Game Overview ::
By hilow >>
- Breakout WR Noah Brown did not practice for the second consecutive day on Thursday, making his outlook appear grim for Week 11.
- WR Nico Collins got in back-to-back limited sessions and told the media that he intends to play against the Cardinals.
- RB Dameon Pierce continues to miss practice leading up to Week 11, listed as a ‘DNP’ in both sessions this week (as of Thursday).
- The Texans excel in so many areas that the Cardinals struggle with defensively.
How ARIZONA Will Try To Win ::
As an Arizona native, I was absolutely shocked to see the Cardinals give so much effort on that final drive of the game and kick a field goal to blindly give up the inside track to the first overall pick. This team was sitting with a 1-8 record with zero chance at making the playoffs, and yet they called that final drive like it was a must-win, lose-and-go-home-type drive. Either way, the Cardinals showed us, without any shadow of a doubt, that they are not going to keel over and die for the rest of the season… which is at least good news to us DFSers. Furthermore, the Cardinals had their first positive pass rate over expectation (PROE) game in quite some time in Week 10, with quarterback Kyler Murray attempting 32 passes to just 19 called running back carries. And that came in a game in which they trailed by just two points going into the half and traded the lead with the Falcons for the entire second half. Even so, the Cardinals have been far from efficient and continue to struggle in the red zone. Their 61.0 plays per game ranks 24th in the league after running just 58 offensive plays from scrimmage against the Falcons.
James Conner returned from injured reserve to see 63 percent of the team’s offensive snaps and 16 carries. Somewhat confusingly, no Cardinals running back saw a target against the Falcons, which is likely a trend we see continue forward with Murray back under center. Kyler saw six carries himself, which is right in line with his returns on the ground from a season ago after fewer designed runs were called for him while dealing with a multitude of injuries. Either way, the matchup on the ground is not ideal against a Texans defense holding opponents to 3.5 yards per carry (third) behind 1.22 yards before contact per carry allowed (eighth). Emari Demercado appears likely to return from a two-game absence this week, which should kick Keaontay Ingram back to the tertiary role and Tony Jones back to inactive status.
The Cardinals have run elevated rates of 12-personnel all season, a trend that continued into Murray’s first start of the year. That has left Marquise Brown and rookie wide receiver Michael Wilson as the only near every-down pass catchers in this offense, with second-year tight end Trey McBride the next closest player (in the absence of Zach Ertz), who averages a 76 percent snap rate over the previous three games. Rondale Moore continues to play snap rates in the high 60s, while the offense has at long last appeared to trim the proverbial fat, with Zach Pascal and Greg Dortch combining for only four offensive snaps in Week 10. The Texans notably run zone coverage at the league’s seventh-highest rate this season, against which no pass catcher jumps off the page in targets per route run (TPRR). It’s actually McBride that leads the team in fantasy points per route run against zone coverage this year at 0.48, which is a number in line with some of the top wide receivers in the league against zone. Wilson is the top wide receiver in that split at 0.38 and is the only other pass catcher to rank inside the top 90 at his respective position in fantasy points per route run in 2023 (yea, bad, bad).