Green Bay dominated this past Monday and anyone who rostered the Aaron Rodgers-Randall Cobb-James Jones stack is likely still stacking chips. For the rest of us, the grind goes on. Typically, owners need some variance from the expected result to win big in GPP tourneys. This past week however, going with expected superstars would’ve netted you in the mid 200’s in points. Adrian Peterson, Jamaal Charles, Antonio Brown, Julio Jones, and Randall Cobb all finished in the upper stratosphere. That said the big money winners still had guys like Joseph Randle and Devonta Freeman dotting their lineups and saving their owners money. Ultimately it is your chose when to go with the value play versus the superstar, but we’re to help you as best we can.
In choosing between going the A-Rod route and the Ty-Rod route you need to determine if $5800 for 277-3 (Tyrod Taylor) is a better deal than $8000 for 333-5. It turned out that you got 83% off the yards and 60% of the touchdowns for 72.5% of the cost. This is about as close to a push as you can get in points per dollar. So imagine that Tyrod still had that huge day but Rodgers produced only 333-3. This would still appear to be a ridiculously good game. The difference is that now Taylor would’ve produced 83% of the yards and 100% of the TDs for 72.5% of the cost. So in this example Taylor would be the better value by a large margin.
Going into last week, I forecasted Aaron Rodgers to finish with 325-3. I also forecasted Tyrod Taylor to throw for 275-2 and add another TD on the ground. They both should’ve produced between 27-31 points using DK’s scale.
The reason I’m explaining this is to showcase the importance of a points/salary ratio. That is the ultimate tracking stat for DFS players. Typically, I determine a player’s grade by taking his predicted points and dividing it by his salary. If that number is under .0035, then that player gets a RED grade. If that number is between .0035 and .00475, then that player gets a GREEN rating, and if that number is over .00475, then that player gets a BLUE rating.
Of course, these ratings can also be adjusted to reflect injury status or perceived game flow, and in most cases I will err on the side of what we expect their floor to be. That is why there will always be more RED and GREEN ratings than BLUEs. Players will sometimes also be downgraded if their price tag is too close to another whose projected points are very high. A good example of this is Eli Manning this week. I like Manning, but his ratio is so far below guys like Russell Wilson and Cam Newton for the same price. This means that his value is much less than theirs, despite their similar price tag.
*Special Note – depending on your league the players in the New York Jets/Miami Dolphins game in London may not be included in your player pool. I have included their salaries on here in case they are.
**Special Note 2 – the Hurricane Joaquin may cause the postponement of the Washington/Philadelphia game. If it does odds are that it will be made up November 1st when both teams are scheduled to have their bye. Of course those stats won’t help you this week in DFS so if the game is off make sure you get your Eagles and Skins out of your lineup. If the game is played be aware that this sort of weather terrorism could hurt the values of Kirk Cousins and Sam Bradford’s passing attacks as well as both teams’ kicking games.
Prices indicated: Green = Acceptable and Red = Not Worth It and Blue = Gotta Have It
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Weekly strategy – This week it is Aaron Rodgers at any price. I believe he approaches 40 points this week – and yes I know that is more than he got last week. Andrew Luck will also out produce his lofty salary and he’ll be the anti-Rodgers play this week. For a few less bucks both Matt Ryan and Carson Palmer make tasty plays but most of the second and third tier QBs are projected to finish below their salary point. Making matters sketchier this week, most of the bottom tier QBs all have noticeable warts too. The only realistic punt options are Derek Carr, Jameis Winston, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Luke McCown, and Ryan Mallett. I’ll likely throw some shade each of their ways, but in general I feel I will stick with the big foursome listed above.
Your Fantasy Four Pack
Aaron Rodgers, Packers @ SF ($7900 DK, $9200 FD, $8900 FS)
You read it correct above, I believe Aaron Rodgers will top his production from last week. The 49ers have given up 680-5 over the last two games. Rodgers will approach those numbers himself. I’m not seriously going to predict 680 yards, but 400-4 is definitely in play (including at least 20 yards on the ground) and 425-5 is not out of the question. The only thing that could curb Rodgers’ numbers is how much his backup plays in the second half.
Andrew Luck, Colts vs. JAX ($7800 DK, $9100 FD, $8300 FS)
The only reason I will own a few more Andrew Luck shares compared with Aaron Rodgers this week is because everybody and their grandmother will own A-Rod making Luck a sexier pick between the two quarterbacks guaranteed to shoot the moon. The last two weeks, Jacksonville has allowed 359-2 and 358-2 respectively to opposing quarterbacks. The yards seem about right but I feel Luck has at minimum a third TD in his arsenal too.
Russell Wilson, Seahawks vs. DET ($7100 DK, $8200 FD, $7800 FS)
Detroit has faced two upper echelon QBs this year. They posted a combined 728-4. Neither of those two QBs had any mobility. Russell Wilson has a ton of mobility and he brings an element the Lions have not seen this year. Against a mediocre run defense (and with Marshawn Lynch questionable), Wilson should go for 60-1 on the ground to go along with his 225-2 through the air making him a solid play if you don’t want to open up the wallet for the top two.
Matt Ryan, Falcons vs. HOU ($6900 DK, $8400 FD, $7800 FS)
Matt Ryan has been automatic this year in terms of production. Julio Jones and he have hooked up relentlessly despite double and triple teams. The Texans have given up six passing TDs already this year despite facing nary a QB1. The best hope Houston has this week is their pass rush versus the Falcons’ O-Line. Of course, that same line has held tough so far allowing the ninth-fewest sacks through three weeks.
Luke McCown, Saints vs. DAL ($5000 DK, $5800 FD, $4800 FS)
Luke McCown looked decent last week filling in for the injured Drew Brees. Meanwhile, the Cowboys pass defense has gotten progressively worse each week this season. Right now Brees is trying to get himself right for Sunday, but we heard the same song-and-dance last week as well. If Brees plays I’m staying away for fear of re-injury as well as his bloated price tag. That said if McCown is the clear starter, then I will probably roll a couple of QB-punt lineups with him at the helm.
Derek Carr, Raiders @ CHI ($5300 DK, $7000 FD, $6300 FS)
Derek Carr gets his chance to dissect the Bears’ revolving-door defense. They were awful before trading away two key members of last year’s defense, now they are just that much thinner. The Chiefs are the only team to allow more passing TDs on the season. For their side of the coin, the Raiders are sixth in passing TDs and seventh in passing yards.
Weekly strategy – I spent a ton on my QB position so I have to cut some corners here. Fortunately for me, none of the premiere RBs has a great setup except Eddie Lacy. I would be willing to take a risk on a Jamaal Charles or Matt Forte but they aren’t a good deal pricewise. The guys I like best are Latavius Murray and Frank Gore and if I throw any money at the position it will probably be at them. More likely, is that I will punt with pass-catching options like Darren Sproles, Lance Dunbar, and Danny Woodhead. I may also fill roster spots with injury replacements such as Thomas Rawls, Ryan Mathews, or Karlos Williams…if Marshawn Lynch, DeMarco Murray and/or LeSean McCoy don’t play. Of course, those three will be heavily owned if they end up starting making them very un-contrarian.
Your Fantasy Four Pack
Jamaal Charles, Chiefs @ CIN ($7600 DK, $8700 FD, $8100 FS)
The Bengals’ defense is stingy against every position. That said the one way to beat them is with pass-catching RBs. Through three weeks, opposing running backs are averaging nine receptions for 68 yards per game, to go along with a pair of TD receptions. Charles has 20 targets and 15 receptions through their first three games, and he could’ve had more last week before Green Bay basically took him out of the passing game with their scheme.
Eddie Lacy, Packers @ SF ($7400 DK, $7800 FD, $7800 FS)
If Eddie Lacy was 100% he would be the consensus number 1 running back this week. As it is he still may outperform all of the rest of this class. The San Francisco 49ers defense has given up 187-5 to over-the-hill veterans, Chris Johnson and DeAngelo Williams, the last two weeks. Imagine what a non-AARP-eligible RB will do against them.
Matt Forte, Bears vs. OAK ($7100 DK, $8300 FD, $7900 FS)
This ranking is more about the mediocrity that is Oakland’s defense rather than my confidence in Matt Forte. Of course, Forte should get a slight reprieve in 8-man fronts with the expected return of Alshon Jeffery. He also will remain a key passing game aspect of Jimmy Clausen’s offense (mainly because dump off passes and bubble screens are the only passes he can routinely complete).
Latavius Murray, Raiders @ CHI ($6300 DK, $7500 FD, $6300 FS)
This is truly a battle of which defense could care less. As bad as Oakland’s rushing defense is, Chicago’s defense is likely worse. All you need to know of their ineptitude is that they have been stomped in consecutive weeks by Chris Johnson and Thomas Rawls. Meanwhile, Latavius Murray just destroyed the Browns and he has scored in back-to-back contests.
Frank Gore, Colts vs. JAX ($4700 DK, $7300 FD, $5500 FS)
After shutting down Lamar Miller and Jon Stewart the first two weeks, Jacksonville went to plaid last week against New England. Four TDs by the Patriots later and they are who we thought they were. Frank Gore will have no trouble moving the ball against this defense much like he did last week versus Tennessee when he posted 86-2.
Darren Sproles, Eagles @ WAS ($4500 DK, $6000 FD, $4700 FS)
Darren Sproles had a huge game as the pass-catching alternative to Ryan Mathews last week while DeMarco Murray stood on the sidelines in street clothes. I’m not sure what Murray’s plans are for this week…I’m not even sure he knows what his plans are. Sproles scored twice last week and he remains an option to take any touch to the house. The Redskins have held two awful rushing attacks in check and then they got beat down pretty bad by the Giants mediocre cadre of components. Sproles is a better athlete than anyone in the Giants’ back field; he should produce a nice line this week even if Murray comes out of his cocoon. – Remember watch the weather in case this one is cancelled.
|Duke Johnson Jr.||$3,100||$5,500||$2,400|
Weekly strategy – Having thrown 8K at QB and a likely 10K at two RB slots, I am going to have about 22-25K for three WRs and a FLEX. That is assuming 4K for TE and 3K for defense. If I take one of the three injury replacement RBs at FLEX for @3.5K that still leaves me 18.5-21.5K for three WRs. Looking quickly over the price tags I am probably going to be able to afford one premiere WR (Julio Jones, Emmanuel Sanders, or Randall Cobb) and a couple second/third tier guys (James Jones, Jordan Matthews, or Amari Cooper). The punt options are much thinner here. I do like Allen Hurns, Marvin Jones, Seth Roberts, and Ted Ginn Jr., but none of these options is gonna be a game winner.
Your Fantasy Four Pack
Julio Jones, Falcons vs. HOU ($9300 DK, $9400 FD, $8900 FS)
Julio Jones has been about as dominant as any receiver in recent history. Averaging 11-147 on 15 targets per game would be pudding enough, but throw in four TDs and you are cooking with truffles. Houston just got done getting run over by Mike Evans, that’ll seem like a routine tooth cleaning compared to the root canal they are about to face.
Odell Beckham Jr., Giants @ BUF ($9100 DK, $9100 FD, $8300 FS)
Odell Beckham Jr. has seen an average of ten targets per game so far this season. He also has wrangled in two scores to go along with a 6-90 weekly average. Meanwhile, only three teams have allowed more WR yardage than Buffalo. Opposing teams WRs have topped 200 yards in each of their first three contests and they have allowed at least one receiver to score a TD in each game, including a pair in each of the last two.
Emmanuel Sanders, Broncos vs. MIN ($7700 DK, $7900 FD, $7300 FS)
The Minnesota Vikings have a great defense but their secondary remains a little thin behind Xavier Rhodes. Rhodes was hurt last week, but he expects to play this week. He’ll draw Demaryius Thomas leaving Sanders to draw either Terence Newman or Captain Munnerlyn. Neither is of the shutdown variety. He is averaging 7-80 with a pair of TDs on 12 targets per week. I think that Peyton will lean his way even more this week while Rhodes shuts down Thomas.
T.Y. Hilton, Colts vs. JAX ($7000 DK, $7700 FD, $7500 FS)
T.Y. Hilton only caught four passes last week but he did net 94 yards. It could easily have been a lot worse as there was fear that he might miss up to a month following his leg injury Week 2. Two secondary receivers hauled in TDs against the Jaguars last week, but Julian Edelman still produced a team leading eight receptions on 11 targets. That lead WR role on Indy belongs to Hilton. I firmly expect Andrew Luck to blow up this week and with that lead role within that blowup Hilton should go off.
Allen Hurns, Jaguars @ IND ($3900 DK, $5300 FD, $2400 FS)
Vontae Davis took Justin Hunter out of last week’s game leaving 9-117-2 for the duo of Kendall Wright and Dorial Green-Beckham. This week he looks to shut down Allen Robinson leaving Allen Hurns the opportunity to have his way with their 5th or 6th best CB due to injuries. Hurns is averaging only 4-66 so far this year but he did catch a long TD last week. Check back later this week to confirm that Hurns is good to go though as he is also battling a thigh issue.
Marvin Jones, Bengals vs. KC ($3800 DK, $5500 FD, $3800 FS)
Marvin Jones was a TD-machine a couple years back. He then got hurt and missed all of last year. Well guess what? He’s back and he picked up right where he left off. In his last seven games he has a TD. Kansas City gets back Sean Smith this week and he will immediately jump into shutdown mode against A.J. Green. This leaves the remaining corners to cover Jones. Those remaining corners have given up the most receptions, the second-most yards, and a league-leading nine total touchdowns to opposing WRs so far this year. Jones’ floor is 6-75-1. I’m actually expecting at least two scores though and he will be in every one of my DFS lineups this week.
|Odell Beckham Jr.||$9,100||$9,100||$8,300|
|Cecil Shorts III||$3,500||$5,300||$2,300|
|Ted Ginn Jr.||$3,400||$5,500||$2,000|
Weekly strategy – I’ve targeted roughly 4K for the tight end position this week so I’m not going to nabbing any of the big three at DK or any of the top seven at FD or FS. If I had the money to work with I’d be happy to roll with Jimmy Graham, Travis Kelce, or Greg Olsen, but I’ll be equally satisfied with Charles Clay, Kyle Rudolph, or Jared Cook. I’d also be ecstatic if I can finagle Martellus Bennett under my cap. In a lot of spots, I will stack Richard Rodgers with my Aaron Rodgers for some double-dip points.
Your Fantasy Four Pack
Jimmy Graham, Seahawks vs. DET ($6000 DK, $6600 FD, $7300 FS)
Detroit has allowed a TE touchdown in each of the first three contests. There is no way that string doesn’t continue against Jimmy Graham. Pete Carroll promised us more Graham and the squeaky wheel got oiled to the tune of 7-83-1 on eight targets last week. That upswing in targets will continue to grow this time out.
Greg Olsen, Panthers @ TB ($5400 DK, $6300 FD, $7100 FS)
Speaking of a coach guaranteeing to get his premiere tight end more targets…After a three target fail Week 1, Greg Olsen received 25 targets over Weeks 2 & 3. Those targets netted him 14 catches, 204 yards, and a pair of TDs. Over the last two years, Olsen has dominated the Buccaneers to the tune of 26-299-2 over four meetings.
Travis Kelce, Chiefs @ CIN ($5300 DK, $6400 FD, $7000 FS)
Travis Kelce has not been guaranteed more touches – but he should be. It is criminal that he has only been targeted 21 times this year. Despite the minimal targets he is still averaging 5-81 plus he has a pair of TDs and a pair of two-point conversions. Cincinnati is very good at covering WRs but they can get beat by tight ends. Just look at last week when Baltimore’s combo of Crockett Gillmore, Nick Boyle, and Maxx Williams posted 8-103 against them.
Martellus Bennett, Bears vs. OAK ($4500 DK, $5500 FD, $6400 FS)
So you didn’t believe me when I told you to take a flyer on Gary Barnidge last week. Yes, Oakland is that bad about covering TEs. Frankly speaking, I don’t even think they scheme to stop the position. Martellus Bennett has 100x more talent than Barnidge – and he’ll need all of that talent because Jimmy Clausen has 50x less talent than Derek Carr. Then again Josh McCown has nearly as much talent as Clausen so maybe we can expect a Barnidge line after all.
Charles Clay, Bills vs. NYG ($3300 DK, $5200 FD, $2900 FS)
Charles Clay has scored in back-to-back games for the first time since Weeks 4 & 5 of 2013. This shouldn’t be too surprising as Buffalo has used their TEs in the past in the red zone (see also Chandler, Scott). Clay was always an active part of Miami’s offense, last week he got to punish his former team for letting him walk. The Giants are allowing 7-80-1 to opposing tight ends but all three of those touchdowns were Week 1 versus Dallas. That said I wouldn’t be surprised if Clay makes it three in a row on the TD-ticker.
Richard Rodgers, Packers @ SF ($2500 DK, $4900 FD, $2800 FS)
Aaron Rodgers to Richard Rodgers it goes together like: Johnson & Johnson, Bagel & Bagel, and M & M’s. Now if we can just get Aaron to look Richard’s way a few more times per game. Richard has only 11 targets on the year but he has caught eight of those passes. Andrew Quarless was put on the IR and Davante Adams is in a walking boot so perhaps Richard might see some more targets next week. San Francisco has done a decent job against opposing TEs so far but that is only because they haven’t been able to stop anyone else. Let’s hope that with the missing pieces in the Green Bay passing game, Rodgers (Aaron) shares some more love with his namesake (Richard) Week 4.
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