Week 8 continued a great season of fantasy football with several exciting matchups on Sunday’s main slate. There were some big names who came to play Sunday with fantasy points piling up for Mike Evans ($6,600), Cooper Kupp ($7,500) and Kenny Golladay ($6,400), who each had more than 32 DKFP.
While those stars came with a hefty salary cap hit, there were some more affordable players who also had breakthrough weeks. Which of Sunday’s emerging stars should be on your radar for the coming weeks? Let’s take a look in this week’s edition of ride or fade.
RB Tevin Coleman, SF vs. CAR, $5,000 — 49.8 DKFP
The 49ers got a statement win against the Panthers in a game that could end up being a factor in the NFC playoff chase. Coleman was dominant from the start of the game and ran for three touchdowns in the first half. He finished with 105 yards on just 11 carries while adding 13 more yards on two catches with four total scores.
Coleman has looked excellent since returning from his ankle sprain, running for at least 45 yards in each of his four games back with six scores. He could get more work if Matt Breida ($4,800, ankle) is out or limited but also has proven he can shine in a shared backfield. The 49ers have a great matchup on Thursday Night Football against the Cardinals and then face the Seahawks and Cardinals in the two following weeks. Coleman should continue to be a feature back in a run-heavy attack and is a great option to consider as long as he stays healthy.
QB Daniel Jones, NYG at DET, $5,800 — 32.18 DKFP
Jones was the highest scoring QB in the early games with his 32.18 DKFP on 322 yards passing and four touchdowns. The rookie attempted a career-high 41 passes but couldn’t quite rally his team back in New York’s 31-26 loss in Detroit.
Despite the loss, Jones’ performance was an encouraging one after he struggled badly the past three weeks against the Vikings, Patriots and Cardinals. Next week, Danny Dimes and the Giants host the Cowboys on Monday Night Football before taking on the Jets and Bears around their bye week. Jones has shown he can produce big games even though the rest of the team isn’t ready for success just yet. With his skill players returning to health and giving him some solid options at RB, TE and WR, look for him to continue to be a fantasy factor — especially when the Giants have to play from behind like they did in this one.
RB David Montgomery, CHI vs. LAC, $4,400 — 27.7 DKFP
Montgomery had a lot of hype coming into the season but had started his rookie campaign slowly before Sunday’s performance. He set a career-high with 27 carries against the Chargers and racked up 135 yards and a touchdown while catching 4-of-5 targets for 12 more yards.
Although Montgomery’s increased workload is a good sign, it’s also important to remember last week he had only two carries. The Bears’ offense is too inconsistent to trust Montgomery just yet — especially the next few weeks against tough run defenses in the Eagles, Lions and Rams.
TE Ryan Griffin, NYJ at JAX, $2,700 — 24.6 DKFP
The Jets had two touchdowns in their loss to the Jags and both were scored by Griffin, who also tacked on a two-point conversion. He finished with 66 yards and his two touchdowns while catching all four passes thrown his way.
Griffin wasn’t expected to have much of a role in the Jets’ offense but has filled in nicely while Chris Herndon (hamstring) has been suspended and working his way back from injury. Herndon has a chance to return in Week 9, though, so Griffin’s success might be short-lived. He does have the red zone attention of Sam Darnold, though, so he’ll have touchdown-dependent upside even though he won’t be a reliable option.
WR Chris Conley, JAX vs. NYJ, $3,300 — 23.3 DKFP
The Jaguars improved to 4-4 with their win over Griffin and the Jets, and Conley played a big role, highlighted by a 70-yard touchdown strike at the end of the first quarter. Conley finished with 23.3 DKFP, catching 4-of-7 targets and topping 100 yards for the first time this season.
It was Conley’s second straight week with seven targets, and he could get more work depending on the severity of the injuries to fellow WRs Dede Westbrook (shoulder, neck) and Marqise Lee (shoulder), who were forced to leave the game this week. Conley and the Jaguars get a good matchup next week against the Texans before their Week 10 bye week. After the bye, they have a soft schedule, so Conley could be a nice option down the stretch if he keeps getting looks. There is some uncertainty at QB as well with Nick Foles nearing a return from his collarbone injury. As a cheap flier, Conley makes sense due to his big-play potential, but the Jaguars’ offense and target distribution makes him a high-risk play week-to-week.
TE Darren Fells, HOU vs. OAK, $3,400 — 23.8 DKFP
Fells caught two touchdowns in the Texans’ comeback win against the Raiders and hauled in all six of his targets for 58 yards. He caught the pass that iced the game by getting Houston a key first down as well. Next week, he and the Texans head to London to face the Jaguars in an important division game before coming back after the bye for contests with the Ravens, Colts and Patriots.
With Will Fuller (hamstring) out for a while, Fells has an opportunity to step up into a larger role — especially in the red zone. He has multiple catches in four of his past five games with five touchdowns during that span. He isn’t an elite TE since he’s so touchdown-dependent but has established himself as a reliable enough option to be a midrange play with upside moving forward.
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