The Fantasy Footballers’ Starts of the Week for Week 1

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OOOHHHH, FOOTBALL IS BACK!!! We are making real start-sit decisions, and there are some great games to get us started! Of course, The Fantasy Footballers are here to help you get the season off to a good start. On this Thursday’s episode, the guys give you their Week 1 Starts of the Week and what led them to make these choices. A breakdown of those choices is below, while the entire episode is here on YouTube.

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Andy’s Starts of the Week

QB- Joe Burrow vs. PIT

78% and 83%… That is Joe Burrow‘s completion percentage last year in both games against the Steelers. Add in that in the last 11 games of the year, he was on a 5100-yard pace and you should be excited to get Joe Burrow in your lineup. Burrow has a bit of a chip on his shoulder and weapons that you can’t stop. Ja’Marr Chase does the Tyreek Hill thing, where he disables your defense and enables the other weapons to get open. This is a week one confidence start that should be delicious. 

RB- Both Denver RBs vs. SEA

Melvontè is, unfortunately, at it again. Melvin Gordon is a player you are probably nervous about playing, but you can do it against the Seahawks. Both backs are going to get work and should eat on the road. Gordon might do it more in situational ways like pass-catching or goal-line work. Javonte should be a top 15 back this week, and Melvin could be a solid flex with a TD upside. 

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WR- AJ Brown vs. DET

It’s time for a lift-off. Brown has played eight games indoors in his career averaging 7.5 targets, 97 yards, and 0.88 TDs in those games. Nick Siriani will want to show off the new toy and take some shots down the field for Brown. Brown is just too physically gifted not to succeed when given enough opportunities, and he should have plenty in this game. 

TE- Cole Kmet vs. SF

The preferred late-round pick-up when punting on Tight End. He should be the second-highest targeted player on the team. Facing a 49ers team who allowed the 5th highest pass rate inside the 10-yard line Kmet has a real shot at multiple touchdowns. If Justin Fields can be anything like what he was at the end of preseason, the Bears may provide some decent value for fantasy players. 

Jason’s Starts of the Week

QB- Russell Wilson vs. DEN

Revenge Game on Monday Night Football! Russ is going to be unlimited. He is going to destroy! Seattle allowed the second most passing yards and the second highest pass success rate in the NFL last season. Wilson knows the defense pretty well after practicing against it for years. Now Nathaniel Hackett is going to let Russ cook. As the Packers OC Hackett’s team averaged 35 passes per game, Pete Carrol only allowed Russ to do that in 25% of his career games. When he had those opportunities, he averaged 280 yards passing and two TDs. Look for him to do even more than that this week and start him with confidence. 

RB- Travis Etienne Jr. vs. WAS

Jason said he “wanted to pick someone you might be nervous of.” With all the off-season talk of “James Robinson is going to be back”, and “Robinson will be the starter”… it isn’t going to be Week 1. This week against this ‘Manders defense without Chase Young looks to be a solid matchup for Etienne. Etienne is an excellent pass catcher and should have plenty of opportunities to show his skill and be a solid RB2. Do not be afraid! 

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WR- Marquise Brown vs. KC

Hollywoooooood! There is no Deandre Hopkins. The Cardinals will have to throw the ball coming back from behind to the Chiefs. Rondale Moore is banged up, and Zach Ertz will most likely be limited. AJ Green is well over the hill in his career, so Brown should easily get 7+ targets this game. The Chiefs got beat deep consistently last year. Opposing teams averaged nearly 13 yards per reception, and the Chiefs were bottom-10 in 20+ yard pass attempts. The necessity of Brown for the offense and the game script paired with his specialty as a deep ball receiver sets him up to have a great week 1. 

TE- Gerald Everett vs. LV

Mount Everett was a favorite late-round TE of Jason’s. The Raiders allowed the 5th most fantasy points to the TE position last year. Everett will be a full-time player in the game, with the second highest over/under of the week. If you need a Tight End with a good shot to score a touchdown, Everett could be an easy player who is still on many waiver wires. 

Mike’s Starts of the Week

QB- Lamar Jackson vs. NYJ

He has been a week one dominator averaging 74% completion, 278 yards, 3 TDs, and 46 rushing yards. The Jets allowed the 2nd most 20+ yard passing plays last season which is a deadly combination for Jackson. Mike quoted a Warren Sharp Tweet, ”I don’t think people are ready for what the Ravens are going to do this year.” Sharp was one of the leading voices talking up the Ravens in 2019, and he is back at it again. Sharp points to Isaiah Likely as a significant contributor to Lamar getting back to his MVP-level dominance. 

RB- Antonio Gibson vs. JAX

For the first month, Gibseason should be in full swing. The Commanders are 2.5-point favorites, and opposing RBs averaged the 5th most rushing attempts against the Jags last year. When Gibson has had 15 or more carries, he averages 17 points per game in ½ PPR scoring. 

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WR- Elijah Moore vs. BAL

The last time we saw Flacco and Moore playing together was in week 11, and Moore went for 8 receptions, 141 yards, and a touchdown. That was on 11 targets. The Ravens should be up a ton in this game, which means the Jets will need to throw the ball, and while the Jets were second in the most 20+ yard passing plays, the Ravens were first last year. Maybe that is fixed, but the negative game script should set up Moore for fantasy success. 

TE- Irv Smith vs. GB

Big Irv is back, he is healthy, and he will be playing. The Packers allowed the 5th highest TE target success rate last year. This game should be very competitive, and if you have the nerve, you could swerve to Big Irv to try and find a TE who will get some targets and maybe have a touchdown upside.

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