Before I jump into the games this week I wanted to give our readers a little insight into why we do what we do at dfsocean.com:
We’re the little guy. We write to provide the small edges that we can to help the other little guys like us do well at this very difficult task of being profitable in DFS. We’re rooting for you and we’re in the trenches with you every week.
We’re also mainly interested in swinging big. We’re trying to take down the milly maker or the biggest top prize on the board and we’re trying to help you do the same. Winning that type of money changes lives: it changes daily decision-making, and career goals, and family planning, and if cultivated properly it changes lives for the better from every angle.
This week there are 222,058 entries in the DK main slate milly maker contest. Several of those entries will be taken up by professional gamblers maxing out their opportunity while straddling a fine line between spreading themselves too thin with diversification. Even more entries will be taken up by people who understand football and name value but don’t understand situations. Then there are people like you and I who are reading and listening and grinding to make our own luck. I feel good about our well-researched chances every week.
It won’t always work out and we’re going to fail way more often than we succeed; that’s just the nature of this beast we’re trying to defeat. But we’re going to improve every day and every week and I trust that determination and preparedness will eventually get us where we want to go in everything we do in life.
Good luck this week to you kind sir/madam, let’s take it down.
BAL @ PHI
Over/Under 47.5 BAL -7.5
This game is pretty straightforward. Baltimore is the better team and siding with Baltimore at 7.5 points is not unreasonable at all. The Ravens lost against KC, but they’ve won every other game so far this season with an average margin of victory of 21.25. You’re not going to find another team in the league who clenches the throat of their opponents so tightly and so steadily when they’re in the lead. I like BAL in this one and I think they cover the 7.5
How do the Ravens win this one? Well, the obvious first thought is that Lamar Jackson runs a lot, but his rushing attempts have decreased each week in the last 4 weeks. Last week he had 2 rushing attempts totaling 3 yards. His biggest real football flaw is that he’s not great at passing the football and that’s probably the worst flaw a QB can have. If the Ravens have any Super Bowl aspirations they better use the regular season now to give Lamar as many reps in the pocket as he needs to be prepared for Super Bowl calibur defenses. I think he starts passing more and because of that I’m out on him in DFS this week and for the foreseeable future, as the highest priced QB on the board. Until we can see growth from him at that position, in most cases I think we can fade. We can re-evaluate as the season progresses.
The BAL backfield is an easier fade; it’s the timeshariest of timeshares. Last week their top 3 RBs had snap counts of 31.7%, 35.4% and 33.0%. That’s not helpful in DFS. Mark Ingram leads the team in RZ rushes (2 more than Lamar, 7 more than next in line Edwards), so if you want a dart throw he’s probably your guy. At 5100, no one will own him, there’s probably a reason for that, but that’s your angle if you’re trying to buy in.
Lamar can’t throw the ball accurately downfield so he should be checking down to Mark Andrews fairly often. He’s probably the only guy you should feel good about on this offense. He’s priced up to 6500 so you’re going to have to be very budgetarian with the rest of your lineup, but he’s a good play regardless. The Eagles also rank 28th against the TE position, fyi. He’ll be in my player pool and I’ll try to squeeze him in where I can.
No me gusta anything else on the Ravens offense.
The Baltimore Defense feels outrageously priced at 4500. They’re a good play and they might get you 20 points but at that price they have to get you 20 points or your lineup is crumbling, bro. Since Vegas set the line at under 10 points, there’s an expectation there that PHI is going to put up at least a little bit of a fight. Ultimately I think you have to decide if you think Carson Wentz keeps up his just about 2 interceptions a game streak. He probably does and I’m really not going to enjoy paying up so high for that defense, but begrudgingly they’ll be in my player pool. They’re priced up because they’re a good play. Probably not my favorite play, but a good play nonetheless.
I don’t trust Carson Wentz so I’m out on the QB. RB Miles Sanders played against the 3rd ranked RB defense in the league last week and he still put up 23.9 fpts. I don’t feel great about him putting up those numbers again against a similar quality rush defense. At 6600, he’s an option, but probably not a good one.
Since I don’t trust Wentz to throw it to the right team, I don’t trust anyone else on this offense. If you want to chase the points from last week from Travis Fulgham, that’s on you. He put up 34.2 points on 10/13 for 152 yards. He out of nowhere had a great game. His price at 4400 is going to entice a lot of people…A lot of people. I’m steering clear.
We’re not desperate enough to consider the PHI defense.
CIN @ IND
Over/Under 46.5 IND -8
I think this game could easily have the largest margin of victory on the slate. I like Joe Burrow a lot but that Indy D is no joke. If Philip Rivers can stay out of his own way, the colts should cruise to victory. I like Indy and I like the points.
It’s never a good idea to roster anyone against your favorite defense, it’s just counterproductive. Indianapolis is my favorite defense this week so I’m fading the entire Cincinnati Bengals offense.
The Colts offense is in the bottom third of the league. Philip Rivers is so past his prime that I don’t think he could even see it on the horizon if he turned around to look for it. Since I don’t trust Rivers to play well in most situations and his team doesn’t particularly need him to play well in this situation, I’m steering clear of him and his very below par pass offense cohorts.
The only guy I like on IND is Jonathan Taylor. The workload is slightly hit or miss, with carry totals of 12, 17, and 13 over the last 3 games. He did have a 26 carry game against Minnesota in week 2 though. Alright his workload is mostly miss, but there is upside. There is a path for him to have another 26 or so carry game and this should be the situation for him. If ever he’s going to put up a monster game this should be it. The Bengals are 21st in the league against the RB position and his team should be playing with a lead. I don’t like his price at 6400, with respect to the workload coming in but he should have closer to 26 carries this week than the 12 carries he had last week. He has 4 red zone targets, and 17 RZ rushing attempts, so the usage is there in that area of the field. I like him. He’ll be one of my guys this week.
The IND Defense is my favorite on the slate. At 4000, they have as safe a floor as any of the upper-priced defenses and probably have the highest upside. They should do well this week.
DET @ JAX
Over/Under 54.5 DET -3.5
Oh boy! This is the game to stack on this week’s slate. I like so many pieces on both sides of the ball. I’d lean towards the Detroit side because they’re coming off of a bye. I don’t necessarily like the points, but I like the Lions for the W. They would make the most sense to prevail in this one, especially since Jacksonville is coming in a little banged up.
Matthew Stafford has underperformed all season. He also hasn’t had his number one wide receiver at his disposal before the last couple of games. Based on his previous game stats, it feels uncomfortable rostering Stafford at 6300. He’s averaging 19 fpts so far this season and that’s not getting us the 3x minimum that we’d want from him at that price. However, Golladay is healthy, Marvin Jones is due, Hockenson is always a TD ready to happen and this week they’re all facing one of the worst defenses in football.
Stafford should be able to move the ball downfield in all capacities. Kenny Golladay is priced at 6200 and he should be a popular play after scoring TDs in the only two weeks he’s played thus far. He’s certainly a solid pick.
I also like Marvin Jones at 5100 who will be much lower owned and generally has a few brilliant games each year when no one is on him. In week 6 last year, almost a year to the day, Marvin had 10 catches for 93 yards and 4 TDs. That’s slate-breaking production potential and I’ll have some shares. He’s probably my favorite receiver on the slate in terms of fantasy potential with respect to projected ownership.
One interesting trend is that TE TJ Hockenson has seen a higher snap share with Golladay in the game. This could be coincidental matchup-related or the OC might feel that the respect opposing defenses give to Golladay when he’s on the field opens up shorter routes for Hockenson. I’d lean towards the latter. Picking a quality TE is expensive this week, as there doesn’t appear to be a lot of intriguing value at bargain pricing. At 5300, I like the matchup and I like the upside of TJ in this one. With both Kenny and Marvin healthy, there’s nowhere else we should be looking throughout the rest of this offense. I’ll have several shares of Hockenson paired with either Jones or Golladay each along with Mr. Stafford.
As you all know, I’m a Gardner Minshew guy. This week he’s playing against a Lions team who is allowing the 10th most fpts to the QB position so far this year. DET is also coming off of a bye and are not only healthier and better rested, they’ve also undoubtedly been watching an awful lot of Jaguar game film. I generally have QB/WR stacks of this offense weekly because it has so many weapons, but I don’t plan on stacking any of it this week. Byes are very helpful, don’t underestimate them.
I’m not playing Minshew this week but I’m not opposed to getting a piece of some of the JAX offense in my DET stacks. Chark is questionable and even if he plays I think he’ll either be more of a decoy or very susceptible to leaving early. I like Laviska Shenault a lot at 5200, whether Chark plays or not. He’s seen 14 targets over the last 2 games and he’s also leading the team in targets overall. This dude is the real deal and if anyone were to put up a stat line of 3 passing TDs and 1 rushing TD like PITs Chase Claypool did last week, I’d bet it’s Shenault. Keelan Cole at 4900 isn’t a bad dart throw although I won’t be going there. The rest of the passing offense I’m not touching from any distance with even the lengthiest of sticks.
I like the JAX RB in this one. The Lions lead the league in fpts given up to the RB position so this is a prime opportunity for a 6800 James Robinson to have himself a game. He’s seen 17 total targets over the last few weeks and leads the team in RZ rushes by an absurd amount. Especially if the Jaguars can take the lead, The Jags are going to lean on Robinson to keep the ball out of Stafford’s hands for as long as possible. He’s one of my favorite RB plays of the week.
ATL @ MIN
Over/Under 55 MIN -3.5
This is one of those games that I’m not a big fan of stacking. There are going to be ownership landmines on both sides and it could get scary for a lot of people who choose the wrong guy this week. I feel pretty comfortable in saying I expect the Vikings to win this one and even with the points. I also like the under in this one as MIN should be playing with a lead most of the game and they love to run the ball. It seems like a setup for a running clock that doesn’t allow for the scoring needed to hit that 55 point total.
If you’re trying to figure out who you want on this ATL offense, why are you doing this to yourself? The Vikings defense does allow the 4th most fpts to the WR position and we’re all pretty high on Ridley but QB Matt Ryan is really struggling, he’s had 1 TD and 2 interceptions total in his last 3 games. Yeah, he looked good against the Cowboys in week 2 but that’s a while ago and that spoke more of the quality of the Dallas defense than of Ryan and the ATL offense.
Julio is playing injured. He’s not healthy enough to play well and is just trying to gut it out because he wants to help his team win while they’re sweating desperation droplets down there in ATL. Calvin Ridley should get ownership. He’s seen an average of over 11 targets in 4 out of 5 games. He had an off game in GB but in every other game he’s been Matt Ryan’s rock. The MIN offense should control the clock on the ground and as an offense they are in no rush to pass the ball unless absolutely necessary, ranking 29th in pace of play. This does not bode well for Ridley or anyone else on the ATL offensive side of the ball. At 7800, I can’t pay that for a player in this situation even of his quality. Could he have 2 TDs and a 150 yards on 8 catches? Sure, but do you trust that Matt Ryan can get him the ball in the right spots to make that happen? I certainly don’t.
The people excited about getting parts of this game are the ones who need ATL to score first and witness continued success from the Falcons ground game. Todd Gurley has scored 4 TDs in the last 3 games and more significantly last week he saw 5 targets after basically seeing none in previous games. It’s questionable from here on out how much this team will want to win games, but if they do want to win, they’re going to need to get Gurley as involved as possible, especially while they have him on a one year contract. At 6300, I like Todd Gurley a lot as the perfect pivot from all of the ownership on Alexander Mattison this week. The floor is not safe with Gurley at all but he’s trending in the right direction and if Vegas is right about the total then he’ll need to have success for ATL to keep it close. He’ll be in my player pool for sure.
Since I don’t trust Matt Ryan as a QB or as a QB within this gamescript scenario I’m not playing any other offensive weapon on ATL. The floor just isn’t there at all.
MIN should run the ball a lot this week. They should have decent success against this Falcons rush defense who’s in the bottom half of the league in fpts given up to the RB position. The likeliest gamescript involves Mattison seeing the same 20 snaps he got last week, while Cook is out injured. He very well could cross the hundred yard mark again and basically see a very similar stat line as the one we displayed last week. He had 112 yards rushing and 3 targets for 24 yards. That was brilliant at his 4000 pricetag. He’s now priced at 7200 and he’s getting a lot of buzz throughout the industry, enough to expect he’ll have a very burly level of ownership. I’m going to be fully fading him because of this expected ownership and because I wouldn’t be surprised if he hits that 19.6 fpts again this week. There are plenty of RBs at cheaper prices that should surpass that fpt total. He’s also a backup RB, who had a $3200 price jump after the game of his life, chasing on that in expectation of better results is probably a fool’s errand.
I do think Mattison gets a heavy workload in this one and as a result I’m not too big of a fan of Kirk Cousins. The pass defense for the Falcons is really bad and Cousins could certainly find all of the success he desires through the air. There’s a very real possibility that Mattison carries the ball from red zone to red zone and guys like Adam Thielen and Justin Jefferson find themselves with the touchdowns.
Minnesota has a very concentrated passing offense, which is great for fantasy purposes particularly against a bad defense. At 7300, I’ll have some Adam Thielen in my player pool. I feel much more confident that he can pay off that pricetag more often than Mattison can. A smooth 100-yard game with two touchdowns feels very much in the realm of possibility.
I like Justin Jefferson in several situations but this feels more like an Adam Thielen game. This defense allows quarterbacks to do whatever they want on offense and Kirk Cousins has just been throwing the ball to Adam so long that it feels like a good game for the two to reminisce. Jefferson is also priced up to 6,000. The upside is higher with Adam Thielen as is the floor.
I’m not precocious enough to try to sell you on Kyle Rudolph but if you like being ahead of the curve sometime in the near future Irv Smith Jr should see the highest snap counts on the team at the tight end position. This week he’s priced at 2,500, the bare minimum, and he’s second on the team in RZ targets. Last week he had five targets and 64 yds, so he certainly has the upside on any given week. He has absolutely no floor, but as far as dart throws you could do a heck of a lot worse. I’ll have him in my player pool. I’m not sure I’ll go down that far but he could get five targets and 50 yards this week and a TD and that wouldn’t surprise me at all.
To recap: in this game I like Todd Gurley and Adam Thielen
WAS @ NYG
Over/Under 43 NYG -3
This game has the lowest point total on the board, two questionable run games, and 2 quarterbacks with a plethora of issues. It’s easy to play Kyle Allen at 4000, but not so much at 5000 and Daniel Jones couldn’t score a TD last week against a Cowboys defense that’s easily one of the worst in the league.
I’m not playing anyone from either offense this week. There may be some upside in some spots but the majority of likelihood scenarios involve both teams playing poorly and this game turning into a field goal contest. Both defenses are bad too, so yeah, I’m skipping this one. There’s much more opportunity elsewhere.
CHI @ CAR
Over/Under 44.5 CAR -2.5
This one should be quick. The point total is low and probably feels about right. There likely won’t be a lot of scoring in this one. CHI has a good defense and Teddy B of the Panthers has been outkicking his coverage. If ever there was a ‘bring him down to Earth’ moment, this should be it for Bridgewater. I think this one could easily come down to the wire and CHI or CAR could find a path to victory so I’m going to steer clear on the betting side.
The Panthers defense is not good and the CHI QB is not good so it’s a match made in football heaven. Nick Foles is not a better QB than Trubisky who he supplanted as the starter earlier in the year. They’re both equally bad; they just have different fatal flaws.
I only like 2 pieces of this CHI offense and the first is RB David Montgomery. The CAR defense has given up 9 TDs to opposing RBs so far this season and David Montgomery will have a good opportunity to increase that TD number. After his backfield-mate Tarik Cohen went down for the season due to injury, Montgomery has taken the reins of the backfield. He’s not a good RB, let’s get that out of the way. There are plenty of other RBs in the league who don’t start for their teams and are much better than this dude. That being said, this CAR defense really is that bad and David is averaging 7 targets a game over the last 2. He’s also averaging 10 carries a game over that same span, which doesn’t sound like much but in the context that he faced two difficult defenses in the last games, we can reasonably expect an increased rep count in this one. At 5800, there are very few times I’d ever want to play Montgomery, this just happens to be one of those times.
The 2nd piece of this offense that I like is WR1 Allen Robinson. He could hit value on usage alone. Over the last 3 weeks he’s averaged 13 targets. I don’t trust Foles to make life easy for him, but it’s clear that the Bears OC is telling the QB to get him involved. He had 19 fpts against TB and 26.1 points against IND, both tough defenses. At 7000, I’ll have some Allen Robinson in my lineups. Something about him feels like a trap this week, I’ll readily admit this. He’s been consistent and I’m sure I’m not the only to notice that. I like him, I’ll play him, I don’t expect to have a lot of him, but that’s due to more of a gut feeling than anything on a stat sheet. I’d say go with your heart on him.
The rest of this CHI offense is trash with Foles at the helm.
As I mentioned earlier, I think Bridgewater is in for a rough game. CHI should go blitz crazy and if Montgomery has any success running the ball, Teddy B might find himself with less drive opportunities than in prior games. He’s played two good games in a row and he’s not a good qb, so I’m certainly not playing him against this Bears defense.
RB Mike Davis is a good play in the same way that Allen Robinson is a good play: it’s because of volume. The CHI defense should do a better job at limiting his yardage than the Falcons in week 5 (89 yards) and the Cardinals in week 4 (84 yards). He’s averaging a little over 7 receptions and 44 passing yards per over the last 3. His role in the passing game gives him a floor of about 11 fpts and he might even see 2 or 3 more targets if/when he struggles to break through the D line and Teddy B needs a quick dump off while he’s being chased. The PPR floor is what really sells me on this guy. At 7000, with an expected pass game stat line of about 14 fpts from the passing game alone, he’s a good play too. If somehow he finds the end zone, on a broken run play, he’s in for a big game.
The CHI defense is going to make Bridgewater into a quick outlet passer so that crosses DJ Moore off of our list. He’s great, but specializes at a deeper depth than what we should see in this game. Robby Anderson has been on fire in 3 of the last 4 weeks. He’s had over 17.9 fpts in all 3 and his dud came against a very tough LAC matchup. At 6300, this is probably the time to get off the Anderson train, but he’s not a bad option. The volume is there and he should steal a target or two that would ordinarily have gone to DJ Moore.
The rest of the CAR offense is basically non-existent, at least for our purposes. No one is going to play this and I won’t recommend this in most circumstances but the Panthers Defense is probably one of the best sub 3000 priced defenses this week. At 2900, they’re going against Foles and all they really have to do is double Allen Robinson and let David Montgomery do David Montgomery things. I’m not excited to play them by any means, but I’ve struggled to find many other cheap defenses that I like this week and they made the cut.
HOU @ TEN
Over/Under 53.5 TEN -3.5
Alright, I really like this game. I think it hits the over pretty decisively and there’s so much fantasy potential on both sides. TEN looked pretty good this week coming off of a bye, I’m interested to see how good they look with only 4 days to prepare mentally and physically.
I like Deshaun Watson as a player and as a person. I root for him to do well. He could very easily struggle against a pretty decent Titans defense. At 7000, I like his upside in this matchup though, particularly because his opponents will be coming into this one with less rest than any other team will ever go into a game this season. The Bills played Tuesday and then again this Sunday. They had Wednesday off too so that’s one more day of game film sessions that didn’t take place. Watson is a great place to start a QB/WR game stack with and I’m sure I’ll have several that start just like that.
The Titans defense allowed only 2 TDs to a very good young QB in Josh Allen earlier this week. What they did not do a good job of is successfully limiting Bills WR Stefon Diggs, who had 10 catches for 106 yards. Diggs has a very similar skillset to Houston’s Brandin Cooks who comes into this one after last week’s breakout performance: 8 receptions for 161 yards and a TD. Another 100 yard plus game could very well be in store for Cooks and at 5000, the upside for the price is probably one of the best on the slate. To hammer this one down, the Titans also allowed a very similar receiver in Justin Jefferson to go 7 of 9 for 175 yards and a TD, in week 3. They struggle against the speedy guys outside, so again, I feel good about Cooks having another good showing for a second week in a row in this matchup
I like Will Fuller in plenty of spots, just not this one. TEN does a good job of limiting the opposing possession receiver
Week 5: Cole Beasley* – 6 catches, 53 yards
Week 3: Adam Thielen – 3 catches, 29 yards, 1 TD
Week 2: DJ Chark – 4 catches, 84 yards
*Beasley isn’t necessarily the same kind of receiver but the Bills don’t really have a typical possession WR1 and measly Beasley is about as close as they get in terms of possession adot.
If you want to chase Darren Fells, good luck with that. TDs are not reliable statistics and although he scored 13.7 fpts last week, take away the TD and his 2 targets even for over 50 yards doesn’t look that great.
Ryan Tannehill was the man on Tuesday. He looked awesome! He had 3 passing TDs and 1 rushing TD against a decent Bills defense. At 5900, he’s still underpriced and I like him again this Sunday.
The first and only receiver I’m looking at on the Titans is WR1 AJ Brown. He looked great earlier this week. He and Tannehill showed off a lot of chemistry and hopefully that continues in this matchup. At, 5600 he’s priced well for the upside. My biggest concern is if he sees shadow coverage from one of the top corners in the league: Bradley Roby. He should. In his coverage, Roby is allowing a very low 0.76 yards per route run. AJ Brown is a stud who could find success in any matchup, but I’m more nervous about this cornerback/WR pairing than I am excited to press the repeat button on drafting Brown again.
The rest of the WRs on the Titans don’t have the same upside all things being equal, regardless of matchup
Jonnu Smith is one of my favorite TE plays of the week. He had a great game against the Bills and he’s one of Tannehill’s favorite RZ options. If Brown is at all limited by Roby, which I suspect he will be, a couple of those targets could funnel towards Smith and at 5200, he’s a solid play. I’d project about 7 catches for 80 yards and a TD for him, if AJ struggles to get open. I don’t know if there’s the same upside to fly past the 100 yard mark like Mark Andrews has, but he can succeed everywhere else. I like Jonnu a lot this week. He’s my guy.
I don’t feel great about RB Derrick Henry at all in a shortened week. At 7300, you have to consider him because he’s a good RB. If I were coaching the Titans I’d go easy on his touches in a shortened week and as a result I’ll have very few shares of him. I’m not sure on the ownership, but he had a bad game last week by his standards and he still had 19.3 fpts so ownership on this slate could be up there.
Obviously we’re not playing either defense in such a high total game with shootout potential.
CLE @ PIT
Over/Under 51.0 PIT -3.5
This isn’t necessarily one of the games I’ll be targeting much. Both teams come into this game high on confidence, as the Steelers come in undefeated at 4-0 and the Browns enter with a single loss, 4-1. It’s hard to definitively say who the better team will be in this game, but PIT is most assuredly the healthiest team and for that reason I’ll side with them. They should get the W in this one.
Baker is coming into this one questionable with an injury to his ribs and chest. He’ll probably play but any injury like that will affect his throwing motion and his throwing motion wasn’t very good in the first place. His health concerns mixed with the high quality PIT defense are more than enough of a cocktail to take me off of him.
Since I don’t trust Baker’s health, I’m not a big fan of his most trusted targets. Beckham has been questionable most of the week, while out with an illness. I’m sure he’ll play, but even if he does I’m not a fan in this matchup.
Jarvis Landry is still questionable as of Saturday while he’s working through his own injuries (ribs/hip). He’s had only a limited practice on Friday and that makes his availability this weekend very unlikely. If and only if Landry misses, WR3 Rashard Higgins could be a surprisingly good play. Landry currently projects to see coverage from the worst of the PIT corners (Mike Hilton). If Higgins can find himself with that matchup some of the time, he’ll have a height/strength advantage that is very much worth a shot at the bare min 3000. His stats won’t jump off of the page to the untrained eye and it’s a very deep cut of a play, but could end up being a good one if PIT takes an early lead and Baker has to throw from behind (which sounds likely).
The only other guy I want anything to do with on the CLE offense is TE Austin Hooper. He’s priced down to 3900 and he’s the most likely candidate to lead his team in targets this week. His red zone usage is low, which isn’t helpful, but he’s averaging 8.5 targets over the last 2 weeks and he’s steadily trending in the positive regression territory. If Baker struggles with the injury and/or the defense, he should be targeting Hooper quite a bit.
The Steelers rank 5th in fpts given up to the RB position and mostly for that reason and the fact that he’s priced up to 6900 and he’s not getting the target load to substantiate that, I’m off of Kareem Hunt. He’s TD dependent and although he’s done a great job of finding the endzone so far this season in every single game, this is not sustainable. That streak should end in this one.
Very rarely will I ever draft the defense of a team coming into a matchup as an underdog. This is no exception. There is only one defense to consider here and it’s on the other side of the ball. The CLE D will certainly be a good defense to consider later on in the season.
The Steelers should be the better (and healthier) team in this matchup and there are a couple pieces of this offense worth consideration. If there’s one thing Ben Roethlisberger is good at it’s finding his floor and never letting it out of his sight. He’s averaging 21.2 fpts so far this season and in all 4 games he’s deviated from this average by no more than 2.02 fpts. I guess he’s just a creature of habit. If after reviewing your lineup you feel like you need exactly 21.2 fpts, this is your guy. At 6700, he’s probably priced appropriately but I think there are several cheaper guys who will outscore him this week. I won’t have him in my player pool at all.
Since we’re pretty certain Ben is going to get his 2.5 TDs, it’s just a matter of figuring out who helps him make that happen. I’m not one to chase* points, but Chase Claypool is set to have a 5 inch height advantage and on the right side of a 37 pound strength disparity in his WR/CB matchup against Denzel Ward. That is one solid CB, statistically he’s no joke, this is just a good matchup for Claypool if he and Ben can take advantage of it. I’m not expecting to see a repeat performance of his 4 TD game like he had had last week, but at 5200 he’s priced well enough to be more than pleased with a 5 rec – 80 yd – 1 TD game. Diontae Johnson’s early exit paved the way for his success last week undoubtedly and Johnson is officially out in this one too.
Quite a few people are likely to be *chasing this week so if you’re looking for a little ownership leverage, JuJu Smith-Schuster is your guy. He’s priced up to 6600 which feels a little high considering he has the same upside as Chase Claypool. He’s going to have the tougher CB matchup but Juju is a really good receiver who has the confidence of Big Ben. So far this season Juju has scored a TD in every other game he’s played and he didn’t score last week, so by that slightly warped logic I feel good about him finding the endzone in this one. This is going to feel as weird for me to type this out as it is for you to read it, but I kinda think Claypool has a safer floor in this matchup. I think he gets more targets and more yards and each of these dudes will likely get into the endzone. I don’t think this is the spot I’ll be playing Juju in but it makes sense in theory.
One guy I kinda like mainly due to his price point is TE Eric Ebron, priced at 4100. He’s seen an average of 6.5 targets over the last couple games and he’s facing a CLE defense that ranks 8th worst in fpts allowed to the TE position. He’s not the safest play, but at his price, he could easily be valuable.
James Conner is interesting in this game. If we think PIT wins this game, which we do, then at some point they’re going to be playing with a lead and that’s where Conner should be coming in to carry the ball. The Browns are the 10th best team in the league at limiting the fantasy points of opposing RBs so it’s going to be a fairly tall task for him. Denver has a better run defense though and he scored 23.1 fpts on over 100 yards rushing against them earlier in the season. I don’t feel good about his floor at 7100, because he and Big Ben value safe floors very differently, but I very much like his upside here. I’ll have some shares, probably not a ton, but some for sure. His ownership should be one of if not the lowest of the top priced RBs too.
There are a few paths to the Steelers Defense getting derailed this week, but there’s a heck of a lot more opportunities for them to play well in this one. I like them at their 3600 pricetag.
DEN @ NE
Over/Under 44.5 NE -9.5
I’m very nervous about this game actually playing. The Patriots had a positive covid test at the end of the week and practice was cancelled on Friday. On Saturday, it sounds like they’ve figured things out and the game is back on but this is very much a situation worth monitoring. It’s a low total with a big spread and I probably wouldn’t be rostering anything from this game even if there weren’t covid concerns. I hate the NE backfield and DEN is not good enough to win most games but they’re good enough to make it difficult for their opponents as they’re getting beaten. All of that above screams steer clear so I will cordially heed this advice and move on to the next one. If you choose to play pieces from this game, stay up to date on the status of this game every second until kickoff.
NYJ @ MIA
Over/Under 47.5 MIA -8.5
Weather Advisory: Rain
Man, I hate this game. It’s going to be rainy and the jets are involved. Miami should have their way with them early and do everything possible to get this game over with. I like the Dolphins in this one and even the points.
The Jets are still starting Joe Flacco at QB so I don’t like anyone on this offense. They’re all such thin plays. I know you want to play WR1 Jamison Crowder because you see his stat lines from the last 3 games, but have some self control. Is Jamison Crowder really 11 targets, 111 yards, and 0.66 TDs per game good? No. No, he’s not. At 6100, I don’t think he’s a good play at all this week. He’s WAY overdue for some negative regression.
You don’t need to draft Jeff Smith at 3000 either, because Breshad Perriman should be back and will dip into his workload. There are so many other plays on this slate we can use to be contrarian, we don’t need any Jets to F it up.
If you want a piece of this game you’re going to have to pick right on the MIA side of the ball. First and foremost I like the MIA Defense at 2900. They probably have the highest upside of any sub 3k defense on the slate.
On the MIA offense, I always have a soft spot for Ryan Fitzpatrick. He’ll attack Goliath after Goliath without a second thought and this type of moxie makes him a very fantasy-friendly QB. I don’t expect he’ll need to do much in this one. The rain is going to muck things up and we’ll have plenty of other opportunities to play him later on.
At the WR position, I like Devante Parker and Preston Williams in general but not to have an exceptional fantasy day in this situation. Same sentiments towards TE Mike Gesicki apply, I like him, I think he’s a great player, but he just won’t be asked to do too much in this one.
Since Miami is most likely going to be playing with a lead against a bad Jets defense, in the rain, my favorite (and only) play in this game is Myles Gaskin. At 5400, his pricetag is more than fair. He’s seeing an average of 16 carries and 4.6 targets over the last 3 games as he’s become the clear lead back on this offense. He leads the team in RZ rushes and is second on the team in RZ targets. In addition to all of that, the Jets also allow the 6th most fpts to the RB position so Gaskin is in possibly the best RB spot on the slate to have himself a career game. He’ll definitely be in my player pool.
GB @ TB
Over/Under 54 GB -2.5
Our last game on the slate is a beauty. The GB Packers take on Brady and company.
I have no inclination of who wins this one so I’m out on betting it. I’m very much looking forward to watching this one and seeing how everything shakes out.
Aaron Rodgers has played excellently this season. He’s avering 27.5 fpts per game and he has a flawless 13-0 TD to Interception ratio. He’s also built those stats upon wins against ATL and a young MIN defense in week 1. The TB defense will be his greatest challenge yet so far this year. Against the 2 best defenses Rodgers has faced thus far (NO and DET), he’s averaged 2.5 TDs on 261.5 yards passing and 21.86 fpts. This is the type of numbers we should be expecting in this game and at 7500, there’s no way we’re paying that.
At the GB WR position, Davante Adams is back and that should limit the upside of every other pass catcher on the GB offense. In his one healthy game so far this season, he saw 17 targets. I don’t necessarily expect him to see that amount of targets this week, coming back from an injury, but I do expect enough targets to limit those around him. At 8000, I think he’s too expensive to pay up for against a top third quality defense.
Robert Tonyan is probably the only guy I even remotely like on this offense relative to his price. At 5100, he will most certainly see Adams dip into his targets to some degree but just about all of the other GB receivers are either injured or not good so there’s a path for him to see a sizable workload even with Adams back. He’s in no means my favorite TE play but he’s serviceable in some spots.
The best angle of attack for the Packers in this game is on the ground with Aaron Jones. The Bucs are 8th best in fpts allowed to the RB position but they’ve only played one top tier RB (Week 1: Alvin Kamara – 23.70 fpts). Jones is very expensive at 7600 and rostering him requires some creativity with the rest of your lineup from a salary standpoint, but he is a good play nonetheless. He’s coming into this game off of a bye so he’s as healthy as he’ll ever be, ready to lengthen his 4 game TD streak. I don’t feel great about a 4000 Jamal Williams at all, but if you’re feeling him, by all means jam into your lineups. I wouldn’t feel good about it but if Jones exits early, you’re going to have a lot of room for upside with a 4k RB with touches.
This is not a good situation to play the GB defense.
There are way too many question marks within the TB backfield. Fournette is questionable but expected to play, but how much is he going to play? And greatly depending on how much Fournette plays, Ronald Jones’ price at 6000 looks less and less appealing. Yeah, I don’t want any part of this backfield.
Tom Brady could have himself a game this weekend. He’s been feast or famine so far this year so it’s hard to trust him, but it is possible. I’d rather find the extra 500 to pay up for Watson or save 200 and pay for Matt Stafford, but there are plenty of other guys you could pick with less upside than Brady.
I’ve looked up and down the TB roster for any WR or TE that I like this week and they all have more detractors than reasons for optimism. I think Chris Godwin has the highest upside but he’s coming off of an injury that had him miss game time and he’s priced at 6400. The coaching staff could and likely will limit his snaps depending on how the game flow goes in this one. With Godwin back, that should limit the upside of Scotty Miller and Mike Evans and against a pair of very good corners, they needed all the help they could get.
At some point Gronk and Brate will be good plays again but I dont think this is the week.
I wouldn’t say this game is flowing with a lot of fantasy goodness but it’s very intriguing for spectator purposes. I don’t expect to have any parts of this matchup except for maybe a sprinkle of Aaron Jones in the right spots.