You only start one quarterback so you better make it count. Quality and upside are important here while securing a solid floor. I know that sounds like a lot so let’s try and keep it simple. Look for a good matchup, a quarterback who has been performing well with a strong supporting cast, a defense that will be favorable to opposing signal callers, and a game script that supports success. Now that we got that out of the way, who fits that criteria for this week?
For those who have yet to subscribe, what are you waiting for? Until then you will get one free pick to whet your appetite. After reaching the Super Bowl in 2018, Jared Goff ($5,900 DK, $7,400 FD) took a step backwards last season. Goff threw for just 22 touchdown passes (with 16 interceptions) a year after going for 32 and 12. Despite completing 30 more passes Goff threw for 50 less yards (4,638) but overall things could have been worse as he finished the season off with back to back 300 yard efforts while throwing five touchdown passes against just one interception. The Rams’ matchup against the Cowboys to start the season figures to be high scoring with an over/under of 51.5 with Dallas favored by 2.5 points. I would expect Goff to be busy as Los Angeles is still working on sorting out their running game. Additionally, and maybe more importantly, Goff provides some cost savings.
Behind the paywall, we will continue to take a closer look at some more quarterbacks who deserve our attention this week along with a few from whom we should keep our distance. And not all will break the back either which will leave plenty of room for help at running back and wide receiver. So, keep on going and take a look at what we have to offer.
You are going to notice a theme here as a lot of our targets are going to be based on teams expected to put up a lot of points. Looking on the other side of the field from Goff, Dak Prescott ($6,900 DK, $8,400 FD) should be on your radar. The implied point totals expect the Cowboys to put up 27 points and the majority of that will run through Prescott in what appears to be a close game. Dallas has a new coach in Mike McCarthy and the Cowboys’ offense looks to be even stronger than last season when Prescott threw for 4,902 yards and 30 touchdowns while adding another 277 yards on the ground. While the Rams still have a strong defense, it isn’t to the same level as in previous years so Prescott shouldn’t have much of a problem moving the ball and racking up the fantasy production.
Another game expected to be high scoring this week is Seattle at Atlanta. The game is pretty close to a pick‘em and with an over/under of 49 there is going to be a lot of offense. In this situation, both quarterbacks are worthy choices but both will also cost you. Russell Wilson ($7,000 DK, $8,400 FD) has consistently been a top option at the position although can we really expect him to repeat his 31 touchdown and five interception performance from last season? Regardless of that he has two strong down field weapons in Tyler Lockett and D.K Metcalf who should have success against Atlanta’s defense. On the other side of that Matt Ryan ($6,700 DK, $7,800 FD) comes in slightly cheaper while having two strong weapons of his own in Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley. This will be a back and forth, prolific affair all afternoon.
In addition to Goff if you are looking to save a little money at the quarterback position, and we know each dollar of salary is extremely valuable, then Matthew Stafford ($6,200 DK, $7,300 FD) should be on your list. In eight starts last season Stafford threw for 2,499 yards with 19 touchdowns so if you want to double that stat line while looking towards this season, you would be forgiven. Obviously that isn’t something we can count on but 30 touchdowns and 4,500 yards is very possible. And the path to that will begin against Chicago on Sunday.
Any week that Drew Brees ($6,800 DK, $8,100 FD) is at home means he is squarely on my radar. His record speaks for itself and with an over/under of 49.5 in New Orleans’ matchup with Tampa Bay, we know the ball will be flying downfield. Just keep in mind that Brees won’t come cheap.
On the other side of the field I am keeping my distance from Tom Brady ($6,500 DK, $7,500 FD) this week. Tampa Bay’s offense is predicated on taking shots downfield and while Brady is certainly talented and has been putting extensive work in, it remains to be seen how he will adjust to his new team and a new style of play. For this week I’m not willing to pay what it costs to find out.
Another quarterback in a new home this season that I’m apprehensive of to start the season is Philip Rivers ($6,000 DK, $7,200 FD). He did throw for 4,615 yards last season but Rivers didn’t look sharp as he only threw for 23 touchdowns against 20 interceptions. The current weather forecast doesn’t look too enticing for a prolific downfield passing affair and I want a free look at how Rivers does in his new home before investing.
Each week is going to look different here as far as picks and pans based on pricing and matchups. Without a preseason we have more questions than answers but we also need to recognize the divergence of DFS from seasonal fantasy football. While I’ve targeted Josh Allen ($6,500 DK, $7,900 FD) in multiple drafts, I am keeping my distance this week. It remains to be seen how his chemistry will develop with Stefon Diggs and to what level Buffalo will look to throw the ball downfield.
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