2014 Fantasy Football: Week 11 AFC Target Report
Welcome to the Week 11 AFC Target Report. For those unfamiliar with the format, five players will be examined based on their usage in the passing game and an attempt to describe what it means from a fantasy standpoint is the end goal. The first number in parentheses is the number of targets followed by the percentage of targets caught. Additionally, the targets for said player will be listed to the right on a week-by-week basis. Time to get the Week 11 AFC Targets Report started.
Mike Wallace – (82 targets/53.7% targets caught) 11-8-12-4-BYE-9-8-7-8-8-7
While Wallace started off strong to begin the season, his lackluster play of late has dropped him to the WR23 overall in PPR formats as he’s barely clinging to WR2 value. After hauling in five touchdowns through the Miami Dolphins first six games, Wallace has only found pay dirt one time in the last four weeks. Other than Week 1, he has failed to eclipse 75 yards in each game. Ryan Tannehill has proven to be completely incapable of hooking up on deep throws on a consistent basis and it’s really hampering 60 Minutes fantasy upside. With six games left, Wallace is on a 70-891-10 pace.
Unless he gets hot down the stretch, it appears the 28-year-old out of Mississippi is destined for his third straight sub-1,000 yard campaign. He’s yet to record a 100-yard receiving game this season. After looking like a lock early on to best his career-high of 73 receptions he set last season, he may not even get to 70 this year. There have been grumblings that members of the Dolphins offense have been privately complaining about the direction of the offense and we’ve already heard Wallace voice his frustration earlier in the season. Unless Tannehill develops a better rapport with Wallace in a hurry down the stretch, he will struggle for consistency if he’s not catching any touchdowns due to his low yardage totals. The going doesn’t get much easier in Week 12 as he faces a strong Denver Broncos secondary. Treat Wallace as a low-end WR2.
Andrew Hawkins – (82/54.9%) 10-12-10-BYE-9-2-9-8-DNP-13
While Hawkins posted a nice 6-97-1 line on a season-high 13 targets, his fantasy value is about to take a substantial hit with the impending return of All-Pro wide receiver Josh Gordon this week. Additionally, while Jordan Cameron is still in the NFL concussion protocol, his return will likely come sooner rather than later. With only two touchdowns this year and six total for his career in 44 career games, don’t expect Baby Hawk to find the end zone much more this season as the Cleveland Browns are on the verge of getting two huge red zone targets back. Catching touchdowns isn’t his game though as Hawkins has become a PPR dynamo of sorts working out of the slot position.
Hawkins is on a 75-1,002-3 pace and while the yardage total is surprising, expecting him to surpass 1,000 yards would be foolhardy considering he will no longer operate as the Browns go-to wideout. With that being said, Hawkins should still be rostered as a potential WR3/Flex option, but only in PPR formats. Keep a close eye on how the Browns utilize Hawkins in a Week 12 matchup against the league-worst Atlanta Falcons secondary.
Keenan Allen – (86/63.2%) 9-6-2-11-7-6-10-13-9-BYE-13
2014 has been quite a mystifying year for Allen in fantasy football terms. After busting out to a 71-1,046-8 line in his rookie season last year, there were huge expectations for the 22-year-old California product to be even better this season. While he is still on pace for 88 receptions this year, his yardage and touchdown rate have dropped off. Allen has only recorded one touchdown and is on pace for 859 yards. It was more of the same in Week 11 as he caught eight passes for 63 yards and tied a season-high with 13 targets, albeit without a score. While PPR owners certainly aren’t complaining about the amount of catches, his inability to find pay dirt more often is severely limiting his upside. The San Diego Chargers spread the wealth philosophy on offense is making Allen consistently inconsistent and has led to him being the WR35 overall in PPR
Allen owners certainly have the right to be frustrated with the wideout as it appears he’s undergoing a sophomore slump of sorts and he’s been a major bust when compared to his ADP. It’s not all bad news though as Allen has played better of late, averaging 6.75 receptions and 60.25 yards over the last four weeks. Additionally, he has some nice matchups coming up in the St. Louis Rams and the Baltimore Ravens the next few weeks. It would be shocking if Allen didn’t finish with at least 3-4 touchdowns and more yards than his projected pace due to him being the Chargers best wideout. Treat him as a mid-range WR3 against the Rams in Week 12.
Andre Johnson – (92/59.8%) 9-7-11-7-8-12-9-12-7-BYE-10
Much like Allen, Johnson has seemingly been allergic to the end zone this year as he only has one touchdown through 10 games but he too had a promising effort in Week 11. With Ryan Mallet operating as the Houston Texans quarterback for the first time, AJ posted a 7-68 line on 10 targets as the seven receptions tied his season-high in that department. It’s worth mentioning he was shadowed by Joe Haden. After turning in a beastly line of 109-1,407-5 last season, he is only on pace for a 88-1,110-2 line this season. Whether it be due to the Texans increased reliance on the running game, shoddy quarterback play, a slight decline in The Natural’s ability, or likely a combination of all these factors, it’s undoubtedly been a down year from the 33-year-old Miami product.
It’s perplexing that while Johnson’s 92 targets is the 11th-highest total in the NFL, he’s only scored once and has yet to record a 100-yard receiving game. Excluding his four seasons shortened by injury, AJ has never recorded less than four touchdowns or less than three 100-yard performances. While Father Time remains undefeated, I’m hesitant to declare his fall in fantasy has more to do with natural ability rather than the aforementioned factors he can’t control. If your trade deadline has yet to expire, I’d be looking to invest in Johnson shares. Take one look at his schedule the next six weeks (CIN, TEN, @JAC, @IND, BAL, JAC) and you can understand the reasons for some giddiness. AJ is only the WR27 overall so far this year, but he should be viewed as possessing high-upside WR2 value the rest of the way. His toughest matchup this week against the Cincinnati Bengals is his toughest assignment the rest of the year and he should be treated as a mid-range WR2 this week.
Jarvis Landry – (55/76.4%) 1-6-7-4-BYE-8-5-3-6-10-5
While none of his fantasy performances over the last three weeks have been earth-shattering by any means, Landry has been rock-solid during that time. Based on his recent usage, it appears the 21-year-old rookie out of LSU has surpassed Brian Hartline on the depth chart for the No. 2 wideout spot and for good reason. He’s much more electric in the open field than Hartline and gives the Dolphins a sure-handed receiver who can play out wide or in the slot. Facing the Buffalo Bills in Week 11, Landry posted a 5-46-1 line. He’s now averaging 5.7 receptions and 48.3 yards with two touchdowns over the last three weeks and has recorded at least five catches in each game.
Even though he wasn’t utilized earlier int he season like he is now, Landry is on a 67-640-5 pace and it wouldn’t be surprising to see him better those reception and yardage totals if he keeps producing like he has the last few weeks. With Wallace as the undisputed No. 1 wide receiver for the Dolphins, Landry’s upside is capped, but Tannehill is much more effective in the short to intermediate range and Landry excels in that area. With that being said, Landry is best left served as a WR4 against the Broncos in Week 12, but if he performs again it may be time to move him into low-end WR3 territory.
Thanks for reading and be sure to comment below with any questions or remarks you have concerning the article. You can follow me on Twitter @MattMoczy and I’m more than willing to answer any questions.