We’re back with another wide receiver matchup report. This week is NFC East heavy and features a few receivers who have been fantasy disappointments to this point in the season. If you have any questions, feel free to ask me on Twitter @JonSauber.
Favorable Receiver Matchups
Alshon Jeffery vs. Washington
Last week, Jeffery racked up double-digit targets for the second time this season. That’s a good sign for the Eagles’ number one wide receiver. He had the chance for two more big plays, but he was interfered with by Carolina defensive backs, although it went uncalled. Jeffery may get a shadow from Josh Norman, but this game is going to be a shootout. That means that he’s going to get a bunch of targets, and will have the opportunity to find the end zone. He’s also good enough to make contested catches even when Norman is on him. Look for eight or more targets for Jeffery this week, and at least one of them coming in the end zone.
Terrelle Pryor vs. Philadelphia Eagles
Did I mention that this game is going to be a shootout? Because this game is going to be a shootout. Terrelle Pryor has been quiet most of this season, but he still saw 11 targets when Washington played the Eagles week one. Ronald Darby and Sidney Jones are still out, so that means Pryor will see a healthy dose of Jalen Mills. Mills has improved, but he’s still susceptible to getting beat deep, and Pryor should be able to do just that. Pryor is someone that should get some looks in DFS and can be deployed as a high-upside flex play in season-long fantasy.
Pierre Garcon vs. Dallas Cowboys
Pierre Garcon has been the clear number one option in San Francisco this season, and his matchup with the Cowboys shouldn’t slow him down. Garcon has 56 targets on the season, and the Cowboys secondary has been awful. He’s going to see plenty of opportunities this week, with a slight increase in deep shots thanks to Brian Hoyer’s benching. Even if he doesn’t bring in a deep ball, Garcon gets plenty of targets to make up for it. Look for 10+ targets and a monster day from Pierre Garcon.
Demaryius Thomas @ Los Angeles Chargers
It does not look like Emmanuel Sanders will be available anytime soon, and that bodes well for owners of Demaryius Thomas. Thomas saw 14 targets last week, with Sanders missing a portion of the game. He likely won’t see that many, but he should still get around 10 this week. As long Trevor Siemian can get the ball to him, Thomas should be in for a nice game. The Chargers secondary is nothing to scoff at, but the volume will help Thomas overcome that. I’m looking to add him in all of my DFS lineups and deploying him safely as a WR1 this week.
Unfavorable Receiver Matchups
TY Hilton vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
It’s difficult to trust anyone on the Colts right now, and that includes last year’s leader in receiving yards. TY Hilton basically vanished this past Monday, only seeing four targets. This week, he’ll be seeing either AJ Bouye or Jalen Ramsey, and that doesn’t bode well for his fantasy value. Hilton will likely see more targets, strictly because of his talent level, but he’s going to have an even harder time pulling them in. Hilton is still likely a flex play in season-long leagues, but you should bench him if you can. Avoid him completely in daily fantasy.
Sterling Shepard vs. Seattle Seahawks
Sterling Shepard is already listed as questionable this week, but even if he plays, I have no interest in starting him. Shepard would be facing one of the best secondaries in the NFL, with a quarterback who has struggled this season. Not only that, if he does play, it’ll be without a full week of practice and on an ankle that is still not fully healed. He’s not worth more than a WR5 this week. You may be looking at him as a cheap option in DFS, but I wouldn’t. There are better sleepers to have, and they have much more certainty than Shepard.
Doug Baldwin @ New York Giants
It’s not just Shepard that I’m worried about in this game. Although Doug Baldwin is waiting for an opportunity to break out, this week won’t be it. Baldwin will see Janoris Jenkins for a good portion of this game, and that’s never a good sign. Not only that, but I expect the Seahawks to rely on their run game this week. Seattle has an opportunity to get up big early, and that could cause a major decline in their passing production. Baldwin is a WR3 for me this week. Don’t roster him in DFS and keep your expectations low in season-long leagues.
Sleeper of the Week
Cooper Kupp vs. Arizona Cardinals
My sleeper of the week goes to Cooper Kupp, for what should be a good performance against Arizona. Kupp has been a safety blanket for Jared Goff. Most weeks, that leads to five or six short targets for Kupp. That’s mostly because the Rams rely on their run game to wear teams down. This week, I expect the Cardinals to jump out to a big lead, forcing Los Angeles to throw the ball. That means more targets for Kupp, who should excel in PPR leagues. I expect around nine targets and a strong chance for a receiving touchdown.