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RotoGrinder NFL Primer Week 11

by Stephen Keech
Updated On: December 3, 2018, 6:06 pm ET

I find myself in awe of how quickly the NFL season moves along every year, and I really don’t know why it continues to surprise me. Nonetheless, we have just SEVEN full slates of football on tap – eight if you include the Thanksgiving slate coming up – and this week is setting up to be a good one with a meeting between the Rams and Vikings (not a statement I thought I’d make seriously this year), Patriots and Raiders plus the Eagles and Cowboys for FanDuel users. We had some good fortune here last week with Marquise Goodwin, Sterling Shepard, A.J. Green, Golden Tate, Robby Anderson and Garrett Celek, so let’s hope that momentum carries over into Week 11.

 

 

Let’s get kick things off with the Targets page, where you can find a full breakdown of targets, including red-zone data, with snap information available all in one place.

 

 

 

Targets, Touches and Percentage of Workload   

 

Sterling Shepard ($6,500 on FanDuel, $6,300 on DraftKings) – FanDuel has still yet to hike Shepard’s price enough to keep him from being an easy cash game selection, but you have some thinking to do on DraftKings. I’ll still be targeting him freely across the board against a Chiefs Defense that has allowed the third-most receiving yards to his position. Kansas City ranks 22nd in sacks and Shepard will avoid Marcus Peters for the large majority of the day since he runs over 80% of his routes in the slot, while Peters is stationed to the left boundary. Shepard has seen a combined 22 targets in his two games as the de-facto number one receiver and given that he’s playing basically every offensive snap, he’s got top five upside while being priced outside of the top ten on both sites. He’s the 22nd highest-priced receiver on FanDuel. In Week 10, Shepard ranked behind just DeAndre Hopkins and Larry Fitzgerald in targets and was also one of just three receivers to play 100% of snaps.

 

 

Travis Kelce ($7,500 on FanDuel, $7,300 on DraftKings) – Kelce is a really nice stacking partner alongside Shepard (potentially with Eli Manning or Alex Smith) in GPPs against Giants Defense that presents a salivating matchup to tight ends. The Giants have allowed a touchdown to a tight end in every single game this season and Zach Ertz is the only tight end to rival Kelce’s involvement within his own offense, so the ceiling is massive here. Kelce ranks 2nd among TEs in targets, T-3rd in red-zone targets and leads the position in percentage of workload (targets) at 24.1%. In case you need any more evidence, Kelce ranks 1st in yards per target among TEs with at least 45 targets and while he isn’t cheap on either site, I’d be willing to pay a higher price tag.

 

 

Amari Cooper ($7,300 on FanDuel, $6,000 on DraftKings) – It’s been an up and down year for Cooper filled with far more downs to this point – he’s only had one game this year where he was valuable in GPPs and is still priced on the higher end of WRs – but I’m hoping he makes it two this weekend in a prime-time game with the Patriots. Cooper ranks 10th among Week 11 WRs in targets and has seen a healthy eight red-zone looks on the year, but an early season bout with drops and an injury to Derek Carr has derailed most of his season to-date. New England has allowed the second-most catches and yards to the WR spot on the year and they rank 27th in sacks, so Cooper will at least have some time to get deep and I don’t expect game flow to be an issue at all for Oakland’s aerial attack. I’d prefer teammate Michael Crabtree in cash games but will be rolling out more Cooper shares in tournaments.

 

 

 

Wide Receiver/Cornerback Chart


The WR/CB chart is one of our daily fantasy sports premium content features that helps to shed light on the best individual draws for wide receivers. Few corners shadow and few receivers spend all of their time lined up in one particular spot, so while this isn’t a cut-and-dry matchups page, the CB listed next to each WR is the coverage that player is expected to draw most often. You can see how often each player lines up in designated spots on the field which gives you a good idea of how often players will be in particular matchups.

 

 

DeVante Parker ($6,200 on FanDuel, $6,500 on DraftKings) – Parker leads the way among all WRs in matchup rating in Week 11 thanks to a draw with Ryan Smith (second-lowest CB rating) in Tampa’s pass-funnel defense. The only receiver to draw a weaker corner is Parker’s teammate, Jarvis Landry, so the Miami passing attack is about as appealing as it’ll be all year. We’ve heard some noise among the Dolphins coaches this week, specifically OC Clyde Christensen, about how Parker basically needs to get back to playing at the level they saw during the preseason, something he’s done very sporadically. An early ankle injury certainly didn’t hurt and he’s seen at least eight targets in each game he’s played outside of that contest, so his $6,200 price tag on FanDuel is tough not to have exposure to.

 

 

Mike Evans ($7,800 on FanDuel, $7,900 on DraftKings) – After missing last week due to a suspension, Evans steps into a great matchup with Xavien Howard, who ranks as our seventh-best matchup for opposing WRs. Evans ranks fifth in matchup rating in Week 11 thanks to his own abilities and it won’t be surprising to see him put up a similar stat line to Devin Funchess (5-92-2) who drew plenty of Howard in the Monday night meeting between Carolina and Miami. The short week for Miami’s defense isn’t great news – this was actually supposed to be their bye week but the schedule was changed to account for Hurricane Irma. The fact that Evans is the most expensive WR on DraftKings should lead to a desirable ownership percentage on him in GPPs over there, and the mispriced WRs may help keep his number in check on FanDuel.

 

 

Bruce Ellington ($4,600 on FanDuel, $3,000 on DraftKings) – Here’s your dart-throw of the week. Ellington figures to be an integral part of the Texans passing game on Sunday with Will Fuller out and DeAndre Hopkins set to duel with Patrick Peterson, but the caveat is that we’re still relying on a below-average arm to get him the ball. It’s likely that Ellington still lines up in the slot on the majority of his routes which sets him up against Tyrann Mathieu, who is a recognizable name but still a plus draw in coverage, as he has the eighth-lowest rating among DBs on the chart. I don’t see Hopkins usage dropping all that much on Sunday (I do think his efficiency will suffer) but Fuller’s absence opens up 5-8 looks and Peterson’s presence should open up a few more, which should funnel down to Ellington and the tight ends. It’s hard to argue with that type of expected workload at minimum price.

 

 

 

Projected Ownership

 

Let’s shift over to the Projected Ownership page, which can help you uncover ways to be contrarian while also being smart – we tie in a player projection to their contrarian rating score, which is one way to utilize this page. I generally tend to use this to find a handful of players under 5-7% that could put forth GPP winning performances if the dice roll the right way. It’s also an excellent tool for players who want to avoid the chalk, as it’s clearly spelled out as to who we feel will dominate ownership on a given week.

 


Eli Manning (2% pOWN on FanDuel, 1% pOWN on DraftKings) – I do expect Manning to end up a little more popular than these projections suggest – maybe in the 5% range – but not enough to make him a ‘popular’ play. I’ve already highlighted the appeal of Sterling Shepard and a lot of that holds weight with Manning as well. Kansas City struggles to get pressure on the quarterback which is great news for a Giants offensive line that has looked completely overmatched at times this year. Things have improved some over the last two games and even if the defense fails to show up again this week, that would keep Eli throwing and hopefully catapult him above the 40 pass attempt plateau for the first time since Week 4. I’ve had some early Week 11 GPP stacks started with Manning-Shepard-Engram plus Travis Kelce (on DK) or Kareem Hunt/Tyreek Hill, so this game figures to be one I have ample exposure to. The fact that Shepard will be heavily owned could spike Manning’s ownership some as well, but I’d expect KC’s QB to draw more attention from the public.

 

 

LeSean McCoy (7.5% pOWN on both FanDuel and DraftKings) – After two dreadful performances in contests which ultimately led to Tyrod Taylor losing his job, it’s hard to imagine McCoy being terribly popular as a road underdog with a rookie QB making his debut as a starter. The matchup is a good one as the Chargers allow nearly 32 touches per game to opposing backs, 30th in the league, and it doesn’t appear that Mike Tolbert is going to play after not practicing Thursday. Tolbert’s absence would increase Shady’s touchdown upside on top of potentially an extra handful of carries. It’s not likely that Philip Rivers leads the Chargers to a dominating type of win even with Peterman under center, but McCoy’s involvement as a receiver does provide a pretty nice floor considering the Bills' overall outlook.

 

 

 

Value Town!


For those who haven’t spent time in these parts, Value Town sheds light on some salary-saving options that’ll allow you the flexibility to roster some big names. I’ll list a handful of options at each position under a certain salary threshold, and will list them in the order I’d prefer to roster them in (ranked in order of tournament preference). This will only include players that are included in both major sites main slate, so no Eagles/Cowboys or Falcons/Seahawks.

 

Quarterbacks

  1. Eli Manning ($6,500 on FanDuel, $5,700 on DraftKings)
  2. Ryan Fitzpatrick ($6,400 on FanDuel, $5,300 on DraftKings) – The price has climbed a little, but he’s still cheaper than he should be and the reemergence of Mike Evans is worth the price spike.
  3. Jay Cutler ($6,600 on FanDuel, $5,400 on DraftKings) – I don’t see him matching his Week 9 performance but Cutler has a respectable ceiling in this matchup and makes sense as a stacking partner with DeVante Parker or Jarvis Landry.

 

Running Backs

  1. Chris Thompson ($6,800 on FanDuel, $5,400 on DraftKings) – Rob Kelley’s absence has proved beneficial for Thompson in past weeks and that should continue in a poor game script for backfield mate Samaje Perine.
  2. Jamaal Williams ($5,600 on FanDuel, $4,900 on DraftKings) – This is of course assuming Ty Montgomery joins Aaron Jones on the sidelines. The workload would be appealing enough at this price.
  3. Rex Burkhead ($5,700 on FanDuel, $3,600 on DraftKings) – Is it terrifying to put trust into a Patriots RB? You’re damn right it is, which is why I’ll be limiting my Burkhead exposure to DraftKings and will probably just be in line with the field in terms of ownership.

 

Wide Receivers

  1. Sterling Shepard ($6,500 on FanDuel, $6,300 on DraftKings) – Free square on FanDuel.
  2. Bruce Ellington ($4,600 on FanDuel, $3,000 on DraftKings)
  3. Keelan Cole ($4,500 on FanDuel, $3,800 on DraftKings) – Allen Hurns is doubtful for Week 11 and while Dede Westbrook will return and make an impact, Cole also figures to benefit and is coming off of an eight-target game in Week 10.

 

Tight Ends

  1. Vernon Davis ($5,200 on FanDuel, $4,600 on DraftKings) – Hinges on Reed’s status, but seems a little more likely to me that he sits as of this writing.
  2. Jared Cook ($5,600 on FanDuel, $4,800 on DraftKings) – The Raiders should be throwing often and Cook has seen at least five looks in all but one game this year.
  3. Tyler Kroft ($5,300 on FanDuel, $2,900 on DraftKings) – Here’s your DraftKings punt play special. Denver doesn’t defend TEs nearly as well as they defend WRs so expect Kroft to see a slight uptick in targets and an increased TD opportunity.
Stephen Keech
Stephen "SBK" Keech is a head-to-head specialist who has shot up to being ranked in the Top 100 for Overall, MLB, NBA, and NHL. SBK’s a lead contributor on RotoGrinders, and can be found on Twitter @StephByronKeech.