Fantasy Football: To start or to sit?

Don’t give up, don’t ever give up.

I had to get my motivational line out early, and I apologize.  But hey, it fits here.  In a week where the Jacksonville Jaguars clawed and scratched their way to their very first win this season, the Rams, of all teams, laid it on the Indianapolis Colts, and the team that causes me so much stress on Sunday (my Minnesota Vikings) won.

Now take this and apply it to fantasy and all of a sudden, things don’t look so bad.  In many leagues, half of the teams reach the playoffs; a losing record could easily get you there.

So therefore, make some trades, work the waiver wire and look at my Start/Sit column, and who knows — maybe you’ll have a fighting chance.

Starts are players who should perform above average and the opposite is true for sits.

The last time Russell Wilson took on my Vikings, he torched them and caused sideline fighting between Minnesota players and coaches.

I wouldn’t be surprised if something similar happened this time around for two reasons:  Percy Harvin is back this week and the Vikings offense might just make it a shootout.

Run, Robert, run — but throw a lot, too.  Robert Griffin III should smoke Philly’s bottom-ranked defense Sunday, so of course you’re going to start him.

Andre Ellington came back down to Earth after a stellar performance the week before; things will be different this go-around.  Facing the worst defense in the league (and assuming the Cardinals will hold the abysmal Jags offense in check), Ellington will be fed a steady diet of touches.

I think we can assume that Reggie Bush is a better version of Gio Bernard.  In that case, I’d like to look at what Bernard did against the same Steelers team Bush will be facing; the numbers are promising.

Gio had 17 fantasy points from a combination of rushing and receiving production.  Bush will do the same.

If Andre Johnson isn’t a good fantasy play this week, I don’t know who is.  Andre has hit the refresh button with Case Keenum at the helm and the young quarterback has complete trust in the 6-foot-3 receiver.  Their opponent gave up seven receiving touchdowns just two weeks ago, as well.

It’s pretty simple:  Pierre Garcon is on a roll and is heading to Philadelphia, where defense is a word that is not in the Eagles’ dictionary.

Somewhat biased and somewhat of a gut-call, I like John Carlson on Sunday.

He was targeted early and often last week while replacing Kyle Rudolph and I bet Christian Ponder will be under duress against the Seahawks.  Carlson will be his safety valve.

I’m actually willing to start the Cardinals Defense over any other squad this week — it’s just way too fast of a unit for the Jacksonville Jaguars to handle.

Talk about a fall from grace — Andy Dalton is a turnover machine anymore and if not for a tipped Hail Mary touchdown, his stat line would have been garbage.

His only reliable receiving threat (AJ Green) will be matched up against a lockdown corner in Joe Haden.  Other than that, who does he go to?

While you were thinking about an answer to that question, Dalton threw another interception.  Sit him down.

Collin Kaepernick isn’t the same quarterback this year; he just doesn’t have the same “it” factor that all the greats do.  It’s fairly obvious defensive coordinators have figured out how to stop this once electrifying player.

Did you know that Fred Jackson has had exactly zero 100-yard rushing games?  If it wasn’t for the touchdowns he’s been getting, his fantasy season would be on life support.

I just see a downward slope for a 30-plus year-old running back.

Did you also know that Maurice Jones-Drew has had exactly zero 75-yard rushing games?  That’s pitiful.  The plodding back won’t find much room against a top-notch Arizona run defense, either.

I know I could regret this, but I’m going to recommend sitting Eric Decker.  Even with Peyton throwing him the ball, I don’t think there will be many opportunities against the stingy Chiefs, at least outside of the red zone.

Unfortunately, this is where Decker makes his money.

This should be the week that the 49ers Defense gets completely exposed with a trip to New Orleans in store.  When Drew Brees finds his groove, there’s just no stopping him; he usually finds his groove at home.

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ANTHONY WATSON

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