Start and Sits

Starts and Sits Week 1 2020

Rush Nation, it is finally the start of Week One! It is time for football. However, with it being time for football, it is also time for Fantasy Football and some Starts and Sits decisions. 

If you are new to our content, I post our Starts and Sits picks on Thursday, giving you plenty of time to get your line-ups up to date and submitted before the late night Thursday Night Action. 

Each week, I am going to give you 5 Starts and 5 Sits for you to consider for your teams every week. If your players are not in this column, you can join our Patreon and get direct access to me, Stocks and the rest of the NFL team. Access to this starts at just $3 a month via our Patreon slack channel. You can also ask us questions for our flagship show by submitting them on Twitter.

However, it is now time to review Starts and Sits for Week One.

Starts

Cam Newton- QB New England Patriots

Without having too much 2020 analysis in terms of games played, we are looking at historical performance and also so analysis of the roster. However, Cam Newton is healthy and ready to go. In 2018, before he went down in Week 12, he was the QB3. He has a safe rushing floor and a cannon arm. You can also count on Newton to find the end zone with his legs. 

However, he is facing a team that Warren Sharp has ranked as the easiest pass defence to face in the NFL. He also has the Dolphins as the 6th easiest rush defense in the NFL. The Betting line for this is also Pats by -6.5.  With an entirely new defense entering the field for the first time together, expect some rust. I expect Newton, McDaniels and co to exploit this D and to cover the spread. All this means is that starting Newton is the play.  

David Johnson- RB Houston Texans

I try to avoid obvious starts. And since David Johnson is a 4th Round pick in most drafts, I can say that Johnson is not an obvious must start. Whilst there are some favourable match-ups, David Johnson has an absolute beauty to start with. 

Also, because he was traded to the Texans as part of the trade that took De’Andre Hopkins to the Cardinals, the pressure is on Bill O’Brien to use Johnson and have it work. 

The Texans have always has efficient runners. The plodder that is Carlos Hyde was fantasy relevant most weeks in this offense. Most people, myself included are worried Johnson is done. However, if you drafted him, you need to play the man against the 22nd ranked Run Defense in the NFL heading into the 2020 season. Also, the Texans will try and keep the Chiefs offense off the field by having longer, slower drives and control the Time of Possession more by holding onto the ball.

Tarik Cohen- RB Chicago Bears

This one makes a lot of sense as it appears to be that David Montgomery will probably not be ready for Week 1 (at time of writing). 

Vegas has this game at 44.5 points, which is the sixth lowest scoring game of the week. It also has the Lions at -3 meaning a slight favourite to win by a Field Goal. I expect both teams to run the ball a fair bit. And with no David Montgomery it is Tarik Cohen to have a stand-alone role for Week One. Take advantage of the volume and plug him in your flex.

Tyler Boyd- WR Cincinatti Bengals

This one is purely a matchup situation selection. I have not seen Stocks Lock Down article being released tomorrow. However, I would be shocked if the Chargers secondary are not on the list of match-ups. With the Chargers having Casey Heyward, Chris Harris Jr. and Desmond King at Corner, they are loaded.

As a result, I expect Joe Burrow to get the offense rolling through the slot. That means Tyler Boyd is the Wide Receiver to play in this offense for Week One. He is going to get a lot of targets and hopefully a lot of receptions. In PPR leagues, this is a must start move.

Brandin Cooks- WR Houston Texans

I have already talked about some of this match-up. However, there are some things I still need to cover. This game in Vegas is being priced at 54.5 total points, which is the highest scoring contest of the week. It also contains the biggest favourite of the week, with the Chiefs at -9. 

What does that mean when we see lines like this? Start everyone. However, you need to start Cooks. He is going to be the number 1 Wide Receiver in this offense. That means volume in a high passing offense. Give me all the shares of Cook and he will be in all my lineups for Week One. 

Sits

Daniel Jones- QB New York Giants

A lot of people are bullish on Daniel Jones this week. Myself included. However, this is not the week to be starting Daniel Jones.

For starters, he has not had any preseason. Jones will need time to get going as he has not been working with many of the weapons in this offense due to their injuries. However, even with that, they play the Steelers Week One.

Jones has turnover issues, especially fumbling issues. And this Pittsburgh defense is the best overall defense they will face this season. So, if you have another option other than Jones, start them instead.

Melvin Gordon- RB Denver Broncos

This one is a two part concern. The first is he is carrying a rib injury, which is extremely bad for a Running Back. He has had limited practice, therefore, you can see a path to him starting Week One.

However, the other concern with Gordon is the fact Phillip Lindsay is still a big portion of this backfield in Denver. I am fully expecting Gordon and Lindsay to split carries the first couple of weeks. Especially as Lindsay is the incumbent. I can’t see a path to him being overly fantasy relevant Week One, especially for the ADP selected. Therefore, best to sit this week.

Leonard Fournette- RB Tampa Bay Buccaneers

If you did your drafts earlier in the offseason and you didn’t listen to me about fading Leonard Fournette, you took him as your RB2. However, you cannot start Fournette this week. 

Despite getting praise from Bruce Arians and landing on a high powered offense in the shape of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, you cannot start him Week One. He has had the playbook for less than a week at this point. Fournette has not been part of the preparations for Week One. Therefore, whilst he might see the field, he will be behind Ronald Jones for this week and Shady McCoy. However, moving forward, his prognosis looks better.

Amari Cooper- WR Dallas Cowboys

Whilst Vegas has the Cowboys vs Rams matchup as a shootout, with the second highest points total of the week with 52 points over/under, Cooper’s match-up is really bad. He faces Jalen Ramsey, who is one of the best shutdown corners in the NFL. Don’t forget he was worth 2 1st round draft picks just last year when he was traded to the Rams.

Not to mention, the Cowboys are not short of options. Michael Gallup, rookie CeeDee Lamb, Tight End Blake Jarwin and also Zeke Elliott can also get receptions. As a result, expect Cooper to potentially be taken out of the game Week One, so sit for better options if you have them.

Sterling Shepard, Darius Slayton and Golden Tate- WRs New York Giants

Fade all the Wide Receivers for the Giants Week One. I have already talked about the Steelers Defense, as well as the challenges facing Daniel Jones.

The other issues is we do not know the target shares of any of these players. Shepard is projected to be the starter. However, Jones and Slayton built a rapport. Whilst Tate has also flashed in this offense and has the longest history of relevant fantasy season’s out of the three. All will be relevant in parts through the season. However, we need more data to analyse how this will be week to week.

That’s it for Week One. Good luck in your match-ups and enjoy the fact football is back. 

Until next week Rush Nation, Keep Rushing!

– Murf (@Murf_NFL)

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