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Fantasy Football Preview: Week 11

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Evan Birchfield is here to prepare you for your fantasy matchups!

Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images

Greetings Falcoholics! Our Atlanta Falcons recently pulled off the upset, defeating the New Orleans Saints. Before we turn our sights to this week’s matchup with the Carolina Panthers, let’s review last week.

Due to the Falcons’ big win, the team didn’t need to lean on quarterback Matt Ryan to win the game and were able to rely on the run game a bit more then they have otherwise this season. Ryan still had a solid day, finishing with 2 touchdowns and 182 passing yards which provided fantasy owners with 20.4 points. Running back Devonta Freeman was injured in the victory but was able to record 10 carries for 38 yards and haul in 3 catches for 10 yards. The 7.8 fantasy points isn’t great, but its better than nothing, I suppose.

Brian Hill came into the game and finished the rushing attack with 20 carries for 61 yards and a receiving touchdown. Austin Hooper, who is one of the best tight ends in the league also went down with an injury, but not before extending his 4-game touchdown streak and also netting his fantasy owners 11.7 points.

Alright, so let’s turn our attention to week 11 against the Panthers. As mentioned above, the team will most likely be without Devonta Freeman and Austin Hooper this week, and possibly a few weeks more. Brian Hill is expected to become the feature back, with Kenjon Barner and Qadree Ollison possibly getting limited action. Hill should be started in all leagues this week, as no team has allowed more fantasy points to opposing running backs the last four weeks than the Panthers. Overall this season, they’ve allowed the 4th most points to opposing running backs, so I’m expecting Hill to have a solid fantasy day this weekend.

Although I don’t necessarily recommend it, tight end Jaeden Graham interests me. I’m not saying you should start him, but he’s definitely someone to monitor as the tight end position has been very thing in fantasy this year. Graham looked impressive during the preseason and has two catches this year for 32 yards total. I predict that he finishes with 5 receptions for 60 yards and a touchdown against the Panthers – I’m probably wrong, but who knows.

League-wide outlook

NFL teams on a bye this week include the Green Bay Packers, New York Giants, Seattle Seahawks and Tennessee Titans

You possibly have some starters on a bye this week, so let’s look at some fill-in options for this week. I’ll include only players rostered in less than 50% of leagues. If you have Aaron Rodgers or Russell Wilson and you need a quarterback this week, look at Mitchell Trubisky. Last week I mentioned:

“In full desperation mode, I do like Mitchell Trubisky this week. I know he’s struggled a lot this season, but he’s facing the Detroit Lions who have allowed the 6th most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks and it’ll be by far the best matchup he’s had this season. I’m not saying Trubisky will get you 30+ but he should be good for around 20 points.”

Trubisky finished with 27.45 fantasy points which was his second-best game of the season. He’s still available in roughly 20% of fantasy leagues and faces the Los Angeles Rams this week. Again, he probably won’t get you 30+, but he should be good for around 20 points.

Need a running back this week? You may be limited as the running back position is very thing in free agency. In a desperation play, I like Indianapolis Colts’ running back Nyheim Hines. He’s a receiving back, so he should only be considered in PPR leagues, but in a game which could be a shootout with Jacksonville, he should be good for 10 points or so. As mentioned above, Brian Hill should be rostered in all leagues if he’s still available.

If you’re in need of a pass catcher, go grab Cowboys’ wide receiver Randall Cobb. Cobb was reliable in Green Bay, and now has become a reliable target for Dak Prescott. In his last two games, Cobb has received 8 targets in each. He’s available in 13% of leagues, and is worth a flex spot if you really, really need someone.

Well that does it, folks. I wish everyone who took the time to read this the best of luck in their week 11 fantasy matchups. If you have any fantasy questions for me, you can ask in the comments below or find me on Twitter at @EvanBirchfield. Remember, when it comes to fantasy football – always go with your gut!