Sunday Crunch is an Inner Circle feature that can be found late on Saturday nights and non-IC members can receive a chunk of the content each week. Mike also posts updated thoughts to Discord on Sunday mornings for Inner Circle members.
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Although he often plays second fiddle to Ja’Marr Chase in terms of media and fan attention, Tee Higgins is one of the better receivers in the NFL and over the last two years, his usage and production have been outstanding in their own right. He now faces a Steelers pass defense that has struggled against perimeter receivers and he should get a healthy dose of targets with Chase out of the lineup and the Bengals likely to struggle against a very good pass defense. I like the Bengals passing game in stacks this week, but Higgins as a solo play is a very good bet in lineups built around some of the higher-scoring games on the slate.
Last week in this spot, I talked up Tony Pollard as a player who I was willing to take a leap of faith on based on my instincts and a belief that rationality will take over. Unfortunately, after writing all of that the Cowboys decided that they would rest Elliott another week and reports of that came out early enough for the field to flock to Pollard. All reports are that Ezekiel Elliott will play this week, and I love it. Elliott is still clearly not 100% – if he was, we would know it and if he was then he wouldn’t be wearing a bulky brace that will limit his effectiveness. This is the definition of a high-leverage game as the Cowboys are on the road against an 8-1 Vikings team and at risk of losing back-to-back games and falling to 6-4, which would be three games behind the Eagles in the division. They need their best players on the field, regardless of contract or veteran status. Oh yea, the Cowboys also play on Thanksgiving this Thursday meaning two games in five days for a player (Elliott) who they claim is critical to their team that is battling an injury. In my opinion, Elliott is most likely to end up in the 8 to 14 touch range with limited effectiveness, while Pollard will be in the 15-20 touch range with upside for more depending on the game script and how Zeke’s knee holds up. Pollard is extremely talented and is in a great matchup, game environment, and role – plus Zeke being active will keep Pollard’s ownership extremely low. Let everyone else run scared, I’ll be running straight into the fire to play the guy who is averaging over 30 DK points in his last two games.