Monday Night Football Preview
There is nothing better than the primetime viewing of Monday night football. For fantasy owners, though, it can be a very stressful time. Every owner has gone through a week where they need a big game from their quarterback or wide receiver to complete a comeback. Luckily for owners and fans in general, the football world gets a doubleheader on Monday night.
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Washington Redskins
FedEX Field | 7:10 P.M. ET | ESPN
The first game of Monday night’s doubleheader looks to be high scoring. Anytime there is a matchup with a potential shootout, it is music to fantasy owners’ ears. This game features two strong offenses with a plethora of weapons.
The Steelers boast a quarterback who is a reliable fantasy asset if he can stay on the field. Ben Roethlisberger was bitten by the injury bug again in 2015, as he was only able to play in 12 games. When he did play though, he was pretty good. He averaged 328.2 passing yards per game and led the NFL in passes over 40 yards.
Steelers’ running back DeAngelo Williams is a must-start while Le’Veon Bell is suspended. Williams finished as the RB4 in 2015 after Bell lost his season to a knee injury. Not only have we seen Williams produce, but he has a very juicy matchup as the Redskins allowed the seventh most rushing yards per game last year.
At wide receiver, Antonio Brown is a must start every week, and he too has a juicy matchup against a defense that allowed the eighth most passing yards per game in 2015. I don’t care that they added Josh Norman; Brown will still be one of the top receivers this week.
Steelers’ tight end Jesse James could be a deep sleeper, as Roethlisberger loves to throw to his tight end.
Redskins Preview[the_ad id=”63198″]Quarterback Kirk Cousins proved to be solid in his first year as a starter, finishing as the QB8. He has a great matchup against a defense that allowed the third-most passing yards in 2015. He is a good bet to put up a solid week.
At running back, this is more of a wait-and-see approach. It is unclear how this backfield will shake out with Matt Jones’ injury. Whoever starts, it’s not a good matchup regardless as the Steelers gave up the fifth lowest rushing yards per game in 2015.
Like Cousins, the wide receivers and TE Jordan Reed are a solid play against the Steelers secondary that gave up a lot of passing yards. Cousins will be throwing a lot, and this could be a “boom” game for a guy like DeSean Jackson.
Los Angeles Rams vs. San Francisco 49ers
Levi’s Stadium | 10:20 P.M. ET | ESPN
This game is almost the complete opposite of the matchup above. The late game offers two of the worst offenses in the NFL, and there are only a select number of players that are considered startable.
There is one player on the Rams offense that is a lock start, and that is running back Todd Gurley. The 49ers allowed the fourth-most rushing yards per game last season, and they also allowed the most rushing touchdowns in the entire NFL. Gurley is going to eat all day.
Wide receiver Tavon Austin could be a guy who is flex worthy, but there are better options out there. He does possess the dual threat of rushing and receiving, so it is not a bad thing if he does wind up as your flex.
The Rams defense could be in for a strong fantasy week as they go up against an offense that will be led by quarterback Blaine Gabbert.
There are not many pieces to start from the 49ers. If running back Carlos Hyde is in your lineup, that is okay, but temper expectations as the Rams boast one of the best defensive lines in all of football.
A guy like Torrey Smith could be a sleeper, but the Rams also have a solid secondary, and he would likely go against cornerback Trumaine Johnson. He is a boom or bust candidate if he can find some way to get behind the secondary.
Tight end Vance McDonald seems to have some sleeper value and has a good connection with Gabbert. There are worse tight ends to have on your team.
Kevin is from Hilton Head, SC and is very passionate about football and fantasy football. He attended Charleston Southern University where I played baseball for four years. Currently Kevin covers the New York Giants for Sports Media 101 and contributes content to QBmecca.com.