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Fantasy Football Risers and Fallers - Jeff Driskel, Deebo Samuel, Kenyan Drake


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 11 of the NFL season.

Editor's Note: Get any full-season NFL Premium Pass for 50% off. Our exclusive In-Season Lineup Tools, Lineup Optimizer and over 150 days of Premium DFS Research. Sign Up Now!

 

Week 12 Risers

Jeff Driskel (QB, DET)

I am reluctant to put Jeff Driskel here on the off chance Matthew Stafford returns this week, but Driskel is going to be all over the streaming radar in Week 12 and rightfully so. Driskel has posted back to back QB1 performances and displayed a high floor due to rushing. Driskel is basically adding a touchdown on the ground. With four fantasy relevant quarterbacks on bye, Driskel has shown enough to warrant the trust of fantasy owners. Rushing quarterbacks are almost always high floor QB1s. Driskel is no different.

Deebo Samuel (WR, SF)

With back to back 100 yard receiving games, Deebo Samuel has established himself as an integral part of the 49ers' passing attack. With 21 targets over the last two weeks, Samuel can be trusted weekly as at least a WR3, especially if Emmanuel Sanders is forced to miss time due to his rib injury. George Kittle should return this week, but I wouldn't expect that to impact Samuel as Ross Dwelley has been targeted just about the same as Kittle.

James Washington (WR, PIT)

With JuJu Smith-Schuster and Diontae Johnson in the concussion protocol, the stage is set for James Washington to operate as the Steelers' WR1 in a dream matchup against the Bengals. JuJu is also dealing with a knee injury and looks likely to sit so even if Johnson can get cleared, Washington is set for an increased role. He will be a popular waiver add by the time you read this.

Tarik Cohen (RB, CHI)

It is difficult to trust anything Bears right now, but Tarik Cohen is back on the fantasy radar with touchdowns in consecutive games leading to double digit fantasy outings. With David Montgomery ineffective and the Bears constantly trailing, Cohen played 59% of the snaps last week and has 10 targets over the past two weeks. Cohen's next two matchups are fantastic against the Giants and Lions. He is back on the flex radar.

Kenyan Drake (RB, ARI)

I know Kenyan Drake is entering his bye and the return of Chase Edmonds looms, but David Johnson is done in 2019. He hasn't been on the injury report the past two weeks and didn't touch the ball last week. This is Drake's backfield until further notice. The schedule isn't great, but neither are running backs in general this season. Drake has reached double digits in every game since joining the Cardinals. He has emerged into a reliable RB2.

 

Week 12 Fallers

Tom Brady (QB, NE)

It's not exactly a surprise that Tom Brady isn't an every week starter in fantasy in the year 2019. He was almost unanimously ranked outside the top 12 entering the season, but after a strong start, fantasy owners began to believe in a resurgence. For the third time this season last week, Brady failed to throw a touchdown pass. This time it came against the Eagles' bottom five secondary. Brady hasn't crested 20 points since Week 6. It is hard to look at favorable matchups and think they matter because that hasn't been the case this season. Brady should still be viewed as viable streamer, but it's become difficult to trust him even in favorable spots.

Cooper Kupp (WR, LAR)

For the second week in a row, Cooper Kupp is on this list. That's because he's fallen even lower than he did after a catchless Week 10. Kupp only saw three targets last week and while his status in the offense is not a concern, Sean McVay has zero interest in throwing the ball. The Rams just want to run and run and run some more. At home against the Ravens is a spot where they will have to throw to keep up, but that's proven to be difficult on a surging Ravens Defense. Marlon Humphrey will shadow Kupp and it projects to be another disastrous outing for the former elite WR1. It turns out Kupp was a massive sell high and we had no idea.

Tevin Coleman (RB, SF)

In a dream spot against the Cardinals, Tevin Coleman face planted once again. It does not matter who is healthy for the 49ers, they are going to split snaps evenly. Coleman and Raheem Mostert played the exact same number of snaps. Coleman is still the goal line back, but the volume is nowhere near where fantasy owners would like it to be. Coleman was pitched as an RB2 upon his return from injury and he's nothing more than a random RB3.

Brian Hill (RB, ATL)

15 carries is encouraging for Brian Hill, but being pulled at the goal line for Qadree Ollison is not. Hill was also targeted just three times and split snaps with Ollison and Kenjon Barner. Hill sure looked like a three down back filling in for the injured Devonta Freeman, but just like Ty Johnson replacing Kerryon Johnson, the next week rolled around that it devolved into a three back committee. Hill now gets Tampa Bay's elite run defense and is far off the fantasy radar.

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