Kickoff: Sunday, September 12th at 1:00 PM ET
Location: Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis, IN
Betting Odds: IND -1.5, 53.5 total via Oddsshark
Russell Wilson (Start, QB1)
Russell Wilson is still one of the best quarterbacks in the league. The team let Russ cook early last season. In the first seven games of last season, Wilson threw 26 touchdowns and only six interceptions. The Seahawks held onto a lot of running backs which would lean towards a more run-heavy offense but Wilson will still get his. He is locked into your starting lineup and was drafted as such. Even in bad matchup weeks, which this is not really, Wilson should shine.
Chris Carson (Start, RB1), Rashaad Penny (Sit)
Chris Carson might be one of the most undervalued running backs coming into the 2021 season. A lot of that revolves around his injury history. Heading into Week 1 I believe he will finish as a top 12 running back. He scored touchdowns in 10 of the 14 games he played last season. What is not talked about is his pass-catching work. He had 46 targets last year. That puts him 22nd last year in terms of running back targets. He scored 4 receiving touchdowns last year. It leads me to believe that Carson could have a clear three-down role, which is hard to find in today’s NFL. Rashaad Penny is nothing more than a handcuff who has no stand-alone value. The Seahawks did keep a large number of running backs on their roster which I believe speaks more to the health of their running backs, not the amount they want to run. An interesting name to watch as a possible stash would be DeeJay Dallas. If he becomes to true handcuff to Carson he could be worth a bench stash in deeper leagues.
Wide Receivers/ Tight Ends
D.K. Metcalf (Start, WR1) Tyler Lockett (Start, WR2), Freddie Swain (sit), Dee Eskridge (sit)
Gerald Everett (Start, TE1), Will Dissly (Sit)
The wide receivers for Seattle were drafted to be starters and they are. This is a game that projects the Seahawks scoring 26 points. D.K. Metcalf jumped up to the tops of fantasy drafts and even if you don’t like the matchup you will start him. Tyler Lockett fell in fantasy drafts due to his bad second half of the 2020 season. Lockett is still a great option, especially in PPR. He had only 2 games with 4 or fewer targets. He is still a favorite target of Wilson’s and should get his. Dee Eskridge is a dynasty and deep league darling but it’s too early to start him. He’s a great wait-and-see option.
Gerald Everett comes over to Seattle from the Rams. He projects to be the starting tight end which kills any value that Will Dissly has. Wilson doesn’t target the tight end much but hasn’t had one the caliber of Everett in a long time. Everett was a late-round pick in the fantasy draft and could be a sneaky start in week 1. You won’t get the top-end tight-end numbers from him but he wasn’t drafted as that. He will be right in the mix of the top 5-12 tight ends at the end of the week.
Carson Wentz (Start, QB2)
Carson Wentz starts his road to redemption against a tough team but should have ample opportunities to show off what skills he has left. The Colts looks to be a run-first team but the coaching staff in Frank Reich and Press Taylor are the most familiar with Wentz and what he can do. The weapons at Wentz’s disposal aren’t the greatest but nothing out of the ordinary from what he was used to from his time in Philadelphia. The game script seems to project the Colts being behind so Wentz will have to air it out more. The foot injury will hamper his rushing some but he has some big targets at tight end to throw to in a pinch.
Jonathan Taylor (Start, RB1) Nyheim Hines (Sit) Marlon Mack (Sit)
Jonathan Taylor comes into the season looking to continue his 2020 campaign where he rushed for 1169 yards and 11 touchdowns as a rookie. He is a top 10 RB with a top 5 upside most weeks. Marlon Mack comes back from an injury that cost him last year but isn’t more than a breather back for Taylor. Nyheim Hines is the one to watch here. He has great pass-catching abilities and recent reports have stated the coaching staff wants to get him more touches. I think it’s a wait-and-see if that hype actually pans out on the field for Hines but he is a great stash just in case. I wouldn’t slight anyone in a PPR league for taking a shot on Hines in a flex spot.
Wide Receivers/ Tight Ends
Michael Pittman Jr (Start, WR2) Zach Pascal (Sit) Parris Campbell (Start, Flex)
Jack Doyle (Start, TE2) Mo Allie Cox (Sit)
The wide receivers in Indy are some of the common names you might see in sleeper articles. With T.Y. Hilton injured and out for a few weeks, it comes down to Michael Pittman Jr, Zach Pascal, and Parris Campbell. I think you can start Pittman in your wide receiver 2 spot. He should see enough volume to make him serviceable. Campbell to me is the boom or bust guy who could slide into your flex. If the Colts get too far behind or want a big momentum swing I can see Campbell catching a 50+ yard touchdown. Pascal is a sit for now and probably all season. The tight ends here intrigue me. Wentz has always favored tight ends when he had Zach Ertz. Jack Doyle seems to be a very similar player. He lacks the sure-fire catching that Ertz had but should still see lots of targets headed his way. Mo Allie Cox is a huge human who is hard to pass up in the red zone but he is too touchdown dependant to be a reliable fantasy starter. Should anything happen to Doyle, I would be jumping to add Cox off waivers.
-Dustin Ludke (Dunit13dl on Reddit)