Week 11 Fantasy Football: Three Must-Start Players

Week 11 Fantasy Football

As each week passes, the fantasy football playoffs are nearing closer and closer. Are you right in the hunt for the championship trophy this season or are you trying to play spoiler to some of the opposing teams in your league? Either way, the only thing worse than losing a matchup, is having the reason you lost be because your bench players outscored your starters. Here are three players to lock into your Week 11 fantasy football lineup that you may not have considered starting this week. 

Three Must Start Week 11 Fantasy Football Players

Cam NewtonQuarterback, New England Patriots

Now I’ll be honest; I know Cam Newton has been an emotional roller coaster ride this year if you have him on your fantasy roster. You felt you got a late-round steal after he took the league by storm in his return to football with four rushing touchdowns in the first two weeks. But that electric start was followed up with a dud in Week 3, and then he missed the following game after being placed on the COVID-19 list. After that, he just didn’t look quite the same for the better part of a month. But after an atrocious showing against the San Francisco 49ers in Week 7 that led to a second-half benching, Newton has pulled off some decent fantasy games, while upping his value with a whopping nine rushing touchdowns – trailing only the bruising running back Dalvin Cook and an MVP-front runner quarterback Kyler Murray in that category. 

The upside with Cam’s legs is one of the highest at the quarterback position. So if you didn’t toss him to the waivers after his series of bad games, or if you were lucky enough to see his upward trend the past few weeks and snag him back up before anyone else did, it feels like your patience (or quickness) is going to begin paying off. Not only will Newton have a great matchup against a struggling Houston Texans team this week, but after that, the Patriots play the Arizona Cardinals, followed by the Los Angeles Chargers – two defenses that are in the top third of the league in allowing fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks. While the obvious downside to Cam has been his lack of passing efficiency (he has just three passing touchdowns, along with seven interceptions and only 1,535 yards on the season), expect those numbers to get a boost and his legs to continue to fuel your QB1 slot the next few weeks as ‘Super Cam’ efficiently produces in a Patriots’ offense looking to make a run for the playoffs in this latter part of the season. 

 

J.D. McKissicRunning Back, Washington Football Team 

29 targets. That is the most targets by any player in the league over the past two weeks and this statistic is what makes J.D. McKissic one of the best PPR pickups this year. Since Alex Smith entered the game as the starter at the end of the first quarter in Week 9, McKissic has turned his 29 targets into 16 catches for 108 yards. And while he is a running back by trade, he is seeing elite WR1-type targets on an offense where Smith continues to put the ball in his favorite “receivers” hands. While starting running back Antonio Gibson and wideout Terry McLaurin have also seemed to benefit in this Alex Smith-led offense, no one has emerged or produced quite like McKissic has from Smith’s presence in the lineup.

A lot of people may have added McKissic to their rosters a few weeks back (even before Smith took over the reins), assuming he’d touch the ball a handful of times so he’d give you a decent floor if one of your backs had a bye week. But now we are seeing a running back who is not just receiving check-downs but is being sought out after all over the field, and is securing an increasingly large snap share percentage (85.4 percent in Week 9 and 69.1 percent in Week 10) as well. He even snagged a goal-line rushing touchdown in Week 10, adding even more to his value as a runner. With two solid matchups coming up against the Cincinnati Bengals and the Dallas Cowboys, look for McKissic to keep seeing plenty of looks as the Washington offense keeps putting points on the board. 

Justin JeffersonWide Receiver, Minnesota Vikings

So maybe Justin Jefferson sounds like a strange option in Week 11 fantasy football this week. We all know how explosive the Minnesota Vikings rookie wide receiver has been this year (both in real life and in the fantasy world), but there have been some downsides that could have led you to put him on your bench in recent weeks. With the Vikings continuously leaning on their star running back, Dalvin Cook, as of late, Minnesota hasn’t been putting the ball in the air all that often. And when they are forced to throw the ball downfield more, Jefferson is competing for touches with phenomenal wide receiver Adam Thielen

After his breakout game in Week 3, Jefferson has been quite ‘boom or bust’; but we all know that when he ‘booms’ it’s in a very big way. However, following Minnesota’s Week 7 bye, he only recorded six catches for 90 yards in his next two games. He has also only seen more than five targets in three games this year. Yet what makes Jefferson a locked-in start for this week and the foreseeable future, is not only his upside against an excellent matchup against a Dallas Cowboys defense that is allowing the third-most passing touchdowns per game, but also the fact that he hauled in a third of quarterback’s Kirk Cousins’ completions in Week 10, catching eight of 10 targets for 135 yards. 

His explosiveness has always been worth a shot in your lineup; but if this combination of target share can continue along with his uncanny ability to separate from defenders, he will launch into ‘must start’ status every week. I think people will be surprised by the closeness of this matchup with Andy Dalton set to return, which will force Minnesota to look towards their playmakers through the air – and expect a lot of those looks to go towards their standout rookie star.  

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