Note: The charts show my comfort level for starting each player at that position. If you see a “+” sign next to a player, that means I can see them playing better than the level I have them listed at. A minus sign will be used for tougher matchups. Read through the comments for each game to get the detail behind the charts. Good luck!
Thursday Night Football:
Aaron Rodgers –
Mitchell Trubisky +
|Aaron Jones +||RB2||
Geronimo Allison +
|WR3||Allen Robinson +|
|Flex||Tarik Cohen +|
Comments: The Packers are set to debut their new offense under new head coach Matt LaFleur. We did not see a full game from Aaron Jones against the Bears defense last season, as he was suspended for the first one and hurt early in the second one. I believe he will be the X-Factor for the Packers ‘offense. If you drafted Rodgers, you are likely not going to bench him, so he’s fine as your QB1, just limit your expectations against this defense. Aaron Jones has a safe RB2 floor, even against this tough matchup. He’ll be more involved in the passing game this year and can make your week with a touchdown. Adams is matchup-proof as your WR1. The tough decisions will come down to getting Geronimo Allison or MVS in your lineups. Both have WR3/Flex upside, with Allison having the better PPR floor. All it takes is one play from MVS to make our week, so I’m open to starting both WRs as a WR3/flex. I’m not too excited to get Graham in my TE1 spot, but if you punted at TE in your draft, he has a good shot at a TD. Look for quick timing routes with Rodgers and his WRs, as well as a balanced attack with the running game here to keep this Bears D on its heels.
As for the Bears, Mitchell Trubisky offers us QB2 value with upside of a QB1. We’re not sure how the Bears will divide the snaps between the RBs just yet, so both Cohen and David Montgomery could be hit or miss. I’ll be more optimistic about Montgomery getting around 15 carries in this one, along with the best chance to rush for a touchdown. Add in a couple catches and he should have a solid RB2 floor. Cohen will be big play dependent and should be viewed as a flex with RB2 upside. Allen Robinson is a solid WR3 this year but will be tested against Jaire Alexander this week. I can see Trubisky moving the ball with quick throws to Cohen and his complementary WRs in Anthony Miller and Taylor Gabriel. I’d be open to using Miller as a flex this week while we monitor Gabriel on the waiver wire. I’d also expect Cordarrelle Patterson to have a few select plays throughout the game, but that’s too risky for now. Maybe in DFS as your cheap, low owned option. Trey Burton is unlikely to play, so we’ll see Adam Shaheen get the start. Not sure I’d start him in our season-long leagues, but he could be worth a shot in DFS.
Sunday Early Games:
Todd Gurley +
|Cooper Kupp +||WR3||
DJ Moore +
Curtis Samuel +
Comments: This game is pretty simple for fantasy football. We’re looking at two teams here who have set it and forget it type fantasy offenses. All of these players have locked in roles within their offenses. We’ll start with Carolina. Cam Newton is not on the injury report and should be good to go, so fire him up as your QB1. He’ll be relying on Christian McCaffrey, DJ Moore, Curtis Samuel and Greg Olsen. McCaffrey is your top notch RB1 as usual; we’ll never be sitting him when healthy. DJ Moore and Curtis Samuel both offer us WR3/Flex options in PPR leagues, while Greg Olsen has a good shot to make your week with a touchdown. The Rams Defense will be one of the better units in 2019, but I’m not sure they’ll be able to shut down this Panthers offense completely. This game is also being played in Carolina, so I feel better about that when considering your Panthers players.
The Rams offense is also crystal clear with how we expect them to move the ball. If you drafted Todd Gurley, he’ll be your RB1. I’ll be curious to see how his snaps and touches get handled in this first game. Gurley might be best viewed as a high end RB2 with RB1 upside. The Panthers have an elite defensive line and solid group of linebackers, so I could see the Rams offensive line struggling, forcing Jared Goff to throw more than usual. Goff has a lot of upside this week as your QB1. He’ll be relying on his trio of WRs in Brandin Cooks, Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp. The Panthers have some solid young cornerbacks as well, so it might be difficult to project which of the three is the best play. I would say Cooper Kupp has the highest upside here. He’s Goff’s favorite target in the Red Zone and primarily plays from the slot. Outside of the big names, we’ll keep an eye on Darrel Henderson’s usage this week in order to get a feel of his value for the rest of the season. Tight ends Gerald Everett and Tyler Higbee are also names to keep an eye on. This will be one of the more entertaining games during the early slate and could go either way. Enjoy.
|WR3||DeSean Jackson +|
|Guice||Flex||Jordan Howard +|
|Toss Up||Miles Sanders|
Comments: This one should get ugly. We’ll want to bank on our Eagles in their home opener. Wentz is locked in as a QB1. The Eagles boast a plethora of skill player weapons for Wentz to rely on, including Zach Ertz, Alshon Jeffery, DeSean Jackson, Jordan Howard and Miles Sanders. Ertz is the clear must start of the bunch at TE, so no questions there. There has been some injury concerns around Alshon Jeffery (biceps) and DeSean Jackson (finger). Monitor those practice reports through the weekend before starting these guys. If both play, I like both in my lineup. DJax has a revenge game opportunity against Washington, so that could pay off nicely to start the year. I’ll be most interested to see how the running back snaps are divided between Howard, Sanders and even Darren Sproles. The positive game script in this one could lead to more running plays for the Philly offense, so I’m open to Howard as an RB2/3 as well as Sanders as a Flex. Sanders can make our week on just one play. Sproles is another interesting PPR play but might be a bit of a risk. We’ll also keep an eye on Dallas Goedert’s usage as well as rookie WR JJ Arcega Whiteside.
The Redskins are starting Case Keenum to begin the season, which automatically limits the offense’s upside. You’ll want to start the Eagles defense for sure. The only player I can see us starting is Derrius Guice, especially if Adrian Peterson is a healthy scratch. Guice has been getting positive buzz lately about having the offense run through him. He can be an RB2/Flex for us this week, but limit expectations. Chris Thompson is still there, so he’ll take a few catches away, but Guice will be locked into the short yardage and goal-line work, if there even is any. The WRs are too risky to even think about with Case Keenum, but we’ll be watching to see who steps up as the best option between Trey Quinn, Paul Richardson, Terry McLaurin and Jordan Reed. This one is pretty simple; Guice or Bust. Start your Eagles.
|Josh Allen +||QB2||Sam Darnold|
|Brown +||WR3||Jamison Crowder +|
|Zay Jones, Singletary||Flex|
|Beasley, Gore||Toss Up||Enunwa, TyMo|
Comments: There’s a lot to like here in this battle between second year quarterbacks Sam Darnold and Josh Allen. Buffalo has the better defense and will look to control the clock with Frank Gore and Devin Singletary. Josh Allen is a QB2 in superflex leagues with QB1 upside this week. He’ll be throwing to John Brown, Zay Jones and Cole Beasley. All it takes is one deep shot to Brown to make our weeks, so I’m open to him being a WR3 with upside for us. Zay Jones and Cole Beasley might be best left on our bench until we are able to see a little more. We’re not sure how the backfield snaps and carries will be split between Gore and Singletary. Singletary will get his opportunities to flash and earn more playing time, but Gore is still a solid runner at his age and could dampen things for his outlook this year. I’m really only comfortable banking on Josh Allen as my QB2 and hoping for a John Brown bomb. The Jets corners are vulnerable so we could see a nice passing game from Allen.
The Jets will be exciting to watch and see how they utilize Le’Veon Bell in this new Adam Gase offense. Bell is really the only must start for the Jets. Darnold will be a QB2 against this tough Buffalo defense. His WRs are Robby Anderson, Jamison Crowder and Quincy Enunwa. I’m most optimistic about Crowder in PPR leagues. We’ve heard Robby Anderson is dealing with a calf issue, so continue to monitor that, but it seems like he will play. You probably drafted Anderson as a starter, so just know that he does have some risk in this one. The Jets have no fantasy viable option for TE while Chris Herndon is on suspension, so it’s really all about Bell and these WRs. We could see Ty Montgomery mixed in as a runner and receiver, but I’m not sure we can bank on him for fantasy just yet. Both of these teams have exciting futures, but are still somewhat unknown this early in the season.
|QB2||Kirk Cousins +|
|Julio Jones||WR1||Adam Thielen|
|WR2||Stefon Diggs +|
|Calvin Ridley +||WR3|
|Austin Hooper||TE1||Kyle Rudolph|
|Mohamed Sanu +||Flex|
|Toss Up||Irv Smith Jr.|
Comments: This will be one of the better early games this week, as both the Falcons and the Vikings enter the season with playoff hopes. The Vikings are looking to run the ball more this year and utilize two TE sets. This is extremely beneficial to Dalvin Cook, who should receive a high volume of carries as well as targets in the passing game. He is a RB1 lock in this one and should help you get off to a nice start this year. Adam Thielen has WR1 upside this week. Stefon Diggs was on the injury report with a hamstring this week, so continue to monitor his progress. In the past, when Diggs has shown up on the injury report, his output for that week has not been the greatest, making me favor Thielen more in this one. Cousins should be considered as a QB2 with QB1 upside. Kyle Rudolph is a TE1 streamer and can make our week with a touchdown. We should not be too worried about him losing targets or snaps to rookie Irv Smith, just know that they plan to have Smith involved as they transition to a more run heavy approach. The Vikings defense will be startable, even against the potent offense of Atlanta.
Matt Ryan and Company will be hungry to erase their 2018 season from their minds. Devonta Freeman is back, along with several key pieces of their defense. Matt Ryan has QB1 upside this week, but could struggle as most QBs do against this defense. I like Freeman as an RB2 with upside. We’ll monitor the rotation behind Freeman to see who would be the next man up, just in case. I fully expect Freeman to be treated as the bell cow and return to high volume carries and targets. Julio Jones had some interesting comments this week about possibly not playing as he works on getting a new contract done. If he plays, he’ll obviously be in our lineups. Jones will likely be matched up against Xavier Rhodes for most of the day, so we might want to limit expectations in week 1. Calvin Ridley could benefit from the attention Julio brings. I like Ridley as a WR3 with upside. Mohamed Sanu is guy who will get a steady amount of targets every week, probably in the 5-6 range. He’s more of a deep flex, but I could see him being useful this week. Austin Hooper is a TE1 and has a chance to start the season hot, as Matt Ryan could look for him often if his WRs are stifled. The Vikings defense is no joke, so we should limit our expectations for all of our Falcons this week, but I wouldn’t be surprised if a few guys boom as well.
|Mark Ingram +||RB2|
|Willie Snead||Flex||Kenyan Drake +|
|Toss Up||Kalen Ballage, Parker, Wilson, Grant|
Comments: We’ll keep this one simple, starting with the Dolphins. Please, do not start anyone. If you have to, Kenyan Drake may have a safe floor in PPR leagues. The Ravens should be able to control this game from the start, making Miami throw the ball a ton. Ryan Fitzpatrick could have some success, but it’s really difficult to predict which receiver that would be. Drake is the third down back and should see enough targets to warrant a flex play in PPR leagues.
Baltimore will lean heavily on the run, so Mark Ingram is an RB2 with RB1 upside. We should see Justice Hill and Gus Edwards mixed in as well, but both are risky starts for fantasy. We’d like to see a little more before we trust either of them. Lamar Jackson is a QB1 with his rushing ability. I’m open to him having a nice day passing the ball as well, although it will be difficult to predict which receiver or tight end will have the best game. Willie Snead might be the safest play in PPR leagues. Rookies Miles Boykin and Marquise Brown could both make some splashes and end up in the end-zone, but could also both be duds. Mark Andrews is a TE1 streamer. We’ll really have to sit back and watch how Lamar decides to spread out his targets before I feel confident about starting anyone besides him and Ingram. Start your Ravens Defense. This won’t be pretty.
|QB2||Nick Foles +|
|Damien Williams||RB2||Leonard Fournette +|
|Sammy Watkins +||WR3||Dede Westbrook +|
|LeSean McCoy||Flex||Chris Conley|
|Streamable||Defense||Only if You have To|
Comments: Another fun early game here. We get to see strength vs strength in the Chiefs offense vs the Jaguars defense. You drafted Mahomes, so you’re starting him every week. You’re also starting Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce. We should limit our expectations for Hill against Jalen Ramsey, but the upside is still there. I’m most interested to watch the running backs Damien Williams and LeSean McCoy. We should feel good about starting Damien this week, as McCoy is adjusting to his new team and getting back into the Reid offense. Damien has an RB2 floor this week, while McCoy is a mere flex play at best. We might even see Darwin Thompson and Darrel Williams get some run, so I’m not too excited to whip McCoy out there just yet. The biggest question will be whether to start Sammy Watkins or not. He caught 6 for 78yds last year against the Jaguars, so I’m open to him as a WR3 with upside. He can make our week with a touchdown, which seems more likely than not. We’ll monitor Demarcus Robinson and Mecole Hardman for future weeks. This game is in Jacksonville, so heat and weather could give the Jaguars the ultimate home-field advantage in this one, but I still like all of our Chiefs here.
The Jaguars offense will look to get Leonard Fournette going early. I love Fournette as an RB2 with RB1 upside this week. We’ll see him more involved in the passing game with Nick Foles. The Chiefs defense is still going to be near the bottom of the league, so I’m open to Foles as your QB2 with upside in superflex leagues. He’ll rely on Dede Westbrook and Chris Conley all day. Westbrook appears to be a solid WR2 in PPR leagues in this one. Conley is most likely on your waiver wires, so just monitor his usage to see if he’s worth an add next week. DJ Chark and Keelan Cole are boom/bust plays, but both could make something happen this week. This offense will be all about Fournette and Westbrook though, so make sure they’re in your lineups. If you own the Jaguars defense, it might be a good idea to pivot and look else where, but I’m open to them being serviceable this week.
|WR1||Odell Beckham Jr.|
|Corey Davis||WR3||Jarvis Landry +|
|Delanie Walker||TE1||David Njoku|
|Adam Humphries +||Flex||Rashard Higgins +|
|AJ Brown, Dion Lewis||Toss Up||Hilliard|
Comments: The highly anticipated Browns offense will be unveiled at home against the Titans. You’re starting Baker as your QB1 for sure. We should expect the Browns to play well on defense and set the offense up to control the game. This will make Nick Chubb a solid RB1 play. We’re looking to see him be more involved in the passing game, as well as dominate the bulk of the carries here. Very good chance Chubb finds the end-zone this week. Baker will be getting his new weapon Odell Beckham to play with. I’m very optimistic on this duo’s outlook for the season, but we should limit our expectations in their first game together. Odell has not been able to practice much or take many snaps with Baker and this offense, so perhaps they are not exactly clicking smoothly off the bat. Odell is still a fine WR1 and can make our weeks with just one play. One receiver that Baker has been clicking with has been Rashard Higgins. I’m actually more excited for Higgins than I am about Landry this week. Landry is a high floor PPR play, but with limited upside. I like Higgins’ chances for a touchdown this week and finishing as a WR3. Landry is a fine WR3 in PPR leagues. The biggest question mark on this offense will be how involved David Njoku will be. He may have some boom/bust weeks, so it’s a tough decision. If you have a better option, it might be a good idea to wait and see what happens here in Week 1. Otherwise, go ahead and start Njoku and hope for a big play or red-zone TD to make your week.
The Titans will try their best to establish the run and get Derrick Henry rolling early. The Cleveland pass rush will be dominant this year. Starting LT Taylor Lewan is out on suspension, so the Browns will have the advantage at the line of scrimmage. This does not bode well for Henry. If you drafted Henry, you are likely starting him as your RB2. If the Titans do get the red-zone opportunity, Henry will get the work at the goal-line, so he could save our day with a touchdown. I’m most intrigued to see Marcus Mariota and this passing game. Corey Davis could have a tough week against Denzel Ward, so limit your expectations as no more than a WR3/Flex play. I’m excited to see what Adam Humphries and rookie AJ Brown can offer us this season. We’re probably not starting these guys, but definitely keep an eye on their play. Delanie Walker is a low end TE1 and should help bring stability back to Mariota and the offense as a whole. Dion Lewis should still see plenty of third down work and could be a deep flex consideration. I’m taking a cautious approach with the Titans this week though, hoping to see more before we trust any of these guys. Henry is probably the only one who should be in our lineups, but even then, it’s not looking great. This Browns defense will be very stifling.
Sunday Late Games:
|Brissett||QB2||Philip Rivers +|
|Marlon Mack||RB2||Austin Ekeler +|
|TY Hilton +||WR2||Keenan Allen +|
|Eric Ebron||TE1||Hunter Henry|
|Flex||Mike Williams +|
|Toss Up||Travis Benjamin,
Justin Jackson +
Comments: How many times will Andrew Luck’s name be brought up in this one? I’m looking forward to seeing Jacoby Brissett and this Colts offense. Brissett had an up and down season the last time we saw him in 2017. He had a lot going against him that year though, so I’m optimistic about him for 2019 now that he has been settled in here for a few years now. The Colts as a team are much better all around compared to that 2017 team. Brissett is a QB2 in superflex leagues. He’ll rely on TY Hilton as his #1. This can translate to WR2 production for us in fantasy, so don’t worry too much about TY dropping off too much. Brissett has been most effective when targeting tight ends. I’m open to both Eric Ebron and Jack Doyle being TE1s this week. Doyle offers us a decent floor in PPR leagues, while Ebron will always be a threat in the red-zone and have a good chance at a touchdown. We’re watching to see who else steps up at receiver outside of these guys. Marlon Mack should get the majority of snaps and carries at running back. He offers us an RB2 week, but may be TD dependent this year. If Mack gets more involved as a receiver this year, his value could be locked in to a solid RB2. Nyheim Hines lingers as the third down back and could steal receptions from Mack and limit his upside in PPR leagues. The Chargers are with-out star safety Derwin James, so I’m open to the Colts having success on offense.
The Chargers will go without Melvin Gordon this week, turning to a tandem of Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson. Ekeler is locked in as an RB2 in PPR leagues, while Jackson will be TD dependent. Jackson will be an interesting flex play every week that Gordon is out. It might be a good idea to wait and see how this game goes before starting Jackson, but I’m open to him as a flex. Philip Rivers is a QB2 with QB1 upside this week. The offense is now more on his shoulders with Melvin out. Keenan Allen is a low end WR1. Mike Williams will likely be in our lineups as a WR3 with upside. We’re looking for him to step up this year now that Tyrell Williams is gone. Hunter Henry is a TE1 this week and could take some steam away from Mike Williams. Travis Benjamin is a boom/bust WR3/flex play and may be worth a shot in DFS. This will be a fun game to keep an eye on, as the Chargers look to return to the playoffs while the Colts look to prove they are a quality team without Luck.
|Joe Mixon +||RB2|
|Flex||DK Metcalf +|
|Toss Up||Penny, Dissly,
Comments: The Seahawks are heavy home favorites here. This has me very excited about Chris Carson. He was likely drafted as your RB2, but expect RB1 numbers this week as he looks to get more involved in the passing game. Russell Wilson is a fine QB1 this week. He’ll rely heavily on Tyler Lockett, who I have as a WR1. Lockett will be a target hog this week as Seattle will tinker with their receivers behind him. DK Metcalf is starting and can be flexed or a WR3. He only needs one play to make our weeks, so I’m very exciting about seeing him with Wilson. Outside of these guys, the rest of the supporting cast is a bit unknown. We’re expecting to see a little more from Rashaad Penny this year, but not enough to start him just yet. Will Dissly is back and could provide a low TE1 week. He’ll be sharing snaps with Nick Vannett however. Jaron Brown was released and then resigned with the team last week. Brown is a boom/bust option in DFS and could establish himself as a core piece of the passing game early. The Bengals are a bottom 5 defensive unit, so start your Seahawk studs.
Tough draw for the Bengals on the road here. Their offensive line is still below average and may struggle to get Joe Mixon going. We’re still starting Mixon as an RB1 though. He is one of the most talented backs in the league and can make up for his poor offensive line play on his own. Andy Dalton is not an exciting play, but could offer QB2 numbers in superflex leagues. This game could get out of hand, so I’m open to some garbage fourth quarter stats here. Dalton will rely on Tyler Boyd heavily while AJ Green is out. Boyd is a WR2 for now. The tight ends Tyler Eifert and CJ Uzomah will both be on the field together often. Most people are looking at Eifert as the next best weapon, but don’t sleep on Uzomah. Both guys could end up as a TE1 this week. We’ll have to monitor the 2nd and 3rd WRs for the Bengals. Rookie Damion Willis gets the start. I would assume John Ross will get ample playing time as well. We’re not comfortable starting either of these guys just yet, but I’m open to seeing some plays made between the two. Gio Bernard is still there to be the change of pace back, but he’s a deep flex consideration for now. I can see the Bengals having some success on offense, but it still feels a bit risky outside of Mixon.
|49ers (0)||@||Buccaneers (0)|
|Jimmy Garoppolo +||QB2|
|Tevin Coleman +||RB2|
|WR2||Chris Godwin +|
|Dante Pettis +||WR3|
|George Kittle||TE1||OJ Howard|
|Marquise Goodwin +||Flex|
|Breida, Samuel||Toss Up||Brate, Barber, Jones|
Comments: This might be the fantasy bonanza of the week. The Bucs at home will look to get Jameis Winston going early with his WRs Mike Evans and Chris Godwin. Evans is your WR1 and Godwin is your WR2 with upside. Godwin might end up with more receptions, while Evans always has a good chance to score. OJ Howard will be in the mix as well. He’s a lock for a TE1 week and could easily be the #1 overall TE this week. Cameron Brate lingers as one of Winston’s favorite targets, especially near the end-zone. We’re not too excited about the Bucs running game, but Peyton Barber is the lead back and clear goal-line back. He could be flex worthy, especially if he gets more involved in the passing game. Ronald Jones is on the wait and see approach for now. I’m more excited about Dare Ogunbowale here. He had a great preseason for the Bucs and showed some nice moves catching the ball. He might end up being the Bucs third down back and best back for fantasy. For now, bank on the Bucs passing game.
As good as the Bucs passing offense might be, their defense will remain a work in progress. Look for the 49ers to rely heavily on Tevin Coleman and Matt Breida. Both can finish as RB2s in PPR leagues. Coleman is the better receiver while Breida is the better runner. Jimmy Garoppolo will be watched under a micro-scope in this one after his poor pre-season play. We’re banking on George Kittle as our TE1. Tampa was not good against tight ends last year, so Kittle is easily the best matchup. We don’t quite know how the receiver group will look just yet between Marquise Goodwin, Dante Pettis, Deebo Samuel and Jalen Hurd. Goodwin has a good chance to win deep and make our day with one play. Pettis is the favorite to be the number one receiver here, but was pushed all pre-season by head coach Kyle Shanahan. Pettis flashed last year as rookie and could pick up right where he left off. Fire up Pettis as a WR3 with upside. Goodwin is a boom/bust flex play. We probably shouldn’t start either of the rookies in Samuel or Hurd, but watch them closely for future usage. Garoppolo is the key to it all and could surprise us with a top 5 performance, or leave us scratching our heads. He’ll be a QB2 in superflex leagues with upside. Try to get a piece of this game in DFS.
|Eli Manning||QB2||Dak Prescott +|
|Saquon Barkley||RB1||Ezekiel Elliott ?|
|RB2||Tony Pollard +|
|Evan Engram||TE1||Jason Witten|
|Sterling Shepard||Flex||Gallup, Cobb|
Comments: We’ll make this one pretty simple. We’re starting Saquon Barkely. We’re starting Evan Engram. Eli Manning could be used in superflex leagues as your QB2, but that feels risky still. Sterling Shepard could have a nice volume of targets, so I’m open to him as our WR3/Flex. I might lean toward another WR if I have a better option with a better matchup over Shepard. I’d really prefer to wait and see how this offense looks before I trust him or Eli. The Cowboys have a solid defense and this game is in Dallas.
We’re starting Zeke. We’re starting Dak as our QB1. Amari Cooper appears good to go and should be in our lineups as a WR2 with upside. I’m most excited about seeing what Michael Gallup can do in year two. I’m open to him and Randall Cobb both being WR3/Flexes in this one, as Cooper will likely draw Janoris Jenkins all day. Jason Witten is even worth a stream as your TE1. Start the Cowboys defense against Eli. Saquon will have his moments, but Eli is usually good for some laughs. This is the best supporting cast of play-makers we have seen with Dak, so try to get Gallup or Cobb in if you can. If not, it’s a good week to scout and see what we have for the rest of the year.
|Matthew Stafford +||QB2||Kyler Murray +|
|Kerryon Johnson +||RB2|
|Marvin Jones +||WR3||Kirk, Fitzgerald|
|Defense||Avoid like the Plague|
|Amendola, Anderson||Toss Up|
Comments: All eyes will be on the debut of Kyler Murray in this one. How will the Cardinals offense fare? Plenty of questions surrounding this offense, so who can we trust for fantasy? David Johnson is the safest of the group as our RB1. He finished as a top 10 RB last year, so fire him up without hesitation. Kyler Murray will be a QB2 with QB1 upside for me in this one. I’m not sure I can trust any of his receivers in Larry Fitzgerald and Christian Kirk. I’m taking a cautious approach with this team to start the year, letting the players prove their worth. The Cardinals defense will be very bad, so the offense will have opportunities to put up some numbers
I would expect the Lions to run the ball early and often, controlling the clock throughout. This means Kerryon Johnson is a fine RB2 with RB1 upside. No Patrick Peterson yet, so Matt Stafford becomes an interesting streaming option and safe QB2 in superflex leagues. He’ll rely on Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones. I view both as boom/bust WR3s with upside. Golladay has the edge over Jones in terms of targets and skill. I’m open to TJ Hockenson playing well in this one. He showed some nice things this pre-season with Stafford, so I could see a low TE1 week here. The Cardinals defense is bad folks. No Patrick Peterson for 6 weeks. We’ll be targeting this unit every week in fantasy and DFS. Kerryon Johnson will be a big factor in the passing game and should be able to help us get off to a hot start. We’ll monitor Danny Amendola and CJ Anderson for future weeks. For now, bank on the running game and Stafford having themselves a nice opening weekend.
Sunday Night Game:
|Ben Roethlisberger +||QB2||Tom Brady +|
|RB2||James White +|
|WR2||Julian Edleman +|
|Donte Moncrief||WR3||Josh Gordon +|
|Flex||Sony Michel +|
|Washington, Samuels||Toss Up||all other WRs, TEs|
Comments: My favorite game of the week. We’ll want to get as many guys in this one as we can. Starting with the defending champs, we can start Tom Brady as our QB1. He’ll lean heavily on Julian Edelman and James White in the short passing game. Edelman is a WR2 with WR1 upside, while White is locked in as our PPR RB2. Sony Michel looks to get more involved in the passing game this year, so limit your expectations for White. Michel is our RB2/Flex with upside and has a good chance at a touchdown. Josh Gordon will be a boom/bust WR3/Flex play. All it takes is one play to make our week, so fire him up. The rest of the offensive play-makers are best left on our bench, so we’ll be monitoring Phillip Dorsett, Demaryius Thomas, Jakobi Meyers, Damien Harris and the TEs. The Patriots offense will most likely be very efficient and control the clock as usual.
The Steelers will look to get James Conner rolling early. He’s a lock for us as our RB1. We’re starting Juju Smith-Schuster as our WR1. Roethlisberger is a potential QB1 this week as he usually shines bright in prime-time opportunities. It’s the complimentary pieces that are the most interesting and difficult decisions. You should start Vance McDonald as your TE1 with upside. Donte Moncrief appears to be the clear number two receiver and can deliver for us as our WR3/Flex. James Washington is boom/bust and might be best left on our bench until we see more from him with the starting unit. Jaylen Samuels could have a few big plays to make him worth an RB2/Flex play in PPR leagues, but might also be best left on our bench until we see more. This game should be exciting for fantasy with all of this offensive firepower, so make sure you get a piece of this one.
Monday Night Games:
|QB2||Drew Brees +|
|Duke Johnson +||RB2|
|DeAndre Hopkins||WR1||Michael Thomas|
|Will Fuller +||WR3|
|Coutee, Stills||Flex||Latavius Murray +|
|Akins, Fells, Hyde||Toss Up||Smith, Ginn|
Comments: The Saints open up at home as 7pt favorites against the Texans. We’re starting our studs in Alvin Kamara and Michael Thomas. Drew Brees is interesting this year. We might see the Saints try to run the ball more this season, which would limit his upside. I’ll rank him as a QB2 with QB1 upside, but it is at home so I’ll lead toward the QB1 side this week. Jared Cook is a fine TE1 with upside. The real questions begin after this main pieces. Tre’Quan Smith and Ted Ginn Jr offer us boom/bust flex plays this week. Latavius Murray could have a nice week and should probably be in our lineups any game the Saints are favored to win. All he needs is a goal-line TD to make our week. He’ll also see more targets from Brees than he has throughout his career. We’re not exactly scared about the Texans defense outside of JJ Watt, so start your Saints at home.
If the Saints are winning and controlling this game, we should expect good numbers from Deshaun Watson and this passing game. Watson is a QB1 for us, along with DeAndre Hopkins as a WR1. I’ll be interested to see how Duke Johnson gets utilized in this offense. He’ll be a PPR RB2 this week and probably all season going forward. If you drafted Will Fuller, it’s probably a good idea to start him every week that he is healthy. He is boom/bust, so play him as your WR3 with upside. Monitor the practice reports for Keke Coutee. He’ll probably be best left on our bench this week as we wait and see how his ankle holds up. Kenny Stills is an interesting boom/bust WR3/Flex play, but again, probably best left on our bench until we see more. Carlos Hyde is there but not worth the look in fantasy. The Saints offense should be able to control this game, so there is a possibility of a let-down from our Texans. Start your studs and hope for the best with Duke Johnson and Will Fuller.
|Joe Flacco +||QB2||Derek Carr|
|Emmanuel Sanders||WR2||Antonio Brown ?|
|Courtland Sutton +||WR3||Tyrell Williams|
|Lindsay, Freeman +||Flex|
|Toss Up||Richard, Renfrow|
Comments: Will Antonio Brown play? That’ll be the biggest question heading into this game. If AB plays, he’ll be in your lineups with a WR2 floor. Denver has a phenomenal pass rush, so we have to limit our expectations for the Raiders offense as a whole. Derek Carr will flirt with QB2 numbers, but I’m not sure I feel safe about him in superflex leagues. I would kind of like to see a game before we trust him as a QB2. Outside of Carr and AB, the Raiders will look to get rookie Josh Jacobs going. Because we are expecting Denver’s defense to control the line of scrimmage, I’m not as excited about Jacobs as my RB2. He’ll need to be involved in the passing game for him to hit RB2 numbers, so we’ll see if he can keep Jalen Richard away on some passing downs. You probably drafted Jacobs as your RB2, so it’s ok to roll him out and see what you got. All of the attention will be on Antonio Brown, so I could see either Tyrell Williams or TE Darren Waller stepping up and having a nice night. Williams will be a boom/bust WR3 most weeks. If AB is out, you’ll probably be trying to get Williams in your lineups. I like Waller as a TE1 streamer even if AB plays. We’ll be monitoring Jalen Richard’s usage, as well as rookie Hunter Renfrow in the slot. Overall, I’m not too excited to start any Raiders this week.
The Broncos will look to establish the run early with Royce Freeman and Phillip Lindsay, mixing in passes to Emmanuel Sanders and Courtland Sutton. I’m actually open to Joe Flacco giving us a QB2 performance this week, so he’s startable in superflex leagues. Phillip Lindsay is expected to see more targets this year, so I like him in PPR leagues. With Flacco as his QB, this bodes really well for Lindsay having safe floors all year. Royce has a good shot at a rushing touchdown or two when they get near the goal-line, so I can see him being RB2/Flex worthy. Flacco will lean on Sanders and Sutton in the passing game, so I’m open to both guys in our lineups. Sanders obviously has the safer PPR floor. If we are expecting the Broncos defense to be smothering, we should look for plenty of rushing opportunities for both Royce and Lindsay in this one. Start your Broncos with confidence, especially that defense.