A sense of normalcy returned in Week 10 and fantasy scoring finally bumped back up to the mean after an abysmal fantasy week in Week 9. Week 11 is here and for most leagues, your trade deadline is nearing. So, when you start analyzing your players and potential trades, make sure you keep an eye on future matchups, especially Week’s 15-17, or better known as the fantasy playoffs. Prepare for the best… or prepare for the worst. Either way, fantasy managers need to start prepping for the playoffs.
But going back to the here and now, below are our 5 Starts and 5 Sits for Week 11.
QB – Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers (vs PIT)
With only three interceptions this season, and a worse-than expected pass rush (still top-10 in sacks, however), the Steelers defense is not the force it has been in year’s past. With a full arsenal of weapons, Herbert will go into this Sunday night showdown picking apart this defense who will most likely be without their star pass rusher, T.J. Watt. Herbert has also been using his legs a lot this year, padding his floor for Week 11.
RB – AJ Dillon, Green Bay Packers (vs MIN)
Dillon took advantage of his opportunity last week against the Seahawks, totaling over 100 yards from scrimmage and two touchdowns. He will have the entire backfield to himself, on a good offense, with increased passing down work. In what will be one of the higher scoring games in Week 11, Dillon will be a smash play for fantasy managers. He is still available in about half of fantasy leagues, so scoop him up if you can.
WR – Brandin Cooks, Houston Texans (@ TEN)
Cooks is on a bad offense, unfortunately. But playing from behind has its benefits, especially when you are the only viable receiving option on your team. Cooks has an incredible playoff schedule and has one of the safest fantasy floors. However, against the 32nd ranked defense for opposing wideouts, Cooks has a chance to be a low-end WR1 for fantasy managers. Start him with confidence.
TE – Pat Freiermuth, Pittsburgh Steelers (@ LAC)
Freiermuth has been great thus far, and for a rookie tight end, that’s saying a lot. Usually, it takes a while for tight ends to develop into fantasy relevant assets. But in this case, Freiermuth had the skillset, draft pedigree and now he has the targets to justify him as a viable fantasy asset for the remainder of the year. This week he faces a Chargers defense allowing the second-most touchdowns, eighth-most yards and sixth-most fantasy points to opposing fantasy tight ends.
D/ST – Baltimore Ravens (@ CHI)
This is John Harbaugh’s worst defense in his entire career as Ravens head coach. So, why am I putting them here? Because of a rookie-led and Matt Nagy-coached offense, that’s why. So far, the Bears are the 5th most generous offense to fantasy defenses. The offensive line allows one of the highest pressure rates in the NFL. You can trust this defense in Week 11… after that, I wouldn’t be too sure.
QB – Taylor Heineke, Washington Football Team (@ CAR)
Heineke has been a viable fantasy asset for fantasy managers so far in 2021. But, the Panthers are one of the all around best defenses in football right now. Heineke is also careless with the ball, like… a lot. He catches a lot of breaks, but when facing a secondary allowing the second-fewest yards on the season, and 5th fewest fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks, Heineke is best left on benches.
RB – Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Kansas City Chiefs (vs DAL)
Clyde is going to be back in Week 11. This may excite those of us who drafted him, but three major factors will end up making his first game back a dud for fantasy managers who start him.
- It’s his first game back since the injury, so his workload will be severely capped.
- Even with his return, Darrell Williams has proved he deserves a prominent role in this offense, and he will get what he has earned.
- The Dallas defense has quietly been one of the better defenses against the run.
Sit him this week.
WR – DeVonta Smith, Philadelphia Eagles (vs NO)
Smith has been electric the last couple weeks. He’s a legit talent at wide receiver, but these games are a bit fluky. Both of these games came off only 6 targets, and he isn’t usually demanding that much volume every week. Even so, this isn’t volume that will help him sustain these numbers. Especially since he is on an offense who is bottom of the league in passing attempts, with a quarterback among the lowest in the league in passing yardage per game. Oh, and this week he will see a lot of Marshon Lattimore.
TE – TJ Hockenson, Detroit Lions (@ CLE)
What a stinker. It goes to show what the lows are for a pass catching option in a Goff-led offense. Hockenson needs double digit targets in order to be fantasy relevant and that’s just the sad truth. He is being game-planned out by opposing defenses and the Lions have been scheming him to either help with opposing pass rushes or is used as a decoy in the middle of the field to create an open receiver underneath for Goff to throw to. It has been less than ideal, for both Hockenson and this offense in general. Cleveland is one of the better teams against tight ends, and they are also coming off an embarrassing loss at New England. This defense will step it up and bounce back big time, and Hockenson will unfortunately be on the other end of that.
D/ST – Pittsburgh Steelers (@ LAC)
Read Justin Herbert. The Steelers defense has been middling thus far, and this is projected to be one of the better games in Week 11. I would look for other options on the waiver wire instead of the Steelers who face one of the best offenses in football. See if Tennessee, Baltimore, or Miami’s defenses are on your waivers.