News & Analysis

Week 1 fantasy football flex rankings

Sep 9, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (26) celebrates his touchdown against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. The touchdown was the first of his NFL career. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

It’s Wednesday and that means it’s time to break out the flex fantasy football rankings for Week 1 of the 2019 NFL season. Remember that rankings change throughout the week, so be sure to check our staff rankings for updates.

1. Saquon Barkley, NYG @ DAL (RB1) — Let's not overthink it. Barkley is the top fantasy option entering the season.

2. Alvin Kamara, NO vs HOU (RB2) — Kamara was the No. 1 fantasy running back three times in September last year.

3. Christian McCaffrey, CAR vs LAR (RB3) — This isn't the best matchup, but McCaffrey is set up to see a healthy workload.

4. Ezekiel Elliott, DAL vs NYG (RB4) — He's finally back. While Elliott may not get a “full” workload, you're starting him no matter what.

5. DeAndre Hopkins, HOU @ NO (WR1) — The top fantasy wideout in each of the last two seasons, Hopkins is set to pick right up where he left off.

6. Dalvin Cook, MIN vs ATL (RB5) — Cook flashed major upside in the preseason and is poised to break out in 2019.

7. Odell Beckham Jr., CLE vs TEN (WR2) — The Beckham era in Cleveland begins this weekend. Giddy up.

8. Nick Chubb, CLE vs TEN (RB6) — With no Kareem Hunt until Week 10, look for Chubb to see monster workloads over the first eight games.

9. David Johnson, ARI vs DET (RB7) — We don't quite know what Kliff Kingsbury's offense is going to look like, but Johnson is in a good position to bounce back.

10. Chris Carson, SEA vs CIN (RB8) — The Seahawks are one of the league's run-heaviest offenses and Carson is the lead dog.

11. Davante Adams, GB @ CHI (WR3) — Sure, the matchup isn't favorable, but Adams is going to get his regardless.

12. Michael Thomas, NO vs HOU (WR4) — He's coming off a massive 125 catches last season and remains locked in as Drew Brees' primary target.

13. James Conner, PIT @ NE (RB9) — Conner was one of just five backs to average over 20 touches per game last season.

14. Leonard Fournette, JAC vs KC (RB10) — All the reports out of Jacksonville have been favorable for Fournette this preseason. He's slated to be a three-down workhorse.

15. Mike Evans, TB vs SF (WR5) — This is a fantastic matchup for Evans. He has the potential to explode out of the gate for the Bucs.

16. Todd Gurley, LAR @ CAR (RB11) — Yes, his workload is likely going to be reduced, but Gurley can still be effective on fewer touches.

17. Travis Kelce, KC @ JAC (TE1) — Matchups don't matter for Kelce.

18. JuJu Smith-Schuster, PIT @ NE (WR6) — Don't underestimate the Patriots secondary. This is a tough draw for Smith-Schuster.

19. Tyreek Hill, KC @ JAC (WR7) — Hill is going to see a shadow from Jalen Ramsey, but it doesn't matter. You start him every week.

20. Julio Jones, ATL @ MIN (WR8) — Likewise, Jones should never be in consideration to sit regardless of the matchup.

21. Adam Thielen, MIN vs ATL (WR9) — Thielen is coming off a triple-digit catch season and was lights out over the first half of last year.

22. Antonio Brown, OAK vs DEN (WR10) — The helmet and foot issues seem to be in the rearview for Brown entering Week 1.

23. Keenan Allen, LAC vs IND (WR11) — He's one of the highest-volume receivers in the league.

24. Le'Veon Bell, NYJ vs BUF (RB12) — We don't know what to expect from Bell this year, but he's a good bet to see heavy volume.

25. Mark Ingram, BAL @ MIA (RB13) — Gamescript should set up very favorably for the run in this contest.

26. Joe Mixon, CIN @ SEA (RB14) — Mixon gets a tough draw out of the gate against Seattle but is still in the RB2 conversation.

27. Amari Cooper, DAL vs NYG (WR12) — Cooper sat the preseason out but should be ready to roll for this plus matchup.

28. Stefon Diggs, MIN vs ATL (WR13) — Like his teammate Adam Thielen, Diggs also topped 100 catches last year.

29. Tyler Lockett, SEA vs CIN (WR14) — With no Doug Baldwin, look for Lockett to see an uptick in targets this year.

30. Kerryon Johnson, DET @ ARI (RB15) — Yes, he's the lead back in Detroit, but don't get too carried away with your expectations for Johnson in Week 1.

31. Chris Godwin, TB vs SF (WR15)

32. George Kittle, SF @ TB (TE2)

33. Brandin Cooks, LAR @ CAR (WR16)

34. Sony Michel, NE vs PIT (RB16)

35. Kenny Golladay, DET @ ARI (WR17)

36. Aaron Jones, GB @ CHI (RB17) — There's no way around it. This is a tough matchup for Jones.

37. Julian Edelman, NE vs PIT (WR18)

38. Robert Woods, LAR @ CAR (WR19)

39. Cooper Kupp, LAR @ CAR (WR20)

40. T.Y. Hilton, IND @ LAC (WR21) — No Andrew Luck, means Hilton is likely a boom-or-bust WR2 each week.

41. Mike Williams, LAC vs IND (WR22)

42. Alshon Jeffery, PHI vs WAS (WR23)

43. Derrick Henry, TEN @ CLE (RB18)

44. Zach Ertz, PHI vs WAS (TE3)

45. David Montgomery, CHI vs GB (RB19)

46. Allen Robinson, CHI vs GB (WR24)

47. Marlon Mack, IND @ LAC (RB20)

48. Tyler Boyd, CIN @ SEA (WR25)

49. D.J. Moore, CAR vs LAR (WR26)

50. Devonta Freeman, ATL @ MIN (RB21)

51. Will Fuller, HOU @ NO (WR27)

52. Josh Gordon, NE vs PIT (WR28) — Here we go. Gordon offers major upside, but keep in mind that the Patriots are one of the league's run-heaviest offenses.

53. Marvin Jones, DET @ ARI (WR29)

54. O.J. Howard, TB vs SF (TE4)

55. Calvin Ridley, ATL @ MIN (WR30)

56. Phillip Lindsay, DEN @ OAK (RB22)

57 .Dante Pettis, SF @ TB (WR31)

58. Hunter Henry, LAC vs IND (TE5)

59. Robby Anderson, NYJ vs BUF (WR32)

60. Dede Westbrook, JAC vs KC (WR33)

61. Austin Ekeler, LAC vs IND (RB23)

62. Tevin Coleman, SF @ TB (RB24)

63. Jarvis Landry, CLE vs TEN (WR34)

64. Curtis Samuel, CAR vs LAR (WR35)

65. Damien Williams, KC @ JAC (RB25) — It's tough to like Williams as anything more than an RB3 with LeSean McCoy now on the roster.

66. Evan Engram, NYG @ DAL (TE6)

67. Jared Cook, NO vs HOU (TE7)

68. Sterling Shepard, NYG @ DAL (WR36)

69. Sammy Watkins, KC @ JAC (WR37)

70. Christian Kirk, ARI vs DET (WR38)

71. DeSean Jackson, PHI vs WAS (WR39)

72. Josh Jacobs, OAK vs DEN (RB26)

73. Duke Johnson, HOU @ NO (RB27) — Carlos Hyde should eat into early-down work for the Texans, making Johnson a risky RB3 play.

74. Corey Davis, TEN @ CLE (WR40)

75. James White, NE vs PIT (RB28)

76. Larry Fitzgerald, ARI vs DET (WR41)

77. Vance McDonald, PIT @ NE (TE8)

78. Latavius Murray, NO vs HOU (RB29)

79. Miles Sanders, PHI vs WAS (RB30)

80. Matt Breida, SF @ TB (RB31) — Yes, he's listed as the “starter,” but Tevin Coleman is still the preferred fantasy option in San Francisco.

81. Courtland Sutton, DEN @ OAK (WR42)

82. Michael Gallup, DAL vs NYG (WR43)

83. Anthony Miller, CHI vs GB (WR44)

84. Royce Freeman, DEN @ OAK (RB32)

85. David Njoku, CLE vs TEN (TE9)

86. John Brown, BUF @ NYJ (WR45)

87. Geronimo Allison, GB @ CHI (WR46)

88. Donte Moncrief, PIT @ NE (WR47) — While Moncrief looks to be the No. 2 in Pittsburgh, this is a rough matchup in Week 1.

89. Delanie Walker, TEN @ CLE (TE10)

90. Mark Andrews, BAL @ MIA (TE11)

91. Marquise Goodwin, SF @ TB (WR48)

92. Emmanuel Sanders, DEN @ OAK (WR49)

93. Austin Hooper, ATL @ MIN (TE12)

94. Rashaad Penny, SEA vs CIN (RB33)

95. Marquez Valdes-Scantling, GB @ CHI (WR50)

96. James Washington, PIT @ NE (WR51)

97. Jamison Crowder, NYJ vs BUF (WR52)

98. Tarik Cohen, CHI vs GB (RB34)

99. Tyrell Williams, OAK vs DEN (WR53)

100. Tre'Quan Smith, NO vs HOU (WR54)

101. Jordan Howard, PHI vs WAS (RB35)

102. Keke Coutee, HOU @ NO (WR55)

103. Derrius Guice, WAS @ PHI (RB36) — We don't know if the Redskins are going to feed Guice right out of the gate, but it could be trending that way.

104. Kenyan Drake, MIA vs BAL (RB37)

105. Eric Ebron, IND @ LAC (TE13)

106. Justin Jackson, LAC vs IND (RB38)

107. Peyton Barber, TB vs SF (RB39)

108. Kenny Stills, HOU @ NO (WR56)

109. Greg Olsen, CAR vs LAR (TE14)

110. Zay Jones, BUF @ NYJ (WR57)

111. LeSean McCoy, KC @ JAC (RB40)

112. Devin Singletary, BUF @ NYJ (RB41) — Give the Bills backfield a little time to sort itself out. Singletary is the guy to own, but we aren't starting him quite yet.

113. Albert Wilson, MIA vs BAL (WR58)

114. Kyle Rudolph, MIN vs ATL (TE15)

115. Adrian Peterson, WAS @ PHI (RB42)

116. Mohamed Sanu, ATL @ MIN (WR59)

117. Jimmy Graham, GB @ CHI (TE16)

118. DeVante Parker, MIA vs BAL (WR60)

119. Darrell Henderson, LAR @ CAR (RB43)

120. Jack Doyle, IND @ LAC (TE17)

121. Deebo Samuel, SF @ TB (WR61)

122. Devin Funchess, IND @ LAC (WR62)

123. Darren Waller, OAK vs DEN (TE18)

124. Jordan Reed, WAS @ PHI (TE19)

125. Ted Ginn, NO vs HOU (WR63)

126. Adam Humphries, TEN @ CLE (WR64)

127. Taylor Gabriel, CHI vs GB (WR65)

128. DaeSean Hamilton, DEN @ OAK (WR66)

129. Dion Lewis, TEN @ CLE (RB44)

130. T.J. Hockenson, DET @ ARI (TE20)

131. Quincy Enunwa, NYJ vs BUF (WR67)

132. John Ross, CIN @ SEA (WR68)

133. Rashard Higgins, CLE vs TEN (WR69)

134. Trey Burton, CHI vs GB (TE21)

135. Kalen Ballage, MIA vs BAL (RB45)

136. Miles Boykin, BAL @ MIA (WR70)

137. D.K. Metcalf, SEA vs CIN (WR71)

138. Noah Fant, DEN @ OAK (TE22)

139. Ronald Jones II, TB vs SF (RB46)

140. Tony Pollard, DAL vs NYG (RB47) — Even though Ezekiel Elliott is back, it's wise to hold onto Pollard for now.

141. Parris Campbell, IND @ LAC (WR72)

142. Dallas Goedert, PHI vs WAS (TE23)

143. Gerald Everett, LAR @ CAR (TE24)

144. Justice Hill, BAL @ MIA (RB48)

145. Robert Foster, BUF @ NYJ (WR73)

146. Danny Amendola, DET @ ARI (WR74)

147. Mecole Hardman, KC @ JAC (WR75)

148. Nyheim Hines, IND @ LAC (RB49)

149. Tyler Eifert, CIN @ SEA (TE25)

150. Frank Gore, BUF @ NYJ (RB50)

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