Among the main slate, the following teams have strong matchups. Who is your favorite for lineup building?
- 49ers wide receivers (Buccaneers)
- Giants wide receivers (Eagles)
- Patriots wide receivers (Jets)
- Dolphins wide receivers (Colts)
- 49ers tight ends (Buccaneers)
- Colts tight ends (Dolphins)
- Steelers tight ends (Broncos)
- Raiders tight ends (Ravens)
Pick one from each group and discuss the matchup and if stacking with them makes sense this week.
James Brimacombe: Out of the first group, I like Odell Beckham Jr as the best option as the Giants/Eagles game has some shootout potential to it and if that does happen it would likely mean that Beckham was a big part of it. Beckham has over 10 targets a game on average on the season and has 4 of his 5 touchdowns on the season over his last four games. The other games you just don’t know whom to pick out of the 49ers and Dolphins WRs as so much depends on their quarterback play which is a major question mark as of now. As far as the Patriots WRs, every week it also feels like a guessing game as you don’t have a clear idea of who will be seeing the volume.
George Kittle is the option that I want out of the second group. Behind only Travis Kelce and Zach Ertz right now you have to think that Kittle is the next in line as the top at his position. Kittle is the top option right now in the 49ers passing game and through 10 games he has a nice 50/775/3 stat line on 71 total targets. He remains a high volume player right now and in a game against the Buccaneers, he could see even more targets as it could be a shootout type of game.
Phil Alexander: If Zay Jones and Robert Foster can get over on the Jets secondary, Julian Edelman and Josh Gordon should have a field day. I'm particularly interested in Gordon for GPPs. He's fairly priced across the industry relative to his upside, has commanded double-digit targets in each of New England's last two games, and has one reception of at least 44 yards in three of his last four. Tom Brady and Gordon will connect on two of those deep shots eventually, and a home game after a bye against the lousy Jets defense seems like as good a time as any.
I'm on board with all these tight end plays to some degree. Kittle hasn't suffered from the change to Nick Mullens at quarterback for the 49ers. Vance McDonald has scored in two straight and faces a Broncos defense that just allowed a throwback performance to the geriatric Antonio Gates (7-5-80-1). Jared Cook is the only viable pass-catcher the Raiders have left. And no team emphasizes the tight end position as well as the Colts.
If forced to choose one for GPPs, give me Ebron coming off a zero target game. He proved as recently as Week 10 his ceiling is as high as any tight end (even in a timeshare), and the game script in Dolphins at Colts (IND -9) provides fertile ground for tight end fantasy production.
Justin Howe: Everyone against the Buccaneers. They haven’t given up gaudy numbers of late, but they’ve been losing games fairly easily and letting game flow sap their “potential.” With a nice, close spread here, I’m confident the 49ers will be throwing for four quarters. And the Buccaneers simply have no answers for the tight end spot. They’ve already allowed 9 different guys top 50 yards, and 5 have finished north of 70. Kittle is a huge athletic mismatch for their stiff safeties, and he should spend much of the day running through green grass down the seams. He’s a cash-game lock in my eyes.
However, the rest of the San Francisco attack is a bit too spread out for any confident stacking. Besides, super-stacking at both wideout and tight end makes little sense if you’re not also going to plug in the quarterback. And I’m not about to play Nick Mullens, even in this matchup. There’s a very real chance Kittle posts his 6-80-1 type of day and Marquise Goodwin also gets loose for 5-70-1 – and Mullens still doesn’t score beyond 18-20 DFS points. That would bring home the right GPP multiplier value, of course, but the opportunity cost to avoiding all other quarterbacks would be huge.
49ers wide receivers (Buccaneers)
Tampa Bay's passing defense has been slowly improving, but they are still ranked in the bottom third of the league, and dead last in touchdown passes allowed. With Nick Mullens under center, George Kittle has been his primary target, but Kendrick Bourne has also seen increased production. If you're looking for a cheap GPP stack, Mullens, Kittle and Bourne might produce some decent value this week.
Colts tight ends (Dolphins)
Andrew Luck has quietly put up some of the best numbers of his career these last few weeks. He has seven consecutive games with three or more passing touchdowns and has 275 or more passing yards in five of them. Eric Ebron had a crap week against the Titans, but he had three touchdowns in the previous two weeks and nine total for the season. This week against the Dolphins, expect him to bounce back and be near the top of the fantasy tight end production again.
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