News & Analysis

Week 11 Fantasy football predictions: The week's sleepers and busts

Dec 3, 2017; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens running back Alex Collins (34) celebrates with offensive linemen Ryan Jensen (66) and James Hurst (74) after scoring a touchdown in the fourth quarter against the Detroit Lions at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

Who are the biggest fantasy football sleepers and busts for Week 11 of the 2018 NFL season? We use advanced matchup analysis to bring you a list of players who will overperform (sleepers) or underperform (busts) their typical production.

Below are some of the top sleepers and busts for Week 11.

Week 11 fantasy football sleepers

Dak Prescott, QB, Dallas Cowboys

Prescott has been on a roll for the last month. Over his last four games played, Prescott ranks fourth in fantasy points scored. His 25 rushing attempts in that span ranks second in the NFL among quarterbacks. He gets a juicy Week 11 matchup through the air against the Falcons, who have given up the fifth-most fantasy points per dropback to opposing quarterbacks.

Eli Manning, QB, New York Giants

Manning gets one of the best matchups for quarterbacks against the Buccaneers, who have given up the second-most fantasy points per dropback. Manning is averaging a healthy 285 passing yards per game this year, and he should score multiple touchdowns against the Buccaneers, who have allowed multiple passing scores against in all but two games this year.

Alex Collins, RB, Baltimore Ravens

Collins is a bit of a risk because it’s not fully known how Ty Montgomery will fit into Baltimore offense, but Collins figures to remain the lead back from a carry perspective as well as continue to handle goal-line duties, which is the most valuable in fantasy. Assuming he gets his 12-plus touches and goal-line work, Collins should feast on the Bengals defense, which has allowed enemy running backs to average 5.1 YPC against.

Lamar Miller, RB, Houston Texans

Prior to his Week 9 dud (12-21-0), Miller was rolling with back-to-back 100-yard games. He’ll have a chance to rack up the fantasy points in a hurry in Week 11 against a Redskins defense that has given up the seventh-most fantasy points per touch to opposing running backs this year.

Amari Cooper, WR, Dallas Cowboys

Cooper has been solid in his first two games as a Cowboys, but he gets his best chance to shine in Week 11 against the Falcons, who have given up the fifth-most fantasy points per target to wideouts on the year. Since joining Dallas, Cooper leads the team in targets (17), receptions (11), yards (11), and receiving touchdowns (1).

Golden Tate, WR, Philadelphia Eagles

Tate has the second-best individual WR/CB matchup of the week. Even though he played fewer than 30% of Philadelphia’s snaps in Week 10, he is a leading sleeper candidate in Week 11 given the matchup against New Orleans’ secondary, which has given up the second-most fantasy points per target to wideouts. Tate isn’t a sure thing — his usage last week was discouraging — but Week 11 is the best chance for him to have a breakout game.

Ricky Seals-Jones, TE, Arizona Cardinals

Seals-Jones set a season-high in routes run (36) in Week 8 and then re-set his season-high with 37 routes run in Week 10. Arizona’s decision to move on from Mike McCoy as offensive coordinator opened things up in this offense, and Seals-Jones is one of the primary beneficiaries. Seals-Jones saw a Zach Ertz-like 9 targets last week. His Week 11 matchup is against the Raiders, who have given up the most fantasy points per target to tight ends.

Vance McDonald, TE, Pittsburgh Steelers

Overall, the Jaguars pass defense has been solid again in 2018. If there’s a big area of weakness, though, it’s against tight ends, as Jacksonville has given up the third-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends on the year. McDonald has big-play potential, with at least one gain of 19 yards in five of his last seven games.

Week 11 fantasy football busts

Kirk Cousins, QB, Minnesota Vikings

Cousins’ Week 11 opponent, the Bears, have given up the fifth-fewest fantasy points per dropback to opposing quarterbacks this year. Cousins has a big ceiling, but he has a low floor, too, with just one passing touchdown in four of his last seven games.

Andy Dalton, QB, Cincinnati Bengals

Dalton picked apart the Ravens defense earlier in the season, but that was with A.J. Green flexing his way to three first-half touchdowns. With no Green on his side in Week 11, Dalton has Week 11 bust written all over him against a Baltimore defense giving up the third-fewest fantasy points per dropback to quarterbacks this year.

Marlon Mack, RB, Indianapolis Colts

Mack has been awesome since fully returning from injury — over his last three games, only Todd Gurley, Christian McCaffrey, Kareem Hunt, and Alvin Kamara have more fantasy points — but the magic won’t be recreated in Week 11 against the Titans, who have given up the fewest fantasy points per touch to running backs this year.

Adrian Peterson, RB, Washington Redskins

The gamescript-dependent Peterson could be in for a rocky Sunday as Washington is a 3-point underdog in a game with a low over/under (just 42.5 points). The Texans, his Week 11 opponent, have also given up the fifth-fewest fantasy points per touch to opposing running backs.

John Ross, WR, Cincinnati Bengals

Ross found the end zone in A.J. Green’s absence last week, but he’ll have a tougher go of it in Week 11 against the Ravens, who have given up the second-fewest fantasy points per target to wideouts this year. Enemy receivers — as an entire unit — are averaging fewer than 125 yards per game against Baltimore.

Brandin Cooks, WR, Los Angeles Rams

I’m not saying you should bench Cooks, but out of all of the players expected to shine in the upcoming Rams/Chiefs game, Cooks might have the worst outing of the bunch. Kansas City has given up the fewest fantasy points per target to opposing receivers, and KC’s Steven Nelson — who Cooks will see most of in coverage — is one of our top-10 graded cornerbacks (among this week’s starters).

Eric Ebron, TE, Indianapolis Colts

Ebron found the end zone three more times in Week 10, but he’s still a clear second to Jack Doyle in this offense in terms of playing time. Doyle played 87% of the team’s snaps last week, compared to Ebron’s 38% snap rate. It’s also a tough matchup against the Titans, who have given up the fewest fantasy points per target to tight ends.

Benjamin Watson, TE, New Orleans Saints

Watson has been strong in the red zone over the last month, with two touchdowns in his last four games (and a third called back last week), his target volume has been all over the place: 6, 0, 4, 2. Don’t expect big things from Watson in Week 11 against the Eagles, who have given up just two touchdowns to tight ends this year en route to ceding the fourth-fewest fantasy points per target to the position.

The best matchups

Below is a list showing how each team fares on a per-touch or per-target basis. This list will be updated weekly and can be used to identify strong matchups.

Fantasy Points Per Touch (FP/T), Points Per Target (PPT), and Points Per Drop Back (PPDB) Given Up
Team QB: PPDB RB: FP/T WR: PPT TE: PPT
ARZ 0.43 (8) 0.89 (11) 1.85 (16) 1.95 (21)
ATL 0.58 (28) 1.18 (32) 2.06 (28) 1.74 (9)
BLT 0.42 (3) 0.70 (2) 1.59 (2) 1.93 (19)
BUF 0.39 (1) 1.02 (28) 1.75 (12) 1.62 (7)
CAR 0.54 (26) 0.90 (14) 1.84 (15) 2.44 (31)
CHI 0.42 (5) 0.76 (4) 1.75 (11) 1.94 (20)
CIN 0.57 (27) 1.08 (29) 1.86 (17) 2.04 (24)
CLV 0.42 (4) 1.01 (27) 1.71 (6) 1.80 (11)
DAL 0.49 (20) 0.82 (6) 1.80 (13) 1.97 (22)
DEN 0.48 (17) 0.89 (10) 1.91 (19) 1.91 (16)
DET 0.61 (29) 0.97 (21) 2.36 (32) 2.24 (28)
GB 0.45 (13) 0.91 (18) 1.91 (20) 1.63 (8)
HST 0.41 (2) 0.80 (5) 1.60 (3) 2.16 (27)
IND 0.50 (24) 0.88 (8) 2.01 (26) 2.02 (23)
JAX 0.48 (19) 0.72 (3) 1.61 (4) 2.28 (30)
KC 0.44 (11) 1.16 (31) 1.48 (1) 1.92 (17)
LAC 0.44 (10) 0.88 (9) 1.97 (22) 1.62 (6)
LAR 0.51 (25) 0.95 (19) 2.27 (30) 1.77 (10)
MIA 0.49 (23) 0.98 (24) 1.92 (21) 2.08 (26)
MIN 0.46 (15) 0.82 (7) 1.74 (7) 1.92 (18)
NE 0.49 (22) 0.91 (15) 1.69 (5) 2.05 (25)
NO 0.63 (30) 0.91 (17) 2.33 (31) 1.50 (2)
NYG 0.46 (14) 0.97 (22) 1.88 (18) 1.58 (5)
NYJ 0.44 (12) 0.89 (12) 1.74 (8) 1.87 (14)
OAK 0.65 (32) 0.97 (23) 2.01 (27) 2.76 (32)
PHI 0.44 (9) 1.01 (25) 1.74 (9) 1.54 (4)
PIT 0.48 (18) 0.90 (13) 1.75 (10) 1.84 (12)
SEA 0.43 (7) 0.95 (20) 1.81 (14) 1.87 (15)
SF 0.49 (21) 0.91 (16) 1.97 (23) 1.86 (13)
TB 0.63 (31) 1.08 (30) 2.24 (29) 2.27 (29)
TEN 0.43 (6) 0.66 (1) 1.99 (24) 1.43 (1)
WAS 0.47 (16) 1.01 (26) 2.00 (25) 1.50 (3)

 

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