Mike Fanelli | September 26th, 2019
In tonight’s game, the Philadelphia Eagles travel to Green Bay to take on the 3-0 Packers in a game some are calling a must-win for the Eagles. Unlike the past few Thursday Night games, this one should be entertaining and very fantasy friendly. There are several players I would feel comfortable playing in tonight’s game but first let’s take a look at my predictions from last week.
While the game between the Jacksonville Jaguars and Tennessee Titans wasn’t the most entertaining, fantasy owners got solid production from several players. I was on point with starting DJ Chark, Leonard Fournette (thanks to one positive run), the Jaguars D/ST and with benching Dion Lewis and Corey Davis. Gardner Minshew had a solid game, finishing as the QB16 with 18 fantasy points while Marcus Mariota finished as the QB21 with 15.6 fantasy points. However, all that is in the past so let’s take a look at tonight’s matchup.
General Fantasy Preview
In the battle of two highly drafted quarterbacks, Carson Wentz has gotten off to a strong start, ranking as the QB7 so far this season, while Aaron Rodgers has faced three strong defenses and is currently the QB21. However, both quarterbacks are top 12 options for me this week and I expect Rodgers to have a big game against a banged-up Eagles secondary. The Packers defense has been one of the best this season but they haven’t faced a quarterback with Wentz’s talent yet. While Wentz won’t have DeSean Jackson, who is out with a groin injury, he is expected to have Alshon Jeffery tonight.
Last week I said the most obvious start was Derrick Henry because of his workload and while he didn’t have the greatest game, averaging just 2.6 yards per carry, he did score 11.6 fantasy points, thanks to scoring the Titans only touchdown of the game. This week there are several players I like but the clear must start is Davante Adams. He has gotten off to a slow start this season, the WR47 so far, but should break out against the banged-up Eagles secondary. If you can buy low on Adams before the game starts, do it!
As I mentioned above, I have both quarterbacks in my top 12 rankings this week. Given the Eagles banged-up secondary, I prefer Rodgers to Wentz and believe Rodgers has a good chance to finish as the top-scoring quarterback this week. The Eagles only gave up 12.1 fantasy points to Matthew Stafford last week but gave up 700 yards, six touchdowns, and 46.3 fantasy points to Case Keenum and Matt Ryan in the first two games. Meanwhile, Wentz is averaging 21.4 fantasy points per game but the Packers are holding opposing quarterbacks to score just 9.7 fantasy points per game. However, they have faced Mitchell Trubisky, Kirk Cousins, and Joe Flacco so far, making that average questionable at best. In the end, fantasy owners should feel good player either quarterback.
Many, including myself, liked Sanders entering the season but warned that fantasy owners would need to be patient. Over the first three games of the season, Sanders is leading the team in snaps at running back but hasn’t received a lot of touches until last week. Over the first two weeks, Sanders averaged 12.5 touches per game but got 15 last week. The biggest difference is Sanders was able to produce 126 scrimmage yards last week compared to 64 total yards during the first two weeks of the season. Sanders is starting to find his groove and he could explode this week. The Packers have given up the third-most fantasy points to opposing running backs this season, giving up 10.9 more fantasy points than the league average. If Sanders gets enough touches, he has a chance to finish as an RB1 this week.
Marquez Valdes-Scantling, WR, Green Bay Packers
Like I said before, Adams is my favorite buy-low guy right now but Valdes-Scantling is another option. The only problem is, Valdes-Scantling has been solid so far this season and is coming off a 21.9 fantasy point game last week. With a banged-up Eagles secondary, I expect MVS to have another big game tonight. He currently is tied with Adams for the team-high in targets with 21 this season. Unlike Adams, Valdes-Scantling isn’t a must start but certainly a high upside flex play. While I don’t like Geronimo Allison for season long leagues, he could be an interesting cheap option for DFS players despite limited fantasy points this season because of the matchup.
Jordan Howard, RB, Philadelphia Eagles
While Howard did have his best game as an Eagle Sunday verse the Lions, had he not gotten the goal line touchdown, he would have finished with just 3.7 fantasy points. He hasn’t topped 45 rushing yards in a game this season and with Sanders’ role increasing and Darren Sproles handling third-down work, Howard probably shouldn’t be on standard size redraft rosters. While the matchup is very juicy, unless Howard scores a touchdown, he doesn’t offer top 36 upside. Some running backs owned in less than 50% of ESPN leagues I rather play over Howard include Ronald Jones, Rex Burkhead, and Justin Jackson.
Aaron Jones, RB, Green Bay Packers
I would be fine with playing Jones but with tempered expectations. Jones is off the injury report after dealing with a shoulder injury in the game verse the Broncos. While Jones’ two touchdowns saved his fantasy owners (15.3 fantasy points), he had just 11 touches for 23 yards (2.1 yards per touch) and was out snapped by Jamaal Williams 35-22. Furthermore, despite Jones averaging six more fantasy points per game than Williams, he only has seven more snaps than Williams for the season. The Eagles are the fifth toughest team against opposing running backs and have given up just one rushing touchdown this season. His volume should result in a solid game but I wouldn’t be surprised if Jones has a single digit fantasy game tonight.
Jimmy Graham, TE, Green Bay Packers
Currently, Graham is questionable to play in tonight’s game with groin and quadriceps injuries. Regardless of if he plays for the Packers or not, he shouldn’t be in your fantasy lineup. After his week one performance where he scoring 12 fantasy points (mostly because of his touchdown), Graham has zero targets since. He is also playing just 58% of the snaps while Marcedes Lewis is playing 49% of the snaps. Graham isn’t the player he was a few years ago, yet he is still owned in 37.8% of ESPN leagues. Both Jordan Reed and Vernon Davis are available in over 70% of ESPN leagues and I rather have either over Graham for the rest of the season. Ladies and gentlemen this is the kick in the ass you need, DROP THE BUM.
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