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Target Analysis: Week 11 (2020 Fantasy Football)

Nov 25, 2020

Diontae Johnson is establishing himself as Ben Roethlisberger’s top target.

We’ve seen it time and time again. Volume is the clearest indicator of fantasy success, as it’s rare for a player to be a fantasy football stud without the opportunity to convert touches into points. Pass-catching opportunities, especially in PPR leagues, are often a bigger determinant of fantasy success than a player’s talent or circumstances.

So, every week of this fantasy season, I will diagnose the target landscape in the NFL. Who’s seeing the highest share on a team? Who’s trending downward? And most importantly, what takeaways can we draw from this data to ultimately help you make better fantasy lineup and roster decisions?

Here is your Week 11 Target Analysis:

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Arizona Cardinals

Larry Fitzgerald 10 20 6.67 57 5.70 ⬆️
DeAndre Hopkins 8 23 7.67 96 9.60 ⬇️
Christian Kirk 6 20 6.67 52 5.78
Kenyan Drake 5 6 2.00 16 1.78 ⬆️
Chase Edmonds 4 10 3.33 42 4.20 ⬆️
Dan Arnold 2 7 2.33 22 2.20 ⬇️

This was an odd game from Kyler Murray and the Cardinals’ offense. Something just seemed off about them. Whether it was due to Murray’s nagging shoulder injury or the quick turnaround off of an emotional Week 10 victory, Arizona’s passing attack was not nearly as productive as one would’ve hoped versus a historically bad Seahawks defense. Murray still completed 29 passes for 269 yards and two touchdowns, but he was playing catch-up for most of the game. That’s likely how Larry Fitzgerald finished with double-digit targets and eight catches for 62 yards on the week. DeAndre Hopkins and Christian Kirk were still serviceable, with the former catching five balls for 51 yards while the latter managed four receptions for 50 yards. Nonetheless, in a game expected to be a shootout, this was not how you wanted to start off your fantasy week as a Cardinals fantasy manager.

Hopkins is still an automatic WR1 so long as Murray is not hampered by his shoulder injury. Even if Murray isn’t ailing, Hopkins will provide a consistent floor regardless of who throws the ball to him. Kirk is playable as a low-end WR3, but he thrives off of the deep play. If the matchup doesn’t seem befitting of a high scoring affair, you may need to consider other options. I would still leave Fitzgerald on the waiver wire, as this was only the third time this season he’s surpassed 10 PPR points. His ceiling is extremely low as the third passing option in Kliff Kingsbury’s offense.

Atlanta Falcons

Russell Gage 12 18 6.00 64 6.40 ⬆️
Calvin Ridley 9 9 3.00 77 8.56 ⬆️
Christian Blake 4 7 2.33 16 1.60 ⬆️
Todd Gurley 2 4 1.33 24 2.40 ⬆️
Julio Jones 2 9 3.00 58 7.25 ⬆️
Hayden Hurst 2 10 3.33 56 5.60 ⬆️

Matt Ryan struggled on Sunday versus a stout New Orleans defense, completing only 19 passes for 232 yards and failing to get the ball into the end zone. With Julio Jones in and out of the lineup for most of the game due to a hamstring injury, Russell Gage and Calvin Ridley combined for 21 targets and 148 yards. Ridley led the Falcons with 90 receiving yards while Gage garnered a team-high seven catches for 58 yards.

Despite a down performance overall from the Atlanta offense, you should still start Jones and Ridley with confidence (if healthy) every single week. Gage is only a viable play if either Jones or Ridley is inactive, and even then he will still need to share the targets over the middle of the field with Hayden Hurst. Speaking of Hurst, the former Ravens tight end ended up with zero catches on only two targets. He’s a streamable tight end, but as you can tell, his floor is extremely low.

Baltimore Ravens

Mark Andrews 7 21 7.00 60 6.00 ⬇️
Willie Snead V 7 18 6.00 40 4.00
Dez Bryant 5 5 1.67 5 5.00 ⬆️
Marquise Brown 3 14 4.67 58 5.80 ⬇️
Devin Duvernay 2 5 1.67 20 2.00 ⬇️
J.K. Dobbins 2 6 2.00 22 2.20

If you haven’t dropped Marquise Brown in your re-draft leagues, you should do so immediately. Many, including myself, hoped that Brown could break out in his second year with Lamar Jackson, but he’s been a major fantasy bust. Averaging just below six targets per game, Brown has been a rarely utilized boom-or-bust deep threat. With Willie Snead and Dez Bryant out-targeting him in Week 11, you should move on from the once-promising sophomore wideout.

You can roster Snead and Bryant in deep leagues, but they aren’t playable. Mark Andrews is the only viable pass-catcher in Baltimore, though that’s mainly due to scarcity at the tight end position. Jackson has regressed mightily as a passer this season, and he’s not likely to turn it around this late in the season.

Carolina Panthers

D.J. Moore 11 21 7.00 80 7.27 ⬆️
Curtis Samuel 10 24 8.00 58 5.80 ⬆️
Robby Anderson 9 28 9.33 97 8.82 ⬆️
Mike Davis 2 13 4.33 56 5.09 ⬇️
Alex Armah 1 3 1.00 6 0.55 ⬇️
Chris Manhertz 1 1 0.33 7 0.64 ⬆️

With Teddy Bridgewater declared a late inactive on Sunday morning, I made clear on Twitter (*cough* *cough* @AmbrosinoNFL) that I couldn’t trust starting any Panthers pass-catcher. That wasn’t because I believed backup P.J. Walker would be ineffective. Quite to the contrary, Walker allowed D.J. Moore and Curtis Samuel to each have one of their best performances of the season. It was all about security, as you had no clue what the target distribution would look like with Walker at quarterback. Would he favor the running backs and tight ends? Would wideouts be his primary looks? Even though Moore, Anderson, and Samuel had great games, I’d prefer to leave a good performance on the bench than risk a “zero” in my lineup.

As it turns out, Walker heavily targeted his wideouts. Carolina’s top-three wide receivers combined for 30 of Walker’s 34 pass attempts. If you started any of them, you were happy. While it’s good to have this data in our records, it’s likely Bridgewater returns to action in Week 12. However, if he misses another game, you now know you can start your Panthers wideouts with confidence.

Cincinnati Bengals

Tyler Boyd 11 19 6.33 87 8.70 ⬆️
Tee Higgins 10 19 6.33 71 7.10 ⬆️
A.J. Green 9 14 4.67 77 7.70 ⬆️
Gio Bernard 5 12 4.00 41 4.10 ⬇️
Drew Sample 4 6 2.00 32 3.20 ⬆️
Auden Tate 2 6 2.00 20 2.00 ⬇️

2020 has been a season of injuries in the NFL. Unfortunately, it claimed another victim Sunday in Cincinnati. Late in the game, Joe Burrow was sacked and tore his ACL. Brandon Allen is expected to start going forward. Burrow’s absence changes the entire picture for Bengals pass-catchers, as Allen was abysmal in his limited action for the Broncos last year.

Although Cincinnati’s Week 12 matchup against the Giants is extremely enticing, I fear Allen will fail to support any Bengals pass-catcher. If I had to pick one Cincinnati receiver to play next week, it would be Tyler Boyd, who should become a safety blanket for Allen as the slot receiver in Zac Taylor’s offense. Allen doesn’t have the arm strength to make use of A.J. Green and Tee Higgins’ big-play and contested-catch ability, so bench them for safer options until we see otherwise.

Cleveland Browns

Austin Hooper 5 7 2.33 40 5.00 ⬆️
Khadarel Hodge 5 6 2.00 12 1.20 ⬆️
Rashard Higgins 4 9 3.00 24 2.40 ⬇️
Jarvis Landry 2 6 2.00 56 5.60 ⬇️
Kareem Hunt 1 5 1.67 30 3.00 ⬇️
David Njoku 1 1 0.33 14 2.00 ⬆️

Cleveland has gotten unlucky with the weather over the past several weeks. Against the Raiders and Texans, wind gusts exceeded 40 miles per hour, leaving the passing offenses on both sides entirely inept. The winds calmed down last Sunday against the Eagles, but the skies opened up and poured rain. In abysmal conditions, Baker Mayfield only completed 12 passes for 204 yards. No Cleveland pass-catcher finished the game with more than three catches or surpassed 75 receiving yards.

The most productive wideout was Khadarel Hodge, who caught three of his five targets for 73 yards. Still, it’s doubtful he’ll even get rostered in more than five percent of leagues, let alone started. The only Cleveland pass-catchers you would have considered starting both disappointed, as Austin Hooper scored just 6.3 fantasy points and Jarvis Landry finished with 4.3. The Browns have a fantastic matchup in Jacksonville this week, so you should be able to throw them into your lineups without much worry about the weather.

Dallas Cowboys

Amari Cooper 7 13 4.33 90 9.00 ⬆️
Dalton Schultz 6 13 4.33 61 6.10 ⬆️
CeeDee Lamb 6 13 4.33 72 7.20 ⬆️
Michael Gallup 5 12 4.00 60 6.00 ⬆️
Ezekiel Elliot 2 5 1.67 53 5.30 ⬆️
Cedrick Wilson 2 5 1.67 27 2.70 ⬆️

Andy Dalton returned to the lineup for Dallas and was very productive against a porous Minnesota defense. He completed 22 passes for 203 yards and three touchdowns in a 31-28 win over Minnesota. Dalton’s favorite target in this matchup was Amari Cooper, as the $100 million wideout caught six of his seven targets for 81 yards. CeeDee Lamb also caught four passes for 34 yards and a touchdown while adding two carries for 12 yards on the ground. The odd man out, Michael Gallup caught just two of his five targets for 29 yards.

With competent quarterback play finally returning to Dallas, you can feel a semblance of confidence inserting Cooper and Lamb into your lineups. It’s entirely possible one of them busts in a given week, but they are the safest bets of this wide receiver corps. Cooper’s dominance as the WR1 in the offense and Lamb’s position as the slot receiver make them much more reliable than Gallup, who had been boom-or-bust even with Dak Prescott.

Denver Broncos

Jerry Jeudy 8 30 10.00 77 7.70
Tim Patrick 8 23 7.67 56 5.60 ⬆️
KJ Hamler 6 26 8.67 44 4.89 ⬇️
Noah Fant 5 15 5.00 58 6.44 ⬇️
Nick Vannett 2 3 1.00 13 1.30 ⬆️
Troy Fumagalli 1 4 1.33 4 0.40 ⬇️

Denver pulled out the upset win over the red-hot Miami Dolphins. Most of the credit belongs to the run game, as Melvin Gordon and Phillip Lindsay combined for 166 yards and two touchdowns on 31 carries. Still, Drew Lock was solid through the air, completing 18 passes for 270 yards. He spread the ball around relatively evenly; four players saw five or more targets. Jerry Jeudy and Tim Patrick were the receivers of choice, each receiving eight targets.

It’s unlikely Patrick and Jeudy will both have high-ceiling games in any given week, as Lock is not enough of a gunslinger at this point in his career to support multiple wideouts for fantasy. Patrick saw more deep looks in this game and finished with five catches for 119 yards. He’s a fine FLEX play for those in need of a receiver with a decent floor. Although Jeudy belongs in an identical category for re-draft purposes, the first-round pick disappointed this week with only three receptions for 37 yards.

Detroit Lions

T.J. Hockenson 7 19 6.33 60 6.00 ⬆️
Marvin Jones 6 20 6.67 57 5.70 ⬇️
Jamal Agnew 6 6 2.00 15 1.50 ⬆️
Kerryon Johnson 5 8 2.67 15 1.67 ⬆️
Marvin Hall 3 11 3.67 26 2.60
Jesse James 2 6 2.00 15 1.50 ⬇️

With Kenny Golladay, Danny Amendola, and D’Andre Swift all missing in action for the Lions against Carolina, we expected Detroit’s offense to be pretty mediocre even in a good matchup. However, I don’t think anyone thought Matthew Stafford would throw for under 200 yards and the Detroit offense would score zero points. Yet, that’s exactly what happened, as the Lions just could not move the ball with any semblance of ease on Sunday.

T.J. Hockenson and Marvin Jones, the only Lions’ players you should have considered starting in Week 11, did not hurt your fantasy team. They were still middling, as Hockenson caught four of his seven targets for 68 yards while Jones finished with just four catches for 51 yards. Given the target void the Lions experienced in this game, fantasy managers hoped for a much higher ceiling from those two. Don’t expect anything special from Detroit’s pass-catchers in a Thanksgiving matchup against Chicago.

Green Bay Packers

Davante Adams 8 32 10.67 87 10.88 ⬇️
Marquez Valdes-Scantling 6 16 5.33 51 5.10
Robert Tonyan 5 10 3.33 37 3.70 ⬆️
Aaron Jones 4 15 5.00 43 5.38 ⬇️
Allen Lazard 4 4 1.33 21 5.25 ⬆️
Jace Sternberger 3 4 1.33 14 1.40 ⬆️

Allen Lazard returned to the lineup after an extended stretch on the IR, but he didn’t reclaim his role as the Packers’ WR2 in their Week 11 matchup against Indianapolis. Lazard caught just two of his four targets for 18 yards. To be fair, Green Bay kept him on a pitch count in his return to action. Also, Marquez Valdes-Scantling certainly didn’t do much to keep a stranglehold on the role, as he recorded just three catches for 55 yards and lost a key fumble in overtime.

I would not start Lazard or Valdes-Scantling this week. Green Bay’s WR2 situation is too volatile to proclaim confidently that either one will see a majority of the workload. Robert Tonyan is still a viable streamer at tight end, as he caught all five of his targets for 44 yards and a touchdown. Also, if you aren’t auto-starting Davante Adams by now, you probably don’t deserve to have him on your fantasy team.

Houston Texans

Will Fuller 8 21 7.00 68 6.80
Jordan Akins 6 11 3.67 26 2.60 ⬆️
Brandin Cooks 5 22 7.33 73 7.30 ⬇️
Duke Johnson 5 10 3.33 21 2.63 ⬆️
Keke Coutee 4 4 1.33 6 0.60 ⬆️
Pharaoh Brown 3 6 2.00 9 0.90 ⬆️

I cannot praise Will Fuller’s consistency enough. He put up yet another double-digit fantasy performance despite facing a stout New England secondary. Leading the Texans in targets on Sunday, Fuller caught six of eight opportunities for 80 yards. He’s not the only consistent option at wide receiver, as Brandin Cooks also had another solid game despite getting matched up with Stephon Gilmore for most of the contest. Cooks caught four of his five targets for 85 yards, and he almost added a score that was wiped away by a penalty.

So long as the matchup isn’t abysmal, you can feel comfortable starting Fuller and Cooks every single week. With a Thanksgiving Day matchup with Detroit on the docket for Week 12, you should feel extremely confident putting them in your lineup. Jordan Akins had a solid outing, but he’s a desperation start at tight end.

Indianapolis Colts

T.Y. Hilton 6 11 3.67 50 5.56 ⬆️
Trey Burton 5 12 4.00 32 4.57 ⬆️
Nyheim Hines 4 13 4.33 45 4.50 ⬇️
Jonathan Taylor 4 8 2.67 28 2.80 ⬆️
Michael Pittman 3 18 6.00 31 4.43 ⬇️
Zach Pascal 3 14 4.67 48 4.80 ⬇️

After Michael Pittman had a breakout performance in primetime against the Tennessee Titans, he fell back a bit with three catches for 66 yards and a score. I am not saying Pittman was bad by any means. In fact, he’s the best wideout on his team. The problem Pittman faces is that his quarterback, Philip Rivers, will never lock on to a single receiver. Eleven different players caught a pass in the Colts’ Week 11 win, and only Jonathan Taylor managed to corral more than three receptions. Despite how talented Pittman and T.Y. Hilton may be, you will never be able to trust them to get a consistent workload.

Despite what I mentioned above, Pittman is still a viable WR3. As we saw this past week, Pittman can still be fantasy-viable and provide a consistent floor in limited touches. With another matchup against the Titans on tap in Week 12, I am more than comfortable inserting him into my lineup. Aside from Pittman, however, don’t risk starting any other Colts wideout. Nyheim Hines will provide a solid floor as the scatback, but even he presents some level of risk given Frank Reich’s propensity for employing a running back committee.

Jacksonville Jaguars

D.J. Chark 8 25 8.33 66 7.33 ⬆️
Keelan Cole 5 14 4.67 53 5.30 ⬇️
Tyler Eifert 5 14 4.67 37 4.11 ⬆️
Chris Conley 4 20 6.67 46 4.60 ⬇️
Ben Ellefson 3 3 1.00 3 0.30 ⬆️
Devine Ozigbo 3 3 1.00 3 0.30 ⬆️

There are few certainties in the NFL, but it was highly improbable that Jake Luton and the one-win Jaguars would fare well against the ball-hawking Steelers defense. The rookie quarterback completed just 16 passes for 151 yards, throwing zero touchdowns and four interceptions. D.J. Chark was somewhat viable, catching four of his eight targets for 41 scoreless yards. Still, you probably weren’t thrilled about putting him in your lineup. Given the casual fantasy football player probably hasn’t even heard of some of the players on the above chart, you can guess how many Jaguars I will recommend you start in Week 12 versus Cleveland.

If you couldn’t guess, the answer is zero. The Browns’ defense has been dominant of late, so there is no legitimate reason to start a Jacksonville pass-catcher unless you are completely out of options. James Robinson continues to be the lone bright spot for the Jaguars in 2020, but that is primarily due to his rushing ability. When it comes to catching the football, I am not taking a chance with any Jaguars receivers.

Kansas City Chiefs

Tyreek Hill 14 32 10.67 86 8.60 ⬆️
Travis Kelce 10 22 7.33 89 8.90 ⬆️
Demarcus Robinson 8 11 3.67 38 3.80 ⬆️
Byron Pringle 4 4 1.33 11 1.10 ⬆️
Darrell Williams 3 4 1.33 17 1.70 ⬆️
Clyde Edwards-Helaire 2 7 2.33 45 4.50 ⬆️

Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce both went over 100 yards in a Sunday night shootout in Las Vegas. Hill, who has been more consistent than explosive this season, caught 11 balls for 102 yards and a touchdown. Meanwhile, Kelce was dominant once again, catching eight of his 10 targets for 127 yards and the game-winning touchdown. The third-option of choice for Patrick Mahomes this week, Demarcus Robinson reeled in six of his eight targets for 44 yards. Mecole Hardman, Le’Veon Bell, and Clyde Edwards-Helaire were all held to just one catch each.

Outside of Hill and Kelce, you cannot start any Chiefs receiver with confidence. Either Robinson or Hardman will have the occasional good game, but those performances are entirely too unpredictable. Given bye weeks are nearly over, you shouldn’t even consider grabbing either ancillary wideout off of your waiver wire. Despite how great the Kansas City offense looks on a week-to-week basis, only Hill and Kelce are viable for fantasy.

Las Vegas Raiders

Nelson Agholor 9 16 5.33 38 3.80 ⬆️
Darren Waller 7 22 7.33 84 8.40 ⬆️
Alex Ingold 3 4 1.33 14 1.40 ⬆️
Hunter Renfrow 2 7 2.33 40 4.00
Bryan Edwards 2 3 1.00 9 1.50 ⬆️
Henry Ruggs 1 8 2.67 26 3.25 ⬇️

Nelson Agholor is what we all hoped Henry Ruggs would become. Consistently utilized as a deep-play threat, Agholor has made some incredible receptions this season. He finished Sunday night’s game with six receptions for 88 yards and a touchdown. Ruggs, meanwhile, did not see his first target until late in the fourth quarter. The rookie finished the contest with just two total touches for 17 yards. Agholor is simply a better play than Ruggs for the rest of the season. If I rostered Ruggs in dynasty leagues, I would be highly concerned about his lack of usage in this offense.

Darren Waller was dominant as usual, catching all seven of his targets for 88 yards and a score. Outside of Kelce, he has been one of the most consistent tight ends this season and gives your fantasy roster a competitive advantage every single week. Despite the additional weapons surrounding Derek Carr, Waller continues to be a target hog and a PPR monster.

Los Angeles Chargers

Keenan Allen 19 37 12.33 112 11.20 ⬆️
Kalen Ballage 9 18 6.00 18 6.00 ⬆️
Hunter Henry 7 20 6.67 65 6.50 ⬆️
Mike Williams 7 19 6.33 52 5.78 ⬆️
Joshua Kelley 2 7 2.33 22 2.20 ⬆️
Troymaine Pope 2 2 0.67 9 0.90 ⬆️

Justin Herbert and the Chargers’ offense dominated the winless Jets all day. The presumptive Rookie of the Year completed 37 passes for 366 yards and three touchdowns in a 34-28 victory over New York. Keenan Allen was once again phenomenal, catching 16 of his 19 targets of 145 yards and a touchdown. Mike Williams and Hunter Henry also had great games, with the former catching four passes for 72 yards and a score while the latter caught four catches for 48 yards and a touchdown. Moral of the story: Start your fantasy players against the Jets.

Allen is obviously an automatic start every single week, but Williams and Henry haven’t been locked-and-loaded starters. Henry is likely an auto-start unless you are stacked at tight end, but he’s definitely not the most consistent player out there. A big-play threat for Hebert, Williams is a viable FLEX play so long as the rookie continues to sling the ball with reckless abandon. With the Chargers set to make a cross-country trip to Buffalo in Week 12, we may be in store for a shootout between Hebert and Josh Allen.

Los Angeles Rams

Robert Woods 15 21 7.00 75 7.50 ⬆️
Cooper Kupp 13 20 6.67 92 9.20 ⬆️
Josh Reynolds 6 16 5.33 54 5.40 ⬇️
Gerald Everett 5 8 2.67 35 3.50 ⬆️
Tyler Higbee 4 10 3.33 35 3.89 ⬇️
Darrell Henderson 3 4 1.33 19 1.90 ⬆️

The Los Angeles passing offense was rolling in their road matchup against Todd Bowles’ Tampa Bay defense, as Jared Goff threw for 376 yards and three touchdowns in a narrow victory. Cooper Kupp and Robert Woods both had career performances on Monday night, with the former catching 11 of his 13 targets for 145 yards while the latter securing 12 of his 15 looks for 130 yards and a score. The remainder of the Rams’ pass-catchers were virtually useless; Josh Reynolds had the next-highest receiving yardage with 32.

You should have been starting Kupp and Woods every week before this matchup even took place, but now you finally have evidence that both receivers can put up great games in the same week. For most of the season, you picked your poison with either Woods or Kupp. Now, we’ve seen how well this offense works when both are heavily involved. The Rams are likely to keep up this hot performance on the offensive side of the ball, as four of their next six opponents are division rivals.

Miami Dolphins

DeVante Parker 9 23 7.67 65 6.50 ⬆️
Jakeem Grant 6 16 5.33 34 3.40 ⬆️
Salvon Ahmed 6 7 2.33 7 2.33 ⬆️
Mike Gesicki 5 14 4.67 46 4.60
Malcolm Perry 5 8 2.67 9 0.90 ⬆️
Mack Hollins 2 4 1.33 4 0.40 ⬆️

After a hot start to his career, rookie Tua Tagovailoa got benched late with Miami trailing Denver, 20-10, in the fourth quarter. Despite the in-game quarterback change, DeVante Parker had a solid six receptions for 61 yards and a touchdown. Mike Gesicki was serviceable, catching four passes for 43 scoreless yards. Still, his upside is nowhere near where it was when Ryan Fitzpatrick was starting. Rookie Salvon Ahmed was also much more involved in the receiving game in Week 11, seeing six targets and catching five of them for 31 yards.

Brain Flores confirmed following the loss that Tagovailoa’s benching was not injury-based, but he felt Fitzpatrick would give the team a better chance to win. Nonetheless, Tagovailoa is expected to start in Week 12 against the hapless Jets. I would feel confident starting DeVante Parker and Mike Gesicki, as Tagovailoa’s fellow rookie classmate just obliterated the Jets’ secondary last week.

Minnesota Vikings

Adam Thielen 11 23 7.67 76 7.60 ⬆️
Justin Jefferson 5 19 6.33 59 5.90 ⬇️
Dalvin Cook 5 11 3.67 30 3.33 ⬆️
Kyle Rudolph 3 12 4.00 27 2.70 ⬇️
Irv Smith Jr. 2 6 2.00 23 2.56 ⬆️
C.J. Ham 1 2 0.67 7 0.70

We know by now that the Vikings offense is entirely run-centric, and they will only pass at an above-average volume if necessary. Situations occur when either the matchup is in their favor or they trail early. Luckily for those who started Adam Thielen and Justin Jefferson, both of those conditions were met last Sunday versus Dallas. Kirk Cousins completed 22 of 30 passes for 314 yards and three touchdowns in a narrow loss to the Cowboys. Thielen was the main benefactor, once again finishing as a top-five wideout by catching eight of his 11 targets for 123 yards and two touchdowns. Jefferson also had a nice outing, catching three of his five targets for 86 yards and a score.

As I have said before, the ceiling of Minnesota’s top two wideouts is sky-high. Both could finish inside the top five of their position any given week, so long as the right matchup presents itself. Unfortunately, their hot streak may come to an end when you need them the most. The Vikings have favorable matchups against Carolina and Jacksonville in the next two weeks, but their fantasy playoff schedule is brutal. They face Tampa Bay, Chicago, and New Orleans from Weeks 14-16. Thielen and Jefferson may have top-five upside, but it will be difficult for either to be relevant once you get into the postseason. Thielen could also miss Week 12 after landing on the reserve/COVID-19 list.

New England Patriots

James White 9 16 5.33 41 5.13 ⬆️
N’Keal Harry 8 8 2.67 40 5.00 ⬆️
Damiere Byrd 7 16 5.33 48 4.80 ⬆️
Jakobi Meyers 3 24 8.00 41 4.10 ⬇️
Rex Burkhead 3 11 3.67 33 3.30 ⬇️
Ryan Izzo 3 4 1.33 19 1.90 ⬆️

Against one of the league’s worst defenses, Cam Newton and the Patriots’ pass-catchers actually delivered some viable fantasy performances. The best among the group was Damiere Byrd, who came away with six receptions for 132 yards and a touchdown. Meanwhile, N’Keal Harry became more involved with eight targets, but only caught five for 41 yards. James White took on a more substantial role with Rex Burkhead sidelined, catching six passes for 64 yards.

Despite solid outings by Byrd and White, I am still staying away from this team for fantasy purposes. They are so volatile week-to-week that it’s a guessing game as to which player will deliver. All indications from the past few games had pointed to Jakobi Meyers having the blow-up game, but he saw just three targets and finished with 6.8 PPR fantasy points. I don’t trust New England, so I cannot recommend a single Patriot with any semblance of confidence.

New Orleans Saints

Michael Thomas 12 25 8.33 30 7.50 ⬆️
Emmanuel Sanders 5 11 3.67 47 5.88 ⬆️
Latavius Murray 2 3 1.00 15 1.50 ⬆️
Alvin Kamara 1 15 5.00 81 8.10 ⬇️
Deonte Harris 1 6 2.00 25 2.50 ⬇️
Jared Cook 1 6 2.00 35 3.89 ⬇️

After Taysom Hill was surprisingly declared the starting quarterback last week, the fantasy community had a meltdown. Whether it was due to Hill’s tight end eligibility on ESPN’s fantasy platform or how the Saints’ pass-catchers could suffer due to Hill’s style of play, New Orleans was the hot topic all week. I recommended only Michael Thomas and Alvin Kamara as worthy starts since we had no clue how Hill would distribute his passes. Unsurprisingly, he forced the ball to Thomas.

Thomas saw 12 targets against Atlanta, catching nine for 104 yards. It was by far his best performance of the season, which is ironic considering he did it without his future Hall-of-Fame quarterback. Emmanuel Sanders had a viable 10.6 PPR points, but a majority of them came off of an underthrown 44-yard lame duck pass. I would not feel comfortable starting him next week. Kamara suffered the most from the quarterback change, only seeing one target despite averaging over eight per game previously. His upside will be capped so long as Hill continues to tuck and run the ball when in trouble.

New York Jets

Denzel Mims 8 16 5.33 26 2.60 ⬆️
Ty Johnson 6 6 2.00 8 0.80 ⬆️
Breshad Perriman 4 11 3.67 28 4.67 ⬆️
Jamison Crowder 3 5 1.67 51 8.50 ⬆️
Chris Herndon 3 3 1.00 28 2.80 ⬆️
Frank Gore 2 4 1.33 13 1.30 ⬆️

Jamison Crowder used to be the lone bright spot for the Jets in what has been an abysmal, winless season. However, veteran Joe Flacco has sought to it that fantasy managers can’t have nice things. In two games with Flacco as the starter, Crowder has caught three of five targets balls for 42 yards and a touchdown. In his four games with Sam Darnold, Crowder averaged 11.5 targets, seven receptions, and 96 yards per game. With Flacco as the starter, Crowder is virtually unplayable.

On the bright side, Denzel Mims has been quite impressive. The rookie saw eight targets in this game and caught three for 71 yards. He’s not really playable unless you are truly desperate at wide receiver. With a matchup against a strong Dolphins defense on tap for Week 12, you’re taking a huge risk by starting any Jets pass-catcher.

Philadelphia Eagles

Travis Fulgham 7 12 4.00 56 5.60 ⬆️
Dallas Goedert 6 12 4.00 31 5.17
Jalen Reagor 5 12 4.00 26 5.20 ⬇️
Miles Sanders 5 10 3.33 35 5.00
Greg Ward 4 10 3.33 55 5.50 ⬇️
Boston Scott 3 4 1.33 21 2.10 ⬆️

Philadelphia fans, you should probably avert your eyes. Week 11 presented one of the worst performances we have seen from the Eagles’ offense in quite some time. Carson Wentz scored more points for Cleveland in the first half than for his own team. They started to get going once the game got out of hand, but it was one to forget for fantasy managers. Dallas Goedert was the only Philadelphia pass-catcher to log more than four receptions or score more than 10 fantasy points.

Travis Fulgham led the team in targets, but he had virtually nothing to show for it, making just one reception for eight yards. Jalen Reagor had a decent outing, catching four of his five targets for 52 yards. Still, one would’ve hoped that the rookie would be more involved after averaging 6.5 targets in his past two contests. The Eagles should bounce back this week in what looks to be a shootout against the Seahawks. But with the way Wentz is playing, we could see an entirely new offense unfold if Doug Pederson decides to insert rookie Jalen Hurts.

Pittsburgh Steelers

Diontae Johnson 16 37 12.33 81 9.00 ⬆️
Chase Claypool 8 31 10.33 65 6.50 ⬇️
Eric Ebron 7 19 6.33 56 5.60 ⬆️
JuJu Smith-Schuster 5 25 8.33 75 7.50 ⬇️
Ray-Ray McCloud 4 8 2.67 15 1.50 ⬆️
James Conner 3 7 2.33 30 3.00 ⬆️

Dionte Johnson has established himself as the clear No. 1 wide receiver in Pittsburgh. In every game he did not left early with some sort of injury, Johnson has posted double-digit targets. He tallied his second consecutive 100-yard game last week and appears to have developed a greater rapport with Ben Roethlisberger. I have said all season that JuJu Smith-Schuster was Pittsburgh’s most consistent wideout, but apparently, even he can have down weeks. He provided just four catches for 19 yards. The Steelers’ fifth-string wideout, Ray-Ray McCloud, actually outgained Smith-Schuster in this matchup with Jacksonville. Chase Claypool had another solid outing, catching four of his eight targets for 59 yards and a score.

You can start Johnson, Smith-Schuster, and Claypool every single week. It’s likely one of them will bust in any given game, but the upside of all of these receivers is too enticing to leave any on the bench. Even with a difficult Thanksgiving matchup with Baltimore on tap for Week 12, I would feel comfortable putting any of these three wideouts in my starting lineup. Eric Ebron is a decent streaming option, but he’ll be touchdown-dependent this week.

Seattle Seahawks

Tyler Lockett 9 25 8.33 88 8.80
D.K. Metcalf 5 18 6.00 77 7.70 ⬆️
Jacob Hollister 3 11 3.67 19 1.90 ⬆️
Carlos Hyde 3 3 1.00 10 2.00 ⬆️
Greg Olsen 2 9 3.00 35 3.50 ⬇️
DeeJay Dallas 2 7 2.33 17 1.70 ⬇️

After turning the ball over seven times in two losses, Russell Wilson was nearly perfect in his Thursday Night Football rematch against the Cardinals. Wilson completed 23 of 28 passes for 197 yards and two touchdowns, while also adding 42 yards on the ground. Tyler Lockett once again dominated Arizona, catching all nine of his targets for 67 yards and a touchdown. This was a far cry from his Week 7 performance in which he put up 200 yards and three touchdowns, but he was extremely productive nonetheless. D.K. Metcalf was once again subpar, dropping several passes and ending the night with three catches for 46 yards and a touchdown.

Metcalf has been inconsistent of late after starting the season hot, finishing outside the top-36 wide receivers in three of the past five weeks. Still, he finished as the WR1 and WR11 in those other two weeks,. He should still be an automatic start every week, but expect some volatility if he’s facing a lockdown cornerback like he had to do against the Cardinals and Rams. Lockett is a bit safer as the most targeted receiver in this offense who often works against the opposing team’s No. 2 cornerback. Like Metcalf, he should be started every week. For those in tight end trouble, Jacob Hollister may be worth a roster spot, as Greg Olsen is expected to miss the rest of the season with a leg injury.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Antonio Brown 13 26 8.67 26 8.67 ⬆️
Chris Godwin 10 22 7.33 51 7.29 ⬆️
Mike Evans 9 26 8.67 72 6.55 ⬇️
Rob Gronkowski 6 15 5.00 55 5.00 ⬆️
Leonard Fournette 4 13 4.33 34 3.78 ⬆️
Cameron Brate 3 6 2.00 18 1.64

Tom Brady showed his age in Monday’s showdown with the Rams. The future Hall of Famer turned the ball over twice and averaged a putrid 4.5 passing yards per attempt despite throwing the ball 48 times. Every deep shot Brady took sailed over his receiver’s head, which led to both interceptions.

Yet despite Brady’s struggles, Tampa Bay’s wide receiver trio was solid. Antonio Brown led the team in targets, corralling eight receptions for 57 yards. Chris Godwin nabbed seven of his 10 targets for 53 yards and a score, while Mike Evans grabbed five balls for 49 yards and a touchdown despite his tough matchup with Jalen Ramsey. Rob Gronkowski was the only underwhelming pass-catcher for Tampa Bay, as he caught just two of his six targets for 25 yards. I’d feel confident starting of all my Buccaneers in what could be another high-scoring affair against Kansas City.

Tennessee Titans

Corey Davis 7 16 5.33 55 6.88 ⬆️
A.J. Brown 7 20 6.67 59 7.38 ⬆️
Jonnu Smith 6 14 4.67 49 4.90
Anthony Firkser 5 14 4.67 39 3.90 ⬆️
Derrick Henry 2 4 1.33 22 2.20
Cameron Baston 2 5 1.67 7 0.70

Despite the difficult matchup in Baltimore, Tennessee scored 30 points on the stout Ravens defense. Corey Davis continued his rather consistent 2020 season, catching five of his seven targets for 113 yards. Meanwhile, despite making some critical drops early, A.J. Brown bounced back and caught four balls for 62 yards and a hard-fought touchdown. Jonnu Smith also managed to get in the end zone for the third consecutive week, catching four of his six targets for 20 yards and a score.

I’m still wary of Davis, but that may purely be anchoring bias at this point. Davis burned me so many times before that I find it hard to trust his recent success. However, there’s no denying how well he has played this season. He’s a decent FLEX option, especially given he has a rematch with Indianapolis this weekend. Brown may not be as consistent as he had been to start the season, but he’s an auto-start every week regardless of the matchup. Smith, meanwhile, is a viable tight end streamer despite his touchdown-dependency.

Washington Football Team

Terry McLaurin 7 24 8.00 93 9.30 ⬇️
Logan Thomas 5 17 5.67 57 5.70 ⬇️
J.D. McKissic 4 33 11.00 66 6.60 ⬇️
Steven Sims Jr. 3 10 3.33 18 1.80 ⬇️
Cam Sims 2 11 3.67 15 1.50 ⬇️
Antonio Gibson 2 9 3.00 32 3.20 ⬇️

Alex Smith won his first game since returning from a gruesome leg injury, which is a testament to his fortitude in getting back on the NFL field. He did so mainly with the help of sophomore wideout Terry McLaurin, who caught five of his seven targets for 84 yards. However, aside from McLaurin, no other Washington pass-catcher surpassed three catches or 30 yards receiving. J.D. McKissic had been a target hog of late, receiving 29 targets over his past two games. On Sunday, he got game-scripted out of a contest Washington led throughout.

McLaurin should be an auto-start every single week, as he continues to thrive regardless of who is throwing him the ball. He could be the first player to reach 1,000 receiving yards this season with 129 on Thanksgiving. With a matchup against the porous Dallas secondary on the horizon, the feat is certainly realistic. McKissic is a decent FLEX play who will continue to have a safe floor as the scat-back. Aside from those two, however, I’m avoiding all other receiving options in Washington.

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Dan Ambrosino is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Dan, check out his archive and follow him @AmbrosinoNFL.

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