Sunday Six Pack: Week Eight

Levi Chappell

1. Is New England’s defense dominant enough, that you should sit your studs (i.e., Nick Chubb, Odell Beckham)?

When you can get the opposing quarterback to see extra men, or even imaginary creatures like ghosts on a football field . . . you know you have done something right. A serious question can be asked, are they the greatest defense of all-time?

The Patriots have registered a +175 point differential over the first seven weeks — yes, I said that correctly — which results in an average win margin of 25 points. That is simply astounding. The Patriots defense (not including their own offensive turnovers, or special teams) has given up 18 points. Yes, 18 total points through seven weeks. The defense has scored three defensive touchdowns and a safety, totaling 20 points. So if the defense just went up against an offense all day they would still have won.

Which brings me to my question, do you really sit Chubb or Beckham against New England? In week one the Pats held James Conner to 21 yards rushing, and JuJu Smith-Schuster to 78 yards. Le’Veon Bell had 18 carries for 35 yards in week three and 70 yards in week seven. The only real fantasy performance they gave up so far this year was to Golden Tate in week six where he caught six passes for 102 yards and a TD.

The choice of who to start and sit will all depend on the weekly matchups for you and your team. While I don’t anticipate many people sitting Chubb or Beckham, don’t be surprised if the Browns get creamed on Sunday. Play at your own risk.

2. Can Ty Johnson make an impact for fantasy teams down the stretch?

A big hit for many fantasy teams and the Detroit Lions was the news of Kerryon Johnson getting placed on IR. While I do not think that Ty Johnson is the same caliber player as Kerryon or will be as effective, I think he can really help some teams down the stretch as a RB3/flex option.

He has not looked great so far in his limited action in the NFL, but his college profile was impressive. Many thought he was one of the more explosive threats at the RB position and a home run hitter on any given carry while at Maryland. He is 5’10” 210LBS, which is a fringe “every down” type body. JD McKissic will be heavily involved as well, but this is now Ty’s job to lose and also his time to shine. If you are a Kerryon owner, hopefully you handcuffed him and can find some solace in the value that Ty can bring you.

3. What will Chase Edmonds do now that defenses are a bit more “aware” of him?

The Arizona Cardinals faked out NFL fans and fantasy teams when David Johnson was made active for the game, but ended up being a decoy. Edmonds took full advantage of his opportunity, touching the ball a whopping 29 times and turning those touches into 150 total yards and three scores. It looks like Johnson will be a game time decision and possibly out entirely for this weekend’s matchup. If you have Edmonds, you are undoubtedly firing him up this weekend.

Now that defenses know what type of playmaker he can be, will he be the main priority that defenses try to stop?

After watching the tape of last week’s game, I noticed that Edmonds has really good burst and vision, something I just hadn’t noticed since he has been buried behind DJ for a while now. Moving forward, I would be a bit worried of him receiving nearly 30 touches in a game at only 5’9” 205 LBS.

He should 100% be in your lineup this week, whether DJ is active or not, and even though defenses may be keying on him, he should still produce at a nice clip.

4. Is Carson Wentz the real deal?

That is a bit of a loaded question, because what exactly does that mean? I’m asking the question, trying to get an answer on whether or not Wentz is a top dynasty QB, and whether or not he can elevate the Eagles to becoming real contenders.

At times he looks like a superstar. Back in 2017, it looked like he was going to become a top QB for years to come. He later went on to tear his ACL that year and Nick Foles lead the team to the Super bowl. Then in 2018, it was Wentz’s job again, and injuries plagued him . . . again.

Now it is 2019, and Wentz is fresh off a four year, 128 million dollar extension, and he has not lived up to that money so far. By no means is he the only reason that Philly has gotten off to a slow start. DeSean Jackson’s injury hurt the offense, Zach Ertz has disappeared, and the Eagles have dropped more passes than anyone else in football. It’s also worth mentioning that the secondary has been one of the worst in the league, giving up chunk plays and points right and left.

But when you are supposed to be the “franchise player,” responsibility will fall on you, whether that is right or wrong. Even with the Eagles underperforming, they are still only one game back of the division-leading Cowboys. The Eagles have a big matchup on Sunday against a stout Bills defense, and I will be watching Carson Wentz closely.

5. Can the Kansas City playmakers sustain fantasy reliability without Patrick Mahomes?

In case you had your head stuck in the sand for over a week . . . Mahomes is injured. He dislocated his knee, but for some reason, still practiced this week (WHAT?!). Obviously, Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce are the two biggest contributors when it comes to Mahomes’ talent, and I am curious to see what the offense looks like against the Packers.

Matt Moore is not a terrible quarterback, and he has a good amount of playing experience. He also has Andy Reid is his corner, who has had some pretty good success with backup quarterbacks. I mean, even Koy Detmer went 2-1 as a starting quarterback under Reid. Koy Detmer!

I would not be surprised to see a more run heavy offense installed, but make no mistake, Andy Reid will draw up some plays for Hill and Kelce. There is no way you are benching either of them, but expectations should be tempered a bit.

6. Does the departure of Emmanuel Sanders increase or decrease the stock of Courtland Sutton?

In some “not so surprising” news, Emmanuel Sanders was traded. We had been hearing that he was on the trade block for quite some time, and it happened to be the 49ers who acquired his services.

Meanwhile, Sutton is having a really good sophomore year. He is on pace for 82/1,289/7. He is clearly the #1 option on the Broncos, and I will be watching to see if defenses now try and eliminate him from the offensive flow. Even though Sanders is 32 and coming off an Achilles injury, having Sanders opposite of Sutton clearly helped divert the attention.

There are not many bright spots on the Broncos this season. Phillip Lindsay and Royce Freeman form a good, not great, running back tandem, and no tight ends or other wide receivers have made an impact. Joe Flacco has not been what the Broncos were hoping for, and they are clearly looking forward to 2020 and beyond.

Similar to Antonio Brown and Smith-Schuster, but on a much smaller scale, I will be watching to see if Sutton can seamlessly handle the #1 duties, or if there will be growing pains along the way.

Enjoy another week of glorious NFL football!

levi chappell