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Ravens vs. Buccaneers Start 'Em, Sit 'Em: Tom Brady, Gus Edwards, Chris Godwin, Mark Andrews, Leonard Fournette, Rashod Bateman

Lamar Jackson - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, NFL Injury News

Finally, we had touchdowns on a Thursday. I’m not sure who slipped sleeping pills to the entire Saints' defense, but they certainly couldn’t wake up. Thankfully this week, we have two offenses that should be near the top of the league in scoring. Let’s keep this ball rolling and hope to have another burner this week.

Before we get started, to all of those impacted by injuries, I am sorry. Last week was tough, headlined by Breece Hall tearing his ACL after looking unstoppable. There were also three trades that happened over the past week, with new landing spots for Christian McCaffrey, James Robinson, and Robbie Anderson.

Both these teams this week could use a get-right game. Although Baltimore is coming off a win, I don’t think they’ve played a good 60 minutes of football all season. As for the Bucs, let’s just hope they show up. As always, my name is Ellis Johnson and this is your Thursday Night Start ‘Em Sit ‘Em article.

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Baltimore Ravens @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers - 8:20 pm ET

Notable Injuries:


Must-Starts for Fantasy Football Lineups

Lamar Jackson (QB, BAL)

For the first time since his rookie season, Jackson takes on the Buccaneers. After starting the season off on fire, Jackson has come back to earth. He scored more fantasy points in the first two weeks of the season than he has in the last four games.

Thankfully, the Bucs are right in the middle of the league for fantasy points allowed to the QB position. P.J. Walker even managed to put up points on this defense, so Jackson should be primed to get back on track this week. As always, start him with complete confidence.

Mark Andrews (TE, BAL)

Unfortunately, Andrews appears to be more injured than we initially expected. Despite playing last week, he only managed two targets. Then, to start this week, he missed Monday’s practice. You have to monitor this situation all week to make sure he’s taking the field on Thursday.

If he laces them up, you play him. In fact, if Andrews only played the first three games of the season, he would still be the TE8 on the season. That’s wild. Assuming he’s healthy, I’m calling for the star TE to open the Pie Shop* this week. 

*Pie Shop: An Australian term (often used in Rugby League) to describe who will score a Try (or in this case touchdown) this week. (Season Calls: 3-4)

Leonard Fournette (RB, TB)

For the first time this season, Fournette had a notably poor performance in Week 7. However, it’s hard to hold it against the RB8 on the season, since that entire team was in shambles last week.

If we know one thing about Baltimore, it’s that they can put up points. I expect Brady to rely heavily on his favorite dump-off target as they try to play catch-up in this one. Fournette is as steady as it gets at the position, and Baltimore is below-average against the position. Start him as an RB1 again this week, and forget that Week 7 ever happened.

Mike Evans (WR, TB)

Despite dropping what could have been the easiest touchdown of his career early in the game in Week 7, Evans still managed a nice week. Then again, any time you are targeted 15 times, you’re bound to produce for fantasy.

The WR14 on the season now takes on the team allowing the sixth-most fantasy points to the position. Evans should be in for a big day, especially if Baltimore finds a lead early. It’s been three weeks since we’ve seen Evans find the endzone, and I think that changes this week. That’s right, we have a double Pie Shop* this week with Andrews and Evans.

*Pie Shop: An Australian term (often used in Rugby League) to describe who will score a Try (or in this case touchdown) this week. (Season Calls: 3-4)

Chris Godwin (WR, TB)

Through all the fog surrounding the Buccaneers, there is a small lighthouse chilling in the distance. That light is called Chris Godwin. Quietly doing his job to right the ship, Godwin has been very steady for fantasy. Although we have yet to see a monster game from the veteran wideout, we’ve seen him have six catches in his last four games and double-digit targets in three of them. The breakout is coming and this defense could be a prime spot for it in prime time. He’s a high-end WR2 this week in fantasy.

Solid Starts for Fantasy Football Lineups

Tom Brady (QB, TB)

It’s been a season to forget for the best QB of all time. This isn’t only true for real NFL, but also for fantasy. Despite only scoring more than 20 fantasy points once this season, he still comes in as the QB11 on the season. This is primarily a result of him being third in pass attempts and sixth in passing yards.

This week, that passing volume should succeed against this secondary that is allowing the eighth-most fantasy points to the position. Coming off one of the worst losses of his career, Brady will have all of his weapons fully healthy to make a statement on primetime against an exploitable defense.


Flex Considerations for Fantasy Football Lineups

Gus Edwards (RB, BAL)

What a return from injury Edwards had. After suffering an injury early last season, Edwards took the full recovery period and scored twice in his debut last week. What’s interesting is that his injury was of similar severity as J.K. Dobbins; however, Edwards took the extra time and is now the lead back on this team. Unfortunately, in his second game back, he faces the Buccaneers, who allow the eighth-fewest fantasy points to the RB position. He’ll be the main back again for this team, making him a solid flex/RB3 play this week.

Rashod Bateman (WR, BAL)

Another Raven who returned from injury last week was Jackson’s favorite WR. Bateman returned to a modest stat line of four catches for 42 yards. All season, Bateman has been relatively unreliable for fantasy; however, it is clear that this team is better as a whole with him on the field. He doesn’t have the safe floor of high volume, but this matchup could be dominated by scoring making him a flex/WR3 this week.


Consider Sitting for Fantasy Football Lineups

Russell Gage (WR, TB)

This one is easy. Gage has had more than six fantasy points once this season. If you are in a league where there’s a premium for players who go two catches for 20-40 yards, then he’s your guy. Other than that, don’t look his way.

Cade Otton (TE, TB)

Otton has been a surprising storyline this season. The rookie TE has had a relatively involved season so far and is coming off four receptions for 64 yards. More importantly, he played 81% of snaps last week. Unfortunately, he still makes the “sit” section as I would rather play players like Evan Engram or Irv Smith Jr. who are available in a lot of leagues.

Devin Duvernay (WR, BAL)

Another player who has had a surprisingly uneventful season. Duvernay has showcased his explosive nature all season; however, with Bateman back, he will no longer be a featured part of this offense. He’s a fine DFS dart throw for a big play, but I would look elsewhere in most leagues.

Honorable Sit Mentions: Julio Jones, Isaiah Likely


Ellis’ Picks

TB +1.5 (3-4), Over 45.5 (2-5)

Career Thursday Night record: Spread (25-18), Over/Under (23-20)

I won’t lie, we are cold. For the first time in three years writing this, we are 0-4 over the last two weeks. The good news is that you can’t bounce back if you never drop in the first place. That’s right, we’re chugging along with this week’s picks.

For the third consecutive week, we have a line that is 1.5 points or less. So, to be fair, Vegas has picked some tough games to predict. In this one, the Ravens are a 1.5-point road favorite, with a very modest over/under of 45.5. These teams both need a win; however, the Bucs at home are definitely the more desperate team. As a result, and I know it’s gross, I think the Bucs can exploit the weaknesses of a beat-up Ravens team. However, my most confident pick is definitely the over in this game.

I hope you all have a great week. I’ll catch you here next week to break down the potentially 7-0 Eagles and the Texans.

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