Fantasy Fallout: Week 11 Review

By Matt Rogers
PSDC Fantasy Football Expert

nfl_fantasy_fallout

Let me begin with a quick, painful stat correction from Week 10. When I wrote my bit last week I had a win in our Dynasty league by 0.09. The next day Yahoo entered a stat correction which cost me that narrow margin of victory. So my final count for Week 10 ended up being 4-2 instead of 5-1. I stayed in second place with an 8-2 record in the Dynasty league, but losing a close one always sucks. Screw you, Yahoo!

Week 11 offered much of the same. My teams walked away from the weekend 4-2. I hold down first place in two leagues and clinched a playoff spot in both of those leagues. Despite yet another close loss in the Dynasty league, I’m holding down second place in there and anxiously awaiting the return of Aaron Rodgers. I have a three-game win streak going in another league that has me in second place. Then my other two leagues find me in sixth and 10th place. So I’m still on track to make the playoffs in 5 of 6 leagues.

So here we are. Week 12 marks the final week of byes. Teams are starting to clinch playoff spots. Other owners are starting to grasp the reality that their season is shot. At this point, the goal is to stay healthy during the final stretch to the playoffs. Owners with keen eyes are starting to stash players on their bench for the playoffs. Players like Percy Harvin, Michael Crabtree, Lance Briggs, Sean Lee, etc. are starting to get on track for a return in the next two to three weeks. If you have bench space to burn, grab them now.

Here is a quick recap of Week 11.

MOST VALUABLE PLAYERS

Week 11 MVP

Bobby Rainey: In this week’s episode of freakish crap you will never see again, Bobby Rainey led all players not named after a London landmark in scoring this week. If anything, this should make it perfectly clear just how much the Falcons’ defense sucks. Still, I give props where they are due. Rainey busted out for 167 total yards and three TDs. It will never happen again, but I’d rather have him than Willis McGahee which is who Cleveland ended up with after they cut Rainey earlier this season. Stay thirsty, my friend!

Vontaze Burfict: This outstanding performance pushed Burfict past Sean Lee and Kiko Alonzo to claim the top spot in overall IDP scoring for the season. Burfict continues to establish himself as a must own IDP going forward. I regret not owning him in any of my leagues. If he continues this level of play, he is sure to find his way onto some of my teams next year. What else can I say? Play him with full confidence.

Week 11 MVP Team

Player

Fan Pts

% Owned

Ben Roethlisberger Pit – QB

33.98

66%

Cam Newton Car – QB

27.36

99%

Calvin Johnson Det – WR

25.43

100%

Antonio Brown Pit – WR

23.58

98%

Bobby Rainey TB – RB

29.63

25%

LeSean McCoy Phi – RB

23.00

100%

Marshawn Lynch Sea – RB

22.70

100%

Garrett Graham Hou – TE

14.82

25%

Delanie Walker Ten – TE

14.57

21%

Player

Fan Pts

% Owned

Joe Haden Cle – CB

16.47

4%

Will Allen Pit – S

14.90

0%

Jairus Byrd Buf – S

13.80

3%

Vontaze Burfict Cin – LB

24.93

76%

Bobby Wagner Sea – LB

14.80

20%

Paul Worrilow Atl – LB

14.50

6%

David Bass Chi – DE

13.80

0%

Shaun Phillips Den – LB,DE

13.50

6%

Julius Peppers Chi – DE

13.50

12%


MISSING IN ACTION

Week 11

AJ Green: This was an awful performance, but I am willing to give AJ a pass because he has been exceptional all year and Cleveland’s defense is better than most people realize. Dalton has been a train wreck since his five TD performance a few weeks back. I hope the coaching staff gets this corrected during the upcoming bye week because I really need Green to be exception down the stretch.

Richard Sherman: I write this in honor of one of my buddies who openly (and sarcastically) thanked Sherman for costing him a matchup this week by failing to record a single point in the Seahawks match up with Minnesota. Granted, it probably wasn’t all Sherman’s fault since the Vikings have no QB who can throw the ball far enough downfield for Sherman to defend the pass. Goose egg!

Week 11 MIA Team

Player

Fan Pts

% Owned

Drew Brees NO – QB

11.56

100%

Tom Brady NE – QB

11.60

98%

Brandon Marshall Chi – WR

3.80

100%

A.J. Green Cin – WR

0.97

100%

Adrian Peterson Min – RB

4.33

100%

Jamaal Charles KC – RB

5.30

100%

Reggie Bush Det – RB

2.10

99%

Jimmy Graham NO – TE

5.23

100%

Jordan Cameron Cle – TE

3.43

95%

     

Player

Fan Pts

% Owned

Patrick Peterson Ari – CB

2.72

66%

DeAngelo Hall Was – CB

2.00

46%

Devin McCourty NE – S,CB

2.00

45%

Richard Sherman Sea – CB

0.00

34%

Erin Henderson Min – LB

3.50

53%

Tamba Hali KC – LB

3.50

47%

Von Miller Den – LB

0.50

46%

Mario Williams Buf – DE

3.00

44%

Charles Johnson Car – DE

0.50

22%


BYE WEEK BLUES

This is the last weekend of byes which means this is the last weekend you will be able to complain about losing because you didn’t have all your players. There are a ton of good ones out of action this weekend. So you will have to dig around and find coverage. Trust me. There is plenty if you know where to look.

Bye: Buffalo, Cincinnati, Philadelphia, Seattle

OFFENSE:

Quarterbacks:

Nick Foles, Russell Wilson, Andy Dalton and whoever is healthy enough to take snaps for Buffalo are all out of action. Against my year-long rants against the read-option QBs, I realize some of you still trust Wilson as your starter. He has performed better than I expected, but I still think you will hardly miss him being gone this weekend. Despite Foles recent explosion, he is probably a backup on more teams than a starter.  So I suspect the bye for him, Dalton and the Bills QB will do little damage.

OK, last week is suggested you play Carson Palmer. I did and was rewarded with a big win. Now, you can drop him because the Colts’ D is much better than the Jags. Speaking of the Jags, I’m going to push their opposing QB hard again this week as a bye week replacement.

Case Keenum: Benching Keenum in the third quarter against Oakland last week will probably turn out to be the nail in the coffin for Kubiak. Sure, he can blame the stroke if he wants. It was just a bad move. Luckily, either he came to his senses or someone higher up did it for him. So Keenum will be the starter again this week versus the Jags. I’m using him in two leagues. I suggest you grab him if he’s available.

Mike Glennon: So he didn’t light up Atlanta like I thought he would last week. With the running game going nucking futs on the Falcons, he didn’t need to do much. This week against Detroit will be a different story. Glennon will have to be a gunslinger for the Bucs to keep up with the Lions. I also see no way in hell Bobby Rainey ever has another game like he did last week. So this will be Glennon’s show.

Running Backs:

There will be no Beast Mode this weekend. Marshawn Lynch is off and taking a couple top RBs with him. The bye comes at a good time for LeSean McCoy and the Eagles as Shady got banged up a little Sunday and needs some time to heal up. It seems Fred Jackson and CJ Spiller have been alternating weeks being hurt. So the bye should help them too. BenJarvus Green-Ellis, Giovanni Bernard and the rest of the Bengals simply need some time to regroup. Overall, there will be several owners scrambling for help.

All these guys’ owners will be reaching deep to find some RB help this weekend. I’m going to take the easy way out and stick with suggesting the same guys as last week.

Brian Leonard/Bobby Rainey: After Rainey shredded the Falcons last week, you have to expect Tampa Bay to try feeding him the ball again this week. Detroit has a tough front seven. So the yards may not be as easy to come by for Rainey. I expect Leonard to be more useful in the passing game this week and the Bucs will have to push it a lot to keep up with Detroit’s scoring.

Andre Brown: The Giants didn’t ride Brown as hard against the Vikings as they had the previous week, but he still tallied 21 touches. This week the Cowboys come to town with one of the most porous defenses known to man. Brown should have no problem running through this defense and posting massive fantasy numbers. Hell, Brandon Jacobs may be a double-digit scorer too.

Mark Ingram: After lighting up the Cowboys, Ingram came back down to earth with only seven touches for 29 yards against San Francisco. However, the Saints now get a shot at Atlanta. Yes, the same Atlanta that just got rode hard and put up wet by Bobby Rainey and the Bucs. I expect Ingram and company to pull off a massive multi-RB scoring binge Thursday night similar to the Week 10 Cowboy beat down.

Wide Receivers: 

AJ Green decided to get a jump on the bye week and did jack squat against Cleveland. Still, he is probably the best player on my keeper team and I won’t be alone in missing him this week. DeSean Jackson and Riley Cooper have been huge this year, especially the past few weeks. Poor Stevie Johnson desperately needed this bye week to get healthy. For reasons I can’t explain, many owners like the Seahawks passing game. So a lot of owners will be scraping up scrubs to fill in for those scrubs.

The WR ranks are very thin this week. So I’m going to try and make this short and sweet. This week you have to play the matchups.

Cowboys vs Giants: These two teams combined for 713 passing yards in Week 1. Eli Manning had 450 of those yards and the Cowboys defense is worse now than it was then. That gives you two easy options.

If you have a Giants’ receiver or one is available in your league, play them versus the Cowboys.

If you are in a league with kick return points, play Dwayne Harris against the Giants. Also, Miles Austin is set to return to the starting role opposite Dez Bryant this week. So he deserves consideration while Terrance Williams may take a hit. Cole Beasley is unlikely to be helpful this week.

Carolina vs Miami: The Panthers and Cam Newton have been hot lately while Miami has just been a hot mess. Steve Smith remains the top dog and is highly owned. Just don’t overlook the other receivers for Carolina. Brandon LaFell continues to have a good year and scored in double digits against New England last week. He is only owned in 24% of leagues and is probably available. Ted Ginn Jr. is also lightly owned at only 19% and will help in leagues with kick return yards.

I’m sure there are other options but these are jumping out at me this week. Exploit them if you can.

Tight End:

There is no tier one TE missing action this week, just a lot more of the “other” TEs.

Garrett Graham: He led all TEs in scoring last week despite Kubiak trying to screw him by putting Schaub in at QB in the second half. Kubiak seems to have learned his lesson and named Keenum the starter for this weekend. Keenum at QB versus the Jaguars makes for a killer match up for Graham. Play him.

Delanie Walker: Last week, Walker had 10 catches for 91 yards and a TD. He was barely outscored at TE by Graham. This week, he faces the same defense Graham lit up last week. So if you are desperate for a TE, there is little reason not to give this guy a look, at least for a week or two.

John Carlson: Carlson had another decent week as the Vikings starter against a stout Seahawks defense. This week he has a much softer opponent in the Packers. I’ve seen enough to pick him up in some leagues where I needed a little TE depth and plan to use him in at least one league this week.

DEFENSE:

Defensive Backs:

Six of the Top 25 scoring DBs are out of action this week: Earl Thomas (2nd; 95.30 points), Da’Norris Searcy (7th; 80.03 points), Aaron Williams (9th; 77.30 points), Terence Newman (21st; 70.27 points), Brandon Boykin (23rd; 69.47 points) and Adam Jones (24th; 68.27 points). Chances are if you know those guys well enough to own them, you already have a backup plan. For those of you who are less enlightened, here are a few options to help you out this week.

James Ihedigbo: I talked about this guy last week and his ownership only rose from 1% to 4%. He had another decent week and remains 15th in overall DB scoring. Now Baltimore faces the Jets. Do you really need any more reason to add and this guy and play him this week?

Ryan Clark: I’m surprised Clark isn’t more widely owned. He is 18th in overall DB scoring with only 10% ownership. This should be a messy game this week in Cleveland. As with all messy, smash-mouth contests, Clark should be right in the middle of the action. He is a good guy to have.

Brandon Carr: Dallas is coming off a bye. Carr should be fully healthy. The Cowboys defense sucks out loud and everyone should expect Eli and Company to throw the ball all day. Plenty will go toward Carr’s side of the field. So he should have plenty of scoring opportunities on tackles and passes defended.

Duke Ihenacho: Denver faces New England this week and both defenses will be pressed to keep up with the opposing offenses. Ihenacho has quietly risen to 25th in overall DB scoring and is only owned in 8% of Yahoo leagues. He will get plenty of work this week against the Patriots.

Linebackers: 

Three Top 10 LBs have byes this week, as well as four more guys in the 25-50 range. Add to that three, maybe four depending on Posluzny’s concussion test, more guys from the Top 50 out of action. There is room here for guys to make a move this week and sneak out a win. I was talking to one of my friends last night about how he keeps losing close games. I looked at his defense and saw where he’s probably missing a good 5-6 points a week by playing names instead of numbers. I started to explain it to him but decided to keep quit since I’ll probably play him in the first or second round of our playoffs. Ha.

Anyway, here are a few guys you may want to pocket for the stretch run.

Thomas Davis (14th) and Mason Foster (20th) have each scored over 80 fantasy points already this year but are owned in only 15% of Yahoo leagues. Foster is coming off a 13.73 point week. Davis is coming off a 13.50 point week. There is no reason they should be free agents in your league.

Kevin Burnett (26th) and Nick Roach (36th) are being highly ignored along with the rest of Oakland’s defense. Meanwhile they continue to score points and can help fantasy teams win. The Titans are likely to challenge Oakland’s linebackers. So either of these guys could help you win this weekend.

Here is a list of LBs that rank in the Top 50 in scoring yet are owned in 7% or less of Yahoo leagues:

James Anderson, Ahmad Brooks, Demario Davis, Bruce Carter, Geno Hayes and Paul Worrilow. I had multiple waiver claims in on all of those guys in different leagues where I need LB help for this bye week. Any will serve my one-week purpose, although I plan on keeping them around longer for depth.

Defensive Linemen: 

Everyone once in a while something surprises even me. When I was looking at DLs this week I realized that all four of Buffalo’s defensive linemen rank in the Top 25 in IDP scoring. So, if any of you had any of them, you need help this week. Carlos Dunlap is second overall in DL scoring. So he’ll need to be replaced. His line mate Michael Johnson also ranks in the Top 25. Philly also has two guys in the Top 25, Trent Cole and Cedric Thompson. So that’s 8 of the Top 25 out of action. DL points will be scarce this week.

Shaun Phillips: Denver has Phillips playing DE enough that he qualifies for this position even though he is really more of an OLB/Pass Rush specialist. That said, I suggest you take advantage of this as his point production has him ranked 13th amongst DLs. He is only owned in 7% of Yahoo leagues.

Jason Hatcher: He is still getting little love with only 9% ownership. Granted he may have been dropped by some teams that owned him during last week’s bye for the Cowboys. For whatever reason, he is highly available. He is the Cowboys best DL and is 23rd overall in DL scoring.

That’s it. Seriously, that is all I have this week. Take it for what it is and use it how you see fit.

Go forth and prosper.

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