Fantasy Football: Start or Sit Paul Richardson in Week Nine?

Only one wide receiver was more widely added this week in fantasy football than Paul Richardson, and that was part Twitter sensation, part Martavis Bryant annoyance, part wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster. It makes sense, as Richardson ended his week eight contest with 105 yards and two touchdowns on six receptions. This week the Seahawks take on Washington, again at home. Should you slot your newly-acquired Paul Richardson straight into your fantasy football lineups?

First, let’s look at Richardson’s production this season. He’s had inconsistent target volume, as his seven targets last week match his previous two weeks combined. While he scored three touchdowns prior to his two-TD performance, he hasn’t had the yardage to backup big games. He didn’t top 65 yards in any contest prior to last week and had 35 or fewer yards three times. That’s some dang inconsistent production so far this season, and that’s par for the course for the 2017 Seahawks. Tyler Lockett, Doug Baldwin, and Jimmy Graham all flashed and disappeared. That’s what happens when you have an amazing, improvisational quarterback. Wilson goes exactly where he needs to go on every play, and doesn’t feed any particular pass catcher. That inconsistency is what has doomed Doug Baldwin this season.

This week they take on a Washington team that has one of the most stifling defenses against opposing wide receivers. They allow the fourth-fewest fantasy points to the position on the year, and their hiccups came only when they were without the services of Josh Norman and Bashaud Breeland, their two best defensive backs. Josh Norman returned last week, and Breeland should be back this week (he practiced all week leading up to the game last week, and was held out as a precaution). That means it’ll be a long, bad day for Seattle wide receivers. Here’s the short of it: Aldrick Robinson is literally the only non-Eagle wide receiver to score a touchdown against Washington this season. They’re #ActuallyGood on defense, and their twenty sacks and six interceptions so far this season only underscore that point.

It’s entirely possible that Paul Richardson scores a touchdown and goes for fifty yards this weekend, but I’m not buying it yet. If you’re in a Bye week bind, he’s a tentative start. He’s not someone I would trust, however, as the Seahawks are starting to get some squeaky wheels (Doug Baldwin, Eddie Lacy) that need some greasing, and that might mean Richardson is out in the cold, greaseless? I don’t know, that metaphor went off the rails. He’s a hesitant WR3, only because of Byes. I’d sit him if you can. But here’s the thing about Richardson: Tyler Lockett was the breakout last week, not Richardson. Keep that in the back of your mind.

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