2021 Fantasy Football Week 11 Buy-Low, Sell-High Featuring Darren Waller, CeeDee Lamb - Roto Street Journal
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2021 Fantasy Football Week 11 Buy-Low, Sell-High Featuring Darren Waller, CeeDee Lamb

The following buy-low, sell-high recommendations are primarily based on a metric called Expected Fantasy Points (XFP). XFP calculates the value of each target and rushing attempt based on the distance to the end zone and air yards. These historical data attributes correlate highly with actual fantasy points scored (PPR scoring).

For more information on Expected Fantasy Points and to utilize our XFP data tool, click the link below:

RSJ’S XFP TOOL: CARRIES, TARGETS, AND AIR YARDS FOR EVERY PLAYER

WEEK 11 BUY-LOW

DARREN WALLER

Fantasy managers are panicking over Darren Waller‘s poor performance in the 2021 season. Waller has still been a good fantasy tight end, averaging the fourth-most points per game at the position, but the high-end production and boom weeks have mostly been missing.

Even though Waller has failed to meet expectations, his target profile is still valuable. Waller’s 16.5 XFP average sits very slightly ahead of Travis Kelce for the top spot at the position. He is averaging 8.9 targets per game with a healthy aDOT of 9.7 yards, both elite numbers for a tight end.

Waller is currently on a 142-target pace over 16 games. He saw 145 targets in 2020 when he put up 107 catches for 1196 yards and 9 touchdowns, so his current problems have to do with efficiency, not volume. Most of the drop in efficiency can be traced to two issues: drops and touchdowns.

Waller currently has a 10.2% drop rate according to PFF, well above his 1.8% drop rate in 2020. Drops are typically not a sticky stat, and previous drop numbers are not a good predictor of future drops. Waller is currently dropping nearly a target per game, and a player of his caliber should be able to clean that up moving forward.

In addition, to drops, Waller has only scored two touchdowns on the season, well behind his expected numbers. He is a primary target for Derek Carr in the red zone, and his 12 red-zone targets have fueled a solid expected touchdown number of about 4.9 this year. Unfortunately, Waller has only scored twice, and also had a touchdown called back for a penalty last week.

Waller is currently averaging 11.2 yards per catch. If he matched his 1.8% drop rate from last year, he would be averaging roughly 1.6 additional PPR points per game due to drops alone. If you also add three touchdowns to match his expected touchdown numbers, he would be averaging an additional 2.2 PPR points per game.

In summary, Waller is losing 3.8 PPR points per game to drops and bad touchdown luck, stats that are prone to noise in the short term. If you add 3.8 points per game this season, he would be averaging 17.0 PPR points, good for the overall TE1. Take advantage of the poor drop and touchdown luck and send out an offer for Waller this week.

MARQUISE BROWN

Marquise Brown has somewhat flown under the fantasy radar this year despite putting up excellent numbers all season. He wasn’t drafted high due to performing poorly in 2020. Recently, some managers have been worried about the possibility of rookie Rashod Bateman eating into Brown’s targets.

However, since Bateman’s debut in Week 6, Brown’s volume numbers have improved. Brown played the first five games without Bateman and the last four games with Bateman.

His snap share has increased from about 72% before Bateman to about 80% with Bateman, and the 80% would likely be a little higher if the Ravens needed him late in a blowout victory over the Chargers. His targets also increased from 7.6 per game over the first five games to 11.0 over the last four. His XFP increased from 15.2 to 20.8 over the same stretch, including a staggering 24.8 XFP average over his last three.

Brown has been solid lately, putting up 16.4 points over the previous three weeks, but the XFP numbers show a much higher ceiling than his recent production. The narrative of Bateman’s emergence taking away from Brown’s opportunities can be safely rejected. Bateman probably isn’t the sole reason for the increase in opportunities, but either way, Brown is seeing elite volume.

MIKE GESICKI

If you’re stuck streaming tight ends and can’t afford Darren Waller, Mike Gesicki managers might be looking to jump ship after his goose egg in primetime on Thursday Night Football. I wouldn’t panic, as Gesicki still saw seven targets and 15.0 XFP in the contest. He has at least seven targets in four of the last five games and remains a solid mid-tier TE1 option for the rest of the season.

RSJ’S XFP TOOL: CARRIES, TARGETS, AND AIR YARDS FOR EVERY PLAYER

WEEK 11 SELL-HIGH

CEEDEE LAMB

CeeDee Lamb put up a monster 6-94-2 day on only seven targets in Week 10, but I am concerned about his production moving forward. Lamb has been solid this season, but I was hesitant to draft him due to the below stats from 2020:

Cooper led the Cowboys in targets, and Gallup led the team in snaps and air yards last year. In Week 1, the only other week Gallup has been active, Lamb played only 73% of snaps, even though Gallup left early with a calf injury.

The Week 10 snap counts are skewed due to a blowout win and Lamb’s third-quarter injury, but according to PFF’s Nathan Jahnke, no Cowboys receiver played more than 75% of the snaps in the first half of the game. Without Gallup, Lamb is averaging an 85% snap share this season.

The Cowboys wide receiver situation is now murky with Gallup back. We don’t have great data on what exactly the splits will look like in the future, but Lamb and Cooper will both likely see a decrease in targets. I would be fine selling Cooper now too, but the primary reason Lamb is on the list is that he has significantly more trade value. No other receiver in Lamb’s value range has a threat of decreasing snaps and targets.

Most managers aren’t concerned about the workload decrease yet because of the Week 10 production, so you can likely pivot to a similar player with less risk. Justin Jefferson, Stefon Diggs, Keenan Allen, A.J. Brown, and D.K. Metcalf are all comparable receivers I prefer over Lamb in full-PPR.

It’s possible that Gallup won’t hurt Lamb as much as last year, but I think the risk is being understated. Given the timing of his huge game, you might not get a better chance to sell high on Lamb.

MIKE EVANS

While Mike Evans has put up solid overall fantasy numbers this season, his recent target totals reveal a disturbing trend: Evans has seen four or fewer targets in three of the last four games. Even running back Leonard Fournette is averaging more targets (24 to 21) over this stretch.

Evans hasn’t been terrible recently as he has put up 4.7, 31.6, 12.8, and 14.2 points over the last four, but he is saving his production with an unsustainable touchdown rate.

Evans has scored five touchdowns over his previous three games, which means he caught a touchdown on over 29% of his targets during that stretch. He has about 6.3 expected touchdowns based on his target profile compared to 9 total touchdowns on the season. Evan is a red-zone weapon and sees more high-value looks than most players, but he is still likely due for some touchdown regression unless his targets increase significantly.

This recent stretch of low volume has come without teammate Antonio Brown in the lineup, so the competition for targets only figures to increase going forward.

FINAL THOUGHTS

That’s all I have for Week 10. Now that you’re an Expected Fantasy Points Expert, you can use the tool to dominate your league. Check out my trade value chart, which also incorporates expected fantasy points data, and check back next week for more players to buy low and sell high. Please send any questions or feedback to @RSJ_Jackson on Twitter!

Author

  • I am currently working as an accountant and have been obsessed with fantasy football for over 10 years. My specialties are auction draft strategy and discovering unique team management strategies to maximize winning odds. Thanks for reading!

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