Plus find out which Eagles and Lions receivers are must-starts and must-sits this week
Week 11 is here and that means it's fantasy football crunch time. Unless you are one of the lucky fantasy owners that are cruising to the playoffs, this might be a must-win week for you as you battle for the final playoff spot in your fantasy football league.
That means choosing the right wide receiver and tight ends to start, and which ones to sit has never been more important.
Find out which Baltimore receiver is worth starting this week and which surprising tight end is worth streaming this week. But before diving into Week 11, let's see how the Week 10 start/sit advice turned out.
Good Calls for Week 10...
Sit Golden Tate (1.9 fantasy points) – It is going to take some time for Tate to find his role in the Eagles’ offense.
Sit David Njoku (1.8 FP) – The tight end position is terrible and there usually aren’t better options out there, but Njoku’s production has fallen off a cliff over the last few weeks.
Bad Calls for Week 10...
Sit Corey Davis (18.5 FP) – So much for Bill Belichick taking away opposing teams’ No. 1 wide receivers.
Sit Eric Ebron (25.1 FP) – Looks like I got the Colts' TEs mixed up. It should have said sit Jack Doyle, and start Ebron.
Teams on bye: Buffalo, Cleveland, Miami, New England, New York Jets, San Francisco
START THESE WRs...
Alshon Jeffery, PHI (at NO)
Jeffery was shut down by a good Dallas pass defense last week. This Sunday, Jeffery gets to feast on a Saints defense giving up the most fantasy points to wide receivers by quite a bit. New Orleans has already allowed six 100-yard games and an amazing 16 touchdowns to the position. Fire up Jeffery as a strong WR2 this week.
Amari Cooper, DAL (at ATL)
Cooper has been an immediate factor for the Cowboys. In just two games, Cooper has 11 receptions for 133 yards and a touchdown. Expect him to be even more involved this week when the Cowboys face the Falcons. Atlanta is third in terms of most fantasy points allowed to WRs this season. Six different receivers have topped 100 yards against the Falcons, and they've given up 13 TDs to the position. Cooper is primed to have his best game yet as a Cowboy.
Michael Crabtree, BAL (vs. CIN)
Baltimore’s offense is tough to project with their QB situation in flux, but Crabtree deserves WR3 consideration even if Lamar Jackson or Robert Griffin III is under center (more likely in shotgun). The Ravens rank second in pace of play, averaging 25.18 seconds per play. Crabtree’s 76 targets quietly lead the team and both he and John Brown have six red zone targets over their last six games. He’s collected 310 air yards in the last four weeks, good for 15th among WRs, as well as a 15.5 average depth of target (aDOT) in that span that’s tied with three other wideouts for ninth.
MIGHT BE WORTH THE RISK...
Maurice Harris, WAS (vs. HOU)
While Harris’ five targets from Week 10 fell short of his 12-target Week 9, they still paced all Washington WRs in a bizarre win over the Bucs. Alex Smith’s play doesn’t elevate anyone’s ceiling, but Harris isn’t a ceiling play. This offense needs a spark and with its line halfway into the blue medical tent already, it’s unlikely to come from Adrian Peterson and the north-south run game.
SIT THESE WRs...
Devin Funchess, CAR (at DET)
Funchess looked to be the clear first option in the downfield passing game through Carolina’s first six games as the hulking WR averaged eight targets per game with Curtis Samuel and Greg Olsen on the shelf and rookie DJ Moore getting up to speed. Unfortunately, in Carolina’s last three games Funchess has seen just 13 targets, which is tied with Moore, behind Christian McCaffrey’s 17, Olsen’s 16 and barely ahead of Samuel’s 11. This doesn’t count Moore and Samuel’s sporadic rush attempts and ignores how Cam Newton is a huge threat to keep TDs to himself and McCaffrey's emergence. Funchess appears to be a TD-dependent flex option now on an offense that ranks 26th in pace of play (29.16 seconds).
Demaryius Thomas, HOU (at WAS)
This will be the second game for Thomas as a member of the Texans, and hopefully the bye week helped him get more acclimated to his new offense. In his first game with Houston in Week 9 at Denver, Thomas had just three catches for 61 yards on three targets. Better days are ahead, but he could be fighting for targets behind DeAndre Hopkins if Keke Coutee (hamstring) is healthy. Thomas is a low-end WR3 at best this week.
Calvin Ridley, ATL (vs. DAL)
Ridley is having a strong rookie season with games of 50-plus yards and seven touchdowns. Don't trust Ridley this week, though. The Cowboys have been brutal on receivers, giving up the second-fewest fantasy points to the position. The Cowboys are allowing just 10 receptions per game and have surrendered a total of six touchdowns in nine games to the position. Leave Ridley on the bench this week.
YOU’VE BEEN WARNED...
Kenny Golladay, DET (vs. CAR)
Like Kerryon Johnson, Golladay is one of the few bright spots on the Lions. He caught six balls for 78 yards and a touchdown on 13 targets last week against the Bears. The issue for Golladay this week is Marvin Jones may not play with a bone bruise. Without Jones and the departed Golden Tate, the Panthers' defense will be able to focus on stopping Golladay. Carolina has been tough on receivers this year. Golladay isn't an awful start, but if you have other strong options, go with them instead.
START THESE TEs...
Jeff Heuerman, DEN (at LAC)
Heuerman caught 10 of 11 targets for 83 yards and a touchdown in his last game versus the Texans. The interesting thing about Heuerman is that score was only his second red zone touchdown this season, but he actually ranks third among tight ends with 12 red zone targets, behind only Eric Ebron and Zach Ertz. If Heuerman can start turning more of those targets into scores, he'll make an impact at a weak tight end position. Heuerman has at least five targets in four of his last five games. He's worth a shot this week if you need a tight end.
Jack Doyle, IND (vs. TEN)
Doyle is coming off a mediocre stat line last week and watched Eric Ebron score all the fantasy points, but he still led all Colts tight ends in snaps and was one yard away from scoring a touchdown. While his matchup against the Titans looks bad on paper, keep in mind that their defense has faced just one fantasy-relevant tight end (Zach Ertz), and he had a monster game (10 receptions for 112 yards).
Trey Burton, CHI (vs. MIN)
Burton is coming off a boring, 40-yard performance last week against the Lions. Still, he's worth starting this week against the Vikings. While it might look like a tough game on the surface, the Vikings have actually allowed the seventh-most fantasy points to home tight ends this season.
MIGHT WE WORTH THE RISK...
Michael Roberts, DET (vs. CAR)
With six teams on bye and the tight end position a wasteland, here is your streamer of the week. Roberts continues to play roughly 40 percent of Detroit’s snaps and without Golden Tate (traded) and possibly Marvin Jones Jr. (who will not be 100 percent if he does play), Roberts could be Matthew Stafford's best red-zone option outside of Kenny Golladay. There’s also the small fact that Carolina has surrendered nine TDs to TEs in as many games, resulting in the most fantasy points allowed to the position thus far.
SIT THESE TEs...
C.J. Uzomah, CIN (vs. BAL)
Uzomah saw a season-high seven targets back in Week 6 but has totaled six in the three games since as he regularly disappoints his fantasy owners. The Bengals' offense was a hot mess without A.J. Green last week and it won’t get any easier on the road against the Ravens. Unless you believe in “special assistant” Hue Jackson being able to energize this squad with a rousing pep talk then it’s best you leave Uzomah and other complementary Cincinnati players on the bench.
Jordan Reed, WAS (vs. HOU)
Reed had maybe the best matchup he's going to have all season long last week against the Buccaneers, and he finished with just 51 yards. Reed has now failed to hit double-digit fantasy points in all but one of his last six games, and this week's matchup against the Texans doesn't bode very well for his rebound chances.
Jared Cook, OAK (at ARI)
Owners probably aren't running to start any Raiders on their fantasy teams right now. The team hasn't scored a touchdown in two games. And even with the tight position so weak right now between injuries, ineffectiveness and byes, this still isn't a great week to use Cook. The Cardinals allow the seventh-fewest fantasy points to tight ends. Add to that Derek Carr struggling, and Cook is better left on the bench in Week 11.
YOU’VE BEEN WARNED...
Eric Ebron, IND (vs. TEN)
Ebron has only six targets over the last two games and has played a mere 38 snaps to Jack Doyle’s 105 in that stretch. Even Mo Alie-Cox has been in for more (48). Don’t be that results-oriented person who gets burned when Ebron drops his one red-zone target and suddenly you’re left with a goose egg. Tennessee's defense has been pretty tough all season (see last week vs. New England) and that's the case with TEs. The Titans have given up the fewest fantasy points per game to the position.
— Written by Michael Horvath, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Horvath is a Canadian who also happens to be a fantasy football (not to be confused with CFL) and fitness nut. Follow him on Twitter @realmikehorvath.
(Top photo by James D. Smith/Dallas Cowboys, courtesy of www.dallascowboys.com)