Updated: Oct 7
IND @ DEN (-3.5) o/u 42
Last week we picked a QB and a RB matchup and ended up getting the W in both of those head-to-heads. Does it count? Well, that’s currently up for debate at the TopProp headquarters (The Tua head-to-head was voided)! For this week’s Thursday Night Football game, I’m returning to the QB position and tossing in a WR matchup as well.
Matt Ryan (+4.5) > Russell Wilson
Through four weeks, Russell Wilson ranks 14th in the NFL in fantasy points averaging 16.5 points per game. Matt Ryan ranks 22nd averaging just 13.8 points per game. In this matchup, Matt Ryan gets a whopping 4.5 points and the Colts workhorse running back Jonathan Taylor was just ruled out Wednesday. The Colts have struggled to get the run game going this year which has led to a lot more Matt Ryan than Frank Reich probably anticipated coming into the season. Ryan has 154 pass attempts and 1,125 passing yards on the year. Without Taylor this week, the Colts will likely have to continue to lean on Ryan and the passing game to stay competitive. In a more neutral matchup between Ryan and Wilson, I’m likely taking Russ but that 4.5 points this week tips the scales for me just enough to favor Matty Ice in this one.
Play: Ryan (+4.5) > Wilson
Michael Pittman Jr. (+0.5) vs. Courtland Sutton
I’m taking the Colts QB so conventional wisdom would tell you that I’d also take the Colts WR in these head-to-heads…..Not today! I like Courtland Sutton over Michael Pittman Jr. who gets half a point in this matchup. In the three games Pittman has played in, he’s averaged 12.8 Half-PPR points per game on roughly 9 targets per game. He’s averaged a 96% route participation, owns a 20% target share, has 18% of his team’s end zone targets, and is averaging a 6.7 yard average depth of target (ADOT).
Courtland Sutton on the other hand has averaged 13.2 Half-PPR points and 8 targets per game. Sutton also has a 97% route participation, owns 28% of his team’s targets, 45% of the Broncos’ end zone targets, and an impressive 13.2 yard ADOT.
I’m projecting a positive game script for the Colt’s passing game which should mean more opportunities for Pittman, but he’s yet to eclipse a double-digit ADOT while Sutton has lived in the double digits. On the year, Sutton is nearly double Pittman in terms of ADOT and they’re receiving a similar workload. Sutton has dominated target share and end zone targets compared to Pittman so even with two or three fewer targets in this one, I like Sutton over Pittman with the 0.5 point bonus.
Play: Sutton > Pittman (+0.5)
It would seem like I’m hedging my bets here taking the Colt’s QB and the Broncos WR, but I do believe the targets Sutton is getting are much further down the field and in more key situations (i.e. the red zone). That means more fantasy points....I stand by the picks!