WR Travis Benjamin - Los Angeles Chargers
|5-10, 172||Born: 12-29-1989||College: Miami (FL)||Drafted: Round 4, pick 2012|
Week 15: at Kansas City Chiefs
FBG says: Great matchup. Two of the top big-play passing offense meet this week as Phillip Rivers and the Chargers rank just behind the Chiefs with the second-highest yards per pass attempt while Rivers ranks fifth in passing touchdowns behind the first-place Patrick Mahomes. Rivers had passed for multiple touchdowns in every game leading up to last week, but his streak came to an end against the Bengals as the red zone proved to be a challenge for Rivers and company to navigate. Keenan Allen was the recipient of that one touchdown last week though, as Allen has now developed a streak of his own with at least 57 receiving yards and a touchdown in five straight games. Allen had a relatively slow start to the season for his standards, averaging just below six receptions and 72 receiving yards per game with one touchdown thru Week 8 leading to ranking 26th in PPR scoring amongst wide receivers. In the second half of the season, since Week 9, some softer matchups and increased focus from Rivers has led to Allen averaging just under eight receptions and 95 receiving yards per game with five touchdowns, vaulting him to the third-ranked fantasy wide receiver in PPR scoring in the last six weeks. The long-awaited return of top Chiefs safety Eric Berry will finally happen this week barring any pre-game setbacks. This Chiefs secondary will be welcoming him with open arms as they currently rank worst in the league with 282 passing yards allowed--in part due to the pass-heavy game scripts they so often find themselves in. They have been particularly weak in coverage in the middle of the field with both tight ends and running backs producing at high levels when facing the Chiefs--a testament to how poor the play by their safeties and linebackers has been. Coverage by their cornerbacks on the outside has been marginally better though, as touchdowns from opposing wide receivers have been kept to a minimum while production from outside receivers has at least been held to average levels. If Berry can return at even a partial percentage of his old self, it will help significantly as the Chargers can be very dangerous with Keenan Allen on those short routes from the slot to dominate the middle of the field. The matchup in the trenches cannot be ignored in this one either though, as the Chargers have an impressive offensive line that has held Phillip Rivers upright the majority of this season while the Chiefs rank second in sacks with at least three sacks in four straight games. These Chiefs pass rushers led by Justin Houston has been absolutely relentless even against strong offensive lines such as the Rams recently, so they get the edge in that matchup especially with the rookie Justin Jackson likely to pick up blocking duties if he is the only healthy running back for the Chargers.
Recent Stats and Projections
Weekly Performance vs WR 1, WR 12, WR 24, WR 36
Travis Benjamin's percentile rank in each category, among WR with more than 50 fantasy points.
Recent Game Summaries
2018 Week 14 vs CIN (1 / 1 / 11 / 0 rec)
Benjamin turned his lone target into an 11-yard gain on a crossing route late in the first half to try and set up a Hail Mary bomb. Instead, the Chargers got a little bit closer than anticipated and ended up kicking a 59-yard field goal before the half ended.
2018 Week 13 vs PIT (2 / 2 / 44 / 1 rec, 1 / 1 / 0 rush)
Benjamin was the recipient of some good luck (or poor officiating, depending on how you look at it) late in the first half. With the Chargers trailing 13-0, a lineman appeared to commit a false start penalty. The Steeler players all pointed to it, and perhaps let up a bit on the defensive end, expecting a flag that never came. Benjamin took full advantage, racing past the defense down the right sideline, where Philip Rivers lofted a perfect pass right in his hands. Benjamin hauled it in for the 46-yard touchdown to get the Chargers on the board. Aside from that long pass, Benjamin's other reception was a short swing pass that he juggled for a loss, and he had a jet sweep handoff attempt that only gained a yard.
2018 Week 11 vs DEN (3 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)
Even though Benjamin didn't get his hands on the ball, he was still involved in one of the big negative plays of the game. He was targeted on two deep balls where the pass was nowhere near him down the field. But on a second half pass intended for him, the defender stepped right in front and nearly took it the other way for a score. Benjamin was the one who ran him down, and actually nearly forced a fumble on the tackle.
2018 Week 10 vs OAK (0 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec, 1 / -2 / 0 rush)
The team tried getting Benjamin involved with a reverse handoff in the first half, but it went nowhere. Benjamin ran east and west much more than north and south, and the play went for a 2-yard loss. He was not targeted in the passing game.
2018 Week 9 vs SEA (1 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec, 1 / -2 / 0 rush)
Benjamin's lone touch came midway through the fourth quarter on a "jet sweep" handoff attempt to the left side. Benjamin was caught behind the line and dragged down for a loss, and he had no impact on the passing game.
2018 Week 7 vs TEN (1 / 1 / 13 / 0 rec)
Benjamin returned from his foot injury, but was way down the list in terms of passing options. He was targeted just once, a second half comeback route to his back shoulder that he grabbed for a first down.
2018 Week 4 vs SF (1 / 1 / 2 / 0 rec)
Benjamin has been inactive with a foot injury the past few games; he registered just one short catch in this game before exiting after re-aggravating that same injury.
2018 Week 1 vs KC (5 / 1 / 1 / 0 rec, 1 / 19 / 0 rush)
Benjamin's afternoon opened on a positive note, going for 19 yards on a reverse handoff. And it was all downhill after that. He was targeted on a deep ball by just a bit, but Benjamin allowed the ball to bounce off of his fingertips. It was perhaps slightly overthrown, but it should have been caught and could have gone for a touchdown. He then took an inside screen for 14 yards that was negated by a block in the back on Tyrell Williams. Late in the first half, Benjamin again got wide open way past the defender. He again had to wait a bit for the ball to come down since Rivers threw the pass under duress, but it went right through Benjamin's hands and bounced off his thigh. For some reason, he kind of jumped just as the ball got to him, which seemed to throw off his rhythm. As if the first two weren't bad enough, he capped his afternoon with another dropped touchdown (this one definitely would have gone for a score since he dropped it IN the end zone). It was a perfectly-thrown bullet pass by Rivers, but he just let it go right through his hands. Benjamin does a great job of getting open in the deep secondary, but if he doesn't start hanging on to some of these passes he is going to find himself on the outside looking in at targets.
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|15||@ Kansas City Chiefs|
|16||vs Baltimore Ravens|
|17||@ Denver Broncos|