Each week the Noise highlights 10 somewhat un-obvious names who he believes will leave egg on his face. To qualify, each player must be started in at least 50% of Yahoo leagues. Speaking as an accountability advocate, I will post results, whether genius or moronic, the following week using the scoring system shown here (Thresholds – QB: 18 fantasy points, RB: 12 fantasy points, WR: 11 fantasy points, TE: 10 fantasy points). If you’re a member of TEAM HUEVOS, reveal your Week 7 Lames via Twitter @NoisyHuevos.
Drew Brees, QB, New Orleans Saints
(61% started in Yahoo; DK DFS: $6,100)
Matchup: vs. CAR
Vegas line/Total: NO -7.5, 51
The future Hall of Famer’s sluggish start prompted many to prematurely assume his immediate demise was underway. Laboring on throws beyond 15 yards, he looked like someone attempting to chuck a 50-pound kettlebell. The reaction, however, was classic kneejerk. Sure, this could be Brees’ swan song, but he isn’t completely baked. He’s still remarkably accurate, evidenced by his top-six standings in adjusted completion percentage and deep-ball completion percentage. Alvin Kamara’s unique ability to transform simple five-yard dumpoffs into electric 30-yard gains has certainly helped. Michael Thomas’ expected return this week, provided he doesn’t attempt to deck another teammate, is also a massive boost. Still, expectations should be tempered.
Against Carolina the calculus isn’t complicated. Run the ball, move the chains, log end-zone spikes and emerge victorious. Giving up 4.81 yards per carry, 158.0 total yards per game and nine combined scores to rushers, the Panthers are highly malleable in the trenches. Kamara and thunder complement Latavius Murray will be gameplan centerpieces for Taysom Hill devotee Sean Payton, especially working behind an offensive line that typically manhandles the opposition. As a result, Brees could be more game manager than gunslinger. Carolina has yielded just 6.1 pass yards per attempt and one 18-plus fantasy point QB.
Fearless forecast: 253 passing yards per game, 2 passing touchdowns, 1 turnover, 17.1 fantasy points
Josh Jacobs, RB, Las Vegas Raiders
Matchup: vs. TB
Vegas line/Total: TB -2.5, 53.5
Disappointment. It could be argued Jacobs deserves such a qualification. In Weeks 2-4, his production dropped precipitously, which is potentially why the Raiders briefly entertained Le'Veon Bell’s services before the Jets castoff signed on the dotted line with Andy Reid and KC. A combination of Vegas’ underachieving offensive line (No. 18 in adjusted line yards allowed) and Jacobs’ slide in yards after contact (‘19: 3.48; ‘20: 2.69) are to blame for the inconsistency. On pace for 48 receptions, he’s actually exceeded all expectations in the pass game, a deterrent for many drafters back in August. His 71.6% opportunity share and top-five standing in total yards created remain attractive, but the noticeable inefficiencies sound alarms. COVID-19 concerns currently impacting the entire Raiders starting O-line only amplify worry.
Wielding a sharpened sword, the Buccaneers have swashbuckled the competition with measurable success. Despite the injury setback to hole closer Vita Vea, LB Devin White and Co. have thrown up repeated roadblocks. White and Lavonte David alone have accounted for 29 tackles for loss versus the run. As a collective, Tampa has given up 2.79 yards per carry, 48.5 rush yards per game, five rushing TDs and the eighth-fewest fantasy points to RBs. Against the Raiders’ underperforming o-line, the Bucs should envelope Jacobs early and often.
Fearless forecast: 19 carries, 59 rushing yards, 3 receptions, 17 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 9.1 fantasy points
Matchup: vs. PIT
Vegas line/Total: PIT -1.5, 51.5
The modern-day Football Frankenstein is a creation unlike any other. Equipped with the size of Brandon Jacobs, the brawn of Jim Brown and the durability of Emmitt Smith, Henry is a mishmash of supreme awesomeness, a unique workhorse in an era littered with timeshares. Now in esteemed company after rushing for his third 200-yard game of his career, the reigning rush king has earned his rightful place among pulverizing greats. His obscene 7.91 YAC per attempt logged last week versus Houston was legendary. Riding the crest of three consecutive two-TD games going to battle against Henry is probably a losing proposition, but even the divine ruler himself isn’t immune from a down week.
Pittsburgh, though down star linebacker Devin Bush, is still the most ironclad run defense in the league. According to the FTN Daily trench tool, the Steelers rank No. 1 in fewest adjusted line yards allowed. For fantasy purposes, they’ve conceded 3.22 yards per carry, 54.8 rush yards per game, two rush TDs and the third-fewest fantasy points to the position. If not for a flukey Miles Sanders 74-yard TD gallop two weeks ago, they would be unrivaled in points surrendered. The Eagles rusher is the only player to exceed 71 yards on the ground against them. Taylor Lewan’s unfortunate deactivation due to a torn ACL is a massive blow to a unit that will be challenged relentlessly by Pittsburgh’s gap pressure, placing Henry at risk of posting a dud performance.
Yes, Henry could probably stiff arm an undetectable Russian nerve agent without feeling any harmful effects. However, this is an unattractive matchup. Too #TeamHuevos? My face is ready for the egg pelting.
Fearless forecast: 23 carries, 80 rushing yards, 1 reception, 11 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 9.1 fantasy points
Matchup: at CIN
Vegas line/Total: CLE -3, 51.5
Temper tantrums on the sidelines. It’s just a different location and the same late October result for Beckham, whose demonstrative meltdowns have become par for the course. His frustrations, however, are warranted. Baker Mayfield, after all, hasn’t emptied the trash in his “house” in months. It’s festering, much like his nostril-piercing game. Outside the top-20 in five different completion percentage categories, including overall adjusted (QB26), he’s fallen fast and hard from his record-setting rookie season. Cleveland’s run-first, run-often tendency, too, has limited opportunities vertically, a strategy Beckham himself recently admitted would hinder his production. Bottom line, only sporadic WR2 contributions are in the forecast, making the once revered WR1 terribly untrustworthy.
Cincinnati is on the cusp. Though they couldn’t string together a consistent four quarters last week in Indianapolis, the team, as a whole, is advancing. Defensively they remain pliable against the run, which Kareem Hunt is sure to take advantage of, but vertically they’ve tightened. They’ve fallen outside the top-10 in average air yards per game allowed, rank No. 18 in fantasy points surrendered to WRs and have given up 7.0 pass yards per attempt. OBJ’s projected primary adversary, William Jackson, has yielded a 56.3 catch percentage, 82.4 passer rating and 0.81 yards per snap this season. Essentially, don’t bank on Beckham to duplicate his 4-74-1 line from Week 2.
Fearless forecast: 4 receptions, 63 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 8.3 fantasy points
Matchup: vs. GB
Vegas line/Total: GB -3.5, 56.5
In an unprecedented development, Fuller’s lower extremities have stunningly remained intact. Usually by this time a carpet monster, injury imp or glute goblin has taken a bite out of the wide receiver. After all, he missed 32 games in his previous five seasons. Defying stigmas about his fragility, he’s raced inside the wide receiver top-10. He’s scored in four consecutive games, crossed 100 yards in three contests and ranks inside the WR top-20 in air yards percentage (32.1%), average depth of target (15.1 yards), yards per catch (16.3) and total red-zone targets (12). Houston’s forgiving defense has only swelled opportunities, a development which will continue until a random attack by a flock of voracious seagulls lands him on injured reserve.
The Texans’ tilt with Green Bay features the highest projected total (56.5) of the week. It’s completely justifiable after the video game numbers Tennessee hung on Houston last Sunday. Points may not be a premium, but with DB Jaire Alexander lurking, Brandin Cooks, Randall Cobb, David Johnson and the Texans tight ends could be Deshaun Watson’s preferred flavors. The lockdown corner has morphed into one of the virtual game’s most feared matchups. This season, he’s surrendered a 71.3 passer rating, 0.70 yards per snap to his assignments. The stifling DB, who’s shadowed Adam Thielen and Calvin Ridley this season, may issue the same treatment to Fuller.
Fearless forecast: 4 receptions, 57 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 7.7 fantasy points
Bonus lames (over 50% started)
RB: Kenyan Drake, AREZ (Line: SEA -3.5; DK: $4,800) — The source of audible four-letter tirades heard around the world at roughly 11:27 p.m. ET Monday was from those directly impacted by Drake’s garbage-time 69-yard TD sprint, a matchup-altering skamper that sunk many a fantasy GM. The rusher’s mom, who recommended pregame for her son to “hit some holes,” beamed with pride. Dallas, ever so generous to the running back position, executed its gap assignment with the gusto of a sun-baked walrus. Before you ask, no, Drake, who is suddenly RB13 in total scoring in 0.5 PPR leagues, isn’t back in the circle of trust. Including his breakthrough Week 6 against the bumbling ‘Boys, he’s RB44 in YAC per attempt, RB43 in yards created per touch and outside the top-50 in missed tackle percentage (10.8). Hardly utilized as a pass catcher, he’s the definition of “TD dependent.” This week facing a Seattle defensive line No. 10 in adjusted line yards allowed, relinquishing 3.74 yards per carry, 75.6 rush yards per game and the ninth-fewest fantasy points to RBs, he’s a FLEX option in 12-team leagues and nothing more. (FF: 18-63-0-1-4-0, 7.2 fantasy points)
RB: Le'Veon Bell, KC (Line: KC -9.5; DK: NA) — Arousal levels for Bell in Kansas City red are off the charts. If you’re an enthusiast, please don’t “accidentally” expose yourself on a work Zoom call. It’s not recommended. The hype surrounding the eroding vet is insane. Clyde Edwards-Helaire’s days of 20-plus touches are probably over, but Bell isn’t coming in and stealing the lion’s share. He’s a third-down back who’ll also receive occasional red-zone work, a role that should generate 8-12 touches per game. If you think he’s securing anything more, I have a Caribbean timeshare available for sale at a very affordable price. This week in a potential snow-impacted contest, trusting him is an enormous gamble not only for his offense unfamiliarity, but also the matchup. Denver is the unfriendliest opponent for fantasy running backs allowing 3.69 yards per carry, 112.6 total yards per game and one total TD. Even in a hellish bye week, he’s completely unreliable, if he plays. (FF: 6-24-2-16-0, 5.0 fantasy points)
WR: Amari Cooper, DAL (Line: DAL -2.5; DK: $6,900) — Can the Dolphins, who announced Tua Tagovailoa will be the starter post-bye, deal Ryan Fitzpatrick to Dallas? Racing down narrative street, Andy Dalton melted under the primetime lights Monday against Arizona. Inaccurate under steady pressure, he triggered uneasiness for Cowboys nation. The dropoff from Dak Prescott to Dalton proved steep. Cooper, thanks to garbage time, did register a top-10 performance (10-7-79-1), but he may not be as fortunate this week in the nation’s capital. Washington has glaring flaws, however, defending wide receivers isn’t one of them. The Fighting Footballs have surrendered 7.6 pass yards per attempt, but rank No. 2 in fewest fantasy points given up to WRs. Whether against Ronald Darby (110.1 passer rating allowed) or Kendall Fuller (8.7 (!)), Cooper isn’t a slam dunk top-20 option, especially knowing the pressure Chase Young and Montez Sweat can apply. (FF: 5-56-0, 8.1 fantasy points)
WR: Allen Robinson, CHI (Line: LAR -5.5; DK: $6,700) — Pinching myself that my beloved Bears are actually 5-1, I constantly wonder whether or not the winning is sustainable. Outside of defending the pass, this team isn’t particularly effective at anything. Robinson is a beast, but #MandatoryMontgomery is only lackluster and no one else has consistently complemented the receiver in the pass game. Big Nick Foles, QB33 in adjusted completion percentage, is, for all intents and purposes, rather flaccid. Is this the week reality sets in? The Rams have yielded the fewest fantasy points to WRs this season. Presumably shadowed by Jalen Ramsey (56.0% catch percentage, 0.47 yards per snap allowed), it’s unlikely Robinson outperforms what most fantasy GMs would consider average. (FF: 5-62-0, 8.7 fantasy points)
TE: George Kittle, SF (Line: NE -2.5; DK: $6,500) — In a narrative as old as the E. coli-ridden meats adorning Bill Belichick’s cold cut combo, New England always gameplans around neutralizing the opposition’s greatest strength. They executed precisely that Week 3 blanketing Darren Waller holding him to two receptions for nine yards and no touchdowns. Kittle is a beast. There’s no discounting it. At an extremely thin position where unreliability reigns supreme, he, Travis Kelce, Mark Andrews and Waller are really the only consistency kings. Kittle, after all, ranks inside the top-five in myriad advanced analytic categories. Overall, the Pats have allowed the fifth-fewest fantasy points to tight ends. (FF: 4-47-0, 6.7 fantasy points)
Week 6 results: 6-4 (Season: 26-29)
W: Kareem Hunt, Tyreek Hill, Mike Evans, Miles Sanders, Tyler Higbee, Robby Anderson
L: Matt Ryan, Joe Mixon, Julio Jones, A.J. Brown