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Falcons players to start in your fantasy lineup or sit on your bench in Week 9

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Resume your regularly scheduled Atlanta Falcons football play, on the other side of the bye week.

Washington Redskins v Atlanta Falcons Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The Atlanta Falcons are coming off of back to back wins and a bye week, looking to really get hot in a Week 9 matchup against the Washington Redskins.

The last start/sit column, from Week 7, was strong, going 7/8 in terms of how close the advice was to actual player performance. That’s two weeks of going 7/8 in a row.

Let’s try to find elusive perfection this week.

Matt Ryan - Start

The Redskins have a very good defense, which is top five in both yards allowed and points allowed. They’ve been a middle of the pack unit against opposing quarterbacks in terms of fantasy points allowed, however.

Matt Ryan, meanwhile, is the QB3 in all of fantasy football despite not playing last week due to the bye week. While nobody is catching QB1 Patrick Mahomes anytime soon, Ryan should regain his spot as the QB2 after this weekend.

Continue firing up Atlanta’s signal caller with confidence.

Tevin Coleman - Sit

You may be hard-pressed to sit a starting running back with six teams on a bye this week, but if you have options then I suggest leaving Teco on the bench against a Redskins team that’s one of the 10 stingiest defenses against opposing fantasy RBs this season.

Washington has allowed the second-fewest rushing yards in the league this year, and Coleman has been incredibly touchdown dependent since Week 2. He’s been getting those touchdowns lately, but TD-dependency isn’t a recipe for success, especially with Ito Smith taking more and more short-yardage carries.

Julio Jones - Start

You’re not sitting Julio Jones, especially not when six teams have a bye week.

Calvin Ridley - Start

I feel like this is the week where Ridley gets back into the end zone — he scored six touchdowns in between weeks 2 and 4, but has been on a draught since then.

The Redskins are middle-of-the-pack in regards to fantasy points allowed to opposing WRs and they’ll be giving Julio Jones plenty of attention. Following the bye week, Ridley should be close to fully recovered from a bone bruise injury he picked up in Week 6. Ridley has a good ceiling this week.

Mohamed Sanu - Sit

I’m back telling you to not start Mohamed Sanu! No, I’m not a hater of Sanu’s, I actually really like Sanu, but I don’t think that the offense will fare well enough to keep everyone properly fed this weekend.

The Redskins have a top five defense in the league and they’ve piled up 11 sacks in the past two games combined — they can get heat on the QB. As a result, I don’t think we’ll see the Falcons offense put up the 30+ we’ve been seeing this season, meaning that someone will be left out to dry in terms of fantasy prospects. I think that someone will be Sanu.

Austin Hooper - Start

This is more of a start as a result of necessity more than anything else — with the TE position being the shallowest in fantasy football, and with six teams on a bye week, I don’t think you can afford to sit Hooper if he’s on your roster. If you have a better option like Olsen against the Bucs or even OJ Howard against Carolina, then by all means make that play.

As a result of the Redskins’ good defense like I just mentioned under the Sanu entry, I wouldn’t expect a monster game from Hooper. Ryan has grown to trust the Stanford alum enough to where he should have a decent floor, however. Utilize that floor if you have no better options.

Matt Bryant/Giorgio Tavecchio - Start

Whichever of the two kickers starts for the Falcons is the one to start here, obviously. The Redskins give up the fewest fantasy points to opposing kickers but with how good the Falcons have been at giving their kicker opportunities, whoever is kicking will be matchup-proof.

Both Bryant and Tavecchio have kicked in a 57+ yarder to seal a win in each of the past two games for the Birds. Tavecchio was even named the fantasy stud for Week 7. Both are very reliable, and whoever starts should get some decent opportunities, even if the offense doesn’t put up 30+.

Atlanta Falcons D/ST - Sit

The Falcons’ defense had their best performance since Week 1, against the Giants, and they still only put up four fantasy points. Keep sitting this unit until further notice.