Players I think have favourable/unfavourable match ups heading into week eleven.
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(PHI) QB Nick Foles vs. (WAS) – Foles followed up his record setting game against Oakland with a very nice 228-yard, three-touchdown performance against the Green Bay Packers, also on the road. This week Foles has some additional circumstances working in his favour; he is playing at home and is gets the Washington defence. Until Foles gives me a reason (and Chip Kelly a reason) not to start him, I am going to keep him in my lineup. He may not take the most pass attempts, but as long as he is taking deep shots to DeSean Jackson and making Riley Cooper relevant, he is going to produce.
(HOU) QB Case Keenum vs. (OAK) – Keenan surprised me last week by having a three-touchdown, zero-interception performance on the road against the tough Arizona Cardinals defence. This week Keenum gets the Oakland Raiders secondary. The Raiders secondary’s stats are a bit bloated due to the seven-touchdown performance they allowed Foles, but they are still very susceptible to allowing opposing quarterbacks some solid outings. I also love how Keenum puts the bal up for Andre Johnson, still one of the best pure talents in the NFL.
(SD) RB Danny Woodhead @ (MIA) – The Dolphins run defence was awful last week allowing multiple Tampa Bay running backs to embarrass them at times. The ‘Fhins defence also allows solid totals to running backs who can catch balls out of the backfield. I really love Danny Woodhead’s chances of putting together a 80-100 total yard performance that is capped off with a touchdown. Woodhead has two touchdowns in his last three games and could make it three in four this weekend.
(ARI) RB Andre Ellington @ (JAC) – The return of Rashard Mendenhall sucks for Andre Ellington owners, as was experiences last week when he returned from injury to take 13 touches 42 yards for a 3.2 yard per carry average. Ellington on the other hand received just 11 carries for 55 yards, a 5.0 yard per carry average. Mendenhall is still going to get a few touches, but if the Arizona Cardinals know what is good for them they will keep feeding the ball to the younger and much more electric Ellington. The match up against Jacksonville should be a good one for Ellington.
(PIT) RB Le’Veon Bell vs. (DET) – Much of Bell’s profuction this season has come from pure volume, such as last week when he carried the ball 16 times for just 57 yards, but was able to find the end zone. The Lions are not one of the better or worse teams in the league against the run and I don’t know that Bell will have a great yards per carry average in this one either, but again I like his chances of scoring. The Steelers seem committed to using him as he has had at least 16 carries in each of his starts this season. At the very least the opportunity should be there.
(PHI) WR Riley Cooper vs. (WAS) – 241 yards and five touchdowns in his last two games, Cooper seems to have a great relationship with teammate and quarterback Nick Foles. I am going to be starting Foles and Cooper in all of the leagues I picked them up and own them in, hoping that a promising match up against Washington keeps the ball rolling.
(HOU) WR DeAndre Hopkins vs. (OAK) – One of the best things about Case Keenum is that he is not afraid to put the ball in the air and let his talented receivers go get it. Andre Johnson for example had gone pretty much a full season without having a touchdown catch with Matt Schaub behind centre to now having five in his last two games with Keenum. Hopkins has not been nearly as good in the last two weeks, but I think there’s a good chance to takes a step forward this weekend with teams again realizing they need to stop Johnson.
(WAS) WR Leonard Hankerson @ (PHI) – The Eagles allow the most points to opposing wide receivers of any team so far in 2013, and Pierre Garcon can’t catch every pass. This is definitely more of a sleeper play as Hankerson’s season high in 5 catches for 80 yards in week one, but he is coming off back-to-back five catch games. The matchup sets up to be a high scoring affair as two high-powered offenses take on two soft defenses. Hankerson has a shot for 70+ yards and could add his fourth touchdown of the season.
(ARI) TE Rob Housler @ (JAC) – I don’t expect Housler to get another 11 fantasy points this week (57 and a touchdown in week ten), but he does have a chance to find the end zone again. Another factor that could benefit Housler is the expected absence of Michael Floyd.
(SF) QB Colin Kaepernick @ (NO) – When Vernon Davis went out against the Panthers last week, everything changed for Kaepernick and the ‘49ers offence; they could hardly move the ball. Davis is going to be ready for this weekend’s game, but Michael Crabtree is still not confirmed, and the Saints defence has been very susceptible to a good running game, so that may be the route the ‘49ers take. Colin has thrown just one touchdown in his last three games and rushed for just 16 yards in last week’s loss. It could be a boom or bust game for Kaepernick when he visits the Superdome this weekend; it depends on whether or not he is going to run the ball himself.
TNF (IND) QB Andrew Luck @ (TEN) – As good of a quarterback as Andrew Luck is, losing Reggie Wayne is a massive factor for him and the Colts. It also doesn’t help that Luck is taking on the Titans on a short week; a Titans team that has only allowed seven touchdown passes all season long. Now Luck is definitely talented enough that he could overcome the stats and still have a 250-yard, two-touchdown game, but I would not blame you if you went another direction. I would likely take a chance with Keenum over Luck this weekend.
(JAC) RB Maurice Jones-Drew vs. (ARI) – MJD was able to come in handy for those who started him last week as he found pay dirt early in the game, but only had 41 total yards on 21 carries which is rather ugly. This weekend Jones-Drew will have to take on the Arizona Cardinals, a team that has only allowed two touchdowns to running backs this year and is ranked second in all of fantasy at defending the run. Don’t expect much from MJD this weekend.
(NE) RB Stevan Ridley vs. (CAR) – Ridley is coming off a streak of 6 touchdowns in his last four games, so I considered keeping Ridley off the Sit ‘em list, but I like the Panther defence more than I like Ridley. Averaging close to five yards per carry over his last five games, you might think it hard to get away from starting Ridley, but as good as he has been lately, so has the Panthers defence. The Panthers have only allowed two rushing touchdowns all season long and are looking great following the win over San Fran. Also, Shane Vereen is back for the Patriots, and while Vereen plays a different role than Ridley, it could mean just a few less touches. I think the touchdown streak ends on Monday.
(CAR) RB DeAngelo Williams vs. (NE) – Williams has two touchdowns in his last three games, but has not gone for more than 46 yards in any of those games. Also, with the return of Jonathan Stewart, the touches for Williams are going down; Williams had been seeing about 15 rushes per game but has only seen 29 in his last three games. He had a very nice touchdown run last week against the ‘49ers, but I don’t see it happening again against the Patriots. I don’t like either of the two starting running backs in this game.
(GB) WR James Jones @ (NYG) – With Scott Tolzien under centre, things are very in the dark for all of the Packers receivers. Jordy Nelson is still the top guy on the depth chart and is going to see targets no matter what, though it depends on a very unknown quarterback to make those targets count, and Boykin has shown flashes of extreme talent and is playing the Randall Cobb roll thus far. Jones on the other hand has always been a guy that depended on touchdowns for much of his production. I don’t like the odds that Tolzien finds him for a score. Also, Jason Pierre-Paul has looked better recently, along with the overall Giants defence.
(OAK) WR Denarius Moore @ (HOU) – The Texans have allowed a league low 925 yards so far to opposing wide receiver this season, though they have allowed wide receivers to score nine touchdowns. Also allowing a league low 166.6 yards per game to opposing wide receivers, I don’t see Terrelle Pryor having a great game in the air and having to use his feet more in this game. Denarius is likely going to be dependent on a touchdown to have a good fantasy game as the yards are going to be hard to come by.
Scary Start: (SD) WR Keenan Allen @ (MIA) – I am always surprised when I see this stat; the Dolphins have still only allowed one wide receiver to score a touchdown all season. Now this likely speaks to the Dolphins inability to stop the run down in the end zone, but as long as the trend continues you have to question opposing wide receivers. I would not be sitting Keenan Allen unless I had a good option, but I am also worried that he is going to end up with 60-80 yards and no scores. I like this game for Woodhead and Mathews.
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