Kickoff: Sunday, October 16th, 1:00 PM ET
Location: MetLife Stadium, New Jersey
Betting Odds: BAL -5.0, 45.0 total via PFF.com
Writer: Estevão Maximo (@estevao_maximo on Twitter)
Lamar Jackson (Start, QB1)
Lamar Jackson has been pretty human over the last two weeks with back-to-back performances averaging a little over 150 passing yards a game and not finding the end zone through the ground, despite 23 rushing attempts and 141 rushing yards in that time span. However, he still is one of the highest, if not the highest, upside plays in any given week with his rushing ability. Lamar is averaging just under 10 rushing attempts per game, with 49 through 5 weeks, and that’s an unbelievable number for the QB position, and even with J.K. Dobbins getting more and more acclimated to the offense, following his return from injury, Jackson’s rushing upside simply won’t go away.
The Giants defense has been surprisingly decent this year despite losing James Bradberry and suffering through a plethora of injuries to key names such as Leonard Williams, Azeez Ojulari, and Kayvon Thibodeaux; the group is ranking ninth in team points allowed (18.6), and eleventh in points allowed to opposing QBs. But prior to last week, they really hadn’t faced many elite QBs; they did a decent job with their first test against Rodgers, but it’s a whole different case with Lamar.
J.K. Dobbins (Start, FLEX)
J.K Dobbins had eight rushing attempts for 44 yards against the Bengals on a Sunday Night Football that delivered a positive game script for the Ravens’ backfield. It was only Dobbins’ third game back from injury, and the Ravens seem to be set on a conservative load, easing the former Buckeye back into their game plan.
Dobbins split work pretty evenly with Kenyan Drake, getting only a 40% snap share compared to Drake’s 42% and his own Week 5 mark at 50%.
There is little doubt of the upside that Dobbins carries down the line, and the Giants D has been susceptible to the run, allowing 5.0 yards per carry, but for the time being without a clear hold on this backfield, Dobbins remains only a FLEX play, and maybe a low-end RB2 if you’re in need.
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends
Devin Duvernay (Start, FLEX), DeMarcus Robinson (Sit), Tylan Wallace (Sit), Mark Andrews (Start, TE1)
The Ravens played last week without their top wide receiver, Rashod Bateman, and it’s unlikely that he’ll suit up against the Giants, having not practiced at the beginning of the week. The pass-catcher likely to take the most advantage of Bateman’s absence is Devin Duvernay who led all Ravens’ wide receivers with 7 targets and 78 total yards from scrimmage.
Duvernay has been a sort of jack-of-all-trades for the Ravens, contributing not only with receiving work but also running the ball and returning on special teams (already has a kick-off return for a TD this season). Duvernay is an interesting FLEX play with Bateman out.
Mark Andrews has really separated himself from the top 5 TE group, and into almost an 1A/1B situation with Travis Kelce as bona fide stud tight ends that you can simply pencil in for a nice game pretty much on a weekly basis. The Ravens TE rebounded nicely from his Week 4 game against the Bills, with 89 yards and a score, leading his team in targets.
New York Giants
Daniel Jones (Sit)
The New York Giants are 4-1 on the season. The New York Giants’ rushing attack has over 100 more yards than their passing game does, with 895 on the ground vs 771 through the air. Daniel Jones should only be a desperation play in Superflex, if you don’t have much else in terms of options.
It’s hard to knock the Giants QB too much because he’s throwing the ball to a group that probably wouldn’t see the field for somewhere around 30 of the other NFL teams. Kadarius Toney and Wan’Dale Robinson have seldom seen the field with injuries, and Kenny Golladay who’s also out has fewer receiving touchdowns in New York than Zack Wilson.
Being last in net yards per passing attempt with 5.2 in a league that has the Chicago Bears, it’s most noticeable. Even Fields has the ability and playmaker in Darnell Mooney to chug the ball down the field a couple of times a game.
Saquon Barkley (Start, RB1)
Let’s call it like we’re seeing it: Saquon Barkley is the best running back in football right now. The Giants rushing attack should be limited by the fact most defenses can focus on it without fear of being hurt deep. And yet, Barkley is averaging 135.2 scrimmage yards per game and 5.5 a carry.
The former number two overall pick is an absolute force with the ball in his hand and is always one move away from busting out a long run. After getting robbed of touchdowns in Week 4 because the Bears couldn’t defend the bootleg (Jones ran for two scores), Barkley managers were able to celebrate a late score against the Bears that came on a Wild Cat formation on first and goal.
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends
Richie James (Sit), Darius Slayton (Sit), David Sills (Sit), Daniel Bellinger (Start, TE2)
With a very banged-up wide receiver room, the Giants don’t really have much to work with in the passing game, at least not until Toney, Robinson, and Golladay (sighs) return to the starting lineup, which likely won’t happen this week.
The main target for Daniel Jones last Sunday when all those names were out was Darius Slayton, and while the former “everyone’s favorite breakout pick” likely won’t reach the heights many envisioned for him a few years ago, he received 7 targets for a healthy 79 yards, and the one ball he didn’t catch, Jones missed him badly on what would’ve been a 20+ yard gain.
Richie James played banged up and didn’t really factor into the game too much, which shouldn’t probably change moving forward.
You shouldn’t expect an end-around score for tight-end Daniel Bellinger ever, much less with any sort of frequency, and that’s what ultimately made his day last week, but the rookie tight end is seeing his passing volume increase with 11 targets in the last three games, and with a depleted wide receiver room, he’s an intriguing streaming pick, depending on how desperate you are. Tight end is a bit of a wasteland as we all know.