I wish I could tell you exactly what's going to happen in the NFL this week. If that were the case then I'd be much better at my job. But, as many of you like to point out, we can't predict the future.
Here's what I would like to happen in Week 10, aside from lots of Fantasy production -- no injured running backs. The past three weeks have been brutal with season-ending injuries to stars in Arian Foster (Achilles) in Week 7, Le'Veon Bell (knee) in Week 8 and Dion Lewis (knee) in Week 9.
Plenty of other injuries have occurred along the way, and Jamaal Charles (knee) was also lost for the season in Week 5. It's hard to recover when you lose a key player like that, no matter how good the fill-in options are with DeAngelo Williams, Charcandrick West and Jeremy Langford, who was great in Week 9 for the injured Matt Forte (knee).
We have four teams on a bye this week with Atlanta, Indianapolis, San Diego and San Francisco. You can argue the 49ers have been on a bye all season with their lack of Fantasy options, but losing key players to injuries during the bye weeks is tough.
We hope you have managed your team to a winning record through nine weeks, and we're in the home stretch now of the Fantasy season in Week 10. Now is the time to make your playoff push, and hopefully we can avoid any more serious injuries at running back along the way.
This is an interesting week for quarterbacks with Ben Roethlisberger (foot) hurt, and Philip Rivers, Matt Ryan and Andrew Luck on a bye. Luck is also out for a few weeks with a lacerated kidney, so several Fantasy owners are scrambling for a starter.
As we've seen for most of this season with guys like Carson Palmer and Andy Dalton to Brian Hoyer and Ryan Fitzpatrick, you can find a solid Fantasy quarterback anywhere. And Derek Carr has become a reliable starter over the past three games.
He had some good moments early in the season with 32 Fantasy points against Baltimore in Week 2 and 24 points at Cleveland in Week 3. But those were his only games with more than 15 Fantasy points prior to Oakland's bye in Week 6. And that's when things changed.
Carr came off the bye with a tremendous three-game stretch against San Diego, the Jets and Pittsburgh where he scored at least 29 Fantasy points in each outing and 11 touchdowns to one interception. His receivers have been exceptional with Amari Cooper and Michael Crabtree making plenty of plays, and Carr looks like a polished passer with plenty of experience instead of a second-year starter.
His matchup this week against Minnesota isn't great on paper since the Vikings allow an average of just 16.3 Fantasy points a game to opposing quarterbacks. But a lot of that has to do with Colin Kaepernick, Peyton Manning and Nick Foles scoring 10 Fantasy points or less.
Matthew Stafford twice and Jay Cutler have each scored at least 20 Fantasy points against the Vikings, and Carr should follow suit at home. He's playing great right now, and we don't see him slowing down this week. He's a Top 10 quarterback heading into Week 10.
I'm starting Carr over: Carson Palmer (at SEA), Peyton Manning (vs. KC), Matthew Stafford (at GB), Jay Cutler (at STL) and Russell Wilson (vs. ARI)
Prime Time Andy was good on Thursday night in Week 9 against the Browns with 234 passing yards and three touchdowns for 27 Fantasy points in a standard league. It was his fifth game of at least 27 Fantasy points for the season, and he should stay hot against the Texans this week on Monday night. Houston has allowed five quarterbacks to score at least 20 Fantasy points, and Dalton should have the chance for another big week at home.
Newton was amazing last week against the Packers with 38 Fantasy points in a standard league, and we hope he has his best game of the season on the road against the Titans. He's only scored more than 20 Fantasy points once on the road this year in matchups at Jacksonville, at Tampa Bay and at Seattle, but this is favorable matchup at Tennessee. The Titans have already allowed two rushing touchdowns to opposing quarterbacks (Newton has five on the season), and four quarterbacks have scored at least 20 Fantasy points, including two in a row with Brian Hoyer and Drew Brees. Newton's receivers other than Greg Olsen started making plays last week with Devin Funchess, Corey Brown and Jerricho Cotchery, and if that continues than Newton's value could skyrocket.
Could we be headed toward another Giants-Patriots Super Bowl this season? That would be a stretch, but the last two times the Giants and Patriots met in the regular season was in 2007 and 2011. Both times the teams played in the Super Bowl as well, so we'll see if history repeats itself this year. Manning has a good history against Bill Belichick (clearly with his two Super Bowl rings), but in four career meetings against the Patriots he has scored at least 20 Fantasy points three times. And Manning is good at home with three of four games scoring at least 20 Fantasy points, and he's reached that total nine times in his past 12 home games going back to last year. The Patriots have allowed four quarterbacks to score at least 20 Fantasy points against them this season, and there's a good chance Manning hits that number this week, especially if the Giants are chasing points.
We've got two nicknames for Bortles that I thought were worth sharing. Ryan Bass, our video host and noted Bortles supporter since both went to the University of Central Florida, said he was known as Bortles Kombat in college. And video producer Jake McClosky dubbed him as the Blake Knight. Whatever you want to call Bortles, let's just hope he continues to play well. He's scored at least 20 Fantasy points in four of his past five games, including 24 points at the Jets in Week 9. Hopefully he has a healthy Allen Hurns (foot) for this matchup, but the Ravens have been bad against opposing quarterbacks all season, allowing an average of 25.8 Fantasy points a game to the position. Six quarterbacks have scored at least 23 Fantasy points against Baltimore, including four in a row, and Bortles should have another solid game this week.
Adam Aizer pointed out on our Fantasy Football Today podcast that every quarterback to face the Saints this season has either had their best game of the year or their second-best outing. If that trend holds then Cousins will either top the 35 Fantasy points he scored against Tampa Bay in Week 7 or finish with more points then the 23 he had in Week 4 against the Eagles. If he does either one then he'll be a great starting option this week, and I'm buying into Cousins as a Top 10 quarterback based on the matchup. Brandon Weeden in Week 4 is the lone quarterback to not score at least 20 Fantasy points against the Saints, and New Orleans has allowed 721 passing yards and 10 touchdowns the past two games against Eli Manning and Marcus Mariota. We hope Cousins isn't a bust since he's not the best Fantasy quarterback, but New Orleans has a terrible defense and should continue to struggle this week, especially on the road.
Tyrod Taylor (at NYJ): NYJ have been bad vs. QBs the past three games.
Peyton Manning (vs. KC): He scored 26 Fantasy points at KC in Week 2.
Joe Flacco (vs. JAC): He has at least 24 Fantasy points in every home game.
You can set your watch to Cutler this season because his production has been the same each week for the past five games - exactly 21 Fantasy points in a standard league. He's played great this year under new offensive coordinator Adam Gase, but this should be a tough spot for him. The Rams are No. 2 in Fantasy points allowed to opposing quarterbacks, and 18 points from Carson Palmer and Aaron Rodgers are the best totals scored against this defense. St. Louis has allowed just five passing touchdowns compared to six interceptions, and Rodgers is the lone quarterback with multiple touchdowns. Cutler's streak of 21 Fantasy points will end in this matchup on the road.
Only two quarterbacks have scored more than 19 Fantasy points against the Eagles this season with Cousins in Week 4 and Matt Cassel in Week 9. Otherwise Philadelphia has been great in limiting Matt Ryan, Brees, Eli Manning and Newton to minimal production. Tannehill has really only produced minimal stats for most of this season with just two games over 19 Fantasy points in eight games. He's combined for 18 Fantasy points the past two games at New England and at Buffalo, and this is a tough stretch with three consecutive games on the road. We hope Tannehill can turn things around, but this is a tough spot to trust him. Keep him reserved in the majority of leagues.
Mariota had a career game in Week 9 at New Orleans with 40 Fantasy points, and he looked great coming off a two-game layoff with his knee injury. But the Saints prop up every quarterback this season (see above with Cousins), and Mariota should come crashing down with his production in this matchup against the Panthers. Carolina has allowed just two quarterbacks to score at least 20 Fantasy points this season with Russell Wilson in Week 6 and Aaron Rodgers last week, and the Panthers have given up 11 passing touchdowns to 13 interceptions. Prior to facing the Saints, Mariota combined for 15 Fantasy points in his previous two games against Buffalo and Miami, and he should struggle again in this matchup at home.
Winston has been better on the road this season than at home, and he could have another down game in Tampa this week. He has three games this year with at least 20 Fantasy points on the road, but he scored 17 points or less in four games at home, including Week 9 against the Giants. Dallas hasn't allowed a quarterback to score more than 17 Fantasy points in three games in a row, including matchups with Eli Manning, Wilson and Sam Bradford. This should be a game where Tampa Bay can lean on Doug Martin and the ground game, and Winston could struggle to score multiple touchdowns, which he's done just four times this year. He's only worth starting in two-quarterback leagues this week.
Wilson has a good history against the Cardinals with at least 21 Fantasy points in three of his past four meetings, and the last time he faced Arizona he went off for 39 points in Week 16 last year. Wilson ran for 161 yards against the Cardinals in two games in 2014, but that element of his game has been down this season. He's averaging just 38 rushing yards per game this year, and last year he averaged 53 yards per game. He also has failed to run for a touchdown, and he has just two games with more than 20 Fantasy points and three with 15 points or less. The Cardinals have been good against opposing quarterbacks this year, with only Nick Foles and Josh McCown scoring more than 20 Fantasy points against this defense. For the season, they are allowing 17.3 Fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks, and that's about what I expect from Wilson this week.
Palmer missed both games with the Seahawks in 2014 because of his torn ACL, so we'll see how he does against his division rivals in this first matchup since 2013. Palmer was miserable against Seattle then, but the Seahawks were a tougher defense that season. And Palmer is a better quarterback now. Still, it's been seven games since a quarterback has passed for multiple touchdowns in Seattle. And in two games against the Seahawks in 2013 we saw Palmer combine for 436 passing yards, two touchdowns and six interceptions. Palmer has six games with at least 22 Fantasy points this season, but he's faced a relatively easy schedule to date. His lone tough matchup was against St. Louis in Week 4, and he finished with 18 Fantasy points in that outing. I would expect a similar performance this week at Seattle.
The Packers are giving Starks the chance to start against the Lions, and we hope he takes advantage of the opportunity with Eddie Lacy struggling. Starks has scored double digits in Fantasy points in a standard league in two of his past three games, and the four times this season he's had at least 10 carries he's scored at least eight Fantasy points. Lacy will still play a role, so keep that in mind, but the Lions have allowed eight running backs to score double digits in Fantasy points this year with 12 touchdowns. We'd love to see Lacy get going and finish the season strong, but right now you have to buy into Starks as the No. 1 running back in Green Bay.
McFadden has done a nice job the past three games as the starter for the Cowboys, and we don't expect him to slow down now against the Buccaneers. His usage rate has been the best part of his game since he's had at least 26 touches in each game over that span against the Giants, Seahawks and Eagles. He hasn't scored a touchdown since Week 7, but he's totaled at least 113 yards in each of the past two weeks. The Buccaneers are a tough opponent against running backs, but Devonta Freeman and Shane Vereen have scored double digits in Fantasy points in the past two games, and McFadden should also post a quality stat line.
Martin was bad the past two games with nine Fantasy points combined against the Falcons and Giants. Week 8 against New York was especially troubling since Martin lost a fumble and was benched for the second quarter in favor of Charles Sims, who played well with eight carries for 78 yards compared to 11 carries for 31 yards for Martin. But we expect him to bounce back this week against the Cowboys, who come into this game beat up on defense. Dallas also allows the most Fantasy points to opposing running backs, and the Cowboys could be without linebackers Sean Lee (concussion) and Anthony Hitchens (ankle), and even Rolando McClain is battling a hand injury. Eight running backs have scored double digits in Fantasy points against Dallas, and Martin should play well in this game at home.
It's risky to trust West this week given the matchup since Denver has allowed just three starting running backs to score double digits in Fantasy points in a standard league, including Charles, Adrian Peterson and Frank Gore. The key to running backs having success against the Broncos is workload, and every running back with at least 16 carries has found success against this defense. West has at least 20 carries in each of his past two games against Pittsburgh and Detroit, with 24 touches in both outings, and he's scored at least 17 Fantasy points in both games. Last year, Knile Davis went into Denver with Charles hurt and had 22 carries for 79 yards and two touchdowns and six catches for 26 yards, and we hope West can follow suit this week as a backup Kansas City running back with a big game in Denver.
There's no guarantee the Patriots will lean on Blount this week even with Lewis out, but he's worth the gamble if New England attempts to lean on the ground game to a certain extent. The last time Lewis was out was Week 7 against the Jets, and Blount had just three carries for minus-3 yards, which was by design since Tom Brady planned to throw the ball all game. Blount has scored at least seven Fantasy points in a standard league in five of his past six games, so that should be his floor, and he could do well against the Giants this week. New York has allowed a running back to score double digits in Fantasy points in four of the past five games, with three touchdowns over that span. This could be a game where Blount barely touches the ball if New England plans to air it out all game, but with Lewis out and given what Blount has done of late we would risk starting him in the majority of leagues.
Jeremy Langford (at STL): He's at least a flex if Forte remains out.
Karlos Williams (at NYJ): He's scored in each game he's played this year.
Ryan Mathews (vs. MIA): He's scored in three of his past four games.
Shane Vereen (vs. NE): Revenge game? He's scored in his past two games.
Matt Jones (vs. NO): This should be his best game of the season since Week 2.
You have to like what Andrews has done the past two games against Houston and New Orleans with at least 19 total touches in each game. He's established himself as the No. 1 running back for the Titans, and even the return of David Cobb (calf) this week shouldn't change that. But I wouldn't expect a big outing from this week against the Panthers. The past two opponents in the Texans and Saints allowed the Titans to run the ball, and Carolina's run defense is a significant step up in competition. Luke Kuechly is dealing with an ankle injury, but if he plays as expected then the Panthers run defense is tough. Only one starting running back has scored double digits in Fantasy points against Carolina when Kuechly has played this season, which was Marshawn Lynch in Week 6. We don't expect Andrews to be anything more than a flex option this week, but he should struggle in this matchup if Kuechly if active.
Blue played one game in place of the injured Foster in Week 8 against Tennessee and finished with 14 carries for 39 yards and five catches for 33 yards. The workload was good, but he has to produce more if the Texans give him at least 19 touches. This is a tough week to trust Blue against the Bengals, who have allowed five running backs to score double digits in Fantasy points but only two rushing touchdowns on the season. We expect the Texans to be chasing points in this matchup, and Jonathan Grimes could see extended playing time because of his ability to catch the ball even with Blue getting five receptions in his last game. Blue should only be considered a flex option at best in this matchup.
Hillman was limited to seven carries for 1 yard in Week 9 at Indianapolis, and the thigh injury he sustained in Week 8 against Green Bay might be bothering him since he was again limited in practice Wednesday of this week. C.J. Anderson has actually run better than Hillman the past two games after Denver's bye week, and maybe he will take over the backfield this week against the Chiefs. It's a tough matchup since Kansas City has only allowed Jeremy Hill, Giovani Bernard, Forte and Bell to score double digits in Fantasy points this season, and Hill was limited to nine carries for 34 yards against the Chiefs in Week 2. We hope to see Hillman practice in full by Friday, and he can still be a flex option this week. But if I had to pick between Anderson and Hillman this week I would take Anderson because he appears to be the healthier of the two Broncos right now.
It's a good idea to pick up White where available since his role should expand now that Lewis is out. But that doesn't mean you have to start him in the majority of leagues just yet. When Lewis missed Week 7 with an abdomen injury, White had just two carries for 4 yards and three catches for 26 yards. You should assume somewhere between 6-8 touches for White moving forward on a weekly basis, and hopefully he'll start making plays sooner rather than later to help replace Lewis. Brandon Bolden could also get a few touches to help Blount, so see what happens with White this week against the Giants before making him active in most formats.
Johnson has done a nice job helping Fantasy owners of late, especially in PPR leagues, with at least six catches in four of his past seven games and at least 55 receiving yards in four outings as well. But in standard leagues, Johnson has scored double digits in Fantasy points just once, which was Week 4. He only had four carries and eight total touches the past two games against Arizona and Cincinnati, and we'll find out if his role changes now that Robert Turbin is cut. But the Steelers have allowed just two touchdowns to opposing running backs this season and three to score double digits in Fantasy points in a standard league. I would use Johnson as a low-end No. 2 running back in PPR leagues, but I would only flex him in standard leagues. His touches are too few and far between for my liking.
The last time Seattle played at home was in Week 6 against Carolina, and Jonathan Stewart had a great game with 20 carries for 78 yards and two touchdowns. He's the only running back to score against the Seahawks this season, and standout linebacker Bobby Wagner missed the game with an injured pectoral. No running back has gained 100 rushing yards against Seattle this season, and Johnson also has to deal with sharing touches with Andre Ellington and David Johnson. Chris Johnson has been great this season and comes into this game with either 90 total yards or a touchdown in five of his past six games. But we'd be surprised if Johnson has a big game this week, and he should only be considered a flex option at best in most formats.
If I like Carr as the Start of the Week then his top two receivers in Cooper and Crabtree should have the chance for a big game as well. That was the case in Week 9 at Pittsburgh when the duo combined for 36 Fantasy points, and it should hold true again in Week 10 against Minnesota. Crabtree has been the better receiver of late with double digits in Fantasy points in three games in a row, with four touchdowns over that span and two games with at least 102 receiving yards. He leads the Raiders in targets this season, and he's scored at least 16 Fantasy points in two of Oakland's past three home games. Cooper has scored double digits in Fantasy points in two of his past three games, and five No. 1 receivers have at least nine Fantasy points in a standard league against the Vikings this season. Since the Raiders have two No. 1 receivers we should see both do well this week.
Robinson had arguably his best game of the season in Week 9 at the Jets because he had six catches for 121 yards against coverage from Darrelle Revis. It's the fourth game in a row Robinson has scored double digits in Fantasy points, and he's proving to be a must-start receiver in every league no matter the matchup. This game should be his fifth in a row with double digits in Fantasy points since the Ravens have allowed 14 touchdowns to opposing receivers and nine to score double digits in Fantasy points. Allen Hurns (foot) is banged up this week, but if he's able to play then start him also. But if Hurns is out that should be more targets for Robinson (he has at least nine in every game since Week 2), and he should dominate this Baltimore secondary based on his recent level of play.
This should be a week where all three Packers receivers in Randall Cobb, Adams and Jones play well against the Lions. You're starting Cobb after he scored in Week 9 at Carolina, but you should have faith in Adams and Jones as well. The Lions have allowed eight touchdowns to opposing receivers and seven to score double digits in Fantasy points. Twice this season Detroit has allowed multiple receivers to score double digits in Fantasy points in the same game (San Diego in Week 1 and Arizona in Week 5), and the Packers are due for an offensive explosion following a two-game losing streak on the road. Jones has scored in every home game this season, and Adams played well last week against the Panthers with seven catches for 93 yards on 11 targets. Adams has the chance for a strong finish now that his ankle injury is behind him.
I hope Matthews didn't fool us with his performance against the Cowboys last week when he had nine catches for 133 yards and a touchdown on 12 targets. It was his best game of the season, but he's played well against Dallas now twice this year after he had 14 Fantasy points vs. the Cowboys in Week 2. But coming off the bye in Week 8, we hope Matthews is focused and ready to put a poor first half behind him that was plagued with drops. He also dealt with a hand injury earlier this season, and maybe he's 100 percent healthy. This is a good week to trust him against the Dolphins, who have allowed seven receivers to score double digits in Fantasy points, including three huge games in a row from Nate Washington, Julian Edelman and Sammy Watkins in the past three weeks. Matthews should be able to do damage against this secondary, and he's worth starting as a No. 2 Fantasy receiver in the majority of leagues.
Diggs finally had a bad game for the first time in his rookie season with three catches for 42 yards on five targets against the Rams in Week 9. That snapped a four game streak with at least eight Fantasy points and a three-game streak of double digits in points in a standard league. He should rebound this week in a big way against the Raiders. Six of eight No. 1 receivers against Oakland this season have scored double digits in Fantasy points. Keenan Allen could have made it seven of eight, but he had just nine catches for 89 yards. Last week, Antonio Brown roasted this secondary for 17 catches for 284 yards on 23 targets. Fantasy owners could only dream of an outing like that for Diggs, but you should expect a quality performance from in this matchup with the Raiders.
Kamar Aiken (vs. JAC): He and Chris Givens are sleepers vs. JAC.
Danny Amendola (at NYG): His best games have come with Lewis out.
Robert Woods (at NYJ): No. 2 receivers have thrived vs. NYJ this year.
Marvin Jones (vs. HOU): HOU has allowed 10 touchdowns to receivers.
DeSean Jackson (vs. NO): You can trust him vs. a bad NO defense.
The Chiefs get somewhat of a break coming off their bye week with DeMarcus Ware (back) and Aqib Talib (suspension) out, but that doesn't mean you should start Maclin in the majority of leagues. He hasn't scored double digits in Fantasy points since Week 4, and in Week 2 against Denver he struggled with four catches for 57 yards on seven targets. Chris Harris and Bradley Roby will pick up the slack for Talib, and Maclin should still have a hard time making plays since Denver has allowed just two receivers to score double digits in Fantasy points all season. Maclin should only be considered a No. 3 Fantasy receiver at best this week.
I don't love any of the Cardinals receivers this week based on the matchup with Seattle. Only one receiver has scored double digits in Fantasy points against the Seahawks this season, which was Cobb in Week 2 in Green Bay. So be careful using John Brown, Michael Floyd or Fitzgerald this week even though all three have been great this season. Fitzgerald has a terrible history against Seattle with 14 catches for 133 yards and no touchdowns combined in his past five meetings. The last two times he played Seattle with a healthy Palmer in 2013 he had five catches for 35 yards combined. And the last time Fitzgerald scored in Seattle was 2011. If I had to rank the Cardinals receivers this week it would be Brown, Fitzgerald and Floyd, but I'd try to avoid them all if possible given the matchup.
Green-Beckham is worth picking up in the majority of leagues because he could prove to be a difference maker for Fantasy owners down the stretch. The Titans want to get him more involved, and he led the team in targets in Week 9 at New Orleans with 10 for five catches and 77 yards. We hope Mariota continues to feed him, but he should draw Josh Norman this week, which should be a tough matchup for him to exploit. He did score touchdowns against Joe Haden and Vontae Davis earlier this season, but Norman is a better cornerback than both of those guys and should shut down Green-Beckham this week.
Washington comes into Week 10 playing at a high level, and he's proven to have a good rapport with Hoyer this season. In his past two games, Washington has combined for 37 Fantasy points with 13 catches for 201 and three touchdowns on 22 targets. The good news for this week is Hoyer and the Texans should be throwing a lot, and Washington should remain heavily involved. But the bad news is Cecil Shorts (hamstring) should return this week from his two-game absence, and Washington only has one game with double digits in Fantasy points when Shorts was healthy, which was Week 1 against Kansas City. DeAndre Hopkins should get his stats, but Washington could lose production with Shorts back in action. And we've really only seen No. 1 receivers have success against the Bengals this season as secondary options have struggled.
If for some reason we see Calvin Johnson (ankle) out in Week 10 then take Tate from this list and put him in the must-start group because he's a star when Johnson is out. But that's been the problem for Tate this season is he's been stuck in a secondary role -- and sometimes even third behind Eric Ebron -- and his production has suffered. He's only scored double digits in Fantasy points once in a standard league in Week 6 against Chicago. He only has double digits in targets twice this season, and he's been held to five Fantasy points or less in five of the past six games. The Packers are dealing with injuries in their secondary, which could help Tate, but most likely Stafford will continue to lean on Johnson and Ebron over Tate. Until he starts to play at a high level on a consistent basis he should remain reserved in the majority of leagues.
Watkins had plenty of praise for Revis, and rightfully so, saying to the Buffalo News that facing the Jets top cornerback is the "hardest challenge of my career, season, every year." Last year, the two met twice when Revis was with the Patriots, and Watkins was held to a combined seven catches for 84 yards and no touchdowns. He was a rookie then, and he's coming off a tremendous game in Week 9 against Miami with eight catches on eight targets for 168 yards and a touchdown. And despite dealing with a variety of injuries, Watkins has scored in three of the five games he's played in. We just saw Revis get beat up by Robinson in Week 9, but we doubt he'll struggle in consecutive games. Watkins is only worth using as a No. 3 Fantasy receiver this week.
When healthy, Reed has been among the best Fantasy tight ends this season, and he should continue to play well this week. He's scored at least seven Fantasy points in a standard league in the five games he's been able to finish this season, and he hasn't had fewer than six targets in any outing. In Week 9 at New England, Reed had three catches for 18 yards and a touchdown on seven targets, and seven Fantasy points in a standard league is his floor this week. The Saints have struggled with tight ends all year, and four tight ends have scored double digits in Fantasy points against New Orleans. In Week 9, the Saints allowed Delanie Walker to score two touchdowns, and Anthony Fasano also found the end zone. Reed should be great this week.
The Packers have struggled with tight ends of late, and Ebron should be able to take advantage of this matchup. Antonio Gates and Ladarius Green combined for 12 catches, 130 yards and a touchdown against Green Bay in Week 6. Owen Daniels and Virgil Green combined for six catches for 105 yards in Week 8 and Greg Olsen had four catches for 66 yards and a touchdown in Week 9. Ebron has three games with double digits in Fantasy points of the six he's played this year, including two on the road at San Diego and at Minnesota. With the Lions likely chasing points this week, we should see Ebron play well in Week 10.
The Titans leaned on Walker as the biggest difference maker in their passing game with Kendall Wright (knee) out at New Orleans in Week 9, and Wright isn't expected to play this week against the Panthers. Walker had eight targets for seven catches, 95 yards and two touchdowns, which was easily his best game of the season, but he's had some other good moments as well. Walker has at least six catches in four games in a row and at least 95 receiving yards in two of his past four outings. He should see a hefty amount of targets this week as well, and the Panthers have struggled with tight ends of late. Three tight ends in the past four weeks (Jimmy Graham, Coby Fleener and Richard Rodgers) have all scored double digits in Fantasy points, and Walker could add his name to that list with Mariota leaning on him in this matchup.
Jason Witten (at TB): He should be a safe option in PPR leagues this week.
Richard Rodgers (vs. DET): A TE has scored vs. DET in three of past four.
Kyle Rudolph (at OAK): OAK allows the most touchdowns to tight ends.
Miller has a great matchup against the Browns this week, and Cleveland has allowed four tight ends to score double digits in Fantasy points with eight touchdowns allowed to the position. But you can't trust him without Ben Roethlisberger (foot) this week. In the four games this season Miller has played without Roethlisberger, he has combined for four Fantasy points on five catches for 52 yards. In the start with Landry Jones in Week 7 at Kansas City, Miller had no catches on two targets. He also has combined for eight Fantasy points in his past four meetings with the Browns going back to 2013. Until Roethlisberger returns, you can't start Miller in any format.
Thomas has been a bust candidate for the season with one good game in the four he's been active, which was against Houston in Week 6 when he scored 13 Fantasy points in a standard league. Otherwise he's combined for three Fantasy points in his other three games, and he had one point in Week 9 at the Jets despite eight targets. He will likely see a hefty amount of targets again this week against the Ravens, but this is a good week to bench Thomas in the majority of leagues. Baltimore has allowed one tight end to score more than six Fantasy points, which was Gary Barnidge in Week 5, including matchups with Eifert and Gates. It would be nice to see Thomas play well, especially with Bortles playing at a high level, but until we see consistent production from Thomas he should remain on your bench.
Just when it looked like Daniels was done as a relevant Fantasy option with the Broncos trading for Vernon Davis prior to Week 9 at the Colts he comes out and has his best game of the season with six catches for 102 yards and a touchdown on nine targets. We'll see how he does this week, but Davis should take on more work after getting just one target against Indianapolis. And the Chiefs have been amazing against tight ends all season. Kansas City has allowed just two touchdowns to opposing tight ends, including Virgil Green in Week 2, but no tight end has scored more than seven Fantasy points, with matchups against Tyler Eifert, Martellus Bennett and Ebron. Daniels had three catches for 19 yards at Kansas City in the first matchup, and we expect him to struggle in the rematch this week.
I originally had Barnidge as a starting option this week, but that was with Josh McCown (ribs) expected to start at quarterback. Since it appears like Johnny Manziel will now start against the Steelers that would limit Barnidge even in a favorable matchup. Barnidge has not played well with Manziel, and all six of his games with double digits in Fantasy points in a standard league have come with McCown under center. Manziel started in Week 9 at Cincinnati, and Barnidge finished with two catches for 35 yards on seven targets. He could still play well this week against the Steelers, who have allowed a touchdown or 60 receiving yards to six tight ends this season. But his track record with Manziel compared to McCown has not been good, and if Manziel starts as expected then be wary of using Barnidge in the majority of leagues.
Panthers (at TEN): The Titans nearly played a flawless game against the Saints in Week 9. They scored 34 points with no sacks allowed, and all they had was a lost fumble. But that performance had as much to do with the Saints porous defense as it did with the Titans. Mariota has two games this season where he's been sacked at least six times, and six opposing DST units have scored at least 12 Fantasy points against Tennessee this year. The Panthers have four games this season with at least four sacks, and they've scored at least 11 Fantasy points in four games. Kuechly is expected to play in Week 10 despite his injured ankle, but keep an eye on his status. Even if Kuechly is out you can still trust the Panthers DST this week.
Eagles (vs. MIA): PHI has 13 sacks in the past four games.
Steelers (vs. CLE): CLE has allowed 30 sacks on the season.
Ravens (vs. JAC): Bortles has seven interceptions in his past four games.
Vikings (at OAK): The Raiders offense has turned into a juggernaut the past three games, and that should mean bad news for the Vikings DST. Oakland has scored at least 34 points in three games against San Diego, the Jets and Pittsburgh, and those opposing DST units have combined for just nine Fantasy points in a standard league over that span. Carr has been sacked just once in those three games, and the Vikings come into this game with just two combined sacks in their last two outings. Now, Minnesota hasn't allowed more than 23 points as a team in any game this year, and the Vikings have held three of their past four opponents to under 20 points in Kansas City, Detroit and St. Louis. But none of those teams have played as well as Oakland during the past three games, and we expect the Raiders to play well in this matchup at home.
Justin Tucker (vs. JAC): Tucker is one of the best kickers in the NFL, and he's typically been a top Fantasy option. But like most of the Ravens, he's underperformed this season. He only has three games this year with double digits in Fantasy points in a standard league, and he's actually scored six points or less three times in eight games. He did that only five times in each of the past two seasons. He was great in his last game before the bye against the Chargers with five field goals and two extra points, and the Jaguars have also allowed some big games to kickers this season. Four kickers have scored double digits in Fantasy points against Jacksonville in the past six games, all on the road, and Tucker should follow suit. He should have one of this better outings this week.
Connor Barth (vs. DAL): DAL has allowed multiple FGs in five in a row.
Caleb Sturgis (vs. MIA): Do revenge games count for kickers also?
Blair Walsh (at OAK): Every kicker vs. OAK has made multiple field goals.
Chandler Catanzaro (at SEA): Catanzaro has been hit or miss this year as a starting Fantasy kicker. He only has two games this season with double digits in Fantasy points in a standard league, but he's never been below six points in any week. On the road, Catanzaro has just two games with multiple field goals, and his best game on the road was Week 8 at Cleveland with two field goals and four extra points. He did not fare well in Seattle last year with one made field goal on two attempts and no extra points, and the Seahawks have not allowed multiple field goals at home this year against Robbie Gould, Matt Prater and Graham Gano. Greg Zuerlein, Mason Crosby and Dan Bailey all scored double digits in Fantasy points vs. Seattle this year, but that was with the Seahawks on the road.
Full Disclosure from Week 9
Week 9 didn't go as planned, starting with Jeremy Hill struggling as the Start of the Week on Thursday night against the Browns and then ending with several players I had as sits doing well. I had plenty of positive calls, but like most things in life, you remember the bad more than the good.
Hill failed to take advantage of a terrific matchup against Cleveland and was the No. 29 running back in standard leagues. Hopefully he can rebound this week against Houston, but Giovani Bernard is the best Bengals running back in Week 10 if you have both guys.
My positive start suggestions, including sleepers, were Marcus Mariota, Ben Roethlisberger, Derek Carr, DeAngelo Williams, Jeremy Langford, LeGarrette Blount, LeSean McCoy, Darren McFadden, Shane Vereen, Antonio Andrews, Amari Cooper, Michael Crabtree, Dez Bryant, Brandin Cooks, Eric Decker and Allen Hurns.
The calls I missed that upset me the most were guys I said to sit in Cam Newton, Andrew Luck, Blake Bortles, Frank Gore and Allen Robinson. All played better than expected, especially Newton, who went off against the Packers.
| Full Disclosure from Week 9 |
| Starts of the Week |
| Player || Sportsline projected Pts. || Actual Fantasy Pts. || Start % || Pos. rank |
| Jeremy Hill, RB, Bengals || 13.1 || 5 || 90 || 29 |
| Recommended starts who made us look good |
| DeAngelo Williams, RB, Steelers || 10.9 || 36 || 78 || 1 |
| Derek Carr, QB, Raiders || 17.5 || 34 || 41 || 5 |
| Michael Crabtree, WR, Raiders || 6.6 || 22 || 59 || 3 |
| Recommended sits who made us look good |
| T.Y. Hilton, WR, Colts || 5.8 || 8 || 35 || 31 |
| Melvin Gordon, RB, Chargers || 8.9 || 5 || 48 || 30 |
| James Jones, WR, Packers || 7.3 || 5 || 48 || 50 |
| Recommended starts who made us look bad |
| Eli Manning, QB, Giants || 21.8 || 16 || 72 || 21 |
| Antonio Gates, TE, Chargers || 9.3 || 6 || 78 || 14 |
| Ronnie Hillman, RB, Broncos || 10.6 || 0 || 62 || 55 |
| Recommended sits who made us look bad |
| Cam Newton, QB, Panthers || 20.3 || 38 || 62 || 3 |
| Frank Gore, RB, Colts || 8.1 || 15 || 50 || 15 |
| Allen Robinson, WR, Jaguars || 8.6 || 12 || 60 || 15 |