Once again it is time to put down that extra scoop of mashed potatoes and get your lineup in for Thanksgiving Day DFS. So, for this abbreviated Turkey day action I have identified my favorite pay to play, fade, and value play at each position. Don’t worry regular DFS players, we’ll be back Friday with our regular Daily Domination article to help you set your weekend only daily fantasy lineups.
Here are my recommendations for this week’s price range targets by position.
At DK: 7.3K for Ben Roethlisberger, 17.5K for LeVeon Bell and Ezekiel Elliott, 14-15K for Jamison Crowder and two other WRs, 3.7K for Kyle Rudolph at tight end, 4.3K or less for your FLEX (I’m leaning one of the cheaper RBs or Ladarius Green) , and 2.8K for Pittsburgh Defense.
At FD: 8.5K for Big Ben, 18.1K for Bell and Zeke, 19K for your WRs, 5.3K for Rudolph, and 9K combined for kicker and defense of your choice (I’m leaning Dustin Hopkins and Pittsburgh Defense).
Prices indicated: Red = I’ll Pass and Black = Acceptable Value and Green = I’m Gonna Need a Bigger Plate
Weekly strategy – With Andrew Luck likely to miss this game with a concussion this leaves Ben Roethlisberger as the only truly high-priced option. He is also the safest option. The only two other guys I’d consider are Sam Bradford and Kirk Cousins. If you are a fan of schaudenfreude you may wish to start Scott Tolzien. Of course, that would be as awful as trying to down a big plate of Tofurkey. If by some miracle Luck plays he could be an ok option, since Pittsburgh’s defense is an oxymoron.
Pay To Play
Ben Roethlisberger, Steelers @ IND ($7300 DK, $8500 FD)
Indianapolis has allowed multiple passing TDs in each of their last seven games. Ben Roethlisberger has faced Indy once each of the last two years. In those two games, he has posted a ridiculous 886 yards and TEN touchdowns. In each of those two games, Indy’s defense was healthier than it will be this week.
Dak Prescott, Cowboys vs. WAS ($6300 DK, $8000 FD)
Washington has gotten into shootouts the last two weeks, but prior to that they had allowed zero or one passing TD in seven straight. One of those passing shutouts was Week 2 against Dak Prescott. Although it should be noted that Dak ran in a score in that game. I just cannot pay that much for Prescott when I can have Big Ben for so just a smidge more.
Sam Bradford, Vikings @ DET ($5100 DK, $6700 FD)
Detroit’s defense has become better than at the start of the season, but they are still short-handed due to injury. Meanwhile, Sam Bradford has been performing much better since Norv Turner “quit” and Pat Shurmur took over play calling. Only three teams have allowed more passing scores than the Lions. I guarantee that Bradford outperforms the 270-1 he posted a couple weeks back against this Lions’ club.
Weekly strategy – There aren’t really any horrible plays here amongst the starters, other than Theo Riddick. I’m a little scared that Pittsburgh will lay out the Stove Top against Frank Gore. Based on volume both Gore and Rob Kelley could be contrarian plays or DK FLEX, but I doubt I ignore the Big Two (Ezekiel Elliott and LeVeon Bell) this week. You have to spend your money somewhere and these two are considerably safer than most of the top tier at WR. Of course, you cannot afford both of these two and Antonio Brown, unless you punt at QB.
Pay To Play
LeVeon Bell, Steelers @ IND ($9000 DK, $9500 FD)
Indianapolis has been abused by pass-catching backs this year. No team has allowed more RB receiving scores. Plus, LeVeon Bell has three scores in the last two weeks and he has been held under 100 scrimmage yards only once all year.
Theo Riddick, Lions vs. MIN ($5400 DK, $6400 FD)
Theo Riddick cannot run between the tackles. The only reason he even got 76 total yards in the first meeting this year with Minnesota was due to defensive injuries. The Vikings defense is mostly healed up so I just can’t fathom him topping that figure this week. His best value is in PPR formats and Minnesota can give up some RB receptions and yards but I still don’t love Riddick’s chances here.
Rob Kelley, Redskins @ DAL ($4300 DK, $5700 FD)
I don’t love this play, but based on volume alone Rob Kelley is probably the best “third option” this week behind the Big-Two. Dallas is pretty staunch against the run, but they have allowed RB touchdowns in three of their last four games. If I want to stack Big Ben and Antonio Brown, I will need to roster Kelley as my RB2 alongside one of the Big-Two. Otherwise, Kelley will see a few of my lineups as a DK FLEX if I’m a tight wad at TE or WR2/WR3.
|Marvin Jones Jr.||$4,100||$5,700|
Weekly strategy – Obviously, Antonio Brown is a stud with a great matchup. I just don’t think I can fit him in to my pocketbook this week without punting at RB2. The cheaper (and perhaps wiser play is loading up on lesser priced guys (Jamison Crowder, Eli Rogers, Cole Beasley, Adam Thielen, Cordarrelle Patterson, Golden Tate).
Pay To Play
Antonio Brown, Steelers @ IND ($9200 DK, $8800 FD)
This is a tough one, but if you can make it work financially do it. Antonio Brown has posted a measly 18-251-4 against Indy in their two most recent meetings. The negative here is the only way to get Brown, Ben, Zeke, and Bell onto the same DK roster would be to scrape the barrel at TE, use two sub-3.5K WRs at WR2/WR3, and choose another league minimum guy as your DK FLEX.
Dez Bryant, Cowboys vs. WAS ($7700 DK, $8000 FD)
Dez Bryant is very good and he has been red hot of late. Unfortunately I cannot pay this much knowing that he is about to be shadowed by Josh Norman. Last year (with Norman shadowing him for Carolina), Dez caught two of eight targets for only 26 yards. That said, this could be the ultimate contrarian play since he is so hot.
Adam Thielen, Vikings @ DET ($4000 DK, $6200 FD)
Adam Thielen has also been very hot of late. He has five or more targets in five of his last six games. He has also scored in back-to-back games. Detroit has one good CB and a bunch of rotten subordinates. I imagine that Darius Slay will attempt to shadow Stefon Diggs (although I doubt he succeeds). This leaves the remaining pieces to try and stop both Thielen and Cordarrelle Patterson (who I also like as a sleeper this week).
Weekly strategy – You shouldn’t have the money to roster Jordan Reed, although he has a pretty solid matchup. Fortunately, both Ladarius Green and Kyle Rudolph also have sexy matchups at considerably cheaper salaries. For the heck of it, I will do one Kirk Cousins-Reed stack, but most of my money will be on Rudolph.
Pay To Play
Kyle Rudolph, Vikings @ DET ($3700 DK, $5300 FD)
Detroit has allowed the most TE touchdowns this year. This includes one in every game except three. Plus, Kyle Rudolph has scored a TD against the Lions in each of their last three meetings.
Jordan Reed, Redskins @ DAL ($6200 DK, $7400 FD)
It is actually a fairly healthy matchup for Reed, but I just cannot pay this much for him, knowing that the rest of the position is loaded with value. I’m definitely fading him at FD, where, I don’t see him reaching his price point.
Ladarius Green, Steelers @ IND ($2600 DK, $4500 FD)
The Colts have allowed 73 yards or more and/or a TD to the tight end position in six of their last eight contests. Ladarius Green was targeted a fair amount in his first game back, but was MIA in a cakewalk against Cleveland last week. I think he gets back on track this week.