Game Overview ::
By hilow >>
- Mike Williams has yet to practice (as of Thursday). As such a massive part of the Chargers game plan, his absence would be a significant hit to the league’s second-most efficient offense.
- From the other side, Sammy Watkins has also yet to practice this week and should be considered legitimately questionable with a thigh injury.
- Keenan Allen against man coverage as the de facto top receiving threat is highly intriguing.
- Marquise Brown against zone coverage as the de facto top receiving threat is highly intriguing.
How los angeles Will Try To Win ::
We’ll start the Chargers discussion by taking a look at the injuries. The current overall WR2, Mike Williams, has yet to practice this week with a knee injury apparently sustained in the Chargers Week 5 shootout win against the Browns. On the defensive side for the Chargers, fill-in linebacker Drue Tranquill appears set to miss this week with a pectoral injury. Keep a close eye on the status of Williams on Friday as he is likely going to need at least a limited showing to suit up this weekend. Tranquill appears headed for a missed game, placing further stress on a linebacking unit already stretched thin. Not the best of news against the rushing ability of Lamar Jackson. The Chargers run the fastest offense in the league and hold the NFL’s tenth highest situation-neutral pass rate at 63%. Their 60% 11-personnel and 25% 12-personnel usage falls right around league-average, while their 18/20/62% target rates to running backs, tight ends, and wide receivers, respectively, fall right at league-average as well. Due to their heavy pace-up nature and second-ranked drive success rate on offense, they have run 71 offensive plays or more in every game but one thus far. They also rank second in the league in points per drive at 3.02. Yeah, this offense is no joke. Mike Williams’ game-day status is a big deal as he owns a solid 25.2% team target market share and a whopping 38.6% of the team’s available air yards to date, as one of the focal points playing the “X” receiver role in Joe Lombardi’s offense.
Austin Ekeler continues to operate in a 60-70% snap rate role with opportunity totals of 15/18/17/20/22 on the season. After seeing zero targets in Week 1, Ekeler has handled 25 targets over four games since, with no fewer than five in any contest over that span. His fantasy numbers are highly inflated by touchdowns, having scored seven times through five weeks. Joshua Kelley handled all of the change of pace duties behind Ekeler in his first game action of the year last week, taking the reins from the combination of Larry Rountree III and Justin Jackson. The matchup on the ground yields a below-average 4.13 net-adjusted line yards metric, while the presence of nose tackle Brandon Williams is a big hit to the pure rushing matchup here. That said, the Ravens have allowed the seventh-most fantasy points per game to opposing backfields and Ekeler should be in line for another 20-22 running back opportunities.
If the Chargers are to come away with a victory this week, the heavy lifting is likely going to have to be done through the air. The Ravens play the highest rate of man coverage in the league and have shown some vulnerability with deep passing, allowing 12.0 yards per completion on the season (28th in the league). The duo of Keenan Allen and Mike Williams accounts for an absurd 51.5% of the available targets and 68.6% of the available air yards in this offense, the latter of which is the most in the league for two members of a team. Should Williams miss, it is likeliest we see Josh Palmer step into Williams’ role as the “X” receiver, while Jaylen Guyton’s role remains mostly unchanged. From an expected volume perspective, Williams’ absence would most directly benefit Keenan Allen. We know the route tactician that Keenan is, and any boost to expected volume for him in man coverage is a significant fantasy boon. Tight ends Jared Cook and Donald Parham continue to split snaps at a near-even rate. Although the snaps are almost identical from a week-to-week perspective, Cook has run 155 routes to only 55 for Parham on the season. A missed contest for Williams is likely to create a significant boost to Cook’s receiving expectation here.
How baltimore Will Try To Win ::
The streak of 43 consecutive 100-yard rushing games from the Ravens came to an end last week in a surprise negative game script against the Colts, but this is still an offense that holds the seventh-highest situation-neutral rush rate at 46%, even with the absurd injuries sustained to the backfield throughout the season. Of the 30.4 rush attempts per game that Baltimore has averaged, quarterback Lamar Jackson accounts for 11.2 rush attempts per game with a unique combination of designed quarterback runs and scramble ability. We can generally expect a rather conservative offensive approach from the Ravens unless otherwise forced into increased aerial aggression (as seen in their stunning come-from-behind overtime victory in Week 5). Their moderate pace (18th-ranked situation-neutral pace of play), heavy rush rates, and middle-of-the-pack defensive efficiency has led to a wide range of offensive plays run from scrimmage that should be considered highly dependent on game flow (three games of 73 or more with one game around NFL-average at 68 and one game all the way down at 58). Against the tempo of the Chargers, expect to see closer to the top-end of that range for the Ravens here.
Ty’Son Williams has struggled in pass protection to start his young career, paving the way for veteran running back Latavius Murray to emerge as the lead back for the Ravens. Murray has averaged 55.5% of the offensive snaps over the previous two weeks, which should give a good idea of expected involvement here. Behind Murray, fellow veteran Devonta Freeman and rookie Ty’Son Williams should rotate through for the remaining snaps. With a loose committee at the position, each is highly reliant on touchdowns for fantasy relevance. The matchup on the ground yields a moderate 4.38 net-adjusted line yards metric behind an underperforming offensive line. That said, the clear path of least resistance against the zone-heavy defensive scheme of the Chargers is on the ground; they are one of only six teams to allow more production than the Ravens to opposing backfields. Furthermore, consider the lack of depth in the linebacker unit of the Chargers a significant boost to the rushing expectation for Lamar Jackson here.
The trio of Marquise Brown, Sammy Watkins, and Mark Andrews combine for 68% of the total targets for the Ravens through five weeks. The significance of wide receiver Sammy Watkins’ status this weekend, who has yet to practice and seems legitimately questionable with a thigh injury, should not be understated. Rather than expect one player to fill any gap in playing time left behind by an absence from Watkins, it is likeliest we see a combination of Devin Duvernay, James Proche II, and Miles Boykin rotate through. Coming off a career week, Mark Andrews faces his stiffest test of the season in the likely coverage of standout safety Derwin James. Should Watkins miss, we’re likely to see a large portion of the pass game filter through Hollywood Brown here.
Likeliest Game Flow ::
Similar to the Vikings/Panthers game, this one presents a wide range of potential outcomes as far as game flow goes. Furthering this assertion is the somewhat unquantifiable aspect of a potential letdown game from each offense after emotional (and record-setting) comeback victories last week. Injuries to key wide receivers from both teams have the potential to alter the respective game plans here, both boosting expected volume for the remaining players and slightly denting the expected pass game efficiency. It is likeliest we see this game start relatively slow in the first half as each team experiences a “hangover effect,” with the final box scores likely reliant on second-half production. Because this is the case, and because both of these teams just recently went on offensive tirades, there’s an interesting case to be made that this game environment underwhelms relative to public perception. That said, the key injuries on both sides present a situation where the boost to expected volume from the remaining pass-catchers could be enough to offset any lack in efficiency. There’s a ton of moving parts and aspects to consider here!
TOP PLAYS OF THE WEEKEND
SORTABLE GREEN ZONE TOUCHES
TEAM & PLAYER DK POINTS
DFS+ Interpretation ::
By Alex88 >>
- 3rd highest total of Week 6
- Per PFF, LAC ranks 13th on offense & 16th on defense
- BAL ranks 12th on offense & 14th on defense
- BAL is 2-3 ATS
- BAL ranks 4th in rushing yards, 6th in passing yards, and 1st in total yards
- LAC is 4-1 ATS
- LAC ranks 17th in rushing yards, 3rd in passing yards, and 7th in total yards
- Herbert ranks 4th in PFF passing grade (87.6)
- In 19 career games, Herbert averages 25.14 DK ppg
- He exceeds his salary based expected output by an average of +4.06 pts with a 63.2% consistency
- His 27.2 DK ppg this season ranks 5th
- Tournament winning scores from Herbert’s 19 career games: 41.48 // 30.74 // 30.96 // 35.98 // 30.84 // 45.82
- BAL is middle of the pack in PPG to QBs, ranking 16th (21 ppg)
LAC Passing Attack
- LAC has utilized 11 personnel at a 60% rate and 12 personnel at 25%, both figures just about league average (58% and 22%)
- Snap shares: Keenan Allen 87.2% // Mike Williams 77.4% // Jalen Guyton 64.9% // Jared Cook 60.9% // Donald Parham 50.3%
- Target shares: Keenan 25.5% // Mike 24.5% // Cook 12.5% // Guyton 6.2% // Parham 3.4%
- DK logs: Keenan (22, 17.8, 19, 10.6, 13.5) // Mike (22.2, 22.1, 36.2, 2.1, 39.5) // Guyton (7.9, 4.2, 0.3, 3.9, 5.5) // Cook (10.6, 5.8, 4.7, 19, 3.9) // Parham (2.3, 6.7, 12.7, 2.9, 12.9)
- Keenan’s 16.6 ppg rank just below John Ross and just above Brandin Cooks
- Keenan ranks 21st in air yards, 13th in target share, and 21st in WOPR (per Koalaty Stats)
- Mike ranks 2nd in PPG with 24.4
- Mike ranks 7th in air yards, 11th in target share, 11th in air yard market share, and 12th in WOPR
- BAL ranks 9th in DK ppg allowed to WRs (33.4)
- Among all TEs, Cook ranks 7th in air yards, 24th in target share, 21st in air yard market share, and 19th in WOPR
- Parham leads Cook in TDs, 2-1
- BAL ranks 31st in DK ppg allowed to TEs (20)
- Ekeler leads the RBs with a 64.9% snap share, 12% target share, and 18 touches per game (Rountree is 2nd in touches with 5 per game)
- Ekeler’s 25 total targets rank 5th among all RBs, despite receiving zero targets in Week 1, his target share ranks 9th, and his RBOPR ranks 15th
- Ekeler’s 24.66 DK ppg ranks 2nd behind only Derrick Henry
- DK log: 11.7 // 22.5 // 22.7 // 32.5 // 33.9
- BAL ranks 28th in DK ppg allowed to RBs (29.6)
- During Lamar’s 2019 MVP season, he averaged 29.4 DK ppg
- Per game, he averaged 26.7 passing attempts for 208.5 yards and 2.4 TDs & 11.7 rushing attempts for 80.4 yards and 0.5 TDs
- Through five games, Lamar is averaging 29.2 DK ppg (second only to Tom Brady’s 29.3)
- Per game, he’s averaging 33.4 passing attempts for 303.8 yards and 1.6 TDs & 11.2 rushing attempts for 68.2 yards and 0.4 TDs
- Lamar ranks 5th in PFF passing grade
- He ranks 1st in explosive pass rate
- His 11.0 YPA leads all QBs
- DK log: 20 // 37.26 // 20.28 // 22.44 // 45.88
- LAC ranks 8th in DK ppg to QBs (17.2)
BAL Passing Attack
- Baltimore’s usage of 22 personnel (21%) ranks first by a significant margin. Next closest, ATL, has a 12% rate and league average is 3%
- They also lead in 20 personnel with 12% (average is 1% and 21 teams have yet to utilize it)
- 11 personnel usage is 25% lower than league average and 12 personnel is 17% lower
- Snap shares: Mark Andrews 74.7% // Marquise Brown 72.4% // Sammy Watkins 70.4% // Devin Duvernay 59.2%
- Target shares: Andrews 22.8% // Marquise 22.8% // Sammy 19.2% // Duvernay 19.2%
- Week 3 was the only game since Week 11 last year in which Marquise did not have either 80 receiving yards or a TD (including postseason)
- His 2021 DK log: 19.4 // 26.3 // 8.3 // 19.1 // 36.5
- Among WRs who have played all 5 weeks, Marquise ranks 6th in DK ppg
- His 545 air yards rank 9th among WRs
- Sammy hasn’t scored 15+ DK pts since Week 1 last year
- Duvernay has never scored 11+ DK pts
- LAC ranks 3rd against WRs (28.3)
- Andrews ranks 2nd in air yards, tied-2nd in target share, and 3rd in WOPR among TEs
- His 18.2 DK ppg rank 3rd
- DK log: 5 // 10.7 // 18.9 // 11.7 // 44.7
- His 44.7 score on Monday Night was the 3rd best at the TE position since 2014
- LAC ranks 29th against TEs (18.8)
- Snap share: Latavius Murray 42.5% // Ty’Son Williams 33%
- Target share: Ty’Son 5.4% // Devonta Freeman 2.4% // Latavius 1.8%
- Touches per game: Latavius 10.4 // Ty’Son 9.5 // Le’Veon Bell 4 // Freeman 2.5
- There has been one instance of a BAL RB scoring 12+ pts this season (Ty’Son Williams scored 18.4 in Week 1’s OT loss to the Raiders)
- LAC ranks 26th in DK ppg to RBs (29.2)