Atlanta Falcons (1-3, 0-2 Away) vs Houston Texans (2-2, 1-1 Home)
Date: Sunday, Oct. 6, 2019
Time: 1:00 p.m. EST
After getting smashed by a not-so-great Titans squad, the Falcons look to bounce back this week in what should be a high-scoring shootout. The Texans are sitting in the middle of the pack in terms of points allowed to quarterbacks, but the two “better” quarterbacks, Philip Rivers and Drew Brees, both put up over 20 points. With the lack of a rushing attack, the Falcons will rely on Ryan to make some plays to keep up with the Texans. The Texans, minus one week, are allowing around 30 points per game to the running back. Much of this RB production allowed has come through the air, so Devonta Freeman’s rushing struggles are less important in this one.
The Texans are struggling to cover the pass so far this season, as they are allowing 41.05 fantasy points per game to opposing WRs. This is going to be a fantastic fantasy matchup for Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley and Mohamed Sanu. From PFF’s matchup charts, all three WRs have been given above a 15% matchup advantage, with Julio being the highest, at 38%. This receiving group is going to have a fantastic game. All the matchups on paper look great except for one, and that is the matchup that Austin Hooper has. Hooper is having a breakout season, as he is currently sitting at the TE2 in full point PPR, but the Texans are extremely good at covering the tight end position. The Texans are currently allowing only 5.63 fantasy points to TEs per game. Yes, the matchup is scary, but due to sheer volume, Hooper still is a must-start.
Along the same lines as the Falcons, the Texans are coming off a bad loss as well, so for fantasy owner’s sake this can only mean a bounce back game. The Falcons are currently allowing 19.23 fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks, giving Deshaun Watson a solid matchup. Watson has been nothing special this year, due to offensive line’s struggles, but we all know the upside Watson possesses. At this point in the season, I don’t think anyone is comfortable playing Carlos Hyde or Duke Johnson and this matchup does help that either. The Falcons are in the top half of the league when it comes to fantasy points allowed to the running back, and the Texans running game is far from special, so the value is in the passing game.
The Falcons are currently allowing a respectable 36.95 fantasy points to opposing WRs, but with the loss of Keanu Neal, they proved last week that they are vulnerable, as they got torched by Marcus Mariota. We can all agree that Watson and DeAndre Hopkins are much better than Marcus Mariota and A.J. Brown, so unless this defense got much better in one week, Hopkins is going to have a great game. Will Fuller, who is currently sitting at 15th in air yards, is just one play away from getting back on track. Everything is lining up for this receiver, who is averaging a little under 100 air yards a game. And if A.J. Brown was able to score two touchdowns on only 43 air yards, I know that Fuller is going to have his coming out party this game.