Wed Nov 13 10:28am ET
By JEFF PAUR
Sr Fantasy Writer
Carr can shine in Week 11
Well, it is do or die for many teams at this point of the season. Some teams need a win in the worst way to keep their playoff hopes alive. Time is running out for a lot of teams. Hopefully, your team is in position for a long playoff run. But if not, now is the time to make your move. There is still hope if you are sitting outside the playoffs. Things can turn around in a hurry. Don’t give up yet but get on that winning streak now.
Now for my random thoughts for the week. . . . .
I didn’t think there would be a player for a long time that could match Patrick Mahomes when it comes to excitement on the field, but I think Lamar Jackson rivals him as one of the most dynamic players in the league. Jackson sure is fun to watch. He is appointment television in my view. I just love watching this guy play. Mahomes and Jackson are quite the draw for the NFL. They are two of the big reasons why so many fans watch this game. And from a fantasy perspective, they are my top two fantasy quarterbacks right now. Not too shabby.
I said this earlier this season, but I don’t care how many times he turns the ball over. Jameis Winston is one of the top fantasy quarterbacks in the game. He is rated fifth overall at quarterback. He has four straight 300-yard games and six total this season. He also has touchdowns every game and multiple scores five games. His consistency in this pass-first offense makes him a great weekly start. He can turn the ball over every game as long as he keeps producing when on the field.
Don’t forget about Nick Foles. He is back in the starting lineup this week and takes over the starting duties for a team that has enjoyed plenty of success this year throwing the ball. Foles was looking good in Week 1 before getting hurt, going 5-of-8 for 75 yards and a touchdown. I think he could be a fantasy factor the rest of the way. Gardner Minshew is rated 13th overall at quarterback, so I think Foles can at least match that production for the Jaguars He certainly has the track record to do so.
If Tyler Lockett misses any time because of his leg injury, which seems very possible, I think D.K. Metcalf can be a legit No. 1 for fantasy teams while Lockett is out. Metcalf is showing signs of playing a bigger role in the offense to begin with, which is a great sign. He was targeted a season high 10 times last week and has six receptions each of his last two games. The rookie is a big-time talent that can be a big mismatch for defenses. I would be very excited to have him on my roster the rest of the way. I think good things are coming for Metcalf.
I would be worried if I had any Rams on my team. This team is trending the wrong way, mainly because Jared Goff has taken a step backwards this year. He just isn't playing near the level of last year. Cooper Kupp didn’t even catch a pass last week. Todd Gurley has been a disappointment all season. Things just have’t gone as expected for the Rams this year. The team does play well at home and against weaker defenses, but road matchups and tough defenses are their kryptonite.
I think the season of Allen Robinson is really being overlooked. This guy is having some kind of year if you consider Mitchell Trubisky is throwing him the ball. Trubisky is a train wreck, but Robinson is still 15th overall in fantasy receiver scoring. He has at least five receptions all but two games. I would love to see Robinson with a great quarterback throwing him the ball. He is a special talent at the receiver spot.
David Johnson just doesn’t look healthy. He played last week but obviously wasn’t 100 percent in the game. He had five carries for two yards. Kenyan Drake ended up getting more work and that should be the case going forward until Johnson is near his old self. For now, I think Johnson belongs on fantasy benches. I just don’t trust him. Remember, he has 40 or fewer rushing yards six of the eight games he has played. The only thing saving him all year was his work in the passing game.
As always, don’t forget to check out my weekly rankings here: Week 11 rankings.
News and Notes: The Ravens signed defensive tackles Domata Peko and Justin Ellis on Tuesday. The team is looking to add some depth at the position because of injury. Both veteran players could find their way in the rotation in the near future. . . . . Quarterback Colin Kaepernick is scheduled to hold a private workout for NFL teams in Atlanta on Saturday. The session will reportedly include an on-field workout as well as an interview.
Derek Carr, QB, Raiders. Carr didn’t have a great game last week but his numbers have been solid all season. He has multiple touchdowns five of his last seven games and 240-plus passing yards five games. He has been getting it done for his fantasy owners, especially of late. He has 20-plus fantasy points three of four games. Expect his good production to continue this week against the Bengals. Cincinnati allows the fourth most fantasy points to quarterbacks and rank 22nd overall against the pass.
Curtis Samuel, WR, Panthers. Samuel continues to find the end zone, scoring a touchdown last week. He has scores three of four games. His yardage numbers aren’t great but he is getting his catches and finding the end zone. Samuel has at least three receptions every game. He can find the end zone again this week against the Falcons, a team that has allowed 19-passing touchdowns. The Falcons allow the sixth most fantasy points to receivers.
Melvin Gordon, RB, Chargers. Gordon finally got it going on the ground last week, rushing 22 times for 108 yards and a touchdown. He has scores four straight games and topped 100 total yards two straight. He is round into form at a good time for fantasy owners. He should keep up his hot ways this week against the Chiefs. Kansas City allows the second most fantasy points to running backs and rank 31st overall against the run.
Devin Singletary, RB, Bills. Singletary didn’t do much last week but his chances weren’t off the charts. He ran just eight times for 42 yards. He did catch three passes, though, giving him at least three receptions three straight games. Singletary is the top back in this offense right now and should lead the team in touches again this week against the Dolphins. Miami is 30th against the rush, allowing 146-rushing yards per game. The Dolphins allow the seventh most fantasy points to running backs.
Courtland Sutton, WR, Broncos. Sutton might have a new quarterback throwing to him, but he continues to produce. He found the end zone his last time out and has at least three receptions every game this year. He also has more than 55 yards in all but a game. His numbers have been very consistent as the top receiver for the Broncos. Expect continued success this week against the Vikings, a team that has struggled to stop the pass. Minnesota allows the third most fantasy points to receivers.
Jordan Howard, RB, Eagles. Howard is playing his best football right now. He has scores two straight and 80-plus rushing yards each of those games. His value is trending up. But even with that all said, Howard can produce poorly at times. He has fewer than 10 fantasy points five games and has one or no receptions six of nine games. His lack of work in the passing game really hurts his fantasy value, especially when he goes up against a good rush defense. And the Patriots have a solid rush defense. New England is 11th against the run and allowed just five rushing touchdowns this year.
Stefon Diggs, WR, Vikings. Diggs is back on one of his cold streaks. He has fewer than 50 yards two straight games. He has six games with fewer than 50 yards this season, producing wildly inconsistent numbers for his fantasy owners. He is always capable of the huge game, so he is tough to sit. But expect some mediocre production at times, especially this week against the Broncos. Denver has been very good against the pass, allowing the third fewest fantasy points to receivers.
Jared Goff, QB, Rams. Goff is a mes right now. He even lost out on some playing time to Blake Bortles last week, which isn’t a great sign for him. Goff didn’t score a touchdown last week and has one or no scores four of nine games. He has just one three-touchdown game this season. Goff has not come near his production of last season. He plays better at home but it is tough to start him this week because of his recent play and a matchup against the Bears. Chicago allows the seventh fewest fantasy points quarterbacks.
Larry Fitzgerald, WR, Cardinals. Fitzgerald tied a season high with eight receptions last week. He has at least five receptions all but three games. Unfortunately, those three games came the last four weeks. His play has dipped some in recent weeks. He really struggled against the 49ers two weeks back, catching four passes for 38 yards. He plays this same San Francisco team this week. The 49ers allow the fifth fewest fantasy points to receivers and are first overall against the pass.
Phillip Lindsay, RB, Broncos. Lindsay had 92 yards and a score his last time but had just nine touches in the game. This was a season low for Lindsay. This was the first time all year that Lindsay didn’t have double-digit touches in a game. Lindsay has struggled a little more in recent weeks, having fewer than 60-rushing yards two of three games. He could have more issues this week against a Vikings defense that shutdown Ezekiel Elliott last week. Minnesota allows the fifth fewest fantasy points to running backs and rank seventh overall against the run.
Deebo Samuel, WR, 49ers. Samuel had the first 100-yard game of his career last week. He was targeted 11 times in the game, getting a ton of chances with Emmanuel Sanders banged up. Sanders could miss time, making Samuel the likely top target in the passing game. Samuel has at least three receptions three straight games. HIs production has been trending up, having 18 targets his last two games. He should get plenty of chances again this week against the Cardinals. Arizona is 31st against the pass, allowing 287-passing yards per game. Samuel is a good injury replacement or bye-week fill-in for Week 11.
Kyle Allen, QB, Panthers. Allen had the first 300-yard game of his career last week. And he did this on the road against a good Packers defense. Allen continues to gain confidence as the starter for the Panthers and his play seems to get better every week. He has three multiple touchdown games and 225-plus passing yards five of seven games. He can help as a spot starter in the right matchup. And a game this week against the Falcons is a good one for Allen. Atlanta did hold Drew Brees in check last week, but don’t look into that too much. The Saints just stalled in the red zone, but moved the ball well through the air. Atlanta is 25th against the pass and allow the fifth most fantasy points to quarterbacks.
Brian Hill, RB, Falcons. Hill gets the start this week with Devonta Freeman hurting. He has been trending up even with Freeman on the field. Hill has scores two straight games and a season-high 71 total yards last week. Hill has some total yardage potential in a starting role and could be a good flex option in Week 11. Hill gets the Panthers, a team that allows the fourth most fantasy points to running backs.
Randall Cobb, WR, Cowboys. Cobb had his first 100-yard game of the season last week. He also scored a touchdown for the first time since Week 1. Cobb has at least six receptions two straight games. He is getting a few more looks in recent weeks, which is encouraging for his fantasy value. He has some value as a spot starter, especially if the Cowboys continue to have struggles running the ball. Cobb has a matchup to continue his solid play, getting the Lions. Detroit is 28th against the run and allow 26 points per game.
Gerald Everett, TE, Rams. Everett continues to emerge as a low-end No. 1 tight end. He had a season-high eight receptions last week. He has been targeted double-digit times three of five games. He isn’t a sure thing because of some up and down production, but is worth using as a streamer. He gets the Bears this week, a team that has struggled to stop the tight end. Chicago allows the fifth most fantasy points to tight ends. So despite what looks like a tough matchup for the Rams passing game, Everett is a good play in this one. He could get a lot of looks.
High/Low Scoring Games
Each week we will take a look at some of the high and low scoring games for the coming week. In high scoring affairs, get your marginal players on those teams in your lineup to take advantage of the possible points barrage. And in the low scoring games, keep those marginal players on the bench and make sure to have your defenses involved in those contests.
High Scoring Games: Cowboys/Lions, Saints/Bucs, Falcons/Panthers, Texans/Ravens, Chiefs/Chargers.
Low Scoring Games: Broncos/Vikings, Jets/Redskins.
Bye Weeks: Packers, Giants, Seahawks, Titans.
Jeff Paur is a two-time finalist for FSWA Fantasy Football Writer of the Year and won the FSWA award for Best Fantasy Football Article on the Web in 2011. He also was the most accurate expert in 2012, winning the FSTA Fantasy Football Accuracy Award. If you have any questions for Jeff, email him at email@example.com. Follow Jeff on Twitter @jeffpaur.
Minnesota Vikings tight end Irv Smith should see an increased role in the offense in 2020 now that Stefon Diggs is playing for the Bills. When wide receiver Adam Thielen was out for almost two months with an injury last year, Smith caught 36 passes for 311 yards and two touchdowns and emerged as a reliable target for quarterback Kirk Cousins. Minnesota's offense also relies heavily on tight ends under coach Gary Kubiak; tight ends have received an average of 23 percent of targets per season in Kubiak's 21 seasons as a head coach or offensive coordinator. Even battling for targets with Kyle Rudolph, Smith could become worth rostering as a TE2 in standard leagues in his second season in the NFL.
San Francisco 49ers running back Matt Breida didn't have much of a role on offense to end last season behind Raheem Mostert and Tevin Coleman. If Jerick McKinnon is actually healthy in 2020, he gives the 49ers a legitimate route-runner and third-down option out of the backfield. San Fran could be willing to trade Breida's rights for a low-round draft pick. Of all the backs in this crowded backfield, Breida is the most likely to be playing for another team come the start of the season. The 25-year-old from Georgia Southern has been productive with 5.0 yards per carry on 381 career rushing attempts in his three years with the Niners, but he's also consistently battled nagging injuries and is now buried on the depth chart. A move out of this crowded backfield and onto another team with more opportunity would be best for Breida's real-life and fantasy value.
The Kansas City Chiefs have had contract talks with defensive tackle Chris Jones, but there haven't been any offers up to this point. The Chiefs will also be trying to work out a long-term extension with Super Bowl MVP Patrick Mahomes, but that is unlikely to happen until sometime after the draft. The Chiefs placed the franchise tag on Jones earlier this offseason, but they'll have until July 15 to figure out an extension. The 25-year-old made the Pro Bowl for the first time in 2019, registering nine sacks, 36 tackles (23 solo), eight tackles for loss and 20 QB hits. Jones has become an essential inside presence on KC's defensive line and has 33 sacks in his four seasons in the league.
The Cleveland Browns have shown interest in free-agent defensive end Jadeveon Clowney, and some people around the league think that Cleveland has gotten closer with Clowney than other suitors. Clowney was originally seeking around $20 million per season, but his market has been cold and he hasn't received the offer that he wants in order to re-sign with the Seahawks. The Titans and Jets have also been interested, but the pass-rushers price might have to drop some more in order for him to strike a deal. The 27-year-old isn't in a rush to sign at this point. The oft-injured former first overall pick in 2014 by the Texans is a risk/reward in both real life and in IDP leagues.
Free-agent wide receiver Antonio Brown was charged with felony burglary conveyance, misdemeanor battery and misdemeanor criminal mischief charges for an alleged January assault that resulted in the former All-Pro's arrest. The misdemeanor battery charge states that Brown was "actually and intentionally striking" a delivery truck driver against his will. It's possible the state of Florida will offer him the chance to work out a plea deal. The NFL opened an investigation of Brown in the fall when his former trainer Britney Taylor accused him of rape and sexual assault in a civil lawsuit. No matter what transpires with Brown's charges, he's expected to be punished by the NFL, and it remains to be seen if any team will give him another chance in 2020 or beyond.
Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (core injury) is progressing well in his rehab, according to head coach Kevin Stefanski. In regards to both Beckham and Jarvis Landry's respective rehabs from offseason surgery, Stefanski told reporters, Both those guys are exactly where they need to be in terms of rehab progression." Beckham had surgery to repair a core muscle injury in late January but appears to be in no danger of missing games once the 2020 season kicks off. After a down year, Beckham needs to be treated as a WR2 with upside in fantasy drafts.
Cleveland Browns wide receiver Jarvis Landry (hip) is on track in his rehab, according to coach Kevin Stefanski. Landry had surgery to repair the labrum in his hip back in February with the expectation he would need 6-8 months to recover. Speaking of both Landry and Odell Beckham Jr., Stefanski stated, "Both those guys are exactly where they need to be in terms of rehab progression." Landry can be tentatively penciled in for the start of the NFL season but he is likely to miss most of training camp. When active, Landry can be treated as a rock-solid WR2 in all formats.
The Kansas City Chiefs agreed to an undisclosed deal with tight end Ricky Seals-Jones on Friday, according to a source. Seals-Jones played in 14 games (three starts) and caught just 14 passes for 229 yards, but he did score a career-high four touchdowns in his lone season with the Browns last year. It was disappointing that he wasn't able to do more, especially with David Njoku missing a big chunk of the year with an injury. In Kansas City, he'll be a little-used backup tight end behind stud Travis Kelce. If Kelce were to miss any time with an injury, however, Seals-Jones could have some TE2 appeal for fantasy owners.
Houston Texans safety Justin Reid said he has spoken to head coach Bill O'Brien about his brother, free-agent Eric Reid. O'Brien was positive about Eric Reid, but it's unclear if the Texans will actually sign him. The 28-year-old was the 18th overall pick of the 49ers in the 2013 draft and made the Pro Bowl in his rookie season. He spent the last two years in Carolina, recording a career-high 130 tackles (97 solo), seven tackles for loss, five QB hits, six passes defensed, one forced fumble and two fumble recoveries in 16 games. Reid has 11 career interceptions in his seven seasons in the NFL. Houston needs as much help as they can get in the secondary.
Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Christian Kirk, the former second-round pick out of Texas A&M in 2018, knows that the addition of stud wideout DeAndre Hopkins will mean that opposing defenses will focus less on him. Kirk missed the final three games of 2019 due to injury and finished with 68 catches for 709 yards and three touchdowns. He should see a lot more single coverage, but the fact remains that he'll see fewer consistent targets with both Hopkins and Larry Fitzgerald demanding looks from quarterback Kyler Murray. The 23-year-old could have some big games if teams focus all their attention on Nuk, but Kirk's fantasy stock is down entering the 2020 season.
Chicago Bears general manager Ryan Pace said that quarterbacks Mitch Trubisky and Nick Foles will be in an open competition in training camp this summer. The Bears were expected to bring in someone to compete with Trubisky under center, so they decided to acquire Foles from the Jaguars. Foles has experience working with all of Chicago's offensive coaches, so it seems like it could be his job to lose after Trubisky regressed in 2019. The Bears also remain non-committal on whether they'll pick up Trubisky's 2021 option. Neither QB will be much more than a midrange QB2 if they win the job, but Foles, a former Super Bowl MVP, would be a little more intriguing for wide receiver Allen Robinson.
The Kansas City Chiefs and wide receiver Sammy Watkins agreed to a restructured contract that will keep him with the team for at least another season. It will lower his salary cap number and he can earn a maximum of $16 million in 2020, according to a source. The one-year deal has a base salary of $9 million, and the move creates $5 million in cap space for the Chiefs. Watkins had 52 catches for 673 yards and three touchdowns in 14 games in the regular season, but he came on once again in the postseason on the way to a Super Bowl championship. The 26-year-old has just one 1,000-yard receiving season in his six years in the league after being the fourth overall pick of the Bills in 2014. Watkins can have some big games in KC's offense, but they'll be few and far between.
The Las Vegas Raiders signed safety Damarious Randall to a one-year deal worth up to $3.25 million, according to a source. It comes just after a deal for cornerback Eli Apple fell apart. Randall, a first-round pick by the Packers in 2015, had the first 2.5 sacks of his career for the Browns in 11 games last year, also recording 61 tackles (45 solo) and three QB hits. The 2019 season was the only one in his five years that he didn't record an interception, as Randall has 14 career picks in 65 games (56 starts). He'll help shore up the secondary alongside Johnathan Abram in Las Vegas.
According to a source, there's "not a chance in hell" that the New England Patriots trade wide receiver Julian Edelman. Edelman does carry a salary cap hit of $9.6 million in 2020, but he's too important to the team's passing game, especially given their lack of depth and with quarterback Tom Brady no longer in town. The veteran receiver was targeted 153 times in 2019 and caught 100 passes for the second time in his career. With Brady gone -- he'll likely have Jarrett Stidham under center this season -- Edelman's fantasy appeal certainly won't be as strong, and he'll also be 34 next month. But he'll still be useful in PPR leagues and could even come at a nice value. However, he won't be as much of a PPR lock as he's been in the past as Brady's favorite aerial weapon.
The Las Vegas Raiders and cornerback Eli Apple were unable to finalize a contract, according to sources. Apple will remain a free agent and will go back on the open market. The former 10th overall pick by the Giants in the 2016 draft hasn't lived up to his draft pedigree in his four years in the league with New York and New Orleans, but another team will likely be willing to take a chance on him at a low cost. The 24-year-old has just three interceptions in his career and totaled 58 tackles (53 solo), four passes defensed and one forced fumble in 15 games for the Saints in 2019.
The New York Jets are interested in free-agent defensive end Jadeveon Clowney now that his asking price has dropped a bit on the open market. Clowney has found a cold market for his services, likely because of the lack of physicals due to the coronavirus and his extensive injury history, but at this point he's in no rush to pick a team. He's willing to wait until he gets the deal that he's seeking as the best pass-rusher available in free agency this late in the game. The Seahawks are interested in bringing him back at the right price, and the Titans have also shown interest. Clowney has never had a double-digit sack season in his career and is an injury risk, but there's no denying that he still has an impact in defending both the run and the pass when he's healthy. This one could drag on.
Houston Texans left tackle Laremy Tunsil said on NFL Live that he wants to become the league's highest-paid offensive lineman. "Im not going to talk numbers, as Im going to keep that between me and the club. I am looking to be the highest-paid lineman, of course. I worked my butt off to be in that position and hopefully we can make that happen," Tunsil said. The 25-year-old first-round pick of the Dolphins in 2016 was acquired from Miami along with receiver Kenny Stills last year for two first-round picks and a second-rounder. He's an elite left tackle that should easily wind up making around $20 million per season on a long-term deal with the Texans. His presence on the blind side for years to come will be excellent news for quarterback Deshaun Watson.
Pittsburgh Steelers tight end Eric Ebron (ankle) said he's still not fully recovered from an ankle injury that held him to just 11 games in 2019. Ebron had to have his ankle examined and "cleaned out" by an independent doctor near his home in Houston because of league restrictions keeping players from visiting other organizations during the coronavirus pandemic. The 26-year-old has yet to be examined by the Steelers medical personnel. "If the season started today, I dont think Id be able to 100% perform. But we dont play today," Ebron said. He was a disappointment last year as a TE1 after setting career highs in catches (66), yards (750) and touchdowns (13) in 2018. The 10th overall pick by the Lions in 2014 must get healthy first, but he'll also be competing for targets with Vance McDonald, which will hurt his overall fantasy ceiling in his new home.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers re-signed quarterback Blaine Gabbert to an undisclosed one-year deal on Thursday, according to a source. Gabbert will serve as the backup to Tom Brady in 2020. The 30-year-old former 10th overall pick of the Jaguars in 2011 will help Brady learn head coach Bruce Arians' system. He didn't see the field at all in 2019, but Gabbert has played in 56 games (48 starts) in his eight years in the NFL with stops in Jacksonville, San Francisco, Arizona and Tennessee. You can obviously ignore Gabbert in all fantasy leagues, and he'd merely be a low-end QB2 option in Tampa if Brady were to get hurt and miss any time.
Cleveland Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski said that offensive tackle Jack Conklin will stay at right tackle in Cleveland. The Browns added Conklin in free agency as they look to improve a dreadful offensive line from a season ago. The eighth overall pick by the Titans in the 2016 draft was a first-team All-Pro in his rookie season and has been one of the better right tackles in the league in his four seasons. The 25-year-old has started all 57 games he's played in and has played in a full 16-game season in three of his four years in the league. Conklin will help bring stability to the right side of the Browns line, but they'll need help elsewhere.