Editor’s Note: Last week, 201 of your fellow DLF community members shared in a $7,000 prize pool in the inaugural week of the DLF Football Championship. Of the 344 people who participated in the contest, 201 of them at least doubled their money! Those are pretty great odds. Make sure you get in for week two.
We had some good hits in our first stacking article last week. Philip Rivers and Stevie Johnson made for one of the best values of the week by combining for 39.16 points while costing only $12,800. I suggested avoiding the Buffalo Bills stack of Tyrod Taylor, Sammy Watkins and Charles Clay – the three combined for only 22.2 points. Taylor was a great value in cash lineups, but led to a dreadful stack unless paired with Percy Harvin who scored 17.3 points.
My big miss last week was with Andrew Luck and TY Hilton. The Colts offense could not get the ball moving against a stout Bills defense and left yardage on the field from penalty after penalty. Hopefully this week’s stacks fair better than the Colts did in week one.
Keep in mind these suggestions are meant for guaranteed prize pools (GPPs) with fields of over 50 participants.
Drew Brees, QB NO
Brandin Cooks, WR NO
The Saints play a Bucs defense that gave up four touchdown passes to the Titans and rookie Marcus Mariota ($7,400) in week one. Drew Brees ($8,900) threw for 355 yards in Arizona last week, while only targeting Brandin Cooks ($7,400) eight times against a stronger Cardinals defense. Cooks should see an increase in targets and efficiency against Tampa Bay in a game which will match receivers up against weaker Tampa Bay cornerbacks.
Fellow receiver Brandon Coleman ($5,000) has a low enough price tag and high enough upside to really sell out on the Saints offense this week by stacking both receivers, but in a game where the Saints are favored by ten points, I am concerned it could get out of hand early – this makes Mark Ingram ($8,000) a nice play, as well, if you want to go against this stacking option. I will have Ingram in play in some other tournament and cash lineups, especially if CJ Spiller ($6,100) isn’t available again this week.
Honorable Mention: Sam Bradford ($7,500) and Jordan Matthews ($7,000)
Cam Newton, QB CAR
Greg Olsen, TE CAR
Last week the Texans were absolutely torched by Alex Smith ($6,800) and Travis Kelce ($6,600). While the Chiefs were putting up fantasy points left and right, Cam Newton ($7,700) and Greg Olsen ($6,000) only combined for 15.1 points. I expect Olsen to be the most targeted Panthers player this week and to turn it into a much greater return on investment. Carolina does not have the strongest offensive line, so Olsen should be a big part of the game plan in the short passing attack.
This game is expected to remain fairly close throughout, so the passing game should remain a threat from start to finish. As long as Newton is able to avoid big hits from JJ Watt, Vince Wilfork and Jadeveon Clowney, there should be enough offensive production for this combination to meet value. The running game should be kept in check by Houston’s strong front seven, so expect the second half to feature a Newton to Olsen connection.
Honorable Mention: Tony Romo ($8,500), Cole Beasley ($5,700) and Jason Witten ($6,000)
Stack of the Weak
Andy Dalton, QB CIN
Tyler Eifert, TE CIN
Last week’s Stack of the Weak was our biggest success, and this week’s leaves a fist full of cap space leftover to add some studs to our lineup. Against the Raiders, Andy Dalton ($6,900) connected with Tyler Eifert ($5,900) on 9-of-12 targets for 104 yards and two scores, making Eifert on of week one’s breakout players.
This week, the Bengals are home against a Chargers team who gave up 13.3 points to Eric Ebron ($4,800) in week one. Eifert is a far superior tight end to Ebron and should be able to work the middle of the field to his advantage. Jimmy Wilson allowed a pair of catches and Eric Weddle was beaten for a touchdown while the defense was focused on Detroit’s Calvin Johnson ($8,100) and Golden Tate ($6,700). AJ Green ($8,100) will command a similar amount of attention on one side of the field. At this low price and extremely high upside, this is a stack I will be relying on heavily this week. I tried talking myself out of it since Eifert will likely be highly owned in tournaments this week, but the price is too low to fade.
Honorable Mention: Lamar Miller ($7,300) and Dolphins Defense ($5,100)
Special Note: The running back and defense stack is less popular than the quarterback and receiver or tight end stack, but it is just as viable. The lacking Jaguars defense should allow the Dolphins to take the lead relatively early on, allowing Miller the opportunity for 15+ touches. In turn, the Dolphins defense should be able to feast on the Jaguars offensive line and Blake Bortles.
Matt Ryan, QB ATL
Julio Jones, WR ATL
I have a feeling this stack won’t completely bust, but it’s an expensive one which won’t return value. Matt Ryan ($8,700) and Julio Jones ($8,800) will need to put up 52.5 points to return tournament value. Their opponents, the Giants, had a difficult time in the pass game against running backs and tight ends in week one but kept the Cowboys’ receivers in check, holding Dez Bryant to less than 50 yards receiving before leaving with a foot injury.
The Falcons don’t have a strong presence at the tight end position and did not heavily target running backs in the passing game last week. This will leave Jones and Roddy White ($7,400) to be focused on by the Giants secondary. In a hostile New York environment, I think this Falcons offense in bound for a letdown. Ryan and Jones could connect enough times for a 100-yard game, but their prices are too high for the production I expect from them.
On the flip side of the coin, I think the Giants receivers will have a difficult time against a strong Falcons corps of corner backs and will need to target Shane Vereen ($6,200) to compensate.
Honorable Mention: Eli Manning ($8,000) and Odell Beckham ($8,700)