Just hours before the start of Week 1’s Sunday action I know many people have questions running through their heads. Who should I start? Who should I sit? Let’s take a look at how some of the recent news changes things:
Tyrell Williams – Wide Receiver – Oakland Raiders
Obviously the release of Antonio Brown is going to have a significant impact on the offense in general, but the player who could see the biggest boost is Williams. He was often an overlooked option with the Chargers, over the past two years becoming buried on the depth chart (never more than 69 targets). Now he should be sitting atop it, with few other options for Derek Carr to throw the football to. Hunter Renfrow is intriguing, but he’s going to be the WR2. Darren Waller? There’s upside as a tight end, but he’s hardly a dependable option.
Williams has racked up as many as 69 receptions, 1,059 yards and 7 TD before (all in ’16) and figures to exceed his career high of 120 targets. Don’t be surprised to see him be the prime target in Week 1 and post big numbers.
Verdict – Start ‘Em
Devin Singletary – Running Back – Buffalo Bills
The surprising release of LeSean McCoy has left many to think that Singletary would immediately step into the lead role. While that could (or at least should) happen before long, right now he’s going to share the backfield with Frank Gore and T.J. Yeldon. According to Marcel Louis-Jacques (via ESPN):
There’s no precedent for Singletary in his first NFL game, but I’d expect anywhere between eight and 15 combined touches for the running back. That number could increase or decrease depending on who has the hot hand among him, Frank Gore and T.J. Yeldon.
There’s still some FLEX appeal with that type of projection, but there’s also a chance he does little damage against the Jets. It all depends on your alternatives, but consider him a risky FLEX.
Verdict – Sit ‘Em (usable as a high risk, high reward FLEX)
Derrius Guice – Running Back – Washington Redskins
The #Redskins are planning to make RB Adrian Peterson inactive for today’s game against the #Eagles, per me and @MikeGarafolo. Last year’s starter is now surprisingly a spectator. Our story: https://t.co/auQwBgLV6s— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 8, 2019
Guice was always expected to be a solid play, though he could lose touches if the Redskins are playing catchup and need to take a pass heavy approach (something that appears very likely). That said he could see a lot of work early and that’s enough to make him a solid RB2.
Verdict – Start ‘Em (as RB2)
Vernon Davis – Tight End – Washington Redskins
With Jordan Reed ruled out it will be Davis operating as the lead tight end for the Redskins. It’s not an ideal matchup against the Eagles, but could he be the prime safety valve? It’s possible, though in a shaky offense it’s also possible he’s used more as a blocker than anything. At this point it’s impossible to trust him as a TE1.
Verdict – Sit ‘Em
Robby Anderson – Wide Receiver – New York Jets
The Jets injury report lists WR Robby Anderson, WR Braxton Berrios and CB Trumaine Johnson as questionable. They were all limited in practice today, but all are expected to play Sunday. #nyj— Brian Costello (@BrianCoz) September 6, 2019
We had Anderson ranked #33 among wide receivers earlier this week, so we never would’ve considered him a must start even at 100%. Now consider that he’s not at full strength and that he could often draw coverage from Tre’Davious White. That’s not generally going to be a recipe for success, so while the desperate could play him he’s not a recommended option.
Verdict – Sit ‘Em (desperation WR3)
Stefon Diggs – Wide Receiver – Minnesota Vikings
#Vikings coach Mike Zimmer on if Stefon Diggs will be able to play Sunday after being listed as questionable. “We’ll see,”— Chris Tomasson (@christomasson) September 6, 2019
This is a little bit of a tricky situation, as Diggs has been battling a hamstring injury. At least the game is scheduled for 1:00 PM EST so we’ll have some clarity early in the day. There is some risk, especially given Diggs’ history of performance when being banged up before and that there’s the potential that he’s used in a limited role (or as a decoy to distract the defense from Adam Thielen). At the same time it’s a plus matchup and if he’s on the field Diggs will be hard to sit. Monitor the news in the morning, but plan on having him in your lineup for now.
Verdict – Start ‘Em (borderline WR2, must start WR3, given the risks)
Keke Coutee – Wide Receiver – Houston Texans
An ankle injury has left him as questionable for Monday night’s game against the New Orleans Saints. That alone will make him tough to trust, since if he does sit your replacement options would be limited. Of course even if he does play just how trustworthy is he? It’s possible he faces a reduced workload and it’s not like he’s a favorite for targets as he’s going to be behind DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller in terms of wide receivers and the addition of Duke Johnson could force him to fourth in the pecking order even when healthy. He’s an easy sit in all formats.
Verdict – Sit ‘Em
DK Metcalf – Wide Receiver – Seattle Seahawks
There had been questions about his Week 1 availability after he had a “minor” operation in August, but he wasn’t on the injury report so he’s clearly ready to go. Just what can we expect from the rookie wide receiver in his first NFL game? That’s hard to predict, because he’s missed time working with Russell Wilson and it’s possible his workload is limited. There’s some boom or bust here, and those who are desperate could consider using him, but for most the risk likely outweighs the reward.
Verdict – Sit ‘Em (Boom or Bust Play if desperate)
Sources – ESPN, NFL.com
Make sure to check out all of our Week 1 rankings: