Keep in mind that these suggestions are made for GPP (Guaranteed Prize Pool) tournaments with more 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.
Cam Newton, QB CAR
With a salary of $7,900, Newton doesn’t fit the profile of the typical bargain I look to feature in this article but he’s easily my favorite play at the position in week three, so I had to start with him.
The Saints’ pass defense is absolutely terrible. Through two weeks, they’ve allowed Carson Palmer to throw for 307 yards and three touchdowns and Jameis Winston to throw for 207 yards and a score while also running for 41 and another touchdown – that equals 24.03 fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks.
Despite being without a quality pass catcher on the outside, Newton can easily equal that point total and when he does, he’ll easily qualify as a bargain under center.
Ryan Fitzpatrick, QB NYJ
Fitzpatrick ($6,800) didn’t have to rip it much on Monday night against the Colts because they got a lead but once Indy got close in the second half, he showed that he has a great handle on Chan Gailey’s system as he drove the Jets right down the field.
Fitz-Magic and the Jets take on the Eagles this week, who have allowed 270 yards per game through the air which includes allowing Brandon Weeden to complete all seven of his passes for 73 yards and a touchdown in the second half on Sunday.
If Weeden can carve up the Eagles, so can Fitzpatrick. He should prove to be a nice value this week.
Tyrod Taylor, QB BUF
Taylor ($7,000) has been listed in this article each of the last three weeks and has delivered both weeks. Completing more than 75% of his passes, he’s averaged 22.44 fantasy points per game. To go along with his efficiency, he’s shown the ability to push the ball down the field while also contributing on the ground. Despite Taylor’s price increasing again this week, he should easily out produce his salary against the Dolphins in week three.
Other Options: Marcus Mariota ($7,300), Andy Dalton ($7,100), Johnny Manziel ($6,800) and Ryan Mallett ($6,300)
Latavius Murray, RB OAK
Although Murray ($7,000) has struggled to get rolling to this point, it should be noted the Raiders have been forced to pass for much of their first two games of the year. This week, the Raiders head to Cleveland to take on the Browns in what should be a good game. The Cleveland defense has allowed a league high 160 yards per game on the ground over the first two weeks and that trend should continue on Sunday.
Murray’s involvement in the offense has been limited due to circumstance and that has kept his salary low for daily players. Now’s the time to take advantage as a big game is likely for the Raiders’ tailback.
T.J. Yeldon, RB JAX
Despite Yeldon ($6,600) averaging just 3.3 yards per carry so far, he has the potential to be one of the bargains of the week at running back. After the injury to Denard Robinson last week, he carried the ball 25 times against the Dolphins so it’s obvious the Jaguars see him as a workhorse.
This week, the Jags take on the Patriots, who have allowed a league worst 5.7 yards per carry and 147 yards per game on the ground. While there is risk going with Yeldon in tournaments because the game could get out of hand, his ownership rate should be down and he has the potential to get a lot of touches. He makes for an ideal boom or bust GPP play in week three.
Devonta Freeman, RB ATL
Despite the Cowboys’ defense being extremely stingy against the run so far this year – allowing just 2.6 yards per carry – and Freeman ($6,500) being extremely mediocre – averaging just 2.0 yards per carry, I can’t help but include him here.
With the Cowboys being unbelievably shorthanded on offense due to injuries to Tony Romo, Dez Bryant and perhaps even Jason Witten, the Falcons are now the favorites in Big D and should be expected to nurse a lead. With fellow runner Tevin Coleman now on the shelf with a rib injury, that leaves the door wide open for Freeman.
He may not be very efficient with his touches, but Freeman should be heavily involved in the offense both as a runner and a receiver. He’s another risky play, but he certainly has upside.
Joseph Randle, RB DAL
I haven’t been a big proponent of Randle ($6,500) but this week he has an excellent opportunity to be a FanDuel bargain.
Without Romo and Bryant, the Cowboys should be forced to pound the ball on the ground and to this point, it seems like they’re intent on giving Randle every opportunity to be their lead back despite averaging just 3.4 yards per carry.
The Cowboys take on the Falcons this week, who are giving up more than 30 fantasy points per game to running backs. I wouldn’t be surprised if Randle finds the end zone and has his best game of the season on Sunday in Dallas.
Ronnie Hillman, RB DEN
Although Hillman ($6,200) is technically the backup to C.J. Anderson ($7,300), the two split snaps in week two 42 to 31, which suggests Hillman is cutting into Anderson’s playing time. Whether it’s the injury to Anderson’s toe or Hillman outplaying him, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the trend continue in week three.
The Broncos will take on the Lions on Sunday. Detroit has allowed 147 yards per game on the ground and a league high four rushing touchdowns. They’ve also given up 10 receptions for 111 yards to tailbacks through two weeks.
Call me crazy but this feels like a Hillman game to me. It’s a risky play, but he’ll be in at least a couple of my tournament lineups this weekend.
LeGarrette Blount, RB NE
Yes, I realize Dion Lewis ($6,700) has been one of the best bargains on FanDuel for each of the last two weeks. That said, when was the last time Bill Belichick stuck with a tailback?
This is strictly a gut call but I simply wouldn’t be shocked if Blount ($5,900) got 20-plus carries and scored a couple touchdowns this week. Would you?
Other Options: Doug Martin ($6,600), Jonathan Stewart ($6,500), James Starks ($6,500) and Duke Johnson ($5,600)
Allen Robinson, WR JAX
After piling up 155 yards and two touchdowns a week ago, it was a surprise Robinson’s ($6,600) salary didn’t spike to at least $7,000. If you subscribe to the theory that Jacksonville will be playing from behind in Foxboro and forced to throw for a majority of the game, ARob has the potential to be a massive bargain.
Bargain hunters should keep in mind however, that because of his big game last week Robinson may be heavily owned in tournaments. It’s also worth remembering that Belichick works hard to take away the opponents best weapon and Robinson is clearly that for the Jags.
Torrey Smith, WR SF
The matchup against the Cardinals for the 49ers’ passing game may look tough on paper but that may not be the case for Smith ($6,400). Arizona has allowed more 20-plus yard passes (12) than any other defense over the first two weeks of the season and the deep ball just happens to be Smith’s specialty.
Quarterback Colin Kaepernick and Smith seem to be gaining chemistry with each week that passes so I wouldn’t be surprised to see the two try to hook up over the top a couple times on Sunday.
Pierre Garcon, WR WAS
If you’re planning to play the Thursday slate on FanDuel and want some action in the game, Garcon ($5,900) has the potential to be a bargain. The Giants have given up a league worst 719 passing yards so far on the year. With DeSean Jackson still nursing a sore hamstring, Garcon could put up a nice game on Thursday night.
Doug Baldwin, WR SEA
Baldwin ($6,000) has hauled in seven passes in each of the first two weeks of the season. Although he’s only racked up 127 yards on those 14 catches, the possession receiver is obviously playing the role of “go-to guy” for Russell Wilson.
This week, Baldwin and the Seahawks will face Chicago’s Swiss cheese pass defense that has allowed a league worst seven passing touchdowns and a pair of big games to possession wide outs James Jones (four receptions, 51 yards, two touchdowns) and Larry Fitzgerald (eight catches, 112 yards, three touchdowns).
Although I see the Seahawks winning this game easily (which should make for an excellent week to roster Marshawn Lynch), Baldwin should be active early and often and has a great opportunity to outperform his salary.
Ted Ginn Jr., WR CAR
Because of injuries to most of the wideouts above him on the depth chart, Ginn Jr. ($5,200) has played 62% of snaps for the Panthers and has become their primary deep threat. This week he faces the pitiful Saints secondary. Anybody rostering him will be hoping for a couple bombs from Newton but nobody should be surprised if they connect for a long score or two.
Other Options: Brandon Marshall ($7,400), John Brown ($6,000), Stevie Johnson ($5,900), Kendall Wright ($5,900), James Jones ($5,700), Percy Harvin ($5,600) and Cole Beasley ($5,400)
Martellus Bennett, TE CHI
Bennett ($5,600) started the season as a top-four salary among tight ends but has slipped to eighth due to some big performances by others at the position. Although he may not be on pace for another 90-catch season, he’s been no slouch either – averaging 10.4 fantasy points per week. I expect that number to climb this week after facing the Seahawks defense that has allowed 17 fantasy points per game to tight ends and has allowed a touchdown to the position in each of the first two weeks.
New starter Jimmy Clausen should be under pressure all game and will likely be looking to dump the ball off quickly to his underneath receivers. If you can’t afford Rob Gronkowski ($8,400) and plan to fade the other top tight end options that should be highly owned, Bennett is my favorite bargain at the position for the Sunday slate of games.
Jordan Reed, TE WAS
Reed ($5,300) still carries an incredibly reasonable price tag despite catching 13 passes for 145 yards and a touchdown on 17 targets over the first two weeks of the season. The Giants have allowed 14 catches for 145 yards and three scores to opposing tight ends.
A quality tight end who’s getting a lot of looks and facing a defense that can’t defend the tight end means money in your pocket.
Other options: Kyle Rudolph ($5,300), Owen Daniels ($4,700)[ad5]?
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