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What to do with Brian Hill in Week 11 fantasy football

With injuries to Devonta Freeman and Ito Smith, Brian Hill appears to be the last man standing in Atlanta’s backfield. Does that distinction make him viable against Carolina?

Atlanta Falcons running back Brian Hill runs the ball against Washington in the first half at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Maybe the most important thing to note when it comes to Brian Hill’s viability is how the Falcons doled out their running back snaps following Devonta Freeman’s injury last week. It was primarily a one-man show with Hill racking up 38 snaps and 21 touches in a 26-9 victory; however, it’s not as if this was a case of Hill being the only possible RB for Dan Quinn to turn to. Unlike some emergency situations where a backup running back will see tons of volume out of sheer necessity, both Kenjon Barner and Qadree Ollison were active in Week 10, with the former seeing a few offensive snaps of his own. Still, at the end of the day, without the services of Freeman, Atlanta decided to give the reigns to Hill and not opt for a messier committee approach. That’s a telling sign of things to come.

Usage shouldn’t be a concern for Hill as he goes up against one of the league’s worst run defenses this weekend. Carolina has surrendered an eye-popping 4.69 adjusted line yards per carry in 2019 — the third-highest mark of any NFC team. However, that’s really only the beginning of the Panthers’ list of weaknesses in this specific facet. Carolina sits dead-last in the NFL in run defense DVOA, has allowed an NFL-high 172.0 opponent rushing yards per contest across the past three weeks and, to top it all off, has conceded 17 total rushing touchdowns through 10 weeks of action — five more than any other squad in football. It might be fair to have concerns about Hill drawing a favorable script, but no such worries should exist when it comes to matchup.

Fantasy Football Analysis, Atlanta Falcons RB Brian Hill

There shouldn’t really be any question about Hill’s standing in season-long formats — and, to a lesser extent, cash games — but utilizing the 24-year-old in DFS tournaments does involve a moment’s thought. As the obvious value play in the $4K tier, Hill’s ownership will likely hover at similar level to Ronald Jones’ in Week 10. That chalk paid off and I truly think Hill, who’s shown skills on both the ground and in the air, can do the same. Fire him up in all settings.

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