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Fantasy Football: Week 10 Recap

Pick any negative adjective you like to describe Week 10, because it was pretty basic as far as entertainment value is concerned. For fantasy owners, it was nice to have a week off from any big-time, season-ending injury. It was also nice to see the 49ers earn their first win of the season, and, of course, another big week from the Rams D/ST. The playoff picture is really taking shape now, both in real life and in your fantasy realm. Here’s your Week 10 recap:

Thumbs Up

  • A fairly mundane outing turned into a monster day for DeMarco Murray late in the fourth quarter. He gifted owners 29.2 fantasy points against the Bengals on Sunday, but his last-ditch effort to stretch over the goal line with less than a minute remaining really helped owners out. He finished with three TDs and 72 total yards, but more importantly, sent the Titans to 6-3.
  • Just another day at the office for the Jaguars’ D/ST. It all started with less than two minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, as low and behold, Philip Rivers fumbled the ball to give the Jags a huge opportunity in the red zone. The Jags failed to convert that turnover into points, but A.J. Bouye’s interception in overtime went on to set up Jacksonville’s game-winning field goal. If you’re lucky enough to own shares in this defense, you secured only five points. After giving up two unanswered touchdowns, though, be thankful — this could have been much worse.
  • The Packers are still hangin’ in there, baby. Brett Hundley went full Aaron Rodgers on us against the Bears, slicing a pass to Davante Adams towards the corner of the end zone in the middle of two defenders. It was really the only big offensive highlight of the day for Green Bay, but alongside Adams’ 20 points, kicker Mason Crosby also came through with 13 points of his own on the back of a 3-for-4 day that included a 50-yarder.
  • It’s great that Drew Brees can now have a quiet game and relax knowing Alvin Kamara and Mark Ingram have everything under control. A combined 237 rushing yards and, wait for it, four TDs (!) from the pair racked up 55.9 fantasy points against the Bills. There are plenty of big names in front of them, but if this keeps up, we’re really looking at two Top 5 RBs heading into next season.
  • Golden Tate entered my Top 10 Wide Receivers heading into this week, and against a Browns defense that has allowed the second most TDs in the league (19), he certainly did not disappoint. For the fourth time this season, Tate put up 90 yards or more, good for 21.7 fantasy points during the Lions’ 38-24 victory. Matthew Stafford also had himself a day, throwing three TDs and finishing with a passer rating of 118.9. For a duo that continuously goes underrated across most fantasy leagues prior to draft day, this is just what we expected with just over a month remaining.
  • Yeah, so it really would’ve sucked if A.J. Green missed this week with a possible suspension. Fortunately, fantasy owners got to relish in the glory of Green’s 115-yard, one-TD game. It’s hard to say if Andy Dalton had a good game, or if Green just made him seem like a capable QB. Either way, Green is still a man playing amongst boys.
  • Great to see Teddy Bridgewater back on the sidelines, but should the Vikings really mess with this Case Keenum/Adam Thielen chemistry? The two hooked up for 166 yards and a score during Sunday’s 38-30 win, and since Keenum is still owned in less than 14% of leagues, you have to make the case for him as a pretty reliable QB2 option. Thielen, on the other hand, was good for 30.6 points, second to none other than…
  • Robert Woods! Credit Rams offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur, as he just keeps on dialing up the perfect aggressive play call when the moment calls for it. Woods led the way among receivers with 37.1 PPR points, a career-high, might I add. He could draw a potential blockbuster matchup with Xavier Rhodes next week when the Rams take on the Vikings, but since Jared Goff looks so comfortable lobbing deep balls — one of which went for 94 yards on Sunday — there’s no reason owners should be worried.
  • Expect the unexpected. DeAndre Hopkins was amazing when DeShaun Watson was healthy, but it would’ve been easy to see him fade back into obscurity under the new Tom Savage regime. Luckily for us, he’s well and truly turned the corner, posting 111 yards on seven receptions against the Rams. For the third week in a row, Hopkins ranks among the Top 20 WRs in terms of fantasy points. And since Houston’s running game still seems stagnant, he could very well finish the season on a high note.

Thumbs Down

  • Some are calling Tyrod Taylor’s performance “embarrassing.” I like to think of it more along the lines of “an inevitable certainty.” The Bills’ defense has carried them this far, but Taylor’s 56-yard, one-INT display against the Saints on Sunday was bound to happen sooner or later. The lack of chemistry with his wide receivers is one thing, but the conservative play calls from the Bills is another. When LeSean McCoy rushes for just 49 yards, life is made even more difficult, and really, the Bills never looked prepared for a shootout against an offensive juggernaut like the Saints. Fantasy owners, you got 2.9 points. That’s worse than Tom Savage or Eli Manning this week.
  • If you ever feel like you have this fantasy football thing figured out, just remember that, at one point, we all thought Bilal Powell was a Top 20 running back heading into the season. Sunday was another fizzler, as Powell gave us just 30 yards on 10 carries. Funnily enough, though, he does rank 20th in yards so far this season. If you’re an owner, however, these dribs and drabs of spotty performance continue to frustrate.
  • With Jameis Winston out, Tampa Bay’s passing game was always going to lack a little oomph. Unfortunately for us, this means Cameron Brate has gone from top-caliber tight end to former shell of himself, as he posted just 10 yards on one reception. Owned in nearly 90% of leagues, Brate’s two lackluster fantasy points probably won or lost you a matchup. After seeing little chemistry with Ryan Fitzpatrick in Week 9 against the Saints, it remains to be seen where this ship is actually heading.
  • Awful day for Dallas. For the third time this year, Dak Prescott posted less than 200 yards, and since Jason Witten was the Cowboys’ top receiver with 59 yards, you get a pretty good idea of how ugly things were in Atlanta. Really, most of the Cowboys’ offense belongs on here. The hype around Alfred Morris was huge all week, but even he struggled for just 53 yards. On defense, the Cowboys D/ST didn’t fare much better. The Falcons converted on seven third-down opportunities and finished with 336 total yards on the day. Next up for the Cowboys, a trip back home to take on the Eagles.
  • Sticking with poor team performances, let’s talk Broncos one more time. C.J. Anderson had another meh performance against the Patriots, posting 54 yards on 10 carries. The Broncos have now scored just one rushing TD in their last five games, and since they now sit bottom of the AFC West, can we dare say they’ll finish the season with a worse record than the Chargers?

On the Shelf

  • A fairly tame week as far as injuries go. Well, that was until DeVonta Freeman was met head-on in an ugly collision with a Cowboys defender. It was a simple inside run that saw Freeman fall limp moments after the helmet to helmet impact. He’s currently being evaluated for a concussion.
  • Injuries and the Packers seem to go hand-in-hand, as Aaron Jones was the latest victim during Sunday’s win over the Bears. On a very wet afternoon at Soldier Field, Jones left the game during the first half with a knee injury.
  • Other Notables: Ryan Grant (concussion), Jacoby Brissett (concussion), Will Fuller V (ribs).

Surprise, Surprise

So Aaron Jones was your Plan B secret weapon to use in the flex? Good news! Jamaal Williams had himself a week, rushing for 67 yards on 20 carries. Okay, those aren’t huge numbers, but Williams is still a viable waiver wire add you’ll want to keep in mind if you need help at RB. The Packers were huge on Williams heading into the season, mainly because he is a physical style runner that can break tackles and make explosive plays in the open field. He’s not the kind of RB that will burn opposing defenses with elite speed, but with Jones and Ty Montgomery both leaving Sunday’s game with injuries, Williams figures to see an increased workload going forward.

Mr. Irrelevant

Make that five games of 30 yards or fewer for T.Y. Hilton this season. At this point, it doesn’t get more painful than this. But to make matters worse, he saw fewer targets than Jack Doyle and Chester Rogers. All of this comes on the back of a 175-yard performance last week against the Texans, so it’s kind of a fun brain game trying to figure what exactly the Colts’ game plan is right now. Whatever it may be, Hilton’s 4.3 fantasy points stunk this week, but there is room for redemption against the Titans in Week 12 after a bye in Week 11.

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