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NFL Week 9 Recap: Christian Watson Coming Out Party

Fresh off Sunday’s slate of games, Fantrax looks back at all the good, the bad, and the interesting from the Sunday slate of NFL games in the Week 10 fantasy football recap.

Hopefully, we can use what we learned in the first 10 weeks of fantasy football to help make better lineup decisions moving forward. This weekly column will highlight the week’s slate from a fantasy perspective, while also analyzing what trends to pay attention to in the weeks ahead.

For Week 10, we will look at the slate highlighted by the return to form from Jonathan Taylor, a Packers’ rookie wide receiver breaks out, and Justin Fields laying waste to the NFL.

Week 10 Fantasy Football Recap

Week 10 Studs

Justin Fields

Going forward, this spot leading off the week’s fantasy studs will be reserved for Justin Fields. As long as he keeps torching the league on fire, he will be listed among the fantasy studs of the week. In Week 10, he was the overall QB1 for the second week in a row, and now trails only Josh Allen and Patrick Mahomes for overall points in the 2022 season. He threw for two passing touchdowns again plus ran for another 147 yards with scores on the ground. We are reaching unprecedented territory in his rushing production at this point. Since the year 2000, there are 10 instances where a quarterback rushed for at least 130 yards. Fields now owns two of those and they just happened in back-to-back weeks.

Patrick Mahomes

The day could not have gone better for the Chiefs on Sunday. The Bills lost, the Chargers lost, and Mahomes turned in a vintage performance in a win, putting up 331 passing yards with four touchdowns. The Chiefs are now in the driver’s seat for home field the rest of the season and Mahomes is now hitting his statistical high point of the season.

Matt Ryan

Matt Ryan was a surprise for new head coach Jeff Saturday and the Colts. In a let-me-show-you game of sorts, he finished with 222 passing yards, 38 rushing yards, and two total touchdowns to go along with the team’s road victory in Las Vegas. The Colts really can’t go back to Sam Ehlinger now after this showing by Ryan and how historically bad the offense was with him under center.

Jonathan Taylor

The consensus RB1 in drafts this offseason also roared back into our lives this week, running all over the Raiders for 147 rushing yards plus a score. He led the position in fantasy points in Week 10 and really appeared to benefit from the play-calling and scheme that Jeff Saturday was working with on Sunday. If the Colts can go back to relying on Matt Ryan and Taylor to produce their offense each week, the Colts could still be a sneaky playoff team.

Saquon Barkley

By the time halftime arrived in the Texans-Giants game on Sunday, Saquon Barkley already had 20 carries for more than 80 rushing yards. He would finish the contest with 35 rush attempts, 152 rushing yards, and a rushing score in a win to move the Giants to 7-2. This was just the first non-Derrick Henry game that any player rushed at least 35 times since 2017 when Frank Gore and Adrian Peterson both accomplished the feat.

Jeff Wilson, Jr.

When Jeff Wilson was traded to the Dolphins after the 49ers acquired Christian McCaffrey, the big question was how would he fit in with Raheem Mostert? Well, even though Mostert busted out a long touchdown run of his own on Sunday, Wilson was clearly the superior player. He rushed 17 times for 119 yards and a score, while also adding 24 receiving yards on five targets. The lion’s share of this backfield belongs to Wilson going forward.

Rachaad White

The big story out of Germany Sunday morning, besides the crowd singing “Country Road, Take Me Home” was the emergence of Rachaad White. He didn’t light up the German sky necessarily, with just 105 yards on 22 carries, but it was the huge jump in usage that should encourage us moving forward. Leonard Fournette scored and was given 15 opportunities, but it’s clear the coaching staff wants to feature White whenever they can.

CeeDee Lamb

The best two receivers on the day both came out of the Green Bay-Dallas game, with Lamb taking the top honors. His 150 receiving yards on 11 catches with two touchdowns carried the day and almost led the Cowboys to a tough road in at Lambeau. Lamb was already third in the league in target share before this game (31.7%), and he can easily catch Tyreek Hill and Cooper Kupp in the weeks to come.

Christian Watson

On the other side of the field, Christian Watson played in just his seventh NFL game but saw his first game with more than four targets. Those eight targets resulted in over 100 receiving yards and three touchdowns including one memorable Lambeau Leap. With Romeo Doubs and Randall Cobb hurt, the door is wide open for Watson to come in and make an even bigger immediate impact over the second half of the season. The thing that stood out most for Watson was his route-running on Sunday, which looked to be very sharp already.

Justin Jefferson

He had great stats today, blah, blah blah. Sure, 193 receiving yards and a touchdown are amazing, but do yourself a favor. Go watch the undeniable catch of the year Jefferson made to keep the game alive on a fourth down for the Vikings. That’s some king-making kind of stuff right there.

Christian Kirk

The Jaguars needed some kind of spark to stay even somewhat close to the Chiefs on Sunday, and Kirk was able to provide it when Travis Etienne and others could not. His nine catches for 105 yards and two touchdowns cemented his status as a WR1 this year. In fact, Kirk is now seventh overall in half-PPR fantasy points at the position this year.

Cole Kmet

If Justin Fields is the offensive tide that raises all boats, Kmet is the one who benefited most today. He had the game of his life with 74 receiving yards and two touchdowns, including a long 50-yarder from Fields. All of the Chicago offense is getting a boost these days, and it shouldn’t surprise us now if Kmet lives up to his lofty preseason expectations moving forward.

Dalton Schultz

Dalton Schultz is slowly but surely working his way back into our lives as a relevant fantasy tight end. This is now four straight weeks that Schultz has seen his targets, receptions, and receiving yards rise. And today he brought down a touchdown from Dak Prescott. If you’ve been hanging on to Schultz on your bench, it’s time to start firing him up.

Week 10 Duds

Russell Wilson

The Russell Wilson Sadness Tour (trademark pending) rolled right along on Sunday, as the Broncos’ quarterback finished with 286 yards passing, one score, and one interception. Not abysmally bad numbers, but bad enough to finish behind the likes of Davis Mills, Derek Carr, and Jacoby Brissett, among others. Wilson is now 21st among quarterbacks this year with 120.6 fantasy points.

Travis Etienne, Jr.

After he got 30 touches last week, we commented in this space about how the usage trend just could not keep on going up every week. Well, it came crashing back down on Sunday with just 11 rush attempts and three targets for the talented Clemson back. He did get removed on a number of clear passing downs, which is a problem, but he still played on 49 of 64 potential snaps. Better days are ahead after the bye week.

Alvin Kamara

Part of the understanding of having Kamara on your roster is that he is going to have some games like this from time to time, especially with Andy Dalton under center. His 26 rushing yards and 19 receiving yards both paled in comparison to his season averages, and the Steelers were clearly spying him the whole game. That made it hard for Kamara and anyone on the Saints to maintain any offensive rhythm.

Derrick Henry

It’s not like 22 opportunities for any player in the NFL is something to scoff at, but when it’s Derrick Henry and the game he was in was a one-score affair throughout, you have to wonder why he wasn’t more involved. This is likely just a blip on the radar for Henry with games still left against Green Bay, Cincinnati, and Houston among others.

Chase Claypool

So much for Claypool having a much bigger role this week in his second game with the Bears. He played on only 19 of the 61 total snaps and ran only seven routes on those snaps. Many people expected very big things for Claypool going to a suddenly competent quarterback, but attendance is part of the grade, and he needs to be on the field to make an impact.

Amari Cooper

Amari Cooper was out-targets by guys named Donovan Peoples-Jones, David Bell, and Pharoah Brown in this game. Part of the problem was a shadow coverage from elite cornerback Xavien Howard, so this should course-correct in the games to come. But Amari Cooper has one of the highest target shares and air yards share in the league. Once he gets Deshaun Watson in Week 11, he should explode again.

Deebo Samuel

Deebo Samuel may have received 10 opportunities in this game, but it’s clear he is taking a backseat lately to Christian McCaffrey, Elijah Mitchell, and Brandon Aiyuk. Samuel was fourth on his own team in rush attempts and was third in targets in the win over the Chargers. Last year was nice of course, but that second-half production and yards after the catch were such outliers it would be impossible to expect the same thing from him again.

Greg Dulcich

The new tight end hotness Greg Dulcich followed up three very strong games with a supreme dud on Sunday. He finished with just one catch and 11 yards and even his flowing locks could not grant him the Samson-like power he needed to overcome a stout Tennessee defense in this game.

Taysom Hill

Some days you get the Taysom Mountain, some days you get the Taysom Hill, and other days you get the Taysom ant pile. That’s what his fantasy managers saw today with a singular rush yard. No passing attempts. No targets. This is the headache of rostering a player like Taysom Hill.

Injuries to Monitor

Zach Ertz Injures Knee, May Miss Multiple Weeks

According to Adam Schefter, the Arizona Cardinals will likely be without tight end Zach Ertz for several weeks after he was carted off the field with a knee injury early during Arizona’s win over the Los Angeles Rams. Ertz is expected to have an MRI on Monday to confirm the extent of the problem in the knee, though the team believes his ACL is still intact and did not suffer a tear.

Cooper Kupp May Have Avoided Serious Ankle Injury

Star wide receiver was forced to leave the same game after suffering what first appeared to be a very bad ankle injury in the fourth quarter. After the game, coach Sean McVey said the injury “didn’t look very good and didn’t sound very good.” But Ian Rapoport is reporting that Kupp likely avoided a terrible ankle injury, although he may have to miss some time.


Ezekiel Elliott Inactive Again

Tony Pollard filled in admirably for the injured Ezekiel Elliott once again on Sunday. It ultimately wasn’t enough as, despite Pollard’s 115 yards and a score, the Cowboys fell to the Packers in overtime. Owen Jerry Jones will probably use this as some misguided excuse that Elliott needs 40 touches for the team to win. But for all of use looking at these performances from a fantasy eye, it’s clear Pollard is the back that needs to be on the field for a majority of the snaps in Dallas.

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