Fantasy football scores take up a Sunday afternoon vacation

I like to say that every batch of NFL results is weird in its own way. The chaos is the product. That’s what we as fantasy managers are used to. We try to take advantage of entropy, if we can. We turn go inside the slip. And man, there were plenty of fantasy slips in the early week 11 window. Several big stars made appearances on the eve of Thanksgiving.

Start in Detroit, where Josh Allen was erratic early, finishing with just 197 yards, one touchdown, and a whopping seven rushing yards. Has his recent eavesdropping problem startled him? Maybe he was afraid of making a mistake. Buffalo still rolled to an easy win – even if Cleveland stole the last second against the spread – but it was by far Allen’s worst fantasy play of the year. Those 12.58 points don’t buy much.

In the meantime, Jacoby Brisset flourished—part of it in waste time—on his way to 324 yards and three touchdowns. Amari Cooper (8-113-2) finally crushed in a road game, and Donovan Peoples-Jones (5-61-1) finally broke the seal on his touchdown account. It’s a good thing Cleveland found some passing success, because Nick Chubbhad, like Allen, a shockingly bad game (14 carries, 19 yards).

Perhaps you had high hopes for the Ravens to lay the wood to the Panthers – after all, Baltimore was a beefy 12-point favorite at home. But Lamar Jackson was limited to one touchdown (at least it was on the ground) and 240 yards of offense, for 16.46 Yahoo fantasy points, and the Ravens went out on their toes with a dull 13-3 win. Jackson didn’t lose your fantasy game for you, but he certainly didn’t gain anything for you.

He focused only on two main players when he threw downfield. Mark Andrews (6-63-0) was of course played in all fantasy leagues. Demarcus Robinson (9-128-0) was not. This is the seventh year of Robinson’s regular career; it is only the second time he has gone past 100 metres, and only the third time he has exceeded 70 metres. Score one for the genius of desperation.

Demarcus Robinson #10 of the Baltimore Ravens has little fantasy value

Demarcus Robinson delivered in fantasy – except very few fantasy managers were desperate enough to play him. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Kenyan Drake did not go bananas in the absence of Gus Edwards. The Drake mustered 10-46 rushing and two short receptions. No touchdowns. No fantasy glory.

I refuse to say much about the Panthers. D’Onta Foreman (11-24-0) had no careers. DJ Moore was submerged by Baker Mayfield. I never thought I’d be so desperate to watch Sam Darnold play again.

The Eagles had their lowest-scoring game of the year, though they somehow got away with a 17-16 win in Indianapolis. The Lions beat the Giants, but Jared Goff threw for only 165 yards – with no touchdowns. Jamal Williams (three spikes) remains Detroit’s spirit animal, and D’Andre Swift scored in stoppage time, though the Lions continue to limit his work (eight touches, 32 yards).

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The Lions defense was determined to stop Saquon Barkley and it worked – 15 carriers, 22 yards. Barkley also had two catches for 13 yards. Daniel Jones was useful in overtaking, throwing for 341 yards, running for 50 more and good for two touchdowns. If you needed Wan’Dale Robinson (9-100-0) or Darius Slayton (5-86-0) as desperation plays you made a slight profit.

Even some reliable kickers were brought down by the weather gods. Graham Gano scored two extra points in the New Jersey wind tunnel. Nick Folk had a hell of a time with the Foxboro wind, but luckily for New England, Zak Wilson was even worse. The Patriots escaped with a win (and a gift card) thanks to a point return in the last minute. No one needs to rewatch this 10-3 snooze fest.

Oh, luckily we were able to set our watch on a few things. Chris Olaf (5-102-1) ran past the Rams defenders all day. Jonathan Taylor totaled 94 yards and a score, and Michael Pittman and Paris Campbell were both respectable. Cole Kmet did not go off in Atlanta (3-35-0), but Justin Fields (153 air, 85 ground, two scores), David Montgomery (121 total yards, one score) and Darnel Mooney (4-29-1) all showed up. Mooney was held free for most of the day; he could easily have done more. Hopefully Fields is healthy for Week 12 – he hit his left shoulder late in the loss to Atlanta.

The Falcons did what they usually do: they kept the ball away from their best playmakers. Drake London had only one catch on three targets, but at least it was a two-yard touchdown. Cordarelle Patterson shared with two other bishops (Tyler Allgeier, Marcus Mariota), not that 10-52-0 is a bad showing. Patterson’s fantasy day was saved by a kickoff return of 103 yards. Kyle Pitts had five goals, three catches, 43 yards. Sometimes it’s sky yards, sometimes it’s prayer yards.

You can’t always get what you want, but sometimes you get what you need. No matter how disappointing your 1 p.m. window was, there’s always a chance your opponent ran into more early pits than you.

But hey – there’s always the 4pm window.

Stay tuned for more bangs and fails in Week 11…

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