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NFL Week 9: Bengals at Jaguars fantasy football starts and sits

Who you should have in your fantasy lineups when the Bengals take on the Jaguars.

NFL: Buffalo Bills at Cincinnati Bengals Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

For most leagues, you probably have less than five weeks left before the fantasy playoffs start. That means this week is important to you, but there aren’t many players worth starting this week when the Bengals play against the Jaguars. It is a battle of two pretty good defenses, but there are still a few players you should throw in your lineup.

Must starts

Leonard Fournette (Jaguars RB): Fournette missed Week 7, but he had the bye week to get healthy, and he has practiced fully all week. That means the Jaguars are going to give him the ball early and often. If there is one thing the Bengals’ defense has struggled with for the past few weeks, it is teams that are committed to giving their running back carry after carry.

Favorable matchups

Joe Mixon (Bengals RB): If the Bengals are smart they will attack the Jaguars’ one weakness on defense: their run defense. It is currently ranked last in the league allowing 138.6 yards per carry this season. Still the Bengals have proved they can over think things like that. Mixon is also running behind an awful offensive line, which will always hurt his value.

Jaguars defense: I would check how many points your league awards for sacks. The Jaguars had a 10 sack game last time they played, and they should have another outing close to that this week. All my prayers go to Andy Dalton this week. If we’ve learned anything this season, it’s do not sit the Jaguars’ defense in fantasy.

Good but not great

Marcedes Lewis (Jagurs TE): Piggy backing off telling everyone to start Jack Doyle last week, you should start Marcedes Lewis this week. The Bengals aren’t very good at covering tight ends, and after last week it doesn’t seem like the coaching staff knows how to teach that. It only hurts the Bengals that linebacker Kevin Minter is out with an elbow injury. Lewis hasn’t done much outside of his three touchdown game against the Ravens, but he could be a sneaky deep play if you need a tight end.

Unfavorable matchups

A.J. Green (Bengals WR): Jalen Ramsey is the real deal, and Dalton likely won’t have much time to throw this week. The one positive for Green is that he should see a bulk of the targets, so there is always a chance he has a decent outing. Still there is a lot going against him in this matchup.

Allen Hurns (Jaguars WR): In Week 7 against the Colts, Hurns topped 100 yards with five catches. He could have a decent outing, but it really depends on if the Jaguars trail in this game. Jacksonville will be very content to run the ball as long as the Bengals can’t stop it, so that hurts Hurns’ value a lot.

Just sit them

Andy Dalton (Bengals QB): Why? Why would you start Dalton in this game? I get cheering Dalton on and thinking he can have a good game. But why would you risk that during a crucial fantasy game with the playoffs closing in quickly? The odds Dalton even has time to throw are low, so just avoid having him in your lineup.

Any Bengals receiver other than Green: If it isn’t Green there is no need to play any Bengals receiver this week. I’m lumping Tyler Kroft in here as well because he should stay in to block more this week. No other receiver has proved they can be a consistent threat to a defense for Dalton, much less a defense like the Jaguars’.