The season is 10 weeks old, and for the most part, you've learned who the mainstays are in your lineup. However, here are a few under-the-radar players that I like this week who might be worthy of finding your starting roster, especially in deeper leagues. Take a look at the matchups and learn which defenses have been struggling lately. Is there an opportunity to catch lightning in a bottle with a non-traditional starter? It's easy to insert Christian McCaffrey, Jonathan Taylor, Tyreek Hill, and Davante Adams into your lineup, but the diamonds in the rough can win your week. Here's a look at a few from each position that I like, especially for this week.
- Cam Newton, CAR (vs Washington) - The Football Team has allowed the most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season, including three 300-yard games and three four-touchdown pass games. Newton and Carolina enter this game with a new sense of pride. In their mind, they are 1-0 since signing their forgotten savior. Newton brings a dual-threat approach to the game and is capable of scoring as a rusher and passer. Washington thwarted Tom Brady last week, so perhaps their defense is coming alive at the right time, despite losing Chase Young to a season-ending leg injury. If you picked up Newton after last week's signing, consider starting him in Week 11.
- Mac Jones, NE (at Atlanta) - Mac Jones and the Patriots are winners of their last four games and five of their last six. In those games, Jones has passed for over 235 yards in one of the last six games with only two games with multiple touchdowns in that span. He isn't the best fantasy answer at quarterback but he is getting the job done in the win column. What makes this matchup intriguing is the opponent. Atlanta has not allowed a single 300-yard passer this season, but they have allowed 19 touchdown passes in nine games including two touchdown passes in seven of nine games. Jones has a chance to put up decent numbers in Week 11 and is worthy of consideration as a fantasy starter this week in 1QB leagues.
- Tua Tagovailoa, MIA (at NY Jets) - Tagovailoa is returning from a finger ailment that shelved him for two weeks. While he didn't start last week, he replaced a banged-up Jacoby Brissett and has been named the starter for Week 11 against the Jets. Miami's opponent has allowed 12 touchdown passes in the last five games, three of which were also 300-yard passing efforts. Before injuring his finger, Tagovailoa had six touchdown passes in the last two games. He has a great chance to rise up the ranks with a strong performance against the Jets and their struggling defense.
- Justin Fields, CHI (vs Baltimore) - Fields is starting to emerge as a fantasy mainstay with two top 10 finishes in his last two games. He has rushed for 38 yards or more in each of the last four games and he's coming off a 291-yard passing performance against Pittsburgh. The Bears and Fields have lost four straight games, but the young rookie is starting to come into his own. Two straight 20+ fantasy weeks has many excited about his future. The Ravens have allowed two 400-yard passing games and eight touchdown passes in their last four games. This is a decent matchup for Chicago.
- Tyrod Taylor, HOU (at Tennessee) - Taylor had some struggles in his first game back from a hamstring injury. He tossed three interceptions with zero touchdowns in a loss to Miami. He and the Texans travel to division-leader Tennessee this week in a tough matchup against the Titans. On the bright side for Houston, Tennessee has allowed seven games of 270 yards passing or more this season. While winning games hasn't been much of a challenge for the Titans, their pass defense is being tested every week. Taylor is capable of a high-volume passing game, plus he also adds a degree of rushing to his strengths as a quarterback. It may not look like the best matchup on paper, but this could wind up being a decent fantasy outing for Taylor.
- Myles Gaskin, MIA (at NY Jets) - Gaskin has not been a consistent every-week starter for us this season, but this week looks like a good time to fire him up in your lineup. The Jets have allowed 17 rushing touchdowns to running backs alone this season. Eight different running backs have scored against the Jets in the last four games. At least one running back has a rushing touchdown in every game but Week 1. Gaskin has at least 40 snaps in each of the last four games. No other running back has more than 22. If you have Gaskin on your roster, this is the week you can, and probably should play him.
- Damien Harris, NE (at Atlanta) - Last week was Rhamondre Stevenson's time to shine with Damien Harris out with a head injury. He was productive and looked good in his audition but look for Bill Belichick to return to Damien Harris as the primary rusher. Could we see both? Most likely, yes, but Harris should see the bulk of the team's carries and goal-line work. Atlanta has allowed a rushing touchdown to a running back in all but two games this season. They have not allowed a 100-yard rusher all year but they have allowed the second-most PPR points to running backs since Week 6.
- D'Onta Foreman, TEN (vs. Houston) - Since Derrick Henry's departure to the IR, Tennessee has split the backfield duties nearly evenly with Adrian Peterson and D'Onta Foreman. Peterson appears to be the go-to option in short-yardage or goal-line situations while Foreman has been more of an option between the 20s. Both could be available options on your bench or as a free agent pickup, but Foreman may have a bit more value as a dual-threat weapon. His 78 yards on 13 touches last week raised eyebrows and may have given him a boost in usage moving forward. Houston is a team to exploit. They have allowed five rushing touchdowns to running backs in the last four games and Tennessee is a high-scoring offense scoring 30+ points in three of the last six games, all wins.
- Devonta Freeman, BAL (at Chicago) - Freeman has scored a touchdown in three of the last four games. Only Latavius Murray has scored (once) in that same span. The release of Le'Veon Bell also solidifies Freeman as a more reliable fantasy running back on the Ravens. The Bears are also a good matchup to exploit, allowing the second-most rushing yards to running backs (129 per game) since Week 6.
- Eno Benjamin, ARI (at Seattle) - James Conner is the running back of choice for Arizona but Eno Benjamin is someone who could take a step forward as a complement to Conner while Chase Edmonds (ankle) is on IR. Benjamin has zero receptions in his brief career to this point, but he is capable of being a receiving threat if called upon. His role will take a step forward with Edmonds shelved and it could come into existence this week against Seattle. In terms of receiving yards, the Seahawks have allowed the most receiving yards to running backs than any team this year, averaging 77 yards per game to opposing backs. Benjamin is a risky play this week simply because he hasn't been a big presence on offense. His window for production is now open and he has a decent matchup that could yield some positive numbers this week.
- Nico Collins, HOU (at Tennessee) - The Titans have allowed the most PPR points to wide receivers this season. Since Week 6 it has dropped off to second-most. Houston's top receiver is clearly Brandin Cooks, but Collins is a player who has seen a bump in snaps steadily rising since Week 6 up to 70% in his last game (Week 9). He has 13 receptions in the last four games and could have a breakout game any week. Why not this week against the top team in PPR points allowed?
- Robby Anderson, CAR (vs Washington) - Robby Anderson came to life last week with PJ. Walker and Cam Newton under center as opposed to fantasy killer, Sam Darnold. Anderson has a high snap percentage and he's tied with D.J. Moore with three receiving touchdowns. Carolina is a run-first offense with Christian McCaffrey among the top receiving threats, but in terms of downfield targets, Anderson is a popular target and will continue to be a part of the offense. Maybe now with Newton under center he'll reap the benefits. He also has a plus-matchup against Washington this week.
- Albert Wilson, MIA (at NY Jets) - Maybe Week 10 was an anomaly but Albert Wilson had a mini-breakout game as a speedy, slot receiver. He had 2 rushes for 11 yards and 4 catches for 84 yards. He tied his season-high snap percentage of 55% and he was third on the team in target share at 15%. Jaylen Waddle and Mike Gesicki are the Dolphins' top targets but Wilson appeared to have carved out a role if last week's game has any indication of future usage. This is a good week to play him if you're looking for a deep play or injury fill-in. The Jets have allowed the most PPR points to wide receivers since Week 6.
- Marcus Johnson, TEN (vs Houston) - Speaking of Week 10 breakouts, Marcus Johnson quietly gained 100 yards on 5 receptions (6 targets) in the Week 10 win over New Orleans. Johnson was on the field for 63% of offensive snaps and he commanded a team-leading 22% team target share. Was it a one-week flash or is there more to be mined from the veteran undrafted receiver from Texas? We're going to find out this week. Tennessee has a decent matchup against Houston. The Texans have allowed the third-most PPR points to wide receivers since Week 6.
- Randall Cobb, GB (at Minnesota) - The Packers' top target is Davante Adams, but there is still some meat on the bone for others to benefit. The data suggests Cobb may be the one who could benefit. Cobb has a team target share percentage of 11% or higher in the last four weeks. No other Packers receiver not named Adams can say that. Cobb also plays the majority of his snaps out of the slot, an area that has been kind to Packers receivers in the Rodgers era. The matchup against the Vikings is a good one. Minnesota has allowed an average of 16 receptions for 204 yards per game since Week 6, second-most only to the Jets.
- Adam Trautman, NO (at Philadelphia) - Which team has allowed the most PPR points to tight ends this year? Philadelphia. Since Week 6 the Eagles have allowed an average of 9 receptions for 97 yards and 0.8 touchdowns per game to tight ends. Trautman has had a snap percentage of no less than 84% each game going back to Week 5. In the last five games, Trautman has 2, 3, 2, 4, 5 receptions. His team target share percentage has been 17% each of the last three games. He is quietly starting to emerge and now he gets a great matchup against the top team in tight end points allowed.
- C.J. Uzomah, CIN (at Las Vegas) - Uzomah has earned a look as a fantasy starter thanks to five touchdowns scored this season. In his last six games, he has averaged 3.5 receptions per game. The Bengals have a favorable matchup this week at Las Vegas who have struggled against tight ends allowing at least one tight end score in five of their nine games including five of their last six games. Since Week 6 the Raiders are averaging 8 receptions for 92 yards and 0.8 touchdowns per game to opposing tight ends. This is a good matchup for Uzomah.
Good luck. Go earn that playoff spot this week.
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