Although I usually don’t enjoy the short slate of games during the regular season such as primetime slate and late afternoon only slate, the NFL post season is one of my favorite times to play on FanDuel. I’m not sure if it’s because time is running out to play weekly fantasy football or if it’s because this short slate is flooded with players from the best teams in the league but either way, it’s a lot of fun. Let’s get to the bargains!
Keep in mind that these suggestions are made for large field GPP (Guaranteed Prize Pool) tournaments 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.
Peyton Manning, QB DEN
Manning ($7,000) hasn’t started a game since mid-November and hasn’t scored 18 fantasy points in a week since September. Although that’s cause for concern, he also gets a good matchup against a Steelers defense that has allowed big games to quarterbacks throughout the season and allowed Broncos pass catchers to torch them for 296 yards and three scores in week 15 (although those numbers came from the arm of another quarterback.
With his struggles as well as the potential for head coach Gary Kubiak to yank him in favor of Brock Osweiler ($6,800) at any time, it’s difficult to have a lot of confidence in Manning. As the lowest priced option of the starting quarterbacks this week however, he’s certainly worth considering.
With the possibility of this being his final chance at another ring, Manning just may turn back the clock in search of going out on top. I’ll have him in at least a couple lineups.
Spencer Ware, RB KC
Ware ($6,100) was featured here a week ago as my favorite bargain of the week and he came through – at least to some extent – with 67 yards and a touchdown on 16 carries. That follows up his 76 yard, one touchdown performance on 16 carries against the Raiders in week 17. It’s clear at this point that Ware and Charcandrick West ($6,300) are in a timeshare but over the last couple weeks it’s been Ware that has gotten the majority of the workload as well as all the touches around the goal line.
The Patriots have been above average against the run but the Chiefs are a run first team that will no doubt have a run heavy game plan in New England on Saturday. Nobody should be surprised if Ware out-carries West again or if he finds pay dirt for the third straight week.
Andre Ellington, RB ARI
Ellington ($5,200) is easily the most risky player on this list. With just 11 touches over the last two weeks since returning from a toe injury, there are no guarantees he makes any kind of impact. With that said however, the Cardinals love to involve their running backs and David Johnson ($8,500) has to come off the field at some point.
While Johnson is my favorite running back of the week, he’s also the highest priced option at the position and there’s certainly the potential for both runners to be involved. If week 16 (when Green Bay got slaughtered by the Cardinals 38-8) was any indication, Arizona will be nursing a lead late in the game which means plenty of opportunities for both tailbacks. [inlinead]
With as few as 10 touches, Ellington can make quite an impact. And with his low usage of late as well as every fantasy player seemingly being in love with Johnson, his ownership numbers should be incredibly low on Saturday – which makes him the ultimate contrarian play.
Michael Floyd, WR ARI
It’s a weekly battle to choose which Cardinals receiver to roster on FanDuel between Larry Fitzgerald ($7,900), John Brown ($6,700) and Floyd ($6,500). This week points to being a Floyd week though. Not only is he the cheapest option of the three, he also should be the lowest owned after catching just one pass for 16 yards in week 17 against the Seahawks.
The last time Arizona hosted Green Bay, Floyd led Cardinal receivers with six catches for 111 yards. He routinely beat Packers rookies Quinten Rollins and Damarious Randall as he was far too physical at the point of the catch for the young corners. It shouldn’t surprise anybody if he repeats that performance.
Although I’ll likely hedge this week by also sticking John Brown in a few lineups due to their similar price, I still see Floyd as the best bargain among Cardinals pass catchers.
Jared Abbrederis, WR GB
After Davante Adams ($5,400) went down with a knee injury in the third quarter, Abbrederis ($4,900) was the one who filled in. He caught just two balls for 14 yards and also committed a bad drop but Aaron Rodgers continued to look his way and even hit him for a two-point conversion in the fourth quarter where he absolutely torched Will Blackmon on a quick slant.
If the Packers are going to try to make a game of it against the Cardinals, they’ll have to throw it early and often and somebody will have to step up. Rodgers has talked up Abbrederis for weeks and it appears he’ll get his chance with Adams not at 100%.
Another very contrarian play, Abbrederis could be the kind of guy that wins somebody a tournament due to his low price and what should be an incredibly low ownership rate.
Greg Olsen, TE CAR
Olsen ($6,300) as a bargain may not be the ground breaking statement you were looking for here but he’s easily the best value at the position going into the divisional round. With Rob Gronkowski ($8,300) priced $2,000 more than him and even Travis Kelce ($6,500) carrying a higher price tag, Olsen offers a discount on top-end talent at the position.
The last time Olsen lined up against the Seahawks he caught seven passes for 131 yards and a touchdown in week six and the Seahawks have struggled throughout the year against tight ends. He’ll likely be the highest owned tight end this week, but as just the third highest priced option at the position and with a great matchup, he easily presents the biggest upside when considering cost.
Other Options: If you’re dead set on pivoting from the top options, you could roster Richard Rodgers ($5,100) and hope this is a week he’s involved near the goal line.
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