Well here we are in Week 11 of the NFL Season! Time sure flies when we are having fun, right? I will admit to you my readers that Week 10 DFS for me was my worst of the season. Games I saw as winners turned out to be losers. Plays I thought you should consider turned out to be busts. Even defenses I thought you could rack fantasy points against, ended up being the ones that you needed on your roster to score enough to cash. It happens – it’s called real life. Sometimes we get a bit too caught up in the manioca of matchups, snap share and other bufzzworthy terms you will find often in DFS articles and on podcasts. The reality is these are real people playing a real game where anything can happen and often does. The best we all as a fantasy community can do is make educated guesses and sometimes those guesses are wrong. So I promise to try and be better this week but I hope you do as well. I will point you in the directions I’m leading but if you don’t like that direction, F*** it – play your feels. What I hope to at least give you is a different perspective and some key insights on plays that perhaps you can build better lineups and CASH from. So let’s begin.
I will be giving you 4 games I am targeting in DFS Contests this weekend as well as Darts for you to consider. These “Darts” aren’t necessarily Dart Throw plays, more so they are things that just need to be talked about and considered that aren’t attached to any of the 5 games I already discussed. So let’s begin.
Before I do, I want to wish everyone a safe and happy Thanksgiving. Yes I will have a Thanksgiving day DFS Primer up this week, so maybe we will talk again – but if we don’t, please stay safe and if you don’t have to travel, please consider staying home and using technology to your advantage. My family will be using Zoom to share our Thanksgiving with family. Again stay safe and have a Happy and Healthy holiday.
BEFORE I BEGIN, I want to touch on Taysom Hill for a minute and a term that you may hear in other DFS Content – “A Free Square”. Taysom Hill for his entire NFL Career has best been known as a “Gadget” player and a Drew Brees foil. However the Saints have announced him as the starting QB on Sunday in Brees’ absence. On DK he has always been listed as a QB since that was what he was drafted as. However on FanDuel and on Yahoo, Hill is listed as a Tight End. Hill is also priced extremely efficiently as the pricing on all of the sites came out well before the announcement by the Saints on Wednesday of this week. On DK he is $4,800. On FanDuel he is $4,500 and on Yahoo Daily he is. Due to his price many in the industry will label him a “free square” and what they mean by that is you have a player who will see a healthy amount of snaps in a competitive game with pricing not matching opportunity. It is called a “Free Square” because due to the situation it’s almost a lock that “everyone” will be playing the player in Cash Game Lineups (ie; Head to Heads, 50/50s, Multipliers). This article is not necessarily a Cash Game article as I am primarily a tournament player in DFS so I am writing from a tournament player’s perspective. So for me, especially on Draft Kings, I will be staying away from Taysom Hill – primarily because he projects to be the highest owned player across the board by a mile (projected to reach 85% ownership on FanDuel for example) and when ownership on a player gets that high I get too nervous to stick him in a tournament lineup (especially a player like Hill who could start the game at QB and be switched in favor of Jameis Winston quickly). In FanDuel or Yahoo Cash Games, I think his is a fine play in TE or Flex. I will say if you are MASS MULTI ENTERING in Tournaments (150+ Entries) having a couple shots on Hill is fine (even on DK at QB) BUT I’d also recommend for every shot you take on Hill on one lineup, take a shot on Winston on the next build. Winston could prove to be the ULTIMATE pivot and leverage play if Hill’s Ownership does end up in the 85% – 90% range.
I should mention though, I like Taysom Hill as a showdown slate option. Showdowns on Sunday are tournaments I talked about last week and there will be a Showdown slate for Atlanta New Orleans. To be honest, my Showdown lineups saved my Week 10 from busting entirely and I’d recommend taking advantage of them. Particularly in the games I am highlighting or in any game you like. Why I like Hill there is because you can play both Hill and Winston on the same lineup and get all of the New Orleans potential QB Points against the Falcons defense.
Just wanted to get all of that out there and out of the way. On to the games I am targeting.
GAME 1: Detroit Lions vs Carolina Panthers
You know those games that you are just genuinely excited to see what happens in? This one is that kind of game for me. A couple quick notes – Teddy Bridgewater is questionable and may end up being a game time decision. If he ultimately does sit, that could open the door for former XFL Star PJ Walker to get a shot. Against the Detroit defense, at an extremely low price and likely very low ownership, I like Walker a lot. Christian McCaffery is also out for this game as is Kenny Golladay and Lions rookie RB Deandre Swift. So you have some value to work with here and I think this game is going to go largely overlooked with so many other studs on this slate getting the attention.
Mathew Stafford is questionable going into this game but is expected to play and if he does end up suiting up he could be a smash. The Panthers Defense have one of the league’s worst pressure rates coming into this game which means Stafford should have plenty of time to throw and with his own defense allowing over 400 Total Yards per game, there is plenty of reason to believe Matty S will be throwing a lot. Now let’s look at who he is throwing to. No Golladay and No Amendola this week. Interesting. Last week Marvin Jones Jr saw 10 targets taking them for 96 yards and a score. Yay! You also had flavor of the week Marvin Hall taking 3 targets for 61 yards and a score. Yay again! How about Quintez Cephus who has seen his snap share rise over the last week (51% of snaps in Week 10) and now with Amendola also out, Cephus will likely see an even increased role…dart throw? Cheap? Ok I’ll have a few Cephus shares thank you. None of these receivers are over $6,000 on DK and more importantly none are even being projected for more than 9% ownership on the slate and the Lions could Smash here.
I think you also have to take a look at TE TJ Hockenson, priced nicely and facing a Panther’ Defense that is 22nd in the league against Tight Ends. Hockenson has a nose for the end zone and has really come on in 2020 as a reliable option for the Stafford.
Lastly, with Deandre Swift out this week I think Adrian Peterson and to a lesser extent Kerryon Johnson could make for interesting Flex Plays. The Panthers are allowing over 120 yards on the ground to opposing offenses and I think that the Lions will try to establish the run early with AP. He is cheap and is projecting to be the highest owned running back in this game at a whopping 13% ownership. C’mon. Could this be an AP two touchdown game? Stranger things have happened. I prefer AP over Johnson only because I think the Lions prefer AP over Johnson, but at an even cheaper price and next to no projected ownership Johnson does make for an interesting pivot option should AP’s ownership creep up any higher (15 – 20%).
On the other side of the ball I think this is a great time to look at locking in Mike Davis. We all know the story by now – McCaffery is out, Davis becomes the workhorse option etc etc – but we also know that Davis (last week’s “Free Square” by the way) has not been the fantasy stud consistently since those first couple weeks of his role – including last week. So why do I like Davis this week? His ownership has FINALLY DROPPED! Davis is projected currently at roughly 10% ownership, which I like a lot. He is finally back priced correctly across the industry and again, he just hasn’t delivered. However now we find ourselves in a game where he is facing a team that gave up 206 yards on the ground to Davlin Cook two weeks ago and is now averaging a whopping 141 yards on the ground to opposing offenses. Couple that with Teddy Bridgewater potentially sitting and if that happens, I could see the Ground Game take a lot of precedence for the Panthers. Granted should Bridgewater sit, Davis’ ownership could rise – but I can’t see it going over 15% and so for me, Davis is a Great Play on Sunday.
So let’s chat about the Panther’s QB. If Teddy Bridgewater starts I think he is a Strong Play here, though I do like Stafford more. Twice this season we have seen Teddy Two Gloves attempt over 40 passes and three times this season he has attempted over 30. I think we may be in store for 30+ attempts against the Lions who we have seen can put up points quickly against “sub par” defenses. The Panthers by the way are giving up over 386 yards of total offense per game by the way. Bridgewater is cheap and currently he is clocking in at the 17th owned quarterback on the slate. His rushing has been coming along too, now averaging 4 attempts per game. Should Bridgewater sit though we will either see the aforementioned PJ Walker or Will Grier. I do like Walker as a Dart Throw here but if Grier plays I will likely stay away. I see Walker as a playmaker and Grier as a Game Manager.
I think you have to like the opportunity for Robbie Anderson and DJ Moore however. Especially if Bridgewater plays you are talking about Target Monsters against a Lion’s defense giving up nearly 300 passing yards per game. Anderson has become the clear #1 target in this offense over the course of the season, though last week DJ Moore gave us every reason in the world to believe in him again. So pick your poison. Anderson is seeing is projected for roughly 15% ownership while Moore is projected around 7% so for me, I like Moore a little better – but in a game that the Panthers could very well see themselves playing catchup I think you gotta like these receivers. However I think my favorite Panther to look at here is Curtis Samuel. We have seen Samuel emerge as a dual threat in games that McCaffery doesn’t play taking snaps at Wide Receiver and Running Back and especially if Teddy Bridgewater plays, I could see Samuel exploiting this Lions defense. Samuel is likely to be the least owned of the three wide receivers here largely due to a very quiet week 10 – but keep in mind, Week 10 they faced the Buccaneers who have one of the best overall defenses in the league. This is a matchup easily viewed as Night And Day.
Last week we saw big things for Tight End Ian Thomas but instead it was Tight End Colin Thompson getting the red zone look and score. If you want to ride the hot hand I don’t blame you. However I think the Carolina Tight Ends become more interesting options if Bridgewater sits than if he plays. Big targets are key for backup QBs, generally. On a whole though, I’d rather focus my attention on the Carolina WRs and Mike Davis as I think the Tight Ends here are too touchdown dependent to roster.
Favorite Play in this Game: Mathew Stafford
Top Plays: Stafford, Marvin Jones Jr, Mike Davis, DJ Moore, Robbie Anderson, Curtis Samuel
Secondary Plays: Adrian Peterson, Marvin Hall, TJ Hockenson, Quintez Cephus
Dart Throws: Kerryon Johnson, Carolina Tight Ends, Detroit Defense (if Bridgewater Sits)
GAME 2: New England Patriots vs Houston Texans
In a statement you may never hear me say or write again – Jakobi Meyers is projected to be the highest owned wide receiver on this entire slate. Why is that? First – the Houston Texans defense has been nothing short of swiss cheese – in fact, much like the Falcons earlier this season – the Texans are the Cheat Code for opposing offenses. Second, Meyers has emerged as the clear #1 Target and Important Offensive Weapon for the New England Patriots since Cam Newton‘s return from Covid a number of weeks ago. Now normally I like to tell you that highly owned players are not ones I will be playing – but not here. I think you need to eat the chalk. Over the last 3 weeks Meyers has seen 31 Targets from Newton and he even threw a bomb touchdown pass in week 10 in a win over the Ravens. Oh yeah – AND HE IS DIRT CHEAP – $4,900 on DK and $6,000 on FD. To me – this guy should be the real Free Square here, not Taysom Hill. Meyers should SMASH here.
Speaking of smashing I love Cam Newton in this game. Riding a two game winning streak including an underdog win against the Ravens, Newton is starting to get his swagger back and I’m hard pressed to find a reason that the Houston Texans defense has given to me this season to be worried. I like Cam’s passing attempts, averaging 22.5 over the last 3 games. I like Cam rushing the football (9 Rushing TDs on the Season). I just plain like Cam Newton on Sunday. He is actually my QB 1 and I don’t even mind not stacking him with anyone (though Meyers is an obvious choice). Due to the massive ownership attention that Taysom Hill is seeing, nearly every other QB on the slate is projecting for 15% ownership or less too so Cam is in play.
The only thing slowing Cam and Meyers down from smashing though is the Patriots rushing offense which (and I am not saying this as a Pats Truther here) has been nothing short of excellent this season. Damien Harris has seen double digit attempts over the last three weeks and has 2 100+ yard games during that same span, three on the season. However he is questionable with a rib injury. That Q tag lines up interestingly with the return of Sony Michel from IR. I expect if Harris is Q or limited at game time, we could see a healthy dose of Michel especially if the Patriots go up a touchdown or two and NO ONE is looking at him on this slate. Take some shots. Also you can’t discount the play of Rex Burkhead this season with Michel on the shelf – including his 2 touchdown performance last week. I think Burkhead has taken a step over James White in this offense, though with Michel back in the fold it will be tough to say how snaps will be shared. If Harris is a full go I prefer him most of the bunch against a Texans defense allowing nearly 170 yards on the ground to opposing offenses, but I do think Michel is a perfect sneaky low owned cheap flex dart throw especially if you are multi-entering.
If you have the stomach for it you can look at TE Ryan Izzo but he’s not for me seeing maybe one target per game – but I do want to highlight N’Keal Harry and Damiere Byrd here. With SO MUCH ownership going to Meyers, both of these guys could be the ultimate pivot as neither are seeing over 10% ownership and while Meyers is seeing the targets, it’s often Harry and Byrd who are seeing the valuable Red Zone looks and I should mention Cam has targeted Byrd deep more this season than he has Meyers – who has been more of a safety valve than a red zone target. If you are playing Patriots stacks, using Cam with Meyers and either Harry or Byrd could be a contrarian way to attack this offense.
I don’t hate the Patriots Defense here either. Stefon Gilmore looks to be back this week which makes the Patriots Secondary near elite once again and the Texans have certainly had their struggles this season on offense. Nuff ‘Ced there.
On the Texans side of this ball it is a tough putt on a whole. Yes I do think the Texans play the Patriots hard and yes I do think the Texans put up points – but where will this come from is the question. I think your safest play here is Deshaun Watson. I say the safest because Watson is the quintessential “Put the Team on My Back and Go” guy in the NFL this season. With Gilmore back you have to wonder will he shadow Fuller or Cooks and if he doesn’t does this mean current NFL Interception leader JC Jackson will be on the one or the other? Yes – all of the above are safe questions and assumptions. BUT Jackson has been beat on the deep ball and so while it is tough to say who will catch that deep ball it is a lock to say who will throw it. Additionally, I like Watson running here. He finds a way to make plays and if you don’t trust Fuller or Cooks, just like Cam, I don’t mind playing Watson naked and running it back with Meyers or Harris on the other side. I think though a player going under the radar here is Randall Cobb. The Patriots have shown some weakness in the slot this season and Cobb is seeing an average of 5.5 targets per game from Watson. Should he drop back and find Cooks and Fuller unavailable, Cobb could be the safety valve he needs on Sunday. No one is a). talking about Cobb b). playing Cobb (as of right now) or even mentioning Cobb anywhere else. So maybe I’m the crazy one. But I’ll have some lineups with Cam at QB and Cobb at WR…
David Johnson is on IR which means Duke Johnson will get the rock. Duke was a very popular cheap play in Week 10 that was a bust to say the least. So while his price hasn’t risen, his ownership has dropped considerably. However we just saw the Patriots give up yardage to a mixed backfield of the Ravens and I think if you look at how the Pats played Lamar in Week 10, they will unleash a similar game plan against Deshaun in week 11. This could open some lanes up for The Duke and I like the opportunity. Incredibly the Texans are not using Duke in the passing game at all (he has seen a whopping 14 targets total this season including 0 in week 10) – so it comes with a limited ceiling – but in this game with his primary weapons potentially locked down, Watson could be looking Dukes way over the middle and in the flats. You want to be different – stack Cam with Duke and Cobb. Tons of savings on salary and there is a good chance you’ll be unique in your tournaments.
I should mention Darren Fells and Jordan Aikins and Pharaoh Brown – the Houston tight ends – but in doing so I should also mention that he Pats have been downright stingy against Tight Ends this season. Additionally Fells and Aikins were only targeted once each last week while it was Brown who saw 2 targets and a touchdown. So if you want to ride the hot hand, Brown is likely to be unowned and is very cheap. On a whole though I think you have better Tight Ends with more opportunity on this slate.
Favorite Play in this game: Cam Newton
Top Plays: Newton, Jakobi Meyers, Damien Harris, Sony Michel, Deshaun Watson, Randall Cobb
Secondary Plays: Duke Johnson, Brandin Cooks, N’Keal Harry, Will Fuller, Damiere Byrd
Dart Throws: Rex Burkhead, Pharaoh Brown
Game 3: Dallas Cowboys vs Minnesota Vikings (4:25 start)
I mentioned the start time here because I want to highlight a strategy that no one really talks about in NFL DFS lineup construction and that is making sure you have exposure to the entire slate and not just a certain set of games. You could accomplish this with only having one or two pieces of earlier or later games in your lineup, depending on how your build is taking you. You just don’t want to get caught up not looking at the start times of the players you select or games you target. You could build a stellar lineup and realize every player on your team is in the 1pm slate (if you do, consider shifting that lineup to the early slate of games only) and then come 6pm realize you are losing because you missed a smash play in the 4:00 slate of games. Just keep it in mind.
This brings me to this matchup with the Red Hot Minnesota Vikings taking on the beyond desperate Dallas Cowboys. Outside of Dalvin Cook who projects to be the highest owned running back on the entire slate, no one is paying attention to this game and I think that is a mistake.
Let’s take the Vikings for example. Dalvin Cook should be a smash play here. I am not scared with the little red 8th tag next to the matchup here because the way this offense is built around Cook and the run schemes that this offensive line has become nearly prolific at developing lanes for him, I just think he has the opportunity to SMASH. And if he doesn’t take over this game you have a very exploitable Cowboy’s secondary ready for Kirk Cousins and Adam Thielen and Justin Jefferson to exploit. Jefferson has really been coming on as of late and Thielen is riding a two touchdown performance in Week 10. I will say here, I will either be playing Dalvin Cook alone or stacking Cousins with both Thielen and Jefferson. I won’t mix the two. Either Dalvin Cook takes over this game or Cousins and the Pass Catchers do. I don’t see the Cowboys being competitive enough on Defense to push the Vikings in a way that a full stack will pay off in fantasy – if that makes sense.
Tight End Irv Smith has been limited in practice all week so it is highly likely he misses. If he plays, I’d add him to that mix of Pass Catchers behind Thielen and Jefferson. If he doesn’t we saw Kyle Rudolph have a season high of 5 catches and 3rd string tight end Tyler Conklin have a season high of 51% of snaps. So you can certainly take a shot on a Vikings Tight End but I prefer Thielen and Jefferson over them, regarding pass catchers. Rudolph does always carry touchdown upside of course, but I’d like to see the targets up more before I lock any of them in – outside of Smith who I think if he plays makes for a sneaky, cheap, low owned Tight End.
The Cowboys have a good shot of seeing Andy Dalton return and while I don’t think I’ll get to many shares of the Red Rocket in my lineups, I think it is a clear upgrade for Amari Cooper who is severely being overlooked. The Vikings (in spite of an impressive showing in Week 10) still have a defense giving up over 270 passing yards per game and Cooper is cheap compared to his normal pricing. I think Cooper could be a sneaky slate breaker to be honest as we have every reason to believe the Cowboys will be playing catch up ball here and why not grab a piece of the #1 target for Dalton here. I think Michael Gallup also belongs in your player pool for the same reason and it did appear that Gallup and Dalton had developed a bit of chemistry before Dalton’s injury. The odd man out so far in the Dalton led offense is Ceedee Lamb but again if you think that the Cowboys will be playing in catchup mode, I think all of the pass catchers are viable here.
This brings me to Big Zeke. Zeke is always in play. I would not put both Zeke and Cook in the same lineup, not just because of price but the theory here is that if one or the other is dominating the usage of the one not dominating will drop, but Zeke makes for an interesting pivot from the very chalky Dalvin Cook and has a solid opportunity here to perform. It also may be the cheapest Zeke has been in DFS, from a pricing standpoint, since he debuted in the league. While not as much as Cook is to the Vikings, Zeke still is the wheel that turns the Cowboys offense and if they have any shot here to get things going it is likely through Ezekiel Elliot’s legs. I think if you are not playing Davlin Cook in a lineup, you could do worse than grabbing a priced down and ownership down Ezekiel Elliot here.
And if you are looking for a cheap dart, low owned throw – don’t forget Dalton Schultz the Tight End. He has not seen nearly the targets that he had been seeing with Dak but he is playing north of 70% of offense snaps and again if you believe the Cowboys are playing catchup, than I think any capable pass catcher should be in play and Schultz has proven capable when given his opportunities.
I should mention too – if Dalton ultimately doesn’t play – I like the Vikings Defense as a cheap contrarian tournament play. And if you think the Vikings go up big, in non Dalvin Cook lineups, sticking Alexander Mattison in your flex could also prove a big leverage play if Mattison for any reason gets any extended run, targets and/or a Touchdown.
Favorite Play in this Game: Dalvin Cook
Top Plays: Cook, Adam Thielen, Kirk Cousins, Justin Jefferson, Amari Cooper, Ezekiel Elliot
Secondary Plays: Michael Gallup, Irv Smith (if he plays), CeeDee Lamb
Dart Throws: Dalton Schultz, Minnesota Tight Ends not named Irv Smith, Alexander Mattison and Vikings Defense (if Dalton is out)
Game 4: Tennessee Titans vs Baltimore Ravens
Here is another game that I think is going outrageously overlooked – but I will be on. You have two AFC Teams that are coming off losses in an otherwise solid season and neither want to lose any more ground. You also have real studs that no one is talking about and I just don’t no why. I think you can find some real advantages on the field here that can give you leverage in your tournament builds.
The NFL Rushing leader is not Dalvin Cook (currently). It is Derek Henry and at prices comparable to Cooks, he is projected at less than half of Cooks ownership. Last week we saw the Patriots and Damien Harris run all over this Raven’s Defense. Now the case can be made that the Ravens concentrated so much attention on Cam Newton that it allowed the Patriots to establish a run game. I would like to challenge that in saying that the Patriots are a run first offense and scheme their offense around establishing the run. Guess who also does that and perhaps does it better? The Tennessee Titans and Derek Henry – that’s who! I think of any other player on this slate, Henry could end up being a sneaky slate breaker that less than 25% of DFS Players are playing. Henry is coming off a couple down games, but I am not afraid. If I’m not playing Dalvin Cook or Ezekiel Elliot – Derek Henry is my man and in fact I like Henry even more than I do Big Zeke this week.
And if Cam Newton and Jakobi Meyers can put a hurtin’ on the Raven’s secondary – Ryan Tannehill and AJ Brown and Corey Davis should certainly be in play this week. Adam Humphries is out so I think both Brown and Davis are in play here and I think a stack with Tannehill and Brown and Davis will go severely overlooked and have plenty of upside. The Ravens defense is chock full of talent – no doubt – but with big pieces out and/or likely out in Calais Campbell (DNP all week), Brandon Williams (DNP all week) and CB Jimmy Smith (limited Thurs/Fri) I think the entirety of the Titans offense will have some room to move. Much like Cook and Cousins, I likely will not put Henry and the pass catchers in the same lineup – BUT a unique approach may be to stack Henry and Tannehill together. Not often recommended (QB/RB stack) but here you have the two most likely offensive performers together and I don’t hate the idea.
With Adam Humphries out I also like Jonuu Smith in this game. Smith came on very strong early in the season but saw his offensive production drop once Humphries was back on the field. I think Smith in a stack with Tannehill and either Brown or Davis could be strong play on this slate. My cheap, low owned, dart throw though is TE Anthony Firsker who is seeing a couple targets per game but again with Humphries out could easily assume the role of an underneath pass catcher for Tannehill. If you are paying down at Tight End you could likely do worse than Firsker.
The Titans Defense also has a knack for creating turnovers and you never know – Lamar could still be reeling from that loss to New England. If you want to play a cheap defense no one is playing, I’d look at the Titans if you have the guts.
The Titans offense also plays well in a showdown lineup. Because targets and offensive production on this team operates in a funnel, you could really build unique stacks without having to go off the board too far. I’d take a look at this game in the showdown single game tournaments – there is a lot of upside here.
You want breaking news? How about this – DEZ BRYANT HAS BEEN ACTIVATED TO THE ACTIVE ROSTER FOR THE BALTIMORE RAVENS AS OF 4:30PM SATURDAY 11.21 as reported by RotoGrinders. Now isn’t that a reason to take a look at this game? Of course there is no guarantee Bryant will make any kind of impact on Sunday and we have heard very little if no news on any practice report that says Bryant and Lamar are developing a chemistry – but take this for what it is. Dez Bryant will see the field on Sunday against the Tennessee Titans. As of this writing Dez is not in the player pool on Draft Kings BUT he is in the player pool on FanDuel and is only $4,600. It remains to be seen if Draft Kings adds him in before kickoff on Sunday. If they do keep an eye on my Twitter @delrayboston
My feeling on Dez Bryant? If he is available I will take some shots. You are looking at a former pro bowl wide receiver who has been begging, itching and literally tweeting that he is just looking for an opportunity. His much heralded signing with the Saints ended with injury and to me this is a guy with a Chip on his Shoulder – and if you read my stuff, you know I love a guy with a chip on his shoulder. For right now on FanDuel if you are multi-entering – he is a target. If Draft Kings adds him into their player pool, I think he is a target there too if you are multi entering. The Ravens elevated him to the main roster for a reason – I am not taking that lightly.
What does Dez Bryant mean on a whole to me? Another body to cover for the Titans which means likely Less Double Teams on Marquise “Hollywood” Brown who with this news just became one of my favorite Wide Receiver plays on the slate as I would expect both Brown and Bryant to be playing down the field while week 10 hero Willie Snead holds down the underneath routes. Brown is averaging 7 targets per game and has been quiet largely due to opposing defenses being able to key in on him in the open field. Having Bryant out there should open up more space for Brown to navigate and (outside of the turnover potential) the Titans’ secondary doesn’t scare me giving up nearly 300 passing yards per game. Don’t sleep on Snead either though. If anything can be said about the Ravens this season, it is clear Lamar has a lot of trust in Willie Snead and last week was the second time this season he has caught multiple touchdown passes. Speaking of trust you can’t talk the Ravens without talking Tight End Mark Andrews. Andrews has slowly but surely carved his way to being the #3 Tight End on the season in real football terms behind Kelce and Kittle and it is because Lamar Jackson loves to target Mark Andrews. Last week we saw his running mate Nick Boyle go down which should put Andrews even more firmly in the drivers seat here. The Titans rank 21st in the NFL against Tight Ends and the only thing holding Andrews back from being a full go for me is that he is the most expensive Tight End on the slate. But that price tag should keep his ownership down which is a plus. I think Andrews is a solid play in this matchup.
Much like the Titans pass catchers the Ravens are going largely overlooked in tournaments (outside of Andrews) and I for one will be heavy on them in my lineups I think this is a sneaky get right game for this offense.
Which brings me to Lamar Jackson who has his own chip on his shoulder against the Titans after his 2019 historic season was stopped cold by the Titans in the playoffs. Lamar hasn’t been Lamar this season as the narrative has gone but after a stunning loss to the Patriots, I wonder if the Ravens don’t take off the leash and let Lamar run free. On DK the incredible ownership on Taysom Hill is literally projecting every other QB at 15% or less owned and shockingly the reigning MVP here right now is the second highest owned at a whopping 11%. I like Lamar here and I think the stack with Lamar and Brown and/or Andrews could be a slate breaker in an of itself.
I am talking about the Raven’s backfield last only because it is the only piece of this offense that the Dez Bryant news doesn’t make easier to predict. I think there is little doubt rookie JK Dobbins has shown a lot of upside, but last week the returning veteran Mark Ingram muddied those waters. Then you have the perennial thumper Gus Edwards who actually has been seeing the most consistent work all season. I think a case can be made for each. If the Ravens fall behind, Dobbins the most explosive pass catcher will see work. If the Ravens end up on the goal line, Edwards or Ingram could be likely. And if the Ravens get ahead in this game, Edwards will likely be who they call on to close out the game and run out the clock. All of this says to me – stay away, so that is what I will be doing. It may cost me, but I think the Ravens running backs are too touchdown dependent and short of a crazy long run that breaks out it is tough to trust that any one of them will get to a 100 yard game. If I had a gun to my head, I like Edwards best of the bunch – but that is just me.
Favorite Play in this Game: Derek Henry
Top Plays: Henry, Ryan Tannehill, AJ Brown, Corey Davis, Lamar Jackson, Hollywood Brown
Secondary Plays: Mark Andrews, Willie Snead, Jonuu Smith
Dart Throws: Dez Bryant, Anthony Firsker, Titans Defense
- Despite the massive attention on Taysom Hill, I can actually see the Saints and Falcons game underwhelming and not hitting the spread. The Saints Defense is GOOD as we saw them literally dismantle an arguably better passing attack in the Buccaneers just two weeks ago. Now on the plus side Calvin Ridley is back for the Falcons so if I was targeting any piece of this game it likely will be Ridley. Also Alvin Kamara who does have a favorable matchup against the Falcons and the Saints could be more run heavy due to the QB situation. But if it is indeed Taysom Hill under center for most of if not all offensive snaps I think it is a down grade for Michael Thomas and the other pass catchers (at least on paper).
- An honorable mention to the above game list is Philadelphia and Cleveland. Philadelphia is finally close to 100% healthy and I think you can take pieces from this game, which as of right now, does not have the crazy wind challenges that the Browns have had to face the last couple weeks (though Rain is in the forecast). On the Eagles Side I think Alshon Jeffery could be a very sneaky play and with so much focus on Dalvin Cook, Myles Sanders is going criminally underowned. In general I like the Philadelphia offense including Carson Wentz, Dallas Goedert and Travis Fulgham. A couple dart throws at Boston Scott and Richard Rogers too if you are multi-entering. On the Cleveland side I think Baker Mayfield is do for a get right game and I don’t mind taking a couple shots on him, stacked with Jarvis Landry. Austin Hooper is in in play at Tight End for me and you had to like what you saw from Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt last week. I think the Browns to enough to stay competitive and that is good for Fantasy. All of these guys seem to be going overlooked on the slate, so I’d grab some pieces and take advantage.
- While I don’t like this game on a whole I think taking some pieces from Pittsburgh and Jacksonville isn’t a bad idea. On the Pittsburgh Side I think Diontae Johnson and James Connor stand out, but I don’t hate the entirety of the offense JuJu, Big Ben, Claypool or Ebron included. The Steelers are the last undefeated team in the league and offensively they couldn’t ask for a better matchup than the Jaguars to continue their winning ways. On the Jacksonville side I think it’s DJ Chark and Keelan Cole for me both at low ownership and priced down in the matchup. Gardner Minshew may play in this game which if he does, I may stay away from Jaguars all together. Laviska Shenault will miss this game BTW.
- I also like the Washington offense here. Alex Smith is getting more comfortable and I think that only helps Terry McLauren who right now is the 5th highest owned receiver on the slate. Additionally both Antonio Gibson and JD McKissic should be in your player pool. As well as the Washington Defense who is one of the only defenses of the year to put up positive fantasy points in every week.
- Lastly the Green Bay and Indianapolis Game. Davante Adam, Nyheim Hines – both guys I have in my player pool. Do what you want with the rest of the lot – but I will say Michael Pittman Jr definitely intrigues me.
Good Luck in your Contests!