Week 9 Game Hub: LV-NYG

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Week 9 Game Hub: LV-NYG

Las Vegas Raiders (5-2, 4-3 ATS) at New York Giants (2-6, 4-4), 1 p.m.

Brolley’s Raiders Stats and Trends

  • The Raiders won their first two games without Jon Gruden by double-digits, scoring 33+ points in both contests.

  • Las Vegas is 4-1 toward overs in its last five games as a favorite.

  • After a brief cold spell in Weeks 4-5, Derek Carr has posted 320+ passing yards and two passing TDs five times this season. He’s thrown for 315+ yards in nine of his last 11 full games dating back to Week 13 last season. The Giants gave up 20+ FP to opposing QBs in five of their first six games before holding Patrick Mahomes (15.0 FP) and Sam Darnold (3.5) in check the last two weeks.

  • Darren Waller picked up a late-week ankle injury prior to Week 7, which forced him to miss their showdown with the Eagles — Foster Moreau posted 6/60/1 receiving in his place. Waller hasn’t cleared 65 receiving yards in his last five games, and he owns a solid but not spectacular 21% target share in that span. The Giants limited Travis Kelce to 4/27 receiving on seven targets last week.

  • Hunter Renfrow has posted 5+ catches, 45+ receiving yards and double-digit FP in six of his seven games. The Giants are giving up the eighth-most catches per game (14.5) to WRs this season

  • Bryan Edwards figures to see the biggest bump in usage with Henry Ruggs headed to prison for a long time. Ruggs left behind 5.0 targets per game and the aDOT sat at 17.1 yards on his targets. Edwards has actually run the most routes per game (33.6) among the WRs this season, but he’s seen the third-most targets per game (4.1) to this point. Zay Jones figures to be the #3 WR for now, and he could be the new vertical option with an aDOT of 16.6 yards on just seven targets so far. Mecole Hardman posted 5/63 receiving in this matchup last week.

  • Josh Jacobs is expected to be ready to play after picking up a chest injury prior to their bye. He still scored a touchdown prior to leaving for the injury, which gives him five total TDs and scores in 4-of-5 games. He’s scored 10+ FP in every game he’s appeared in. Peyton Barber would get some early-down burn if Jacobs is unable to play after all, and Kenyan Drake is back in the mix with 38.2 FP in his first two games under the new regime. The Giants are giving up 4.5 YPC and the fifth-most rushing yards per game (109.8) to RBs this season.

Brolley’s Giants Stats and Trends

  • New York is 7-0-1 toward unders in its last eight home games.

  • Giants have covered and played under the total in consecutive games.

  • Daniel Jones has topped out at 17 FP in each of his last two games, and he’s fallen below 245 passing in each of his last three full games. His rushing production has also dried up a bit with just 16/44 rushing in the last three weeks after posting 27/188/2 rushing in his first four games of the season. Jalen Hurts (236/2 passing) and Teddy Bridgewater (334/3) each reached 22+ FP against the Raiders the last two weeks.

  • Kadarius Toney comes into this week with a left thumb injury, but he’s the healthiest option out of New York’s top three receivers. He managed just 4/26 receiving on five targets against the Chiefs after missing a game for his ankle injury. Sterling Shepard picked up a quad injury to go along with his hamstring issues and IR stint is likely in his future. Kenny Golladay is nearing a return after a four-week layoff for his knee injury. He posted a season-best 6/116 receiving in his last action against the Saints back in Week 4. The Raiders are giving up just fourth-fewest receiving yards per game (133.4) and only 10.3 YPR to WRs.

  • Evan Engram had a season-best 10.5 FP last week thanks to his first touchdown of the season in his sixth game. He’s posted 3+ catches in each of his last five games, but he’s averaging by far a career-low 8.1 YPR. The Raiders have given up the fifth-most FPG (16.8) to TEs this season.

  • Devontae Booker is highly likely to get another start this week with Saquon Barkley landing on the COVID list this week. Even if Barkley gets two negative tests before Sunday, Barkley has been nursing an ankle injury and the Giants are unlikely to throw him into game action without practices. Booker’s fantasy production has risen in each of his three starts for Barkley (10.9<14.6<17.5). The Raiders are giving up 4.5 YPC and the 11th-most FPG (26.0) to RBs.

Barfield’s Pace and Tendencies

Raiders

Pace (seconds in between plays): 27.9 (17th)

Plays per game: 68.3 (10th)

Pass: 63.6% (12th) | Run: 36.4% (21st)

Giants

Pace: 26.6 (6th)

Plays per game: 66.8 (17th)

Pass: 64.4% (10th) | Run: 35.6% (23rd)

Pace Points

On a slate filled with mediocre matchups, this is one of the better games from a pace / play perspective. Raiders-Giants is the third-best matchup for Week 9, just a nose hair behind Rams-Titans in the model. Vegas passing way more has been somewhat of a revelation for their offense and I believe it’s one of the main reasons they’re sitting at 5-2 amidst all the chaos. In year’s past, the Raiders were often too balanced for their own good and running the ball too much ended up putting them in too many long down / distance situations. Not anymore! Vegas is fourth in pass rate above expectation in neutral situations (game within a score in 1st-3rd quarter) which trails only the Rams, Chargers, and Buccaneers.

The Giants have been snake bitten by injuries once again as Daniel Jones hasn’t had any of his key weapons on the field at the same time. This week is just more of the same. The good news (for fantasy at least!) is that most of their games have been fun. Prior to facing the Chiefs last week and the Panthers the week prior, Giants games’ had combined for 48 or more points in four of their last 5 times out with two of those meetings going off for 59 and 64 total points (vs. Washington and Dallas). A part of the reason those games end up having so much scoring juice is because New York plays extremely quick when they’re behind – their 23.9 seconds per play when trailing is fifth-fastest. This game has definite shootout appeal if the Raiders offense stays hot and they push the scoring pace and force the Giants to play super fast.

Huber’s Key Matchup Notes

NOTE: Each week, Huber’s Key Matchup Notes in the Fantasy Points Game Hubs are little snippets from Wes Huber’s industry-best, comprehensive Advanced Matchups bible. A DFS-slanted article typically available to only our Premium Subscribers, we are making this week’s edition FREE to coincide with our midseason price drop, with rates reduced by 50%. There is still plenty of time to get on board!

The one player we can all count on maintaining composure on Sunday is Derek Carr. The current challenge for Las Vegas is far different than when dealing with the aftermath of inappropriate comments from their deposed HC. But Carr has displayed the resiliency on the field to overcome the most current challenge. Since Jon Gruden’s departure, Carr has led the Raiders to back-to-back wins, and submitted one of the most efficient passing performances of the last half-decade in Week 7 against Philadelphia. With Darren Waller missing the game with what must have been a low-ankle sprain — man-up Waller!, Carr shredded the Eagles for 323 passing yards, a pair of TDs, and one INT. What made the game so impressive is that he completed 91% of his attempts! And the INT was on a ball that Jalen Richard deflected directly into the hands of Avonte Maddox.

The Giants feature the fourth-highest rate of Cover 3, ninth-highest of Cover 4, and 10th-highest of Cover 2. On the 20 dropbacks in that Week 7 contest when Carr faced the same coverages New York features, he completed 19-of-20 attempts for 224 yards, nine first downs, and 11.2 YPA. Removing the results of Week 15 last season when Carr was forced out due to injury after six dropbacks, Carr has averaged 333.9 passing YPG, and 2.1 total TDs/game. It appears the catalyst for Carr’s career metamorphosis was his Week 12 performance vs. Atlanta that resulted in all of 0.6 FPs, four turnovers, and a 43-6 demolition. Another promising takeaway from Carr’s performance against the Eagles two weeks ago, he pivoted off Waller’s absence to seamlessly feed Foster Moreau with a 6/60/1 line.

The majority of the Earth’s population likely have no knowledge of Nate Hobbs’ existence. He played his high school ball about an hour down the road from my home at Louisville Male HS. Hobbs was selected out of the University of Illinois in the fifth round of the most recent draft. He posted some plus measurables at his Fighting Illini Pro Day, clocking with a decent 4.48-second 40, but adding a 6.85-second three-cone, 40.5” vertical jump, and 135” broad jump.

Among qualified slot corners, Hobbs ranks third-best in YPCS (0.62), fourth in FP/CS (0.15), first overall in AY/CS (0.02), and 16th in TPR (92.2). The top mark for fewest AY/CS indicates the level of respect Hobbs’ coverage has commanded from QBs, and further reinforced by the fact that his coverage is the least targeted at his position. Ingesting all of that information, it should be clear that this isn’t my typical Target recommendation. But Kadarius Toney isn’t your typical wideout. He combines elite speed (4.38-second 40) and explosiveness (39.5” vertical and 136” broad jump). But this particular schematic matchup against a Raiders’ defense featuring the highest rate of Cover 3 simply leans too far in Toney’s favor to ignore.

With the cutoff set at 10 receptions for individual coverage qualification, Toney ranks second-best this season with 0.85 FP/Rt, leads all WRs with 5.06 YPRR, stands seventh in YPT (12.46), and first in target rate drawn when on the field against Cover 3 (41%). Hobbs will be in the vicinity of Toney while he’s doing most of his work and the Raiders will stalk Daniel Jones with the league’s highest QB pressure rate. But my confidence in Toney this week would only be threatened by picking up another injury.

Dolan’s Vantage Points

It really does feel sick to write about fantasy football in a week in which Henry Ruggs was charged with DUI resulting in death, I’ll just get that out of the way.

The Raiders obviously still have to play the game, and Derek Carr will have to do so without his former teammate.

Carr is expected to get TE Darren Waller back this week, and Ruggs’ release means Bryan Edwards and Zay Jones are likely to see an uptick in usage starting this week against the Giants.

Expect a solid dosage of the run game against the Giants, as well. The previously unknown Derrick Gore slashed ‘em on Monday night last week, and Darrel Williams had a big game through the air. Presuming he plays, Josh Jacobs is an RB2 and Kenyan Drake a usable FLEX.

Here’s Scott Barrett from Start/Sit on Jacobs:

“Jacobs suffered a chest injury in Week 7, causing him to sit out for the entirety of the second-half. But he’s off the injury report following the bye, and should be started this week as a high-end RB2.

Since returning from a separate injury (ankle) in Week 4, Jacobs has averaged 15.1 carries, 4.3 targets, 16.8 XFP (RB10), and 16.7 fantasy points per four quarters (RB14). From Week 4 until his final touch of Week 7, he’s handled a bell cow-like 81% of the carries and 70% of the targets out of the backfield (on 68% of the team’s snaps). And he’s run a route on 48% of the team’s dropbacks (up from 38% last year). All of this is especially impressive considering the Raiders trailed on 61% of their offensive plays over this stretch. And Jacobs has long been one of the most gamescript-sensitive players in fantasy. Throughout his career, Jacobs averages 20.0 FPG in wins but only 10.5 FPG in losses.

So, in addition to seeing what looks like the best usage of his career, Jacobs also gets a top-10 matchup this week. The Raiders are favored by 3.0-points, and the Giants rank 6th-worst in YPC allowed to opposing RBs (4.53) and 9th-worst in schedule-adjusted FPG to opposing RBs (+2.4).”

It was looking like a possibility the Giants would get RB Saquon Barkley back from an ankle injury this week, but Barkley also tested positive for COVID-19 early in the week in what amounted to a lab error producing a bunch of false positives. Though Barkley was indeed a false positive, the fact that he wasn’t able to get into the building until Friday spells another week of Devontae Booker here. Over the last three weeks filling in for Saquon, Booker is tied with Cordarrelle Patterson as the RB14 with 16.1 FPG.

Wes outlined in detail above why he likes this matchup for Kadarius Toney, and Toney should have volume with Sterling Shepard (quad) out and Kenny Golladay just making his way back from a knee injury. Here’s Graham from Start/Sit with more:

“Are the Giants cursed? Because it really seems that way. Joe Judge must have messed with a voodoo doll or with the wrong football god when he got hired because it’s just crazy how they can’t get all of their key guys on the field at the same time. Sterling Shepard is now nursing a quad injury, Kenny Golladay (knee) isn’t likely to play this week, and Saquon Barkley is extremely questionable after being added to the COVID list on Wednesday in addition to his balky ankle. All of this lines up for Toney to be the lone piece healthy for the Giants in Week 9 and even he is dealing with a bad cut on his hand after getting stepped on against the Chiefs on MNF. Whew. This matchup isn’t great, but Toney will somewhat avoid Casey Hayward who has been one of the few cornerbacks to be legitimately afraid of for fantasy. The thing is, Hayward never covers the slot – he is strictly an outside corner. Luckily for Toney, he has moved into the slot on exactly 50% of his routes this season and the Raiders have given up the majority of their production through the interior. Honestly, the matchup may not matter much here because Toney should get fed relentlessly because he’s the lone playmaker the Giants have left healthy.”

With Toney another week removed from his ankle injury (his hand isn’t much of a concern) and Golladay anticipated back, it’s a solid week if you need Daniel Jones against a secondary that has allowed some solid production of late.

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