Rank's 11 Week 11 Sleepers


Am I really going to go with Eli Manning this week? I was on record saying he was going to ball out last week, just because he needed to show just a little bit of pride. And, I guess you could say he played well ... for fantasy. He had 188 passing yards to go along with three touchdowns. It wasn't terrible, which is saying something for Eli. Especially when you notice that the dude missed Odell Beckham Junior on what should have been two more touchdowns. The deep, 45-yard ball was especially brutal. I say this as somebody who has OBJ on multiple teams, but that might have been the worst throw I've ever seen in my life. Which is not hyperbolic at all. It's the most level-headed statement I've ever made in my life. And that statement is far from hyperbolic, as well.

With all of that being said, this week, Eli gets the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. They have allowed 23 touchdown passes this season. They are among the leaders in passing yards allowed. The Bucs only have one interception on the season. The other team with the fewest? It's the 49ers at two. So if you're good with Eli getting close to 200 passing yards and multiple touchdowns with little risk of an interception, then you've got to do it. Crazy, though. These last two matchups would have been the perfect time to let an unknown quarterback test the waters. Let him wade in.

Which is kind of like the situation Lamar Jackson would find himself in if he's given a go against the Bengals this week. I wrote last week in Unpopular Opinions that the Ravens should stop with the shenanigans with using Jackson as some gimmick. But if he's given a "full go" because of Flacco's hip injury, I could be on board with that for sure. Love the matchup against Bengals. Cincinnati is good at creating turnovers (10 picks), but they have allowed 21 touchdown passes (tied for second-most) and the second-most passing yards.

Since we're kind of still on the subject, you should get on board with Sterling Shepard this week. Bucs slot corner M.J. Stewart missed the last two weeks, so his status is still uncertain. But, what is certain is that you want to start slot receivers against the Bucs. All of them.

All right, here are eight more sleepers for your week:

Dak Prescott, QB, Dallas Cowboys

Take your victory laps Cowboys fans. Amari Cooper hasn't been terrible and he's been absolutely fantastic for Dak. Prescott's average target separation is up and his open throw percentage has gone from 37 percent to 55 percent according to Next Gen Stats. What is important to also note is that his completion percentage is up to 70 percent and he's had a passer rating of 101.2 over the last two games. If you extrapolate Dak's passer rating with Cooper (101.2) out over a season, that number would be tied for 11th, ahead of Ben Roethlisberger, Aaron Rodgers and Andrew Luck.

Peyton Barber, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Love the matchup this week against the Giants who haven't been the same since they let Snacks Harrison move on. They are giving up huge running totals, as evidenced by Matt Breida (17/101/1 on the ground) on Monday night.

Josh Adams, RB, Philadelphia Eagles

I'm old enough to remember when Wendell Smallwood was the dude for the Eagles. But, Adams has carved out a bigger role in the offense and he is getting close to half of the carries in the Eagles backfield. So he's a good sleeper in terms of usage. The matchup against the Saints is going to be kind of rough, though.

Josh Reynolds, WR, Los Angeles Rams

You love this because he's the next man up for a team that runs 11 personnel almost exclusively. But Robert Woods becomes the primary out of the slot, which will limit Reynolds' appeal some. But when you're looking for sleepers, you want to lean towards guys in high-volume offense. And if you Google "high-volume offense" -- Sean McVay's face shows up on your screen.

Sammy Watkins, WR, Kansas City Chiefs

Speaking of guys in high-volume offenses, I can't quit Sammy Watkins. Even off his foot injury, I'm going to roll with him against the Rams. He's getting close to 18 percent of the target share when he's available, which is good. And, the Rams have really struggled against the pass. They have allowed nearly eight yards per attempt against the pass and given up 14 touchdowns this season, which is more than you would want to see from a championship-caliber team.

Anthony Miller, WR, Chicago Bears

This game is going to be a huge test for Mitch Trubisky. He's been pressured on 19.5 percent of his throws, which is the fourth-lowest rate in the NFL. His passer rating is 107.3 when he's not pressured, but drops to 69.6 when he is. The Vikings are fourth in the NFL in pressure rate and lead the league in sacks -- so, it's going to be important for Trubisky to get rid of the ball in a hurry. That could leave to a high-volume of quick targets to Miller working out of the slot.

Vance McDonald, TE, Pittsburgh Steelers

I'm into Big Ben in fantasy this week despite the tough draw. He had a huge total against the Jags last year in a losing effort in the AFC Divisional Round. But, Jacksonville is much different this year and they just got used by the Colts tight ends last week.

Jeff Heuerman, TE, Denver Broncos

A favorite among the fantasy community during the bye week on paper. He had 10 receptions for 83 yards in Week 9. It was outstanding usage, a first for him. But could it be the start of something new in the wake of Demaryius Thomas' departure? I'm kind of hoping (and banking on it).