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Marcus Mariota start or sit: Week 8 fantasy football advice

We break down the fantasy football outlook of Marcus Mariota ahead of the Falcons’ Week 8 matchup against the Panthers.

NFL: San Francisco 49ers at Atlanta Falcons Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

The Atlanta Falcons are coming off a humbling 35-17 defeat against the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 7. Marcus Mariota didn’t do much in that game, completing just 8-of-13 passes for 124 yards and a touchdown. He also ran for 31 yards on six carries. Can Mariota and the Falcons bounce back against the Carolina Panthers in Week 8? Let’s dive into the analysis.

Fantasy Football analysis: Falcons QB Marcus Mariota

Much like the Falcons themselves, Mariota’s numbers have been all over the place this season. However, the Atlanta quarterback has rushing upside to keep him in the fantasy conversation. Case in point, Mariota ran for 50 yards and a touchdown in Week 6 against the 49ers. He added 129 passing yards and two passing scores for 24.16 fantasy points in that game. However, Mariota had only 12.06 fantasy points last week at Cincinnati.

Start or sit in Week 8?

Mariota’s upside is intriguing, and I’m cautiously optimistic about his fantasy outlook this week. The Falcons could see plenty of scoring opportunities against a Panthers team that is among the bottom tier in the NFL. The last time the Panthers faced a mobile quarterback, they gave up 207 passing yards, two passing touchdowns, 26 rushing yards and a rushing score to Kyler Murray. Perhaps we will see Mariota’s good side this week and he’ll flirt with 20 fantasy points. He’s a fringe fantasy starter in Week 8 based on matchup potential.