2020 Season: Week 9 Start/Flex/Bench


Charles Herrmann (@HermsNFL)
The Lateral Chief Editor

Malcolm McMillan (@McLateralFF)
The Lateral Writer

Start/Flex/Bench is basically The Lateral's version of rock, paper, scissors. No... that doesn't seem right. It was some other three-word game. Not sure why the name is escaping me, but I think the youths these days refer to it as FMK on the interwebz.

Regardless of what the name of that silly other game is, the point of the exercise is simple; for every match-up in a given week, Charles and Malcolm will give their picks for who you should start in your lineup, throw into your FLEX spot/stream if we're talking QB or TE, and who to leave on the bench. Charles will pick for all the AFC teams, and Malcolm will pick for all the NFC teams. 

Other things to keep in mind are this exercise is done with a 1 QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, 1 TE, 1 FLEX, 1 K roster playing PPR format in a 12-man league in mind, but ultimately the picks should be applicable to most fantasy rosters.

Week 9 Start/Flex/Bench

Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers (Thursday 8:20 pm)

GB: Start WR Davante Adams, flex WR Allen Lazard, stream the DST, and bench all the RBs.
SF: Start RB JaMycal Hasty, flex WR Trent Taylor, stream whoever the Niners start at TE (I am leaning Jordan Reed currently), and bench QB Nick Mullens
Houston Texans at Jacksonville Jaguars (Sunday 1 pm)

HOU: Start QB Deshaun Watson/RB David Johnson/WR Will Fuller V, flex WR Randall Cobb, bench the DST. Something about that COVID-19 outbreak in the facility scared me off.

JAC: Start RB James Robinson, all WRs are more in the flex territory, bench QB Jake Luton. The rookie gunslinger is intriguing but unless you're in a very deep league, nah.

New York Giants at Washington Football Team (Sunday 1 pm)

NYG: Start WR Sterling Shepard, flex RB Devonta Freeman (or RB Wayne Gallman if Freeman is still out), stream the DST, and bench WR Darius Slayton.

WFT: Start WR Terry McLaurin, flex RB Antonio Gibson, stream the DST, and bench QB Kyle Allen.

Baltimore Ravens at Indianapolis Colts (Sunday 1 pm)

BAL: Start RB J.K. Dobbins/TE Mark Andrews (mostly because you have to), flex RB Gus Edwards in non-PPR/WR Marquise Brown (risky as hell though), bench QB Lamar Jackson.
IND: Honestly? Nah. I ain't touchin' this team with a ten-foot pole. K Rodrigo Blankenship is the only option I'm comfortable with. Flex RB Jonathan Taylor if you absolutely have to and clench your butt cheeks, but this situation is a mess.

Detroit Lions at Minnesota Vikings (Sunday 1 pm)

DET: Start WR Marvin Jones Jr., flex WR Marvin Hall, and bench K Matt Prater.

MIN: Start RB Dalvin Cook, flex WR Adam Thielen, and bench QB Kirk Cousins.
Chicago Bears at Tennessee Titans (Sunday 1 pm)

CHI: Start WR Allen Robinson II, flex WR Darnell Mooney, stream QB Nick Foles, and bench TE Jimmy Graham.

TEN: Start RB Derrick Henry, flex WR A.J. Brown, and bench the DST.

Carolina Panthers at Kansas City Chiefs (Sunday 1 pm)

CAR: Start RB Christian McCaffrey, flex WR Robbie Anderson, and bench QB Teddy Bridgewater.
KC: Start the Kansas City Chiefs.

Seattle Seahawks at Buffalo Bills (Sunday 1 pm)

SEA: Start QB Russell Wilson, flex WR D.K. Metcalf, and bench RB Travis Homer.

BUF: Start QB Josh Allen/the top 3 WRs (Diggs, Brown, Beasley), flex RB Zack Moss, bench RB Devin Singletary.

Denver Broncos at Atlanta Falcons (Sunday 1 pm)

DEN: Start TE Noah Fant/RB Philip Lindsay if healthy, flex WR Jerry Jeudy/RB Melvin Gordon III, stream TE Albert Okwuegbunam, bench QB Drew Lock. 
ATL: Start WR Julio Jones, flex WR Calvin Ridley (if healthy), and bench RB Brian Hill.

Las Vegas Raiders at Los Angeles Chargers (Sunday 4:05 pm)

LV: Start RB Josh Jacobs/TE Darren Waller, stream QB Derek Carr, flex WR Henry Ruggs III in deep leagues, bench WR Nelson Agholor.

LAC: Start QB Justin Herbert/RB Justin Jackson/WR Keenan Allen, flex WR Mike Williams, bench RB Joshua Kelley. I simply do not know how I feel about TE Hunter Henry. 

Miami Dolphins at Arizona Cardinals (Sunday 4:25 pm) 

MIA: Stream the DST in deeper leagues and that's all I've got. Too many moving pieces with QB Tua Tagovailoa taking over and the RB corps being all out of whack. Give the offense a week to sort itself out. 
ARI: Start WR DeAndre Hopkins, flex RB Chase Edmonds, and bench the DST.

Pittsburgh Steelers at Dallas Cowboys (Sunday 4:25 pm)

PIT: Dear lord, START THEM ALL. Every last stinkin' one of them. Hell, start RB Willie Parker. See if QB Kordell Stewart is available. Rod Woodson might be a good choice in IDP leagues. 

DAL: Start K Greg Zuerlein, flex WR Michael Gallup (basically a desperation hail mary), and bench TE Dalton Schultz (honestly, bench everyone you can).

New Orleans Saints at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Sunday 8:20 pm)

NO: Start RB Alvin Kamara, flex WR Michael Thomas, and bench the DST.

TB: Start QB Tom Brady, flex WR Antonio Brown, and bench RB Ronald Jones II.

New England Patriots at New York Jets (Monday 8:15 pm)

I'll make this easier: Start the NE DST, stream QB Cam Newton, flex RB Damien Harris, bench every other participant in this game.

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