Fantasy Football Mailbag: Friday 11/4/16

Can we trust Tyrell Williams despite his injury in Week 9? And should we go back to Christine Michael after a rough performance in Week 8?

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Now, let's answer some questions.

Email submission from Cody Webb:

Do you think I should start Tyrell Williams or Todd Gurley in my flex spot this week?

This one is a tough call right now with Tyrell Williams dealing with an injury, holding him to a limited practice session on Thursday. But if he gets in a full practice on Friday, he'd likely hold a slight edge over Todd Gurley.

The San Diego Chargers have had a brutal schedule of late, facing the lock-down Denver Broncos defense in two of their past three games. Outside of those two games, though, Williams has at least eight targets in three of his past four games, including 10 back in Week 7. With Travis Benjamin dinged up, Williams could have a huge role against a struggling Tennessee Titans defense.

The Titans have fallen all the way to 28th in our schedule-adjusted pass defense rankings, one slot below the maligned New Orleans Saints. The Titans have allowed four receivers to top 100 yards this year, and another got to 98. Williams -- if healthy -- could add his name to that list on Sunday.

Gurley's not a terrible play this week simply because his passing-game usage has gone up with 21 targets over his past four games. But with the Los Angeles Rams' implied team total all the way down at 20.75 (compared to the Chargers' mark of 25.5), his upside isn't overly attractive, giving Williams the upper hand.

Email submission from Patrick Frake:

...just introduced to your website and love it! It got me thinking about my team and the playoffs... I am in a 12 team PPR and I am in first place w a 6-2 record. See snapshot of my team below and thoughts on: 1. RB handcuffs, or 2. going after players w upside for the fantasy playoffs on the wire like Dion Lewis, Sammy Watkins, JJ Nelson or other suggestions, or 3. propose a trade for a top RB or other suggestions?

On Patrick's roster in particular, the one position in need of a potential upgrade was tight end. With Jack Doyle being the lone option, that would become a pain point soon as Dwayne Allen is nearing a return to the lineup. That makes Ladarius Green a guy to target for the stretch run.

Although Green likely won't be ready for Week 9, he has been practicing with the team since their bye week and should return soon. That means you'd be getting a tight end on one of the league's better offenses for free this late in the season. Green's role likely won't be robust early, but we're shooting for upside at this point, and Green has it.

From a broader perspective, now's the time to grab J.J. Nelson. Because he's on his bye week, Nelson is still lingering on plenty of waiver wires. He's the lone healthy receiver the Arizona Cardinals have, and it has shown through in his usage with 19 targets the past two games. The team named Nelson a starting wideout this week, so that role isn't going away soon. Snag him while you can and hope his solid run continues.

Email submission from Keenan Bates:

With Spencer Ware in concussion protocol, I'm going to assume he will be out this week. So that leaves me with Devanta Freeman, Christine Michaels, and Frank Gore. I'm going to start Freeman, but am trying to decide between Gore and Michaels. I know Gore has a tough match-up with Green Bay, but he has been so consistent. It's a tough decision. What are your thoughts?

Although Devonta Freeman didn't find the end zone last night, he did at least rack up over 100 yards from scrimmage, so this is off to a solid start. When choosing between Christine Michael and Frank Gore, it's hard to trust Michael fully after his usage last week, but we almost have to in this spot.

Michael -- even while losing carries to C.J. Prosise -- is in a decent spot for Week 9. The Seattle Seahawks are at home and 6.5-point favorites over the Buffalo Bills. This means the Seahawks should be able to run the ball a decent amount, a luxury they did not have in Week 8 against the Saints. This is a game script that would figure to favor Michael over Prosise, and Michael could be in for a decent rebound performance.

Gore's matchup is about as bad as it gets. Not only are the Green Bay Packers ranked second against the run, based on numberFire's schedule-adjusted metrics, but the Indianapolis Colts are seven-point underdogs. Gore likely won't have high rushing volume, and it'll be hard to gain ground on the carries he does get. Long-term, we should like Gore more, but Michael gets the nod this weekend.

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