Many of the usual suspects including Drew Brees, Patrick Mahomes, Matt Ryan, and Jared Goff were among the scoring leaders for Week 9. And yes, Ryan Fitzpatrick had another great game. San Francisco’s third string quarterback Nick Mullens started Week 9 after C.J. Beathard’s wrist injury and helped the 49ers break their six-game losing streak with an impressive performance of 262 passing yards and three touchdowns! New Orleans’ Saints’ star wideout Michael Thomas not only had an elite performance of 12 catches for 211 receiving yards, but paid homage to retired wide receiver Joe Horn with a touchdown celebration with a hidden cellphone. It was definitely a throwback as the phone was even a “flip phone”! Week 9 was not stingy on scoring as seven teams (despite six on bye) scored 30 or more points with three (Chicago Bears, Carolina Panthers, and New Orleans Saints) topping 40 points! Even Julio Jones who ranks 2nd in total receiving yards finally scored his first touchdown of the season!
Take a dive with me as we prepare for Week 10. Four teams are on bye so plan accordingly. Thus far, weather should not be a major factor, however temperatures are getting a bit chilly in some regions.
QB Philip Rivers, Los Angeles Chargers
With so much focus on the Rams, Los Angeles’ “other team” has not received nearly as much hype despite sitting at 6-2 with a five game win-streak. Veteran quarterback Philip Rivers may be in line for a great start as the Los Angeles Chargers visit the Oakland Raiders who have allowed the 7th most fantasy points to quarterbacks including at least two touchdowns in every game except Week 2. With 19 passing touchdowns and only 3 interceptions this season and a strong performance against Oakland in Week 5, Rivers can be considered a low-end QB1 this weekend.
Week 10 projection: 250 passing yards; 2 TD
RB Duke Johnson Jr, Cleveland Browns
Cleveland Browns running back Duke Johnson Jr has not been a major factor in the ground-game recently, but has become a major weapon for rookie quarterback Baker Mayfield through the air. With an average of nearly five catches and 50 receiving yards per game, Johnson Jr should be owned and may be a flex candidate in Week 10 when the Cleveland Browns welcome the Atlanta Falcons who have given up the 3rd most fantasy points and most receptions to running backs.
Week 10 projection: 75 total yards; 1 TD
WR John Ross, Cincinnati Bengals
Although Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver John Ross has missed the last four games, he is practicing this week and questionable to return for Week 10. With A.J. Green expected to miss at least a week or two, Ross will join Tyler Boyd as Andy Dalton’s top receiving targets as the Bengals welcome a New Orleans Saints’ secondary that has surrendered the most points including most receiving yards and touchdowns to wide receivers. Ross may be a nice fill-in as a WR4 or FLEX especially in deep leagues.
Week 10 projection: 60 receiving yards; 1 TD
TE Ben Watson, New Orleans Saints
With a tough year at the tight end position (even if you are a Rob Gronkowski owner) seasoned veterans including Benjamin Watson have become invaluable, especially when they are catching passes from Drew Brees! Although he suffered a dud without any catches in Week 8, he also managed six games with at least three receptions including touchdowns in two of his last three games. Watson visits the Cincinnati Bengals who have been vulnerable to tight ends by allowing the 2nd most points to tight ends including an average of 107 receiving yards and two scores over the last three contests.
Week 10 projection: 50 receiving yards; 1 TD
Defense/Special Teams New York Jets
The New York Jets’ defense has been a roller-coaster this season after a few tremendous games against Detroit and Indianapolis, but a few disappointments in losses against Chicago and Minnesota. With a home matchup against the mightily struggling Buffalo Bills, Jets’ defense will be an excellent stream this week especially with the defenses of the Houston Texans, Denver Broncos, Baltimore Ravens, and Minnesota Vikings on bye. In the last four games, Buffalo’s offense has suffered 11 sacks, 14 turnovers, and 4 touchdowns. Start New York Jet’s defense this weekend!
Week 10 projection: 12 points