As we head into Week 10, injuries are beginning to reach critical mass. It’s not just the injuries to offensive skill players having an effect. Injuries to offensive lineman on teams like the Vikings and Seahawks have had negative impacts.
There have also been many injuries on the defensive side of the ball. The Cornerback position has been especially hard hit. No. 1 CBs Aqib Talib, Darius Slay, Sam Shields, and Desmond Trufaunt are all dealing with injuries. Keep in mind that when a questionable player does play, he will likely be limited to some degree.
I use a A-F grading scale for each player. I do this because I think many players values are equal. In DFS, if two players have the same grade, go with the cheaper option.
“A” Players are expected to have big games. “B” players are must starts. “C” players are borderline starters. A “C+” means I would lean towards starting them, and a “C-” means I’d lean towards not starting them. “D” players are not recommended starters, and “F” players are not listed.
As it related to DFS; These numbers are based on FanDuel’s player pricing. Grades are based on FanDuels’s 1/2 point PPR scoring system. A= $8,000 plus, B= $6,500-$7,900, C= $5,500-$6,400, D= $4,600-$5,400, and F= $4,500. Keep in mind QBs prices are inflated by around $1,000, and TEs prices are deflated by around $1,000.
Week 10 Game Previews and Fantasy Predictions
Chicago Bears at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Bears are coming off of a bye, and their best game of the season, when they beat up Minnesota a week ago. Jay Cutler returning is a big help for Alshon Jeffery. The Bucs have been one of the worst defenses in the NFL, ranking 28th overall.
Despite their 3-5 record, and underachievement as a team, Mike Evans has been playing out of his mind. Jameis Winston has also played pretty well. Doug Martin is expected to return this week. It would be wise for the Bucs to run the ball more, and take some pressure off their defense.
Alshon Jeffery A-
Jordan Howard B
Jay Cutler C
Zach Miller/Eddie Royal/Cameron Meredith C-
Mike Evans A
Jameis Winston B-
Doug Martin (Q) C+
Cameron Brate C
Houston Texans at Jacksonville Jaguars
The Jaguars have developed a pattern on offense. The have been awful in the first half of games, and then they’ve put up a lot of cheap passing yards and TDs in the second while trailing big. Hopefully the Texans used their bye week to regroup on offense. They get a great match-up against the Jaguar’s sub par defense.
Deandre Hopkins B+
Lamar Miller B (Q)
Brock Osweiler/Will Fuller (Q) C-
Allen Robinson/Allen Hurns (Q) C+
Julius Thomas C
Chris Ivory/T.J. Yeldon C-
Blake Bortles D+
Denver Broncos at New Orleans Saints
The Saints are actually a small favorite in this game. New Orleans has found their running game the last two weeks, and despite their bad defense, their offense is strong enough to make them a competitive team.
The play of Trevor Siemien is killing the Broncos. I think it’s time to see Paxton Lynch. The offensive line is not playing well, and their running game has been regressing. Look for RB Kapri Bibbs to see more touches after ripping off a 69-yard TD last week.
Demaryius Thomas B-
Devontae Booker/Kapri Bibbs/Emmanuel Sanders C+
Drew Brees B-
Mark Ingram B-
Mike Thomas/Brandin Cooks C+
Tim Hightower/Coby Fleener C-
Green Bay Packers at Tennessee Titans (Offensive Game of the Week)
Every game the Packers play turn into passing fests on both sides of the ball. The combination of Green Bay having the No. 2 run defense, along with a secondary decimated by injuries, is allowing for opponents to put up big passing yards.
On offense, the Packer’s are throwing the ball 50 times a game, completely abandoning the running game. I don’t expect anything to change in this game. Marcus Mariota has become a must start QB option.
Aaron Rodgers A
Jordy Nelson B
Randall Cobb (Q)/Davante Adams/Ty Montgomery C+
Delanie Walker A-
Marcus Mariota B
DeMarco Murray (Q) B-
Rishard Matthews C+
Tajae Sharpe/Derrick Henry (Q) D+
Kansas City Chiefs at Carolina Panthers (Defensive Game of the Week)
I expect this game to be a defensive struggle. TEs Greg Olsen and Travis Kelce are each the biggest weapon on their teams. Alex Smith will start this week. Spencer Ware is expected to play, and Jeremy Maclin is highly questionable.
The Panther’s defense seems to have righted the ship the last two weeks, having only allowed 30 points in their last two games (both wins).
Travis Kelce B
Spencer Ware (Q) C+
Alex Smith/Tyreek Hill D+
Greg Olsen A
Cam Newton C+
Jonathan Stewart C+
Kelvin Benjamin C-
Minnesota Vikings at Washington Redskins
Both of these teams desperately need a win to stay in playoff contention. The Vikings have lost three straight games, and their offense looks lost. The injuries to both of their starting tackles has had an effect on both their running game and pass protection. Short passes to Stefon Diggs, Cordarrelle Patterson, and Kyle Rudolph have become the bulk of the Viking’s offense.
The Redskins have been at their best when running the ball well. Matt Jones is questionable, and Robert Kelley will likely get a good amount of carries even if Jones does play. Jamison Crowder has officially surpassed DeSean Jackson as the Redskins No. 1 WR.
Stefon Diggs B-
Kyle Rudolph C+
Jerick McKinnon/Matt Asiata/Cordarrelle Patterson C-
Jordan Reed A
Jamison Crowder C+
Robert Kelley/Matt Jones (Q) C
DeSean Jackson/Chris Thompson C-
Kirk Cousins D+
Atlanta Falcons at Philadelphia Eagles
The Falcons are one of the hottest teams in the league right now, and the Eagles are one of the coldest. The Eagles are a very average team. Their 3-0 start was clearly an arbitration. Philadelphia simply doesn’t have the defensive players to match-up with Atlanta’s high powered offense.
The Eagle’s offense has been asking way too much out of Carson Wentz. Wentz attempted has attempted 43 and 47 passes in his last two games. The Eagles will need to find their running game to have a chance in this one.
Julio Jones A
Matt Ryan B+
Devonta Freeman B
Taylor Gabriel/Tevin Coleman (Q) C
Jordan Matthews/Zach Ertz C+
Carson Wentz/Darren Sproles/Ryan Mathews C
Los Angeles Rams at New York Jets (Worst Game of the Week)
The two worse QBs in the league based on QB rating, Ryan Fitzpatrick and Case Keenum meet up in this one. Both of these teams are out of the playoff discussion. The biggest story line is when will these teams decide to bench their QBs, and go with the younger guys.
Todd Gurley (Q) C
Tavon Austin/Kenny Britt/Lance Kendricks D+
Brandon Marshall B
Matt Forte (Q) C+
Quincy Enunwa C-
Miami Dolphins at San Diego Chargers
Few people would’ve expected this game to end up featuring two of the top RBs in fantasy football. Jay Ajayi did not rush for 200 yards for a third straight game last week, but he did have a nice 110 rushing yards and a TD against the Jets No. 4 ranked run defense. Melvin Gordon had an amazing 261 rushing/receiving yards last week (2nd most in franchise history.
Another situation to keep an eye on is the Chargers WRs and TEs. Travis Benjamin, Tyrell Williams, Antonio Gates, and Hunter Henry are all questionable.
Jay Ajayi B+
Jarvis Landry B-
Ryan Tanehill/DeVante Parker D+
Melvin Gordon A
Philip Rivers B-
Travis Benjamin (Q)/Tyrell Williams (Q)/Antonio Gates (Q)/Hunter Henry (Q) C
San Francisco 49ers at Arizona Cardinals
Colin Kaepernick has actually played pretty well since taking over as starter. The 49ers are still awful. They’ve lost seven straight games, and they now have the 32 ranked defense in the league.
The Cardinals should have their way at home with an inferior team. J.J. Nelson is a super sleeper in this game. John Brown is dealing with a sickle cell issue that has limited his playing time, and Michael Floyd has completely disappeared.
Colin Kaepernick C-
Carlos Hyde (Q) C-
David Johnson A+
Larry Fitzgerald B
Carson Palmer B
J.J. Nelson B-
John Brown (Q) C
Dallas Cowboys at Pittsburgh Steelers (Game of the Week)
This is the most interesting game of the week for me. The Cowboys have been as consistently good this season as any team (expect maybe New England). The 4-4 Steelers are equally as talented as Dallas, but they haven’t been consistent. They blew out Kansas City, one of the best teams in the AFC, and they’ve also lost badly to Philadelphia, Miami, and Baltimore.
This is a must win game for the Steelers. They’re fortunate to be playing in the AFC North, were a 9-7 record could win the division. There are many Fantasy stars in this game. Also, Tony Romo is officially healthy enough to play. Dak Prescott will remain the starter. Dallas is calling the situation a coaching decision.
Ezekiel Elliott A
Dez Bryant B
Dak Prescott B-
Cole Beasley/Jason Witten C+
Antonio Brown A
Le ‘Veon Bell B
Ben Roethlisberger B
Sammie Coates (Q)/Eli Rogers C-
Seattle Seahawks at New England Patriots
This is a rematch of the 2014 Super Bowl. The Patriots look like almost the exact same team. The Seahawks have regressed significantly since then. Seattle is 30th in the league in rushing, and their defense has fallen from great to slightly above average.
New England is a 7 point home favorite. I don’t think the Seahawks defense will be able to slow down the juggernaut that is the Patriot’s offense. Russell Wilson should put up some decent passing numbers trying to keep up with Tom Brady.
Russell Wilson B
Doug Baldwin B/Jimmy Graham B
Christine Michael C+
Rob Gronkowski A+
Tom Brady A-
Julian Edelman (Q) B-
Martellus Bennett C
LeGarrette Blount/James White C
Cincinnati Bengals at New York Giants
A very evenly matched Monday Night game that should produce a lot of fantasy points. Two of the league’s elite WRs match-up in Odell Beckham and A.J. Green. The Bengals have a better running game, and the Giants have the better QB. Both defenses are equally average.
A.J. Green A
Tyler Eifert B
Giovani Bernand/Jeremy Hill C+
Andy Dalton C-
Odell Beckham A
Eli Manning B
Sterling Shepard C+
Rashad Jennings C
Paul Perkins/Victor Cruz (Q) C-
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