Friday - May 14, 2021

Home / Lineup / START/BENCH: Week 11


This week’s edition starts with a sad occurrence. It’s one that probably should have happened weeks ago, but we tried like heck to avoid it. But 10 weeks into the season, with the fantasy playoffs stretch run about to get underway in earnest, there’s just no getting around it anymore.

We have to take Carolina running back Christian McCaffrey off the “Studs” list — largely so that fantasy managers who choose to do so can drop the 24-year-old in favor of a player who might actually help get them into the postseason.

It has been a miserable season for the No. 1 overall pick in most fantasy drafts in 2020. First McCaffrey suffered a high-ankle sprain in Week 2 that knocked him out of action for well over a month. McCaffrey returned in Week 9, racking up 151 total yards and two scores against Kansas City.

But McCaffrey injured his shoulder near the end of that contest. The fourth-year veteran missed Week 10, and per Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk, he is expected to miss multiple weeks.

The reality is that Carolina has lost five in a row and is 3-7. If Carolina loses to Detroit on Sunday, it’s a distinct possibility that the team just throws in the towel on 2020 and puts McCaffrey on Injured Reserve. Does that mean that every fantasy manager should run out and cast McCaffrey into the cold? Of course not — if you can afford to hold in the hopes he sees the field again this season by all means do so. But the odds that happens are decreasing by the week — and some fantasy managers need to put someone in that spot who can help their team now. Not (maybe) later.

Week 11 is another four-team bye week — Buffalo, Chicago, the New York Giants and San Francisco are all off this week.



Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City (at Las Vegas)

Lamar Jackson, Baltimore (at Tennessee)

Russell Wilson, Seattle (vs. Arizona)

Kyler Murray, Arizona (at Seattle)

Josh Allen, Buffalo (BYE)

Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay (at Indianapolis)

Deshaun Watson, Houston (vs. New England) 


Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers (vs. New York Jets): Herbert’s numbers were down a bit in Week 10 — just 187 passing yards and two scores against Miami. The rookie will rebound on Sunday against the lowly Jets.

Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh (at Jacksonville): Roethlisberger had his best game of the season last week, throwing for 330 yards and four scores against Cincinnati. The hot streak should continue Sunday against a Jacksonville team allowing the third-most fantasy points to quarterbacks.

Carson Wentz, Philadelphia (at Cleveland): It hasn’t been pretty, but Wentz has posted Top 10 fantasy numbers this season in more scoring systems than not. Through 10 weeks, Cleveland is surrendering the fifth-most fantasy points per game to quarterbacks.

Jameis Winston, New Orleans (vs. Atlanta): The No. 1 overall pick will no doubt be popular with streamers at quarterback in Week 11 — in no small part because only Seattle is allowing more fantasy points to the position in 2020 than Atlanta.


Tom Brady, Tampa Bay (vs. Los Angeles Rams): Brady’s last two games have been quite the roller-coaster — he was great last week against Carolina but flopped the week before against New Orleans. The Rams just held Russell Wilson under 250 passing yards with zero touchdown passes.

Jared Goff, Los Angeles Rams (at Tampa Bay): Monday’s matchup between the Rams and Tampa Bay features two of the top three defenses in the NFL — and two of the six worst fantasy matchups for the quarterback position in 2020. It’s a good game to watch — but a fade for Brady and Goff.

Philip Rivers, Indianapolis (vs. Green Bay): Rivers topped 300 passing yards last week against Tennessee, but he had just one touchdown pass and draws a Week 11 matchup with a Green Bay team giving up the fourth-fewest fantasy points to quarterbacks this season.

Deshaun Watson, Houston (vs. New England): New England might not be as good defensively as 2019, but the team is still pretty good on that side of the ball — and facing Lamar Jackson last week is an excellent warm-up for this meeting with Watson and Houston.

About Gary Davenport

A member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association and Pro Football Writers of America who resides in Columbus, Ohio, Gary has been featured on a number of fantasy websites and in nationally circulated publications. These publications include the USA Today Fantasy Football Preview and the magazines distributed by Fantasy Sports Publications Inc., for whom Gary is a both a contributing author and associate editor. Gary is an nine-time FSWA Award finalist and three-time winner who has been a finalist for that organization's Fantasy Football Writer of the Year award each of the last four years. He won the honor in 2017 and 2019. Gary also appears regularly on Sirius XM Radio (including live from Radio Row at Super Bowl XLIX) and over-the-air stations across the country. Gary was one of the co-founders of, and Head Writer at, Fantasy Football Oasis before joining Fantasy Sharks as an IDP Senior Staff Writer in 2011. He knows football. Or so he's heard.