Bettings Lines from Bovada
Teams on BYE this week: Bills, Browns, Dolphins, Jets, Patriots, 49ers
Packers @ Seahawks (-3) (Thu 5:20 PM PDT):
Blurb: I expect this game to be high scoring, as the over/under indicates, and I think both the quarterbacks will end up having good games. Aaron Rodgers has been struggling as of late but is a “must start” for most people, but this boosts Russell Wilson against a beatable Packers defense. The Seahawks will run the ball a lot like usual, so whichever running back ends up getting the majority of the work for the Seahawks (Chris Carson is questionable, Mike Davis/Rashaad Penny split touches last week) will have a decent matchup to work with. The uncertainty of who gets the work is definitely a factor to consider when deciding whether to play one of these running backs or not. If Chris Carson plays, he’s my favorite. If he doesn’t, it’s a tough call between Davis and Penny. As of right now, Chris Carson will start this game according to offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer. I love Aaron Jones this week, and although it’s a tough matchup, I expect the high scoring to benefit him since he gets the most work in the Packers backfield. Both the wide receiver corps will get a boost as well for me, so Lockett, Baldwin, and MVS are all fine starts. Davante Adams is a must start. Jimmy Graham is worth a start, and Nick Vannett is a desperation play, but neither have gotten enough targets to be successful. You can probably do better, I’m not confident in either to produce this week. Sit both defenses this week.
Cowboys @ Falcons (-3) (Sun 10:00 AM PDT):
Blurb: This line really seems like a reaction to last week: the Falcons had a horrible performance at the Browns, while the Cowboys had a wonderful performance at the Eagles. That being said, I like the Falcons offense at home this week. I think Matt Ryan is one of the top QB options this week, even going against a good defense. Julio Jones is a must start. It’s hard to predict which one of the secondary Falcons receivers will do well every week, but at home it’s a good bet that one of Ridley or Sanu will have a good game. I don’t trust Tevin Coleman for more than a solid 50-70 yards and a possible touchdown. Those are good numbers, but he doesn’t get a huge workload and that makes him a riskier play against a Cowboys defense that is good against the run and running backs in general. Ito Smith is only a play for the most desperate this week, I don’t like him. Austin Hooper has quietly had a breakout year this season, and he’s basically an every week low end TE start, especially in a home matchup. The Cowboys have favorable matchups across the board against one of the league’s worst defenses, so that bodes well for Dak Prescott as a streamer. Amari Cooper should be in your lineup as he’s seen a lot of targets since coming to the Cowboys and he’s now in a wonderful matchup. Ezekiel Elliott is a must start.
Buccaneers @ Giants (-1) (Sun 10:00 AM PDT):
Blurb: The high over/under in this game gives me some confidence in Fitzpatrick and Manning as streamer level quarterbacks. You should be aware that Fitzpatrick could be benched after a mistake, so you’re playing with fire starting him. I think both offenses will move the ball easily against each defense. You have to start Saquon, Evans, and Odell Beckham. DeSean Jackson and Chris Godwin are the epitome of boom/bust players, but they are worth a start every week because the offense throws the ball a ton. The downside is they have to share targets with O.J. Howard, Mike Evans, and Adam Humphries. Watch out for Chris Godwin, he may not play this week because of injury. Sterling Shepard and Evan Engram are good plays this week, I expect the Giants passing game to have success, and they are the #2 and #3 options behind Odell Beckham. O.J. Howard is a must start on the Bucs side. Peyton Barber gets all the rushing work on the Bucs, and although it doesn’t mean much, he’s a player you could do worse than if you’re stuck at RB. The Giants haven’t been great against the run since they traded Damon Harrison. The Giants defense is worth a flier if you want to bet on Fitzpatrick having a meltdown, but again, any sort of bet on Fitzpatrick is playing with fire.
Panthers (-4) @ Lions (Sun 10:00 AM PDT):
Blurb: The Lions defense is not good. I think that Cam Newton and Christian McCaffrey go wild this week, but you were starting them anyway. Greg Olsen is someone I’m very confident in this week, as the Lions are a good matchup for tight ends and I project Carolina’s offense to be really successful. It’s hard to know which Carolina wide receiver will do well each week, and this week Devin Funchess is my preferred option. I don’t have a lot of confidence in any Carolina receiver though. On the Lions side of the ball, they go against a defense that is beatable through the air and the ground, but has done a good job preventing touchdowns. I’m nervous about Matthew Stafford since Marvin Jones is probably not going to play this week, but he is in that confident streamer category. Kenny Golladay and Kerryon Johnson are both fine starts this week, I think they’ll get theirs. Theo Riddick is a PPR only player. I’m confident in the Panthers defense to get some sacks and takeaways. I’m not sold on the Lions offensive line and the Lions are in the bottom third of the league in points allowed to D/STs.
Bengals @ Ravens (Sun 10:00 AM PDT):
Blurb: As of right now, it is not certain who will start for the Ravens, so there is no betting line released. Joe Flacco is out and Lamar Jackson and RG3 will split reps. I think Alex Collins will have a good game regardless of who is at QB, but with Flacco not playing, Ravens WRs are tough to trust. I love the Ravens defense this week, the Bengals don’t have A.J. Green and they struggled against the Saints defense at home last week. I think the Ravens will feast on them to the tune of a huge D/ST performance. The only Bengals player I would start no matter what is Joe Mixon, hopefully his big usage results in an at least OK fantasy day. I’m not confident in Tyler Boyd or John Ross, but both are desperation guys that you may need to play. The Bengals defense is bad, but if they go against RG3 or Lamar Jackson, they are a viable start in fantasy.
Titans @ Colts (-2) (Sun 10:00 AM PDT):
Blurb: The Colts come off their BYE against a really tough Titans defense. I’m not confident in the Colts running game this week against a tough Titans front. I think Marlon Mack will get a good amount of touches because it’ll be a close game, but I’m not sure if he’ll get a lot of production with those touches. Andrew Luck has been excellent this year, so I’m still OK with starting him against a tough defense. I think there are better options though. T.Y. Hilton is someone you probably have to start, and I am confident he’ll produce, as the Titans are in the bottom half of the league against fantasy WRs. I think the Titans defense is a usable option this this week. On the Titans side of the ball, they get great matchups across the board. Marcus Mariota is a great streaming option, since he got over his injury he’s been a fantastic QB. Dion Lewis is now the featured back for Tennessee, and he gets a favorable matchup as well. Derrick Henry is a desperation play that I’m not confident in. He’s touchdown or bust. Corey Davis gets to play a subpar secondary, and with the high number of targets he gets, he should excel this week. Don’t be fooled by the Colts gaudy numbers, they have played a weak WR schedule, and against tough matchups they have crumbled.
Steelers (-6) @ Jaguars (Sun 10:00 AM PDT):
Blurb: The Jaguars are reeling, while the Steelers are on a hot streak. The Jaguars have had the Steelers number recently, but that was with a strong defense and complementary offense. I simply don’t think the Jaguars can stop the Steelers, and I think the Steelers defense is going to be able to handle the Jaguars. The Jaguars are a tough matchup for opposing QBs, so I’m low on Big Ben this week on the road with all the other good QB options. Vance McDonald has a good matchup this week, and i think he’ll do well as the Jaguars struggle against TEs in fantasy. Antonio Brown is a must start, and I think Juju Smith-Schuster will do well working in the slot away from the Jaguars top outside corners. James Conner has a hard matchup so my expectations are lower than usual for him, but if you have him you’re probably starting him. I’m not confident at all in this Jaguars offense working against the Steelers defense. I think the Steelers defense is in for a good fantasy performance, and because of that the only Jaguar I’m playing is Leonard Fournette. I don’t like the Jaguars defense in this spot, but because of their talent and being at home they could have a decent fantasy day.
Texans (-3) @ Redskins (Sun 10:00 AM PDT):
Blurb: The Redskins offense is struggling with all their injuries, and that’s good news for the Texans defense which is one of the best in the NFL. I think the Texans D/ST is a really good play this week and will score you some points. I’m not so confident in the Redskins offense. Adrian Peterson is a pretty mediocre play against a really good run defense without three of his offensive linemen, and while Jordan Reed will get targets, I’m not sure how much production will follow. On the Texans side of the ball, they’re playing a pass defense that isn’t as good as people first thought. DeAndre Hopkins is a must start, but I think Demaryius Thomas and DeShaun Watson are good plays as well. Lamar Miller is a so-so play, but since stopping the run is what the Redskins are best at, I’m not sure if he’ll get a lot of points this week as the Texans will choose to pass the ball more.
Broncos @ Chargers (-7) (Sun 1:05 PM PDT):
Blurb: The Chargers are on a hot streak right now, and I think their offense as a whole will be good this game. Philip Rivers is a good but not great option, and Keenan Allen will have a tough matchup against Chris Harris Jr. Allen has not been over 16 points in standard since week 1 of this season, but his past two games have been his best since week 1. I think he’s trending up, and his second half surge is getting started. Melvin Gordon is a must start and I have no concerns about him. Tyrell Williams is a big play or bust guy, and it’s hard to predict whether or not he’ll do that based on the matchup, he’s someone you have to roll the dice on if you have no one reliable. Austin Ekeler has seen his touches decrease by a lot the past few games with Gordon, and I don’t think he’s someone you can reliably start anymore. I think the Broncos will choose to run the ball as much as they can after the Chargers lost their best run stopping linebacker for the season last week. That bodes well for Philip Lindsay, and maybe with a little Royce Freeman sprinkled in, but there’s no question that Lindsay is the feature running back for the Broncos. I don’t like Courtland Sutton going against Casey Hayward, but Emmanuel Sanders should get his.
Raiders @ Cardinals (-5) (Sun 1:25 PM PDT):
Blurb: The Cardinals defense has talent, and they showed it last week putting up a respectable performance against Kansas City. I love them as a play this week, and I’m expecting double digit D/ST points against a Raiders team that has given up on the season. The only Raiders I’m possibly starting are Doug Martin and Jared Cook in standard, Jalen Richard in PPR only. On the Cardinals side of the ball, David Johnson has flourished after the offensive coordinator change, and I expect him to continue to feast. Ricky Seals-Jones has a favorable matchup in this game and he has received a lot of targets after the OC change as well. Ditto for Larry Fitzgerald with the targets and a favorable matchup. Christian Kirk has been around 6 or 7 targets every game, and he has a good matchup too. The Cardinals aren’t world beaters, but the Raiders could make them look like they are.
Eagles @ Saints (-9) (Sun 1:25 PM PDT):
Blurb: You’re starting every key offensive piece in this game on both teams: Wentz, Brees, Ertz, Thomas, Jeffery, and Kamara. I understand that it’s a tough matchup for Mark Ingram, but with such a high over / under, I think he’s a good bet to have a solid fantasy day. Golden Tate didn’t play much last week, which makes him risky, but I think his snap count will go up this week and he’ll produce against the Saints in a possible shootout. Benjamin Watson is a solid streaming option. With how banged up the Eagles secondary is, I can see Tre’Quan Smith scoring a touchdown. I wouldn’t start any of the Eagles RBs because they probably will have to pass a lot and the Saints are good against the run, but if I had to pick one this week it would be Wendell Smallwood, who has emerged as the passing downs back for Philly.
Vikings @ Bears (-3) (Sun 5:20 PM PDT):
Blurb: The Vikings are playing a really tough defense. The Bears are elite against running backs, so that doesn’t bode well for Dalvin Cook, who will probably cede some work to Latavius Murray as it is. The Bears are also in the top third of the league against the pass, so the Vikings really have their work cut out for them. I’m not optimistic for Kirk Cousins or the running backs, but I still think Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen will be able to get theirs. Kyle Rudolph is simply a bad option, he hasn’t scored more than 5 points in non-PPR since week 3. On the Bears side of the ball, they are also going up against a really good defense. The Vikings are elite against the pass, and Allen Robinson will see Xavier Rhodes. That does not bode well for Mitchell Trubisky or any of his pass catchers. The Vikings biggest weakness is against TEs, but they still perform in the top half of the league against them. Given the state of the position, Trey Burton should be started. If you dig deeper on the Vikings stats against running backs, they have given up a low YPC, but allow a lot of yards against pass catching running backs. This means Jordan Howard is in for a horrible game, but Tarik Cohen will have opportunities aplenty. I have a lot of confidence in the Bears defense to get some sacks and takeaways, and I think the Vikings defense will be able to get some fantasy points on the board as well.
Chiefs @ Rams (-3.5) (Mon 5:15 PM PDT):
Blurb: This is the best game of the season, but also one of the easiest as far as fantasy is involved. Start EVERYONE! On the Chiefs side of the ball: Mahomes, Kelce, Hill, Watkins, Hunt are all going to be in your lineup this week, barring Watkins being out because of injury. On the Rams side of the ball the only questions are if you should start Josh Reynolds or Gerald Everett in the wake of Cooper Kupp’s injury. I would prefer to wait a week and see if either of them step up, but both are fine dart throws at the WR and TE positions respectively. Goff, Woods, Cooks, and Gurley will be in your lineup. Sit both the defenses.