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Giants-Jets Week 8 fantasy outlook: Top weapons from each team are intriguing

Even with a 36.5 over/under, there are still some fantasy points to be had

Washington Commanders v New York Giants
Darren Waller
Photo by Lauren Leigh Bacho/Getty Images

Here’s what the Las Vegas Vegas oddsmakers think of the New York Giants’ matchup with the New York Jets on Sunday: snoozer. After all, the over/under for the game is just 36.5. If you think about it, though, that’s actually an optimistic projection, because the two teams combine to average 30.1 points per game. That’s how lackluster the offense has been in East Rutherford this season. Naturally, that caps the fantasy outlook for all players on both teams since touchdowns are king.

Still, there are some solid options in this game for fantasy teams. It’s not a week where you’ll have to reach for deeper options because no teams have a bye week. But both teams have some weapons that often manage to put up some fantasy numbers without getting into the end zone.

Start ‘Em

  • RB Saquon Barkley: The Jets’ defense ranks 20th in PPR points per game allowed to running backs. Barkley managed to put up 17.80 points against the Commanders despite hyperextending his elbow, losing a fumble, and averaging just 3.7 yards per carry. In general, the Jets’ defense is susceptible to both outside runs and screen passes, adding to Barkley’s weekly must-start value. Andrew Thomas’ likely return sweetens the pot.
  • TE Darren Waller: Waller had his best game as a Giant and his best fantasy performance last week. He had 22.80 PPR points on seven receptions, including a touchdown. This passing game will continue to run through him. The Jets’ defense ranks 29th in PPR points per game allowed to tight ends, making this an obvious call.
  • RB Breece Hall: The Giants’ defense ranks 24th in PPR points per game allowed to running backs. Breece Hall put up 20.30 points against the Eagles despite averaging just 3.3 yards per carry, as he had five receptions for 54 yards. Hall played a season-high 66% of the snaps against the Eagles, and that trend should continue moving forward with the Jets looking to move on from Dalvin Cook.
  • WR Garrett Wilson: Wilson has been an on-and-off fantasy performer this year due to the Jets’ volatile offense. His main value is in PPR leagues due to his volume rather than yardage and touchdowns. The Giants’ defense has been stout against receivers, ranking 14th in PPR points per game allowed. Still, Wilson has seen at least eight targets in four of his six games this year, and the two games in which he didn’t were due to game script. He’s not the safest start but always has a high upside.
  • Both defenses: When you have two poor offenses with bad offensive lines, the defenses are good options. Neither team has a high sack rate per game, as the Jets rank 20th and the Giants 31st in that category. Still, they rank 27th and 31st, respectively, in the number of times their quarterbacks are sacked per game. Both teams are around average in the turnover category, but with a low-scoring, high-sack affair expected, the defenses are strong picks.


  • TE Tyler Conklin: The Giants’ defense ranks 18th in PPR points allowed to tight ends. Conklin has been somewhat on-and-off this season, but he’s the Jets’ No. 2 target and deserves consideration.
  • K Greg Zuerlein: Zuerlein is averaging 10.6 fantasy points per game and has scored 32 over his last two contests. The Jets have the NFL’s worst red zone offense, scoring a touchdown just 29.4% of the time. The kicker is 14-of-15 on field goals this year, averaging three attempts per game.

Sit ‘em

  • Although Jets head coach Robert Saleh announced that cornerbacks Sauce Gardner and D.J. Reed may be game-time decisions due to concussions, the pair were listed as full participants in Wednesday’s practice. So was Brandin Echols, the Jets’ top backup outside corner, who has been out with a hamstring injury. That means the Giants’ wide receivers should all be sitting. There was a chance that Wan’Dale Robinson or even Jalin Hyatt could get some deep sleeper love if the Jets’ corners were out.
  • Daniel Jones appears on track to miss his third straight game, which would make Tyrod Taylor the Giants’ starter once more. Although Taylor had an excellent game against the Commanders and Andrew Thomas will likely be back to defend his blindside, it’s just not a great matchup with both star Jets corners returning and a defense that is tied for third in the NFL with eight interceptions.
  • Graham Gano is the 28th-ranked fantasy kicker. Sit him.

Around the NFL

  • QB Kyler Murray had his 21-day practice window opened last Wednesday. While the Cardinals are in competition for the No. 1 overall pick (currently No. 2 overall at 1-6), Murray has always been a fantasy option due to his dual-threat capabilities. It remains to be seen what he looks like less than a full year after tearing his ACL, but he’s worth a waiver wire pickup and stash. Murray’s return would also be good for WR Hollywood Brown, who has had a couple of down games after a strong four-week run.
  • RB Rhamondre Stevenson has picked it up in PPR leagues after being a colossal disappointment for most of the season. He caught 11 balls over his past two games. Still, Stevenson is always a bust risk due to the Patriots’ offensive struggles for most of the season and his own backfield split with Ezekiel Elliott. Stevenson took 65% of the snaps over the past two weeks to Elliott’s 35-38%, but Elliott is eating into his volume and touchdown potential, having scored on the ground in back-to-back weeks.
  • The Colts’ top two receivers, Michael Pittman and Josh Downs, have both been strong starts for most of the season. Downs has three straight weeks with at least 13 PPR points, including 23.50 on 125 yards and a touchdown against Cleveland’s vaunted defense. Pittman has gone over 16 points four times this year, including vs. the Browns despite catching only two passes. Even against a Saints defense that is 11th-best in PPR points allowed to receivers, recent history is on both players’ sides.
  • WR Terry McLaurin is back. He’s seen at least nine targets in three out of the last four weeks and turned in at least 14 PPR points in those games. Even though Sam Howell has been a distributor (and a sack king), McLaurin can be safely started in most matchups, such as this week’s against the Eagles, who rank 23rd in PPR points allowed to receivers.
  • It doesn’t look like WR D.J. Moore is going anywhere, even with Justin Fields doubtful for Week 8. Moore put up 13.40 PPR points on eight receptions from Tyson Bagent. While it’s not the 27.10 or 49.00 points he put up in Weeks 4-5, Moore is the Bears’ clear No. 1 receiver and is, at the very least, a volume-based WR2 in PPR leagues. This week, he has an enticing matchup in the Chargers’ 30th-ranked fantasy defense against receivers.

Starting/streaming options due to injury

  • RB Darrell Henderson, LAR: Kyren Williams is on injured reserve, and Henderson received 18 carries last week. That being said, he went back to the practice squad and the Rams have several other options, so wait to see if he’s elevated again.
  • RB Kareem Hunt, CLE: Jerome Ford is out 1-2 weeks with an ankle injury.
  • RB Jahmyr Gibbs, DET: David Montgomery is expected to be out “a little bit” with his rib injury. If he misses Week 8, Gibbs is once again an RB2.
  • QB Gardner Minshew, IND: Calling him an injury option is not quite accurate because he’ll be the Colts’ starter for the rest of the season. Still, if he’s not rostered due to the previous uncertainty of Anthony Richardson’s injury, he’s a streaming option. Then again, last week’s high-scoring affair against the Browns could just be a fluke.
  • TE Dalton Kincaid, BUF: With Dawson Knox out indefinity due to a wrist injury and Kincaid posting 15.50 PPR points last week, he’s definitely worth a pickup if he’s available.
  • RB Emari Demercado, ARI: Tread carefully with this one, as Demercado was a popular waiver wire pickup in Week 5 before receiving just three touches. Still, he played 80% of the snaps and had 18 touches in Week 7, so he may be a risky flex option with James Conner still on injured reserve.