Who you should start in week 1 of fantasy football

Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles (5) throws a pass during the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the Cincinnati Bengals in Jacksonville, Fla., Sunday, Aug. 28, 2016. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

The time has come. Week one of the NFL is upon us and this season has already brought madness! Two NFC playoff contenders have lost their starting quarterbacks, one AFC favorite is without their quarterback for four games and another is without their star running back for three. It is my job to let you know who the sleepers are (the guys that you should start) and the guys that you should sit in your fantasy leagues this week! Easy, right?

Start QB: Blake Bortles, Jacksonville Jaguars

This QB pick may be sort of a sleeper to the average fans out there. Week one, the Jacksonville Jaguars face off against the Green Bay Packers. The quarterback match-up is two-time MVP Aaron Rodgers versus Blake Bortles, but here’s why you should start Blake Bortles: I expect Rodgers to look to attack the Jags new-look defense and I expect Bortles to respond. Bortles has two very legitimate wide receivers, Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns along with two talented tight ends, Mercedes Lewis and Julius Thomas. That’s ignoring the fact that he has stout running back tandems that can catch balls out of the back field in both T.J. Yeldon and Chris Ivory. My point here is, if Bortles comes out swinging like Rodgers will be against Jacksonville’s new look defense, he is going to have a BIG game.

Sit QB: Philip Rivers, San Diego Chargers

It is easy for me to recommend keeping Phillip Rivers out of your lineup this weekend. The San Diego Chargers quarterback is facing his division rivals, the Kansas City Chiefs. Last year in two meetings, Rivers threw zero touchdowns, and in 2014, he threw two touchdowns in the first meeting with Kansas City and then zero in the second meeting. That means that in the last four games versus the Chiefs, Rivers has only thrown two touchdowns, in addition to five interceptions. To those of you wondering, yes, the Chargers lost all four of those games, just like you will if you start Rivers this weekend.

Start RB: Spencer Ware, Kansas City Chiefs

To continue with the theme of the Chiefs beating on the Chargers, although Jamaal Charles looks like he is going to miss week one, I would still recommend starting Spencer Ware, the Chiefs’ starting back. I am not necessarily saying make him a No. 1 or No. 2 back, but he is a very solid flex. Ware has proven to be capable in the past and the Chargers have an awful run defense. To reassure you all that this is a good idea: Ware had a career game last season against San Diego, averaging 8.7 yards a rush, with two touchdowns, and almost 100 yards in a 33-3 Chiefs win.

Sit RB: Arian Foster, Miami Dolphins

As appealing as it might be to start Arian Foster, because of how good he has been in the past, sit him right on the bench. Foster is with a new team in Miami, and aside from learning the new offense and adjusting to a new scene, he’s got a bigger problem. You may think its the fact that he gets injured left and right, but that is not it. Both the new environment and his injury problems factor big time into the fact that it is going to be very difficult for him to run against the tough Seattle Seahawks defense. So, I think it is easy to say that you should sit Foster this weekend.

Start WR: Jordy Nelson, Green Bay Packers

Packers fans, Jordy Nelson is back and I suggest that all fans start him this weekend! Aside from the fact that Nelson’s opponents, the Jaguars, have a very new-look defense and it may take some getting used to, Nelson is a borderline elite receiver, with an MVP quarterback. I expect nothing more than for him to come back with a vengeance after missing all of last season. I mentioned earlier that I think it will be an offensive showdown between the teams and I think that Nelson will be a big part of it.

Sit WR: Demaryius Thomas, Denver Broncos

Okay, this one is tricky. I am not necessarily saying to sit this Pro Bowl receiver but I am saying don’t expect elite numbers out of him for the first couple weeks of the season. Demaryius Thomas of the Denver Broncos is a great wide receiver but he is going up against the Panthers who will come out angry after losing to the Broncos in the most recent Super Bowl. Additionally, Thomas has a new, young quarterback in Trevor Siemian under center, and in that situation you never know what you can expect. So, maybe as a flex receiver, Thomas can be an alright option, but I would probably avoid it.


Bobby Farris is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at robert.farris@uconn.edu.