You have lineup questions, we have lineup answers -- at least we hope so. Start 'Em, Sit 'Em is here to help fantasy managers make difficult roster decisions. And you know what is a good move? Starting Patrick Mahomes. But that's too obvious, so you won't see the reigning MVP here. Instead, we're exploring more debatable situations. And if you can't find a player you are looking for, please check out the latest NFL Fantasy lineup rankings.
Cooper was targeted eight times against the 49ers last week, catching four passes for 108 yards. He has now scored at least 14.8 fantasy points in three of his last four games -- and the only outlier there came with rookie Dorian Thompson-Robinson starting at quarterback. Cooper has been targeted on 24 percent of his routes -- and his 16.2 air yards per target is a figure that shows he is a consistent big-play threat. The Colts are one of 11 teams to allow more than 1,000 yards to receivers so far this season. Cooper is a must-start option.
McLaurin was a sit last week because of a lack of consistent volume. Well, it appeared the Commanders wanted to right their wrong; now I get to do the same. McLaurin saw 11 targets last week in a game where the Commanders threw just 23 passes. That’s a 48 percent target share. He caught six of 11 for 81 yards. That’s a solid game, but it still feels closer to the floor if McLaurin is going to see volume like that. The upside is very high this week against the Giants, who are in the top 12 in fantasy PPG allowed to WRs.
Brown did not have a huge fantasy day last week, catching just four passes for 34 yards, but the 11 targets are too many to ignore. He has now seen double-digit targets in a league-high four games. Prior to last week, Brown had topped 16 fantasy points in four straight, with a touchdown in three of them. This week, he gets the Seahawks, who have allowed the second-most fantasy PPG to receivers. They’ve given up the eighth-most yards and third-most touchdowns to the position. Brown is a strong start this week. Rookie Michael Wilson, who has topped nine fantasy points and 60 yards in three of his last four, is also in play as a streaming option.
We all are going to have to dig a little deeper this week with six teams on bye, and that has Rice in play. Last week, the second-round pick ran the second-most routes among Chiefs receivers. That only translated into four targets, but his 72 yards was second on the team behind Travis Kelce. Rice has drawn a target on 33 percent of his routes, which also only trails Kelce in Kansas City. He’s being utilized in a similar role to his teammate, Kadarius Toney, who has been second in targets the last two weeks for the Chiefs, except that Rice is used more downfield. While Rice is the preferred option, both are in play as streamers against the Chargers, who have given up the most fantasy PPG to receivers.
IF YOU NEED A DEEPER OPTION ...
Robinson is coming off his best game of the season, as he caught all eight of his targets for 62 yards in a narrow loss to the Bills. He has now seen at least six targets in three straight games. He is in play as a streaming option against the Commanders, who have allowed the most yards and touchdowns and third-most fantasy PPG to receivers. Hyatt, who ran the second-most routes on the Giants this past week, is in play as a deeper sleeper. Washington has allowed the most yards and touchdowns to receivers aligned out wide and on deep passes -- two areas where Hyatt excels.
In last Thursday night's 19-8 loss at Kansas City, Jeudy was limited to three catches for 14 yards on five targets. In five games this season, Jeudy has posted double-digit fantasy points just twice. His high mark so far is just 13.1 fantasy points. That shows that the floor is very low and the ceiling is flex option/WR3, at best. Now he faces the Packers, who have allowed the ninth-fewest fantasy PPG to WRs. They have allowed just 125 yards per game to the position. Get away from Jeudy this week.
Williams is my guy and I want him on as many rosters as possible. But he is still working his way back, and until we see him fully acclimated, I think it is best to stay away. He ran just nine routes last week and had three targets. He is always a big-play threat, as evidenced by his 45-yard touchdown catch against the Buccaneers, but the floor is insanely low if he does not catch a long one. I don’t like his chances this week, as the Ravens have allowed a league-low 5.8 yards per catch to receivers. They’ve allowed the second-fewest yards on deep passes to WRs this season. Despite the big catch last week, don't roll the dice on Jamo here.
Downs was second on the Colts in routes (45) and targets (eight) last week, recording his first NFL touchdown in the process. He has now topped 13 fantasy points in two straight and three of his last four. He is certainly a wide receiver to grab off the waiver wire, but not one to get into your starting lineup this week. The Browns have given up by far the fewest yards to receivers this season. They are allowing just 5.9 yards per pass attempt to receivers. They have also yielded the fewest fantasy PPG to the position. Michael Pittman Jr. is on bust watch this week, but the volume has been so high that you’ll still have to roll him out. The same cannot be said for Downs.
Thomas was listed as a sit last week and he went out and did what Thomas does: providing 9.5 fantasy points. Every game this season, Thomas has scored somewhere between 9.3 and 12.5 points. He has yet to reach 70 yards in a game. Last week, he was the third-highest scoring wideout on his own team. Thomas, at least in 2023, is being used as a possession and chain-moving type of receiver. Through six weeks, the upside looks to be WR3 or flex option. Perhaps with so many teams on bye this week, all you’re looking for is a safe floor -- in which case, Thomas is your guy. But for the most part, I would try to play options that bring more upside than Thomas has shown.