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For the uninitiated, playing daily games on DraftKings can be an enjoyable experience, but equally sobering is the fact that season-long knowledge does not always translate to success in the daily space. Footballguys will bring you a series of value- and strategic-based selections from a number of seasoned daily veterans throughout the NFL season. Herein is another edition of “Tipandpick’s Tips and Picks,” where we will examine the salaries of players at each position on DraftKings and make value-based recommendations for both your cash games and tournaments.
Below you will find a list of recommended players for both formats. GPP players generally have high-upside, but are too risky for cash games; cash game players are consistent with high fantasy floors. In some instances, the value for a player is so strong, he may fall into both categories…let’s have a look.
UPDATED AT 8 AM (EST) on Sunday, October 13th
In order to help you build winning rosters, let's walk through some of the observations that I have made while doing my research for DraftKings this week. As you build out your lineups on DraftKings, try to consider the following commentary, which revolves around game strategy and how we will want to take advantage of what the masses are doing when they construct their own lineups.
PENDING VALUE AT RUNNING BACK: While recording The PowerGrid on Thursday night, the panel remarked that there was not (at that time) a lot of obvious value across the main DFS slate, which meant that ownership of players across the industry was relatively flat. And then Friday happened. Alvin Kamara missed practice with an ankle injury sustained at practice the day prior...Todd Gurley was announced as doubtful against the 49ers with a thigh contusion...and we learned that David Johnson was dealing with a back issue that caused him to yield snaps to Chase Edmonds in the Cards' Week #5 game against the Bengals. Of the three scenarios, we can conclude with a fair degree of certainty that Gurley will watch his game against the Niners, meaning that Malcolm Brown will absorb the RB1 role in that matchup. Brown may get plenty of opportunity at only $4.3K, but we would be remiss if we ignored the fact that the 49ers have yet to allow a rushing touchdown on their 2019 season; add in the fact that Brown might be owned on 30% of GPP rosters and it might make sense to go under that number in your own tournament portfolio.
The other scenarios are a bit harder to read as of the writing of this column. My current suspicions are as follows: 1) Alvin Kamara is announced as inactive on Sunday morning, and 2) David Johnson plays, albeit limitedly, against the Falcons--the remainder of the article is written under those assumptions. If Kamara is inactive, look for Latavius Murray to get all the action he can handle against the Jaguars last-ranked DVOA rush defense at a sub-$4K price point; he would become my de facto number-one player on the entire slate, if that were to occur. Regarding Johnson, he will be out of my player pool altogether unless we get a report that he is 100% all-systems-go on Sunday, which is close to an impossibility. That puts Chase Edmonds, who is averaging 6+ yards per carry in limited action this season, squarely on my tournament radar. Edmonds is not the bargain that Murray or Brown would be, but his resultant ownership will likely reflect that reality, which keeps him in play for GPP contests. The matchup against Atlanta is average (7th DVOA rush defense; 8th in FPs allowed to RBs), but Edmonds needs only to find the endzone to get close to paying off his salary; if he gets the lion's share of work on Sunday, I suspect that he will easily collect 16-20 touches and a score. If either of these scenarios does not play out as described here, check below my Twitter feed on Sunday morning to see how I plan to adjust the above strategy.
You know what they say about the best-laid plans...Adam Schefter tweeted overnight that both Alvin Kamara and David Johnson will be active today. This announcement completely scratches any recommendations I made on Latavius Murray--he should be OUT of your player pool with this news. Regarding David Johnson and Chase Edmonds, I will be following the guidance I provided the preceding paragraph with the expectation that Edmonds gets increased snaps at the expense of Johnson and his tweaked back.
|NAME||OPP.||SALARY||PROJ. %||CASH?||GPP STARS||NOTES|
|Warren Moon||@CAR||$6,400||11%||Yes||««««||4 stars = Best GPP selections.|
|Joe Montana||KC||$8,000||18%||-||«««||3 stars = Better GPP selections.|
|Dan Marino||NYG||$4,400||3%||Yes||««||2 stars = Good GPP selections.|
|Jim Kelly||@OAK||$5,100||7%||-||«||1 star = Average GPP selections.|
A new year brings a new format. In an effort to condense and enhance the value of the article, the text of Tips and Picks will be less than in years' past, but the upside is that you will now gain access to my full GPP player pool for DraftKings each and every week! For each position, I will provide Footballguys' subscribers with every player that I consider to be viable for cash games, while providing a ranking for every player that I will be drafting in my tournament lineups. The above table is an example of what you will see in the "Picks" section of this article. See below for some important bullet points regarding the new format:
- The "CROWD EXPOSURE" column is based on Steve Buzzard's Ownership Projections each week.
- The "CASH VIABLE?" column reveals to the reader which players can be considered for cash games (50/50's, double-ups, and head-to-head contests).
- The "GPP STARS" column rates players according to how I rank them in my large-field GPP contests each week:
- 4 stars: The players in which I will be most overweight on the public (indicated in the 'Crowd Exposure' column); these are my most confident plays.
- 3 stars: The players in which I like more than the public (indicated in the 'Crowd Exposure' column); these are plays that I feel strongly could deliver.
- 2 stars: The players in which I will be close to the public (indicated in the 'Crowd Exposure' column); these players reflect those that I think the public percentages are most accurate.
- 1 star: The players in which I will be exposed at rates lower than the public (indicated in the 'Crowd Exposure' column) OR at rates generally lower than 5% overall; these are players who merit consideration in your overall approach, but will be limited in my player pool due to game strategy reasons.
- If you have any questions on the new format, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Let's take a deeper look into some of the players who I will be targeting for my cash game and tournament rosters this weekend. A short summary follows each respective table to fill in the gaps that led to the respective recommendations; that text represents only an overview of the methodology and rationale that goes into each recommendation.
|NAME||OPP.||SALARY||PROJ. %||CASH?||GPP STARS||NOTES|
|Patrick Mahomes II||HOU||$7,500||12%||Yes||««««||HOU D: Allowed 300+ passing yards in 60% of games.|
|Jared Goff||SF||$6,100||7%||-||««««||SF secondary has not been tested like this…yet.|
|Matt Ryan||@ARZ||$6,400||13%||Yes||«««||White-hot QB gets a stab at 27th DVOA pass defense.|
|Kirk Cousins||PHL||$5,200||4%||-||«««||Cannot run on PHL front seven. Path of least resistance.|
|Kyler Murray||ATL||$6,500||7%||-||«««||Potential shootout vs. ATL elevates Kyler's floor.|
|Jimmy Garoppolo||@LAR||$5,700||2%||-||««||Yet to deliver big game. Might be forced to air it out.|
|Case Keenum||@MIA||$5,000||2%||-||««||Price and matchup are superb. The talent? No so much.|
|Deshaun Watson||@KC||$6,700||12%||-||««||Plush spot coming off 45-point game. Can he do it again?|
|Lamar Jackson||CIN||$6,900||12%||Yes||««||Love the spot, but it could be Ingram's day to shine.|
|Baker Mayfield||SEA||$5,500||2%||-||«||Small piece to cover Beckham's breakout game vs. SEA.|
|Russell Wilson||@CLE||$6,600||5%||-||«||Minimal exposure. Pair with Lockett or Dissly.|
|Andy Dalton||@BAL||$5,400||1%||-||«||Gamescript suits him. Price and ownership are prime.|
|Gardner Minshew||NO||$5,000||6%||-||«||Averaging 4x salary. Stack him with Westbrook here.|
|Dak Prescott||@NYJ||$6,200||8%||-||«||Personnel matchups suit big day, but poor gamescript.|
QUARTERBACK QUICK TAKES:
CASH: Ordinarily, you will find a series of low-priced quarterback options in this section, but there just is not anything that we can trust at the lower end of the pricing tier for cash games this week at quarterback. Our site projections offer up Gardner Minshew against the Saints at $5.0K, but I remain hesitant to recommend a rookie quarterback on a run-first team in a game that Vegas only projects to score a total of 44 points. That leaves us with one of three choices: Patrick Mahomes II against the Texans at $7.5K, Lamar Jackson versus the Bengals at $6.9K, or the "value option" of Matt Ryan at $6.4K. Mahomes is coming off a disappointing road loss to the Colts and will host a Texans defense that allowed Matt Ryan to post 35.9 DK points last Sunday; the gamescript for this matchup does not look much different on paper, so expect Mahomes to log his 6th consecutive 300+ yard passing game on Sunday. Jackson is also playing at home against a susceptible secondary in the form of the Bengals' 31st-ranked DVOA pass defense. Working against Jackson is the fact that his WR1, Marquise Brown, is trending towards not playing due to an ankle injury suffered last week, but Jackson can deliver without having to throw the ball, as evidenced by his 300+ rushing yards over the past month. Lastly, Matt Ryan is another quarterback who has yet to log a sub-300-yard game this season; he takes on Arizona's 30th-ranked DVOA pass defense and should have little problems reaching 3x value (or more) on his modest salary. For GPP purposes, each of these quarterbacks are also in play, but Jackson loses a bit of luster because of the potential loss of his primary receiver and because we cannot count on the Bengals to keep this one competitive for four full quarters.
GPP: Fresh off a 31-3 drubbing of the Browns on Monday Night Football, the 49ers will travel to southern California to defend their undefeated record against a Rams team that has lost their previous two contests despite scoring 69 points in those games. It is difficult to believe, but Jared Goff has over 900 yards of passing in those 2 games and could be asked to carry the load again on Sunday, as the Rams look to play without Todd Gurley, who is doubtful with a thigh injury. Goff is fairly priced at $6.1K and has a bevy of weapons to catch the ball, including Cooper Kupp, Robert Woods, Brandin Cooks, and even Gerald Everett. Elsewhere, you can look to Kirk Cousins for the second consecutive week in tournaments, as the Vikings take on the Eagles' pass-funnel defense; the Birds boast the 4th-best DVOA rush defense, but have allowed 25+ DK points to all quarterbacks not named Matthew Stafford or Luke Falk this season. The path of least resistance for the Vikings is through Cousins' arm, who is attractively priced and looks to be found on less than 5% of tournament rosters. As for other low-owned contrarian options, give some consideration to Case Keenum, Jimmy Garoppolo, and/or Andy Dalton in their respective matchups. Keenum gets a new head coach and a second chance as the Redskins' starting quarterback against the worst defense in the league, Garoppolo could be relegated out of his game-manager role and forced to throw in a shootout against the Aqib Talib-less Rams, and Andy Dalton is an 11-point underdog to a team that allowed 3 consecutive 300+ yard passers before knocking Mason Rudolph out of the game last Sunday.
|NAME||OPP.||SALARY||PROJ. %||CASH?||GPP STARS||NOTES|
|Latavius Murray||@JAX||$3,700||28%||Yes||««««||If Kamara is inactive, get *all* the Latavius you can.|
|Leonard Fournette||NO||$6,700||24%||Yes||««««||Focal piece of Jags offense as short home fave.|
|Malcolm Brown||SF||$4,300||28%||Yes||«««||Tough matchup, but price is too good to ignore.|
|Chase Edmonds||ATL||$4,600||2%||-||«««||Should get increased workload with DJ's bad back.|
|Derrick Henry||@DEN||$6,100||7%||-||«««||Averaging ~ 20 touches/game. 2-touchdown upside.|
|Carlos Hyde||@KC||$4,400||7%||-||«««||Goalline RB in game with ample scoring potential.|
|Chris Carson||@CLE||$6,000||14%||Yes||«««||50+ touches over past 2 games. Fairly priced.|
|LeVeon Bell||DAL||$6,400||24%||Yes||««||Return of Darnold raises floor for all Jets players.|
|Mark Ingram||CIN||$6,600||13%||-||««||11-point home fave supports big day for RB1.|
|Damien Williams||HOU||$5,700||8%||-||««||Recaptured bulk of duties out of KC backfield in last.|
|Adrian Peterson||@MIA||$4,500||4%||-||««||Price, opportunity, & matchup are there for big day.|
|Ezekiel Elliott||@NYJ||$8,500||20%||-||««||Salary is a deterrent despite putative plus gamescript.|
|Dalvin Cook||PHL||$8,400||11%||-||«||Harsh spot for talented back vs. #4 DVOA rush defense.|
|Devonta Freeman||@ARZ||$5,800||10%||-||«||Ito Smith lurking, but matchup is too good to ignore.|
|Miles Sanders||@MIN||$4,200||1%||-||«||Gamescript sets up for increased role from Sanders.|
|Joe Mixon||@BAL||$5,500||7%||-||«||Volume-based suggestion. Only in full-PPR formats.|
|Nick Chubb||SEA||$7,300||12%||-||«||Not sure if he has enough upside to justify this salary.|
|Chris Thompson||@MIA||$5,000||4%||-||«||Double-digit output in every Keenum start in '19.|
|Kenyan Drake||WAS||$4,400||11%||-||«||Best matchup of season, but it's still the Dolphins.|
RUNNING BACK RUNDOWN:
CASH: If you did not read the Tips section of this article, please scroll back up to see why you should consider Malcolm Brown and Latavius Murray for both cash and GPP formats on Sunday. As for alternative cash game running backs, there are a trio that are priced in the $6K tier that could be considered: Leonard Fournette ($6.7K), LeVeon Bell ($6.4K), and Chris Carson ($6.0K). Fournette has 58 touches over his last 2 games and trails only Christian McCaffrey in snaps at their position; he is a high-end option on a run-first offense that is also a short home-favorite. At the Meadowlands, no player in the Jets' locker room will be happier to see Sam Darnold return from his bout with mononucleosis than LeVeon Bell. Bell's point-per-game average dropped by nearly 50% (22 to 12) without Darnold under center; his return should help the Jets sustain drives and bolster Bell's floor and upside in the process. Lastly, Chris Carson is yet another volume-based option who has 52 touches over his past 2 games and has yet to see less than 16 touches in a game this season. He will face off against the league's 23rd-ranked DVOA defense that allowed Matt Breida and Tevin Coleman to gash them for 200+ rushing yards and a pair of scores last Monday night.
GPP: Despite the fact that it makes my stomach uneasy, Carlos Hyde is a compelling tournament play this weekend where ownership is going to be skewed towards a handful of running backs. Hyde is affordably priced at $4.4K and will be overlooked because Malcolm Brown is $100 less and is not considered to be ancient by the DFS community. Hyde should get the majority of goalline looks against the Chiefs, who have allowed 4 different running backs to rush for 99 yards or more, as opposed to Brown's matchup against the 49ers, who have yet to allow a rushing touchdown in 2019. In Baltimore, it appears as though Mark Ingram will also go largely underowned in tournament formats despite the fact that he is the RB1 on a home team slated to win by 11 points. Ingram has already scored multiple touchdowns in multiple games this year, underscoring the type of upside that he brings to your rosters; his matchup against the league's 26th-ranked DVOA rush defense is amongst the best on this main slate. Closing things out at the position, give consideration to Adrian Peterson just one more time in your fantasy career. The 34-year old is finally showing his age, but he gets a smash spot against the Dolphins, who have allowed 42% more fantasy production to opposing running backs adjusted for strength of schedule (worst in the NFL).
|NAME||OPP.||SALARY||PROJ. %||CASH?||GPP STARS||NOTES|
|Julio Jones||@ARZ||$8,000||14%||-||««««||Could put up silly numbers if Matty Ice feeds him.|
|DeAndre Hopkins||@KC||$7,400||19%||Yes||««««||Volume is there, but TDs haven't been. Changes here.|
|Michael Thomas||@JAX||$7,800||9%||-||««««||Drew who? Thomas hasn't lost anything without Brees.|
|Odell Beckham||SEA||$6,800||13%||-||««««||It's time. OBJ breakout game incoming.|
|Dede Westbrook||NO||$5,100||3%||-||«««||Best personnel matchup in JAX receiving corps.|
|Stefon Diggs||PHL||$5,900||7%||-||«««||Prefer Diggs over Thielen, given discount & lower %.|
|Tyler Boyd||@BAL||$6,300||10%||Yes||«««||Gamescript supports back-to-back big day for WR1.|
|Calvin Ridley||@ARZ||$5,700||9%||-||«««||Off-overlooked, but scored in 60% of Falcons' games.|
|Tyreek Hill||HOU||$6,900||8%||-||«««||Speedster returns, as Sammy misses. Great spot.|
|Brandin Cooks||SF||$5,400||6%||-||«««||Off injury report. All the attention on Kupp & Woods.|
|Robert Woods||SF||$5,600||13%||-||«««||Deals with Sherman on perimeter, but McVay will scheme.|
|Demaryius Thomas||DAL||$3,300||3%||-||«««||Don't sleep on him. Looked sharp in Jets debut.|
|Tyler Lockett||@CLE||$6,400||10%||-||««||Always in play, but CLE DBs are getting healthier.|
|Dante Pettis||@LAR||$3,900||1%||-||««||Avoids Rams' superior perimeter cornerbacks from slot.|
|Trey Quinn||@MIA||$3,700||1%||Yes||««||Keenum loves his slot receivers. Great GPP sleeper.|
|Olabisi Johnson||PHL||$3,000||1%||-||««||Large-field GPP differentiator. Getting love from slot.|
|Adam Thielen||PHL||$6,700||12%||-||««||Could thrive here, but hedging a bit with Diggs (above).|
|Michael Gallup||@NYJ||$5,600||8%||-||««||Coming off big game, price and ownership are elevated.|
|Larry Fitzgerald||ATL||$6,100||11%||-||««||Most reliable Cards WR, but snaps were lower last week?|
|Amari Cooper||@NYJ||$7,000||12%||-||««||Could arguably rate higher than this given plus matchup.|
|Cooper Kupp||SF||$7,100||16%||-||««||Crowd fave avoids Sherman in coverage. Volume-hog.|
|Jarvis Landry||SEA||$5,200||9%||Yes||««||Syncing more with Baker of late. TD regression incoming.|
|KeeSean Johnson||ATL||$3,900||3%||-||«||Should not lose snaps due to return of Kirk/Byrd.|
|Seth Roberts||CIN||$3,000||1%||-||«||Marquise Brown DNP on Friday = Next man up.|
|DK Metcalf||@CLE||$4,700||2%||-||«||Big play receiver merits consideration in tournaments.|
|Christian Kirk||ATL||$5,200||4%||-||«||Looking to return in plush matchup. Check status Sunday.|
|Preston Williams||WAS||$4,100||7%||-||«||Positive-regression candidate for scoring. Nice price.|
|Courtland Sutton||TEN||$5,000||8%||Yes||«||Evolving into WR1 in Denver. Redzone size advantage.|
|Jamison Crowder||DAL||$4,000||8%||Yes||«||Implied gamescript favors volume-based production.|
|A.J. Brown||@DEN||$4,200||1%||-||«||Demise of Delanie = opportunity to younger receivers.|
|Keke Coutee||@KC||$3,500||1%||-||«||In play if Stills is inactive. Verify status on Sunday.|
|Byron Pringle||HOU||$3,500||1%||-||«||GPP flyer for 4-wide sets. Limit to 1-2% exposure.|
|Demarcus Robinson||HOU||$5,900||2%||-||«||DK overpriced him, but he has 2-TD upside here.|
|Mecole Hardman||HOU||$5,300||3%||-||«||Probably loses a bit of luster with return of Tyreek.|
|DeVante Parker||WAS||$4,200||3%||-||«||Pivot from Preston Williams. MIA: 28th DVOA pass D.|
|Auden Tate||@BAL||$4,500||2%||-||«||Better matchup than last & owned at 1/10 the rate.|
|Mohamed Sanu||@ARZ||$4,500||7%||-||«||Always lurking as a spoiler, but prefer Ridley/Julio.|
|Terry McLaurin||@MIA||$6,000||4%||-||«||High ADoT receiver gets low ADoT QB in Keenum.|
|Will Fuller||@KC||$6,000||15%||-||«||Not chasing his 3-TD game at elevated ownership.|
|D.J. Chark||NO||$5,500||14%||-||«||Give me Westbrook and the discounts ($ and %).|
WIDE RECEIVER WALK-THROUGH:
CASH: Arguably my least favorite position on this slate, there is not much value to be found at the wide receiver position this week. This article will be the only place in the industry where you will see Trey Quinn as a potential cash game play; at $3.7K with Case Keenum under center against the Dolphins, who skew passing action to the inside, I like Quinn's chances to deliver 3x value while providing salary relief (assuming it is necessary). At the upper end of the salary echelon, you can feel fairly comfortable rolling with DeAndre Hopkins against the Chiefs and/or Tyler Boyd against the Ravens. Hopkins has missed the endzone for a month straight, but to expect that trend to continue given his voluminous role in this offense would be folly; he should be involved in a shootout in Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday, which bolsters his chances of a substantial floor and high-end upside. As for Boyd, he gets the nod simply because of implied volume in a game where the Bengals are projected to lose by double-digits. Only three players in the entire league enter Week #6 with more targets than Boyd, a trend that should continue given the implied gamescript and the fact that the Ravens allow 26% more production to the wide receiver position than league-normalized opponents. In the middle-tier of salaries, Courtland Sutton ($5.0K), Jarvis Landry ($5.2K), and Jamison Crowder ($4.0K) all stand out as players with reasonable floors at their respective salaries.
GPP: The lack of value at the position has created a unique situation where no single wide receiver is projected (at present) to be rostered on > 20% of lineups on Sunday. The relatively even distribution of players makes for an intriguing week, where game strategy is less important than overall points-per-dollar output. Topping the list of candidates capable of delivering that type of value are Julio Jones and DeAndre Hopkins, both of whom have excellent personnel matchups in projected barnburners. Michael Thomas also finds himself as a four-star selection due to his 9% projected ownership in a game that will not force him to line up across from Jalen Ramsey (back injury) for the first time in years. In Cleveland, look for a breakout game from Odell Beckham after dealing with coverage from Aqib Talib, Marcus Peters, and Richard Sherman in two of his previous three games (the third game was Nick Chubb's 3-touchdown performance, where passing was unnecessary). As contrarian roster-differentiators, you might consider Demaryius Thomas ($3.3K @ 3%) against the Cowboys, Dede Westbrook ($5.1K @ 3%) versus the Saints, and/or Olabisi Johnson ($3.0K @ 1%) against the Eagles. Thomas was heavily involved in his Jets debut last week and gets an upgrade at quarterback with a plus gamescript to help his output in Week #6. Westbrook should avoid Marshon Lattimore for the bulk of his routes and will offer substantial leverage against the 14% of the field who will try to capture lightning in a bottle for the second consecutive week with D.J. Chark. And, lastly, Olabisi Johnson has absorbed the primary slot receiver role in Minnesota and will be the forgotten man in coverage while the Eagles try to conjure ways to cover Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs on the perimeter.
|Travis Kelce||HOU||$7,000||13%||-||««««||70+ yards in every game, but only 1 TD. Regression.|
|Mark Andrews||CIN||$4,800||16%||Yes||«««||If Marquise sits, he becomes de facto #1 receiver.|
|George Kittle||@LAR||$5,200||22%||Yes||«««||Niners' best receiver is $5.2K in potential shootout.|
|Zach Ertz||@MIN||$5,400||8%||-||««||Only Eagle in player pool at any worthy percentage.|
|Austin Hooper||@ARZ||$5,000||24%||Yes||««||Best matchup of slate, but ownership reflects it.|
|Will Dissly||@CLE||$4,900||7%||-||««||Averaging 14+ FPs/game over past month.|
|Jared Cook||@JAX||$3,400||3%||-||«||Found paydirt in last. Bump up if Kamara is inactive.|
|Noah Fant||TEN||$2,900||3%||-||«||Not a world-beater but offers salary relief & TD-upside.|
|Tyler Eifert||@BAL||$3,500||1%||-||«||Snaps down in last? Stay close to the field here.|
TIGHT END TIDBITS:
CASH: For cash games this week, you are likely looking at a mid-salary tight end because Travis Kelce is likely out-of-reach for a responsible build, while the remaining tight ends are too risky. That leaves one of the following options: Mark Andrews, George Kittle, or Austin Hooper. Frankly, all three are excellent options and their respective ownership demonstrates just how sharp the DFS community has become over the past few years. Mark Andrews leads his team in targets and has scored double-digit fantasy points in all-but-one game this season; if Marquise Brown (ankle) does not play, Andrews likely becomes Lamar Jackson's favorite receiver against the Bengals. In Los Angeles, George Kittle will continue to play the role of number-one receiver for the 49ers and their underrated offense that is averaging 32.3 points per game; Kittle gets a bump because he will avoid Marcus Peters on the outside (Aqib Talib is also going to miss this contest). Lastly, Austin Hooper continues to be fantasy-relevant and enters this week just two targets behind Julio Jones (42 to 44) for the team-league in that category. Of the three options in this paragraph, Hooper has the best matchup against a Cardinals defense that has allowed six touchdowns to the position to this point in the season.
GPP: In tournament play, no tight end brings more upside to your roster than Travis Kelce on this slate. The Houston-Kansas City game has the highest total on the Vegas board and features a pair of offenses that have scored 27+ points in 70% of their games this season. Kelce has seven redzone targets, but has only converted on one of those, but we should expect him to experience some positive scoring regression in this contest at ownership levels lower than described for the lower-upside tight ends discussed in the cash game section (above). Elsewhere, it is a crap-shoot at the position: Will Dissly and Zach Ertz are both heavily featured in their respective offenses, but neither has a stellar personnel matchup, whereas the remainder of the players in the table have minimal appeal. Thus, focus on the tight ends discussed in more detail here while diversifying minimally with the auxiliary tight ends referenced in the above table.
|NAME||OPP.||SALARY||PROJ. %||CASH?||GPP STARS||NOTES|
|Broncos||TEN||$3,100||6%||-||««««||Titans susceptible to sacks vs. Broncos' pressure.|
|Cowboys||@NYJ||$4,300||6%||-||««««||Paying up to be contrarian with solid defense.|
|Titans||@DEN||$2,900||4%||-||«««||Best way for Tennessee to win is through defense.|
|Browns||SEA||$2,800||1%||-||«««||Return of Greedy & Denzel should shore up secondary.|
|Rams||SF||$3,300||2%||-||«««||Home defense with top CBs at 2%? Going overweight.|
|Seahawks||@CLE||$3,400||3%||-||«««||Mayfield is subject to implode any Sunday.|
|Redskins||@MIA||$3,200||7%||Yes||««||Going against Josh Rosen has been profitable before.|
|Chiefs||HOU||$2,500||4%||-||««||Cheap home defense at 4%. Slightly over the field.|
|Jaguars||NO||$2,200||3%||-||««||Not the same w/out Jalen, but worth this price and %.|
|49ers||@LAR||$2,700||2%||-||««||Taking a few percent in the event of a defensive TD.|
|Ravens||CIN||$4,100||8%||-||«||Rolling with defenses against CIN has worked well.|
|Vikings||PHL||$2,600||8%||Yes||«||Just not sure how Philly moves the ball here?|
|Saints||@JAX||$3,200||7%||-||«||Will always take a few shares against a rookie QB.|
|Dolphins||WAS||$2,700||4%||-||«||A few percent at home against a bad Redskins offense.|
|Jets||DAL||$1,500||11%||Yes||«||The price is right, but the matchup may not be…|
TEAM DEFENSE DIGEST:
CASH: On a week where the lowest implied Vegas team total is quite high at 17 points, there are no lockdown defenses for your cash games rosters. Instead, you might look to save some salary at the volatile position while spending the savings at a position (i.e., quarterback) where the return on investment is more likely. Possible options include the Vikings ($2.6K) at home against the Eagles and the Jets ($1.5K) at home against the Cowboys. Minnesota is intriguing because they match up well against the Eagles. The Vikings boast the 4th-best DVOA rush defense and have only allowed one running back (Aaron Jones, Week #2) to surpass 55 rushing yards; meanwhile, only one wide receiver (Davante Adams, Week #2) has surpassed 80 receiving yards. At home, no team has scored more than 14 points against the Vikings this year. If you want to punt the position entirely, the Jets host a Cowboys team that beat up on some untalented squads to start the season and then struggled against the Saints and Packers over their past two contests. While we should expect Dallas to win this matchup, the Jets should return 3-4x on their lowly $1.5K salary. Lastly, the Redskins are certainly not a world-beater defense, but they take on the winless, hapless Dolphins in Miami; Josh Rosen will be under center for the Dolphins and we should not discount the fact that he has thrown more interceptions (17) in his career than touchdowns (12).
GPP: In tournaments, the recommendation this week is to take a similar approach to what was suggested last week: Sample a lot of different defenses and do not overexposure yourself to any single defense. As noted above, no team defense looks to be a lock for delivering 4x value on their salary, so it makes sense to scatter your exposure over a larger set of defenses to potentially hit on those all-too-random defensive touchdowns. Of my favorites, Denver tops the list because the Titans allow Marcus Mariota to be sacked so often (third-most in NFL), which often leads to turnovers and possible scores. Elsewhere, the Cowboys are intriguing because DraftKings priced them so highly that their ownership is going to be too low for their matchup, which is arguably the most lopsided on the main slate (save the Baltimore-Cincinnati game).