Is this the real life, or is this just fantasy?
If you’re playing weekly fantasy football, it might seem like the latter. Every week is its own entity, allowing you the opportunity to load up on all your favorite players — assuming they fall within your budget.
But let’s take this “fantasy” one step further: What if money wasn’t an object? What if you had unlimited resources at your disposal and could fill your Week 1 roster with the perfect lineup, regardless of its total price tag?
Since it’s fun to dream, we’ve decided to do just that. Below is our ideal starting eight — one quarterback, two running backs, two wide receivers, one tight end, one flex (RB/WR/TE) and one defense (sorry, kickers) — based on each player’s talent and strength of their Week 1 matchup.
Quarterback: Aaron Rodgers (Packers)
Simply put, Rodgers is the best in the business. You could make an argument that Andrew Luck is right there with him, but Rodgers has a far easier matchup in the Chicago Bears than Luck does in the Buffalo Bills.
Running Backs: Adrian Peterson (Vikings), Jeremy Hill (Bengals)
Peterson’s pick needs little explanation, as he’s well-rested and faces a decimated San Francisco 49ers defense. Hill and the Bengals will enjoy an Oakland Raiders defense that allowed the most fantasy points to opposing running backs last season, and if Cincinnati gets ahead early, he’ll get plenty of carries down the stretch.
Wide Receivers: Julio Jones (Falcons), Dez Bryant (Cowboys)
Jones is back, healthy and primed for a huge opening day against an unproven Philadelphia Eagles secondary. We’re expecting the same from Bryant, who lit up his Week 1 opponent, the New York Giants, for 237 yards and two touchdowns in two games last season.
Tight End: Jason Witten (Cowboys)
Tony Romo loves throwing to Witten against any team but especially against the Giants. Witten has scored four touchdowns in his previous four meetings with Big Blue, and according to NFL.com, he has averaged 12.6 fantasy points against them in his last five.
Flex: DeMarco Murray (Eagles)
Murray might not reach his prolific 2014 numbers this time around, but he still should be the focal point of a very potent Philadelphia offense. With a matchup against the clawless Atlanta Falcons on the docket in Week 1, Murray could soar right out of the gate.
Defense: Miami Dolphins
Going with Miami is the perfect storm. Not only does this defense look much improved with the addition of Ndamokung Suh to a scary front seven, the Dolphins will face Kirk Cousins and the inept Washington Redskins in Week 1. We’re expecting turnovers and sacks galore.
Have a fantasy football question for Darren? Send it to him via Twitter at @darren_hartwell
Thumbnail photo via David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports Images