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Snaps, Pace, & Stats: How Week 6 shapes up for fantasy

Sep 9, 2018; New Orleans, LA, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver DeSean Jackson (11) and wide receiver Mike Evans (13) celebrate after a touchdown against the New Orleans Saints during the third quarter of a game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Buccaneers defeated the Saints 48-40. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to the Week 6 edition of Snaps, Pace, & Stats, where we examine trends in snap totals and no-huddle usage. It is meant to be a 30,000-foot view of upcoming games, with the goal of identifying which matchups will – and which will not – be played on fertile fantasy soil.

Up in pace

Rank Week 5 Snaps 2018 Snaps/Game Opponent Wk 5 Snaps 2018 Opp Snaps/Gm
1 San Francisco (92) Baltimore (76.6) Arizona (92) Cleveland (75.6)
2 Baltimore (84) Cleveland (73.8) Cleveland (84) Arizona (73.0)
3 Jacksonville (83) Indianapolis (71.4) Kansas City (83) Kansas City (70.6)
4 Indianapolis (81) Houston (71.0) New England (81) Pittsburgh (70.4)
5 CLE/HOU/GB (76) Philadelphia (69.4) BAL/DAL/DET (76) Cincinnati (70.0)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Atlanta Falcons

The last time we saw the Buccaneers, they’d been mauled by Bears, their coach endorsed his own firing, and the FitzMagic had run out. After a badly needed bye week, Jameis Winston will make his first start of the season in a dome matchup with significant shootout potential. Tampa Bay is one of the only three teams ranking top-eight in both average points scored and points allowed per game. The Falcons are ninth in the former and second in the latter. Even after mustering only 10 points in Chicago, the Bucs rank fifth in points per play, and nobody is close to them in points allowed on a per-play basis. They rank ninth in pass rate during neutral situations (game within one score) and, while opposing offenses have taken a balanced approach to attacking them, their seventh-worst-graded coverage and fifth-worst-graded pass rush will be attacked by Matt Ryan.

The Falcons already throw at the fifth-highest situation-neutral rate (63.5%). They rank eighth in passing yards and sixth in yards per attempt. At home, they average 34.7 points per game (versus 14.5 on the road) and 7.2 yards per play (versus 4.6 on the road). Matt Ryan’s home passer rating is 136.6 (versus 73.4 on the road). Opponents average the 11th-most plays against Atlanta, and pass at the ninth-highest rate when games are close (61.4%). Both the Falcons and Bucs rank top-12 in seconds-per-snap pace, and there’s evidence Dirk Koetter will trust Winston to run more no-huddle than he did with Ryan Fitzpatrick. Tampa Bay ranked fifth in no-huddle rate last season, and they started sprinkling in some hurry-up – albeit while in comeback mode – once Winston replaced Fitzpatrick in their Week 4 game. It’s no revelation that we want heavy fantasy exposure to this high-octane matchup.

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