Fantasy Football Power Rankings: Week 11
There are only four teams on bye this week. The Browns might as well be, though, in terms of providing useful fantasy options in most leagues this week. The Keystone State is well represented up top with a pair of teams in the top five. Quarterback is traditionally a position overflowing with talent, but injuries and ineffective play have driven up the value of having a good one, and that’s reflected right out of the gate with the bottom teams run by non-fantasy-worthy quarterbacks, and the top-12 options at the position residing within the top 16 spots in this week’s Fantasy Football Power Rankings.
|28||Browns (vs. Jaguars)|
|27||Packers (vs. Ravens)|
|26||Ravens (@ Packers)|
|25||Bears (vs. Lions)|
|24||Cardinals (@ Texans)|
|23||Texans (vs. Cardinals)|
|22||Broncos (vs. Bengals)|
|21||Titans (@ Steelers)|
Four teams from a pair of games are found in the bottom table. DeAndre Hopkins remains QB-proof, but he’ll almost certainly see shadow coverage from Patrick Peterson, and that makes him a low-end WR2. The Titans have some intriguing real-life offensive pieces, but the depth creates some fantasy headaches, and it starts in their backfield. The game’s spread (Steelers are 7-point favorites, per Pinnacle) widens the gap between DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry since the former is the far more accomplished pass catcher. The matchup is extremely tough for Marcus Mariota and his receivers, and I wouldn’t start Mariota, Rishard Matthews, or Corey Davis if possible to avoid doing so. Delanie Walker remains a fantasy starter, though, even in a tough matchup.
|20||Giants (vs. Chiefs)|
|19||Dolphins (vs. Buccaneers)|
|18||Bengals (@ Broncos)|
|17||Buccaneers (@ Dolphins)|
|16||Cowboys (vs. Eagles)|
|15||Lions (@ Bears)|
|14||Bills (@ Chargers)|
|13||Seahawks (vs. Falcons)|
|12||Jaguars (@ Browns)|
|11||Redskins (@ Saints)|
The Giants are awful in real life, but Sterling Sherling Shepard and Evan Engram have stepped up as high-volume options in an injury-depleted offense, and both are reliable fantasy options on a weekly basis as a result. Orleans Darkwa is the lead back, but the Giants are the only double-digit underdogs this week, and it creates a very low floor for him since Shane Vereen is the team’s receiving back. The Cowboys and Lions are nearly mirror images of one another this week in terms of what they offer fantasy gamers. Dak Prescott and Matthew Stafford, and Dez Bryant and Golden Tate are fantasy starters, and I’d slightly prefer the latter duo over the former. This seems like a great spot in the rankings to remind readers that these power rankings are from a fantasy perspective and not a representation of real-life rankings. Allen Hurns is expected to miss this week with an ankle injury, but Dede Westbrook is ready to roll, and the rookie is a much more interesting fantasy option and not the craziest dart throw. The Saints have yielded the 10th fewest fantasy points per game to tight ends this year, according to Pro-Football-Reference, but if Jordan Reed returns this week, Washington would be the rare team that offers two fantasy starters at tight end in the form of the aforementioned Reed and Vernon Davis.
|10||Falcons (@ Seahawks)|
|9||Chargers (vs. Bills)|
|8||Raiders (vs. Patriots in Mexico City)|
|7||Vikings (vs. Rams)|
|6||Rams (@ Vikings)|
Devonta Freeman is likely out this week, and that thrusts Tevin Coleman into RB2 status. Seattle’s secondary was dealt a big blow with the season-ending torn Achilles suffered by Richard Sherman, making Matt Ryan a defensible starter even dealing with the rowdy 12th Man. Austin Hooper could see a bump in looks with the Falcons down to just one of two well-rounded backs in need of targets in the passing game, and the second-year tight end is a low-end starter/stream option after reeling in all six of his targets for 49 yards and a touchdown last week. The Bills have been punched in the mouth in back-to-back games and coughed up nearly 500 yards on the ground in that two-game stretch. Melvin Gordon is a top-5 RB this week. Hunter Henry has been targeted just four times in the Chargers last two games, but he’s a top-10 option in a softer matchup this week. The Vikings and Rams square off and round out this group, and the game’s over/under total of 46 and spread of 2.5 points favoring the Vikings put it in potential shootout territory.
5 – Patriots (@ Raiders in Mexico City)
The Patriots travel to Mexico City to face the Raiders, and the game’s over/under total of 52 is the biggest on the board this week by one point. New England is a 7-point favorite and has an implied team over/under total of 29.5 points. Tom Brady, Rob Gronkowski, and Brandin Cooks are the top starters with the former two being outright studs and the latter possessing massive weekly upside (he torched the Texans for a 5-131-2 line in Week 3, but that’s his only game in triple-digit receiving yardage). New England’s backfield will be under the spotlight in this week’s Running Back Snap Count Analysis piece, but I’ll foreshadow that Rex Burkhead is the back I like best out of the committee. If Chris Hogan is able to return this week, I’d push the Patriots up one more spot in the rankings.
4 – Eagles (@ Cowboys)
Carson Wentz is having a fantastic sophomore season as a matchup-proof starter, yet the matchup is good this week. Philadelphia has an implied over/under total of 25.75 points, and they’re a 3.5-point favorite. Coming out of the bye, Jay Ajayi is the back I like best in Philadelphia’s committee, and he’s a low-end RB2. Zach Ertz practiced in full yesterday, and the Eagles rank is with the expectation of Ertz returning this week. Alshon Jeffery is a WR2, and teammate Nelson Agholor checks in as a WR3/Flex. Both have a favorable matchup with the Cowboys coughing up the eighth most fantasy points per game to receivers this season.
3 – Steelers (vs. Titans)
The Steelers are 7-point home favorites on a short week, and their implied team over/under total is 25.5 points. Antonio Brown and Le’Veon Bell don’t require analysis. They’re weekly threats — if not favorites — to lead their respective positions in scoring. However, they’re joined in the fantasy relevant mix this week by Ben Roethlisberger and Juju Smith-Schuster. Pittsburgh plays at home, where Big Ben has played much better than on the road in recent years. That hasn’t been the case this year, but the Steelers have played only three games at home, and one of them included Roethlisberger’s 5-interception disaster against the stingy pass defense of the Jaguars. Smith-Schuster has come on strong as Pittsburgh’s No. 2 receiver, and he’s scored a touchdown in three straight games while erupting for 290 yards receiving on 12 receptions in his last two games.
2 – Chiefs (@ Giants)
The Giants struggles with tight ends have been well documented by fantasy scribes, and Travis Kelce is the run away favorite to lead the position in scoring this week thanks to his excellence coupled with Big Blue’s ineptitude defending tight ends. Kareem Hunt‘s production had been in a slide, and last week’s bye plus a matchup against Big Blue’s porous run defense this week should help him get back on track. Alex Smith is having a career year, and second-year wide out Tyreek Hill has taken a huge step forward after dazzling in his pro debut last year. As a double-digit favorite, the Chiefs D/ST is a high-ceiling option at their position, too.
1 – Saints (vs. Redskins)
The Saints offense has been clicking on all cylinders, and the running game is powering it. Mark Ingram is a top-10 RB going forward, and Alvin Kamara is a high-end RB2 with weekly RB1 upside as well. Drew Brees‘ floor and ceiling are both much lower this year than in year’s past thanks to the ground game’s success and the stellar defense on the other side of the ball, but he’s been sharp as a tack, and Washington has enough firepower to push Brees into throwing a bit more than in recent weeks. Furthermore, he’s been much better at home than on the road as a member of the Saints, and they’re at home this week. Michael Thomas is the one reliable pass catcher in the offense on a weekly basis, but Ted Ginn has homer potential that makes him a Flex option. Finally, New Orleans D/ST is an above-average unit in a good matchup, and they’re touted in this week’s Defenses to Stream piece.