Fantasy Football Week 11: Breakout Performers to Target on Waiver Wire

Tim DanielsFeatured ColumnistNovember 12, 2013

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - NOVEMBER 10:  Andre Brown #35 of the New York Giants carries the ball as Charles Woodson #24 of the Oakland Raiders defends at MetLife Stadium on November 10, 2013 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.The New York Giants defeated the Oakland Raiders 24-20.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

Another week of fantasy football is in the books. Of course, that means there's a fresh batch of breakout performers for fantasy owners to mull over before setting their waiver claims for Week 11 as the playoff races are officially heating up.

The toughest thing to figure out while scouring the free-agent market is whether a player simply had one or two big games or is actually going to remain a fantasy asset moving forward. Making the right call is the difference between adding a key piece or having to make another move in a few weeks.

Furthermore, an impact addition at this stage of the season can be enough to push a team over the top and into the postseason. So let's take a closer look at a trio of players who should top waiver-wire lists heading into Week 11.


Case Keenum (QB, Houston Texans)

KANSAS CITY, MO - OCTOBER 20:  Quarterback Case Keenum #7 of the Houston Texans throws a pass against the Kansas City Chiefs during the first half on October 20, 2013 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri.  (Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images)
Peter Aiken/Getty Images

The Texans are 0-3 since Keenum took over as the starter, but the team's struggles are certainly not due to poor play under center. The unheralded quarterback sports a QB rating a shade over 105 with seven touchdowns and no interceptions.

In fantasy terms, he's averaging 20 points per week since assuming the top spot on the depth chart. By comparison, Tony Romo, who entered Week 10 as the third-ranked fantasy quarterback, was averaging slightly more than 18 points per contest.

While it's not realistic to expect elite numbers of Keenum on a weekly basis, he's a strong option to replace an injured, struggling or bye-week quarterback. He faces a string of middling pass defenses in the coming weeks, starting with the Oakland Raiders in Week 11.


Andre Brown (RB, New York Giants)

The Giants opted against working Brown back into the rotation slowly. In his first game back from a serious leg injury, the fifth-year back carried the ball 30 times for 115 yards and also made a catch for a total of 31 touches right out of the gate.

New York has been seeking stability in the backfield, and Brown provided it against the Raiders. Now, he figures to have carved out a big role for himself in the offense moving forward. Any back who has the potential to get that type of workload warrants a spot in fantasy lineups.

The outlook for the next four weeks is promising. After facing the 12th-ranked Green Bay Packers run defense in Week 11, the Giants will face the Dallas Cowboys (28th), Washington Redskins (18th) and San Diego Chargers (20th). Brown should capitalize in a major way.


Riley Cooper (WR, Philadelphia Eagles)

Cooper is clearly on the same page with red-hot quarterback Nick Foles. Over the past two weeks, the tandem has combined for 241 yards and three touchdowns. When Foles started in Week 6, Cooper had 120 yards and a touchdown.

Right now, defenses are making the decision to make their best effort to slow down DeSean Jackson, which allows Cooper to work against less coverage. As long as that remains the case, and it's hard to imagine teams letting Jackson working against single coverage, the Florida product should thrive.

The Eagles offense has found its stride in recent weeks with 76 total points in wins over the Oakland Raiders and Green Bay Packers. Expect the successful game plan to stay in place, giving Cooper chances to make big plays and making fantasy owners happy in the process.