Behind the Numbers: MLS Fantasy Week 11

Behind the Numbers

Week 10 Recap

Week 10 was the best week for the Behind the Numbers team in their history. The team posted a 114 which was good enough for week rank 65 and propelled the team up to 235th overall. Not bad considering we were ranked 694th overall just 3 rounds ago. The team also had a healthy +$3M up to a team value of 124.8. The team was lead by our fearless CAPTAIN JACK Elliot. First time I’ve ever captained a defender and it paid off. Overall the rest of the team was solid, led by the PHI players. CIN decided to chip in 5 points despite my best efforts to switcheroo their players out of existence this weekend.

Fantasy philosophy

Stats of the Week/Fantasy Takeaways

Must-Have Players

Points per 90

  • Pozuelo: 12.59
  • Vela: 10.66
  • Zlatan: 10.50
  • Elis: 9.22
  • Salinas: 8.62
  • Quintero: 8.45

Defensive Points to Be Had in the Midweek.

  • 8-midweek games on DGW
  • 9 CS/16 Teams (56%) – League Season Average 25%
  • 5 CS/8 Home Teams (62.5%) – League Season Average (32%)

Time to Give the Fantasy Mullet a Haircut

  • Top 25 Fantasy Points per $
    • 17 DEF
    • 5 GK
    • 2 MID
    • 1 FWD

Week 11 DGW Team Defense Rankings

Total Budget this Week: $124.8


There are lots of good options at GK this weekend, so for me, my decisions were dictated by how I wanted to spend my three player choices from each team. Guzan is a pricier option and may bind you into knots if you’re Captaining a TOR player. To me, Bush, Robles, and Ousted are all viable. Looking primarily at Bush and Ousted since they get CIN and NER respectively.


I’d be happy with defenders from any of ATL, NYRB, CHI, LAG, and MTL. CLB has the double home game but gets both the LA teams this week. They’ve really been struggling double LA doesn’t seem like the cure.

As with DGW past, we’re looking for bonus point production to give us that floor.

In ATL, Robinson is the premium choice, while Parkhurst would be the way to go if low on budget. However, Robinson and LGP have a far better bonus point production.

From NYRB, Tim Parker and Connor Lade both offer more budget options with surging bonus point potential. Still not sure if NYRB can be counted on though.

CHI gets the benefit of getting a terrible NER team on the midweek, unfortunately, they don’t actually start too many natural defenders, so Kappelhof is your only real option.

MTL similarly gets the luck of the draw against a CIN team who hasn’t scored in 431 minutes. Diallo and Lovitz are comparably priced with similar production. I prefer CBs since they’re less likely to be rotated in my eyes.

LAG don’t have the greatest matchups but Polenta is such a beast this year that he has to make the list.

Week 11 Offense Rankings

Week 11 Top 50 Player Projections

Note: Player projections extrapolate previous stats and matchup data for the current player and match up assuming that player plays the full 90 (SGW) or 180 (DGW). It does not factor in the probability of a player starting or being rotated during a DGW.


There’s a wealth of MID options, but less so along the FWD line. The must haves are Zlatan and Josef Martinez. Outside of them, things get more interesting. Altidore is probably a must have if he starts during the midweek. Under the radar guys are Caicedo and Sapong. They’d be best in the autoroo since neither really produce bonus points but can bag goals in bunches.

In the midfield, I think you have to go with the trinity of bonus point production in Pozuelo, JDS, and Gil. Gil may be a surprise, but he’s second on the year bonus point production and the xG models point their matchups not being impossible if Freidal can stay out of the way.

Beyond the core 3 (or at least core 2) is where you’re really going to have to make your hay. There are lots of options to choose from. For me its Katai, though he does have a rotation risk and Gressel who I think is the best bet with Barco on international duty. But you’ve got other strong options and bonus point producers like Pedro Santos and Rzatkowski as well generally high floor guys like Bradley and Osorio.

If you’re looking for sneaky budget plays Djordje Milahilovic, Jordan Hamilton (assuming no Altidore), Pity Martinez, and Frankowski.

2019 Week 11 BTN Team

Here’s my first draft based on the discussion above.

For the moment I’m on the train to crazy town to get my mullet cut with a lineup that features 5 at the back and a 3 for 1 autoroo. Likely that’ll have to be trimmed before gametime or lineups will force my hand, but I’ve got too much money to play with. With the DGW teams being tightly clustered, not much to worry about once the games kick off.

If you’d like to follow me on twitter, I’m @MLSFB_BTN. I typically post my updated lineup on Friday nights before the games start to show if my thinking has changed since this column went up.

Resources for nerding out about MLS Fantasy

  • — Bonus point data, projections and more
  • — Interactive xG and passing data
  • — Analytics based player ratings

About Kyle Mcelhinny

Scientist by day, soccer fan by night. Nerd always. Using stats to overcome my lack of knowledge about the beautiful game.

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