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December 31, 2016

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Tournament "Draft" for Week 17

Sean Beazley and I collaborated recently on putting together a tournament lineup for DraftKings main slate (Sunday games only) of Week 17 games.

Essentially, it was a draft with each of us alternating picks for the lineup. Sean had the first and odd-numbered picks; I had the second and even-numbered picks.

Below we will include analysis of each pick, but here is how the final roster shaped up:

QB - Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions (vs. GB), $6,000
RB - Thomas Rawls, Seattle Seahawks (at SF), $5,800
RB - Jacquizz Rodgers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (vs. CAR), $4,900
WR - Doug Baldwin, Seattle Seahawks (at SF), $7,200
WR - Golden Tate, Detroit Lions (vs. GB), $6,600
WR - Davante Adams, Green Bay Packers (at DET), $5,700
TE - Jared Cook, Green Bay Packers (at DET), $3,100
FLEX - Julio Jones, WR, Atlanta Falcons (vs. NO), $8,400
DST - New York Jets (vs. BUF), $2,300

Below are the players in the order they were "drafted" (with comments by boths us):

1. Sean - Doug Baldwin, WR, Seattle Seahawks ($7,200): The Seahawks have one of the easiest matchups on the slate with a game vs. the 49ers. The Seahawks are one of the playoff teams with something to play for. With Tyler Lockett out for the rest of the year, Baldwin should get peppered with targets. He is very likely to be one of the highest-owned WRs this week, but I think he could 4-5x his price. I will have at least 30% exposure this week.

Comments by Kevin: Baldwin exploded for 13/171/1 on 19 targets against the Cardinals in Week 16. While he may not match last week's career-best numbers, the matchup against the 49ers is about as good as it gets and Baldwin had a nearly identical line (8/164/1) the first time he faced the Niners this season. In a week full of many meaningless games, the Seahawks can earn a first-round bye with a win and Falcons loss.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 17 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

2. Kevin - Jacquizz Rodgers, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers ($4,900): One of my favorite plays of the week, as noted in our Week 17 DFS Roundtable post, Rodgers is set up for a massive workload. Not only is Doug Martin (four-game suspension) out again, but Charles Sims was placed on IR this week. Earlier in the year, Rodgers had 35 touches against the Panthers when both Martin and Sims were out. While I don't expect 35 touches, it's possible that 'Quizz sees in the neighborhood of 25 touches as home favorites and one of seven teams projected to score 25-plus points based on implied totals from Vegas odds.

Comments by Sean: When Doug Martin and Charles Sims were out earlier this year, we saw Rodgers get around 30 touches per game. Carolina has absolutely nothing to play for here, and while the Bucs are pretty much drawing dead, they do have a shot so they will be all over this one. Rodgers, like Baldwin, will be popular I believe, but he should pay off his price given the volume.

3. Sean - Matthew Stafford, QB, Detroit Lions ($6,000): The Lions/Packers game is the chalk game to stack this week. It's a winner-take-all, and it's the prime time hammer. Taking Stafford over Aaron Rodgers gets you almost $2K of savings, which I think is significant given I think each QB has the same ceiling.

Comments by Kevin: Playing in the final game of the week (and regular season), Stafford and the Lions are small home underdogs against Aaron Rodgers and the Packers in a win-and-in matchup. Speaking of matchups, it's good for Stafford as the Packers have allowed an NFL-high 8.0 yards per pass attempt and only the Browns (33) have allowed more passing touchdowns than the Packers (30). Earlier this season, Stafford threw for 385 yards and three touchdowns against Green Bay.

4. Kevin - Golden Tate, WR, Detroit Lions ($6,600): With a minimum of five catches in nine of his past 10 games, Tate has averaged 6.8/86.6 on 9.4 targets per game over that stretch. Not only should he see steady volume in a fantasy-friendly matchup (only Titans allow more DK points to opposing WRs) with plenty of real football significance, but he has shown upside with four top-five PPR finishes during that 10-game span.

Comments by Sean: If I am playing Stafford, I am definitely pairing him with Tate. Tate has had double-digit targets in three of his last four. It wouldn't surprise me here to see Tate flirt with 10+ receptions in this one especially if the Lions are playing from behind. My only fear here is the Lions get ahead and control the clock like they did vs. the Saints earlier this year. I won't have all my eggs into this game like I did that one.

5. Sean - Davante Adams, WR, Green Bay Packers ($5,700): Jordy Nelson will likely be the highest-owned WR of the week. He is off a monster game so you have the recency bias, plus he is in a killer spot vs. the Lions. Jordy should see a majority of Darius Slay which is why I am going heavy Adams. Slay isn't a shut-down corner by any means, but Rodgers isn't afraid to spread the ball around. Adams has 30-point upside and should be 15-20% less owned than Jordy.

Comments by Kevin: With more from the running game these days, Adams now has six consecutive games with five or fewer receptions. That said, Adams has four 100-yard games in his past 10 and a total of 10 scores this season. Given how often Aaron Rodgers looks his way in the red zone, Adams has enormous upside and should be much less-owned than Jordy this week.

6. Kevin - Thomas Rawls, RB, Seattle Seahawks ($5,800): If you started Rawls in DFS or season-long leagues last week, he let you down even before he departed with a shoulder injury. Rawls will be good to go in Week 17 and the matchup means that Rawls could turn even a reduced workload into 100 yards and a score or two. Rawls didn't play in the first matchup, but Christine Michael had 20/106/2 in that game for the Seahawks. Unless you're Todd Gurley, who doesn't run for 100 yards against the 49ers? The only concern here is a potential blowout early or the Falcons establish a big lead early over the Saints. Either scenario could keep Rawls on the sidelines in the third and/or fourth quarters.

Comments by Sean: I got burned by Rawls last week big time. I had a couple of lineups in the 190 range with Rawls as my lone bust. I am not afraid to go back to the well here. The 49ers get destroyed in every aspect of the game. The Seahawks should cruise in this one which should lead to plenty of Rawls touches late.

7. Sean - Jared Cook, TE, Green Bay Packers ($3,100): I think the TE lock of the week will be Travis Kelce. Kelce has dominated the position this season. Given our team is pretty much chalk spots/players, I am going a little off the board here with Cook. Pairing Adams/Cook and fading Jordy could be extremely profitable if Rodgers has a big game. The Lions have been better vs. TE lately, but at one point this year you were just locking in opposing TEs vs. them.

Comments by Kevin: Cook is the boom-or-bust type play that makes sense for GPPs. Typically I roster him in his "bust" weeks, however, so I typically have limited exposure. Given the matchup, this has the potential to be one of his "boom" weeks.

8. Kevin - Julio Jones, WR, Atlanta Falcons ($8,400): Active after a two-game absence, Jones had a mediocre 4/60 on seven targets in a 17-point win last week. Putting in a full practice on Friday, Jones should be more involved in a potential shootout against Drew Brees and the Saints. No team is projected to score more points this week than the Falcons and Jones has GPP-winning upside when healthy.

Comments by Sean: Another player that burned me last week was Jones. For whatever reason, the Falcons just don't look to Julio in the red zone, which means his production is basically reliant on long pass plays. Atlanta still has a shot at the No. 2 seed so It's pedal to the medal for the Falcons. I think the Ryan/Julio stack will be very low-owned even with a great matchup vs. the Saints.

9. Kevin - New York Jets DST ($2,300): The Jets have been a massive disappointment this season, but there is reason for some Week 17 optimism. That reason, of course, is E.J. Manuel. With Tyrod Taylor on the bench, the Bills will roll out the former first-round bust out of Florida State on Sunday. At their price point, I'm willing to roll the dice on the Jets defense this week.

Comments by Sean: There are a lot of defenses I like this week. One of those defenses for GPPs is the Jets. You get them at 1K savings off the rest of the ones I like, and they get a good matchup vs. E.J. Manuel, who will probably be rusty. This is a GPP play only as the Jets have been destroyed in recent weeks.

Week 17 Fantasy Football Rankings:

Week 17 DFS Resources:

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December 29, 2016

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 17

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 17?

Kevin Hanson: Jacquizz Rodgers, RB, Carolina Panthers ($4,900)

The great (and not-so-great) thing about Week 17 is that it's more difficult to figure out than any other week on the year. That said, there should be an abundance of value plays by the time Sunday rolls around. During other weeks, there are some value plays become extremely chalky.

Following a surprise inactive status for Doug Martin, Rodgers led the team in both usage and production -- 15/63/1 rushing and 2/15 receiving -- in Week 16. With Martin now suspended four games and set to be inactive on game day, Rodgers will dominate early-down work with Charles Sims assuming a change-of-pace role.

Not only are the Bucs six-point home favorites this weekend, but only the Falcons and Patriots are projected to score more points based on implied totals using Vegas odds. Rodgers won't get the 35 touches he had in his first matchup against the Panthers in Week 5 (with Martin/Sims out), but I could see 20-plus touches this week.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 17 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

Sean Beazley: DeAngelo Williams, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers ($5,500) and DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Houston Texans ($6,500)

Week 17 is a tricky week to play because of all the meaningless games for playoff teams. It is important to keep track of all the news before 1 PM. These picks are purely speculation at this point, because they are from two playoff teams who have nothing to gain from a win on Sunday.

DeAngelo Williams ($5,500) -- Mike Tomlin has said that Le'Veon Bell is a candidate for rest on Sunday, and it makes complete sense to me that he sits. We just saw the Raiders Super Bowl dreams crumble last week when Derek Carr broke his leg. An injury to Bell would clearly hurt the Steelers chances to push forward in the playoffs.

We have seen what DeAngelo has done in the past as the lead back. He gets a dream matchup at home against our favorite punching bag defense, the Cleveland Browns. If Bell is out Sunday, I will be locking DeAngelo in on nearly 100 percent of my tournament teams. His price is far too low to what we can expect him to score.

DeAndre Hopkins ($6,500) -- Had Randy Bullock made that kick Sunday night, I would have been 100% Hopkins this week in a winner-take-all matchup vs. the Titans. The Texans have the division wrapped up, so I do think there will be some key players resting like Lamar Miller. I do think Nuk plays though, because the Texans really need to get this passing attack figured out before the playoffs start. This is the perfect spot to iron out the kinks versus the Titans, who get torched by opposing WRs.

John Trifone: Aaron Rodgers, QB, Green Bay Packers ($7,700)

Week 17 has a lot of uncertainty right now. We're still waiting to find out who exactly will be resting, who will be taking a look at rookies, who may start the game but not finish, etc. Some we know, much we will find out later in the week. At this point, I think Aaron Rodgers is as safe a bet to give you a great floor and high ceiling. He's expensive, but you know what you're getting with Rodgers and the Green Bay offense. They need to win at Detroit to clinch the division, and the Lions pass defense has been the worst or among the worst most of the year. I think Rodgers is worth the hefty price tag this week.

Dan Yanotchko: Golden Tate, WR, Detroit Lions ($6,600)

This week you have to take guys that have something to play for, so I like Golden Tate of the Lions. He has a great last-four split with 378 yards on 34 receptions on 40 targets. The Packers give up a ton of passing yards per game with 265 and 30 touchdowns to boot. I look for a shootout in the dome, with the winner going to the playoffs.

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December 23, 2016

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Tournament "Draft" for Week 16

Sean Beazley and I collaborated recently on putting together a tournament lineup for DraftKings main slate (Sunday games only) of Week 16 games.

Essentially, it was a draft with each of us alternating picks for the lineup. Sean had the first and odd-numbered picks; I had the second and even-numbered picks.

Below we will include analysis of each pick, but here is how the final roster shaped up:

QB - Derek Carr, Oakland Raiders (vs. IND), $6,800
RB - Todd Gurley, Los Angeles Rams (vs. SF), $6,500
RB - Jay Ajayi, Miami Dolphins (at BUF), $5,600
WR - Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (at NO), $8,500
WR - DeAndre Hopkins, Houston Texans (vs. CIN), $5,200
WR - Michael Crabtree, Oakland Raiders (vs. IND), $6,100
TE - Antonio Gates, San Diego Chargers (at CLE), $4,400
FLEX - Allen Robinson, Jacksonville Jaguars (vs. TEN), $4,600
DST - Chicago Bears (vs. WAS), $2,300

Below are the players in the order they were "drafted" (with comments by boths us):

1. Sean - Mike Evans, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers ($8,500): Evans has been held to single-digit scores the past three weeks, and one of those games was versus this same Saints defense. I think he is in a great position for a bounce-back spot in a game which is expected to be very high-scoring. My only concern here is ownership. Le'Veon Bell is not on this slate, and David Johnson has a tough matchup on paper vs. Seattle on the road. This could lead to the reverse of what we have seen the past few weeks where it was popular to jam in high-priced RBs.

Comments by Kevin: Evans has three disappointing performances in a row, but we have have seen him have monster games with huge target totals. With OBJ/AB not playing on the Sunday main slate and Julio/AJG coming back from injuries, Evans is the top main-slate WR by a considerable margin for me.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 16 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

2. Kevin - Todd Gurley, RB, Los Angeles Rams ($6,500): Not only have the 49ers allowed the most fantasy points to the position, but running backs have averaged 5.11 YPC with 22 rushing scores, both of which are season highs (by a wide margin). In addition, the 49ers have allowed 11 100-yard rushers on the year plus two more had at least 100 yards from scrimmage. Gurley has yet to exceed 85 rushing yards in any game and he's averaging just 55.6 per game this season, but it wouldn't surprise me if he exceeded the 100-yard mark with a few receptions and perhaps a touchdown on Saturday.

Comments by Sean: You know a defense is bad vs. the run when a RB is coming off a four-point week and his price increases $2,000! There is no reason to get cute here. Jam Gurley in your lineup and watch the point totals rise.

3. Sean - DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Houston Texans ($5,200): I am more excited for a Week 17 showing in a potential winner-take-all game vs. the Titans secondary. I would be 100% locked in with Hopkins at anything below $7,000 next week. I would hope that he would have a bad game here vs. the Bengals, so people wouldn't jump on board with me, but at this price, you can't overlook him this week. Hopkins had 17 targets last week in a comeback win vs. Jacksonville. Tom Savage is the new QB and he looked ten times better than Brock Osweiler. I think the QB play makes the difference here and Nuk has a massive day.

Comments by Kevin: The QB switch gives Hopkins owners some reason for optimism and the high volume of targets last week (17) is a huge positive as well. At his price point, he's more than worth the gamble.

4. Kevin - Antonio Gates, TE, San Diego Chargers ($4,400): Gates has been up-and-down this season and was a disappointment last week. The Browns are terrible against tight ends as they have allowed the position a total of 72 catches (second-most in NFL), 782 yards (second-most) and eight TDs (second-most). I expect Philip Rivers to target Gates heavily in the red zone.

Comments by Sean: The touchdown Antonio Gates narrative. I was all aboard last week with 40% exposure in GPPs. There are a few TEs I like better that are cheaper than Gates this week so I probably won't have 40% this week, but I should have a decent amount again. Gates gets a great matchup vs. Cleveland who basically can't stop anything.

5. Sean - Jay Ajayi, RB, Miami Dolphins ($5,600): This is a huge game in Buffalo this week. With a win Rex Ryan could potentially save his job. Miami needs to keep winning to secure a spot in the playoffs. Without Ryan Tannehill, I expect the Dolphins to let Ajayi shoulder the load. The Bills run defense has been shredded in recent weeks. We have seen the enormous upside that Ajayi has this season. I think Ajayi will be under owned this week in tournaments.

Comments by Kevin: Ajayi isn't one of the first players that I'd want to put in this lineup, but I think Sean makes some good points. He has shown upside, Buffalo has allowed some very big games to opposing running backs, Ajayi should get tons of usage and his ownership level should be low. He could turn out to be a perfect GPP play.

6. Kevin - Michael Crabtree, WR, Oakland Raiders ($6,100): Crabtree has averaged 5.5/61.9/0.6 per game this season and he's averaging nearly double-digit targets (9.88/G) over his past eight. In an expected shootout, Crabtree has a ton of upside this week and could be the third among this game's wide receivers in terms of ownership after T.Y. Hilton and Amari Cooper. I will certainly stack this game in many of my GPP lineups.

Comments by Sean: Picking the right Raiders WR this year has been extremely difficult for me this season. Crabtree had outscored Cooper in 7/14 games this season. Split right down the middle. The Colts secondary is beatable. Vontae Davis is starting to look more and more like Darelle Revis each week. That's not a good thing. I will be hedging this week and playing probably equal shares of both Oakland wideouts.

7. Sean - Allen Robinson, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars ($4,400): Andy Reid and the Chiefs didn't attack the Titans corners last week the way I thought he would. BLAKE Bortles is arguably the worst starting QB in the league, but this Titans secondary is very bad. Robinson continues to get peppered with targets each week and at his price tag of $4,600, it's very tough to pass on him in tournaments. I definitely will have my fair share of A-Rob this week.

Comments by Kevin: If you owned Robinson in season-long leagues, few players were bigger disappointments (although several in this lineup could give him a run for his money). There are three things to like this week, though: (1) his talent level, which has been true every week, (2) the matchup vs. TEN (32nd in FPA to WRs) and (3) the sub-$5,000 price. The potential to smash value is there even with Blake Bortles throwing him the ball.

8. Kevin - Derek Carr, QB, Oakland Raiders ($6,800): After the Falcons, no team has averaged more points per game this season than the Raiders. Based on Vegas odds, only the Patriots are projected to score more points this week. Carr has plenty of upside in what should be a shootout against Andrew Luck and the Colts and pairs well with Crabtree. I will certainly have a lot of exposure to both QBs and all the key skill players in this game across my GPP lineups.

Comments by Sean: I didn't leave Kevin with much after the Robinson pick, so it was either punt QB or punt D. Kevin elected to punt D which is how I would have played it as well. Carr gets a great matchup vs. the Colts at home. The Colts are still in the playoff hunt, so they do have something to play for. This game is a great one to consider a game stack in GPPs this week.

9. Kevin - Chicago Bears DST ($2,300): The Bears may give up a fair amount of points to Washington, but due to their heavy pass volume, there will be opportunities for sacks/INTs and the Bears have actually scored double-digit fantasy points in two of their past three games.

Comments by Sean: Of the choices left, the Bears make the most sense. The Redskins are coming off a short week where they played like crap. All it takes is one Defense/Special Teams TD to really make this unit pay off.

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December 21, 2016

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 16

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 16?

Kevin Hanson: Todd Gurley, RB, Los Angeles Rams ($6,500)

As disappointing as the season has been for Gurley, he has a great opportunity on Saturday. Even though Gurley struggled in Week 1 against the 49ers, no team has been more generous to opposing running backs this season.

Not only have the 49ers allowed the most fantasy points to the position, but running backs have averaged 5.11 YPC with 22 rushing scores, both of which are season highs (by a wide margin). In addition, the 49ers have allowed 11 100-yard rushers on the year plus two more had at least 100 yards from scrimmage.

Gurley has yet to exceed 85 rushing yards in any game and he's averaging just 55.6 per game this season, but it wouldn't surprise me if he exceeded the 100-yard mark with a few receptions and perhaps a touchdown on Saturday.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 16 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

Brendan Donahue: Bilal Powell, RB, New York Jets ($6,000)

In the past two games that Powell has taken over as the lead back for the Jets, he has scored 27.2 and 37.9 points on DraftKings. I don't see that role changing this week both due to the injury to Matt Forte and the game plan as 16-point underdogs to the Patriots. In a blowout loss last week, he caught 11 passes on 12 targets for 78 yards and that could very well be the same situation this week, giving him a very safe floor and a huge ceiling if he is able to put any of those targets into the end zone.

Sean Beazley: Blake Bortles, QB, Jacksonville Jaguars ($5,000)

I think the Titans could be in for a let-down game after their big last-minute win vs. the Chiefs last week. I've been burned on the Jags call pretty much all year, but I'm not going to miss out on that one time they go off. I don't play high stakes often, but I'm rolling out Blake Bortles in the $50 Chop Block this week on DK. The Titans pass defense is awful, and I think this game could be a shootout. I’m on the fence about pairing him with Marqise Lee or Allen Robinson or just playing him naked. He is the stone minimum on DK which allows you to get pretty much whoever you want. I believe Bortles gets the 300-yard bonus and a couple of scores this week.

John Trifone: Todd Gurley, RB, Los Angeles Rams ($6,500)

It only took until Week 16, but it might be Todd Gurley's week this week. He's facing the 49ers 32nd-ranked rush defense at home after recently calling out his offense and contributing to getting Jeff Fisher fired. Gurley should be in for a heavy workload and should be able to put together his best game of the year. He's a good RB choice this week at $6,500.

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December 14, 2016

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 15

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 15?

Sean Beazley: Sammy Watkins, WR, Buffalo Bills ($5,900)

I really like Sammy Watkins this week in GPPs. I had 20% exposure to Watkins in tournaments last week and will probably have a little more this week as he gets a great matchup vs. the Browns. This is an offense you can definitely stack with Tyrod Taylor and LeSean McCoy as well. Many may be off the Tyrod train this week, but I am all aboard. Watkins appears to be healthy finally and he has as much upside as any WR in the league giving his deep play potential. I could see a 8/140/2 type of game from him this week vs. the Browns.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 15 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

Kevin Hanson: Devonta Freeman/Tevin Coleman, RB, Atlanta Falcons ($6,700/$5,000)

Last week, I went with Emmanuel Sanders and Demaryius Thomas as a double-WR stack against the poor Titans pass defense and both WRs reached the 100-yard mark on a combined 30 targets. Many of my tournament lineups this week will feature a pair of Falcons running backs against the woeful 49ers run defense. (Virtually all of my lineups will have one, if not both, of these two backs.)

The 49ers have allowed 10 100-yard rushers in their past 12 games with Jordan Howard (32/117/3) and Bilal Powell (29/145/2) doing plenty of damage in Weeks 13 and 14, respectively. No team has allowed more yards per carry (4.99) to opposing running backs, who have also rushed for 19 touchdowns and added three more receiving scores.

With Freeman coming off a disappointing performance in their blowout win, that will hopefully keep his ownership down slightly. Especially if Julio Jones plays (at less than 100 percent), I could see the Freeman/Coleman duo racking up 200-300 YFS, 5-10 receptions and a couple of touchdowns in this dream matchup.

Brendan Donahue: Tyreek Hill, WR, Kansas City Chiefs ($5,700)

Hill's speed was on display on national TV last Thursday night and it seems like KC is figuring out what kind of weapon they now have in Hill. Over his past five games, he has caught at least four balls and had at least 52 receiving yards and scored double-digits on DK in each so he is starting to establish a decent floor. Within those five, he's also had three games where he's scored over 20 points with a high over 32.5 so he's also establishing a really high ceiling. This week he gets the Titans, who have given up the most points to opposing WRs so he's a must-play for me this week at just $5,700.

John Trifone: Kenneth Dixon, RB, Baltimore Ravens ($3,800)

The clear value play at running back, Dixon is coming off a good game against the Patriots Monday night. He out-touched Terrance West with 11 carries and eight receptions, and should continue to see increased usage. Salaries came out before Dixon's good game, so I wouldn't overthink it. He's a solid option and the low price tag will help get in some of the higher-priced guys.

Dan Yanotchko: LeGarrette Blount, RB, New England Patriots ($5,000)

This week I have LeGerette Blount of the Patriots going up against the Denver Broncos. Last year the Broncos hit Tom Brady 20 times in the AFC Championship Game, and this year the Broncos are soft against the run. They allow 127 yards per game, 4.2 yards per carry, and 12 touchdowns on the year, and have allowed a 100-yard rusher in their last three games. Blount has an impressive four-game split -- 66 carries, 351 yards and two touchdowns. They are going to play this game like the Colts, run them into the ground.

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December 09, 2016

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Tournament "Draft" for Week 14

Sean Beazley and I collaborated recently on putting together a tournament lineup for DraftKings main slate (Sunday games only) of Week 14 games.

Essentially, it was a draft with each of us alternating picks for the lineup. Sean had the first and odd-numbered picks; I had the second and even-numbered picks.

Below we will include analysis of each pick, but here is how the final roster shaped up:

QB - Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers (vs. NYJ), $5,800
RB - Ryan Mathews, Philadelphia Eagles (vs. WAS), $4,000
RB - Jeremy Hill, Cincinnati Bengals (at CLE), $5,800
WR - Emmanuel Sanders, Denver Broncos (at TEN), $5,700
WR - Tyrell Williams, San Diego Chargers (at CAR), $6,100
WR - Demaryius Thomas, Denver Broncos (at TEN), $6,000
TE - Delanie Walker, Tennessee Titans (vs. DEN), $4,400
FLEX - David Johnson, Arizona Cardinals (at MIA), $9,800
DST - Tampa Bay Buccaneers (vs. NO), $2,400

Below are the players in the order they were "drafted" (with comments by boths us):

1. Sean - Ryan Mathews, RB, Philadelphia Eagles ($4,000): This is a must-win game for the Eagles Sunday as a loss certainly eliminates them from the playoff race this season. The Redskins run defense is pretty mediocre so I expect the Eagles to rely on the run game heavily. I won't go overweight on Mathews because he is a huge injury risk, but I definitely will have him on a bunch of teams this week. I can see a 20-point week out of Mathews.

Comments by Kevin: After missing a couple of games with a knee injury, Mathews is ready to return on Sunday. I almost never roster Mathews (when he's healthy), but it would certainly make sense for the Eagles to feed Mathews and establish the run game after Carson Wentz slung it 60 times in Week 13.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 14 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

2. Kevin - Jeremy Hill, RB, Cincinnati Bengals ($5,800): Certainly, the efficiency leaves a lot to be desired. That said, the volume and matchup gives Hill as much upside as virtually any running back this week. Hill has 18-plus touches in three consecutive games with 25 touches in last week's win and only the 49ers and Falcons have allowed more DK points to opposing running backs this season. Even though the Bengals are on the road, they are favored by 5.5 points against the winless Browns and I could see Hill getting another 20-25 touches with the possibility for a score (or two).

Comments by Sean: I’m a little hesitant to roster a RB who over the past two games has 35 carries for only 54 yards. Hill would need 64 carries this week to reach that 100 yard bonus! His price also increased $1,500 this week despite the gross YPC. With all this being said, Hill does have a great matchup vs. the Browns. I’ll bite on this play this week, because both Baltimore and Philly have pretty solid run defenses.

3. Sean - David Johnson, RB, Arizona Cardinals ($9,800): Johnson’s price is almost $10K, which is absolutely crazy, but he is deserving of this price considering how he has played this year. Larry Fitzgerald’s production has dipped as the season has progressed, which has led to more work for DJ in the pass game. Johnson has had double-digit receiving targets in his last three games. The wheels will off the DJ bus eventually, but I am going to ride him until it happens.

Comments by Kevin: You have spend money to make money? No player is priced higher than Johnson this week, but the stud running back has 33-plus DK points in three consecutive games and at least 27 DK points in all but one game since Week 5. With double-digit targets in three consecutive games, Johnson, like Le'Veon Bell, is one of those rare players that could get the 100/100 (double-bonus) line in any given week.

4. Kevin - Emmanuel Sanders, WR, Denver Broncos ($5,700): While he had a 7/162/1 line in Week 12, Sanders has been frustrating to roster. That said, the volume has been there. Twelve wide receivers have at least a 25-percent share of their team's targets; two of them play for the Broncos. In fact, Sanders (28.64%) ranks second in the NFL in that category behind Tampa's Mike Evans (31.05%). Assuming that Trevor Siemian is the starter, I think both Sanders and Thomas can take advantage of the favorable matchup — Tennessee allows the second-most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers.

Comments by Sean: You don't have to sell me on picking WRs vs the Titans. Kevin and I both wrote up Broncos players in our roundtable this week. There are a couple of things that worry me early in the week. First being Trevor Siemian’s status. I expect him to go this week, but if he doesn't I won't have as much Manny this week. Also, the Titans did just come off a bye week. They have had two weeks to game plan and fine tune their D.

5. Sean - Tyrell Williams, WR, San Diego Chargers ($6,100): This is my favorite game of the week to target as I think this will be the highest-scoring game of the week. I absolutely love Cam Newton in a bounce-back spot after an embarrassing loss vs. the Seahawks last week. Cam will probably be my highest-owned QB in GPPs this week. Since I expect the Panthers to go nuts on offense, I believe the Chargers will have to throw the ball a lot. Williams is Rivers favorite option and I think he has a 7/120/1 type game this week.

Comments by Kevin: The good news is that Williams played nearly the entire game despite his shoulder injury and is practicing in full this week. Not only has Williams scored in four consecutive games, but he has double-digit targets in three of six and 100-plus yards in three of eight games. Williams should be able to reach value at his price point and there is some upside as Philip Rivers should throw more often than he did last week (26 attempts).

6. Kevin - Demaryius Thomas, WR, Denver Broncos ($6,000): Even though Sanders has the second-highest target share in the NFL this season, Thomas has double-digit targets in six of his past seven games. As noted above, the matchup is great and due to the volume for both receivers, I think both can be productive.

Comments by Sean: It looks like Kevin is going in the direction of a Denver stack this week with DT. I do have some concerns as noted above. In a GPP though, I am on board with the play.

7. Sean - Delanie Walker, TE, Tennessee Titans ($4,400): Giving the roster build of having exposure to two Denver WRs, we are hoping for a shootout in this game. I’m going to come back with Delanie Walker as he is the Titans best threat In their passing attack. I think the Denver corners will have an easy time shutting down Rishard Matthews, Kendall Wright, and Tajae Sharpe. Walker has as much upside as any other TE on this slate.

Comments by Kevin: I'd like for Walker's target volume to be more consistent, but I'd expect a higher volume of targets for him this week given the matchup. It's certainly tougher to beat the Broncos on the outside. And even though he has 50 yards or less in three of his past four games, Walker has scored a touchdown in three games during that stretch.

8. Kevin - Colin Kaepernick, QB, San Francisco 49ers ($5,800): Kaepernick was benched after throwing for only four yards and burned plenty of owners last week, but he gets another shot in a favorable matchup. Before last week, Kaepernick had finished as a top-eight weekly quarterback in four consecutive games. While I wouldn't roster him in cash games (head-to-heads, 50/50's, etc.), the upside remains just as high as ever in tournaments. With Thomas and Sanders dominating team targets, I could see both having productive PPR performances without Trevor Siemian having a monster game, but I considered him here as well.

Comments by Sean: Taking Thomas/Sanders at $12K off our salary we are hoping for roughly 50 points in tournaments. If we get that 50 then Siemian is a lock as well. It would suck to hit the nuts in a game stack and not have the QB. Kaepernick has more upside than Siemian, but I’d rather take the play that makes more sense based on our roster build.

9. Kevin - Tampa Bay Buccaneers DST ($2,400): Based on remaining salary, there aren't/weren't a lot of choices to fill our defense. The Bucs have been playing better defense during their four-game winning streak, they play at home and Drew Brees and the Saints are not as prolific of an offense as on the road as they are at home.

Comments by Sean: Tampa D has played better than expected this year. I’ll have a few shares of Tampa D this week as Brees does struggle on the road at times.

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December 07, 2016

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 14

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 14?

Sean Beazley: Trevor Siemian, QB, Denver Broncos ($5,100)

I am targeting a QB this week who is near minimum salary facing a defense that has giving up 21 or more points in seven straight games. That QB is Trevor Siemian at $5,100. Siemian is out of a walking boot, and from early reports is on track to play vs. the Titans this week.

The Titans did release CB Perrish Cox, who was one player we all loved to target in DFS, but their backups are just as bad. This team makes mediocre QBs like Matt Barkley look like Hall-of-Famers. I’ll be running a dozen-plus Siemian GPP stacks this week as I think they will be pretty much unowned.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 14 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

Kevin Hanson: Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders, WRs, Denver Broncos ($6,000/$5,700)

In his past seven games, Thomas has double-digit targets in six games. Meanwhile, Sanders has a minimum of nine targets in five consecutive games. Both of these wide receivers dominate team targets so they should combine for roughly 20 or so in a great matchup against the Titans. This year, the Titans have allowed 173 catches (5th-most in NFL) for 2,227 yards (3rd-most) and 14 touchdowns (tied, 7th-most) to opposing wide receivers. Based on their bargain salaries, Thomas (19th-most expensive WR) and Sanders (23rd-most) should easily exceed value with plenty of upside.

Brendan Donahue: Colin Kaepernick, QB, San Francisco 49ers ($5,800)

Yes, I am going with the guy who set an NFL record last week by actually being sacked more times than he had yards passing in the game. I am willing to chalk that performance up to the weather. This pick might even have more to do with who the Niners are playing, as the Jets defense not only got torched by the Colts but looked disinterested while they were out there. Again, if you can overlook last week's performance, Kapernick was performing as a top-three fantasy QB over the previous four weeks and while he might not be the safest play, I am willing to take a chance on him for tournaments this week at just $5,800 at home vs. the Jets.

John Trifone: Carlos Hyde, RB, San Francisco 49ers ($4,900)

The Jets defense on Monday night was absolutely terrible. With nothing left to play for and Bryce Petty taking over at quarterback for the last four games, I expect the 49ers and Hyde to have plenty of opportunities to put up fantasy points. When healthy, Hyde has been a workhorse back, and I think a 100-yard game and a touchdown is well within his range of outcomes. He could score multiple TDs, but certainly has a safe floor with upside. For $4,900, he's a strong play his week.

Dan Yanotchko: Andy Dalton, QB, Cincinnati Bengals ($6,100)

This week I like Andy Dalton of the Bengals, as he has the best possible matchup in the Browns. Dalton last two 300-yard games were 332 yards last week against Philly and 308 in Week 6 vs. Cleveland. The Browns passing defense is really bad allowing 259 yards per game, 28 touchdowns and they only have eight interceptions and 17 sacks on the year. It will definitely be raining points for the ginger.

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December 02, 2016

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Tournament "Draft" for Week 13

Sean Beazley and I collaborated recently on putting together a tournament lineup for DraftKings main slate (Sunday games only) of Week 13 games.

Essentially, it was a draft with each of us alternating picks for the lineup. Sean had the first and odd-numbered picks; I had the second and even-numbered picks.

Below we will include analysis of each pick, but here is how the final roster shaped up:

QB - Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks (vs. CAR), $6,300
RB - Theo Riddick, Detroit Lions (at NO), $5,800
RB - Carlos Hyde, San Francisco 49ers (at CHI), $5,300
WR - Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons (vs. KC), $8,700
WR - Michael Thomas, New Orleans Saints (vs. DET), $6,900
WR - Marquess Wilson, Chicago Bears (vs. SF), $4,000
TE - Jimmy Graham, Seattle Seahawks (vs. CAR), $5,500
FLEX - Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs (at ATL), $4,700
DST - Pittsburgh Steelers DST (vs. NYG), $2,800

Below are the players in the order they were "drafted" (with comments by boths us):

1. Sean - Jimmy Graham, TE, Seattle Seahawks ($5,500): There are a lot of great options with a very high price this week which is going to naturally lead to buying low at the favorite TE position. Paying up for TE is contrarian for tournaments and I expect ownership to be low as Seattle played awful last week vs. the Bucs. They have a home date with the Panthers, who struggle vs. the pass. I think Graham will be peppered with targets here and will be the No. 1 TE of the week. Graham has already had a 30-point week this year, and I think he has a good chance in this one.

Comments by Kevin: Rob Gronkowski will miss two months following surgery and Jordan Reed is more likely than not to sit in a tough matchup against Arizona. Sean starts the "draft" with my top-ranked TE of the week and later I select my second-ranked TE for week as well. The offense, especially the offensive line, looked horrible last week, but Graham has three 100-yard games on the season and has as much upside as any tight end playing this weekend.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 13 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

2. Kevin - Carlos Hyde, RB, San Francisco 49ers ($5,300): The one-win 49ers are often underdogs, but that's not the case this week even though they are on the road. That tells us a lot about the opponent. On paper, it appears to be a tough matchup for Hyde as Chicago surrenders the third-fewest DK points to RBs, but the defense (and offense, for that matter) has been decimated by injuries. The other RB (Jordan Howard) in this game will be one of the most popular on Sunday's slate, but Hyde should get 20-plus touches including a few receptions, close to/more than 100 yards and perhaps a score.

Comments by Sean: The Bears defense might be worse than the 49ers defense. They are dealing with a ton of injuries. Colin Kaepernick will probably be the popular pick of the week in this matchup, which should keep ownership down on Hyde as QB/RB1 is not a good correlation play. I haven't played a lot of Hyde this year, but have no problem firing him into a bunch of GPPs this week.

3. Sean - Theo Riddick, RB, Detroit Lions (at NO): The Saints have the worst defense against pass catching RBs in the NFL. Drew Brees eats at home, which should lead to a lot of passes by Matthew Stafford in catch-up mode. Riddick is my favorite DFS RB of the week. I think he is extremely safe giving his work in the passing game and if he finds the end zone, he could crush value.

Comments by Kevin: The Saints can put up points in a hurry, especially at home on the fast track, so the Lions could be playing from behind for the majority of this game. Or at least be forced to try to keep up with the high-powered Saints offense. Riddick was a bit of a disappointment last week with his five catches going for only 13 yards, but he has double-digit targets and 70-plus receiving yards in two of his past four games. It wouldn't surprise me if we see something similar this week from Riddick.

4. Kevin - Michael Thomas, WR, New Orleans Saints ($6,900): The biggest concern with Thomas is that he is coming off a 9/108/2 game and no team is projected to score more points this week in the game with the highest over/under. In other words, his ownership level will be very high as owners load up on Saints players and Thomas specifically. Unlike, say, Brandin Cooks, he's established a floor with a minimum of 4/40 in every game. Since Week 3, he has an average of 6.1/75.0 on 8.1 targets per game with seven TDs in nine games so there is plenty of upside for the ex-Buckeye.

Comments by Sean: As I mentioned above, the Saints offense rolls at home. The difficult decision this week is rostering the correct Saints skilled position player. Cooks had a goose egg last week, which actually should increase his ownership this week as many people will be on him for the bounce back. Then we have the Saints TEs, who match up well vs. Detroit's awful TE defense. We also have Willie Snead, who draws an elite matchup vs. Quandre Diggs, who is one of the worst slot corners in the league. All of these guys are in play. Thomas has been Brees' rock though in the red zone, so I’m on board with the play. I just won’t have as much Thomas as I would in other weeks.

5. Sean - Russell Wilson, QB, Seattle Seahawks ($6,300): We have our exposure to the Saints/Lions game already so I’m ok going with a player in a different game. Russell Wilson’s price is extremely low given how well he has been playing as of late. I am willing to write off the Bucs game last week. Wilson has as much upside as any QB on this slate, and he will be extremely under owned.

Comments by Kevin: I liked Wilson a lot last week -- and was burned, as were many owners. Wilson had scored 25-plus fantasy points in three consecutive games before his 12-point dud (151 passing yards, no TDs, two INTs) last week. The offensive line remains a concern, but it's great to see a more mobile (read: healthy again) Wilson start to run more often. Wilson now has eight rush attempts in back-to-back games and he set a season high with 80 rushing yards last week. Due to his dual-threat abilities, Wilson always has a shot at being a top-three producer in any given week.

6. Kevin - Marquess Wilson, WR, Chicago Bears ($4,000): Wilson had 8/125/1 last week and could have had an even better outing. Given the injuries and/or suspensions to the offense, Wilson has been thrust into a prominent offensive role and he could remain the team's most useful option in the passing game until Alshon Jeffery returns. Several will try to chase points, but he provides some salary relief and should exceed value in a favorable matchup against a woeful 49ers defense that is all-around atrocious.

Comments by Sean: Having two players in a game with a total of 43 is extremely risky. That being said, neither team is great on defense and the 49ers have been beaten through the air in recent weeks. If SF gets ahead, our team looks good with Hyde at RB, and Wilson in catch-up mode. Wilson is probably the Bears No. 1 option moving forward In the pass game.

7. Sean - Julio Jones, WR, Atlanta Falcons ($8,700): The only question I will have this week in regards to Julio is, how much is too much Julio? Julio is my No. 1 overall play on this slate. He has a great matchup vs. Kansas City and I believe he should shatter his value this week. Of all the players in Julio’s range and higher, I like Julio to outscore all of them. I think we could see another massive week out of him where if you don't play him, you could be sunk in tournies.

Comments by Kevin: In 10 games since Week 2, Jones has more than 100 yards -- including a 300-yarder -- in six games and 35 or less in four games. (None in between 36-99 -- although he fell into that range in Week 1.) There is obviously tremendous upside with Julio every week and I expect him to once again go over the 100-yard mark this week.

8. Kevin - Travis Kelce, TE, Kansas City Chiefs ($4,700): Perhaps Jeremy Maclin returns this week, but it's possible they ease him back in. Either way, Kelce is a difference-making tight end that now has seven-plus catches for 100-plus yards in three of his past five. In a matchup against the high-powered Falcons offense, the Chiefs may end up throwing a little more often than usual and Kelce is my TE2 for the week.

Comments by Sean: Kelce will be extremely low owned especially if Jeremy Maclin is able to go this week. I think many will just avoid this situation completely, unless they are buying the Tyreek Hill game, which I am not. Kelce, like Graham, is one of the rare TEs who has 30-point upside and this game could be a shootout given how bad Kansas City’s pass defense is.

9. Kevin - Pittsburgh Steelers DST ($2,800): The Steelers are six-point home favorites and Ben Roethlisberger has great home-road splits. If the Steelers put up big offensive numbers, it's possible that the Steelers have plenty of opportunities for sacks and interceptions. In their past four games, Pittsburgh's defense has 16 sacks and four interceptions. Evevn though Eli Manning has multiple TD passes in five of his past six games, he is vulnerable to multi-INT games with three of them during that same six-game span.

Comments by Sean: Defense looks to be tough this week unless you are paying up for one of the elite options. I am going to be spread all over the place on D this week. It’s a crap shoot, but Pittsburgh does fit in with the types of D’s I like to target.

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November 30, 2016

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 13

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Roundtable post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 13?

Sean Beazley: Theo Riddick, RB, Detroit Lions ($5,800)

The past few weeks, the chalk has crumbled which has led to a major dent in my bankroll. I am going to get back on track this week and the one player I love this week is Theo Riddick. Riddick has a very reasonable salary at $5,800.

The Lions have a date with the Saints on the road this week, and we just saw how good Drew Brees and the Saints offense was this past week vs. a good defense. This week, they get the Lions defense, one of the worst in the NFL vs. the pass. Points for New Orleans equals opportunity for Riddick in the passing game in catch-up mode. I could see Riddick easily getting 8-10 receptions for 100 yards and a TD this week, which would more than pay off his value in receiving stats alone.

This is also a great game to stack in tournaments as it should be the highest-scoring of the week. This will be a popular stack, so going a little contrarian in your non-stack part of your lineup will be needed to differentiate yourself from the field. Game stack example: Matthew Stafford, Riddick, Golden Tate, Michael Thomas and Coby Fleener.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 13 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

Kevin Hanson: Travis Kelce, TE, Kansas City Chiefs ($4,700)

I debated a few players here and I debated listing Jordan Howard as it's always a wise move to start running backs facing the 49ers. Another player at a different position that will be in the mix to be my most-owned player is Kelce.

Kelce has hit the 100-yard mark in back-to-back games with a total of 15 catches in those two games. In fact, he had 15 targets on Sunday Night Football against the Broncos. Granted, that game went to overtime, but he has at least seven catches, nine targets and 100 yards in three of his past five games with a favorable matchup on tap. Only five teams that allowed more fantasy points to opposing tight ends this season, but two of those teams -- Browns (bye) and Cowboys (TNF) -- won't play on the main Sunday slate.

Even though he has scored only one touchdown in his past five games (and none in his past four), Kelce has finished with 20-plus DK points three times. Priced below six other tight ends, Kelce is a top-two option for me this week.

Brendan Donahue: Colin Kaepernick, QB, San Francisco 49ers ($6,100)

For a guy that has garnered a lot of attention for his off-the-field actions, he's surprisingly stayed pretty under the radar for his on-the-field performance for fantasy owners. In his last four games, he's averaged 26.9 points per game on DraftKings that culminated with a 37.1-point effort last week against a pretty good defense in Miami. In that game, he ran for 103 yards and facing a Bears defense that will be missing their top two linebackers, I can see him scrambling for a few longs runs once he breaks containment from the defensive line. He continues to produce as a top-10 QB, but DraftKings still has yet to catch up to his production as he is still only priced as the 13th-highest QB this week.

John Trifone: Jordan Howard, RB, Chicago Bears ($6,900)

Even though I want as much of the Saints/Lions game as possible, I'm going to recommend Jordan Howard as a top play. At $6,900, he's a substantial discount from top backs like David Johnson or Le'Veon Bell, but should have a comparable floor and even ceiling in Week 13. The 49ers were actually decent against Jay Ajayi in Week 12, but Miami was missing multiple starters on the O-line. I'm not putting too much stock in the performance. The 49ers run D has been atrocious all year. They play at a fast pace and Howard has been getting the volume as the lead back for Chicago. They should rely on him heavily this week, making his $6,900 price tag a bargain.

Dan Yanotchko: Theo Riddick, RB, Detroit Lions ($5,800)

This week, I like Theo Riddick of the Lions as I think he will not be selected as much of the other options at running back. Riddick fits well with PPR formats, as he is averaging six receptions per game over his last four, and he has been targeted 29 times. The Saints have allowed 13 touchdowns on the ground, and 27 FPTS to opposing runners in PPR format.

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November 25, 2016

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Tournament "Draft" for Week 12

Sean Beazley and I collaborated recently on putting together a tournament lineup for DraftKings main slate (Sunday games only) of Week 12 games.

Essentially, it was a draft with each of us alternating picks for the lineup. Sean had the first and odd-numbered picks; I had the second and even-numbered picks.

Below we will include analysis of each pick, but here is how the final roster shaped up:

QB - Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks (at TB), $6,700
RB - Jay Ajayi, Miami Dolphins (vs. SF), $7,600
RB - Jordan Howard, Chicago Bears (vs. TEN), $5,300
WR - Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons (vs. ARI), $8,500
WR - Michael Floyd, Arizona Cardinals (at ATL), $4,300
WR - Kendall Wright, Tennessee Titans (at CHI), $4,000
TE - Jimmy Graham, Seattle Seahawks (at TB), $5,300
FLEX - Rashad Jennings, RB, New York Giants (at CLE), $5,600
DST - San Diego Chargers (at HOU), $2,700

Below are the players in the order they were "drafted" (with comments by boths us):

1. Sean - Jay Ajayi, RB, Miami Dolphins ($7,600): I’m going back to the well picking on the San Francisco run defense. The past two weeks it played reasonably well, but Arizona just didn't run the ball for whatever reason, and the Patriots are the Patriots and do whatever they want. It took garbage time for LeGarrette Blount to eclipse the 100-yard mark last week. I don't think Miami will get cute here. Ryan Tannehill is one of the worst QBs in the league in my opinion, and I think they lean on Ajayi heavily. I will definitely be overweight on him this week as I think he should have no trouble getting 30 DK points.

Comments by Kevin: After a 1-3 start, the Dolphins have turned their season around with a five-game winning streak fueled by Ajayi's success as a runner. He hasn't rushed for 200 yards, or even 100 yards, or scored a touchdown in the past two games, but Ajayi has a minimum of 19 touches in all five games during their winning streak with an average of 24.2/G. Facing the league's worst run defense as 7.5-point home favorites, it wouldn't surprise me if Ajayi reached the 100-yard mark and scored a touchdown or two.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 12 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

2. Kevin - Russell Wilson, QB, Seattle Seahawks ($6,700): Wilson is the sixth-most expensive QB on the Sunday slate, but there are only two QBs that I have ranked higher that play on Sunday (Tom Brady and Drew Brees), but Wilson has as much upside as either. In his first seven games of the season, Wilson exceeded 15 DK points only once. Since then, however, he has 26.28, 29.52 and 25.28 in his past three games, respectively. Within their past four games, the Bucs have allowed the top-scoring fantasy quarterback twice -- Derek Carr (513 yards and four TDs) in Week 8 and Matt Ryan (344 yards and four TDs) in Week 9.

Comments by Sean: I think the Seahawks offense will be one of the most popular teams this week. They are all in play, Russ, Thomas Rawls, Jimmy Graham and Doug Baldwin. When Wilson is healthy, he is one of the most deadly QBs in the league as he has enormous upside with his rushing ability. I'm on board with this pick.

3. Sean - Jordan Howard, RB, Chicago Bears ($5,300): I expect Howard's ownership to be extremely low this week and this call could make or break my week because I am going to be extremely heavy on him. The big news here was the loss of Jay Cutler. Matt Barkley is not an NFL-caliber QB. They will also be without their best remaining option in the pass game, Zach Miller. This is going to lead to a lot of check downs to Howard. Howard only had one reception last week, but he was targeted eight times. I expect Howard to more than pay off this price tag this week.

Comments by Kevin: I won't have a ton of exposure to Howard this week, mostly because there are other running backs in his price range that I like more -- Thomas Rawls, Todd Gurley, Rashad Jennings, etc. That said, those favorable matchups for other backs should lead to very low ownership levels so I'll throw a few tournament darts on him.

4. Kevin - Jimmy Graham, TE, Seattle Seahawks ($5,300): Graham had four and five targets in his past two games, but he is averaging 5.13/73.25/0.5 on 7.25 targets per game since Week 3. Not only does Graham have three 100-yard games over that eight-game span, but he has scored three touchdowns in his past three games. The only other tight ends with three 100-yard games this season are New England's Rob Gronkowski and Martellus Bennett.

Comments by Sean: I would really like to see Graham get more targets. He has had only nine the past two weeks combined. Travis Kelce just had a pretty big game against this Tampa defense last week, so this is a spot where I could see Graham having a big game.

5. Sean - Julio Jones, WR, Atlanta Falcons ($8,500): Normally I shy away from Patrick Peterson, but Julio Jones is matchup proof. In fact, the last time Julio faced Peterson, he erupted for 10/189/1. I think we could see a repeat performance here in the day's highest total game. The Cardinals offense should be able to move the ball vs. the Atlanta's defense so I think Jones should have plenty of targets.

Comments by Kevin: The matchup is far from ideal, but only the Patriots are projected to score more points than the Falcons this Sunday. Jones has been a little hit or miss with zero games of 30-99 yards since Week 2. That said, he has twice as many 100-yard games (six) including a 300-yarder than he has sub-30 yard games (three) during that span. There is certainly downside due to the matchup, but Jones has the potential to be the top-scoring player in any given week regardless of matchup and Peterson will scare plenty of people off Julio.

6. Kevin - Rashad Jennings, RB, New York Giants ($5,600): Appearing in my Week 12 Fantasy Football Start'em, Sit'em, Jennings has exceeded 100 yards from scrimmage and has now finished as a top-12 fantasy running back in back-to-back games. Last week's matchup against the Bears wasn't great, but Jennings carried the ball 21 times for 85 yards and a touchdown and added five catches for 44 yards on six targets. This week's matchup against the Browns is much softer. In their past five games, the Browns have allowed running backs to rush for 832 yards (5.40 YPC) and eight touchdowns and add 24 catches for 178 yards. During that span, eight different running backs have finished as a top-24 PPR running back.

Comments by Sean: Jennings is someone I always have a hard time clicking on. Last week was the first week I played him all year, which paid off. Too bad the rest of my team sucked! Jennings has an elite matchup vs. the Browns this week, so I have no problems with putting him into my lineup again. I am going to have a good share of Jennings/Ajayi combos in GPPs this week.

7. Sean - Michael Floyd, WR, Arizona Cardinals ($4,300): Picking Arizona’s No. 2 WR has been a challenge all year. I think this game will shoot out, and I like Floyd the best among the cheap Cardinals wideouts. I think most will want to jam David Johnson into lineups this week, so having a natural leverage play like this could pay off.

Comments by Kevin: Floyd has been a major disappointment as he was recently demoted behind guys like J.J. Nelson, but it looks like he has re-emerged as the No. 2 receiver behind Larry Fitzgerald. Floyd now has a minimum of five targets in back-to-back games and in three of his past four and a 100-yard performance during that stretch. Certainly not safe for cash games, Floyd is worth a roll of the dice in a potential shootout.

8. Kevin - Kendall Wright, WR, Tennessee Titans ($4,000): I almost never play Wright, but he should be very low-owned given some of the other options in the $4,000 range like Tyler Boyd. And the Titans have had eight top-24 PPR performances since Week 6 -- Rishard Matthews (four times), Tajae Sharpe (two times) and Wright (two times) -- and no team has allowed more DK points to opposing receivers than the Bears. Similar to Floyd, Wright isn't worth cash-game consideration, but Marcus Mariota has been playing lights out lately and the matchup is certainly exploitable.

Comments by Sean: We were running low on cap space here, and Kevin had the final two picks. I would have went in a number of different directions. I will probably have no Kendall Wright exposure this week. Better plays in better matchups. I expect the Titans to pound the rock on the ground this week with DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry. Limited targets and opportunity here.

9. Kevin - San Diego Chargers, DST ($2,700): One of my favorite defenses of the week will be the Titans DST, but I didn't want to play them against Sean's Howard pick. And I usually prefer to start defenses at home, but Brock Osweiler has been brutal this season. The Chargers have scored double-digit fantasy points in three of their past five games. Even though they have relied on three defensive scores in two of those double-digit games, only the Chiefs and Vikings have more interceptions than the Chargers this season.

Comments by Sean: Giving the Wright choice, this was the only defense that made sense unless you wanted to roll with the Texans in this same matchup. The stats are fairly similar between the two teams in sacks and INTs. I'll never fault anyone for wanting to pick on Brock Osweiler.

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November 23, 2016

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 12

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 12?

Brendan Donahue: Thomas Rawls, RB, Seattle Seahawks ($5,700)

I think last weekend was a prime example of why more and more people have started to switch over to DFS vs. season-long leagues. While the rash of injuries most likely ruined some teams in season-long leagues, it opened up some nice opportunities for us this weekend who are playing on DraftKings. The main one I like this week is Thomas Rawls, who is unquestionably the featured back for Seattle as they only have two running backs currently on the roster after cutting Christine Michael and the injury to C.J. Prosise.

Rawls has already shown that he's ready for a larger workload as he was forced into more action last week and carried the ball 14 times and caught it three times. Rawls was a fantasy difference-maker down the stretch last year and now with his increased role and a good matchup against Tampa Bay, I will be putting him in almost all my lineups at just $5,700 this week.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 12 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

Kevin Hanson: Doug Baldwin, WR, Seattle Seahawks ($6,700)

The Sunday-slate wide receiver options aren't great this week as Antonio Brown plays on Thursday, Julio Jones draws shadow coverage from Mike Evans will likely be shadowed by Richard Sherman and A.J. Green tore his hamstring last week.

With Russell Wilson playing better (now at full health), the Seahawks offense is one of my favorite team stacks this weekend. I will have many tournament lineups with Wilson paired up with Rawls, Baldwin and/or Jimmy Graham this weekend. One week after hauling in three touchdowns, Baldwin reached the 100-yard mark and he now has back-to-back top-10 PPR performances.

Sean Beazley: Larry Fitzgerald and Michael Floyd, WRs, Arizona Cardinals ($7,000, $4,300)

I just came off my worst week playing NFL DFS, but I'm ready to get back on the winning side this week. There is one particular game I really like this week and it's the Arizona-Atlanta game. This game should have a ton of points.

People will see that "green 31" next to David Johnson's name and want to jam him in. I will have my fair share of DJ this week (including cash) and I really like Larry Fitzgerald at $7,000 and Michael Floyd at $4,300. This Atlanta team can be thrown on, and for some strange reason, Arians doesn't like to run the ball even though he has the league's best RB. I believe both will have lower ownership this week and make a great natural leverage play off DJ.

John Trifone: Tyler Boyd, WR, Cincinnati Bengals ($4,000)

With A.J. Green likely done for the year, Boyd may emerge as the top wideout on the team. He had eight catches and a touchdown last week, the game in which AJG went down early on. He's also got a matchup with the Ravens, who have one of the league's top run defenses. This looks like a good spot for a cheap WR to have a solid floor with big potential upside.

Dan Yanotchko: Thomas Rawls, RB, Seattle Seahawks ($5,700)

This week I like Thomas Rawls of the Seahawks, as he has a under-the-radar matchup against Tampa Bay. The Buccaneers have allowed 114.3 yards per game, 4.3 yards per carry, and nine touchdowns this season. Rawls will be seeing a plenty of action this week, as C.J. Prosise is on the shelf, and Seattle has limited options on the depth chart.

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November 18, 2016

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Tournament "Draft" for Week 11

Sean Beazley and I collaborated recently on putting together a tournament lineup for DraftKings main slate (Sunday games only) of Week 11 games.

Essentially, it was a draft with each of us alternating picks for the lineup. Sean had the first and odd-numbered picks; I had the second and even-numbered picks.

Below we will include analysis of each pick, but here is how the final roster shaped up:

QB - Tom Brady, New England Patriots (at SF), $7,800
RB - LeGarrette Blount, New England Patriots (at SF), $6,400
RB - Isaiah Crowell, Cleveland Browns (vs. PIT), $3,900
WR - Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (at KC), $8,100
WR - T.Y. Hilton, Indianapolis Colts (vs. TEN), $7,700
WR - Eddie Royal, Chicago Bears (at NYG), $3,400
TE - Delanie Walker, Tennessee Titans (at IND), $5,700
FLEX - Martellus Bennett, New England Patriots (at SF), $3,700
DST - Arizona Cardinals (at MIN), $3,100

Below are the players in the order they were "drafted" (with comments by boths us):

1. Sean - Isaiah Crowell, RB, Cleveland Browns ($3,900): There is an excess of value this week, so pegging the right value options is going to be just as important as hitting those high-priced studs. Hue Jackson said he would like to Crowell to be more involved in the offense this week, and the Steelers are ranked 31st in DraftsKings points allowed to RBs. I think Crowell is in a great spot for a 100-yard game with a TD this week.

Comments by Kevin: Only $300 less than Seattle's C.J. Prosise, Crowell will likely have relatively low ownership as I expect Prosise to be one of the most popular value plays of the week. Crowell has been a massive disappointment over the past month and a half with five games of sub-30 rushing yards in his past six games. During that six-game span, he has just 12.5 touches per game (as opposed to 16.5/G in his first four). If he gets the bump in opportunities as Jackson suggests, there is upside in a favorable matchup against the Steelers at home.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 11 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

2. Kevin - LeGarrette Blount, RB, New England Patriots ($6,400): Blount is not much of a receiving threat, but few players have as much upside as he does this week. Blount has scored a touchdown in all but one game (Week 4 without Tom Brady), but he has scored every other game this season and has a league-high 12 rushing touchdowns on the season.

Allowing the most fantasy points to opposing running backs this year, the 49ers have allowed opposing running backs to score 13 rushing touchdowns and average 5.26 yards per carry, both of which are position-against highs. Before this past week, the 49ers had allowed seven consecutive 100-yard rushing games.

Favored by nearly two TDs, there should be plenty of scoring opportunities for Blount and the Patriots, who have this week's highest implied total (32.0) using Vegas odds.

- Related: Blount was my choice in our Week 11 DFS Roundtable post

Comments by Sean: Blount’s price rose $1,500 this week, and the pricing was released before the Sunday night contest where he scored three touchdowns. That just shows you how much DK is pricing up RBs facing the 49ers. Blount has scored a TD in every game this year except one and it's a safe bet that he will find paydirt this Sunday.

3. Sean - Tom Brady, QB, New England Patriots ($7,800): Even though Kevin picked Blount, I am still going Brady here. QB-RB doesn't usually correlate well, and when it does it usually is because the RB is a dual-threat. Blount definitely isn't a dual-threat, but having Blount and Brady I get exposure to every Patriots offensive touchdown basically. I can see the Patriots scoring seven touchdowns in this one. This is a dream matchup for this offense. I love the Patriots In a bounce-back spot as well.

Comments by Kevin: Last week, my highest-owned stack was Ben Roethlisberger-Le'Veon Bell-Antonio Brown and that will likely be a highly-owned stack again this week in a soft matchup agianst the Browns. This version of a QB/RB/TE team stack will likely be an uncommon trio even though I think all three will have high ownership levels individually. Unafraid of running up the score on opponents, I could see Brady throw for 350/3 with Blount also rushing for 125/2.

4. Kevin - Eddie Royal, WR, Chicago Bears ($3,400): His best season is still his 2008 rookie season (91/980/5) with Denver when his current quarterback, Jay Cutler, was also his quarterback. With the suspension of Alshon Jeffery, many will load up on Cam Meredith over Royal. Given their history and chemistry, it wouldn't surprise me if Royal is as productive as Meredith this week at a much lower ownership level.

Comments by Sean: It's too bad that the Bears just didn't release Cutler this week so we could go back to throw the ball only to the right side of the field and load up on Cam Meredith again. Cutler has a better rapport with Eddie Royal and I think he makes a very good GPP option this week. I think Royal will be lower-owned than both Meredith and Zach Miller this week.

5. Sean - Delanie Walker, TE, Tennessee Titans ($5,700): Delanie had a good game in his last outing vs. the Colts (7/84/1) and should have success against this same defense this week. He's still priced too cheap at under 6K and you get him at reduced ownership as well, I think, as most will be paying down for TEs like they do every week to jam all the studs in. I think this game will be a shootout Sunday.

Comments by Kevin: The only thing I dislike about Walker this week is that he is coming off his best game of the season (9/124/1 on 11 targets). In other words, I expect his ownership level to be relatively high. Compared to some of the other big names at the position, however, Walker tends to be lower-owned than he should most weeks.

6. Kevin - Mike Evans, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers ($8,100): At $900 more last week, Evans was a popular pick -- and a major disappointment -- in a soft matchup against the Bears. I'm hoping that recency bias keeps his ownership level relatively low this week. And while he had just five targets last week, Evans had double-digit targets in his previous seven games with an average of 13.43/G during that seven-game span. With that type of volume, the 6-foot-5 wideout always has the upside for 100 yards and a couple of scores.

Comments by Sean: I'm on board with the Evans pick here. The matchup is great vs. Kansas City, and he is coming off his worst game of the season, which should keep some people off him.

7. Sean - Martellus Bennett, TE, New England Patriots ($3,700): Gronk missed practice again today and I doubt he plays Sunday given the fact they really don't need him this week vs. San Francisco. Bennett is priced at only $3,700. I think he will be fairly popular this week, but I don't think I can pass on him at this price.

Comments by Kevin: I love Bennett this week, but there are two primary concerns: (1) his ownership level will be sky high assuming Rob Gronkowski is inactive and (2) he may could be used as a blocker more often than fantasy owners would like. There is a little bit of boom (three 100-yard games) or bust (three games with less than 15 yards) with Bennett, but this matchup has "boom" written all over it.

8. Kevin - T.Y. Hilton, WR, Indianapolis Colts (7,700): With the last two picks, I debated Jordy Nelson with the Dolphins DST here as well. Hilton has three games of 29-plus DK points including his first matchup against the Titans. No game has a higher over/under this week than Colts/Titans (53.5) and I will have my fair share of game stacks with players from both sides. Hilton has as much upside as any non-QB in this game.

Comments by Sean: Hilton is one of my favorite WR plays this week. Hilton had 29 DK points in the last meeting vs. Tennessee. I think Luck and the Colts offense will have no problem moving the ball this week. Hilton could have another 30'ish-point performance.

9. Kevin - Arizona Cardinals DST ($3,100): On a four-game losing streak, the Vikings have allowed 16 sacks and their offensive line remains a mess with another injury at left tackle. The Vikings can't run the ball (league-low 2.7 YPC this season) and the Cardinals have allowed a league-low six pass touchdowns with 24 sacks (tied for eighth-most in NFL).

Comments by Sean: I generally don't like playing road defenses but I think this is a great spot for the Cardinals. The only way the Vikings have moved the ball recently was with Stefon Diggs. He gets a dose of Patrick Peterson this week. I think the Vikings will struggle to move the ball, and we know Sam Bradford is prone to turnovers.

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November 16, 2016

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 11

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 11?

Sean Beazley: Allen Robinson, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars, $7,400

Targets and touches equal fantasy points. My play this week is a receiver who has had double-digit targets the past three weeks (40 total). He plays for an offense that is pass-heavy. His team actually leads the NFL with a 66-percent pass-run ratio. The game script is favorable as they are almost 7-point underdogs. He just came off his best game of the season last week. This WR is Allen Robinson.

The last time I wrote up A-Rob was Week 3 vs. the Ravens and he had a two-touchdown game. Hopefully I am the A-Rob Whisperer! Robinson is sandwiched between two WRs that I think will draw higher ownership this week in T.Y. Hilton and Dez Bryant. Robinson could be a good low-owned play this week.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 11 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

Kevin Hanson: LeGarrrette Blount, RB, New England Patriots, $6,400

Not only will Blount be one of my lineup staples in Week 11, but I'd be comfortable going with the running back stack of Blount and James White (especially if Dion Lewis is once again inactive). Coach Belichick said that Lewis was healthy enough to play, but he was inactive.

Blount has scored a touchdown in all but one game (Week 4 without Tom Brady), but he has scored every other game this season and has a league-high 12 rushing touchdowns on the season. Favored by nearly two TDs, there should be plenty of scoring opportunities for Blount and the Patriots, who have this week's highest implied total (32.0) using Vegas odds.

No team has allowed more fantasy points to opposing running backs this year. No team has allowed opposing running backs to score more rushing touchdowns (13) or average more yards per carry (5.26) than the 49ers. Before this past week, the 49ers had allowed seven consecutive 100-yard rushing games.

Brendan Donahue: Martellus Bennett, TE, New England Patriots, $3,700

Although it hasn't been officially announced yet, I highly doubt Rob Gronkowski plays this week and that will most likely make Bennett a popular DFS play, but perhaps too big of a value to pass up. In the four games this year that Bennett has gotten at least six targets, his points on Draftkings have been 25.4, 18.9, 30.7, and 20.2, respectively, for an average of 23.8 per game. In a relatively favorable matchup against the Niners this week, I see Bennett having a rather high ceiling, making him a great value at just $3,700.

John Trifone: Theo Riddick, RB, Detroit Lions, $5,100

There are already some decent value options early this week, with guys like Cam Meredith and C.J. Prosise underpriced, but I'm going with a sneaky good tourney play this week. The Lions are coming off a bye, so recency bias should give them some lower ownership. Additionally, Riddick had been a little banged up and lost a costly fumble in Week 9, which produced a poor fantasy game.

He was over 25 DK points in the prior two weeks, though, and has been heavily targeted in Detroit's passing game. As long as Riddick hasn't lost his spot on the depth chart, which I'm not too worried about but would suggest monitoring throughout the week, he has a ton of upside against the lowly Jags this week. As a value play in the low-mid range, he is well worth some tournament exposure for sure, and could possibly be a cash consideration.

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November 11, 2016

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Tournament "Draft" for Week 10

Sean Beazley and I collaborated recently on putting together a tournament lineup for DraftKings main slate (Sunday games only) of Week 10 games.

Essentially, it was a draft with each of us alternating picks for the lineup. I had the first and odd-numbered picks; Sean had the second and even-numbered picks.

Below we will include analysis of each pick, but here is how the final roster shaped up:

QB - Jay Cutler, Chicago Bears (at TB), $5,300
RB - Le'Veon Bell, Pittsburgh Steelers (vs. DAL), $7,700
RB - David Johnson, Arizona Cardinals (vs. SF), $8,400
WR - Jordan Matthews, Philadelphia Eagles (vs. ATL), $5,900
WR - Stefon Diggs, Minnesota Vikings (at WAS), $6,200
WR - Alshon Jeffery, Chicago Bears (at TB), $6,600
TE - Lance Kendricks, Los Angeles Rams (at NYJ), $3,000
FLEX - J.J. Nelson, Arizona Cardinals (vs. SF), $4,200
DST - Philadelphia Eagles (vs. ATL), $2,600

Below are the players in the order they were "drafted" (with comments by boths us):

1. Kevin - Jordan Matthews, WR, Philadelphia Eagles ($5,900): Favorable matchup? Check. Good volume? Check. Potential to be in catch-up mode early? Check. Great price? Check.

There are a lot of things to like about Matthews, as noted above. Matthews hasn't reached the 100-yard mark since Week 1, but he now has double-digit targets in back-to-back games as the team has thrown it 40-plus times in each of their past two games. Even though the coaching staff wants to throw less, they host the league's top-ranked scoring offense this week so game script may dictate otherwise.

In a potential shootout against the second-most generous fantasy defense to opposing wide receivers, J-Matt has a solid floor with plenty of upside.

Comments by Sean: I have been burned by Jordan Matthews probably more than any other player in NFL DFS. I never get him right. His matchup is elite this week vs. Atlanta, who struggles vs. the pass. This game has the highest total of the week at 50 points. Matthews could be in line for a big day.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 10 contest with $5,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

2. Sean - Alshon Jeffery, WR, Chicago Bears ($6,600): I wrote up Jeffery in our roundtable article. I think he has enormous upside this week. I am hoping he gets overlooked this week. As I mentioned in the roundtable, this is the sweet spot where I am looking for my WRs this week.

Comments by Kevin: I agree with Sean except I don't think he'll be too overlooked. Either way, I want to have a lot of exposure to Alshon. Jeffery is my sixth-ranked fantasy receiver for the week and only the 15th-most expensive among those in the main Sunday slate. And with Jay Cutler back under center, he should be peppered with targets. In fact, he actually has 32 targets over his past three games (after inexplicably getting only 31 in the first five).

3. Kevin - Stefon Diggs, WR, Minnesota Vikings ($6,200): Diggs strongly benefits by the full PPR-scoring format on DraftKings. As an example, Diggs was the WR27 in standard-scoring formats last week but WR9 in PPR. In fact, he now has two consecutive top-10 PPR weeks with 8/76/1 on 13 targets in Week 8 and 13/80 on 14 targets in Week 9.

Comments by Sean: Diggs played his college ball at Maryland so he has a homecoming this week vs. the 'Skins. He is expected to have a lot of family and friends in the stand if you like narratives. I think Diggs will go overlooked this week because of the fear of the Josh Norman shadow. This is a play at low ownership that could be the difference this week in GPPs.

4. Sean - Le'Veon Bell, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers ($7,700): I am going to be all over Bell this week in tournaments. He makes a great natural pivot off DJ, who will be the highest-owned RB. The Steelers were embarrassed on the road vs. Baltimore last week, and Bell had one of his worst games in recent memory. I think Bell and the Steelers offense gets back on track this week, and he has just as much upside as DJ.

Comments by Kevin: Coming off a tough matchup against the Ravens, Bell has two really good matchups on the horizon -- Weeks 11 (Cleveland) and 12 (Indianapolis). That said, he is one of my favorite tournament plays this week. On the year, Bell has 119 combined touches -- 83 carries and 36 receptions -- and NO touchdowns. Predicting touchdowns on a weekly basis is challenging, but Bell had averaged a score on every 36.32 touches in his first three seasons. In other words, his red-zone production should regress to the mean and it wouldn't surprise me if he scored a touchdown or two this weekend. The other thing with Bell is he has yet to get lower than 20.00 percent target share and is averaging 9.2 targets per game.

5. Kevin - David Johnson, RB, Arizona Cardinals ($8,400): There are two mild concerns with Johnson: (1) team establishes too large of a lead early that leads to late-game rest and (2) high ownership levels.

The only player with 100-plus yards from scrimmage in every game this season, Johnson has had a true breakout season even if it was expected. Except for Week 4 (PPR RB18), Johnson has finished as a top-12 PPR weekly running back every week.

This week's matchup is phenomenal. The 49ers have allowed a 100-yard rusher in seven consecutive games. In addition to allowing the most fantasy points to the position, they have allowed 5.48 yards per carry to RBs (Washington allows the second-most, 4.90 YPC). One of those 100-yard rushers was Johnson, who had 27/157/2 plus 3/28 receiving against them in Week 5.

Not only does Johnson have three multi-touchdown games this season, but he has a total of 22 targets and 15 receptions in his past two games. No player has a higher floor and ceiling this week.

Comments by Sean: With Bell and DJ, we have upside for 70 fantasy points. I won't be going all in on DJ in tournaments, but I will probably have more exposure than the field. The 49ers run defense is atrocious. My only concern with DJ is that the Cardinals get up big and we see a lot of Andre Ellington in the second half.

6. Sean - Jay Cutler, QB, Chicago Bears ($5,300): Cutler has an extremely manageable price tag at $5,300 and given the salary we have spent thus far, we need to find a cheap QB. I think Cutler will be very low-owned and he has just as much upside as anyone in this price area.

Comments by Kevin: There are a number of sub-$6,000 quarterbacks that I like this week. I'll have exposure to Marcus Mariota ($5,700), Carson Wentz ($5,400) and Blake Bortles ($5,500) as well. Despite the fantasy-friendly matchup, Cutler should have relatively low ownership.

7. Kevin - Lance Kendricks, TE, Los Angeles Rams ($3,000): Since the days of the Greatest Show on Turf, nobody gets excited about rostering Rams pass-catchers. And while Kendricks has just one touchdown this season (although he dropped a wide-open would-be score last week), the volume and production has been there.

With a minimum of eight targets and five receptions in each of his past three games, Kendricks has at least a 25-percent target share in two of those games and a total of 19/179/1 on 29 targets over that three-game stretch. Kendricks has finished as the PPR TE9, TE6 and TE8 in his past three games, respectively.

Comments by Sean: Kendricks has had 29 targets and 19 receptions in his past three games. He had seven receptions for 90 yards last week and he dropped an easy touchdown pass. He makes for a solid GPP value play at TE.

8. Sean - J.J. Nelson, WR, Arizona Cardinals ($4,200): Nelson has slotted in as the Cardinals No. 2 WR and I think he could stick in this role. If DJ doesn't find the box this week, then Nelson is probably one of the best bets to do it. Even if DJ gets 1-2 touchdowns, there will be many more in this game. The Cardinals have an implied team total of around 31 this week. I'm not fading the Arizona WRs this week just because I like DJ so much.

Comments by Kevin: It's never a bad idea to start players facing the 49ers. As Sean noted above, no team is projected to score more points this week and Nelson is now a starter. In the team's game prior to the bye, Nelson had 8/79/2 on 12 targets (26.67%). I don't expect two touchdowns, and he may not score at all, but he's a big play waiting to happen given his tremendous speed.

9. Sean - Philadelphia Eagles DST ($2,600): There wasn't a lot of choices left at D. The Eagles are at home vs. a great offensive team this week, but they are one of the best fantasy scoring defenses this season. I'm rolling the dice here with this play.

Comments by Kevin: Based on remaining salary, this is probably the best defense we can afford. While the Falcons score a ton of points, the Eagles defense and special teams always have one of the better chances at getting a D/ST score and they should be fairly low-owned.

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November 09, 2016

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 10

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 10?

Sean Beazley: Alshon Jeffery, WR, Chicago Bears ($6,600)

I am assuming most people will target David Johnson this week, so you are going to need to be very wise with how you spend the rest of your salary. The price point I am looking at for my WRs is between $5,500-$7,000. There are a bunch of great tournament plays in this group that could have the same type of ceiling as some of the top options this week.

One of the players that I am interested in this week is Alshon Jeffery. I really like the Jay Cutler/Jeffery stack vs. a Tampa defense that is ranked 27th in the NFL vs. the pass. Alshon finally looks healthy and he has seen 32 targets in his past three games.

We have seen what Jeffery’s ceiling is in the past. I could see a 8/140/2 type of game here. I definitely will be overweight on Alshon this week.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a one-day $3 NBA contest with $25,000 paid to 1st place. ENTER HERE.

Kevin Hanson: David Johnson, RB, Arizona Cardinals ($8,400)

Perhaps my final ownership will be less than 100 percent, but there will be no other time this season that I will come this close to 100-percent ownership on a player than this specific week and with this specific player. The only concern is the massive spread (nearly two TDs) and that the Cardinals take their proverbial foot off the gas, but no team has a higher implied total than the Cardinals (31.0).

Not only have the 49ers surrendered the most fantasy points to opposing running backs, but they have allowed seven consecutive 100-yard rushers. The 49ers are allowing RBs a league-most 5.48 YPC and only the Browns and Saints (14 each) have allowed more total touchdowns to RBs (13).

So, how much will an elite running back like Johnson rack up this week? Well, he was one of those seven rushers and had 27 carries for a season-high 157 yards and two touchdowns with three catches for 28 yards in his first matchup against them in Week 5.

Perhaps he won't match his Week 5 performance, but no player has a higher floor and ceiling this week than DJ.

John Trifone: Marcus Mariota, QB, Tennessee Titans ($5,700)

Early on, there doesn't appear to be a ton of great value, so paying down at QB is a good way to give yourself some extra spending. Mariota has been outstanding the last few weeks and has at least 17 DK points in each of his last five games. Tennessee is at home against Green Bay this week, in what should be one of the higher-scoring games of the week. I like Mariota to easily pay off his salary, but also offer the high upside of some of the top-tier QBs this week.

Brendan Donahue: Darren Sproles, RB, Philadelphia Eagles ($4,300)

This is the second week in a row I'm picking Sproles even after he let me down a bit last week with a somewhat disappointing performance. The good news is that Coach Pederson reiterated that Sproles is the lead back and that was evidenced by him getting 60 snaps to just eight for Ryan Mathews. It is also encouraging that he was targeted nine times even though he was only able to catch one-third of them. In what should be a shootout with Atlanta, I expect him to get at least that many targets again, if not more. It seems that DraftKings has not properly factored in his new usage into their pricing as he is only $4,300 this week, which is the 33rd-priced RB and one of the best values of the week.

Dan Yanotchko: Jordan Howard, RB, Chicago Bears ($6,000)

This week, I like Jordan Howard of the Bears as he has a great matchup against the Buccaneers. Howard is rested off a bye, but he gashed an excellent Vikings defense for 202 yards from scrimmage two weeks ago. The Buccaneers have been soft against the run giving up 118 yards per game 4.1 yards per carry, and eight touchdowns on the year. Howard will be under the radar this week with Jay Ajayi, David Johnson, and Ezekiel Elliot having favorable matchups, but I love his matchup.

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November 04, 2016

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Tournament "Draft" for Week 9

Sean Beazley and I collaborated recently on putting together a tournament lineup for DraftKings main slate (Sunday games only) of Week 9 games.

Essentially, it was a draft with each of us alternating picks for the lineup. Sean had the first and odd-numbered picks; I had the second and even-numbered picks.

Below we will include analysis of each pick, but here is how the final roster shaped up:

QB - Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers (vs. NO), $5,600
RB - Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas Cowboys (at CLE), $7,700
RB - Charcandrick West, Kansas City Chiefs (vs. JAX), $4,400
WR - Donte Moncrief, Indianapolis Colts (at GB), $5,800
WR - Emmanuel Sanders, Denver Broncos (at OAK), $6,300
WR - Kenny Britt, Los Angeles Rams (vs. CAR), $4,400
TE - Kyle Rudolph, Minnesota Vikings (vs. DET), $4,000
FLEX - Le'Veon Bell, Pittsburgh Steelers (at BAL), $7,700
DST - Kansas City Chiefs (vs. JAX), $3,500


Below are the players in the order they were "drafted" (with comments by boths us):

1. Sean - Charcandrick West, RB, Kansas City Chiefs: This pick hinges on Spencer Ware’s status. As of Wednesday, he has not passed the concussion protocol, and I think there is a very good chance he isn't able to go. Jamaal Charles was recently put on the IR as well, so that leaves West as the only cook in the kitchen. West could be that free square you need to pay up for some of the other high-priced studs on this slate. The matchup vs. Jacksonville is very good as well. I would expect 20-plus touches for West and close to a lock for at least 3X value on Sunday.

Comments by Kevin: Assuming that Ware (concussion) is inactive, West will be heavily-owned this week. That would be the only thing to dislike. Especially with Ware and Charles out, West could easily get 20-plus touches with the Chiefs being more than a TD home favorites. In other words, he should easily exceed value and he has the upside to finish with 100-plus yards and a score.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 9 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

2. Kevin - Donte Moncrief, WR, Indianapolis Colts: When a player returns from a multi-game absence, I usually take a wait-and-see approach. With Moncrief playing the majority of snaps and getting nine targets (25.71-percent target share) in his return, there is no hesitation this week. As I noted our DFS Round Table post, Moncrief has seven touchdowns in 10 games that both he and Andrew Luck have played. Facing a banged-up Packers secondary as TD underdogs in a game that should be a shootout, Moncrief has plenty of upside.

Comments by Sean: Moncrief is going to be extremely popular this week. I think he will be one of the top-five guys owned in GPPs this week. The Colts are 7.5-point dogs on the road here, and this game has a 54-point total. Green Bay’s run defense is stout, so I could see Luck throwing the ball 50 times in this one. I expect T.Y. Hilton to play, but he was not himself with that hamstring injury last week. Moncrief should see double-digit targets, and I think he will have over 100 yards receiving.

3. Sean - Kyle Rudolph, TE, Minnesota Vikings: Play TEs vs. the Lions. It's worked pretty much every week. Rudolph is a red-zone machine. He currently sees almost 40 percent of his team's targets inside the red zone. Inside the 10-yard line, it jumps to 57 percent. Sam Bradford and the Vikings offense hasn't looked great the past few weeks, but I think this offense gets healthy this week. I think Rudolph will outscore every other TE on this slate.

Comments by Kevin: After getting 24.24%, 26.67% and 35.71% target share in the first three games, respectively, Rudolph has less than 20% target share in three of his past four games. One concern with Rudolph is that he stays in to block because the team has serious issues on the offensive line. If he becomes more involved as a pass-catcher than he has recently, though, this is the matchup to exploit -- no team allows more fantasy points or touchdowns (eight, so far) to opposing tight ends than the Lions.

4. Kevin - Colin Kaepernick, QB, San Francisco 49ers: Kaepernick has been brutal as a passer -- 46.03 completion percentage and 5.24 Y/A. As a rusher, however, he is averaging 8.82 YPC and 75 rushing yards per game. In a matchup against Drew Brees where neither defense offers much resistance, Kaepernick has as much upside as any quarterback this weekend. Even though the 49ers are home underdogs, they are still projected to score the ninth-most points this week based on Vegas odds.

Comments by Sean: I like Kaepernick enough for cash game consideration this week. Kaepernick has just as a good chance in getting the scoring bonus with his legs as his arm, which makes him very dangerous in tournaments. The Saints defense is bad, and so is the 49ers, which should lead to a lot of points in this one. The only real complement play I like with Kaepernick this week is Carlos Hyde, but I probably will play him naked in most of my lineups.

5. Sean - Kansas City Chiefs DST: Not paying up for Denver last weekend was a big mistake. I had exposure to about eight different cheap defenses around 10% last week and Denver at only 4%. Defense is a crap shoot, but this Jacksonville team is pretty atrocious. The Chiefs are one of my favorite teams to target when they are at home as they have one of the best home-field advantages in football. Hot take: KC D/ST has more TDs than Blake Bortles this week.

Comments by Kevin: The Jags have fired their offensive coordinator, but they still have Blake Bortles under center. Outside of garbage time, Bortles has been awful. Jacksonville ranks last in the NFL in first-half scoring (6.7 PPG), but fourth in fourth-quarter scoring (9.3 PPG). In other words, the Jags could be forced into obvious passing downs early in the game. And even though he doesn't have a return touchdown (yet), Tyreek Hill is one of the game's more dangerous returners.

6. Kevin - Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Dallas Cowboys: Like with West, the only thing to dislike about Elliott is the likelihood of high ownership this Sunday. Not only has Elliott averaged nearly 25 touches per game (24.86/G), but he has a total of 810 YFS in his past five games. The Browns have allowed the fifth-most PPR points per game to opposing running backs. Only the Saints (13) have allowed TDs to running backs than the Browns (12), who have also allowed the sixth-most yards per carry (4.74) to running backs. This could be a 150-yard, two-TD type of game.

Comments by Sean: These first six plays are all plays I am really considering for my main cash lineup this week. We have seen cash type lineups win major tournaments before, so I don't think firing a heavy cash core is a bad idea in GPPs. Zeke is my favorite player to pay up for this week. He has an elite matchup vs. the Browns. I could see Zeke exploding for a 40-point week. I will be all over the Dallas rookie this week.

7. Sean - Kenny Britt, WR, Los Angeles Rams: This pick is contrarian — not stupid! I think the Panthers offense is back, and I love this spot against an overrated Rams team. This pick is solely based on how I think this game plays out. Panthers get up big, and the Rams are forced to play catch up. The Panthers secondary is among one of the worst in the league, and we have seen Britt explode already once this year.

Comments by Kevin: I like the Britt call. Even in the Rams low-powered offense, Britt has 33/535/2 on 48 targets this season. That puts him on pace for over 1,200 yards. With four-plus catches in all but one game and 67-plus yards in five of seven, Britt's production shouldn't kill this team and there is some upside in a game with a favorable matchup where they will likely need to play catch up.

8. Kevin - Emmanuel Sanders, WR, Denver Broncos: Sanders has eight-plus targets in all but one game and double-digit targets in three games this season. In a soft matchup against the Raiders, both he and Demaryius Thomas have the potential for big games. Thomas has a bigger name, and lower price, so I'd expect him to have higher ownership, but Sanders (27.99%) actually has a higher target share than Thomas (23.88%).

Comments by Sean: The Oakland defense had played well vs. Mike Evans and Allen Robinson this year, but they are both big lanky WRs. That's the DT role in Denver. Against smaller WRs like Brandin Cooks and Steve Smith, they have struggled. I think Manny could have a big game here. I love this pick.

9. Sean - Le'Veon Bell, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers: Ben Roethlisberger is on track to play this week. Bell should be priced around $9K with a healthy Big Ben. I think this is the week to play a Ben/Antonio/Bell stack, before the pricing is $2-3K higher. I also love the Zeke/Bell combo in tournaments as I also think you could get a combined 6 TDs between the two.

Comments by Sean: The Ravens run defense is no joke, but Bell is such a versatile back that he's matchup-proof. While he should still get 15-18 carries, there is the potential that he also gets 8-10 receptions. In a full-PPR site like DraftKings, that is huge. In fact, Bell has at least 20-percent target share in every game and a total of 31 targets in the past three games.

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November 02, 2016

DFS Round Table: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 9

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 9?

Sean Beazley: Devontae Booker, RB, Denver Broncos ($6,400)

One play that I really like this week is Devontae Booker. I was 100% Booker last week in GPPs and I'll have a very large chunk of him this week as well. The fact that Denver relied on him so much even after sustaining an injury in the first quarter, and fumbling the ball again is really telling. Booker could have had a three-touchdown game last week. (Thompson vulture.)

This week he gets another great matchup against the Raiders, and it's the Sunday night hammer! Booker should see another game with around 25 touches and I like his chances to crush value this week. There are a lot of RBs in great matchups this week, so I think ownership should be somewhat low as well. I think Booker will have around 30 DK points this week. Fire him up!

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 9 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

Kevin Hanson: Donte Moncrief, WR, Indianapolis Colts ($5,800)

Returning from a five-game absence, Moncrief had four catches for 41 yards and a touchdown on nine targets in Week 8. A 40-yard score was called back, so he could have been even more productive in his return, but it was highly encouraging to see a 25.71-percent target share in his first game back.

Many (including me) expected a third-year breakout from the talented 23-year-old receiver out of Mississippi. With an ideal combination of size (6'2"/222) and speed (4.4 forty), Moncrief has flourished in the red zone when Andrew Luck has been healthy. In the 10 games that both have played over the past two seasons, Moncrief has a total of seven touchdowns.

With T.Y. Hilton battling a hamstring injury, Moncrief could once again see a large target share in a matchup against a depleted Packers secondary. In a game with this week's highest Vegas over/under, Moncrief has plenty of upside.

Brendan Donahue: Darren Sproles, RB, Philadelphia Eagles ($3,900)

Head coach Doug Pederson pretty much confirmed what we already suspected by watching the Eagles game Sunday night that Darren Sproles is now the lead back in Philadelphia. Not only did Sproles get roughly 80 percent of the offensive snaps on the night, he got the ball 20 times to only five for Ryan Mathews and that was even with the lead for the majority of the game. If Sproles is going to continue to get this kind of time and usage, he is a steal at only $3,900 on Draftkings this week.

John Trifone: Ty Montgomery and Davante Adams, WRs, Green Bay Packers ($5,800/$5,900)

The Packers have changed up their offense lately to a more dink-and-dunk recipe to move the ball. In the past two weeks, Aaron Rodgers has attempted 94 pass attempts and has seven TDs and zero interceptions. If Ty Montgomery is a go this week, which I expect he will be, he is an incredible value at $5,800 against a bad Colts defense. It should be an up tempo-paced game and Montgomery will serve as a part-time RB and short pass receiver.

Montgomery missed this past week, but got 25 targets over Weeks 6-7. Davante Adams got 30 targets over Weeks 7-8. I think both options are safe plays, even together, with solid upsides for both. Even if neither get in the end zone, they should still pay off their mid-range price tags based on the volume they're receiving. If both play, I prefer Montgomery, but Adams is a fine play as well.

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October 26, 2016

DFS Round Table: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 8

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 8?

Sean Beazley: Jimmy Graham, TE, Seattle Seahawks, $

You're either a narrative guy, or you’re not. I don't go out of my way looking for a narrative game (revenge, birthday, homecoming, etc.), but there are some that just fall into your laps each week. This week, we get the Jimmy Graham “Revenge” game after being discarded by the Saints front office and traded away to Seattle.

Graham gets an extremely soft matchup with the Saints pass defense, who is among the worst in the league. This game is also in New Orleans which is always a good sign for some extra points. Each week, TE is usually a spot to plug in someone for $3,500 or less to get some savings, so Graham could come in at a pretty low ownership percentage, which is ideal for tournaments. Fire up Graham everywhere this week.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 8 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

Kevin Hanson: Devontae Booker, RB, Denver Broncos, $3,700

If anything, the drawback to owning Booker this week will be his increased ownership levels following Monday night's performance (17/83/1 rushing). Playing more snaps than "starter" C.J. Anderson, Booker also had more touches (18) than CJA (16). While I don't expect him to out-snap, out-touch Anderson this week (or most weeks), his role in the offense had been steadily increasing before his big game in Week 7.

Since Week 3, Booker's percentage of his team's carries has increased every week: 17.39% (W3), 21.88% (W4), 25.00% (W5), 31.25% (W6) and 48.57% (W7). Productive this season on a per-touch basis (4.78 YPC) and a favorable matchup to exploit this week, Booker offers plenty of upside and cost relief for owners looking to fit in high-priced studs elsewhere.

- Related: Booker topped my list of waiver-wire adds at RB this week

Brendan Donahue: Devontae Booker, RB, Denver Broncos, $3,700

Denver said before the Texans game that they wanted to get Booker more involved in the offense and they were true to their word. Booker ran the ball 17 times for 83 yards and a touchdown and actually out-snapped C.J. Anderson 35 to 28. His talent is obvious on the field and I think he at the very least keeps a 50/50 share with Anderson going forward and at just $3700 this week against a Chargers defense that ranks 30th vs opposing RB's on the year, he is a great value play on DK this week.

John Trifone: Mike Evans, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, $8,100

Evans isn't cheap this week, but he's also not quite in the Antonio Brown, Julio Jones, Odell Beckham, A.J. Green range yet, and he should be. With Vincent Jackson done for the year, Evans is an absolute target monster. He's had between 11-18 targets in each of his last five games with Week 1 being his only game that wasn't double digits (seven). Jameis Winston is still a young quarterback and he locks onto his favorite target more than a veteran might. In a PPR format like DK, Evans is a tough fade -- even at $8,100.

Dan Yanotchko: T.Y. Hilton, WR, Indianapolis Colts, $

This week, I am going with T.Y. Hilton of the Colts as I think his ownership will be a little less than Mike Evans of the Buccaneers. Hilton has been a true workhorse all year, 45 receptions on 76 targets for 689 yards receiving and four touchdowns . The Colts get the Chiefs on the fast track at home in Indianapolis, and the Chiefs do allow 257 yards passing per game, and surprisingly they only have gotten eight sacks. This means Andrew Luck might actually live another week behind that offensive line.

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October 21, 2016

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Tournament "Draft" for Week 7

Sean Beazley and I collaborated recently on putting together a tournament lineup for DraftKings main slate (Sunday games only) of Week 7 games.

Essentially, it was a draft with each of us alternating picks for the lineup. Sean had the first and odd-numbered picks; I had the second and even-numbered picks.

Below we will include analysis of each pick, but here is how the final roster shaped up:

QB - Blake Bortles, Jacksonville Jaguars ($6,200)
RB - Devonta Freeman, Atlanta Falcons ($5,900)
RB - Tevin Coleman, Atlanta Falcons ($4,900)
WR - Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers ($7,800)
WR - A.J. Green, Cincinnati Bengals ($8,600)
WR - Allen Robinson, Jacksonville Jaguars ($7,300)
TE - Jack Doyle, Indianapolis Colts ($2,500)
FLEX - Mike Gillislee, Buffalo Bills ($3,000)
DST - Minnesota Vikings ($3,700)

Below are the players in the order they were "drafted" (with comments by boths us):

1. Sean - Mike Evans, WR, Buccaneers ($7,800): There are so many WRs that I want to play this week in this price range, and I think it will be the chalk build with so many cheap options at RB this week. Evans target average goes up from 8.5 with Vincent Jackson to 12.5 without him. Jackson is on IR, and Evans has a great matchup vs. the 49ers. Evans should be a top-three WR this week.

Comments by Kevin: I love Evans this week! Evans has double-digit targets in four consecutive games, five receptiosn every week and a touchdown in four of five games. Like in Week 2 (17 targets), Evans has shown to be a type of receiver that could approach 20 targets in a given week. Since last season, Evans is tied with Antonio Brown for most 15-target games (four) behind Julio Jones (seven). With V-Jax out, this could easily be another 15-target game for Evans in a favorable matchup against a bad and fast-paced 49ers team. It wouldn't surprise me if Evans finished with 100-plus yards and two scores this week.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 7 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

2. Kevin - Devonta Freeman, RB, Falcons ($5,900): Freeman is my favorite, or one of my favorite plays, this week and here's part of what I wrote in our DFS Round Table post: "Freeman (59.44% of team's RB usage) is getting the larger share of the workload than [Tevin] Coleman (38.33%). Not only does Freeman have a minimum of 15 touches in all six games this season, but he has five targets in three of the past four games. So far this season, no team has allowed more receptions to RBs than the Chargers (54) and only the Saints (10) have allowed more TDs to RBs than the Chargers (nine)." As home favorites in the game with the largest over/under and this week's highest Vegas implied total, Freeman is a safe play with enormous upside.

Comments by Sean: This is the highest total game of the week, and San Diego’s defense is pretty bad. This is a game I will be stacking. I won't make the mistake this week to leave Matty Ice out of my Falcons stack like I did when they faced the Panthers. Freeman is priced in the middle of the pack still, and could get overlooked with everyone wanting to jump on board the Julio Jones express. I love Freeman for both cash and tournaments.

3. Sean - Jack Doyle, TE, Colts ($2,500): Doyle comes in at the minimum of $2,500. Dwayne Allen will be out this week, which should increase Doyle’s targets. There is a concern that that Colts offensive line is so bad that Doyle will be left in to block, but It also could mean Andrew Luck is forced to throw quick short passes. Tennessee is very aggressive blitzing on defense, which could lead to a lot of quick check downs to Doyle. For the minimum, I think Doyle is a great play who could push to be a sneaky top 5-7 TE this week.

Comments by Kevin: Based on salary, Doyle should easily exceed value. The Colts have shown a propensity to target their TEs, especially in the red zone, so Doyle has plenty of upside. Even with Dwayne Allen in the lineup, we saw that upside in Week 1 when he led all tight ends in fantasy production. Aside from the concern noted above by Sean about possibly keeping him in to block often, the other concern is a possible high ownership.

4. Kevin - Allen Robinson, WR, Jaguars ($7,300): Robinson has underperformed compared to expectations this season with his most recent outing in a favorable matchup (Chicago) being a complete dud (3/49). Ownership levels should be very low considering some of the other high-priced receivers in great matchups. That said, A-Rob has 17 TDs in his past 20 games, a favorable matchup against the Raiders and double-digit targets in three of five games this season. Could this be the week that he breaks out with a monster game?

Comments by Sean: The Raiders rank last in the NFL in yards allowed in the air this year, and what's even more amazing is that they have played some pretty inept passing attack teams (Titans, Chiefs, Ravens) this season. Robinson should absolutely eat against this secondary.

5. Sean - Blake Bortles, QB, Jaguars ($6,200): I think Andy Dalton will be the highest-owned QB this week as he has the safest floor facing the Browns, but if the Bengals get up big we could see them take their foot off the gas. As noted with A-Rob, the Raiders have the worst pass defense in the league. If this game shoots out, Bortles could be a top-three scorer this week.

Comments by Kevin: Given the upside of the QBs priced right below Bortles (Marcus Mariota, Dalton, etc.), many could skip right over Bortles. We have seen a lot of fantasy QBs have big games against the Raiders and Bortles scored the fourth-most fantasy points last season so the upside is there even if he is off to a relatively slow start this season.

6. Kevin - Tevin Coleman, RB, Falcons ($4,900): I expect Freeman to be a popular pick in all contests this weekend, but Coleman could be very low-owned. For $600 less, you could get Jacquizz Rodgers, who should get a monster workload (35 touches in Week 5 before the bye) and has an ideal matchup against the 49ers (five consecutive 100-yard rushers allowed). Given the other injuries at RB in Buffalo, San Francisco, etc., there are plenty of bargain-basement options at the position.

It's not common that you could (or should) roster two running backs from the same team in a GPP, but I think both backs could be in store for a big game. Back in Week 3, the duo finished as the top-two weekly RBs in a favorable matchup against the Saints. In a less favorable matchup against the Broncos in Week 5, the duo finished as a pair of top-eight PPR RBs. I'd expect less than one percent of lineups to have both backs in the same lineup and Coleman could be less than 5%-owned overall.

Comments by Sean: The Freeman/Coleman combo has worked in the past for Atlanta. If you are going to fade Julio, then this is a perfect leverage play to get extra exposure to the Falcons skilled players. Coleman disappointed many owners last week, so I expect his ownership to be low. This is a high risk/reward play.

7. Sean - A.J. Green, WR, Bengals ($8,600): Well, we have three of my favorite WRs plays this week in this GPP lineup. All three have the upside to be the days No. 1 scorer. It also would not be a horrible strategy to play all three of them as a core and rotate in some of the low-value plays. I have two concerns this week with Green, which will probably lead me to be a little underweight on him. The blowout factor mentioned above, and the possible return of goal-line machine Tyler Eifert. Green still has enormous upside and should not be overlooked this week.

Comments by Kevin: Green has a pair of 170-yard games this season in great matchups against the Jets and Dolphins. This week, he gets a great matchup against the Browns. It's certainly possible that this is one of those 30-point fantasy outings for Green. My main concern is that the Bengals jump out to an early lead as 10-point favorites and we see a lot of the running game this week, but I still like AJG a lot.

8. Kevin - Mike Gillislee, RB, Bills ($3,000): Assuming that LeSean McCoy is out this week (one report suggests a multi-week absence, another says that he'll be a GTD), Gillislee is going to be one of the chalk plays at running back this week. Priced at only $3,000 in a soft matchup against the Dolphins, the Bills should continue to utilize a run-heavy game plan with Gillislee. Obviously, Gillislee is a talent downgrade from McCoy, but the Bills have 135 rush attempts for a league-high 847 yards (6.27 YPC) and seven TDs in their past four games since making a change at offensive coordinator.

Comments by Sean: LeSean McCoy missed practice again today with a hamstring injury. If he is out, Gillislee will be one of the most popular value plays of the week. You really only need about 12-15 points here from him to pay off, and given the workload he will see, he should have no problem paying that off.

9. Kevin - Minnesota Vikings DST ($3,700): With enough salary left to select any defense, I'm going with my top-ranked fantasy defense of the week. The Vikings have a minimum of 8.0 DK points in all five games and double-digit fantasy points in four of those five games. Not only do the Vikings have four defensive TDs, they have 19 sacks, seven interceptions and five fumble recoveries this season. They have also limited opposing offenses to 16 points or fewer in all games. With the Eagles dealing with issues on the offensive line and coming off their bye, they are in a good spot despite being on the road.

Comments by Sean: Defenses are a crap shoot each week basically because anyone can return a kick for a TD or get a couple of defensive scores. I really don't like paying up for them in tournaments because of this. I'd rather use my cap space on players where I can predict point totals better. I won't have much exposure to Minnesota D this weekend.

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October 19, 2016

DFS Round Table: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 7

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 7?

Sean Beazley: DeMarco Murray, RB, Tennessee Titans ($7,200)

One of my favorite DK plays this week is Titans RB DeMarco Murray. Murray is the fourth-highest priced RB this week, and has an extremely favorable matchup vs. the Colts. Murray has had 20-plus touches in each of his last four games, and I expect another heavy workload for him this week.

Last week, DeMarco was the chalk, and he disappointed many owners. This week, I think he will get overlooked. David Johnson is only priced $200 higher than Murray and is coming off a great game In prime time. I think the majority of players will click DJ’s name even with the bad matchup over DeMarco in an elite matchup.

I would estimate ownership being 10-15% higher on DJ this week. Recency bias at its finest, and this is the week to capitalize. I think DeMarco will be the highest-scoring RB this week.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 7 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

Kevin Hanson: Devonta Freeman, RB, Atlanta Falcons ($5,900)

One of my GPP strategies will be to start both Freeman and Tevin Coleman in the same lineup. Normally it wouldn't make sense to pair running backs from the same team in the same GPP lineup, but the Falcons are home favorites with the highest implied point total of the week. The duo has shown that they have the potential to BOTH perform as top-eight PPR running backs in the same week twice in their past four games.

With all that said, Freeman (59.44% of team's RB usage) is getting the larger share of the workload than Coleman (38.33%). Not only does Freeman have a minimum of 15 touches in all six games this season, but he has five targets in three of the past four games. So far this season, no team has allowed more receptions to RBs than the Chargers (54) and only the Saints (10) have allowed more TDs to RBs than the Chargers (nine).

Brendan Donahue: DeMarco Murray, RB, Tennessee Titans ($7,200)

Murray is the clear workhorse in Tennessee and is even getting more carries as the year goes on as evidenced by his 73 carries and seven catches over the past three weeks. With that type of volume and talent going against the 30th-ranked defense against opposing RBs this year, I think Murray has a chance to be the top-scoring RB of the week. At $7200, I think he's as safe an option to build a lineup around.

John Trifone: Marcus Mariota, QB, Tennessee Titans ($6,000)

At $6K, Mariota is one of the cheaper viable quarterback options this week and he's got a great matchup at home against the Colts. He's rushed for over 60 yards in each of his last two games and has thrown six TDs and rushed for one in those games. Mariota should easily pay off value but also has tremendous upside, and as a lower-cost option, will allow you to spend up in other spots.

Dan Yanotchko: Allen Hurns, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars ($5,000)

This week, I really like Allen Hurns going up against the worst pass defense in the league, the Oakland Raiders. Hurns is due for a breakout game, as he has complied 200 yards on 20 receptions, but he has been targeted 38 times in those five games. The Raiders allow 313 yards passing per game, and 12 touchdowns as well, so Hurns is a great add this week.

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October 14, 2016

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Tournament "Draft" for Week 6

Sean Beazley and I collaborated recently on putting together a tournament lineup for DraftKings main slate (Sunday games only) of Week 5 games.

Essentially, it was a draft with each of us alternating picks for the lineup. I had the first and odd-numbered picks; Sean had the second and even-numbered picks.

Below we will include analysis of each pick, but here is how the final roster shaped up:

QB - Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks (vs. ATL), $6,9000
RB - Lamar Miller, Houston Texans (vs. IND), $6,600
RB - DeAndre Washington, Oakland Raiders (vs. KC), $4,200
WR - Allen Robinson, Jacksonville Jaguars (at CHI), $7,800
WR - Marvin Jones, Detroit Lions (vs. LA), $7,200
WR - Sammie Coates, Pittsburgh Steelers (at MIA), $4,700
TE - Jimmy Graham, Seattle Seahawks (vs. ATL), $4,900
FLEX - Tevin Coleman, Atlanta Falcons (at SEA), $4,800
DST - Jacksonville Jaguars DST (at CHI), $2,700

Below are the players in the order they were "drafted" (with comments by boths us):

1. Kevin - Allen Robinson, WR, Jaguars: In our DFS Round Table post this week, Robinson was my choice. I think he's a great option in both GPPs and cash games. Priced on DraftKings as the WR7, A-Rob goes into Week 6 as the WR2 in my rankings. After leading the league with 14 touchdown receptions last season, Robinson got three TDs in his two games prior to the bye and has double-digit targets in three of four games. It wouldn't surprise me if this is the first week of the year that he goes over 100 yards and scores.

Comments by Sean: I'm a huge A-Rob fan. I went all-in Week 3 when they faced the Ravens and was rewarded with two scores, and a boost to my bankroll. He has a great matchup vs. the Bears so I am on board with this play. I think this is a very good game to stack as well.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 6 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

2. Sean - Jimmy Graham, TE, Seahawks: Now is the time to get on board the Jimmy Graham Express. Two consecutive games with eight or more targets, and over 20 DK points in each of them. The Seahawks have a very good matchup vs. the Falcons. I think Graham has another 20-plus point week.

Comments by Kevin: Graham has finished as a top-five fantasy TE in back-to-back weeks before Seattle's bye and gets a phenomenal matchup this week against the Falcons. Based on some of the tight ends priced around him (e.g., Delanie Walker at $5,500 and Martellus Bennett at $4,900 as examples), Graham will likely be relatively low-owned with plenty of upside. I like this pick.

3. Kevin - Russell Wilson, QB, Seahawks: Despite the injuries that Wilson has dealt with earlier this season (yet not missed any time), I like the fact that he had his bye last week. Before the bye, Wilson had his best game of the season (23/32, 309 yards, three TDs). With the emergence of Graham, Wilson has as much upside as any quarterback this week.

Comments by Sean: Kevin stole my pick here. I absolutely love Russell Wilson this week. Everyone will want to get a piece of the Saints/Panthers game, but I think Wilson could be the highest-scoring QB of the week. Wilson also comes with a 1K savings over Drew Brees.

4. Sean - DeAndre Washington, RB, Raiders: Everyone will be off DeAndre this week after his poor performance vs. a very bad Chargers defense. Latavius Murray missed practice again on Thursday and his status is still up in the air for this week's game. Even if Murray is able to go, Washington will still likely see 10-12 touches. This is a great spot for a bounce back.

Comments by Kevin: In our "draft" last week, I wasn't crazy about Washington, but I like him more this week than last. His ownership should be much lower than last week and he has shown the ability to be productive on a per-touch basis (5.48 YPC this season). If the Raiders go with a hot-hand approach, Washington has as much potential as Jalen Richard to develop the "hot hand" this week.

5. Kevin - Lamar Miller, RB, Texans: Miller had just nine touches in last week's 18-point loss to the Vikings. Before that, however, he had a minimum of 22 touches in each of the first four games with an average of 26.5 over that stretch. In a favorable matchup against the Colts, who have allowed the third-most PPR points to opposing running backs this season, Miller could be in store for a massive (and much more efficient) workload. At his $6,600 price point, I love the upside.

Comments by Sean: Miller might go overlooked this week as well giving the recency bias after his bad game vs. Minnesota last week. He is in a very good spot this week vs the Colts, and I expect the Texans to be able to move the ball at will vs. them.

6. Sean - Marvin Jones, WR, Lions: His production has dipped since his red hot start, but I like him a lot here in tournaments this week. I would expect ownership to fall in under 7% for him this week as the majority of players will be paying up for RBs this week. Jones is also in a weird price point surrounded by Dez Bryant and Alshon Jeffery, two receivers that I don't expect people to be playing either. The Lions play better at home, so I think Jones will be back to getting his targets and points.

Comments by Kevin: Jones is coming off a sub-par performance (4/37/1 on five targets) last week, but he had 74-plus yards in each of his first four games including games with 118 yards and 205 yards. I'm on board with Jones this week.

7. Kevin - Tevin Coleman, RB, Falcons: The duo of Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman have exactly 1,000 YFS through five games. With just shy of 40 percent (39.87%) of the RB touches, Coleman has a total of five touchdowns and most of his production has come in the receiving game (17/313/1). Coleman has shown what he could do in a tough matchup (last week vs. Broncos) and I think he should be very low-owned given the tough matchup this week.

Comments by Sean: Sadly, this will be the first time I played Tevin Coleman on a full slate this season. This is the perfect complementary play to go alongside the Russell/Graham stack. If you think Seattle is going to go off this week like I do, then Atlanta will be playing from behind which should lead to a ton of garbage time targets for Coleman. Coleman should be able to hit value this week.

8. Sean - Sammie Coates, WR, Steelers: I was stuck with the final two picks this week. I like Coates spot this week, and he isn't nearly as high priced as he should be giving the fact that he has solidified himself as the team's No. 2 WR. Coates missed practiced today with a hand injury, which might be one of the reasons why he dropped so many passes last week! If Coates doesn't play, I would 2v2 swap him and my D with Michael Thomas/Titans D.

Comments by Kevin: I loved Coates last week. The leader in 40-yard receptions this season, Coates is a big play waiting to happen. My only concern with him this week is the expected spike in ownership, but his salary is great (assuming that he plays).

9. Sean - Jacksonville Jaguars, DST: Defenses are such a crap shoot each week. I tend to play roughly 5-7 defenses each week in my GPP lineups. I usually only play defenses at home, but from time to time I will roll the dice on a small road dog. This play will be under 3% owned, and it could be the difference in a big pay day.

Comments by Kevin: Brian Hoyer has three consecutive 300-yard, multi-TD games, but he's Brian Hoyer. I like Hoyer actually from a fantasy perspective this week, but did I mention that he's Brian Hoyer. I have no qualms with taking a defense facing the great Brian Hoyer.

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October 13, 2016

DFS Round Table: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 6

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 6?

Sean Beazley: Jeremy Maclin, WR, Kansas City Chiefs ($6,300)

Roster construction last week was cheap RB and pay up for WR. This week, I expect it to be the exact opposite as there are so many high priced RBs in great matchups. Cam Meredith will likely be one of the highest-owned players to get those stud RBs in. I think this week a more balanced approach will be key to differentiate yourself from the pack. One of those targets I like this week is Jeremy Maclin. Maclin is priced outside the top 20 this week, and he gets a very juicy matchup vs. the Raiders, who can’t stop anyone. Maclin has had success in the past vs. the Raiders (12/149/3 last season) and I think he has top-five upside this week. Fire him up in GPPs.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 6 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

Kevin Hanson: Allen Robinson, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars ($7,500)

There are plenty of players that I considered, but I absolutely love Allen Robinson this week. While there are six other receivers priced higher than A-Rob, the third-year wideout is my second-ranked receiver after Antonio Brown ($10,000) this week. The volume of targets has been there for Robinson, who has double-digit targets in three of four games. After leading (tied) the league with 14 touchdowns last season, Robinson has three touchdowns in his past two games before the bye. That said, the immensely talented receivers has yet to have that monster game that he's capable of producing and it wouldn't surprise me if it happened against a beatable Bears secondary that just gave up 10/171/1 last week to T.Y. Hilton.

Brendan Donahue: Sammie Coates, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers ($4,700)

While I don't expect Coates to duplicate exactly what he did last week, he is certainly trending in that direction. In the past two weeks, he has 12 catches for 218 yards and two touchdowns on 19 targets. He actually had a few drops last week that cost him an even bigger day and an easy touchdown, but Ben Roethlisberger is clearly gaining confidence in him. In a great matchup against the Dolphins defense that ranks 29th against WRs, he is a great value at only $4,700.

John Trifone: Robert Woods, WR, Buffalo Bills ($4,200) and Cam Meredith, WR, Chicago Bears ($4,100)

My DK pick this week is going to go back to some value options and I'm going to give two WRs in the same range: Robert Woods for $4,200 and Cam Meredith for $4,100. Woods is coming off a poor game, catching only two of his six targets this past week. However, he's got a good matchup coming up and is the Bills top wideout option with Sammy Watkins out. His performance this past week should keep his ownership down.

Meredith also has a good matchup at home against the Jags this week. He played almost the entire game, replacing Kevin White's role, and the presence of Eddie Royal and Alshon Jeffrey on the field did not hurt his production. In the limited time he has played, he's been heavily targeted and made the most of his opportunities. Both wideouts are great value options to open up your lineup to some of the more expensive guys.

Dan Yanotchko: Lamar Miller, RB, Houston Texans ($6,600)

This week, I really like Lamar Miller of the Texans, as he has a great matchup against the Colts. Miller has averaged 74 yards per game, and added 14 receptions as well, as I believe he will be focal point of their offense this week. The Colts have allowed 109.6 yards per game, 4.6 yards per carry, and five touchdowns on the ground. This week will be a breakthrough for Miller, against a really bad Colts front seven.

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October 07, 2016

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Tournament "Draft" for Week 5

Sean Beazley and I collaborated recently on putting together a tournament lineup for DraftKings main slate (Sunday games only) of Week 5 games.

Essentially, it was a draft with each of us alternating picks for the lineup. Sean had the first and odd-numbered picks; I had the second and even-numbered picks.

Below we will include analysis of each pick, but here is how the final roster shaped up:


Below are the players in the order they were "drafted" (with comments by boths us):

1. Sean - Brandon Marshall, WR, Jets: Marshall may be part of my GPP core this week as I think he is in a great spot this week vs. the Steelers on the road. The Jets should be playing catchup this week, which should lead to a surplus of targets headed towards Marshall. With Eric Decker out last week, Marshall led the team with 12 targets. I think Marshall could be a sneaky top-three WR option this week.

Comments by Kevin: Despite the volume (22 targets) in his past two games, Marshall has been somewhat disappointing. In fact, Ryan Fitzpatrick has thrown more interceptions (nine) than Marshall completions (seven) during that span. Not only does Marshall have a career-low catch rate (41.0 percent), but he has a TD/target rate of only 2.564 percent compared to 7.3+ percent in each of the past three seasons. In other words, it would not surprise me if he caught a TD (or two) as that percentage regresses closer to his career average (5.323 percent).

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 5 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

2. Kevin - Julian Edelman, WR, Patriots: During Tom Brady's four-game suspension, Edelman has averaged a 4.75/49 line with no touchdowns. Yawn! In his past 16 games with Brady, however, Edelman has racked up 119 catches (on 176 targets) for 1,355 yards and 10 touchdowns. Not only do the Patriots get Brady back this week, no team is projected to score more points this week as the Browns are tasked with slowing down a pissed-off Brady. As the 18th-priced receiver for DraftKings main slate of Sunday games, Edelman should easily exceed value (for the first time this season).

Comments by Sean: This will be the cheapest you will get Edelman all season. He is in a great spot vs. the Browns in the classic F.U. spot in Brady’s return. If Brady shows any sign of rust, he will look towards Edelman early and often. He makes for a safe GPP play who should have a floor in the 15-20 point range.

3. Sean - DeAndre Washington, RB, Raiders: This backfield has been up for grabs all season. Latavius Murray had had a decreased workload each week and now he is expected to miss this week's game. I’m rolling the dice with Washington over Jalen Richard. I have had success targeting San Diego’s run defense this season.

Comments by Kevin: I prefer this pick in cash games, not GPPs. I don't hate it; I just don't love it. Here's the good news: Washington has been highly efficient on limited touches (6.68 YPC), Latavius Murray (turf toe) is considered doubtful for Week 5 and the Chargers have allowed eight RB touchdowns (six rushing and two receiving) in four games. The bad news? It's been close to a 50-25-25 split with Murray, Washington and Jalen Richard so (close to) a 50-50 split is possible for Washington and Richard, which could cap Washington's ceiling.

4. Kevin - Todd Gurley, RB, Rams: To modify an old series of antacids commercials, how do you spell disappointment? G-U-R-L-E-Y. Even though Gurley has a league-high 90.91 percent of his team's RB touches, the über-talented second-year back is facing 12-men boxes (or so it seems). Given his struggles (a brutal 2.63 YPC), he should be fairly low-owned this week. From a talent standpoint, however, there is always the chance that he busts out for 150 yards and two scores regardless of matchup, but he has a more favorable matchup compared to the past few weeks.

Comments by Sean: I have heard a lot of talk about Gurley this week. I am just not that excited with the play this week, or playing any Rams in DFS for that matter. Gurley is only averaging 2.6 YPC this year, which is by far the worst in the NFL among qualifying backs. If I make 100 lineups this week, I'll probably only have 1 percent exposure to Gurley (this lineup ... haha). Much better options in this price range and below.

5. Sean - Ryan Fitzpatrick, QB, Jets: As discussed with Marshall, I like the Jets passing attack this week. Pittsburgh has given up nearly 300 yards of passing in every game this year, which bodes well for a QB at pretty much minimum salary. I think Fitz is more than likely to hit that 4x his price point that you want in GPPs on DK (20 points) than Tom Brady (30 points).

Comments by Kevin: You can't spell "Ryan Fitzpatrick" without an "INT." With a one-to-nine TD-to-INT ratio over his past two games, it can only get better for Fitzpatrick, right? Compared to his salary, however, there is certainly upside and I don't mind this choice.

6. Kevin - Devonta Freeman, RB, Falcons: With Tevin Coleman saying that he will play this week, it's not clear how much work he'll get. Considering his health condition (sickle cell anemia), it would be wise to not play given the elevated (no pun intended) risks. What I'm hoping is that Coleman is "active" but not a major part of the action. Even with a 55-45 split in workload so far this season, Freeman has 66 touches (16.5/G) through four games. Assuming the Falcons are playing in catch-up mode and Coleman plays less (than usual), Freeman could get 20-plus touches including a ton of targets on Sunday.

Comments by Sean: At first look, Freeman is a terrible play vs. the league's best defense. But if you really dig deeper, this is a brilliant GPP play. Tevin Coleman’s status is up in the air still for Sunday which could lead to Freeman seeing the bulk of the work. The one place you can attack this defense is with pass-catching backs. Freeman is very cheap giving the opportunity he should see this week.

7. Sean - Antonio Brown, WR, Steelers: After the Freeman pick, we were left with a good chunk of change left. I didn't want to pay up for TE this week, so by spending 4K or less on TE and even taking a top-tier defense, it would leave us with a very odd price point for this spot. So, I went with Brown here. Obviously you don't need to know why you should play AB84. If you solely look at roster construction this play fits in perfectly with Fitz & Marshall. The QB-WR1-Opposing WR1 is one of my favorite ways to stack games.

Comments by Kevin: With such a high floor and ceiling, it's always a good idea to own Brown. Only the Patriots are projected to score more points this week than the Steelers. I agree with Sean about the QB with both WR1's being a great GPP stack. Here's a stat I find interesting: Sammie Coates has a league-high five 40-yard receptions with no touchdowns. (That almost seems impossible.) Meanwhile, the Jets have allowed a league-high 16.6 Y/R to opposing WRs. At $3,600, Coates is a nice roll-the-dice GPP play this week as well.

8. Kevin - Zach Ertz, TE, Eagles: The only concern with Ertz is his return from a multi-game injury. Assuming he plays a full complement of snaps, however, Ertz is in a great spot against the Lions. In GPPs, you want upside and Ertz provides that. Only the Falcons have allowed more fantasy points to opposing tight ends and the Lions have allowed six touchdowns to the position.

Comments by Sean: I wrote up Ertz as one of my favorite plays in our DFS Round Table post for Week 5. Detroit is horrible vs TEs and I will have plenty of Ertz this week.

9. Sean - Miami Dolphins DST: The Titans offense has been pretty bad this year. They aren't allowing a lot of sacks, but Marcus Mariota has thrown some costly INTs and D/STs have already scored three touchdowns vs. them this year. If the game is played Sunday, the conditions will be sloppy so I would expect another low-scoring game.

Comments by Kevin: I'm fine with this. D/STs are so hit or miss since defensive scores are so important. It's unclear where or when this game will be played due to Hurricane Matthew, but the Titans have shown a propensity to allow big plays to opposing defenses.

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October 05, 2016

DFS Round Table: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 5

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 5?

Sean Beazley: Zach Ertz, TE, Philadelphia Eagles, $3,500

One guy that I will be heavily targeting this week is Eagles TE Zach Ertz. Ertz should be 100 percent ready to go this week versus a Lions defense that just bleeds points to TEs. Last season, they were the worst unit versus the position, and this year they are allowing on average 6-64-1.5. This is 21.4 DK points. Ertz is only $3,500 so he more than pays off this value.

Ertz should be somewhat low-owned this week as well considering the increase in ownership that Rob Gronkowski will have with Tom Brady back and the weekly chasers targeting Jordan Reed. Ertz’s price point is perfect given that I expect the recency bias to fall as well on players like Kyle Rudolph, Zach Miller, and Hunter Henry (if Antonio Gates is out), who all scored touchdowns last week.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 5 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

Kevin Hanson: Julian Edelman, New England Patriots, $6,700

During Tom Brady's four-game suspension, Edelman averaged a 4.75/49 line with no touchdowns. Not only do the Patriots get Brady back this week, but they get a favorable matchup against the Browns. In his past 16 games with Brady, Edelman has racked up 119 catches (on 176 targets) for 1,355 yards and 10 touchdowns. As the 18th-priced receiver for DraftKings main slate of Sunday games, Edelman should easily exceed value (for the first time this season).

Brendan Donahue: Jordan Howard, RB, Chicago Bears, $5,200

Howard was given the lead role in the Bears backfield last week and may have just won the job going forward even when Jeremy Langford and Ka'Deem Carey come back from their injuries. John Fox said in his post-game interview that the Bears will "continue riding Howard," which certainly makes sense as he ran for 111 yards on 23 carries and caught three balls for 21 yards against the Lions. With a good matchup against a bad Colts defense this week, he is still priced too low on Draftkings at only $5,200 and should have a rather high floor with the potential to be a top-five RB this week.

John Trifone: Andrew Luck, QB, Indianapolis Colts, $7,300

There are always a ton of guys to like on DK, both for value and matchup-based situations, regardless of price. I typically go with a value guy for my recommendation, but this week, I'm going to go with Andrew Luck. At 1-3, the Colts absolutely need a win at home against the Bears this week. Luck has been solid from a fantasy perspective — the Denver game aside, which any quarterback is going to struggle with. He hasn't had that huge game yet, though, and this is an absolutely prime spot for him to get it. I don't mind going for more value at quarterback, but on raw points, I like Luck to blow up this week. I'm expecting 350+ yards with 4 TDs.

Dan Yanotchko: Ryan Fitzpatrick, QB, New York Jets, $5,100

This week I like — and don't laugh — Ryan Fitzpatrick of the Jets at Pittsburgh. Take away his horrible interceptions, and he has averaged 252 yards per game, and has added 60 yards rushing as well. The Steelers have been bad against the pass, allowing 317 yards per game, and a 64-percent completion rate to opposing QBs. I like his value and he's less than Brian Hoyer this week.

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September 28, 2016

DFS Round Table: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 4

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 4?

Sean Beazley: DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller, WR, Houston Texans, $8,400/$5,300

The pricing this week on DraftKings looks much softer than it has in previous weeks. With some of that value on the board this week, you can pretty much pay for anyone. This will make playing GPPs this week very fun.

I have a pair of teammates that I will be targeting heavily this week: DeAndre Hopkins ($8,400) and Will Fuller ($5,300). I wouldn't be opposed to a double stack with Brock Osweiler in GPPs. Recency bias and the extremely low total of 40.5 will get people off the Texans offense this week. This is a big mistake. Hopkins has 15/211/2 in two games vs. the Titans last year and I expect him to get in the end zone again this week.

The Titans released DFS favorite CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson and replaced him with Perrish Cox, who has been equally awful this season. If Fuller is matched up with Cox, he should have a monster game.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a $3 Week 4 contest with $50,000 paid to 1st place and is FREE for new depositors. Enter here.

Kevin Hanson: Melvin Gordon, RB, San Diego Chargers (vs. NO), $

I'm going back to the well with Gordon again (my pick in Week 3). It was a mildly disappointing performance for Gordon last week as he barely averaged two yards per carry against the Colts. That said, he did get 20 touches and score a touchdown. With Danny Woodhead injured, Gordon has a total of 47 touches in the past two games and he's a lock for close to (or more than) 20 touches every week.

MG3 was such a popular pick last week, I'm hoping a high volume of disappointed owners get off him this week. Gordon and the Chargers face a Saints defense that allowed Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman to finish as the week's top-two scorers at the position.

The Chargers are four-point home favorites in a game that has highest over/under. As the 10th-most expensive back for the Sunday slate, he should easily return value and has as much upside as any running back this week.

Brendan Donahue: Trevor Siemian, QB, Denver Broncos (at TB), $5,400

In a week that I don't really love any quarterbacks at their price points, I'm looking for value and possibly no better value this week than in Trevor Siemian. In his first road game last week, Siemian put up 312 yards and four touchdowns on a Bengals D that isn't great, but certainly is better than Tampa's defense that is currently giving up the fifth-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks on the season.

While I'm not expecting another 300-yard, four-touchdown performance, I am expecting a very solid performance from Siemian. And at only $5,400 this week on Draftkings, he will allow you to spend up at the other skill positions.

John Trifone: Jordan Howard, RB, Chicago Bears (vs. DET), $3,700

Jordan Howard is this week's value play at $3,700. The Bears offense is terrible, but they're at home this week against the Lions and Howard should receive a heavy workload. In the age of the passing game, there aren't too many backs that get the volume Howard should with Jeremy Langford out, so for $3,700, he's a great lineup starter.

Dan Yanotchko: Travis Benjamin, WR, San Diego Chargers (vs. NO), $5,900

This week, I really like Travis Benjamin of the Chargers, who has a dream matchup against the New Orleans Saints. The Saints have been really bad against the pass, giving up 299 yards per game, and a 70% completion percentage. Benjamin is the Chargers WR1 with 17 receptions, 229 yards, and two scores. With his big-play ability, you have to love his opportunity this week.

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September 23, 2016

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Tournament "Draft" for Week 3

Sean Beazley and I collaborated recently on putting together a tournament lineup for DraftKings main slate (Sunday games only) of Week 3 games.

Essentially, it was a draft with each of us alternating picks for the lineup. Sean had the first and odd-numbered picks; I had the second and even-numbered picks.

Below we will include analysis of each pick, but here is how the final roster shaped up:

QB - Ryan Tannehill, Miami Dolphins (vs. CLE), $6,200
RB - Melvin Gordon, San Diego Chargers (at IND), $5,800
RB - Matt Asiata, Minnesota Vikings (at CAR), $3,000
WR - Allen Robinson, Jacksonville Jaguars (vs. BAL), $7,500
WR - Jarvis Landry, Miami Dolphins (vs. CLE), $6,600
WR - Phillip Dorsett, Indianapolis Colts (vs. SD), $4,400
TE - Jordan Reed, Washington Redskins (at NYG), $6,500
FLEX - Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas Cowboys (vs. CHI), $6,900
DST - Green Bay Packers (vs. DET), $3,000

Below are the players in the order they were "drafted" (with comments by both of us):

1. Sean - Allen Robinson, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars, $7,500: I wrote up Robinson as my favorite DK play this week. I absolutely love him in this matchup vs. Baltimore. Jason Verrett and the San Diego secondary shut down Robinson last week so giving recency bias I am hoping Robinson gets overlooked this week. I am projecting Robinson to be the No. 1 WR this week in fantasy. I think a line of 8-140-2 is definitely attainable.

Comments by Kevin: It's been a slow start for Robinson (nine catches for 126 yards), but he has 20 targets through two games and a more favorable matchup in Week 3. One of the most talented young receivers in the NFL, I expect bigger and better things from A-Rob both this week and the rest of the season. With lots of upside, his ownership levels should be relatively low due to his slow start. I like this pick.

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2. Kevin - Ryan Tannehill, QB, Miami Dolphins, $6,200: Projected to score the fifth-most points (tied) based on Vegas odds, the Dolphins enter Week 3 as the biggest favorites of the week. Through two weeks, the Browns have allowed 580 passing yards and four touchdowns to rookie Carson Wentz and Joe Flacco. DeVante Parker (hamstring) was limited in yesterday's practice, but he had a strong debut (8/106) last week. The trio of Jarvis Landry, Parker and Kenny Stills should give the Browns secondary fits.

Comments by Sean: Tannehill and Dolphins stacks this week will not be sneaky. That being said, most multi-entry GPP players pick a core group of players and rotate in different QB/WR stacks. Ownership will never be too high on a QB. Tannehill has a great matchup vs. the Browns this week. Tannehill also has the ability to rush one in, which is huge. I think Tannehill should pay off this price tag.

3. Sean - Jarvis Landry, WR, Miami Dolphins, $6,600: Landry is the safe WR to stack with Tannehill, but safe doesn't necessarily rule out a good GPP play. Landry should be targeted heavily as Arian Foster will miss this week's game. Jay Ajayi and Kenyan Drake are not backs I would trust to move the chains even in a potential blowout. I think a 10/120/1 game is quite possible this week for Landry.

Comments by Kevin: In a full-PPR format like DraftKings, I'm fine with Landry here as the option to pair with Tannehill. Landry has double-digit targets in both games and a total of 17 catches through two weeks. With Arian Foster expected to miss this week's game, the Dolphins could end up using the short passing game with Landry to substitute for some of their running game.

4. Kevin - Melvin Gordon, RB, San Diego Chargers, $5,800: With Danny Woodhead out for the year, the Chargers will rely heavily on Gordon (like they did last week). MG3 had a 24/102/1 rushing line last week and has a total of three scores through two weeks. In a favorable matchup against the Colts, who have allowed the most PPR fantasy points to opposing running backs, MG3 should get 20-plus touches and easily exceed value on his $5,800 salary.

Comments by Sean: Gordon is the mega chalk at RB this week facing the Colts, who just bleed yardage and points. The only thing that could worry me here is if the Colts get up big early. We could see the Chargers abandon the ground game. Given his salary and opportunity, Gordon should produce enough to pay off. I will have a lot of shares of Gordon on Sunday.

5. Sean - Phillip Dorsett, WR, Indianapolis Colts, $4,400: This game has the highest total of the slate and without Donte Moncrief this week, Dorsett’s targets should increase. T.Y. Hilton plays about 60 percent of his snaps from the slot, which could result in more Jason Verrett coverage for Dorsett, but I’m willing to take the gamble here. I will be targeting both wideouts heavily this week. The Colts defense cannot stop anyone, so I expect Andrew Luck to throw the ball 40-plus times.

Comments by Kevin: With Donte Moncrief (shoulder) out for a month-plus, Dorsett will start in two-receiver sets opposite T.Y. Hilton. At only $4,400, the speedy second-year receiver always has the potential for a big play or two and should be more involved overall.

6. Kevin - Matt Asiata, RB, Minnesota Vikings, $3,000: As weird as it feels to pick Asiata, I think the potential reward is big. The matchup isn't great and there are a lot of other cheap RBs this week including Asiata's teammate. I think his ownership level should be fairly low despite the bargain-basement price tag. Given that the Vikings trust him at the goal line and in pass protection, there could be opportunities for a score (or three) and some receptions. From 2013 to 2016, the leader in games with three rushing TDs is ... you guessed it ... Asiata (three such games). All three of those games came in an 11-game span overlapping the 2013 and 2014 seasons.

Comments by Sean: Matt YOLO Asiata! We know what the negative factors are here with this play. (Matchup, less workload than Jerick McKinnon). The positive play is that this is the perfect pivot off McKinnon. It worked great last week if you faded the chalk, Danny Woodhead, for MG3. Also, I expect the ownership to be high on Stefon Diggs as well since his salary was released before the monster game on Monday night. Asiata should get all the goal-line carries as well. He could be very sneaky this week. I'm on board for $3K.

7. Sean - Jordan Reed, TE, Washington Redskins, $6,500: My final pick was Jordan Reed. Paying up at a position most people pay down at is optimal GPP strategy. The Giants defense is one of the worst defenses vs. the TE. The Redskins are 0-2, so I think they go back to what got them to the playoffs last year; a heavy dose of Reed. Reed will be the No. 1 TE in fantasy this week.

Comments by Kevin: It's been a somewhat slow start for Reed, but he has 18 targets and 12 catches through two games. Reed is tied for the positional lead in both categories. In two games against the Giants last year, Reed had 14 catches for 194 yards on 18 targets. There is plenty of upside here.

8. Kevin - Ezekiel Elliott, RB/Flex, Dallas Cowboys, $6,900: Things haven't gone as well as most had hoped so far with Elliott, who has a total of 139 yards on 44 touches. Favored by a touchdown at home in a favorable matchup against the Bears, however, Elliott should get another hefty workload (assuming he holds onto the ball) with the potential for some goal-line opportunities.

Comments by Sean: Zeke has scored in both of his first two NFL games this year, but hasn’t looked great in either game. Perhaps wearing a full jersey is what is slowing him down this year. He is only averaging 3.3 YPC behind arguably the best O-line in football. I’m not high on Elliott this week, but game script looks good here with the Cowboys being a 7.5-point favorite. Paying up for RB this week is contrarian as well as most will spend down for the injury replacements.

9. Kevin - Green Bay Packers DST, $3,000: With the Packers and Dolphins priced the same ($3,000), the majority of owners will choose Miami in this spot. So, Green Bay's defense should be very low-owned.

Comments by Sean: The Dolphins are going to be the highest-owned defense of the week, and it's probably not even going to be close. A pivot here to Green Bay could make or break this GPP lineup as I would imagine if you are stuck on this price point, 99 percent of the players will take Miami.

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September 21, 2016

DFS Round Table: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 3

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 3?

Sean Beazley: Allen Robinson, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars (vs. BAL), $7,500

There is a ton of value this week giving the plethora of injuries this past week. Getting one of your top-end options correct is going to be very important this week. One of those players I really like is the Jaguars receiver Allen Robinson at $7,500.

When you look for WRs, looking at targets is probably one of the most important factors. A-Rob has 20 targets in his first two games and leads the team. Robinson was shut down last week by Jason Verrett, who I think is a top-three CB in the league, so his ownership should be lower than normal.

The matchup is great vs. the Ravens despite the Ravens giving up the least amount of passing yards in the NFL this season. I hope the casual DFS player overlooks the fact that the Ravens first two games were versus Tyrod Taylor and Josh McCown. My bold call is that Robinson is the No. 1 WR this week in DFS. Get him in your lineups.

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Kevin Hanson: Melvin Gordon, RB, San Diego Chargers (at IND), $5,800

Talent? Check. Heavy workload? Check. Favorable matchup? Check. What's not to like about Gordon this week? The 13th-most expensive running back this week, MG3 offers his owners plenty of value this week. Through two weeks, Gordon has three touchdowns after failing to score any as a rookie, and he had 27 touches in Sunday's win over Jacksonville. MG3 should be one of the staples of your cash-game lineups and he has some upside for GPPs as well.

Brendan Donahue: Melvin Gordon, RB, San Diego Chargers (at IND), $5,800

Even though the Chargers added Dexter Mccluster this week, I don't see him stealing too many snaps from Gordon. With Gordon getting the bulk of the work against the defense that's currently allowing the most points per game to opposing RBs, Gordon has a great chance to surpass last week's performance that returned 24 points for his owners.

John Trifone: Melvin Gordon, RB, San Diego Chargers (at IND), $5,800

The Chargers continue to offer value through injuries. It's early in the week and several RB injuries this past weekend are likely to open up some great cheap options, but at this point, Melvin Gordon already looks like one of the better plays. He's averaging over 20 DK points through two games, and with Danny Woodhead's injury, Gordon should get even more usage.

He had 24 carries for over 100 rushing yards, and has another great matchup with Indianapolis coming up. Gordon has looked more like the guy that San Diego thought he would be when they drafted him, and he should get plenty of opportunities to continue that trend.

Dan Yanotchko: Larry Fitzgerald, WR, Arizona Cardinals (at BUF), $6,900

I really like Larry Fitzgerald of the Cardinals this week, as he's turned back the clock to 2009 and he gets to play the Bills. Fitzgerald has 168 yards receiving on 14 receptions on 22 targets and three touchdowns. The Bills have given up 295 yards passing per game and just look woeful in the secondary after letting Ryan Fitzpatrick carve them up.

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September 19, 2016

Look Back: Week 2 DraftKings Cash Game Lineup Review

Week 2 is in the books. Just when you think you know about the NFL, everything changes. More than any other sport, the NFL is a week-to-week league. I was very lucky again this week to just break even. My saving grace was a Fan Vice Freeroll! Don't take free rolls for granted as they could make or break a week.

Here are five thoughts about my Week 2:

  1. I was over-exposed to two games that were projected to be high scoring: NO-NYG and CIN-PIT. I had tons of Rashad Jennings, A.J. Green & Antonio Brown; not enough of DeAngelo Williams and Sterling Shepard. I expected Drew Brees to struggle on the road, but was not expecting a game like he had Sunday.
  2. Injuries were devastating again. One of my favorite Week 1 plays was Keenan Allen. He was lost for the year. This week, my favorite play was Danny Woodhead. Woodhead was having a good game as well until he got hurt. I also expected 40-plus from Carolina this week. I had a bunch of Jonathan Stewart lineups go down in flames, even the ones paired with Cam Newton and Kelvin Benjamin or Greg Olsen.
  3. The Chargers/Jaguars game was the shocker of the week for me. The Jaguars defense which many said would be promising this offseason got destroyed by Melvin Gordon and a cast of misfit receivers. T.J. Yeldon, a staple in my cash games and someone who I seemed to plug in for some savings when building GPPs, was awful. Eight catches for 10 yards! Corey Grant with the vulture TD grab in garbage time too. Extra tilting!
  4. Cheap defense strategy hurt this week as the high-end units I liked -- Carolina, Denver and Arizona -- all had big games. I elected for savings and had more shares of Baltimore, New England, Oakland and Jacksonville. Part of this was to get the high-end WRs in my lineup.
  5. Too much love for an old receiver coming off an Achilles injury. I had 60 percent exposure to Steve Smith on Sunday. It was one of those gut calls that just didn't pan out.

On to Week 3 ...

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September 16, 2016

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Tournament "Draft" for Week 2

Sean Beazley and I collaborated recently on putting together a tournament lineup for DraftKings main slate (Sunday games only) of Week 2 games.

Essentially, it was a draft with each of us alternating picks for the lineup. Sean had the first and odd-numbered picks; I had the second and even-numbered picks.

Below we will include analysis of each pick, but here is how the final roster shaped up:

QB - Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers (vs. SF), $7,900
RB - C.J. Anderson, Denver Broncos (vs. IND), $6,800
RB - Rashad Jennings, New York Giants (vs. NO), $5,600
WR - DeSean Jackson, Washington Redskins (vs. DAL), $6,300
WR - Michael Floyd, Arizona Cardinals (vs. TB), $5,900
WR - Steve Smith Sr., Baltimore Ravens (at CLE), $4,300
TE - Coby Fleener, New Orleans Saints (at NYG), $3,900
FLEX - Danny Woodhead, RB, San Diego Chargers (vs. JAX), $5,200
DST - Carolina Panthers (vs. SF), $3,900

Below are the players in the order they were "drafted" (with comments by both of us):

1. Sean - Steve Smith Sr., WR, Baltimore Ravens (at CLE), $4,300: Smith led all Baltimore WRs, playing 66% of the snaps last week. He had a pretty weak 5-19 line on nine targets, but I really like this spot vs. the Browns this week. I’m not a big fan of Mike Wallace, and Breshad Perriman is nursing a calf injury that forced him to missed practice on Wednesday. (Practiced Thursday.) Value isn't as plentiful as Week 1, so finding some cheaper plays is going to be more important this week. Of the players in this price range at WR, I believe Smith is the most likely to pay off 5-6x value that you will need to win a GPP. Smith also is a good pivot off all three cheap San Diego options, and Tajae Sharpe who looked good Week 1.

[Comments by Kevin: Even though Wallace was the most productive Ravens receiver in Week 1, Smith was the most-targeted (nine) of the group. He was terribly inefficient (2.11 yards per target), but I expect him to lead the team in targets again in a favorable matchup. Worth a flier.]

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2. Kevin - C.J. Anderson, RB, Denver Broncos (vs. IND), $6,800: With a high floor and plenty of upside, Anderson will be the building block in the majority of my lineups (both GPPs and cash games). After a slow start last season, CJA averaged an RB-high 6.35 yards per carry from Weeks 7 to 17 last season and racked up a total of 139 yards and two scores on 24 touches in Week 1. Favored by nearly a touchdown at home against a soft Colts defense as the focal point of a run-heavy offense, what is not to like? The Colts surrendered four total TDs -- two rushing and two receiving -- to RBs in last week's shootout against the Lions.

[Comments by Sean: I expect Anderson to be the highest-owned RB this week. The Colts defense is horrendous. Theo Riddick was a huge weapon out of the backfield last week, and Anderson is a dual threat back in an offense that will likely be doing a lot of dink and dunking. Sign me up for Anderson.]

3. Sean - Coby Fleener, TE, New Orleans Saints (at NYG), $3,900: We saw Dak and the Cowboys attack the middle of the field all last week vs. the Giants. Part of that was to protect Dak, but also I think the Giants corners are underrated. Drew Brees spreads the ball around better than probably any QB in the league so I could see a big game from Fleener this week. I think the recency bias will draw the ownership of Willie Snead & Brandin Cooks up, while Fleener’s should be relatively low. Fleener is a very good play to get a piece of this game at a low price.

[Comments by Kevin: In a game where Brees threw for 423 yards and four touchdowns in a soft matchup for TEs, Fleener had one catch for six yards. SIX! That will scare off many. Perhaps rightfully so. That said, there is plenty of upside in another favorable matchup for opposing TEs. It wouldn't surprise me if the Saints game-planned to exploit the middle of the field with Fleener and he goes off.]

4. Kevin - DeSean Jackson, WR, Washington Redskins (vs. DAL), $6,300: A big play waiting to happen, his lone career 200-yard game came against the Cowboys. Since signing with Washington, Jackson has at least 80 yards per game with a score in two of three Washington-Dallas games (he didn't play in Week 17 last year). In those three games, D-Jax has a combined line of 14/302/2 (21.57 Y/R).

[Comments by Sean: Jackson is the ultimate GPP play. He has scored over 15 DK points in his last three games vs. the Cowboys. I’m not sure how much exposure to any of the Redskins receivers I will have this giving the Cowboys projected pace of play, and the fact that Kirk Cousins spread the ball around so well last week. I’ll trust Kevin here with his gut shot though giving that he is a Cowboys fan.]

5. Sean - Cam Newton, QB, Carolina Panthers (vs. SF), $7,900: I’m trying my best to get Cam into my cash lineup this week, but it's very hard considering you want to roster one of the elite WRs as well. I will however have extra exposure to him in tournaments. He is one of the few QBs in the league who has 40-point scoring potential, and this is one of those matchups where I could see the Panthers scoring 40+ points despite facing the league's "best" defense, lol. I’m hoping that red #1 scares off some people.

[Comments by Kevin: Brees and Eli Manning could be the two highest-owned QBs, but Newton is my top-ranked QB and no QB has the type of weekly upside that he does. The 49ers play so fast and the Panthers defense is so good that I expect a lot of Niner three-and-outs to lead to a lot of Panther drives. I absolutely love the upside here.]

6. Kevin - Rashad Jennings, RB, New York Giants (vs. NO), $5,600: Jennings didn't have a great performance Week 1, but he had 19 touches. In their past four games, Jennings has a total of 81 touches. Priced as an "average" player ($5,555 average salary per roster spot), Jennings is virtually assured of 20 touches against one of the softest defenses in the league in a game with the highest over/under of the week. While Odell Beckham obviously has a ton of upside, so does Jennings as only the Panthers are projected to score more points this week (based on Vegas odds).

[Comments by Sean: So we faded the Saints WRs with Fleener and now ODB with Jennings. This is a great pivot off extremely high-owned players. I don’t think Jennings will go as overlooked as Fleener, but he still is a great play here. If the Giants get off to a lead at home which they could, we could see Jennings with a 100-yard, 2-TD type of game.]

7. Sean - Danny Woodhead, RB, San Diego Chargers (vs. JAX), $5,200: I wrote up Woodhead as my favorite DK play of the week. I think Woodhead will be chalky giving the lack of value this week, but so was Spencer Ware last week. If you didn't have Ware last week in tournaments, you were behind a quarter of the field. This is an up-tempo game and I definitely think Woodhead pays off his sub-6K price tag.

[Comments by Kevin: The Keenan Allen injury means that there will be plenty of passing-game targets for other options. Of course, players like Travis Benjamin, Tyrell Williams, etc. will see an uptick, but I think Woodhead could see a higher volume of targets as well. I found it interesting that Woodhead doubled Melvin Gordon's snaps last week despite a pair of MG3 touchdowns and a commanding early lead last week.]

8. Kevin - Carolina Panthers DST (vs. SF), $3,900: Given what the 49ers defense did against Case Keenum and the anemic Rams offense, I expect plenty to load up on the ($100 cheaper) Seahawks defense against the Rams. After losing a hard-fought battle in a Super Bowl re-match, I expect the Panthers to take out their frustrations at home. Playing with the lead wire to wire, the 49ers offense looked better than expected last week. Things won't go as smoothly if they're forced into catch-up mode early. Carolina is favored by two TDs. The Panthers scored five defensive TDs last week and there is an excellent chance they get one this week.

[Comments by Sean: The Panthers are the highest-priced defense and for good reason. They should dominate this game which should mean tee off time on Blaine Gabbert. I could see a half-dozen sacks, and a few turnovers in this one. I generally like to play cheap defenses in GPPs but I can’t argue with this one. Great spot.]

9. Kevin - Michael Floyd, WR, Arizona Cardinals (vs. TB), $5,900: I debated three receivers here with the remaining money -- Willie Snead, Michael Crabtree and Floyd. I like all of them, but I think Floyd will be the lowest-owned after Larry Fitzgerald had a pair of touchdowns last week. The Bucs actually have a good run defense -- both Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman averaged less than 3.0 YPC last week -- so I expect the Cardinals to throw the ball often. Floyd showed his upside last year down the stretch with five 100-yard performances over the final half season.

[Comments by Sean: Floyd will definitely be low-owned. I expect ownership under 5%. Kevin had the double pick at the end and really wanted the Panthers defense. Most will take Willie Snead at this price point, but in a GPP this could pay off going off the board.]

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September 14, 2016

DFS Round Table: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 2

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts in our weekly DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 2?

Sean Beazley: Danny Woodhead, RB, San Diego Chargers (vs. JAX), $5,200

Woodhead outsnapped Melvin Gordon 50-23 on Sunday and had seven more touches. Even when the Chargers were up big in the game, the Chargers were using Woodhead, which is a pretty telling sign.

The Chargers will be without Keenan Allen for the rest of the season, and will need to turn to Woodhead even more in the passing game. Woodhead could see upwards of 10 targets this week against a Jags defense that gave up 105 receptions to RBs last year (third-highest in the NFL). Woodhead could even be safe in cash this week as well.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a FREE Week 2 contest with $100,000 in prizes (including $10,000 to 1st) and is FREE to enter. Enter here for free.

Kevin Hanson: C.J. Anderson, RB, Denver Broncos (vs. IND), $6,800

After a slow start last season, CJA averaged an RB-high 6.35 yards per carry from Weeks 7 to 17. Picking up where he left off, Anderson racked up a total of 139 yards and two scores on 24 touches as he finished Week 1 as a top-three back.

Favored by nearly a touchdown (-6) in Week 2, the Broncos should once again force feed the ball to Anderson. CJA gets a favorable matchup against the Colts, who allowed a pair (Theo Riddick and Ameer Abdullah) of top-10 fantasy running backs last week.

Six running backs have a higher salary than Anderson this week. That said, there is only one running back ahead of him in my PPR running backs: David Johnson, who's also the highest-priced back of the week. With plenty a high floor and plenty of upside, he'll be the building block in the majority of my lineups.

Brendan Donahue: Willie Snead, WR, New Orleans Saints (at NYG), $5,800

Even though it's only been one week, I think the Saints have already come to the realization that they are only going to win games in shootouts this year, which is great for us in fantasy. Snead had a terrific Week 1 catching all nine targets for 172 yards and a touchdown. In last year's matchup with the Giants, Snead put up 25 points on DraftKings with 6 catches for 70 yards and two touchdowns. I see another high-scoring game between these two teams and Snead is in line for another big game.

John Trifone: Danny Woodhead, RB, San Diego Chargers (vs. JAX), $5,200

If you're not playing Eli Manning and Odell Beckham in cash Week 2, you're going to be in the minority. And you should be. There are plenty of tournament options I like as pivots off Eli - specifically Philip Rivers, who everyone will be off after the Keenan Allen news. I also like Kirk Cousins in tournaments after having a sub-par performance on Monday night.

My favorite early value play, though, would probably be Danny Woodhead. He substantially out-snapped Melvin Gordon Week 1 and has better usage with Keenan out of the lineup. With DK's PPR scoring, Woodhead has a safe floor and also a fairly high ceiling in what should be a relatively fast-paced game against Jacksonville. At $5,200, he looks like great value to me.

Dan Yanotchko: T.J. Yeldon, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars (at SD), $4,700

This week I like T.J. Yeldon of the Jaguars going against a very bad Chargers run defense. Chris Ivory was just released from the hospital, and most likely will not play this week. Although he was inefficient, Yeldon had 25 touches -- 21 carries and four receptions -- last week and added a TD. Also, last week San Diego gave up 4.4 yards per carry and two scores as well.

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September 12, 2016

Week in Review: Week 1 DraftKings Cash Game Lineup Review

To Dak or not to Dak was the question that the majority of us faced headed into Week 1. I had two DraftKings cash lineups ready to roll, one with Dak Prescott and the other with Matthew Stafford, who was my favorite QB of the week.

Here is a review of my DraftKings cash lineup and the thought process behind the picks:

QB - Dak Prescott, $5,000: 10.28 DK points
I ended up going with Dak because it opened so much cap space in my lineup. The elite WRs that I liked -- Julio Jones and DeAndre Hopkins -- had great matchups, and I wanted them both in my lineup. My thought was even if Dak had a bad game around 10 DK points, I would make up the points having my WR1/2 on the slate score big points.

RB - Spencer Ware, $4,400: 35.90 DK points
Ware was the no-brain play of the week in cash. Great matchup, and should get the majority of the work in garbage time as I expected Kansas City to win big. My big regret on Ware was in GPPs. I chose to pivot my 75% exposure from Ware to T.J. Yeldon and Christine Michael. I only had 30% Ware in tournaments yesterday.

RB - Christine Michael, $3,700: 9.9 DK points
I debated on Yeldon in cash as well after the Chris Ivory news broke, but I ended up with Michael. This is another game-flow pick as I thought Seattle would handle business at home and Michael would get 20+ touches.

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a FREE Week 2 contest with $100,000 in prizes (including $10,000 to 1st) and is FREE to enter. Enter here for free.

WR - Julio Jones $9,400: 16.60 DK points
Ware & Julio were the two players I wanted in cash this week. This pick was self-explanatory.

WR - DeAndre Hopkins, $8,800: 16.40 DK points
The thought of having Julio & Nuk on my cash team was tantalizing. Bears defense was in shambles, Brock Osweiler has looked sharp this preseason.

WR - Marvin Jones Jr. $4,600: 12.50 DK points
The Lions passing attack is something I wanted to target since the Colts were pretty much starting a brand new secondary yesterday. I played a lot of Theo Riddick in GPPs as I thought the Stafford/Jones/Tate stacks would be among the most popular.

TE - Martellus Bennett $3,400: 4.40 points
I had Dwayne Allen penciled In all week until the Gronk news broke. I thought the Patriots would be behind and forced to throw all game. I didn't even think of Bennett to be used as a blocker to help protect Jimmy Garoppolo. This was my biggest regret of the week and the 13 point difference between the 2 players would have won me another 11 head-to-heads.

Flex - Keenan Allen, $8,000: 12.30 points
Playing Keenan Allen in cash is like playing Anthony Davis in cash while playing NBA. I was willing to take the injury risk here though as I thought giving my predicted game flow that the Chargers would be playing from behind. Allen was unstoppable all game, and would have paid off that $8K price tag if he didn't get hurt.

DEF - Titans $2,600: 4 DK points
Low total home game, Shaun Hill as the opposing QB. There was a lot to love here. The Titans defense played great, but couldn't get any measurable stats. My other cash game consideration was Arizona at $900 more. They scored 6 points so in hindsight I am happy with my pick.

Total DK points 121.48
Cash win rate - 33%
50/50 - Didn’t cash

Some more general thoughts:

  • 33 combined points for 36% of my combined cap with Julio/Nuk was not going to cut it in cash this week.
  • Week 1 Game flow tough to predict. Missed script on three games -- Miami at Seattle, San Diego at Kansas City, and New England at Arizona.
  • Dak had some big drops, Nuk dropped a TD, Keenan injury. It was a rough week overall with some bad luck.
  • Biggest regret: Allen-for-Martellus swap.

Continue reading "Week in Review: Week 1 DraftKings Cash Game Lineup Review" »


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September 07, 2016

DFS Round Table: Favorite DraftKings Plays for Week 1

Every week of the 2016 NFL season, our contributors will provide their favorite DraftKings play of the week and share their thoughts why in our DFS Round Table post.

In some cases, the play is intended for tournaments (i.e., Guaranteed Prize Pools or GPPs); in other cases, it's for cash games (e.g., head-to-heads and 50-50's). Or both.

Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 1?

Brendan Donahue: Spencer Ware, RB, Kansas City Chiefs (vs. SD), $4,400

It's becoming more apparent that Jamaal Charles will miss Week 1 and since prices were released before the news broke, you can get his replacement, Spencer Ware, for only $4,400 this week. Ware got 11 carries or more in four games last season and he scored at least one TD in each of those four games and got you over 23 DraftKings points in two of them. As the 30th-most expensive RB on the board this week, he presents great value in cash-game formats and will allow you to spend at other positions.


Editor's note: DraftKings is running a FREE Week 1 contest with $100,000 in prizes (including $10,000 to 1st) and is FREE to enter. Enter here for free.

Sean Beazley: Golden Tate, WR, Detroit Lions (at IND), $7,300

If you are reading this DFS advice column, you have probably read countless others, so I'm not going to talk to you about all of the same chalky plays that everyone is talking about. Dak Prescott, Marvin Jones Jr. are four players that will be very high owned, and I have all four penciled into my cash team right now. One player that I absolutely love that will get overlooked is Golden Tate. Tate has a hefty price tag at $7,300 considering his teammate Jones Jr. is $2,700 cheaper.

Here are two reasons why I love Tate for GPPs:

  1. Ownership: Unless you are going full game stack, or a QB-WR-WR Lions stack, chances are you are going to be choosing Jones Jr. over Tate. Jones Jr. will be 20-25% higher owned than Tate. There are also a lot of other flashy players in great matchups in this same price range. Randall Cobb vs. Jacksonville, Amari Cooper vs. New Orleans, and Mike Evans vs. Atlanta. The casual DFS player is not going to choose Tate over those players. I think this gets overlooked when building lineups.
  2. This is a dream matchup for Tate. The Colts defense is decimated with injuries in the secondary which should lead to plenty of opportunities for Matthew Stafford and the Lions offense. I read a great article today on defensive tendencies. I would imagine Tate sees a lot of Darius Butler (89th of 111 corners in coverage last year according to PFF) in the slot.
DraftKings offers full point per catches, and it wouldn't shock me at all to see Tate be among the league's best WRs in Week 1.

Alternating picks for a tournament lineup, Sean/Kevin did a DraftKings GPP Draft for Week 1.

Kevin Hanson: Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Dallas Cowboys (vs. NYG), $7,300

Even if Tony Romo weren't injured, I'd expect the Cowboys to employ a run-dominant game plan with Zeke. With a horrible defense and a rookie quarterback replacing a fragile one, the Cowboys can protect both Dak and their leaky defense by controlling the clock and LOS on offense. There is plenty of value to be had this week so it's easy to spend up, but I think Elliott's ownership will be much lower than next week given Dak's contest-minimum price tag this week. In my early Week 1 rankings, Elliott is my top-ranked fantasy running back and my bold prediction for his debut is 200 rushing yards and a pair of touchdowns.

[FYI: I looked it up and no rookie had more than 194 rushing yards in Week 1. Coincidentally, it was Ottis Anderson against the Cowboys.]

John Trifone: Donte Moncrief, WR, Indianapolis Colts (vs. DET), $6,000

There are a lot of great value picks this week -- more than there will usually be because of the long gap between when prices came out and Week 1. Guys like Spencer Ware, Dak Prescott, and Marvin Jones are all good value options. I'm going to pick two different value plays, though. I like Donte Moncrief for $6,000 and the Browns defense for $2,300 against a rookie quarterback in Philly. Moncrief should see a lot of targets in a high-scoring affair Week 1 against a bad defense. The Browns are facing a team that just traded their starting quarterback, a sign that they're essentially waving the white flag on the entire season. Those are two of my favorite cash plays for Week 1.

Dan Yanotchko: Doug Martin, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (at ATL), $6,200

I like Doug Martin this week at home against the Atlanta Falcons. Last year Martin had a solid stat line in two games of 166 rushing yards and a TD. Not only will the Falcons start two rookies at linebacker, they gave up 105 rushing yards per game, 4.0 yards per carry, and a league-high 20 rushing touchdowns last year.

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September 06, 2016

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Tournament "Draft" for Week 1

Sean Beazley and I collaborated recently on putting together a tournament lineup for DraftKings main slate (Sunday games only) of Week 1 games.

Essentially, it was a draft with each of us alternating picks for the lineup. I had the first and odd-numbered picks; Sean had the second and even-numbered picks.

Below we will include analysis of each pick, but here is how the final roster shaped up:

QB - Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions (at IND), $7,200
RB - Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas Cowboys (vs. NYG), $7,300
RB - Latavius Murray, Oakland Raiders (at NO), $5,600
WR - Keenan Allen, San Diego Chargers (at KC), $8,000
WR - Marvin Jones Jr., Detroit Lions (at IND), $4,600
WR - Donte Moncrief, Indianapolis Colts (vs. DET), $6,000
TE - Jared Cook, Green Bay Packers (at JAX), $2,900
FLEX - Ryan Mathews, Philadelphia Eagles (vs. CLE), $5,700
DST - Baltimore Ravens (vs. BUF), $2,700

Below are the players in the order they were "drafted" (with comments by both of us):

1. Kevin - Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Cowboys (vs. NYG), $7,300: Before the (latest) injury to Tony Romo, I expected the Cowboys to utilize a run-heavy attack similar to 2014 with DeMarco Murray. And while Dak Prescott looked as good as a fourth-round rookie could look in the preseason, it's natural to expect growing pains in the regular season. (As a Cowboys fan, I hope he picks up where he left off.) With that said, I expect Elliott to get a massive Week 1 workload as the Cowboys try to take some pressure off Dak. Plus, Elliott's ownership level may not be as high as I think it should with Prescott priced at contest minimum and likely the most-owned QB of the week.

[Comments by Sean: Elliott is the perfect double-pivot pick. Dak Prescott will be the highest-owned QB Week 1 on DraftKings since he is priced at the minimum. Also, most roster construction will be 1-2 elite WRs and cheap RBs. This is one of my favorite GPP picks.]

2. Sean - Matthew Stafford, QB, Lions (at IND), $7,200: The Colts/Lions game has the highest total of the week. I expect the Colts to win this game by a touchdown or more, which should lead to plenty of catch-up by Stafford and the Lions offense. I think the 300-yard bonus is definitely in play here as well as 2-3 touchdowns.

[Comments by Kevin: Stafford enters 2016 with the most favorable fantasy strength of schedule and the favorable schedule starts with the Colts. Not only do the Colts have some defensive issues at full strength, they are without several key defensive players including Vontae Davis, their best cornerback. A game in a dome tied for the highest over/under against a defense at less than full strength sounds good to me.]

Editor's note: DraftKings is running a FREE Week 1 contest with $100,000 in prizes (including $10,000 to 1st) and is FREE to enter. Enter here for free.

3. Kevin - Marvin Jones, WR, Lions (at IND), $4,600: With or without Stafford as our starting QB, Jones is an outstanding value with 40 Sunday wide receivers priced higher. In fact, he's priced at nearly $1,000 less than the average salary ($5,555; $50,000 salary cap divided by nine starters). Without Calvin Johnson in Detroit, it's really a case of Golden Tate and Jones being a 1(a) and 1(b) to each other and there is a $2,700 price difference between the two. By all accounts, Stafford and Jones have developed excellent chemistry as first-year teammates as well.

[Comments by Sean: Jones is the obvious pair to Stafford for $2,700 cheaper than Golden Tate. Jones ownership will be in the 20-25% range while Tate's should be in the 5-8% range. I like Tate a lot more for GPPs giving the ownership, but it's really tough to pass on Jones giving how well he has fit in this offense.]

4. Sean - Donte Moncrief, WR, Colts (vs. DET), $6,000: I think Moncrief will surpass T.Y Hilton as Andrew Luck's No. 1 option this year. I'm getting on board the Moncrief bandwagon early in a great matchup vs. the Lions. I love stacking games, picking players on both teams. If the game shoots out, you will have a big advantage on the field.

[Comments by Kevin: Moncrief is one of my favorite players this year -- the WR18 in my rankings ahead of guys like Randall Cobb, Jeremy Maclin, etc. In order words, I expect a breakout from Moncrief, who just turned 23 last month and has off-the-charts physical tools. In addition, no team has a higher projected points total than the Colts this week.]

5. Kevin - Latavius Murray, RB, Raiders (at NO), $5,600: The only reason I hesitated to "draft" Murray is ownership; Murray should be one of the highest-owned running backs this week. That said, the matchup is great, the Raiders have one of the best offensive lines in the NFL and I expect the Raiders to run the ball a lot this season. Murray ranked fourth in the NFL in touches last season and Del Rio has said that he wants him to get more carries in 2016. This game is tied with IND/DET for the highest O/U of the week, but the Saints are favored by only a point. The Raiders will try to keep Drew Brees off the field as much as possible.

[Comments by Sean: ] Game flow, and ownership are the reasons why I will have little exposure to Murray in Week 1. I think it is more likely that the Saints get up in this game, and the Raiders are forced to play catch up, which will limit Murray's carries. Also, Murray has been one of the most talked about RBs headed into Week 1 against the Saints, who were terrible at stopping the run. Don't underestimate the casuals just picking Murray because he has that glaring "30th" in green next to his name. Murray should be one of the top-three highest-owned RBs Week 1.

6. Sean - Keenan Allen, WR, Chargers (at KC), $8,000: As I mentioned above, the most common GPP build will be having 1-2 elite WRs. Paying down for Allen gives us some wiggle room for the rest of our lineup and it differentiates us from the rest of the field. Allen only played eight games last year, but in three of those he had double-digit receptions. Allen's ownership should be fairly low as well considering some of the comps in his same price point.

[Comments by Kevin: DraftKings utilizes full-PPR scoring and Allen is an elite PPR option. Among high-end receivers, he had the biggest difference between my standard ranking (WR13) and PPR ranking (WR6) for 2016. Allen was on pace for 134 catches last season and he will one of the most targeted receivers of Week 1 -- and the season.]

7. Kevin - Jared Cook, TE, Packers (at JAX), $2,900: A physically-gifted player, Cook has never put it all together to be a consistent producer. Playing with Aaron Rodgers, the sky's the limit when it comes to Cook's weekly upside. It wouldn't be a complete shock if he had a long touchdown, or even two, in his debut. Hopefully it'll be like 2013 when Cook had 7/141/2 in the season opener (only to follow it up in Week 2 with 1/10/0).

[Comments by Sean: Cook was going to be my next pick, but Kevin snagged him here. Cook finally gets an elite QB to play with, and this guy has a ton of talent. He is a tall vertical threat that will open up all sorts of options for the Green Bay passing attack this year.]

8. Sean - Ryan Mathews, RB, Eagles (vs. CLE), $5,600: I could have went with a number of different players here, but I ended up with Mathews. Mathews will be the lead back this year and has a very good matchup vs. the Browns. The Eagles are going to need to run a watered-down offense until Carson Wentz is up to speed. That should mean plenty of easy check downs to Mathews. Mathews should be the featured goal-line back as well now that Chip Kelly's hurry-up offense is gone.

[Comments by Kevin: If I were building this roster by myself and looking to fill the remaining FLEX/DST spots, Mathews would have not made the cut. I would have gone with the Eagles DST at $3,300 leaving me with $5,100 to spend. And then I would have gone with someone like Coby Fleener at $4,900 here.]

9. Kevin - Baltimore Ravens DST (vs. BUF), $2,700: As noted above, the Eagles would have been my choice, if we had the money. Two potential benefits with the Ravens: (1) Tyrod Taylor ranked near the lead in times sacked (36, 11th-most) last season and (2) the Ravens recently signed dangerous returner Devin Hester.

[Comments by Sean: The Ravens aren't a terrible play vs. the Bills at home this week, but I prefer the Titans at $2,600. Tennessee will be playing smash-mouth control-the-clock football. The Vikings are starting Shaun Hill, who is horrible. It is also the lowest total of the week.]

I've entered this lineup into the Week 1 Millionaire Maker so good luck fighting for the second-place prize. :)

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December 31, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 17

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 17?

Sean Beazley - Zach Ertz, TE, Philadelphia Eagles ( NYG), $3,600

This is the final full NFL slate of the year, and boy does it have some dream matchups to target. Spending up on elite WRs in cash games has been my recipe to success this year, and this week all five of the top-priced wideouts have great matchups. I have tinkered with a number of different rosters to try to get 2-3 to fit in my cash lineup. Luckily, DraftKings pricing has been extremely soft this year.

One player who will be the centerpiece of all my cash games this week is Eagles TE Zach Ertz. Ertz has a cake matchup vs. the Giants, who are near the bottom of the league vs. the pass. Ertz has finished the season strong posting 26/298/1 on 37 targets in his last three games. At a bargain price of $3600, Ertz really only needs 11 DK points to pay off his salary. Ertz paired with a sub 6K QB, and a bargain-bin priced defense (like Dallas) can really open up your options this week.

Brendan Donahue - Zach Ertz, TE, Philadelphia Eagles ( NYG), $3,600

The Eagles have finally started to make Ertz one of the focal points of their offense, but unfortunately for them it was too little too late. Ertz certainly isn't going to help DeMarco Murray gain any more yards by blocking, but he can catch the ball as evidenced by his 21 catches in the past two games. Sam Bradford has been targeting him early and often with 30 targets in the past two games and he has a great matchup this week against the Giants, who give up the most points to opposing TEs on the season. Draftkings has him at only $3,600 this week and he should easily outperform his salary.

Kevin Hanson - Odell Beckham Jr., New York Giants (vs. PHI), $9,000

Certainly, I'm not going out on much of a limb to suggest Beckham, but my most common stack this week will be Eli Manning and OBJ. And with some other values on the board, I feel comfortable with cash-game and tournament lineups that feature Eli/OBJ plus Julio Jones ($8,500).

Before his one-game suspension, Beckham extended his touchdown streak to five games even though his 100-yard game streak ended at six games. Over his past seven games, Beckham has a minimum of 19.6 fantasy points in every game and an average of 29.74 per contest. Averaging nearly 100 yards (99.71/G) and a score (0.93/G) this season, OBJ should be targeted early and often by Manning in a premier matchup. Only the Steelers have allowed more fantasy points to opposing wide receivers (PPR/DK scoring) this season.

Dan Yanotchko - Eric Decker, WR, New York Jets (at BUF), $6,500

This week I am big on Eric Decker of the Jets at $6,500, as he has a great matchup in a must-win game. Decker splits in the last four games: 38 targets, 24 receptions, 69 YPG, and 3 TDs. Decker caught six balls for 85 yards and a TD in the last game against a Bills secondary that allows 253 yards passing and 28 TDs.

Week 17 DFS cheat sheets:

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December 26, 2015

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): Week 16 Values for DraftKings Contests

In a salary-cap format, finding players that give you a bang for the buck is key to constructing a profitable lineup.

Looking ahead to Sunday, I've identified some players that I believe are undervalued based on their DraftKings price tag. In some cases, they are cheap in absolute terms, but the focus here is on relative values -- projected output versus current salary.

With that said, here are some of my favorite value plays for Week 16 (Sunday/Monday games only):

QB - Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers (at BAL), $6,800

While not necessarily a bargain-bin quarterback for the week, there is plenty of value with Big Ben this week. Ranked first overall in my Week 16 rankings, Roethlisberger is tied with Drew Brees as the sixth-most expensive DraftKings quarterback this week.

With the Steelers scoring 30-plus (real-life) points in six consecutive games, Roethlisberger has scored a minimum of 25 DraftKings points in five of those six games. In each of those 25-point outings, he has thrown for 300-plus yards, which is a three-point bonus with DK scoring. Over that six-game span, Big Ben has averaged 365.8 passing yards per game and thrown a total of 13 touchdowns.

Baltimore has allowed the eighth-most DraftKings points to opposing quarterbacks this season. Roethlisberger is as safe as can be for cash games and he has tremendous upside in tournaments as well.

QB - Blake Bortles, Jacksonville Jaguars (at NO), $6,500

Finishing with a minimum of 25.28 DK points in each of his past four games, Bortles has averaged a tad shy of 300 passing yards (299.5/G) and has thrown 11 touchdowns to only two interceptions. In addition, he has 93 rushing yards and two more scores over that stretch.

Bortles faces a Saints team that has allowed the most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season. In addition, the Saints have allowed a top-three weekly finish in six of their 14 games this season.

There are seven quarterbacks priced higher than Bortles this week, but he's third in my Week 16 rankings behind only Big Ben and Cam Newton. And the fact that he's priced so closely to Roethlisberger, Bortles ownership levels may not as high as would otherwise be the case.

QB - Ryan Fitzpatrick, New York Jets (vs. NE), $5,200

Priced only $200 above the position-minimum salary, Fitzpatrick offers plenty of bang for the buck. Excluding the game he left early due to injury, Fitzpatrick has accounted for multiple touchdowns in 11 of 13 games this season including the first time he faced the Patriots. In that game, Fitzpatrick threw for 295 yards and two scores and ran for another 29 yards.

Over his past four games, Fitzpatrick has thrown 10 touchdowns and only one interception with an average of 307.25 passing yards per game. In addition, he's averaged roughly 20 (19.75) rushing yards per game as well. With the exception of the game left early, Fitzpatrick has scored a minimum of 14 fantasy points in every game this season.

RB - David Johnson, Arizona Cardinals (vs. GB), $5,800

Scoring a league-most 47.9 DraftKings points in Week 15, Johnson rushed for 187 yards and three touchdowns and added four catches for 42 yards as well. It would be unreasonable to expect a repeat performance, but he has been consistently productive since taking over as the team's lead back three weeks ago.

Over his past three games, Johnson has a minimum of 24 touches and 110 yards from scrimmage in each of those games. And despite a limited number of touches (135) this season, Johnson has scored a total of 12 touchdowns -- seven rushing, four receiving and one return.

There are 10 running backs with a higher salary than Johnson, but three of them won't play this weekend. That said, there are not seven running backs better than DJ this weekend.

RB - Charcandrick West, Kansas City Chiefs (vs. CLE), $5,700

Against the Ravens on Sunday, West carried the ball 16 times for 76 yards and a touchdown plus he added two catches for nine yards. It was his best performance and largest workload since departing early in a Week 11 matchup against the Chargers.

Before his injury, West had a minimum of 24 touches and 22 DK points in three straight games. It's unlikely that he gets 24 or more touches this week, but the matchup against the Browns is favorable. In addition, the Chiefs are favored by double digits so they should be playing with a lead for much of the game.

RB - Frank Gore, Indianapolis Colts (at MIA), $4,000

While I wouldn't roll Gore out in my cash lineups, Gore has a favorable matchup as he returns home to Miami. Only the Saints and 49ers have allowed more fantasy points to opposing running backs than the Dolphins, who have allowed 132.1 rushing yards per game and 10 rushing touchdowns.

Averaging only 2.81 yards per carry over his past seven games, the good news is that Gore has a minimum of 16 touches in each of those games with an average of 20.57/G during that stretch. With his consistent usage rate and favorable matchup, Gore is worth a flier in tournaments.

RB - Bilal Powell, New York Jets (vs. NE), $3,900

Over the past three weeks, Powell has been extremely productive -- perhaps more so than you have realized. In fact, he's been a top-12 fantasy running back each week in standard-scoring formats. Here's the list of running backs with three top-12 weekly finishes over the past three weeks: Bilal Powell.

End of list.

With 20 receptions on 25 targets for 191 yards during that span, Powell has been even better in PPR (DraftKings) scoring. Powell has a minimum of five catches and 19.2 DraftKings points in each of those three games. While he may not continue his streak of 20-point games, it's highly likely that he exceeds value on his below-$4,000 salary, offering salary-cap relief to load up elsewhere.

- Related Poll: Will Powell finish as a top-24 RB (standard scoring) in Week 16?

RB - Rashad Jennings, New York Giants (at MIN), $3,500

Another NY (or NJ) running back should provide DFSers with plenty of production and salary-cap relief this week. Spending most of the season as part of a four-man rotation, Jennings has seen a spike in workload over the past two weeks. In those two games, he has a minimum of 17 touches each week and a total of 41.

Although he lost a fumble last week against the Panthers, it was his most productive outing of the season. Jennings rushed 16 times for 107 yards and a touchdown to score 19.7 DK points. It's not too often that a 20-touch back is available for the discounted salary of $3,500 even though the matchup isn't necessarily favorable.

WR - Jeremy Maclin, Kansas City Chiefs (vs. CLE), $6,000

Maclin has a minimum of six catches and 50 yards in four consecutive games and he has scored a total of four touchdowns during that span. During that four-game span, Maclin has averaged 23.53 DraftKings points per contest with a minimum of 12.6 in each of those games. Ranked as a top-10 wideout for Week 16, Maclin is priced lower than 16 other wide receivers on DraftKings this week. The Browns have allowed the seventh-most fantasy points (DK scoring) to opposing receivers this season.

WR - Martavis Bryant, Pittsburgh Steelers (at BAL), $5,600

Without question, Bryant's teammate, Antonio Brown, is the clear-cut top fantasy receiver for Week 16. That said, few receivers (on other teams) have a better outlook than Bryant. The Ravens have allowed third-most DraftKings points to opposing receivers this season. Over their past nine games, Baltimore has allowed opposing receivers to haul in 18 touchdowns.

Held without a touchdown in back-to-back games, Bryant had a total of six touchdowns in his first seven games this season. In addition, the second-year wideout has the longest reception of 2014 (94 yards) and 2015 (88 yards). While he's one of the best big-play receivers in the NFL, Bryant has double-digit targets in three of five games and is averaging 9.56 targets per game on the year. While Bryant is my ninth-ranked receiver this week, there are 23 with a lower salary.

WR - Kamar Aiken, Baltimore Ravens (vs. PIT), $5,400

It's not only Bryant and the Steelers receivers that have a favorable matchup in this game. In fact, the Steelers have allowed the most DraftKings points to the position this season. Coming off an 8/128/1 performance against the Chiefs last week, Aiken has a minimum of five catches and has scored double-digit fantasy points in seven consecutive games.

WR - Markus Wheaton, Pittsburgh Steelers (at BAL), $4,100

With teammates Brown and Bryant such strong plays this week, Wheaton will be relatively overlooked, but he's certainly a fine option in his own right. Kicking off a four-game stretch with a career-best 201-yard performance against the Seahawks, Wheaton has a total of 22 catches, 378 yards and three touchdowns over that span. Not only does he have a minimum of 50 yards in each of those games, but he has scored in three of the four and he's averaging 9.25 targets over that stretch.

WR - Rueben Randle, New York Giants (at MIN), $3,500

Randle has scored and finished with double-digit fantasy points in back-to-back games and in four of his past six games. Averaging only 5.57 targets per game, Randle should see that volume spike with the one-game suspension of Odell Beckham Jr. Priced only $500 above minimum salary, Randle should easily exceed value this week.

TE - Julius Thomas, Jacksonville Jaguars (at NO), $5,100

Thomas has the best matchup on the board as no team has allowed more fantasy points to the position than the Saints. Over his past five games, Thomas has scored more than 13 fantasy points in four of five weeks and has a total of 27 catches for 292 yards and four touchdowns over that stretch.

TE - Will Tye, New York Giants (at MIN), $3,500

Tye has finished as a top-10 weekly tight end in three consecutive games. In addition, Tye has five-plus catches in four of five games and he has either 50-plus yards or a score in all five consecutive games. He has scored double-digit fantasy points in five consecutive games. With OBJ sidelined this week, Tye should see a bump in targets and extend his streak of games with at least 10 DraftKings points.

- Week 16 DFS DraftKings Cheat Sheet

Week 16 Fantasy Football Rankings:

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December 24, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 16

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 16?

Sean Beazley - Kamar Aiken, WR, Baltimore Ravens (vs. PIT), $5,400

One player that will be the center piece of my cash lineup this week is Kamar Aiken. Aiken comes in at a great price of $5400. He has a dream matchup this week vs. the Pittsburgh Steelers at home. The Steelers have giving up the most points to fantasy WRs this year, mainly due to the fact that their offense has been so efficient this past month or so.

Baltimore will likely be behind in this one, so Aiken should see plenty of targets. Aiken had a solid game vs. the Steelers in his previous meeting, and that was with a healthy Steve Smith and Justin Forsett. Aiken is the Ravens only reliable option at this point. I will be 100 percent on Aiken on all DFS sites in cash this week.

Brendan Donahue - Antonio Brown, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers (at BAL), $9,300

We learned once and for all last week that as long as Ben Roethlisberger is under center, Brown is matchup-proof. He put up a very impressive 16 catches for 189 yards and 2 TDs against a very tough Denver secondary and hopefully helped most of us get in the cash on DK last week.

So, if he can do that against Chris Harris and Denver, I'm very excited at his prospects against a Baltimore secondary that has given up the third-most fantasy points (DK scoring) to opposing WRs on the year. In his last seven games, he's averaging over 14 targets a game and if he gets 14 targets against this Baltimore defense, he should easily be the No. 1 WR this week and should be in your lineups.

Kevin Hanson - Bilal Powell, RB, New York Jets (vs. NE), $3,900

Over the past three weeks, Powell has been extremely productive -- perhaps more so than you have realized. In fact, he's been a top-12 fantasy running back each week in standard-scoring formats. Here's the list of running backs with three top-12 weekly finishes over the past three weeks: Bilal Powell.

End of list.

With 20 receptions on 25 targets for 191 yards during that span, Powell has been even better in PPR (DraftKings) scoring. Powell has a minimum of five catches and 19.2 DraftKings points in each of those three games. While he may not continue his streak of games with 20-plus points, it's highly likely that he exceeds value on his below-$4,000 salary, providing the salary-cap relief to load up elsewhere.

- Related Poll: Will Powell finish as a top-24 RB (standard scoring) in Week 16?

Dan Yanotchko - Markus Wheaton, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers (vs. PIT), $4,100

For a good GPP pick this week, I really like Markus Wheaton of the Steelers going against a very bad Ravens secondary. Wheaton has had a great four-game split -- 37 targets, 22 catches, 94.5 yard average and three touchdowns. At $4,100 and going up against a team that has given up 28 TDs through the air, he has great value.

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December 18, 2015

Week 15 Collaborative DraftKings GPP Lineup

Modifying a theme we do every April with NFL mock drafts, Sean Beazley and I collaborated (alternated picks) on putting together a GPP lineup for Week 15 DraftKings tournaments.

Below we both comment on all of the selections, but here is the final lineup:

QB: Carson Palmer, Arizona Cardinals (at PHI), $7,000
RB: Eddie Lacy, Green Bay Packers (at OAK), $5,200
RB: Brandon Bolden, New England Patriots (vs. TEN), $3,200
WR: Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons (at JAX), $8,500
WR: Jeremy Maclin, Kansas City Chiefs (at BAL), $5,500
WR: John Brown, Arizona Cardinals (at PHI), $4,900
TE: Gary Barnidge, Cleveland Browns (at SEA), $5,000
Flex: DeAngelo Williams, Pittsburgh Steelers (vs. DEN), $6,600
DST: Arizona Cardinals DST (at PHI), $3,900

Here are our individual picks with comments in the order that we drafted our team:

Sean Beazley: Jeremy Maclin, $5,500

Sean: Maclin draws a great matchup vs. the Ravens, who just got torched by Russell Wilson and the Seahawks last week. Maclin has averaged 10 targets over his past three games, hauling in 24 catches during this time. Alex Smith has great chemistry with Maclin and I believe he has a field day and finishes north of 20 DK points.

Kevin: Given the style of the offense, Maclin's ceiling may not be as high as some other receivers in his price range, but he should easily exceed value given his recent level of production and the matchup.

Kevin Hanson: Carson Palmer, $7,000

Kevin: Palmer's ownership level should be relatively low this week considering that his salary is identical to that of Russell Wilson. Given Wilson's recent hot streak, I expect him to be the highest-owned quarterback of the week, which in turn should mean an ownership level of less than 10 percent for Palmer. With the third-most fantasy points scored this season, Palmer has 300-plus passing yards and/or multiple touchdowns in 12 of 13 games this season. Based on DK scoring, the Eagles have allowed the second-most fantasy points this season and they have allowed a total of 20 touchdowns to opposing quarterbacks in their past six games.

Sean: Palmer is in a great spot this week vs the Eagles, but I really like their RB David Johnson if Andre Ellington remains out this week. Johnson has averaged 23 touches the past week, and that's a ridiculous amount for the NFL's second highest scoring offense. A Palmer/Johnson/WR stack would definitely be contrarian. I'll have some exposure to Palmer, but more for Johnson.

Sean Beazley: Julio Jones, $8,500

Sean: Jones has disappointed owners the past three weeks. He has failed to hit value or reach 100 yards receiving during this span. Jones also has hasn't caught a TD pass since Week 8. Many DFS players tend to fade players that have burned them in the past. I think Julio will be the least owned of the top four WRs this week. Jones gets a good matchup vs. the Jags, who most teams attack via the air. I think Jones has a rebound game this week and will be the highest-scoring player of the week.

Kevin: Jones has not scored a touchdown in five consecutive games, but he still leads the NFL in both receptions and yards. In addition, he has double-digit targets in all but two games this season. With his volume of targets in a favorable matchup, Jones is my top-ranked receiver for Week 15.

Kevin Hanson: John Brown, $4,900

Kevin: Brown has a minimum of 14 DK points in eight of his past nine games so the consistent production has been there. In a matchup against the Eagles, who allow the most fantasy points to opposing receivers, the ceiling is high for the speedy wideout from Pittsburg State. I'll also have my fair share of Michael Floyd, who has exceeded 100 yards in three of his past four games, and Larry Fitzgerald stacked with Palmer as well this week.

Sean: Brown is my favorite Cardinals WR to stack with Palmer this week. The salary is perfect. I love deep threats vs. this defense who struggles with man coverage.

Sean Beazley: Brandon Bolden, $3,200

Sean: There are a lot of cheap RBs this week that you can target. I believe that teammate James White will be the highest-owned Patriots RB this week. One of the main reasons why I like Bolden is game flow. The last time Tennessee traveled to Foxboro, they lost 59-0. While I think this team is a little better, they should still get smoked this week and Vegas agrees since they are 14-point dogs. There is always risk rostering a Patriots RB, so Bolden is only a GPP play for me this week. I generally look for 4-5x from my punt value plays, so I'm looking for 14 points here. 15-50-1, 2-10 seems like a reasonable line to me in a game I expect the Patriots to score five-plus TDs.

Kevin: As Sean noted, it's hard to trust a Patriots running back in anything other than a GPP. But at slightly more than minimum salary, Bolden could easily get 15 touches and potentially some goal-line work in a game where they should score a lot of points. He's worth the roll of the dice here and gives us some salary-cap relief.

Kevin Hanson: Eddie Lacy, $5,200

Kevin: Over the past four weeks, who has the most 100-yard rushing games? Of course, the answer is Lacy (three). In fact, only three players have more than one during that span. Barring a game following a curfew mishap, Lacy has 20-plus touches in those three 100-yard games. Ownership levels shouldn't be too high given his Week 13 dud and early-season struggles, but he has 100-yard, two-TD type of upside at a reasonable price.

Sean: I'm on board with Lacy as a target this week. He's had 20 touches in three of four weeks.

Sean Beazley: Gary Barnidge, $5,000

Sean: Barnidge has been one of the biggest fantasy surprises this year. Everyone was on the TE narrative at the beginning of the year, and that was playing whoever is facing Oakland. Well in Week 3, it was Gary Barnidge. He was an unknown, and if you played him, you were rewarded with 25.5 DK points. Since then, Barnidge has scored 15-plus DK points in seven of 10 games. Barnidge is safe for cash, but safety for a GPP is also a plus, since many people usually try to punt this position with someone in the $2,700-$3,200 range. Seattle's defense has been pretty poor against TEs this season. Cleveland should be down in this one, so I expect Barnidge to see double-digit targets and hit 15-plus DK points again this week.

Kevin: On pace for 80/1,109/10, what a year it has been for Barnidge. I prefer him in cash games, but he's a fine choice in GPPs as well.

Kevin Hanson: DeAngelo Williams, $6,600

Kevin: While the Broncos have limited opposing passers and receivers to the fewest fantasy points, they have been middle of the pack in terms of fantasy points allowed to opposing running backs this season. In his seven starts this season, Williams has been highly productive: 891 YFS, 22 receptions and eight touchdowns. Based on DK scoring, he has averaged 24.16 fantasy points per start. In three of those seven starts, he has scored multiple touchdowns; only Chris Ivory (15) has more rush attempts inside the 5-yard line than Williams (12) this season. He's been consistent, but he has a high ceiling as well and I think he'll be fairly low-owned.

Sean: Kevin has a set of big ones with this play, and I like it. Williams should be extremely low owned in tournaments facing the Broncos who are third vs. the run this season. I think Ben Roethlisberger and the Steelers can move the ball vs Denver this week, and that makes all Steelers offensive weapons great tournament plays.

Kevin Hanson: Arizona Cardinals DST, $3,900

Kevin: I think the Cardinals win this game comfortably and establish an early lead, forcing the Eagles to throw more often than they would like. Only the Panthers and Chiefs have more interceptions than the Cardinals (16) with three of those returned for touchdowns. In addition, they have multiple sacks in four of their past five games. And not only have the Cardinals D/ST scored positive points in all 13 games, but they have double-digit fantasy points in five games this season.

Sean: There are golden rules in yearly leagues like drafting defense and kicker in the last two rounds, and there are golden rules in daily leagues as well. I rarely ever target road defenses, and in the rare case I do the defense needs to be either elite or very cheap. The Cardinals do not fit this criteria. In a GPP however, I can get on board with the play for one reason. This is a great correlation play with Palmer/Brown. If you're expecting Palmer/Brown to go off, then you're probably expecting the Cardinals to be able to score some points and have a lead in the game. This could lead to some extra sacks, and potentially a pick-six.

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December 16, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 15

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 15?

Sean Beazley - Jeremy Maclin, WR, Kansas City Chiefs (at BAL), $5,500

There is no elite value popping out at me right now, so I feel this week it might be the best approach for a balanced lineup. There are a number of options between $4,500-$6,500 where I believe you can put up 20-plus points. One of those plays is Chiefs WR Jeremy Maclin.

Maclin comes in at a very reasonable price at $5,500 and draws a great matchup vs. the Ravens, who just got torched by Russell Wilson and the Seahawks last week. Maclin has averaged 10 targets over his past three games, hauling in 24 catches during this time. I believe Maclin has a field day vs. the Ravens this week and finishes north of 20 DK points.

Kevin Hanson - John Brown, WR, Arizona Cardinals (at PHI), $4,900

Brown has been consistent with 14-plus fantasy points in eight of nine games; the exception was Week 10 when he was a game-time decision against the Seahawks due to his hamstring. Since Week 3, Brown has averaged 4.6 catches for 80.4 yards per game. Based on DK scoring, no team has allowed more fantasy points to opposing wide receivers than the Eagles.

With a sub-$5,000 salary, Brown should easily exceed value in Week 15. Given his matchup, consistency and price, he's a safe play in cash games. And with the speed to get behind the Eagles secondary for a big play or two, Brown has plenty of upside for GPPs.

Brendan Donahue - Lamar Miller, RB, Miami Dolphins (at SD), $6,300

Coming off of a two-TD game on only 12 carries (it is a bit of a mystery why he only got 12 carries), Miller now goes up against the Chargers, who have given up the fifth-most points to opposing RBs and he should be relatively fresh. You can see the talent when Miller gets the ball as he averaged 7.4 yards per carry last week on just 12 carries. And the week before when they consistently gave him the ball, he rushed for 113 yards on 20 carries. I have him ranked second this week among running backs, but he is only $6,300 this week and should easily outproduce his salary.

Ryan Watterson - James White, RB, New England Patriots (vs. TEN), $4,600

With LeGarrette Blount out for the season, White should step into a larger role. His usage has seen an increase the past few weeks as the passing-down back, but he should now see more carries as well. Against a Titans defense that is near the bottom of the league against the run, and with White's growing role in the pass game, he has potential to return solid gains on a cheap salary.

Dan Yanotchko - Jeremy Maclin, WR, Kansas City Chiefs (at BAL), $5,500

This week a must-have for me is the Chiefs wideout Jeremy Maclin at $5,500. Maclin has had a great four-game split: 36 targets, 27 receptions, 88 yards per game and three touchdowns. He also gets a great matchup against the Ravens, who give up 248 yards passing on the year and 27 TDs. Just look what Tyler Lockett and Doug Baldwin did last week, and Maclin is a certain WR1.

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December 09, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 14

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 14?

Brendan Donahue - Danny Amendola, WR, New England Patriots (at HOU), $5,200

Since Julian Edelman has gone down in Week 10, Amendola has filled the role admirably. Looking at the numbers more closely, he has taken over right where Edelman left off. In those three games, he has 26 catches on 36 targets and has amassed 258 yards and a TD. With Edelman and most likely Rob Gronkowski out again, look for Amendola to once again be Tom Brady's primary target this week and get you great value on Draftkings.

Kevin Hanson - David Johnson, RB, Arizona Cardinals (vs. MIN), $4,300

As the team's featured back last week, Johnson gained 99 yards on 22 carries and added two catches for 21 yards and a touchdown in last week's win over the Rams. This week, the Cardinals are favored by nearly double digits as they host a Vikings team that has already ruled out four defensive starters.

Meanwhile, the Cardinals will be without Andre Ellington for another week, which means another heavy workload for Johnson this week. With a touchdown in three consecutive games, Johnson has scored a total of nine touchdowns -- four rushing, four receiving and one return -- despite limited touches (78) this season. Ranked inside my top-10 running backs for the week, Johnson should easily reach value for those that play in Thursday contests this week.

Ryan Watterson - Jameis Winston, QB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (vs. NO), $5,500

Going with the trend of QBs playing the Saints defense. Winston has improved throughout the season and has had a few games that show his potential. Against the worst pass defense in the league, Winston should have a big game and allow you to spend elsewhere. Pairing him with Mike Evans is my favorite stack this week.

Dan Yanotchko - Doug Baldwin, WR, Seattle Seahawks (at BAL), $4,500

This week, I am liking Doug Baldwin of the Seahawks who is on a tear lately. Baldwin has benefitted hugely from Jimmy Graham's injury, as he has compiled a four-game split of 24 receptions, 443 yards and six TDs. Combine this with a favorable Baltimore matchup that has given up 244 yards passing and 22 touchdowns on the year with only four picks. I really like his value at $4,500, and he has been targeted 31 times over the last four as well.

Sean Beazley - LeSean McCoy, RB, Buffalo Bills (at PHI), $6,100

When I build my lineups each week, I take into consideration a lot of different things. One of those things are narratives. Some DFS players are big into narratives and some are more analytical and just play the best numbers. This week we probably have one of the biggest narratives of the year and that's the LeSean McCoy revenge game.

McCoy was traded to Buffalo in the offseason, and in a nutshell called Chip Kelly a racist. McCoy doesn't have the best matchup in the world vs. an Eagles D which is more easily beaten through the air, but at $6,100 I think he easily pays off that price this week. There is one thing that is certain, and that's Rex Ryan is a player's coach. I believe he will give Shady plenty of opportunity to prove Chip Kelly wrong.

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December 03, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 13

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 13?

Kevin Hanson - Scott Chandler, TE, New England Patriots (vs. PHI), $2,500

Given the number of value plays this week, it would be easy to go with a stars-and-scrubs lineup. With Rob Gronkowski (knee) out this week and possible longer, Chandler takes over as the top pass-catching tight end for the Patriots and is priced at a position-minimum salary of $2,500. Obviously, Chandler is a huge downgrade from Gronk (then again, who isn't?!), but Chandler led the Patriots in targets (11) last week against the Broncos with Gronk playing most of the game.

Although Danny Amendola is expected to return this week, Chandler should see another high volume of targets from Tom Brady even if he doesn't lead the team again this week. While the matchup is better for Amendola and the team's receivers, no team is projected to score more points this week than the Patriots based on Vegas odds. A line similar to last week's performance (5/58/1) seems reasonable for Chandler this week.

Sean Beazley - Alshon Jeffery, WR, Chicago Bears (vs. SF), $6,900

There are a number of great value plays this week. We have David Johnson at $3,400 getting a full workload due to injuries to Chris Johnson and Andre Ellington, and Danny Amendola ($4,700), who is also expected to return this week. He should get some extra targets with Gronk out this week.

These players will be extremely highly-owned this week, but one guy who I absolutely love is Bears WR Alshon Jeffery. Jeffery comes in at bargain at $6,900. Jeffery gets an excellent matchup at home vs. the 49ers. Jeffery is also finally 100 percent as this is the first time since Nov. 11th that he wasn't listed on the injury report. I expect another double-digit target game and believe he finds the endzone as well.

Ryan Watterson - David Johnson, RB, Arizona Cardinals (at STL), $3,400

Johnson will be a very popular pick this week, and he is a near must-have despite the somewhat poor matchup. The fact is Johnson takes on a starting role in the Cardinals explosive offense. He is also a very capable receiver and has shown how explosive he can be in his limited touches. His high potential output at such a low salary makes him a lock for a lot of my lineups.

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November 25, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 12

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 12?

Brendan Donahue - T.J. Yeldon, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars (vs. SD), $4,800

I am playing the law of averages with Yeldon this week. He's the clear-cut lead back in Jacksonville and is going against the Chargers, who have given up the most fantasy points to running backs this season. Yeldon has had 10 days to rest his foot that had been bothering him and should be 100 percent this week. He has still averaged over 16 carries per game in his last four games and is going up against a Chargers team that gives up 125.9 yards per game on the ground, it's hard not to see him having a big game based on his volume and matchup.

Kevin Hanson - Brian Hoyer, QB, Houston Texans (vs. NO), $5,000

The last three quarterbacks that have faced the Saints defense have scored the most or second-most fantasy points for that given week. In fact, the Saints have allowed multiple touchdowns in six consecutive games and a minimum of 324 passing yards in five of those six games. A bye week and a new defensive coordinator won't be enough to turnaround the league's most fantasy-friendly defense.

Before leaving the Bengals game early, Hoyer threw multiple touchdown passes in five consecutive games. During that span, Hoyer has scored a minimum of 17 fantasy points in each game with 20-plus three times. Despite his position-minimum salary, Hoyer should easily exceed value with top-five upside this week. Another factor in Hoyer's favor this week is that both Aaron Rodgers and Cam Newton play on Thursday and Tom Brady (at Denver) and Ben Roethlisberger (at Seattle) have tough matchups.

Ryan Watterson - Thomas Rawls, RB, Seattle Seahawks (vs. PIT), $4,500

Rawls steps into the starting position for the Seahawks with Marshawn Lynch out for a few weeks, and while he has a difficult matchup, the opportunity is too great to ignore. Coming off a massive day against the Niners, Rawls will be fed the ball consistently against the Steelers and has a chance to greatly outproduce his salary.

Dan Yanotchko - T.J. Yeldon, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars (vs. SD), $4,800

This week I love T.J. Yeldon of the Jaguars going up against one the worst front-sevens in football, San Diego. Yeldon has a great number at $4,800, and he has 17-plus touches in six of his last seven games, plus 27 receptions on the year. I like Yeldon and his 4.0 YPC average going against a Chargers team that allows 126 yards per game and 4.9 yards per carry. C'mon, they let Spencer Ware rush for 96 yards on 11 carries and 2 TDs last week.

Sean Beazley - DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Houston Texans (vs. NO), $9,100

Last week was a tough week if you played a lot of the chalk. The cash lines in the Million maker and 50/50's were the lowest they have been all year. This week we are going to run into a lot of the similar type of chalk bargain players, so it is imperative that you nail the rest of your lineup. The chalk this week comes at the RB position, so I'll be paying at WR again this week. One player I absolutely love is Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins.

Hopkins comes in at a steep price tag of $9100, but like I mentioned, if you are playing the chalk RBs, you should have plenty of salary to get one or two of these top-notch stud WRs into your lineup this week. Some people have pretty short memories in the DFS world, but let's not forget how bad the Saints defense has been the past three games vs. the Giants, Titans, and Redskins. The Saints gave up 1,045 yards and 15 passing touchdowns during this time. There are ten teams in the NFL this year who have 15 or fewer passing touchdowns allowed all season. There is no WR in the NFL that has more targets than Hopkins (137). Hopkins also leads all WR in TDs with nine. Hopkins will be the center of my cash lineup this week.

Bonus Turkey Day Play: It's pretty unfortunate that DK doesn't have a 16-game slate this week because I would be on board rolling out QB Matthew Stafford as my cash game QB this week. Stafford has a juicy matchup against the Eagles tomorrow, and he still has a very fair price of $5,800. Stafford managed 20.4 DK points last week without having a good game. If you're playing the three-day Turkey slate, I recommend Stafford for GPPs. One great tip for playing small slate GPPs is avoiding the urge to spend your entire salary cap. Too many players make this mistake in tournaments, which leads to a lot of overlap. If you have a lineup $1500 short of the cap, there is a great chance that it's unique.

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November 18, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 11

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 11?

Brendan Donahue - Charcandrick West, RB, Kansas City Chiefs (at SD), $4,500

Anyone that puts up 31.1 points against Denver, in Denver, immediately gets my attention. Digging deeper, there is a nice trend with West.

He has gotten at least 20 carries in his each of his last three games and has rewarded his fantasy owners by putting up 23.9, 22.2, and 31.1 points in each. I don't see any reason why this trend can't continue going up against the Chargers, who give up the most points in the league against opposing running backs. At $4,500, he is an absolute steal this week.

Kevin Hanson - Charcandrick West, RB, Kansas City Chiefs (at SD), $4,500

Heavy workloads? Check. Consistent production? Check. Favorable matchup? Check. What's not to like about West this week? And despite his high usage rate and strong production, his salary has actually dropped from his Week 10 price tag ($4,800). Thank you, DraftKings!

Not only does West have a minimum of 20-plus carries in three consecutive games, but he has at least 22.2 DraftKings points in each of those three games. Priced at more than $1,000 less than the average starting salary, West will be a staple in my cash-game and GPP lineups alike.

Dan Yanotchko - Davante Adams, WR, Green Bay Packers (), $

This week, I really like Davante Adams at quite the nice $4,700 price point. Adams has finally broken through with Aaron Rodgers in the past two weeks, as he has compiled 17 receptions on 32 targets, and 173 yards total.

I know the Packers haven't exactly lit the offensive world on fire lately, as they only compiled 16 points against Detroit at home. This will be a Rodgers bounce-back game, and of course I love the fact that Adams had 21 targets last week alone.

Ryan Watterson - Stefon Diggs, WR, Minnesota Vikings (), $

There are two low cost WRs firmly on my radar this week -- Allen Hurns and Stefon Diggs. But if I have to choose between the two, Diggs is the choice. His salary is lower and he has a lot of upside this week. While he has slowed down the past two weeks, matchups and game flow can be blamed for the decrease in production.

This week, the Vikings take on the Packers. Call me naive, but I actually believe the Packers figure it out this week and the Vikings will be forced to throw more than they have been. In terms of FPA, the Packers have been solid against WRs, which will lead a lot of people to overlook Diggs in their lineups. However, that can be deceiving.

The Packers are 27th in efficiency against WR1's, so if the Vikings are forced to throw more, Diggs could be in for a big day. I'll be taking a flier on him in a lot of lineups this week.

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November 12, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 10

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 10?

Sean Beazley - Allen Robinson, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars (at BAL), $6,700

Before I get to my picks this week, I strongly recommend every DFS player to support FanDuel and DraftKings with their fight to keep DFS legal in NY. I'm not only saying this because I'm a resident of NY, but it's for the overall general good of the industry.

My DFS career is on the line, so why not go all-in on the mighty Jacksonville Jaguars this week! One player I absolutely love this week is receiver Allen Robinson. Robinson has a modest salary at $6,700 and faces the Ravens, who have one of the worst pass defenses in the league. Pairing Robinson with QB Blake Bortles ($5,600) on DK will be one of my favorite GPP stacks of the week. I believe Robinson could be under-owned in tournaments considering all the WRs in that same price tier that are coming off big weeks (Randall Cobb, Mike Evans, Amari Cooper, Alshon Jeffery, etc.).

Bonus Pick: Bears WR Alshon Jeffery was the focal point of my DFS lineups last week, and he will continue to be in my cash lineup until his price hits elite level. There is no reason why he shouldn't be priced in the same range as the elite WRs in the game. At $7,100, he is a must play in your cash lineup.

Brendan Donahue - Rob Gronkowski, TE, New England Patriots (at NYG), $8,000

With Dion Lewis out for the season, look for Gronkowski to return to the focal point (or even more of the focal point) of the offense again. Lewis missed Week 7 vs. the Jets and Gronkowski had a season-high 16 targets that resulted into 11 catches for 108 yards and a TD. Couple that with the fact that the Giants have given up the third-most points (Draftkings scoring) to tight ends this season and this is shaping up for another monster game for the monster known as Gronk.

Kevin Hanson - Kirk Cousins, QB, Washington Redskins (vs. NO), $5,200

While he has been a bit boom or bust, Cousins has finished as a top-five fantasy quarterback twice over his past five games. While his overall level of production has varied, one constant has been passing volume. Cousins has thrown for 40-plus pass attempts in three consecutive games and in five of his past six.

This week sets up as a potential "boom" week for Cousins. Not only have the Saints allowed the most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season, but they have allowed an average of 351.3 passing yards per game and a total of 13 passing touchdowns over their past three games.

At only $5,200 (or just $200 above the position-minimum salary), Cousins has a ton of upside while creating plenty of salary-cap relief to load up elsewhere. He will be a staple in both my cash game and GPP lineups in Week 10.

Dan Yanotchko - Allen Robinson, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars (at BAL), $6,700

This week, I am going with Allen Robinson of the Jaguars for $6,700, as he has one of the best matchups possible against the Baltimore secondary. Robinson has had an amazing stat split over the last four weeks, having 25 receptions on 41 targets for an average of 93.0 yards per game and four touchdowns. I feel Robinson is primed for a breakout week, and also fellow No. 2 Allen Hurns has already missed Wednesday practice with a sprained foot. Baltimore has been quite rough in the secondary this year, as they have given up 284 yards passing and 16 touchdowns, so I am green lighting Robinson this week.

Ryan Watterson - Jarvis Landry, WR, Miami Dolphins (), $6,700

Although Landry gets a Philly defense that is giving away a lot of production to WRs, ranking third to last in FPA to that position. In addition, the Eagles are 31st against WR1's in particular. Landry continues to produce on a weekly basis despite some of the Dolphins passing game struggles. I think he blows up for a big week and pushes towards a top-5 finish at his position.

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November 07, 2015

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): Week 9 Values for DraftKings Contests

In a salary-cap format, finding players that give you a bang for the buck is key to constructing a profitable lineup.

With that said, here are some of my favorite value plays for Week 9:

QB - Philip Rivers, San Diego Chargers (vs. CHI), $6,900

Since Week 4, Rivers has thrown for 300-plus yards and multiple touchdowns in five consecutive games. During that five-game span, Rivers has averaged 372.6 passing yards and 2.6 touchdowns per game. In addition, he has finished as a top-nine fantasy quarterback in all five of those games.

The season-ending injury to Keenan Allen hurts Rivers a bit, but he leads the NFL in pass attempts (43.5 per game) this season. So far this season, the Bears currently surrender the sixth-most fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks. In a plus matchup for the league's highest-volume passer, Rivers is my second-ranked quarterback for the week yet six other signal-callers have a higher salary for Week 9.

QB - Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers (vs. OAK), $6,600

Roethlisberger returned from his knee injury last week, but he threw more interceptions (three) than touchdowns (one) against the Bengals. With a game under his belt to shake off some of the rust, Big Ben should post better numbers against a poor Raiders secondary this week. Oakland allows the seventh-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks. Roethlisberger has the ninth-highest salary this week, but he's my fifth-ranked quarterback for the week.

QB - Derek Carr, Oakland Raiders (at PIT), $5,500

Against an elite Jets defense and secondary, Carr shredded them for 333 yards and four touchdowns last week. Carr now has four top-eight weekly performances in his past six games including each of his past two games. Over that six-game stretch, the only time he hasn't thrown multiple touchdowns was against the Broncos, who currently have the league's stingiest defense. (Denver has allowed only five passing touchdowns in seven games and held Aaron Rodgers to 77 passing yards last week.)

There are a few other bargain-priced quarterbacks that I like in Carr's price range (e.g., Tyrod Taylor at $5,300 and Jay Cutler at $5,200) as well.

RB - Lamar Miller, Miami Dolphins (at BUF), $5,000

Miller had a disappointing 15 rushing yards on nine carries in their blowout loss to the Patriots, but Miller did score for a third consecutive week. In his past three games since the coaching change, Miller has racked up 303 rushing yards, 10 receptions for 85 yards and four total touchdowns. In fact, he has finished as a top-11 PPR running back in all three of those games after finishing no better than RB28 in his previous four games. The matchup isn't great, but as long as the game is close, Miller should see roughly 18 touches in this game.

RB - Darren McFadden, Dallas Cowboys (vs. PHI), $4,300

Not only does McFadden have 20-plus carries in back-to-back games, but he has a total of 17 receptions on 20 targets in his past three games. With 57 touches in past two games combined, few players are guaranteed to get the type of workload that McFadden will get.

His Week 9 matchup may not be great as the Eagles have allowed the sixth-fewest fantasy points to opposing running backs, but McFadden finished as the RB8 in PPR formats last week against the Seahawks, who have been the stingiest defense to opposing running backs this season.

RB - Jonathan Stewart, Carolina Panthers (vs. GB), $4,300

In his past three games, Stewart has a minimum of 20 carries in each game and a total of 68 during that span. No player has more carries during that three-game span than Stewart (68). Of course, Cam Newton is always a threat to vulture goal-line carries from Stewart, but he has three touchdowns during that span as well.

RB - Jeremy Langford, Chicago Bears (at SD), $4,000

With Matt Forte (MCL) ruled out for Week 9, Langford is in position to get a heavy workload in a favorable matchup. The Chargers have allowed four 100-yard rushers and a total of 10 touchdowns to running backs this season. Only the Falcons have allowed more fantasy points to opposing running backs so far this season.

WR - Alshon Jeffery, Chicago Bears (at SD), $6,700

Jeffery has played only three games -- Week 1, Week 6 and Week 8 -- this season, but he has a minimum of 11 targets in every game. Since returning from his injury, Jeffery has eight-plus catches for more than 100 yards and a score finishing as the weekly WR4 in both games. As the WR5 in my Week 9 PPR rankings, Jeffery has a lower salary than 12 other wide receivers this week.

WR - Michael Crabtree, Oakland Raiders (at PIT), $4,900

In seven games this season, Crabtree has at least eight targets in six games and a minimum of six targets in every game. In fact, he has more targets (68, 9.71/G) than Amari Cooper (59) this season. On the season, Crabtree is averaging 5.71 catches for 69.0 yards per game and has scored in back-to-back games. In addition, he has a minimum of 54 receiving yards in five of his past six games. Considering it's easier to throw than run on the Steelers, Crabtree should once again get eight or more targets in Week 9.

WR - Steve Johnson, San Diego Chargers (vs. CHI), $3,200

In our DFS Roundtable post of Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 9, Johnson was my selection. No player should benefit more than Johnson from the season-ending kidney injury to Keenan Allen, who entered this week with the third-most targets in the NFL behind DeAndre Hopkins and Julio Jones.

Johnson has not exceeded 50 receiving yards since Week 1 (6/82/1), but I expect him to get eight or more targets in a favorable matchup against the Bears this week. While I have Johnson ranked inside my top-20 fantasy receivers for the week, his salary is only $200 above the position minimum as 59 receivers carry a higher price tag this week.

WR - Brandon LaFell, New England Patriots (vs. WAS), $3,200

Not safe for cash-game lineups, LaFell offers tremendous upside in tournaments at his near-minimum salary. Even though he didn't start last week, LaFell played on 82.0 percent of the team's offensive snaps last week, which second among the team's wide receivers behind Julian Edelman (94.0 percent). The Patriots are projected to score more points (33.0) than any other team this week based on Vegas odds.

TE - Heath Miller, Pittsburgh Steelers (vs. OAK), $2,700

Starting tight ends against the Raiders has been a profitable strategy this season. Not only have the Raiders allowed the second-most fantasy points to the position, they have allowed 12 touchdowns to tight ends in seven games this season.

With Roethlisberger back last week, Miller caught 10-of-13 targets for a season-high 105 yards. In fact, Miller has seen double-digit targets in two of the three games that Big Ben has started and finished.

In lineups that I don't start Miller, I'll start Rob Gronkowski. In some lineups, I will use both (as TE and Flex), but nearly 100 percent of my entries thi8s week will feature either Miller and/or Gronk.

- Week 9 DFS DraftKings Cheat Sheet

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November 05, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 9

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 9?

Brendan Donahue - Jeremy Hill, RB, Cincinnati Bengals (vs. CLE), $5,200

Bengals OC Hue Jackson said just yesterday "the arrow is pointing up" on Jeremy Hill. You can't ask for a much better matchup if Jackson wants to look smart. Hill's numbers haven't been where we had expected them to be yet this season, but this is a great time to get back on track. Cleveland is allowing over 130 yards on the ground and over 24 fantasy points per game to opposing RBs this year.

Sean Beazley - Antonio Brown, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers (vs. OAK), $8,100

One play I really like this week is Steelers WR Antonio Brown. Brown is still extremely under priced at $8,100. Brown was targeted 11 times last week in Ben Roethlisberger's return, which was the most since Week 3. The Bengals have one of the best defenses in the NFL, and Big Ben did look a little rusty last week. Oakland ranks 31st in the NFL giving up 302 passing yards per game. This is the last week you will be able to get Brown below $9,000. Brown will be the staple of my cash lineup, and I will definitely roll out plenty of Ben/Antonio stacks in tourneys.

Bonus Play: The Patriots are favorite to beat Washington by two touchdowns on Sunday. I expect all of the Patriots skilled players to be highly owned, but I'm targeting a player on the Redskins, and that is TE Jordan Reed. Reed has a very nice salary at $4500, and I expect the 'Skins to be in catch-up mode, which should equate to another game where Reed sees a dozen targets. Reed averages just under 10 targets per game, and has an extremely high ceiling.

Kevin Hanson - Steve Johnson, WR, San Diego Chargers (vs. CHI), $3,200

The season-ending injury to Keenan Allen opens up plenty of opportunities for Johnson and others in the passing game. Only DeAndre Hopkins (113) and Julio Jones (103) had more targets than Allen (89) so far this season. Johnson has not exceeded 50 receiving yards since Week 1 (6/82/1), but I expect him to get eight to 10 targets in a favorable matchup this week. While I have Johnson ranked inside my top-20 fantasy receivers for the week, his salary is only $200 above the position minimum as 59 receivers are priced higher this week.

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October 29, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 8

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 8?

Brendan Donahue - Todd Gurley, St. Louis Rams (vs. SF), $6,300

I am going to keep riding the Gurley Train until DraftKings decides to wake up and price him accordingly. Was he the most owned player last week? Yes, but he still delivered and if you didn't have him, you most likely had a hard time cashing. Coming off of a 35.3-point performance, he is still only $6,300 and going against a San Francisco defense that has given up the sixth-most fantasy points to running backs this season. Fade at your own risk!

Sean Beazley - Todd Gurley, St. Louis Rams (vs. SF), $6,300

Chasing big weeks is generally something I don't do, but sometimes it is warranted. One cash game must for me this week is Rams RB Todd Gurley. Gurley's price was bumped $1,300 to $6,300, but I believe this is still too good to pass up. Gurley had 23 touches last week, and I expect the same, if not more, vs. the 49ers. The Rams are eight-point favorites at home so the game script in this one should go Gurley's way.

Bonus Play: Saints D $2000. The Saints defense has scored in double digits the past two weeks and that is against two pretty good offenses (Indy and Atlanta). I do not like a lot of options this week at the position, so punting with a home team who does have a return threat to take one to the house is a very sneaky play. This play along with some of the other value plays really sets you up to roster some of the big stars this week that I absolutely love.

Ryan Watterson - Stefon Diggs, WR, Minnesota Vikings (at CHI), $4,800

Diggs is Teddy Bridgewater's new favorite target and the only Vikings WR that has produced much of anything with his opportunities. Coming off a strong performance against the Lions, Diggs takes on a Bears defense that is one of the worst in the league against the pass. Diggs represents great value this week at the WR position and allows you to spend elsewhere.

Kevin Hanson - Mike Evans, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (at ATL), $6,800

For me, Gurley is an obvious choice at running back and a strong consideration to list here, but considering Brendan and Sean both went with Gurley, I'll change it up for a little variety. I also considered listing Justin Forsett as the Chargers have allowed the most fantasy points to opposing running backs this season. In fact, they have allowed a top-9 weekly finish in six of seven games, four 100-yard rushing games and 10 touchdowns to the position this year.

My favorite receiver for tournaments this week is Tampa's Mike Evans. One of the more talented young receivers in the NFL, the 22-year-old Evans had a huge game following Tampa's bye with eight catches on 12 targets for 164 yards and a score against Washington last week. While it was Evans first touchdown of the 2015 season, he is one of the better red-zone options at 6-foot-5 and finished with 12 touchdowns as a rookie last year. Given the team's injuries at receiver (Louis Murphy out for the year and Vincent Jackson expected to miss this week's game), Evans should be targeted heavily in a game they are expected to trail. There is plenty of upside for Evans this week at a modest cost ($6,800).

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October 22, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 7

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 7?

Brendan Donahue - Todd Gurley, RB, St. Louis Rams (vs. CLE), $5,000

If you want the definition of a workhorse running back, take a look at Todd Gurley's past two games. Gurley has averaged 24.5 carries per game for 152.5 yards per game, so I think it's safe to say he's recovered from his injury and you can start him with confidence. He couldn't have a much better matchup this week going against the Browns at home who are giving up a league-high 149.8 yards rushing per game. At just $5,000, I expect him to be highly owned but he is just too good of a value this week to pass up.

Sean Beazley - Julio Jones, WR, Atlanta Falcons (at TEN), $9,100

There are a number of extremely chalky plays this week. If you aren't all over players like Antonio Gates, and Todd Gurley this week in your cash game, then you're probably a losing player in DFS. Gates was a lock for me before the salaries were released playing the Raiders who are awful vs TEs. Gates has been targeted 27 times in his first two games of the season. At the price of $5,000 you would be extremely foolish to not target him. Gurley, the other chalk play of the week, also sits at $5,000. Gurley will no doubt get 20-plus carries this week, and it wouldn't shock me to see him get around 30 given how I expect the game to go on Sunday.

My favorite tournament option of the week is Julio Jones. Jones is the perfect pivot off DeAndre Hopkins. I expect Hopkins to be among the highest owned players this week given receny bias. I believe this same bias (Julio's recent struggles), and the fact that Julio Jones costs $500 more than Hopkins will make Jones extremely under-owned. I also believe that Julio's teammate Devanta Freeman will be very popular, which also should keep people off Jones as pairing a RB/WR together is not usually a smart move. The Falcons played the Titans this pre-season and Jones absolutely dominated the Titans secondary. This was without CB Jason McCourty, but let's be honest, nobody can slow down a healthy Julio Jones. There are plenty of cheap options this week so you should have no problem fitting Jones in. You have the Rams D at a ridiculous $2400 vs. the Browns at home, and you could always go double TE for the savings.

Ryan Watterson - Todd Gurley, RB, St. Louis Rams (vs. CLE), $5,000

Gurley won't be this cheap for long, take advantage while you can. Gurley gets a Cleveland team that ranks 28th against RBs by DraftKings standards, and he will be the primary focus of this offense given the lack of other weapons - he had 30 carries last game. Given he is likely to touch the ball as much as anyone else this week, and has one of the best matchups, he is a must-start. Without question, he will be one of the most highly-owned players this week, but you can't afford to fade him in the majority of lineups.

Kevin Hanson - Todd Gurley, RB, St. Louis Rams (vs. CLE), $5,000

Coming off a torn ACL, Gurley sat the first two weeks of the season and was eased into action in Week 3. Since then, however, the talented top-10 pick from Georgia has carried the ball 49 times for 305 yards in his past two games. Now healthy and coming off his team's bye, Gurley is in line for another massive workload and the matchup couldn't be much more favorable.

The Browns have allowed a 100-yard rusher -- Latavius Murray (Week 3), Justin Forsett (Week 5) and Ronnie Hillman (Week 6) -- in three of their past four games. (And in Week 4, Danny Woodhead had 138 yards from scrimmage.) There is no doubt that Gurley will be one of the highest-owned players this week, but he's as safe as it gets with the upside for a monster game.

Dan Yanotchko - John Brown, WR, Arizona Cardinals (vs. BAL), $5,500

This week I am going with John Brown of Arizona, who has one of the best matchups against a very bad Ravens secondary. Brown has had a great start to the season, registering 33 catches for 497 yards and two touchdowns. The Ravens have been very bad on the back end, giving up 286 yards and 27 points per game. The league's highest-scoring offense, going against Baltimore in their second week in a row out west on the road? Yes, please.

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October 14, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 6

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 6?

Sean Beazley - Rob Gronkowski, TE, New England Patriots (at IND), $7,600

Last week for me was pretty rough especially with Jamaal Charles in all my cash lineups, and heavily used in the majority of my GPP lineups. This week, I'm going nearly all-in again and I'm going with Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski. I was completely wrong on Gronk last week, and paired with Charles you can get how awesome my Week 5 was.

Gronk is the most expensive TE on the board again at $7,600 but still is much cheaper than some of the elite WRs on the site. The Patriots sit as nearly double-digit fanvorites on Sunday, and the total is at 55.5. This is by far the biggest total of the week. This is the biggest FU game of the season for Tom Brady and the Pats since this is where Deflategate started. There is a concern that the Patriots take to the ground vs. the Colts since they racked up over 400 yards versus them last year in two meetings, but I think this is all about Brady.

I'll be trying to squeeze Brady in as my QB in my cash lineups as well, but for $400 savings you can get Aaron Rodgers, who has just a high as floor this week as Brady does in my opinion. The Patriots have scored six offensive touchdowns in each of their last three games vs. the Colts. I don't see any reason why they can't do that again on Sunday. I'm calling for a 30+ point week for Gronkowski, and the best part of it is the game is on Sunday Night. If you do not have a piece of this offense in your cash game this week, you will most likely lose.

Bonus GPP Stack - Colin Kaepernick/Anquan Boldin ($9,300 combined): The Ravens secondary has been god awful this season. They have made Derek Carr, Andy Dalton, and Josh McCown all look like Hall-of-Fame QBs. Playing this stack will definitely allow you to get a piece of all the top totals games (NE/IND, SD/GB, PHI/NYG) this week.

Brendan Donahue - Matt Forte, RB, Chicago Bears (at DET), $7,100

If you want someone who is guaranteed touches on a weekly basis, then Forte is your guy. He's averaged 20 carries and four receptions per game through the first five weeks. The only week he didn't have a reception was when Cutler was out so with him back, expect Forte to continue to get his targets in the passing game against a weak Detroit defense who will be out with Deandre Levy this week, so I expect him to finish as a top-three RB this week.

Ryan Watterson - Charcandrick West, RB, Kansas City Chiefs (), $4,000

With Jamaal Charles done for the season, West will be first in line to take the lead role for the rest of the season. He has the speed to be a game-breaker and with the increased opportunities, West has the chance to return significant value for his $4,000 salary.

Kevin Hanson - Willie Snead, WR, New Orleans Saints (vs. NO), $3,300

Leading the team with 381 receiving yards, Snead has emerged as the team's most reliable receiver through the first five weeks of the season and he's on pace for 1,219 yards for the season. With 89 and 141 yards in his past two games, respectively, Snead now has at least five catches in three consecutive games. Even though the Saints are underdogs, they are still projected to score the fifth-most points this week based on Vegas odds. In what should be a high-scoring game, Snead has a solid floor with plenty of upside and his $3,300 price tag (60th-highest WR salary) offers owners plenty of salary-cap relief to afford higher-priced studs in other spots.

Dan Yanotchko - Anquan Boldin, WR, San Francisco 49ers (vs. BAL), $4,300

This week, I really like Anquan Boldin of the 49ers, as he has a great matchup, and awesome price point at $4,300. Boldin had a great week against a bad Giants secondary, as he had eight catches for 108 yards and a TD. This week he gets another bad secondary in the Ravens, who have given up 288 yards passing per game, and their defense allows 27.4 points per game.

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October 07, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 5

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 5?

Sean Beazley - Jamaal Charles, RB, Kansas City Chiefs (vs. CHI), $7,800

I rarely have 100-percent exposure to a player, and there is good reason not to in tournaments, but this week I absolutely love Jamaal Charles and he will be the centerpiece in the majority of my lineups. The Chiefs are heavy favorites at home vs. the Bears so Charles should have plenty of opportunity to get into the endzone. Charles ($7,800) comes in at a bargain -- $700 cheaper than Le'Veon Bell.

Both RBs are in great situations this week, but the savings you get from Charles allows you a little more cap relief to roster some of the other studs this week. I'm trying to find combinations to get three studs into a lineup together. Rob Gronkowski will surely be my No. 2 stud, and I'm trying to find a way to get Julio Jones in the lineup as well, but it is very difficult with no clear-cut chalk value play like Karlos Williams was last week. One value play I'm considering is Saints WR Willie Snead. I think the Saints-Eagles game could be the highest-scoring game of the week.

Brendan Donahue - Jeremy Maclin, WR, Kansas City Chiefs (vs. CHI), $6,000

Maclin has been a target machine in the first four weeks with at least seven targets each week including a season-high 13 targets last week. He's turning those targets into great fantasy stat lines, particularly the last two weeks, with 19 catches for 289 yards and a touchdown. He has a plus matchup this week vs. a Bears secondary that has allowed the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers so far this year. Listed as the 17th-highest WR salary this week, he has plenty of potential to finish as a top-5 WR at a discounted price.

Ryan Watterson - Le'Veon Bell, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers (at SD), $8,500
Rueben Randle, WR, New York Giants (vs. SF), $4,400

I'm going with two players this week. First off, while it's important to identify low-cost value players, value isn't just about cost. The point of finding low-cost players is to spend it elsewhere. This week, my high-spend player will be Le'veon Bell in a lot of leagues. He is always a workhorse, but with Michael Vick under center, he figures to be even more involved (he had 29 touches last week). Vick will be more acclimated with the offense this week, but I would expect another conservative gameplan, putting Bell in a position to get a lot of checkdown passes as well. Against a Chargers defense giving up the second-most points to RBs by Draft Kings scoring, he should explode for another huge week.

My low-cost play this week is Rueben Randle. This is a risk/reward play, so probably a better tourney option. Randle has been more productive the last two weeks and will continue to see targets as the only legitimate option opposite Odell Beckham. The Giants take on the Niners, who actually looked decent (defensively, that is) last week holding the Packers offense in check. But that was at home, where they have given up an average of 18.5 points per game. The road is a different story, where they have allowed an average of 45 points per game. And guess where this game is being played? I wouldn't be at all surprised to see Randle post something like a 7/115/1 line this week. He could also go 3/35/0, but thats why it's a risk/reward.

Kevin Hanson - Owen Daniels, TE, Denver Broncos (at OAK), $2,700

My debate here was between St. Louis rookie running back Todd Gurley and Daniels. I'll have ton of exposure to both, but I'll likely have more of Daniels. With DraftKings, there is the ability to play two tight ends (with a flex spot) so playing Daniels doesn't mean you can't play Rob Gronkowski. Although Daniels has scored in back-to-back games, his production has been relatively modest -- 12 catches for 61 yards and two touchdowns over four games.

That said, no team has allowed more fantasy points to opposing tight ends this season than the Raiders. In addition, they have allowed a top-two weekly finish at the position in PPR scoring (DraftKings uses full PPR) in every game this season -- Tyler Eifert (TE2), Crockett Gillmore (TE1), Gary Barnidge (TE2) and Martellus Bennett (TE1). If there's a week that Daniels has a huge game, this is the week. (Or Week 14 for this second matchup with the Raiders.)

Dan Yanotchko - Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers (at NYG), $5,200

I'm going with another tournament play this week, and while I say this rarely, I like Colin Kaepernick this week. He has a great matchup this week against the Giants, who have allowed 316 yards per game an 68-percent completion rate to opposing quarterbacks. Kaepernick does have big game potential as he threw for 335 yards against Pittsburgh, and he has not rushed for less than 40 yards in a game this year as well.

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September 30, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 4

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 4?

Sean Beazley - Derek Carr, QB, Oakland Raiders ($5,300)

There are a bunch of players I like this week. I like Donte Moncrief again despite the news today that Andrew Luck is nursing a shoulder injury. I'm on Martellus Bennett against the Raiders defense that has been dreadful against TEs, and I'll have my fair share of Karlos Williams as well even if LeSean McCoy plays on Sunday.

My favorite pick of the week though is a QB/WR stack and it's coming from a team that hasn't had fantasy relevance in like a decade. That team is the Oakland Raiders. I love Derek Carr at the $5,300 bargain price playing the Bears, who seem like they have already packed it in this season. Carr has had back-to-back 300-yard games and I think he has another one on Sunday. Carr is in play in both GPPs and cash games.

I'll have separate Carr stacks with both Amari Cooper ($6,300) and Michael Crabtree ($4,600). I'll have more exposure to Cooper, who should absolutely eat vs. the Bears on Sunday. Cooper has been targeted 31 times in his first three games, and I expect another 10-12 this week. I think Cooper finds the endzone twice in this one.

Ryan Watterson - James Jones, WR, Green Bay Packers ($5,300)

Jones has shown a fantastic chemistry with Aaron Rodgers, which was never more evident than the two offsides that turned into huge plays against KC. It takes strong chemistry to convert those free plays as the WRs essentially improvise their routes and Rodgers needs to know what they are going to do in a split-second decision. The fact that he hit Jones on two such plays for huge gains (and a TD) demonstrates a lot of trust. With Davante Adams reaggravating his ankle, Jones is in line for a lot of work against a Niners secondary that has been awful to this point.

Kevin Hanson - Karlos Williams, RB, Buffalo Bills ($3,400)

For me, this is a fairly easy choice this week. In a secondary role to LeSean McCoy, Williams has been highly productive on a per-touch basis (7.8 YPC) so far this season. The only player to rush for a touchdown in all three games this season, Williams should be in line for a significant workload with McCoy a likely inactive for Week 4. The Giants have allowed the fourth-most fantasy points (PPR) to opposing running backs so far this season. At his price point, Williams should be the highest-owned running back, but he offers tremendous value and flexibility with 46 RBs priced higher.

Dan Yanotchko - Lance Dunbar, RB, Dallas Cowboys ($3,600)

This week I really love the matchup of Lance Dunbar and his 21 receptions, going against the New Orleans Saints. So far, Dunbar has been a PPR monster, and since Brandon Weeden does not throw the ball more than 7 yards downfield, I am looking at a similar day like he had against Atlanta -- 10 receptions for 100 yards. New Orleans also has an awful run defense, giving up 126 yards per game and 4.2 yards per carry. I really like the price point of $3,600 for Dunbar given his favorable matchup.

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September 23, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 3

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 3?

Sean Beazley - Donte Moncrief, WR, Indianapolis Colts ($4,800)

There is one game I am looking forward to this weekend for DFS purposes and that's the Colts at Titans. There are a number of good plays I like in this one, but by far my favorite is Colts WR Donte Moncrief. Moncrief has 13 receptions on 19 targets this year, and has been the best Colts offensive playmaker thus far. Moncrief gets a juicy matchup vs. the Titans, who got torched last week deep by the Browns Travis Benjamin. Moncrief's salary is too low at $4,800. There are a lot of decent plays around this price point, so pairing Moncrief with one of those other players will give you the salary you need to pay up for an elite WR, RB or paying up for Andrew Luck. Titans CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson is my guess on who will draw Moncrief. He is one of the worst CBs in the league. He gets beat routinely down field, so I expect another big outing from the Colts wideout. I think he is a top-15 WR this week with upside to finish in the top-five.

Bonus Play -- Marcus Mariota, QB, $6,100: Mariota won the DuganBrothers $2,000,000 last week, and I think he makes for a very solid play this week. I think the Titans are going to get their asses handed to them by Luck & Co. so the Titans should be playing from behind. Mariota finished with 18.18 points last week. I think he finishes in the low 20's this week as I see pass attempts in the 40's for him. Mariota is the perfect GPP pivot off Tyrod Taylor ($5,800), who should be one of the most popular cheap QB plays this week.

Brendan Donahue - Danny Woodhead, RB, San Diego Chargers ($4,400)

Woodhead continues to be undervalued on Draftkings. After putting up 22.2 and 16.4 points in his first two games, he still is only $4,400 this week with a good matchup against the Vikings, who rank 22nd in fantasy points given up to RBs so far this year. With 10 catches on 13 targets for 88 yards through two games, Woodhead is a safe play to put up points even if he doesn't score a TD.

Ryan Watterson - Danny Woodhead, RB, San Diego Chargers ($4,400)

Being that I recommended Woodhead last week, this isn't exactly a creative choice. But he is still a great value at $4,400 this week. Woodhead has been more productive than Melvin Gordon and is essentially splitting snaps with him, so there is plenty of opportunity. The Vikings are vulnerable to RBs as receivers, giving up a combined eight catches for 66 yards to the Lion's RBs last week. Additionally, they are ranked 24th in efficiency against RBs as receivers. Add Woodhead to your lineup while he is still a bargain, as I'm not sure how long that will last.

Kevin Hanson - LeGarrette Blount, RB, New England Patriots ($4,000)

Not safe for cash-game lineups, this is a high-risk, high-reward play that I'll use in many of my tournament lineups this week. Entering the week as a two-TD favorite with the highest projected Vegas total, the game plan for the Patriots should be different than last week's where Tom Brady threw it 59 times, the second-most of his career.

Jacksonville has allowed just 2.9 YPC, second-best in the NFL, and Blount had just two carries for four yards on Sunday, both of which should lead to ultra-low ownership levels this week. In his past 13 games with the Patriots (counting the postseason), however, Blount has rushed for 14 touchdowns and he has five multi-touchdown games during that stretch. While Dion Lewis should have a much higher ownership level this week, it wouldn't surprise me if Blount scored a touchdown, or two, at an ownership level of one or two percent.

Dan Yanotchko - Allen Robinson, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars ($5,200)

I'm going with Allen Robinson of the Jaguars this week at $5,200. Fantasy points do not care about garbage time, and garbage time could come early on Sunday. The Patriots have allowed 260 yards per game, and four touchdowns so far this year. Robinson has also been Blake Bortles favorite receiver with 19 targets, seven receptions for 182 yards, and two touchdowns so far.

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September 20, 2015

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): Week 2 Values for DraftKings Contests

In a salary-cap format, finding players that give you a bang for the buck is key to constructing an optimal lineup.

With that said, here are some of my favorite value plays for Week 2:

QB - Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints (vs. TB), $7,800

Granted, Brees may not qualify as a value in absolute terms with the third-highest quarterback salary this week, but he is a value in relative terms as my top-ranked signal-caller for Week 2. One week after rookie Marcus Mariota shredded the Bucs secondary for four first-half touchdowns in his NFL debut, the quarterback with half of the 5,000-yard seasons in NFL history is up next. Favored by double digits, one potential concern for the Saints (Brees) is a blowout that leads to the Saints taking their foot off the gas in the second half.

That said, no quarterback has been more prolific than Brees at home. In 72 home games as a Saint, Brees has averaged a 2:49-to-0.92 TD-to-INT ratio with an average of 7.99 Y/A and 68.85-percent completion rate. In addition, Brees has exceeded the 300-yard mark in 42 of those 72 home games.

QB - Sam Bradford, Philadelphia Eagles (vs. DAL), $6,900

No team is projected to score more points than the Eagles (30.5) this week; the Saints (28.75) are projected for the second most. The Eagles started slowly last week, but they scored 21 second-half points after trailing 20-3 at the half and that momentum should carry over to this week. While Bradford is unlikely to throw it 52 times again this week, he has plenty of upside despite a salary outside of the top-12 fantasy quarterbacks.

QB - Carson Palmer, Arizona Cardinals (at CHI), $6,700

While Palmer missed 10 games last season, he was productive on a per-game basis — 271.0 Y/G with multiple touchdown passes in five of six games. Picking up where he left off, Palmer opened the season with a 307-yard, three-TD performance against the Saints in Week 1. The Bears gave up the fifth-most fantasy points last week (to Aaron Rodgers and the Packers), but they allowed the second-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks last season as well, giving Palmer another exploitable matchup this week.

RB - Lamar Miller, Miami Dolphins (at JAX), $5,500

Miller had a modest performance last week with 75 yards from scrimmage on 14 touches, 4.1 yards per carry and no scores. Washington has an excellent front-seven, though, and I expect a better performance from Miller in Week 2 against the Jaguars. Even though the Dolphins don't give him the heavy workloads his per-touch production warrants, Miller was one of the most consistent running back performers last season. Going into this weekend's games, Miller is my seventh-ranked PPR running back and only the 17th-most expensive at the position group.

RB - Carlos Hyde, San Francisco 49ers (at PIT), $5,100

Hyde exploded for 168 rushing yards and two scores last week en route to finishing as the top-scoring fantasy running back for Week 1. With Week 2 pricing set prior to that Monday night performance, that outing isn't reflected in Hyde's $5,100 price tag. While there are some concerns with Hyde (high ownership levels, the team being a road underdog and playing on a short week), Hyde should still get a heavy workload regardless of game flow with Reggie Bush out and outproduce his salary.

RB - Chris Ivory, New York Jets (at IND), $4,700

There are a number of factors working Ivory's favor this week that make him attractive at his RB28 salary. Carrying the ball 20 times for 91 yards and two TDs against the Browns, Ivory figures to get a heavy workload once again as the Jets look to control the clock and keep Andrew Luck and the (normally) high-powered Colts offense off the field. And while being a seven-point road underdog certainly isn't ideal for a running back's fantasy outlook, the Colts run defense is one of the league's worst and it's unlikely that 27 running backs outproduce Ivory this week.

RB - Danny Woodhead, San Diego Chargers (at CIN), $4,000

Gaining 62 yards on 16 touches (including four receptions), Woodhead scored two touchdowns in Week 1. Not only is Woodhead the team's third-down back, but he clearly has the trust of Philip Rivers in the red zone. In his only healthy season with the Chargers (2013), he had 76 catches and scored eight touchdowns. With the 41st-highest salary among running backs, Woodhead is my 13th-ranked PPR back for Week 2.

RB - Lance Dunbar, Dallas Cowboys (at PHI), $3,000

Playing 32 of the team's 71 offensive snaps last week, Dunbar didn't get any carries, but he racked up eight receptions for 70 yards against the Giants, which was good for 15 DraftKings points (PPR scoring). With Dez Bryant out, Dunbar should once again be heavily involved in the passing attack. The Cowboys are 5.5-point underdogs in the game with this week's highest over/under. Given his position-minimum salary, Dunbar provides the flexibility to load up elsewhere.

WR - Jordan Matthews, Philadelphia Eagles (vs. DAL), $7,100

As noted earlier, no team is projected to score more points this week than the Eagles and a Bradford-Matthews stack will surely be one of the highest-owned combos. That said, Matthews was highly targeted in Week 1 (10/102 on 13 targets) and I think we could see a similar performance from him again this week. And he's actually $100 cheaper than his $7,200 Week 1 price tag.

WR - Pierre Garcon, Washington Redskins (vs. STL), $5,000

Not only will DeSean Jackson (hamstring) be sidelined for the next several weeks, but the oft-injured tight end Jordan Reed is questionable with a quad injury. By default, Garcon is in line for a heavy dose of targets in Week 2. Coincidentally, the one game that D-Jax missed last year was against the Rams and Garcon finished that game with nine catches for 95 yards on 11 targets despite the team getting shut out.

WR - Terrance Williams, Dallas Cowboys (at PHI), $4,200

The broken foot injury for Dez elevates Williams to the No. 1 receiver role for the Cowboys. Although he doesn't possess a WR1 skill set and it increases the attention he'll receive from the Eagles defense, he should see a much larger number of targets during Bryant's absence. At his price, Williams has plenty of upside in the game expected to be the highest-scoring of the week.

WR - Steve Johnson, San Diego Chargers (at CIN), $4,200

In his Chargers debut, Johnson caught all six of his targets for 82 yards and a score. While his price has increased from last week's $3,700 salary, it remains relatively low -- priced as WR46 this week. Especially with Antonio Gates suspended for three more games, Johnson should be the second-most productive pass-catcher for the Chargers behind Keenan Allen.

WR - Brandon Coleman, New Orleans Saints (vs. TB), $3,300

Behind Brandin Cooks (73 snaps), Coleman (58) was on the field for more snaps than Marques Colston (46) in Week 1. As I noted above, Brees is in a great spot to carve up a bad Bucs secondary and historically the Saints offense has been virtually unstoppable at home. Given his size (6-6, 225), it wouldn't surprise me if Coleman scored a touchdown (or two) this weekend and he's priced near the position minimum for the week.

WR - Cole Beasley, Dallas Cowboys (at PHI), $3,300

Once again, the Bryant injury elevates the involvement of the other pass-catchers and Beazley is priced only $300 above the position minimum. While Williams has a higher ceiling, Beasley should easily exceed value, especially given the PPR-scoring of DraftKings contests. I expect him to finish with five-plus catches for 50-plus yards in Week 2.

TE - Jason Witten, Dallas Cowboys (at PHI), $4,300

Sticking with the theme of Cowboys' pass-catchers, Witten should see a heavy dose of targets in Philly. Against the Giants last week, Witten had eight receptions (on nine targets) for 60 yards and two scores. It was only the fifth multi-touchdown game in Witten's 192-game career, but he has been productive against the Eagles with an average of 5.8 receptions and 64.9 yards per game.

TE - Vernon Davis, San Francisco 49ers (at PIT), $3,000

Especially in tournaments, Davis is certainly a viable punt play at only $3,000. Obviously, Davis shouldn't be compared to Rob Gronkowski, who scored three touchdowns against the Steelers last week, but Davis has elite athleticism for the position and the 49ers could find themselves in a situation that leads to more than the 26 pass attempts they had against the Vikings in Week 1. The recipient of roughly one-quarter of the team's targets (six), Davis had three catches for 47 yards in Week 1. And even though he has only two touchdowns since the start of the 2014 season, Davis has scored 13 touchdowns in two separate seasons since 2009.

- Week 2 DFS DraftKings Cheat Sheet

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September 16, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 2

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play for Week 2?

Brendan Donahue - Chris Ivory, RB, New York Jets ($4,700)

After posting 20 carries for 91 yards and 2 TDs for 23 points last week, Ivory has another great matchup against the Colts this week. The Colts gave up 147 yards on the ground last week to Buffalo and I think the Jets will try to control the clock and pound the run with Ivory all game. Great value for Ivory this week and should easily outproduce his salary.

Sean Beazley - Sam Bradford, QB, Philadelphia Eagles ($6,900)

My play for Week 2 is the same play I had Week 1 in all my cash games, and that is Sam Bradford. I absolutely love this spot for him. The total is set at a juicy 55.5 points, and that's even with Dez Bryant ruled out. Bradford and the Eagles offense was clicking in the second half vs. Atlanta, and we know how quick of a pace they play.

This will be the last week you can get Bradford (QB12) at a discount ($6,900). I honestly think Bradford is the safest bet for 300 yards this week. I'll have him rated as my No. 3 QB this week behind only Andrew Luck and Aaron Rodgers. I'll have a healthy dose of Jordan Matthews as well, and could pair the two together in both cash games and GPPs. The Eagles front-seven is pretty good against stopping the run, and I think Dallas takes some chances deep in this one, which could lead to some quick possessions. I'm a big fan of Terrance Williams in GPPs. I'm fading the DeMarco Murray revenge game, and actually believe Chip Kelly will go to the air more often using a little more play-action. My prediction is 350/3 for Bradford and at under 7K, that's a bargain.

Ryan Watterson - Danny Woodhead, RB, San Diego Chargers ($4,000)

Woodhead has always been a key piece to the Chargers offense when healthy, and last week proved Melvin Gordon's presence isn't going to change that. Woodhead is not only the third-down back, but he also had 12 carries to Gordon's 14, and out-touched Gordon 6-0 last week in the red zone.

While I don't expect that to always be the case, it goes to show that Woodhead will not be forgotten in this offense. This week, the Chargers take on a tough Bengals D. I would expect a lot of third-down situations, meaning a lot of potential opportunities for Woodhead to put up solid receiving numbers, in addition to around 10 carries. It won't take much to create value at his current salary, and the upside is there for another big game.

Kevin Hanson - Lance Dunbar, RB, Dallas Cowboys

In last week's DFS Roundtable, I went with a high-priced running back (Jeremy Hill). This week, I'm going with a minimum-salary option in Dunbar. Playing 32 of the team's 71 offensive snaps last week, Dunbar didn't get any carries, but he racked up eight receptions for 70 yards against the Giants, which was good for 15 DraftKings points (PPR scoring). With Bryant out this week, Dunbar should once again be heavily involved in the passing attack. The Cowboys are 5.5-point underdogs in the game with this week's highest over/under. Given his position-minimum salary, Dunbar gives me plenty of flexibility to load up elsewhere.

Dan Yanotchko - Carson Palmer, QB, Arizona Cardinals ($6,700)

This week, I am really loving Carson Palmer at $6,700. Palmer had a great Week 1, posting 307 yards passing and 3 touchdowns against the much-maligned New Orleans pass defense, and this week he gets an even worse pass defense in Chicago. I know Aaron Rodgers only had 189 yards last week, but he still threw for three touchdowns, and completed 78 percent of his throws. I love the Cardinals weapons in Larry Fitzgerald, Michael Floyd, and John Brown, and I feel that with Andre Ellington out, the game plan is to air it out more.

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September 12, 2015

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): Week 1 Values for DraftKings Contests

The long wait to the 2015 NFL season is over. We have one (high-scoring) game in the books and 255 regular-season games to go.

With DFS sites like DraftKings setting their Week 1 salaries prior to the preseason, there are a number of values for this weekend's slate of games due to injuries opening up opportunties for their (healthy) teammates or players earning larger/starting roles for themselves.

Finding lower-priced options is key to being able to afford higher-priced studs in your lineups so I'll attempt to identify some players that I feel are undervalued — priced lower than expectations — for Week 1.

In general, the players listed in this post will have lower salaries, but I am looking for relative values — not only absolute values.

With that said, here are some of my favorite value plays for Week 1:

QB - Tony Romo, Dallas Cowboys (vs. NYG), $7,300

With the 12th-highest salary among QBs this week, Romo is my fourth-ranked fantasy QB and one of my top-three QBs (Tom Brady) has already played this week. In two games against the Giants last season, Romo threw only 49 pass attempts combined, but he threw seven touchdowns to only one interception and averaged 11.31 yards per attempt. Only the Eagles have a higher projected point total for this weekend's games than the Cowboys. In what should be one of the week's highest-scoring affairs, Romo should carve up a depleted Giants defense in primetime.

QB - Sam Bradford, Philadelphia Eagles (at ATL), $6,900

Speaking of high-scoring contests in primetime, Bradford and the Eagles will take on the Falcons in the first of Monday's two night games. We've seen how productive the Eagles quarterbacks can be in Chip Kelly's system over the past two years and Bradford is the most talented of the group that Kelly has had thus far. Ranking last in the NFL in pass defense (279.9 YPG) in 2014, the Falcons may offer little resistance to the Eagles' fast-paced offense.

QB - Tyrod Taylor, Buffalo Bills (vs. IND), $5,000

If you want to punt the position, Taylor is viable option at the position-minimum salary. Earning the starting gig this preseason, Taylor has upside even if the Bills play conservatively on offense due to his dual-threat abilities. While the other quarterback in this game will have to face an elite defense, Taylor gets to face a defense that is anything but elite.

RB - Doug Martin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (vs. TEN), $4,500

I love some higher-priced studs like Eddie Lacy and Jeremy Hill and I've paired those guys with a lower-priced option like Martin in many of my lineups. Since a dominant rookie season (1,926 YFS and 12 TDs) in 2012, it's been a disappointing and injury-plagued two seasons for Martin, but things are pointing up with a strong offseason and preseason. Opening the season against the Titans, who ranked 31st last year in run defense, Martin gets a soft matchup in a game where he should get a heavy volume of work as their rookie quarterback makes his NFL debut.

RB - Christopher Ivory, New York Jets (vs. CLE), $4,100

The only team that allowed more rushing yards than the Titans last season was the Browns. While their run defense will be better than last year with the first-round selection of Danny Shelton, it's still a favorable matchup for Ivory and the Jets backfield. Ivory finished as a top-24 fantasy running back in PPR formats last season and I expect an increase in workload from the 13.5 touches per game he averaged in 2014.

RB - Danny Woodhead, San Diego Chargers (vs. DET), $3,700

Woodhead's 2014 season was cut short due to injury, but he was one of the better fantasy running backs in PPR formats in his first season with the Chargers. In 2013, Woodhead had 1,034 YFS, 76 receptions and eight touchdowns. Even though the Chargers drafted Melvin Gordon with a top-15 selection, Woodhead will get the bulk of third-down snaps with many snaps inside the red zone as well.

WR - Jarvis Landry, Miami Dolphins (at WAS), $5,600

Except for his former LSU teammate Odell Beckham, Landry had more receptions than all other rookie receivers in 2014. Going into 2015, Landry is the only constant among the team's top pass-catchers and Landry finished with 84/758/5 as a rookie. Over the final nine games of the season, Landry had a minimum of five receptions in every game and averaged 6.55/55.89/0.50 per game over that stretch. Last season, Washington allowed the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing receivers (PPR scoring).

WR - Allen Robinson, Jacksonville Jaguars (vs. CAR), $5,400

One of my favorite breakout players for 2015, Robinson just turned 22 last month and quietly had a strong rookie season before a Week 10 foot injury ended his season prematurely. Before the injury, Robinson had a minimum of four catches in eight consecutive games in an offense that otherwise struggled. While they signed free-agent Julius Thomas to a large contract in the offseason, Thomas will miss the first several games and Robinson should be heavily targeted in Week 1. With the 37th-highest salary among wideouts, Robinson is my 12th-ranked receiver for this week.

WR - Davante Adams, Green Bay Packers (at CHI), $4,400

With his playing time increasing down the stretch last season, Adams strong offseason suggested he would take a big step forward in 2015. With the season-ending ACL injury to Jordy Nelson, that improvement became certain with good health as Adams now will start opposite Randall Cobb in two-WR sets. Although Adams is ranked inside my top-24 receivers for the week, he's priced as the WR49 in DraftKings contests this week.

WR - Stevie Johnson, San Diego Chargers (vs. DET), $3,700

There are 64 receivers priced higher than Johnson, who should be able to easily exceed value this week. Johnson will take over the role vacated by Eddie Royal, a player that I like this week as well and who finished as the WR32 in PPR leagues last season. And with the four-game suspension of Antonio Gates, there's another reason to like Johnson this week.

TE - Martellus Bennett, Chicago Bears (vs. GB), $4,300

It appears that Alshon Jeffery will play on Sunday, but calf injuries are fairly easy to aggravate. But with Brandon Marshall traded this offseason and Jeffery at less than 100 percent, Bennett should figure prominently into the game plan with the Bears being a touchdown underdog. In two games against the Packers last season, Bennett, who led all tight ends in receptions (90) in 2014, had 11 catches for 179 yards (16.27 Y/A) on 17 targets.

TE - Tyler Eifert, Cincinnati Bengals (at OAK), $3,500

Eifert is one of my favorite breakout players at tight end this season and I think his breakout would have happened last season were he not injured in Week 1. With a solid matchup, Eifert is one of my favorite tight end plays this weekend.

- Check out our DraftKings DFS Cheat Sheet for Week 1

Week 1 Fantasy Football Rankings:

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September 09, 2015

DFS Roundtable: Favorite DraftKings Play for Week 1

One of the benefits of playing daily fantasy football in Week 1 is that prices were set more than a month ago, which leads to plenty of cheap options.

Going into Week 1 this year, the most obvious bargain is Green Bay's Davante Adams. I'd expect Adams to be the most-owned play in cash games and GPPs alike.

There was plenty of buzz with Adams in the offseason (as Coach McCarthy dubbed him MVP of the OTAs) and he continued that momentum into training camp. With the torn ACL injury that cost Jordy Nelson his season, however, Adams immediately moves into the starting lineup opposite Randall Cobb. As the No. 2 receiver in an Aaron Rodgers-led offense, Adams should exceed 1,000 yards in his sophomore campaign.

For Week 2, Adams will be priced much higher than his bargain $4,400 salary for this week.

Every week this season, our contributors will give their favorite plays for the week in DraftKings contests.

Q: Who is your favorite DraftKings play (aside from Adams) for Week 1?

Sean Beazley - Doug Martin, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers ($4,500)

There are a number of easy targets to pick Week 1. I expect Packers WR Davante Adams ($4,400) to be heavily owned in cash games, and he will be locked in on all of mine. I tend to play more tournaments than cash games, so for these roundtable questions, I will be focusing on tournament plays that I like. Finding value like all daily games is the key to success, but in tournaments, you need to differentiate yourself with the field if you want to place higher.

My favorite this week is Tampa Bay RB Doug Martin at a bargain price of $4,500. I think Martin will be very low-owned this week considering there are some other great value plays right around the same price. (Chris Ivory being one of them.) Martin has looked very sharp this preseason and he should be poised to have a big game vs. the Titans, who were 31st in the NFL against the run last year. The Titans added defensive legend Dick LeBeau to their coaching staff. And they have also made some good offseason moves (Brian Orakpo, re-signing Derrick Morgan, etc.), but I think this defense as a whole can and will get beat all season on the ground. Tampa Bay will still be a little vanilla with the play-calling with Jameis Winston so I expect the Muscle Hamster to shoulder the load -- 125-150 total yards, a few receptions and a touchdown or two is not out of the question here.

Brendan Donahue - Sam Bradford, QB, Philadelphia Eagles ($6,900)

This is maybe the only time you will be able to take advantage of Sam Bradford at this price this season. I'm not saying that just because I think he will excel in Chip Kelly's offense as he showed us a glimpse with his 10-for-10, 3-TD performance against the Packers, but also because with his injury history, you may literally not be able to put him in your lineups again this season. That being said, he has a great matchup against the Falcons, who gave up the 11th-most fantasy points to opposing QBs last year and did little to improve that in the offseason.

Ryan Watterson - Doug Martin, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers ($4,500)

Many of the top RBs this week have a tough matchup or some level of uncertainty associated with them. Martin has a clear-cut lead-back role and a fantastic matchup against a Titans defense that ranked in the bottom five against the run in almost any method of measurement. As opposed to previous years when Martin had a lead role and disappointed, he has looked very good by all accounts and it showed in the preseason. With a rookie QB, the Bucs will lean on their run game and Martin should exploit the Titans awful run D. At a mere $4,500, Martin could produce strong numbers and enable you to spend elsewhere.

Kevin Hanson - Jeremy Hill, RB, Cincinnati Bengals ($7,100)

Given the values to be had elsewhere this week, it's easy to afford higher-priced backs like Hill, although he is still a value in relative terms. With the ninth-highest salary among running backs, Hill is my second-ranked running back for the week. From Week 9 on, Hill led the NFL in rushing yards (929, 5.40 YPC) with five 100-yard games over that nine-game span. No team allowed more fantasy points to opposing running backs last season and the Bengals had the fifth-highest run-play percentage (47.59 percent) in 2014. With a high floor and ceiling alike, I can see Hill get 20-plus carries, 100-plus yards (DK scoring gives three bonus points for a 100-yard rushing game) and a touchdown (or two) with a few receptions.

Dan Yanotchko - Doug Martin, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers ($4,500)

I love Doug Martin of the Buccanuthis week, as I feel he's a great value play at $4,500. The Muscle Hamster has looked great in the preseason, showing off that great quickness that made him a star in 2012. I love his matchup against the Titans, who were second worse in the league in giving up 2,195 yards and 4.3 yards per carry last year. The Titans also surrendered 17 touchdowns on the ground as well, giving Martin the potential for great numbers at his price.

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September 08, 2015

DraftKings GPP Lineup Construction for NFL Week 1

If you have watched television or listened to the radio recently, you have seen a commercial -- or a 1,000 of them -- for DraftKings or FanDuel this year. This is going to be the biggest year of daily fantasy sports ever.

DraftKings has an amazing $10 million guaranteed tournament for Week 1 alone, which is the richest prize pool ever. This is going to attract a lot of new players, which is great for people that have been playing for a few years.

If you are one of these new players, the key is research, research, and then more research. Read articles on game theory and recommended plays and they will help you in the long run. Join cheap H2H contests against some of the top players in the industry to see what type of lineups they are playing. Deconstructing lineups is probably the best tool most people overlook. Subscribe and listen to podcasts. There are about a dozen podcasts I listen to during football season. These will give you some great insight on which players to pick on Sunday.

My general strategy in large tournaments -- called Guaranteed Prize Pools (GPPs) -- is to pick a core group of players I really like and then to build teams around them.

Use Vegas as a guide. The higher the over/under, the more points you can expect to see. It's a fairly simple concept, but it's often overlooked by new players. (Note: We track weekly Vegas odds here.)

Excluding the Thursday Night Football matchup, we have three games this weekend that are projected above 50: Green Bay at Chicago, NY Giants at Dallas and Philly at Atlanta. I'd be willing to bet that the majority of GPP winners will have at least 1-2 players from these games. Games like Cleveland at NY Jets or Carolina at Jacksonville can be safely ignored this week for position players unless you are rolling out 20+ GPP lineups.

Here is my core group I like for Week 1.

WR - Davante Adams, Green Bay Packers, $4,400: Adams is the chalkiest play on the board for Week 1, but I'm not going to be contrarian just to be contrarian. There is a lot of value to fading Adams, because if he gets hurt or if Aaron Rodgers targets Ty Montgomery, Jeff Janis or any of the TEs (more than Adams), then all of the non-Adams players have a leg up on the rest of the field. I just don't see that happening against the Bears defense. If I'm entering 20+ contests, I'd definitely throw some non-Adams lineups out there, but for newer players or people playing a small number of lineups, going 100 percent Adams is a great move.

WR - Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons, $9,300: At the $9300 price tag, Jones is the most expensive player on DK Week 1. I'm not sure exactly what his ownership level will be, but I think it could be very high with all the savings you can find elsewhere. Jones gets to match up vs. the Eagles defense that was awful against the pass last year. Paying up $9,300, you need to get around 30+ points from him to get value in a tournament and I think he is as safe of a bet as there is, barring injury.

RB - Doug Martin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, $4,500: I wrote Doug Martin up on our DFS Roundtable this week. Martin has a very juicy matchup vs the Titans week 1. He has looked explosive this pre-season and should be the primary back this season for the Bucs.

[Note: Our DFS Roundtable post will be up Wednesday night.]

TE - Martellus Bennett, Chicago Bears, $4300: With Gronk playing Thursday night, that leaves the TE position with only a few solid choices. My usual strategy is to pay up for an elite player like Gronk or punt the position. I think this week I'm paying up for the fifth-most expensive TE. As I mentioned above, targeting players from the highest O/U games is something you should do. Bennett is a good red-zone target, and could get some extra targets with Alshon Jeffrey banged up, and Brandon Marshall in NY.

QB - I usually will never have a core QB in my lineups. I like to pair different QBs with WRs in each of my GPP lineups. There are many times where an outside-the-box combo like Ryan Fitzpatrick and DeAndre Hopkins (last year) could win you a tournament.

With those four core players, that's a salary of $22,500, which leaves us a nice $27,500 to play with five positions left.

Here is a look at how I will spend from this point. I'm targeting a defense next. My general rule of thumb is picking a defense at home vs. a sh%#{y offense. The one that stands out this week is the NY Jets at $2,900. There are some other defenses I like that I will sprinkle in on some of my lineups like Miami and Tampa Bay, but the Jets will probably be used in 50% of my GPP lineups. This leaves me with $24,600 for four players (or $6150 per player).

I can go a number of different routes at this point. I can pair my WRs (above) with their starting QBs --Rodgers at $8,600 or Matt Ryan $7,500 -- or I can try to find another QB/WR combo. For this example, I'm going to draft Matt Ryan at $7,500, leaving me with an average of $5,700 each for a RB/WR/Flex. Ryan should have a monster game vs the Eagles defense.

I want to get a piece of the NY Giants/Dallas game. I am going to take Dallas RB Joseph Randle at $5,900. The Cowboys have the best offensive line in football, and I expect a lot of people to be off Randle after the success that Darren McFadden had this preseason. Randle could be a very low-owned steal with an incredibly high ceiling. I'm left with $5,600 per player at this point.

I could go the even route and find two players near the same salary or try and go big with a sleeper and a more consistent player, who should have a higher floor. I'm all for winning GPPs or placing as high as possible so I'm going boom or bust.

WR - Eddie Royal, Chicago Bears, $3,900: The Bears should be down and Royal should have a fair number of targets vs. the Packers.

RB - Jeremy Hill, Cincinnati Bengals, $7,100: The Raiders run defense is pretty bad, and I think a lot of people will shy away from Hill Week 1. Hill has an incredible ceiling Week 1.

In this lineup, six out of eight players come from highest total games.

Here is another sample lineup without QB/WR combo.

QB - Tyrod Taylor, Buffalo Bills, $5,000: Taylor is at the site minimum and makes for a very sneaky GPP play. The Bills defense has improved this offseason, but they face arguably the best offense in the NFL this week. The Bills could be playing from behind in 3+ WR sets which would force Indy to play a lot of 5-6 DB sets. This would give Taylor a lot of space to run the ball. A modest game of 200 passing yards, 50 rush yards, 2 TDs, 2 INTs gives Taylor plenty of value to pay off his price tag. This leaves me with $6533 left per player.

WR - Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys, $8,700: I get another elite WR who has 30+ scoring potential.

WR - Jordan Matthews, Philadelphia Eagles, $7,200: The Eagles #1 WR should have a field day vs the leagues worst passing defense last year.

RB - Ryan Mathews, Philadelphia Eagles, $3,600 Punt play and high upside. I'm projecting the Eagles to score 40+ points on Monday night.

6 out of 8 players come from highest total games.

A more contrarian lineup with my core group

QB - Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts, $8,300: Luck has a very tough matchup vs Buffalo on the road, and I think he will get overlooked and be very low owned week 1. Sometimes you just play elite players regardless of matchup.

RB - Andre Ellington, Arizona Cardinals, $6,400: Ellington has a very soft matchup at home vs. the Saints. For only $300 more, you can snag DeMarco Murray in a game where I project their to be 60+ points. Ellington makes a pretty solid pivot to Murray.

WR - Stevie Johnson, San Diego Chargers, $3,700: It wouldn't shock me to see Johnson return to fantasy fame this year. He has a pretty good matchup vs. Detroit and the price is right.

Flex - Andre Johnson, Indianapolis Colts, $6,100 Luck/Johnson combo could reward you big time if Buffalo finds a way in slowing down T.Y. Hilton.

With this lineup i only have 3 of 8 players coming from the highest total games.

Typically the contrarian lineup will net you a bigger win than a chalkier lineup like 1 and 2, but you need to be prepared to lose the majority of the time with these lineups.

There is no right or wrong way in constructing a roster. You need to always tweak your strategy to stay ahead of the rest of the pack.

Best of luck to everyone this season.

Find me on Twitter at @Xtremedynasty.

Continue reading "DraftKings GPP Lineup Construction for NFL Week 1" »


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January 21, 2015

Fantasy NBA DraftKings DFS Values (Jan. 21st)

In order to fit studs like DeMarcus Cousins ($11,100), Kevin Durant ($10,700) or LeBron James ($10,700) into our DraftKings lineups tonight, finding values at other roster spots is imperative.

Like most Wednesdays, it's another large slate (12 games) today, which increases the odds of finding value at other spots.

For this post, I will focus on players with a salary of $6,500 or less to highlight the mid- and low-priced players that I like for tonight's games.

[Note: Our NBA DFS posts are primarily posted on our basketball blog, The Basketball Junkie.]

With that said, here are some DraftKings values for Wednesday's NBA games:

PG - Jarrett Jack, Brooklyn Nets (at SAC), $6,300: With Deron Williams out, Jack remains a strong option among the mid-priced point guards. In his past eight games, Jack is averaging 32.19 fantasy points per game with 38.5 or more in half of those games including back-to-back games against the Wizards. During that eight-game span, Jack has averaged 15.63 points, 7.38 assists, 3.5 rebounds and 3.13 three-pointers in nearly 37 minutes per game. Meanwhile, the Kings have allowed the seventh-most fantasy points to opposing point guards this season.

PG - Mo Williams, Minnesota Timberwolves (vs. DAL), $6,200: Williams is coming off a disappointing performance (18 fantasy points in 29 minutes), but he had at least 25 fantasy points in the previous seven games with 42-plus points in three of them. Assuming that Ricky Rubio misses at least one more game, Williams has plenty of upside in what should be a fast-paced game. Both teams rank in the top-third of the league in terms of pace. (That said, I'll like Williams a little less if Kevin Martin (GTD) suits up tonight although he may be on a minutes restriction if he does.)

PG - Trey Burke, Utah Jazz (at CLE), $5,600: Burke has scored at least 22.75 fantasy points in 11 consecutive games and has averaged 30.68 points over that span. Burke is averaging 16.9 points, 5.1 assists and a steal per game during that span and gets a great matchup against Kyrie Irving and the Cavs, who have surrendered the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing point guards this season.

PG - Elfrid Payton, Orlando Magic (at DET), $5,400: Payton has now scored 40-plus fantasy points in back-to-back games and 30-plus fantasy points in four consecutive games. Arguably the best defender in last year's draft class, Payton has multiple steals in all four of those games, but he has surprisingly stepped up offensively with 22 and 19 points in his past two games, respectively. Over his past four games, he is averaging 16.5 points, 7.8 assists, 4.5 rebounds and 2.3 steals per game.

PG - Langston Galloway, New York Knicks (at PHI), $3,600: With three opportunities to start a point guard on DraftKings (PG, G and UTIL spots), that's typically a strategy that I use most nights and will do so again tonight in many of my lineups. There are plenty of great mid-priced options, as mentioned above, but Galloway is a much cheaper option that is likely to draw another start and no team allows more fantasy points to opposing point guards than the 76ers. Galloway has averaged 21.75 fantasy points in his five games with the Knicks including a pair of 30-point fantasy outings.

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SG - Wesley Matthews, Portland Trail Blazers (at PHO), $5,700: Matthews' minutes won't directly benefit from the injury to LaMarcus Aldridge, but his usage rate and shot attempts will. With Aldridge playing only 14 minutes before his injury on Monday, Matthews took a season-high 20 shot attempts including 12 three-point attempts. He now has 26 three-point attempts in his past two games. Dollar for dollar, Matthews may be my favorite play among SGs tonight.

SG - Eric Gordon, New Orleans Pelicans (vs. LAL), $5,400: If Jrue Holiday (ankle) misses another game, that would benefit Gordon. Since returning from his own injury on Jan. 5th, Gordon has played 33-plus minutes in seven of eight games. In his past seven games, Gordon has scored a minimum of 22.5 fantasy points and he's averaged 27.57 per game over that span.

SG - J.R. Smith, Cleveland Cavaliers (vs. UTA), $4,900: Smith has averaged over 35 minutes per game in his past six outings with 17.0 points, 3.3 treys and 1.8 steals per game during that span. With at least 22.5 fantasy points in five of those six games, he has averaged 28.58 fantasy points over that stretch. Meanwhile, Utah has allowed the 10th-most fantasy points to opposing shooting guards this season.

SF - Nicolas Batum, Portland Trail Blazers (at PHO), $5,400: Things haven't gone so well for Batum (and his fantasy/DFS owners), but that has led to a more modest price tag. Although he has failed to reach 20 fantasy points in four consecutive games, Batum could shoulder a little more of the load with Aldridge out. In addition, the Suns play at the third-fastest pace and rank fifth in most turnovers per game (15.3) and Batum is less of a scorer and more of a player that contributes across multiple stat categories.

SF - Jeff Green, Memphis Grizzlies (vs. TOR), $5,000: Excluding his debut with the Grizzlies, Green has scored 28.25-31.25 fantasy points with at least 30 minutes in his other three games with his new team. During that three-game span, he has at least 14 shot attempts each night and has posted an average of 16.3 points, 6.0 rebounds and a steal per game. The Raptors have allowed the fifth-most fantasy points to opposing small forwards this season.

PF - Donatas Motiejunas, Houston Rockets (at GS), $5,500: In a game with a 218.0 over/under, there should be plenty of fantasy points tonight. Motiejunas has now scored double-digit (real) points in 12 consecutive games and has now scored at least 24.75 fantasy points in seven consecutive games. Against the Warriors on Jan. 17th, Motiejunas scored 29.75 fantasy points in less than 22 minutes, a 12-game low in minutes. Over the past 12 games, he has averaged nearly 30 minutes per game.

PF - Nerlens Noel, Philadelphia 76ers (vs. NYK), $5,300: While he may lack some consistency, Noel has been getting consistent playing time with 30-plus minutes in six of his past seven games. Over his past four games, Noel has averaged 11.75 points, 8.25 rebounds, 2.5 steals and 2.25 blocks per game. Noel needs 31.8 fantasy points to reach six times his salary and he has scored 31.5 or more fantasy points in three of his past four games.

PF - Channing Frye, Orlando Magic (at DET), $5,000: This play is contingent upon the status of Tobias Harris, who is considered a game-time decision for tonight's game. If Harris can't go, Frye should continue to benefit. In the five-game stretch that Harris has missed, Frye has averaged nearly 36 minutes and 27.95 fantasy points per game. Frye's shooting percentage (15-of-51, 29.4 percent) during that stretch has been awful, but 41 of his 51 attempts have been from behind the arc and he still has a minimum of 21.5 fantasy points in those games despite poor shooting.

C - Tyson Chandler, Dallas Mavericks (at MIN), $6,300: Typically Chandler isn't someone that finds his way into my lineups, but he now has three consecutive double-doubles with at least 35 fantasy points. Meanwhile, the T'Wolves have allowed the second-most fantasy points to opposing centers this season so Chandler has an excellent shot at reaching value once again.

C - Alex Len, Phoenix Suns (vs. POR), $4,800: With injuries to Robin Lopez and LMA, Len gets a favorable matchup against a Blazers' front court that lacks depth. Len is coming off his worst performance (21 fantasy points in 19 minutes) over his past seven games, but he had a minimum of 26 fantasy points with an average of 30.54 in his previous six games.

C - Chris Kaman, Portland Trail Blazers (at PHO), $4,400: Kaman had just 12 fantasy points in 19 minutes on MLK Jr. Day, but he averaged 28 minutes and 26.31 fantasy points in his previous four games. With the injuries in the Blazers' front court, Kaman should see close to 30 minutes tonight and he has averaged 1.05 DK points per minute this season.

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January 15, 2015

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Favorite Plays for Conference Games

Hopefully it's been a profitable season for you in daily fantasy football as this week marks the last hoorah for NFL DFS players.

Given that there are only two games this week, I will focus on the players that I like (regardless of salary) as opposed to the regular season where I try to focus more specifically on lower-priced options.

Here are the DraftKings plays that will be in many of my lineups this weekend:

QB - Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts (at NE), $8,200

With only a two-game slate, I will have exposure to all four starting quarterbacks this week. That said, Luck is my top-ranked fantasy quarterback for the weekend, but he's only the second-most expensive behind Tom Brady ($8,500). Granted, the matchup against the Patriots cornerbacks isn't great, but Luck involves his tight ends and running backs in the passing game as much as any other quarterback not named Alex (Smith) as well. Of the remaining four quarterbacks, no other quarterback threw it as much as Luck this season or had as many 300-yard games. [Note: DraftKings awards a three-point bonus to 300-yard passers.] To a lesser degree than the next guy on this list, Luck has the ability to make plays with his legs, but it can still be a huge boost to his fantasy production.

QB - Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks (vs. GB), $8,000

Even though 18 quarterbacks threw the ball more than Wilson in the regular season, only two quarterbacks -- Aaron Rodgers and Luck -- scored more fantasy points this season. Wilson has a terrific 72:26 career TD-to-INT ratio, but the plays he makes as a runner is his fantasy bread and butter. With 849 rushing yards and six rushing scores this season, Wilson was tied for 16th with Denver's C.J. Anderson in rushing.

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RB - Marshawn Lynch, Seattle Seahawks (vs. GB), $7,600

Even though Lynch is the highest-priced running back, it would be difficult to fade Lynch in a two-game slate. Few players at any position in the entire NFL have as high of a ceiling and floor as Lynch, who has four consecutive seasons of 1,200-plus rushing yards and double-digit rushing scores. In the first matchup between these two seasons, Lynch rushed for 110 yards and two scores. Using DraftKings scoring, Lynch has averaged 19.3 fantasy points per game this season.

RB - Dan Herron, Indianapolis Colts (at NE), $5,900

As much as I like Lynch, Herron is actually my top-ranked running back this week in full PPR formats (like DraftKings). In two playoff games, Herron has 18 catches on 19 targets. Given the talent in New England's secondary, Herron could certainly see 8-10 receptions like he has had in the first two playoff games. The only concern with Herron is his fumbling issues (two of them in the Wild Card round), but he otherwise has a total of 53 touches (including those 18 receptions) for 236 yards and two touchdowns. Barely above the game's average salary ($5,555), Herron is a must-start this weekend in both GPPs and cash games.

RB - LeGarrette Blount, New England Patriots (vs. IND), $4,500
RB - Jonas Gray, New England Patriots (vs. IND), $2,800

After Lynch and Herron, there are more risks at the running back position. As much as I love Eddie Lacy's talent, his matchup against the Seahawks often leads me to paying up for Lynch or down for Herron. Another risk this weekend (and every weekend) is trying to figure out what Bill Belichick will do when it comes to the allocation of touches to the team's running backs.

Since Gray rushed for 201 yards and four touchdowns against the Colts in Week 11, the team re-signed Blount and Gray has a total of just 20 carries since that point and was a healthy scratch last weekend. Meanwhile, Blount himself had a four-touchdown game with 166 rushing yards against the Colts in last year's playoffs. Given the success that the team has had running the ball against the Colts recently, it's only logical that Blount and/or Gray get plenty of cracks at trying to break that defense.

The question comes down to which one? My gut tells me that Blount will be "the guy" this weekend and I'll have about three times as many shares of Blount than Gray. In case my gut leads me astray, I have subsituted Gray for Blount in some of my lineups to go along with the upgrade at another position that the extra salary-cap space allows.

WR - Jordy Nelson, Green Bay Packers (at SEA), $7,600

With a much more productive performance last weekend than Nelson, teammate Randall Cobb has the highest salary among wide receivers this weekend. Even though the matchup against the league's stingiest defense to opposing wide receivers does not inspire a ton of confidence, I expect a bounce-back week from Nelson, who had 14 targets in Week 1 against the Seahawks.

WR - Doug Baldwin, Seattle Seahawks (vs. GB), $5,000

Of team's No. 1 wide receivers this weekend, Baldwin is at least $2,000 cheaper than all of them. In addition, his salary is $555 less than the average salary per player that fits into the $50,000 salary cap. Given the team's run-first philosophy, Baldwin has averaged just 6.13 targets per game, which potentially caps his upside and my enthusiasm for playing him. That said, Baldwin has a minimum of 8.1 DK points over his past five games with an average of 14.24 DK points per game during that stretch. Based on my fantasy football projections, Baldwin's cost per point ($400) ranks second to only teammate Kevin Norwood ($388.89) at wide receiver this weekend.

WR - Donte Moncrief, Indianapolis Colts (at NE), $3,500

Moncrief has played greater than 50 percent of the team's offensive snaps since Week 13 and he had his second-most targets (eight) last week, both of which are encouraging even though he finished with just two catches for 32 yards against the Broncos. Given the rookie's talent and the attention that should be given to T.Y. Hilton, I'm willing to roll the dice on Moncrief as a way to generate some salary-cap relief in tournaments. Despite an average of just 6.8 DK points this season, Moncrief has shown his upside with performances of 27.3 (Week 8) and 32.0 (Week 13) DK points.

WR - Kevin Norwood, Seattle Seahawks (vs. GB), $2,100

Before this weekend, the position-minimum salary for wide receivers was $3,000. With Paul Richardson (torn ACL) out and Norwood expected to get a slight boost in the offense, I'm willing to use Norwood as a decent punt option. Even though I hope that Norwood hauls in a couple of receptions with an expanded role, the lineup flexibility he creates is the real reason that I'm rolling the dice with Norwood in several lineups.

TE - Rob Gronkowski, New England Patriots (vs. IND), $7,800

Certainly you don't need me to tell you that Gronk is a good play this weekend or any weekend for that matter. But if you're going to pay up at a position this week, it should be at tight end. Like Lynch, few players have Gronk's combination of a high ceiling and high floor. Except for Week 2, Gronk has finished as a top-12 weekly PPR tight end with double-digit fantasy points every week and he averaged 18.9 DK points per game. Since Week 5, Gronk has finished with 25-plus DK points in one-third (four) of his 12 games.

TE - Luke Willson, Seattle Seahawks (vs. GB), $4,000

Granted, the Seahawks are a run-first offense that spread around their limited targets in the passing game. That said, Willson has capitalized on his opportunities with a total of 239 yards and three touchdowns in his past three games. One of the faster tight ends in the league with 4.5 speed, Willson will likely be the least-owned of the top-four tight end options this weekend and it wouldn't surprise me if he finished second behind only Gronk in production.

In addition, check out our site's DraftKings Championship Games Cheat Sheet.

Here are my fantasy football playoff rankings:

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January 02, 2015

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): DraftKings Values for NFL Wild Card Round

Building a DFS lineup isn't purely based on selecting the best players, but it's about finding the best values relative to their salaries. In order to fit higher-priced studs like Dez Bryant, DeMarco Murray or Antonio Brown into your lineup, you'll need to find some lower-priced options to provide some salary-cap relief.

With that said, here are some DraftKings value plays for the Wild Card Round (sorted by position, then salary):

QB - Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers (vs. BAL), $7,300

It's always difficult to run on the Ravens, but it certainly won't help that the Steelers will be without stud second-year back Le'Veon Bell. That said, it's much easier to throw on them and Big Ben threw for 340 yards and six touchdowns in his last game against the Ravens. Over his past nine games, Big Ben has averaged a massive 343.78 yards per game and he has reached the 300-yard milestone in seven of those games. A Big Ben/Brown stack will be featured in many of my lineups this week.

[Note: DraftKings awards a three-point bonus for reaching 300 passing yards, 100 rushing yards or 100 receiving yards.]

QB - Joe Flacco, Baltimore Ravens (at PIT), $6,700

Earlier in the season, Flacco threw multiple touchdown passes in both meetings against the Steelers. More recently, Flacco has thrown multiple touchdown passes in four of his last five games to close out the season. While Flacco has never posted prolific regular-season statistics, he's been much better in the postseason. Over his past two postseasons (2011-2012) combined, Flacco has a 15:1 TD-to-INT ratio with multiple passing scores in all six of those games including three passing touchdowns in his last three postseason games.

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RB - Jeremy Hill, Cincinnati Bengals (at IND), $6,200

At this point, Hill is in all of the lineups that I have constructed so far. Since his emergence as the team's lead back, Hill has been highly productive. Hill has at least 22 carries with 100-plus yards in each of the team's final three games. And over the final nine games of the season, Hill has gained a total of 929 rushing yards at 5.40 yards per carry with six touchdowns. Even though I still have DeMarco Murray as my top-ranked fantasy running back for this weekend's games, the gap between Murray and Hill is slim given Hill's favorable matchup against the Colts, who have allowed the 12th-most fantasy points to opposing running backs (PPR scoring).

[Note: DraftKings uses full PPR scoring. All references made to scoring and points allowed will be based on PPR formats whether stated or not.]

RB - Dan Herron, Indianapolis Colts (vs. CIN), $4,700

As part of the team's Boom (Herron) and Bust (Trent Richardson) backfield, Herron is clearly the better option. Over the past five games, Herron (0.66) has averaged more than double the fantasy points per touch than Richardson (0.30). And while I like the matchup against the Bengals, who have allowed the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing backs, Herron's upside is potentially capped by the fact that he has been limited to 13 touches or fewer in five consecutive games.

RB - Kerwynn Williams, Arizona Cardinals (at CAR), $3,700

Since the injury to Andre Ellington, Williams has emerged as the team's lead back. In three of the past four games, Williams has at least 17 touches and he's been fairly productive with his opportunities. Although he has yet to score a touchdown (and the Cardinals are projected to score the fewest points this week), Williams has averaged 4.64 YPC over that four-game span. Williams provides plenty of salary-cap relief if you're looking to load up on the elite receiver options this week.

WR - Torrey Smith, Baltimore Ravens (at PIT), $5,400

Among the teams playing this weekend, only the Ravens have allowed more fantasy points to opposing wide receivers this season than the Steelers. Since Week 4, Smith has scored a total of 11 touchdowns including three over the past two games. Although Smith is my fifth-ranked fantasy wide receiver this weekend, seven other wideouts have a higher salary than he does.

WR - Mohamed Sanu, Cincinnati Bengals (at IND), $4,200

With A.J. Green (concussion) officially listed as doubtful and unlikely to play on Sunday, it's a huge boost for Sanu. While Sanu has shown that he can be really productive with Green out of the lineup, Sanu has exceeded 23 receiving yards only once in his past eight games. In the four games that Green had no catches (either sat out or left game early), Sanu averaged 5.25/95.75/0.5 and had nine-plus targets in three of those games. Keeping that in mind, one of those games was against the Colts and Sanu finished with only 3/54 on nine targets in Week 7.

WR - Cole Beasley, Dallas Cowboys (vs. DET), $3,700

Since the team's Week 11 bye, Beasley has averaged 3.5 catches for 46.2 yards and 0.7 touchdowns per game. While he may not be a great option, he makes for a solid punt option in DFS formats this week for those looking for some salary-cap relief. Beasley is my 11th-ranked wide receiver, but he is priced as the 17th-most expensive wide receiver this week.

WR - Markus Wheaton, Pittsburgh Steelers (vs. BAL), $3,100

Many expected a breakout season for the second-year receiver out of Oregon State with Emmanuel Sanders signing with the Broncos in the offseason, yet he finished with a modest 53/644/2 stat line this year. Priced only $100 above the position minimum, however, Wheaton is a punt option that could see an increased volume of targets this week with Bell being ruled out. Bell averaged 5.19 receptions and 6.56 targets per game this season and given the fact that the Ravens run defense is so stout, Wheaton could see more than the 5.44 targets per game he averaged this year.

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TE - Greg Olsen, Carolina Panthers (vs. ARI), $5,500

Yes, Olsen is the highest-priced fantasy tight end this week. That doesn't mean he can't still be underpriced. Given that the average salary of all players is $5,555 ($50,000 cap divided by nine players), Olsen carries a below-average (albeit slightly) price tag. Olsen had a career year (84/1,008/6 on 123 targets) and he gets a favorable matchup against the Cardinals, who have allowed the seventh-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends this season.

TE - Owen Daniels, Baltimore Ravens (at PIT), $3,300

Daniels is an interesting punt option in Gary Kubiak's TE-friendly offense. In his two games against the Steelers this year, Daniels had 5/28/2 and 6/53 stat lines and a total of 14 targets in those two games. Scoring two touchdowns again seems unlikely, but I wouldn't be surprised if he saw seven or so targets, which is typically not the case for tight ends this close to the position-minimum salary of $3,000.

In addition, check out our site's DraftKings Wild Card Round Cheat Sheet.

Here are my fantasy football rankings for the Wild Card Round of the playoffs:

Has your team been eliminated from the playoffs? Check out my 2015 NFL mock draft for a look ahead to this April's draft.

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December 20, 2014

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): Week 16 DraftKings Fantasy Football Values

Fitting in higher-priced studs into your lineups requires finding values to provide some salary-cap relief. With that said, here are some value plays for Week 16 DraftKings contests (sorted by position, then salary):

QB - Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints (vs. ATL), $8,300

Perhaps not a value in terms of absolute cost at $8,300, but Brees is my second-ranked quarterback and the fourth-most expensive option this week. So, in other words, if you're looking to pay up at the position, Brees will provide you with some relative value. Based on projected point totals using Vegas odds, no team is projected to score more points this week than the Saints, who also control their destiny if they win their final two games. Over their past nine games, the Falcons have allowed six 300-yard passers and eight quarterbacks to throw for 292-plus yards. Brees seems like a lock for the three-point scoring bonus at 300 passing yards.

QB - Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins (vs. PHI), $6,100

In relief of an injured Colt McCoy, RG3 had his best outing of the season last week as he finished eighth in fantasy points among quarterbacks. Getting the start this week in such a favorable matchup, it's certainly possible that he puts up another top-eight performance in a favorable matchup yet there are 16 other quarterbacks priced higher than Griffin. With RG3 injured in Week 3 when these teams first met this season, Kirk Cousins got the start and lit up the Eagles secondary for 427 yards and three scores. That said, the Eagles secondary has been consistently bad (good to opposing quarterbacks) as they have allowed 11 of them to finish as top-12 fantasy quarterbacks in their 14 games this season.

QB - Alex Smith, Kansas City Chiefs (at PIT), $5,600

Smith is an even cheaper and safer option at quarterback than RG3 with a lower ceiling, but he's a great option this week for those looking for some salary-cap relief at the position for cash games. Although he averaged 197.3 yards per game through Week 13, Smith has thrown for 293 and 297 yards in the past two weeks, both of which are easily his highest totals of the year. And even though he has yet to throw a touchdown to a wide receiver, Smith has multiple passing touchdowns in three of his past four games. In addition, the Steelers have allowed the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season.

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RB - Eddie Lacy, Green Bay Packers (at TB), $7,300

Lacy is another play that may not be cheap in absolute terms, but he's a solid foundation from which to construct your roster. Playing through his hip injury last week, Lacy has now finished as a top-six fantasy running back (PPR scoring) in six of his past seven games. During that seven-game span, Lacy has averaged 23.87 fantasy points per game with a total of 881 yards from scrimmage, 25 receptions and eight touchdowns. Facing the Bucs, who have allowed the eighth-most fantasy points to opposing running backs, Lacy has both a high floor and a high ceiling this week.

RB - C.J. Anderson, Denver Broncos (at CIN), $6,900

Similar to Lacy, Anderson's high floor and ceiling makes him a great play in both cash games and tournaments. Anderson has a total of 117 touches in his past four games and has exceeded 30 touches in three of those games. Anderson has a total of 534 YFS and five touchdowns during that span. Only the Falcons and Raiders have allowed more fantasy points to opposing running backs than the Bengals this season.

RB - Tre Mason, St. Louis Rams (vs. NYG), $4,600

With difficult matchups in back-to-back weeks (Washington and Arizona are in bottom three in terms of FPA to RBs), Mason's outlook gets brighter as he faces a much more generous defense to fantasy running backs. Not only do the Giants allow the ninth-most fantasy points to rurnning backs, they allow the fourth-most on a per-touch basis (0.93). Since Week 9, Mason has averaged nearly 20 touches per game (19.29). A realistic range of DK points for Mason should fall within 15-20 points this week.

RB - Lamar Miller, Miami Dolphins (vs. MIN), $4,400

Despite having any huge games this season, Miller still has scored the 12th-most fantasy points among running backs (PPR scoring) this season. In large part, it's due to Miller's consistency. The Dolphins third-year back has finished as a top-19 fantasy running back (or better) in 10 of 14 games this season. With a plus matchup against the Vikes, Miller should once again post a top-20 performance even though he's priced outside of the top-20 running backs.

RB - Shane Vereen, New England Patriots (at NYJ), $3,800

Trying to predict which Patriots running back(s) will get the most touches and production in a given week is a sure-fire way to drive yourself crazy. That said, Vereen is at least worth a roll of the dice in a GPP at his sub-$4,000 salary as Vereen should be more involved in the game plan against a tough run defense (and bad pass defense). The first time the Patriots faced the Jets (granted, that was pre-LeGarrette Blount), Vereen had his best game of the season (11/43 rushing and 5/71/2 receiving). With 28.4 fantasy points (PPR scoring), only two other backs (Matt Forte and Le'Veon Bell) scored more that week.

RB - Steven Jackson, Atlanta Falcons (at NO), $3,600

Although I have S-Jax ranked inside my top-20 fantasy running backs for the week, he's priced as the 38th-most expensive back. And while S-Jax is better in standard-scoring (or half-PPR like FanDuel) leagues, he has scored double-digit fantasy points in five of his past seven games. During that span, he has averaged 16.9 touches per game with 18-plus in five of those games and has scored four touchdowns. In a high-scoring affair against the Saints, who allow the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing running backs, Jackson should have no problem reaching and exceeding value this week.

WR - DeSean Jackson, Washington Redskins (vs. PHI), $5,500

Jackson has been a bit of a boom-or-bust fantasy option throughout his career and this season has been no different. To be fair, he has played with three different quarterbacks. D-Jax has finished as the WR50 (or worse) in three of his past four games. That said, I expect a performance from D-Jax closer to the outing (117 yards and a TD) he had the first time he faced his former team. Aside from the revenge factor, no team has allowed more fantasy points to opposing wide receivers than the Eagles.

WR - Torrey Smith, Baltimore Ravens (at HOU), $4,600

Only the Ravens have allowed more fantasy points to opposing wide receivers than the Texans this season -- and since he can't play his own defense, this is the best possible matchup for Smith. Dealing with a knee injury the past couple of weeks, Smith's production has understandably taken a hit -- two catches for 16 yards on three targets last week and no targets the previous week. That said, Smith isn't listed on the injury report this week, which indicates that his knee issue shouldn't be a problem. Before the injury, Smith had seven touchdowns in his previous seven games.

WR - Donte Moncrief, Indianapolis Colts (at DAL), $4,100

A goose egg. I had Moncrief in several GPP lineups last week and was obviously disappointed that he couldn't outscore me. One of the positives of that (when it comes to this week) is that several owners will remember last week's dud and not want to get burned again this week, which will help keep his ownership levels down. Given that T.Y. Hilton (hamstring) could potentially sit this week out, it will open up more snaps and opportunities for Moncrief.

WR - Dwayne Bowe, Kansas City Chiefs (at PIT), $3,200

Not so long ago, Bowe led the NFL in touchdown receptions (15 in 2010). Of course, one of the most amazing statistics of the 2014 season is the fact that none of the Chiefs receivers have a touchdown reception this year. Perhaps that changes this week (or maybe it doesn't), but Pittsburgh has allowed the seventh-most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers and rank 30th in terms of efficiency. If you're in need of some salary-cap relief in a tournament, Bowe is an interesting punt play.

TE - Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs (at PIT), $4,500

Kelce ended a five-game scoring drought with a touchdown last week against the Raiders, but he has still finished as a top-eight fantasy tight end in three of his past four games. On the season, Kelce has 56 catches for 747 yards and five touchdowns despite not getting as many snaps and targets as fantasy owners would like to see. Kelce should exceed value this week as a mid-priced tight end option.

TE - Jason Witten, Dallas Cowboys (vs. IND), $4,000

Witten has finished as a top-seven fantasy tight end in four of his past seven games including last week. (And one of the times he finished outside the top seven TEs was a top-11 performance.) In addition, the Colts have allowed the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends this season. Although he doesn't possess the highest ceiling, Witten should have another productive outing this week.

In addition, check out our site's DraftKings Week 16 Cheat Sheet.

Also, check out my weekly fantasy football rankings:

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December 13, 2014

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): Week 15 DraftKings Fantasy Football Values

Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell has rattled off three consecutive games with 200-plus yards, which puts him on a two-player list including Walter Payton as players to accomplish such a feat.

You don't have to be an NFL analyst or historian to know that it's pretty damn good to be on a two-player list along side Sweetness.

If you want to roster Bell in your DraftKings lineups, however, it's going to cost you. Bell's Week 15 salary ($9,600) is more than $4,000 greater than the average player salary ($5,555) on the nine-man lineup due to the $50,000 cap.

That doesn't mean that Bell should not be in your lineups. With his recent production and a matchup against the Falcons, who allow the most fantasy points to opposing running backs, Bell belongs in your lineups. What it does mean, though, is that you will need to find some values elsewhere to make the lineup work.

With that said, here are some value plays for Week 15 DraftKings contests:

QB - Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons (vs. PIT), $6,600

This play mostly hinges on the status of stud receiver Julio Jones, who is considered a game-time decision for their Week 15 matchup. The good news is it's a 1 p.m. start so we'll know at least 90 minutes before kickoff. That said, Ryan has thrown for at least 360 yards in back-to-back games and has a total of six touchdowns in those games. Historically, Ryan has been much more productive at home (86:33 TD-to-INT ratio, 7.59 Y/A, 98.2 passer rating) compared to the road (92:55 TD-to-INT ratio, 6.88 Y/A, 85.7 rating). Not only will Ryan be at home, but the Falcons have a favorable matchup as the Steelers have surrendered the eighth-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season. As my fifth-ranked fantasy quarterback this week, Ryan is the 12th-most expensive option at the position this week.

QB - Mark Sanchez, Philadelphia Eagles (vs. DAL), $6,500

Based on Vegas odds for Week 15, no team is projected to score more points this week than the Eagles (29.75). A good part of that production could/should come from LeSean McCoy, who gashed the Cowboys two weeks ago for 159 yards and a score, but Sanchez had his second-best performance of the season against the 'Boys as well with 21.48 DraftKings (DK) points. Coming off his disappointing performance against the once-again stifling Seahawks defense, Sanchez could be lesser owned than he otherwise would.

QB - Philip Rivers, San Diego Chargers (vs. DEN), $6,200

There are 15 quarterbacks with a higher salary than Rivers, but he is my ninth-ranked quarterback for the week. So, if you decide to not pay up for one of the top options, Rivers is a solid mid-priced value. Rivers had a disappointing performance last week against the Patriots and the Broncos have a talented secondary, but Rivers threw for 252 yards and three touchdowns in his first outing against the Broncos.

QB - Derek Anderson, Carolina Panthers (vs. TB), $5,000

If you're looking to punt at the position, you won't find a cheaper option than D.A., but he's not my lowest-ranked starting quarterback this week. Although I have him ranked as my QB24, he has some upside despite the bargain-basement price. Anderson threw for 230 yards and two touchdowns in his other start this season, which was coincidentally against the Bucs as well. He finished as a top-10 fantasy quarterback that week.

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RB - Joique Bell, Detroit Lions (vs. MIN), $5,900

While the matchups were exploitable, Bell has exploited them. After all, we have certainly seen instances of players getting favorable matchups only to disappoint fantasy owners. In each of his past two games, Bell has finished with 24.7 fantasy points (RB4) and 30.3 fantasy points (RB3). He now has 20-plus touches in three consecutive games and has scored multiple touchdowns in back-to-back games.

Although we didn't do one of our typical roundtable posts this week, it didn't stop Brendan Donahue from pounding the table on Bell. Here's what he wrote: "Bell has flown under the radar a bit this season, but he's scored 27 points or more in PPR formats in each of his last two games. There is no reason that shouldn't continue this week as he has a great matchup at home against the Vikings. The Vikings have been vulnerable against the run lately giving up 4.6 YPC in their last four games and they have several key injuries up front. In fact, their defense has allowed an average of more than 20 fantasy points per game to opposing running backs."

RB - Jeremy Hill, Cincinnati Bengals (at CLE), $4,300

After a couple of modest performances, Hill is expected to get the start this week and should be in store for a larger workload than he got last week. Hill is a powerful downhill runner and he has averaged 5.24 YPC since Week 9 that includes a couple of 150-yard performances. Hill has a great chance to get close to 100 rushing yards and a score despite his discounted price.

RB - Latavius Murray, Oakland Raiders (at KC), $4,000

Before sustaining his concussion in Week 12, Murray blew up for 112 yards and two touchdowns on four carries against the Chiefs. While he missed Week 13 with the concussion, it was highly encouraging that the Raiders gave him 25 touches (23 carries and two receptions) against the Niners last week. Although he averaged just 3.3 yards per carry against a tough run defense, the workload is encouraging and he still finished as a top-20 fantasy running back. At a $4,000 salary, Murray has a strong chance of exceeding value on Sunday in his re-match against the Chiefs.

RB - Chris Johnson, New York Jets (at TEN), $3,600

Over the past two weeks, it has been a nearly identical split in carries between Johnson (33) and Chris Ivory (32). Although CJ1K is listed here, both backs are solid values as they should each get heavy workloads against an exploitable run defense. And I will certainly have exposure to both backs in tournaments this week. While Ivory is more likely to find the end zone, Johnson could get more receptions and is $600 cheaper than Ivory ($4,200). Of course, Johnson's return to Nashville is an interesting narrative, especially given the way his release was handled this offseason. Johnson was frustrated that they waited so long to release him, which limited his free-agency options, saying they were "nasty" and "did him dirty." As one of the game's biggest boom-or-bust players, it wouldn't surprise me if this turned out to be a 180-yard type of "boom" performance. Or didn't. But in a tournament, I'm willing to roll the dice.

WR - Sammy Watkins, Buffalo Bills (vs. GB), $5,600

Since Week 6, Watkins has either scored more than 20 fantasy points (DraftKings scoring) or less than seven points. After a four-game stretch on the under-7.0 side, Watkins had a 7/127 game that was good for 21.7 DK points against the Broncos. Few players priced under $6,000 have the talent and upside that Watkins possesses.

WR - Steve Smith, Baltimore Ravens (vs. JAX), $4,800

I like (this) Smith more if Torrey Smith (knee) ends up sitting this one out, but even if he's active, he could end up playing fewer snaps than usual given the Ravens are two-TD favorites. With Torrey sidelined last week, Steve had 7/70/1 and could see a similar line again this week. While the Eagles are projected for the most points in Week 15, the Ravens are projected for the second-most at 29.50.

WR - Donte Moncrief, Indianapolis Colts (vs. HOU), $4,000

Moncrief has moved ahead of Hakeem Nicks in terms of snaps played and Reggie Wayne has been battling a variety of injuries. Wayne is expected to play on Sunday, but Moncrief has played 52.8 and 60.2 percent of the offensive snaps in the past two games, respectively. With a couple of big games under his belt this season, Moncrief has shown his upside and the Texans have allowed the most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers (PPR scoring) this season.

WR - Marqise Lee, Jacksonville Jaguars (at BAL), $3,600

Over the past three weeks, Lee has been the most consistent of the Jags receivers with 52-plus yards in each of his past three games. Priced as the 58th-most expensive wideout, Lee has some upside going against the Ravens, who have surrendered the second-most fantasy points per game (PPR scoring) this season.

WR - Marquess Wilson, Chicago Bears (vs. NO), $3,000

As a sophomore at Washington State, Wilson was one of the most prolific wide receivers in college football with 82/1,388/12. In large part to how his career at WSU ended (as opposed to his talent), Wilson ended up as a seventh-round pick in the 2013 NFL Draft. Before he broke his collarbone in August, all reports were glowing and I expected a breakout season from him. Fast forward a few months and Wilson is healthy (and Brandon Marshall is not), which means he's the No. 2 WR this week against a bad Saints secondary. At the position-minimum salary, Wilson offers tremendous value and flexibility for fantasy owners this week.

TE - Antonio Gates, San Diego Chargers (vs. DEN), $4,500

Gates has not scored a touchdown in his past five games, but we've seen Gates be a dominant red-zone weapon this season. From Weeks 2 to 8, Gates scored a total of nine touchdowns including two against the Broncos in Week 8. With 12 receptions in his past two games, Gates has been more involved recently in their passing offense and he has the most favorable matchup of the Chargers' skill-position players. Denver has allowed the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends (PPR scoring) this season.

TE - Larry Donnell, New York Giants (vs. WAS), $3,800

Donnell has had three relatively quiet performances in a row despite favorable matchups against the Cowboys, Jaguars and Titans. Given his first performance against Washington (7/54/3), Donnell is a solid option among tight ends priced under $4,000. In addition to Donnell in Week 4, Washington has allowed the top-scoring fantasy tight end in each of the past two weeks: Coby Fleener (Week 13) and Jared Cook (Week 14).

In addition, check out our site's DraftKings Week 15 Cheat Sheet.

Also, check out my weekly fantasy football rankings:

Keep track of our site's updates: (1) follow us on Twitter, (2) LIKE us on Facebook and/or (3) add us to your Google+ circle


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December 05, 2014

Daily Fantasy Football Roundtable: Favorite Week 14 DraftKings Plays

The fantasy playoffs are under way for most as Week 14 typically marks the beginning of the playoffs in fantasy leagues. With daily fantasy sports, however, it's like championship week every week as the season lasts for only that week's games.

Like in previous weeks, our contributors have offered their favorite DraftKings play for the remainder of this week's games.

Here are our picks for Week 14:

Brendan DonahueJonathan Stewart, Carolina Panthers (at NO), $3,800

This is purely a value pick. Stewart is the 41st-most expensive running back this week, but with the news that D'Angelo Williams could miss Sunday's game, Stewart should be the featured back. The Panthers should be giving Stewart the lion's share of the work anyway. Stewart is averaging 4.25 YPC on the year compared to 3.47 for Williams, and Stewart is also tied for fifth in the entire league in yards after contact per attempt. New Orleans has given up the fifth-most fantasy points to running backs (DK scoring) this season so I would expect Stewart to provide top-25 production and is a great value pick this week.

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Ryan WattersonRandall Cobb, Green Bay Packers (vs. ATL), $7,400

The Packers offense has been on a tear for several weeks with Cobb playing a large role in their success. Cobb gets a matchup with the hapless Atlanta secondary this week -- the Falcons rank 31st in defensive pass efficiency, but Cobb really benefits from the matchup within the matchup. As porous as the Falcons have been, Desmond Trufant has been very solid as their No. 1 CB. The same cannot be said on the other side of the ball, especially with the injury to Robert Alford (although he wasn't doing all that well even when healthy). Trufant is expected to shadow Jordy Nelson, and we all know Rodgers is not the kind of QB to force anything. As a result, Cobb should be the go-to guy this week and take advantage of a very positive matchup. At $7,400, you can't call this a bargain or value play, but Cobb should significantly outperform his salary this week.

Sean BeazleyBrian Hoyer/Josh Gordon, Cleveland Browns (vs. IND), $5,200/$8,100

This Sunday, I will be rolling out a QB-WR combo that only takes up $13,500 off my $50,000 cap. The big news this week was that Brian Hoyer will start for Cleveland and I love the Hoyer/Gordon combo this week. Hoyer will be on a short leash with Manziel looming, but the Colts pass defense has been horrible the past few weeks so I think Hoyer will rise to the occasion. I have Josh Gordon as my No. 1 fantasy WR this week, and Hoyer is a steal at $5,200. With the savings at QB, it allows me to roster a few more higher-tiered players (Jordy Nelson/Odell Beckham Jr.) I really like this week.

Dan YanotchkoJarvis Landry, Miami Dolphins (vs. BAL), $5,600

This week a guy on my must-have list on Draft Kings for $5,600 is Jarvis Landry of the Miami Dolphins. Landry has one of the best matchups of the week, as the Ravens defense allows a whopping 274 yards passing per game, which is second-worst in the league, and also they have surrendered 20 touchdowns as well. Landry also has an impressive stat line this year, as he has 57 receptions for 518 yards and five touchdowns, and he has evolved into a WR2 that is knocking on the door of WR1 with a split of 27 catches on 37 targets, 217 yards receiving, and three touchdowns in his past four games.

Kevin HansonEddie Lacy, Green Bay Packers (vs. ATL), $7,800

Although he finished with just 13.5 DK points last week, he had more than 20 DK points in each of his previous four games and has at least 13.5 points in six consecutive games. A workhorse back with more than 20 carries in each of his past two games, Lacy is set up for another huge workload as the Packers are this week's biggest favorites and projected by Vegas to score the most points. Lacy is averaging 5.21 YPC over his past three games and he has five touchdowns in his past four games. Not only are the Packers expected to win big this week, but Lacy's matchup against the Falcons (second-most fantasy points to RBs) is also one of the best at the position in Week 14. With a high floor and plenty of upside, Lacy is ideal for both cash games and GPPs.

More Week 14 content:

Good luck in Week 14!


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