Looking towards Week 1 of the NFL fantasy football season, we will look into all the matchups and discern the positive or negative impact a given matchup will have on wide receivers. Below are the top receivers to sit and start based on their Week 1 matchups.
Fantasy Football: Week 1 Must Start/Sit Wide Receivers
Tee Higgins – CIN (vs Minnesota Vikings)
Tee Higgins is looking to start off his sophomore season in a big fashion. This matchup against the Vikings seems to be a perfect opportunity to have a high-scoring game. With the struggles of Ja’Marr Chase this offseason, Higgins should be the No. 1 target fir Cincinnati. With Joe Burrow under center last year the Bengals threw at one of the highest clips in the NFL. The offensive line likely to struggle again, and a pass-heavy attack seems inevitable. It will be even more inevitable if the Vikings are able to go shot for shot with the Bengals.
Antonio Brown – TB (vs Dallas Cowboys)
On most teams the third wide receiver is far from an exciting fantasy player. This is not the case when it comes to Antonio Brown. On any given week Brown could be the most targeted wide receiver on the Buccaneers. In this matchup against a bad Cowboys defense the upside for Brown is immense. This is a game that should be high scoring, and with how much Tom Brady likes to throw to every receiver, this is a perfect game for Brown.
Deebo Samuel – SF (at Detroit Lions)
Lately Brandon Aiyuk has gotten so much attention that people seem to have forgotten about Deebo Samuel. With Aiyuk’s health concerns, it would be shocking if they will let him loose in this game. With that said, even with Aiyuk on the field, Samuel can be a top-end option in their matchup against the Lions. Detroit has a terrible defense, so Samuel should have no trouble racking up fantasy points.
D.J. Moore – CAR (vs New York Jets)
This game reeks of a revenge game for Sam Darnold against the Jets. While many will look for the double-revenge game with Robby Anderson, D.J. Moore will be the one scoring more points in this matchup. The Jets defense looks poor, and Moore is looking to have a more complete season in 2021. Moore is the No. 1 target on the team, so he should have a good chance to finish top 12 this week.
Ja’Marr Chase – CIN (vs Minnesota Vikings)
Ja’Marr Chase struggled immensely in Bengals camp and during this preseason. This is likely attributed to the rust that comes with not playing football since 2019. While Chase could elevate his game and play well this season, erring on the side of caution is ideal.
Kenny Golladay – NYG (vs Denver Broncos)
Kenny Golladay has missed a majority of August with a hamstring injury. While normally this would not matter too much for a star wide receiver, this is his first year with the Giants. It is even more important when realizing that Daniel Jones is the starting quarterback and cannot just throw the ball to any wide receiver off the street. None of this includes the issue that comes with playing against a tough defense in Denver.
Odell Beckham Jr. – CLE (at Kansas City Chiefs)
This is a more plus matchup for Odell Beckham Jr. against the Chiefs, as the Browns will likely have to stray away from the running game to catch up to their opponent. Despite the positive matchup, Beckham’ has yet to live up to the hype. If Beckham looks good, he will not make this list anymore, but if he struggles, then he will stay in the must sit column.
JuJu Smith-Schuster – PIT (at Buffalo Bills)
With the addition of Najee Harris via the NFL Draft, the Steelers look to try to go back to a more run-heavy attack. It will be tough with a bad offensive line, but they will still look to run more than last season. This will likely lead to an odd man out weekly for the Steelers’ threesome of wideouts. Diontae Johnson and Chase Claypool are top breakout candidates, which leaves JuJu Smith-Schuster as the outcast. Plus, it is likely that either Tre’Davious White or Levi Wallace will lock him down.
DeVante Parker – MIA (at New England Patriots)
Even with Will Fuller V missing this matchup, DeVante Parker is still far from an ideal start. The Dolphins – Patriots game has the second-lowest projected point total of the week. With just a 43.5 total, it is hard to see any upside in starting Parker.
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