Nov 10, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) scrambles away from pressure in the second half against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome. The Seahawks won 33-10. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports
Week 11 has plenty of story lines to keep track in both regular season action and NFL fantasy matchups. Which ones should owners targets and which ones should be avoided?
Start – Russell Wilson against Minnesota Vikings
The Seattle Seahawks passing game may finally get some help with the return of Percy Harvin. How ironic that he comes back to face his former team, the Minnesota Vikings. At home and coming off a big performance in Atlanta, Russell Wilson faces one of the worst defenses in the league. Expect him to create a multitude of big plays with his arm and legs.
Sit – Tom Brady against Carolina Panthers
Having a bye week might help matters for Tom Brady in week 11, but then again no amount of preparation can work against what is probably the best defense in the league. The Carolina Panthers have shut down almost every offense they’ve seen and rank second overall against the pass. Brady always tends to struggle when facing teams with strong defensive lines. Carolina has one of the best in football coming off a dominating performance in San Francisco.
Start – Reggie Bush against Pittsburgh Steelers
It’s hard to imagine a day when they weren’t the best run defense in the league, but NFL fantasy owner have watched the Pittsburgh Steelers crumble all year, dropping to the fourth-worst allowing 127 yards per game. That is good news for Lions running back Reggie Bush who is having one of the best seasons of his career. Detroit will need to use him in order to control the ball and get the Pittsburgh fans out of the game early so as to avoid an upset.
Sit – Jamaal Charles against Denver Broncos
Probably the most anticipated matchup of the year so far with the Kansas City Chiefs out to prove they are for real. Beating the Denver Broncos would certainly validate their undefeated start. The question is will Jamaal Charles be able to help them do it? Denver has one of the best run defenses in the league and got a huge boost with the return of Von Miller to the lineup. Much of how Charles does may be predicated on whether quarterback Alex Smith can make some plays through the air.
Start – Jordan Reed against Philadelphia Eagles
Nick Foles is the story of late for the winning streak the Philadelphia Eagles have put together but they still don’t have a particularly good pass defense. The Washington Redskins come off their bye week knowing this and also know the Eagles haven’t yet seen one of their new weapons in tight end Jordan Reed. The rookie has come on over the past few weeks and displayed some excellent traits as a pass catcher. Eagles safeties and linebackers should have a hard time stopping him if Robert Griffin III gets protection.
Sit – Demaryius Thomas against Kansas City Chiefs
Peyton Manning could be in store for a rough day against the Kansas City Chiefs. Their pass rush is the best in football and he is practically a statue because of ankle problems. On top of that he stands behind a makeshift offensive line. So it’s reasonable to assume his receiver might be in store for an off night. Demaryius Thomas is sure to see plenty of attention from the Chiefs secondary, especially after scoring three touchdowns in San Diego.
Sleeper – Antonio Brown against Detroit Lions
NFL fantasy owners weren’t sure about the pass defense of the Detroit Lions despite their upgrades in the off-season. Apparently there was good reason for that. They gave up over 300 yards again last week to Chicago and travel to Pittsburgh to face Ben Roethlisberger. While their defensive line should create problems for the Steelers, their secondary should worry about wide receiver Antonio Brown who is having the best season of his career. He’s also got a tendency to expose bad defenses.