Fantasy Football: Start & Sit NFL Week 1 Quarterbacks

Ryan Tannehill has a much-improved cast of receivers for 2015. (Getty)

Ryan Tannehill has a much-improved cast of receivers for 2015. (Getty)

Editor’s note: Sign up with DraftKings here and enter the free $100K fantasy football contest for Week 1 of the NFL season. The winner takes home $10,000.

It’s go time.

Week 1 of the NFL season is underway and there are 15 more games Sunday-Monday. Technically, the Steelers-Patriots haven’t started yet, but no players from that game are included in this post.

And for millions across the country football season means constant clicking of the refresh on your computer or phone to check fantasy stats and scores. It really what Sundays in the fall are all about.

Nearly everybody has picked their season fantasy league team. But now the games are here and with that comes the harder part: “Should I start X or should I start Y?” That’s the question asked a gazillion times each week.

That’s where I come in.

The purpose of this post is not to point out the obvious, as in “What about Aaron Rodgers?” My answer is: “Yes, you start Aaron Rodgers. Now go to your room for asking such a silly question.”

It’s the borderline players who you are on the fence about it. Or maybe it’s a sleeper who has star potential for a particular week. And if there is a stud player who has a terrible matchup, he might show up in the Sit section.

With that in mind, bookmark our fantasy football rankings 2015 page to keep up-to-date on the latest projections and rankings for each NFL week throughout the season.

Here’s our version of start and sit: “He Will Shine” and “Show Him the Pine.”


He Will Shine

Sam Bradford, Eagles, at Falcons

The former No. 1 overall pick hasn’t played since October 2013 because of injuries but has been extra sharp like Vermont cheddar in the preseason. Chip Kelly’s offense can seemingly make anyone a star (Mark Sanchez, anyone?). And so can the Falcons’ defense. They did stop anyone in 2014 and didn’t do much to improve. Bradford’s lightning quick release and unknown, but talented cast should push him into big numbers Sunday.

Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins, at Redskins

Tannehill has a whole new cast of receivers — Greg Jennings, Kenny Stills, Jordan Cameron, DaVante Parker — to go along with the returning Jarvis Landry. They’re letting the rest of the NFL what they plan to do. That would be passing. And that’s what the Washington defense let everyone do last year. They added two new so-so safeties, but Tannehill should be able to pick them apart.

Carson Palmer, Cardinals, vs. Saints

Michael Floyd is ailing (broken fingers) and questionable, and Larry Fitzgerald is another year old, but Palmer should put up starting-caliber numbers vs. the Saints. The Saints ain’t especially adept at slowing down opposing passing games and will be without secondary starters Keenan Lewis and Jarius Byrd. Cards WR John Brown can play and don’t be surprised if a rookie by the name of J.J. Nelson uses his blazing 4.2 speed to make a big play or two. Palmer will also rely on running back Andre Ellington, who is a very capable receiver.

Bonus: Also eyeing Andy Dalton of the Bengals vs. the Raiders. Dalton is primed for a comeback season.



Carson Palmer 2014 HighlightsSeason cut short after 6.5 games 2014 Season Carson Palmer highlights2014-11-24T08:35:43Z

Show Him the Pine

Cam Newton, Panthers, at Jaguars

Unfortunately for Newton, he lost stud receiver Kelvin Benjamin to a knee injury. But he does have Philly Brown, Ted Ginn Jr., Jerricho Cotchery and a somewhat raw rookie in Devin Funchess!! Drew Brees would have a tough time with that crew. TE Greg Olsen should have a nice day, but not feeling too confident about Cam for Week 1. Who knows, though, perhaps a few guys step up. Then we’ll talk for Week 2.

Colin Kaepernick, 49ers, vs. Vikings

When you only add WR Torrey Smith to the mix as route runners with the aging Anquan Boldin and Vernon Davis, your quarterback isn’t going to be very productive. I guess Reggie Bush is there, too. But, still. Keep an on Kaep, but he is your backup QB until further notice.

Kirk Cousins, Redskins, vs. Dolphins

Just because he was named starter and his teammates have lots of nice things to say about him, it doesn’t mean you need to play Cousins. I mean, he does have some weapons in DeSean Jackson, Pierre Garcon and Jordan Reed, but Cousins is nothing more than a wait-and-see right now. And he’s shown to be too inconsistent.


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