Before we start talking about Week 8, we must remember one of fantasy football’s most productive players. This week, fantasy teams everywhere lost Arian Foster when he announced his retirement from the Miami Dolphins. This after his former backup Jay Ajayi ran for his second straight 200-yard game (much to GOAT’s chagrin). Injury had marred the last two seasons for Foster, but from 2010-14, he finished as a top-five fantasy running back in four of those five seasons, leading many players to fantasy football champions. Hopefully we remember Foster for the fantasy stud that he was in those years and not the injury-plagued star that couldn’t stay healthy.
Week 8 is the first week after Foster’s retirement, and there are six teams on bye: the Ravens, Rams, Dolphins, Giants, Steelers, and 49ers. Teams everywhere have plenty of holes to fill this week, and GOAT and A-Mac have a few suggestions as they do every week. Here are their start ’em and sit ’em’s for Week 8!
A-Mac’s Week 8 Start Ems’
Brock Osweiler, QB, Houston Texans (ESPN 9.9% owned): Osweiler has been highly inconsistent to start his career in Houston. While he has been horrid on the road, not registering double-digits in any of his three road starts, Osweiler is a competent fantasy option at home. The Texans indeed play in Houston this week against a Detroit Lion defense that has allowed 300 yards passing in four of the first seven weeks of the season.
Devontae Booker, RB, Denver Broncos (ESPN 36.3% owned): For the first time in his career, Booker got double-digit touches last week and ran for 83 yards and a touchdown on Monday night. With Bronco starter CJ Anderson out with a torn meniscus, look for Booker to have a huge day against a Charger defense that has allowed rushing touchdowns in five of their first seven games.
Marqise Lee, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars (ESPN 2.1% owned): With only five catches in the last two games, Allen Robinson continues to frustrate fantasy players that drafted him in the first round of their drafts. The Jaguar offense is currently not running through Robinson but rather through the little-owned Lee, who is currently the leading the team in receptions. Lee and the Jags face the Titans who have struggled against wide receivers the last two weeks, allowing 28 receptions and three touchdowns.
GOATs Week 8 Start Ems’
Davante Adams, WR, Green Bay Packers (ESPN 17.2% owned): Adams caught 13 balls on 16 targets last week, which was the most in both categories for his team. The Falcons defense is rated lower than Chicago’s which could give him a large chunk of targets again if Jordy Nelson can’t get open. With Nelson and Cobb continuing to draw the top defensive backs on each defense, Adams will be able to exploit the less talented defenders he faces.
Jeremy Hill, RB, Cincinnati Bengals (ESPN 91.9% owned): Last week, Hill ran just nine time, but for 168 yards and a touchdown against the Browns’ 30th ranked run defense. There is no way you can sit a guy that puts up that many yards with less than ten carries when he is going to face the 31st ranked rushing defense. That is who Hill faces when Washington comes to town this week.
Russell Wilson, QB, Seattle Seahawks (ESPN 97.2% owned): Wilson is currently the 26th-ranked fantasy quarterback which puts him right between Brian Hoyer and Trevor Siemian. Fortunately, New Orleans has a terrible defense, ranked 28th against pass and rush, that they should be able to exploit on the ground and through the air. Wilson should bounce back into clear QB1 territory with this juicy match up.
A-Mac’s Week 8 Sit Ems’
Andy Dalton, QB, Cincinnati Bengals (ESPN 76.6% owned): Dalton has been one of fantasy footballs most consistent quarterbacks in the last month, throwing for at least 250 yards in the last four games with six touchdowns and zero interceptions. The Bengals take on a Washington secondary that has been stingy against quarterbacks in the past four weeks, allowing one one quarterback to pass for over 250 yards just once.
Cameron Meredith WR, Chicago Bears (ESPN 70% owned): When Brian Hoyer was quarterbacking the Bears, Meredith was easily one of his favorite targets. But with Jay Cutler coming back this week, expect Alshon Jeffrey to garner a vast majority of the targets again. The Bears also face the absurdly tough Minnesota Viking defense that was allowed over 150 yards in a game to wide receivers just once all season.
Jack Doyle, TE, Indianapolis Colts (ESPN 20.6% owned): Entering Week 8, there is a tie at tight end for the fourth-most fantasy points in standard scoring leagues. Those two tight ends are Rob Gronkowski and Jack Doyle. With Dwayne Allen probably out the next few weeks, Doyle will be the number one tight end for Andrew Luck. The Colts play the Chiefs, who are tough against the tight end, allowing more than five points in a game just once all season to the position.
GOATs Week 8 Sit Ems’
Melvin Gordon, RB, San Diego Chargers (ESPN 98.0% owned): Gordon is leading the league in touchdowns and had his best fantasy outing yet against the soft Atlanta defense. Facing the stout Denver defense, Gordon’s production will drop down. The only week he had less than ten fantasy points was the last time he faced Denver, which was just two weeks ago.
Michael Thomas, WR, New Orleans Saints (ESPN 63.1% owned): Thomas has seen at least nine targets from Brees in three of his last four games. The Saints also haven’t faced a really good secondary yet this season. The Legion of Boom is going to slow down the Saints’ wide outs and this will be Thomas’ first real test this season so I expect some rookie struggles.
Cam Newton, QB, Carolina Panthers (ESPN 99.9% owned): Cam came back from his concussion and lit it up last week. Unfortunately for him, he will be facing a top five pass defense this week when Patrick Peterson and company roll into town. I would expect him to have a lot less success against the Cardinals than he had against the terrible Saints secondary.