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Fantasy Football Risers and Fallers - Keenan Allen, Damien Williams, Mohamed Sanu


Whether due to their own play, the play of others, or injuries, players' stock increases and decreases on a weekly basis. Perhaps more than any other, the NFL is a league that experiences ups and downs at a rapid pace. With only 16 games, there’s little room for error and seemingly endless opportunities for improvement. The same goes for fantasy football; managing rosters effectively is key to winning that championship.

Throughout the season, players get hot and see an increased role while others struggle and fight to stay relevant. Experienced fantasy players know this happens every year. In this weekly column, we’ll showcase those who have taken important steps forward and those who have taken steps back.

These are the key risers and fallers heading into Week 10 of the NFL season.

Editor's Note: Get any rest-of-season NFL Premium Pass for 50% off. Our exclusive DFS Tools, Lineup Optimizer and Premium DFS Research through the Super Bowl. Sign Up Now!

 

Week 10 Risers

Mohamed Sanu (WR, NE)

Since this is the Patriots, this could be a one week thing as their game plan changes weekly. However, Mohamed Sanu played 100% of the offensive snaps last week and led the team with 14 targets. It was as if the offensive was designed around him. Sanu appears locked in as Tom Brady's WR2, which is a massive boon for his fantasy value going forward as the Patriots face a much tougher slate of quarterbacks than they did in the first half of the season, which will force them to throw more. Sanu has legitimate WR2 upside if this is real.

Devante Parker (WR, MIA)

I feel like the biggest fraud putting DeVante Parker's name here. I might be the biggest Parker hater out there. I have blasted him as terrible at football and completely useless, but the fact remains he has been a WR3 this season and with Preston Williams done, Parker is the unquestioned primary option in the Dolphins' passing attack. Parker has scored in four of his past five games and should lead the team in targets going forward.

Damien Williams (RB, KC)

Let's get the obvious out of the way first. Damien Williams did not actually have a good game last week. He had a 91 yard touchdown run, worth 15.1 fantasy points. He only scored 20.8 fantasy points. That means his other 13 touches netted just 5.7 fantasy points. With that being said, LeSean McCoy is finished. Andy Reid has clearly had enough of him missing assignments and giving the ball to the other team. Williams played on 73% of the offensive snaps and looks to have regained the primary role. With Patrick Mahomes poised to return soon, Williams could reemerge as an RB2 over the remainder of the season.

Ronald Jones (RB, TB)

This is the week where I just have to eat crow. Much like DeVante Parker, I wrote Ronald Jones off as a completely garbage player. To be fair, he was one of the worst players in the NFL as a rookie. The good news for Jones is he legitimately improved as a player in his second year and Bruce Arians has taken notice. Jones has usurped Peyton Barber, which was evident from the season low 14% snap share that Barber had last week. Jones touched the ball 20 times and while the Bucs' RB1 isn't immensely valuable, they are still a high powered offense, making the lead guy a viable fantasy starter. That appears to be Jones.

 

Week 10 Fallers

Keenan Allen (WR, LAC)

Name value is a tricky thing. By the time you realize it doesn't matter anymore, it's probably too late. Here's to hoping it's not too late to move away from Keenan Allen. Odds are you don't have anyone so clearly better than Allen to start over him, but if you're in a league that still starts just five total WR/RB, don't feel obligated to start Keenan Allen because he's Keenan Allen. He hasn't topped 12.3 fantasy points since Week 3. Over that span, his highest yardage total is 61 and he hasn't scored. Allen has always been a poor man's Michael Thomas in the sense that he cannot survive without volume and is completely incapable of splash plays. For Thomas, the volume is all that's needed because he is always efficient. For Allen, the volume has been inconsistent and he's been inefficient. We are entering the tenth week of the season. It is time to call a spade a spade. Allen is nothing more than an extremely volatile, low floor WR3, at best.

JuJu Smith-Schuster (WR, PIT)

Name value is a tricky thing. By the time you realize it doesn't matter anymore, it's probably too late. Here's to hoping it's not too late to move away from JuJu Smith-Schuster. Wait, didn't I just say this? I'm having deja vu. JuJu and Keenan Allen are very similar in terms of valuation. They are both name brand receivers that aren't producing. The difference is JuJu has an excuse in that his starting quarterback is out. Unfortunately, that excuse does fantasy owners no good. Unlike Allen, JuJu lives on splash plays. It is great to know that JuJu can do it on limited volume, but relying on the splash play makes for a very uneasy ride. JuJu has yet to see double digit targets in a game and has only exceeded 100 yards once - against the Dolphins. Without a splash play touchdown, JuJu's floor is among the lowest in fantasy football. The schedule is very up and down ahead, but it hasn't really mattered anyway. JuJu is a volatile WR3.

Sony Michel (RB, NE)

It feels like cheating putting Sony Michel here because, as far as I'm concerned, Michel can't get any lower for me. Even when he has his good weeks, I don't respect him at all because he is a bad football player. I'm not entirely sure he's broken a tackle yet this season. Michel's volume doesn't even matter; he needs to fall into the end zone. Michel played a season low 22% of the snaps last week and was nowhere to be found at the goal line, mostly in favor of James White. As much as I'd love to recommend dropping Michel, his potential touchdown upside on one of the league's best offenses makes him at least a desperation flex play, but that's all he is.

Mark Walton (RB, MIA)

Last week's hottest pickup with Kenyan Drake getting shipped to Arizona has fallen as quickly as he rose. Mark Walton played 74% of the offensive snaps last week and was on his way to being an every week RB3 with a feature role on a bad offense. Now he's suspended four games for violating the substance abuse policy. Walton is an easy cut as he is no lock to return to any sort of role and he's on the Dolphins.

 

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