Unlock More Content Like This With a Footballguys Premium Subscription
"FBG is the best fantasy football advisory service anywhere."
Nigel Eccles, Co-Founder, FanDuel
Go here for this week's Rushing Matchups.
Top 5 Passing Matchups
Green Bay vs LA Chargers
Jordan Love has faced challenges in the 2023 season, struggling with a completion rate of just 58% and averaging 6.7 yards per attempt. The Green Bay Packers' offense has had difficulties consistently moving the ball against opposing defenses. Part of the issue for the Packers is the lack of experience and consistency at the wide receiver position. The team drafted mid-round picks like Christian Watson, Romeo Doubs, and Jayden Reed, but they have not yet provided the level of production expected. Luke Musgrave, at tight end has shown flashes of athleticism but is still a rookie with limited experience and has struggled with consistency. Overall, the Packers have a young receiving corps that has faced challenges, leaving Jordan Love without a reliable go-to receiver.
The Los Angeles Chargers' secondary has been a significant problem for the team in the 2023 season, and there are no signs of improvement heading into Week 11. Jared Goff recently torched the defense for 333 yards, making him the fourth quarterback to top 300 yards against the Chargers this season. The Chargers have allowed an average of 316 passing yards per game to opposing quarterbacks, the highest in the NFL and significantly more than the next closest team. This poor performance is concerning, considering that the Chargers have faced some of the weaker passing attacks in the NFL, including Ryan Tannehill, Zach Wilson, Tyson Bagent, and Aidan O'Connell, and still allowed 245 yards to those quarterbacks. Cornerbacks Michael Davis and Ja'Sir Taylor have both struggled. Even Derwin James, once an All-Pro safety, has taken a significant step back in coverage despite remaining an elite run defender. The Chargers' secondary issues have persisted throughout the season.
Top of Form
San Francisco vs Tampa Bay
The 49ers used the bye to fix their offense after losing three straight games heading into the off week. Last week, this passing attack looked like it did early on in the season, which is a dynamic, efficient, and difficult-to-defend attack as Brock Purdy carved through the Jaguars' pass defense, throwing for 296 yards and 3 touchdowns in an effortless 34-3 victory. With four elite receiving options in Brandon Aiyuk, Deebo Samuel, Christian McCaffrey, and George Kittle, it simply overwhelms defenses. It can lead to big plays, as we saw last week with George Kittle breaking off a 66-yard touchdown. Stopping those four players is not possible in one-on-one coverage. Helping Purdy is that the 49ers also have the league's best left tackle in Trent Williams. While always a Pro Bowl-level player, Williams is having a late-career emergence as the game's best tackle as the 35-year-old looks to win his third consecutive All-Pro honors.
Tampa Bay's pass defense bounced back a little bit last week, holding Will Levis and the Titans' passing offense to just 199 passing yards. It's difficult to know how much of this was the rookie quarterback compared to an improvement for the Buccaneers' defense, who had allowed 320 yards or more in three of their prior four games. The issue for the Buccaneers is that while Antoine Winfield Jr is an elite safety, they lack consistent coverage options around him. Even at the strong safety position, Ryan Neal has been a liability. This has the team searching for other options, such as playing career backup Dee Delaney at strong safety on obvious passing downs. At corner, Jamel Dean has had a strong season, but Carlton Davis has been a disappointment. Davis, who the Buccaneers signed to a massive contract prior to last season, was called out by head coach Todd Bowles, stating that the team would see no loss from Davis missing the last game as backup Zyon McCollum could cover just as well as he could.
Tennessee at Jacksonville
Will Levis and the Titans' offense struggled last week in a game that many expected to see some growth for the rookie quarterback last week against the Buccaneers. Levis completed just 49% of his passes in Week 10 and did not look comfortable throughout the game. Part of the issue has been Levis trying to force the ball to DeAndre Hopkins. In Levis's first start, Hopkins had 4 receptions on 6 targets for 128 yards and 3 touchdowns, which was his best game of the season. Since then, over the last two weeks, Levis has completed just 7 of his 20 targets to Hopkins as they seem to be trying to force the ball to him instead of letting the targets come naturally. If the defense know that a quarterback is locked onto a certain receiver, it makes it much easier to defend the pass, even if you have a very poor pass defense as the Buccaneers do.
The Jaguars' pass defense is in a bit of a freefall at this point of the season. Over the last five weeks, the Jaguars have allowed 300 yards passing or more to four of their five opponents, with the only team failing to do so being the Steelers in a game where both Mitch Trubisky and Kenny Pickett played. The issue continues to be alarming when you factor in the quarterbacks Jacksonville has faced, as Gardner Minshew, Derek Carr, Josh Allen, and Brock Purdy/Sam Darnold all eclipsed the 300-yard mark. Even for Josh Allen, this was his only 300-yard game over his last five outings. Making matters worse, the Jaguars look like they will be without Tyson Campbell this week, which would elevate Gregory Junior, a second-year corner out of Ouachita Baptist, who played his first game of the season last week at corner. The issue for the Jaguars has been a consistent pass rush. The Jaguars have just 18 sacks on the season which is the fifth-fewest in the NFL this year. While Josh Allen is having a fantastic season, the issue is that former number-one overall pick Travon Walker continues to struggle with just 3.5 sacks. No other defensive lineman has more than a single sack on the year besides Allen and Walker.
Arizona at Houston
Kyler Murray, in his first game back, did enough to get the team their second win on the season and provide some optimism heading into the remainder of the season. While Murray completed just 59% of his passes and threw for 249 yards, he was not the bright spot for the Cardinals, as that entirely belongs to Trey McBride. For the second time in the last three weeks, McBride was dominant as this past week he had 8 receptions for 131 yards, as he caught eight of his nine targets. McBride was the first tight end selected in the 2022 draft and is starting to show the athleticism that got the Cardinals excited to take him in the second round of that draft. One player to potentially be concerned about is Marquise Brown, who had just one reception for 28 yards. There were some expectations that the receiver would get back to the levels we saw with Murray last year, and so far, that has yet to be the case. If the Cardinals do want to be consistently competitive, they are going to need one of their receivers in Brown, Rondale Moore, or Michael Wilson to emerge alongside McBride. The team also added running back Michael Carter this week, who is a much better receiver than a runner and could help in third-down situations.
Houston's secondary is starting to show some cracks. Over the last five weeks, they are allowing 306 passing yards per game, including 300-yard passing performances to Desmond Ridder, Derek Carr, and Joe Burrow over that five-game timeframe. A big reason for the recent fall-off has been the health of safety Jimmy Ward, who looks like he will miss this week with a hamstring injury. His replacement, veteran DeAndre Houston-Carson, has a liability in coverage over the last couple of weeks. This and second-year safety Jalen Pitre's struggles have led to Houston being one of the worst teams at defending the tight end position. On the year, they allow the most receptions to tight ends and the 5th-most passing yards to the position as players such as Cade Otton, Kyle Pitts, Jonnu Smith, and Evan Engram have all had strong performances against this defense. At wide receiver, there are some concerns here as well as Derek Stingley struggled in his first game back last week, which, along with the safety issues, contributed to Ja'Marr Chase and Tyler Boyd going for over 100 yards last week. Stingley, the third-overall pick in the 2022 draft, has been unable to stay on the field, playing just three games this season. After a poor rookie season, he has yet to show signs of growth in his second year.
Continue reading this content with a PRO subscription.
"Footballguys is the best premium
fantasy football only site on the planet."
Matthew Berry, NBC Sports EDGE