I guess Russell Wilson and Deshaun Watson are decent-enough in fantasy football.

I was waiting on Watson, but now I'm a believer. Seattle's defense wasn't as good as it had been this season in week 8, but it's still one of the better units in the NFL. And Watson was really good in that matchup.

It's not surprising that he's able to pile up the fantasy points since Houston has several weapons not previously utilized. What we shouldn't forget about that matchup, though, is Wilson's monster day, with more than 400 yards passing.

With plenty of byes in week 9, trust the matchups. Here's the week 9 quarterbacks start 'em, sit 'em guide.


Deshaun Watson vs. Indianapolis Colts

If you saw Watson in week 8, just think what he'll do in week 9.

The Colts are terrible on defense and allowed Andy Dalton to finish third among quarterbacks in fantasy football scoring in week 8. They are statistically the second-worst pass defense and they love to give up huge yards per play at 8.9.

That works well into what Watson has been able to do this season. Watson has more than 30 fantasy points in three of his last four games. He's getting it done with his arm and his feet, which should equal trouble for a Colts team without the necessary defensive personnel to keep up.

Watson should be considered a top-three quarterback option for week 9.

If you're going to nitpick, though, Watson needs to keep an eye on his turnovers. He has four interceptions in his last two games.

If he can avoid major mistakes against the Colts, he's an easy over-20-point fantasy performer in week 9.

Derek Carr vs. Miami Dolphins

Miami can stop the run on most occasions. But they don't do well against opposing quarterbacks.

Carr has shown some major inconsistencies at times. His major issues reside with turning the ball over. In three of his last five games, he has six combined interceptions. In the other two games, he has four touchdowns against no interceptions.

The good thing for Carr, though, is that Miami doesn't turn over quarterbacks. The Dolphins have only two interceptions this season and are allowing opposing quarterbacks to generate a QBR of 103.1, the second-highest in the league, just behind Oakland.

Most importantly, though, Carr is still accumulating yards. He has 730 yards in his last two games through the air. The Dolphins can't stop the pass, so Carr should be a solid QB1 in week 9.

Drew Stanton vs. San Francisco 49ers

If you need a streaming option, Stanton is your best bet.

The 49ers rank sixth from the bottom in QBR, ninth-worst in passing yards allowed, and they don't generate many turnovers, notching just five interceptions this season.

Stanton isn't a consistent fantasy option, but he's worth a look with several byes in week 9. The Cardinals are going to throw and will offer him opportunities. And against San Francisco's defense, the passing department is easily exploitable.


Marcus Mariota vs. Baltimore Ravens

Maybe a week off has done some good for Mariota. Or maybe he'll be the same watered-down version we saw in the first-half of the NFL season.

Mariota isn't near the player we anticipated entering 2017. He's not using his legs and the offense is predictable. The wide receivers aren't good enough to create separation, forcing Mariota to look pedestrian in the pocket as he either dumps off passes or misfires.

He's not being asked to run the ball, so that's limiting his fantasy production in a major way. And against Baltimore, he needs to use his legs to spread out a defense that is dominating opposing quarterbacks.

Baltimore is allowing just 10 fantasy points per game against quarterbacks, the third-best mark in the NFL. They're also giving up a QBR of 66.5, the second-best number in the NFL.

The Titans will look to establish a strong running game against Baltimore and will keep Mariota limited in his volume. Look for another day of QB2 production from Mariota.

Kirk Cousins vs. Seattle Seahawks

If you anticipate another game like we saw in week 8, don't count on it from Seattle. The Seahawks were torched through the air, but I'll attribute that to an anomaly. That hasn't been the case for the majority of the season, so I'll trust them again in this matchup against a reeling Washington team. 

Before week 8's tough outing, Cousins ripped off four consecutive outings of 20-plus fantasy points. The only problem with those stats is that he put up those numbers against bottom-12 pass defense.

Against top-half pass defenses, which is still a place where Seattle resides, Cousins has barely been in double-digits for fantasy points.

I don't expect Seattle to score as much as we saw in week 8, so that should limit Cousins' unique ability of filling up the stat sheet with meaningless touchdowns/passing yards at the end of the game.

Andy Dalton vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

You may have thought I was crazy for starting Dalton last week, but he did turn in a nice fantasy performance, finishing third among quarterbacks.

But that was for only one week. This is a different story.

The Jaguars are menacing against opposing quarterbacks, limiting quarterbacks to only 6.9 fantasy points per game. That's just ridiculous.

They intercept passes. They sack quarterbacks. They basically don't let them breathe.

Thank Dalton for the nice week 8 and dump him for week 9.

Scott Levine is the Associate Editor for the Clinton Herald. During his free time, he blogs about fantasy sports and handicaps games.

Scott Levine can be reached at scottlevine@clintonherald.com or on Twitter @ScottLevineCH

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