Select Page

Last updated: November 19th at 9:45am ET


Team Totals: Falcons 27.5, Bucs 23.5

Even with a league-high 18 interceptions – second most by any player through ten games in over two decadesJameis Winston has stayed among fantasy’s most-consistent assets with top-14 scores in seven of his last eight starts and five top-ten outcomes mixed in. Winston’s bankability will be put to Week 12 test by Atlanta’s upstart defense. Resurrected by assistants Raheem Morris and Jeff Ulbrich’s play calling, the Falcons stymied Drew Brees for Week 10’s QB22 result, then held Carolina to three points while intercepting Kyle Allen four times in Atlanta’s second straight road-upset win. With Winston toughing out a balky ankle that clearly contributed to at least two of last week’s four picks, the Falcons’ D/ST is firmly in play, even as Jameis’ box-score projection remains high in this potential track meet. … A fairly predictable Week 11 flop versus run-tough New Orleans, Ronald Jones managed six innocuous touches and was out-snapped 43% to 30% by Dare Ogunbowale, largely due to negative script after Tampa got down 13-0 in the first quarter and spent the rest of the day playing from behind. Peyton Barber didn’t log a single carry but stayed involved, vulturing a six-yard receiving score late in the second quarter. Jones is still the best flex option in the Bucs’ backfield, but Bruce Arians’ three-man ordeal isn’t going away. Running back roles are determined by game flow and “hot hands” in Tampa.

Winston’s 2019 target distribution: Mike Evans 97; Chris Godwin 89; Cameron Brate 35; Ogunbowale 32; Breshad Perriman 31; O.J. Howard 26; Jones 23; Scotty Miller 22; Barber 15. … Even while Atlanta’s overall defensive performance has improved markedly of late, their secondary has stayed vulnerable to wideout production as Michael Thomas (13/152/0), Tyler Lockett (6/100/0), and D.J. Moore (8/95/0) could all attest in the Falcons’ last three games. On the season, only five defenses have surrendered more yards to wide receivers than Atlanta. While Evans is a no-brainer elite play as 2019’s overall WR2 behind Michael Thomas, slot man Godwin’s matchup makes him similarly enticing. Slot receivers facing the Falcons have accounted for a crisp 715 yards and seven touchdowns on 96 targets (7.45 YPA) this season. … Benched for an ugly first-half drop that became a Winston pick, Howard has lost virtually all fantasy viability shuttling in and out of Arians’ doghouse. Brate was last week’s obvious beneficiary with 10 catches on 14 targets, running a season-high 47 routes on 75% of Tampa’s offensive snaps. Brate’s usage and involvement are always hit or miss, but he’s at very least a better Week 12 streamer than Howard. … 4.36 speedster rookie Miller may be making a run at Perriman’s third receiver job after parlaying six targets into 71 yards in last week’s loss to New Orleans. Perriman hasn’t reached 50 yards in a game all year. Miller looks to be the preferred long-shot WR4 dart throw in this potential shootout.

Although Atlanta’s defense has been carrying the team lately, this is a breakout spot for the Falcons’ offense at home facing a Bucs team that’s allowed 27-plus points in 9-of-10 games and a 33.5-point average over its last eight. Tampa Bay provides passing games with safe floors by permitting top-15 fantasy results to eight straight quarterbacks faced, while only Arizona (29) has allowed more touchdown passes to the position (25). Quiet over his last three outings, this is an eruption spot for Matt Ryan. … Even after his Week 11 box score underwhelmed, Brian Hill remains RB2/flex playable versus Tampa Bay, whose once-impenetrable run defense has yielded 331 yards on 74 carries (4.47 YPC) to enemy backs in its last four games. With 16 touches, three targets, and 18 routes run on 60% of last week’s offensive snaps, Hill logged fantasy-viable usage at Carolina, while rookie Qadree Ollison fumbled on a fourth-quarter run and special teamer Kenjon Barner touched the ball twice on offense.

Ryan’s post-bye target distribution: Julio Jones 17; Calvin Ridley 12; Russell Gage 9; Hill 5; Justin Hardy 4; Christian Blake 3; Jaeden Graham 2. … This is a dream spot for Julio and Ridley against a Bucs defense yielding the NFL’s most fantasy points to wide receivers. With Mohamed Sanu gone and Austin Hooper (knee) still on the shelf, Julio is a cinch top-three WR1 play and Ridley a WR2 with WR1 upside. Scoreless since Week 3, Jones is a colossal positive-TD regression candidate. Ridley used his game-breaking route-running tools to put repeated Week 11 clown suits on usually-stingy Panthers CB Donte Jackson. … Gage’s target counts are just 5 and 4 since Atlanta’s bye, and he played 48% of last week’s offensive snaps as a rotational slot receiver. The likely back-and-forth nature of Sunday’s affair keeps Gage in WR4 range, but he’s a touchdown-or-bust option without a game above 58 yards all year. … In his first post-Hooper audition, Graham drew just two targets on 52% of Atlanta’s offensive snaps and ran 21 pass routes compared to block-first TE Luke Stocker’s 10. Clearly the Falcons’ preferred receiving tight end, Graham is a Hail Mary streamer with matchup working in his favor. Fellow TEs Evan Engram (6/113/1), Jonnu Smith (6/78/1), Greg Olsen (6/110/0, 4/52/0), George Kittle (8/54/0), Gerald Everett (5/44/1), Anthony Firkser (3/43/0), Jared Cook (4/41/1), Tyler Higbee (4/41/0), Josh Hill (3/39/0), Jacob Hollister (4/37/2), and Cook again (2/33/1) have all met or beaten PPR expectations versus the Buccaneers.

Score Prediction: Falcons 28, Bucs 23