The Denver Broncos traveled to Texas this weekend and shocked the Houston Texans with a 38-24 upset. With a 4-8 record and rookie quarterback Drew Lock making only his second NFL start, nobody expected the Broncos to compete with a Texans team that defeated Tom Brady and the New England Patriots just last week.
The Texans entered this game atop the AFC South with an 8-4 record. This loss certainly did not help their playoff hopes, as they now fall to 8-5 and will possibly be tied with the Tennessee Titans, if the Titans can beat the Raiders in their match-up this afternoon. The Indianapolis Colts had a chance to climb back into the race, but blew a 14-point lead in a 38-35 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The Texans face the Titans twice within the next three weeks and those games could end up deciding the playoff fate of these divisional rivals. It’s going to be a tight race and one that may come down to the wire in Week 17.
The AFC Wildcard spot currently belongs to the Buffalo Bills, with a record of 9-4 after falling to the Baltimore Ravens in Week 14. The Bills face the Steelers, Patriots, and Jets in remaining weeks, so the Texans have a shot to reach the playoffs via the Wildcard spot if they are unable to win the division.
From a fantasy perspective there are several takeaways from this game, as quarterback Drew Lock and tight end Noah Fant displayed some serious chemistry. The duo connected on four of four targets for 113 yards and one touchdown, with an impressive 28.3 yard average depth of target.
Fant is not the only receiver Lock was able to connect with on the day, as Lock finished the game with 22 completions on 27 pass attempts for 309 yards, three touchdowns and one interception, with a QB rating of 136.0.
The Broncos may not have hopes of making the playoffs but they are certainly going to use the next few weeks to get more experience for these talented rookies. They are both worth considering as streamers in redraft leagues as they take on the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 15, a team that provides a favorable match-up for both tight ends and quarterbacks. If you aren’t in need of a streamer, or are unwilling to take a gamble on a rookie in the fantasy play-offs, they are still worth keeping an eye on, particularly in dynasty leagues and for DFS tournaments, as they develop over the final weeks of the season. Each of these players could provide value in redraft leagues in the 2020 season.