Bye weeks continue to play a major role in fantasy football each week, so secondary and tertiary starting options are as important as ever with the fantasy playoffs nearing. Riskier plays can be rewarded if discovered correctly and complacent managers rely too heavily on drafted players. Trust your instincts — coupled with solid PFF metrics, of course.
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So, let's get to it: the Week 11 edition of fantasy football start ’em or sit ’em.
Since Week 6, Tagovailoa has been the 10th-highest-graded quarterback among those with at least 100 dropbacks. And that includes the half-game last week where his hand wasn’t even fully healed. We’ve seen the sparks from Tua recently — he put up 20-plus fantasy points against the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Atlanta Falcons. Granted, they are both weaker defenses.
Luckily, he gets to play against another weak defense in the New York Jets this week. Since coming back from their bye, the Jets have allowed an average of 301 passing yards per game to opposing quarterbacks. They also have given up 10 passing touchdowns in those four weeks. The combination of Tua playing well and him facing a bare-bones defense could lead to a huge breakout game.
In a similar vein, it’s tough to know when you should start Gaskin and when you should bench him. However, he has been fairly reliable against weaker defenses. When playing against bottom-10 run defenses this season in terms of 0.5 PPR points allowed, he averaged 12.4 points per game. In the past four weeks, he’s seen the lion's share of running back touches — 15.3 attempts and four targets per game average.
Meanwhile, the Jets' defense is the worst in the league when it comes to fantasy points yielded to opposing running backs.
Rushing TDs allowed:
17 – Jets
12 – Chargers
10 – Lions
9 or fewer – Everyone else
— Kent Weyrauch (@KentWeyrauch) November 17, 2021
Those touchdowns led to New York allowing 35.4 fantasy points per game to opposing backfields. That’s a whopping eight points per game more than the second-worst team. Gaskin is easily a flex, and possibly a high-end RB2, in this game.