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Thursday Night Football DFS Preview: What to Expect Fantasy-Wise from Ravens at Dolphins

Previewing the fantasy football and DFS matchups in the Thursday Night Football game between the Baltimore Ravens and Miami Dolphins.

Week 10 of the 2021 NFL season starts with Thursday Night Football as the Miami Dolphins play host to the Baltimore Ravens. Here’s a break down the fantasy football starts and sits and DFS plays for Thursday night’s action.

Over/Under Points Scored: 48

Baltimore Ravens

QB Lamar Jackson — Miami’s QB hurry (5.7%) and knockdown rates (12.8%) are both bottom-2 in the league. Elite QB1.

WR Marquise Brown — .5PPR’s WR5. 16th in catches (46), 6th in receiving yards (682), T-7th in receiving touchdowns (6), 13th in percentage share of his team’s air yards (35.94%). Miami’s 11% explosive pass plays allowed rate (SharpFootballStats.com) is T-3rd highest in the league. Antonio Brown’s cousin is a fantasy WR1 from here on out and should scorch the Dolphins in Thursday’s primetime slot.

WR Rashod Bateman — The rookie X-receiver Bateman has seen target totals of six, six, and eight through his first three NFL games. Baltimore’s funneling him about a half-target less than they were giving to Sammy Watkins before the long time veteran X went down with a hamstring injury. Watkins may return this week but it’s hard to imagine that he meaningfully infringes upon Bateman’s usage. Bateman is a back-end WR3 this week.

WRs Sammy Watkins and Devin Duvernay — In the two previous seasons with KC, Watkins operated as a slot receiver around 50% of the time. Duvernay, a special teamer who’s developing as a slot receiver himself, is likely to be forced into a slot rotation with Watkins in the lineup. Miami’s rolled with Nik Needham as the slot DB with Jason McCourty on IR but have begun rotating Justin Coleman in due to lackluster Neeham play. Coleman pulled off a tip-drill pick last week–we’re waiting on dust to settle here but it’s not an imposing matchup regardless. Watkins is a WR5 floor play. Duvernay is a WR7 with contrarian DFS appeal whose outlook is enhanced by return-TD potential.

TE Mark Andrews — Andrews went 5-of-10 for 44 yards last week but dropped a day-changing 30-yard touchdown in the 1st-quarter. Most box score combers won’t realize that, which provides a buy-low opportunity in DFS. Miami’s 12.8 .5PPR TE PPG allowed is 9th most in the league. Andrews is an elite TE1 who could be a sneaky DFS MVP/Captain play.

RBs Devonta Freeman and Le’Veon Bell — Latavius Murray was the lead back before suffering a high-ankle sprain in Week 6 but hasn’t practiced since, a troubling sign given Baltimore’s Week 8 bye. Freeman and Bell have likely played Murray out of that job though, combining for 174 yards and 3 touchdowns over the last two games. Consider Freeman a dual threat 1A back, with Bell rotating in as the rush-centric 1B. Miami’s run defense is 20th per NEFF rating (46.8%) and they’re currently allowing 21.8 .5PPR RB PPG, T-15th most in the league. It’s not a mouthwatering spot but it’s decent. Freeman is a borderline RB2/3 while Bell is now a member of the top-36.

Related: Week 10 Fantasy Football Rankings

Miami Dolphins

QBs Tua Tagovailoa and Jacoby Brissett — We don’t yet know if Tua can play (finger) but we certainly hope he can. Brissett flunked vs. the hapless Texans last week. If active, Tua is a high-floor QB2 with the offensive personnel to put up a back-end QB1 outcome. Baltimore’s secondary suffered another injury in Week 9 when FS DeShon Elliott tore both his pec and triceps muscle. They were recently confirmed to have been in the hunt for Dolphins CB Xavien Howard before the trade deadline expired early last week.

Update 11/11/21, 3:18pm PST: Jacoby Brissett is tonight’s starter.

WR Preston Williams — Injuries and behavioral issues have kept Williams off the field this year but he’ll be active on Thursday night and immediately fill in as the X-receiver with both DeVante Parker and Will Fuller stuck on IR. Consider Williams a low-floor/high-ceiling WR5.

WR Jaylen Waddle and TE Mike Gesicki — Miami’s slot receiver 1-2 punch should go hog wild in this one. BAL Slot CB Tavon Young is a weekly target for opposing game planners and rookie FS Brandon Stephens–who transitioned from RB to DB in college and found just modest results–will provide scant coverage assistance, filling in for the injured DeShon Elliott. Thumping SS Chuck Clark doesn’t offer much in the way of coverage ability either. Fire up Waddle as a fantasy WR3 and Gesicki as a mid-to-high TE1.

TEs Durham Smythe and Adam Shaheen — Given the positional matchups listed above, both guys could be deployed in contrarian DFS lineups. Smythe is quietly fourth on the team in red zone targets (5, PFF.com).

RBs Myles Gaskin and Salvon Ahmed — Houston at Miami stayed “competitive” through four-quarters of play last week, which led to a full workload for Gaskin. The 3rd-year dual “threat” back carried the ball 20 times for 34 yards and 1 rushing touchdown, adding 6 catches on 6 targets for 23 yards and 1 fumble lost. Gaskin’s 1.7 yards per attempt mark was the worst of Week 9 (min. 10 attempts, PFF.com). Not great. Regardless, Miami’s is likely to be playing from behind this week and Baltimore may be without run stuffing DL Brandon Williams (shoulder) once again. The game script should facilitate another 20+ touch outing for Gaskin and Baltimore’s 61.8 RB receiving yards allowed per game are 4th-most in the NFL. Their 5.8 RB receptions per game are 13th. Gaskin is a viable fantasy RB3 with top-24 upside. Ahmed is just a low-end bench stash.