By the Numbers: Week 11 (2020 Fantasy Football)
Coming into this NFL season, every fantasy analyst was trying to answer the same league-winning question: Who will be this year’s Lamar Jackson?
Through 10 weeks, Kyler Murray has run away with this distinction and is currently on pace to break the season record for fantasy points by a quarterback, which was set by Jackson in 2019.
While passing volume hasn’t been a major factor in Murray’s fantasy ascension, his efficiency, both on the ground and through the air, is unmatched at the position, where he’s averaging a league-leading .66 points per dropback this season.
The successful “Hail Murray” to DeAndre Hopkins at the end of Sunday’s win against the Bills was yet another shining moment in the burgeoning career of the diminutive 23-year-old superstar, who should be a fantasy force for the foreseeable future.
Unlike Jackson, who’s shown passing deficiencies this season, Murray has long been considered a capable pocket passer, and despite worries about his stature, he has an uncanny ability to avoid major hits, similar to fellow former baseball-playing quarterback Russell Wilson.
It’s probably too late to acquire Murray at a reasonable price in re-draft or keeper leagues, but for now, sit back and enjoy watching fantasy football history, as Murray enters Week 11 averaging 30.2 fantasy points per game, the most ever by a quarterback through his team’s first nine games.
Earlier this season, I almost traded Myles Gaskin and Brandin Cooks to a running back-needy team in exchange for Allen Robinson. The manager was extremely close to accepting the deal, but he wanted to wait one week to see what the Detroit Lions would do with rookie running back D’Andre Swift. Needless to say, he made the right call.
Since Week 4, Swift has averaged 15 half-PPR points per game, making him the RB7 over that span. He’s averaged a solid 4.5 targets per game in that time, and seen a steady increase in total touches, culminating in a season-high 21 in Week 10.
Head coach Matt Patricia named Swift the Lions’ starting running back before last week’s contest, and with his continued excellent play, there’s no reason to suspect Swift will be relinquishing that role anytime soon.
Washington Football Team running back J.D. McKissic doesn’t get enough love. Over the past two games, McKissic has led the NFL (including wide receivers and tight ends) with a whopping 29 targets and has averaged 13.6 half-PPR points per contest, good for the RB14 during that span.
Sure, he’s almost exclusively valuable in half- and full-PPR leagues, but considering McKissic’s ADP fell outside the top 85 running backs in both scoring formats, he’s been one of the bigger bargains of the fantasy season.
Speaking of underappreciated players, let’s talk about Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tyler Boyd. In nine games this season, Boyd has averaged 12.8 half-PPR points and 8.4 targets per game, the latter of which ranks 10th among receivers.
According to Player Profiler, the Bengals average 44.8 pass plays per game, which ranks second in football. Considering his prominent role in a high-volume passing attack, Boyd represents one of the most consistent high-floor plays every week, as he has for the past few years.
Yes, Boyd didn’t play well in Week 10’s matchup against the Pittsburgh Steelers, but to be fair, who does play well against the Steelers?
Philadelphia Eagles running back Miles Sanders has missed three games this season, but when healthy, he’s a sure bet for high-floor fantasy scoring.
Dating back to last season, Sanders is averaging 16.7 half-PPR points per contest over his last nine games, a mark which would rank sixth among running backs this season.
In his return to play in Week 10, Sanders totaled 17 touches, and on the year has averaged 16.7 while averaging six yards per attempt.
We’d like to see a little more volume out of the former Nittany Lion, but he’s been extremely efficient when healthy, evidenced by his top-five running back DVOA.
As things stand, Sanders is averaging 14.5 half-PPR points per game in 2020, but he should see an uptick in volume and scoring opportunity as he works himself back to a full workload.
Drafting one of those receivers never fit my strategy, which favors selecting consistent, high-volume players instead of boom-or-bust guys with volatile usage.
When Cooks was traded to the Houston Texans this offseason, I was finally in on both Woods and Kupp, but L.A.’s past four games have dampened my outlook.
Since Week 6, Josh Reynolds has averaged eight targets per game, nearly triple his previous five-game average of three targets per game. In that span, he’s averaged 11.1 half-PPR points per contest, ahead of Kupp (8.9 points per game) and just behind Woods (11.8 points per game).
While Woods has been the No. 1 receiver in this offense for much of the season, Reynolds is emerging as a consistent fantasy threat, which makes me think we may be witnessing a dreaded three-headed receiving attack under head coach Sean McVay once again.
If you want to dive deeper into fantasy football, be sure to check out our award-winning slate of Fantasy Football Tools as you navigate your season. From our Start/Sit Assistant – which provides your optimal lineup, based on accurate consensus projections – to our Waiver Wire Assistant – that allows you to quickly see which available players will improve your team, and by how much – we’ve got you covered this fantasy football season.