FFStatistics: Fantasy Football Start or Sit Week 10
Welcome to week 10 start or sit article. This one, ladies and gentlemen, should be fun. There are a total of six teams on bye this week. With the Denver Broncos, Houston Texans, Jacksonville Jaguars, New England Patriots, Philadelphia Eagles, and Washington Redskins all getting the weekend off, it slims the pickings for rosters.
This aim for this weekly article is to provide start or sit advice that may be among the less obvious choices, based on statistical analysis.
Fantasy Football Start or Sit Week 10
The obvious starts are all in play this week. Everyone is expecting Patrick Mahomes back under center, he is an auto-start if he plays. Lamar Jackson, Drew Brees, Aaron Rodgers and Russell Wilson are all solid, high-floor plays this week. Now, we get to the less obvious plays that should provide upside opportunities this weekend.
Start: Philip Rivers vs. Oakland
Philip Rivers had a good outing against the Green Bay Packers last week, despite not throwing a touchdown. He was precise, had no turnovers and still finished with 294 passing yards. The Packers have been stingy against quarterbacks, which led to Rivers relying on the run game for most of the damage. Still, he produced adequate passing yards.
The Raiders are getting roasted by quarterbacks, allowing the second-most points to the position. Their run defense, however, has been moderately good. The game script here will put more emphasis on Rivers looking to spread it around through the air as opposed to relying on Melvin Gordon and Austin Ekeler to run it between the tackles.
Rivers is averaging 289 passing yards and 1.3 touchdowns per-contest this season. The Raiders are allowing 311 passing yards and 2.75 passing touchdowns per game. Rivers should land in the top-12 territory this week.
Start: Jameis Winston vs. Arizona
Okay, we all know how volatile it is to rely on Jameis Winston. Winston and Baker Mayfield are sharing the league lead for interceptions with 12 apiece heading into week 10. What sometimes goes untalked about, is how many yards Winston is compiling on a weekly basis. His 2,407 yards are seventh-best among the position. He is sixth overall in the touchdown department with 16 total.
The Cardinals are allowing the most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks. No quarterback they have faced has failed to throw at least one touchdown against them. In seven of nine weeks, quarterbacks have thrown multiple scores against them. The Cardinals only have two interceptions on the season. That is not saying that Winston might not throw one directly into the chest of an opposing defender, but they are not creating turnovers on their own.
If there is a game we can hope for minimal bone-headed plays from Winston; this might be it. Winston is a top-eight option this week in all quarterback formats and a strong bye week starter.
Sit: Mitchell Trubisky vs. Detroit
For those paying attention, Matthew Stafford was one the starts in last week’s article. There are multiple factors that have led to Stafford’s high passing volume. A porous secondary is one of those factors. Teams are racking up points against the Lions creating shootout potential often. Heading into week 10, the Lions are generously allowing the sixth-most points to quarterbacks. On the surface, this looks like a game where owners could start Mitchell Trubisky.
Alas, this has all the makings of a trap play.
In the six games he has played (not including the one where he left injured.) Trubisky has thrown touchdowns in only two of them. He is only averaging 173 passing yards per game. He is not utilizing his legs, which helped maintain a safe floor last season. Head coach Matt Nagy has publicly stated that Trubisky is not playing at the level expected of him. Nagy’s playcalling has also come under scrutiny.
In a divisional matchup against a red-hot Matt Stafford, owners should look for a better option than a hail mary throw with Trubisky under center.
Start: David Montgomery vs. Detroit
We will stick with the same game, different aspects here. David Montgomery has taken a while to become fully integrated into this offense. Montgomery has logged 41 carries in the last two games combined. While he may not have had much in the way of yardage last week against a stout Eagles defense, he did score twice. Nagy’s gameplan should be to mask as much of Trubisky as possible.
Montgomery should walk into 15-plus touches in this game. The Lions are giving up the most fantasy points to running backs this season. If the Bears want to hang in this contest, they will run early and often with their elusive rookie. Montgomery should be considered a high-end RB2 this week.
Start: Mark Ingram vs. Cinncinatti
The Ravens are a football team built to run the football. Even with Lamar Jackson logging the rushing attempts and yards he has been getting, Mark Ingram has continued to be featured and relevant. Ingram has seen double-digit carries in each game this season, and just put 115 yards behind him against the Patriots defense. His seven rushing touchdowns add value, showing that they are not solely relying on Jackson to hit paydirt.
The Bengals defense has allowed eight rushing touchdowns this season. Ingram finished with 52 rushing yards and one score against them in week six. The Ravens will not have to push to win this game. Ingram should be in line for some garbage time, clock-kill rush attempts in this one. He can be started as a high-end RB2 in this contest, with a good chance of scoring again.
Sit: Devonta Freeman vs. New Orleans
Trivia time, can anyone correctly guess how many rushing touchdowns Devonta Freeman has this season? If you said zero, you must own shares of him somewhere. Freeman is averaging 41 rushing yards per game this season and has only entered the end zone to celebrate a teammate scoring. That in itself makes it difficult to want to start him in fantasy.
To make matters worse, the Saints defense has yet to allow a top-10 running back performance this season. No back has eclipsed 100 yards against them.
The saving grace for teams that must put him in their lineups is that Freeman’s value as a pass-catching option. He has done well as a receiver out of the backfield and that has saved his fantasy output often this season. Freeman is an uncomfortable flex option for PPR formats this week.
Start: Christian Kirk vs. Tampa Bay
If the aim here was to go with the most obvious start at the position, Michael Thomas would easily be the start of the week. The goal here is to find the mid-range plays with the best potential ceiling. That being the focus of this article, please welcome Christian Kirk to the stage. Kirk is maintaining a 64% catch rate and an average of 8.8 targets per game.
The Buccanneers are allowing the most fantasy points to the position in the league. Six different receivers have finished with 100-plus receiving yards this season. They have allowed 12 receiving touchdowns thus far. Eight of those have been to slot receivers. Kirk has lined up in the slot over 70% of his routes this season.
This matchup is a great opportunity for Kirk to go off for a big game. He is a high-upside, mid-range WR2 this week. The targets will be there, his catch rate is good and the matchup is tasty. Eat up Mr. Kirk.
Start: Golden Tate vs. New York Jets
Since returning from suspension, Golden Tate has received six or more targets in all five games he has played. He has cleared 80 or more receiving yards in three of those five games with one score.
The Jets are allowing the seventh-most fantasy points to receivers. They have allowed 11 touchdowns to receivers and allowed six different receivers to clear 70 or more yards. With Sterling Shepard back in concussion protocol and Evan Engram already ruled out for the game, fire up Tate as a high-target volume play this week. He is a fringe WR2 play with upside in PPR formats this week.
Sit: D.K. Metcalf vs. San Francisco
D.K. Metcalf had his big breakout game last week. It was his first career game of over 100 yards receiving and he hauled in a big-boy touchdown to ice the cake. The week before he finished with only 13 yards, but scored twice, salvaging the low yardage totals. The Metcalf fanboy-ism was nearly rabid on Twitter after last week’s big game.
However, the flame that burned so brightly last week may be doused by a couple of different factors this week. Firstly, the matchup is not a good one. The 49ers defense has been rock solid against both quarterbacks and wide receivers. They are allowing the sixth-fewest fantasy points to the position. Secondly, Josh Gordon may not be what he once was, but he remains an above-average receiver and may take targets away from Metcalf.
Metcalf remains a scoring threat due to his freakish size and speed combination, but expectations should be limited in a brutal matchup.
Make no mistake, the following is neither fun nor exciting. With six teams on bye, and Evan Engram already ruled out, the tight end landscape is NOT pretty this week.
Start: Gerald Everett vs. Pittsburgh
Over the last five weeks, Gerald Everett has only seen less than five targets once. In that stretch, he has 37 targets for 254 yards and two scores. Brandin Cooks has already been ruled out for at least this week. The Steelers are allowing the ninth-most fantasy points to tight ends. With Cooks out, look for Cooper Kupp and Everett to have success over the middle. Everett is a back-end TE1 this week.
Sit: Trey Burton vs. Detroit
Trey Burton has all but disappeared from stat-sheet relevance this season. He has less than 21 yards in every game he has played this season. He has yet to catch a touchdown and it is doubtful that changes this week. The Lions do allow some production to the position, but not enough to look at Burton as a recommended play. Even with six teams on bye, leave Burton on the waiver wire where he should be in all but the deepest of leagues.
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