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Start/Bench—Week 8 

 
Start
Chad Kelly, QB-Ole Miss at LSU
The LSU defense has not given up more than 20 points and the Ole Miss offense has not scored fewer than 30 points, so something has to give.  If Kelly uses his legs as he did last week against Arkansas, fantasy owners will be okay starting him in Week 8.
 
Jordan Chunn, Troy at South Alabama
Chunn has scored a touchdown in five of six games and lands on this list for a second consecutive week because the Jaguars’ defense is giving up 220.2 yards per game on the ground.
 
Shannon Brooks and Rodney Smith, RBs-Minnesota v Rutgers
The Scarlet Knights have the sixth-worst run defense in the nation, giving up 263.7 yards per game on the ground, and they have allowed 19 rushing touchdowns, which is the third-highest total in the FBS.  Last week, Brooks and Smith combined for 40 carries against Maryland and they should get a chance to duplicate that production this week against Rutgers.
 
Elijah McGuire, Louisiana at Texas State
McGuire has not been the same since he was injured in an OT loss to Tulane about a month ago, but a Week 8 matchup against one of the worst run defenses in the nation (231.8 ypg) should help cure his fantasy woes.
 
Brian Hill, RB-Wyoming @ Nevada
Even though Hill has scored in every game this season, he has only topped the 100-yard mark three times.  He shouldn’t have a problem topping the century mark this week going against a Wolfpack defense that is allowing 250.7 yards per game on the ground.
 
Terrell Newby, RB-Nebraska v Purdue
Newby has topped 100 yards rushing in consecutive weeks and has scored in three straight games.  In Week 8, he’ll face a Boilermakers defense that is allowing 264.3 yards per game on the ground, fifth-worst in the FBS.
 
Dillon Birden, RB-Houston @ SMU
Teammate Duke Catalon has been cleared to play this weekend after missing the last three games due to a concussion.  However, Birden has been too productive to sit on the backburner and chances are pretty good that he’ll still assume his recent role in the offense.  Plus, seven touchdowns in the past four games is a little hard to ignore, especially if you need to fill your Flex position.
 
Jalen Robinette, WR-Air Force v Hawaii
Robinette has topped 100 yards receiving and scored a touchdown in three consecutive games, and he should get an opportunity to do it for a fourth consecutive week against a defense that is giving up 38.9 points per game.

 

 
Bench
Trevor Knight, QB-Texas A&M at Alabama
While the Alabama defense has given up 30 or more points twice this season, both games were on the road.  At home, Alabama has scored three DST touchdowns and have only given up 16 points in three games.  Knight should be able to move the offense down the field, but can he convert red zone opportunities into touchdowns instead of field goals.  We’re not so certain.
 
Austin Allen, QB-Arkansas at Auburn
Texas A&M was the only team to score more than 20 points against the Auburn defense and the Tigers have not given up more than two touchdowns in any one game this year.  You’re expecting too much if you believe Allen and the Razorbacks will produce more against the Auburn defense than Clemson, LSU, and Texas A&M have.  
 
Aaron Duckworth, RB-Idaho at Appalachian State      
Duckworth has topped 80 total yards and scored a touchdown in three of his past four games, but this is the best defense the Vandals have faced since playing Washington in Week 2 when Duckworth rushed for 30 yards on nine carries.
 
Marcus Cox, RB-Appalachian State vs Idaho
So, it’s Thursday and still no clarity on the playing status of the senior running back for this weekend’s game against Idaho.  Even if Cox does play, we would think he would be eased back into action given the way Jalin Moore has played in his absence.
 
Ray Lawry, RB-Old Dominion at Western Kentucky
Lawry returned in Week 6 and ran for 88 yards and a touchdown in a 36-16 win against Massachusetts, but he was upstaged by teammate Jeremy Cox, who ran for 162 yards, two touchdowns, and finished with 24 rush attempts compared to Lawry’s 12.  It seems like Lawry has to win back the starting, and at best, will split carries with Cox, who has scored seven touchdowns in the past three games.    
 
Joe Williams, RB-Utah at UCLA
Williams carried the ball 34 times for 179 yards and a touchdown in last week’s 19-14 win over Oregon State after being thrust into the starting role following a four-week layoff.  Is his body in good enough shape to handle that kind of workload two weeks in a row?  Maybe, but the Utes are playing on the road this week and the Bruins have a much better run defense than the Beavers. 
 
Anthony Miller, WR-Memphis at Navy
Miller had 90 or more receiving yards and scored a touchdown in three of Memphis’ first four games of the season, but since then he has five receptions for 33 yards and fantasy owners have little choice but to sit him in a tough matchup at Navy.

 

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