Start 'Em & Sit 'Em is the ultimate look at the weekly NFL matchups and how they'll affect your fantasy football team. All starts and sits are based on standard scoring leagues. Obvious fantasy starters like Cam Newton and Antonio Brown will not be featured. For your final lineup decisions, check our lineup rankings.
Eli Manning vs NO: Manning put up a solid 18.28 fantasy points last week in Dallas, and now he'll face another questionable defense in a home matchup against the Saints. Last week, Derek Carr went for 319 passing yards and 22.36 points against them. Manning also shredded New Orleans for 350 yards and six touchdowns last season. He's a must-start.
Carson Palmer vs TB: Palmer put up 18.94 fantasy points in last week's loss to the Patriots, and he's a good bet to at least reach that mark when the Cardinals host the Buccaneers. Last week, Tampa Bay's defense surrendered 334 yards, two touchdowns and 24.36 fantasy points to Matt Ryan and the Falcons pass attack. Looks for Palmer to find success.
Matthew Stafford vs TEN: Here's a fun little piece of information ... since Jim Bob Cooter took over as the offensive coordinator in Detroit, Stafford has averaged 20.76 fantasy points per game. That includes 23 touchdown passes and a mere four interceptions. He's also been solid at home under Cooter, tossing nine touchdowns in his last three starts.
Derek Carr vs ATL:Carr, listed as a start 'em last week, rewarded fans with a 22.36-point performance in a win over the Saints. I'd keep him active against the Falcons, who surrendered four touchdowns and 25.5 fantasy points to Jameis Winston last week. Carr has also been solid at home, tossing 15 touchdown passes in his last seven games in Oakland.
Philip Rivers vs JAX: Rivers might have lost his top wideout in Keenan Allen, but he's still a viable starter at home against a Jaguars defense that allowed 23.56 fantasy points to Aaron Rodgers on their home field. Rivers has also been solid on his home turf, posting two or more touchdowns in four of his last six games in San Diego against AFC teams.
Matt Ryan at OAK:Ryan, listed as a sleeper last week, put up a strong stat line (24.36 fantasy points) in a loss to the Buccaneers. I'd keep him on the bench this week though, as Ryan has averaged a mere 14.87 fantasy points in his last nine road contests. I would also look for the Raiders defense to be a whole lot better on their home field.
Jameis Winston at ARI:Winston was a statistical beast last week, throwing four touchdown passes en route to a 25.54-point explosion in Atlanta. Unfortunately, his next contest in Arizona isn't nearly as favorable on paper. In fact, the Cardinals have surrendered one or fewer touchdown passes to field generals in five of their last six home games.
Alex Smith at HOU: Smith was one of the highest scoring players in fantasy football a week ago, putting 28.02 points on the Chargers in a come-from-behind win. His fortunes aren't likely to continue this week, however, as he'll face a much tougher test in Houston. The Texans have surrendered fewer than 290 passing yards in 12 straight games.
Ryan Tannehill at NE: Tannehill had a respectable 15.14 fantasy points last week in Seattle, and it could have been better had Kenny Stills not dropped a sure touchdown. Still, this week's roadie against New England isn't what you would call favorable. In four career games at Gillette Stadium, Tannehill has three touchdown passes with seven picks.
Jay Cutler vs PHI (Mon.): Cutler doesn't have an awful matchup on paper against the Eagles, but he's been a tough sell for fantasy fans on the road over the last year. In his last four contests outside of Solider Field, he's scored an average of just 12.6 fantasy points. That includes three games where he's produced one touchdown pass. Look elsewhere.
C.J. Anderson vs IND: Anderson went off in the season opener, scoring two touchdowns and 25.90 fantasy points in a win over the Panthers. He also saw 48 snaps compared to six for rookie Devontae Booker, so CJA looked like a true featured runner. This week, Anderson faces a Colts defense that surrendered 46.90 fantasy points to backs in Week 1.
Jeremy Langford vs PHI: I wasn't a huge fan of Langford in the preseason, but his value rose as the Bears leaned on him as their featured back. In Week 1, he saw 54 snaps compared to 21 for his backup, Ka'Deem Carey. Langford should continue to roar against the Eagles, who surrendered 19.70 fantasy points to backs in their opener. He's an RB2.
Eddie Lacy at MIN: Lacy didn't ball out last week (at least in the stat sheets), but he did average 4.4 yards per attempt and was the clear featured back (14 carries) over James Starks (four carries) in the offense. I'd expect him to produce a nice line this week in Minnesota, where he has averaged 17.8 fantasy points in three career roadies.
Arian Foster at NE:Foster didn't have a monster line (10 fantasy points) in his debut with the Dolphins, but he led the backfield in snaps (46) and is the team's clear lead running back. He'll be in the RB2/flex starter conversation against the Patriots, who allowed 20.20 fantasy points to David Johnson and the Cardinals' cast of runners in Week 1.
Jonathan Stewart vs SF: Stewart didn't put up a huge line in the opener, but he served as a featured runner (42 plays) and averaged 4.3 yards per attempt. I like him as a RB2/flex starter this week against the Niners, as Stewart has averaged 19.8 carries in his last five home games and has scored a touchdown in three of his last four games in Carolina.
Thomas Rawls at LA:Rawls (ankle) didn't start last week's contest against the Dolphins, as Christine Michael got the call and led the Seattle backfield with 52 snaps and 17 touches. While I expect him to re-emerge as the top option for coach Pete Carroll, it's difficult to see Rawls as a real option until this committee swings back in his favor.
Ameer Abdullah vs TEN: Abdullah was awesome last week, posting 18 fantasy points in a win over the Colts. But can he do it in back to back weeks? Well, he'll be facing a Titans defense that held Arian Peterson to 31 yards and a terrible 1.6 yards per attempt in week ago. This defense also allowed the seventh-fewest fantasy points to runners last season.
Frank Gore at DEN: Gore's biggest asset is the fact that he sees volume in the Colts offense (48 plays in Week 1), but he's not what owners would call a reliable fantasy starter. In fact, he should be on your bench this week when Gore heads to Denver to face the Broncos. Their defense surrendered a mere 8.80 points to Carolina's runners in Week 1.
Jeremy Hill at PIT Hill is a constant threat to score a touchdown, but he's also become dependant on end-zone visits to make a solid fantasy impact. This week he goes up against the Steelers, who have held him to an average 6.7 fantasy points in four career meetings. Hill has also never scored a touchdown against them, making him difficult to start.
Isaiah Crowell vs BAL: Crowell had a nice start to the new campaign, rushing for 62 yards and a touchdown en route to a 13.80-point performance against the Eagles. Still, he saw just seven more snaps than Duke Johnson and is now facing a tough task against the Ravens. Their defense allowed just 12.20 fantasy points to Buffalo's runners in their opener.
Jarvis Landry at NE: Landry didn't put up much of a stat line in standard formats last week, but that was against CB Richard Sherman and a stout Seattle pass defense. He should improve in New England, who surrendered almost 30 fantasy points to Arizona's wideouts last week. Landry has also averaged 10 targets in his last three meetings against the Pats.
Julian Edelman vs MIA:Fantasy fans in all formats should expect Edelman to put up a nice stat line this week against a Miami defense he has owned over the last three seasons. In fact, he's posted an average of 16.75 fantasy points in his last four games against the AFC East rival. In that time, Edelman has also seen a combined 46 targets in the offense.
DeSean Jackson vs DAL: Jackson seems to shine when he faces the Cowboys, as he's put up no fewer than 12 fantasy points in each of his last three games against them. That includes one game with 136 yards and two others where he scored a touchdown. When you also consider the question marks on the current Dallas defense, Jackson becomes a nice option.
Emmanuel Sanders vs IND: Sanders led the Broncos with eight targets in their opener, but his final stat line (5/49/0) left a lot for fantasy owners to be desired. Still, he should be in the WR3/flex starter conversation this weekend due to a tremendous matchup against a Colts defense that is chock full of injuries. Keep the faith, and keep Sanders active.
Jordan Matthews at CHI (Mon.): This might be a case of chasing the fantasy points, but I'll bite because Matthews has a solid matchup ahead against the Bears. Last week, Chicago surrendered almost 30 fantasy points to Houston's wideouts (including two touchdowns). Couple that with his rapport with Carson Wentz, and Matthews is now on the WR2/3 radar for Week 2.
Randall Cobb at MIN: Cobb didn't have a great start to the fantasy season, posting 57 yards and no touchdowns in a win over the Jaguars. His slow start could continue against the Vikings, who have held him to 258 yards (36.8 YPG) and two touchdowns in seven career meetings. Cobb is difficult to sit, so if you do start him it should be with real caution.
T.Y. Hilton at DEN: Hilton was held to six receptions, 79 yards and 7.9 fantasy points in last week's loss to Detroit, as teammates Donte Moncrief and Phillip Dorsett both lapped him in the stat sheets. He could be in for another tough week against CBs Aqib Talib, Chris Harris and a Broncos pass defense that is among the toughest units in the league.
John Brown vs TB: This one is less about the matchup and more about the fact that Brown saw a mere 35 snaps last week, compared to Larry Fitzgerald's 59 and Michael Floyd's 58. Whether this is a result of the concussion issues he had in the preseason is unclear, but I can't make a case for Brown as a fantasy starter until his usage totals increase.
Stefon Diggs vs GB: Diggs was a solid option for fantasy fans last week, posting 10.2 fantasy points in a win over the Titans. Still, an upcoming matchup against the Packers makes him a difficult sell for fantasy fans. Their defense held Allen Robinson and the Jaguars wideouts in check last week, and the Packers were tough on the position in 2015.
Tavon Austin vs SEA: Austin is tough to trust for fantasy fans, and it's almost impossible to start him against the Seahawks. That's due in large part to the fact that Seattle has owned him in his career. In five career games against them, Austin has recorded a combined 11 catches, 61 scrimmage yards and one rushing touchdown. Again, that's combined.
Delanie Walker at DET: Walker put up a stinker last week, posting just 4.2 fantasy points in a loss to the Vikings. Still, the veteran is too valuable to sit at a position that was plain bad in the stat sheets overall. He should rebound against the Lions, who surrendered a ridiculous 28.80 fantasy points to Indianapolis tight ends last week.
Gary Barnidge vs BAL: Barnidge did not have a great start to the season, putting up a goose egg in a loss to the Eagles. On a positive note, he did have a great rapport with new quarterback Josh McCown a season ago and should see more targets in Week 2. Barnidge also put up a combined 15 catches, 230 yards and a score versus Baltimore in 2015.
Antonio Gates vs JAX:The Chargers are down two wide receivers (Keenan Allen, Stevie Johnson), and there's not a lot of experienced options behind them aside from Travis Benjamin. Enter Gates, who should see more than his share of offensive opportunities against the Jaguars. Their defense allowed the sixth-most points to the position last year.
Julius Thomas at SD: Thomas had one of the best fantasy stat lines among tight ends a week ago, and he's clearly one of Blake Bortles' favorite options down in the red zone. With the position coming off a dreadful week overall (unless you were a true genius and started Jack Doyle), Thomas is shaping up as a regular fantasy starter at this point.
Coby Fleener at NYG: Fleener stunk in the stat sheets last week, and there's some real concern that he's going to be phased out of the offense due to his troubles learning the play book. I'll give him another week of rope however, as the Saints face a Giants defense that has had it's struggles with the tight end position over the last year or so.
Jimmy Graham at LA:Trying to find relevant tight ends to list as sits is a difficult task right now, because the position was an absolute train wreck last week. So, I'm speaking to those owners who love big names and feel like Graham is worth a roll of the dice. At this point, he's not ... he had one target and was involved in 17 plays in Week 1.
Martellus Bennett vs MIA:With or without Rob Gronkowski, how can you trust Bennett after last week's stink bomb in Arizona? Despite the fact that he saw 73 snaps, the veteran was targeted just five times and hauled in a mere three passes for 14 yards. I'd err on the side of caution against the Dolphins, even if the Pats run a lot of "12" personnel.
Jared Cook at MIN: I trust Cook about as much as I would trust Lucy holding a football for me to kick on an autumn day in those old "Peanuts" strips. Heck, even the great Aaron Rodgers couldn't make him relevant in last week's win over the Jaguars. As a result, I'd keep Cook out of your fantasy kitchen against what is a formidable Vikings defense.
Zach Miller vs PHI (Mon.):Miller, listed as a sit 'em last week, played on 43 snaps but was targeted just four times for 14 yards in a loss to the Texans. Next up on the schedule is a date with the Eagles, who held Barnidge to nothing in their season opener. Despite the lack of options at the position, Miller is not a tight end to trust this weekend.
Austin Seferian-Jenkins at ARI: Seferian-Jenkins scored the fifth-most fantasy points among tight ends last week, and he did it on one target (a 30-yard touchdown catch from Jameis Winston). If you look deeper into the numbers, however, you'll see that he saw just 18 total snaps -- Cameron Brate and Brandon Myers both had more -- so don't trust ASJ just yet.
Panthers D/ST vs 49ers: The Panthers didn't put up a monster line in last week's loss to the Broncos, but eight fantasy points is nothing to sneeze at in standard scoring leagues. I'm expecting an even better outcome this week, as Carolina hosts Blaine Gabbert and a Niners offense that will not be effective as it looked last Monday night.
Ravens D/ST at Browns: Remember when the Ravens defense was among the elite units in fantasy football? Well, owners should have faith in the purple and black this week against the Browns and backup quarterback Josh McCown. Maybe he's an upgrade on Robert Griffin III, maybe he's not ... but the Browns remain a matchup target for defenses.
Jets D/ST at Bills (Thur.):The Jets defense recorded seven sacks in last week's loss to the Bengals, and now they're in Buffalo against a Bills team that scored seven points in their opener. Their offense is also in a questionable state due to the status of Sammy Watkins (foot), who is expected to be on the gridiron at less than 100 percent.
Eagles D/ST at Bears (Mon.):The Eagles put up an impressive 11 fantasy points in last week's win over the Browns, and another favorable matchup awaits against a turnover-prone quarterback in Jay Cutler and the Bears. Philadelphia's defense is still a free agent in more than 70 percent of NFL.com leagues, so fantasy fans who like to stream are in business.
Vikings D/ST vs Packers: No defense scored more fantasy points than the Vikings last week, but that was against Marcus Mariota and the Titans. The matchup is much more difficult in Week 2, as Aaron Rodgers and the Packers come to Minnesota in the first-ever contest at U.S. Bank Stadium. The Vikings might be fired up, but Rodgers is too good to ignore.
Dolphins D/ST at Patriots: In what was a shock to some (including me), the Dolphins defense put up 11 fantasy points on the road against the Seahawks. And while their upcoming matchup against the Patriots features Jimmy Garoppolo and not Tom Brady, New England is not a team that turns the ball over very often. Keep these fish in the waiver wire pool.
Giants D/ST vs Saints:The Giants spent a mint on defensive additions in the offseason, but this unit still scored one fantasy point last week against a rookie quarterback in Dak Prescott. Next on the schedule is Drew Brees and the Saints, who showed off one of the league's most powerful offenses in their opener. Keep the G-Men on the bench this week.
49ers D/ST at Panthers:The Niners defense was one of the top units in the league from a fantasy perspective last week, posting an impressive 16 points against the Rams. Before you go out and add them for Week 2 though, keep in mind that a terrible road matchup against Cam Newton and the Panthers awaits. I wouldn't have much faith as a result.
Dan Bailey at WAS: Bailey was our top kicker start last week, and he blew up for a ridiculous 17 fantasy points in a loss to the Giants. I'll roll with him for another week, as the veteran faces a Redskins team that he's done quite well against in recent seasons. In fact, Bailey has put up a combined 27 points in his last two games at FedEx Field.
Chris Boswell vs CIN: Boswell had a decent start to the new season, scoring a respectable eight fantasy points in a blowout win over the Redskins. Fantasy owners should consider that his statistical floor this weekend, as Boswell should thrive against a Cincinnati defense that surrendered 10 fantasy points to Jets kicker Nick Foles just one weekend ago.
Justin Tucker at CLE: Tucker opened the 2015 campaign with a nine-point performance in a win over the Bills, and he figures to have another solid stat line this weekend in Cleveland. In his last four games against the AFC North opponent, Tucker has scored eight or more points three times. He's also converted on all 10 extra points in that time frame.
Chandler Catanzaro vs TB:Catanzaro had a stinker of an opener, posting just three fantasy points in a loss to the Patriots. I'd keep the faith in the talented kicker, however, as he faces a Buccaneers defense that surrendered 10 fantasy points to Matt Bryant a week ago. What's more, Tampa Bay allowed the third-most fantasy points to opposing kickers in 2015.
Cairo Santos at HOU: Santos was a start 'em last week, and he delivered with nine fantasy points. Whether he can put up another good line remains to be seen, but the matchup in Houston is not what you would call favorable. In fact, this defense allowed just two points to Patrick Murray last week and allowed the third-fewest points to kickers last year.
Jason Myers at SD: Myers came out and scored 13 fantasy points in last week's loss to the Packers, but few owners were able to benefit (1.3 percent owned). Before you rush to add him, however, keep in mind that no kicker has converted on more than two field goals in the last six games in San Diego. That could be a tough trend for Myers to overcome.
Nick Novak vs KC: Listed as a sleeper last week, Novak posted 11 fantasy points and tied for the fifth-best total at the position. Still, he's a matchup-based option and this week's contest against the Chiefs isn't favorable on paper. Kansas City surrendered the fewest fantasy points to kickers (5.19 PPG) a year ago, so Novak is a definite risk.
Phil Dawson at CAR: The 49ers might have scored 28 points against the Rams in their opener, but Dawson didn't benefit with a mere four fantasy points (all extra points). He isn't going to make much of an impact this week either, as the veteran faces a Panthers team that surrendered the second-fewest fantasy points to opposing kickers a season ago.