Top 5 Fantasy Flex Picks for Week 1 Include Michael Thomas, Raheem Mostert, and More

Week 1 is finally here, which means fantasy managers are setting their first lineups of the season! Who are some strong Flex options for Week 1?

Week 1 is officially upon us! And with it, we move from finding players in free agency, off of waivers, or through trades and transition to setting our lineups for the optimum scoring. The real fantasy football season is here.

Many managers are very aware of who they want to start in their top positions among running backs, wide receivers, and tight ends. But who to start in our Flex spots can often be the hardest decision to make.

Have no fear! We have a few names that will be great options for any team for Week 1 of the 2023 NFL season. Let’s dig in and find out who are some of the top options to start in our Flex spots.

Who Should I Put in My Flex Spot?

Figuring out the right players to start in your Flex spot is a bit of a science. We want to find players who have a good opportunity to see action in the game, play in favorable matchups with weaker opponents, and have had success in the past.

Typically (at least in Week 1), we want to make sure that our player is likely to be a contributor and have a high floor. We don’t typically aim at rookies playing the first game of their career. It’s easier to set rookies in our lineup once we’ve seen play a part of their new team’s plan on offense.

With this in mind, let’s take a look at a few players that are perfect options for your Flex this week. All of these players are currently ranked after the top 24 running backs and top 36 wide receivers for Week 1.

Michael Thomas, WR, New Orleans Saints

It’s hard to trust a 30-year-old wide receiver to be a strong contributor in our starting lineup. It’s even harder when they’ve only played in 10 games over the last three seasons.

But Michael Thomas was one of the most talented wide receivers in the NFL the last time he played a full season of football. Thomas (now in his eighth year in the NFL) last played a full season in 2019, and all he did was finish the year with 149 receptions (still an NFL single-season record), 1,725 yards and nine touchdowns. He averaged 107.8 yards per game that season.

But that was three years ago. A lot has changed since then, and Thomas has missed a lot of football. Why should we believe he can still be effective?

I’m basing this hunch off of Thomas’ start to the 2022 season before it ended abruptly due to another injury. In the three games Thomas played in 2022, he tallied 16 catches, 171 yards, and three touchdowns. The sample size is very small, but his 14.4 fantasy points per game (0.5 PPR) would have been the ninth best in the NFL last year.

Thomas has a lot to prove and several doubters out there. But as a fourth receiver starting on your fantasy team, you could be doing a whole lot worse. Some may say you should wait until you know he has returned to form. I say start him while you still can. You never know when the next injury could pop up.

There may not be a better time to test this than Week 1, when the Saints play a team with one of the worst pass defenses in 2022: the Tennessee Titans.

Raheem Mostert, RB, Miami Dolphins

Once again, we take a look at an experienced veteran on our list. Raheem Mostert is one of the more underrated running backs coming into the NFL this season. At 31 years old, you may have scratched him off as an option for your fantasy teams. But, the circumstances for Mostert in Miami are too good to overlook.

First off, Mostert is the starting back in an electric offense. While defenses are busy trying to game plan against Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle, Mostert is the RB set to see the most touches on Sunday. He faces off against a Los Angeles Chargers defense that surrendered 144.2 yards per game on the ground last season.

MORE: Fantasy Week 1 RB Start/Sit — Top Options Include Raheem Mostert, AJ Dillon

After Mostert, the only threat to steal touches is rookie De’Von Achane. Veteran running back Jeff Wilson Jr. was placed on injured reserve (IR) before the season began.

With all of this in mind, Mostert is a fantastic option for fantasy owners. He has a high probability of seeing plenty of touches, which gives him a great floor. And he’s coming off a season with over 1,000 all-purpose yards and five touchdowns.

Mostert in Week 1 is a perfect Flex.

Jamaal Williams, RB, New Orleans Saints

Three names into our list, and we’ve failed to identify a good Flex option that is under 28 years old. But don’t let age fool you! These players are still more than capable of being an asset to your fantasy team.

Jamaal Williams had a fantastic 2022 season in Detroit. He was able to eclipse over 1,000 yards rushing with a mind-boggling 17 touchdowns on the ground.

Williams now finds himself in the Big Easy with the New Orleans Saints. The Saints are in a bit of a pickle as they head into Week 1. Their star running back, Alvin Kamara, is suspended for the first three games of the season. Rookie RB Kendre Miller is questionable and likely not fit to suit up for Week 1.

Top 5 Fantasy Flex Picks for Week 1 Include Michael Thomas, Raheem Mostert, and More

This essentially leaves Williams as the Saints’ only option on the ground for Sunday. Williams was able to take advantage of opportunities while in Detroit last season, and it led to a huge fantasy year. He was the go-to ball carrier in goal-line situations, which led to his high touchdown total.

Now in New Orleans, with no other RB options seemingly available, Williams will see the bulk of the carries in Week 1. While the Titans were one of the top run defenses in the NFL last season, the opportunity and circumstances around Williams is too good to pass up.

If Williams is rostered on your squad, he’s a perfect Flex for this Sunday.

Skyy Moore, WR, Kansas City Chiefs

We finally get a little youth on our list! Skyy Moore had a rather lackluster rookie season in Kansas City. The young WR was only able to catch 22 passes for 250 yards in 16 games played and did not score a touchdown in the regular season. In fact, his first career touchdown in the NFL came in Super Bowl LVII.

Moore looks to take that momentum from a touchdown in the biggest game of the year and build on it in his 2023 season. And Week 1 is a perfect opportunity.

Head coach Andy Reid revealed on Tuesday that star tight end Travis Kelce had hyperextended his knee in practice. The tough news leaves Kelce questionable to play against the Lions in the NFL kickoff game on Thursday night.

This gives Moore an opportunity to be a prime target for Patrick Mahomes in the Chiefs’ offense. Kansas City will be starting Moore along with Marques Valdez-Scantling as the main wide receivers in their offense. Kadarius Toney, Rashee Rice, Justin Watson, Richie James, and Justyn Ross make up the rest of the WR room.

Moore did not have a strong 2022, but opportunity has come knocking in Week 1. The last time Kelce missed a game, Mahomes found Byron Pringle six times for 75 yards and two touchdowns. Moore has a chance to be one of the top Week 1 targets for the best quarterback in the NFL. It’s hard to pass up on an opportunity like that.

Brian Robinson, RB, Washington Commanders

Saying Brian Robinson had an interesting rookie season would be putting it lightly. The rookie running back out of Alabama missed the first four games of the season as he recovered from a gunshot wound to his leg in an attempted carjacking before the season began.

When Robinson was able to return, it took him some time to get up to full NFL speed. But in 12 games that he played in the 2022 season, he was able to amass 857 all-purpose yards and three touchdowns.

These stats may not jump off the page as incredible, but Robinson showcased that he was a strong runner with the ability to also catch passes out of the backfield. His versatility allows for him to be involved in any of the Washington Commanders’ offensive plans. His running mate, Antonio Gibson, is more of the typical pass-catching back, but Robinson is able to be a dual threat as well.

Entering Week 1, Robinson looks to be the lead back in the Commanders’ offense. This is a new offense, now under the lead of assistant head coach and offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy. While Bieniemy’s offense wasn’t run-heavy when he was in Kansas City, it would have been odd for them to be the focus with Patrick Mahomes at quarterback.

I fully expect Bieniemy to support his new young QB, Sam Howell, with a balanced offensive game plan. This would mean that Robinson would have plenty of opportunity to start off 2023 in a brighter light than 2022.

Add to all of this that the Commanders face off against one of the worst teams on paper entering 2023: the Arizona Cardinals. This seems like a Flex option that is bound to give you a good base of scoring with lots of opportunity for a good chunk of points.

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