By: Jamy Bechler @WinningDFS101
Start/Sit – 2018 Fantasy Football – Week 10
When it comes to season-long fantasy football, you play your studs unless there is an injury, or you are loaded at a position and have other studs on your bench, or it’s a bye week. Try not to overthink it. You are playing head-to-head against one opponent each week. You just have to beat that opponent (who also probably has weaknesses in their lineup). Unless you are a huge underdog that week, don’t get cute.
This article is to provide some additional information as you set your lineups this week. If you have a player that we list in the “sit” category, you shouldn’t automatically sit him because you might be replacing him with a much worse player. Think of Start/Sit rather in terms of “Confident/Cautious.” These are players that we seem to be getting a lot of questions about. We offer our take on whether you should take a confident or cautious approach to playing them this week.
In most cases, we don’t touch upon the obvious plays. There are other Start/Sit articles (I won’t name names) that will tell you to start Melvin Gordon because he is in a great matchup against a bad Raiders defense. No, you start Melvin Gordon because he has 7 touchdowns in 7 games this year. You start Melvin Gordon because he has three 30+ fantasy point performances. You start him because he’s a stud! This is obvious to anyone that follows football in any form. We don’t list obvious plays so we can look like we are smart when the obvious plays do what obvious plays do. That doesn’t help you. We try to look at some of the plays that are questionable and give you insights on those.
Remember to check the news and injury reports, leading up to roster lock for the various game times. Nobody knows exactly what will happen from week to week in the NFL but use all the information and resources available to you to make the best decisions possible for your lineup. We believe in having a good process and good rationale. Good luck and have fun!
Start – Ryan Fitzpatrick vs. Redskins
Washington is a bottom third defense in terms of fantasy scoring for Quarterbacks. The Redskins should have a better defense than they’ve showed the last few weeks, but they haven’t been playing all that well. FitzMagic didn’t have a great game last week but still managed to have his fourth 20+ fantasy performance of the year. The Buccaneers offense is explosive, and you have to figure that Mike Evans will bounce back, which should open up the offense even more. Only one game in Week 10 has a higher projected total than the 51.5 in this game. There should be lots of offense and FitzMagic is the guy I want in a shootout.
Notables – Carson Wentz vs. Cowboys, Mitchell Trubisky vs. Lions, Russell Wilson @ Rams
Sit – Matthew Stafford @ Bears
Losing Golden Tate was huge to Matthew Stafford and this offense. He was a security blanket. Last week, Stafford failed to reach 200 passing yards. He also had 0 scores. I like Marvin Jones, Jr. and Kenny Golladay but right now I don’t trust this offense for fantasy goodness. Stafford was also sacked 10 times last week, which should have the Bears licking their chops. Chicago leads the NFC with 14 interceptions. Sure, he is still Matthew Stafford, but he just is not the same this year. Overall, he has only had one game of 3+ touchdowns this year and has failed to reach 225 passing yards in three of his last four games.
Notables – Dak Prescott @ Eagles, Marcus Mariota vs. Patriots, Baker Mayfield vs. Falcons
Start – Duke Johnson vs. Falcons
We’ve all been waiting for Hue Jackson to utilize Duke Johnson’s talents. Hue got fired and we saw Duke freed! He had 9 catches for 78 receiving yards and 2 touchdowns against the Chiefs last week after averaging only 3.6 targets per game with Jackson as head coach. Nick Chubb is the clear-cut bell cow Running Back for the Browns but interim offensive coordinator Freddie Kitchens appears determine to utilize Duke’s pass-catching abilities. This should be a dream matchup for Duke this week with the Falcons coming to town. The Falcons should be winning so the Browns will need to pass. The Falcons are giving up 8.5 receptions and nearly 65 receiving yards per game to Running Backs this year. That plays right into Duke Johnson’s game, especially coming off a 29-fantasy point performance.
Notables – Dion Lewis vs. Patriots, Tevin Coleman @ Browns, David Johnson @ Chiefs
Sit – Kerryon Johnson @ Bears
He has talent and should be playing more. Kerryon owners and truthers had a glimmer of hope in Week 7 coming off the bye when he was the true featured back for the Lions. Since then, Matt Patricia has gone back to his Patriot ways. That combined with Theo Riddick’s return and being a road underdog makes starting Kerryon a dicey proposition. Last week, Riddick and Kerryon played the same amount of snaps (39). The anticipated game flow is not good for Kerryon as the Lions should be playing from behind. The hope would be that he sees some targets out of the backfield on 1st or 2nd down situations because 3rd down belongs to Riddick and the goalline snaps belong to Blount. The Bears defense has also yet to allow a rushing touchdown to a Running Back this year, which is a bad sign for a guy that only has one touchdown in eight games
Notables – Doug Martin vs. Chargers, Peyton Barber vs. Redskins, T.J. Yeldon @ Colts
Start – Maurice Harris @ Buccaneers
If you are looking for a streamer this week when you have some key players on bye, then Harris might be your guy. He appeared to come out of nowhere to have a big game last week but the situation hasn’t changed much in the Redskins receiving corp and he has a great matchup this week. Besides, he did get targeted 8 times in Week 5 so Alex Smith knows who he is. In Week 9, he caught 10 of his 12 targets for 124 yards. Harris plays in the slot which is quickly becoming a position full of fantasy goodness. Speaking of goodness, he will go against M.J. Stewart, who is the Bucs slot defender. Stewart has given up 5 touchdowns already this season (per Mike Tagliere of FantasyPros).
Notables – Cooper Kupp vs. Seahawks, Larry Fitzgerald @ Chiefs, Jarvis Landry vs. Falcons
Sit – Allen Robinson vs. Lions
With Robinson practicing this week and proclaiming his groin to be 100%, we might be tempted to fire up the talented receiver against the Lions. Be cautious with this one. He only had a total of 8 catches in the three games preceding his injury. Yes, he scored twice in those three games but we want to avoid chasing touchdowns. They are too unpredictable (unless your name is Todd Gurley or Kareem Hunt). He struggled to catch passes in the Week 7 game against the Patriots. This game doesn’t look to have much shootout potential meaning that there will be less opportunities for Robinson to find the end zone or pile up enough catches to make him a reliable fantasy option.
Notables – DeVante Parker @ Packers, Chris Hogan @ Titans, Nelson Agholor vs. Cowboys
Start – Jordan Reed @ Bucs
More than likely you haven’t considered sitting Reed though if you had, I can’t blame you. He is healthy but not producing. Reed has always been someone that is highly efficient, highly effective, and very fragile. If you are considering benching him, I’d say wait a week. If he can’t get it done this week against the Bucs, he probably can’t get it done at all anymore. The Bucs are ranked second-to-last in terms of fantasy points given up to Tight Ends. This projects to be a very high scoring game (51.5 o/u). Though he hasn’t produced much, Alex Smith hasn’t given up on him as he’s been targeted nearly 8 times per game in his last four games. He is not a slam dunk but I like him to break out this week.
Notables – O.J. Howard vs. Redskins, Jack Doyle vs. Jaguars, Trey Burton vs. Lions
Sit – Jared Cook vs. Chargers
The Chargers are ranked #1 in DVOA plus Cook doesn’t seem to be a thing for the Raiders right now. Yes, Jon Gruden could decide to force feed Cook but the last few games have not shown us any indication that this is a focus for the Raiders right now. Cook is averaging 31 yards per game and less than 4 targets per game in the last four games. You would think that with Amari Cooper not playing the last few games that Cook could have had a break out game but that hasn’t happened. When these two teams met in Week 4, Cook had 4 catches for only 20 yards. You might not have a better option on your roster or available on the waiver wire but if you have options, be very leery about automatically firing up Cook this week.
Notables – Jonnu Smith vs. Patriots, Ricky Seals-Jones @ Chiefs, Nick Vannett vs. Rams
Unless you have one of the top defenses that are probably an automatic start each week, then you might want to consider streaming your defense each week with a team that has the best matchup. Remember, low scoring games is not the only factor for a good defense. You can’t predict fantasy defensive scoring, but you can predict opportunity. You typically want defenses that are aggressive and get pressure on the quarterback. This pressure can lead to turnovers. It is also a decent gamble to target defenses going against rookie or inexperienced quarterbacks. Playing at home is a plus. Finally, game flow matters. A game that will be slow with a lot of rushing attempts is not good for fantasy scoring. Also, it is possible for a defense and an opposing Quarterback to both put up good fantasy numbers in the same game. Here are three teams that you might want to consider streaming for this week, along with three teams you’ll want to be a little cautious with.
Start Notables – Chiefs DST vs. Cardinals, Jets DST vs. Bills, Packers DST vs. Dolphins
Sit Notables – Seahawks DST @ Rams, Cardinals DST @ Chiefs, Cowboys DST @ Eagles
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About the Author-
Jamy Bechler is a fantasy contributor for CouchPotatoGM and FantasyPros. His DFS twitter is @WinningDFS101 and his website is FantasyFocusFootball.com. He has won a fantasy league drafting last, trading away Ezekiel Elliott and having Tyrod Taylor as his starting Quarterback. When he is not playing fantasy sports, Jamy is an author, host of the “Success is a Choice” podcast, and is a leadership trainer, working with businesses and teams across the country (including the NBA). You can also follow his personal twitter account @CoachBechler. Even though he offers his advice on players and contests, after additional information and consideration, he may end up using different players and strategies than what he recommends.