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Feast or Famine: Week 8 (2020 Fantasy Football)

by David Zach | @DavidZach16 | Featured Writer
Oct 29, 2020

Welcome to Feast or Famine! A weekly breakdown of the most variable player rankings by standard deviation from FantasyPros Weekly ECR.  

These players are ranked as either sensational hits or relative busts, and I’ll be giving my reasoning on why you should lean one side over the other. Having no clear group consensus means these are the decisions that could win or lose you your weekly matchup or DFS lineup. Knowledge is power in these situations, so let’s begin.

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Quarterbacks

Derek Carr (LV)
Highest rank: QB8. Lowest Rank: QB22.

Carr has scored over 20 points in three straight appearances, and he did this against tough defenses in the Bills, Bucs, and Chiefs. Now the sailing gets even easier against a Browns defense that has allowed 24 or more points in four out of seven games this year. They are a top-five pass-funnel defense so that should help ensure the passing volume along with a slightly negative script of being 2.5 point underdogs.

Prediction: FEAST

Kirk Cousins (MIN)
Highest rank: QB10. Lowest Rank: QB22.

Cousins has been saved by late-game garbage points for far too long and I think that ends this week. The return of Dalvin Cook should make their game less one dimensional, and no team allows more points to running backs than the Packers. I think the Packers will control the game and the Vikings have very little to play for at this point barring a late-season miracle. Thielen had his way with them in week 1, so I’m guessing they plan to focus on slowing him down differently this time. I also believe recency bias is in effect at this spot after coming off sizable games against the poor secondary of the Seahawks and Falcons.

Prediction: FAMINE

Running Backs

Jamaal Williams (GB)
Highest rank: RB8. Lowest Rank: RB39.

Even if Aaron Jones were to be active, he will very likely be in a limited snap count. Williams handled 23 touches last week for 114 yards and a touchdown. While the Vikings are more vulnerable through the air than on the ground, the 6.5 point favorite line for the Packers should result in them trying to drain the clock in a positive script. Also worth noting that the Vikings just traded away starting defensive end Yannick Ngakoue for draft picks, indicative of their planning for next year already. 

Prediction: FEAST

Honorable Mention Feast: Gus Edwards, Ronald Jones

Devonta Freeman (NYG)
Highest rank: RB22. Lowest Rank: RB58.

Poor running back performances against the Bucs and Steelers have been commonplace all year, and no reason it will change this week. The Bucs have allowed the league’s lowest rushing yards per game at 48.1 and the seventh-fewest points per game, mostly to receiving backs. Freeman’s recent injury and the performance of Gallman make him less valuable than ever, especially considering Dion Lewis‘ work as a receiving back. Look elsewhere this week.

Prediction: FAMINE

Honorable Mention Famine: Giovanni Bernard 

Wide Receivers

Brandon Aiyuk (SF)
Highest rank: WR15. Lowest Rank: WR43.

Seattle has allowed the most points to wide receivers by a landslide this year, largely in part because they have been a top-three pass-funnel defense all year long. The lack of healthy running backs in San Francisco very well could lead to the use of Aiyuk on more jet sweeps and motion plays, the bread and butter of Kyle Shanahan’s offensive scheme. This is a hard receiving group to predict, but I’m betting on at least one of their weapons going for a massive performance on Sunday.

Prediction: FEAST

Honorable Mention Feast: Sterling Shepard, DJ Moore

DeVante Parker (MIA)
Highest rank: WR23. Lowest Rank: WR101.

Parker came off his worst performance of the year against the Jets, but now has had a bye week to recuperate. However, a drastic change is happening in Miami. The Dolphins are replacing Ryan Fitzpatrick with rookie Tua Tagovailoa. Unlikely to have the same gun-slinging mentality as his predecessor, we should proceed with extreme caution on this passing offense. One more thing, the Rams have allowed the second-fewest fantasy points to wide receivers this season. Not a great outlook.

Prediction: FAMINE

Honorable Mention Famine: Tre’Quan Smith, CeeDee Lamb, Chase Claypool

Tight Ends

Richard Rodgers (PHI)
Highest rank: TE6. Lowest Rank: TE21.

Until last week, I hardly knew Rodgers was still an active tight end. Life comes at you fast as he snatched up six catches for 85 yards last week. Dallas Goedert may indeed play, but I’m very much assuming his snap count will be limited. They need him for the remainder of the season and have other methods to defeat a hapless Cowboys defense. It’s not just Rodgers that could be an effective play either, as nearly every position succeeds against the Cowboys as shown below.

Prediction: FEAST

Thanks for reading and stay golden! If you like what you learned, follow me @DavidZach16 for more interesting stats and tidbits throughout the year.

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David Zach is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from David, check out his archive and follow him @DavidZach16.

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