Week seven was an interesting one in the world of fantasy football analysis. After six weeks of sub-par play from Amari Cooper, he broke out in a big way and was the stud of the week. Jameis Winston, who no one was even sure was going to play, had his best game of the season thus far. Trending the opposite direction, Eric Decker laid a goose-egg against the Cleveland Browns. The Chicago Bears defense won a game against the Carolina Panthers with Mitchell Trubisky only completing four passes.
Fantasy projections are tough, even from the people that study the numbers, trends, and performance based on any number of metrics. No one can get it perfect, but we keep plugging along doing the best we can to help people win their fantasy matchups and hopefully their league championships.
Fantasy Focus Week Eight Thursday Night Football: Miami Dolphins – Baltimore Ravens
Miami Dolphins (4-2)
Matt Moore – Quarterback
Matt Moore entered last week’s win over the New York Jets in relief of an injured Jay Cutler. Cutler suffered cracked ribs and is expected to miss at least this week. As a result, Moore will be starting under-center on Thursday. He did show some rust, but seemed to shake it off rather quickly and put together a couple of touchdowns to one interception.
Moore draws a tough first start against a stingy Ravens defense. Baltimore has given up the second-fewest fantasy points to the quarterback position this season. Moore should not be started in any format in a difficult matchup on a short week of practicing as the starter. Sit him outside of anything other than bye-week or injury desperation.
Jay Ajayi – Running Back
Jay Ajayi has flashed a couple of times this season, with two games over 100 yards rushing. Otherwise, he’s been a disappointment to fantasy owners who spent the high draft pick on him. Ajayi offers some high-points in volume and he’s only fumbled once. The downside is that his longest run of the season was only 20 yards and he has yet to find the end-zone.
Baltimore’s defense can be beat on the ground and the game-script figures to heavily rely on the run game. Ajayi is in the RB2 conversation and should be started this week. He’s an RB2 in standard, and an RB3/flex play for PPR formats.
Kenny Stills – Wide Receiver
Kenny Stills has been more-than-serviceable with DeVante Parker being sidelined. That production may not see a huge dip when Parker returns due to Stills rapport with Matt Moore. Stills showed up in a big way last week with six catches for 85 yards and two touchdowns
Stills should stay involved with Matt Moore under-center. He’s a decent WR3/4 start this week against a tough defense.
DeVante Parker – Wide Receiver
DeVante Parker has been sidelined with an ankle injury. He got a limited practice Tuesday, and could be a game-time decision.
Even if he suits up, it’s tough to trust him against a rough defense. Sit him this week.
Jarvis Landry – Wide Receiver
Jarvis Landry has been solid, despite shaky quarterback play from Cutler. He’s had no less than seven targets in any game this season, putting him squarely in the WR2 mix for PPR leagues.
Even in a tough matchup, Landry is getting enough targets to be a WR2 for PPR formats. Start him this week in both formats.
Julius Thomas – Tight End
Outside of last week’s performance where he manages three catches for 58 yards, Julius Thomas has been almost irrelevant for fantasy purposes.
Thomas is not a starting option in any format.
Baltimore Ravens (3-4)
Joe Flacco – Quarterback
Joe Flacco has not impressed this season. His yardage totals have seen a career low in 28 yards week three, to a season-high of 235 in week four. He’s only thrown five total touchdowns to his eight interceptions. The Ravens wide receiver corps is depleted, which does not help the struggling signal-caller.
Outside of two-quarterback or super-flex leagues, Flacco is difficult to trust, even against Miami’s middle-of-the-pack passing defense. Don’t start him in standard, one quarterback leagues.
Javorius Allen – Running Back
Javorius Allen has solidified his role as the pass-catching back in Baltimore’s offense. His rush attempts have fluctuated heavily, but he has remained a check-down target for Flacco.
Buck Allen’s floor is safe in PPR formats but he is not a high-ceiling option. He is a flex-play start this week.
Alex Collins – Running Back
Alex Collins has taken the lead back role, but hasn’t really done much with it. He has no involvement in the passing game and has yet to score a touchdown.
He’s continuing to see double-digit carries in the last three games, and does offer some volume. He is a low-floor flex play in standard leagues.
Jeremy Maclin – Wide Receiver
Jeremy Maclin sat out weeks six and seven with a shoulder injury. He has returned to limited practice this week and may be on track to suit up for Thursday night’s game.
Maclin may turn out to be a game-time-decision for a short-week game. Maclin is in the WR3 mix if he suits up. Monitor the inactive list before starting him.
Mike Wallace – Wide Receiver
Mike Wallace took a vicious hit last week and has been in concussion protocol. He has returned to practice in a limited fashion, and may turn out to be a game-time-decision on Thursday.
If he suits up, Wallace could be in flex conversation with not many other viable receivers available. Monitor the injury report, and make contingency plans.
Chris Moore – Wide Receiver
Chris Moore defaulted into fantasy relevance with so many injuries for the Ravens. Moore caught Flacco’s lone touchdown last week.
Moore could find relevance again in deeper leagues as a WR4/desperation flex depending on injuries.
Ben Watson – Tight End
Ben Watson has been dealing with a knee injury. He did not practice Tuesday. The Ravens are monitoring his reps, and he should be good to go for Thursday nights game.
If he suits up, Watson could be a streaming tight end option.