The 2019 fantasy football season is coming down to the wire, and this week I’ll provide you with 25 impact players in our weekly snap and target data. I usually omit the obvious standouts, but this week I’m leaving the top running backs, receivers and tight ends in order. Leaving them in order may help you recognize their greatness, and also identify fantasy closers too. Keep in mind my algorithm accounts for snap and target data that also factors in fantasy scoring output, which makes it unique.
The following players are potential season-long starters or flex starters, trade targets and/or FAAB priorities:
Key: Snap % / Target % / Touch %
Titans RB Derrick Henry: 71.2 snap percentage / 5.4 target percentage / 67.6 touch percentage
Packers RB Aaron Jones: 50% / 0% / 38.2%
Vikings RB Dalvin Cook: 75% / 12.3% / 57.9%
Ravens RB Mark Ingram: 48.9% / 0% / 39.1%
Ravens TE Mark Andrews: 51.1% / 33.3% / 38.2%
Raiders RB Josh Jacobs: 51.7% / 16.7% / 63.3%
Buccaneers RB Peyton Barber: 25.9% / 4.5% 54.5%
Cardinals WR Christian Kirk: 95.7% / 14.9% / 9%
Chargers RB Melvin Gordon: 62.3% / 2.1% / 47.9%
Buccaneers RB Ronald Jones: 47.1% / 20% / 47.5
Giants WR Darius Slayton: 93.1% / 20.9% / 14.9%
Steelers WR James Washington: 50% / 18.9% / 16.2%
Bengals TE Tyler Eifert: 30.7% / 8.7% / 17.4%
Cowboys WR Amari Cooper: 88.7% / 22.2% / 17.5%
Falcons RB Brian Hill: 50.6% / 5% / 52.5%
Bears RB Tarik Cohen: 52.6% 13.3% / 23.3%
Chiefs WR Tyreek Hill: 84.1% / 27.5% / 17.4%
Chargers RB Austin Ekeler: 45.5% / 5.7% / 22.9%
Jets WR Jamison Crowder: 72.3% / 12.8% / 12.8% / 10.6%
Cardinals WR Andy Isabella: 37.1% / 11.5% / 11.5%
Cowboys WR Randall Cobb: 80.3% / 14% / 12.3%
Giants WR Golden Tate: 94.4% / 11.8% / 5.9%
Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey: 100% / 9.6% / 35.6%
Jets RB Le’Veon Bell: 73.8% / 8.3% / 45.8%
Bengals RB Joe Mixon: 76% / 5.3% / 56.1%
Last week in this column, we saw a huge influx in running backs, as they dominated the top 20 performers. That trend, although not as overwhelming, is still prevalent as seven of this week's top 10 performers were RBs. Make sure you up your running back game, and maybe target some of these guys for your flex spot, if you want to compete for a fantasy title this year.
Take a closer look at this week’s top five RBs and we see a common theme. Besides Dalvin Cook, who was drafted in the teens to early 20s, the rest of the group (Derrick Henry, Aaron Jones, Mark Ingram and Josh Jacobs) were mostly third-to-fifth round picks in season-long formats. If you have any of these backs as your RB2 or you went WR early and ended up with a combo of any of these guys as your starters, you’re in great position to close the season. Note to self: You can draft stud and impact RBs beyond the first three rounds.
Touching on drafting, it’s a great time of the year to evaluate your drafts, and both recognize drafting strengths and find ways to improve. One player we can learn from is Cowboys WR Amari Cooper. Cooper closed the 2018 season strong after being traded from the Raiders to the Cowboys. While Cooper didn't play in preseason it detoured many drafters from making an aggressive pick on him, and he even fell to the third round in many high-stakes drafts in August. You’ll find Cooper as one of the top WR fantasy producers in 2019 and he proves that sometimes you have to ignore the masses to draft the best team.
RB duos are a theme on this list again, as both the Buccaneers and Chargers have tandem RBs in the data: Ronald Jones/Peyton Barber for Tampa and Melvin Gordon/Austin Ekeler for L.A. Last week in the summary section we discussed advocating for the Buccaneers, as the data and schedule favored players from Tampa. Was their production last week because they faced the fantasy-friendly Arizona Cardinals, or was it the fact the Bucs have averaged 31.85 PPG over the last seven games? Fantasy production isn't always about players on the best teams or most recognizable offenses, it's about production and consistency. As for the Chargers, Melvin Gordon finally looks like the stud RB who could command a big contract and Ekeler is just an excellent football player who you can’t remove from the field for long. Either Charger RB can be an excellent RB2 down the stretch for your fantasy teams.
Christian Kirk’s breakout game finally happened, and may have helped your fantasy team secure a W in Week 10. Kirk, who finally played as the outside WR in Week 9, and struggled with 3.8 fantasy points, absolutely dominated in Week 10. Once again was this because he faced the leaky Bucs secondary or because the system could reward a speedy WR such as Kirk? I'll continue to encourage you to get some Cardinals on your fantasy team. While you watch other teams and often wonder why they’re not more aggressive on offense, that rarely happens in the Kliff Kingsbury offense. They go fast and run more innovative plays. Andy Isabella has grinded his way into more playing time and is making a fantasy impact as well. Isabella averaged 26 yards per reception and finished second in receiving yards with 78 vs the Bucs.
Giants receiver Darius Slayton had a monster fantasy game and probably gained some new diehard fantasy fans in the process. Slayton’s 14 targets can’t be ignored, and neither can the fact that Slayton’s ability to take aggressive angles and beat defenders with his raw speed makes him one to watch. Slayton's skill set is a perfect match for Daniel Jones’s throwing style, and remember his name during draft time next year when many may forget.
Patient Joe Mixon owners were rewarded with one of his best fantasy performances of the season in Week 10. The Bengals decided to ride Mixon with Ryan Finley making his first career start at QB. Even with a stacked box, the physical Mixon still grinded out 114 rushing yards. On the flip side, if you can find an impatient Mixon owner willing to make a deal, try to land him as your RB2 moving forward. The Bengals offense still has upside.
It’s worth noting that Tarik Cohen had his biggest fantasy game of the year with 13.7 points.
Check out the Week 10 numbers from Tyreek Hill, who is poised to close strong. With Mahomes back at QB, and with a healthier wheel, Hill dominated with 19 targets. If you want to get aggressive in one last trade, Hill is a name to target. Don’t be surprised if Hill puts up two or three 30-plus point fantasy games to finish the season.
More Advice from SI Fantasy:
—Tuesday’s Bull Market Fantasy show with Jim Cramer
—Jaime Eisner’s waiver wire pickups: Brian Hill, Darius Slayton and suggestions for deeper leagues
—Frankie Taddeo’s droppables, with some big-name players you shouldn’t feel bad about cutting
—Bill Enright’s injury report has the impact on everyone who got hurt in Week 10
—Frankie Taddeo dishes out awards in his Week 10 superlatives