Start ’em, Sit ’em: Cooper primed for breakout performance

By Grant Ramirez

Sports Blogger



Start ‘em

Amari Cooper, WR, Oakland Raiders (vs KC)

(e Orimo, Flickr)

Amari Cooper hasn’t had the season many expected from him. Outside of a monster game against Kansas City, he has a high of only 68 receiving yards. However, I like Cooper’s chances this week. He faces a Chiefs’ defense that Josh McCown and the Jets torched last week for 38 points. Plus, the Chiefs suspended star corner Marcus Peters for throwing a referee’s flag into the stands in New York.

Alfred Morris, RB, Dallas Cowboys (vs NYG)

Alfred Morris had a breakout game for the Cowboys on Thursday Night, rushing for 127 yards and a touchdown. In addition, Dallas’ offensive line seemed to return to its elite form against Washington, opening up huge holes for Morris as the game wore on. Sunday, the Cowboys play a Giants’ run defense that has been atrocious, ranking last in the league. Look for another good performance from Morris in New York.

Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, San Francisco 49ers (vs HOU)

In his first start for San Francisco, Jimmy Garoppolo played well. He threw for almost 300 yards on the road against a solid Chicago defense. Garoppolo is setup to have an even better performance on Sunday against Houston’s 22nd ranked pass defense. Also, he should continue to improve as he gets more comfortable in the 49ers’ offense and establish chemistry with his targets.


Sit ‘em

Kirk Cousins, QB, Washington Redskins (vs LAC)

Kirk Cousins put up a solid stat line last week against Dallas. However, he didn’t get much help from his receivers and was constantly under duress behind a crumbling offensive line. He shouldn’t have an easier time this week against the Chargers and their tandem of star pass rushers, Melvin Ingram and Joey Bosa. Los Angeles’ secondary is no slouch either, ranking in the top five in pass defense. Cousins should be in for a rough afternoon.

Pittsburgh Steelers, D/ST (vs BAL)

Although Pittsburgh boasts the NFL’s fourth ranked defense, it has struggled some lately. In their past two games, quarterbacks Brett Hundley and Andy Dalton torched the Steelers’ secondary. On Sunday, they play a Baltimore team that has struggled offensively but put up 44 points last week. The Steelers also lost a vital piece of their defense, linebacker Ryan Shazier, to a spinal cord injury against Cincinnati. This could be a big factor moving forward.

Jordy Nelson, WR, Green Bay Packers (vs CLE)

(carmine19jock, Flickr)

Jordy Nelson isn’t a viable fantasy option as long as Brett Hundley is under center. He’s averaged 20 receiving yards per game and hasn’t scored a touchdown in Aaron Rodgers’ absence. Even in Hundley’s best game, where he threw for three touchdowns and nearly 300 yards, Nelson had only 11 yards. He and his new quarterback simply can’t find a connection. Although the Packers play winless Cleveland this week, don’t look for production from Nelson.

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