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Week 11 fantasy streamers: Make a move for Mariota


Streaming your starting QB, TE, or D/ST isn't the goal in fantasy football. But, if you're weak at a position where you only have to start one player, picking up usable fantasy weeks from the waiver wire can be a beneficial process. In typical start-one quarterback, tight end, and D/ST 12-team formats, most of your league mates won't -- and shouldn't -- carry a backup QB or D/ST. Positional scarcity leaves the waiver wire flush with plausible weekly starting options based on their matchup and expected game-flow.

Simply put, because quarterback and defensive matchups are easier to predict and their output varies less on a weekly basis, sharp fantasy owners have an edge in their leagues if they can stream their "onesie" positions (usually their defense) better than their opponent.

There are six more teams out on a bye this week (Buffalo, Cleveland, Miami, New England, New York Jets, and San Francisco), but, unfortunately -- it's a fairly thin slate for streamers:


Floor and Ceiling: Marcus Mariota, QB, Tennessee Titans vs. Indianapolis Colts

The Titans are out of the doldrums of their schedule, and Marcus Mariota is back to performing near his ceiling. With two top-eight weekly QB finishes in Weeks 9-10, Mariota now faces a Colts' defense that was just whacked by Blake Bortles (320 yards, 2 TDs, 112 passer rating) in Week 11. Mariota is also averaging a career-high 29.8 rush yards per game, buoying his floor if he struggles as a passer. Simply put: Mariota is dripping with fantasy upside in a likely competitive affair against a bad Colts defense that ranks dead last in pass success rate (43 percent).

Floor: Dak Prescott, QB, Dallas Cowboys vs. Atlanta Falcons

Between both passing and rushing TDs, Dak Prescott now has multiple scores in four-straight games. He enters Week 11 in a prime spot, in theory, against a Falcons side permitting the fifth-most passing fantasy points per dropback and third-most QB rushing yards per game. Alex Smith and Nick Foles are the only two quarterbacks that have failed to finish as top-10 fantasy signal-callers against Atlanta. Meanwhile, Prescott has finished as a top-10 fantasy passer in three of his last four.

Note: If Joe Flacco is out (hip) in Week 11, Lamar Jackson will become a trendy streamer ahead of the Ravens date against the crumbling Bengals. Obviously, Jackson is known for his legs and explosive ability, giving him plenty of rushing upside for fantasy. If forced to start Jackson, the Ravens will likely attempt to go extremely run-heavy to utilize Jackson's dual-threat ability. Baltimore is presently the most pass-happy team in the NFL when the scoreboard is neutral (66 percent), which can not happen with Jackson this early in his development. Still, Jackson struggled mightily passing per PFF's charts this preseason (77.3 passer rating; 6.0 YPA; 50 percent completions; 8 sacks absorbed). He's a ridiculous runner, but Jackson's low passing floor should keep us solely cautiously optimistic ahead of his debut. The Bengals are allowing the ninth-most passing fantasy points per dropback and are fifth-worst in pass success rate.

Tight Ends

Floor: Jeff Heuerman, TE, Denver Broncos vs. LA Chargers

In Demaryius Thomas' Week 9 absence after he was dealt to Houston, Jeff Heuerman made the best of the Broncos open opportunity. Before the bye, Heuerman dropped a quiet 10/83/1 on the Texans and actually led the Broncos in targets (11) in the game. Functioning as Case Keenum's security blanket, Heuerman sneakily leads Denver in red-zone passing looks per game this season (1.3), too. Perhaps Demaryius' departure sparks just enough opportunity to give Heuerman streaming appeal. Remember, Case Keenum made Kyle Rudolph the PPR TE10 last season. The Chargers have been one of the tighter defenses against TEs -- they are allowing the ninth-fewest fantasy points per target -- but we have to follow the small-sample volume in a terrible season at the position.

Deep: Ricky Seals-Jones, TE, Arizona Cardinals vs. Oakland Raiders

Seals-Jones has yet to find a consistent place in the Cardinals pass attack. His last five games have bounced all over the place (0/0, 5/69, 2/12, 2/12, 5/51) as his target share has been uneven with rookie signal-caller Josh Rosen. Week 11, however, could be a positively spiked week for Seals-Jones. The Raiders are hilariously permitting 2.51 PPR points per target to enemy tight ends, by far the worst clip in the NFL. The Chargers rarely use their tight ends and only managed 3/48 to Antonio Gates and Virgil Green last week, but Oakland was demolished by George Kittle (4/108/1) and Colts TEs (10/133/3) in their two prior contests. RSJ is a matchup "play and pray" option for desperate managers in need of a tight end.

Deep: Jonnu Smith, TE, Tennessee Titans vs. Indianapolis Colts

Smith has averaged just 2.7 targets and 29.7 yards per game over the last three weeks, but the second-year tight end is seeing just enough red-zone opportunity to perhaps maintain a reasonable floor. Smith has seen at least one inside-the-ten target in three-straight games and just posted a five-week high 92 percent snap rate in Week 10 against the Patriots. Smith is on the deep streaming radar against a Colts side that just yielded 9.6 PPR points (5/46 on six targets) to Jags' little-used TE James O'Shaughnessy. Over the full year, the Colts are allowing 8.77 yards per target to tight ends (seventh-most).


Floor and Ceiling: Arizona Cardinals D/ST vs. Oakland Raiders

Oakland has failed to put up more than 10 points in four of their last five games while Derek Carr has absorbed 4.0 sacks per contest in this span. Per Next Gen Stats, Arizona leads the NFL in blitz rate (42 percent) while all Carr can do against five or more rushers is check down or get sacked. Carr's 4.3 air yards per attempt against the blitz over the last five weeks is by far the lowest clip in the NFL. Load up on Cards' D.

Ceiling: Pittsburgh Steelers D/ST vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

Pittsburgh's defense has tightened considerably since their Week 7 bye, allowing just 5.7 Pass YPA (second-fewest) over their last three games. The Steelers have limited enemy aerial attacks to a lowly 42 percent success rate (fifth-best) in this span because of their relentless, blitz-heavy scheme. In this mini hot-streak, the Steelers have sent five or more pass rushers on an absurd 46 percent of pass plays, spelling potential disaster for Blake Bortles in Week 11. Per Next Gen, Bortles owns a 6.0 completion rate below expectation when blitzed this season, the eighth-worst clip.

Deep: New York Giants D/ST vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

'Fitzmagic' giveth and taketh away.

Look, the Giants defense isn't very good -- they're bottom-10 in yards, points, turnovers, and sacks per drive -- but the Bucs' consistently sloppy offense at least keep the G-Men in play on a weak streaming slate. Even though Tampa is 11th in points scored per game, they're giving up an absurd 2.8 turnovers per game (most) while Ryan Fitzpatrick has been under pressure on 35 percent of his dropbacks over the last two weeks (eighth-worst). The Cardinals and Steelers D/ST's are the far preferred Week 11 plays, though.

-- Graham Barfield is the managing editor of fantasy football content at Follow him on Twitter @GrahamBarfield.