Start ‘Em & Sit’ Em is the latest weekly look at NFL matches and how they will affect your fantasy football team. Fantasy superstars like Patrick Mahomes and Christian McCaffrey will not be featured in this column. All player pairing is based on a PPR scoring system.
Week 2 Start ‘Em, Sit’ Em
QUARTER | RUNNING BACK | LARGE RECEIVERS | END | KICKERS | TEAM DEFENSES
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Week 2 Start ‘Em: Tight Ends
Start of the week
Hunter Henry at Chiefs
Henry had a solid opening for fantasy fans, trailing five of his eight targets for 73 yards in a win over the Bengals. He also finished second among Chargers receivers in shots behind Keenan Allen, and his eight targets also tied Allen for second. It should be in your starting lineups against the Chiefs, as Henry scored more than 1
Jared Cook at Raiders
Cook produced five catches for 80 yards in the Saints opening, and has now had at least 84 yards in reception or a touchdown in six of his last seven games dating back to last season. The veteran may also see more opportunities in the pass bout with Michael Thomas at less than 100 percent. Cook also has a very good matchup in a revenge match against the Raiders in a race he has a 50.5 up / down based on DraftKings Sportsbook.
Tyler Higbee of the Eagles
Higbee didn’t do much in his 2020 debut, scoring just seven points despite a positive matchup against the Cowboys. He played 65 shots in the contest, which was way more than Gerald Everett (24), so he’s the top tight end in Los Angeles (if there were any questions). I would go with him against another NFL East team, the Eagles, who allowed Logan Thomas a touchdown and 13.7 fancy points in the opening game of the season.
Hayden Hurst at Cowboys
Hurst did not perform well on his debut with the Falcons, only capturing three of the five targets for 38 yards. It was also the clear fourth option in the passing game, as Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley and Russell Gage all had nine tricks and over 100 yards. However, he has a nice match up against a Cowboys team that allowed the third-most points to finish last season and just lost LB Leighton Vander Esch to an injured collarbone.
The more you start
- Austin Hooper vs Bengals (TNF)
- Dallas Goedert vs. Rams
- Eric Ebron vs Broncos
- Noah Fant at the Steelers (DraftKings: $ 4,400)
- O.J. Howard vs. Panthers (DraftKings: $ 3,900)
- Logan Thomas at Cardinals (DraftKings: $ 3,600)
Week 2 Sit ‘Em: Tight Ends
Session of the week
Rob Gronkowski versus Panthers
Gronkowski was quiet in his first NFL game since 2018, trailing two of the three targets 11 yards. While he led all tight end Bucs in snaps (54), O.J. Howard had multiple targets (6) and scored on one of Tom Brady’s two touchdowns. This week’s match against the Panthers isn’t great either, as the tight ends averaged a fourth fewer points against them last season. Their defense also kept Darren Waller just 45 yards in the first week.
Jack Doyle vs Vikings
Doyle only had four targets for the Colts in their opening, while Philip Rivers watched his wide receivers and runners at a much more consistent pace. Rivers threw 44 percent of his passing attempts behind him. So while Doyle played 54 shots, he wasn’t much involved in the pass attack. He also has a tough next matchup against the Vikings, who gave up an average of just 10.3 fantasy points per game to compete with tight end a season ago.
Mike Gesicki vs Bills
Listed as sit ’em last week, Gesicki only had three catches for 30 yards in a loss to the Patriots. He will be struggling to produce a good line again this week as the Dolphins host a Bills defense that allowed the second fewest points to finish last season and held Chris Herndon at 37 yards last week. Gesicki has also had trouble against Buffalo in his career, scoring 8.1 fantasy points or less in three career matches against foe AFC East.
Jimmy Graham vs Giants
Graham scored a touchdown and was targeted seven times last weekend by Mitchell Trubisky, and his 11.5 fantasy points were better than George Kittle and Darren Waller. However, I think you are chasing points if you think he will repeat that performance, even against the Giants. Their defense was at the center of the pack against last season’s stance, and the G-Men held Eric Ebron to a hold for just 18 yards in their season opener.
The more he sits
- Greg Olsen vs Patriots (SNF)
- Chris Herndon IV against 49ers
- Ian Thomas of the Buccaneers
- Zach Ertz vs Rams (DraftKings: $ 5,600)
- Evan Engram at Bears (DraftKings: $ 5,300)
- T.J. Hockenson at Packers (DraftKings: $ 5,200)
Michael Fabiano is an award-winning fantasy football analyst on Sports Illustrated and a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA) Hall of Fame. You can follow Michael Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Instagram for the latest news and analytics!
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