If you’re an NFL fan, there’s nothing better than “Monday Night Football.” If you’re a fantasy owner, there’s nothing more frustrating.
The league’s Monday night installation makes the worst day of the week that much better, but it also puts fantasy owners in a bind as they fill out their lineups. This is especially true during Week 1, as four teams will be in action Monday night to close out the NFL’s opening “weekend.”
The New York Giants and Detroit Lions kick things off at 7:10 p.m. ET, AND the San Diego Chargers and Arizona Cardinals have the nightcap at 10:20 p.m. All four teams are chock full of good fantasy players, but the question is, who is worth taking out a Sunday starter for?
Don’t worry, we’ve got your back. Here’s who you should sit and start Monday night.
Ryan Mathews, RB, Chargers: Arizona’s defense was downright dominant against the run in 2013, allowing just five touchdowns while holding opponents to 84.4 yards per game on the ground. Sure, the Cardinals don’t have Karlos Dansby or Daryl Washington, but do you trust Mathews to win your Week 1 matchup going against this defense?
Golden Tate, WR, Lions: Tate’s ceiling is high in Detroit’s pass-happy offense, but don’t get too excited. The Giants allowed just two 100-yard receivers all season in 2013, and Tate still is getting acclimated with Matthew Stafford and the Lions. If anyone puts up big receiving numbers for Detroit in Week 1, it’ll likely be Calvin Johnson.
Michael Floyd, WR, Cardinals: Floyd’s 1,000-yard season in 2013 wasn’t a fluke. The third-year pro from Notre Dame is fast becoming a top target in Arizona alongside the aging Larry Fitzgerald. The Cardinals also open the 2014 season against a Chargers team that gave up over 4,000 passing yards in 2013. Floyd should be in your lineup, plain and simple.
Reggie Bush, RB, Lions: Bush proved he’s in top form with an 86-yard touchdown run against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Detroit’s second preseason game. The explosive running back went off in the team’s 2013 season opener against the Minnesota Vikings in 2013, and he could do the same against the Justin Tuck-less Giants defense.