News & Analysis

Week 11 DFS locks of the week

ARLINGTON, TX - NOVEMBER 24: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys runs on the field during the first quarter against the Washington Redskins at AT&T Stadium on November 24, 2016 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

We’re back again with our weekly look at the players who should be locks in DFS lineups.

With Week 10 in the rearview, it’s time to gear up for Week 11. This is the final bye-heavy week (four teams off), but nearly every game this week should be closely contested; just one game (KC-NYG) has a double-digit spread.

This suggests that we should be blessed with plenty of good fantasy options this week. But we have to choose our favorites, so here’s a list of players you can lock into your Week 11 DFS lineups.

Note: There’s always a case to be made for playing any player in tournaments. This list of “locks” is cash game focused, but I typically like these players across all contest types.

Quarterbacks

Alex Smith, Kansas City Chiefs

The Giants have given up the most fantasy PPG to opposing quarterbacks, and they are tied for most passing touchdowns against (20). Over the past six weeks, quarterbacks are averaging over 319 YPG with over 2.5 TDs per game.

Tom Brady, New England Patriots

Brady and the Pats take on the Raiders in what is projected to be the highest-scoring game of the week. The Raiders have given up 300-plus yards and three touchdowns to quarterbacks in two of their previous three games.

Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys

Prescott is coming off a bad outing, but he’s at home in Week 11 for what could turn into a shootout against the high-flying Eagles. The absence of Ezekiel Elliott also means Prescott has higher rushing touchdown upside.

Running backs

Melvin Gordon, Los Angeles Chargers

Gordon draws the Bills in Week 11, who have given up the second-most PPG to enemy backs on the year, including 35-plus points to opposing backfields in three straight contests.

Jordan Howard, Chicago Bears

The Bears will go back to the drawing board with Howard in Week 11, and he draws a good matchup against the Lions, a bottom-10 teams in terms of fantasy points given up to opposing running backs on the year. Detroit has given up at least one rushing touchdown in all but two games this year.

Kareem Hunt, Kansas City Chiefs

Still searching for his first touchdown since September, Hunt gets a great matchup against the reeling Giants, who have ceded lines of 31-116-2 and 27-153-1 to opposing backfields over the past two weeks.

Jerick McKinnon, Minnesota Vikings

McKinnon has seen his workload decrease, but his price isn’t prohibitive, and he draws a great matchup against the Rams, who have given up the fifth-most fantasy PPG to opposing backs this year.

Wide receivers

Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Coming off suspension, Evans should make quick work of the Dolphins secondary, which has been exposed in recent weeks, giving up lines of 10-170-1 and 15-194-2 to Oakland and Carolina receivers in their past two games, respectively.

Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys

Coming off arguably his worst game of the year (7-4-39-0), Bryant gets a bounceback spot against the Eagles. Bryant will primarily see Ronald Darby in coverage. Darby is one of our 15 worst-graded cornerbacks playing this weekend.

Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona Cardinals

Fitzgerald draws a great matchup against Houston slot man Kareem Jackson, who has been pummeled all year. Jackson gives up 2.18 yards per route covered, fourth-worst among this week’s starting corners. Fitzgerald quietly ranks fourth among all wideouts in targets, with 84.

Sterling Shepard, New York Giants

Shepard gets the best individual WR-CB matchup of the week against Kansas City’s Steven Nelson, who has defended only 67 routes this year but already has our fifth-lowest grade among all starting corners. Over the past two weeks, Shepard ranks second in receptions (16) and yards (212).

Tight ends

Rob Gronkowski, New England Patriots

The Raiders are a top-10 matchup for fantasy tight ends. Gronk is always in play, but he’s a must-start when the matchup is this good. In three of their past four games, Oakland has given up lines of 6-106-0 to the Chargers’ tight ends, 6-52-1 to the Chiefs, and 8-93-1 to the Dolphins.

Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs

If Gronkowski’s matchup is good, Kelce’s is out-of-this-world great. The Giants have given up a touchdown to a tight end in every single game they’ve played this year. You really think the streak stops at Kelce?

Cameron Brate, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Brate was a Week 10 fail, but this is a get-right spot against the Dolphins, who have given up the fifth-most fantasy PPG to enemy tight ends this year, including a touchdown to the position in four of their past six games.

Zach Ertz, Philadelphia Eagles

The Cowboys have been decent against tight ends overall this year, but linebacker Sean Lee is iffy for Week 11, and Ertz is virtually matchup-proof anyway. Ertz’s 0.51 PPO ranks first among all tight ends who have seen at least 15 targets this year.

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