Week 11 Fantasy Football Mailbag
Throughout the 2012-2013 NFL season, I will be answering some questions that come my way on Twitter in a mailbag. Sometimes, Twitter questions require more than 140 characters to get to the reasoning behind the answer. With Week 11 upon us, let’s take a look at what people are asking:
1) Got Foster, Spiller, McCoy, & Lynch. Any reason to keep Tate? Was going to drop for a chance on Starks just to keep off the WW. – @TDJ1725
That’s quite the group of running backs you have. I know it seems like a good plan to play some defense by playing the waiver wire – and in some cases it is – but you should stick with Tate as a safety net for your team.
On a normal week, both Tate and Starks belong on your bench. However, should one of our four studs go down (especially Foster), Tate is a much better option than Starks. Starks has moved up in Green Bay’s depth chart, as his 17 carries would seem to indicate, but he still only saw 23 out of a potential 74 snaps last week. By comparison, Alex Green saw 44 snaps and had 11 carries. It’s not like Starks is running away with the job.
Tate does not see the field very often — he has just 94 snaps on the season — but he has proven himself to be a capable backup. He averages over 4.0 YPC and it’s not hard to imagine him putting up Foster-like numbers should Foster go down. That’s a safety net I wouldn’t put on the open market.
We are heading into Week 11, and the Packers have scored a grand total of one rushing touchdown. If an opponent of yours picks up Starks and plugs him in, you can rest easy. In reality, you’re probably playing better waiver wire defense by letting someone else deal with Starks.
2) Giving up Andre Brown for Brandon Myers (.5 PPR) a fair trade? I need a TE, only have Rudolph who’s on bye. Thank you. – @Megatr0n81
I don’t think so. Save for his eight-reception, 59-yard, two-touchdown game in Week 9, Myers has been underwhelming. He does carry more value in PPR leagues because he averages close to five receptions a game, but he doesn’t rack up the yardage or scores.
Despite averaging just five carries a game over the last four games, Brown has scored a touchdown in each one of those games. He has also scored seven touchdowns in seven games played this season. He is averaging 5.4 YPC and received a major boost in responsibility last weekend. Brown was in on 60.3 percent of New York’s snaps against Cincinnati, up from about 20 percent of the snaps in each of the previous four games.
I know you need a tight end, especially with Rudolph on bye. However, Brown has been one of the best goal-line backs in the league this season and has the potential to carry the load in case of a Bradshaw injury. Additionally, you should be able to find a TE comparable to Myers on your waiver wire.
3) 10 team PPR options for flex this week. LeShoure/McGahee/T. Young/D. Avery/T. Smith. Have Decker/Demaryius as WR1/2. – @balding_pastor
Torrey Smith, Willis McGahee, and Titus Young should be your top three flex options on a weekly basis.
Smith has seven touchdowns in his last seven games, including three in his last two. He leads all Baltimore receivers in snaps (546), targets (62), yards (570), and touchdowns (7). His knack for finding the end zone on a regular basis makes him the easiest choice of the bunch.
McGahee is quietly having himself a tremendous season in Denver. He is the 12th-best rushing in the NFL with 676 yards, and his 160 carries are the ninth-most among running backs. His biggest issue has been fumbles, where he leads all running backs with five. Believe it or not, McGahee has been performing as an RB1 in 12-team leagues, as he is the 12th-best fantasy RB through 10 weeks.
Young should be your third flex option. He has come onto the scene in recent weeks as has solidified his position as the second option in Detroit behind Megatron. He has the second most snaps, targets, and yards among receivers in Detroit. He also leads all Detroit receivers (yes, even Megatron) with four touchdowns. He has averaged over five receptions a game over the last four weeks and has scored three touchdowns in that span.
4) Defense this week: Tampa Bay, Cincinnati, Or St. Louis? – @polaXicanAZ
All three defenses are in line for big weeks, but you have to go with the Bengals in Week 11 as they face the abysmal Kansas City Chiefs. So far this season, D/ST have scored an average of more than 14 PPG when going against the Chiefs. By comparison, the dominant Chicago D/ST has averaged just over 17 PPG. Not too much of a difference, especially when you consider just how good the Chicago D/ST has been this season.
The Buccaneers defense has been very up-and-down this season. Here are their point totals each week this season: 13, 5, 11, 0, 14, -5, 10, 4, 19. See a trend? Oddly enough, their week 11 opponent (Carolina) has been equally up-and-down in giving up points to opposing D/ST. Point totals of D/ST vs. Carolina’s offense: 13, -4, 16, 1, 12, 7, 11, 2, 26. This is as unscientific as it gets, but trends are trends. The Buccaneers defense is lined up for a disappointing week while the Panther’s offense is lined up for a strong week.
The Jets come to St. Louis with a miserable offense; having given up 16 PPG to opposing D/ST the last three weeks, but the Rams D/ST hasn’t been anything great as of late themselves. In the last four weeks, St. Louis D/ST has scored exactly 0 combined points.