In this article, we take a look at the slate of games for Week 11 in an effort to give you options that we think can help you get the most out of your lineup. We are looking to maximize your lineup by giving you a few cheaper options that can help you to get your lineup loaded up in other areas.
We give consideration to the script of each of the games to determine how these games will likely play out. We also evaluate the play of the wide receivers and tight ends and how they will match up with the defenses they will face. We also look at players that are injured, or those coming back from injury. We then target plays that we like and a few that we don’t.
With the help of our defensive guru Aaron Rudnicki, let’s take a look at players that we both like and a few that we would avoid this week.
Mike Evans, WR, Tampa Bay @ Philadelphia ($7,300)
Bischoff: Evans is a target hog in the Tamp Bay offense and it’s just a matter of time before he turns these targets into a multi-touchdown game. He is a streaky player and while he scored 12 touchdowns last year as a rookie, 10 came in the last nine games of the season. I’d get Evans on board as he is due for a very big game.
Rudnicki: Tampa likes to move Evans around quite a bit so he should match up with both of the Eagles starting corners throughout the game. Byron Maxwell has not looked as comfortable in the Eagles schemes as he did with Seattle and has given up big plays all year, so that should be a matchup that Evans can take full advantage of. Nolan Carroll isn’t exactly a shutdown corner either though so I think Evans can keep his run of big games going (has 8 catches and 100+ yards in 3 of 4 games).
Michael Crabtree, WR, Oakland @ Detroit ($6,000)
Bischoff: Second-year cornerback Nevin Lawson looked very good last week matched up versus Green Bay’s DeVantae Adams, but this was a very out of sorts Packers team. This week the Raiders come into town with the passing game hot, and Crabtree gets the benefit of drawing coverage that plays to this strengths. He’s been targeted 37 times in the past four games and has converted 24 into catches while compiling 328 yards and four scores.
Rudnicki: The Lions put starting corner Rashean Mathis on injured reserve with a concussion and also lost depth corner Josh Wilson, which leaves them very shorthanded at the position. They are likely to use their best corner to shadow Amari Cooper this week, which means Crabtree will most likely face off against the inexperienced Nevin Lawson.
Marvin Jones Jr, WR, Cincinnati @ Arizona ($4,300)
Bischoff: I’d expect Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton to continue to take shots down the field in Week 11, and that means that Jones will see opportunity to make some big plays for his offense. The Cardinals have the personnel to limit the other Bengals weapons, and it’ll be Jones that draws the weakest cornerback this week. At his price he can get to value with a stat-line of six catches for 80 yards and a score, and I think he can get there this week.
Rudnicki: With Patrick Peterson likely to lock up A.J. Green and Tyrann Mathieu limiting the chances for Mohamed Sanu in the slot, Jones should find himself matched up with Jerraud Powers. Given those choices and the fact the Cardinals are also strong against tight ends, I expect Jones to be Dalton’s favorite target this week.
Golden Tate, WR, Detroit vs. Oakland ($4,600)
Bischoff: The Lions are going to score points in this game at home, and it’ll be an opportunity for the secondary weapons in this game. Tate’s price is low enough, and there were signs of life in the Week 10 win on the road in Green Bay. There will be enough volume going Tate’s way this week to warrant rostering him.
Rudnicki: Both Lions receivers this week should be solid choices, but Calvin Johnson obviously comes with a much higher price tag. Tate has mostly been a disappointment for fantasy owners this year, but he has a great chance to turn things around this week with a matchup against one of the weakest corners in the league in D.J. Hayden.
Danny Amendola, WR, New England vs. Buffalo ($4,000)
Bischoff: If there is a weakness in the Bills secondary, it is in the short passing game into the middle of the field. I’d expect Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski to see bracketed coverage all day which takes a player out of the middle of the field, an obvious advantage for Amendola. The value in Amendola is in the number of targets he’ll see and his conversion rate of those targets. He’ll be heavily owned at this price but he should easily get to value in this game.
Rudnicki: With Julian Edelman likely out for the year, Amendola should step right into his role in the Patriots offense and see a huge increase in playing time and targets. He is a proven talent who can do a lot of the same things that Edelman does, and the Bills biggest weakness this year is defending pass plays over the middle. The absence of RB Dion Lewis also doesn’t hurt as the Patriots don’t seem to have another RB who can fill his role in the passing game and Amendola should help fill some of that void.
Stevie Johnson, WR, San Diego vs. Kansas City ($3,900)
Bischoff: Johnson is another player on this list that should see a significant amount of targets this week as the Chargers are banged up at the wide receiver position. He’s roster worthy in this full PPR format as he should be a focal point out of the slot for the Chargers.
Rudnicki: The Chiefs have gotten some more consistent play from their outside corners lately, but Ron Parker is beatable inside. Steve Johnson works primarily out of the slot where he’s most comfortable and he should have an advantage over Parker here. The Chiefs are also very good at defending the TE, which figures to keep Gates in check and result in more targets for Johnson who is the Chargers No. 1 WR now.
Jordan Matthews, WR, Philadelphia vs. Tampa Bay ($6,000)
Bischoff: Matthews has had his share of trouble catching the ball in his second-season in the NFL, but he’s going to continue to see heavy volume in the Eagles’ offense. Starting quarterback Sam Bradford is out due to injury and backup Mark Sanchez is going to start for the Eagles in Week 11. Sanchez and Matthews had some chemistry last season over the final nine games with Matthews scoring six touchdowns (he had eight TD total in 2014).
Rudnicki: Despite many favorable matchups this year, Matthews has been unable to really get going much of the time. The matchup with Tampa should see him line up against slot corner Alterraun Verner, who was benched earlier and has not played very well. Additionally, the QB change from Bradford to Sanchez figures to help as the two worked well together last year.
Tavon Austin, WR, St. Louis @ Baltimore ($4,600)
Bischoff: Austin is as explosive a player as there is in the NFL, and the Rams are doing everything they can do to get the ball into his hands. The Ravens are No. 26 in the NFL against the pass and they tend to give up big plays (34 passing plays over 20 yards) and big plays for Austin will be touchdowns. Given the matchup and his usage, I’ll have Austin in a bunch of lineups in Week 11.
Rudnicki: The Rams passing attack should get a boost with Case Keenum under center this week as they face one of the absolute worst pass defenses in the league. Lardarius Webb has been the best corner for Baltimore but he often plays in the slot, which means he will likely take on newcomer Wes Welker. That should leave Austin and Kenny Britt with great matchups outside, but Austin has been more productive this year and looks like the best option to take advantage.
Eric Ebron, TE, Detroit vs. Oakland ($3,500)
Bischoff: Ebron is a secondary weapon in the Lions offense, but that means big things this week against the Raiders. The Raiders have shown throughout the 2015 season that they don’t have enough playmakers on defense to hang with tight ends, and Ebron’s athletic ability gives him an added advantage here. Ebron needs four catches and 60 yards and a score to be worthy of rostering and he should get there this week.
Rudnicki: The Raiders are the gift that keeps on giving when it comes to opposing tight ends. They have given up 10 touchdowns to tight ends this year, with the only miss coming from the Broncos in week 5. The catches and yards given up haven’t been huge in recent weeks, but that had a lot to do with the teams they were facing. Ebron hasn’t been great this year, but he’s shown enough flashes to indicate he can take advantage of this matchup.
Travis Kelce, TE, Kansas City @ San Diego ($4,700)
Bischoff: Kelce has an elite skill set at the tight end position but has been limited from a scoring perspective in the Chiefs offense. This might be the week that the dam breaks and Kelce gets into the end zone for fantasy owners. His price is low enough to help fill out your roster elsewhere and he can offer TE No. 1 for the week type production.
Rudnicki: Even with Eric Weddle back at safety, the Chargers are having difficulty containing the tight end position. They’ve given up 4 touchdowns to the position in the past 3 games, which is a great sign for Kelce whose main drawback all year has been a lack of touchdowns. This has the feeling of a game where he could easily pick up a pair of touchdowns and establish himself as one of the truly elite fantasy TE options.
AJ Green, WR, Cincinnati @ Arizona ($7,700)
Bischoff: Green draws Cardinals cornerback Patrick Peterson in Week 11 and that’s a stiff test for any receiver. While Green is a very talented receiver with the ability to beat anyone on the outside, this looks like a tough enough matchup and the Bengals might just avoid getting the ball to Green this week.
Rudnicki: Green has now posted a couple of bad games in a row, and things don’t figure to get much easier for him this weekend. The Cardinals like to have Patrick Peterson shadow the opposing team’s No. 1 WR so that should mean plenty of matchups with Green. While Green is good enough to win this matchup at times, it also figures to be one of the toughest he’ll face all year so it’s tough to expect much from him.
DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Houston vs. New York Jets ($8,800)
Bischoff: Make no mistake, Hopkins is an elite wide receiver having a monster season and his addition here as a negative play has everything to do with two factors. First is that he draws Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis, and second is the quarterback situation in Houston. The Texans will force the ball to Hopkins and there is some value there, but the cost of rostering Hopkins is too great with the limited production coming this week.
Rudnicki: Hopkins is obviously the type of WR you can plug into your lineup regardless of the matchup, but there are two factors here that might make you reconsider. One is the fact that he’ll likely be matched up with Darrelle Revis for much of the game, even though he struggled against Sammy Watkins a week ago on national television. Second is the fact that Brian Hoyer is unlikely to play so the Texans will have to turn to T.J. Yates at QB. Yates may not be that bad, but he is likely a downgrade given how Hoyer had been playing.
Jeremy Maclin, WR, Kansas City @ San Diego ($5,000)
Bischoff: Maclin draws Chargers cornerback Jason Verrett in Week 11 and that is a poor matchup for the Chiefs wide receiver. The Chiefs are a difficult team to trust from a passing outlook, and I see Kelce as a much better play against the Chargers secondary in this game.
Rudnicki: Jason Verrett has been playing tremendous for much of the year, but it’s gone somewhat unnoticed because of other breakdowns in the Chargers defense. In their last game, it wasn’t until he left the game with an injury that Alshon Jeffery really got going and looked unstoppable. Verett figures to lock up with Maclin, who has cooled off considerably with 3 poor games in a row just as the Chiefs started winning.
T.Y. Hilton, WR, Indianapolis @ Atlanta ($6,200)
Bischoff: Hilton is a tremendous vertical threat at the wide receiver position for the Colts, but the loss of quarterback Andrew Luck is a crushing blow to the strength of Hilton’s game. The matchup against Falcons cornerback Desmond Trufant isn’t helping matters, as the Colts will look to get the ball moving via short passes in Week 11. This is a week to avoid Hilton.
Rudnicki: Hilton figures to match up with the Falcons top corner Desmond Trufant for much of this game, which figures to help keep him in check. Additionally, the switch to Matt Hasselbeck at QB likely means more short and intermediate passes, which worked very well for Andre Johnson earlier in the year but not so great for Hilton.
Alshon Jeffery, WR, Chicago vs. Denver ($6,800)
Bischoff: It feels like Jeffery has been on this list as a negative play all year and it’s a testament to how well he’s played through an assortment of injuries. This week the Bears face the best pass defense in the NFL with Denver coming to town. The Broncos have the league’s best cornerback tandem in Aqib Talib and Chris Harris Jr, and the Bears are going to have a very tough time throwing the ball on them this week.
Rudnicki: Jeffery was shut down by the Rams defense last week even though the Bears wound up winning that game easily. He should once again find things very difficult as the Broncos make a trip to Chicago and he gets to line up opposite Chris Harris Jr and Aqib Talib all day.
Kamar Aiken, WR, Baltimore vs. St. Louis ($4,800)
Bischoff: The Rams have the ability to bring tremendous pressure to the quarterback with only their defensive line and they don’t give opposing quarterbacks a lot of time to stand in the pocket and make throws. Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco is going to get the ball out quickly in this game and that means less volume for Aiken in Week 11.
Rudnicki: If the Rams can shut down Alshon Jeffery after the way he had been playing, you have to think they will not have too much trouble with Aiken here. Even though they were victimized by the Bears TEs and RBs last week, they held the WRs to a total of 4 catches for 24 yards. All of the Rams corners have been playing well, so the Ravens best chance in a game like this is likely to come from their running game.
DeSean Jackson, WR, Washington @ Carolina ($5,100)
Bischoff: The matchup that Jackson gets this week is one that has caused poor production for most wide receivers this year. Currently there is no cornerback playing better than Panthers cornerback Josh Norman, and this isn’t the week to test him by putting Jackson into your lineup.
Rudnicki: Jackson says he’s healthy but he only saw 30 snaps in last week’s win over the Saints. He didn’t do a whole lot in that matchup, and figures to find things a whole lot tougher now with a trip to Carolina. Jackson should be matched up with Josh Norman for most of the game and that just isn’t a matchup that many WRs are going to have success against.
Tyler Eifert, TE, Cincinnati @ Arizona ($5,900)
Bischoff: The Cardinals have the luxury of possessing the type of personnel to shut down tight ends via their safeties and scheme. Tyrann Mathieu has become a rock-solid safety and consistently makes plays in the Cardinals secondary. Rashad Johnson is a good player too, and the Cardinals play Deone Bucannon as a nickel linebacker and all of it adds up to a scheme that all tight ends have struggled against. I’d expect the struggles to continue this week and I’d avoid Eifert in Week 11.
Rudnicki: Eifert has 9 touchdowns in 9 games this year, but he was plagued by drops last week and now faces a defense who has given up just 1 TD to a TE all year. In fact, no TE has put up more than 53 yards against them this year either. Arizona’s strength is the safety position so they should match up well with Eifert and likely force the Bengals to beat them elsewhere.
Antonio Gates, TE, San Diego vs. Kansas City ($4,800)
Bischoff: The Chiefs are the No. 15 passing defense in the NFL but the stat is misleading when considering what they’ve given up to the tight end position. Also, the Chiefs passing defense has done a good job of limiting quarterback play, surrendering a quarterback rating of 79.8 which is the fifth best in the NFL. There have been very few tight ends that have produced against the Chiefs at the level Gates would need to get to this week. It’s best just to avoid him in both cash games and GPP play in Week 11.
Rudnicki: Gates is probably going to be highly owned because the Chargers are missing some key weapons on offense and the Chiefs have given up a lot of fantasy points through the air. However, the Chiefs actually rank among the best teams in the league at defending the TE position. They’ve only given up 2 TDs to the position all year and are allowing an average of just 3 catches for 31 yards to the position each week.
Martellus Bennett, TE, Chicago vs. Denver ($4,200)
Bischoff: The Broncos own the league’s best pass defense. They get pressure from the edges in outside linebackers Demarcus Ware and Von Miller, and they boast a fearsome secondary led by cornerbacks Chris Harris Jr and Aqib Talib. Also, safeties T.J. Ward and Darian Stewart patrol the middle of the field to limit the production of tight ends. This is not the week to play Bennett.
Rudnicki: In addition to the Broncos being a terrible matchup for most receiving options, now the Bears appear to be getting production from their #2 TE in Zach Miller. Martellus Bennett is one of the better blocking tight ends in the league, so they may need to keep him in more this week to try and slow down that great Broncos pass rush.