First off, apologies to anyone who started Darren Fells last week, leave it to Romeo Crennel to nullify his best red zone target in a loss. Moving onto Week 8, which is the first of two six-team bye weeks with the Arizona Cardinals, Baltimore Ravens, Denver Broncos, Pittsburgh Steelers, Washington Football Team, and Houston Texans all on their bye. As such, we’re working with a reduced talent pool for streamers this week, but there’s still value to be had to help you weather this difficult time:
Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, San Francisco 49ers (@ Seattle Seahawks) – 26.0 Percent Owned
This pick is significantly predicated on matchup, with the Seahawks boasting one of the worst defenses in the league that has allowed no less than 23 points in any of their matchups this year. Further, the game scripts have been excellent for quarterbacks against Seattle as Russell Wilson and the Seattle offense have forced opposing teams into high scoring games decided by less than one score. Given the battered condition of San Francisco’s running backs, I think Garoppolo will be slinging the ball to George Kittle and Brandon Aiyuk (among others) who should pick up enough yards after catch to catapult Garoppolo to a good performance this week.
Derek Carr, QB, Las Vegas Raiders (@ Cleveland Browns) – 46.0 Percent Owned
Full transparency, I placed a bet on the under for this game given the weather conditions forecasted in Cleveland on Sunday. However, I think there’s still enough value in this game to start Carr. While I don’t see massive blowup potential from Carr in this game, I think it’s very likely that he’ll have solid production, buoying your quarterback position as you make it past your bye week. Cleveland is an incredibly streaky team, and is coming off an emotionally charged, close win against the *checks list* Cincinnati Bungles. Being the Browns, I don’t have much confidence that they’ll play up to the Raiders this week. This is a good spot for Carr, who should help fuel your fantasy team through it’s byes.
Tennessee Titans D/ST (@ Cincinnati Bengals) – 26.4 Percent Owned
The Titans defensive unit was able to get it together in the second half of the game last week against the Steelers, but it was too little too late. This week, a contending Titans team should come out like gangbusters against a rookie led Bungles team that should be an easy win for any Super Bowl contender. The Bengals’ horrid offensive line should also generate some easy sacks for this Tennessee defense. My only concern for this game is that Tennessee may be looking past the Bengals to their next matchup. However, I don’t think the Titans’ fresh off a close loss will be taking any game for granted extinguishing that concern. I’m looking for the Titans to make a statement in this game, cementing their status as a contender this season.
Denver Broncos D/ST (vs. Los Angeles Chargers) – 30.2 Percent Owned
Yes, Justin Herbert has been excellent. Yes, the Broncos lost Nose Tackle Mike Purcell. However, despite this, the Chargers are still playing a divisional game on the road against a Denver defense that returns A.J. Bouye who should prove incredibly valuable in coverage of Keenan Allen. Somehow, Michael Badgley will miss / get a field goal blocked in this game, and I expect Herbert to be hassled against what’s been a strong unit in terms of quarterback pressures and sacks. Similar to the above, this pick stays true to picking defenses against rookie quarterbacks that tend to be a bit easier to rattle/throw off.
Richard Rodgers, TE (vs. Dallas Cowboys) – 21.5 Percent Owned
Starting Rodgers this week against a mentally beaten and physically battered Cowboys team seems like a slam dunk.. Rodgers led the Eagles in receptions and had the second most targets in Week Seven against the Giants. With Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert both sitting this week, Rodgers should have an excellent opportunity to produce fantasy value by acting as Carson Wentz’ big-bodied safety valve at tight end. Rodgers’ athleticism which should net additional yards after catch also adds to the Eagles tight end’s value.
For some Week Eight dart throws for tight ends, given the limited available talent pool, I think either Trey Burton or Gerald Everett (assuming Tyler Higbee sits out this week) are solid streamers. Burton appears to be Phillip Rivers’ favorite tight end target, and the Colts seem willing to give the athletic Burton additional opportunities to impact the offense (such as his rushing attempt last week), granting some additional scoring potential.
Everett looks to be the number one tight end with Higbee out on a generally strong Rams offense. However, his matchup is less than desirable with the Dolphins being the second best team against the tight end position this year. I like Everett’s talent and think he’ll be on the field, but he may not have the best looks given the strength of the Miami defense against tight ends.