Start ’em, Sit ’em: avoid Winston, again

Luke Garza

Sports Blogger


We’re two weeks into the NFL season and we’ve already seen some recurring themes. Some trends are hard to trust, while others seem like they could continue throughout the season. Who would’ve thought running back Matt Forte would have three times as many fantasy points as Adrian Peterson and Todd Gurley, combined, after two weeks? As hard as we try, fantasy football is hard to predict. With that, here are three players to start and three to sit in Week 3.

Start ‘em

Matt Ryan, quarterback, Atlanta Falcons

Through two weeks, Ryan leads the NFL in fantasy points. You read that correctly. Ryan has feasted on his weak matchups thus far, racking up a total of 730 yards and five touchdowns against the Raiders and Buccaneers. Ryan faces another weak defense Sunday when the Falcons travel to New Orleans. Ryan has averaged 21.8 fantasy points per game in his past four matchups with the Saints.

Melvin Gordon, running back, San Diego Chargers

After failing to reach the end zone in his rookie campaign, Gordon has scored three times in two games to start the season. Gordon, the fourth-leading fantasy running back this season, has carried the ball 38 times. That figure should increase, however, because Danny Woodhead was recently declared out for the remainder of the season after tearing his ACL. With Woodhead out, Gordon should receive a heavy workload against the Colts, who have allowed 250 yards on the ground this season.

Jarvis Landry, wide receiver, Miami Dolphins

Landry leads the NFL with 17 receptions and ranks second with 23 targets. Those numbers alone are enough of a reason to start him. To make things better, the Dolphins face the lowly Cleveland Browns, who allow an average of 16.7 fantasy points against opposing No. 1 receivers.

Sit ‘em

Jameis Winston, quarterback, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tampa Bay quarterback Jameis Winston finds himself on this list for the second week in a row. (Keith Allison, Flickr)
Tampa Bay quarterback Jameis Winston finds himself on this list for the second week in a row.
(Keith Allison, Flickr)

This marks the second consecutive week Winston finds himself on this list. Winston is coming off a four-interception game Sunday, and is without starting running back Doug Martin for this week’s matchup with the Rams. The Rams have allowed an average of 12.5 fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season.

Carlos Hyde, running back, San Francisco 49ers

Like last season’s debut, Hyde racked up a lot of fantasy points in Week 1. He couldn’t follow it up against Carolina’s stellar defense, though, as he struggled to a measly 2.4 yards per carry. It doesn’t get easier for Hyde, as the 49ers travel to Seattle to face the Seahawks, who held Rams running back Todd Gurley to 51 yards on 19 carries last week.

Julian Edelman, wide receiver, New England Patriots

Edelman finds himself on this list only because of his quarterback situation. Rookie Jacoby Brissett looks to make his first career start Thursday, and it could be a shaky one. Edelman might even take a few snaps at quarterback during the game; a position he played during his time at Kent State. The lack of solid, proven quarterback play tells me the Patriots are going to opt to use a run-heavy attack, limiting Edelman’s ceiling this week.


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