Our Daily Fantasy Football Podcast for Week 8 is up. We talk Philip Rivers/Matthew Stafford stacks, bargain wide receivers and the infamous Raiders/Jets Highty game. Click below to listen and good luck in Week 8.
On Friday's edition of the Fantasy Football Helpers Podcast, we talk about Philip Rivers and his fruitful matchup against Baltimore. Why you shouldn't 'like that' about Kirk Cousins' most recent fantasy friendly performance and also why you should love Todd Gurley. This should be a good one.
Key injuries for Week 8
Tampa Bay Buccaneers WR Vincent Jackson out with knee injury at Atlanta Falcons
What it means: This is intriguing because it clears out some targets for recently-healthy tight end Austin Seferian Jenkins. The Falcons rank among the bottom 10 against the TE, surrendering 8.6 fantasy points per game. Without Jackson, teams will likely double up Mike Evans making it entirely possible ASF sees some openings down the seam and in the red zone. Before he got hurt, ASF was averaging 5 targets per game and posted a 5-110-2 line in Week 1 vs. Tennessee, another team that hasn't fared well against tight ends. If you're in a tournament that started Thursday and didn't fare well in the Patriots/Dolphins game, then it might be worth it to take out the tight end you currently have in there and swing for the fences with ASF. His $2,800 value makes him a potential steal if he plays. As of now, his status is up in the air.
New York Giants CB Prince Amukamara out with pectoral strain vs. New Orleans Saints
What it means: This injury has kept one of the Giants best cornerbacks out for the last two games. The Giants caught a break getting dealt Matt Cassel last week in their win over Dallas but still gave up 280 passing yards to Sam Bradford in a convincing loss on Monday night. While their next quarterback hasn't been the stat-stuffing machine he once was, Drew Brees has thrown for over 300 yards in four-of-six games and is still building chemistry with tight end Benjamin Watson. Plus, the Saints rank in the Top 5 in red zone attempts this season, so their offense is still generating plenty of scoring opportunities. Watson led the team in targets in Week 6 and although he got a touchdown sniped by Michael Hoomanawanui last week, is still a quality start against a Giants team ranked in the bottom 10 vs. the tight end. Avoid the Giants defense this week if you can.
Optimal lineups for Week 8
Philip Rivers at Baltimore Ravens
Why he's a good option for Week 8: The Ravens have surrendered multiple touchdowns to five opposing quarterbacks in seven games. The only quarterback that didn't throw one on them was Peyton Manning in Week 1. Rivers and the Chargers are a bad NFL team but a great fantasy one since they often fall behind early which forces to throw their way back, much like they did against Oakland last week. The Ravens rank dead last against opposing quarterbacks, surrendering 21.1 points per game. With Melvin Gordon still struggling to record his first touchdown and Danny Woodhead playing the receiver back role, this team is almost entirely reliant on Rivers to score points. Stack him with Ladarius Green or Keenan Allen in hopes he'll connect with one multiple times. If you want to go for a more bargainy stack, see the wide receivers below.
Some more stats on Rivers: He averages about 5 red zone passing attempts per game and had 13 against Green Bay two weeks ago. To put it into perspective, Tom Brady had 17 red zone attempts in the Patriots win over the Jets in Week 8, and they abandoned the run entirely in the second half.
Julio Jones vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Why he's a good option for Week 8: Another week, another start for one of the best WR's in the league. After seeing just one red zone target over the last three weeks, Jones saw three last week and scored his first touchdown since Week 3 in Dallas. The Buccaneers have allowed 100-yard games to multiple receivers including Kendall Wright, Allen Hurns, and DeAndre Hopkins plus a multiple touchdowns to Tedd Ginn. There's a good chance Jones has his best game of the season against Tampa Bay.
Calvin Johnson vs. Kansas City Chiefs
Why he's a good option for Week 8: Johnson and the Lions underwent some changes over the past week. They fired their offensive coordinator before their plane took off for London and there's word swirling around Detroit's practice field that the Lions could open up the offense more and allow quarterback Matt Stafford to throw down field. It's not like they have much to lose given their poor record and if there was any opportunity to let it all hang out, this is it. The Lions have a great matchup against arguably the worst secondary in the league. The Chiefs are giving up 31.3 points to wide receivers per game, which ranks them at the very bottom. Matt Stafford has thrown six touchdowns over his last two games with just one interception.
Delanie Walker at Houston Texans
Why he's a good option for Week 8: For one, his cost isn't too bad at $4,100.
Bargain wide receivers
Stevie Johnson at Baltimore Ravens
Why he's a good option for Week 8: Johnson provides WR1 upside in a plus matchup against Baltimore. We like him as a flex play if you want to stack him with Rivers, we think that's a good idea. You can get the benefit of a big stack without paying a huge price.
Stefon Diggs at Chicago Bears
Why he's a good option for Week 8: Diggs is going up in price but he's still the top WR in Minny with 60 total snaps to lead all Vikings' receivers in Week 7. The Bears are third-worst against wide receivers in 2015, giving up 26.3 points per game to WRs to go along with 11 touchdowns. Keep riding the Diggs train until it slows down.