The NFL community happily welcomed back football into the comfort of their living rooms last night in a subpar Atlanta Falcons-Philadelphia Eagles season opener. What also jumped back into the palms of our hands was Fantasy Football. Unfortunately, if you started Matt Ryan in your lineup, your fantasy football season is probably off to a rough start. However, the Dallas Cowboys sunday afternoon face-off against the Carolina Panthers could pose some favorable match-ups if these players are on your team.
Up until Ezekiel Elliot’s six-game suspension last season Dak Prescott was the fourth best fantasy quarterback in the league, according to Fantasy Pros. He averaged nearly 22 points per game. In his first eight games he put up at least six games of 230 yards passing, six multi-touchdown games with four of those being three-touchdown performances. The Panthers were middle of the road in pass defense in 2017. Prescott, combined with Elliot’s ability to attract attention, should enjoy a solid performance against the Panthers’ suspect secondary.
— Marc Istook (@MarcIstook) September 1, 2018
Despite missing six games last year Ezekiel Elliot still finished as a top-10 fantasy rusher across all platforms. Carolina finished as the third best rushing defense in the league, allowing only 88 yards per game. But that shouldn’t scare anyone off. Panthers only faced two of the top nine fantasy running backs in 2017, Alvin Kamara and Melvin Ingram. In two games, the dynamic New Orleans duo combined for 238 yards rushing, four rushing touchdowns, 16 receptions and 138 yards receiving. Elliot is more than capable of providing at least half that production in the running game and similar production in the receiving game.
Allen Hurns, Terrance Williams, Cole Beasley
Though this receiving core may not be as bad as some predict, there is not enough evidence to warrant anyone being a viable fantasy producer yet. Because of the Panthers average secondary it would not be a stretch to start Cole Beasley in some PPR leagues. Rookie Michael Gallup could be a diamond in the rough going forward, but no one has emerged as a clear go-to target. No one should get a look to start outside of the FLEX position.
If you have a Cowboys tight end on your roster you either really love this team or have way too many teams in your leagues.
Don’t Forget About:
Dallas Cowboys Defense/ Special Teams
The Cowboys are coming off a season where they ranked 11th against the pass and 8th against the run. What hindered them in previous seasons was the ability to create turnovers. When faced with a top-15 pass defense, Newtown threw for only three touchdowns and 6 interceptions. Kris Richard prides himself on having his defensive backs in the faces of opposing receivers. Byron Jones and Chidobe Awuzie could each get their fair share of opportunities of 50/50 balls. With additions of Tavon Austin and Deonte Thompson, the special teams should be improved from their lone punt return touchdown from last season.
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