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This article attempts to highlight some of the best and worst matchups for wide receivers and tight ends each week. Using player tracking data from various sources (NFL.com, Pro Football Focus, ESPN, etc.) as well as reviews of recent trends, I look for situations to exploit or avoid when setting your weekly lineups. Given that this article is intended to help across all sites (both DFS and season-long), variations in pricing and scoring systems are not taken into account so obviously, the values could shift depending on where you are playing. The main intent of this article is simply to call out some players who could be significantly helped or hurt by their situations each week.
There are a lot of people high on Sutton heading into this season and he walks into a great Week 1 matchup against a Seattle secondary that lost its top corner from a season again in D.J. Reed and with Tre Brown on the physically unable to perform list. This would already account for a great matchup, but multiply that with a major upgrade at quarterback in Russell Wilson and the season should start with a bang for Sutton. Burns allowed .43 fantasy points per route run against him last season and has a tough matchup to start this season.
Most of us know the Week 1 Sammy Watkins history, but this season he has a matchup and new quarterback that makes it entirely a possibility again. The Vikings gave up the most fantasy points per game to receivers last season and were entirely overmatched outside of glimpses from Patrick Peterson. Allen Lazard should draw the attention of Peterson and leave Watkins to run free against Dantzler. With the confidence of Arron Rodgers, there should be little issue starting Watkins this week.
WR Rondale Moore (ARZ vs KC) vs LJarius Sneed
There were times when Sneed looked great last season, but he truly fell off at the end of the year. He allowed 0.35 fantasy points per coverage snap last season and struggled by allowing volume in the slot. Moore is poised to take a big step forward early this season with DeAndre Hopkins suspended and should be part of a high-scoring Week 1 matchup against the Chiefs. Look for fireworks in this one and some high-scoring performances from several receivers.
There are a lot of weapons in the Cincinnati offense, but none are more overlooked than Boyd. It is easy to gravitate towards the big plays on the outside, but Boyd has the best matchup in the slot this week against the Steelers. Maulet allowed .46 fantasy points per coverage snap in limited action last season and will see limited help from Cameron Sutton as he locks up with JaMarr Chase and Tee Higgins on the outside. The Bengals will look to build on their success from last season early against their divisional foe and Joe Burrow has had no issue running up the score and throwing deep into games in the past. Look for Boyd to put up solid numbers in Week 1.
Kirk has a lot to prove with the contract he received, and this offense needs a kickstart with all of the top picks it has had recently. That is entirely possible on both fronts in Week 1 as Kirk will battle St-Juste in the slot. It was not a kind season for St-Juste last year as he allowed .42 fantasy points per coverage snap last season. While it was in limited action and fewer than 200 snaps, it is hard to see a massive leap forward this season. Kirk is stepping into a good spot and should see high volume throughout the season. It will be hard to outperform the contract he received, but he has a great Week 1 matchup to start trying.
As revenge games go, this is one of the more tame ones in Week 1. Parker was the clear number 1 receiver for Miami before their massive overhaul, and he will get a chance to show them what they let go early this season. He has a great matchup against Igbinoghene who allowed .53 fantasy points per coverage snap last season. Nik Needham and Xavien Howard will do a great job locking up the rest of the receivers and Parker should be able to run free in his matchup. Look for him to be targeted early and often by Mac Jones as the Patriots try and fight back within the division they have dominated for the past decade.
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