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Start ‘Em or Sit ‘Em

Week 11 Start 'Em or Sit 'Em

by Nick Mensio
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

Happy Week 11, everyone. Start ‘Em or Sit ‘Em is geared toward season-long leagues but can also be used for daily fantasy purposes, as these are players I’ll likely have some exposure to over the weekend.

QUARTERBACK

Start of the Week: Derek Carr vs. Patriots: The Raiders are coming off their bye week. Heading into it, Carr strung together three-straight 300-yard passing games. In two of those games, however, he managed to throw just one touchdown in each, while the other was a 417-yard, three-score effort against the Chiefs in Week 7. Carr has just three top-12 finishes on the year, but a Week 11 home date against the Patriots with two weeks of rest looks like a real spot to jump-start this offense for a playoff run. New England is 30th in pass-defense DVOA, 31st in fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks, and 32nd in overall pass defense. The Patriots also don’t pressure the quarterback, as they’re 26th in sacks, and are one of three teams to allow more than 8.0 YPA through the air. In Weeks 1-6, the Patriots allowed five top-12 finishes, and the only one not to finish as a QB1 was Deshaun Watson (QB15). Since then, the Patriots have shut down Matt Ryan, Philip Rivers, and Brock Osweiler. Ryan had to deal with the Foxboro fog, Rivers only attempted six passes before halftime, and Osweiler is…well…Osweiler. Carr should snap New England’s streak. This game has a 54.5-point over-under, the highest of Week 11. Both defenses are truly awful, so we could see a back-and-forth affair. We’re going to want plenty of action on this one in DFS.

Starts

Alex Smith at Giants: Smith is also coming off his bye. The overall QB4 in fantasy points per game, Smith should probably be locked into fantasy lineups at this points, but the nature of his career likely has some at least debating it. The last three quarterbacks to face the Giants have all had top-four weeks, including Russell Wilson (QB4), Jared Goff (QB1), and C.J. Beathard (QB4). The New York defense has completely mailed it in, and top CB Janoris Jenkins was obviously not even trying late in last week’s loss to the previously winless Niners. Over the last five weeks, the Giants are dead last in fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks. On the year, they’re 32nd in sacks, 30th in pass yards allowed, and 29th in pass-defense DVOA. Smith has thrown multiple touchdowns in 5-of-9 starts, and New York is tied for last in touchdown passes surrendered with 20. The only real concern here for Smith is the projected wind, as RotoGrinders’ Kevin Roth forecasts sustained winds in the 15-20 MPH range with gusts of 30 MPH. That could be bad news for the deep passing game. Smith is typically a guy who likes to get the ball in the hands of his playmakers early, letting them create yards after the catch, so it’s not a huge deal. Kansas City’s implied team total of 27.75 points is the third-highest of Week 11. Both offenses should be able to put points on the board.

Blake Bortles at Browns: The only reason Bortles is on this list is because he’s the quarterback who gets the Browns this week. There aren’t many quality streaming options available on the wire this week, but one is Bortles. He’s the QB24 in fantasy points per game this season, so it’s a battle of bad against bad. Bortles has set season-highs in pass attempts each of the past two weeks, firing off 51 passes last week against the Chargers after letting it loose 38 times Week 9. He has just a 2:2 TD:INT mark in those two contests, but Bortles has topped 250 yards in each of the past three games. The Browns are 25th in fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks, 27th in pass-defense DVOA, and 30th in touchdowns allowed through the air. Over the last four games, only Marcus Mariota hasn’t finished as a QB1 against Cleveland. Deshaun Watson was the QB2, Case Keenum the QB6, and Matthew Stafford the QB8. Bortles isn’t as good as any of those guys and has a worse supporting cast, but there’s enough here to produce a top-12 week. Weather will be a real issue in Cleveland, however, as snow showers are predicted for the morning and 20-25 MPH winds accompanied by feels-like temperatures in the 20s during game time. Wind is the biggest enemy to passing games, particularly deep passes. Bortles doesn’t need disadvantages as is, but a week where Tom Savage, DeShone Kizer, Nathan Peterman, Brock Osweiler, Mitchell Trubisky, and Blaine Gabbert are starting NFL games, Bortles isn’t that bad of an option. The Browns also feature one of the league’s top run defenses, though I don’t really expect that to scare the Jaguars out of their game plan.

Eli Manning vs. Chiefs: Manning has had a middle-of-the-road season and is far from the Giants’ biggest 2017 worries. He’s top-10 in touchdown passes and has thrown only six interceptions. Manning is fresh off a top-12 week in San Francisco and gets to come back home to face a similarly bad Chiefs pass defense. Kansas City is 28th in pass yards allowed, 28th in fantasy points surrendered to quarterbacks, and 22nd in pass-defense DVOA. Over their last four games, the Chiefs are giving up 279 yards per game through the air. Not everything is roses for Manning, though. His offensive line is a real issue, especially with top lineman RT Justin Pugh out indefinitely with a back injury. LT Ereck Flowers is already one of the worst in the league at his position. And Manning’s pass-game arsenal has obviously been wrecked by injuries to Odell Beckham and Brandon Marshall. Sterling Shepard and Evan Engram have emerged as real threats, however, and are enough to vault Manning to solid fantasy days in plus matchups. This one qualifies in a game with a solid 45-point total with the Giants as considerably underdogs, suggesting they’ll be throwing the ball plenty as they play from behind. As mentioned above, the wind is a concern, but Engram and Shepard run most of their routes close enough to the line of scrimmage where it shouldn’t pose a big problem.

Sits

Matthew Stafford at Bears: Stafford is having a big year as the current QB10 in fantasy, and he’s been particularly good over the past month with a number of top-12 weeks. His Week 11 matchup is by no means favorable, however. The Bears are No. 4 in fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks, No. 10 in pass yards allowed, and No. 11 in pass-defense DVOA. Chicago is also one of just four teams yet to yield 10 touchdown passes. The Bears seem to play much better defense at home, as only Matt Ryan has managed a top-10 week in Chicago. It’s a tough place to play, and Stafford struggled badly there last season, throwing for just 213 yards, no touchdowns, and two picks. Temperatures are expected to be around the freezing mark on Sunday with winds around 15 MPH. The Bears’ solid pass defense will pose more of a challenge to Stafford than the weather. The 40.5-point total in Lions-Bears is the fourth-lowest of Week 11.

Brett Hundley vs. Ravens: Hundley had easily his best game in his short period as the Packers’ starter last week against the Bears, completing 18-of-25 passes for 212 yards and a score. He just looked more confident in his game. It still wasn’t nearly enough to make him fantasy relevant as the QB21 on the week. Now coming back home against Baltimore isn’t any better of a spot. The Ravens are No. 3 in fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks, No. 3 in pass yards given up, and No. 3 in pass-defense DVOA. That combined with the run-preferred nature of this Green Bay offense minus Aaron Rodgers (collarbone, I.R.) makes Hundley a low-floor, low-upside play, even in two-quarterback leagues. The Packers are two-point home underdogs in the game with the lowest over-under of the week at 37.5 points. There aren’t many recommended fantasy plays on either team.

Case Keenum vs. Rams: Keenum had one of the best two or three games of his career last week in Washington, lighting up the Redskins for 304 yards and four touchdowns. He threw a couple interceptions late, which had the Vikings warming up Teddy Bridgewater, but coach Mike Zimmer announced earlier this week that Keenum would get the Week 11 start. FOX Sports’ Jay Glazer did report that the Vikings were “very tempted” to go with Bridgewater, whom they view as the future of the franchise coming off his gruesome knee injury. The Glazer report is a big concern to Keenum’s security as the quarterback, and it suggests he has an extremely short leash that could result in a mid-game switch. This could be that week. The Rams are No. 1 in overall team defense DVOA, No. 6 in fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks, No. 9 in pass yards given up, and No. 2 in pass-defense DVOA. They’ve righted the ship after an up-and-down first part of the season. Keenum will surely want to stick it to his former team, but the threat of Bridgewater coupled with the imposing matchup, even at home, makes Keenum nothing more than a desperation play.

RUNNING BACK

Start of the Week: Doug Martin at Dolphins: Martin scored touchdowns in his first two games off suspension in Weeks 5 and 6, but since then he’s averaging just 2.7 YPC without a trip to the end zone and one game with more than 51 rushing yards. The good news is Martin has played at least 50% of the snaps in four of the last five games and has seen at least 18 carries in three of the last four. On Thursday, OC Todd Monken said the Bucs have to continue running the ball and “hammering it” to keep the defense off the field and allow play-action to work on offense. Sunday presents a prime get-right spot for Martin. The Dolphins’ defense has completely collapsed after what now looks like a fluky start to the year. Over the last five weeks, Miami is 30th in fantasy points allowed to running backs, bleeding 129.4 yards per game and 5.22 YPC to the position. Only the Bills and Bucs have given up more rushing touchdowns in that span. With Ryan Fitzpatrick making another start in place of an injured Jameis Winston (shoulder), Tampa Bay will certainly want to run the ball like it did last week when Martin received a season-high 20 carries. The hope is Martin will do more than the 51 scoreless yards he was able to manage against the Jets. Miami is coming off a drubbing at the hands of the Panthers this past Monday night when they allowed at least 40 points for the second time in three weeks. Jonathan Stewart busted his slump with a season-high 117 yards on the ground, and both Christian McCaffrey and Cameron Artis-Payne scored rushing touchdowns. In Week 9, Marshawn Lynch ran for two touchdowns against the Dolphins, and the previous week Alex Collins had the game of his life with 113 yards on 18 carries. If Martin can’t make it happen on Sunday, then it may not be in the cards for him this year. It’s one of the few games without weather issues.

Starts

Kenyan Drake vs. Bucs: Damien Williams has started each of the first two games since the Jay Ajayi trade, but Drake has easily been the better player of the two. Drake has turned 16 carries into 151 yards and a 66-yard touchdown last week against Carolina. He’s also reeled in all eight of his targets for 45 yards. Williams has also received 16 carries, but he has just 33 scoreless yards to show for it, while catching eight passes for 67 yards and a score. Drake offers far more playmaking ability and upside, but the coaches seem to trust Williams more in pass pro and near the goal line. Drake can score from anywhere on the field and gets another plus draw against the Bucs. Tampa Bay is 26th in fantasy points allowed to running backs. The Bucs have given up the ninth-most catches to the position. They just shut down Bilal Powell and Elijah McGuire last week, but Alvin Kamara managed the overall RB1 finish against Tampa in Week 9, and Christian McCaffrey had a top-24 week in Week 8. The total for Bucs-Dolphins has risen to 42 points up from 40 in the last 24 hours. The game is currently a pick-em and one of the few matchups without weather concerns for Week 11. Drake is on the back end of the RB2 radar, while Williams is more of a touchdown-dependent RB3.

Jay Ajayi at Cowboys: Acquired from the Dolphins at the trade deadline, Ajayi played 17 snaps in his Eagles debut back in Week 9 and rushed eight times for 77 yards, including a 46-yard touchdown, against the Broncos. He has now had the bye week to study the playbook, and OC Frank Reich said the coaches are comfortable using Ajayi in any situation moving forward. Considering the Eagles gave up a fourth-round pick for Ajayi, he figures to be the 1A in this backfield moving forward. Dallas has played solid defense as a whole through 10 weeks, but it does yield 4.2 YPC to running backs while checking in at No. 26 in run-defense DVOA. Tevin Coleman managed the RB10 finish against the Cowboys last week as the Falcons’ top back following Devonta Freeman’s concussion. The Eagles’ offense is much more conducive for success on the ground. Philadelphia is one of the run-heaviest teams in the league, averaging more than 31 rushing attempts per game. Coach Doug Pederson runs the ball to open up the pass. Eagles-Cowboys has the third-highest total of the week at 48 points, and the Eagles’ implied team total of 26.25 is the fourth-highest on the board. This one will be played in the dome on the fast track at Jerry’s World without weather concerns.

Orleans Darkwa vs. Chiefs: Darkwa has solidified himself as the Giants’ preferred option on early downs. He’s been in on at least 35% of the snaps each of the past four weeks and is averaging 15 carries per game in that span. Not only is he getting the work, Darkwa is making things happen with them, averaging 4.88 YPC. A touchdown would be nice, but Darkwa has also raised his floor with at least two catches in each of the last three games. Kansas City has been getting run over by running backs of late. Over the last five weeks, the Chiefs are No. 23 in fantasy points allowed to the position and yielding 4.73 YPC. On the season, they’re 29th in rushing yards allowed and dead last in run-defense DVOA. Only the Patriots are surrendering a higher yards-per-carry average. Darkwa isn’t flashy, but he can get what is blocked and has broken six tackles as a runner the past two weeks. The concern for Darkwa in this spot is the Giants being double-digit underdogs, but the good news is this one is in New York, giving the G-Men a better chance of keeping it close. Even in a blowout loss to the Rams in Week 9, Darkwa still saw 16 carries. He’s firmly on the RB2 radar.

Sits

Ameer Abdullah at Bears: Abdullah has scored in back-to-back games with short touchdowns against the Packers and Browns. He seems to be gaining more trust from the coaches in the red zone and at the goal line, which is obviously a big boost to his fantasy status. The volume has also been there most weeks, seeing double-digit carries in every game thus far. However, Abdullah still isn’t creating big plays, averaging just 52.1 rushing yards per game and failing to top 55 yards since Week 4. Abdullah has caught more than one pass in a game just once in that same span. The floor is extremely low when he isn’t scoring a touchdown. The Bears have been gashed at times on the road, but they play pretty good run defense at home where they allow just 17.2 points per game. Ty Montgomery got loose for a lengthy touchdown run last week, but Jamaal Williams averaged just over 3.0 YPC on 20 totes in relief. Chicago held Panthers running backs to 58 scoreless yards on 21 carries the previous home game. The low floor outweighs the upside in this spot for Abdullah. The 40.5-point total in Lions-Bears is the fourth-lowest of the week.

Joe Mixon at Broncos: Mixon’s snap rates have been up the past three games, playing at least 60% of the offensive plays each week, but he continues to be one of the biggest disappointments of the year. He hasn’t topped 50 rushing yards since Week 5 and is averaging just 3.0 YPC for the season. Like Abdullah above, Mixon has saved his fantasy owners with a pair of touchdowns the past two games. But over the last four games, Mixon is averaging only 10 carries per game and making little impact as a receiver outside of a 67-yard catch in Week 8. The low volume and the Bengals’ dreadful offensive line has capped Mixon’s upside. He now gets a real tough road draw against a Broncos run defense that is No. 5 in rushing yards allowed, No. 10 in fantasy points given up to running backs, and No. 1 in run-defense DVOA. Denver is yielding just 3.44 YPC to the position. The 39-point total in Bengals-Broncos is the third-lowest of Week 11. Mixon is likely going to need another touchdown to give owners a top-30 week.

Alfred Morris vs. Eagles: In the first game without Ezekiel Elliott, Morris got the start last week against the Falcons. He played just 21 snaps to Rod Smith’s 39, however, while Darren McFadden was a non-factor. Morris’ numbers look okay with 53 yards on 11 carries, but he struggled early and didn’t do anything outside of producing 45 yards on one second-half drive. It’s pretty evident Morris isn’t going to simply step in and pick up where Elliott left off, especially with the Cowboys missing stud LT Tyron Smith, who will also be sidelined this Sunday night. Morris will be running behind a weakened offensive line against the league’s top run defense. The Eagles are surrendering just 66.4 yards per game on the ground, while the second-place Panthers are at 80.6. Only the Vikings have given up fewer fantasy points to running backs, and most of the damage in that department versus Philly has been by running backs who catch the ball. Morris doesn’t do that, as that’s more of Smith’s role. The only positive is this game will be played in a dome with a decently-high 48-point total. Morris is a low-floor, touchdown-dependent RB3 with minimal upside.

WIDE RECEIVER

Start of the Week: Bruce Ellington vs. Cardinals: Ellington has quietly played over 77% of the snaps on the season and has become more involved in the pass game the past two weeks with Tom Savage under center. Ellington has seen eight targets in each of Savage’s two starts, catching seven of them for 63 yards and a touchdown. He should have had a much bigger day last week against the Rams but was unable to haul in a deep ball early in the loss. With Will Fuller (ribs) now sidelined for at least this week, Ellington should see at least a small boost. And considering DeAndre Hopkins will draw shadow coverage from shutdown CB Patrick Peterson, Ellington could flirt with double-digit targets while running most of his routes at Tramon Williams and Tyrann Mathieu. Williams played really well last Thursday night against Seattle but is 34 years old and was terrible last season in Cleveland. He took over as the starter three weeks ago, replacing burn victim Justin Bethel. Mathieu just hasn’t been good this year. The Cardinals are 28th in fantasy points allowed to receivers. This game has some sneaky fantasy appeal, even with Savage and Blaine Gabbert as the quarterbacks. Neither defense is very good, and it will be played in a dome on turf. Ellington is very much in play as a WR3/4 who runs most of his routes from the slot. Arizona has been torched by slot wideouts all year.

Starts

Jamison Crowder at Saints: Seemingly over his early-season injury woes, Crowder has seen double-digit targets in each of his past two games and is averaging 10 per game over the last four weeks. He’s finally starting to produce after being a hot breakout candidate over the summer. The matchup is imposing on paper against the Saints’ pass defense that checks in at No. 4 in DVOA, but this game will be played in the Superdome, one of the most fantasy-friendly atmospheres in the league, and sports a sky-high 51-point total. Running 75.5% of his routes out of the slot, Crowder will draw Kenny Vaccaro in coverage. Vaccaro missed Week 10 with a groin injury and has the lowest coverage grade among Saints cornerbacks. With Jordan Reed (hamstring) also suffering a setback last week and not practicing Wednesday or Thursday, that also gives Crowder a slight boost in the middle of the field. Crowder has big upside in a game that may see a ton of points.

Marqise Lee at Browns: Over the last four weeks, Lee is averaging nearly 10 targets per game and has solidified himself as the clear-cut top option in the Jaguars’ passing attack. That will be the case even more this week after Allen Hurns injured his ankle in Week 10 and has already been ruled out for Sunday. Lee has produced at least 70 yards and/or a touchdown in four consecutive games and now gets a date with a Cleveland pass defense that is dead last in DVOA against opposing No. 1 receivers. Top CB Jason McCourty returned from his high-ankle sprain last week, but Lee may not see much of him if the Jaguars give Lee more reps out of the slot sans Hurns. Lee played a good amount of slot snaps last season when Allen Robinson was healthy. The Browns have been flamed by Adam Thielen and Golden Tate in back-to-back games, and both run the majority of their routes out of the slot. Lee has already put himself on the weekly WR2/3 map and gets another plum matchup this Sunday, even with winds expected to be blowing 20-25 MPH.

Danny Amendola at Raiders: Patriots-Raiders is the hottest game on the board this week, and it will be played in high-elevation Mexico City. The Raiders and Texans played in Mexico City last season, and both defenses were completely gassed by the middle of the second half due to the poor oxygen exchange. Amendola has topped 50 yards just one time since the season opener, and the Raiders have contained opposing slot receivers pretty well on the year. But with Chris Hogan (shoulder) likely out again this Sunday, Amendola could see a couple more balls come his direction. He caught all four of his targets for 36 yards last week in a tough date against Denver. Things will come easier for the Patriots’ receivers this time around. Amendola and Tom Brady have a good connection, and he and Rob Gronkowski should soak up looks in the middle of the field while Brandin Cooks runs by the Raiders’ bigger outside corners. Amendola is a far better play in PPR formats where he’ll be on the WR3/4 map as a floor play who sees red-zone targets. The total on Patriots-Raiders keeps rising and is up to 54.5 points as of Thursday evening. New England’s implied team total of 30.5 is easily the highest on the board.

Sits

Sammy Watkins at Vikings: Since the bye, Watkins has scored a 67-yard touchdown in Week 9 against the Giants and followed it up with a 17-yard score last week against the Texans. It’s made Watkins a fine fantasy play in back-to-back games, but the reality is he’s still not seeing nearly enough volume to make it sustainable from week to week. In those two games, Watkins has seen just five total targets, and he remains a distant fourth option in the Rams’ passing game, trailing Robert Woods, Cooper Kupp, and Todd Gurley. It’s always smart to bet against guys who don’t see volume. The Rams’ offense has been incredible under coach Sean McVay’s guidance, but things will be tougher this week in Minnesota. The Vikings are 12th in pass-defense DVOA and 12th in fantasy points allowed to receivers. There’s also a good chance Watkins sees a lot of top CB Xavier Rhodes, who has yet to allow a touchdown this season and is Pro Football Focus’ No. 21 cover corner out of 116 qualifiers. Quarterbacks have a 59.0 passer rating when throwing at Rhodes. Kupp probably has the best matchup out of the slot against ageless CB Terence Newman.

Brandon LaFell at Broncos: LaFell is coming off easily his best game of the season, a 6-95-1 shredding of the hapless Titans pass defense. It was LaFell’s first game over 50 yards this season. Likely added in a decent amount of leagues after owners looked at last week’s results, LaFell is someone to avoid Week 11. The Broncos aren’t as dominant in pass defense this season, checking in at No. 17 in DVOA, but the raw numbers suggest it’s still an elite group. Denver is No. 3 in fantasy points allowed to receivers and No. 1 in catches given up to the position. LaFell figures to see plenty of Bradley Roby and Chris Harris while A.J. Green does battle with Aqib Talib. The 39-point total in Bengals-Broncos is the third-lowest of the week and could easily hit the under.

Marvin Jones at Bears: Jones was a total flop last week at home against the Browns. On a day Matthew Stafford threw three touchdowns, Jones was targeted just three times, catching one for 22 yards. This came after Jones was leading all receivers in targets per game Weeks 6-9. The return of Kenny Golladay to the lineup after a lengthy absence may have played a big role in Jones’ target dip, so that will be something to monitor moving forward. Jones has been held to 37 yards or less in all four games Golladay has played this season. This just isn’t a good matchup for the Lions’ passing game overall. The Bears are allowing just over 17 points per game at home, and are No. 11 in fantasy points surrendered to opposing receivers. Prince Amukamara is playing really well on one side of the field, while Kyle Fuller is healthy opposite him. Fuller has been torched at times this year and was getting whooped by Davante Adams last week. However, a lot of his bad play has come away from Soldier Field. Jones needs to be dropped to WR4 range. This game has an ugly 40.5-point total.

TIGHT END

Start of the Week: Jared Cook vs. Patriots: The overall TE9 through 10 weeks, Cook has regularly been a starting option for much of the year. He’s coming off a season-high 126 yards last time out against the Dolphins and has topped 100 yards in two of the last three games. Cook has seen at least five targets in all but one game this season and is playing over 77% of the snaps. New England was smashed by Cameron Brate (TE4) in Week 5 and Austin Seferian-Jenkins (TE4) in Week 6. Cook will be the first real tight end the Patriots have seen since then. This is a game we want to hammer for fantasy purposes. Patriots-Raiders has an astronomical 54.5-point total that has been rising each day. The high elevation of Mexico City figures to work against the defenses.

Starts

C.J. Fiedorowicz vs. Cardinals: Fiedorowicz returned from I.R. last week to play 63-of-70 snaps and see six targets. He didn’t do much with them in a difficult matchup against the Rams, but the snap percentage was the main takeaway as Fiedorowicz avoided setbacks with his length concussion history. He gets a better draw this week against a Cardinals team that has allowed the 12th-most fantasy points to tight ends and just got lit up by Jimmy Graham for two touchdowns last week. With DeAndre Hopkins expected to be locked up in Patrick Peterson’s coverage all afternoon, the Texans’ secondary options like Fiedorowicz and Bruce Ellington should see a couple more looks. Fiedorowicz is worth picking up as a streamer for the stretch run.

Ben Watson at Packers: Quietly, Watson is 10th among all tight ends in targets per game over the last four weeks, seeing over six per week in that span. The ageless one has also been in on over 70% of the snaps on the year and played 90% of the downs last time out against the Titans. The Packers are No. 1 in fantasy points allowed to tight ends, but they haven’t seen much in the terms of competition from that spot. The last three weeks, the opposition has been Dion Sims, Coby Fleener, and Eric Ebron. Watson is better than all three of those guys, and Joe Flacco likes to throw to his tight end more than the Bears, Saints, and Lions. Watson leads the Ravens in red-zone targets.

Tyler Kroft at Broncos: Since taking over for Tyler Eifert, Kroft has topped 50 yards just twice, having a monster two-touchdown day against the Browns for one of them and then going for 79 yards against the Jaguars in Week 9 ahead of last week’s bye. It’s been pretty hit-and-miss for Kroft, but this looks like a good spot to go back to him after the Patriots just ripped the Broncos apart with running backs and tight ends last Sunday. Dwayne Allen caught his first pass of the season and scored a touchdown, while Martellus Bennett and Rob Gronkowski combined to go over 100 yards. The Broncos are 31st in fantasy points allowed to the position, surrendering the most yards, third-most catches, and third-most yards to tight ends. The nature of the Denver defense having an elite group of corners tends to force everything to the middle of the field to the tight end.

Sits

Hunter Henry vs. Bills: After playing over 81% of the snaps in Weeks 6 and 7, Henry has seen his usage go down in the past two games. He’s played just 62.5 and 65.2 percent of the plays in the last two, respectively. And Henry has just three catches for 18 yards to show for it in that span. The Bills don’t present a difficult matchup, but Henry needs to be on the field more and see some volume before we can go back to him as a streaming option. Keenan Allen figures to be in a bounce-back spot this week against a Bills defense that has collapsed in recent games.

Austin Hooper at Seahawks: Hooper has provided some useful games here and there this season, including a 6-49-1 game last week against Dallas, but this looks like a spot to fade him. The Seahawks have allowed just three touchdowns to tight ends this season and are No. 8 in DVOA against the position. Hooper hasn’t topped 50 yards in a game since the season opener.

Eric Ebron at Bears: Ebron was a popular sleeper play last week, and he answered with a touchdown against the Browns’ nonexistent defense against tight ends. It was a one-week thing for Ebron, and he’s safe to send back to the waiver wire this week. The Bears have handled tight ends this season, allowing the fifth-fewest fantasy points and sixth-fewest catches to the position.

Nick Mensio

Nick Mensio has been covering the NFL for Rotoworld since 2012. He can be found on Twitter at @NickMensio.