man can’t squeeze his hand! Throwing the ball is very hard if you can’t squeeze the ball to throw it. I expect short throws in a lackluster performance against the Eagles for Mariota. The Eagles defense has been holding opposing Fantasy quarterbacks to under 14 fantasy points per game.
Projection: 205 yards passing, 1 touchdown, and 1 interception
QB Blake Bortles, Jags
Well that was quick. He was a start for me last week but now he is once again sit. He let me down dramatically last week against the Titans, and now he’s going to go up against the New York Jets who have only allowed three passing touchdowns this season, averaging just about 13 fantasy points per game to opposing QBs.
Sit the boat, but I’ll happily be wrong.
Projection: 178 yards passing with 1 touchdown and 2 interceptions
QB Josh Rosen, Cardinals
Isn’t the matchup enticing though?
I totally understand, especially in Daily. the man’s extremely cheap but let’s be real. The first start against the Seattle Seahawks defense! Granted it isn’t the Legion of Doom, but they are still formidable. They picked off Dak Prescott twice last week.
There’s generally a learning curve for rookie quarterbacks, and I don’t expect Rosen to pick it up right away.
Projection: 212 yards passing with 1 touchdown and 2 interceptions
QB Ryan Fitzpatrick, Bucs
FITZMAGIC is riding the bench this week folks, the Fantasy bench that is. The matchup is just brutal against the Bears. The Bears defense plays really well at home, only allowing 14 fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks.
Projection: 276 yards with 2 touchdowns and 3 total turnovers
RB Jamaal Williams, GB
What a crazy choice here? Jamall Williams nearly doubles the amount of snaps played in comparison to Aaron Jones but only saw seven touches. Aaron Jones is the more productive back (see Jones in the start section for more info) even to the point of Aaron Rodgers in an interview saying that we need to get number 33 out there more.
As I said earlier, I believe it’s only a matter of time until Aaron Jones is the starter and Jamall Williams is Just a pass catching back.
Projection: 52 total yards with 2 receptions for 23 yards
RB Jay Ajayi, Eagles
He is finally healthy folks. After missing last week Ajayi is ready to take over the role of starting running back for your Philadelphia eagles.
However, he’s not ready to take the starting running back role on your fantasy team. The Tennessee Titans have failed to give up a single touch down to opposing running backs, and only allowing a mere 16 PPR points per game to opposing running backs. The matchup is difficult.
I will start him with caution preferably sitting him.
Projection: 12 carries for 42 yards and 3 receptions for 21 yards
RB Kenyan Drake, Dolphins
He is my bust for this week. The matchup is really good against the Pats who allowed Detroit to have the first 100-yard rusher since Reggie Bush I’m just really confused with the backfield situation of Miami. Frank Gore got the “start” and Drake only out touched him by one last week. He could very well have a great game, but I am not entirely confident. I would rather sit him and see what he will do before implementing them in my lineup for the future:
Projection: 14 carries for 62 yards with 2 receptions for 21 yards
WR Quincy Enunwa, Jets
The Jacksonville jaguars only give up on average of 171 passing yards per game. That’s third best in the NFL. The jags defense is known for shutting down opposing quarterbacks, and it doesn’t help that Enunwa’s quarterback is also a rookie. Sam Darnold is going to have a tough game.
Projection: 4 receptions for 42
WR Desean Jackson, Bucs
After A dud performance on Monday night football, Jackson is facing a stingy Bears defense. He unfortunately falls into the touchdown or bust category this week. Starting him is a risky move.
Projection: 3 receptions for 61 yards
WR Jordy Nelson, Raiders
Nelson exploded for 170 yards and two touchdowns last week. He will unfortunately come back down to earth against the Browns who only yield around 249 passing yards per game (12th in league) I feel Derek Carr is going to get pressured a lot. I expect a subpar performance for Jordy Nelson this week.
Projection: 4 receptions for 49 yards
TE Dallas Goedert, Eagles
He produced seven catches a touchdown last week, but I feel that was an outlier. He is still fighting for snaps with Zach Ertz and I feel he’s a touchdown or bust candidate unless Ertz gets injured.
Projection: 3 receptions for 32 yards
TE George Kittle, Niners
It pains me to sit Kettle as he was one of my early-season favorites. How will he perform with Beathered throwing him the ball? Plus, the Chargers defense has yet to allow 32 yards against opposing tightened. He is pretty much touchdown or bust.
Projection: 4 receptions for 39 yards
TE Vance McDonald, Steelers
Vance McDonald made the play that he will be remembered for the rest of his football career with that gorgeous stiff arm on Monday night football. Still, he continues to share snaps with the Jesse James and I don’t think you’ll get long touchdown catches every game. For this week he’s definitely a touchdown or bust candidate and a must sit.
Projection: 3 receptions for 42 yards
They have been playing really good over the last three games with fantasy points in the top ten each week. But they’re going up against New England at their stadium. New England and Brady typically play way better at home and I believe the offense will do a lot better than recent weeks. I’m expecting 30+ points for the Patriots.
Do you really see the Pats losing 3 in a row?
Projection: 35 points allowed with 3 sacks and 1 turnover
K Robbie Gould, Niners
You just can’t expect many kicking opportunities for team who lost their starting quarterback to injury. As a result, I do not expect Gould to have a good fantasy day. He went from Fantasy hero to fantasy zero in a matter of a month.
Projection: 1 for 1 on field goals with 1 extra point