Overtime Ireland

Fantasy Corner: Starts & Sits – Week 1

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Each week I will be advising you on the best players to start and sit in order to help you win your league. If you have any start/sit questions that you need answered before your games please feel free to ask me on twitter @JamesMaguire21



Kirk Cousins (WAS)

Cousins is coming off a poor preseason, but I wouldn’t let that deter you from starting him this week in a nice matchup against the Eagles. He finally has all of his receiving weapons healthy, and I would look for him to throw often in what could be a high scoring matchup. If you factor in that Cousins has always performed well against the Eagles (lowest score of 19points, highest 40), and that the Eagles had a terrible pass defence last season: it makes him a fantastic start this week.

Carson Palmer  (ARI)

Palmer finished last season hot, and I would expect that trend to continue into this season, especially now that his receivers are healthy. He has a lovely matchup against a Lions defence that are weak against the pass. He scored 3 TD’s in their last meeting, and is a great option at QB this week.

Other good QB starts: Eli Manning (NYG), Cam Newton (CAR)

Running Backs

Terrance West (BAL)

West has earned the featured back role in Baltimore this season, and he should be in for a large workload this week as Joe Flacco is eased back into action. It is a great matchup for him as the Bengals will be without LB Vontaze Burfict, and in the majority of games that he has missed, the Bengals have given up double digit fantasy points to opposing runners. Get him in your lineups.

Dalvin Cook (MIN)

Cook looked very good in the preseason, and should have earned the no1 role over Murray. I would look for him to have a great debut performance as he has a great matchup against a Saints defence that was awful against the run last season. They shouldn’t have improved too much, and he should be able to exploit this matchup and help your team to its first win of the season.

Other good RB’s to start: Todd Gurley (LAR), Christian McCaffrey (CAR)

Wide Receivers

Stefon Diggs (MIN)

Diggs is coming off a good season, and excels in PPR formats. He should catch lots of balls this week against a Saints defence that allowed the 5th most receptions to opposing WR’s last season. He should be in for another good season, starting this week. Get him in your lineups.

Martavis Bryant (PIT)

Bryant missed all of last season due to suspension, but he’s back now with a point to prove, and I expect him to explode out of the gate. He has a nice matchup against the Browns who he has played well against before, and I would expect him to catch a few long passes from Big Ben.

Other good WR’s to start: Sammy Watkins (LAR), Kelvin Benjamin (CAR)

Tight Ends

Kyle Rudolph – TE (MIN)

I would expect Rudolph to continue where he left off last season, on route to another good fantasy year. Bradford looks for him often and he is a good redzone target. This week also represents a good matvhup for the Vikings TE as he faces a Saints defence that has a history of being weak against the pass.

Coby Fleener – TE (NO)

Fleener has generally been a disappointment in fantasy, and can be a risky play. However, with Snead out for the 1st three games I would be willing to take a chance on him. His best game last season came when Snead was out, and with Cooks gone as well, there should be plenty of targets for him this week. He is a good upside play.

Other good TE’s to start: Delanie Walker (TEN), Zach Miller (CHI)



Matthew Stafford (DET)

Stafford should have another decent season, but it will be hard to trust him this week in what should be a tough matchup. He is facing a Cardinals defence that is extremely tough on opposing QB’s, in fact only 5 QB’s scored multiple TD’s against them last season. If you have a better option I would keep him benched this week.

Other QB’s to sit – Dak Prescott (DAL), Philip Rivers (LAC)

Running Backs

Ameer Abdullah (DET)

Abdullah has a brutal matchup against the Cardinals this week, and could really struggle to be productive for your fantasy team. The Cardinals defence is still as strong as last year, and they allowed the fewest PPG to opposing runners last season. I would keep him benched in all formats this week.

Other RB’s to sit: Frank Gore (IND), Ty Montgomery (GB)

Wide Receivers

Dez Bryant (DAL)

I expect Dez to have a very good season as his chemistry with Dak Prescott improves, and he is now fully healthy. However I expect him to have a slow start as he faces a tough Giants defence that have contained him in their previous meetings. He is a risky play this week.

Other WR’s to sit: TY Hilton (IND), Jeremy Maclin (BAL)

Tight Ends

Antonio Gates – TE (LAC)

Both Gates and Henry could have good seasons this year, but I would keep both benched this week in a tough matchup against the Broncos. The Broncos have a good defence and only gave up 1 TD to opposing TE’s last season. They are both risky plays this week.

Other TE’s to sit: Eric Ebron (DET), Martellus Bennett (GB)

This OTI Piece was written by James Maguire. James is a NY Giants fan from Westmeath, Ireland. He is a huge fan of the NFL and watches several games each weekend. He has been playing Fantasy Football for over 10 years with great success in all types of leagues. Most of his articles focus on Fantasy Football covering a range of topics relevant to both Dynasty and Redraft leagues. Check him out on twitter @JamesMaguire21 .

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