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Julian Edelman, Chase Claypool, Hunter Renfrow, fantasy football wide receivers

Fantasy Football Week 8 Start ‘Em Sit ‘Em: Wide Receivers

You might not be on the best terms with fantasy football right now. Tyler Lockett might have absolutely killed you last week. James Robinson could have done the exact same thing.

Meanwhile, there’s a chance you started Cam Newton and got a negative-point performance. Or perhaps Patrick Mahomes did not get you his usual 25 points and you dropped a close game.

Needless to say, Week 7 was absolutely insane in terms of fantasy football. That might have left you either loving the game, or simply not wanting to play ever again. Sadly for those that are disappointed, you can’t just not play. I mean you could, but you’ll still be racking up Ls and will probably get kicked out of your league.

So for those that are looking for the answers this week, let’s take a look at some wide receivers. Who should you start and who should you sit in Week 8?

WRs to Start in Week 8

Cole Beasley, Buffalo Bills

Cole Beasley has been an absolute fantasy football monster lately. The crazy part is there is still a decent chance he is available in your league.

Let’s take a look at the Buffalo Bills’ wide receiver’s games this year.

Starting with Week 1, four receptions for 58 yards. Then five receptions for 70 yards followed by six receptions for 100 yards. Next he had three receptions for 32 yards and a touchdown, then six receptions for 53 yards. After that, Beasley had four receptions for 45 yards and a touchdown, before racking up 11 receptions for 112 yards in Week 7.

Beasley has been a solid fantasy football start every week so far. He has not had any “bad” games yet. His only game with three receptions also saw a touchdown. One of two four-reception games he had also saw a touchdown, the other still managed 58 yards.

So in a PPR league the worst game of the year for Beasley still got you nine points (or 9.8 points based on your scoring). That’s more than enough to make you feel good about starting him every week at this point.

Meanwhile, the fact that he’s gotten you double-digit points every other week of the year should tell you that he’s liable to not only be a decent start but to literally help you win any week.

Now he’s going up against the New England Patriots. That’s a tough defense to face off with. However, you need to remember that Beasley is not the number one receiver. Stefon Diggs will take the bulk of the attention. That leaves Beasley as the security blanket, and he’s been thriving and growing in that role for quarterback Josh Allen.

At this point, it feels safe to put Beasley down for at least 10 points. After his last two games, he seems like a “must start.”

Rashard Higgins, Cleveland Browns

Odell Beckham Jr. tragically suffered a torn ACL in Week 6. Obviously that puts him out for the rest of the year.

It’s a terrible injury and you can’t help but feel bad for him. This opened up a door for Rashard Higgins, though.

The Cleveland Browns wide receiver took advantage of that door. Last week he racked up six receptions (one off his career-best) for 110 yards (a new career-best). Off that game alone, you’re probably thinking he is not a bad start, right?

Well, what about his last two games. Nothing incredible happened in the receptions or yards area. He had three catches for 31 yards one game, and one reception for 13 yards the other. But both of the also added a touchdown.

So we’ve now see “touchdown hawk” Higgins and “receptions and yards” Higgins.

He has definitely proven to be a decent enough weapon and Baker Mayfield was loving him last week.

Now the Browns are squaring off with the Las Vegas Raiders. Expect that game to see a lot of scoring.

With that in mind, Mayfield will likely be throwing a lot. Based on the last few games, Higgins should be on your “start” radar.

Hunter Renfrow, Las Vegas Raiders

Speaking of that game, let’s flip sides and go over to the Raiders. There we will find Hunter Renfrow.

Renfrow has not been all that hot lately. He had a few big games earlier in the year, but two games ago saw the wide receiver record just one reception for 42 yards, then four receptions for 42 yards the next game.

That last one is not all that terrible, but it still shouldn’t excite you too much.

So why should you start Renfrow? Well that last game does indicate an uptick in usage. More importantly though, the shootout.

Like I already said for Higgins, this should be a high-scoring game. That means a lot of passes. Renfrow is a volume guy. So he could very easily thrive in that type of environment.

He might seem a little risky, but we now are at the point of bye weeks. With certain players injured and others on byes, you might need to plug someone in.

Renfrow has legitimate 15-plus point potential. Plug him into your fantasy football team and let him go to work on those receptions.

WRs to Sit in Week 8

Julian Edelman, New England Patriots

Julian Edelman is one of the great slot receivers in NFL history. The Patriots are one of the great dynasties in NFL history. 2020 is not their year, though. The Patriots are now 2-4 and facing off with the incredibly tough Bills in Week 7.

Edelman has 21 receptions for 315 yards this year. Not terrible, but not good either. Throw in that he has zero touchdowns and things get worse.

Dig deeper, though, and there is an even bigger problem.

Edelman had 13 receptions for 234 yards in his first two games. In the four games since then he has just eight receptions for 81 yards. That’s an average of two receptions for 20.25 yards per game in the last four—ugly.

If you need any other reason, you did see that performance by the Patriots in Week 6 right? At the moment, you simply can’t trust any of their offensive performers. Steer clear of Edelman until he can prove he’s back to his usual ways.

Chase Claypool, Pittsburgh Steelers

Chase Claypool entered everyone’s heart with that insane performance against the Philadelphia Eagles.

Because of that, everyone has been riding high on the Claypool train. Rightfully so too, the rookie wide receiver is going to be a superstar for the Pittsburgh Steelers for a long time.

He’s exciting to watch and easy to root for as well, so that just adds to it all. However, don’t get over excited. He is still a rookie on a team with a ton of great weapons. So he is not always going to get his shine. Just look at last week when he recorded just one reception for negative two yards.

“That was against the Tennessee Titans and their incredible defense though!”, you cry. Well the Steelers are facing off with the Baltimore Ravens now—no rest for the weary.

Claypool will get you some more big games in 2020 and will be a no doubt starter down the road. Right now he’s still a rookie third option at best going up against a great defense. Don’t start him in Week 7.

Marquise Brown, Baltimore Ravens

We are sticking with that same game, flipping sides though. If we are going to talk about the defense of the Ravens, it’s only right that we give the Steelers all their credit as well.

Pittsburgh has been shutdown this year. It has not been a fun time for opposing offenses.

Marquise Brown is the number one of the Ravens. He’s a great receiver that many expect to turn into a full-blown superstar soon enough. For now he still has a few faults though. More importantly, the position is not all that strong for Baltimore.

Even the Ravens seem to know this, as they addressed their wide receiver troubles by adding Dez Bryant to the practice squad earlier this week.

Due to the position’s troubles, teams can focus on Brown. He can still put up solid fantasy football numbers despite that. Even if he doesn’t do much, he’s a deep threat. At any moment he can score a massive 80-yard touchdown and suddenly he could end the day with that one reception and you’re still happy with his fantasy day.

Because of that, Brown is never a bad start. This is about as close as he’ll get to that though. We’ve already seen a few bad performances from him this year (look at his two receptions for 13 yards game against the Kansas City Chiefs as proof), so it’s not unheard of for him to struggle.

The Pittsburgh defense is too good. So if you have any other viable options, put them in over Brown. It’s too risky to start him against the Steelers.