Fantasy stats based around 4 points per passing TD and 0.5 points per reception.
There are two main approaches when look at fantasy player scoring trends. The first is to see how that player is performing from an output perspective. The second is to look at how their upcoming opponent has performed.
This article leans heavily on Fantasy Points Against (FPA). This number measures the total fantasy points given up per game to a position group by a defense. Other stats referenced may come from sources including Pro Football Reference, Pro Football Focus, and Football Outsiders.
On Monday Night Football, Adam Thielen caught two touchdowns against a superb Chicago defense. Missing from the scoring log was Justin Jefferson who did just fine catching eight passes for 135 yards. The path to success shouldn’t be as tough this week against a poor Dallas Cowboys team.
The Cowboys have allowed the 3rd most FPA to wide receivers in addition to 12 Top 24 performances. Three teams have had multiple receivers with 70+ receiving yards against Dallas meaning both Thielen and Jefferson can prosper. The Cowboys also allow almost four 20+ yard receptions per game. Jefferson has 14 such catches this season.
The Vikings are surging and the offense is clicking. Jefferson is a low WR2 with limitless upside this week.
This is the first time a consensus first round fantasy pick has been featured in this piece. In short, Michael Thomas should be started in every league by all of his fantasy managers.
The Atlanta Falcons have allowed the 2nd most FPA to wide receivers and 12 Top 24 finishes. In their last game, they gave up double digit fantasy points to three Broncos receivers catching passes from Drew Lock.
With no Drew Brees, fantasy owners may be skeptical of their Saints players. Thomas has been underwhelming to this point but should absolutely be started everywhere.
For a while the Bengals seemed to be a gold mine of fantasy potential. Rookie quarterback Joe Burrow has had three good receivers and a strong running back in Joe Mixon. In those receivers, AJ Green has struggled to get targets as of late and Tee Higgins is quickly ascending as a wide receiver talent. Tyler Boyd has continued to get a strong portion of the target share and has value.
The Bengals face a vulnerable Washington team this week but it won’t be easy for receivers. The Washington defense has only allowed four Top 24 performances and allows the 2nd fewest FPA to wideouts. Only once this season has Washington allowed 10+ fantasy points to two receivers in a game.
There is a good chance that one Cincinnati receiver has a good week. Higgins and Boyd are both playable options but expectations should be tempered.
This, like the Bengals wide receivers, is more of a downgrade than a sit. Chris Godwin and Mike Evans can be started. Antonio Brown is a questionable start but a fun play especially for teams in secure positions (playoffs clinched or mathematically out).
The Bucs face the Rams in primetime Monday night. The Rams have allowed the fewest FPA to wide receivers and only conceded two Top 24 performances. Only one receiver has reached double digit fantasy points against the Rams since Week 4.
Outside of Russell Wilson last week, the Rams haven’t faced many deadly quarterbacks. Tom Brady should be able to create opportunity for his receivers this week. Lower expectations for Godwin and Evans and keep Brown on the bench.
Featured Image courtesy of Sean Gardner / Getty Images
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