Red Zone Report Week 11
As fantasy football managers continue to try and score big points, they often find the highest upside in players who score touchdowns. The best area of the field to get into the end zone is as close as possible to the goal-line. That is why Red Zone carries and targets are so important. The purpose of this Red Zone Report Week 11, is to showcase which players have received the most opportunities in the Red Zone.
For the remainder of this article, the words “Red Zone” will be replaced with “RZ” for brevity.
Red Zone Rushing
A bit of a youth movement with the league leaders in RZ carries, certainly at the top three. Pacing all players in total RZ opportunities was a player on his third team this year. Kalen Ballage received 7 RZ rushing attempts with the Chargers in Week 10. Going forward, he could potentially maintain his RZ role that he has held for two games now.
Next on the Week 10 list is Rondald Jones with 6 RZ carries. And in third place is Cam Akers with 5 RZ rushing attempts. It is good to see the young players get their opportunities even if both Akers and Jones continue to split RZ and goal-line duties with other teammates.
Akers and Jones share a similar situation to Jonathan Taylor. Even with 4 RZ carries in Week 10, he was among four Colts players to receive a rushing attempt inside the 5-yard line. Tying Taylor with 4 RZ carries are Kenyan Drake and Wayne Gallman. Interesting that Drake returned from injury, while Gallman has become the go-to RZ back in New York because of several other injuries.
Carries Inside the 5
Add to Wayne Gallman’s resume that he is also the go-to goal-line guy for the Giants. His 3 rushing attempts from inside the 5-yard line led the league during Week 10. Right behind Gallman are Antonio Gibson, Alvin Kamara, and Cam Newton with 2 carries inside the 5 apiece. All three players currently hold their respective team leads for carries inside the 5-yard line, as well as total RZ oppotunities.
Red Zone Targets
Massive Mike Evans opportunity in Week 10. During that game, he received 5 RZ targets sitting atop the weekly submit in that category. And Evans did so by a mark of 2 targets, as no other player had more than 3. That list includes names such as Chase Claypool, J.D. McKissic, Michael Pittman, Jonnu Smith, JuJu Smith-Schuster, and Adam Thielen.
There are a few among that group worth mentioning. Starting with the running back, McKissic had 3 RZ carries in addition to his 3 RZ targets. With 6 total RZ opportunities, he trailed only Kalen Ballage during week 10.
Next, the pair of Steelers. Smith-Schister now holds the team lead with 11 RZ targets. Meanwhile, Claypool is third in Pittsburgh with 10 total RZ opportunities. Both players are clearly being used heavily in this all-important area of the field. Finally, the rookie Pittman, in spite of several games missed, is second on the Colts in RZ targets. Look for that trend to continue to go up.
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It was not nearly as productive of a RZ week for quarterback runs. At least not when compared to Week 9. Kyler Murray led the league during Week 10 with 3 RZ rushing attempts. With a total of 16 on the season, Murray is tied for second in the league among signal-callers.
The only quarterback with more RZ carries is Cam Newton. With 2 more RZ runs, he continued his 2020 tally with a total of 22 RZ rushing attempts. Alongside Newton in Week 10 were Daniel Jones and Deshaun Watson, with 2 each. The only distinguishing factor between those three players is where in the RZ they run the ball. Both of Newton’s attempts came inside the 5-yard line. Meanwhile, Watson carried only once in that area, while Jones had both his RZ carries outside the 5.
2020 Season So Far
Even with a bye during Week 10, Todd Gurley is still atop the NFL in total RZ attempts with 42. Entering Week 11, Gurley holds a narrow lead over Josh Jacobs, who has 39 RZ opportunities on the season. Running right behind him are Derrick Henry and Alvin Kamara with 38 RZ opportunities each. Among those top four, there have been 16 RZ targets combined. 13 of the 16 have gone to Kamara.
With 13 RZ targets, Kamara leads all running back in 2020. He is also only two behind the overall league leader Mike Evans. Those 5 RZ targets in Week 10 were enough to vault Evans over the four players who held a tie after Week 9. Evans is still a couple of weeks away from his bye. If he wants to maintain that lead, Evans will likely need to extend his lead and continue to receive ample RZ targets.
Much like Gurley, Ezekiel Elliott held on to a statistical lead through the bye week. Elliot still has (by the lightest of margins) the most carries from inside the 5-yard line during the 2020 season. Now that the Cowboys return to action, Elliott will get a chance to receive more RZ opportunities.
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