A New England Riser
With Mike Gillislee firmly entrenched on Bill Belichick's bench in New England, the freshly-healthy Rex Burkhead made an impact for the Patriots in Week 10. He turned 10 carries into 36 yards on the ground and added in three catches for 27 more yards and a score, proving how capable he is as a dual-threat back. While it's hard to believe that Bill Belichick would ever truly feature one running back, Burkhead has a much better shot at fantasy production every week given the fact that he is so effective both on the ground and through the air. While James White is still in the mix as a pass-catching option, Tom Brady uses his running backs so effectively and often that it's very possible for multiple backs to carry fantasy value. Burkhead should be a top waiver claim this week, and will carry high-end flex value going forward, with the potential for much more if he is given more opportunities on the ground.
New Number One In Chi-Town
Recently acquired from the Chargers in late October, Dontrelle Inman made a big impact in his first active game for the Chicago Bears. Inman tied for the team lead in targets with eight, and parlayed those into 88 yards on six catches in Week 10. Both of those stats led the team, and it appears that Inman will be a cog in the offense moving forward. Understand that the upside here is very limited given the fact that the Bears are an extremely run-heavy team--they are in fact dead-last in the league passing attempts. However, opportunity is king in fantasy football, and Dontrelle Inman will be the Bear with the most opportunity moving forward.
As long as he maintains his health, you can expect anywhere from 6-10 targets per game, and he should have no problem squeezing flex value out of those. With Zach Miller gone for the season, there is no real red zone threat to take away looks from in close either, which further bolsters Inman's upside.
Bryant's Days As a WR1 Are Long Gone
Dez Bryant is a WR1 in name only these days, although most casual fantasy players likely wouldn't recognize that. Despite being the best wide receiver on one of the best offenses over the last two years, Bryant has settled into a role as an every-week WR2. He simply doesn't have the multi-touchdown upside he has had in years past, mostly due to the fact that the Cowboys live and die with their running game. Dak Prescott is particularly careful with the ball, which is admirable, but he doesn't take very many shots down the field, thus limiting Bryant's opportunities to make big plays. In 2017, the former Pro Bowler has a season-high of seven catches, and he has yet to score more than one touchdown in a game or break 100 yards. Even with Ezekiel Elliott suspended, the Cowboys likely won't shift their game plan too drastically, which will leave Dez Bryant on the outside looking in when it comes to the elite fantasy wideout cluster. You are likely still starting him every week, but expectations need to remain permanently tempered.
NFL Pickups of the Week
Austin Ekeler, RB, Los Angeles Chargers - Ekeler exploded with a two-touchdown game in Week 10, and has clearly earned more touches in the LA offense. If Philip Rivers is forced to miss Week 11 with concussion symptoms, Ekeler's immediate value rises even higher.
Corey Coleman, WR, Cleveland Browns - The dynamic sophomore is back at practice, and should return to the lineup in short order. He has big-play potential
that could make him a worthy bench stash for teams that are already looking towards the playoffs, even in Cleveland's lackluster offense.
Julius Thomas, TE, Miami Dolphins - Thomas has scored a touchdown in back-to-back games, and with Jay Cutler healthy and Jay Ajayi no longer in Miami, the
Dolphins seem to be favoring a pass-heavy attack. Thomas is still a great red zone weapon and makes for a solid TE2 for the playoff push.