Fantasy Football Week 10 reactions and Week 11 early waiver wire: Late-blooming Rashaad Penny stars
Dave Richard catches you up on everything you need to know from Sunday's games, with an eye toward your next waiver run.
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Is it just me, or was Week 10 a little wackier than usual? Maybe it's because some teams know they're headed toward a meaningless finish and aren't trying quite as hard as they were early in the season. Maybe some of these players are just plain tired.
Either way, lots of things encapsulated this weekend of weirdness:
Of the 12 games played before the Sunday night affair, only two were settled by seven or fewer points.
Baker Mayfield tossed three touchdowns; two to his running backs. That's one more score than Patrick Mahomes, who had his usual quality game but might not qualify as a top-10 quarterback when the week is all said and done.
Tyreek Hill became a co-worker of ours for a few second:
That's just bizarre.
We figured a running back would have a big game for Fantasy, maybe even two touchdowns. The least likely rusher to do that was Henry, but he did.
We knew a tight end would find the end zone. But Jonnu Smith? For the second week in a row?!
We anticipated a receiver would dominate a specific cornerback matchup, but it was Corey Davis who managed it best.
And we knew a quarterback would probably throw for two touchdowns. We didn't think it would be Marcus Mariota.
For the third straight week, Tom Brady finished outside of the top-12. Nearly all of his metrics, from completion percentage to yards per attempt, are down from where they were as recently as Week 7.
But the most important metric — touchdowns — is as Nathan Peterman-esque as possible: One in his last three games. Seriously. One.
Is it time to do the unthinkable and bench Tom Brady?? The answer is YES. Because he's on bye in Week 11.
But after the bye he'll play at the Jets. By then he will hopefully have Rob Gronkowski back on the field and defenses will be forced to play the Patriots much differently than when Gronk isn't on the field. Plus, it's the Jets. They officially stink.
If you have Brady, your next moves are obvious. One, you need a quarterback to replace him in Week 11. Streamers like Eli Manning, Matthew Stafford and Dak Prescott would suffice, but you might want to invest in a passer who can work Week 11 and be on call as a backup in case Brady disappoints in Week 12 — because you won't be confident in starting him Week 13 against the Vikings, especially if you're contending for a playoff spot.
And for Weeks 11 and 13, there are two options: Stafford and the very quarterback who bested Brady on Sunday: Mariota. Stafford will play the Panthers and Rams, both at home and both involving matchups with suspect pass defenses that will force the Lions to throw a bunch. Mariota will take on the Colts and the Jets.
The Fantasy world hasn't reached panic mode on Brady, but it's probably wise to have a plan just in case Brady struggles after the bye. At the very least the timing is right to add a quarterback anyway.
Three big questions from Week 9
Is the Rams offense less appealing without Cooper Kupp?
Definitely not. If anything, bank on the Rams to be resourceful without Kupp. Josh Reynolds should fill in for Kupp in the slot and L.A.'s tight ends have been impactful in each of their last two games. Both scored this week and could be bye week options when the Rams play the Chiefs next week. That game might total 100 points. Goff & Co. should be just fine.
They're getting clubbed by Chubb. Since the Browns traded Carlos Hyde, Landry and Njoku each have three games with 53 yards or less. They both did well in Chubb's first start at Tampa Bay — Chubb got off to a cold start in that one — but since then, they've been disappointing. PPR leaguers have no choice, as they must keep them on their rosters through the Browns' Week 11 bye. Non-PPR leaguers, especially those in small leagues, could opt to part ways with Landry, and maybe Njoku too.
Should we be encouraged or discouraged by Leonard Fournette's return?
The good: Fournette scored twice and totaled 109 yards. The bad: He barely averaged 2.0 yards per carry and didn't have a run longer than 11 yards. But the best: He handled a massive workload — 24 carries and five catches — and his role in the passing game means he's not a one-dimensional running back. That's a very, very good thing considering the Jaguars' upcoming matchup against the Steelers. If you were patient enough to stash Fournette or savvy enough to buy low on him, you should be rewarded with a top-15 running back for the rest of the season.
Eight big waiver pickups for Week 11 and beyond
- Cardinals DST (21 percent owned): The play the Raiders in Week 11.
- Rashaad Penny (18 percent owned): Penny might have put himself back in the Seahawks run game conversation after his massive outing against the Rams. With Chris Carson not a lock to play on Thursday against the Packers, Penny could end up as a useful starter for your team.
- Anthony Miller (23 percent owned): Miller is worth picking up for the rest of the way. Tough matchup next week against the Vikings but then he sees the Lions again in Week 12. That'll be nice.
- Josh Reynolds (2 percent owned): He's expected to replace Kupp in the slot for the Rams. That's a pretty good spot to be in.
- Gerald Everett and Tyler Higbee (1 percent owned each): Their roles are expanding a little bit in L.A. and Kupp's departure could keep them relevant. Both are bye-week replacements for Gronk, Njoku and George Kittle next week. Higbee tends to play more snaps but Everett, over the course of the season, has a slight edge in targets.
- Keke Coutee (31 percent owned): Hopefully he's healthy enough to play after the bye since he has some modest PPR potential. Don't forget about him.
- Marcus Mariota (31 percent owned): He'll end up starting for folks as a Tom Brady replacement next week.
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