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To Start or Not to Start: Week 1
To Start or Not to Start: Week 1

By Luke Blascovich

Published: 9/5/2018

It twas a fine night on that midsummer day. The Eagles and Falcons were set to combat in a game of sport. Several participants of which belonged to thou squad. Yet one question lingered all throughout the night. Who do I start? Should I pickup nobleman "x"? What do-

I can't keep doing that. Never will I understand old timey English. But luckily I know a thing or two about fantasy football and I'm here to help you with your tough weekly decisions. Enough blabber, it's time to get to the meet of this article. It's time for the first ever "To Start, or Not to Start?" !

Note: I'm not gonna tell you to start obvious players like Aaron Rodgers, Antonio Brown, etc. Here we'll mainly focus on players with extremely good or bad matchups or those I feel the community might be on the edge about.

Start

Start of the Week: Jared Goff (LAR)

As you’ll see throughout the season I’ll be targeting QBs who should be in shootouts. Goff vs the ever-worsening Raiders defense? Easy money. Some say it’s too easy and Gurley will steal TDs as a result. Oakland’s offense would like to beg to differ. Derek Carr is healthy again, Amari looks like he’s ready to breakout, and Marshawn Lynch came back from the dead last year as a competent running back. Although I don’t see anyway they could win, I still believe the Raiders will keep it close enough for Goff to have to pass a fair amount. Even Gruden must have Goff on his fantasy team as he traded away the Raider’s only competent defensive player in Khalil Mack just in time for week 1. Do it for Gruden, start Goff.

Philip Rivers (LAC)

Remember how the Chiefs first team defense got manhandled by the Bear’s second and third team players? That wasn’t a coincidence. This unit is bad. And good ol’ Philip Rivers is about to do worse things to them than Jon Gruden has done to the Raiders in one year. That alone should be enough to make him an instant start.

Cam Newton (CAR)

The Panthers get a fantastic matchup vs the Cowboys paper-soft defense to start the year. Now with more weapons than ever before, expect Cam to take advantage and rip them a new one.

Kirk Cousins (MIN)

With Dalvin Cook easing his way back from an ACL tear and the gunslinging 49ers in town Cousins is going to have to do some heavy lifting this week. Now surrounded by more offensive talent than ever I expect him to be more than capable of doing so. He’s a no-brainer for me.

Matthew Stafford (DET)

A surprise high-scoring game week 1 could be the Lions v. the Jets. For years Stafford and Co. have had to do the heavy lifting for Detroit and I don’t expect much different to be the case this year. The Jets, on the other hand, also will lean heavily on their offense as that was the unit that had them in the hunt for a wildcard spot last year until McCown got hurt. Despite being a rookie, I expect Darnold to fill in adequately. However, since it’s his first start I’m not going to recommend him quite yet. If you’re in a really deep league I’ll still vouch for Darnold as a ‘start’ player. Regardless of format, if you have Matthew Stafford he’s a fine option this week.

    Other QBs With Good Matchups

  • Tyrod Taylor
  • Blake Bortles
  • Case Keenum
Sit

Sit of the Week: Derek Carr (OAK)

Fantasy is a weird beast. On one hand, we have Goff as the QB of the week in what should be a major shootout. On the other hand, the sit of the week AKA Derek Carr. I know I hyped him and their offense up in the Goff piece but just because someone’s or some team does decent doesn’t always correlate with fantasy production. Carr will have to face the new juggernaut defense of the NFC West (the Legion of McVay, you can thank me later) and boy are the odds against him. Don’t bother giving him the keys to a starting spot in your lineup, ‘cause if there’s one thing this Carr is doing this week it sure isn’t starting.

Matt Ryan (ATL)

A Thursday night tango between the dirty birds doesn’t bode well for Matty Ice. Just because he’s facing the Super Bowl MVP doesn’t mean it’s gonna be a shootout. Just look at when they played in January. The Falcons offense was as cold as Matt Ryan’s nickname. Steve Sarkisian remaining in Atlanta should be enough to have people down on Ryan this year. Yet many people still see him as the QB1 he was during his last year with Shanahan. Sorry fellas but it’s over for now. Not even his stacked receiving core can save him from the combo of lackadaisical playcalling and the Eagles improved defense.

Jimmy Garoppolo (SF)

At first hand Minnesota v. San Fran looks like a shootout. However the Vikings are at home and they’ve been pretty impressive there…

“But Luke, Jimmy G and Co. put up 44 points against the Jaguars wi-” Yeah that’s true but they were at home for that competition and oh did Jacksonville have to travel for that one. Minnesota debatably has more talent on defense and an evident home field advantage at their disposal. Don’t get me wrong, I also think Jimmy G is gonna be the next big thing, just not this week.

Patrick Mahomes (KC)

One offseason sure can do a lot for a player. Moreso just a couple long passes and being drafted by the mighty Andy Reid, but who am I to talk as I had Mahomes ranked as a top 12 QB this year. We just might have to wait for that as he gets to start the year with a lovely matchup vs the Bolts. Great, just great. The only thing on Mahomes side this week will be volume as the Chiefs defense makes second and third stringers look fantastic (@Chicago). Given the preseason performance of KC’s O-line I also worry about Mahomes life this week. I mean, they were terrible. A unit of rotating doors who are giving too friendly of a hello to Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram. Treat week 1 like Andy Reid treated Mahomes first year. Bench him.

Russell Wilson (SEA)

This matchup is one of the more alarming ones to me. Russell Wilson has a tendency to start the season slow in fantasy and the Broncos as a team tend to do better earlier in the season. The latter played like a top 5 defense until week 6 last year. With the addition of Bradley Chubb the Broncos might just have the keystone to recreating a poor-man’s version of their 2016 unit. Such a group would still be one to fear, especially with an O-line as horrendous as Wilson’s. Doug Baldwin’s odd injury just makes the situation more grim for he might be one aggravation away from exiting the game early. If that were to happen Wilson’s next best weapon would be Tyler Lockett. A good player, but not enough to make up for the rest of Wilson’s problems. Don’t let his worries be yours, wait a week to play him.

    Other QBs With Bad Matchups

  • Marcus Mariota
  • Alex Smtih
  • Dak Prescott
  • Mitch Trubisky
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To Start Or Not to Start: Week 1

By Luke Blascovich

Published: 9/5/2018

It twas a fine night on that midsummer day. The Eagles and Falcons were set to combat in a game of sport. Several participants of which belonged to thou squad. Yet one question lingered all throughout the night. Who do I start? Should I pickup nobleman "x"? What do-

I can't keep doing that. Never will I understand old timey English. But luckily I know a thing or two about fantasy football and I'm here to help you with your tough weekly decisions. Enough blabber, it's time to get to the meet of this article. It's time for the first ever "To Start, or Not to Start?" !

Note: I'm not gonna tell you to start obvious players like Aaron Rodgers, Antonio Brown, etc. Here we'll mainly focus on players with extremely good or bad matchups or those I feel the community might be on the edge about.

Start

Start of the Week: Jared Goff (LAR)

As you’ll see throughout the season I’ll be targeting QBs who should be in shootouts. Goff vs the ever-worsening Raiders defense? Easy money. Some say it’s too easy and Gurley will steal TDs as a result. Oakland’s offense would like to beg to differ. Derek Carr is healthy again, Amari looks like he’s ready to breakout, and Marshawn Lynch came back from the dead last year as a competent running back. Although I don’t see anyway they could win, I still believe the Raiders will keep it close enough for Goff to have to pass a fair amount. Even Gruden must have Goff on his fantasy team as he traded away the Raider’s only competent defensive player in Khalil Mack just in time for week 1. Do it for Gruden, start Goff.

Philip Rivers (LAC)

Remember how the Chiefs first team defense got manhandled by the Bear’s second and third team players? That wasn’t a coincidence. This unit is bad. And good ol’ Philip Rivers is about to do worse things to them than Jon Gruden has done to the Raiders in one year. That alone should be enough to make him an instant start.

Cam Newton (CAR)

The Panthers get a fantastic matchup vs the Cowboys paper-soft defense to start the year. Now with more weapons than ever before, expect Cam to take advantage and rip them a new one.

Kirk Cousins (MIN)

With Dalvin Cook easing his way back from an ACL tear and the gunslinging 49ers in town Cousins is going to have to do some heavy lifting this week. Now surrounded by more offensive talent than ever I expect him to be more than capable of doing so. He’s a no-brainer for me.

Matthew Stafford (DET)

A surprise high-scoring game week 1 could be the Lions v. the Jets. For years Stafford and Co. have had to do the heavy lifting for Detroit and I don’t expect much different to be the case this year. The Jets, on the other hand, also will lean heavily on their offense as that was the unit that had them in the hunt for a wildcard spot last year until McCown got hurt. Despite being a rookie, I expect Darnold to fill in adequately. However, since it’s his first start I’m not going to recommend him quite yet. If you’re in a really deep league I’ll still vouch for Darnold as a ‘start’ player. Regardless of format, if you have Matthew Stafford he’s a fine option this week.

    Other QBs With Good Matchups

  • Tyrod Taylor
  • Blake Bortles
  • Case Keenum
Sit

Sit of the Week: Derek Carr (OAK)

Fantasy is a weird beast. On one hand, we have Goff as the QB of the week in what should be a major shootout. On the other hand, the sit of the week AKA Derek Carr. I know I hyped him and their offense up in the Goff piece but just because someone’s or some team does decent doesn’t always correlate with fantasy production. Carr will have to face the new juggernaut defense of the NFC West (the Legion of McVay, you can thank me later) and boy are the odds against him. Don’t bother giving him the keys to a starting spot in your lineup, ‘cause if there’s one thing this Carr is doing this week it sure isn’t starting.

Matt Ryan (ATL)

A Thursday night tango between the dirty birds doesn’t bode well for Matty Ice. Just because he’s facing the Super Bowl MVP doesn’t mean it’s gonna be a shootout. Just look at when they played in January. The Falcons offense was as cold as Matt Ryan’s nickname. Steve Sarkisian remaining in Atlanta should be enough to have people down on Ryan this year. Yet many people still see him as the QB1 he was during his last year with Shanahan. Sorry fellas but it’s over for now. Not even his stacked receiving core can save him from the combo of lackadaisical playcalling and the Eagles improved defense.

Jimmy Garoppolo (SF)

At first hand Minnesota v. San Fran looks like a shootout. However the Vikings are at home and they’ve been pretty impressive there…

“But Luke, Jimmy G and Co. put up 44 points against the Jaguars wi-” Yeah that’s true but they were at home for that competition and oh did Jacksonville have to travel for that one. Minnesota debatably has more talent on defense and an evident home field advantage at their disposal. Don’t get me wrong, I also think Jimmy G is gonna be the next big thing, just not this week.

Patrick Mahomes (KC)

One offseason sure can do a lot for a player. Moreso just a couple long passes and being drafted by the mighty Andy Reid, but who am I to talk as I had Mahomes ranked as a top 12 QB this year. We just might have to wait for that as he gets to start the year with a lovely matchup vs the Bolts. Great, just great. The only thing on Mahomes side this week will be volume as the Chiefs defense makes second and third stringers look fantastic (@Chicago). Given the preseason performance of KC’s O-line I also worry about Mahomes life this week. I mean, they were terrible. A unit of rotating doors who are giving too friendly of a hello to Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram. Treat week 1 like Andy Reid treated Mahomes first year. Bench him.

Russell Wilson (SEA)

This matchup is one of the more alarming ones to me. Russell Wilson has a tendency to start the season slow in fantasy and the Broncos as a team tend to do better earlier in the season. The latter played like a top 5 defense until week 6 last year. With the addition of Bradley Chubb the Broncos might just have the keystone to recreating a poor-man’s version of their 2016 unit. Such a group would still be one to fear, especially with an O-line as horrendous as Wilson’s. Doug Baldwin’s odd injury just makes the situation more grim for he might be one aggravation away from exiting the game early. If that were to happen Wilson’s next best weapon would be Tyler Lockett. A good player, but not enough to make up for the rest of Wilson’s problems. Don’t let his worries be yours, wait a week to play him.

    Other QBs With Bad Matchups

  • Marcus Mariota
  • Alex Smtih
  • Dak Prescott
  • Mitch Trubisky