INDIANAPOLIS — The Indianapolis Colts host the Miami Dolphins this Sunday in a matchup that is favorable to them from a fantasy football perspective.
Here are some factors to consider before this week’s matchups.
*Weekly positional rankings from FantasyPros.com, based on Half-PPR scoring.
QB Andrew Luck
- Last three weeks avg: 22.0-of-29.7 passing (74.2%), 273.7 yards, 2.3 carries, -1.3 yards, 9 total TD, 1 total TO, 1 total 2PM — 28.2 FPPG
- Last week: 23-of-29 passing (79.3%), 297 yards, 3 total TD — 29.0 FP
- FantasyPros Week 12 Position Rank: QB2
- Dolphins vs. QBs: 9th (17.3 FPPG)
Luck has been lights out pretty much all season. He has thrown for at least three touchdowns in the last seven games, which puts him in elite company: Peyton Manning and Tom Brady are the only others to ever accomplish that feat within the same season.
The Dolphins rank decently against quarterbacks, but they have allowed Sam Darnold, Derek Carr and Mitchell Trubisky to all throw for more than 300 yards. Also, Trubisky, Tom Brady and Deshaun Watson all threw at least three touchdowns against them (Watson threw five).
There’s no reason to believe Luck won’t continue his hot streak of play this week at home in the all-blue Color Rush unis.
RBs Marlon Mack and Nyheim Hines
Last three weeks avg:
- Mack — 40.0 snaps (61.4%), 17.7 carries, 74.0 yards (3.8 avg), 1.7 reception (2.7 targets), 11.3 yards (7.0 avg), 3 total TD, 1 total 2PM — 16.0 FPPG
- Hines — 21.3 snaps (32.7%), 6.3 carries, 31.7 yards (3.6 avg), 2.0 receptions (3.0 targets), 15.3 yards (9.9 avg) — 5.7 FPPG
- Mack — 38 snaps (61.3%), 16 carries, 61 yards (3.8 avg), 1 reception (2 targets), 8 yards (8.0 avg), 1 total TD — 13.4 FP
- Hines — 16 snaps (25.8%), 5 carries, 14 yards (2.8 avg), 1 reception (3 targets), 20 yards (20.0 avg) — 3.9 FP
FantasyPros Week 12 Position Rank: Mack RB14, Hines RB40
Dolphins vs. RBs: 29th (29.6 FPPG)
Mack and Hines are criminally underrated in the rankings heading into this matchup, and I’ll tell you why:
Opposing running backs Dion Lewis, James White, Sony Michel, Joe Mixon, Tarik Cohen, Kerryon Johnson, Lamar Miller and Aaron Jones all amassed more than 100 yards of offense and scored a combined nine touchdowns.
A Colts running back group that ran for consecutive 200-yard games within the last few games not being ranked near the top? This should be another really good week for the Colts’ run game.
WR T.Y. Hilton
- Last three weeks avg: 4.3 receptions (7.0 targets), 88.7 yards (20.5 avg), 2 total TD — 15.0 FPPG
- Last week: 9 receptions (9 targets), 155 yards (17.2 avg), 2 total TD — 32.0 FP
- FantasyPros Week 12 Position Rank: WR11
- Dolphins vs. WRs: 10th (34.1 FPPG)
Hilton finally had his 2018 breakout last week, putting up more than 150 yards and two touchdowns against the Titans.
Opposing defenses don’t have enough resources to take everyone in the Colts offense away, so it’s hard to believe Hilton will be completely shut down by Miami this week. If the Dolphins focus on Hilton, that may mean taking away an extra man from the box where the Colts will gash them with the run. Maybe it means the Colts just unleash the tight ends yet again.
The Dolphins have allowed seven opposing receivers to have at least 80 yards, and four of them eclipsed 100 yards. Hilton is good play again this week.
TEs Jack Doyle and Eric Ebron
Last three weeks avg:
- Ebron — 21.0 snaps (33.4%), 2.0 receptions (2.0 targets), 35.3 yards (17.7 avg), 4 total TD — 12.6 FPPG
- Doyle — 52.0 snaps (80.9%), 4.3 receptions (4.7 targets), 49.7 yards (11.5 avg), 1 total TD — 9.1 FPPG
- Ebron — 25 snaps (40.3%), 0 receptions (0 targets) — 0.0 FP
- Doyle — 51 snaps (82.3%), 4 receptions (4 targets), 43 yards (10.8 avg) — 6.3 FP
- FantasyPros Week 12 Position Rank: Doyle TE5, Ebron TE13
- Dolphins vs. TEs: 17th (12.7 FPPG)
For the first time this season, the Colts tight ends were kept quiet last week. The group — which has 16 touchdowns so far on the season — was held to a total of four catches (four targets) for 43 yards. The law of averages says that’s highly unlikely to happen again.
Miami has done pretty well against tight ends in terms of not allowing any big performances, but Michael Roberts and Jordan Thomas each had two touchdowns against them.
Especially considering the barren landscape of the tight end position in fantasy this year, Doyle and Ebron are good plays.
K Adam Vinatieri
- Last three weeks avg: 1.0-of-1.3 FGA (75.0%), 4.0-of-4.0 XPA (100.0%), 7.0 points
- Last week: 1-of-1 FGA (100.0%), 5-of-5 XPA (100.0%), 8 points
- FantasyPros Week 12 Position Rank: K4
- Dolphins vs. Ks: 27th (8.8 FPPG)
The Dolphins yield the sixth-most fantasy points to kickers, and this one is also at home in the climate-controlled environment of Lucas Oil Stadium for Vinatieri.
He’s had at least seven fantasy points in seven of 10 games this year, and he plays for an offense that’s humming right now. Start ‘em.
Colts Defense/Special Teams
- Last three weeks avg: 341.7 yards allowed, 21.3 points allowed, 1.7 sacks, 1.3 takeaways
- Last week: 263 yards allowed, 10 points allowed, 5 sacks, 2 takeaways
- FantasyPros Week 12 Position Rank: DST11
- Dolphins vs. DSTs: 29th (8.7 FPPG)
The Dolphins see the return of Ryan Tannehill at quarterback, who has missed the last five games with a shoulder injury and acknowledged this week that he’ll be playing through pain. That hardly sounds like he’ll be firing on all cylinders.
Miami has surrendered 16 sacks in their last four games (four per game), and the Colts were able to sack quarterbacks Marcus Mariota and Blaine Gabbert fives times last week. They blitzed a little more than usual, and they were effective. The Colts' defense has also had at least one takeaway in every game this year, including six games in which they’ve had at least two.
Offensively, Miami isn’t spectacular in any one area, but they do rank low in the following categories:
- 26th in scoring (19.9 PPG)
- 28th in total offense (313.6 YPG)
- 28th in third-down offense (33%)
- 28th in time of possession (28:48)
- 32nd in red-zone scoring (40%)
- 32nd in rushing touchdowns (3)