If you invested heavily in early-round wide receivers in your Fantasy football draft, you might be in a tough spot in Week 8. Michael Thomas seems unlikely to play due to a hamstring injury, and DeAndre Hopkins is on bye; Chris Godwin (finger) is out, Mike Evans has been a big disappointment, Amari Cooper is likely playing with a third-string QB, Odell Beckham Jr. is out for the year, and JuJu Smith-Schuster had been a huge disappointment before a promising 14-target Week 7. Of the first 11 wide receivers drafted, only four look like true must-start options this week. That's not great.
Of course, that doesn't mean the position itself is in bad shape. 24 wide receivers are averaging at least 15.1 PPR points so far in 2020, and a staggering 42 are at 12.0 per game or better. It's a deep position with breakouts like Travis Fulgham, Stefon Diggs, DK Metcalf, Robby Anderson, and Justin Jefferson helping make up for the struggles of some of the top-end guys.
In fact, given injuries at running back — 15 expected Week 1 starters are likely out for Week 8 — there's a pretty good chance you're in better shape at WR than anywhere else. But figuring out who to start and sit when you have so many good options is a challenge of its own. Here are Jamey Eisenberg's Start 'Em & Sit 'Em calls for Week 8 to help you make the right decisions.
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PHI Philadelphia • #13
Age: 25 • Experience: 2 yrs.
I don't care if the Eagles get healthy this week with the potential returns of Dallas Goedert (ankle) and Jalen Reagor (thumb); I'm still starting Fulgham as a top-15 Fantasy receiver in all leagues. He has at least 10 targets in three games in a row, and he's scored a touchdown in three of four games this year. The Cowboys defense is awful, and nine receivers have either a touchdown or 100 receiving yards against this secondary in 2020. Carson Wentz should continue to lean on Fulgham for big production this week.
MIN Minnesota • #18
Age: 21 • Experience: Rookie
Jefferson comes off Minnesota's bye in Week 7 with at least 100 receiving yards in three of his past four games, and he has three touchdowns over that span. In two of those games he had at least nine targets, and hopefully he continues to see that amount of targets while playing opposite Adam Thielen. The Packers just allowed three Texans receivers to score at least 12 PPR points in Week 7, so hopefully Jefferson and Thielen both excel this week. I'm confident in Jefferson being a top-20 Fantasy receiver in all leagues.
SF San Francisco • #11
Age: 22 • Experience: Rookie
Deebo Samuel (hamstring) is out this week, so Aiyuk will be the No. 1 receiver against the Seahawks. It's a great matchup, and the timing is perfect for Aiyuk coming off the best game of his career in Week 7 against New England when he had six catches for 115 yards on seven targets. Thanks to a couple of rushing touchdowns, Aiyuk has scored at least 12 PPR points in three of his past five games. And the Seahawks allow the most Fantasy points to opposing receivers, which makes Aiyuk a potential top-20 receiver in all leagues in Week 8.
A.J. Green WR
CIN Cincinnati • #18
Age: 32 • Experience: 10 yrs.
Give Green credit for rebounding after a poor start and looking like a legit Fantasy option once again. Through his first five games this year, Green combined for 24 PPR points, and it looked like this would be a lost season. But in his past two games against Indianapolis and Cleveland, Green has combined for 32 PPR points with 15 catches for 178 yards on 24 targets. He's still looking for his first touchdown in 2020, but that could happen against the Titans, who have allowed eight touchdowns to wide receivers in their past four games. Tyler Boyd, Tee Higgins and Green are all worth starting this week.
Mike Evans WR
TB Tampa Bay • #13
Age: 27 • Experience: 7 yrs.
Evans has been exceptional every time Chris Godwin (finger) has been out this year, and Godwin isn't playing in Week 8 at the Giants. Godwin missed Week 2, Week 4 and Week 5, and Evans scored at least 15 PPR points in all three games. In every other game he's been at 14 PPR points or less. You should be trying to sell Evans in your Fantasy leagues because Godwin isn't expected to be out long, and Antonio Brown (suspension) is eligible to play in Week 9. It could be bad for Evans then, but he should be great against the Giants without Godwin on the field.
Cole Beasley WR
BUF Buffalo • #11
Age: 31 • Experience: 9 yrs.
Even though John Brown should return this week from his one-game absence in Week 7 at the Jets, I'm still using Beasley as a borderline starter in all leagues, with his value slightly higher in PPR. Beasely has scored at least 11 PPR points in six games in a row, including at least 14 PPR points in his past two games against Kansas City and the Jets. The Patriots have allowed nine receivers to either score or gain at least 100 receiving yards in their past five games.
CLE Cleveland • #82
Age: 26 • Experience: 5 yrs.
Higgins should see an expanded role with Odell Beckham (ACL) out, and he's worth starting as a high-end No. 3 Fantasy receiver in all leagues against the Raiders. He has either a touchdown or 100 receiving yards in three games in a row, and the Raiders just allowed three touchdowns to Tampa Bay's receivers last week.
LV Las Vegas • #13
Age: 24 • Experience: 2 yrs.
The Browns have struggled with slot receivers all season, and Renfrow will hopefully continue to be a popular target for Derek Carr this week. He has at least six targets in three of his past four games, and should be considered a low-end No. 3 Fantasy receiver in PPR. Nelson Agholor and Henry Ruggs have a higher ceiling for the Raiders given their big-play ability, but don't be surprised if Renfrow has a big game this week against the Browns.
NYG N.Y. Giants • #87
Age: 27 • Experience: 5 yrs.
I liked what Shepard did in Week 7 at the Eagles after being out four games with a toe injury. He had six catches for 59 yards and a touchdown on eight targets, and he should again be heavily involved from Daniel Jones this week. The Buccaneers secondary is tough, but Darius Slayton should have the harder time with a likely matchup against Carlton Davis. Shepard should be considered a No. 3 Fantasy receiver in all leagues.
Denzel Mims WR
NYJ N.Y. Jets • #11
Age: 23 • Experience: Rookie
With Jamison Crowder (groin) and Breshad Perriman (concussion) banged up heading into Week 8 at the Chiefs we could see Mims as the No. 1 receiver for the Jets. Making his NFL debut in Week 7 against Buffalo, Mims had four catches for 42 yards on seven targets, and it would be great to see him get seven targets again this week. Four receiver have had at least seven targets against the Chiefs this year, and all four have scored at least 13 PPR points. Mims should be considered a low-end No. 3 Fantasy receiver in all leagues if Crowder and Perriman are out.
MIA Miami • #11
Age: 27 • Experience: 6 yrs.
Parker seems on track to play despite leaving Week 6 with a groin injury since he was limited in practice Wednesday. That's the good news. The bad news is he's facing a secondary led by Jalen Ramsey, and this will be Tua Tagovailoa's first NFL start. There could be some issues for Tagovailoa and Parker until we see how they work together. And the Rams have allowed just three touchdowns to receivers all year. Parker should be considered a No. 3 Fantasy receiver this week in most leagues.
PIT Pittsburgh • #11
Age: 22 • Experience: Rookie
It appears like Claypool will be the No. 3 receiver for the Steelers when everyone is healthy, and that's a bad thing going into a matchup with the Ravens. In the two games where Diontae Johnson was out or left with a back injury against the Eagles in Week 4 and Browns in Week 5, Claypool dominated with 11 catches for 184 and four total touchdowns on 15 targets. But in Week 7 at Tennessee with Johnson back, Claypool was limited to one catch for minus-2 yards. He's had four targets or less in every game with Johnson on the field, and it appears like his production will be limited when Johnson and JuJu Smith-Schuster are playing. You should lower your expectations for Smith-Schuster and Johnson this week given Baltimore's defense, but Claypool should be kept on your bench in all leagues.
NYG N.Y. Giants • #86
Age: 23 • Experience: 2 yrs.
Slayton struggled in Week 7 at Philadelphia with a matchup against Darius Slay, and the same thing could happen this week against Carlton Davis and the Buccaneers. Slayton was limited to two catches for 23 yards on four targets against the Eagles, and targets could also be a problem for him with Shepard now back from his toe injury. There's always the chance of Slayton scoring a long touchdown, and he did score at least 12 PPR points in two games prior to Week 7. But I don't like the setup for Slayton this week, and I would try to avoid him if possible.
LAC L.A. Chargers • #81
Age: 26 • Experience: 4 yrs.
Imagine if I told you before last week's game against Jacksonville that Justin Herbert would pass for 347 yards and three touchdowns, and Mike Williams would only have one catch for 4 yards on three targets. So far, he only has one game this season with a touchdown or more than 10 PPR points, and it was Week 5 at New Orleans when Keenan Allen left with back spasms. It's hard to trust Williams right now, and he doesn't have a great history against the Broncos. In his past four games against Denver, Williams has 18 catches for 312 yards and one touchdown, so he's easy to fade this week.
T.Y. Hilton WR
IND Indianapolis • #13
Age: 31 • Experience: 9 yrs.
Hilton will hopefully improve his Fantasy production coming off a bye in Week 7, but I need to see it first before starting him in most leagues. In his first six games, Hilton failed to score a touchdown and had just one outing with more than nine PPR points. His worst game was Week 6 against Cincinnati with one catch for 11 yards on five targets. Maybe the time off allowed Hilton and Philip Rivers to get on the same page, which would be great. But until we see the two start connecting more on the field, especially in the end zone, Hilton will remain a risky Fantasy option in most leagues.
Amari Cooper WR
DAL Dallas • #19
Age: 26 • Experience: 6 yrs.
It's hard to sit Cooper in most leagues, but two things are working against him this week. One, he might have Ben DiNucci as his starter with Andy Dalton (concussion) hurt. And two, Cooper matches up against Darius Slay. The two met last year when Slay was in Detroit, and Cooper finished with three catches for 38 yards on eight targets. Despite Dak Prescott (ankle) going down, Cooper has continued to play well with at least 15 PPR points in all but the game where Prescott was hurt in Week 5 against the Giants. I'd still consider Cooper a low-end starting option, and he's the best of the Cowboys receivers this week ahead of CeeDee Lamb and Michael Gallup. But I don't consider Cooper a slam-dunk starting option this week given his quarterback and likely coverage from the Eagles.