It’s time for our Week 11 Starts and Sits! Remember, we’ll do our best to predict outcomes based on what’s given to us. That’s diving into the numbers, digging through the juicy matchups, examining trends, watching the film, and collecting data that should lean towards certain players being better starts than others. While it won’t always play out that way, fantasy is a game of what’s most “likely” to happen and we need to attack it that way.
Every week we try to make some of your decision-making easier with what we’ve collected, but ultimately it’s your call on what you want to do with your team. I’ll try to avoid the slam-dunk stud plays and focus more on players you’re teetering with putting in your starting lineups. We’re going to discuss Quarterbacks, Running Backs, Wide Receivers, and Tight Ends on each week’s slate, and I hope that we can win you the week!
Now, let’s rock.
Quarterbacks to Start:
Cam Newton | Carolina Panthers: Welcome back to Carolina Mr. Newton. In a week where we weren’t sure Newton would play, he scored two touchdowns and was the catalyst in a Panthers blowout of the Arizona Cardinals. Newton seemed to inject new life into this Carolina offense that we haven’t seen since the first month of the season when Darnold was actually looking like a decent quarterback. As of this writing, Newton has not been announced as the starter, but I would expect that to be sometime over the next few days.
While Washington held Tom Brady in check somewhat in Week 10, Washington still has given up the most fantasy points to quarterbacks this season at 24.5 per game. They’ve also allowed the second-most passing touchdowns of any team, most yards per game, and are one of eleven teams to give up over 200 yards on the ground to quarterbacks so far this season. Cam Newton should be a great streamer and be an asset to your fantasy team this week.
Ryan Tannehill | Tennessee Titans: The QB11 so far on the season, Ryan Tannehill has scored at least 18.6 fantasy points in three of his last four games and seems to have hit his stride, even without Derrick Henry in the lineup. While the six passing touchdowns over the last five games are not impressive by any means, he has four rushing touchdowns over that span. In fact, Tannehill’s five rushing touchdowns are tied for the league-high for quarterbacks and his 5.6 yards per carry have him t-3rd among quarterbacks this season. That rushing upside will always add intrigue to his name.
Tannehill faces a Houston Texans team that gives up the 8th most points to opposing quarterbacks this season at just over 20 per game. In a game that I expect the Titans, who are winners of six straight, to beat the Texans handily, I think Tannehill has a nice game here.
Joe Burrow | Cincinnati Bengals: Joe Burrow is coming off of a stinker in his last game against Cleveland in Week 9 where he threw for under 300 yards with two interceptions, on his way to less than 10 fantasy points for the first time this season. Prior to that game, however, he had been a model of consistency, having scored at least 18.6 fantasy points in six straight games. Burrow was the QB5 over that six-week stretch.
Burrow faces off against Las Vegas, who ranks 11th-worst in fantasy points allowed to opposing quarterbacks this season. What’s interesting is this team was actually one of the best, before a stretch recently in which this defense has allowed multiple passing scores by quarterbacks in three of their last four games. The exclamation point being Mahomes’ five touchdowns on Sunday Night Football. Burrow should bounce back well in this matchup against a team that is reeling in the Raiders.
Quarterback to Sit:
Matt Ryan | Atlanta Falcons: I wouldn’t wish someone watching that Atlanta Falcons – Dallas Cowboys game from Week 9 on my worst enemy. The showing from the Falcons on all sides of the ball was absolutely embarrassing, and this team doesn’t have long to recover before their game tonight against the Patriots on Thursday Night Football. Matt Ryan had actually not been horrible recently, having scored at least 18.4 fantasy points in three out of four games prior to his putrid 2.7 in Week 10. What’s the scariest part of this matchup is what’s expected to be at Ryan’s disposal.
Calvin Ridley remains out, while the biggest surprise in fantasy football this season that is Cordarrelle Patterson is highly questionable and is a game-time decision. Kyle Pitts remains in the lineup, but New England ranks 5th-best against the position, allowing less than nine fantasy points per game to tight ends. New England also is well known for taking the opposing best player out of a game, making the opposing team rely on other players to beat them. Taking out Kyle Pitts, there isn’t much there for Matt Ryan to throw to that has consistently shown to be trustworthy? Add in the fact that the New England defense has forced eight interceptions over their last four games, and I’m staying clear of Matty Ice.
Running Backs to Start:
A.J. Dillon | Green Bay Packers: For those that have been holding on to this A.J. Dillon lottery ticket, it’s your time to cash in. Aaron Jones (sprained MCL) is expected to miss the next 1-2 weeks, and I would expect we don’t see him until after the Packers’ bye in Week 14. Dillon as the lead running back in this offense, is easily a top 10 play week in and week out. Many view him as just a bruising, in-between the tackles runner, but he actually has 16 receptions on the season in limited playing time.
Dillon and his expected 20+ touches go against the Minnesota Vikings this week, who have allowed five total touchdowns to opposing running backs over the last two games. The Vikings’ run defense as a whole gives up nearly 25 fantasy points per game and also allowed the 4th-most touchdowns through the air to opposing running backs. The Vikings’ defense remains banged up and Dillon should have a great week for those lucky enough to start him this week.
Myles Gaskin | Miami Dolphins: I think it’s funny to start this section with a narrative: On odd number weeks, Gaskin has been a smash. On even number weeks, not so much. Gaskin is averaging 17.6 PPR points on odd number weeks and 4.6 PPR points on even number weeks. That is interesting in itself. Let’s take a look more at the facts now.
The New York Jets have allowed the highest target share to opposing running backs this season. Not just that, but the Jets have also allowed the most yards, touchdowns, and fantasy points to the position in 2021 as well. In the Jets’ last four games, they’ve allowed 11 rushing touchdowns and three receiving touchdowns to running backs alone. In a game I expect the Dolphins to take care of business, Gaskin should be heavily involved (he’s had at least 15 touches in four straight games) and be a lock for double-digit PPR fantasy points.
Rhamondre Stevenson | New England Patriots: I know this definitely won’t be as sexy a play as it looked to be a few days ago when Damien Harris was still questionable to play in this game. However, I’m still excited to have Stevenson as a flex this week. Stevenson is coming off of a 114 total yardage game in which he scored two touchdowns and had four receptions. That type of volume and that efficiency I can’t see being relegated to a bench role.
Going against a Falcons defense that has allowed seven total touchdowns to running backs over the last five games and ranks 4th-worst in fantasy points allowed to the position at just under 29 per game, there should be no reason that Harris and Stevenson can’t play a 1A and 1B role in this game. While that may be frustrating for fantasy managers, I think both could easily score in this game in which the Patriots are heavily favored and you’ll leave happy you played either one of these Patriots backs.
Running Back to Sit:
Jordan Howard/Boston Scott | Philadelphia Eagles: I love what the Eagles have tried to do with their running game. In fact, the Eagles have run the ball more than any other team since Miles Sanders went down with his ankle injury. Even if Sanders can’t go this week, I don’t like either of these ground game options for the Eagles against the New Orleans Saints. These running backs remain very touchdown-dependent and are not involved in the passing game to the extent that Kenneth Gainwell is.
Why is that a problem? Well, the Saints defense hasn’t allowed a running back to score over their last four games and have only given up six touchdowns to running backs all season. They remain the second-worst matchup in terms of fantasy points allowed to opposing running backs, behind Buffalo and don’t allow many big plays on the ground. There are a lot better places to go here than with this backfield committee and the opponent this week.
Wide Receivers to Start:
Michael Gallup | Dallas Cowboys: For those that play Daily Fantasy, this is the game that many have circled on their board. The Cowboys-Chiefs game has the highest projected score of the week at 56 points and both offenses should be able to fire on all cylinders. Gallup in his first game back since Week 1 accounted for three catches for 42 yards on five targets. Those five targets trailed only Ceedee Lamb and Tony Pollard. Gallup as the number three receiver in this offense can be really intriguing against a Chiefs team that is very beatable in the secondary.
The Chiefs have allowed three touchdowns to wide receivers over their last three games and while they rank in the top 10 against wide receivers this year, they still have allowed 11 receiving touchdowns. With most of the focus on Lamb and Cooper, I think Gallup could sneak in the endzone in this one.
Jaylen Waddle | Miami Dolphins: While the Dolphins keep rotating at quarterback, Waddle continues to be a focal point. Waddle leads the team with a 21.5% target share through 10 weeks, and while he’s WR24 on the season, he’s actually WR8 from Weeks 6-10. He’s averaged 15.5 fantasy points over that stretch, receiving 48 targets over that time. Waddle remains the number one in this offense, which looks great with their opponent this week.
The Jets have not just been bad against running backs. Recently they’ve been just as bad against wide receivers. The Jets are allowing 35.7 fantasy points per game to opposing wide receivers (17th), but have allowed the most fantasy points per game to receivers over the last three weeks. Combine that with the fact that the New York Jets have allowed 45 or more points in three of the last four games, and you have a recipe for a juicy game from many Dolphins players in this one.
Jamison Crowder | New York Jets: With all the Dolphin love, there’s room in this article for a little Jet love here too. Jamison Crowder has been incredibly steady when he’s played, providing between 6-9 targets in every game, along with 8.4 fantasy points in every game but one this year. He’s been consistent and should be a great option for the expected starter Joe Flacco, who likes to target his slot receivers.
The Dolphins have allowed the second-most receiving yards and third-most fantasy points per game to receivers at 41.5 per game this year. They also have allowed 12 receiving touchdowns, which ranks t-3rd most. The Dolphins play great on the perimeter but are susceptible to players that play in the middle of the field (slot) and Crowder could salvage a decent day in what’s expected to be a heavy negative game script for the Jets.
Wide Receiver to Sit:
Tyler Boyd | Cincinnati Bengals: There were many out there that liked Tyler Boyd the most of all three Bengals wide receivers going into this year, because of the huge discount he was compared to the other two in drafts. Well, that hasn’t worked out. Boyd has scored just two touchdowns this season and topped 40 receiving yards just once in his last five games. In fact, if you take out the Weeks where Higgins was out of the lineup, in the other seven games, Boyd is averaging just 4.7 fantasy points per game.
Las Vegas ranks 6th-worst for opposing wide receivers and is not an ideal matchup, to begin with. The one place the Raiders seem to especially excel is in the slot, which is where Boyd plays, and you shouldn’t have Boyd sniffing your lineup this week outside the deepest of PPR leagues.
Tight End to Start:
Hunter Henry| New England Patriots: For this spot last week, I was deciding between Hunter Henry and Mike Gesicki. I decided to go with Mike Gesicki who finished with 0 receptions on seven targets, while Henry scored two touchdowns. I’m not leaving Henry off again this week.
He only had four receptions on four targets for 37 yards on Sunday but scored 2 touchdowns and cost me a win in one of my fantasy matchups. That’s 7 TDs in his last seven games. Henry has finished as a TE1 (top 12) in six of his last seven games and should again in Week 11 against the Falcons. Start him and continue to ride it out while he’s hot.
Tight End to Sit:
Gerald Everett | Seattle Seahawks: I get the appeal after leading the Seahawks with eight receptions for 63 yards in the Seahawks loss to Green Bay in Week 10. For context, no other pass catcher had even half of Everett’s receptions in this game. However, this appears to be very fluky and nothing that seems to have any substance to it.
Arizona has been the toughest against tight ends this year, allowing only seven fantasy points per game to opposing tight ends and only one touchdown. In a game that I expect Russell Wilson to get back on track and target his favorite two wide receivers, I’d leave Everett on the bench.