DETROIT — After a week off to recharge their batteries, the Indianapolis Colts are back at it today, as they travel to take on the Detroit Lions at Ford Field.
As a team, the Colts (4-2) are hoping to take care of business today against the Lions (3-3) to give them some positive momentum as they head into perhaps the toughest stretch of their schedule. And for those with Colts players in your fantasy lineups today, there should be opportunities for at least a couple Indy players to score points in bunches throughout the afternoon to create some positive momentum for your team as the NFL regular season schedule reaches its halfway point.
So what should you expect from the Colts players on your fantasy rosters in Week 8? We've got you covered here.
(Weekly positional rankings from FantasyPros.com, based on Half-PPR scoring. Ranks as of Friday of game week.)
QB Philip Rivers
» FantasyPros Week 8 Position Rank: QB22
» Lions vs. QBs: 16th (19.3 FPPG)
If you're coming here looking for expert analysis about how Philip Rivers will fare today fantasy-wise against the Lions, I just want to apologize. I have no idea. Detroit literally ranks middle of the pack in terms of average fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks on a weekly basis, so that's no help. Also complicating matters is Rivers' season to this point; he wasn't really much of a fantasy asset in the first five weeks of the season, and even had a couple games in which he didn't net many points at all, but then all of a sudden the light bulb turned on in the second quarter of the Colts' Week 6 game against the Cincinnati Bengals, and he ends up putting up substantial numbers in a dramatic, come-from-behind victory heading into the bye week. So, again, my apologies; I wouldn't necessarily rush to pick Rivers up this morning if you need a QB, but I also wouldn't be surprised if kept the momentum going and torched the Detroit defense like he did Cincinnati's. 🤷♂️
RBs Jonathan Taylor and Nyheim Hines
» FantasyPros Week 8 Position Rank: Taylor RB6, Hines RB38
» Lions vs. RBs: 29th (25.1 FPPG)
Get. Jonathan. Taylor. In. Your. Lineup. Now. ... Please. The Lions almost can't help themselves giving up huge performances to running backs this season, highlighted by a 168-yard, three-touchdown (two rushing, one receiving) performance from the Green Bay Packers' Aaron Jones and a combined 147 rushing yards with three touchdowns to the New Orleans Saints' Alvin Kamara and Latavius Murray. While Taylor didn't get many touches Week 6 against the Bengals just due to the fact the Colts had to spend most of the game working their way back from a large deficit, the rookie running back has clearly shown improvement each and every week, and is due to break out any time. That could very well happen today against the Taylor. As for Hines, if you have him in your lineup today, you're hoping for a double-trouble-like performance like Kamara and Murray had against the Lions a few weeks back; Hines hasn't really seen a ton of targets or carries since getting two touchdowns Week 1 against the Jacksonville Jaguars, but we'll see if Frank Reich's gameplan changes that narrative at all today.
WRs T.Y. Hilton, Zach Pascal and Marcus Johnson
» FantasyPros Week 8 Position Rank: Hilton WR40, Pascal WR56. Johnson WR67
» Lions vs. WRs: Tied-24th (26.6 FPPG)
It seems as though the fantasy experts are saying to avoid the Colts' wide receivers in your lineups today. I happen to disagree. I've probably said in this space almost every week this season that T.Y. Hilton is due for a breakout performance, and darn it, I haven't stopped believing in The Ghost — especially the day after Halloween. The Lions simply cannot stop top receivers: they allowed 10 receptions for 137 yards to the Arizona Cardinals' DeAndre Hopkins, six receptions for 143 yards to the Jacksonville Jaguars' Keelan Cole, eight receptions for 97 yards to the Atlanta Falcons' Julio Jones (and five receptions for 69 yards and a touchdown that same game to Calvin Ridley), six receptions for 93 yards to the New Orleans Saints' Emmanuel Sanders, four receptions for 76 yards and a touchdown to the Chicago Bears' Anthony Miller ... need I go on? Start Hilton. Just do it.
TEs Trey Burton, Jack Doyle and Mo Alie-Cox
» FantasyPros Week 8 Position Rank: Burton TE17, Doyle TE33, Alie-Cox TE51
» Lions vs. TEs: T-3rd (4.7 FPPG)
While the Lions seem to yield an awful lot of points to running backs and wide receivers, they haven't budged much against opposing tight ends. In fact, the Falcons' Hayden Hurst had the best tight end performance against Detroit at six receptions for 68 yards. There is room for a touchdown here or there — both Jimmy Graham and Robert Tonyan Jr. reached the end zone against Detroit's defense in recent weeks — but for the most part tight ends are getting more than two or three receptions for 20 to 25 yards on a week-to-week basis. Burton has been the go-to guy at tight end for the Colts here lately, and he might not be a bad start if you need him, but Doyle's usage fluctuates, and Alie-Cox, who had such a strong start, missed the Week 6 win over the Bengals before the bye week and is still questionable today with a knee injury.
Colts Defense/Special Teams
» FantasyPros Week 8 Position Rank: DST9
» Lions vs. DSTs: Tied-17th (6.9 FPPG)
I'll repeat myself again in this week's fantasy preview: start the Colts' D/ST until they give you a reason not to. Yes, the first halves haven't been pretty the last two games against the Cleveland Browns and Cincinnati Bengals, but the second-half performances, which have included a good amount of takeaways and field goals and even a kickoff return for a touchdown, have really helped Colts D/ST owners rack up some points. The Lions have weapons on offense — never count out Matthew Stafford on offense, and Kenny Golladay is one of the top emerging receivers in the NFL — but they've been pretty mediocre as a unit. Start the Colts if you've got 'em.