Falcons players to start in your fantasy lineup or sit on your bench in Week 1

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    Football is finally back Youth Julio Jones Jersey , and as a result, we’re greeted with the return of fantasy football once again as well. I’ll be doing some weekly analysis on Falcons players in regards to their fantasy football prospects over the course of the season.Everyone is 0-0 to start the new season, and the promise of trash talking all of your friends is more present and appealing than ever at this time of year.Atlanta has a highly anticipated Week 1 matchup lined up against the Philadelphia Eagles, in what will be the first regular season game of the new NFL season. Today, we’ll look at which Falcons players you should start and which players you should sit in that matchup, from a fantasy perspective.Matt Ryan – SitI do feel like Matt Ryan should have been drafted in all leagues as a high upside QB2, and if he is on the waiver wire in your league and you have a disposable player on your bench, you may want to look into taking a flier on Atlanta’s starting QB.However, I would have to advise against starting Ryan in a tough Week 1 matchup on the road, against a stout defense. The Eagles’ defense surrendered the 10th fewest fantasy points to opposing QBs in 2017. Ryan threw for 210 yards and one touchdown against Philly in the Divisional Round — neither mark is strong from a fantasy perspective — and was consistently hounded by pressure from a rampant Eagles defensive line.Ryan should have a bounce-back year thanks to the continuity of having a second-year offensive coordinator, but he starts the season with an incredibly tough matchup when you take the dominant defense and hostile environment into account. Stash him on your bench for now.Devonta Freeman – StartYou probably took Freeman in the second round and are therefore not going to sit him to start the season, there’s nothing wrong with that. With the volume and goal-line carries he’ll get in what should be a potent offense, he always has a chance at having a big game, but I would temper expectations just a little bit this week.The Eagles’ defense is incredibly stingy against the run — giving up the second-fewest fantasy points to opposing running backs in 2017 and being the only team in the league to allow less than 1,000 yards rushing in the regular season. Only the Titans and Patriots gave up less than the six rushing TDs the Eagles surrendered last season as well.Freeman had a miserable playoff game in Philadelphia in January — rushing for a meager seven yards on 10 carries — but it was discovered afterward that he was playing hurt in that game. Start Freeman in Week 1, but don’t expect the type of production we’ve grown accustomed to.Tevin Coleman – StartI know, I just talked about how unrelenting the Eagles’ defense is against opposing running backs, but for some reason that seems to not apply to Tevin Coleman. In two career games against Philadelphia, Coleman has totaled 159 rushing yards on 30 carries.Against the Eagles in the playoffs, Coleman registered 79 rushing yards on just 10 carries, and would have probably led the Falcons to victory had he been given more opportunities to touch the ball.What really makes Coleman an attractive start this week is how potent he is at catching the ball. While they shut down the run frequently, Philadelphia gave up the second most receiving touchdowns to opposing RBs in 2017. Freeman is also a capable receiving back, but the Falcons have reportedly promised Coleman a more prominent pass-catching role this season. Confidently start Coleman as at least a flex option this week.Julio Jones – StartYou drafted Julio Jones in either the late first round or the early second round; you’re going to start him in every matchup. Jones was force-fed in the Divisional Playoff game in January, being targeted 16 times when no other Falcon got more than five targets. While I wouldn’t expect that drastic of a target discrepancy in this game, Jones should still be Ryan’s favorite target.For as stingy as Philadelphia’s defense was last year, they were incredibly susceptible to opposing wide receivers, giving up the eighth-most fantasy points to opposing WRs over the course of 2017.Jones recorded 101 receiving yards in the playoff game, and was inches away from catching the game-winning touchdown as well. He’s a must-start this week, and should be among the top-scoring WRs in fantasy to start the year.Mohamed Sanu – SitSanu is someone who can be a nice bye week fill-in later on in the season, but this is a game where you’d be better off leaving him on your bench. In what’s likely to be a low-scoring game, with Julio Jones dominating looks and the Eagles burning the clock with a run-heavy approach, there may not be enough targets to sufficiently feed Sanu.The Rutgers man can account for a touchdown catch (or maybe even touchdown pass) in any given game, scoring a TD in six different matchups last season http://www.authenticsatlantafalcons.com/cheap-ryan-schraeder-jersey , but that’s not a smart thing to bank on unless you have to. Sit Sanu out of this one unless your team is ravaged by injuries.Calvin Ridley – SitThis is not the easiest matchup for a rookie WR making his first career NFL start. While Ridley ought to be owned in all formats, his situation is very much similar to Sanu’s — there won’t be enough targets to make him a reliable play this week.Ridley will likely be the fourth or fifth option in the passing game behind veterans Julio Jones, Sanu, Coleman and maybe even Austin Hooper. Ryan will build his trust and rapport with the first-round draft pick as time goes on, but I don’t think the timing is entirely down yet so early in the process.Austin Hooper – SitHooper is someone whom we thought took that next step in Week 1 last season, when he went off against the Bears for 128 receiving yards and an 88-yard touchdown catch. He didn’t go over 50 receiving yards for the rest of the season, however. As a result, Hooper will need to take that next step this season, and until we see that he’s done that, I have to advise against starting him.The Eagles are a middle-of-the-road team against tight ends in fantasy football, giving up the 18th-most points to opposing TEs in 2017. Hooper had just one catch for three yards in the Divisional Round against them, however, and he can’t really be trusted in this Week 1 matchup.Matt Bryant – StartI’ll make this one easy. As long as he’s healthy, start Matt Bryant every week because of how prolific the Falcons’ offense has the potential to be and how accurate he is when given the opportunity to kick. The Eagles gave up the second-fewest points to opposing fantasy kickers in 2017, so don’t expect Bryant to singlehandedly win you your matchup this week, but he’s still as reliable as they come.Atlanta Falcons D/ST – StartThe Falcons defense will need to generate more turnovers to be consistently reliable in fantasy football this season, but they’re a decent streaming option against an Eagles offense which only scored 15 points against them in the playoffs and which looked awful in the preseason.If Carson Wentz were starting, it would be a much higher risk to stream the Falcons’ defense, but they get an uptick with Nick Foles being announced as the starter.Tune in weekly for Falcons start/sit advice throughout the rest of the regular season. Takk McKinley says nobody feels sorry for the Atlanta Falcons’ injury-ravaged defense.The second-year pass rusher makes a good point. Atlanta earned a playoff berth the past two years with a mostly healthy defense, but it’s a different story this season.The Falcons (1-3) are reeling now that Grady Jarrett, their best interior lineman, is the fourth defensive starter to miss Sunday’s game at Pittsburgh (1-2-1).”It sucks not having Grady out there, but we can’t be sad, because the Steelers won’t be sad about it,” McKinley said. “They won’t.”Jarrett’s ankle injury comes with the team’s best linebacker, Deion Jones, already out another six weeks and starting safeties Keanu Neal and Ricardo Allen done for the season.After allowing 80 points combined and losing their past two games in the closing seconds, the Falcons rank third-worst in scoring, fifth-worst in total yards and second-worst in third-down percentage. They’re a banged-up group that can’t seem to catch a break.Starting end Vic Beasley is nursing a sore ankle and has been limited in practice this week. Reserve end Derrick Shelby has been limited with a groin injury and hasn’t played since the Week 2 win over Carolina.Injuries at safety has given starting jobs to Damontae Kazee, who played in 16 games as a reserve last year, and rookie Isaiah Oliver, who played exclusively at cornerback in his last two seasons at Colorado.Coaches have leaned heavily on Kazee to tone down his aggressiveness following a penalty in preseason and an ejection for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Carolina quarterback Cam Newton.And the staff is working with Oliver, who made a big mistake last week against Cincinnati. Coordinator Marquand Manuel called zone coverage http://www.authenticsatlantafalcons.com/cheap-ricardo-allen-jersey , and Oliver was playing too far in front when A.J. Green dashed behind him for the winning touchdown catch.”Going forward, I told the guys that you can’t line up without talking to one person,” Manuel said. “It’s the growing pains that you have to go through, but that’s a part of it. It’s new guys talking to new guys, and guys that have experience, we need them to talk more. And the guys that don’t have it, we need you to talk to guys that have it. That’s where communication starts.”Losing Jarrett is substantial enough that the Falcons will use a three-man rotation of Jack Crawford and Terrell McClain, a pair of longtime veterans, and Michael Bennett, who was signed this week after injuries allowed him to play in just one game last year with Jacksonville, to fill his spot.Rookie Deadrin Senat, a third-round pick, will take most of the snaps at nose tackle, where Crawford and McClain have split starts this year. Coach Dan Quinn added that third-string end Steven Means, signed last month, might have to help out on the inside, too.Trying to restore some order for his defense, Quinn has spent the past few days emphasizing better fundamentals in tackling, ball-hawking, pass rush and communication.”None of those are scheme-related,” Quinn said. “None of those are wholesale changes. It’s a matter of us doing specifically those four things really well, and that’s why I think you’ll see this group get better quickly because of those four things.”There was some progress last week. Missed tackles dropped from 15 the week before to “single digits,” as Quinn described it, against Cincinnati. Kazee got his first career interception, and McKinley, after missing the Week 3 loss to New Orleans with a groin injury, returned to have his first three-sack game.Linebacker Duke Riley says McKinley brought some swagger back to the defense.”We can’t make the excuses that we don’t have the guys,” Riley said. “We have the right guys in the room. We’ve just got to own up to it and be closers.”NOTES: RBs Devonta Freeman (knee) and Tevin Coleman (shin) and WR Mohamed Sanu (hip) had full participation in Thursday’s practice. WR Julio Jones (hand, ankle) is expected to play despite being listed as limited. Other players listed as limited Thursday: DE Vic Beasley Jr. (ankle), DE Derrick Shelby (groin) and LB Foye Oluokun (ankle).

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