The Week 11 NFL main slate kicks off on Sunday, Nov. 17, at 1 p.m. ET. In this piece, I highlight the running backs who stand out in our large suite of analytical DFS Tools, most specifically the industry-leading FantasyLabs Models.
Odds as of Wednesday evening and via PointsBet, where Action Network users can access an exclusive promotion to get a 200% deposit match (deposit $50, bet with $150).
Top Running Backs in the FantasyLabs Models
There are five running backs atop the individual Pro Models that Jonathan Bales, Peter Jennings (CSURAM88), Adam Levitan, Sean Koerner, Chris Raybon, Kevin McClelland (SportsGeek) and I have constructed.
- Ezekiel Elliott: $9,000 DraftKings; $8,400 FanDuel
- Dalvin Cook: $8,900 DraftKings; $8,600 FanDuel
- Josh Jacobs: $6,900 DraftKings; $8,000 FanDuel
- Carlos Hyde: $4,600 DraftKings; $6,300 FanDuel
- DeAndre Washington: $3,000 DraftKings; $5,000 FanDuel
Ezekiel Elliott: Dallas Cowboys (-3) at Detroit Lions, 51.5 Over/Under
UPDATE (Nov. 16): Lions QB Matthew Stafford (back) and DT Da’Shawn Hand (ankle) are out. S Tracy Walker (knee) is questionable.
Zeke hasn’t been on the main slate in over a month thanks to three prime-time games and the Week 8 bye. I’ll be honest: I haven’t really missed him.
This year, Zeke has career-low marks with 23.4 opportunities (carries plus targets), 22.7 touches and 108.9 scrimmage yards per game. In a vacuum, those numbers are great. Almost any other back in the league would commit felonious crimes to have that kind of opportunity and production.
But within the context of Zeke’s career, those numbers are disappointing, especially considering that the team is scoring 27.9 points per game — the highest average the Cowboys have had since Zeke entered the league. In other words, the decrease in Zeke’s role has coincided with the increase in the team’s scoring output. That’s not good.
The decline in his 2019 production is easily seen in his fantasy numbers (per our FantasyLabs Trends Tool).
- 2016 (16 games): 20.1 FanDuel points, +2.65 Plus/Minus
- 2017 (10 games): 19.0 FanDuel points, +3.56 Plus/Minus
- 2018 (17 games): 19.4 FanDuel points, +4.47 Plus/Minus
- 2019 (nine games): 16.1 FanDuel points, +0.95 Plus/Minus
In each of the first three years of his career, Zeke hit salary-based expectations in a majority of his games. This year, though, he has a 44.4% Consistency Rating. Based on his 2019 Plus/Minus, Zeke has provided significantly less daily fantasy value than he has in previous years.
In only three of nine games this year has Zeke finished as a top-12 fantasy back (per the RotoViz NFL Stat Explorer).
Just last week, Zeke had his worst game of the season, putting up 63 scoreless yards on 23 opportunities even though the Cowboys lost only by four points. It’s not as if Zeke got game-scripted out of the contest. He simply failed to produce.
But this week there is hope: Zeke has a great matchup.
They have allowed the second-most FanDuel points to opposing backfields with 27.9 per game. To the four backs they’ve faced with salaries comparable to Zeke’s — David Johnson, Austin Ekeler, Dalvin Cook and Saquon Barkley — the Lions allowed 23.7 FanDuel points per game with a +9.70 Plus/Minus and 100% Consistency Rating.
On top of that, the Lions are dealing with some defensive injuries. Tackle Da’Shawn Hand (elbow) missed last week and is uncertain for Week 11. He’s played just two games this year. Additionally, tackles Mike Daniels (foot) and A’Shawn Robinson (thumb) both left Week 10 early: They aren’t sure to play this week. And safety Tracy Walker (knee) has missed the past two weeks.
And on the offensive side of the ball, quarterback Matthew Stafford (back) missed last week and seems to be on the doubtful side of questionable for Week 11. If Stafford is inactive and backup Jeff Driskell is forced to start, the Cowboys could get out to a big lead and have a run-heavy game script for much of the contest.
If you want a top-tier back for cash games or guaranteed prize pools but don’t want to pay all the way up for Christian McCaffrey, then Zeke is an option.
And that’s especially the case on FanDuel, where Zeke is the No. 1 back in the Bales, CSURAM88, Levitan, Koerner, SportsGeek and Freedman Models and has a position-high 99% Bargain Rating.
Dalvin Cook: Minnesota Vikings (-10.5) vs. Denver Broncos, 40 O/U
UPDATE (Nov. 16): WR Adam Thielen (hamstring) and RG Josh Kline (concussion) are out. Broncos S/CB Will Parks (hand) is in.
Cook entered the season as a concern-laden player. He flashed but failed to sustain his output in two injury-impacted career-opening campaigns. But in his third NFL season, he has been forcefully fantastic through 10 games.
- Fantasy production: 22.0 FanDuel points, +7.51 Plus/Minus, 80% Consistency Rating
- Football production: 203-991-10 rushing and 40-424-0 receiving on 48 targets
Cook trails only Christian McCaffrey as the No. 2 fantasy back this year. If not for McCaffrey, people would be falling over themselves to talk about how transcendent Cook has been.
His season has basically been one sustained ode to the twinned beauty of usage and efficiency.
On a weekly basis, Cook has an extremely high floor. He’s No. 3 with 19.5 expected fantasy points per game and 4.7 fantasy points over expectation (per RotoViz Screener). He’s getting his touches and making them count. He leads the league with 18 carries inside the opponent five-yard line (per Pro Football Focus).
Cook has a touchdown in eight of 10 games. In his two scoreless starts, he has 167 scrimmage yards per game. He’s No. 1 with 72 evaded tackles and 448 yards created (per Player Profiler). Straight baller.
With the offseason addition of center Garrett Bradbury and right guard Josh Kline — and especially rushing guru Gary Kubiak as an offensive advisor — the Vikings offensive line has improved significantly. In 2018, the Vikings were No. 23 with 4.09 adjusted line yards per attempt. This year, they are No. 5 with 4.78. In fact, they are top-six in all of Football Outsiders’ rushing offensive line metrics. (By the way, this is a #RevengeGame for Kubiak. Not that it matters.)
Since taking over as the offensive coordinator in Week 15 last year, Kevin Stefanski has overseen an aggressively ground-based system. In Stefanski’s 13 play-calling games, the Vikings have a 51.1% run rate. For this season specifically, they have a 51.9% run rate.
With a better offensive line and a coordinator who leans on the run, it’s no wonder Cook is having a breakout season.
Coming off a Sunday Night Football smackdown of the Cowboys in which he put up 183 scrimmage yards and a touchdown on 33 opportunities, Cook is in good form.
His Week 11 matchup isn’t good. In fact, the Broncos are No. 1 in PFF run defense and No. 7 in pass defense DVOA against running backs. But at least he’s on the positive side of his splits.
- Home (12 games): 17.8 FanDuel points, +6.15 Plus/Minus
- Away (13 games): 15.3 FanDuel points, +3.20 Plus/Minus
- Favorite (18 games): 17.5 FanDuel points, +5.33 Plus/Minus
- Underdog (seven games): 13.7 FanDuel points, +2.79 Plus/Minus
Broncos quarterback Brandon Allen has just one game of NFL experience, and the Vikings have been one the league’s least-friendly teams to visiting quarterbacks under head coach Mike Zimmer, allowing just 215.6 passing yards per game since 2014. Allen and the Broncos could struggle in Minnesota, and Cook could benefit from a very run-heavy game script.
Cook has at least 18 touches in each game. The five backs to get 18-plus touches against the Broncos — Josh Jacobs, David Montgomery, Leonard Fournette, Marlon Mack and Nick Chubb — averaged 17.8 FanDuel points per game with a +7.37 Plus/Minus and 80% Consistency Rating.
I partially like this spot so much for Cook because I am bullish on the Vikings. I bet them at -10 early in the week. Under Zimmer, they have offered a strong return on investment in several different scenarios.
They have been a profitable regular-season team to back (per Bet Labs):
- At home: 30-13-1, 35.1% ROI
- As favorites: 34-17-1, 29.3% ROI
- Outside of division: 41-15-1, 41.8% ROI
These trends make sense within the context of who Zimmer is as a coach and what kind of team the Vikings are.
Zimmer is a focused, no-nonsense, risk-adverse, process-oriented, defense-directed “manager” (for lack of a better word), and the Vikings are a disciplined team that doesn’t often make big mistakes.
They don’t waste the natural advantage they have at home. They don’t play down to the level of their underdog opponents. They don’t present a known and easy challenge to teams that aren’t familiar with them.
This week, the Vikings are in a “solar eclipse” spot with all of Zimmer’s historical edges lining up. As non-divisional home favorites, the Vikings are 19-3-1 ATS (66% ROI).
If the Vikings are to have success against the Broncos — and I bet they will — Cook seems likely to have a big day. For cash games and tournaments, Cook is a top-tier option.
He’s the No. 1 back in the Raybon Model for FanDuel, where he has elite marks with 13 Pro Trends, a +4.54 Projected Plus/Minus and 98% Bargain Rating.
Josh Jacobs: Oakland Raiders (-10.5) vs. Cincinnati Bengals, 48.5 O/U
UPDATE (Nov. 16): Bengals CB Dre Kirkpatrick (knee, IR) is out.
This is a great spot for Jacobs, whom I want to roster in all formats.
In the big picture, almost no running back should ever be drafted in Round 1, but through nine games, Jacobs has more than lived up to expectations.
- Fantasy production: 17.7 DraftKings points, +6.37 Plus/Minus, 77.8% Consistency Rating
- Football production: 168-811-7 rushing and 14-132-0 receiving on 20 targets
Jacobs’ production hasn’t been even, but fortunately his splits are easy to spot and rather predictable.
- Wins (five games): 23.1 DraftKings points, +11.5 Plus/Minus, 117 yards and 1.4 touchdowns
- Losses (four games): 11.0 DraftKings points, -0.07 Plus/Minus, 89.5 yards and zero touchdowns
If the Raiders win, Jacobs is likely to have a big game, and it just so happens that they are double-digit home favorites against the hapless 0-9 Bengals, who will be giving rookie fourth-round quarterback Ryan Finley just his second NFL start.
With the Bengals likely to struggle to score, Jacobs could get 20-plus opportunities in a run-heavy game script. In his five wins, Jacobs has gotten 22 carries and 2.6 targets per game.
And he clearly has talent: Months ago, Jacobs was the No. 1 player in my dynasty rookie rankings.
Of all the backs drafted, Jacobs was first last year with a 59.2% positive play rate and second with 38 broken tackles per 100 touches, 2.4 yards per route and 41.9 expected points added (per Sports Info Solutions).
Jacobs has three — maybe four — significant factors in his favor.
Because he saw limited action at Alabama as a committee back, he should enter the NFL relatively fresh.
He’s young. Backs who play as 21-year-old rookies have historically been significantly more impressive than backs who enter the league at an older age.
There’s his draft position. As a first-rounder, he’s likely to see a significant workload because so much was invested into him.
And finally, there’s his size. At 220 pounds, Jacobs is built like a lead back.
Given how important age, draft position and size are to the running back position, it’s not unreasonable for fantasy players to expect a lot out of Jacobs early on — he could be a top-10 fantasy producer in 2019.
Sure enough, Jacobs is just outside of the top 10, entering the week as the No.11 fantasy back in scoring. Not bad for a rookie on mediocre team. And after this week, I bet he’ll be in the top 10. His matchup is just so good.
Last year, the Bengals allowed the most DraftKings points to opposing backs with 31.7 per game. This year, they have seen only the slightest improvement, inching that number down to 29.8.
The onslaught has been relentless. If a back has gotten double-digit carries against the Bengals, he’s given them the Johnny Sack treatment.
RBs with 10+ carries vs. Bengals: DK Scoring
W1: Carson – 25.1
W2: Mostert – 24.1, Wilson – 15.4, Breida – 17.2
W3: Gore – 16.9
W4: Conner – 26.5, Samuels – 23.5
W5: Johnson – 18.6
W6: Ingram – 15.4
W7: Fournette – 19.5
W8: Gurley – 10.4, Henderson – 8.9
W11: Jacobs vs. CIN
— Matthew Freedman (@MattFtheOracle) November 13, 2019
In every game this year, Jacobs has had 10-plus carries.
Linebackers Nick Vigil and Preston Brown are especially to blame for the Bengals’ generosity to opposing backs. They have both been exposed on the ground and in coverage.
The Bengals are No. 29 in rush defense DVOA. They’re at their worst in the intermediate range of the field, where they rank No. 31 with 1.50 second-level yards allowed per run: Once opposing backs get 5-10 yards past the line of scrimmage, the Bengals linebackers have been incapable of limiting yardage.
To make matters worse, the Bengals are No. 31 in pass defense DVOA against running backs. Last year, they were also No. 31.
On the ground or through the air, they can’t stop anyone.
Vigil and Brown specifically have been among the worst defenders on the team, and that’s reflected in their PFF grades.
- Nick Vigil: 48.7 overall, 44.7 run defense, 56.2 coverage
- Preston Brown: 44.1 overall, 41.1 run defense, 52.0 coverage
The Bengals just waived Brown this week and will now likely use rookie Germaine Pratt in his place. Given that Pratt has a 34.1 PFF grade with marks of 56.0 in run defense and 34.9 in coverage, he’s hardly an upgrade.
The Raiders have a slate-high 29.5-point implied Vegas total. Like an empty beer can on a frat bro forehead, the Bengals are gonna get smashed.
And Jacobs is that frat bro forehead. As Alabama Hannah would put it, “Roll Tide!”
Jacobs is the No. 1 back in the Bales, Levitan, Raybon, SportsGeek and Freedman Models for DraftKings, where he has a position-high eight Pro Trends.
Carlos Hyde: Houston Texans (+4.5) at Baltimore Ravens, 50 O/U
UPDATE (Nov. 16): WR Will Fuller (hamstring) and LT Laremy Tunsil (knee) are questionable. Ravens NT Michael Pierce (ankle) is doubtful.
The Texans have been on the main slate seven times this year, and for three of those, Hyde has been at the top of at least one of our Models. For a low-upside between-the-tackles grinder who has gone from the 49ers to the Browns to the Jaguars to the Chiefs to the Texans in 18 months, that’s pretty good.
It’s hard to be too excited by Hyde: He’s a plodder with a 53.5% snap rate and just 22 yards receiving on 10 targets this year.
But too often people undervalue the big-bodied, early-down backs on DraftKings simply because they don’t catch passes. Although he’s a receiving nonentity, Hyde has had 10-plus carries each week and 18-plus carries in over half of his games. Of all backs with at least 10 carries per game, Hyde is No. 3 with his 56% rushing success rate, and he has a career-high 4.7 yards per carry this season. He’s been pretty close to the best version of himself this year.
In his two full seasons as a locked-in starter (2016-17), he averaged 1,219.5 yards and 8.5 touchdowns from scrimmage in 14.5 games. This year, he’s pacing for 1,290.7 yards and 5.3 touchdowns. He’s not an untalented player.
Hyde has just 11.2 DraftKings points per game this year, so — again — he’s not overly exciting. In only one game this year has he had a top-12 finish.
But at $4,600 on DraftKings, he has an underappreciated floor with his +2.59 Plus/Minus.
Even though the Texans are road dogs, I actually like this spot for Hyde. On the ground, the Texans match up well with the Ravens. The Texans are No. 1 in PFF run offense and the Ravens have a funnel defense that ranks No. 8 against the pass but No. 28 against the run in DVOA.
The backs with 10-plus opportunities against the Ravens — LeSean McCoy, Darrel Williams, Nick Chubb, James Conner, Joe Mixon (twice), Chris Carson and James White — have averaged 18.2 DraftKings points per game with a +6.96 Plus/Minus.
If the Texans choose to slow the game down with their ground attack, Hyde could see upwards of 20 touches, in which case a 15-point fantasy performance is more than possible.
And I wouldn’t write off the Texans just because they are road dogs. They’re coming off the bye, so they should be rested and ready, and with quarterback Deshaun Watson, the Texans are 8-3 against the spread as road underdogs. At a minimum, the Texans should be competitive enough for Hyde to see a positive game script.
Hyde is too risky for cash games because of his pass-catching inability, but I like him in tournaments as a low-priced back with a reasonable chance to get 20 touches in a good matchup.
Hyde is the No. 1 back in the Koerner Model for DraftKings, where he has a position-high nine Pro Trends as well as a strong 93% Bargain Rating.
DeAndre Washington: Oakland Raiders (-10.5) vs. Cincinnati Bengals, 48.5 O/U
UPDATE (Nov. 16): Bengals CB Dre Kirkpatrick (knee, IR) is out.
This is the second time this year that Washington has popped in the CSURAM88 Model for DraftKings. Is Peter just trolling us?
Washington does have some factors in his favor this week.
First, the Raiders lead the slate with their 29.5-point implied Vegas total. If the Raiders score enough points, some of those might trickle down to Washington.
More importantly, he has the most glorious of matchups. The 0-9 Bengals are so bad that they’ve allowed eight-plus touches and a slew of production to a number of non-lead backs this year.
- Raheem Mostert (Week 2): 24.1 DraftKings points, 13-83-0 rushing, 3-68-1 receiving on four targets
- Jeff Wilson (Week 2): 15.4 DraftKings points, 10-34-2 rushing
- T.J. Yeldon (Week 3): 5.9 DraftKings points, 8-30-0 rushing, 2-19-0 receiving on three targets
- Jaylen Samuels (Week 4): 23.5 DraftKings points, 10-26-1 rushing, 8-57-0 receiving on eight targets
- Chase Edmonds (Week 5): 17.6 DraftKings points, 8-68-1 rushing, 3-18-0 receiving on four targets
- Darrel Henderson (Week 8): 8.9 DraftKings points, 11-49-0 rushing, 2-20-0 receiving on three targets
Washington is unrosterable in cash games, but he has 4.2 carries and 1.4 targets per game this year, and if the Raiders get out to a big lead as a double-digit home favorite, Washington could get sustained action in the second half.
Perhaps most importantly, Washington is cheap, especially on DraftKings, where he’s a stone-minimum $3,000 with a 97% Bargain Rating.
As a cheap change-of-pace back with a great matchup, good spot and nearly nonexistent ownership rate, Washington has some deeply contrarian value as a pivot to Josh Jacobs or maybe even a stacking partner with him.
The Raiders played on Thursday Night Football last week, but in Week 9, Jacobs and Washington were rostered in just six of 176,470 Millionaire Maker lineups together (per our FantasyLabs Contests Dashboard). If stacked together this week, Jacobs and Washington are almost certain to yield a unique lineup.
The odds of both Jacobs and Washington going off aren’t high, but they’re probably higher than the almost 0.0% ownership rate Washington has had this year (per our FantasyLabs Ownership Dashboard). The Raiders are No. 6 in the league with a 45.7% run rate, and they are likely to run at will against the Bengals.
Long-term team-specific production patterns can be analyzed with our FantasyLabs Correlations Tool, and this year, Jacobs and Washington actually have a strong 0.54 correlation in their production — the highest mark either of them has with another player. If you use our Lineup Builder to stack Jacobs and Washington, you will likely have the flexibility to roster almost anyone else you want.
Upside Running Backs for Guaranteed Prize Pools
Christian McCaffrey, Carolina Panthers ($10,500 DK, $10,500 FD): For the third week in a row, Run CMC is priced at an all-time high on DraftKings and FanDuel, but he’s earned the high salaries as an official member of Team Jam ‘Em In. McCaffrey is the No. 1 running back in our Week 11 fantasy football rankings. McCaffrey is the league’s most north/south runner with his 3.19 efficiency rating (per Next Gen Stats), and he’s averaged 30.8 DraftKings points with a +11.06 Plus/Minus in his 12 home games since last year’s breakout campaign. McCaffrey leads all running backs in our Models with his median, ceiling and floor projections. UPDATE (Nov. 16): LT Greg Little (Concussion) is in. Falcons CB Desmond Trufant (toe) is in.
Leonard Fournette, Jacksonville Jaguars ($7,900 DK, $7,200 FD): Despite ranking No. 3 in the league with 1,126 scrimmage yards and No. 4 with 214 touches, Fournette has just one touchdown this year. He is destined to enjoy positive regression at some point. The Colts have a funnel defense that is No. 6 against the pass but No. 23 against the run in DVOA. Fournette is on the positive side of his reverse splits with 22.5 DraftKings points and a +7.72 Plus/Minus across his 11 games as a road dog. UPDATE (Nov. 16): WR Dede Westbrook (neck, shoulder) is in. Colts CB Pierre Desir (hamstring) is doubtful while S Malik Hooker (knee) is in.
Alvin Kamara, New Orleans Saints ($7,400 DK, $7,800 FD): In his Week 10 return from ankle and knee injuries that cost him two games, Kamara had 74 scoreless yards on a season-low 12 touches, and this week he has a tough matchup against a Buccaneers unit that ranks No. 1 in rush defense DVOA. But the matchup and teammate Latavius Murray’s growing backfield role could depress Kamara’s ownership rate. With 723 yards but just two touchdowns, Kamara will eventually see his scoring luck improve. UPDATE (Nov. 16): Bucs OLBs Carl Nassib (groin) and Anthony Nelson (hamstring) are out. CB Carlton Davis (hip) is in. CB M.J. Stewart (knee) is out.
Le’Veon Bell, New York Jets ($7,200 DK, $7,400 FD): Since his 2014 breakout, Bell is No. 1 among all backs with 26.1 opportunities per game. In his seven games against teams other than the Patriots, Bell has averaged 16.7 DraftKings points with a 71.4% Consistency Rating. For the season, he has an elite 89.2% snap rate. The Redskins have allowed a top-eight mark of 28.0 DraftKings points per game to opposing backfields. UPDATE (Nov. 16): C Ryan Kalil (knee, elbow) is out and LT Kelvon Beachum (ankle) is questionable.
Mark Ingram, Baltimore Ravens ($6,600 DK, $7,500 FD): The workload for Ingram has dropped from 14.8 carries and 1.8 targets per game in Weeks 1-5 to 12.3 and 1.5 in Weeks 6-10. On top of that, the Texans are No. 6 in rush defense DVOA. But Ingram is still the lead back in an offense with a militant 57.2% run rate in quarterback Lamar Jackson’s 17 career starts, and he’s No. 4 in the league with 12 carries inside the opponent five-yard line. UPDATE (Nov. 16): WR Marquise Brown (ankle) got in a limited practice on Friday and is tentatively expected to play. Texans CBs Bradley Roby (hamstring) and Lonnie Johnson Jr. (concussion) are questionable.
Marlon Mack, Indianapolis Colts ($6,400 DK, $7,300 FD): Mack is No. 5 with 19.8 carries per game, and the Colts are No. 5 with a 46.2% run rate. In his 16 career games as a favorite, Mack has averaged 14.3 DraftKings points with a +2.91 Plus/Minus. The Jaguars have a funnel defense that ranks No. 10 against the pass but No. 24 against the run in DVOA. UPDATE (Nov. 16): QB Jacoby Brissett (knee) is in.
Tevin Coleman, 49ers ($6,100 DK, $6,700 FD): Since returning from injury in Week 5, Coleman has averaged 15.9 DraftKings points, 74.2 yards and one touchdown on 14.3 carries, 2.5 targets and two receptions per game. Coleman had just 36 scoreless yards on 16 opportunities against the Cardinals in Week 9, but it’s reasonable to expect more from him in this rematch given that the Cardinals are No. 28 in PFF run defense and No. 28 in pass defense DVOA against running backs. Change-of-pace back Matt Breida (ankle) is doubtful, so Coleman could see more work than usual. UPDATE (Nov. 16): TE George Kittle (knee) and Matt Breida (ankle) are doubtful. WR Emmanuel Sanders (ribs) is a questionable game-time decision.
Devin Singletary, Buffalo Bills ($6,000 DK, $6,500 FD): The upside third-rounder has been an inconsistent producer, but he has 14 carries and 5.5 targets per game over the past two weeks, whereas undead veteran Frank Gore has an average of eight and 0.5 over that span. After getting 50 scoreless yards last week on 15 opportunities at a 22.3% ownership rate, Singletary could have a depressed market this week. The Dolphins are No. 30 in rush defense DVOA and No. 32 in pass defense DVOA against running backs. UPDATE (Nov. 16): Dolphins S Reshad Jones (chest) is expected to play.
Ronald Jones, Tampa Bay Buccaneers ($5,200 DK, $6,400 FD): Setting aside the horrible unforced fumble that landed him on the bench, Jones had probably the best game of his career last week. He underwhelmed with just 29 yards on 11 carries, but he ran with power on his seven-yard touchdown, and he finally flashes as a receiver, putting up an 8-77-0 pass-catching line on eight targets. The Saints are No. 3 in PFF run defense, so the matchup is tough, but RoJo has 20 and 19 opportunities in his two games since earning the starting job, and that kind of usage can go a long way. UPDATE (Nov. 16): Saints CB Marshon Lattimore (thigh, hamstring) is out.
Brian Hill, Atlanta Falcons ($4,800 DK, $5,900 FD): Get ready — Hill is about to become the definitive antifragile Zero RB of 2019. Starter Devonta Freeman (foot) is doubtful and backup Ito Smith (neck, IR) is out, so Hill is in line to get a lot of work. After stepping in for Freeman in the middle of Week 10, Hill saw 20 carries and two targets on 40 snaps. With a good combination of size and athleticism (6-foot-1, 219 pounds, 4.54-second 40-yard dash), Hill has every-down ability, and he’s finally getting his shot after hanging around as a third-stringer and special-teamer for three years. In his final collegiate season he had 1,927 yards and 22 touchdowns in 14 games as a junior: Hill definitely does not suck. The Panthers have a funnel defense that ranks No. 3 against the pass but No. 32 against the run in DVOA. He will be a very popular option in both cash games and tournaments. UPDATE (Nov. 16): Freeman is out. Panthers CB James Bradberry (groin) is in, CB Ross Cockrell (quad) is out and CB Donte Jackson (hip) is questionable.
J.D. McKissic, Detroit Lions ($4,600 DK, $5,800 FD): The Lions are without starter Kerryon Johnson (knee, IR) and probably will be without backup Ty Johnson (concussion), who exited Week 10 with an injury. As a result, last week McKissic set career-high marks with a 70% snap rate, 10 carries and seven targets. Even if the Lions fall behind without quarterback Matt Stafford (back), McKissic could still action thanks to his three-down skill set. UPDATE (Nov. 16): QB Matthew Stafford (back, hip) is out. RB Ty Johnson (concussion) is questionable but presumably still in the league’s protocol.
Adrian Peterson, Washington Redskins ($4,400 DK, $6,300 FD): In four games under interim HC Bill Callahan, the Redskins have a 51.9% run rate despite owning an average point differential of -8.3. Even though they are just 1-8, the Redskins are actually home favorites. The Jets are No. 2 in rush defense DVOA, so the matchup is tough, but Peterson has averaged 112.5 yards on 20 opportunities per game under Callahan. In his 14 Redskins games with a final margin no worse than -10 points, Peterson has averaged 15.0 DraftKings points per game. He could lose work to the returning Derrius Guice (knee), but coming off the bye, the aged Peterson should be especially spry. UPDATE (Nov. 16): RB Chris Thompson (toe) and WR Paul Richardson (hamstring) are out. Jets LB C.J. Mosley (groin) is out. LBs Neville Hewitt (neck, knee) and Brandon Copeland (hip, thumb) are questionable. CB Darryl Roberts (calf) is doubtful.
Kalen Ballage, Miami Dolphins ($4,300 DK, $5,300 FD): Last week Ballage had a career-high 82% snap rate and 24 opportunities, but he managed only 45 scoreless yards. Still, he seems likely to have similar usage this week, and the Bills have a funnel defense that ranks No. 9 against the pass but No. 27 against the run in DVOA. Ballage has a position-high +3.14 Projected Plus/Minus on DraftKings. UPDATE (Nov. 16): Bills DE Jerry Hughes (groin) is questionable.
Raheem Mostert, San Francisco 49ers ($3,400 DK, $4,600 FD): Change-of-pace back Matt Breida (ankle) is doubtful, so Mostert seems likely to see extra work. In his six career games with eight-plus opportunities, Mostert has averaged 11.4 DraftKings points. In his three games with 12-plus opportunities, 13.2. As a double-digit home favorite, Mostert could get some extended action in the second half. UPDATE (Nov. 16): TE George Kittle (knee) and Matt Breida (ankle) are doubtful. WR Emmanuel Sanders (ribs) is a questionable game-time decision.
FantasyLabs Positional Breakdowns
For more in-depth NFL analysis information, check out The Action Network.
Pictured above: Josh Jacobs
Photo credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports.