Week 11 Starts and Sits
Bye Weeks: Buffalo Bills, Cleveland Browns, Miami Dolphins, New England Patriots, New York Jets, San Francisco 49ers
Dak Prescott (at Atlanta)
While Dak Prescott hasn’t been taking the top off defenses like his rookie season, he has been very consistent over the course of the past few weeks. On Sunday Night against the Eagles, Prescott completed 26 of 36 attempts for 270 yards and a touchdown and added another touchdown on the ground. While these statistics aren’t fantastic, in a week with 6 teams on bye, he is a solid option. Atlanta is the 4th worst defense against opposing quarterbacks (23.7 points per week) and just gave up 216 yards and 3 touchdowns against Baker Mayfield and the Browns.
Blake Bortles (vs Pittsburgh)
Despite losing to the Colts in week 10, Blake Bortles had a solid effort in the passing game. Bortles threw for 320 yards, getting 2 touchdowns with zero turnovers. Undoubtedly, the return of Leonard Fournette opened up some passing lanes for Bortles allowing him to have his best passing performance since week 2 against the Patriots. Bortles gets another prime matchup against a Pittsburgh defense that held Cam Newton and the Panthers in check week 10 on Thursday night but are still allowing opposing quarterbacks to score 20.3 points per week.
Carson Wentz (at New Orleans), Jared Goff (vs Kansas City), Lamar Jackson (vs Cincinnati)
Carson Wentz is in quite the groove in his return from ACL surgery, throwing for 360 yards for 2 touchdowns and an interception Sunday Night against the Cowboys. Wentz has accumulated 1,545 and 12 touchdowns to 2 interceptions in the last 5 weeks. Wentz should be able to capitalize against the New Orleans Saints in week 11, a team that is allowing 24.5 points to quarterbacks a week and has allowed 18 touchdowns to 4 interceptions on the season. Jared Goff has been thriving in 2018 and that continued in week 10 against a strong Seattle defense, throwing for 318 yards and 2 touchdowns. Even though the Rams offense will take a hit without Cooper Kupp (ACL injury), he still has plenty of weapons to throw to and Todd Gurley in the backfield. Goff gets a shot at a poor passing defense in the form of the Kansas City Chiefs who are allowing 19.2 points to the position (10th worst in the NFL). The last play is pure speculation, but as of this, it looks likely that Lamar Jackson gets his first NFL start in week 11 against the Bengals. Jackson has been used largely as a run option of a decoy so far this season, but he has the weapons and the offensive line in place to give him time to accumulate yards. The Bengals are allowing 24.2 points per week to quarterbacks (2nd worst in the NFL) and just gave up 51 points to the Saints. As a bonus, they have also allowed 159 yards and 2 touchdowns on the ground to quarterbacks. *Worth noting, if Joe Flacco starts he is also a play. The Bengals defense is that bad and just fired their first-year defensive coordinator.*
Alex Collins (vs Cincinnati)
It’s rough counting on Alex Collins in any given week, but in a shallow week for running backs he might be a high upside play given his goal line work. Before the bye week, Alex Collins carried the ball 9 times for 35 yards and a touchdown. He has gotten consistent work this season, reaching double-digit carries in 6 of 9 games. The Bengals have been terrible against the run, allowing the 3rd worst mark in the league (32.8 points per week). It is also possible the Ravens make the run game a priority with Lamar Jackson (potentially) starting, which could give Collins even greater upside.
David Johnson (vs Oakland)
Newly appointed offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich finally found a way to utilize David Johnson against the Chiefs, getting him involved in both the passing and running game. Johnson totaled 21 carries for 98 yards and a touchdown in the ground game while adding 7 catches for 85 yards and a touchdown receiving. It was easily David Johnson’s best game since 2016 and shows that Leftwich is dedicated to getting him involved in the offense. The Raiders are allowing the 7th most points to running backs (28.4) per week and are terrible enough on offense to keep this game close, which should give Johnson even more chances to break big runs.
Doug Martin (at Arizona), Dion Lewis (at Indianapolis), Peyton Barber (at NY Giants)
Since the Marshawn Lynch injury, Doug Martin has gotten the bulk of the backfield work. He logged his 3rd consecutive game with double-digit carries, with 15 touches for 61 yards against the Chargers and adding 3 catches for 31 yards. The Arizona Cardinals are the 4th worst team against the run (30.1 points per week) and don’t have the offensive firepower to run away with this game, allowing Martin to have a greater role than usual in a potentially neutral game script. Even though Derrick Henry had 2 touchdowns against the Patriots, he was actually out-touched by Dion Lewis once again. Lewis carried the ball 20 times for 57 yards while adding 2 catches on 11 yards in the passing game. The Colts have been average against the run this season, allowing 27.2 points to opposing backs this season. This game could be a shootout, which lends itself to Dion Lewis getting work in the passing game. In a heavy bye week, Peyton Barber is a viable running option given a choice matchup against the New York Giants. The Giants are allowing 28.4 fantasy points to running backs and have allowed 7 touchdowns on the ground this season. Barber hasn’t put up strong numbers this season (averaging only 3.7 yards per carry), but he has gotten a consistent workload this season (double-digit carries in 7 of 9 games this season). It hurts to do it, but Barber has upside in this bye-heavy week.
Sterling Shepard (vs Tampa Bay)
Sterling Shepard has struggled to replicate the high usage rate he had during Evan Engram’s injury. On Monday Night, he was only targeted 3 times against the 49ers. He did catch 2 of those 3 targets for 9 yards and a touchdown, giving him high scoring upside. As long as the Giants continue to show the ability to execute a quick strike offense to protect Eli Manning, Shepard has upside ability. He gets a great matchup in week 11 against a Tampa Bay defense allowing the 2nd most points to wide receivers (44.1) in 2018.
Amari Cooper (at Atlanta)
Amari Cooper has been great since being traded to the Dallas Cowboys, totaling 11 catches on 18 targets for 133 yards and a touchdown against the Titans and Eagles. While he didn’t get a touchdown against the Eagles, he did get 6 catches (10 targets) for 75 yards, giving him a solid PPR day. The Falcons have struggled against opposing wideouts, averaging 42.6 points to opposing receivers and giving up 14 touchdowns on the season.
Donte Moncrief (vs Pittsburgh), Alshon Jeffrey (at New Orleans), Tre’Quan Smith (vs Philadelphia)
Donte Moncrief has stayed healthy all season and is emerging as the most consistent receiving option in Jacksonville this season. While he only received 4 targets, he caught 3 of them for 98 yards and a touchdown against his former team. The Steelers are allowing 38.6 points to wide receivers on the year and have allowed 11 touchdowns. Alshon Jeffrey has been consistently targeted the last two weeks (5 targets in week 10, 8 in week 11), but has struggled to produce big statistical outputs against defenses with larger, physical corners (Jacksonville and Dallas). Against the Cowboys, he caught 4 balls for 48 yards and failed to find the end zone. He gets a better matchup this week against smaller corners in the Saints, a team that is allowing a league-worst 49.7 points to wide receivers and are allowing league-worst marks in terms of yardage (2,045) and touchdowns (16). While Tre’Quan Smith wasn’t targeted at all in week 10 against the Bengals in a 51 point effort, he was on the field for 61 of 75 snaps. Also hurting matters was a dedication to the run game as the Saints rushed for 244 yards on 47 carries and passed the ball an underwhelming 27 times. Smith should have more than enough opportunity to put together a solid week 11 in a home matchup against the Eagles, a team allowing wideouts to compile 42.4 fantasy points per week and also boast an offense that should keep the Saints throwing the ball.
Mark Andrews (vs Cincinnati)
Mark Andrews continues to see the majority of the tight end passing work for Baltimore, getting 3 catches on 6 targets for 50 yards against the Steelers. In a week with poor tight end options, he has high upside considering the fact that the Bengals are the 2nd worst team against tight ends (16.4 points per week). If Lamar Jackson starts, he could become a viable check down option and boasts high volume upside.
Evan Engram (vs Tampa Bay)
Evan Engram had a relatively productive Monday Night showdown against the 49ers, catching 4 of his 5 targets for 46 yards. While he didn’t seem to factor into the game plan most of the night, he did come up big when it matters, accruing 3 catches on the final game-winning drive. Engram has lost touches this year with Odell Beckham Jr. returning to full health and the continued emergence of Saquon Barkley, but he gets a matchup that is too good to pass up in the form of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, a defense that is allowing the 2nd most points (16.4) to the tight end position.
Ricky Seals-Jones (vs Oakland), Jonnu Smith (at Indianapolis), Gerald Everett (vs Kansas City)
Ricky Seals-Jones finally emerged as a viable option in the Cardinals offense against the Chiefs, converting on 5 of his 9 targets for 51 yards. Seals-Jones has collected at least 4 targets in 8 of 9 games, which gives him great upside on a weekly basis (especially as Josh Rosen looks more and more comfortable as a passer). Given the volatility at tight end, a potential double-digit scorer combined with a defense allowing the 7th most points to tight ends (14.4 points per week) allows Seals-Jones to be an excellent week 11 play. It seems that Jonnu Smith is finally starting to grow into the Delanie Walker role that has been open since his injury. Smith has put together two consecutive weeks of 30+ yards and a touchdown, culminating in a 3 catch 45-yard performance against the Patriots. The Colts defense has struggled against tight ends this season (14.4 points per week and 3 touchdowns allowed), leaving Smith with a chance to continue his growth in the Titans quick strike offense. In the wake of the Cooper Kupp injury, it is possible that Gerald Everett starts to see some more consistent work in the Rams high octane passing game. Everett was only targeted twice against the Seahawks, but he caught both of them for 15 yards and a touchdown. He gets an excellent matchup against the Chiefs who are allowing an average of 14.4 points to tight ends on the season.
Derek Carr (at Arizona)
Derek Carr’s struggles have continued since a strong showing against the Colts in week 8. In weeks 9 and 10 he has compiled over 400 passing yards but hasn’t found the end zone in an offense lacking weapons in the passing game. Carr continues to complete passes efficiently but just cannot find a way to get the ball into the end zone as the Raiders continue their 2018 tailspin. His job doesn’t get any easier as he faces a stout Cardinals passing defense that is allowing a 3rd best mark of 14.7 points per week to quarterbacks. Even in a heavy bye week, Carr should be avoided at all costs if you want to win your week 11 matchup.
Alex Smith (at Houston)
The 2018 Alex Smith mediocrity tour continued in the Redskins week 10 matchup against the terrible Buccaneers pass defense as he threw for 178 yards and only 1 touchdown in what should have been a stellar matchup. Smith hasn’t made many mistakes this season, but he also has shown a lack of big plays that signified his last season in Kansas City. Smith gets a very difficult matchup against a dangerous Texans pass rush and a secondary allowing the 4th best point total against quarterbacks this season (15.4 points per week).
Kirk Cousins (at Chicago), Ben Roethlisberger (at Jacksonville), Andy Dalton (at Baltimore)
While the bye week was undoubtedly helpful for the Vikings to get healthy, Kirk Cousins has a tough matchup in week 11 against the Chicago Bears. Before the bye, Cousins had a highly efficient 18 of 22 performance, although he did throw for only 164 yards and a touchdown (with 1 interception) against the Lions. The Bears are allowing quarterbacks to score only 16.0 points to signal callers this year and have the pass rush to exploit an inconsistent Vikings offensive line. It could be a long day for Cousins in the Windy City. Ben Roethlisberger put on an absolute clinic Thursday Night against the Carolina Panthers in week 10, completing 22 of 25 passes for 328 yards and 5 touchdowns in an absolute blowout. While it is tempting to roll with the hot hand, it is worth noting that Big Ben is back on the road in week 11 facing an underwhelming (but still dangerous) Jaguars defense allowing only 16.2 points per week to quarterbacks. Be wary of rolling with Ben in week 11. In what could have been a matchup to assert himself as a top quarterback, Andy Dalton fell flat against a weak Saints passing defense. Dalton threw for a paltry 153 yards with 1 touchdown and 2 interceptions in what should have been a field day for the Bengals offense. Dalton gets a much more difficult matchup against the Ravens defense coming off a bye week and allowing 16.4 fantasy points per week. It is worth noting that Dalton threw for 4 touchdowns in his last matchup against the Ravens, but could find more struggles against this same team on the road in week 11.
Marlon Mack (vs Tennessee)
Marlon Mack was on fire entering week 10, rushing for 258 yards and 3 touchdowns against the Raiders and Bills defense. However, he ran into a metaphorical brick wall against the Jaguars, rushing 12 times for 29 yards and adding 2 catches for 9 yards in a very underwhelming Sunday. His life doesn’t get any easier in week 11 as he faces a Titans defense that has suffocated opponents running attacks in 2018, allowing 17.6 points per week and coming off an excellent performance in a win against the New England Patriots.
Mark Ingram (vs Philadelphia)
Mark Ingram finally put together his first explosive week since his suspension against the Bengals, rushing 13 times for 104 yards and adding 3 catches for 58 yards and a touchdown. Fantasy owners have been waiting for the dedication to the 2 headed rushing attack the Saints featured in 2017 and this game didn’t disappoint. Ingram draws a much more difficult matchup against an Eagles defense that has still been their normal selves against running attacks, allowing only 21.3 points (9th best in 2018) and 2 rushing touchdowns on the season.
Josh Adams (at New Orleans), Kerryon Johnson (vs Carolina), Joe Mixon (at Baltimore)
The Eagles have been searching for a consistent running back since Jay Ajayi went down with an ACL injury earlier this season. Josh Adams has looked to be the most explosive option in the backfield and has been given a consistent workload the last two weeks, including 7 carries for 47 yards against the Cowboys Sunday night. The Saints are allowing only 19.7 points to running backs on average per week this season, so while Adams may be worth a stash, he shouldn’t enter fantasy lineups in week 11. Kerryon Johnson is quickly emerging as the top rushing option in Detroit, rushing the ball 14 times for 51 yards and a touchdown while adding 6 catches for 38 yards and a score against a Bears defense that had previously not allowed a rushing touchdown in 2018. He gets a difficult week 11 matchup in the form of the Carolina Panthers defense allowing only 20.3 fantasy points per week to running backs and the quick scoring ability to get the Lions in more packages utilizing Theo Riddick. While Joe Mixon was effective against the Saints (11 carries for 61 yards, 2 catches for 24 yards), he still struggled to get heavy work in a game that got out of hand in a hurry. The return of Giovanni Bernard from injury also cut into Mixon’s workload in the passing game. Mixon gets a terrible week 11 matchup against the Ravens defense, which is allowing only 17.2 points to running backs and should be fresh coming off a bye week.
Calvin Ridley (vs Dallas)
Calvin Ridley continues to have an excellent rookie year, but he has cooled down considerably since his torrid start to the season. Against the Browns, he caught 3 of his 5 targets for 37 yards. He draws a difficult assignment in the form of the Dallas Cowboys pass defense in week 11, which is a unit allowing under 220 passing yards per game on average and remains the strongest unit against fantasy wideouts in 2018.
DeSean Jackson (at NY Giants)
DeSean Jackson had a relatively productive week 10 against the Washington Redskins, catching 5 of 8 targets for 67 yards in a game where the Buccaneers collected over 500 yards of offense but only scored 3 points. Jackson always has explosive upside, but with the Buccaneers struggling to get in the end zone, his upside is highly limited. His week 11 matchup isn’t great, as the Giants have done surprisingly well (30.3 points per week, 5th best in the NFL) against opposing quarterbacks despite their terrible record. Jackson looks to be more bust than boom in week 11.
Tyler Boyd (at Baltimore), Josh Doctson (vs Houston), JuJu Smith Schuster (at Jacksonville)
Theoretically, AJ Green’s absence should mean an increased workload for Tyler Boyd in the Bengals offense, however, it could be counterproductive if the injury causes him to move out of the slot. This was proven in week 10 against the Saints as he collected only 4 targets, catching 3 of them for 65 yards. Regardless of where he plays in the offense in week 11, Boyd will have his work cut out for him as the Ravens are allowing wideouts to score only 32.3 points per week (6th best in the NFL). Josh Doctson has put together back to back weeks of at least 3 catches, over 30 yards, and a touchdown for Alex Smith and the Redskins. Against the weak Tampa Bay secondary, Doctson put together a 4 catch, 46-yard performance with the aforementioned touchdown. While the Houston secondary has been susceptible to passing attacks in 2018 (32.5 points per week), they have a pass rush that can hurry Alex Smith and put a firm ceiling on Doctson’s big play ability. On the surface, Juju Smith-Schuster had a fantastic day against the Panthers in week 10, putting up a 3 catch (5 targets) 90 yard and a touchdown performance. However, Juju got 75 yards and a touchdown on the first play of the game and was sufficiently contained from that point forward. He draws a tough matchup against the physical Jaguar secondary that allowing the 2nd least points to fantasy wide receivers in 2018 (27.7 points per week).
Jimmy Graham (at Seattle)
Jimmy Graham continues to underwhelm in the Packers offense, putting together a 1 catch for 14-yard performance against the Miami Dolphins. Aaron Rodgers continues to ignore tight ends in the Packers offense, and Graham is no exception despite his all-world athleticism. The opportunities get even more sparse in week 11 as the Packers face a Seattle defense that has destroyed tight ends this season, allowing a ridiculously low 9.2 fantasy points per week to the tight end position.
Ben Watson (vs Philadelphia)
Ben Watson was one of the few players who couldn’t find the end zone against the Bengals (although he was extremely close) catching 1 of his 2 targets for 1 yard. His rollercoaster season has continued in 2018 as he seems to alternate between strong and weak performances in each week. Watson shouldn’t be in your starting lineup given his high volatility in the Saints passing offense and a matchup against an Eagles defense that is only allowing 8.2 points to tight ends (and only 2 touchdowns) in the 2018 season.
Nick Vannett (vs Green Bay), Jared Cook (at Arizona), Vance McDonald (at Jacksonville)
Despite seeing his target value drop in week 11, Nick Vannett was still able to get into the end zone on his single eight-yard catch. While Vannett seems to be emerging as a red zone target for Russell Wilson, he does have a brutal week 11 matchup against a Packers defense that is one of two teams to allow zero touchdowns to tight ends and boasts a 8.3 points per week average against tight ends. Jared Cook was highly targeted by Derek Carr against the Chargers in week 10, collecting 4 of 9 targets for 52 yards. Cook is another option that has been very up and down in the 2018 season but could struggle to produce against the Cardinals defense with the safeties to restrict intermediate throws and an impressive 9.3 fantasy points per week to the tight end position. Vance McDonald has been a solid tight end this season in the Steelers offense, and his high-level production continued against the Panthers with a 4 catch, 44-yard, 1 touchdown performance. He gets a tough matchup on the road against the Jaguars who, despite allowing 3 touchdowns to Eric Ebron in week 10, still rank highly against the tight end position in 2018.