Fantasy Football Week 8 Start Em, Sit Em Lineup Advice, Projections, and Roster Q&A

I’mmm baaaaaaccccckkkkk!

Did you miss me?

Jon has himself a busy schedule this week, so he texted me this morning and asked if I’d be up for reprising my role as the author of our weekly Start/Sit column here at MSF. I have to admit, as soon as I saw his text I was pretty pumped.

Doing these posts every week, week after week, can admittedly be a bit of a grind, as I learned over the last couple of years; so I was happy to let Jon take it over this year and focus my efforts in other areas. But I’ve missed the weekly challenge of poring over matchups and stats and trends to figure out which players to recommend to you as starts and sits.

So it’s good to be back in the saddle.

Anyway, It’s not like I’ve been totally absent. I still offer commentary on Jon’s posts, answer questions in the comment sections, and monitor the @FantasyMSF Twitter account. So I haven’t really given you a chance to miss me even if you wanted to. Now though, for the first time all year, I have to go on record with start and sit picks.

I’m ready. Let’s roll.

fantasy football week 8 start em sit em lineup advice, projections, and roster q&a

First up, let’s take a quick old school look back at how Jon did with his top-line start/sit picks last week:

  • Start ’em hits: Ben Roethlisberger, Dwayne Bowe, Fred Davis
  • Start ’em misses: Ryan Torain
  • Sit ’em hits: Vincent Jackson, Willis McGahee, Dustin Keller
  • Sit ’em misses: Cam Newton

Other suggestions he was slam-dunk correct on: sit Philip Rivers and Kevin Kolb; sit Larry Fitgerald and Brandon Lloyd

Other suggestions he was dead wrong on: start Matt Hasselbeck; sit Mark Sanchez; sit Jonathan Stewart; that Visanthe Shiancoe would be the “worst” tight end

Overall, a decent week for Jon. His top-line picks were solid, but some of his bolder “other” suggestions went awry. Jon has had a very strong track record this season though, so the bar is high for my relief appearance.

Here are my thoughts on who you should start and who you should sit in Week 8.

Fantasy Football Week 8 Start Em, Sit Em
Lineup Advice and Projections

Remember that the following teams are on bye in Week 8:

  • Falcons
  • Bears
  • Packers
  • Jets
  • Raiders
  • Buccaneers

Several startable QBs are out this week (Rodgers, Ryan, Freeman), as are some RBs that teams have come to count on (Turner, Forte, DMC), and some top flight WRs (R. White and the Packers crew, among many others). That means that not only do you need to bone up on your waiver wire knowledge, you need to be prepared to make the key start/sit decisions at the fringes of your roster that will be the difference between winning and losing.

Lucky for you, that’s why we’re here.

Fantasy Football Week 8 Start Em, Sit Em Picks: Quarterbacks

Start ‘Em QB: Joe Flacco, Baltimore (v Arizona)

fantasy-football-week-8-start-em-sit-em-lineup-advice-projections-joe-flaccoKnow that I am currently writing this at 6:23 pm Central time on Monday evening. So the Monday night game between Baltimore and Jacksonville hasn’t even started. Thus, there is a chance that Flacco throws up one of his patented stinkers tonight against Jacksonville’s better-than-you-think pass defense (210 yards per game, 9 TDs heading into week 7).

Even if he does, I don’t care. You start him against Arizona and expect top 5 stats.

Here are some numbers:

  • Cam Newton: 422 yards
  • Rex Grossman: 291 yards
  • Eli Manning: 321 yards
  • Ben Roethlisberger: 361 yards

These are the yardage numbers that four of the Cardinals’ opponents have hung on their pass D this year. The two I left out were Minnesota and Seattle, because neither team had competent quarterbacking when they faced the Cardinals. Joe Flacco may not be a superstar, but he is certainly competent, and he has been a guy in the past who has put up huge numbers against inferior defenses. Consider his performance against St. Louis earlier this year, one of the few pass defenses that could be considered as bad as Arizona’s: 389 yards, 3 TDs for Flacco.

Flacco’s overall numbers are somewhat depressed by some tough matchups early in the season (Jets, Texans, Titans when they were actually trying), but don’t forget that this is a guy who has tossed at least 21 TD passes the last two seasons and who tends to get them in bunches when they come. This week will be one of those weeks when they come in bunches. Start Flacco.

Joe Flacco fantasy football Week 8 projection: 275 yards, 3 TDs

Other start ’em QBs for Week Eight:

  • Eli Manning isn’t sexy from a fantasy perspective, but you can win with him. And you can certainly win with him when he has tasty matchups like the one he has this week against Miami.
  • You realize Cam Newton is a top 10 option at QB now, right? Okay, just checking. Make sure he’s in your lineup.

Sit ‘Em QB: Tim Tebow, Denver (v Detroit)

Yep, I’m going to throw some cold water on Tebowmania.

fantasy-football-week-8-start-em-sit-em-lineup-advice-projections-tim-tebowDespite finishing with respectable fantasy numbers in Week 7 (2 TDs, 200+ total yards), you really have to have watched the full game to put those numbers into context. Through 55 minutes, Tebow was hovering around negative fantasy points when you take into account his fumble, but then he led a furious five minute comeback that included most of his passing yards and both of his TDs.

A few things to keep in mind as you analyze Tebow’s chances against Detroit:

  • Miami has given up 12 TD passes and picked off only two through six games, so the matchup was very favorable. Detroit, on the other hand, gives up barely 200 passing yards per game, has picked off opposing QBs ten times, and has allowed only 8 TD passes in 7 games. This matchup is not favorable.
  • Miami only had eight sacks coming into Week 7 before amassing seven against on Tebow. Detroit has 17 sacks in 7 games thanks to a ferocious defensive line that makes indecisive quarterbacks pay. Tebow looked very indecisive in Week 7, which will not bode well at all for him against Suh, Avril, and Co.

I do like Tebow as a solid fantasy backup this season. He’ll be able to produce decent fantasy stats when the matchup is favorable. This one absolutely is not. In fact, it’s just about the worst matchup for Tebow at this stage in his career, especially with Willis McGahee being out and removing the Broncos’ only consistent rushing threat.

Stay far, far away…this week at least.

Tim Tebow fantasy football Week 8 projection: 125 yards passing, 45 yards rushing, 0 TDs, 2 INTs

Other sit ’em QBs for Week Eight:

  • What the hell is wrong with Philip Rivers? I know Jon is as baffled as anyone. He thought Rivers would be the best fantasy QB this year, but Rivers has just 7 TDs through six games to go along with 9 INTs. He now has to face a Kansas City secondary that picked Oakland QBs off six times last week (I know it was Boller & Palmer, but still) and who Rivers hasn’t lit up historically (only 17 TDs in 12 career games). Plus the game is at Arrowhead, always a tough place to play. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I think if you have a reasonable alternative, it’s time make Rivers (and by extension Antonio Gates and Vincent Jackson) prove that he’s the Rivers of old before you start him with confidence.
  • Be wary of Ryan Fitzpatrick this week, despite what Cam Newton did against the Redskins last week. Washington has problems, but pass defense hasn’t been one of them. The ‘Skins, now desperate after another loss, have given up only five TD passes all season long. Fitzy doesn’t pose the running threat that Cam did, so Washington should have an easier job containing him.

Jon’s thoughts:

I really don’t have much to disagree with here…although I would say I am even higher on Eli Manning than Jerod is.  He should absolutely light up the Miami secondary.

One other guy I would definitely look at starting would be Matt Hasselbeck…he will be playing against the Colts.  All I really need to say here is, “62-7.”

One more under-the-radar guy I would look at is Andy Dalton.  The Seattle secondary is nearly as bad as Arizona’s, and at this point, it looks like the Red Rifle might just be good.  Plus, he has the Rookie of the Year Runner-Up (AJ Green) on his team.  You all know how much I love him…start the Red Rifle if your guy is on a bye.

Fantasy Football Week 8 Start Em, Sit Em Picks: Running Backs

Start ‘Em RB: Chris Johnson, Tennessee (v Indianapolis)

Longtime readers know that when I do these start/sit posts, I try to never make my top-line picks obvious ones. Why would I tell you to start Adrian Peterson or Aaron Rodgers? That offers no one any value. So how crazy is it that in Week 8, former fantasy super-duperstar Chris Johnson warrants mention in the start ’em category?

What’s even crazier is that some of you may think I’m crazy for trusting CJ268 (his actual rushing total this year) as my start ’em RB!

But there is plenty of reason to expect the long-awaited CJ breakout this week, and it has everything to do with the matchup: Indianapolis. The Colts make every opposing running back look like Gale Sayers. Through seven games this year Indy is allowing 150.9 rushing yards per game and has allowed 9 touchdowns. If CJ can’t have a fantasy-relevant day against them then the Titans need to sue him for fraud immediately. I’m only half joking.

With that said, keep this in mind: just because Johnson torches Indy’s run D (which I expect), it doesn’t mean he’s “back”. It just means he has a pulse. On the bright side, there are some tasty matchups upcoming on the schedule (Carolina, Tampa Bay, Indy again, Buffalo, all in the bottom third in the league in run D), so feel free to enjoy a bit of optimism if the old CJ returns on Sunday.

Chris Johnson fantasy football Week 8 projection: 140 yards rushing, 2 TDs, 5 receptions, 45 yards

Other start ’em RBs for Week 8:

  • Mark Ingram and Darren Sproles are both definite starts this week, and in deeper leagues or on teams especially decimated by injury or bye weeks Pierre Thomas has some value as well. It all comes down to the matchup. New Orleans faces St. Louis in Week 8, the team with by far the worst run defense in the NFL. Last week the Saints faced the team with the second-worst run D in the NFL, Indiacrapolis, and all three of these guys put up solid fantasy numbers. Sure, it’d be great if there was one guy racking up all the fantasy goodness that Sean Payton and Drew Brees create, but come 6-team bye weeks like this one, just be thankful that the Saints will give opportunities to three running backs against a team like the Rams. 
  • I can’t believe I’m doing this, but Ryan Torain is probably a top 20 back in Week 8. Despite two straight awful outings after his supposed breakout a few weeks back, Torain has a) a good matchup (Buffalo, 30th against the run) and b) the starting role with Tim Hightower injured and Roy Helu apparently not yet in good enough graces with Mike Shanahan to warrant the starting nod. We’ve seen Torain produce before in Shanahan’s system when given the chance, so you can start him with some measure of confidence…but don’t come blaming me if he ends up getting five carries and doing nothing. You and I both know we’re playing with fire talking about starting a Shanny RB, but the circumstances do seem to make the risk worth the potential reward in this case.
  • I probably don’t need to tell you to start DeMarco Murray after his performance last week, but just in case you were worried that he only succeeded because of the matchup, his matchup is pretty good in Week 8 too. Philly gives up 123.8 rushing yards and a TD per game. With Felix Jones expected to still be out, Murray should get the lion’s share of the work. But take note: if you can, now isn’t a bad time to try to sell high on Murray’s inflated value.

Sit ‘Em RB: Peyton Hillis and Montario Hardesty, Cleveland (at San Francisco)

I don’t care who is healthy, who starts, or even if Cleveland signs Jim Brown for the week to come play. San Francisco has the best front 7 in football right now. Yes, I’m serious…watch them. Remember how we all used to look at Pittsburgh, and still do with Baltimore, and consider sitting even our studs against them? If you’re not thinking of San Fran in that light now, you’re mistaken. Just trust me. I’ve watched every minute of every one of their games this year. They are legit.

fantasy-football-week-8-start-em-sit-em-lineup-advice-projections-peyton-hillisPlus, even when healthy Hillis has been far from a stud this year. Not only is he not nearly as effective this year as he was for much of last year, the Browns offense has regressed, leading to very few scoring opportunities for the backs. The ceiling for Cleveland’s RBs right now is quite likely what Montario Hardesty put up in Week 7: 122 total yards on 35 touches with no TDs. And that was against Seattle, a decent but not great run D. The 49ers are giving up just 74.7 rushing yards per game and have not allowed a running TD all season. Yikes.

Unless Cleveland signs the young Jim Brown to play on Sunday, sit whoever is carrying the ball for them. And against this 49ers run D, rested after the bye, even a young Jim Brown might have trouble finding holes.

Peyton Hillis and Montario Hardesty combined fantasy football projection for Week 8: 65 rushing yards, 40 receiving yards, 0 TDs

Other sit ’em RBs for Week 8:

  • Willis McGahee is out, which will lead some people to get excited about Knowshon Moreno, as will the matchup against Detroit’s less than stellar run D. I disagree. Granted, he’s not a terrible option if your lineup is decimated, but I’m waiting until he does something positive to trust him with a starting slot. Detroit will be able to stack the box against Tebow, which will make the going tough for Knowshon.
  • That’s it. I’m off the DeAngelo Williams train. I’ve given him plenty of chances, and he always seems to repay me with flaming piles of turd like his 10-carry, 35-yard performance in Week 7, which was made even more frustrating by the fact that Cam Newton and Jonathan Stewart ran wild against the Redskins. Make this guy have two straight solid weeks before you trust him. (And for the record, I’m not all that high on Jonathan Stewart either this week. Minnesota is good against the run.)
  • Don’t get too excited about Bernard Scott, who will be filling in for the suspended Cedric Benson this week. Not only is Seattle decent against the run (105 yards per game, 5 TDs allowed) but Brian Leonard is there to siphon carries. Plus, offensive coordinator Jay Gruden clearly has confidence in Andy Dalton, AJ Green, et al, and he won’t hesitate to keep airing it out.

Jon’s thoughts:

I LOVE LOVE LOVE Ryan Torain this week.  Start him with confidence!

Also, let me pass along a quick story for all of you Knowshon Moreno lovers (I am one by the way…but this may make you wary of him as an NFL back).  Allegedly, the kid had never even played football until one day, his high school coach saw him playing tag with a bunch of kids and nobody could touch him.  He thought to himself, “Wow…that kid would make a great running back.”  The legend was born.  Anyway, Know (I have it on very good authority that this is what all of his friends call him) began torching people in high school, and even excelled in college because of his shear athletic ability.  However, he doesn’t really LOVE football like a lot of these guys, and he has never been a guy that people would describe as a “workout warrior.”  Now that he’s in the NFL, he can’t beat people just based off of his talent anymore.  Really, he’s a lot like Julio Jones.  Add all of this to the fact that the Broncos aren’t very good, and a 30-year-old with a blown apart knee has been BETTER than him all season…and I would stay away from Knowshon…maybe forever.

As for the Panthers’ running backs, I’m actually much higher on Jonathan Stewart (and not just because I own him in my league).  Minnesota is great against the run, so Williams will be neutralized.  However, Cam Newton LOVES throwing to Stewart out of the flat, and with Minnesota’s pass rush, I expect Newton to make a lot of quick, short throws to his tight ends and Stewart.  Stewart may not have a lot of yards on the ground, but I could see him approaching triple digits through the air.

Fantasy Football Week 8 Start Em, Sit Em Picks: Wide Receivers

Start ‘Em WR: Brandon Lloyd, St. Louis (v New Orleans)

Regardless of whether Sam Bradford plays or not, I like Lloyd this week. In his first start with his new team last week, he compiled 6 receptions for 74 yards with A.J. Feeley at QB. That was in a blowout against Dallas. Clearly the potential for a blowout is there this week with the awful Rams going up against the juggernaut that just obliterated Indy to the tune of 62 points.

It is safe to assume that St. Louis will be passing a lot to try to keep with Brees and Co, and if they are, either St. Louis QB will surely continue to target their new toy. Plus, the Saints have given up 12 TD passes in 7 games, so they can be had through the air.

Lloyd proved last year that he’s a top flight wide receiver in Josh McDaniels’ system. He’s back with McD now, and I think he’s a possible top 10 WR from here on out, especially when you consider that St. Louis’ schedule eases up in the second half.

Brandon Lloyd fantasy football Week 8 projection: 7 receptions, 90 yards, 1 TD

Other start ’em WRs for Week Eight:

  • After two very subpar weeks, Antonio Brown took advantage of a favorable matchup against Arizona to bust out with 7 catches and 102 yards. He has another favorable matchup against New England in Week 8. Seeing as how Bill Belichick likes to take out the other team’s #1 offensive option, the focus of the Patriots D will likely be Mike Wallace. That should provide opportunities for Brown to make a few big plays, which he’s proven he can make.
  • Michael Crabtree is quickly becoming Alex Smith’s go-to guy. He had his best game of the season in Week 6 when he snared 9 passes for 77 yards. With Braylon Edwards expected to return and stretch the defense, Crabtree should have even more room to do his Cris Carter impression. Cleveland’s pass defense stats are pretty solid from a yardage perspective, but they have given up 8 passing TDs in 6 games. I have a suspicion Crabtree makes his first venture into the end zone in Week 8.
  • I haven’t been very complimentary of Steve Breaston over the past few weeks, but he is starting to win me over with his consistency. Breaston has at least 50 yards in four straight games and scored two TDs against Indy in Game 5. He faces a San Diego defense in Week 8 that allowed three TD passes to the Jets’ #2 receiver, Plaxico Burress. Though Dwayne Bowe will always be the top red zone option for Matt Cassel, the QB is clearly gaining trust in Breaston, so it’s time I do too. (Take note: just because Breaston is listed doesn’t mean I consider him a slam dunk start, but as a guy that may be on your waiver wire he offers some value for those desperate with six teams on bye.)

Sit ‘Em WR: Deion Branch, New England (at Pittsburgh)

I had a really, really hard time coming up with a sit ’em WR for this week. With six teams on bye, it’s hard to say that any top 40 WR is a sit, especially in leagues where three wide receivers start. But I didn’t want to tell you to sit someone obvious or from a crappy offense, so I’m going to step out on a limb with Branch.

I’ll give you my reasons for suggesting Branch as a sit candidate so you can see if you agree with my thinking or not:

  • Pittsburgh is #1 in the NFL against the pass this year, giving up just 171.9 yards per game and only 8 TDs in 7 games.
  • Branch is the fourth option in the New England passing attack behind Wes Welker, Aaron Hernandez, and Rob Gronkowski.
  • Despite his ballyhooed rapport with Tom Brady, Branch has one game with zero receptions this year, another with one reception, and another with three catches. Yes, he’s had at least 69 yards receiving in four of his six games, and he’s caught two TDs, but there is a lot of inconsistency here.
  • In his career, Branch averages just over 5 catches and 61.5 yards per game and against Pittsburgh, which is decent, but he’s only hit paydirt once.

I would not be shocked at all if Branch ends up having a good or even great game on Sunday. Such is the nature of New England’s offense. But I think there are plenty of reasons to think this will be another of Branch’s off weeks, so if you’re blessed with four or five good options this week despite all the byes, consider those options strongly.

Deion Branch fantasy football Week 8 projection: 4 receptions, 45 yards, 0 TDs

Other sit ’em WRs for Week Eight:

  • Tim Tebow is my sit ’em QB, so clearly I don’t have much confidence in the Denver passing game. Thus, stick Eric Decker and Demaryius Thomas on your benches. If you have to play one of them, Thomas is the guy I’d want based on what I saw in Week 7. 
  • Reggie Wayne is really struggling. He hasn’t eclipsed 77 yards or scored a touchdown since Week 1. Tennessee may or may not be a good matchup, it just depends on which Titans team shows up, but Pierre Garcon remains the Colts WR to start right now anyway, and I’m waiting until Wayne can string together a few solid weeks in a row before thinking of him as a must-start WR again.
  • Sidney Rice had a stellar 8-catch, 109-yard performance in Week 3, but his numbers have gotten steadily worse in every week since. Seeing as how he is no longer playing with his Viking buddy Tarvaris Jackson, and how not every pass D is as friendly to opposing WRs as Arizona’s is, it’s not a surprise. As long as Charlie Whitehurst is playing QB and the opponent is halfway competent against the pass, sit all Seahawks WRs unless you’re desperate.

Jon’s thoughts:

How are you not starting Steve Smith?  After watching Greg Jennings run all over the field against the Vikings, I am supremely confident that Steve Smith (a guy who plays very similarly to Greg Jennings, but is even more explosive) will have a MASSIVE day.  Steve Smith has been carrying terrible quarterbacks for…well…for forever, and now that he has someone that is better than competent, he is better than ever.  Most people probably don’t realize this, but Smith is the #4 WR in fantasy this year…yet he STILL ISN’T OWNED IN EVERY LEAGUE IN YAHOO!!!  This is unacceptable.  Start Smith with confidence this week…he could very well have the best week of anyone not named Megatron.

fantasy-football-start-sit-week-8-start-em-sit-em-projections-picks-jerodJerod’s rebuttal thoughts:

Excuse me, but where did I say I’m not starting Steve Smith? Of course you start Steve Smith. I don’t want to patronize our readers, so I assume they can make obvious decisions like that. Although your note about him not being owned in all Yahoo leagues is concerning and ridiculous, so I’m glad you pointed Smith’s greatness out for the few who are unaware. But believe me, Smith is starting on any team I have.

Fantasy Football Week 8 Start Em, Sit Em Picks: Tight Ends

Start ‘Em TE: Jake Ballard, New York Giants (v Miami)

Do you realize that Jake Ballard has caught 11 balls for nearly 200 yards and two touchdowns over the Giants’ last three games? It’s true. Many were lamenting the fact that Kevin Boss left for Oakland, and the effect it would have on Eli Manning’s stats, but Manning seems to have found a nice rapport with the Boss-like Ballard.

Fortuitously, Ballard’s Week 8 matchup is solid. Miami is one of the worst defenses in the league in terms of points given up to opposing tight ends. Add it all up, and Ballard is an outstanding start candidate this week.

Jake Ballard fantasy football Week 8 projection: 4 receptions, 55 yards, 1 TD

Other start ’em TEs for Week Eight:

  • The Browns are also very bad at containing opposing tight ends. That means Vernon Davis needs to be playing on all rosters who have him. 
  • The Cowboys are another teams that has given up a decent amount of fantasy points to opposing tight ends this year. With Brent Celek coming off of his first good game of the year (4 catches, TD) he is a sneaky start if you’re desperate.
  • By now, you shouldn’t need me to tell you to get Fred Davis in your lineups…do you? If so, get him in your lineups.

Sit ‘Em TE: Dallas Clark, Indianapolis (at Tennessee)

fantasy-football-week-8-start-em-sit-em-lineup-advice-projections-dallas-clarkClark did not record a catch on Sunday night after having his first Clark-like game of the season in Week 6 (6 catches, 53 yards). Tennessee is a middle-of-the-pack team in terms of holding down opposing tight ends, but this selection is more based on lack of faith in the Colts offense than any confidence in the Jekyll and Hide Titans.

Clark has only scored two TDs this year and has only one game with more than four catches or 46 yards. The safer bet this season has been to take the under on those numbers, which is just about the floor for being considered a solid start option in a standard fantasy league. Let someone else pretend Dallas Clark is still the Clark of old. Don’t you make that mistake.

Dallas Clark fantasy football Week 8 projection: 3 catches 35 yards, 0 TD

Other sit ’em TEs for Week Eight:

  • Heath Miller‘s production has been steadily increasing, but I’m a bit worried about him in Week 8. New England is pretty good against opposing tight ends, and Miller has to score TDs to have value, as his yardage totals rarely will get you excited.
  • Scott Chandler has four TDs this season, which looks really good when you’re sorting your waiver wire in desperate need of a fill-in. Don’t be fooled. Chandler hasn’t scored since Week 3 and and he has a grand total of 1 yard receiving over the last two games.

Jon’s thoughts:

It’s very hard to find tight ends who are going to have bad games from week to week, however I would consider sitting Owen Daniels as well.  Jacksonville’s defense has been very good (even though the rest of their team is awful), and even though Houston has been very good this year, Schaub hasn’t necessarily been lighting anybody up through the air.  He’s been good, but not great every week, and he’s only thrown 12 touchdown passes.  With all of that said, there may not be a better option than Owen Daniels…but I think he will have a down week on Sunday.

Fantasy Football Week 8 Start Em, Sit Em Picks: Defense/Special Teams

Start ‘Em D/ST: Detroit Lions (at Denver)

If you want a full explanation for why I’m recommending Detroit’s D this week, just scroll up and read what I wrote about Tim Tebow. I like him, I’m rooting for him, but this is just a great matchup for Detroit’s defense in terms of what they do well.

You beat Detroit on the ground, and the Broncos will struggle to run with McGahee out. That means Tebow will have to try to win the game through the air and, well, Ndamukong Suh and Co could have a lot of fun.

Detroit Lions D/ST fantasy football Week 8 projection: 13 or fewer points, 5+ sacks, 1 turnover

Other start ’em D/ST units for Week Eight:

  • Houston’s defense continues to surprise me with how well it’s playing under new coordinator Wade Philliips. Jacksonville and rookie QB Blaine Gabbert, who will be coming off of a Monday night game, should be a tasty matchup.
  • Cincinnati’s D will be a popular choice this week going up against Seattle, and it’s a good choice. Just be wary of those tricky Seahawks at home. They will often surprise teams that are traveling over a couple of time zones to play them in their very loud stadium. That said, Charlie Whitehurst is Charlie Whitehurst.

Sit ‘Em D/ST: Pittsburgh Steelers (v New England)

The Steelers’ defense is starting to play better as of late, but they are far from the dominating unit we’re used to. Wheras a Pittsburgh-New England game might once have been a battle of top defenses, it is now a meeting of two of the top passing attacks in football.

Between Tom Brady, Big Ben, Mike Wallace, Wes Welker, et al, this should be a fun game to watch…so long as you’re not starting either defense.

Pittsburgh Steelers D/ST fantasy football Week 8 projection: 27 or more points, 2 sacks, 1 turnover

Other sit ’em D/ST units for Week Eight:

  • Don’t get too excited about Kansas City’s defense after what they did to Oakland. Kyle Boller and Carson Palmer were predictably awful and the Chiefs took advantage, but I expect more out of Philip Rivers and a Chargers team smarting after a tough, embarrassing loss to the Jets. It may not be enough to make Rivers a sure-fire start (as I mentioned above), but I do think the balance of the Chargers’ offense should allow them to put up points against KC.
  • Minnesota’s defense is still pretty good against the run, but they are getting torched through the air. And after what Cam Newton was able to do against a very good Washington defense last week, the whole “play any D going against a rookie QB” adage does not work when he’s involved. In fact, it’s becoming start to avoid defenses that are going up against the amazing Cam.

Jon’s thoughts:

I would start the NY Giants this week.  While it’s true that they are not the Giants’ defense of old, they have an unbelievably favorable matchup against the Dolphins…who barely scored 15 points against Denver last week.

Don’t be depressed by their lack of production so far…they could have a 3 or 4 turnover week in Week 8.


There they are. My Week 8 start/sit picks are in the books and on the record. That was fun! My thanks to Jon for ceding his start/sit saddle this week and giving me the opportunity to give it another go.

Now hopefully all of these picks work out for everyone who visits this week.

As usual, we’ll be answering your questions all week. So drop them below, and then stay tuned to the site for the rest of the week as we post new fantasy content every day.


About the Author

Jerod Morris

I love words. I write for Copyblogger and founded MSF, The Assembly Call, & Primility. I practice yoga, eat well, & strive for balance. I love life. Namaste. Say hi on Twitter, Facebook, & G+.