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Matchups

Silva's Week 11 Matchups

by Evan Silva
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

1:00 PM ET Games

Detroit @ Chicago
Team Totals: Lions 22, Bears 19

Matthew Stafford visits Soldier Field with top-ten finishes in four straight games to face an underrated Bears defense that has limited 7-of-9 quarterbacks faced to fantasy results of QB16 or worse, ranking seventh in the NFL in sacks (26) and allowing the league’s fourth-fewest touchdown passes (9). Bears DC Vic Fangio’s unit has capped passing-game upside and lowered quarterback floors, increasing Stafford’s risk as a fringe fantasy starter despite how hot he’s been lately. In last year’s last two meetings with Fangio’s defense, Stafford managed underwhelming passing-yardage/touchdown totals of 223/1 and 213/0. … After fumbling twice in Detroit’s Week 9 loss to Green Bay, the Lions gave Ameer Abdullah his second-lowest touch count (12) of the season in last Sunday’s win over Cleveland, and he was held below 60 total yards for the fifth straight game. Abdullah has devolved into a low-floor, touchdown-dependent flex option with a mediocre Week 11 draw against a Bears defense holding enemy running backs to 3.92 yards per carry. … Theo Riddick’s matchup is theoretically better at Chicago, which gave up 35 combined running back receptions in its last five games. Unfortunately, Riddick’s Week 10 snap rate (33%) was his third-lowest of the season, and Riddick hasn’t logged double-digit touches since Week 2.

Stafford’s target distribution since Detroit’s Week 7 bye: Golden Tate and Marvin Jones 24; T.J. Jones and Eric Ebron 13; Riddick 9; Abdullah 6; Darren Fells 5; Kenny Golladay 3. … Tate is white hot with six-plus catches and 85-plus yards in four straight games, although his Week 11 matchup isn’t a gimme against the Bears’ stingy slot coverage, which has notably contained Adam Thielen (5/34/0), Mohamed Sanu (6/47/0), JuJu Smith-Schuster (2/39/0), and Randall Cobb (3/52/0). Nevertheless, Tate’s bankable volume and high-percentage role solidify his every-week WR2 appeal. … This game offers bounce-back potential for Marvin Jones after last week’s 22-yard dud. Jones runs a team-high 50% of his routes at left cornerbacks, where Bears LCB Kyle Fuller has become a weekly whipping boy. The Packers attacked Fuller relentlessly with Davante Adams (5/90/1) last week, and on the year PFF has charged Fuller with the NFL’s third-most yards allowed (534) among 116 qualified corners. … Golladay’s Week 10 return reduced Detroit’s third receiver job into a timeshare with T.J. Jones, rendering both fantasy non-factors. … Ebron hasn’t cleared 60 yards all season and is averaging 2.2 catches per game. He is a low-floor streamer option against a Bears defense allowing the NFL’s seventh-fewest fantasy points to tight ends.

His Week 10 box score torpedoed by negative game script and Chicago’s running-game abandonment, Jordan Howard looks to right the ship against a hit-or-miss Lions run defense that stymied the Steelers and Packers’ backfields in Weeks 8-9 before getting gashed by Browns backs for a 26/144/5.54/1 rushing line last week. As Howard was one of Week 10’s highest-owned DFS plays and burned the field, his Week 11 ownership percentage is certain to plummet in a not-dissimilar spot. … With touch counts of 1 > 5 > 2 in his last three games, Tarik Cohen has faded from fantasy relevance. … Because the Bears trailed for the entirety of last week’s loss, Mitchell Trubisky racked up season highs in attempts (35) and passing yards (297) in Chicago’s 23-16 defeat by Green Bay. Betting on Trubisky as a fantasy play would be a wager that this game flows similarly to last week’s and that he can have similar success against a superior Detroit pass defense that ranks 10th in DVOA, whereas the Packers rank 23rd. With that said, the Lions have shown intermittent defensive cracks by allowing four of their last five quarterbacks faced to log top-12 fantasy results. Trubisky’s poor supporting cast and the Bears’ run-first mentality remain significant obstacles to Trubisky’s streamer appeal, but he has earned a two-quarterback-league start.

Trubisky’s Week 10 targets: Dontrelle Inman and Kendall Wright 8; Josh Bellamy 7; Benny Cunningham 4; Daniel Brown 3; Cohen and Adam Shaheen 2. … Inman took over as the Bears’ No. 1 receiver in his Week 10 debut, leading the team in receiving (6/88/0) on 95% of the snaps. That also makes him Chicago’s likeliest wideout to draw Darius Slay’s shadow. In what remains a run-heavy offense, Inman is a dicey WR4/flex option, albeit one worth rostering in 14- and 16-team PPR leagues. … Through five Trubisky starts, Wright has yet to score a touchdown or clear 50 yards. … Bellamy served as the Bears’ No. 2 perimeter wideout in last week’s loss to Green Bay, playing 67% of the snaps and working ahead of Tre McBride (12%) and Markus Wheaton (3%). Bellamy caught a 46-yard TD from Trubisky, but he also dropped a pass, secured just 2-of-7 targets, and could be on a short leash.

Score Prediction: Bears 21, Lions 20

Editor's Note: DFS pro Andy Means shares four players you should build around in Week 11. Find the plays here! 

Jacksonville @ Cleveland
Team Totals: Jaguars 22.5, Browns 14.5

As the Jaguars kept all four of their running backs active in last week’s narrow win over the Chargers, Leonard Fournette’s usage was dialed back with 19 touches on 54% of the snaps after he averaged 24.2 touches on a 59% playing-time clip in his first six games. The reduced workload may have been a precautionary move after Fournette aggravated his ankle injury in Week 6, then sat for the ensuing month. It also may be an effort by the Jags to keep Fournette healthy in the season’s second half with playoff aspirations. Either way, Fournette should be loaded into season-long-league lineups against a Browns run defense that finally showed Week 10 cracks, permitting a 15/87/5.80/1 rushing line to Lions running backs. The Jaguars’ high-powered defense figures to dominate the Browns’ turnover-prone offense, keeping Fournette in positive game script. … Although it won’t feel comfortable, Blake Bortles is worth streamer consideration against a Browns pass defense that ranks 27th in DVOA and has allowed 8-of-9 quarterbacks faced to log top-15 fantasy results. Bortles has quietly posted top-15 finishes in three straight starts and is running more with 14 rushing attempts in that three-game stretch. Marqise Lee has settled in as a reliable source of every-week production, and Dede Westbrook’s long-awaited debut adds explosiveness to the passing game. Bortles is also in play as a matchup-driven DFS option.

Although Westbrook should make his presence felt eventually, Allen Hurns’ (ankle) absence further locks in Marqise Lee’s target-share stranglehold. Lee’s first-, third-, and fourth-highest yardage totals of 2016 occurred in games Hurns left early or missed, while Lee enters Week 11 with 70-plus yards and/or a touchdown in four straight weeks. A concern is Browns CB Jason McCourty’s lockdown coverage, although McCourty returned from his high ankle sprain in last week’s loss to Detroit and didn’t shadow any individual Lions receiver. One way for the Jags to keep Lee away from McCourty would be to use him in the slot, where McCourty has played just 3% of his snaps and Cleveland was rinsed by slot men Adam Thielen (5/98/1) and Golden Tate (6/97/1) in its last two games. … Particularly on the off chance McCourty does limit Lee, Westbrook and Keelan Cole warrant dart-throw discussion. Westbrook won the 2016 Biletnikoff Award as college football’s top wide receiver and logged a monster 13/288/22.2/2 preseason receiving line, although Westbrook’s playing time is uncertain in his debut. … Cole is an undrafted rookie out of Kentucky Wesleyan who stands 6-foot-1, 194 with pedestrian 4.59 speed but has topped 60 yards in two of the Jaguars’ last three games and drew a season-high eight targets in last week’s win over the Chargers. … Marcedes Lewis would be an entirely matchup-driven streamer against a Browns defense yielding the league’s third-most fantasy points to tight ends. Lewis has cleared 30 yards in 2-of-9 games and is best approached as a touchdown-or-bust Hail Mary play.

Even with exciting sophomore Corey Coleman (hand) back to bolster DeShone Kizer’s weapons – and Kizer coming off his season-best game – Cleveland’s passing game is a full fade against Jacksonville’s shutdown pass defense, which has held 9-of-9 quarterbacks faced to fantasy results of QB18 or worse while leading the NFL in sacks (35) with a league-low six touchdown passes allowed. With LT Joe Thomas (triceps) on I.R., RT Shon Coleman in concussion protocol, and C J.C. Tretter (knee, shoulder, quad) all kinds of banged up, Kizer is sure to be under heavy duress. … Jacksonville’s run defense has stiffened in two games with Marcell Dareus, limiting Chargers and Bengals backs to a combined 42/99/2.36/1 rushing line. This is no longer a unit to attack. Averaging 5.70 yards per carry with two TDs and increased receiving usage in his last two games, Isaiah Crowell does deserve credit for recent small-sample improvement, but he remains a touchdown-dependent flex play only. … Passing-game specialist Duke Johnson is still a viable PPR option with double-digit touches in four straight games facing a Jaguars defense on which Chargers passing-game specialist Austin Ekeler hung a 5/77/2 receiving line last week. Johnson set a season high in carries (10) in last week’s loss to Detroit, and Johnson’s 59% playing-time clip was his second highest of the year.

Score Prediction: Jaguars 17, Browns 13

Baltimore @ Green Bay
Team Totals: Ravens 20, Packers 18

Fresh off his season-best game in last week’s upset win at Soldier Field, Brett Hundley draws a tougher matchup against Baltimore, which ranks third in pass-defense DVOA while permitting the NFL’s second-lowest completion rate (56.7%) and passer rating (69.8). Just 1-of-9 quarterbacks to face the Ravens has logged top-16 fantasy results, and Hundley’s rushing value may be compromised after he tweaked his hamstring on a 17-yard scramble last week. Hundley played with more decisiveness and confidence in Week 10, but his Week 11 draw suggests Hundley is unlikely to build on that success. … This is also a tough spot for Green Bay’s banged-up running game against a now-healthy Ravens defensive front that tightened up before its Week 10 bye, holding enemy backs to a combined 36/90/2.50/1 rushing line in its last two games. If Ty Montgomery (ribs) doesn’t play, plodding rookie Jamaal Williams would take over as Green Bay’s feature back coming off last week’s 21-touch affair. Seventh-round rookie Devante Mays would be next in line for carries, and FB Aaron Ripkowski is capable of mixing in. Even in a bad matchup, Williams would offer volume-driven RB2/flex appeal should Montgomery sit this one out.

Hundley’s 2017 target distribution: Davante Adams 33; Jordy Nelson 24; Randall Cobb 16; Aaron Jones 15; Montgomery 8; Lance Kendricks 5; Geronimo Allison 4; Williams and Richard Rodgers 3. … No Packers pass catcher has a favorable Week 11 matchup against a Ravens defense yielding the NFL’s second-fewest fantasy points to wide receivers. Baltimore has used four corners extensively this year, and all four have allowed passer ratings below 70.0, per PFF. … With Hundley at quarterback, Adams has emerged as the Packers’ top receiving bet by dominating targets and turning in stat lines of 2/12/0 > 7/53/0 > 5/90/1 in Hundley’s starts. I am still approaching Adams as a volatile WR2/3 play. … Nelson’s receiving lines in Hundley’s starts are 1/13/0 > 4/35/0 > 3/20/0. He has devolved into a low-floor WR4 at best post-Aaron Rodgers. … Cobb’s numbers are 2/15/0 > 5/58/0 > 3/52/0 on target counts of 4 > 5 > 4 with Hundley starting. The Packers tried to manufacture touches for Cobb by putting him in the Wildcat in last week’s win over the Bears, but he managed eight yards on four carries and isn’t a realistic play.

Matchups haven’t mattered for Joe Flacco, who has posted top-16 fantasy results in just 1-of-9 starts and hasn’t passed for 270 yards all year. Dating back to last season, Flacco has thrown multiple touchdown passes in only two of his last 11 games. Flacco is a low-ceiling two-quarterback-league option no matter whom the Ravens are playing. … Ranked No. 8 in run-defense DVOA, Green Bay reasserted its up-front stoutness by stymieing Jordan Howard (15/54/0) in last week’s win. Not only have the Packers held enemy running backs to a 48/115/2.40/1 rushing line in the last two weeks, they have allowed the NFL’s ninth-fewest receiving yards (372) to the position this year. With Terrance West (calf) and Danny Woodhead (hamstring) due back to muddy the Ravens’ backfield picture, I think this is a wait-and-see week for all members. Alex Collins and especially Buck Allen’s roles are at risk of lessening.

After battling an early-season shoulder injury, Jeremy Maclin showed he was healthy in Baltimore’s two pre-bye games with receiving lines of 3/53/1 and 8/98/0 versus the Dolphins and Titans. Running 61% of his routes inside, Maclin is a solid WR3 play against Packers slot CB Damarious Randall, who has PFF’s No. 111 coverage grade among 116 qualified cornerbacks. … The Packers are giving up the NFL’s eighth-most fantasy points to wide receivers, so it’s not out of the question Mike Wallace could pop up for a productive game against struggling perimeter CBs Davon House and Kevin King. Wallace is never a safe play, of course, having topped 30 yards in 2-of-8 games. He’s a boom-bust WR4/flex. … Ben Watson leads the Ravens in red-zone targets (8) and targets inside the ten (6), but he has scored just twice and is a touchdown-or-bust streamer at best with only one 50-yard game on the season. The Packers have allowed the NFL’s fewest fantasy points to tight ends, notably checking Kyle Rudolph (5/47/0), Zach Miller (2/45/0), Eric Ebron (3/35/0), Tyler Kroft (3/28/0), Coby Fleener (2/22/0), Jimmy Graham (3/8/0), and Austin Hooper (2/7/0). Jason Witten (8/61/0) had the best tight end game against them this year.

Score Prediction: Ravens 20, Packers 17

Arizona @ Houston
Team Totals: Cardinals 19.25, Texans 19.25

We can all agree Tom Savage is neither a short- nor long-term answer in Houston, but he does offer bottom-feeder two-quarterback-league appeal against a pass-funnel Arizona defense that has allowed top-12 fantasy results to 7-of-9 quarterbacks faced. … I’m worried about Lamar Miller again. Out-carried 11 to 10 by D’Onta Foreman in Week 9, Miller logged a season-low 59% snap rate in last week’s loss to the Rams. A timeshare back in an offense that can no longer score, Miller is a low-end RB2/flex option facing a Cardinals defense that has held running backs to 3.49 yards per carry and four rushing TDs in nine games. … With Patrick Peterson on DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller (rib) out indefinitely, Bruce Ellington is a prime sleeper against an Arizona secondary that gets shredded by complementary pass catchers and just lost versatile S/CB Tyvon Branch (ACL) for the year. Ellington has drawn 20 targets in the last three weeks – including four in the red zone – and plays 70% of his snaps in the slot, where the Cardinals have been rinsed by Golden Tate (10/107/0), Doug Baldwin (5/95/0), Nelson Agholor (4/93/1), Cooper Kupp (4/51/1), Adam Humphries (6/51/0), and Trent Taylor (5/47/0). Ellington is an elite SPARQ athlete who used to play college basketball. … C.J. Fiedorowicz made his Week 10 return from I.R. and played 90% of the snaps, but he blocked nearly half the time and was out-produced 2/30/0 to 2/10/0 by Stephen Anderson. You should be able to find better streamer tight end plays this week.

Blaine Gabbert was quietly last year’s QB17 in fantasy points per game during a Weeks 1-5 run as the 49ers’ starter, struggling as a passer as he always has and always will but averaging 7.8 rushing attempts per start and twice scoring 20-plus fantasy points. The Texans have yielded top-eight results to Russell Wilson (QB1), Jacoby Brissett (QB8), and Jared Goff (QB3) in three straight games with 300-plus passing yards for each. Houston has also given up the NFL’s ninth-most rushing yards to quarterbacks. Gabbert is worth taking seriously as a season-long-league streamer and low-cost DFS punt. … The one Arizona pass catcher worth staying optimistic about is slot man Larry Fitzgerald after Gabbert peppered 49ers slot man Jeremy Kerley with a team-high 9.2 targets per game in Weeks 1-5 last season. Gabbert has never been comfortable challenging defenses outside the numbers. … Adrian Peterson’s touch counts as a Cardinal are 26 > 12 > 39 > 22, giving him volume-driven RB2 appeal even if his results have been predictably uneven in an injury-ruined Arizona offense. The normally-stout Texans run defense showed cracks in last week’s loss to Los Angeles, yielding a 16/99/6.20/0 rushing line to Rams running backs.

Score Prediction: Cardinals 24, Texans 17

Tampa Bay @ Miami
Team Totals: Buccaneers 20, Dolphins 20

On a short week following last Monday night’s embarrassing blowout loss to the Panthers, the Dolphins return home to face a Bucs defense that struggled all year before coming alive in last week’s win over the Jets, nearly equaling its previous season total in sacks (6) while eliminating Gang Green’s running attack. Tampa Bay played poor defense in the first half of 2016, then caught fire in the second half. With most of their best defenders finally healthy, it shouldn’t surprise if a similar 2017 scenario plays out. Although Jay Cutler has managed top-16 fantasy results in just 1-of-8 starts, I think Miami’s passing-game matchups are favorable enough for Cutler to be approached as a quality two-quarterback-league play. … After Kenyan Drake worked as Miami’s Week 9 backfield leader, Damien Williams grabbed a slight Week 10 edge with 11 touches on 55% of the snaps to Drake’s 9 touches on a 45% playing-time clip. Drake broke a 66-yard touchdown run and has outgained Williams 196 to 100 on the same number of touches (24) since the Jay Ajayi trade, but Dolphins coaches insist this will remain a near-even RBBC. The difficulty of this matchup is hard to gauge because the Bucs’ defense is now healthy after getting lit up at less than full strength in the first half of the year. Either way, I’m viewing Drake as a low-end RB2/flex play and Williams as a shaky flex.

Cutler’s post-Ajayi target distribution: Jarvis Landry and DeVante Parker 17; Julius Thomas 13; Kenny Stills 12; Williams 9; Drake 8. … The best area to attack Tampa Bay is on the perimeter, where the Bucs have been flamed by Stefon Diggs (8/173/2), Deonte Thompson twice (4/107/0, 4/57/1), Odell Beckham (7/90/0), Robby Anderson (4/85/1), Brandin Cooks (5/85/0), Chris Hogan (8/74/1), Michael Thomas (8/65/0), John Brown (3/63/1), Ted Ginn (4/59/1), and Kelvin Benjamin (3/39/1). Parker has drawn eight-plus targets in 5-of-5 healthy games and should be locked into lineups as a WR2. The Dolphins' coaching staff called out Parker in the media this week, perhaps as a motivational tactic ahead of a high-volume game. Stills is a passable WR4/flex. … The Bucs’ slot coverage is also vulnerable, as Larry Fitzgerald (10/138/1), Danny Amendola (8/77/0), Adam Thielen (5/98/0), and Kendall Wright (7/69/0) have shown. Landry has drawn double-digit targets in 7-of-9 games, scoring a touchdown in five of the last six. … Julius Thomas’ big Week 9 game against the Raiders stands out as a fluke. He has drawn five targets or fewer in all of his other eight games and on the year has cleared 30 yards in 2-of-9 appearances. Thomas remains a touchdown-or-bust streamer against a Bucs defense that has allowed just three touchdowns to tight ends this year.

After last week's fantasy flop against the Jets, Ryan Fitzpatrick gets a shot to redeem himself against Miami’s woeful pass defense, which ranks 31st in DVOA while yielding the NFL’s second-highest completion rate (68.7%) and passer rating (104.8). Only eight teams have given up more touchdown passes (16) than the Dolphins, who were torched by Cam Newton for last week’s QB1 finish. Fitzpatrick, of course, is less capable than most passers of exploiting opponent weaknesses. I think Fitzpatrick is best viewed as a two-quarterback-league starter and desperation streamer. … The Dolphins’ run defense has also collapsed, yielding a combined 124/648/5.23/5 rushing line to enemy backs in its last five games, including Alex Collins, Marshawn Lynch, and Jonathan Stewart’s season-best efforts all in a row in Weeks 8-10. Doug Martin has lacked productivity but not usage, coming off a Week 10 game where he logged 20 touches. For Week 11, Martin is a volume- and matchup-driven RB2 play.

Fitzpatrick’s 2017 target distribution with Mike Evans in the lineup: Evans 10; Adam Humphries 8; Cameron Brate 7; DeSean Jackson 5; Martin, Chris Godwin, O.J. Howard 2. … Fresh off his one-game ban, Evans is primed for Week 11 liftoff against a Dolphins secondary that starts at cornerback third-round rookie Cordrea Tankersley and Xavien Howard, who ranks dead last among 116 qualified corners in PFF’s coverage grades and was Devin Funchess’ (5/92/2) primary burn victim last Monday night. … Brate has dudded in back-to-back games, but the Dolphins’ defense has shown a tendency to wake up sleeping tight ends. Miami has given up the NFL’s second-most receptions to the position (56), getting flamed by Jared Cook (8/126/0) and Ed Dickson (3/33/1) in consecutive weeks. … Jackson was the Bucs’ leading receiver (6/82/0) sans Evans last Sunday and offers Week 11 blowup potential against a porous Dolphins secondary. Jackson has cleared 70 yards and/or scored a touchdown in five of his last eight games.

Score Prediction: Buccaneers 23, Dolphins 20

LA Rams @ Minnesota
Team Totals: Vikings 24, Rams 22

Jared Goff draws arguably his toughest to-date challenge in a Week 11 visit to Minnesota, where the Vikings have held six straight opponents to 19 points or fewer in home games. Just 2-of-9 quarterbacks to face the Vikings have registered top-12 fantasy results, while Minnesota has yielded the NFL’s fifth-fewest passing touchdowns (10) and fourth-fewest yards per pass attempt (6.5). Goff deserves serious consideration for the NFL’s Most Improved Player award, and perhaps Comeback Player of the Year; his accomplishments should not be diminished. But Goff has been highly opponent sensitive, torching the 49ers (QB9), Giants (QB1), and Texans (QB3) but struggling as most quarterbacks do against stout pass defenses like Seattle (QB22) and Jacksonville (QB22). And like most quarterbacks do, I think Goff will struggle in Minnesota. … Todd Gurley’s matchup is also concerning. The Vikings have allowed the NFL’s second-fewest fantasy points to running backs, including 3.47 yards per carry and a league-low three all-purpose TDs. Gurley’s sheer volume always gives him a bankable floor, of course. Gurley has cleared 100 yards from scrimmage in seven of his last eight games, averaging 22.9 touches during that stretch.

Goff’s target distribution since the Rams’ Week 8 bye: Robert Woods 15; Cooper Kupp 12; Gurley 10; Tyler Higbee 6; Sammy Watkins 5; Gerald Everett 4; Pharoh Cooper 3; Tavon Austin 0. … As LCB Trae Waynes has come on strong after a rocky start, there are no obviously-exploitable areas in the Vikings’ secondary. Perimeter wideouts Mike Evans (7/67/0), Antonio Brown (5/62/0), Jordy Nelson (6/60/0), Davante Adams (5/54/1), Michael Thomas (5/45/0), Marvin Jones (2/42/0), Josh Doctson (4/30/0), and Mike Wallace (1/9/0) have all finished below expectation against Minnesota. I am downgrading Woods to a WR3 and Watkins to a big-play-dependent WR4. … Kupp warrants more optimism in the slot, where Jamison Crowder (4/76/0), Adam Humphries (6/68/0), Eli Rogers/JuJu Smith-Schuster (7/59/1), and Brandon Coleman/Tommylee Lewis (4/65/0) have caused Minnesota some fits. Kupp ranks fourth in the NFL in red-zone targets (13) and 13th in targets inside the ten (5), enhancing his touchdown probability. … Rotational TEs Higbee and Everett are difficult to trust regardless of matchups. Higbee has drawn four targets or fewer in 7-of-9 games, clearing 25 yards twice. Everett has single-digit yards in 6-of-9 games.

As the Rams’ defense has reached its midseason stride, there are few noticeable edges for Minnesota’s offense to exploit. Just 2-of-9 quarterbacks to face Wade Phillips’ defense have logged top-12 fantasy results, while Los Angeles ranks fifth in sacks (28) and is allowing the league’s third-lowest passer rating (73.3). Even in a game between two vastly-improved offenses, I think this sets up as a lower-scoring, defense-first affair. After the Vikings seriously considered benching Case Keenum for Teddy Bridgewater this week, we have to believe Keenum will have a short in-game leash moving forward. … The Rams’ defense is more exploitable on the ground, yielding 4.47 yards per carry and the NFL’s fourth-most fantasy points to running backs. Los Angeles’ eight rushing TDs allowed are sixth most in the league. Unfortunately, Latavius Murray has plateaued as a touchdown-or-bust flex option with just one game of 70 total yards on the season due largely to a nonexistent passing-game role. Murray did play a season-high 49% of the Vikings’ snaps in last week’s shootout win at Washington, contributing to Jerick McKinnon’s five-game low in touches (12) and playing time (51%). McKinnon is still an every-week RB2 in PPR leagues, but he will devolve into a flex if now-healthy Murray’s role continues to grow.

Keenum’s target distribution with Stefon Diggs back in Weeks 8-10: Adam Thielen 22; Kyle Rudolph 14; McKinnon 12; Diggs 11; Laquon Treadwell 5; David Morgan 4; Jarius Wright 2; Murray and Michael Floyd 1. … There are no standout matchups in Minnesota’s pass-catcher corps against a Rams defense yielding the NFL’s seventh-fewest fantasy points to receivers and tenth-fewest points to tight ends. … Thielen has earned every-week starter treatment in season-long leagues as the NFL’s only player with five-plus catches in 9-of-9 games, but his draw is imposing against a Rams secondary limiting slot production, as Doug Baldwin (4/37/0), Larry Fitzgerald (3/29/0), and Cole Beasley (3/17/0) can attest. Sterling Shepard (5/70/0) and Bruce Ellington (4/41/1) did emerge with useful box scores in each of the Rams’ last two games, however. Thielen recently passed Rudolph as the Vikings’ leader in red-zone targets (10) and targets inside the ten-yard line (5). … Diggs’ fantasy owners should hope he draws shadow coverage from Rams “top” CB Trumaine Johnson, whom PFF has charged with the NFL’s seventh-most yards allowed (497) among 116 qualified cornerbacks. … Facing a Rams defense yielding the league’s fourth-fewest yards (369) to tight ends, I am dropping Rudolph to a touchdown-or-bust, low-end TE1.

Score Prediction: Rams 23, Vikings 21

Kansas City @ NY Giants
Team Totals: Chiefs 28, Giants 17

Alex Smith returns from Kansas City’s Week 10 bye to face a collapsed Giants defense that has allowed top-ten fantasy results to six straight quarterbacks faced and coughed up last week’s QB4 result to struggling 49ers rookie C.J. Beathard despite CB Janoris Jenkins (suspension) and RE Olivier Vernon’s (ankle) returns. Smith has been a high-floor, high-ceiling producer with top-15 results in 8-of-9 starts, including four top-six finishes and an 18:1 TD-to-INT ratio on the year. In DFS lineups, Smith’s obvious stack partner is Travis Kelce against the Giants’ putrid tight end defense. … This is an opportunity for the Chiefs to reestablish Kareem Hunt as an offensive focal point after his usage and production tailed off leading into the open date. Hunt is scoreless in six straight games and played a season-low 54% of the snaps in Kansas City’s pre-bye loss to Dallas, losing season highs in touches (7) and snaps (40%) to third-down back Charcandrick West. Hunt did log touch counts of 22 and 25 in his prior two games and is set up nicely to get back on track against the Giants, who rank 27th in run-defense DVOA and got creamed (26/153/5.89/1) by 49ers backs in last week’s embarrassing loss to previously-winless San Francisco. Andy Reid is 16-2 lifetime coming off byes; Hunt should experience positive game script.

Smith’s Weeks 6-9 target distribution: Travis Kelce 31; Tyreek Hill 25; Hunt 20; Demarcus Robinson 16; West 9; De’Anthony Thomas 8; Demetrius Harris 7; Albert Wilson 2. … Kelce is always a player to bet on with 90-plus yards and/or a touchdown in five of his last seven games. This week’s matchup gives him especially monstrous upside against a Giants defense that has been shelled by Jason Witten (7/59/1), Eric Ebron (5/42/1), Zach Ertz (8/55/1), O.J. Howard (2/63/1), Cameron Brate (4/80/1), Hunter Henry (3/42/1), Broncos TEs (4/58/1), Seahawks TEs (5/76/1), Rams TEs (3/57/1), and Garrett Celek (4/67/1). … The #TyFreakOnTheRoad narrative has held strong all season and is back in play in the Meadowlands. Whereas Hill has managed weekly PPR finishes of WR45 > WR51 > WR43 > WR57 at Arrowhead, his weekly results are WR3 > WR17 > WR14 > WR3 > WR18 in away games. Hill oozes big-play ability, and the Giants are hemorrhaging big plays. DC Steve Spagnuolo’s unit has allowed the NFL’s second-most completions of 20-plus yards (35) and fourth-most 40-plus-yard passes (9). In DFS, Smith-to-Hill stacks seem likely to be significantly lower owned than Smith-to-Kelce lineups. … Robinson’s snap rates since Chris Conley tore his Achilles’ are 91% > 98% > 81% > 98%. Unfortunately, Robinson’s target counts are 5 > 8 > 1 > 2. Robinson is a long-shot dart throw whose intrigue is raised by this matchup.

The 1-8 Giants are a dead team with little to play for beyond pride, but they do have an advantageous Week 11 matchup against the Chiefs, who have allowed 27 or more points in seven of their last eight away games while yielding top-12 quarterback results in four of the last seven weeks. Eli Manning paid streamer dividends with last week’s QB11 finish and is again a plug-and-play option off the waiver wire against Kansas City’s sieve-like defense. The Chiefs rank 22nd in pass-defense DVOA and have allowed the NFL’s ninth-most touchdown passes (16). … This is also a plus draw for Orleans Darkwa against a Kansas City run defense that ranks dead last in DVOA and has been gutted for a 175/806/4.61/5 rushing line by enemy running backs in its last seven games. Darkwa has averaged 17.0 touches in the Giants’ last four games with multiple receptions in three straight. Game flow will become a concern if the G-Men fall behind early, but Darkwa is a viable RB2/flex play in a great matchup with bankable volume.

Manning’s target distribution since Sterling Shepard returned: Shepard 22; Evan Engram 19; Tavarres King 10; Vereen 8; Roger Lewis 7; Darkwa 4; Wayne Gallman and Rhett Ellison 2. … Shepard has logged target counts of 13 and 9 on snap rates of 93% and 100% since coming back from his ankle injury. He is a locked-in WR2 against the Chiefs, who have allowed the NFL’s ninth-most catches (114) and third-most yards (1,682) to wide receivers. Chiefs slot CB Steven Nelson got beaten for both of Cole Beasley’s TDs in Kansas City’s pre-bye loss to Dallas. Shepard runs 84% of his routes in the slot. … The Chiefs have been up and down in tight end coverage, but they gave up 6/107/0 to Jared Cook in Week 7 and 4/48/1 to Broncos tight ends in Week 8. Engram has proven matchup proof regardless with a touchdown in four straight games and 72 targets on the season, most among NFL tight ends. He’s become an every-week smash play. … Perimeter wideout usage in New York is tougher to predict with Lewis and King vying for scraps behind Engram and Shepard. If forced to choose from the two, I’m leaning slightly toward King because he runs fewer routes in Chiefs LCB Marcus Peters’ direction. King and Lewis are Hail Mary plays.

Score Prediction: Chiefs 30, Giants 20

 

DFS Players: Chiefs at Giants is the RotoGrinders Matchup of the Week. Some of RotoGrinders' top NFL minds break down this game from every angle and help prepare you to set winning lineups this weekend in daily fantasy football.

Washington @ New Orleans
Team Totals: Saints 29.5, Redskins 21.5

Skins-Saints has the second-highest total on the Week 11 slate and offers Drew Brees another blowup opportunity against a Washington pass defense that has regressed over the course of the year. Flamed by career journeyman Case Keenum for 304 yards and four touchdowns at home last week, the Skins now travel to the Superdome having allowed top-13 fantasy results to 6-of-9 quarterbacks faced. As Kirk Cousins has shown matchup-proof scoring ability on the opposite end, this is a game where Brees’ volume could easily spike in a potentially back-and-forth affair. Brees is a top-shelf season-long-league start with a high enough ceiling for DFS tournaments despite not having shown it yet this year. … The Saints’ new offensive foundation is their running game, of course, and Mark Ingram remains at the forefront with touch counts of 30 > 26 > 24 > 17 > 21 compared to Alvin Kamara’s 14 > 14 > 11 > 16 > 17 since New Orleans’ Week 5 bye. Washington has played stout run defense this season, but that could change after ILB Will Compton suffered a Week 10 Lisfranc sprain following Mason Foster’s year-ending labrum tear. The Saints’ rushing attack has been matchup proof, anyway, imposing its will on all levels of opponent. Ingram is an every-week RB1 and Kamara an every-week RB2 with RB1 upside.

Brees’ targets since the Saints’ Week 5 bye: Michael Thomas 46; Kamara 25; Ted Ginn 21; Ingram 17; Brandon Coleman 13; Coby Fleener 8; Willie Snead 3. … Thomas runs a team-high 50% of his routes at right corners and 20% in the slot, and he will therefore avoid stationary LCB Josh Norman on 70% of his pass patterns. Thomas hasn’t had a truly week-winning game yet this year, but few NFL receivers have been more trustworthy. The Saints’ target leader in all nine games, Thomas ranks fourth at his position in catches (59) and eighth in yards (662). … Ginn will run routes at Norman a team-high 42% of the time, but he can never be dismissed due to big-play potential. Ginn ranks top 15 in the NFL in 20-plus-yard catches (9), and Washington has allowed the league’s sixth-most completions of 20-plus yards (34). … Coleman logged his second-lowest snap rate (38%) of the season in last week’s win over the Bills, continuing to share time with Snead (47%). Until one emerges as the Saints’ full-time slot receiver, this is a situation to avoid. Snead hasn’t seen a target since Week 6. … The Redskins have surrendered an NFC-high 675 yards to tight ends, but I’m skeptical it will impact the Saints’ Week 11 passing game. Fleener logged season lows in snaps (22%) and routes run (7) in last week’s win over the Bills and is scoreless since Week 2.

A top-12 fantasy quarterback in five of his last seven games with four top-six results, Kirk Cousins should continue to be teed up confidently in Week 11’s second-highest-totaled game. The Saints are vulnerable to deep passes with the NFL’s eighth-most 20-plus-yard completions allowed (30) and have yielded the league’s third-most rushing yards to quarterbacks (194). Scrambling is an often-overlooked aspect of Cousins’ game; he ranks 12th at his position in rushing attempts (30) and rushing yards (130) and is tied for fourth in rushing scores (3). … Although Rob Kelley’s (ankle, knee) loss has been billed as a positive for Samaje Perine, Chris Thompson projects as the primary beneficiary as the running back the Redskins’ coaching staff actually trusts. In Kelley’s missed Weeks 3 and 6 games, Thompson parlayed touch counts of 14 and 20 into total-yardage/touchdown sums of 188/1 and 138/0. This is another Thompson smash spot against a Saints defense permitting the NFL’s sixth-most fantasy points to running backs, including the sixth-most receiving yards (469) to the position. Whereas Thompson should be dialed up as a locked-in RB2, Perine is a touchdown-or-bust flex play who could easily be phased out by negative game script.

Cousins’ targets since the Skins’ Week 5 bye: Jamison Crowder 35; Thompson and Vernon Davis 32; Josh Doctson 23; Ryan Grant 21; Jordan Reed 16; Terrelle Pryor 13; Maurice Harris 3; Perine 1. … Finally hitting a stride after battling multiple early-season injuries, Crowder has drawn double-digit targets in consecutive games and has the top matchup in Washington’s pass-catcher corps against Saints slot CB Kenny Vaccaro, who missed Week 10 with a groin injury and has the worst coverage grade in New Orleans’ secondary. Especially if Reed (hamstring) sits out again, Crowder should be teed up as a high-ceiling PPR play. … Doctson has failed to clear 60 yards in 9-of-9 games and draws a difficult matchup against Saints shutdown boundary CBs Marshon Lattimore and Ken Crawley, who have keyed New Orleans’ defensive resurgence. Doctson is a WR4/flex dart until he shows he’s capable of producing as more. … Pryor was demoted behind Harris last week and can be dropped in all season-long leagues. … Davis’ last seven stat lines in games missed by Reed are 7/76/0 > 6/72/0 > 5/58/1 > 1/13/0 > 5/47/0 > 6/79/0 > 2/50/1. If Reed is inactive again, Davis will be a top-six TE1 play in this possible shootout.

Score Prediction: Saints 30, Redskins 23

4:05 PM ET Game

Buffalo @ LA Chargers
Team Totals: Chargers 24, Bills 19.5

Even after he lost critical crunch-time snaps to UDFA sparkplug Austin Ekeler in last week’s loss to the Jaguars, Melvin Gordon is the premier fantasy play on Los Angeles’ side from a matchup standpoint. The Marcell Dareus-less Bills have been creamed in run defense over their last seven games, conceding a combined 179/880/4.92/10 rushing line to enemy backs, including last week’s disembowelment by the Saints in which New Orleans peeled off 24 straight second-half rushing attempts and scored an absurd six rushing scores. Ekeler did lose a late-game fumble against Jacksonville that contributed to the Bolts’ loss, and Gordon still emerged with 21 touches on 68% of the snaps. … Ekeler is worth a look as a dart-throw flex play after last week’s 15-touch effort. Over the Bolts’ last four games, Ekeler’s chronological snap counts have climbed steadily (11% > 31% > 31% > 33%). Due to Gordon’s inefficiency and history of knee woes, I think Ekeler should at very least be rostered in all 12-team fantasy leagues. … Philip Rivers (concussion) is expected to play after turning in three straight weekly finishes of QB16 or worse, albeit in two matchups with the Broncos and Jaguars and one in Foxboro. The Bills’ run defense has been so bad that teams are opting to barely even throw the ball against them, reducing their fantasy-points-allowed stats. Ultimately, I’m not a fan of Rivers as a Week 11 fantasy starter beyond two-quarterback leagues.

Rivers’ target distribution after the Chargers’ Week 8 bye: Gordon 8; Keenan Allen 7; Ekeler and Tyrell Williams 5; Travis Benjamin 3; Hunter Henry, Antonio Gates, Mike Williams 2. … Although Buffalo is billed as having a stout pass defense, Sean McDermott’s secondary has been gashed for big games by A.J. Green (7/189/1), Michael Thomas (9/117/0), Demaryius Thomas (6/98/0), Mike Evans (7/88/1), Michael Crabtree (5/83/0), Kelvin Benjamin (6/77/0), Emmanuel Sanders (7/75/0), DeSean Jackson (5/73/0), and Robby Anderson (4/48/1). Only 11 teams have given up more receptions (112) to wide receivers. This is a sneaky spot for Allen to bust his slump. Scoreless since Week 1 with five straight games below 70 yards, Allen is sure to be exceptionally low owned in DFS tournaments. … The Bolts’ perimeter wideout rotation of Mike, Tyrell, and Benjamin has rendered all three fantasy obsolete. … The Chargers still refuse to commit to Henry as their main tight end. Coming off the Week 9 bye, Henry ran the same number of routes (20) as Gates and has drawn two targets in consecutive games. Even against a Bills defense allowing the NFL’s 11th-most yards (512) to tight ends, Henry is a low-floor streamer play.

After setting up Tyrod Taylor to fail at the beginning of the year, then benching him at the first sign of trouble, the Bills will throw fifth-round pick Nathan Peterman to the wolves against the Chargers’ No. 6 DVOA-rated pass defense, which ranks second in the NFL in sacks (29) and has held seven of its last eight quarterbacks faced to fantasy results of QB13 or worse. This is a prime streamer spot for the Chargers’ D/ST. … Los Angeles’ run defense stiffened with WLB Denzel Perryman back from I.R. in last week’s loss to Jacksonville, stymieing Leonard Fournette (17/33/0) and holding Jaguars running backs to a 21/45/0 rushing line when you exclude Corey Grant’s 52-yard fake-punt gain. The dual-threat downgrade from Taylor to Peterman is another concern for LeSean McCoy’s outlook. Until he proves me wrong, I’m bumping McCoy into low-end RB1 territory after valuing him as an elite RB1 to this point. It does help that Mike Tolbert (hamstring) is not expected to play; Tolbert was siphoning 5-7 touches per game and sporadic goal-line looks. … There is no way to tell whether Peterman will have a positive impact on any individual Bills pass catcher. Ultimately, his impact is likelier to be negative on the entire corps. Kelvin Benjamin will have to deal with Casey Hayward’s stingy shadow coverage, and the Chargers have put clamps on tight ends all year, worrisome for Charles Clay. Los Angeles has allowed the league’s second-fewest fantasy points to the position.

Score Prediction: Chargers 23, Bills 17

4:25 PM ET Games

Cincinnati @ Denver
Team Totals: Broncos 21, Bengals 18.5

Bengals-Broncos projects as a low-scoring game wherein Denver’s struggling defense has a great chance to come alive against Cincinnati’s barely-there pass protection. This is a week to fully fade Andy Dalton and tee up Denver’s D/ST at home against a Bengals offense that ranks 28th in Football Outsiders’ Adjusted Sack Rate allowed. … Joe Mixon also encounters a difficult Week 11 spot against a Broncos run defense that ranks No. 1 in DVOA, limiting running backs to the NFL’s eighth-fewest fantasy points and 3.44 yards per carry. Merely a touchdown-or-bust RB2/flex option, Mixon has totaled 70 yards from scrimmage twice all year. … Expectations should be lowered for A.J. Green against a Broncos defense that has allowed just two enemy wideouts to clear 65 yards against them (Alshon Jeffery, Brandin Cooks) through nine games. … The sleeper on Cincinnati’s side is Tyler Kroft, who has logged 93% or more of Cincinnati’s offensive snaps in five straight games. The Broncos’ cornerback-stingy defense funnels action to tight ends, so much that Denver has allowed a league-high 746 yards to the position.

The Broncos’ D/ST is the best fantasy play on Denver’s side. Brock Osweiler’s fantasy results through two starts are QB25 (Eagles) and QB25 (Patriots), rendering Osweiler a poor two-quarterback-league option regardless of opponent. … Denver’s backfield remained a three-way committee in last Sunday night’s loss to New England. C.J. Anderson’s 11 touches and 38% snap rate paced the RBBC, but he was trailed closely by Devontae Booker (9, 38%) and Jamaal Charles (8, 25%). It’s become another situation to avoid no matter whom the Broncos are playing in a given week. … Just one opposing wide receiver (Marqise Lee) has topped 65 yards against Cincinnati since Week 3. The Bengals are yielding the NFL’s fourth-fewest fantasy points to the position. The good news is both Emmanuel Sanders (6/137/0) and Demaryius Thomas (5/44/1) looked healthy in last week’s loss to New England. The bad news is this week’s matchup is much tougher, downgrading Sanders and Thomas from fringe WR2 plays to WR3s.

Score Prediction: Broncos 20, Bengals 13

New England vs. Oakland
Team Totals: Patriots 30.5, Raiders 23.5

Tom Brady visits Mexico for a smash spot against the Raiders, who gave up consecutive top-ten fantasy results to Alex Smith (QB5), Tyrod Taylor (QB9), and Jay Cutler (QB4) before their Week 9 bye and rank dead last in pass-defense DVOA, yielding the NFL’s highest passer rating (110.5) and also ranking dead last in sacks (13). Brady is Week 11’s top quarterback play. … Rex Burkhead was the biggest beneficiary of Mike Gillislee’s Week 9 healthy scratch, logging season highs in touches (13) and snaps (51%), scoring on a first-drive reception, and blocking a punt on special teams that will surely endear him to coach Bill Belichick. Since returning from an early-season rib injury, Burkhead’s touch counts have trended upward in three straight games (7 > 11 > 13). Oakland gets gashed by running backs, ranking 24th in run-defense DVOA and allowing the NFL’s seventh-most receiving yards to the position (468). Burkhead has emerged as a legitimate RB2 play in PPR leagues and an every-week flex starter in non-PPR. … Dion Lewis’ passing-game usage is almost nonexistent at this point, but he remains the favorite for early-down and scoring-position work in New England. Lewis also made a Week 9 special teams impact on a 103-yard kickoff-return score in Denver and led New England in carries (14), hitting pay dirt from eight yards out in the third quarter. Lewis is a solid RB2/flex in non-PPR with less value in PPR. He has multiple catches in just 3-of-9 games. … James White’s touch counts (9 > 7 > 5) and playing time (31% > 23% > 16%) have trended down since Burkhead returned, increasing White’s risk as a flex option. He remains playable in PPR leagues against an Oakland defense giving up the NFL’s sixth-most catches to running backs (56).

Brady’s post-bye target distribution: Brandin Cooks 11; Rob Gronkowski 7; Danny Amendola 4; White, Burkhead, Martellus Bennett 3; Phillip Dorsett, Dwayne Allen 2. … Brady-Gronk is this week’s premier DFS stack against a Raiders defense that has been rinsed by Hunter Henry (5/90/0), Julius Thomas (6/84/1), Delanie Walker (7/76/0), AJ Derby (4/75/1), Vernon Davis (5/58/1), and Travis Kelce (4/33/1). … Cooks led New England in targets (11) and catches (6) in the team’s post-bye win at Denver. This is a blowup spot for Cooks against a plus-sized Oakland secondary that will struggle with his 4.33 speed. … The Raiders have contained slot men Keenan Allen (5/45/0), Jarvis Landry (6/32/1), Eric Decker (3/10/0), Jeremy Kerley (3/14/0), Jordan Matthews (3/21/0), Jamison Crowder (6/52/0), Bennie Fowler (2/35/0), and Jeremy Maclin (6/43/0). Pats slot man Amendola has cleared 50 yards once since Week 1. … Even with Chris Hogan (shoulder) sidelined last week, Dorsett was a non-factor with 16 yards on two targets. He remains waiver-wire material in season-long leagues. … Bennett played just seven snaps in his Week 9 debut with the Patriots and will share time with Allen behind Gronkowski for the foreseeable future.

With the highest total of Week 11 (54.0), this game’s shootout potential gives Derek Carr QB1 appeal against a Patriots pass defense that ranks 30th in DVOA while yielding the NFL’s ninth-most touchdown passes (16) and seventh-highest passer rating (98.2). New England hasn’t permitted a top-12 quarterback finish since Week 6, however, and Carr has been a polarizing producer with three top-seven results on the season but four of QB20 or worse. As usual, Carr is a boom-bust fantasy play coming off the Raiders’ Week 9 bye. … In their pre-bye win over Miami, the Raiders played Marshawn Lynch on a season-high 60% of the snaps and gave Lynch 16 touches, his most since Week 1. Lynch responded with his best game of the year, hitting pay dirt twice and ripping off numerous BeastModian runs, tallying a season-high 60 yards after contact. Jalen Richard and DeAndre Washington resumed sharing change-up duties with five touches apiece. It is conceivable the coaching staff went easy on Lynch in the first half of the year in order to keep him fresh down the stretch, and one game-plan approach the Raiders could take would be to hammer Lynch against New England’s leaky front in an effort to keep Brady off the field. The Patriots rank 29th in run-defense DVOA, allowing a mammoth 5.00 yards per carry and the NFL’s third-most receiving yards (501) to enemy running backs. Lynch is a viable RB2 play this week.

Carr’s Weeks 1-9 target distribution: Amari Cooper 72; Michael Crabtree 47; Jared Cook 45; Washington 28; Richard 21; Seth Roberts 20; Cordarrelle Patterson 16; Lynch 10. … New England couldn’t cover Emmanuel Sanders (6/137/0) last Sunday night and also gave up a useful game to Demaryius Thomas (5/44/1). On the season, the Patriots have allowed the NFL’s second-most receptions (121) and yards (1,765) to wide receivers. This is a mouth-watering draw for Crabtree, who has scored a touchdown and/or cleared 80 yards in 6-of-7 healthy games. … Cooper’s volatility isn’t going away, but his upside remains immense in a cake matchup like this. He has drawn nine or more targets in three straight games, and New England’s inability to generate pass rush should give Cooper opportunities to come open deep. … Fantasy’s least-discussed every-week TE1 is Cook, who ranks seventh at the position in catches (39) and fourth in yards (499). Austin Seferian-Jenkins (8/46/1), Cameron Brate (5/68/1), Ryan Griffin (5/61/1), Coby Fleener (3/33/1), and Ed Dickson (3/62/0) have all given the Patriots fits.

Score Prediction: Patriots 34, Raiders 24

Sunday Night Football

Philadelphia @ Dallas
Team Totals: Eagles 26.5, Cowboys 22.5

A top-seven fantasy quarterback in 7-of-9 starts and this year’s QB3 overall, Carson Wentz is a Week 11 smash play against the Cowboys, who have allowed the NFL’s ninth-most touchdown passes (16), tenth-highest passer rating (96.4), and sixth-highest completion rate (66.6%). Dallas will be without difference-maker WLB Sean Lee (hamstring), while Zach Ertz (hamstring) is healthy after missing the Eagles’ pre-bye dismantling of Denver. … Lee’s absence also upgrades the outlook for trade-deadline acquisition Jay Ajayi, whose role will expand after he spent the open date studying Philadelphia’s offensive playbook. Ajayi ranked third in the backfield in touches (8) and played just 25% of the snaps against the Broncos, although he was less than a week removed from the trade and still outgained the rest of the Eagles’ running backs (8/77/1). Corey Clement figures to stay involved as Philly’s No. 2 back due to his pass-protection prowess and red-zone role, while LeGarrette Blount’s clock-killing ability should keep him active on game days. This remains an RBBC, capping Ajayi’s short- and long-term ceiling. In a high-scoring offense facing a Lee-less Dallas run defense, Ajayi remains a solid RB2/flex play at JerryWorld.

Wentz’s Weeks 1-9 target distribution: Alshon Jeffery 73; Zach Ertz 64; Nelson Agholor 42; Torrey Smith 30; Wendell Smallwood 15; Trey Burton 14; Brent Celek 12; Mack Hollins 10. … Jeffery enters Week 11 with 70-plus yards and/or a touchdown in five of his last eight games, improving his rapport with Wentz over the course of the year. He has earned every-week WR2 treatment taking on a Dallas secondary that allows the NFL’s ninth-most fantasy points to receivers, including the fourth-most touchdowns (11). … Slot men Larry Fitzgerald (13/149/1), Jamison Crowder (9/123/0), Cooper Kupp (5/60/1), and Sterling Shepard (7/44/0) have especially caused problems for the Cowboys, upgrading Agholor’s outlook as a boom-bust WR3/flex. Agholor has cleared 60 yards twice this season and is averaging just 4.7 targets per game, instead getting by on efficiency. … Travis Kelce (7/73/1) and Austin Hooper (6/49/1) paid fantasy dividends against Dallas in each of the last two weeks. The Eagles were able to treat Ertz’s hamstring cautiously, holding him out of Week 9 and through the Week 10 bye. He is a top-three tight end play behind only Rob Gronkowski (vs. OAK) and Travis Kelce (@ NYG). … A Martavis Bryant lite, Hollins has steadily earned more snaps (11% > 26% > 44%) and has a chance to be a factor down the stretch. Hollins stands 6-foot-4, 221 and averaged 20.6 yards per catch at North Carolina. He will supplant Smith soon.

In large part due to LT Tyron Smith’s (groin) expected absence – a backbreaker in last week’s loss to Atlanta in which fill-in Chaz Green was whipped for five of pedestrian Falcons RE Adrian Clayborn’s six sacks – Dak Prescott has a concerning Week 11 draw against an Eagles defense that leads the NFL in quarterback hits (73) and ranks third in interceptions (11). Philadelphia is giving to fantasy passers otherwise, having allowed top-12 results to six of their last eight quarterbacks faced. I think Prescott is best viewed as a boom-bust play I would still lean toward starting. He has posted top-12 fantasy finishes in 7-of-9 starts, ordinarily mixing a high floor with a sky-high ceiling. I think Prescott’s floor takes the biggest hit due to Dallas’ offensive line struggles, but his upside remains intact. It helps that the Eagles have allowed the NFL’s fifth-most rushing yards to quarterbacks (180). … This is a brutal matchup for early-down grinder Alfred Morris against a Philly run defense that ranks No. 7 in run-defense DVOA and has held enemy backs to 2.92 yards per carry. As the Eagles allow the NFL’s fifth-most receptions to running backs (57), Rod Smith is a superior PPR flex play after leading the Cowboys’ backfield in Week 10 snaps (62%), targets (6), and routes run (32). Morris is a touchdown-or-bust RB2/flex specific to non-PPR leagues.

Prescott’s targets since the Cowboys’ Week 6 bye: Dez Bryant 35; Terrance Williams 19; Jason Witten 17; Cole Beasley 14; Smith 8; Brice Butler 5. … Eagles CB Ronald Darby is tentatively due back, but he hasn’t played since Week 1 due to a fractured ankle, and DC Jim Schwartz wouldn’t commit to Darby playing a big Week 11 role. On the season, Philadelphia has allowed the NFL’s fourth-most catches (118) and ninth-most yards (1,495) to wide receivers, giving Bryant another shot at a blowup game. … Williams had a big Week 9 against Kansas City’s sieve-like pass defense. He remains scoreless on the year with one 50-yard game since Week 1. … Beasley hasn’t reached 25 yards since Week 2 and hasn’t reached 50 yards in 15 straight games, including playoffs. While either could pop up for a big play or game at any unforeseen point, Williams and Beasley are ultimately hard to take seriously on such low usage. … The Eagles have sprung sporadic leaks in tight end coverage minus MLB Jordan Hicks (Achilles’), surrendering the NFL’s seventh-most receptions (47) and 12th-most yards (500) to the position. Witten is never a safe-floor play with single-digit yards in 3-of-9 games, but he still absorbs whatever is thrown to him with a career-high 76.4% catch rate. He’s a passable streamer in PPR leagues against Philadelphia.

Score Prediction: Eagles 30, Cowboys 24

Monday Night Football

Atlanta @ Seattle
Team Totals: Seahawks 24, Falcons 21

A top-ten fantasy passer in six of his last seven starts with four top-five finishes among them, Russell Wilson draws another favorable matchup on Monday night against the Falcons, who rank 20th in pass-defense DVOA and have yielded top-12 results to three of their last four signal callers faced. Atlanta has also allowed the NFL’s eighth-most rushing yards to quarterbacks (171), while Wilson ranks third at his position in rushing attempts (51) and second in rushing yards (290). … Washed-up Eddie Lacy's (groin) expected return takes Thomas Rawls out of play as a flex option. ... The lone playable Seahawks back is J.D. McKissic, who finally cleared the five-touches-per-game barrier in last week's win at Arizona and will see elevated usage with C.J. Prosise (ankle) on I.R. The Falcons have yielded the NFL’s third-most receptions (58) to running backs. Things are looking up for McKissic in Seattle’s increasingly pass-first attack, and it would not be surprising if he became an every-week PPR flex option down the stretch.

 

Wilson’s target distribution since the Week 6 bye: Doug Baldwin 40; Jimmy Graham 28; Tyler Lockett 25; Paul Richardson 14; McKissic 12; Rawls 7; Luke Willson 4; Tanner McEvoy 3; Amara Darboh 4; Lacy 2. … Atlanta has played stout slot coverage for most of 2017, but was still burned by Jarvis Landry (8/62/1) and Golden Tate (7/58/1). On pace for career highs in targets (140) and catches (96) in Seattle’s pass-first attack, Baldwin is a player to bet on and not against on a weekly basis. … The Falcons have allowed the NFL’s fourth-fewest fantasy points to tight ends, although they did yield seven catches on seven targets to Jason Witten last week. Graham has topped 55 yards and/or scored a touchdown in seven straight games while leading all tight ends in red-zone targets (15) and the entire league in targets inside the ten (11). … The Richardson-Lockett weekly conundrum is one Richardson has routinely won with a combined 12/250/3 receiving line since Seattle’s bye compared to Lockett’s 13/176/0, despite Lockett having drawn 11 more targets in that span. Richardson has simply been a better, more efficient player. Neither boundary receiver’s Week 11 matchup stands out against sturdy Falcons outside CBs Robert Alford and Desmond Trufant. Atlanta allows the NFL’s eighth-fewest fantasy points to wide receivers. 

Matt Ryan travels to Seattle with top-14 fantasy finishes in just 5-of-9 starts to face a Seahawks pass defense that has sprung some injury-caused leaks lately, but still ranks No. 7 in DVOA and gets back difference-maker FS Earl Thomas (hamstring) after a two-week absence. Just 1-of-9 quarterbacks have logged top-12 results against the Seahawks and only 3-of-9 have placed QB16 or higher. As Seattle will be without Richard Sherman (Achilles’) on Monday night and Atlanta’s pass-catcher corps is flush with favorable matchups, I still believe Ryan warrants fringe fantasy-starter consideration. The 2016 NFL MVP has played better in real life than fantasy this season. … The Seahawks’ run defense has returned to dominant form, holding enemy backs to a combined 121/317/2.62/5 rushing line in its last six games. Tevin Coleman will fill in as Atlanta’s feature back in Devonta Freeman’s (concussion) absence, but he is merely a volume-driven RB2 in this brutal spot. Seattle also stymies running backs in the passing game, allowing the NFL’s third-fewest catches (36) and second-fewest receiving yards (244) to the position.

Ryan’s targets in the last four games: Julio Jones 39; Mohamed Sanu 28; Austin Hooper 19; Freeman 11; Taylor Gabriel 10; Justin Hardy 6; Coleman 5. … Despite continued box-score disappointment, Jones is worth sticking with against a Seahawks secondary that just lost Sherman and will either turn to burnable Jeremy Lane or street free agent Byron Maxwell across from rookie RCB Shaq Griffin. Julio isn’t hitting pay dirt, but he does rank ninth among NFL receivers in catches (49) and fifth in yards (715). Natural regression suggests Jones will start scoring more soon. … Sanu draws a Seahawks defense fellow slot man Larry Fitzgerald (10/113/0) shredded last week. Despite Sanu’s slow Week 10 results (3/29/0), he has cleared 65 yards and/or scored a touchdown in five of his last seven games and remains the clear-cut No. 2 option in the Falcons’ passing attack. … Albeit perhaps partly due to Earl Thomas’ absence, Seattle gave up 5/106/0 to Rams tight ends in Week 5, 6/60/1 to Evan Engram in Week 7, 6/72/0 to Vernon Davis in Week 9, and 5/64/1 to Jermaine Gresham last week. Hooper has drawn six-plus targets in five of his last six games. His matchup is improved by SS Kam Chancellor's (stinger) expected absence.

Score Prediction: Seahawks 24, Falcons 23

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