Lions’ Swift, Cardinals’ Hopkins among best bets to score

NFL Dallas

Some unfamiliar names are on the list of players with the best opportunities to score this week, along with a few old reliables. That’s just the way of the fantasy world this season, as we’ve come to expect the unexpected. These are my best bets to find the end zone in Week 11.

Running Back

KALEN BALLAGE, Chargers

Ballage has had limited production for the majority of his time in the NFL, but he has another chance with the Chargers and he’s taking advantage. Ballage has been the premier back in LA for two games, scoring in one and picking up more than 100 yards in the other. He has a good chance to do both this week against a Jets team that has allowed the fifth-most rushing TDs (eight) this season. Joshua Kelley is his only real competition in the backfield right now, and he’s only getting a third of the touches Ballage is getting.

D’ANDRE SWIFT, Lions

Swift has asserted himself as the back to have in Detroit, getting double-digit touches in his past five games and averaging 5.1 YPC over his past six. Coming off a 148-yard, 1 TD game against the Washington defense, Swift will face a Panthers’ front this week that has allowed the third-most rushing TDs (10) up to this point.

DAMIEN HARRIS, Patriots

Harris is running with vision and power, everything you want from a two-down back. He’s only scored once in the short time he’s been the lead back for the Patriots, but he’s got his best opportunity thus far this week against a Texans team that has given up the most rushing yards this season (1,389) and the second-most rushing TDs (11).

DALVIN COOK, Vikings

Cook is basically a fixture in this piece every week, but his penchant for scoring is undeniable. He could have another banner week against a lowly Cowboys defense that has allowed eight rushing TDs this season. The 39.74% TD dependent Cook has the second-highest TD dependency of any RB, behind only Todd Gurley, and he’s got the second-highest points per touch behind only Alvin Kamara. Cook has scored in all but one game he’s played in this season, and that was against the defensive juggernaut Bears.

MIKE DAVIS, Panthers

Davis keeps getting more opportunities in Carolina, as Christian McCaffrey has struggled with injuries. He’ll get the best matchup in the league for RBs this week against the Lions, who have given up the most TDs (18) to RBs this season. Davis isn’t the most high-profile play, but he’s one of my best bets to score in Week 11.

Wide Receiver

D.K. METCALF, Seahawks

Tyler Lockett hasn’t practiced yet this week, and he’s looking iffy to face the Cardinals this week, which would leave Metcalf as the de facto and de jure No.1 receiver for the Seahawks this week. Even if Lockett can go, the 37.62% TD dependent Metcalf still has great odds to score, as he already has the second-most receiving TDs (eight) in the league. Metcalf had a lackluster game against the Cardinals in their first meeting, but with a hobbled running game and perhaps an injured Lockett, Russell Wilson will likely target Metcalf at a high rate.

DEANDRE HOPKINS, Cardinals

In the same game, Hopkins will face a Seahawks team that is the best matchup for WRs in the league, allowing 35.7 fantasy points a game. In their first meeting, he had 12 targets and caught 10 balls for 103 yards and a TD, so it stands to reason that he’s likely to find the end zone at least once again this week.

CHASE CLAYPOOL, Steelers

At 51.82% TD dependency, Claypool is the most TD dependent player in the league, as more than half of his fantasy points have come from TDs. Because he’s averaging 11 targets a game over his past three, he’s no longer boom-or-bust, but has maintained a decent floor. With nine TDs so far, Claypool is in line to keep up the pace as the Steelers’ primary red zone target against a Jaguars team that has allowed eight TDs to receivers this season.

MICHAEL THOMAS, Saints

Thomas likely won’t have Drew Brees under center this week, but Jameis Winston actually may fare better for Saints receivers than Brees has for most of the season. Winston still has the arm to air it out to Thomas against a Falcons team that is the second-best matchup for WRs this season. Thomas has been out for the majority of the season, but he knows how to find the end zone, as he was the league’s third-highest receiving scorer in 2019.

ADAM THIELEN, Vikings

Thielen has watched Dalvin Cook take over in Minnesota, but he’s still tied for the lead in receiving TDs (nine), and he’s facing a Cowboys secondary that has given up the most receiving TDs (16) in the league. Justin Jefferson is racking up yardage on the other side of the field, but Kirk Cousins tends to favor the 49.18% TD dependent Thielen in the red zone, and the Vikings could have plenty of visits there on Sunday.

This column was provided to The Associated Press by RosterWatch, www.rosterwatch.com.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

COVID-19 SAFETY TIPS

COVID Tip: Wash Your Hands

COVID Tip: Cover When Coughing and Sneezing

COVID Tip: Disinfecting

COVID Tip: Cover Your Mouth

COVID Tip: Avoid Close Contact

COVID-19 Tip: Disinfect Areas

COVID-19 Tip: Wash Hands Often

NBC Sunday Night Foootball