Alright, for full disclosure, this is an absolutely brutal slate. We’re waiting on A TON of late news to drop. And few names are popping as massive clear and glaring values. Typically, the 25th-best value as per the DFS Super Model is offering about $385 in salary relief. But that would rank 12th-best this week. Further, Thanksgiving week is always the most brutal week of the season for any fantasy analyst. It’s like cramming two weeks into one in terms of research. So, for all these reasons, this week’s article is a little light. I was able to write up QB and TE in full, but RB and WR is a little light. Expect me to go more in-depth on the update, which should be first out Saturday night and then will be updated until Sunday lock.
Notes: Like I just said, we’re waiting on A LOT of news to drop. Also, the SuperModel update is a big part of my process. So, all of these rankings are subject to change. That’s why you need to read the Sunday AM Update (out Saturday PM).
Quarterbacks / Game Stacks
Derek Carr, QB, Las Vegas Raiders / Matt Ryan, QB, Atlanta Falcons (53.0 Over/Under)
Argument for Carr:
Carr earned a near-perfect 96.0 Pass Grade from PFF in Week 11. That was – by a good margin – the highest-graded game by any QB this year. He now ranks 7th-best on the year.
Excluding Week 8 – a hellish weather game – Carr has had the league’s 3rd-toughest QB schedule to-date, worth -1.0 FPG off of his per-game average. If we keep that game excluded, he’s averaging 17.8 FPG.
This week, he gets a best-possible matchup against an Atlanta defense that’s surrendering the most FPG to opposing QBs (26.6), while also ranking bottom-2 in passer rating allowed (105.9) and passing fantasy points allowed per pass attempt (0.552). By my data, Atlanta is the biggest pass funnel defense in the NFL (64% actual pass% vs. 59% expected). But most importantly, they’re allowing opposing QBs to out-score their per-game average by a league-high 7.8 FPG.
What does that mean? Based on strength of schedule and current matchup, we should boost Carr’s expectation to about 8.8 fantasy points. Add that to his per-game average, and we’re at 26.6 fantasy points this week. Defensive matchups aren’t everything, so that’s at least a little bullish, but hopefully you get the point – he’s a clear and glaring value, priced as just the 18th-most expensive QB on DraftKings ($5,700), about 10 spots lower than where I’d have him ranked.
Argument for Ryan:
On DraftKings, Ryan is only $200 more than Carr. And Ryan is Matt Ryan, while Carr is, well, Derek Carr. Las Vegas has Vegas on their side (favored by 3.0), but as dogs perhaps Atlanta goes far more pass-heavy than the Raiders. Where Josh Jacobs is a massive threat to vulture Carr, maybe Gurley isn’t as big of a threat to do the same to Ryan. And, oh wait, Gurley is actually out this week, which means Ryan is likely to lean more pass-heavy than they’ve typically been – you know, typically wasting about 17 plays per game handing the ball off to Gurley and his pedestrian 3.7 YPC average.
Unfortunately Julio Jones is looking like a true game-time decision. And though Matt Ryan is Matt Ryan, he’s rarely ever looked like Matt Ryan in games Jones failed to play in full. This season he’s averaging just 13.7 FPG in the 5 games Jones sat out or played hurt. If he sits out, it’s worth also downgrading Carr (and slightly upgrading Josh Jacobs).
Josh Allen, QB, Buffalo Bills / Justin Herbert, QB, Los Angeles Chargers (52.5 Over/Under)
Argument for Josh Allen:
Josh Allen has long been the most matchup-sensitive QB in fantasy. He dropped 36.0 fantasy points in his softest matchup of the season in Week 9. Los Angeles would be his 3rd-softest matchup of the season, ranking 4th-worst overall in schedule-adjusted FPG allowed to opposing QBs (+2.4). They’ll probably get elite CB Chris Harris Jr. back this week, but CB Casey Hayward, DE Melvin Ingram, and LB Uchenna Nwosu are all out.
Buffalo has all but abandoned the run in recent weeks, passing on 74% of their plays versus a 55% expectation (based on gamescript and down and distance). Over this span, Allen averages 34.2 FPG. They have the 2nd-highest implied point total of the slate (29.0), and this game offers the 2nd-highest Over/Under of the slate (52.5).
Argument for Justin Herbert:
Josh Allen is the most matchup-sensitive QB in fantasy, but Justin Herbert has only ever looked like the good Josh Allen. (I’ve said this maybe 37 times this year.) Herbert has had the league’s 4th-toughest QB schedule to-date, worth 0.90 FPG off his per-game average. In spite of that, Herbert has hit 21.5 fantasy points in 7 of 8 career starts. Since Week 4 (his 2nd career start), Herbert ranks 2nd in FPG (26.5), 3.0 FPG behind Kyler Murray and 1.6 FPG ahead of Patrick Mahomes. But Herbert is $600-800 cheaper than Mahomes on both sites.
Buffalo ranks 11th-worst in schedule-adjusted FPG allowed to opposing QBs (+1.3), so this matchup represents a +2.2 boost to Herbert’s per-game average. Buffalo has also given up the most rushing FPG (6.0) to opposing QBs this year, which is notable, given Herbert’s mobility. It’s also notable that, like Buffalo in recent weeks, Los Angeles has been leaning massively pass-heavy. Herbert averages 41.8 pass attempts per game since Week 3 (3rd-most). This game has massive shootout potential favoring both passing attacks (especially with Austin Ekeler due to return.)
Patrick Mahomes, QB, Kansas City Chiefs / Tom Brady, QB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (55.5 Over/Under)
Argument for Patrick Mahomes:
KC @ TB offers the highest Over/Under of the slate (55.5, 3.0 more than next-closest) and the highest implied total of the slate (Chiefs @ 29.25). The spread is close, with the Chiefs favored by 3.0, implying massive shootout potential.
Kansas City has nearly totally abandoned the run in recent weeks. Since Week 7 they’re passing on 69% of their plays vs. 52% expected. Against Tampa Bay’s elite run defense, it would make sense to go that route again this week. Tampa Bay’s pass defense is neutral at best (16th-most passing FPG allowed), but Mahomes is about as matchup-proof as they come. Really, he can do just about whatever he wants whenever he wants. It’s usually only a matter of whether or not the opposing offense can force him to keep his foot on the gas.
Argument for Tom Brady:
On paper, Kansas City is actually a more difficult matchup, ranking 6th-best in passing FPG allowed to opposing QBs. Tom Brady struggled mightily in 2 of his last 3 games, and he’s 0-for-19 on deep pass attempts over the past month. Is this 43-year-old QB wearing down across the 2nd half of the season – something we’ve seen from him before in recent years? Could be, though Vegas is optimistic Tampa Bay puts up points. And against Kansas City’s juggernaut offense, typically the only way that happens is through the air.
Across the full-season, Brady ranks 5th in PFF Grade, right behind Russell Wilson, and ranks 8th in FPG (20.5).
- Personally, I absolutely love the idea of running out some Taysom Hill + Michael Thomas stacks. Last week, I played a Justin Herbert + Keenan Allen + Diontae Johnson lineup as my main for GPPs. And then I got weird in a 3-entry max, trying to go a little more contrarian, playing a number of Ben Roethlisberger dub-stack lineups. This week, my “weird” play of the week is Hill + Thomas. Last week, Thomas caught 9 of 12 targets for 104 yards, while Kamara was basically an afterthought. Thomas accounted for 50% of Hill’s completions and 45% of his passing yards. From Wes’ Advanced Matchups column: "During the play-by-play, announcer Kevin Burkhardt passed along that he asked Hill if he had any special receiver connections from his time practicing with the second-team offense. His response: No, I just want to get the ball to No. 13." Hill, last week, ranked 6th in PFF Pass Grade (81.1) and 1st in fantasy points per dropback (0.88). In the 2019 preseason (working as a true QB) Hill ranked 5th of 84 qualifying QBs in PFF grade. Since the 2018 preseason, he’s averaged 0.67 fantasy points per dropback, which is more than Mahomes has averaged over his full career.
- Graham Barfield made a great case for Kyler Murray here. He’s a great play on paper, and as a bonus he’s likely to go lower-owned.
- No one ever wants to play Teddy Bridgewater in DFS, but he’s been at least serviceable and while providing a few blow-up games. He’s a strong value on FanDuel, especially if paired with Robby Anderson, and is likely to draw low ownership. Minnesota is giving up the 4th-most passing FPG to opposing QBs (18.8).
- Tua Tagovailoa (or especially Ryan Fitzpatrick if he sits) is in play as a low-owned contrarian option against a premier pass-funnel defense. We’ve seen the Jets give up monster games to Patrick Mahomes (36.6), Josh Allen (28.2), Justin Herbert (27.7), Kyler Murray (27.3), and Cam Newton (24.6) earlier this year.
- Daniel Jones is popping as our No. 2 QB value on DraftKings (per our projections). Could Wayne Gallman flop while the passing attack goes nuclear, beating up on a bottom-7 Bengals pass defense? Absolutely.
Dalvin Cook, RB, Minnesota Vikings
Cook leads all players in XFP% (31.5%), a sizable distance ahead of the next-closest player (Davante Adams, 27.8%). He leads all slate-eligible RBs in DKFPG (28.7). Next-closest is Alvin Kamara who is banged up with a foot injury after going catchless last week in Taysom Hill’s first start, scoring just 10.5 fantasy points. Behind him is Derrick Henry, who is 8.6 FPG behind Cook. On FanDuel, Cook also leads in FPG (25.4), and by 7.8 FPG ahead of Henry.
Since his return from injury in Week 8, he’s averaging a whopping 27.3 carries, 3.5 targets, along with league-highs in XFP (25.3) and FPG (32.6). The Vikings are 3.5-point favorites with the 4th-highest implied point total of the slate (27.75). Carolina ranks 4th-worst in YPC allowed (4.74) and 5th-worst in total FPG allowed to opposing RBs (27.2).
There’s a bunch of words there, but this one’s easy. Cook has been a slate-wrecker (5 of 9 games with 29 or more DKFP) all season and especially in recent weeks, and it’s a pillow-soft matchup. You know what to do.
Austin Ekeler, RB, Los Angeles Chargers
“Wait? Is he coming back this week? Yes, he’s coming back this week, man. Yeah! He’s coming back this week!” Or, at least so he says.
Prior to his injury, Ekeler averaged 15.6 carries, 5.3 targets, 15.6 XFP, and 20.0 FPG on a 65% snap share. If over a full season he’d rank 12th in XFP and 4th in FPG. He could see a diminished workload this week in his first game back (though maybe not with Kalen Ballage banged up and questionable), but he also shouldn’t be anywhere near as cheap as he is. He’s just the 12th-most-expensive RB on FanDuel and the 15th-most-expensive RB on DraftKings. Buffalo ranks neutral on paper, but they also rank 7th-worst in YPC allowed (4.66).
James Robinson, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars
Through the first 6 weeks of the season, Robinson played on 61% of the team’s snaps, averaging 17.3 XFP and 13.9 FPG. Since then, he’s played on 79% of the team’s snaps, averaging 17.2 XFP and 17.6 FPG. What does that mean? With Chris Thompson on IR, Robinson is now a full-on bell cow, earning a mid-RB1 workload and producing on that good volume like a true mid-range RB1. But at $6,300 (DK) / $7,400 (FD) he’s not at all priced like it.
Mike Glennon is starting this week, which is a significant concern because he’s a human giraffe and not a starting-caliber NFL QB. Though Jake Luton probably wasn’t much better, and Glennon’s giraffe-like neck allows him a clear view of the field over the heads of opposing linemen. So, who knows? Jacksonville has a lowly 21.5-point implied total, and are 6.0-point underdogs against the Browns. But Jacksonville has lost by double-digit points 5 times, Robinson hit 30.0-plus fantasy points in 2 of those games, and has handled at least 17 touches in every game thus far. The matchup is neutral or slightly worse, but Robinson has been hyper-efficient and hyper-effective all year, and is a strong-to-decent value thanks to this newfound boost in volume.
Myles Gaskin, RB, Miami Dolphins
Here’s what we had to say about Myles Gaskin in Week 9, right before he was placed on Injured Reserve:
Through the first 4 weeks of the season, Gaskin averaged 14.1 XFP per game, commanding a 53% XFP share of Miami’s backfield. Over the next 4 weeks (with Jordan Howard ruled a health-scratch in each game), Gaskin averaged 19.7 XFP per game with a 77% share of the team’s backfield XFP. For perspective, that’s the difference between ranking 21st-and 6th-best at the position. He wasn’t super-efficient on that good volume (-2.3) but was good enough to be ranked as a fringe RB1 each week. Unfortunately, he’ll be sidelined for the next 3 games with a sprained MCL.
If he’s active this week, with Salvon Ahmed out, he’s a massive value at just $5,700 (DK) / $5,600 (FD). The Jets are giving up the 7th-most FPG to opposing RBs (26.2), and the Dolphins enter this game favored by 7.5.
Again, apologies this week’s article isn’t as comprehensive as recent weeks, so the next few player blurbs are going to be shorter than typical.
- Kareem Hunt and Nick Chubb are both in play. Hunt has bested Chubb in XFP in each of their last 2 games, averaging 15.8 to Chubb’s 10.6. That’s in spite of the fact that game script was more favorable to Chubb. It’s also noteworthy that over this span, Hunt has seen 4 opportunities inside the 10-yard-line to Chubb’s 1. With Chubb back, the rushing game is back in full-effect and rolling, but that’s also due to the healthy return of PFF’s highest-graded guard Wyatt Teller. Favored by 7.0 points, behind the 3rd-highest implied point total of the slate (28.25), and in a top-3 matchup against Mike Glennon and Jacksonville’s porous run defense. Hunt is the better value, and a great value overall, but Chubb has more slate-busting upside. Truthfully, they’re just both great plays.
- Derrick Henry is an unstoppable juggernaut and the Colts are down 3 of their top-4 run defenders. Bobby Okereke (LB), Denico Autry (DT), and DeForest Buckner (DT) are all out. Their loss cannot be overstated – this matchup goes from bottom-3 to top-10. He legitimately rivals Dalvin Cook as the top high-priced RB play on the slate, and – as usual – offers massive slate-breaking potential.
- Wayne Gallman has scored 5 touchdowns in his last 4 games, averaging 13.5 carries, 2.5 targets, and 15.8 FPG over this span. He draws a dream matchup against QB Brandon Allen and a Bengals defense that’s giving up the 2nd-most YPC to opposing RBs (5.24).
- With Todd Gurley out, Brian Hill is in play. I don’t think he’s good – he averaged just 5.3 FPG in his 2 starts last year – but he’s in play at the stone minimum on DraftKings. It’s hard to imagine he can’t mirror what Todd Gurley’s been doing – averaging just 3.7 YPC and falling into the end zone once or twice every few games. If he can do that, however, he’d be a massive value.
- Josh Jacobs, Clyde Edwards-Helaire, and Ronald Jones are all decent leverage options off of the chalkier passing attacks in those games. I like Jacobs the best, though Devontae Booker’s recent upsurge in usage is no doubt a concern.
- At just $4,500 and with Rex Burkhead out, James White is a viable punt on DraftKings. He saw 5 carries and 9 targets last week.
Justin Jefferson, WR, Minnesota Vikings
Since his first career start in Week 3, Jefferson ranks 7th in FPG (17.7). He ranks 2nd in PFF Grade (90.6), 1st in YPRR (3.16), and 1st in fantasy points per target (2.61). And now the Vikings are going to be without both Irv Smith and Adam Thielen this week. What does their absence mean for Jefferson? Ideally more targets with similarly good efficiency. However, historically it hasn’t really translated into fantasy points. In 2019, Stefon Diggs averaged 14.9 FPG without Thielen. He averaged 13.7 FPG the rest of the time. Since 2016, Thielen averaged only 13.5 FPG in games without Diggs. So, maybe the extra defensive attention without Thielen could actually work against him, but I’m inclined to just add about 2.5 targets and 4.0 points to his expectation. Carolina is giving up the 11th-most FPG to opposing outside WRs (23.9), and he’d be a clear and glaring value even if Thielen was active. So, what is he now? Probably a must-play.
Keenan Allen, WR, Los Angeles Chargers
From Wes Huber:
“Let’s face it, if you’re not disclosing your lineups to Keenan Allen at the target shares he’s being offered, swiftly altering that strategy is advised. Here are those generous shares since Justin Herbert took the reigns in Week 2: 33, 36, 52, 6 (back spasms), 32, 41, 31, 35, and 58 percent. Simply stating that Allen has garnered a 31 percent target share does little justice to those percentages. At 11.5 targets/game, “Slayer” leads the league to go along with the sixth-highest FPRt (0.51). He may only average 44.0 air yards/game, but he’s been putting up Michael Thomas-like reception totals.
“For Week 12, the Chargers will travel to Orchard Park to face the Bills with the highest combined pace of play this season (142.3 plays/game). After some recent Buffalo weather, mild winds will be a welcomed environment for these passing attacks. Vegas is allotting 5.5 points to the Bills, setting Herbert and Allen up with an anticipated negative game script. Allen will deal with a Buffalo Cover 1 in man (29 percent) and Cover 4 zone (21 percent). Against Cover 1 during a 26-game stretch, Allen has generated 2.58 YPRR (15th), and 35 percent of yardage on 25 percent of routes. However, against Cover 4, his 0.61 FPRt trails only Julio Jones for the top mark. That’s a 33 percent jump to his overall average.”
From Wes Huber:
“When deciding on your Week 12 stacks, a combination that includes either Josh Allen, Stefon Diggs, and Keenan Allen as the run-back option, or Justin Herbert, Allen, and Diggs make a ton of sense. If you haven’t been keeping score, eight-of-11 DraftKings Millionaire, six-of-11 FD Sunday Million winning lineups have featured a stack consisting of a QB with at least one of his receivers, and one of their opposing WRs. While he’s only expected to see the Cover 1 he devours at the fourth-lowest rate (14 percent), Diggs will face the NFLs highest-rate of Cover 3 shells (52 percent).
“At 0.44 FPRt, Diggs ranks 17th-best, fueled by a 12 percent increase in air yards/target. Without Derwin James, Casey Hayward Jr. has been a shadow of the former All-Pro defender. Hayward ranks 79th among qualified outside CBs with an average 95.7 targeted air yards per game, proving that opposing offenses are not respecting his coverage. Chris Harris Jr failed to make the active roster last week after being designated to return from IR. His presence would certainly be a welcomed boost to their secondary. With a 28 percent target share, Diggs ranks third with 10.4 targets/game, and third with 66.4 air yards/game. Coming off their bye, expect to see another heavy dose of “Diggsy” following 14 days of valuable rest provided to the team.”
Casey Hayward is out this week, alongside DE Melvin Ingram and LB Uchenna Nswosu. Chris Harris Jr. is likely (but not a lock) to return this week, and will probably play on the outside, but he’s unlikely to shadow. Diggs, ranking 3rd-best in XFP per game (16.9) and 6th-best in FPG (20.8), is a phenomenal DFS play this week, but Cole Beasley and Gabriel Davis are also in play as punt options.
Jakobi Meyers, WR, New England Patriots
From Wes Huber:
“Following Julian Edelman’s knee surgery, Jakobi Meyers seemingly came out of nowhere to collect target shares of 61, 64, and 100 percent from Weeks 8-to-10. Then he met Eric Murray in Houston to spoil the Meyers love parade. Whereas I predicted that Meyers would be shadowed by Bradley Roby last week, Roby actually traveled with N’Keal Harry. Nevertheless, Murray proved to be more than a match for Meyers, limiting him to 6.8 FPs. With Week 11 behind him, Meyers will play host to Arizona in Foxboro as 2.5-point home dogs.
“The Cardinals play man schemes at the NFL’s fifth-highest rate, the third-highest rate of Cover 1 (44 percent). Despite some solid defensive performances this season, Arizona is graciously permitting the fourth-most receptions (15.6), ninth-most YPG (178.5), and fifth-most TDs (1.3) to opposing WRs. That number is compounded further when facing slot receivers, where they’ve allowed the second-most FPG. What must be maddening for DC Vance Joseph is that slot production has come in the face of Byron Murphy actually standing as his most consistent coverage defender.
“In order for a Cover 1 to work, the LBs and the strong safety need to lock down the short-to-mid range center of the field. 2020 first-round LB Isaiah Simmons has been a coverage liability (1.59 YPCS and 0.38 FPCS) thus far, and the Cardinals safety unit lost star FS Jalen Thompson to a leg injury in Week 11. To top that off, Deionte Thompson was added to the reserve/COVID-19 list today. We don’t have a ton of numbers on Meyers, but he has collected 2.92 YPRR against Cover 1 shells this season. Between the injuries at safety for the Cards, Cam Newton’s trust, and his recent production, Meyers is in a smash spot in Week 12.”
Okay, I already just stole 3 blurbs from Wes Huber – our resident WR expert – but he’s been money all year and I couldn’t agree with him more on each take he provided. However, this is his best one yet. You’re just going to have to read it for yourself here.
- Tyreek Hill ranks behind only Davante Adams in FPG (20.2). He’s seen 32 targets over the last 2 weeks, hitting 100-yards in back-to-back games. He’s scored 6 touchdowns in his last 4 games, and has managed to find the end zone at least once in 9 of 10 games this year. He has both massive upside and a sky-high floor. Carlton Davis won’t shadow, Jamel Dean is out, and he’ll attack Tampa Bay where they’re most vulnerable – in the slot (Sean Murphy-Bunting). He’s a top-3 WR value on DraftKings this week (per the DFS SuperModel), and, in spite of that, and everything else, he’s getting nearly zero buzz this week.
- Calvin Ridley averages 9.5 targets and 19.1 DKFPG across the 4 games he played but Julio Jones either sat out or played hurt. With Jones, Todd Gurley, and Hayden Hurst all banged up, the ball has to go somewhere. And this game has massive fantasy potential, sporting the 2nd-highest Over/Under of the slate (53.0).
- Olamide Zaccheaus is a viable punt if Julio Jones sits out. He averages 76.7 YPG in the 3 games he caught the ball more than once.
- The Rams have leaned massively pass-heavy in recent weeks. Over their last 3 games, Jared Goff has thrown the ball 149 times, hitting 300-plus yards passing in each game. Over this span, Cooper Kupp totals 40 targets and 305 receiving yards. Robert Woods totals 29 targets, 248 yards, and 2 touchdowns (2 more than Kupp). San Francisco has historically dominated Kupp, but they’ll also be without their starting slot CB this week (K’Waun Williams). Per the SuperModel, Woods is the 4th-best WR value on DraftKings and Kupp is the 3rd-best WR value on FanDuel.
- Jamison Crowder started off his season with 4-straight double-digit target games, averaging 22.1 DKFPG over this span. Then he dealt with injuries and struggled to see targets with Joe Flacco under center. But he gets back Sam Darnold this week. Darnold is the farthest thing from an elite QB, but he is elite at getting his slot WRs fantasy points. This was true dating back to the days of Quincy Enunwa, and this has been true in games Crowder has missed this year (Braxton Berrios).
- We brought up Michael Thomas in the Taysom Hill section, but he’s still a strong play even if he isn’t being stacked to Hill. He’ll also go far more under-owned than he should.
- Has Fantasy Points-favorite Michael Pittman finally broken out? He might have. He averages 6.0 targets and 15.8 DKFPG over his last 3 games. At the very least, he’s clearly this team’s WR1. He’s a strong value in a favorable matchup.
- Sterling Shepard is popping as the single-best WR value on FanDuel, per the SuperModel. He’s seen 6 or more targets in 21 of his last 22 games. The Bengals are giving up the 4th-most FPG to opposing outside WRs.
- Here’s what I was going to say about DeVante Parker vs. Jakeem Grant: “Tua Tagovailoa has thrown the ball 97 times thus far. And, on those 97 throws, Jakeem Grant is 2 targets and 6 yards off of DeVante Parker for the team-high. Keep in mind, he only became a full-time player in Week 10. Folks, that’s the Backup Connection working in full-effect. He and Parker get a dream matchup this week, against the league’s No. 2 pass funnel defense, which also ranks bottom-7 in FPG allowed and fantasy points allowed per target to opposing outside WRs. Parker is surely also in play, but the price differential I think makes this easy.” Except now Jakeem Grant is questionable with a hamstring injury. Parker is now easily the better play. And he’d be a near must-play play if we also get Ryan Fitzpatrick back.
- Jaguars WRs Chris Conley and D.J. Chark are OUT. Laviska Shenault is a phenomenal punt on DraftKings at just $3,300. He averages 7.0 targets and 60.3 YPG over his last 3 full games. Keelan Cole is also vaguely in play.
- The Falcons are giving up the most FPG to opposing WRs on deep passes. That’d be great news for Henry Ruggs if he was who they drafted him to be. Unfortunately, he’s failed to eclipse 35 receiving yards in 5 straight games. Nelson Agholor, however, has looked like who the Raiders drafted Ruggs to be. Wes Huber likes him a lot, writing him up here.
- Once again Robby Anderson is popping as a strong value on FanDuel. He’s a major touchdown (and XFP) regression candidate, and gets a top-5 matchup against the Vikings. D.J. Moore is also in play, but I prefer Anderson due to his price and XFP dominance (out-scoring Moore 14.4 to 12.5).
- Don't look now, but Antonio Brown might be the new WR1 on this Tampa Bay offense. Over the past two weeks, he leads all Tampa Bay receivers in targets (21), and despite easing into a full-time route share. He’s also easily the cheapest of the 3 WRs on both sites.
Darren Waller, TE, Las Vegas Raiders
Excluding Week 3 (due to injury) and Week 8 (due to hellish weather conditions), Waller is averaging 9.1 targets per game and 16.2 FPG. Over this span, he’s hit at least 15.5 fantasy points in 5 of those 8 games. He gets the ultimate matchup this week, against a Falcons defense that is allowing opposing TEs to outscore their per-game average by a league-high 6.3 FPG. That’s the weak-spot of Atlanta’s league-worst pass defense, and Waller is the focal point of Las Vegas’ passing attack. The math is simple here – he’s a great play.
Travis Kelce, TE, Kansas City Chiefs
Kelce averages 8.9 targets per game (only 0.5 ahead of Waller) and 14.5 XFP (only 0.9 ahead of Waller), but 19.8 FPG, which is 5.6 FPG more than Waller. 19.8 FPG would also rank 4th-most among WRs – just ahead of Tyler Lockett and D.K. Metcalf – and yet he’s just $7,000 on DraftKings, which ranks 8th-most among WRs. Kansas City has the highest implied point total of the slate (29.25), and Tampa Bay ranks 12th-worst in schedule-adjusted FPG (+0.9) allowed to opposing TEs.
If you’re looking to pay down at TE, consider Austin Hooper and Hayden Hurst. Hurst got blanked last week, but averaged 7.3 targets and 61.3 YPG in his previous 3 games. In each game, he saw at least 7 targets and hit at least 50 yards receiving. His ~83% route share is one of the highest in the league, and a good bit higher than Hooper’s ~71%. Hooper hasn’t done much since returning from injury, but he is averaging 7.0 targets, 44.0 YPG, and 10.4 FPG over his last 4 games (if excluding Week 10 due to weather). Hurst’s matchup is only neutral at best, but he’ll benefit from a limited or inactive Julio Jones. Hooper’s matchup, meanwhile, is rock-solid. Jacksonville is giving up the 6th-most FPG to opposing TEs, while also ranking dead-last in fantasy points allowed per target (2.26) to TEs.
Update: In hindsight, maybe Hurst flopped last week due to injury. He picked up an ankle injury in last week’s contest, and barely practiced all week. I’m downgrading him significantly.
- Hunter Henry averages 7.0 targets, 2.0 end zone targets, and 11.7 FPG over his last 3 games. He gets a dream matchup against a Buffalo defense that’s surrendered the 2nd-most FPG to opposing TEs (15.9).
- Jordan Reed is a strong punt option. In Week 10, he ran a route on 22 of 42 dropbacks, turning 6 targets into 62 yards. He barely played in Week 9. But in his previous 2 games, he totaled a 9-73-2 line on 14 targets in just 6 quarters of action. He should be ready for an increased role coming off of the team’s bye.
- Here’s what Wes had to say of Kyle Rudolph: “With Smith sitting on the sideline in Week 10, Kyle Rudolph ran 79 percent of team routes, collected a 25 percent target share, and closed out the game with a 4/63/0 line. A repeat of those 9.3 FPs would actually represent 10 percent over floor value with the drop in salary from $3.4K to $2.8K on DK… The Bottom Line: As if we needed more reason to be on Rudolph, he’ll face a Panthers’ secondary surrendering the second-most receptions (5.8), third-most yardage (61.9), and 11th-most FPG to TEs (13.6). If Rudolph can also swing a TD, he will prove to be a dynamite GPP addition.”