QB – Patrick Mahomes vs LV
Mahomes has not been the same gunslinger that we have seen in previous seasons, but he has actually become quite underrated. He is 4th in the league in passing yards and tight for 3rd in touchdowns (20). However, he plays a tough Raiders defense that have allowed the 5th fewest yards per game (206.9) and the 6th fewest passing touchdowns (12).
In addition, the Raiders have blitzed the least in the league this season, blitzing on only 13.5% of their defensive plays. When Mahomes faces the blitz, he has a 67.8 completion percentage, which is 6th in the league among qualified quarterbacks against the blitz. However, when the defense is not blitzing, he has a much lower completion percentage of 62.2%, which is 30th in the league. Mahomes is still a worthy starter this week, but don’t expect him to perform to the level that he was at last year.
RB – D’Andre Swift vs PIT
Swift has been a key contributor to the Lions in an otherwise disappointing year. He ranks second in receiving snaps for RBs and leads all RBs in receptions and second in receiving yardage. Swift has not been particularly useful while running the ball, as he has not topped 51 yards rushing this season. The Steelers have one of the league’s toughest defenses against running backs.
They have only allowed one 100-yard rusher this season and allow the 7th least receptions to running backs. They have only allowed one running back to get more than 50 receiving yards this season (Aaron Jones), and Swift has had more than 4 receptions in every game this year, but the Steelers haven’t allowed a running back over 5. Lastly, the Steelers have only allowed 2 touchdowns to running backs this year. Swift makes most of his fantasy production in the receiving game, and the Steelers have been one of the stingiest defenses against receiving backs, so try to stay away from Swift this week.
WR – Justin Jefferson, Adam Thielen vs LAC
The Vikings’ two headed receiver attack has been a staple for a few years. Both Thielen and Jefferson are top 35 in receiving yards, and have combined for 11 total touchdowns this year.
However, they face a stingy Chargers secondary who have only allowed one 100-yard game to a wide receiver this year (DeVonta Smith). In addition, only one receiver has had more than 6 receptions in a game this year (CeeDee Lamb). The Chargers have also allowed the 2nd fewest passing yards to opposing teams this season, which adds to the case to be wary for Vikings receivers this week.
TE – Dallas Goedert, vs DEN
The tight end position has been a wasteland this season. There are only two tight ends with 4+ receptions in every game (Travis Kelce and Darren Waller). Goedert has been good for the Eagles this year, and with the departure of Zach Ertz he has the tight end position secured for the rest of the year.
However, he plays the Broncos this week, who have not allowed a single score to tight ends this season, and the 8th fewest yards. In addition, the Broncos have allowed the second lowest points to opposing teams this year with 17 points per game. If there is any tight end that won’t perform to their projection, chances are it’s Goedert.