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Can you believe it? It’s Week 10 already of the 2018-2019 NFL Season. By this time there might be 3 tiers beginning to break up for your fantasy league. The first tier of teams are the ones favored to take it all the way through the playoffs, while the last two remain in the dust. Luckily for us last tiered teams, there’s articles and such that can boost our confidence in making a sturdy lineup. In this week’s article, I shall break down some players that haven’t had that great of a year or began hot but simmered down. With that, here are this weeks:

Under Performers That Can Turn Your Fantasy Football Team Around

Joe Flacco

Joe Flacco began the year averaging almost 25 points a game, but after Week 4, he started to nosedive back into normalcy. This has been the case for Flacco ever since he got that fat payout however long ago. He took the Super Bowl, took the big season money but his production has been mediocre. Well this year has got a different zing to it as we can see Flacco has been better than his average self with 13 TDs and 6 picks. Not only are his numbers increased from this time last season, but his opponents coming up could also boost his point value. After the bye, Flacco faces:

CIN – 30th against the Pass

OAK – 19th

ATL – 26th

KC – 32nd

TB – 27th

LAC – 12th

CLE – 31st

With the exception of the Chargers, Flacco has some wiggle room when it comes to getting Points and Yardage. Not only that, his next adversaries are some of the higher scoring teams in the league, which will push Flacco to (hopefully) get more passing yards and passing TDs trying to keep up with the upcoming shootouts. The big ones that stand out are Cincinnati, Atlanta, and Kansas City, but we all know the kind of points Tampa Bay is capable of putting up. In all, Flacco could have a favorable upside with the season rearing its conclusion.

David Johnson

By all means, David Johnson has been inconsistent when it comes to the fantasy realm. More so in Standard leagues than PPR. Johnson has yet to rack up a 100-yard game, and because the Cardinals are always playing from behind, this puts a damper on his running plays. Week 1 is the only game where Johnson had over a 4 yard average and that was simply a numbers game; he had 9 attempts for 37 yards. Every game played since Week 1 has seen that average going down. Johnson’s next opponents are:

KC – 26th against the run

OAK – 29th

LAC – 15th

GB – 20th

DET – 27th

ATL – 12th

LAR – 19th

SEA – 17th

Each team has an average of 4.4 or higher when it comes to giving up yards to the running back. This could mean big points and big plays for David Johnson for the rest of the NFL season. Kansas City let Nick Chubb rush for 85 and a TD, while Oakland submitted over 120 rushing yards against Frisco. Naturally, the cringe is still there when playing Johnson because of his overall team but with his schedule ahead, he could be the deciding factor on your team.

Dalvin Cook

Fantasy owners know the pain that Dalvin Cook has burdened on their teams. The only owners who would feel no sympathy would be anyone who took Le’Veon Bell the first pick, or in the first round of the draft. In the 4 weeks that Cook has actually suited up, he has accumulated about 41 points. We’ll say 10 points a week of performance. He’s averaged 11 carries a game, along with the 4 reception average. No game that Cook has played in has he scored a touchdown. Things will look up however with the Vikings schedule coming to its finale:

They have a bye for Week 10

CHI – 3rd against the rush

GB – 20th

NE – 21st

SEA – 17th

MIA – 31st

DET – 27th

CHI – 3rd

Who doesn’t love playing in their division when the season is on the road to close? Chicago twice in the upcoming weeks is rough there is no doubt about it. On the contrary, Chicago has given up an average of 3.7 yards per carry to the running back, along with an average of 83.8 rushing yards a game. With an average running back these numbers would be irrelevant but with Cook’s ability to move the ball, this might be the gamble fantasy coaches should be looking for.

Devin Funchess

When it comes to big wide receivers that should be getting the ball in the Red Zone, Funchess should be your guy. Why he is not Cam Newton’s guy in that type of situation, I will never know. But who am I besides some dude with a beard, tickling my keys. For Standard League owners his performance has allowed only 3 instances of double digit points, while PPR that takes a leap up to 4. Double digit points should be a regular thing for your starting players and with this upcoming schedule, Funchess might have more glimmering light to shine through.

PIT – 17th against the Pass

DET – 4th

SEA – 2nd

TB – 28th

CLE – 31st

NO – 29th

ATL – 26th

NO – 29th

Now the NFC South is possibly the most saturated division for fantasy football and this is where I am looking to when thinking about Devin Funchess. The Detroit and Seattle higher rates should not alarm you. The Lions are averaging 8.4 yards per reception, while the Seahawks are at 7.1, both of which are obtainable for a Cam Newton scrambling around gaining the attention of the cornerbacks. The combination of Cam’s cannon and legs, along with Funchess’s big play ability makes Devin Funchess a must play for the weeks to come.

Keenan Allen

There is nothing more aggravating than researching a player and judging this man by some numbers on a screen, all for it to be in the wrong format come time to write. Keenan Allen lives in this purgatory of mine. In PPR leagues, Allen is a clear-cut star racking in some valuable points. But when it comes to standard leagues, Allen has been a lot less becoming than his high draft pick value would make him seem. Overall, Allen has only 1 TD the whole 2018-2019 season and that is, no matter the format, a skosh irritating. Allen’s upcoming schedule includes:

OAK – 14th against the Pass

DEN – 18th

ARI – 6th

PIT – 17th

CIN – 30th

KC – 32nd

BAL – 8th

DEN – 18th

The Chargers get their divisional games near the rear end of the season like the Panthers, and like the Panthers, the Chargers have the number for most of their rivals. Oakland hasn’t been able to succumb too much since Gruden became the overlord of the team. Denver has a QB but has to deal with some moving pieces. Kansas City remains the hardest challenge of the division, but even then, high scoring Chiefs means high scoring Chargers. The teams in the single digit rankings above should not fret owners, the Cardinals are averaging 11.2 yards a reception, while Baltimore is handing out 10.5. The future holds many good things for you standard league coaches when you play Keenan Allen in the future; if you’re in a PPR, gold star for you Bud.

David Njoku

With a sweet name like Njoku, it’s hard not play this man in your lineup. I guess it’s only hard if you don’t look at his numbers. Njoku has been up and down, left and right all season for fantasy coaches. He began with 3 straight games of single-digit scoring (PPR) but followed that with 4 weeks of games over 10 points. Week 8 came around and Njoku saw no action, then Njoku seemed to cool down once again going for 9 points in Week 9. Coaches fret not, with the Browns upcoming schedule, Njoku will be a must play for the remainder of the season.

ATL – 13th points allowed to Tight Ends

Bye

CIN – 2nd

HOU – 10th

CAR – 1st

DEN – 16th

CIN – 2nd

BAL – 12th

Going against the 1st and 2nd worst defenses against tight ends, three times out of the next seven weeks of football makes Njoku a wise pick. Atlanta averages 55.5 yards to tight ends, Houston 58.8, Denver 59.2, and Baltimore 64.0. Each average isn’t necessarily bad if you’re playing Njoku in PPR leagues, in standard leagues Njoku has some definite upside with the down, but this should not derail you. Each team mentioned that isn’t in single digit ranking has given up multiple TDs to tight ends.

Thaddeus Kline

Author Thaddeus Kline

SoCal student majoring in Creative Writing and Literature, hoping to one day make a little dent in history my own way.

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Sports Al Dente 2018