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Onto the mailbag:
Q: Gibson or Sony in standard
The fantasy/chaos fan in me says Antonio Gibson. However, the Patriots fan in me says also Antonio Gibson. My faith in Sony Michel is tiny especially after the whole litany of running backs the Patriots brought in this offseason to more or less try and replace him. And they did replace him mind you. Damien Harris seemingly has won the starting gig, unfortunately he then suffered a hand injury and wound up on IR. Still, James White and Sexy Rex Burkhead are still on the roster and I would expect the Patriots to still employ a running back committee even with new Cam Newton under center.
Meanwhile in Washington, the backfield is Antonio Gibson and... JD McKissic? Clearly Washington liked what they saw out of Gibson given that they moved on from Adrian Peterson despite him being the only veteran in that backfield. The gamescript could get away from Washington against the Eagles, but Gibson also can do damage in the passing game as well. I like him to make a pretty large impact in Week 1.
Final note: since you’re playing standard league, touchdowns are uber king and Michel isn’t getting any goal line touches, not with Newton on the field.
Q: Burrow or Jones or Cousins? Flex: Diontae or Lindsay or Kerryon?
QB-wise, I’m picking Kirk Cousins. He wasn’t great against the Packers last year and I would expect the ground game and Dalvin Cook to be a focal point of the Vikings offensive gameplan this week, but I do trust Cousins’ floor more than Joe Burrow or Daniel Jones. Burrow faces a top five defense in the Chargers and that’s not exactly what I want for a rookie QB making his first start. I would expect some growing pains to show themselves. Daniel Jones I might be lower on than others in the fantasy community but again, don’t love his matchup against the Steelers who were dominant last year limiting QB fantasy production. If you want to bet on upside, I think Burrow just because who knows what his Day 1 talent level is. But I trust Cousin’s floor to give you a solid QB2 performance.
Now to your flex. Right off the bat, I’d stay away from Kerryon Johnson and the Lions backfield in general. So that’s a no for me. Diontae Johnson has a foot injury that’s kept him from practicing which isn’t a great sign for his availability or ability for Week 1. That being said, I like Johnson to have a big year and that could start in Week 1 as he faces a very lukewarm Giants secondary. Phillip Lindsay might actually be the lead back in Denver after a strong camp and a weak one from Melvin Gordon. You’re in a nice spot though since both the Steelers and Broncos play Monday, meaning there’s plenty of time to make this choice. I’d say monitor Johnson, if he plays, start him. If more troubling news comes out about his foot, then confidently ride with Lindsay.
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