Start ‘EM Sit ‘EM Week 9

Start ‘EM Sit ‘EM Week 9

Start 'EM Sit 'EM Week 9We saw plenty of noteworthy fantasy performances that flooded lineups with points en route to wins last week. The NFL only had two teams on Bye, Kansas City and the Los Angeles Chargers, making it easier for fantasy managers to rely on the majority of their rostered players. Availability will be dramatically reduced in Week 9, as six teams will be off on their Bye Week. This means that if you roster a player on the Browns, Cowboys, Broncos, Giants, Steelers, or 49ers, you’ll need to dig into your bench or hit the waiver wire for solid replacements. 

My start/sit recommendations in Week 8 were mostly smashes, with the exceptions being Raheem Mostert (RB38) and Derek Carr (QB30). Tony Pollard and Travis Etiene finished as top-seven running backs in PPR formats, while DeAndre Hopkins (WR2), D.J. Moore (WR5), and Brandon Aiyuk (WR11) all managed to produce WR1 outings. Pat Freiermuth was a TE1 with four receptions for 57 yards in a barren tight end landscape, but Derek Carr’s epic flop in a 24-0 rout against New Orleans was the ugliest outcome. My sits were a mixed bag, as Diontae Johnson (WR50) and David Montgomery (RB36) were unable to get going, but Dak Prescott (QB4) and Kyle Pitts (TE3) were highly productive if you tailed my advice to sit them in Week 8. 

The NFL has a few lopsided games and a few closely contested matchups rounding out the Week 9 slate. Let’s dive into the players to start or sit to maximize points in fantasy lineups as the end of the fantasy regular season looms in the distance. 


D’Andre Swift (RB) Detroit Lions

It wasn’t an overwhelming return for D’Andre Swift against Miami’s run defense, but the Lions found a way to get him into the end zone on a seven-yard reception in the first quarter. Jamaal Williams continues to be a presence and takes touches away from Swift at the goal-line, but Swift gets another plus-matchup against Green Bay’s 29th-ranked run defense. Keep the faith and plug Swift in as a high-end RB2 with an RB1 ceiling at home against the Packers in Week 9. 

Rhamondre Stevenson (RB) New England Patriots

New England is featuring Rhamondre Stevenson on nearly all of its plays, especially in obvious passing down situations. The second-year running back handled 16 carries for 71 yards against a tough Jets defense in Week 8 but he gets a top-ten matchup against the Indianapolis run defense in Week 9. Damien Harris is still earning double-digit carries but playing notably fewer snaps, while Stevenson absorbs five to eight targets per game. He’s a high-end RB2 with a top-five RB finish within his range of outcomes on the road against a bad Colts run defense in Week 9.

Raheem Mostert (RB) Miami Dolphins

I got burned by Raheem Mostert’s inability to find the end zone against Detroit’s 30th-ranked run defense in Week 8 but I’m going right back to Miami’s RB1 in another plus-matchup against the Bears’ 31st-ranked run defense. Mostert is volatile in the passing attack for Miami due to Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle, but he handled roughly 15 carries per game. Mostert has just two touchdowns this season but both have happened in the last four weeks, which is encouraging. Plug Mostert in as a solid RB2 with high-end RB2 upside in an increasingly pass-centric Miami offense.

Terry McLaurin (WR) Washington Commanders

The change from Carson Wentz to Taylor Heinicke has revived Terry McLaurin’s fantasy appeal. The fourth-year wideout had several dud games from Weeks 4-6, but he has elevated his floor with Heinicke’s willingness to target him and throw downfield. McLaurin hauled in six receptions for 113 yards on eight targets, including a critical reception at the end of the game against the Colts in Week 8, where he nearly fell into the end zone to deliver his first 20-point fantasy outing of 2022. McLaurin will face Minnesota’s defense in Week 9, which is allowing the seventh-most fantasy points per game to wide receivers. McLaurin is a solid WR2 with WR1 upside this week. 

Chris Olave (WR) New Orleans Saints

The Saints pivoted off of Chris Olave in Week 8 and fed Alvin Kamara volume, accounting for all three touchdowns in a 24-0 rout against the Raiders. The talented rookie wideout has gone five consecutive games with double-digit PPR finishes, still hitting the mark in Week 8 with five receptions for 52 yards on seven targets. You’ll have to wait until Monday Night Football, so make sure to put Olave in your Flex as a borderline WR1 against Baltimore’s 28th-ranked pass defense.

Tyler Boyd (WR) Cincinnati Bengals

Cincinnati fell flat against Cleveland to wrap up Week 8 but Tyler Boyd was still a bright spot, securing three receptions for 38 yards and a touchdown on a meager five targets. The Bengals tried to exploit the Browns’ porous run defense without much success from Joe Mixon. Boyd has three consecutive games with double-digit PPR finishes and has recorded five such outings through eight weeks. The absence of Ja’Marr Chase opens up more opportunities for Boyd, as defenses are treating Tee Higgins as the WR1. Carolina is a top-ten fantasy matchup for wideouts this season, so plug Boyd into lineups with confidence as a WR2 with WR1 upside in Week 9. 

Robert Tonyan (TE) Green Bay Packers

Tight end is a brutal position to hit on most years, but it’s felt especially bad this season. Green Bay lacks its top wideouts, excluding rookie Romeo Doubs, making Robert Tonyan a good streaming pivot in Week 9 against the Detroit Lions. The Lions are a top-six matchup for fantasy tight ends in PPR formats, so plug Tonyan in as a borderline TE1 who could wind up in the top five if he secures his first touchdown of 2022.

Geno Smith (QB) Seattle Seahawks

Seattle is led by its quarterback, Geno Smith, who has crept into the top ten for the 2022 MVP race. Smith hasn’t hit above 20 points in three consecutive weeks but he’s not going to burn you with a dud, making him a fringe QB1 entering a Week 9 rematch on the road against Arizona. Smith was held to 12.68 PPR points against the Cardinals back in Week 6, but he has been steadily delivering wins with his arm. Arizona is a top-six matchup for fantasy quarterbacks, so plug Smith in with confidence. 


Michael Carter (RB) New York Jets

It was not a pretty outing for second-year running back Michael Carter against New England in Week 8. He handled seven carries for 26 yards but sustained his floor with four receptions for 35 yards on seven targets. The Jets get arguably the toughest matchup on the Week 9 slate against the Buffalo Bills, who are stifling opposing offenses in all areas. Carter is an RB3 with low-end RB2 upside, but there are other pivots in better matchups to target. Sit Carter until the schedule lightens up.

Michael Pittman Jr. (WR) Indianapolis Colts

Sam Ehlinger played a good game against Washington and Michael Pittman Jr. led the Colts’ wide receiving corps with nine targets in a 17-16 loss. Pittman has been very volatile in lineups this season, delivering quiet duds or monster outings. He has drawn nine targets in the last two games and managed 12.3 PPR points in a good matchup. Now, Pittman gets a much together matchup against New England’s defense on the road in Week 9. Sit Pittman since he’s a low-end WR2 without a ceiling in this matchup.

Mike Gesicki (TE) Miami Dolphins

There’s minimum competition for targets in Miami’s tight end room, but Mike Gesicki is the definition of a boom-bust fantasy player. He’s scored three of his four touchdowns across the last three games, so Gesicki is heating up, but the matchup against Chicago is a bottom-ten matchup for fantasy tight ends. Gesicki has five finishes under six PPR points this season and it’s a tough matchup, so pivot to another tight end streamer in Week 9.

Derek Carr (QB) Las Vegas Raiders

Derek Carr’s rise into the MVP conversation quickly disintegrated in a 24-0 shutout against New Orleans in Week 8. It was a good matchup on paper, but nothing was clicking for the Raiders. It’s a team that relies on Josh Jacobs to churn out production on the ground to drive the offense. Carr has only thrown one touchdown across the last two weeks and offers no rushing upside, so it’s best to sit him despite the top-15 matchup against Jacksonville’s defense in Week 9. 

Quick Links

Mike Patch
My Bio goes here.