Fantasy Football Week 11: Start or Sit Vance McDonald, OJ Howard, or Jeff Heuerman?
As week 11 approaches, the unusually flighty tight end position is starting to paint a more complete picture for fantasy teams. Forerunners in the category have found their home on many lineups, but the drop-off is steep. Luckily for you, some random armchair expert is here to steer you in the right direction if you’re trying to decide whether to start or sit three tight ends with good matchups this week.
Pay no attention to the fact that I’m a Jets fan.
Start or Sit Vance McDonald at Jacksonville
Jesse James, the stud turned to dud, seems to be getting the cold shoulder from Big Ben as of recently. His hot start to the season (198 receiving yards and a touchdown through two games) was quickly outlawed, he only saw only 5 targets through the next three games. Vance McDonald, who has the face of a 90’s movie bully, has definitely proven reliable at the position. Seeing 25 targets through his first five games is one thing, but the ability to haul in 80% of those passes has also proven him to be a trustworthy receiver. While James might see more snaps, the Steelers certainly seems to be prioritizing McDonald in its passing game. Last week’s performance against Carolina yielded him his second best fantasy scoring game of the season. Not to mention the matchup with Jacksonville (last in the league against tight ends) will give McDonald ample opportunities to catch the ball and hopefully take someone’s lunch money on the way to the end zone. Granted Jacksonville’s poor luck against the position was exacerbated by the ‘Ebron massacre’ of week 10, they’ve still allowed at least 5 points to the position through the last three games.
Coming off their bye week, they gave up 41.5 total points to three different Colts tight ends. Though deciding whether to start or sit Vance McDonald might be a somewhat risky play, both his floor and ceiling against Jacksonville is high. Vance McDonald is a definite start. Vance McDonald is a definite start.
Start or Sit O.J. Howard at the New York Giants
Fitzmagic isn’t out of magic yet. For a guy named after orange juice, OJ Howard has done pretty well for himself, even with all the quarterback drama in Tampa Bay. While their last outing against the Redskins was absolutely abysmal, there’s sufficient hope for Howard in their week 11 matchup against the New York Giants. OJ’s target share has been anything but consistent, yet he still finds ways to break double digits in all formats. His biggest game of the season was against the Eagles, one of the stingiest teams when it comes to giving up points to tight ends, when he torched them for 96 yards and a touchdown. He had more than twice as many yards in that game than any other tight end has scored against the Eagles all season. While the Giants haven’t always been friendly to the position, they simply haven’t faced many good tight ends. Ertz took advantage of them in week six, and they had major issues containing George Kittle last week, surrendering the most yards to a tight end all season. If San Francisco’s offense can take advantage of them, Howard should have no problem dealing damage to a defense with a short week of rest. If you’re wondering whether to start or sit OJ Howard, consider him a start.
Start or Sit Jeff Heuerman at the Los Angeles Chargers
Many of you have never heard this name before, but he’s starting to blip on the radar. Most people probably would have never imagined Heuerman would outscore Le’Veon Bell in every game of the season, but here we are. Blow off the dust and grab him off the waiver wire, because he’s in for another great game against an up-and-down Chargers defense. Heuerman is coming off his best game of the season, racking up 83 yards and a touchdown against Houston. He had a team-high 11 targets, bringing in 10 of them. Target share hasn’t been consistent for Heuerman through their first nine games, but his strong performance in his previous game (and a touchdown in each of the last two contests) has certainly turned some heads. The 3-6 Broncos, coming off their bye week, will be both rested and thirsty for a win on the road. The Chargers have allowed 4 touchdowns to tight ends through the last 6 games, and on top of that, tight ends have been targeted an average of 8.5 times per game through the last 4 games against them. While Heuerman jersey sales might not go up, his stock in fantasy this week is certainly high. The decision to start or sit Heuerman is easier than usual: Most definitely a start this week.
While matchup dependent, these tight ends have a chance to carve a more consistent role in each of their respective teams in the next several weeks. All three of these players should expect some luck in week 11 and will undoubtedly all outscore Le’Veon Bell in all formats.
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If you need more start or sit advice, check out the remainder of our start and sit articles for week eleven!
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