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What to do with Ian Thomas in Week 1 fantasy football

No more Greg Olsen means more looks for Ian Thomas, but does that matter?

Carolina Panthers v Atlanta Falcons Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The 2020 Carolina Panthers are going to look a lot different than the 2019 Panthers. Gone are players like Luke Kuechly, Cam Newton, and Greg Olsen. In are newcomers like Robby Anderson and Teddy Bridgewater. Without the benefit of a preseason, we haven’t seen what this Panthers offense could look like, but the departure of Olsen should open things up - at least on paper - for a guy like Ian Thomas.

Fantasy Football analysis: Panthers TE Ian Thomas

Carolina is set to host the Las Vegas Raiders Week 1, a team that gave up an average of 11 points per game to opposing tight ends in 2019. In Teddy Bridgewater’s final two games starting for the New Orleans Saints last season, Jared Cook totaled 115 yards and two touchdowns, so Bridgewater clearly has an eye for his tight end.

Despite those promising statistics, there are just too many unknowns when dealing with this Panthers offense outside of Christian McCaffrey. If you have Ian Thomas as a tight end on your fantasy team this year, you didn’t add him to be your TE1, and until he proves he has that upside, he should sit firmly on your bench.

Fantasy Start/Sit Recommendation

Sit, but monitor.