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Outliers, Week 10

A comparison of the weekly positional rankings and the Top 200, this is an output of the players who could either have unexpected good or poor fantasy weeks.

This article will take a weekly look at players who are either undervalued or overvalued each week. The outlier value players offer is calculated by a comparison between the Top 200 forward, a look at the top 200 players with the whole season in mind, and the initial weekly Footballguys rankings. Both sources are from the Footballguys.com subscriber content. An emphasis will be on the players with the largest differences between the season outlook and this week only. Also, a preference will be given to differences for the higher ranked players. Some of these differences will be due to injury, the matchup of the week, or short-term situation.  Now, let's look at this week's outlier players. 

Quarterback

Jared Goff

  • Top 200 ranking: 14
  • Weekly ranking: 9
  • Difference: +5

Goff has played extremely well this season.  The addition of coach Sean McVay has done wonders for the former first-overall pick.  This week, the Rams host the Texans in what should be a plum matchup for the Los Angeles pass offense. The lone concern is that the Rams are huge favorites and may jump out to a lead and lean on the running game, passing infrequently in the second half. 

Cam Newton

  • Top 200 ranking: 10
  • Weekly ranking: 4
  • Difference: +6

Newton and the Panthers host the Dolphins this week in a huge game for the home team.  A victory is needed to keep pace with New Orleans.  The Miami pass defense has been inconsistent this season.  On Sunday night, the Dolphins allowed Derek Carr and the Raiders passing game to accumulate 300 yards through the air and get the win.  Newton has been running more of late and his rushing yardage should provide a solid fantasy floor.

Kirk Cousins

 

  • Top 200 ranking: 9
  • Weekly ranking: 12
  • Difference: -3

 

Cousins led his troops to an improbable win in Seattle last week.  The Washington offense gets another stiff test as Minnesota comes to town.  The Vikings are coming off a bye week and should be well-prepared for Cousins and company.  This is a Minnesota pass defense which is the fourth-worst matchup for opposing fantasy quarterbacks.  Coach Zimmer knows defense and should have a plan for the Washington passing game and coach Gruden, as the two coached together in Cincinnati a few years ago. 

Andy Dalton

 

  • Top 200 ranking: 13
  • Weekly ranking: 21
  • Difference: -8

 

The Bengals offense has been stuck in a rut the past few weeks, scoring 14 or fewer points in two of the three most recent games.  Cincinnati faces Tennessee in a tough matchup for both teams.  The Titans are in the middle of the league in pass defense, yet desperately need a win to keep pace with Jacksonville in the division.  Expect A.J. Green to see plenty of attention from the Titans secondary.  Green was frequently open last week, before his ejection, but Dalton was off the mark.  The veteran passer does not look confident in his play or the offense.

Running Back

Aaron Jones

 

  • Top 200 ranking: 33
  • Weekly ranking: 17
  • Difference: +16

 

Jones is a dynamic playmaker who should see plenty of action against the Chicago Bears this week.  He lost playing time on Monday night due to poor pass protection.  The game against the Lions should be closer on the scoreboard. We expect the Packers to lean on the running game and less on the pass of Hundley. 

Ameer Abdullah

 

  • Top 200 ranking: 34
  • Weekly ranking: 19
  • Difference: +15

 

The Lions found their running game in Abdullah on Monday night.  We expect the young runner to have a prominent role in the Detroit victories.  The game against Cleveland this week fits squarely in this category.  We expect the Lions to dominate the scoreboard and Abdullah to be a productive fantasy RB2 for owners. 

James White

 

  • Top 200 ranking: 19
  • Weekly ranking: 27
  • Difference: -8

 

White has an uncertain role every week as New England uses their tailbacks to take advantage of matchups. Fantasy owners are confused which Patriots back to start in a given week but this week’s matchup against the Broncos is especially confusing.  The Denver defense had been strong versus the run until last week’s massacre at the hands of Philadelphia.  We expect the Broncos defense to rebound.  This is not a great week to start White unless desperate. 

Alvin Kamara

 

  • Top 200 ranking: 5
  • Weekly ranking: 11
  • Difference: -6

 

Kamara is coming off an outstanding performance last week.  The game in Buffalo this week will be a tough test for the New Orleans.  While the Bills rush defense is not great versus the run, we expect Mark Ingram to get the bulk of the fantasy points.  The Saints will need to utilize the powerful runner in order to beat the Bills.  Kamara is still a fantasy RB1 this week, but unlikely to duplicate last week’s output.

Wide Receiver

Demaryius Thomas

 

  • Top 200 ranking: 22
  • Weekly ranking: 10
  • Difference: +12

 

Thomas has been the lone viable weapon while Brock Osweiler is under center.  Osweiler has locked his attention on the play-making receiver and rarely looks elsewhere.  The prime matchup against the Patriots this week could see Thomas with a 100 receiving yards and a score.  Denver should be throwing often trying to keep pace with Tom Brady and company.  New England is the third-worst defense at stopping opposing fantasy wide receivers. 

Sterling Shepard

 

  • Top 200 ranking: 23
  • Weekly ranking: 12
  • Difference: +11

 

Shepard looked healthy last week and should see ample targets against the 49ers this week.  Surprisingly, San Francisco is favored over New York.  This contest should be high scoring, allowing Shepard to have a solid fantasy game.  The Giants have few weapons in the passing game and should lean on the young pass catcher. 

Keenan Allen

 

  • Top 200 ranking: 12
  • Weekly ranking: 15
  • Difference: -3

 

Allen has played great this season.  The matchup this week in Jacksonville is a tough one for Allen and the rest of the Chargers passing game.  The Jaguars are the top defense against fantasy wide receivers and yields only 21 PPR points, on average, to entire receiving corps.  Allen will see better matchups soon on the horizon. 

T.Y. Hilton

 

  • Top 200 ranking: 15
  • Weekly ranking: 18
  • Difference: -3

 

Hilton is coming off a big game against Houston, embellished by the fluke 80-yard touchdown.  This week, the Colts face the Steelers in Indianapolis.  Pittsburgh is second to only Jacksonville in defending opposing receivers.  Hilton is still a middle-of-the-road fantasy WR2 this week.  We just doubt he will duplicate last week’s effort against a strong defense coming off a bye. 

Tight End

Delanie Walker

  • Top 200 ranking: 11
  • Weekly ranking: 3
  • Difference: +8

Walker appeared to be back to full speed last week.  He is quietly the focal point of the Tennessee passing game.  With Demarco Murray nicked up, we expect Walker to be utilized on short passes in the middle of the field.  He is an underrated fantasy option but has been a solid fantasy player this year.  Walker has scored at least 14.6 PPR points in half of his games and no less than 7 PPR points in any game. 

Ed Dickson

  • Top 200 ranking: 34
  • Weekly ranking: 15
  • Difference: +19

Dickson has a great matchup against the Dolphins, the fifth-worst defense in limiting fantasy production from the tight end position.  The departure of Kelvin Benjamin might also increase the targets for the big tight end, especially in the red zone. 

Hunter Henry

  • Top 200 ranking: 10
  • Weekly ranking: 13
  • Difference: -3

Even with three of the top 10 tight ends in the Top 200 on bye this week, Henry is overvalued.  The Chargers travel west-to-east for the early Sunday game, a formula which has not been successful for west coast teams in the recent past.  In addition, the game against one of the top defenses, the Jacksonville Jaguars, will only result in quarterback Philip Rivers being under pressure all game.  This will be a difficult test for the entire Los Angeles offense, not just the second-year tight end. 

Feel free to (email me) with feedback.  Also, I am on Twitter (www.Twitter.com/JeffTefertiller), LinkedIn, and Google+, so you can ask me questions on one of these as well.