People are probably getting a little tired of this guy. It's understandable. Hunt has not found the end zone since Week 3 and the splash plays that were weekly staples of his game have evaporated. Heck, the rookie hasn't rushed for 100 yards in any game since Week 5. That said, I'm on board with ESPN's Field Yates, who wrote that Hunt "has still been a really solid player with an incredible skill set. He can handle passing game work and is just a freight train as a runner." In addition, Hunt still has had at least 18 carries in three of his past four games. So there's that. There's also this: The Buffalo defense is in shambles. The Bills have allowed 135 points in the last three games, the most in franchise history for a three-game stretch. The Bills can't stop the run, they can't stop the pass, they can't rush the quarterback, and now they come up against a Kansas City offense that has explosive players, albeit players who have struggled lately. In particular, the Bills have allowed the most rushing yards per game (173.0) and most fantasy points per game (42.7) to opposing running backs during that three game span. And Hunt's recent regression on the field has led to a diminished price tag ($8000 on DraftKings; $7700 on FanDuel) in the virtual world.
As ESPN's Fantasy Scientist, my friend KC Joyner, put it this week, "There may not be a player more central to his team's offense than Wilson." Joyner went on to explain the Seahawks are leaning heavily on their aerial attack, as passing yards account for 71.7 percent of their overall yardage production. Wilson also leads the team in rushing attempts, rush yards and rushing touchdowns. And he has plenty of weapons. Doug Baldwin, Paul Richardson and Tyler Lockett are all capable of producing at a high level, but Jimmy Graham has been the driving force in the Seattle receiving corps in recent weeks. Graham has seven touchdown catches in his last six games. The 49ers have allowed touchdowns to tight ends in four straight games, so Wilson could make some hay there. Of course, he's likely to make some hay in general as the 49ers rank 29th in quarterback fantasy points allowed this season -- and have given up the second-most rushing yards this season. Wilson can deliver on both counts. Look, I could also pay up for
Tom Brady ($7700 on DraftKings; $9100 on FanDuel) going up against a struggling Miami defense, but Wilson is slightly cheaper ($7000 on DraftKings; $8600 on FanDuel) and the potential rushing production is a difference maker for me.
Don't look now, but the Bills' second-round pick has made noted strides in recent weeks, with seven targets in each of his past two games. Jones had 53 yards receiving and a touchdown in Week 9 and 68 yards in the team's Week 10 Nathan Peterman-fueled debacle in Los Angeles. According to Yates, Jones is playing with what looks like improved confidence and could handle a heavy target share on Sunday with Kelvin Benjamin (knee) expected to sit this one out. In addition, Charles Clay continues to battle his chronic knee issue and Jordan Matthew, who sat out last week with a knee injury, is working on a limited basis this week. Deonte Thompson and Andre Holmes are both working through ankle injuries this week. Yes, that means Jones is the only fully healthy wideout on the roster. Oh, and Tyrod Taylor will be Jones' quarterback. Which is a good thing given the alternative. Best of all, however, the Chiefs enter Week 12 allowing the second-most fantasy points per game to opposing wide receivers and have surrendered 15 touchdowns to the position, he most in the NFL. And if you check some of the other players in his price range, Jones looks like much less a dart toss than most. Of course, I'm going cheaper ($4000 on DraftKings; $5,100 on FanDuel) here because I went a little higher end with the Hunt and Wilson. And if I was looking to pay more, T.Y. Hilton ($6700 on DraftKings; $7500 on FanDuel) might be my huckleberry. The speedy Colts wideout has become the definition of a boom/bust player. But as ESPN's Matthew Berry pointed out, Tennessee’s secondary allows the fifth-most points to opposing wide receivers (and second-most points over the past four weeks). I'm expecting a boom. A big boom.
Hello unstoppable force. Meet immovable object. ... Howard enters the week third in the league in rushing (with 841 yards in 10 games. He already has four 100-yard rushing performances, including one last week in a three-point loss to Detroit. The Eagles, meanwhile, haven't allowed a 100-yard rusher this season. But it's more than that. The Eagles have allowed the fifth-fewest fantasy points to running backs this season not necessarily because they're an immovable object, it's more because they have faced the fewest rushes in the league. And that's because teams usually are playing from behind against them. The Eagles have outscored opponents 71-18 in the first quarter and 232-105 in the first three quarters they have had to give up the run early in games and throw a lot more than they had planned. As a result, opponents have averaged a league-low 19.3 rushing attempts per game against the Eagles and have a league-low 31.2 run-play percentage. Howard ($6000 on DraftKings; $7500 on FanDuel) has been an unstoppable force in large part because the Bears are second in the league in run-play percentage and ninth in rushing attempts per game (29.0). They have been committed to the run regardless of the score. I expect that to change this week when Philadelphia grabs the lead early as they have done all season, and force the Bears to abandon the run and throw more than they want.