What We Saw: Week 11

The QB List staff catches you up on everything you missed during Week 11 of the 2020 NFL season.

Cardinals @ Seahawks

 

This key NFC West divisional matchup failed to produce the fireworks of the previous meeting between these two teams in Week 7, the Arizona Cardinals eeking out a 37-34 win over the Seattle Seahawks with late touchdown drama in Glendale, but it was certainly entertaining. Given both these teams were 6-3 going into this game, it was no surprise that the contest was a more cagey affair to start out. A pedestrian 1st half, which finished 16-7 in favor of the Seahawks, erupted into a slugfest in the 2nd half with two top 3 fantasy quarterbacks, Russell Wilson and Kyler Murray, showing why they have balled out this season.

Murray led his team to a stirring fightback with 2 TDs from 11+ play drives in the 3rd quarter but the Seahawks found some joy on the ground in the 2nd half and kept their noses in front. Carlos Dunlap made the big sack on 4th down for the Seahawks with just 34 seconds remaining to end the Cardinals’ fightback and hand the Seahawks a crucial 28-21 win.

 

 

Arizona Cardinals

 

Quarterback

 

Kyler Murray: 29/42, 269 yards, 2 TD, 3 sacks | 5 carries, 15 yards

 

After a miraculous win against the Bills last week, Kyler Murray (20.26 fantasy points) could not repeat his heroics against the Seahawks, who blitzed at every opportunity to stifle Murray and succeeded in keeping him “couped up” in the pocket for most of the night. The most alarming statistic was his mere 15 yards rushing on just 5 carries. Coming into the game Murray had rushed for at least 60 yards and a TD in each of the Cardinals’ last four games, so this output was surprising against a Seahawks defense that gives up the 2nd most fantasy points to QBs on the season.

 

 

What did not help Murray today was the fact that the Cardinals had 115 penalty yards, their most in a game since 2015. This forced him to look to throw downfield from 3rd and long rather than looking to scamper to move the sticks. Furthermore, Murray was wincing after taking a big hit to his throwing shoulder in the 1st quarter. Keep an eye on this as the week progresses as it clearly impeded him in this game.

 

Running Backs

 

Kenyan Drake: 11 carries, 29 yards, 1 TD | 5 targets, 4 receptions, 31 yards

Chase Edmonds: 2 carries, 13 yards | 4 targets, 4 receptions, 36 yards, 1 TD

 

After re-establishing himself as the lead back in this offense with a 100 yard game on his return from injury last week, Kenyan Drake (16.00 fantasy points) once again produced from a fantasy perspective. Bottled up for most of the night by an impressive Seahawks defensive front, Drake at least got off on the right foot with a score on the Cardinals’ efficient opening drive. Drake lunged for the goal line and the ball came loose, the officials called it a fumble on the field however the replay clearly showed he had scored.

 

 

Drake, somewhat promisingly, saw 5 targets out of the backfield also. Traditionally these have gone to Chase Edmonds (14.90 fantasy points), which is a little worrying for those that hoped Edmonds would potentially surpass Drake as the starting running back. In truth, they are better as a tandem working together as they showed today with Edmonds also finding paydirt with a receiving touchdown to bring the Cardinals back in with a shout in the 4th quarter.

 

 

Drake and Edmonds are an effective, fantasy-friendly 1-2 punch out the Cardinals backfield. They are safe RB2s, each with touchdown-dependant upside.

 

Wide Receivers/Tight Ends

 

Larry Fitzgerald: 10 targets, 8 receptions, 62 yards

DeAndre Hopkins: 8 targets, 5 receptions, 51 yards

Christian Kirk: 6 targets, 4 receptions, 50 yards

Maxx Williams: 2 targets, 2 receptions, 29 yards

Andy Isabella: 2 targets, 1 reception, 6 yards

Dan Arnold: 2 targets, 1 reception, 4 yards, 1 TD

 

Somewhat surprisingly, the old stalwart Larry Fitzgerald (14.20 fantasy points) led the Cardinals in targets, receptions, and yardage against a Seahawks defense who came into the night as the worst unit against fantasy receivers. The 8 targets are a new season-high, with 3 of them in the final drive as the Seahawks played soft-coverage. Fitzgerald has been completely off the fantasy radar this year, so this only served to annoy owners of DeAndre Hopkins (10.10 fantasy points). Nuk looked at his mesmerizing best when given the opportunity but whether the injury to Murray hampered him or not, those who have Nuk rostered will be going into Sunday a little bit nervous after expecting a career-day from the star wideout.

 

 

It was the same story for the young buck, Christian Kirk (9.00 fantasy points). After a spate of 5 TDs in 3 games, Kirk was held in check for the 2nd straight contest and failed to find the endzone. It is clear that the Cardinals see Kirk as more than just a deep threat. However, until we see the kind of volume that offers a larger fantasy floor, Kirk will not be a lock to put up WR2 numbers based on this performance and game script.

 

 

It has been a disappointing season for the Cardinals’ tight end corps, however, Dan Arnold (7.40 fantasy points) took advantage of a complete mismatch in the redzone against cornerback D.J. Reed. Despite this, none of the Cardinals’ tight ends deserve a starting spot in fantasy this year.

 

 

Seattle Seahawks

 

Quarterback

 

Russell Wilson: 23/28, 197 yards, 2 TDs, 3 sacks, 2 FUM | 10 carries, 42 yards

 

After showing serious signs of weakness last week in the Seahawks’ disappointing loss to the Rams, Russell Wilson (20.08 fantasy points) just about did enough to see the Seahawks over the line against the Cardinals. He equaled his lowest number of passing attempts in a game this season with 28, however, he did manage an 82% completion rate and threw 2 touchdown passes in the 1st half.

 

 

Wilson has thrown 7 TD & zero interceptions under pressure this season – the most TD passes under pressure in the NFL.

 

 

The Seahawks found more joy on the ground than expected in the 2nd half so Wilson took a backseat and didn’t need to take any risks with the football. I suppose he can’t give an MVP-type performance every week. I mean Wilson still managed 20+ fantasy points and he remains a set-and-forget top 5 QB week in, week out.

 

Running Backs

 

Carlos Hyde: 14 carries, 79 yards, 1 TD | 3 targets, 2 receptions, 16 yards

Bo Scarbrough: 6 carries, 31 yards

DeeJay Dallas: 1 carry, 13 yards | 2 targets, 2 receptions, 19 yards

 

The Seahawks have badly needed Chris Carson over the last month, however, after missing the last 3 games through injury, they did get back Carlos Hyde (17.50 fantasy points), who found his feet in the 2nd half and ran the clock down at key moments to keep Kyler Murray off the field. Hyde has bounced around the league in the past few seasons but he will play an important role for the Seahawks down the road if Carson continues to miss time.

 

 

There was a hairy moment in the 4th quarter when he nearly botched a pitch from Wilson to turn the ball over, a trait that has tarnished his reputation in the league over the years. Hyde is a safe bet to produced RB2 numbers while Carson remains sidelined. Rookie DeeJay Dallas (5.20 fantasy points) is unlikely to find any role in this offense worth noting.

 

Wide Receivers/Tight Ends

 

Tyler Lockett: 9 targets, 9 receptions, 67 yards, 1 TD

D.K. Metcalf: 5 targets, 3 receptions, 46 yards, 1 TD

Greg Olsen: 2 targets, 2 receptions, 20 yards

Jacob Hollister: 3 targets, 2 receptions, 14 yards

Will Dissly: 1 target, 1 reception, 10 yards

David Moore: 2 targets, 2 receptions, 5 yards

 

The good news here is that despite Wilson only passing for 197 yards, at least 50% of them went to the two primary receivers, who both found the endzone too. Tyler Lockett (21.70 fantasy points) was perfect, catching all his 9 targets and leading the team in yards alongside his lovely touchdown grab. Held without a touchdown in the previous 3 games, Lockett reassured the fantasy world of his prowess and elite route-running ability against a poor Cardinals secondary. More impressive to the eye, if not on the stat sheet, was D.K. Metcalf (13.60 fantasy points), who gave Budda Baker and Patrick Peterson (who gave up a 46-yard defensive pass interference call to D.K.) the runaround for most of the evening.

 

 

It could have been a whole lot better, however, as Metcalf had 2 disappointing drops and had a 40-yard gain called back by a phantom holding call. There was enough to give those who have him rostered as their WR1 plenty to look forward to in the coming weeks. The NFC West will go down to the wire and Russ will need D.K. to keep being aggressive and dominate contested catches through the run-in.

 

 

There is little to this passing offense outside of the star receivers in Seattle. Last night made that blindingly obvious.

 

— Benjamin Haller (@benjaminhaller1 on Twitter)

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