Monday Night Football Fantasy Picks: Start 'Em, Sit 'Em for Patriots vs Chiefs

Rex Burkhead fantasy outlook makes him one of the few Patriots worth starting.
Rex Burkhead fantasy outlook makes him one of the few Patriots worth starting. / Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

The shorthanded New England Patriots take on the Kansas City Chiefs on Monday night. This game was supposed to be played Sunday, but complications from the COVID-19 pandemic forced the NFL to move it back a day. Those complications have affected New England much more than Kansas City, though, as Patriots quarterback Cam Newton will be inactive after testing positive last week.

There's clearly a lot of uncertainty surrounding this one, so here's some start 'em, sit 'em advice for this Week 4 showdown.

Who Should I Start Fantasy Football

Start Rex Burkhead, RB, New England Patriots: Rex Burkhead has been ridiculously productive in the early going. He's turned 35 opportunities (carries plus targets) into 179 yards from scrimmage and 3 scores. With Sony Michel out, Burkhead will only be vying with James White for receiving work and (potentially) Damien Harris for early-down work. He has to be the favorite to lead this Brian Hoyer-led squad in touches this week.

Start Sammy Watkins, WR, Kansas City Chiefs: Sammy Watkins has underwhelmed since signing that massive deal with the Chiefs in 2018. In fact, he's never finished a season in Kansas City with even 675 receiving yards. But he's quietly more involved in this offense than he ever has been. The former Buffalo Bill is averaging 6.7 targets per game – his best such mark since 2015. That has translated into 5.0 catches and 51.7 yards per game, as he's clearly the No. 3 option in this passing game. He draws a tough matchup against New England, but Bill Belichick is famous for taking away what his opponent does best, so most of the attention should be focused on Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce. Watkins could be in for a big showing tonight.

Sit N'Keal Harry, WR, New England Patriots: Julian Edelman is the only Patriots' pass-catcher that's worth starting. The downgrade from Newton to Hoyer crushes New England's skill-position group as a whole, and Edelman is only worth a look because he's likely to get peppered with targets early and often. Plus, Kansas City is quietly the league's fifth-best pass defense, per Football Outsiders' DVOA metrics. Once Newton gets back N'Keal Harry has more upside than every Patriots' receiver other than Edelman, but he's not worth a look with Hoyer in the lineup.

Sit Mecole Hardman, WR, Kansas City Chiefs: We recommended you sit Mecole Hardman last week and it backfired. Hardman turned 6 targets into 4 catches for 81 yards and a touchdown. Don't read too much into that performance, though. Hardman is among the most boom-or-bust players in the league, and last week's showing was not a sign of some sort of monumental shift. He only played 39% of Kansas City's snaps, putting him behind Demarcus Robinson (55%) as the team's WR4. Keep in mind Hardman also only played 29% of the snaps in Week 1. He's going to make some explosive plays from time to time, but he's just not playing enough to be worth starting.

GET AN INSTANT DEPOSIT BONUS UP TO 500! We'll match 20% of your first deposit on FanDuel Fantasy Sports. Max bonus $500

Max Staley is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Max Staley also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mstaley1212. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.