Week 9 Start'em/Sit'em

Wednesday, Nov 4, 2020 at 10:22 pm ET

This is the Fantasy Football Nerd's look at the best and worst matchups for Week 9 of the 2020 NFL season. Analysis is aggregated from multiple sources including FFN. FFN rankings are based upon PPR (point per reception) scoring. Given the known conditions, these matchups are the ones to watch and/or avoid.

Please Note: This list does not generally include the elite players that you are going to start regardless of matchup. You don't need us to tell you to start Christian McCaffrey, Travis Kelce, or Michael Thomas. Instead, we take a look at other players on your team that we believe either have great matchups or should be avoided for multiple reasons. Factors like opposing defense, performance trending, and peer comparisons may influence our decisions.

Start 'em Justin Herbert (LAC, QB)
Ranked 6th this week on FFN is Justin Herbert who continues to play like a QB1 regularly putting up 23+ fantasy points every week. It's as if someone forgot to tell him that rookies aren't supposed to be this good. A matchup with the Raiders is just what the fantasy doctor ordered.
11th Most Pts to QB
Start 'em Cam Newton (NE, QB)
Don't throw the towel in on Cam Newton just yet. Cam comes into this week's rankings at #11 and remains a fringe QB starter against a Jets defense that is giving up the 11th-most fantasy points and the 4th-most yards through the air to the position.
11th Most Pts to QB
Start 'em Ben Roethlisberger (PIT, QB)
Big Ben on the road hasn't historically been great, but the Steelers are undefeated and playing well. Quarterbacks have averaged nearly 19 fantasy points against the Cowboys this year. The only concern is that Dallas will be unable to stop the Pittsburgh run-game which might prevent Ben from throwing. As long as they can slow down James Conner, Big Ben should be able to carve that secondary up.
14th Most Pts to QB
Start 'em Chase Edmonds (ARI, RB)
This is the week where Chase Edmonds is going to cement his role on this team while Kenyan Drake heals his ankle. The Dolphins give up the 7th-most fantasy points to running backs and the workload is here to make Edmonds a must-start.
7th Most Pts to RB
Start 'em David Johnson (HOU, RB)
This is a great matchup for Johnson who has been seeing nearly 16 carries each game. Jacksonville has surrendered the 6th-most fantasy points to runners this year along with 142 yards on the ground each game (5th-most).
6th Most Pts to RB
Start 'em Justin Jackson (LAC, RB)
Of the Chargers' committee, we like Justin Jackson to outperform his peers against a Raiders defense that is giving up the 5th-most fantasy points on the season. He's a great low-end RB2 option this week.
5th Most Pts to RB
Start 'em Brandin Cooks (HOU, WR)
When Brandin Cooks saw Jacksonville back in Week 5, he put up a monster game (8-161-1) on a whopping 12 targets. We don't expect him to repeat that performance, but this is a team allowing 282 yards through the air (5th-most) and Cooks remains the most targeted player on this team.
13th Most Pts to WR
Start 'em Terry McLaurin (WAS, WR)
Who knew that Kyle Allen and Terry McLaurin would be such a positive match? McLaurin hauled in 7 of those passes for 74 yards when he last faced the Giants in Week 6, and he's coming off a big game last week (7-90-1). Keep F1 locked in your lineups.
10th Most Pts to WR
Start 'em Marvin Jones (DET, WR)
When Kenny Golladay left the game last week, it was Marvin Jones who was the biggest beneficiary finding the endzone twice. Jones becomes a fantastic WR2/FLEX option for fantasy owners against a Vikings defense that has given up the 2nd-most fantasy points on the year.
2nd Most Pts to WR
Start 'em TJ Hockenson (DET, TE)
Ranked inside our Top 5 this week is TJ Hockenson who has been a great option for fantasy owners who waited to draft their TE. This is a decent matchup as the Vikings have allowed both Robert Tonyan and Hayden Hurst to find the endzone the last two games.
16th Fewest Pts to TE
Start 'em Noah Fant (DEN, TE)
Drew Lock's security blanket has been a solid option in fantasy. The Falcons present a must-start matchup for Fant. No other team has given up more fantasy points to tight ends this year than Atlanta including an average of 24 points to Hockenson, Tonyan, Graham, and Schultz.
Most pts to TE
Start 'em Washington Football Team (WAS, DEF)
Streaming defenses? Check to see if Washington is available. When they faced the Giants in Week 6, Daniel Jones gave them a sack and an interception, plus kept the Giants to 20 points. New York gives up the 2nd-most fantasy points to opposing DSTs.
2nd Most Pts to DEF
Start 'em Matt Prater (DET, K)
Nobody is giving up more fantasy points to kickers than Minnesota. Prater is in a good spot to keep the double-digit production moving.
Most pts to K
Sit 'em Teddy Bridgewater (CAR, QB)
This is just a bad matchup. The Chiefs have given up the 5th-fewest fantasy points to QBs including just 15 points to both Josh Allen and Lamar Jackson. The Chiefs can be run on, but they're giving up the 3rd-fewest yards through the air (201.3 yards).
5th Fewest Pts to QB
Sit 'em Drew Brees (NO, QB)
When Brees faced the Bucs back in Week 1, he managed just 14 fantasy points. Tampa Bay has been frustrating for quarterbacks all season allowing just one QB to surpass 20 fantasy points.
5th Fewest Pts to QB
Sit 'em Daniel Jones (NYG, QB)
Unless you're playing in Superflex leagues, Daniel Jones is probably best to ride the pines this week. When he last saw Washington in Week 6, he managed just 13.8 fantasy points. Without a legitimate run game and a shaky O-Line, defenses are keying in on Jones and forcing him to struggle.
14th Fewest Pts to QB
Sit 'em Ronald Jones (TB, RB)
RoJo owners know that his fumbling issues are going to be cause for concern. Add to that a healthy Leonard Fournette and Jones becomes a bit more difficult to trust. When he faced the Saints back in Week 1, he just barely eclipsed 10 fantasy points (ppr). Since then, the Saints have given up the 3rd-fewest fantasy points to the position. Ouch.
3rd Fewest Pts to RB
Sit 'em Gus Edwards (BAL, RB)
One of the popular waiver wire pickups this year is coming off a strong showing last week, but we'd urge caution on him this week. Gus Edwards is getting fewer touches than teammate JK Dobbins, and a matchup with a stout Colts defense that's giving up the 2nd-fewest yards on the ground and 4th-fewest fantasy points makes him tough to even consider as a flex option.
4th Fewest Pts to RB
Sit 'em Matt Breida (MIA, RB)
The Dolphins have been talking about Matt Breida's opportunity to shine while Myles Gaskin recovers from a sprained MCL, but Breida didn't practice on Wednesday (hamstring) and has a tough matchup with the Cardinals.
13th Most Pts to RB
Sit 'em CeeDee Lamb (DAL, WR)
On paper, this should be a great matchup, but with Andy Dalton out and Ben DiNucci under center, the Cowboys offense is not what it was before. Unfortunately that negatively affects what was arguably one of the best WR trios. Lamb comes into the rankings this week at #41.
6th Most Pts to WR
Sit 'em Antonio Brown (TB, WR)
This is a tough one because we haven't seen Brown play in some time, but if you want to take a flyer on Brown in your WR3/FLEX spot, take the shot. His first game with Brady in New England was good (4-56-1), but there are more mouths to feed in Tampa Bay. If Godwin can't play, then Brown gets a boost.
8th Most Pts to WR
Sit 'em Corey Davis (TEN, WR)
After a big game last week (128 yards and a score), Corey Davis is likely to come back down to Earth against a Bears secondary that has largely kept receivers in check surrendering the 2nd-fewest fantasy points to them on the season.
2nd Fewest Pts to WR
Sit 'em Mike Gesicki (MIA, TE)
The QB situation in Miami wasn't favorable for fantasy last week and it's not likely to change anytime soon. Mike Gesicki hasn't been the most consistent TE in fantasy. Combine those factors with the brutal matchup and Gesicki belongs on the bench.
9th Fewest Pts to TE
Sit 'em Dalton Schultz (DAL, TE)
The Steelers D is rolling and the Cowboys offense is not. Pittsburgh has kept opposing tight ends to single digits each week giving up the 4th-fewest fantasy points to them.
4th Fewest Pts to TE
Sit 'em Tampa Bay Buccaneers (TB, DEF)
The Bucs' defense is humming along nicely, but the Saints are giving up the 2nd-fewest fantasy points to opposing DSTs. Kamara intends to play and there's a good chance that Michael Thomas returns. This should be a fun game to watch, but I'd leave the Bucs on the bench.
2nd Fewest Pts to DEF
Sit 'em Rodrigo Blankenship (IND, K)
One of the better kickers this season can be dropped this week. No other team gives up fewer fantasy points to kickers than the Ravens, and even Rodrigo Blankenship isn't immune to this defense.
Feweset Pts to K

Join the Discussion

If asking a sit/start question, be sure to provide your scoring format and contribute to answering questions from other FN members as well.

Mario Ramos CommentedNov 4, 2020 11:09 pm

Hold up. So sit Brees & the Tampa Bay defense??? How does that make sense?

jamisdiablo CommentedNov 7, 2020 9:00 am

it's all relative bro... start brees if your only other option is someone like stafford... sit TB DEF if only other option is a team like ATL or GMEN

Nerd CommentedNov 7, 2020 9:10 am

Correct - it's not mutually exclusive.

drcharlie CommentedNov 5, 2020 3:57 pm

Should I trust Christian McCaffrey in his first game back?

mrock CommentedNov 5, 2020 7:36 pm

always start your studs

jamisdiablo CommentedNov 7, 2020 8:58 am


Nerd CommentedNov 7, 2020 9:11 am

What they said

tramz18 CommentedNov 6, 2020 12:47 pm

This isn't start or sit question but you guy's are great about answering all questions. I want to upgrade at TE and have these offer's tell me which would be best for me...It's a keeper league also,so i would lose who i trade and gain who i get for 3 years.
Offer 1- I send Justin Jackson & Schultz and receive H.Henry & Burkhead.
Offer 2- I send J.Jefferson & receive H.Hurst.
Which should i take,Thanks

Nerd CommentedNov 6, 2020 1:01 pm

Sounds like the question really comes down to either Hunter Henry or Hayden Hurst in exchange for Justin Jefferson. I like Henry in that for dynasty.

tramz18 CommentedNov 6, 2020 1:24 pm

Thanks,,,,It's a keeper league so i'd have Henry for 3 years and I agree,i think that's the route i'll go!
And i want to add,this is the first year ive used you guy's and i wish i had found you years ago! Don't worry about me renewing my subscription...Im a lifer now!

jamisdiablo CommentedNov 7, 2020 8:58 am

i think all three of those TEs are middling at best... understand the desire to upgrade at TE but for someone like Jefferson, who you should be keeping already? IDK about that one... maybe if I could snag a Waller or someone a bit better than those 3 TEs... but JJefferson is an up and coming stud you want to keep I'd think.

Bigmike81 CommentedNov 6, 2020 10:27 pm

I need 2 out of the four, Locket, Ridley, Evans or Jefferson in a standard league

jamisdiablo CommentedNov 7, 2020 8:55 am

I go jefferson, locket myself... best matchups... is Ridley even playing? Evans could go off in a high scoring affair, tough call no doubt but thats a good problem to have.

jamisdiablo CommentedNov 7, 2020 8:51 am

here's a nice pickle... JJefferson this week or JJeudy? Both defenses horrible against the pass, one QB so-so, the other completely unproven... ugh. leaning jjeudy for now... if anyone's more likely to be behind and chucking it all afternoon, it's gotta be the team WITHOUT DCook, right? thanks!

Nerd CommentedNov 7, 2020 9:09 am

I know the rankings have Jefferson ahead, but I'd play Jeudy. Hopefully he can come close to a repeat from last week. Great matchup.

tramz18 CommentedNov 7, 2020 9:44 am

@Jamisdiablo, Yeah i gave up Schultz and Jackson and got Henry so i could keep Jefferson as one of my keepers. I think he will be a stud #1 WR and probably take over Thielens #1 spot in Minn. at some point next year.

Broc CommentedNov 7, 2020 8:22 pm

Should I start Josh Jacobs or AJ Brown at my flex? It’s a ppr league.

Nerd CommentedNov 8, 2020 10:34 am

Jacobs. Good luck!

Toph CommentedNov 7, 2020 9:57 pm

Should I start Tannehill or pick up Carr or Newton? Six points for passing tds, not that Newton has thrown many of those. Also do I start Jonnu at TE or H. Henry full point ppr? Thanks!

Nerd CommentedNov 8, 2020 10:36 am

QBs for me is a toss-up. Gonna go with Cam by the slimmest of margins.

Rolling with Hunter in this one.

tramz18 CommentedNov 8, 2020 11:40 am

Ok. I have Zeke but he is banged up ,even if he plays i dont like his matchup vs Pittsburgh. I have 2 other option i could use...1 G.Edwards Balt. or Perine NYJ -PPR , would you use one of these instead and if so which one?

Nerd CommentedNov 8, 2020 11:51 am

Ugh. Rule #1 in fantasy is to always start your studs, but this assumes that Zeke plays. If he plays, you almost have to start him just because you know what he's capable of even against a tough D. If you don't want to take the gamble, Perine would be my pick.

DPull16 CommentedNov 8, 2020 3:50 pm

Pollard or Zeke? Will zeke be limited or taken easy if down slot?

DPull16 CommentedNov 8, 2020 4:04 pm

Down a lot*

Nerd CommentedNov 8, 2020 4:17 pm

I think you still have to play Zeke

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