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Week 10 fantasy matchups: Everything you need to know

Ravens at Bengals (at 1pm ET)

Must Play: QB Lamar Jackson

Start: RB Mark Ingram; TE Mark Andrews

Upside FLEX: WR Marquise Brown

Beware: RB Joe Mixon

Sit: WR Tyler Boyd

Injuries to monitor: WR A.J. Green (ankle)

Key Game Facts

-- The Bengals have allowed a top-15 fantasy running back in six of seven games this season with only Todd Gurley failing to meet the mark

-- Only the Dolphins are allowing more rushing yards per game (134.3) than the Bengals (123.3)

-- Cincinnati has allowed 9/46 (Josh Allen), 10/93/1 (Kyler Murray), 19/152/1 (Lamar Jackson), and 9/48 (Gardner Minshew) rushing to mobile QBs this year

When the Ravens have the ball:Lamar Jackson is this week's top QB play by a mile against the tanking Bengals. Cincy may be without CB Dre Kirkpatrick (knee), too. Even though he has been splitting some snaps with Gus Edwards and Justice Hill, Mark Ingram still has 14 or more touches in seven of eight games and he's clearly been Baltimore's favored back when they get in scoring position. Ingram's 17 carries inside of the 10-yard line (red-zone) are tied for fourth-most with Christian McCaffrey. This matchup and Ingram's touchdown upside keeps him on the RB1 borderline for Week 10. Marquise Brown returned last week after missing two games with an ankle injury. Hollywood saw just four targets and played on 57 percent of snaps last week in his return to action, but another week of rehab and a pristine matchup puts him squarely on the FLEX radar. After pasting the Dolphins and Cardinals for 12/223/2 in Weeks 1-2 Brown hasn't done much, but I'm betting that he'll hit his ceiling either this week or next (against Houston). Perhaps the Ravens jumping out to a big lead and controlling the clock in the second half is what caused Mark Andrews to see season-lows in snaps (34 percent) and targets (3) last week against New England, but Andrews owners obviously have to lock him in as a TE1 in this cake-walk matchup.

When the Bengals have the ball: With Ryan Finley at the controls, it's very hard to find playable Bengals in fantasy football this weekend. While A.J. Green's (ankle) status for return remains up in the air this season, Tyler Boyd and Auden Tate can be penciled in as Finley's top targets against a Ravens secondary that just got Jimmy Smith back last week. Baltimore's cornerback trio now consists of Marlon Humphrey, Marcus Peters and Smith. Good luck. Joe Mixon had one of his best fantasy days of the season in Week 8 against the Rams before the Bengals bye, but he's a touchdown-dependent FLEX option at best for this week. Mixon is still ceding a ton of snaps to Gio Bernard -- Mixon has yet to play over 65 percent of Bengals plays in a single game this year -- and it's hard to have much confidence in this offense in general with an untested rookie under center. The Bengals are implied to score just 17.3 points on Sunday, the second-lowest team total on the slate behind the Dolphins (16.8).

Bills at Browns (at 1pm ET)

Start: QB Josh Allen; WR John Brown; RB Nick Chubb

Start and pray (again): WR Odell Beckham

FLEX: RB Devin Singletary

Sit: QB Baker Mayfield; WR Jarvis Landry; RB Frank Gore

Key Game Facts

-- Baker Mayfield has finished as a top-10 fantasy QB once this year

-- The Bills have allowed a QB to finish top-10 against them once

-- Mayfield is last in completions (58.7 percent) and third from last in touchdown rate (2.6 percent)

When the Bills have the ball:Josh Allen hasn't hit a huge ceiling game yet this year, but he's remained one of the most consistent low-end QB1 options in fantasy. Allen has now tallied top-15 results at the position in six of his last seven games with his only failure coming against New England. Obviously, Allen's ability as a scrambler is what keeps us coming back for more in fantasy -- but this is yet another chance for him to finally have a monster game. The Browns have allowed five-straight QB15 or better fantasy performances and have given up a 103.6 passer rating (7th-worst) and 16-4 TD-INT ratio (seventh-worst) this season. John Brown and Michael Thomas are the only two wideouts that have cleared 50 yards receiving in every game this season and I see no reason to go away from Brown as a WR2 this week. Denzel Ward and Greedy Williams are back healthy for the Browns, but Smoke's role is as consistent as it gets. Devin Singletary took over as the Bills No. 1 back last week, ripping the Redskins for 140 scrimmage yards and a score on 23 touches. Singletary has now played 67 percent of Bills snaps, he he has widely out-snapped Frank Gore on passing downs (45 to 10), and Singletary even has the edge on early-down carries (23 to 16) over the last two weeks. Singletary is a mouth-watering FLEX play this week and is far too cheap on daily sites against a Browns run defense that is allowing the league's second-most yards per carry (4.93).

When the Browns have the ball: We'll see how much Kareem Hunt works in for the Browns in his first game action in almost a year, but for now, Nick Chubb remains a locked-in RB1. Chubb's snaps have been cut down to 65 percent in Week 8 and 60 percent in Week 9, but he's still compiled 21 and 24 touches in those contests. I'd expect a similar 65/35 split between Chubb and Hunt for now. Baker Mayfield said that he wants to "force feed" Odell Beckham Jr. this week as OBJ is currently sitting at a career-low 8.3 targets per game. I have a ton of respect for Tre'Davious White, but Beckham is a Lamborghini sitting idly in the garage just waiting to be unleashed. Unless you're stacked at receiver, you have to roll out Beckham this week. Jarvis Landry's late score salvaged his day in Week 9, but ideally, you'd like to keep him on the bench against this Buffalo unit that doesn't give up much over the middle. Per Next Gen Stats, only the 49ers are allowing fewer fantasy points per game to opposing slot receivers than the Bills.

Lions at Bears (at 1pm ET)

Start: WR Kenny Golladay; WR Marvin Jones; RB David Montgomery

Beware: WR Allen Robinson; QB Matthew Stafford; TE T.J. Hockenson

Sit: WR Danny Amendola

Key Game Facts

-- Only Patrick Mahomes (17.4 percent) is attempting a deep pass (20 or more yards) more often than Matthew Stafford (16.8)

-- Chicago is allowing a 52.1 passer rating on deep throws (fifth-lowest)

-- The Bears have not given up a top-12 (QB1) performance to an opposing QB yet this year

When the Lions have the ball:Matthew Stafford is having the best season of his career as Detroit has emphasized an aggressive, downfield aerial attack. While Stafford has been an unsung late-round QB hero this season, it's best to temper expectations just a bit for this matchup against Chicago. The Bears defense isn't as vaunted as it was last year, but they've still done a great job at limiting opposing QBs for fantasy purposes. Stafford can have a so-so day and still get Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones the rock often enough to come through, though. Golladay and Jones have combined to see 42 percent of Stafford's targets and a monster 58 percent of his air yards this season. Tight end is incredibly thin in fantasy, but T.J. Hockenson has basically been a non-factor in this Lions attack since his monster 6/131/1 performance in Week 1. Over his last seven games, Hockenson has tallied just 16/165/1 on 4.1 targets per day. Unless you're desperate, feel free to continue to ignore this backfield committee for fantasy decisions. Ty Johnson played 61 percent of Detroit's snaps last week with Tra Carson on injured-reserve, but J.D. McKissic still worked in for 4 carries and 4 targets while Johnson had 9 carries and 3 passing looks.

When the Bears have the ball:Allen Robinson flopped hard (1/6 on 5 targets) in a perfect matchup last week while Mitch Trubisky melted down. A-Rob is tough to bench with six teams out on a bye, but I'm fading him where I can for Week 10 lineup decisions. Darius Slay will lock up with Robinson in shadow coverage this week, and even though Slay has dealt with a balky hamstring this year, he's stymied opposing receivers to a 51.1 passer rating and 46.2 completion rate in his coverage this year. The only other start-able Bear this weekend is David Montgomery. At long last, HC Matt Nagy has finally unleashed Montgomery as their workhorse back over the last two weeks -- playing him on 73 percent of Chicago's snaps in each contest. With 31 and 17 touches in his last two games, Montgomery is a locked-in RB2 against a Detroit front-seven that is allowing the league's fourth-highest rushing success rate and fifth-most fantasy points per carry.

Giants at Jets (at 1pm ET)

Must Play: RB Saquon Barkley

Start: WR Golden Tate

PPR FLEX: WR Jamison Crowder

Streamer: QB Daniel Jones; TE Rhett Ellison

Deep Sleeper: WR Darius Slayton

Sit: WR Robby Anderson

Injuries to monitor: RB Le'Veon Bell (knee, ankle); TE Chris Herndon (hamstring); TE Evan Engram (foot); WR Sterling Shepard (concussion)

Key Game Facts

-- Golden Tate has seen 36 targets over the last four weeks without Sterling Shepard

-- Tate has at least six receptions in every game in this span

-- Tate runs 85 percent of his routes from the slot in Week 6-9 and the Jets allow the league's fourth-most fantasy points per game to slot wideouts

When the Giants have the ball: The Giants will be without both TE Evan Engram (foot) and WR Sterling Shepard (concussion) in Week 10, making Saquon Barkley and Golden Tate the lone playable options in most season-long formats. Tate has been a PPR stud with Shepard out of the lineup and this is a green-light spot for him to get loose against one of the league's worst secondaries. Darius Slayton saw a season-high 8 targets when Engram missed Week 6 and he's certainly in play as a WR4 sleeper in deep 12- or 14-team leagues with six teams out on a bye. Saquon Barkley has been significantly more involved as a receiver over the last two weeks after a slow-ish start, turning his 18 targets into 14/146/1. Engram and Shepard's absence only bolsters Barkley's receiving outlook. Daniel Jones has been up-and-down this season to say the least, but the lifeless Jets provide an appealing streaming matchup for the rookie. Rhett Ellison saw seven targets and played every single snap in Week 6 when Engram missed and if you've been streaming the position all year, you could do a lot worse than Ellison against this Jets secondary that just coughed up 6 receptions and 95 yards to Miami's Mike Gesicki last week.

When the Jets have the ball:Le'Veon Bell is expected to play on Sunday after missing some practice time this week with knee and ankle injuries. You'll want to keep your eye on Bell's status on Sunday morning, but if he suits up, Bell is a volume-based RB2 start against a Giants run defense that has allowed a top-24 fantasy running back in seven of nine games this season. Outside of Bell, Jamison Crowder is the only other Jet we can start with any semblance of confidence in fantasy. Crowder has averaged a robust 9.0 targets per game in Sam Darnold's starts this season. Robby Anderson's matchup against burnable boundary cornerbacks DeAndre Baker and Janoris Jenkins is as good as it gets, but it's hard to plug Anderson into fantasy rosters at this point. Outside of his 5/125/1 blowup game against Dallas, Anderson has tallied just 10 receptions and 109 yards on 25 targets in his four other starts with Darnold. Anderson only makes sense as a swing for the fences FLEX play. Chris Herndon is finally expected to return this week, but it's possible that he will split snaps with Ryan Griffin after a long layoff from suspension and injury.

Chiefs at Titans (at 1pm ET)

Must Play: WR Tyreek Hill; RB Derrick Henry

Start: TE Travis Kelce

Upside FLEX: RB Damien Williams

Streamer: QB Ryan Tannehill; TE Jonnu Smith (if Walker DNP)

Sit: RB LeSean McCoy; WR Sammy Watkins; WR A.J. Brown (but monitor Davis' status)

Injuries to monitor: WR Corey Davis (hip); QB Patrick Mahomes (knee); TE Delanie Walker (ankle)

Key Game Facts

-- Kansas City has allowed a top-20 fantasy running back in seven-straight games

-- The Chiefs run defense is allowing the seventh-most yards per carry, the third-most rushing yards, and the second-highest success rate to opposing RBs

-- Tyreek Hill has posted 60 yards and/or a touchdown in 14 of his last 16 fully healthy regular season games

When the Chiefs have the ball: Barring a surprise, Patrick Mahomes is set to make his return after missing just two games with a dislocated knee cap. You were already starting Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce no matter what, but Mahomes' return really helps Damien Williams and the Chiefs backfield outlook. After LeSean McCoy fumbled late in the third quarter in Week 8, HC Andy Reid went back to Williams in more of a featured role last week. Williams' 73 percent snap rate in Week 9 was a season-high. Of course, Reid could frustrate us all and turn back to a committee between Williams and McCoy -- but Williams' promising usage last week and Mahomes' return puts him back on the FLEX radar with six teams out on a bye. Mahomes' return also theoretically helps Sammy Watkins' outlook, but your guess is as good as mine there.

When the Titans have the ball: After dusting the Panthers for 99 scrimmage yards and two scores on 16 touches last week, Derrick Henry is a no-brainer RB1 in Week 10 against a Chiefs run defense that has struggled all year long. Outside of possibly streaming Ryan Tannehill in 12-team leagues, the Titans side is pretty void of fantasy options this week. Corey Davis is battling a hip injury and may not play, which would make A.J. Brown a little more trustworthy in fantasy this week. The Chiefs have been doing a great job of keeping everything in front of them and not allowing boundary receivers to beat them, but Davis missing would boost Brown's target projection. Jonnu Smith remains on the TE1/TE2 streaming borderline if Delanie Walker misses, too. Smith has seen 15 percent of Titans targets in Walker's three missed games from Weeks 7-9 and the Chiefs are giving up the 10th-most fantasy points per game to tight ends. I'd stream Jack Doyle and Eric Ebron over Jonnu Smith but would start Smith over the likes of Greg Olsen, Jimmy Graham and Vance McDonald.

Cardinals at Buccaneers (at 1pm ET)

Must Play: WR Mike Evans; WR Chris Godwin

Start: QB Jameis Winston; RB Ronald Jones; QB Kyler Murray; WR Christian Kirk; RB Kenyan Drake

Beware: WR Larry Fitzgerald

Injuries to monitor: RB David Johnson (ankle, back); TE O.J. Howard (hamstring)

Key Game Facts

-- This game has the highest over/under of the week (52.0)

-- Arizona is allowing the league's highest passer rating (118.4) while Tampa Bay is giving up the seventh-highest rating (100.4)

-- Patrick Peterson has really struggled since returning three weeks ago, allowing 14 receptions for 195 yards and 2 TDs on 17 targets in his coverage

When the Cardinals have the ball:Kyler Murray is overdue for (positive) touchdown regression and a potential shootout against the league's worst secondary is exactly what he needs to turn around his lowly 9 passing TDs total through nine games. The Bucs' have now allowed six-straight quarterbacks to finish top-15 against them with 5 signal-callers netting top-10 results. Christian Kirk has seen a team-high 25 percent of Cardinals' targets and 30 percent of their air yards in his six starts this season while Larry Fitzgerald has seen less than 20 percent of Arizona's targets in 4 of Kirk's 6 healthy games. Kirk has clearly become Murray's top target and he is one of my favorite plays of the week against this Bucs' team that is allowing a league-high 9.4 receptions per game to opposing slot wideouts. David Johnson is set to return after missing three games with back and ankle injuries and I'd expect D.J. to get quite a bit of burn lined up at receiver against Tampa Bay. Johnson has aligned as a wide receiver on 15 percent of his snaps this season and Kenyan Drake's emergence will allow HC Kliff Kingsbury to get both backs on the field at the same time. Sure, the Bucs' are playing shutdown run defense, but there is more than enough volume to go around to start both Johnson and Drake in season-long lineups in what should be the highest-scoring game of the slate.

When the Buccaneers have the ball: Start all of your Bucs in this spot. Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, and Jameis Winston are all top-5 plays at their position and both Evans and Godwin carry nuclear upside in Week 10. Evans has put fantasy teams on his back since his random Week 5 goose egg, putting up 9/96, 11/198/2, and 12/180/1 (on 45 targets!) over the last three weeks. Chris Godwin has cooled off a bit with Evans picking up the pace, but he'll have no issue hitting his ceiling this week. The Cardinals are allowing the second-most PPR points per game to opposing slot receivers and Godwin aligns out of the interior on nearly two-thirds of his routes. This past week, Ronald Jones got 20 touches, played on a career-high 55 percent of snaps and led Tampa's backfield in routes run (18) for the first time all season. After his breakout game in Seattle, HC Bruce Arians came out on Monday and declared that Jones is officially the team's starting running back. Buying into any Bucs' backfield hype has been a losing proposition for quite some time, but it does finally appear that Jones has surpassed Peyton Barber. Jones is far too cheap on daily sites and I'm willing to roll with him as a strong RB2 start in season-long in his new featured role. We've been playing tight ends against Arizona and profiting all year, but it's impossible to have any confidence starting O.J. Howard this week. Howard is set to return after missing a few games and Cam Brate should be active, too, after he left Week 9 early with a ribs injury.

Falcons at Saints (at 1pm ET)

Must Play: QB Drew Brees; WR Michael Thomas

Start: QB Matt Ryan; WR Julio Jones; WR Calvin Ridley; TE Austin Hooper; RB Alvin Kamara; TE Jared Cook

Sleeper: WR Ted Ginn

Beware: RB Devonta Freeman; RB Latavius Murray

Key Game Facts

-- After putting up 7.8 receptions and 87.8 yards per game last year, Michael Thomas is up to 9.1 catches and 109.4 yards per game in 2019

-- Thomas set an NFL record for catch percentage last year (85 percent) and he's caught 82 percent of his passes this year despite playing only a few games with Drew Brees

-- Four of the last six meetings between the Falcons and Saints have combined to score over 48 points with 3 games stretching well over 60 points scored

When the Falcons have the ball:Matt Ryan is set to return this week after missing only one game with a sprained ankle. As double-digit road underdogs, this looks like yet another spot for Ryan and Co. to air it out a ton while playing catch up... which is exactly how every Falcons game has gone this year. Ryan has tossed for over 300 yards in every game that he's finished this season and I see no reason to go away from Ryan as a QB1 this week, even though the Saints defensive line has a massive advantage over the Falcons in the trenches. Marshon Lattimore will shadow Julio Jones this week, but as we know, matchups do not matter for Julio. He posted 5/96 and 11/147 against New Orleans last year. With Lattimore on Julio, Calvin Ridley has a better one-on-one matchup on paper against Eli Apple. While Apple is playing significantly better ball this year, Ridley flamed the Saints last season for 7/146/3 and 8/93/1 while Lattimore traveled with Julio. Devonta Freeman is going to be on the field for nearly every snap with Ito Smith out this weekend, but he'll likely have to live off his receiving volume to come through this week against a Saints front seven that is allowing the fifth-fewest yards per carry to opposing backs.

When the Saints have the ball:Drew Brees and Michael Thomas are going to feast against this Falcons defense, but the biggest question on the Saints side is in their backfield. Alvin Kamara is set to return after missing two games but Latavius Murray balled out in an every-down role with Kamara sidelined, posting monster stat lines in Week 7 (140 scrimmage yards and 2 TDs on 33 touches) and in Week 8 (157 scrimmage yards and 2 TDs on 30 touches). Kamara was clearly the Saints lead back before going down with an injury -- Murray averaged just 5.3 carries per game in Week 1-6 -- but Latavius' recent performance should be worthy of a larger role. While Murray's usage this week is a bit difficult to predict, Kamara should have no issue getting loose for a big game against Atlanta even if he's closer to 15-18 touches instead of 20-24. Kamara has a ridiculous 23 receptions in 3 fully healthy games against Atlanta in his career. The Saints will also get Jared Cook back this week and he immediately slides back in as a top-10 play at the thinnest position in fantasy.

Dolphins at Colts (at 4:05pm ET)

Must Play: RB Marlon Mack

Start: WR Zach Pascal; WR DeVante Parker

Stream: QB Jacoby Brissett; TE Jack Doyle; TE Eric Ebron; TE Mike Gesicki

Sleeper: WR Chester Rogers

Beware: RB Kalen Ballage

Injuries to monitor: WR T.Y. Hilton (calf); QB Jacoby Brissett (knee)

Key Game Facts

-- Marlon Mack has averaged 19.0 PPR points per game when the Colts have won by six or more points over the last two years

-- Mack has put up 10.8 PPG in all other Colts' games in this span

-- Indianapolis is favored to win by 12.5 points over Miami

When the Dolphins have the ball: With Preston Williams (ACL) on injured reserve and Mark Walton out for four weeks on suspension, DeVante Parker stands alone as the top play for Miami this week. Parker has 50 yards and/or a touchdown in seven of eight games this season and is a high-end WR3 start with only Jakeem Grant, Allen Hurns, and Albert Wilson rotating in behind him at receiver. Williams leaves behind a team-leading 60 targets and 33 percent share of air yards. Mike Gesicki quietly has seen 20 targets since Miami's Week 5 bye and he stands to benefit a bit with Williams' absence, too. Kalen Ballage will get some sort of featured role with only Myles Gaskin and Patrick Laird behind him on the depth chart, but Ballage is averaging a dusty 2.0 yards per carry and has caught just 4 of his 12 targets this season. I suppose volume will be there for Ballage, but I have no interest clicking his name into a fantasy lineup until we see something from him.

When the Colts have the ball: It looks like Jacoby Brissett (knee) won't end up missing a game after all, putting him squarely on the Week 10 streaming radar. Sam Darnold is the only quarterback that has failed to finish outside of the top-15 weekly performers against Miami this season. While Marlon Mack is an obvious must-play in fantasy football this week, Zach Pascal, Jack Doyle, and Eric Ebron are all start-able in season-long lineups. Pascal has tallied 4/72 (7 targets) and 5/76/1 (6 targets) in T.Y. Hilton's two missed starts this year and even though they are splitting passing looks, Doyle and Ebron just need 5-7 targets each to have a chance at a decent day against this brutally bad Miami defense. If you're desperate at receiver in a deep 12- or 14-team league this weekend, go check and see if Chester Rogers is available off your league wire. Not only is Hilton out this week, but the Colts will also be without Parris Campbell (hand). Rogers runs the majority of his routes from the slot and Miami has allowed an absurd 10.4 yards per pass attempt when QBs throw against their interior coverage this year.

Rams at Steelers (at 4:25pm ET)

Must Play: WR Cooper Kupp; RB Jaylen Samuels

Start: RB Todd Gurley; TE Gerald Everett; WR Robert Woods

Beware: QB Jared Goff; WR JuJu Smith-Schuster

Deep Sleeper: WR Josh Reynolds

Sit: TE Vance McDonald

Injuries to monitor: WR Brandin Cooks (concussion); RB Malcolm Brown (ankle); RB James Conner (shoulder); WR JuJu Smith-Schuster (toe)

Key Game Facts

-- Through Week 9, a total of 40 WRs are seeing more targets per game than JuJu Smith-Schuster (6.5)

-- After seeing double-digit looks in 10-of-16 games last year, JuJu hasn't eclipsed 10 targets yet this season

-- Jaylen Samuels' weekly PPR finishes in his four starts over the last two seasons: RB14, RB14, RB15, RB10

When the Rams have the ball: After playing a three-year low 55 percent of Rams snaps in Week 8 before their bye, Todd Gurley is relegated to a touchdown-dependent RB2 start for the rest of 2019. The extra week of rest will do Gurley well, but he's simply not been close to the same player this season and he has lost his workhorse role. Gurley caught 7 balls for 54 yards in Week 4, but he has just 8 receptions for 27 yards in his six other combined games this year. By now, everyone knows about Jared Goff's home/road splits and his splits under pressure. It's hard to find many better options off of the waiver wire with six teams off this week, but the Steelers front seven is generating the league's 10th-highest pressure rate and fourth-highest sack rate. Goff is a middling QB2 here. While Goff's fantasy outlook is unappealing -- no team gives up more fantasy production to slot receivers than the Steelers, giving Cooper Kupp a mouth-watering ceiling in Week 10. Robert Woods and Gerald Everrett's usage has been all over the map this year, but Brandin Cooks' absence should open up a few extra looks to go around. Woods is a high-end WR3 option this week while Everett is a de facto TE1. Josh Reynolds has averaged 3.3 receptions, 46.8 yards and 0.54 touchdowns per game in his starts over the last two seasons and only makes sense as a desperation WR4/5 in this spot.

When the Steelers have the ball:James Conner (shoulder) is set to miss his second-straight game, locking in Jaylen Samuels as a borderline RB1 in PPR leagues this weekend. Samuels has now finished as a top-15 fantasy running back in every start he's made in his career. Trey Edmunds will certainly mix in for some carries, but Mason Rudolph's perpetual tendency to check down to his running backs gives Samuels the far better role in fantasy. Rudolph has targeted his backs on 27 percent of his throws this year, trailing only Drew Brees (29 percent) for the league lead. Outside of Samuels, it's hard to find any other Steelers worth starting in fantasy this weekend. JuJu Smith-Schuster was a late addition to the injury report after it appears he re-aggravated his toe injury from September and October. At this point, all we can do is bet on talent with JuJu in our fantasy lineups.

Panthers at Packers (at 4:25pm ET)

Must Play: RB Christian McCaffrey; RB Aaron Jones

Start: QB Aaron Rodgers; WR Davante Adams; WR D.J. Moore; WR Curtis Samuel

Beware: TE Greg Olsen; RB Jamaal Williams; TE Jimmy Graham

Key Game Facts

-- This game features two of the NFL's worst run defenses, with the Panthers allowing 4.91 yards per carry (third-most) and the Packers giving up 4.89 YPC (fourth-most)

-- Green Bay is allowing a league-high 62 percent success rate on the ground while no team is giving up more fantasy points per carry than Carolina

When the Panthers have the ball:Christian McCaffrey has finished as a top-8 running back in PPR scoring in 7-of-8 games this season and while matchups do not matter for the Fantasy MVP, this spot couldn't get any better against a leaky Packers run defense. Green Bay's pass defense has also started to slide in recent weeks as their secondary has quietly allowed a league-high 214 yards per game to enemy wideouts over the last five weeks. Kyle Allen only has eyes for D.J. Moore and Curtis Samuel when he's dropping back to pass, targeting his top two wideouts on an absurd 50 percent of his throws over the last month. Both Moore and Samuel are good-to-great WR3 plays this weekend and both are still too cheap on daily sites. All of the Panthers volume is going to CMC, Moore, and Samuel -- leaving Greg Olsen behind to pick up the scraps. After a hot start to the season, Olsen has just 11 receptions for 110 scoreless yards over his last 5 games. Olsen is only a touchdown-dependent TE2 at this point.

When the Packers have the ball: After his worst game of the season, Aaron Jones is set up to smash against this Panthers run defense that ranks dead last in FootballOutsiders run defense DVOA metrics. I'll bet frustrated fantasy managers will immediately forgive Jones for his 9 carry, 30 rushing-yard performance after this week. Jamaal Williams has been the luckiest player in the NFL over the last month, scoring a receiving touchdown in every game. Williams has just 12 carries in his past three games and you'll continue to have to bank on his role as a receiver if you roll him out as a FLEX option this weekend. Like always, Aaron Rodgers is a mid-tier QB1 start this week with perhaps a slightly lower floor than usual. The Packers will be content just riding Aaron Jones and the run game if they get out to a big lead over Carolina at home. Likely still less than 100 percent while dealing with turf toe, Davante Adams' return to the lineup last week was a bit of disappointment (7/41 receiving). Adams still saw a team-high 11 targets in a game where the Packers did not show up, though, and he may have a significant matchup upgrade if Panthers top CB James Bradberry (groin) does not suit up. Adams remains the only Packers pass-catcher we can rely on in fantasy.

Vikings at Cowboys (at 8:20pm ET)

Must Play: RB Ezekiel Elliott; WR Amari Cooper; RB Dalvin Cook

Start: QB Dak Prescott; WR Michael Gallup; WR Stefon Diggs

Sit: QB Kirk Cousins

Injuries to monitor: WR Adam Thielen (hamstring)

Key Game Facts

-- Amari Cooper is on pace for over 94 receptions, 1,598 yards, and 14 TDs if we remove his Week 6 game vs. the Jets (left after 3 snaps)

-- Cooper has caught 72 percent of his targets as a member of the Cowboys

-- Cooper caught just 57 percent of his targets with the Raiders

When the Vikings have the ball: The Vikings will be without Adam Thielen (hamstring) this week, making their team extremely straight-forward for Week 10 lineup decisions. Dalvin Cook is an auto-play every week and while this isn't the best matchup ever for Stefon Diggs, he's bound to have a bounceback game with Thielen out of the lineup. Olabisi Johnson will slide into a near every-down role without Thielen in the lineup but he is only on the board in the deepest of leagues. The Vikings pass offense will run through Diggs this week. With 35 or fewer pass attempts in seven of nine games this season, volume is always the concern for Kirk Cousins in fantasy football. Dallas has allowed the fifth-fewest fantasy points to opposing QBs, but that's simply because they haven't faced many good quarterbacks this year. I'm sure some desperate tight end streamers will want to start Kyle Rudolph this week with Thielen sidelined, but I'd be very cautious of that decision. While Rudolph has scored twice in the last two weeks, rookie Irv Smith has already forced a timeshare in Minnesota. Smith and Rudolph both have 17 targets over the last month.

When the Cowboys have the ball: Minnesota has gotten its clocks cleaned all season long by talented boundary receivers and Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup present yet another difficult test for this struggling secondary. Minnesota is now allowing the second-most fantasy points per game to receivers aligned out wide after getting destroyed by Alshon Jeffery (10/76/1), Marvin Jones (10/93/4), Kenny Golladay (8/105), and Tyreek Hill (6/140/1) over the last month. Cooper has battled through injuries all year long but remains on the WR1 radar here while Michael Gallup is an outstanding WR2 play. I'd roll with Gallup over Allen Robinson, JuJu Smith-Schuster, and Marvin Jones this week. Dak Prescott has finished as a top-12 fantasy passer in all but one game this season and I'd only start Lamar Jackson, Patrick Mahomes, Kyler Murray or Drew Brees over him this weekend. The Vikes' pass defense is crumbling and Prescott has averaged 6.2 more fantasy points per game at Jerry World over the last two years.

Seahawks at 49ers (at 8:15pm ET)

Start: QB Russell Wilson; WR Tyler Lockett; RB Chris Carson; WR Emmanuel Sanders; RB Tevin Coleman

Stream: QB Jimmy Garoppolo

Beware: RB Matt Breida

Desperation TE streamer and Kittle insurance: TE Jacob Hollister

Sit: WR D.K. Metcalf

Injuries to monitor: TE George Kittle (knee, ankle); WR Josh Gordon (ankle)

Key Game Facts

-- Emmanuel Sanders has seen 39 percent of 49ers air yards in his first two games, which would be tied with Mike Evans for the fifth-highest share among wide receivers over the full season

-- Seattle has given up 8 top-25 fantasy receiver performances over their last 7 games

-- Seattle has also allowed a top-15 fantasy QB in six-straight games

When the Seahawks have the ball: After properly dismantling the Buccaneers last week, Russell Wilson and Tyler Lockett find themselves in a decidedly tougher matchup on Monday Night Football. Wilson-to-Lockett is arguably the NFL's top QB-WR duo and I can't wait to see if they can be the first pass offense to break down the 49ers' stellar secondary. While San Francisco's pass defense has remained white-hot, its ground defense has shown signs of cracks over the last few weeks as Adrian Peterson (20/81), Christian McCaffrey (14/117/1), and Kenyan Drake (15/110/1) have all rumbled for good-to-great performances in Weeks 7-9. Chris Carson has played on 80 percent of Seahawks snaps over the last five weeks and may have a higher ceiling than the matchup on paper would suggest. Jacob Hollister played on a season-high 80 percent of snaps last week, posting 4/37/2 on six targets against Tampa. The 'Niners are far from an easy matchup for tight ends, but every single George Kittle fantasy owner needs to stash Hollister as insurance just in case Kittle does not suit up. At the very least, Russell Wilson has targeted his tight ends on 20 percent of his throws this season, the sixth-highest rate among QBs.

When the 49ers have the ball: San Francisco is the most run-heavy team in the league, but it's hard not to like Jimmy Garoppolo as a borderline QB1 this week. Seattle is far easier to throw on than run against and I'd look for HC Kyle Shanahan to dial up a healthy dose of play-action passes to free up 49ers receivers. Tevin Coleman and Matt Breida have split touches 85-69 in favor of Coleman since he returned in Week 5 and both backs are on the RB2/FLEX radar for MNF. While Breida is awesome -- he's averaged 5.3 yards per carry on 252 attempts over the last two years -- the 49ers continue to feature Coleman in the red-zone over him. San Francisco has run 35 plays inside of the opponents' 10-yard line over the last five weeks and Coleman has been on the field for 26 of those snaps. Matt Breida has just four inside-10 snaps in this span. Breida will likely have to score from distance to hit his ceiling in fantasy. Emmanuel Sanders continues to be underrated in the fantasy community and he'll look to log his third-straight excellent game as a member of the 'Niners here. Sanders dusted Patrick Peterson out of the slot last week and has yet to show any signs of physical decline after tearing his Achilles a year ago. If George Kittle does not suit up, the 49ers will turn to Ross Dwelly to replace him. If you own Kittle and Jacob Hollister is not available, Dwelly is fine secondary insurance so you can wait up until game-time to see if Kittle is active.

  • -- Graham Barfield is a fantasy editor and analyst for Catch him on the NFL Fantasy Football podcast with Marcas Grant and Michael Fabiano, Fantasy LIVE on NFL Network, watch him on Fantasy League One, and follow him on Twitter @GrahamBarfield. *
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