Guest of the League
Aurelio Sanchez Memorial League Est. 2007
FFL: Week 11 | NFL: Week 11

RealTime DFS Strategy: Week 7

Fri Oct 18 10:05am ET
By MIKE BARNER
Contributing Writer

Engram poised for big Week 7


With the Browns, Panthers, Steelers and Buccaneers all on a bye for Week 7, we are missing some of the most impactful players in the world of DFS. However, that doesn’t mean there still aren’t a lot of great options to consider. Let’s break down each position and discuss both some players to target and some to keep out of your lineup-making process.

QUARTERBACKS

Top-tier option: Jared Goff, LAR at ATL ($6,100): Goff might not be the most expensive quarterback on the slate, but he’s certainly one of the most appealing ones. Despite compiling just 78 passing yards last week against the 49ers, he can be productive in the right matchup. Case in point, he had 517 passing yards and two touchdowns in Week 4 against a bad Bucs’ secondary. The Falcons have been almost as dreadful, allowing the sixth-most passing yards per game in the league and 15 touchdown passes.

Cheap target: Gardner Minshew II, JAC at CIN ($5,800): I had Minshew here last week, as well, but he flopped with 163 yards and a pick against the Saints. Don’t let one bad performance get you down on Minshew Mania. This is a prime spot for him to bounce back with a great stat line considering the Bengals will likely be without two of their top cornerbacks in Dre Kirkpatrick (knee) and William Jackson (shoulder).

Player to avoid: Teddy Bridgewater, NO at CHI ($5,800): Minshew wasn’t the only quarterback to have a quiet performance in that Saints-Jaguars game. Bridgewater wasn’t as bad, but he finished with only 240 passing yards and one touchdown. He’s thrown for 240 yards or fewer in three of his four starts and has two games with one or no touchdown passes. Facing a Bears’ defense that is one of the stingiest in the league is not the time to deploy Bridgewater in DFS.

RUNNING BACKS

Top-tier option: Leonard Fournette, JAC at CIN ($7,200): The secondary won’t be the only area of concern for the Bengals. They have been chewed up by opposing running backs, allowing the most rushing yards per game and the most rushing touchdowns. Fournette has been a workhorse with 115 carries and 36 targets, leaving him with a tremendously high floor in this matchup.

Cheap target: Devin Singletary, BUF vs. MIA ($5,700): Singletary hasn’t been on the field since going down with a hamstring injury in Week 2. The good news is the bye week seems to have helped him since he’s been listed as a full participant in practice. While he’ll still have to share the workload with Frank Gore, being priced this low makes him a viable target against a Dolphins defense that has allowed the second-most rushing yards per game.

Player to avoid: Melvin Gordon, LAC at TEN ($6,700): It hasn’t been pretty in two games since Gordon returned from his contract holdout. The Chargers have given him 20 carries, but he’s only turned that into 49 yards while failing to find his way into the end zone. Austin Ekeler will continue to steal some snaps from him and the Titans have only allowed three rushing touchdowns this season, so I’m not taking a chance on Gordon at this price. Pay the extra $500 and roll with Fournette.

WIDE RECEIVERS

Top-tier option: Cooper Kupp, LAR at ATL ($7,100): With Goff tanking last week, Kupp had only four catches for 17 yards on six targets. Considering he had at least 101 receiving yards in each of his previous four contests, I’m largely ignoring last week’s dud. With the Falcons’ struggles to defend the pass already detailed, a Rams stack with Goff and Kupp has a great chance to be profitable.

Cheap target: John Brown, BUF vs. MIA ($5,600): The addition of Brown to the Bills’ offense has been seamless so far, catching 28 of 39 targets for 390 yards and a touchdown through five games. He hasn’t received fewer than five targets in any game, reaching at least 10 targets two times. The Dolphins have allowed 14 touchdown passes and the seventh-most passing yards per game, leaving Brown with plenty of upside at this reasonable price.

Player to avoid: Terry McLaurin, WAS vs. SF ($5,600): If there is someone to be excited about on the Redskins, it’s McLaurin. The rookie looks like one of the building blocks for the franchise, posting 23 catches, 408 yards and five touchdowns through five games. However, the 49ers defense has been excellent, resulting in them allowing the fewest passing yards per game. There will be plenty of weeks down the road in which you’ll want to target McLaurin, but this isn’t one of them.

TIGHT ENDS

Top-tier option: Evan Engram, NYG vs. ARI ($5,900): The Giants sorely missed Engram last week against the Patriots. He’s been one of the staples of their offense, posting 33 receptions, 373 receiving yards and two touchdowns across five games. He hasn’t received fewer than seven targets in any contest and should be back this week for a prime matchup against a Cardinals’ defense that has been destroyed by opposing tight ends. No need to overthink this one.

Cheap target: Hunter Henry, LAC at TEN ($5,000): In need of some help in the passing game, the Chargers finally got some relief last week with the return of Henry. He immediately made his presence felt, catching eight of nine targets for 100 yards and two touchdowns. While the two touchdowns will likely be hard to replicate this week, the target share shouldn’t. With that kind of volume, he can provide value at this price.

Player to avoid: Eric Ebron, IND vs. HOU ($4,400): Since we’re talking about volume, now’s a good time to bring up Ebron. He hasn’t been overly involved in the Colts’ offense with only 20 targets through five games. That has resulted in three games in which he caught only one pass. While he’s always a threat in the red zone, having a healthy Jack Doyle will continue to limit his opportunities. Henry has significantly more upside, and while the $600 price difference is nothing to sneeze at, it isn’t large enough to warrant rolling with Ebron.

Mike Barner has been covering fantasy sports since 2007. His work has appeared in Sports Illustrated, Yahoo, SportsLine and RotoWire. Mike was also a finalist for the 2018 FSWA Basketball Writer of the Year award. Follow Mike on Twitter @rotomikebarner.

Player Notes
Budda Baker Nov 15 7:00pm ET

Arizona Cardinals safety Budda Baker has emerged as one of the best defensive backs in fantasy of late with the fourth-most fantasy points the last five weeks. The San Francisco 49ers aren't a great matchup for him, but the volume figures to be there for him to land enough tackles as a DB1.

From RotoBaller

Chandler Jones Nov 15 7:00pm ET

Arizona Cardinals linebacker Chandler Jones makes his fantasy living with sacking quarterbacks. The San Francisco 49ers allow 2.6 sacks per game over the last five weeks. Jones is a risky play because he's all-or-nothing, and he'll have to reach the quarterback to score many points. Treat him as a flex option.

From RotoBaller

Andy Isabella Nov 15 7:00pm ET

Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Andy Isabella has flashed some big plays the last couple of weeks, and he has become the de facto third receiver for the club. He's not worth the risk against the San Francisco 49ers, though. The Niners are too tough of a defense to bank on Isabella's inconsistency.

From RotoBaller

Zane Gonzalez Nov 15 7:00pm ET

Arizona Cardinals kicker Zane Gonzalez has entrenched himself as a solid PK1 going a perfect 10-for-10 in field goals and 12-for-12 in extra points the last five games. He's facing the toughest team to kick against during the stretch in the San Francisco 49ers. He's still worth running as a low-end PK1, but there could be better options on waivers this week.

From RotoBaller

Christian Kirk Nov 15 7:00pm ET

Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Christian Kirk broke out for six catches, 138 yards and three touchdowns last week. However, that momentum may halt against the San Francisco 49ers, which are one of the better teams against wideouts. Kirk has the talent and upside to overcome the matchup, though. Wide receivers have averaged 9.8 receptions for 102.8 yards and 0.4 touchdowns per game over the last five against the Niners. Kirk is still worthy of a WR3 play.

From RotoBaller

Larry Fitzgerald Nov 15 7:00pm ET

Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald is coming off an eight-catch game that energized his owners after several stale showings. Don't expect him to carry that over into Week 11. The San Francisco 49ers are one of the top-five teams at defending receivers the last five weeks. They've allowed 9.8 receptions for 102.8 yards and 0.4 touchdowns per game to opposing receivers. That doesn't leave a lot of upside for Fitz, who has struggled to do much with his receptions. He's a flex option in point-per-reception formats, but he's not a very enticing one.

From RotoBaller

Demarcus Robinson Nov 15 6:50pm ET

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Demarcus Robinson has been forced into a split time role with Mecole Hardman for the third receiver position. The Chiefs have both Tyreek Hill and Sammy Watkins back healthy and ahead of them on the depth chart. Robinson caught four of five targets for 56 yards in the loss to the Titans in Week 10. He saw five targets, while Hardman was targeted just once last week. However, he'll have a limited role going forward, so consider him a low-end flex option for deep leagues for Week 11.

From RotoBaller

Travis Kelce Nov 15 6:50pm ET

Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce has been reliable for the team and fantasy owners all season long. He's only caught three touchdowns this season, but that hasn't hurt this fantasy value. He's heading into a matchup against the Chargers in Week 11. The Chargers are fairly good at stopping tight ends, but Kelce is elite. He's going to find a way to get open and make receptions. Fantasy owners can feel confident with Kelce as a high-end TE1 for Week 11.

From RotoBaller

Sammy Watkins Nov 15 6:40pm ET

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Sammy Watkins has caught at least five receptions for 39 yards or more over each of the last three games. He's been targeted eight or more times during those contests. The Chiefs are looking his way often and Watkins is making plays. The Chargers Defense has been tough at times against receivers, so Watkins could be slowed down a bit. Fantasy owners should consider Watkins a WR3 with good upside for Week 11.

From RotoBaller

Mecole Hardman Nov 15 6:40pm ET

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Mecole Hardman has seen one target over the last two weeks as his fantasy value is quickly fading away. Hardman was targeted once for a 63-yard touchdown in Week 10 versus the Titans. Both Tyreek Hill and Sammy Watkins are back healthy, so that has pushed Hardman into a split role for the No. 3 spot. He'll have a limited role going forward and shouldn't see more than two or three targets against the Chargers this week. Fantasy owners should avoid Hardman unless there is really no one better available.

From RotoBaller

Tyreek Hill Nov 15 6:30pm ET

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill looked unstoppable versus the Titans in Week 10. He caught 11 of 19 targets for 157 yards and one touchdown. Getting quarterback Patrick Mahomes back was a huge boost for Hill. They have great chemistry together and that should continue in Week 11 against the Chargers. Fantasy owners can count on Hill as a reliable WR1 and he should surpass his projection on Monday night.

From RotoBaller

Kyler Murray Nov 15 6:30pm ET

Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray may be relegated to the fantasy bench this week against the beefy San Francisco 49ers Defense. The Niners have been the best defense against the quarterback position the last five weeks, and they have consistently tortured them all season. Opposing signal callers averaged just 157.2 passing yards per game over the last five games, and QBs tossed three touchdowns and four interceptions as a whole. Murray was decent against them a couple of weeks ago with 241 passing yards, two scores and no picks in a 28-25 loss. He's a low-end QB1 on his own merits, but you really have to be in a jam to throw him out there against this squad. Seek a one-week play with a great matchup off waivers.

From RotoBaller

Patrick Mahomes Nov 15 6:20pm ET

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes returned last week from an injury and threw for 446 yards and three touchdowns. The injury clearly isn't lingering on Mahomes and he's back to being an elite fantasy option. They head into a matchup with the Los Angeles Chargers on Monday. Mahomes should have no problems getting what he's projected and then some for Week 11.

From RotoBaller

Patrick Peterson Nov 15 6:20pm ET

Arizona Cardinals cornerback Patrick Peterson (calf) returned to practice fully Friday after he was limited by a calf injury the first part of the week. Peterson will be good to go for the Cardinals Defense against the San Francisco 49ers. Peterson isn't a great player to use in individual defensive player formats, but he fortifies a low-end option in the Cardinals Defense.

From RotoBaller

Damien Williams Nov 15 6:20pm ET

Kansas City Chiefs running back Damien Williams has been solid for fantasy owners over the last two games. He gave owners headaches for most of the season, but is finally beginning to pay off. Veteran LeSean McCoy was scratched in Week 10, so that helped Williams get 19 carries with ease. It's unclear whether McCoy will suit up this week or not. The Chiefs are seeing positive results when they run with Williams, so they should continue to trust him. He'll have RB2 value for Monday night against the Chargers.

From RotoBaller

LeSean McCoy Nov 15 6:20pm ET

Kansas City Chiefs running back LeSean McCoy was a healthy scratch for Week 10 versus the Tennessee Titans. There is no signs of him sitting out for Week 11, so fantasy owners should prepare for him to play. However, Damien Williams has been running the ball very well over the last two weeks. The Chiefs are likely going to stick with what's working right now. McCoy is basically a deep league desperation option at this point with little upside. He shouldn't be trusted against the Chargers on Monday.

From RotoBaller

Chris Conley Nov 15 6:10pm ET

Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Chris Conley has been a big-play threat averaging 20 yards per reception this season. However, those opportunities don't come often against the Indianapolis Colts. They've allowed one touchdown to receivers the last four games, and Conley doesn't catch enough volume to contribute otherwise. Keep him on the bench this week.

From RotoBaller

Seth DeValve Nov 15 6:10pm ET

Jacksonville Jaguars tight end Seth DeValve (oblique) is doubtful for Week 11 against the Indianapolis Colts. DeValve actually delivered four catches for 41 yards in a rare cameo appearance for Jaguars tight ends in their last game. No Jaguars tight end is worth consideration against the Indianapolis Colts.

From RotoBaller

Jeff Driskel Nov 15 6:10pm ET

Detroit Lions backup quarterback Jeff Driskel will get the start in Week 11 against the Dallas Cowboys with starting quarterback Matthew Stafford (back) ruled out. Driskel performed well in Week 10, throwing for 269 yards with one touchdown and one interception. He also showed some impressive mobility, adding five rushes for 37 yards. The Cowboys secondary is one of the best in the NFL, as they've allowed just nine passing touchdowns on the year and opposing quarterbacks have thrown for over 238 yards against them just twice, but the Bears team Driskel faced in Week 10 is a tough unit as well. Without a reliable running back, the Lions will likely focus on the ground game in this one, so 40-plus pass attempts could be in the books again. Driskel will slot in as a QB2 for this matchup.

From RotoBaller

Josh Lambo Nov 15 6:10pm ET

Jacksonville Jaguars kicker Josh Lambo has tied for 10th in fantasy points among kickers the last four weeks by going a perfect 10-for-10. He'd be even better if he had more than four extra-point attempts, which he made three of. He could have a golden ticket this weekend against the Indianapolis Colts, who have surrendered the most fantasy points per game to kickers over the last five weeks. PKs have gone 12-for-12 in field goals and 6-for-6 in extra-point attempts. Treat Lambo like a midrange kicking option this week.

From RotoBaller