Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) -
The Miami Dolphins head north for a division matchup with the Buffalo Bills to begin Week 11.
Miami comes into the game off one of their worst outings in recent memory. They were beaten up by a mediocre Tennessee Titans squad to the tune of 37-3.
Miami usually wins behind the running of Reggie Bush and a solid defense, but neither came to play last weekend.
Bush ran four times for 21 yards, but dropped the ball on the carpet and was benched. He apologized to Dolphins fans after the game. Fantasy owners should expect a top-notch effort in Week 11, particularly against a Bills run defense which allows a league-high 163.7 ypg.
Miami has not scored a touchdown in six quarters and rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill has been as inconsistent as first-year starters usually are. Since throwing for 431 yards against the Arizona Cardinals in late September, Tannehill has averaged just 186.6 ypg through the air. Those aren't fantasy- worthy numbers and we recommend sitting him if you have another viable quarterback.
With the drop in Tannehill's passing statistics comes a corresponding fall in the value of his receivers. Brian Hartline is the best of the bunch, but hasn't scored in five games and has only posted one double-digit fantasy total over that span. He's a low-end WR3, at best.
Davone Bess, Jabar Gaffney and tight end Anthony Fasano are more than likely going to earn you five points or less, which certainly isn't worthy of a spot in any fantasy lineup.
The host Bills win games with their offense. At times, they have had up to five fantasy-worthy starters. For the Thursday night contest with Miami, we recommend four of them.
The Bills' sixth-ranked running game is normally a "two-headed monster" with both Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller doing the damage. Jackson is the tough inside runner while Spiller is the explosive "home run hitter."
But Jackson has been ruled out of the game after suffering a concussion late in last weekend's game with New England. That leaves the entire running game to Spiller, who thrived in a similar situation earlier in the season when Jackson was sidelined with a knee injury. For that reason, we have Spiller as a RB1 and a must-start even against a Dolphins run defense which is ranked fifth-best yielding just 94.2 ypg.
While the Miami defense is normally tough to run against, they are very "giving" in the passing department. The Dolphins are ranked 28th against the pass, yielding 278.0 ypg.
Despite recent rumors concerning quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick's questionable long-term future with Buffalo, the Harvard graduate has had his moments this season. Last Sunday he threw for 337 yards and two touchdowns against New England and has thrown for two touchdowns or more in six of nine games. We think he can make it seven out of 10. If your quarterback situation is up in the air due to a bye or the many injuries that hit the position last week, Fitzpatrick is a viable option.
For the first time in a long time, wide receiver Stevie Johnson's name isn't on the injury report. Although he has yet to earn fantasy owners the 100-yard receiving bonus this season, we still believe in him.
Donald Jones, who starts opposite Johnson, has cracked double-digit fantasy points in two of the last three games and has surpassed tight end Scott Chandler as the final Bills fantasy-worthy starter.
As always, we finish with the place-kickers. The Bills' Rian Lindell is a solid veteran, but he simply doesn't get enough opportunities. He's only attempted 10 field goals this season and none from over 50 yards. The Dolphins' starter is Dan Carpenter, who has seen more chances than Lindell, but still not to the level of a fantasy starter. Look elsewhere for your fantasy kicker.