49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo

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Thomason: Hot/Cold Fantasy Picks For Week 1

Jimmy Garoppolo has a tough matchup against the Vikings in Week 1.

Jack Thomason
September 06, 2018 - 12:07 pm

(670 The Score) "Sit ‘Em, Start ‘Em" is a breakdown of some of the best and worst fantasy football matchups to help you navigate setting your lineups for the week.

Thankfully, football is finally here! My goal with this article is to provide you with a player to start who may not be the most obvious of starts and to share a player to sit who you normally wouldn't consider shying away from regardless of matchup.

Quarterback

START – Andy Dalton, Bengals (at Colts) Dalton was 11-of-16 for 180 yards and two touchdowns in his preseason dress rehearsal and seemed to be firing on all cylinders offensively. The Bengals have upgraded their offensive line by trading for left tackle Cordy Glenn and drafting center Billy Price in the first round. They also will start the season with a full complement of weapons, given that A.J. Green, Joe Mixon, Giovanni Bernard, John Ross and Tyler Eifert are all healthy and ready to roll. Dalton is one of the most underrated quarterbacks for the season and has a great matchup against the Colts.

SIT – Jimmy Garoppolo, 49ers (at Vikings) Everyone is excited for Garoppolo this season. I can understand why, but with San Francisco being 6.5-point underdogs at Minnesota, I'm steering clear of him this week. The Vikings have one of the best defenses in the league, generate a ton of pressure and are stacked on the back end with elite cover cornerbacks. I see tough sledding for San Francisco and will look to see Garoppolo and his weapons going when they host the Lions in Week 2.

Running back

START – Lamar Miller, Texans (at Patriots) It's easy to shy away from Miller given that the Texans are six-point underdogs and on the road, but Miller is a three-down back and will provide receptions if/when the Texans are trailing. Many of us have been haunted by Miller over the last few years, but if you look at the games Miller played with Deshaun Watson, he was a top-10 fantasy running back. The Patriots and Texans played twice last year, including in the playoffs, and Miller saw a combined 38 touches in those two games. That's including the first meeting, when D'Onta Foreman had 10 touches. Foreman is starting the season on the physically-unable-to-perform list.

SIT – LeSean McCoy, Bills (at Ravens) McCoy is the entire Buffalo offense, so he's going to see a heavy workload, which makes it difficult to sit him. That being said, there's no one else on this offense to take away defensive focus from McCoy. With Nathan Peterman starting at quarterback and Buffalo traveling to Baltimore as 7.5-point underdogs, I'm avoiding McCoy if I can or crossing my fingers in hopes for just one splash play to save his fantasy line.

Receiver

START – Phillip Dorsett, Patriots (vs. Texans) You know you're starting Chris Hogan and Rob Gronkowski, but what about Dorsett? He's quietly the No. 2 receiver for the Patriots, who have an implied team total over 28 points. The over-under for the game is 50.5, and the Patriots are currently six-point favorites. He's a great WR3 with upside this week as the way to attack the Texans' defense is through the air. Fire him up and reap the rewards.

SIT – Doug Baldwin, Seahawks (vs. Broncos) If ever there was a year for Russell Wilson and his supporting cast to really pop, this would be it given the defensive woes for Seattle. Unfortunately, the news is already out that Baldwin won't be 100 percent for the entire 2018 season given his knee injury. Add that to Baldwin having to face off against Chris Harris and a porous offensive line trying to protect Wilson against the heat of Von Miller and company, and I think we have a recipe for a benching. 

Tight end

START – Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Jaguars (vs. Panthers) The Giants were horrific when it came to covering tight ends last year. Actually, they were historically bad, at one point allowing a touchdown to a tight end in 10 straight games. We saw more of the same from New York in the preseason and with the injury to Marqise Lee for Jacksonville, I think Seferian-Jenkins is a player that could shine beyond just this game. He did pop up on the injury report, so pay attention to that, but if he starts, he's an excellent streamer for Week 1.

SIT – Evan Engram, Giants (vs. Jaguars) Expectations for Engram are extremely high and rightfully so after an incredible rookie season. The problem is the massive uptick in targets during the 2017 season was due to a myriad of injuries to other skill position players. With a healthy Odell Beckham and Sterling Shepard as well as the addition of Saquon Barkley, expectations need to be tempered for Engram in general -- and against the Jaguars as well. 

Other starts: Philip Rivers (vs. Chiefs), Alex Collins (vs. Bills), Emmanuel Sanders (vs. Seahawks) and Jack Doyle (vs. Bengals) 

Other sits: Patrick Mahomes (at Chargers), Adrian Peterson (at Cardinals), Amari Cooper (vs. Rams) and O.J. Howard (at Saints)

Jack Thomason is 670 The Score’s fantasy football expert. Follow him on Twitter @jthomason77 and feel free to ask fantasy questions.​