Week 8: Fantasy Football Start 'em
Tannehill is coming off a strong fantasy week and has been playing well for a while now. On Sunday in Chicago, Tannehill threw for 277 yards and two TDs. More impressively, he completed 78.1 percent of his passes, threw no INTs and earned a rating of 123.6. He threw two touchdowns and gained at least 35 yards on the ground in each of his past three games. He seems to be really taking to the Bill Lazor's offense as the season progresses. In Week 8, he has a juicy matchup against the lowly Jaguars, a team that ranks 30th against the pass and is giving up the 11th-most fantasy points to QBs. Now, Jacksonville's pass defense has been statistically better over the past two weeks, but you should note that those outings came against Charlie Whitehurst and Brian Hoyer.
Tannehill really appears to be on the same page with his weapons this season. He has hooked up with Mike Wallace for a TD in all but one game this year. Rookie wideout Jarvis Landry is beginning to come into his own, and tight end Charles Clay looks like he's getting healthy. Plus, Lamar Miller has been running well and taking some pressure off as well as factoring in the pass game. Most importantly, the Dolphins' O-line is much improved. This offense looks like it has a chance to develop into something special. Tannehill should be considered a low-end QB1 this week in Jacksonville.
With Pierre Thomas expected to miss a few weeks with a shoulder injury, Cadet will become the Saints' primary pass-catcher out of the backfield. He has proven he is capable by catching 15 passes over the past three games. Drew Brees utilizes his RBs out of the backfield more than any other quarterback in the league. Thomas and Sproles each caught at least 70 passes last season. In 2011, Sproles caught 86 passes. So, expect Cadet to have a ton of PPR value for the next month or so. Double-digit receptions in any week are not out of the realm of possibility for Cadet, especially after he caught six passes Sunday while playing just 20 snaps. He should be considered a high-upside flex option until Thomas returns, and that holds true for this Sunday night's battle on the Superdome turf against the Packers.
Robinson had a breakout game last week, carrying the ball 22 times for 127 yards and a touchdown. Do not expect this kind of consistency on a weekly basis from Robinson as the Jaguars' backfield is still a debacle operating behind a poor offensive line. In Week 8, however, Robinson has the ability to exploit the Dolphins' biggest weakness, and it's not just with his rushing ability. Miami has a very solid defense, but its linebackers are absolutely miserable in coverage. Last week, Matt Fortecaught six passes for 60 yards and a TD. This has been a trend for the Dolphins' defense over the past two seasons. They were burned badly by Darren Sproles in 2013, and they gave up two receiving touchdowns toJoe McKnight earlier this year. Robinson didn't catch a pass last week, however, despitelimited snaps for most of the season, he has played a consistent role in the passing attack. Expect Robinson to do damage this week through the air by isolating the Dolphins' LBs in space. It would be shocking, after his Week 7 performance, if Robinson doesn't see the majority of the snaps in Jacksonville's backfield.
With Reggie Wayne sidelined by an elbow problem, Nicks could be a sneaky-good play as Andrew Luck's No. 2 WR. The Steelers' defense has been ravaged by injuries and has been getting lit up by opposing offenses. In Week 7, Texans No. 2 WR DeAndre Hopkins caught six passes for 108 yards in Pittsburgh. Wayne is averaging 8.9 targets per game, and Luck has only thrown for fewer than 300 yards once this season. Those targets and yards have to go somewhere, and Nicks is the most likely candidate to receive them. Before seeing just one target Sunday, he was already averaging almost seven targets per game over the three previous weeks. Nicks isn't necessarily a safe start, but he is an excellent sleeper flex play.
Aside from a disastrous game against Jacksonville in Week 6, Wright has re-emerged as the Titans' go-to receiver. He has caught at least five passes in all but two games this season and somewhat surprisingly has caught three touchdowns over the past three weeks. His four TDs on the season is already twice as many as he had all of last season. The Titans are showing a lot faith in Wright, as he converted two third-down conversions and was able to wriggle between two defenders on his 14-yard catch-and-run score in Week 7. This week, Wright faces a 26th-ranked Texans pass defense. Houston is giving up just about 44 fantasy points per game to opposing fantasy WRs corps, the third-most in the league. In the past three weeks, the Texans have been absolutely torched by opposing No. 1 WRs. Every one of them has caught nine passes and accounted for a TD. Most notably,T.Y. Hilton caught all nine of his targets for 223 yards and an end-zone visit. With Wright having such a great matchup and now being utilized in the red zone, it is safe to put him in your starting lineup. Especially if starting QB Jake Locker returns as expected.
Daniels has been a solid fill-in for Dennis Pitta and, this week, has a great matchup against the Bengals. Daniels was targeted nine times and caught six passes for 58 yards and a touchdown Sunday. The Bengals are giving up 22.5 fantasy PPG to opposing TEs, the most in the league. To put that generosity in perspective, the Cowboys are second-worst at guarding tight ends but are giving up more than one point less per game. The third-worst team, Seattle, gives up only 17.1 fantasy PPG to opposing TEs. Week after week, tight ends are dominating the Bengals' defense. When the Ravens played Cincy in Week 1, while Pitta was healthy, Daniels still caught four passes for 34 yards. He has since cemented himself as a major fixture in the Ravens' offense, and the matchup is as good as it gets. Daniels even deserves to be started in eight-team leagues this week.