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Cooper Kupp
AP
By the Numbers

NFL Week 10 WR/CB Matchups and TE Analysis

by Ian Hartitz
Updated On: November 7, 2019, 1:08 am ET

Giants at Jets

Giants Offense

Position WR Height Weight Speed Tgt Share Air Yard Share CB Height Weight Speed
Left Darius Slayton 73 190 4.39 12% 27% Darryl Roberts 71 187 4.43
Slot Golden Tate 70 202 4.42 23% 22% Brian Poole 70 209 4.55
Right Bennie Fowler 73 217 4.52 12% 18% Nate Hairston 72 196 4.52

Projected shadow matchups: None

WR/CB breakdown: Sterling Shepard (concussion) practiced in full last week before being placed back in the protocol over the weekend. It seems very unlikely that he'll suit up anytime soon.

Daniel Jones' target distribution during Shepard's four-game absence has been as follows:

Note that Engram and Barkley each only played three games over the past four weeks.

Tate's 42 targets since returning from suspension in Week 5 are the seventh most in the league. Overall, he's been the PPR WR16 in Weeks 5-9 while demonstrating some truly amazing contested-catch skills to go along with his always-lethal ability after the catch.

Fire up Tate as an upside WR2 in PPR formats against the Jets' 25th-ranked defense in pass DVOA.

Darius Slayton has more than five targets in just one game this season. Still, the nature of his pass-game opportunities keep him on the fantasy radar as an upside WR5. Only Will Fuller (19 air yards per target) and Tyrell Williams (18.6) have been targeted further downfield on average than Slayton (16.6) through nine weeks.

Neither Fowler (58% snaps in Week 9) nor Latimer (15%) are on the fantasy radar as the No. 5 and No. 6 pass-game options inside of the league's 23rd-ranked scoring offense.

TE breakdown: Engram (foot) didn't practice Wednesday and is considered week to week. He's cooled off since going for over 100 yards and scoring a touchdown in two of the Giants' first three games of the season. The injury, combined with potential for a No. 3 pass-game role with each of Barkley and Tate getting fed targets, makes Engram more of a low-end TE1 moving forward as opposed to a locked-in top-three option if healthy. Rhett Ellison will draw the start if Engram is ultimately sidelined, but the Giants' 31-year-old backup TE possesses a mediocre combination of athleticism and proven receiving ability. Don't treat Ellison as anything more than a desperate dart throw as far as fantasy is concerned.

Jets Offense

Position WR Height Weight Speed Tgt Share Air Yard Share CB Height Weight Speed
Left Robby Anderson 75 190 4.41 19% 36% Deandre Baker 71 193 4.52
Slot Jamison Crowder 68 185 4.56 23% 26% Grant Haley 69 190 4.44
Right Demaryius Thomas 75 224 4.41 17% 24% Janoris Jenkins 70 193 4.46

Projected shadow matchups: None

WR/CB breakdown: Robby Anderson continues to play over 90% of the offense's snaps, but has just three, eight, eight, six and four targets in five games since the Jets' Week 4 bye. He certainly boasts a fantasy-friendly target share; his average target depth of 15.5 yards is the eighth-highest mark among 72 full-time WRs this season. Still, Anderson has largely been a non-factor for the entire year outside of his electric 92-yard touchdown against the Cowboys. 

Crowder caught 8-of-9 targets for 83 yards and a score against the Dolphins' porous defense last week. He's again set up brilliantly in the slot against the Giants, who have employed arguably the league's worst nickelback in Grant Haley:

  • 1.93 yards allowed per cover snap in the slot (No. 47 among 51 qualified CBs, per PFF)
  • 116.8 QB rating allowed in the slot (No. 40)
  • 353 yards allowed in the slot (No. 50)
  • 31 receptions allowed in the slot (No. 49)

Demaryius Thomas has finished with fewer than 50 receiving yards in four-of-six games this season and hasn't found the end zone.

Anderson and Crowder have proven capable of providing fantasy value in spurts inside of this pitiful offense. Still, Sam Darnold's general inability to throw the football in recent weeks gives the entire passing game a painfully low floor, even in this great matchup.

TE breakdownChris Herndon (hamstring) dressed in Week 9, but was available for emergency purposes only. Ryan Griffin continued to play well with a near every-down role. Overall, Griffin has posted 1-1-0, 4-66-2 and 6-50-0 lines in three games since Herndon's suspension ended. The likelihood that Herndon will be operating at less than 100% if active, combined with Griffin's stellar play, could lead to a committee of sorts once the Jets' talented second-year TE gets back on the field. This would render both Herndon and Griffin as low-end TE2s with part-time roles in the league's 31st-ranked scoring offense.

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Chiefs at Titans

Chiefs Offense

Position WR Height Weight Speed Tgt Share Air Yard Share CB Height Weight Speed
Left Demarcus Robinson 73 203 4.59 12% 19% Malcolm Butler 70 187 4.4
Slot Sammy Watkins 73 211 4.43 25% 23% Logan Ryan 71 191 4.56
Right Tyreek Hill 70 185 4.34 20% 46% Adoree' Jackson 70 186 4.42

Projected shadow matchups: None

WR/CB breakdown: Patrick Mahomes (ankle) is trending towards returning this week. The presence of the 2018 MVP would obviously result in a significant boost for everyone involved in the Chiefs Offense.

This is particularly true for Demarcus Robinson, who has been relegated to a part-time role with Matt Moore under center. The offense's snap distribution among WRs and TEs last week was as follows:

Overall, Hill (22 targets), Kelce (21) and Watkins (18) are the only Chiefs with double-digit targets since Moore took over halfway through the team's Week 7 victory over the Broncos.

The Titans have mostly been solid against the pass this season thanks in large part to a strong bounce-back year from Adoree' Jackson, but the extended absence of Malcolm Butler (wrist, IR) could be problematic for a defense that hasn't moved their CBs around to this point. Career backup CB LeShaun Sims has allowed 5-of-8 targets into his coverage to be caught for 76 yards and a score this season and finished 2018 as PFF's 110th-ranked CB among 135 qualified corners.

Fire up Hill, Kelce and even Watkins with confidence this week, regardless of who is under center.

TE breakdown: Kelce is the PPR TE2 after nine weeks, but still somehow feels like a disappointment. This is because the Chiefs' stud TE ranks 17th in PPR among all WRs and TEs after finishing 2018 at No. 9. Regardless, continue to treat Kelce as a weekly top-three TE thanks to both his natural talent as well as his monstrous workload (74 targets) that has only been topped by Zach Ertz (75) at the position. 

Titans Offense

Position WR Height Weight Speed Tgt Share Air Yard Share CB Height Weight Speed
Left A.J. Brown 72 226 4.49 15% 21% Charvarius Ward 73 198 4.49
Slot Adam Humphries 71 195 4.58 15% 13% Tyrann Mathieu 69 186 4.5
Right Corey Davis 75 209 4.53 16% 25% Bashaud Breeland 71 197 4.62

Projected shadow matchups: None

WR/CB breakdown: Ryan Tannehill's target distribution this season has been as follows:

It's tough to expect consistent fantasy production from anyone involved in what has essentially been a four-way draw for lead receiver duties inside of the league's 12th-most run-heavy offense.

Both Davis and Brown have demonstrated tantalizing ability at different points throughout the season, but this isn't the spot to expect boom weeks. The Chiefs Defense has been significantly better against the pass (No. 4 in DVOA) than the run (No. 28) through nine weeks and are one of just seven defenses to allow fewer than 30 PPR per game to the WR position.

TE breakdown: Jonnu Smith remains a perfectly fine low-end TE1 option as long as Delanie Walker (ankle) remains sidelined. The Titans' backup TE has posted 3-64-0, 6-78-1 and 3-18-0 lines over the past three weeks with a near every-down role. Still, the return of Walker would likely result in each player receiving limited snaps, rendering both TEs as non-viable fantasy options against the league's fifth-best defense in DVOA against the position.


Cardinals at Buccaneers

Cardinals Offense

Position WR Height Weight Speed Tgt Share Air Yard Share CB Height Weight Speed
Left KeeSean Johnson 73 201 4.6 13% 15% Jamel Dean 73 206 4.3
Slot Larry Fitzgerald 75 225 4.48 20% 23% Vernon Hargreaves 70 204 4.5
Right Christian Kirk 71 201 4.47 23% 27% Sean Bunting 70 195 4.42

Projected shadow matchups: None

WR/CB breakdown: The Cardinals are officially done with utilizing 4-WR formations as their base offense. Their snap distribution in Week 9 at WR and TE was as follows:

Kirk is no longer a primary slot WR, but the talented second-year player demonstrated the ability to win from the outside on more than a few occasions in 2018.

Only Mike Williams (54 targets) has more pass-game opportunities than Kirk (53) without a touchdown this season. A matchup against the league's single-worst defense in PPR per game allowed to opposing WRs is as good a time as any for Kirk to find the end zone.

Larry Fitzgerald had fewer than five targets for the third-consecutive game in Week 9 and hasn't surpassed 70 receiving yards in a contest since Week 2. The 36-year-old WR should be treated as an upside WR4 thanks to the pristine matchup, but there's no longer a solid floor here.

The rest of the Cardinals WRs are off the fantasy radar due to snap and target concerns. Hopefully Andy Isabella can find his way into 3-WR sets sooner rather than later after demonstrating his upside with an electric 88-yard touchdown last week.

TE breakdown: Williams might've had a full-time role in Week 9, although the Cardinals' starting TE still has fewer than three targets in all but one game this season. The same is true for Clay. Both TEs remain off the fantasy radar due to workload concerns despite the great matchup.

Buccaneers Offense

Position WR Height Weight Speed Tgt Share Air Yard Share CB Height Weight Speed
Left Mike Evans 77 231 4.53 27% 39% Patrick Peterson 72 219 4.34
Slot Chris Godwin 73 209 4.42 23% 24% Tramaine Brock 70 195 4.54
Right Breshad Perriman 74 212 4.3 11% 12% Byron Murphy 71 190 4.55

Projected shadow matchups: Mike Evans vs. Patrick Peterson

WR/CB breakdown: Evans has "won" both of his career matchups against Peterson, posting 6-70-1 and 3-95-1 lines in 2016 and 2017, respectively. Still, he received a combined 26 targets in those two contests.

The good news for Evans is that the 2019 version of Peterson doesn't appear to be anything to fear. The Cardinals' No. 1 CB ranks outside of the league's top-50 corners in catch rate allowed, QB rating allowed as well as fantasy points allowed per cover snap and target. Both Emmanuel Sanders (7-112-1) and Michael Thomas (11-112-1) managed to excel while in Peterson's shadow over the past two weeks.

The question is whether or not both Evans AND Chris Godwin will be able to ball out in the same week after mostly alternating blowup performances throughout the Buccaneers' first eight games of the season.

  • Week 1: Evans (PPR WR80); Godwin (WR32)
  • Week 2: Evans (WR49); Godwin (WR5)
  • Week 3: Evans (WR1); Godwin (WR64)
  • Week 4: Evans (WR10); Godwin (WR1)
  • Week 5: Evans (WR106); Godwin (WR6)
  • Week 6: Evans (WR9); Godwin (WR3)
  • Bye
  • Week 8: Evans (WR1); Godwin (WR41)
  • Week 9: Evans (WR2); Godwin (WR24)

Either way: Continue to treat both Evans and Godwin as weekly WR1s against the Cardinals' 23rd-ranked defense in fewest PPR per game allowed to opposing WRs.

Breshad Perriman posted a season-best 4-42-1 line in Week 9, but found the end zone via one of the more ridiculous tipped passes you'll ever see. Perriman (61% snaps last week) continues to somewhat rotate with rookie Scott Miller (16%), who would've had his first career touchdown in Week 9 if he hadn't stepped out of bounds before catching the ball.

TE breakdown: TEs O.J. Howard (hamstring), Cameron Brate (ribs) and Antony Auclair (toe) are all dealing with various injuries, but Howard is at least expected to return in Week 10. Still, Tanner Hudson could continue to be involved as well, and Howard has fewer than five targets in every game since Week 1. He's a boom-or-bust TE2 regardless of the great matchup due to these volume concerns.


Falcons at Saints

Falcons Offense

Position WR Height Weight Speed Tgt Share Air Yard Share CB Height Weight Speed
Left Julio Jones 75 220 4.39 22% 34% Eli Apple 73 199 4.4
Slot Russell Gage 72 184 4.55 7% 9% P.J. Williams 72 194 4.57
Right Calvin Ridley 73 189 4.43 15% 24% Marshon Lattimore 72 193 4.36

Projected shadow matchups: Julio Jones vs. Eli Apple, Calvin Ridley vs. Marshon Lattimore

WR/CB breakdown: Ridley absolutely roasted the Saints with a 7-146-3 performance in Week 3 of last season. He was so dominant that the Saints switched Lattimore off of Jones in the second half and had their No. 1 CB shadow the rookie WR for the remainder of the game.

The latter approach wound up being the Saints' strategy again when the teams met in Week 12.

A few notes about that matchup:

  1. Apple shadowed Jones, but the Saints bracketed the Falcons' No. 1 WR with help from a safety on nearly every snap.
  2. Lattimore largely shadowed Ridley on an island without additional help.
  3. Both Jones (11-147-0) and Ridley (8-93-1) balled out regardless.

Continue to fire up Jones as a no-doubt WR1, while Ridley can probably be approached as more of an upside WR2 moving forward. Overall, the talented second-year WR has posted 8-93-1, 8-105-1, 6-71-1, 5-88-1 and 7-146-3 lines in five career games with at least eight targets.

Russell Gage caught 7-of-9 targets for 58 scoreless yards in his debut as the Falcons' No. 3 WR. Still, he figures to work as the offense's No. 4 pass-game option (at best) more weeks than not, while backup WRs Christian Blake (18% snaps) and Justin Hardy (14%) ate into some of Gage's (57%) reps.

TE breakdown: Austin Hooper has at least four receptions in every game this season and has found the end zone in three consecutive contests. The overwhelming majority of his production has come in the second half with the Falcons trailing, but that reality doesn't appear to be on the verge of changing anytime soon. That point is particularly true this week, as the Falcons are presently 13-point underdogs. Continue to fire up Hooper as a weekly high-end TE1 even though the offense would obviously rather get Ridley and Jones more involved.

Saints Offense

Position WR Height Weight Speed Tgt Share Air Yard Share CB Height Weight Speed
Left Michael Thomas 75 212 4.57 31% 38% Isaiah Oliver 72 201 4.5
Slot Austin Carr 73 194 4.67 5% 9% Kendall Sheffield 71 193 4.4
Right Ted Ginn 71 180 4.43 13% 30% Blidi Wreh-Wilson 73 195 4.53

Projected shadow matchups: None

WR/CB breakdown: The Falcons, like most of the league, haven't quite figured out a way to guard Michael Thomas over the years:

  • Week 3, 2016: 7 receptions-71 yards-1 TD (11 targets)
  • Week 17, 2016: 10-156-1 (14)
  • Week 14, 2017: 10-117-1 (14)
  • Week 16, 2017: 4-66-0 (5)
  • Week 3, 2018: 10-129-0 (10)
  • Week 12, 2018: 4-38-0 (6)

Continue to fire up Drew Brees' No. 1 WR as a weekly top-three fantasy WR. Thomas deserves to be in any conversation regarding the league's very best WR at this point.

The return of Desmond Trufant (toe) would help the Falcons' porous secondary ...

... but Ted Ginn will offer some fantasy value regardless. The 34-year-old is locked in as the offense's No. 2 WR and has posted solid enough 2-42-0, 7-101-0, 3-58-0, 3-44-0 and 5-74-0 lines in his last five games with Brees under center. A matchup against the league's 31st-ranked secondary in pass DVOA might be just what Ginn needs to provide his first boom week in awhile.

The potential return of Tre'Quan Smith (ankle) would relegate Austin Carr to the bench. Neither are realistic fantasy options at the moment.

TE breakdown: Jared Cook (ankle) is tentatively expected to return after missing two games. He posted a pedestrian 2-37-0 line on just three targets in Week 1 with Brees under center. Treat Cook as more of a low-end TE1 in this amazing matchup 

Ian Hartitz

All things NFL. Great day to be great. You can follow Ian on Twitter @Ihartitz.