Evan Silva

Matchups

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Silva's Week 5 Matchups

Sunday, October 8, 2017


1:00 PM ET Games

NY Jets @ Cleveland
Team Totals: Jets 19.75, Browns 19.75

Due in part to teammate ineptness – e.g. Kenny Britt – and his own on-field flaws, DeShone Kizer has been an extreme high-variance fantasy producer four starts in. In chronological order, Kizer’s weekly finishes are QB10 > QB32 > QB13 > QB32, with both of his high-end results tied to rushing TDs. Kizer also leads the NFL in interceptions (8) and turnovers (9). As a streamer and/or two-quarterback-league play, you simply have to know what you’re getting into. Kizer looks great at times, and like the league’s worst quarterback at most others. His outlook is more intriguing than usual this week because the Jets play man-coverage defense and invite quarterback rushing attempts, while Kizer is playing at home in a sneaky bad-team potential shootout. … Isaiah Crowell’s usage is tied to game flow, but it is nonetheless concerning his weekly touch totals are descending (19 > 10 > 14 > 8) amid sustained ineffectiveness. Crowell has averaged 3.78 yards per carry with four touchdowns over his last 16 games. This is a now-or-never matchup against the Jets, who’ve yielded the NFL’s fourth-most fantasy points to running backs. … Duke Johnson has emerged as Kizer’s favorite target, leading the Browns in catches (9, 6) in consecutive weeks while out-snapping Crowell in two of the past three. The Jets have given up the NFL’s ninth-most catches (25) and tenth-most receiving yards (223) to enemy backs, keeping Johnson in play as a PPR flex.

Kizer’s Weeks 1-4 target distribution: Johnson 26; Kenny Britt 23; Ricardo Louis 20; Rashard Higgins 17; Seth DeValve 15; David Njoku 11; Crowell 8; Kasen Williams 6. … From a pass-catcher standpoint, it’s tough to know where to look for sleepers when tailback-receiver hybrid Johnson leads the Browns in targets. … Britt single-handedly ended seemingly countless Week 4 drives with drops, penalties, and mental mistakes, and coach Hue Jackson conceded after the game Britt would be released if not for Cleveland’s multitude of wide receiver injuries. Mercifully, knee and groin injuries threaten to keep Britt out of this week’s game. … Njoku (51%) out-snapped DeValve (49%) for the first time in Week 4, although they continue to rotate and cancel out each other’s fantasy relevance. It is frustrating the Browns refuse to play them together, especially when their wideouts are so bad. … Slot man Higgins has hurt the team since his seven-catch, 95-yard tease in Week 2 against Baltimore. In two games since, he’s caught 2-of-10 targets for ten yards. … 4.43 speedster Louis is worth some Hail Mary discussion with rising target totals over the past three weeks (2 > 6 > 9). Louis played a season-high 86% of the Browns’ Week 4 offensive snaps, catching five balls for 64 yards. With Jets top CB Morris Claiborne likelier to chase Britt, Louis should draw the easier matchup against either Darryl Roberts or Juston Burris.

Josh McCown enters this Week 5 “revenge game” with to-date fantasy finishes of QB23 > QB13 > QB23 > QB31. Matching up with the Browns gives McCown a real chance at spiked results after Cleveland allowed season-best games to Joe Flacco (QB15), Jacoby Brissett (QB5), and Andy Dalton (QB3) in Weeks 2-4, showing major pass-funnel tendencies by containing running games but getting blown to pieces by aerial attacks. The matchup makes McCown a locked-in two-quarterback-league play and underrated 14- or 16-team-league streamer. … Even without stud NT Danny Shelton last week, Cleveland shut down Joe Mixon and through four games has held enemy backs to a combined 100/308/3.08/2 rushing line. Bilal Powell remains a volume-driven RB2 after operating as the Jets’ clear Week 4 lead back in Matt Forte’s (turf toe) absence with season highs in touches (25) and snaps (66%). Powell’s 75-yard TD run was fluky because the Jaguars’ defense figured he was tackled after Powell fell flat on his face after emerging from the pile, but he turned 24 touches into 115 total yards even if you leave out that run. … Rookie Elijah McGuire also broke out against the Jags, handling 12 touches on a 27% playing-time clip and totaling 131 yards with a score, including a perfectly-blocked inside-zone run McGuire took 69 yards to the house. This week’s matchup is more difficult, but what projects as a balanced game script should allow McGuire to again flirt with double-digit touches, giving him deeper-league flex appeal.

McCown’s Weeks 1-4 target distribution: Jermaine Kearse and Robby Anderson 24; Powell and Jeremy Kerley 13; Austin Seferian-Jenkins 10; Forte 8; ArDarius Stewart 6; McGuire 4. … Either Anderson or Kearse will probably have a useful Week 5 fantasy game, but your guess is as good as mine regarding who it’ll be. The Browns have been flamed by No. 1 wideouts A.J. Green (5/63/1), T.Y. Hilton (7/153/1), Antonio Brown (11/182/0), and Jeremy Maclin (4/31/1). If forced to choose from the Jets’ top-two wide receivers, my pick would be Anderson for his superior big-play ability and slight target lead (12 to 10) on Kearse over the past two weeks. … Since returning from suspension two games ago, Seferian-Jenkins has logged 77% of the Jets’ offensive snaps and equaled Kearse in targets. The Browns’ defense got torched by Jesse James in Week 1 (6/41/2), Ravens tight ends in Week 2 (13/121/0), and Bengals tight ends in Week 4 (7/79/2). Seferian-Jenkins is arguably the premier tight end streamer on the board this week.

Score Prediction: Browns 24, Jets 21

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Carolina @ Detroit
Team Totals: Lions 22.5, Panthers 20.5

Panthers-Lions is a battle between 3-1 teams I’ve struggled to get a feel for. I bet the over on Carolina’s pre-season Win Total, yet have been underwhelmed by their on-field play. I bet the under on Detroit and have mixed feelings. For Week 5 in particular, getting a handle on Matthew Stafford’s outlook is just as difficult. To-date weekly quarterback finishes against the Panthers’ defense are QB28 (Brian Hoyer) > QB25 (Tyrod Taylor) > QB14 (Drew Brees) > QB10 (Tom Brady), all below-expectation marks. Stafford has managed QB20 > QB18 > QB22 results over his last three starts. While I’m not sure I would fade Stafford in favor of streamers like Jacoby Brissett (vs. SF) or Josh McCown (@ CLE), I do believe we’re at a point where that is a question worth asking. … Albeit in unlikely circumstances on the road against the Vikings in Week 4, Ameer Abdullah finally had a breakthrough game with 109 yards from scrimmage and a touchdown on a season-high 23 touches. Abdullah has been frustrating to say the least, but he does offer a weekly floor of 17 touches based on first-month results. Carolina, of course, has played run-tough defense by limiting enemy running backs to a combined 71/270/3.80/2 rushing line while allowing the NFL’s fifth-fewest fantasy points to the position. Ultimately, Abdullah is a volume-driven RB2/flex option. … Theo Riddick may need an Abdullah injury to become a usable fantasy commodity. Riddick has logged single-digit touches in 3-of-4 games and has just 113 total yards on the season.

Stafford’s Weeks 1-4 target distribution: Golden Tate 32; Riddick 21; Eric Ebron 19; Marvin Jones 18; Kenny Golladay 15; T.J. Jones 12; Abdullah 11. … Tate has been a surprisingly up-and-down fantasy asset through four weeks, especially for a player whose calling card is consistency. Nevertheless, Tate’s Week 5 matchup is attractive against a Carolina defense that give up an 11-yard TD to Saints slot WR Brandon Coleman in Week 3 and 6/42/1 to Danny Amendola in Week 4. Even with Golladay (hamstring) on the shelf last week, Tate ran 73% of his routes in the slot. … The Panthers have still been most vulnerable to perimeter wideouts, namely Michael Thomas (7/87/1), Pierre Garcon (6/81/0), Chris Hogan (5/60/1), and Ted Ginn (2/44/1). I haven’t been bullish on Marvin Jones in any game so far, but I think his outlook is elevated in this matchup. … Held below 50 yards in all four games, Ebron established a season low in snap rate (44%) in last week’s win over the Vikings. Equipped with speedy linebackers who close quickly on the middle of the field, Carolina stymied 49ers tight ends in Week 1 (5/27/0), Charles Clay (3/23/0) in Week 2, Coby Fleener (1/21/0) in Week 3, and Rob Gronkowski (4/80/0) in Week 4. The Panthers’ loss of FS Kurt Coleman (knee) is a concern for their defense, but I’m skeptical it will help Ebron bust his slump.

Even after his overall QB2 result against New England, I have a hard time viewing Cam Newton as more than a high-volatility fantasy bet against a Lions defense that has yielded lowly finishes of QB21 (Carson Palmer), QB23 (Eli Manning), QB21 (Matt Ryan), and QB24 (Case Keenum), with none landing inside the top 20. The Patriots’ defense is bad enough that Newton’s Week 4 has a real chance to prove a fluke. Last week marked Cam’s first top-15 week since last November. … The Lions’ run defense was already struggling before losing WLB Paul Worrilow (MCL), surrendering a combined 49/239/4.88/2 rushing line to enemy backs in Weeks 3-4. Detroit has also given up the NFL’s 10th-most catches (24) and seventh-most receiving yards (238) to the position. I’m still not sure why Christian McCaffrey creeped into the second round of season-long drafts by the end of August, but he makes for a reasonable RB2/flex play in Detroit. Due to his pass-catching role, McCaffrey remains a far more desirable PPR than non-PPR asset. McCaffrey has just one touch inside the ten-yard line, losing two yards on the play. … Jonathan Stewart also stands to benefit if Carolina’s defense plays to its ceiling. Stewart hasn’t exceeded 15 touches in a game since Week 1, however, and his lack of receiving work renders Stewart a touchdown-or-bust flex option.

Cam’s Weeks 1-4 target distribution: McCaffrey 29; Devin Funchess 25; Kelvin Benjamin 19; Ed Dickson 8; Stewart 6; Curtis Samuel 5; Russell Shepard 4; Fozzy Whittaker 3. … In two games since Greg Olsen broke his foot, Funchess’ snap rates have jumped from 75% to 96%, his routes run per game have gone from 32.5 to 36.0, and his per-game target averages spiked from 4.0 to 9.5. Funchess also leads Carolina in red-zone targets (4). Should Lions top CB Darius Slay give Benjamin trouble, Funchess would stand to benefit on the opposite side. … No. 1 wideouts to face Slay’s Lions so far are Stefon Diggs (5/98/0), Julio Jones (7/91/0), ankle-hobbled Odell Beckham (4/36/0), and Larry Fitzgerald (6/74/0). The matchup isn’t overly imposing for Benjamin, who has topped 75 yards in two straight healthy games and should continue to be fired up as a WR2/3. … The Lions haven’t been the tight end sieve they were last year, so far holding Kyle Rudolph (2/34/0), Austin Hooper (1/9/0), Evan Engram (4/49/1), and Jermaine Gresham (3/15/0) all below 50 yards. Dickson will only be worth streaming in especially favorable matchups.

Score Prediction: Lions 23, Panthers 21

San Francisco @ Indianapolis
Team Totals: Colts 23, 49ers 21.5

49ers-Colts offers sneaky bad-team shootout potential with pass-funnel defenses on both sides. Not only is Carlos Hyde (hip) banged up to the extent that he played a season-low 69% of the 49ers’ Week 4 snaps and ceded a season-high 10 touches to No. 2 back Matt Breida, the Colts’ run-defense stoutness has been sustained by holding enemy backs to a combined 90/333/3.70/4 rushing line. Chuck Pagano’s unit has surrendered QB14, QB12, QB13, QB5 results to Jared Goff, Carson Palmer, DeShone Kizer, and Russell Wilson while allowing a league-high 26 completions of 20-plus yards and ranking 26th in sacks (9). Despite his to-date struggles, Brian Hoyer offers two-quarterback-league viability in this cupcake draw indoors, and has desperation streamer appeal in 14- and 16-team leagues. … Even with slightly more limitations than usual, Hyde logged a robust 21 touches in last week’s loss to Arizona and enters Week 5 averaging 20.5 touches for 102.3 total yards per game. Indianapolis has done well to limit rushing efficiency, but the Colts have still allowed the NFL’s seventh-most fantasy points to running backs. On pace for 68 catches, Hyde is tracking to shatter his career high of 27. At worst, he is an every-week RB2.

Hoyer’s Weeks 1-4 target distribution: Pierre Garcon 33; Hyde 22; Marquise Goodwin and Trent Taylor 19; Aldrick Robinson 18; George Kittle 14; Breida 9; Kyle Juszczyk 8. … This is a potential breakthrough game for Garcon, who runs 68% of his routes at slot and left corners, whereas Vontae Davis played all right corner in his Week 4 return from a preseason groin injury. Davis struggled much as he did when trying to play through a groin injury last season, giving Seattle’s wideouts an inordinate amount of cushion, and allowing 101 yards on six targets according to PFF’s charts. … If Goodwin (concussion) can’t go against the Colts, Robinson will come into play as a dart-throw WR3/flex option in this plum draw. Although Robinson managed an underwhelming 3/52/0 receiving line in last week’s loss to Arizona, he drew a team-high 12 targets and played 87% of the 49ers’ offensive snaps. As Goodwin simply hasn’t been getting the job done, this could be an opportunity for Robinson to seize the starting role opposite Garcon should he capitalize. … The Colts surrendered 4/89/0 on six targets to Rams tight ends in Week 1, 2/62/0 on three targets to Cardinals tight ends in Week 2, 5/45/1 to Browns tight ends in Week 3, and 5/66/1 to Seahawks tight ends last week. Kittle played 89% of the Niners’ Week 4 snaps, ran a season-high 44 pass routes, and is worth Hail Mary streamer discussion based on matchup and opportunity.

Back from a brutally unfavorable Week 4 matchup in Seattle, Jacoby Brissett returns home to Lucas Oil Stadium where he posted top-five fantasy quarterback stats last time out (vs. CLE), and now draws a 49ers defense against which no enemy signal caller has finished worse than the QB17, including back-to-back top-14 weeks by Jared Goff and Carson Palmer, who each topped 290 passing yards. The Niners have faced/allowed a league-high 21 rushing attempts by quarterbacks, while Brissett is averaging 4.7 scrambles for 23 yards per start with two rushing TDs, raising his floor and ceiling. On a one-for-one basis in this game, I would rather stream Brissett than Hoyer. … The 49ers have limited enemy backs to a combined 105/373/3.55/2 rushing line, giving Frank Gore a tough Week 5 matchup in an offense that has struggled mightily to run the ball. The Colts rank dead last in the NFC in yards per carry (3.0) and 25th in the league in rushing yards per game (85.2) despite Brissett’s dual threat, which boosts their counting stats. Averaging just 58.8 total yards per game, Gore is a volume-based and ultimately touchdown-or-bust flex play. Gore (2) has also been out-carried by both Robert Turbin (3) and Marlon Mack (3) inside the ten-yard line, lowering Gore’s scoring probability. He’s a low-floor, low-upside fantasy commodity.

Brissett’s Weeks 2-4 target distribution: T.Y. Hilton 21; Jack Doyle 20; Kamar Aiken 15; Donte Moncrief 14; Gore 6; Turbin 3; Mack 1. … The Niners gave up three season-best wide receiver games in the past two weeks to Robert Woods (6/108/0), Sammy Watkins (6/106/2), and Jaron Brown (8/105/0). Hilton has been held below 60 yards in 3-of-4 starts, but he is always better on the Lucas Oil track indoors, and nothing about San Francisco’s secondary is worrisome. … Hilton is the lone Colts wideout to reach 60 yards in a game this season, and he’s done so once. Moncrief’s stats in Brissett’s starts are 2/18/0, 2/44/0, and 3/30/1. Aiken’s are 3/31/0, 1/9/0, and 1/4/0. … The Niners contained Greg Olsen in Week 1 (2/18/0), Jimmy Graham in Week 2 (1/1/0), Rams tight ends in Week 3 (2/21/0), and Jermaine Gresham (2/12/0) in Week 4. Nursing a concussion, Doyle will be a fringe streamer if he plays.

Score Prediction: 49ers 27, Colts 23


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Evan Silva is a senior football editor for Rotoworld.com. He can be found on Twitter .
Email :Evan Silva



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