As we all recover from eating our favorite holiday meal on Thanksgiving, grab a cup of coffee and enjoy this week’s latest red zone report. We’ll take a look at one of the league’s best, and one of the league’s worst quarterbacks in the red zone this season, as well as an AFC South running back that might be losing a couple of red zone touches each week down the stretch. Lastly, we’ll look at apparently the No. 1 red zone option in New Orleans, who has emerged as a waiver wire gem in fantasy football. From red zone passing, to rushing, to receiving, we’ll take a look at some notable numbers from the season thus far that can help your fantasy football teams the rest of the way. Using the red zone report here at Fantasy Alarm, here are the key numbers and notes in this week’s red zone analysis.
NFL Red Zone Report
Red Zone Passing
Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs
I know I’ve talked about Mahomes numerous times here, or at least it feels like it, however, what he’s doing is impressive. Sure, he leads the league in touchdowns, and he has more red zone passing touchdowns than anyone else. Wait, let me clarify that. He has more passing touchdowns in the red zone this year, than any other quarterback does overall! Here are the league leaders in passing touchdowns:
Absolutely insane! Mahomes has 76 pass attempts inside the 20-yard line this season, which is 13 more than the next closest player. The Chiefs hardly run the ball in the red zone, and even when they do, Mahomes has 18% of the team’s carries! His fantasy floor is so damn high, and his red zone production is a big part of that.
Russell Wilson, Denver Broncos
This trade keeps looking worse and worse. Wilson only has seven passing touchdowns on the season, which is fewer than Davis Mills and Jacoby Brissett, and only one more than Baker Mayfield! The Broncos as a team have stunk in the red zone, so it isn’t all on Wilson, but you won’t get any sympathy from me when you are completing 45 percent of your passes and you have a 2:1 TD/INT ratio in the red zone as a starting quarterback making a boatload of money. While Wilson has a favorable fantasy schedule down the stretch, he’s simply too hard to roster, and a breakout run down the stretch we are hoping for seems more like fantasy than reality.
Red Zone Rushing
Travis Etienne, Jacksonville Jaguars
The big question here is how much of a role will Darrell Henderson play in the red zone down the stretch? It seems logical that they use him in the red zone, given his archetype and running style, and it would also allow him to only have to learn a small sector of the playbook. Also, Jacksonville is 3-7 on the year, so they might consider scaling back Etienne’s workload to not run him into the ground in what is likely to be a wasted year for Jacksonville as they aren’t playing for anything, other than maybe getting second in the AFC South, but no playoff bid. Jacksonville pounced on the opportunity to get Henderson, and after missing all of his rookie year, Jacksonville might throttle back on Etienne a bit down the stretch, especially in the red zone.
Alvin Kamara, New Orleans Saints
He’s getting the work, which is good, but there isn’t exactly a ton of work to be had. Furthermore, Kamara has turned 12 red zone carries into just 15 yards and only one rushing score. His usage in the passing game has saved him this season, and he actually is second on the team in red zone targets this season, although he has just one receiving score there, too. The New Orleans offense is lackluster, but volume isn’t going anywhere for Kamara. Honestly, we need some better luck!
Red Zone Receiving
Juwan Johnson, New Orleans Saints
Seven red zone targets. Five receptions. Four touchdowns. While he has no more than 50 receiving yards in any game this season, and only two games with at least five receptions, he’s been a touchdown machine with Andy Dalton. Over his last five games, he’s caught 17 passes for 179 yards with five touchdowns, which over a full 17 game season comes out to 58 receptions for 609 yards and 17 touchdowns! Johnson is incredibly touchdown dependent, but he’s been one of the better fantasy options at the tight end position of late, and Dalton loves looking his way inside the 20s.
Nico Collins, Houston Texans
I talked about it in this week’s DFS WR Coach, but Collins is the No. 1 receiver in Houston. Brandin Cooks is disgruntled and has struggled most of the year, and Collins has seen his workload go up. He’s tied for the team lead in red zone targets over the last two weeks with Chris Moore, and his size and physical stature allows him to be effective in the red zone when given the opportunity. Now, the Texans haven’t done a great job with giving him those opportunities, but he’s the guy in the red zone, and maybe, just maybe, the switch to Kyle Allen gives us those opportunities. Collins has 48 or more receiving yards in four of his last five, but he has just one touchdown during that stretch.
Related NFL Links:
- Fantasy Football Running Back Handcuff Grid
- Fantasy Football Weekly Rankings
- 2022 Fantasy Football Waiver Wire Pickups
- 2022 NFL Injury Report
- 2022 Fantasy Football Stock Watch