Last updated: October 18th at 9:20am ET
Team Totals: Cowboys 26, Eagles 23
As far as consistency goes, Carson Wentz belongs in fantasy’s first tier with top-12 results in 5-of-6 starts and now catches a beat-up Dallas defense likely missing two of its top-three cornerbacks (Byron Jones, Anthony Brown) due to hamstring injuries. The Cowboys have also struggled to generate pass rush, ranking 22nd in sack rate (19.4%) and 21st in QB Hit Rate (14%), all of which came to a Week 6 head when Sam Darnold lit Kris Richard and Rod Marinelli’s defense on fire for 10.6 yards per attempt and a pair of scores in the Jets’ 24-22 upset win. Wentz’s high-floor to-date performance combined with this matchup against Dallas’ increasingly-vulnerable defense keeps him squarely in the QB1 crosshairs and DFS viable in stacks with Zach Ertz. … Even amid continued run-game struggles, Miles Sanders has settled in as the Eagles’ primary passing-game back, well earned based on Sanders’ pass-blocking prowess and receiving skills. The Cowboys’ zone defense has given up the NFL’s fourth-most running back receptions per game (6.8), while timeshare partner Jordan Howard hasn’t so much as drawn a target since Week 4. With at least 49 receiving yards in three of the last four weeks, Sanders is an underrated flex play in PPR leagues. … Howard remained the Eagles’ clear-cut primary back in last week’s loss to Minnesota, playing a year-high 63% of Philly’s offensive snaps and handling 13 or more touches for the third straight game. Dallas has surrendered an unimposing 109/486/7 (4.46 YPC) rushing line to enemy backs. Howard’s floor is still scary low due to his lack of receiving usage, and he will likely need a short TD to pay fantasy dividends.
Wentz’s Weeks 2-6 target distribution: Zach Ertz 47; Nelson Agholor 34; Alshon Jeffery 29; Mack Hollins 20; Sanders 16; Dallas Goedert 15; J.J. Arcega-Whiteside 7; Howard 6; Darren Sproles 5. … The Cowboys used Byron Jones (hamstring) to shadow Ertz last Week 14, holding him to 5/38/0 receiving on eight targets. As Jones appears unlikely to play in Sunday night’s rematch, Ertz’s 2018 Week 10 result against Dallas (14/145/2) is more notable. This year, tight ends facing the Cowboys have caught 31-of-40 targets (78%) for 311 yards (7.8 YPA) and two touchdowns. This is a blowup spot for Ertz. … Agholor’s receiving lines since Alshon came back from his calf injury three games ago are 0/0 > 1/20/0 > 4/42/0. Dallas’ expected absence of slot CB Anthony Brown (hamstring) gives Agholor hope on one-game DFS slates. … Jeffery’s target counts since returning are 9 > 8 > 12, and he has four TDs in four appearances this year. Plus-sized Jones’ (6’1/199) absence will make life easier on Jeffery, who warrants confident WR2 treatment in season-long leagues. … The Eagles embraced two-tight end 12-personnel in their last two games, hurting Hollins but benefiting Goedert, whose eight targets in last week’s loss to the Vikings were a career high. I personally am streaming Goedert in several season-long leagues this week; the Cowboys are allowing the NFL’s fifth-most receptions and sixth-most yards per game to tight ends.
All signs point to Dak Prescott playing Week 7 without LT Tyron Smith (ankle) and RT Le’El Collins (MCL) as well as Amari Cooper (quad). Over the past two seasons, Prescott has averaged 1.3 fewer yards per pass attempt, 87.6 fewer yards, and 5.5 fewer fantasy points per game without Cooper. Even against an Eagles defense has yielded top-eight results to 4-of-6 quarterbacks faced, Prescott is a volatile QB1 play with a shorthanded supporting cast. … Ezekiel Elliott has touch counts of 25 > 21 > 24 > 14 > 33 over his last five games ahead of facing a stout Philly defense that has limited enemy backs to 115/343/3 (2.98 YPC) rushing but yielded the NFL’s eighth-most catches per game (6.0) to Zeke’s position. His two 2018 touches/yardage/TD counts versus Eagles DC Jim Schwartz’s defense were 25/187/2 and 40/192/0. Despite the tough draw, no running back’s volume ceiling is higher than Elliott’s on Week 7’s slate.
Prescott’s Week 6 target distribution: Michael Gallup and Jason Witten 7; Zeke, Cedrick Wilson, and Tavon Austin 6; Blake Jarwin 4; Cooper 2; Dalton Schultz 1. … Gallup turned in his career-worst game in last week’s loss to the Jets – he committed three blatant drops and fell below 50 yards for the first time since last Week 15 – but Gallup’s bounce-back potential is sky high considering Cooper’s status. Six different wideouts have 100-plus-yard games against Philly’s near-nonexistent secondary; all told, enemy receivers have averaged 202.3 yards per game versus the Eagles, the NFL’s third-highest clip. … Witten is a strong streamer after taking over as a comfort-zone weapon for Dak following Cooper’s injury, parlaying a season-high seven targets into five catches for 57 yards. Witten’s playing time has risen in four straight weeks (51% > 79% > 83% > 88%). … Whereas Devin Smith is Gallup’s direct backup, Boise State alum Wilson sits right behind Amari. As Cooper (quad) left last week’s game early, Wilson played 61% of Dallas’ snaps and turned six targets into five catches for 46 yards. Especially against a bad Philly secondary, Wilson will be a prime DFS one-game-slate sleeper should Cooper sit. … Randall Cobb popped in this week’s Air Yards Buy Low Model but missed Week 6 with a back injury and is in doubt for Week 7. If Cobb sits again, Austin will be a one-game DFS-slate option at slot receiver against the Eagles.
Score Prediction: Eagles 27, Cowboys 24