Welcome to the Positional Matchups Report, aka POSAFPA. In this article, I provide an easy-to-use positional matchup table and highlight potentially exploitable matchups. If you’re curious about the process, you can find a full introduction HERE, where I lay out the methodology.
Last Week’s Results
Chuba Hubbard had a solid outing, putting up double-digit PPR points this week against the Colts. He faces Chicago this upcoming week, so expect a similar outlook again.
As expected, Trey McBride had a tough game against the Browns, who managed to shut out the Cardinals. Despite this, his peripheral numbers were still good. His matchup this week is neutral, and given the tight end landscape, he should be rostered in nearly every league.
Jaren Hall was a miss, but the process was a success. Unfortunately, Hall exited the game with a concussion after just six pass attempts. Joshua Dobbs stepped up after arriving in Minneapolis just five days prior. He slung it like a pro to receivers whose full names he didn’t even know. He completed 20/30 passes and put up nearly 25 fantasy points. It’s unclear who will be the starting QB in the future, but based on trends this season, it’s unlikely that Jaren Hall will clear concussion protocol before this week’s game.
Will Levis disappointed, tallying only single-digit fantasy points. He put up more passing yards than last week but had no touchdowns and one interception. This is likely his floor, and he should bounce back this week with a moderately positive matchup.
Jessie Bates and Richie Grant both performed well. Marcus Maye was okay, but it was another Saints defensive back, Paulson Adebo, who feasted. Adebo put up nearly 40 points courtesy of the Bears.
How to Use the Table
First, find YOUR PLAYER’S TEAM in the first column. Next, follow that line to THEIR POSITION’S column. That percentage is how much better or worse you can expect them to do compared to what they typically score.
For example, Let’s say you’re deciding between Jakobi Meyers (WR-LV) and Tyler Lockett (WR-SEA). For Meyers, find LV in the first column. Follow that row over to the WR column, and you’ll see his positional matchup is -40%. That’s an extremely negative matchup. Next, for Lockett, find SEA in the first column. Follow that row over to the WR column, and you’ll see his positional matchup is 29%, which is a very positive matchup. Given both players are averaging between 12 and 13 PPR points per game, I would lean toward Lockett this week.
Offensive Boons and Fades
Kyler Murray is finally expected back this week! (insert Call of Duty joke here). This week, the Cardinals face the Falcons, who have given up 22% more fantasy points to opponents over the last six weeks. It’s been confirmed that Kyler will be starting Week 10. It may take time for him to knock the rust off, but his matchup is very good. With so many fantasy quarterback studs on bye or falling to injury, Kyler is a starter in most formats. Russel Wilson and Geno Smith have plus matchups this week and may be available on waivers in single QB redraft leagues. They could be inexpensive trade targets if you’re competing and need a QB replacement for Daniel Jones or Kirk Cousins.
Keaton Mitchell is likely sitting on waivers or potentially your taxi squad. If that’s the case, you may want to hold off on promoting him one more week. Last week, he faced Seattle, who has been a relatively neutral matchup for RBs and put up over 20 PPR points. This week, however, he faces a very difficult matchup with the Browns, who have allowed 23% fewer points to running backs over the last six weeks.
Rhamondre Stevenson had his first big game in a while last week. This week, he has an even better matchup against the Colts. Javonte Williams had a massive 27 carry, 3 reception game in Week 8 before his bye. Now he faces Buffalo, who has been a terrific matchup for RBs. The implied game script has the Bills leading, so Denver might be pass-heavy trying to play catch up. That said, Williams has maintained a healthy 14% target share over the last six weeks, so I’m not particularly concerned about him being scripted out.
Derrick Henry is also coming off a massive game but has a far tougher matchup against the Buccaneers this week. This game is expected to be close with just a single point spread. His receiving work has improved over past years. This Titans offense is particularly volatile. I may look for safer options elsewhere, but it is a tough bye week. On the receiving side, Tampa Bay has been giving up a ton of fantasy points to wide receivers, so DeAndre Hopkins should have a bounce-back week.
IDP Boons and Fades
While it’s unlikely that Divine Deablo will play this week, the other Raiders linebackers are likely to have a big game against the Jets. Robert Spillane is the most likely beneficiary, but don’t overlook.
While the Raiders linebackers have a good matchup on paper, Robert Spillane is the only startable one this week. Divine Deablo is unlikely to play at the time of my writing this article. Amari Burney has been the biggest beneficiary but has only played half of the defensive snaps in the last two games. At best, he’s a “pick up and stash” in deep IPD formats.
Patriots linebacks Ja’Whaun Bentley and Jahlani Tavai are solid starts this week as Washington remains a great matchup to target for IDP. While the Dallas linemen look like a good matchup on paper, none are trustworthy. Don’t be fooled by Sam Williams‘ production last week. While he tallied almost 13 fantasy points, he played just 19% of snaps, so it isn’t sustainable production.
Houston’s defensive backs have a great matchup against the Browns, whose QB turmoil continues. While Jalen Pitre is a safe start most weeks, you can also look to stream Steven Nelson or Tavierre Thomas this week. Chicago also has a good matchup, but their secondary has been a rotation of injuries all season. Jaquon Brisker has returned after a two-week absence due to a concussion and can be safely started. Tyrique Stevenson has averaged 13.5 IDP123 points over the last six weeks, making him a good option as well. Also noteworthy is linebacker Jack Sanborn. Tremaine Edwards is out, so Jack Sanborn will start again. He’s been very productive the last two games, and with an excellent matchup this week, you can be confident putting him into your lineup.
Since 1968, the Vikings and Saints have faced off only 37 times, so it’s unusual that they would have formed a rivalry. That said, if you’ve watched many of those games, you will see why. For some reason, whenever these two teams face off, there’s a touch of chaos. Perhaps it’s simply chance, or perhaps Loki is reliving the glory days of the 9th century when Vikings battling Saints would have been done under less entertaining circumstances.
- 2022: The game ended with a 62-yard field goal attempt by Will Lutz to tie the game, which bounced off the upright and then the crossbar before falling forward and sealing the fate of the Saints.
- 2021: We had the Alvin Kamara Christmas game where he scored 6 touchdowns in his red and green cleats.
- 2020: The Vikings had a surprise upset over the Saints in the Wildcard game of the playoffs despite being 7.5-point underdogs.
- 2017: The Minneapolis Miracle.
Mythological implications aside, this is shaping up to be an interesting game. With a 41-point over/under, it doesn’t aim to be a barn burner, but with a 2.5-point spread favoring the Vikings, it should be competitive. Joshua Dobbs will have been able to practice with the team this week, and while his matchup isn’t ideal, he’s already produced well for fantasy in more difficult matchups this year. Justin Jefferson is eligible to return from IR, so keep an eye on practice reports. TJ Hockenson and Jordan Addison did well with Dobbs under center, and both have pretty neutral positional matchups.
On the Saints side, Chris Olave is coming off a game where he finally performed like we’d hoped he would, and the Vikings secondary has remained a neutral matchup for receivers. Alvin Kamara has a moderately negative positional matchup, but given how much of his production comes from his receiving work, it shouldn’t affect him as much as Jamaal Williams, who has been underwhelming for fantasy as-is. The Vikings give up a generous amount of points to opposing linebackers, so Demario Davis should be a solid start.
Team Trends for Future Weeks
Notable Rush Funnel Teams: The Jets have become the biggest rush funnel in the league over the last six weeks, which is no surprise given their secondary. Las Vegas, Indianapolis, and, to a lesser extent, Carolina are all positive matchups for rushers.
Pass Funnel Teams: Tampa Bay is now the largest pass funnel team, barely ahead of Philadelphia. Detroit has also followed this trend but to a lesser extent.
IDP Targets: Washington and the New York Giants are again at the top of the IDP target list. With the Giants QB situation in utter shambles, it’s no surprise we should continue streaming against them. Sam Howell is still on track to break the season-long record for sacks taken by a huge margin, so there’s upside for any pass rushers going against him. Carolina is a solid matchup for all IDP positions as well. Cincinnati and Miami are both teams to stream DBs against.
So there you go for Week 10. Apologies for the delay this week. It’s a rough week for players on bye, but there are plenty of streaming options, not something you can always count on.
Follow me on Twitter @MonCalFF and check out our other Start-Sit articles which can be found here. Until next week, good luck!