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What to do with Jamison Crowder in Week 1 fantasy football

The Jets have a difficult game against the Bills, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you should shy away from putting their No. 1 receiver in your fantasy lineup.

Jamison Crowder #82 of the New York Jets looks on against the Pittsburgh Steelers at MetLife Stadium on December 22, 2019 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images

In his first season with the New York Jets, Jamison Crowded quickly forged a connection with quarterback Sam Darnold. The veteran receiver led the team in catches (78), receiving yards (833), and touchdowns (6). He’ll lead the receiving corps once again this season—in part because the options behind him on the depth chart just aren’t much to look at—but with a Week 1 game against a nearly impenetrable Buffalo Bills defense, is Crowder a realistic option for fantasy lineups?

Fantasy Football analysis: New York Jets, WR, Jamison Crowder

It’s tempting to look at a matchup like this and shy away from starting Crowder. As the Jets’ top (only?) receiving threat, he’ll be a focal point for the Bills’ secondary. Darnold will have tight end Chris Herndon and running back Le’Veon Bell to throw too as well, especially if Buffalo closes off his downfield options. But there’s a simpler issue here, one of volume. Crowder is the No. 1 receiver by a country mile, and he’s got an established connection with Darnold, who will still be looking to get him the ball in all likelihood.

That was the case in 2019. Crowder caught 14 of 17 targets (that’s a lot of targets!) for 99 yards against the Bills in Week 1 last year. When they met again in Week 17, Crowder caught eight out of 10 passes thrown his way for 66 yards and a touchdown. So it may seem counterintuitive, but Crowder isn’t a bad player to have in your second receiver spot this week.

Fantasy Start/Sit Recommendation

Start Jamison Crowder.