By Cole Banker
As we turn the page to Week 10, here is our list of players to be confident in and be skeptical of. To clarify, when we say we “love” a player, we mean that we expect him to outperform his projections for that week, and the opposite for players we “hate.” We are using PPR scoring when we refer to players’ rankings. Enjoy.
Quarterbacks we love this week
Cole: Jameis Winston (TB) vs. Arizona
You really have no idea what you’re going to get from Jameis Winston on a weekly basis. His 16 turnovers in just 8 games limits his upside, even in a Buccaneers offense that loves to throw the ball. However, Jameis played well in Seattle last week, tossing 335 yards, two touchdowns, and most importantly, no picks. The Cardinals are a clear-cut bottom-3 defense that just allowed Jimmy Garoppolo to go off for 29 fantasy points and are giving QB’s an average of just under 28 points every week. As long as Winston can limit his turnovers, expect a big performance from the former Seminole.
Chris: Kyler Murray (ARI) @ Tampa Bay
To put it briefly, Kyler Murray has been great this season. The number one overall pick has shown that he can provide value with his legs, something that was highly anticipated. However, Murray is also putting up good numbers through the air with three games of over 300 passing yards. The matchup helps Murray out in this one, as Tampa Bay has allowed the most passing yards per game this season. Arizona is not far behind in that statistic, and both teams are allowing more than 27 points per game. In a potential shootout, I expect Murray to continue his strong rookie campaign.
Quarterbacks we hate this week
Cole: Matt Ryan (ATL) @ New Orleans
Dan Quinn is going back to his franchise QB after a two-game absence in a season that has already been decided for the Falcons. Being limited all week in practice, it’s safe to assume Ryan is still not 100%, which leads us to question Quinn’s decision to rush his QB back in a game that is all but meaningless for the 1-7 Falcons. This game has the makings of a blowout, and against a solid Saints secondary, Ryan is set for a tough day.
Chris: Matthew Stafford (DET) @ Chicago
In arguably the best year of his career, Stafford draws a tough Bears defense in week 10. Chicago`s defensive unit has struggled more as of late, but the Bears are still allowing just 18.0 points per game this season. Furthermore, Stafford has to play outdoors in a cold weather game in Chicago. Additionally, the former Georgia Bulldog`s worst month by passer rating is November (maybe he should talk with Jared Goff?). With the second lowest point total of the week, I don`t love Stafford in this one.
Running Backs we love this week
Cole: Marlon Mack (IND) vs. Miami
Mack’s lack of involvement in the passing game has limited his fantasy ceiling thus far in 2019, even with his success on the ground. He is easily on pace for a 1,000 yard season and has solidified his role as the workhorse back in Indy, and even without a big role in the passing game, he is set to go off against Miami. In only 8 games, the Dolphins have given up nearly 1100 yards on the ground to running backs. That’s an enormous number. The Dolphins have lost by 10+ points in six of their eight games, and it shouldn’t be any different this week in Indianapolis, setting up a tasty game script for Mack.
Chris: Mark Ingram II (BAL) @ Cincinnati
Ingram finds himself on the love list with a great matchup on Sunday. Baltimore travels to Cincinnati in a contest that could set the single-game record for most rushing yards by a single team ever. While Baltimore has clearly established their identity as a run-heavy offense, the Bengals have been an embarrassment at defending the run game, allowing 177.6 rushing yards per game this year. To put that number into perspective, Eric Dickerson averaged 131.6 rushing yards per game when he ran for over 2,000 yards in 1984. With Ingram maintaining a solid workload in the Ravens offense, including multiple catches in five games this year, expect him to put up big numbers this week.
Running Backs we hate this week
Cole: David Johnson (ARI) @ Tampa Bay
After sitting out two straight games, DJ will be active Sunday in Tampa, but the extent to which he plays will be in question. Fantasy owners were screwed in Week 8 after Chase Edmunds stole literally all of Johnson’s touches when the Cardinals said Johnson was active that week. The Bucs are 2nd in the NFL in rush defense and are limiting opposing backs to fewer than 12 points per game, so lower your expectations for Johnson in Week 10.
Chris: Devonta Freeman (ATL) @ New Orleans
For one reason or another, I have not been able to get behind Freeman at all this season. This week, I don’t like the matchup. Trailing only New England, the Saints are the second-stingiest defense to opposing fantasy running backs in 2019. To further the point, New Orleans is allowing just 84.3 rushing yards per game. Freeman has played a role in the passing game this year, elevating his floor, but I think that is his only way to meeting his projection this week.
Wide Receivers we love this week
Cole: Emmanuel Sanders (SF) @ Seattle
Sanders has thrived as the #1 receiver in San Francisco in his first two games in a 49ers uniform, scoring a TD in each of his first two games and breaking out for a season-high 112 yards last Thursday night. Garoppolo has shown success throwing the football in the last couple weeks, taking the pressure off of Tevin Coleman and the run game. Seattle is below average in defending the pass, and there should be some points scored in this fantastic Monday Night Football matchup, setting Sanders up for a big opportunity in primetime.
Chris: Calvin Ridley (ATL) @ New Orleans
The Saints have continued to dominate against the run in 2019, but they are still vulnerable through the air. New Orleans is giving up the ninth-most fantasy points per game to opposing wide receivers this season. With Marshon Lattimore likely covering Julio Jones for the majority of the game, Ridley should once again be a top option for Matt Ryan. In two career games against New Orleans, Ridley has 15 catches for 239 yards and four touchdowns. Furthermore, Atlanta is coming off a bye and gets to stay indoors in week 10, giving the offense an opportunity to put up some points in the Superdome.
Wide Receivers we hate this week
Cole: Juju Smith-Schuster
Juju has alternated between a game of over 15 points and one with under 5 points since Week 3, and this inconsistency is not something you want in your starting lineup. He has not gotten consistent looks from Mason Rudolph, who lacks the deep-threat ability that made Juju such a great fantasy option in the past. He’ll also likely have to deal with Jalen Ramsey and a talented Rams secondary. I’d feel confident benching Juju this week.
Chris: Odell Beckham Jr. (CLE) vs. Buffalo
No, there is no quota that I am required to hit that says I must put at least one player from Cleveland on the hate list every week. Hear me out, the Browns offense has been underwhelming, Odell has underperformed, and Buffalo has a great pass defense that is playing at home. In addition, the Bills are yet to allow an opposing receiver to pass the 100 yard mark in a game this year and Beckham also only has one touchdown on the season. Combine these facts and you get a star receiver on the hate list. I am not saying you sit Odell, because you probably can`t, but temper expectations for him in week 10.
Tight Ends we love this week
Cole: TJ Hockenson (DET) @ Chicago
Hockenson has struggled recently, having been held without a TD in each of the last 5 games. However, the rookie from Iowa has received at least 5 targets in 3 of his last 4 games, so there are signs his rapport with Stafford is growing. Chicago, interestingly, has a solid pass defense but is in the bottom five in defending tight ends, giving them nearly 10 points a game. Hockenson is a solid bye week fill-in in Week 10.
Chris: Gerald Everett (LAR) @ Pittsburgh
Everett has a chance for a decent game in Pittsburgh this week. The Steelers, though their defense has improved tremendously since the beginning of the season, are still a bottom-third defense against opposing fantasy tight ends. Additionally, the man who will be throwing the ball to Everett, Jared Goff, loves the month of November. Goff has a passer rating of 107.8 and a touchdown to interception ratio of 7 to 1 in November. Everett has his most career touchdowns in November of any month, despite playing more games in every other month of the regular season.
Tight Ends we hate this week
Cole: Jimmy Graham (GB) vs. Carolina
When Graham doesn’t score, he’s in trouble. He has received more than 5 targets from Aaron Rodgers just once this year, and when Graham doesn’t find paydirt, he is being held to less than 6 PPG. It’s tough to rely on someone with that kind of inconsistency, as he is now a touchdown-dependent option. Leave Graham on the bench this week against a Panthers defense that is holding opposing tight ends to fewer than 6 PPG.
Chris: Greg Olsen (CAR) @ Green Bay
I worry about Carolina`s passing attack in this game. I believe they will lean heavily on Christian McCaffrey to expose a weak Packers rush defense, making Olsen potentially take on more of a blocking role in this game. Once again, looking into who is delivering the ball to Olsen is important. Kyle Allen has been good, but he will have to throw in poor conditions with an expected high of 35 degrees this Sunday. Allen was born in Arizona and went to college in Texas, so this kind of temperature is likely not what he is used to playing in. Lower your expectations for Olsen and the Panther`s passing offense in week 10.
Defenses to Stream
Cole: Indianapolis Colts (vs. MIA)
Chris: Baltimore Ravens (@ CIN)
Defenses to Avoid
Cole: Carolina Panthers (@ Green Bay)
Chris: San Francisco 49ers (vs. Seattle)
Edited by Garrett Jones | firstname.lastname@example.org