Start 'Em, Sit 'Em Week 10: Smart Matchup Plays, Sleepers and More
Nine weeks down, five to go in the regular season for most fantasy football leagues. It's getting to be crunch time, and if you're not currently in position to get your team into the playoffs, you're running out of time to get it there.
Even if you're near the top of your league's standings, it's not time to take it easy. Playoff seeding matters, especially if your league awards first-round byes to the top seeds. So it's important to rack up as many points as possible by setting the best lineup each week.
As we head into Week 10, here's some start/sit advice to help with lineup decisions this week.
Start 'Em: Carson Wentz, QB, Indianapolis Colts
Few quarterbacks have been as consistent as Carson Wentz of late. He's thrown multiple touchdown passes in six consecutive games, and he's accounted for three total scores in each of the past three weeks. The Colts' offense is clicking now that he has settled into his spot with the team.
The 28-year-old will be a great signal-caller to start in Week 10, when Indianapolis hosts the Jacksonville Jaguars. Although the Jags' defense impressed in their upset win over the Buffalo Bills last week, it's still giving up the 10th most fantasy points per game to QBs this season, per NFL.com.
Not only will Wentz be a strong quarterback to start this week, but he'll also be one of the top available streaming options in many leagues, as he's still available in 40 percent of Yahoo leagues and 50 percent of ESPN leagues.
So, if you need a fill-in QB, make sure to check to see if the former Philadelphia Eagles player is on your league's waiver wire.
Sit 'Em: Antonio Gibson, RB, Washington Football Team
Antonio Gibson has been playing through a shin injury in many of Washington's recent games, so the Week 9 bye came at the right time for the second-year running back. However, he faces a difficult matchup against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on his return to action.
The Bucs are allowing only 78 rushing yards per game, which ranks second best in the NFL. And they'll be fresh as well, as their bye was also in Week 9. So, it's going to be tough for the 23-year-old and the rest of Washington's rushing attack to gain much on the ground.
There's also a good chance that the game script leads to Washington trailing and being forced to pass a lot, a situation that usually gives J.D. McKissic a large number of touches out of the backfield.
Gibson, who hasn't scored a touchdown in any of his team's past three games, is best left on the bench this week.
Start 'Em: Rashod Bateman, WR, Baltimore Ravens
Over his first three NFL games, Rashod Bateman has become more involved in the Ravens' offense. In Week 9, he set new season highs for receptions (five) and targets (eight) while recording 52 yards.
The 21-year-old should only continue to get better, especially now he's among quarterback Lamar Jackson's top options.
Baltimore is going on the road to face the Miami Dolphins on Thursday night, and it could be the perfect stage for Bateman to break out. He has yet to score his first NFL touchdown, but he could get in the end zone and rack up some yardage against a Miami defense allowing 42.36 fantasy points per game to wide receivers, the third most in the league, per NFL.com.
So, if you're in need of a third wide receiver for your fantasy lineup this week, it's worth taking a chance on the Minnesota product. But remember to put him in a WR spot and not as your flex player, because the Ravens are playing on Thursday and it will give you more lineup flexibility later in the week.
Sit 'Em: Jarvis Landry, WR, Cleveland Browns
Odell Beckham Jr. may no longer be on the Browns, but it doesn't seem that's going to lead to much of an increase in production for Jarvis Landry. In Cleveland's Week 9 win over the Cincinnati Bengals, the wide receiver had only three receptions for 11 yards.
Through the 28-year-old's first five games of the season, he has no receiving touchdowns and hasn't had more than five catches or 71 receiving yards in a matchup. And this week, the Browns are taking on the New England Patriots and a defense that has been thriving in recent weeks.
Even when Cleveland has strong matchups, Landry isn't getting nearly enough involvement to be a worthwhile fantasy option. So, it would be better at this point to bench him and wait to see if he can get going down the stretch. Until then, keep finding stronger WR options.