Koerner: Fantasy Start/Sit Strategy for Eagles-Packers

Koerner: Fantasy Start/Sit Strategy for Eagles-Packers article feature image
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USA Today Sports. Pictured: Jamaal Williams, Aaron Jones

  • Sean Koerner is here to help you make your Thursday Night Football fantasy start/sit decisions.
  • See which Philadelphia Eagles and Green Bay Packers players are must-plays (or stay aways).

Miles Sanders is in the middle of the RB3/Flex discussion. Alshon Jeffrey is on the fringe of the WR3/Flex range. And Aaron Jones and Jamaal Williams are still splitting the workload in the Packers’ backfield.

Should you roll the dice on any of them to open the week?

Let’s run through whether to start or sit key fantasy players on Thursday Night Football.

Quarterbacks

Carson Wentz, Eagles

Wentz is in the “sit” discussion this week as he should be viewed more as a high-end QB2.

I’d start a QB like Daniel Jones over Wentz. I’d even consider streaming quarterbacks like Jacoby Brissett or Matthew Stafford, who are potentially available as streamers. However, it probably isn’t worth dropping a player in order to stash Wentz in favor of a Brissett or Stafford to get a 0.5-1 point projection boost, so if your options are limited, start Wentz with lower expectations against a tough Packers secondary.

Aaron Rodgers, Packers

Rodgers has been mainly a game manager as the Packers are undefeated largely thanks to their defense. But this is the first great matchup for Rodgers, who faces an Eagles secondary that’s vulnerable to the pass. We can reasonably think of him as a mid-range QB1 this week.

If you drafted Rodgers, it means you spent fairly high draft capital to get him and should not hesitate to fire him up in this ideal matchup.

Running Backs

Miles Sanders, Eagles

Sanders is the primary start/sit decision for the Eagles’ backfield tonight as he’s right in the middle of the RB3/Flex discussion. To me, Jordan Howard and Darren Sproles only hold Sanders back from being a true workhorse, but neither are great plays this week.

eagles-vs-packers-odds-picks-thursday night football-cheat sheet-2019
USA Today Sports. Pictured: Miles Sanders

You can use my up-to-the-minute fantasy football rankings to see which players I have ranked higher than Sanders in your scoring format, but one RB I would bench Sanders for is the Chiefs’ Darrel Williams. I have Williams ranked a tad lower than Sanders as of writing, but that’s assuming LeSean McCoy will suit up despite dealing with an ankle injury and likely playing at less than 100%.

There’s upside in waiting to see whether McCoy ends up being more limited than we think or missing Week 4 entirely, which makes the risk worth it.

Aaron Jones, Packers

This is very much a 50/50 backfield. And whether you agree with Matt LaFleur’s decision to make it that doesn’t really matter. Still, it makes Jones’ floor pretty scary against a solid run defense like the Eagles. He was able to put up respectable numbers last week via two short touchdown runs, but he was bottled up by the Broncos in limited action for most of the game.

We should still treat him as a low-end RB2, though we might need him to break a big run (or two) and/or score to hit his value this week.

Jamaal Williams, Packers

Williams is much more of a nuisance for Jones owners, but could be used as a desperate Flex play in deeper PPR formats if you have no other options.

Wide Receivers

Alshon Jeffrey, Eagles

Jeffery is set to return, but we’ll need to monitor any news we can get on him during pre-game warmups. He’s on the WR3/Flex fringe right now, so I’d recommend checking my rankings right before lock before making any final decisions.

Nelson Agholor-Alshon Jeffrey
USA Today Sports. Pictured: Nelson Agholor, Alshon Jeffrey

Nelson Agholor, Eagles

Agholor’s value could go up or down based on Jeffery’s status tonight.

It’s a tougher matchup, so I would lean toward sitting Agholor in most leagues if possible.

A sit/start decision would have been between Agholor and Philip Dorsett — if Julian Edelman was still looking like a true game-time decision, I would’ve recommended sitting Agholor to wait and see whether Dorsett’s value spiked into the WR3 range. But with Edelman looking likely to play, you can lean toward Agholor tonight.

Davante Adams, Packers

A huge game from Adams is long overdue, and it could happen as soon as tonight. Fire him up as a high-end WR1 against a vulnerable secondary he should be able to carve up.

Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Packers

MVS owners have been rewarded for their patience.

He had a tough schedule over the first three weeks and a very conservative Packers offense prevented multiple pass-catchers from putting up useful fantasy scores in this offense. But MVS is clearly going to be Rodgers’ No. 2 target going forward and we’ll see more games like Week 3 (6/99/1) going forward.

He’s a low-end WR3 in a great matchup this week.

Tight Ends

Zach Ertz, Eagles

If you have Ertz, you’re starting him.

Jimmy Graham, Packers

Don’t be tempted to play Graham tonight. (Not that you likely were.) The Packers are very much running a 3-TE rotation between Graham, Marcedes Lewis and Robert Tonyan.

TE is a tricky enough position to handle even when you know who the starter is, so this situation is only worth targeting in one-game slate GPPs.

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