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Week 8 fantasy football start ’em or sit ’em for IDP leagues

Oct 25, 2020; Landover, Maryland, USA; Washington Football Team quarterback Kyle Allen (8) scrambles from Dallas Cowboys defensive end Demarcus Lawrence (90) in the fourth quarter at FedExField. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The fantasy football playoffs are nearing, and as we reach the halfway point of this season, the questions of who we should start or sit become all the more crucial. Roles are changing as players get moved around, injured, traded, etc.

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So, how do we know who to trust and who to avoid? I’m here to help you sort through some of these decisions right now as we look at some of the less obvious starts and sits for IDP.

DEFENSIVE LINE

START — Demarcus Lawrence, DE, Dallas Cowboys (vs. PHI)

It’s been a weird year so far for Demarcus Lawrence, who is one of the highest-paid players on the Cowboys' roster. He seemingly had lost his starting role to Aldon Smith, who hadn’t played football in five years, was seeing minimal snaps while Everson Griffen was in the lineup and has just now finally started to look like what we would expect from one of the league’s top pass-rushers.

Lawrence has seen an increase in his snap total from September, and his play has picked up significantly as of late, as well. He notched just eight total pressures and zero sacks through the first five weeks of the season but has managed 12 total pressures with two sacks over the past three weeks.

Aldon Smith has also seemingly cooled down a bit, not getting a sack since Week 3, and Everson Griffen was recently traded away to the Lions. Griffen had actually out-snapped Lawrence a couple of times this year and has always hovered close to the same amount of snaps as him, as well. As such, his departure should mean more work for Lawrence the rest of this season.

SIT — Uchenna Nwosu, DE, Los Angeles Chargers (vs. DEN)

Uchenna Nwosu has looked like a decent waiver pickup over his past two games, compiling three sacks and four solo tackles into a couple of nice fantasy days for his managers. Unfortunately, there's reason to believe that's his peak, as Melvin Ingram is set to return to the Chargers' defensive line. I touched on Ingram’s work in this week’s waiver wire article and expect it to have a big impact on what we can expect from Nwosu going forward.

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