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Changing the Call: Quarterback Start/Sits Week 9

It’s Week 9, and the contenders have begun to separate themselves from the pretenders. In his latest installment of Changing the Call, @Spydes78 tells you which QBs you can trust this weekend to keep you on top.

(Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)

Hey Nerds! The Dynasty Nerds writers are here to provide you with weekly starts and sits. We will be making our recommendations based on weekly consensus PPR rankings from FantasyPros. Here is our squad and the position groups they will be covering to help you each week. Follow us, friend us, tweet us.

We look forward to hearing from you!

NOTE: Rankings are based on a 12-team PPR league. So, saying WR2 means top 24, or TE1 means top 12, etc. and are pulled from Fantasy Pros consensus expert rankings.

About Last Week…

Previous Week Record: 0-4

Season Long Record: 19-13

Week 8 Starts:

Week 8.  Oof.  My recommended slate had everything going against it.  First, there was poor Jameis Winston.  Off to a white hot start against the Bucs, he sustained a season-ending knee injury in the second quarter.  With 10.2 fantasy points prior to his exodus, he was on pace for a top 3 weekly finish.  Instead the scoring stopped, and he landed at QB28 in his final contest of 2021.

Then, there was the ongoing saga of Patrick Mahomes.  Despite being a heavy favorite, the Chiefs barely scraped out a home victory against the struggling Giants.  Mahomes did collect 275 yards through the air, but managed only a single touchdown.  In the end, there was simply not enough scoring to bolster his fantasy production.  He landed at a middling QB17 for the week.  Miss.

Week 8 Sits:

Surely, there was a bit more success on the ‘sit’ side of the ledger.  Jimmy Garopollo was coming off some downright ugly performances and his tenuous position as the Niners starter hung by a thread.  Seems like a lock to bench him, right?  Nope.  Instead, he finished the day with 27.3 fantasy points after not exceeding 20 points in any previous matchup in 2021.  Jimmy G was Week 8’s QB3.  What can I say?  Sometimes the NFL is weird.

The last piece of indignity for yours truly came in my suggestion to bench Tua Tagovailoa against the Bills.  Buffalo had put a choke hold on almost every opposing QB, and were favored at home by nearly two touchdowns.  Though Tua was indeed held mostly in check, he still managed a rushing touchdown to bolster his output on the week to 16.2 points.  This qualified Tagovailoa for a top half finish and left me floundering after a disastrous week.


(Photo by Meg Oliphant/Getty Images)

Justin Herbert

In Week 9, Herbert and the Chargers visit the City of Brotherly Love for a matchup with the Eagles.  Despite an unimpressive 3-5 record, Philadelphia has actually defended opposing quarterbacks surprisingly well.  Through 8 weeks, the Eagles defense is 7th best in the league, surrendering 16.5 fantasy points per contest to opposing signal callers.

Do keep in mind, however, that this year-to-date performance is boosted by an inept effort by the Lions in Week 8.  Goff never found his stride and managed only 8.9 points in the home blowout.  Lest we forget, Derek Carr sliced up the same Eagles squad, dropping 20.0 points just a week before.  Needless to say, the Birds have been inconsistent, at best.

Contrast this with Herbert’s recent productivity.  The second year phenom has averaged an eye popping 23.5 fantasy points per game over the last 4 weeks.  This mark qualifies Herbert as the QB6 over this interim.  Put simply, Herbert has been hot of late.

Handicappers are forecasting the pending matchup between the Chargers and Eagles to be a high scoring affair.  With an over/under of 51 points, and Los Angeles favored by a field goal, I expect Herbert to be front and center on the fantasy stage.  Get him in your lineups this week and take advantage of his massive potential.

(Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)

Matt Stafford

It’s no secret that Stafford and the Rams have been on a torrid pace through the NFL landscape.  Sitting at 7-1, Los Angeles has thus far established themselves as very real contenders in the NFC.  That position was only magnified by their recent decision to acquire sack master Von Miller at the trade deadline.

As it pertains to the quarterback, in particular, Stafford has been lighting it up in his Detroit Lions Emancipation Tour.  Averaging 23.8 fantasy points in Weeks 5-8, Matt has been the QB5 over the last month.  He’s clearly flourishing under Sean McVay’s tutelage.

In Week 9, Stafford and the ‘all-in’ Rams will play host to the Titans.  Tennessee, still reeling from the loss of their premier talent, Derrick Henry, will attempt to challenge their sizzling hosts.  Through 8 weeks, the Titans have given up an average of 20.3 fantasy points to opposing QBs, the 9th most in the league.  The data belies their vulnerability.

Oddsmakers have taken notice of this mismatch, setting a gaudy over/under of 54 points and favoring the Rams by 6.  Vegas knows that a big week from Matt Stafford is likely and you should too.  Start the Rams field general with confidence in Week 9.


(Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

Trevor Lawrence

Captain Obvious here with an NFL update.  Things have not gone particularly well for Urban Meyer and friends in Jacksonville.  The Jaguars have been plagued by injury, scandal, and inept performance.  With a 1-6 record, they find themselves at the all too familiar bottom of the pro football barrel.

Once pegged as a savior for the languishing organization, Trevor Lawrence is slowly being absorbed into the failure that has defined this fledgling franchise.  Roughly halfway through his rookie campaign, Lawrence has more interceptions to his credit than touchdowns.  His average of 15.8 fantasy points per game puts him at 27th in the league in terms of productivity.  

Struggles for first year players are not uncommon.  And there have certainly been some flashes of Lawrence’s potential.  However, it’s fair to wonder whether withering in such a toxic environment may be doing permanent damage to such a promising young talent.

On Sunday, Lawrence and the Jaguars will face off against a locked in Bills defense.  Relinquishing just 11.6 fantasy points per matchup, Buffalo has consistently made life tough for the QB.  

The matchup features a low over/under of 48.5 and the Bills are favored by a whopping 14.  With a downtrodden Jags predicted to score less than 20, things look bleak for Lawrence to shake his underperforming ways.  Find a better option than the Jacksonville signal caller in a contest replete with red flags.

(Photo by Nick Cammett/Getty Images)

Ben Roethlisberger

You’ve probably seen the chatter about Big Ben and his decline.  He’s struggled mightily in 2021, and at times it’s looked as though his will to play has outlasted his ability.

Despite being surrounded by an impressive skill position corps, in Weeks 5-8, Roethlisberger averaged a lowly 13.8 points per game.  He offers minimal upside, failing to eclipse a point total of 16.0 at any point this season.

Roethlisberger’s protection has done him no favors, and has no doubt contributed to his challenging season.  He has been sacked at least once in every game of the season. And, and there is no sign of things getting better in that regard.

This week, the Bears will visit Heinz Field.  Though Chicago has a middling defense when it comes to points relinquished to quarterbacks, they have demonstrated an ability to pressure.  With 21 sacks through 8 games, the Bears defense currently ranks as the league’s 4th most prolific at taking down the quarterback.

The miniscule 40 point over/under on this matchup means that oddsmakers expect a defensive struggle.  Best to keep Ben on the bench for this one.  Make him prove that he still can get the job done, before trusting him in your lineup.

In Closing…

I thoroughly enjoyed bringing you this piece, and would love to continue the conversation on quarterback start/sits.  Please feel free to comment below or contact me @Spydes78 on Twitter.  And also, stay tuned to @DynastyNerds for a steady pipeline of content from our eminently qualified staff to carry you through your season.  If you like what you read, please consider becoming a subscriber to any of the elite tools that Dynasty Nerds has to offer.  Make sure to use the promo code “SPYDES” to receive a 15% discount.  Thanks for reading and enjoy the grind!

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