What is up everybody! Got your seatbelts fastened? Masks on? Wallet emptied? Let’s head out on this fantasy football journey together! 

This fantasy football season, I’ll be priming the pump for your fantasy football week and then doing game recaps of the Sunday and Monday night games. Feel free to drop any questions you’ve got below, and catch either me or DT on Sunday mornings to get your lineups in order. On with the good words! 

Fantasy Football Tools

First and foremost: you like us, right? I mean, not in a loving sense. OK, maybe you love DT. After all, he’s a sharp-witted donkey that dances to Smash Mouth unironically. But, you enjoy the work we [waves arms at Razzball friends] do and the community we build and the knowledge we share? Then please support us with a premium subscription to our fantasy football tools. You get Rudy’s ridiculously detailed prognostications for about $1/week, and you can go ad-free to support us even more (trust me, the website experience is so much better without the ads). If you’re into DFS, grab the DFS Fantasy Football Tools and take advantage of the optimizer that will return you the most bang for your buck. If you’re into DFS, you know that overhead cuts away from ROI, and Razzball has one of the most affordable, feature-packed optimizers out there. 

Quick: why does the above matter? The truth is: Razzball provides the highest quality tools for the price of any website in the industry. I’m not trying to start a fight or debate; our numbers are researched, updated constantly, and you can download them and manipulate them and load up 100 DFS lineups and and and…and it’s all at a price that is accessible to just about anybody. By supporting us, you keep the lights on and show us that you care about our work. If you don’t have the means to do a premium subscription right now, then help us out by recommending our articles and dropping a comment to let us know you’re thinking about us. Cool? On with the show! 

Week 1 Highlights

To help everybody get ready for the first week of fantasy football, I’ll be putting the training wheels for some of you and highlight unexpected players that you might want to trade/acquire/start/sit based on projection data, and we’ll get you to the head of your fantasy league like the boss that you are. 

Quarterback

Ryan FitzpatrickYou may have drafted Fitzmagic as your backup QB, or he may be sitting on the waiver wire in your league right now. Did anybody take him as QB1? Just me? OK! Rudy’s seeing him as having over 280 yards passing potential, which is sixth-best in the league for the first week. Major sportsbooks are agreeing, giving the odds-on favorites for Fitzpatrick’s passing yards to be around 270 and 2 touchdowns, which are basically Dak Prescott-levels of production. If you need a QB to go for week 1 — either because you did the QB free fall or are wondering about your Superflex starter — then Fitzmagic is your man this week. Fitz will likely be a streaming QB for most of the year, but he’ll be the cheapo Disney+ streaming package, so keep an eye on him on waivers when you need a fill-in. 

Running Back

[Edit: Gus Edwards tore his ACL — get Ty’Son Williams or Le’Veon Bell ASAP]

Damien HarrisRudy’s got him for 15 carries this week, which is 6th most among running backs. Personally, I was stunned — Harris was being drafted as RB 25-30 in the pre-season, and I think a lot of people got caught up in the Rhamondre Stevenson hype. Harris is -130 at DraftKings Sportsbook to go for over 13.5 rush attempts in week 1, meaning it’s “smart money” to start Harris. Rookie Mac Jones will need to adjust to the Patriots system, and the Patriots DEF should hold off the Miami offense well enough to keep the Patriots running. At the time of writing, the Patriots/Dolphins game is favored to be under a 43 point total, meaning we’ll likely see a lot of rushing on both sides. With Harris expected to top 80 yards from scrimmage by many betting houses — and similarly projected by Rudy’s weekly fantasy football projections — we’re looking at an RB that you should acquire before the rest of the public sentiment comes up. If he flops in the future, that’s no big deal because his cost is cheap right now. I mean, he’s basically drafted as an RB3 for your teams right now. Are you breaking the bank to acquire Duke Johnson or Ty Johnson or…that’s strange, I can’t think of anymore Johnsons. Wait! D’Ernest! ENYWHEY. Current Razzball projection models — backed by a surprising number of sportsbooks — are seeing Harris having top-5 rushing attempts on the year, which will be extraordinary for your team if it comes to fruition. Also, if you can make a Najee Harris/Damien Harris backfield win your league, I’ll send you DT’s Kerryon Johnson FatHead. Hey, I found another Johnson! 

Wide Receiver

Corey DavisHere’s a guy who’s off the radar. Davis had a great 2020 under the Titans’ system and he parlayed that success into a contract with the rebuilding New York Jets. [sigh] Imagine working your butt off and your agent comes out to say, “Guess what, I got you a job with the Jets!” OK, there’s a regime change there under new head coach Robert Saleh, and he brought along former 49ers passing game coordinator Mike LeFleur to be the new offensive coordinator. LeFleur was the passing game coordinator for the 49ers’ 2019 Super Bowl run (13th in the league in passing yards) as well as last year’s injury-riddled season, where the 49ers surprisingly finished 12th in the league in passing yards despite having one of the worst quarterback situations in the league [nervously awaits the attack of the Nick Mullens fanbois]. Corey Davis enters that passing game situation in Week 1 against the Carolina Panthers in a matchup that’s favored to go over 44 total points. Rudy’s projections show Davis as a candidate to finish week 1 in the top 30 targets, ahead of receivers like Mike Evans, DeVonta Smith, and Adam Thielen. Sportsbooks are off Davis and aren’t even looking at him at the time of writing. If you need a sleeper WR, grab Davis and see what he does in week 1. 

Tight End

Evan Engram, Austin Hooper, Cole KmetI talked about this earlier in the pre-season about why you should draft a good tight end. Basically, the field of tight ends looks like they’re getting 4-5 targets, and that’s super-boring. This is why people made tight end premium leagues, where they boosted the scoring of the most boring position to make even more boring tight ends seem palatable. Quote me: “TE Premium leagues are the sriracha of fantasy football. They make unusable things palatable because you can’t feel your tongue” If you didn’t end up with a Kelce/Waller/Kittle on your roster, consider one of these guys. Or really, dart throw at any TE out there because they’re all about the same for projections. It’s surprising more tight ends aren’t named “Chad” because I can’t tell them apart. Not that you’re not special if you’re named Chad [nervously awaits the Ochocinco fanbois to emerge]

Cowboys vs Buccaneers

What better way to start the NFL season than a little game of cops and robbers? NFL, you’re so witty in your scheduling. So, somewhere in NFL marketing, they thought it would be great to pit Tom Brady and his fistful of Super Bowl rings against Dak Prescott in his first game back from a horrifying ankle injury. Also, Prescott sat out much of the preseason, so this game is going to be — you know — less interesting than the Jets/Panthers game. The Bucs are a ridiculous -400 to win this one and they’re favored to win by over a touchdown, and the game itself is favored to have over 51 points total. So, we could see Brady do a 3 TD performance and spread it out amongst his receivers, but we could easily see Tampa Bay rush 20 or more times and spread out the TDs. The Bucs are all starts, and the Bois are, well, garbage time starts. Let’s see who could be in your favor for your fantasy teams: 

Tom Brady and Dak Prescott: Start ’em. Rudy’s got each of them about 50% odds for a 300+ yard game. Don’t get cute: start your studs. 

Ezekiel ElliottDo you feel lucky, punk? Sports books have no idea what to do with him, and he’s 50/50 on being your fantasy FLEX or RB1. That’s a wide range of outcomes, which is great for DFS GPPs and awful for your average fantasy Joe. Rudy’s been down on Elliott (phew, spicy!) all preseason, and his projections suggest betting the Under across the board on Zeke. With a likely outcome as fantasy RB18-20 this week, you should find an upside RB2 on your roster to cover for Zeke’s likely obsolescence when Tampa Bay goes up by 3 TDs at the half. 

Ronald Jones and Leonard FournetteSigns point to Ronald Jones being the 1A running back in Tampa Bay this year, and he’s the odds-on favorite to get the most carries and yards this week. Fournette is a riskier play but still worth a shot in deep leagues; TB might be up early and rushing a lot in the second half. In that case, Lenny becomes a cheap GPP play or usable FLEX play. 

Antonio Brown and Michael GallupIn theory, these are your WR3 for the game, but with the potential for big air yards, they could be your fantasy starters. Each of them are favored for over 50 yards, with AB having a good shot at 60 yards. Start them as your WR2/FLEX plays if you roster them. Some psychos out there are saying AB will be the WR1 on TB this year. Other psychos just use acronyms for everything. Which psycho am I? 

Leave your questions and comments and general camaraderie down in the comments. Have an awesome week!

58 Comments
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cable
cable
1 year ago

12 team h/h points redraft……..

I have A Jones & J Allen

y/n ..give…DJ Moore/Hunt …….get Diggs/Dillon

cable
cable
1 year ago
Reply to  cable

above is non ppr

Foxman
Foxman
1 year ago
Reply to  cable

Yeah dude, you make that move. Stack up Diggs and Allen for sure. Sucks losing a guy like Hunt who you can start, because you won’t be starting Dillon and Jones. But you got a great handcuff, and the best player in the trade. Do it!

Mo Murray Mo Problems
Mo Murray Mo Problems
1 year ago

Who should I start as my flex this week in ppr league: Antonio Brown, Odell, or B. Cooks? Thanks.

Homer's got the Runs
Homer's got the Runs
1 year ago

Hey Blair, 14 team half ppr redraft league. Did a poor job drafting RBS this year. Was wondering if an offer of Russell Wilson and Ronald Jones for Stafford and Antonio Gibson was fair. Other guy has Fournette so it would give him the entire backfield for the Bucs. My backs would then be Gibson, Edward’s, Singletary, Pollard and Ty’son.

McKinzie
McKinzie
1 year ago

Nice write up thanks!

PPR go with Gronk tonight or use Jonnu Sunday?

Clokwerc
Clokwerc
1 year ago

I have Blake Jarwin.. picked him last.. should i drop him for:

Gerald Everett
A. Firsker
Z. Ertz
D. Knox
D. Arnold
H. Hurst
A. Trautman
c. Herndon
t. Conklin
J. Doyle
J. Graham
P. Freiermuth
or just keep him

AntP
AntP
1 year ago
Reply to  Clokwerc

good morning

after following razzballs rankings in a
10 team full ppr
7th pick
round drafted in parenthesis
Start
qb/rb/rb/wr/wr/te/k/d/ flex
I ended with

Stratford (12)/Hurts (15)
A jones(1)/CEH / (4)
T Hill(2)/T Mclauren (3)/CeeDee (5)
Andrews (6)
Bal
Bench D Henderson/Mostart/M Williams/M Gordon/Deebo
after all that…

how do I look? do inhave a weakness?
should i look to upgrade ?

and who do I start?

help

Ant p
Ant p
1 year ago

I’m thinking mostart over ceedee

tradealready?
tradealready?
1 year ago

4 days post draft and a trade antsy leagu member sends me this deal:

I get: Adam Thielen, Jonuu Smith
I give: Mark Andrews, Leveon Bell

my current WR’s are: DJ Moore, Kenny Golladay, Fuller, Chark, Callaway, TY hilton (IR)

superflex league- 0.5 ppr.

thanks for the column! great to have fantasy back

Allan
Allan
1 year ago

Got several really close calls I could use an outside opinion on. In one league I’ve got both Dak and Hurts to decide between. I like Hurts match-up a lot more but Dak definitely has a better offense. Seems like a coin flip. In my ppr dynasty league I’ve got to decide between Carson and Sanders at RB2 and Julio, Amari, and Lamb at my flex. Any help would be appreciated.

Allan
Allan
1 year ago

Much appreciated.

nightpandas
nightpandas
1 year ago

Hey Blair,

12 team Std Keep 3…on the fence if I”m competing this year, traded most of my high picks away last year for a run. My team is:

1 Qb: Burrow
2 RB: Kamara Gibson
2 WR: JJefferson Deebo
1 TE: Everett
2 Flex: Jones II Edmonds
BN: Ty Johnson, Gallman, J White
BN: Beasley, Agholor
BN: Big Ben

Got an offer of my Kamara and Ty Johnson and 8th round 2022 for
Swift, Kittle and Drake and a 1st round 2022

What do think? May be able to compete even with the trade…

nightpandas
nightpandas
1 year ago
Reply to  nightpandas

A second offer is : David Montgomery Andrews and Brady for my Kamara Everett Big Ben

Ralph
Ralph
1 year ago

What’s good Blair the 3 most added RBs on waiver wire are L Bell, J Jackson and T Jones Jr who should be the add? I have Jones Jr currently. My rbs are Henry, Henderson, Sermon and R Jones II and T Jones Jr. Thanks man!

Joe
Joe
1 year ago

Tee Higgins, Antonio Brown and Mike Davis. Which player should I bench this week? .5 ppr.

Russowl
Russowl
1 year ago

I usually stream defenses but ended up with a colts and a couple leagues this year. Should I roll with the colts against Seattle or stream the chargers against Washington or Miami against New England or Carolina against the Jets?

Standard League 10-point bonus for a 100 yards rushing or receiving

For my flex we going with deebo Samuel vs lions over Jerry Judy vs Giants this week?

Russowl
Russowl
1 year ago

Thanks blair

Joe
Joe
1 year ago

Thanks.

William Hung
William Hung
1 year ago

I have an open roster spot with Michael Thomas in my IR spot. These are the top guys I am looking at off the wire: .5 PPR league

WR: Curtis Samuel, Waddle, Mooney, Shepard
RB: Stephenson, Bernard, Penny, Jackson, Bell

William Hung
William Hung
1 year ago

Oh let me clarify this is a bench spot. Full roster below – 12tm .5 PPR

QB- Stafford
RB- CMC, J-Rob
WR- Jefferson, Theilen
TE- Goedert
FLEX- Gus Bus
Bench:
WR- AB, Deebo
RB- James Conner, Tony Jones Jr.
TE- Engram
IR- Michael Thomas

William Hung
William Hung
1 year ago

Damn it – Gus the Bus is down and out

bobsnyder4210
bobsnyder4210
1 year ago

Hey Blair…happy football season!

Help me get my head around this one…1/2 ppr starting 1 RB, 2 RB\WR\TE…my RB Room in this league is:

Kamara, Henderson, Gaskin, Sermon, Conner

I’m fine with my other positions…but if you had these guys and Tony Jones is still available, would you grab Jones and drop Conner? I almost never handcuff, but it seems like a totally affordable luxury in this case, not?

Thanks, man.

bobsnyder4210
bobsnyder4210
1 year ago

That’s why I have Conner at the end of my bench in a few leagues…it feels like he could be the lead guy there, with Edmonds taking enough of the load to keep Conner healthy all season.

But I always like to explore options when they pop up and bounce ideas around…thanks, man.

Alberto
Alberto
1 year ago

In a ppr would you go with Ronald Jones or Paris Campbell as your flex?

Alberto
Alberto
1 year ago

Thanks bud. Now if you had to pick 2 to start, Ty’son, Kareem Hunt, and RoJo?

Misformookie
Misformookie
1 year ago

Non ppr league, who you starting at flex?
AB, Amari Cooper, Mostert? Picked up Tyson Williams And Bell, but who knows what’s going on there …
Thanks

Misformookie
Misformookie
1 year ago
Reply to  Misformookie

I also have Sutton and Jacobs on the bench too.

Random Collmenter
Random Collmenter
1 year ago

Start Ty’Son over Miles Sanders in .5 PPR? Thanks.

Russowl
Russowl
1 year ago

10 team extra bench and utility standard score with bonuses added 100 rushing or receiving yard is 10 points 300 passing yards is 10 points.Have to drop someone before kick off Sunday because do not currently have a defense. No weekly waivers . Whoever I drop is likely to be scooped up quickly as I’ve been in this league since 2003. Normally I wouldn’t roll with two quarterbacks and easily drop Matt ryan but I have a feeling he’ll hit the bonus often. But if hurts hits like he should probably won’t be using Ryan much

Qb hurts
Wr A.j. brown , Allen Robinson
Rb. Kamara , Swift
Te. Kelce
Flex Henderson (rams),Jeudy
Bench .Matt Ryan ,Deebo Samuel, James Connor, Jamaal Williams, will fuller , Kenyan Drake, Hardman, Le’Veon Bell
Is bell the drop or someone else?

Russowl
Russowl
1 year ago

I agree thanks Blair

thanks!
thanks!
1 year ago

HELP!

I’m getting skittish on starting Saquon week 1, am I crazy to bench him?

Heres what I have: (12 team superflex league, 2rbs, 2wr, 1 flex)
RB: sanders, barkley, swift, coleman, murray, bell
WR: dj moore, golladay, chark, callaway, fuller

I’m lost at who to start at RB/WR after Miles Sanders and Dj Moore. I was leaning swift and Callaway, but then who to put in at flex?

Thanks a bunch

Jolt In Flow
Jolt In Flow
1 year ago

CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE! You and Rudy knocked it out of the park with Zeke.

Well done EWB (and Rudy). Am I the only one seeing your astute calls in both baseball and football?!

Keep them coming EWB,

Jolt

Rudy Gamble
Admin
1 year ago

no victory lap yet but i had two consistent zags vs ADP and 2-for-2 after week 1 (fade Zeke, fade PIT WRs) :)