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If you read last week’s bargains and happened to insert a couple of them into your lineup like Justin Forsett, Terrence West, Darren Sproles, Brandon Marshall, Roddy White, Jordan Matthews or Martavis Bryant (who were all featured), you had plenty of cap space to add a couple out of a pool consisting of Aaron Rodgers, Peyton Manning, Marshawn Lynch, Dez Bryant, Jordy Nelson, Julius Thomas and Jimmy Graham. And your pockets are a little fatter because of it. If you didn’t, I’m going to do it again this week for you!
Keep in mind that these suggestions are made for GPP (Guaranteed Prize Pool) tournaments with more than 50 participants where players are looking for bargains to fill out their lineups after already inserting their “studs” for the week. Many of them are risky plays and shouldn’t necessarily be considered in head-to-head or 50/50 games.
Robert Griffin III, QB WAS
With a game already under his belt since returning from injury and now coming off the bye, Griffin ($7,300) gets a prime matchup against the Buccaneers’ awful pass defense. Tampa Bay is giving up a league worst 293 passing yards per game and 18 touchdowns through the air, which ranks 31st in the league.
Griffin hasn’t looked particularly good in a game this year, but that’s going to change this week against the Buccs. He should be a lock to throw at least two touchdowns and has the upside to put up top-five numbers at the position considering the matchup, especially if he gets to use his legs a bit.
Teddy Bridgewater, QB MIN
The Vikings feature far from a high octane offense and Bridgewater ($6,600) hasn’t had a multiple touchdown game yet in his career. That said, he gets to face the Bears’ defense this week that is among the worst in the league against the pass and is coming off back-to-back games where they gave up at least five touchdown passes. Granted that was against All Pro quarterbacks Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers and Bridgewater certainly isn’t of that caliber of a passer, but he’s still worth consideration. After all, the Vikings are coming off a bye so they should have their rookie quarterback ready for this great matchup.
Other Options: Mark Sanchez ($6,900) and Ryan Mallett ($6,000)
Ryan Mathews, RB SD
[inlinead]?Sure it’s risky to put a running back coming off an injury (especially one with his injury history) directly into your FanDuel lineup, but Mathews ($6,200) has been practicing for two weeks now and all reports out of San Diego are that he looks to be of full health and ready to take over as the primary ball carrier. When you add how desperate the Chargers are for a spark in the running game and that they get to face the Raiders, who have allowed the second most rushing yards per game (119) and second most touchdowns (9) to tailbacks on the season, Mathews looks even better.
Mathews is certainly a high risk play. There is a very real chance he could be eased into a rotation and his teammate Branden Oliver ($6,300) could get his fair share of touches. If that’s the case and the Chargers jump out to a big lead, Oliver could be a very good option as well and is certainly worth consideration for some major junk time production.
Rashad Jennings, RB NYG
It’s a bit early in the week, so we’re unsure if Jennings ($6,600) will even play but if he’s a go, he’ll likely be leaned on heavily on Sunday. After all, Andre Williams ($6,600) has been given 43 carries over the last three weeks and he’s averaged just 2.5 yards per carry. Head coach Tom Coughlin has a history of not trusting rookies and likely can’t wait for his veteran runner to get back. I’d expect him to give Jennings a majority of the work if he’s healthy against the 49ers and although San Francisco has been good against the run this year, they’ve given up 20.1 fantasy points per game to tailbacks over their last three games.
Like most on this list, Jennings is a risky play but shouldn’t be in many lineups. He’s worth consideration if he gets the start.
Shane Vereen, RB NE
Vereen ($6,500) has been on a bit of a roller coaster ride for those depending on him for fantasy production. He’s reached 45 rushing yards just once and only has 31 receptions on the season although he was expected to reach upwards of 90 catches – but his numbers have been coming around. He’s scored in two of the Patriots’ last three games (including a two touchdown game in week 7) and has two 16 touch games over the same span.
This week Vereen and the Patriots will take on the Colts in Indianapolis and the game promises to be a classic Brady vs. Manning shootout. Tom Brady will no doubt have to air it out early and often which lends to Vereen being on the field a lot. He may be “check down Charlie” on Sunday night, but if that leads to between five and eight receptions (which I fully expect), it could mean huge fantasy numbers for Vereen, especially if he finds the end zone (which is also likely.)
Jonathan Stewart, RB CAR
Don’t look now, but Stewart ($5,100) is fantasy relevant again. Over the last three weeks, he’s been on the field for 63% of the Panthers’ offensive snaps and he’s easily been the most impressive tailback on the Panthers’ roster since returning from injury in week seven. This week he faces the Falcons’ leaky run defense that has allowed more fantasy points to running backs than any other defense in the league.
He’s an extremely risky play this week due to him sharing carries with De’Angelo Williams, but Stewart is a quality, low cost boom-or-bust option for those looking to free up some cap space this weekend. Plus he’s unlikely to be highly owned.
Other options: Frank Gore ($7,300), Montee Ball ($6,700), Jerrick McKinnon ($5,500) and Tre Mason ($5,300)
Brandon Marshall, WR CHI
I featured Marshall ($7,100) in this same space last week because he was listed as the 15th highest prices wide out on FanDuel at $7,300 and I had to recommend his as a bargain. Somehow after posting eight catches for 112 yards and a score (21.2 fantasy points) his price dropped and he’s now the 19th most expensive receiver. Although he suffered an ankle injury (which has been described as minor) in the fourth quarter Sunday night, I just can’t ignore him once again. This week he faces the Vikings secondary that has given up big games to Sammy Watkins and DeSean Jackson recently. There’s a chance it may be Alshon Jeffery ($7,900) making plays for the Bears this week, but I’ll take the discount on Marshall.
Brandon Cooks, WR NO
So far in his rookie season, Cooks ($6,800) has been far better in the friendly confines of the Superdome where he averages 17 fantasy points per game than on the road where he scores just 7.9 points per week. On Sunday, the Saints are at home against Cincinnati. The Bengals may be one of the best in the league against receivers, but Cooks hasn’t had a home game where he’s scored less than 11.4 fantasy points and I don’t expect that to change this week. He should be a big part of New Orleans’ game plan and is a good bet to find the end zone.
Pierre Garcon, WR WAS
Garcon ($6,500) is coming off back-to-back disappointing games against the Cowboys and Vikings, but he gets to face the Buccaneers this week, who are giving up more points than any other team in the league to wide outs. DeSean Jackson ($8,100) is also likely to put up some good numbers this weekend but like with Marshall, I like the discount that comes with the cheaper option and Garcon is due to put up a big number. He’s a good bet to get in the end zone this week and the more I think about it, the more I like the idea of pairing him with his quarterback to save some cap space this week. If they connect for a big game, that could give you exactly what you need to put up a big score in GPP games.
Jordan Matthews, WR PHI
Mentioned in this space a week ago, Matthews ($5,500) came through in spades by scoring 29.3 fantasy points and has now scored in consecutive weeks. This week he’ll take on the Packers’ secondary that has been giving up touchdowns to nearly every big play receiver they’ve faced in their last six games. I’m betting that Matthews keeps his streak going this week in Titletown by finding pay dirt once again.
Other Options: Martavis Bryant ($7,000), Brandon LaFell ($6,900), Andre Johnson ($6,300), Greg Jennings ($5,800) and as a bottom of the barrel option, Brenton Bersin ($4,700)
Travis Kelce, TE KC
Kelce ($5,900) was listed here last week and was a bit of a disappointment, catching just two balls for 19 yards. I wanted to go a different direction this week but he’s really the only reasonably priced option at the position that jumps off the page at me. So if you’re dead set on staying away from the big three at the position (which I won’t be doing), he’s among the three best options along with the two listed below.
This week Kelce and his Chiefs teammates take on Seattle, who has allowed 10 touchdowns to tight ends. Kelce is playing more and more each week and is easily Kansas City’s best option in the passing game. He should be targeted early and often and is their best bet to catch a touchdown – although counting on Andy Reid and Alex Smith to do either is rather risky.
Other options: Jordan Reed ($5,200) and Jordan Cameron ($5,100) if he’s active.[ad5]?
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