Over the next 17 weeks (and into the post-season), we’ll be highlighting some of the best bargains on the best daily site in the industry, FanDuel. This week, we’re going “double duty” with both Peter Howard and Mo Brewington offering their own suggestions and ideas.
We won’t suggest any players we don’t think have upside, this slants the suggestions towards Grand Prize Pool (GPP) tournaments. However, we try to keep the main suggestions cash game viable as well, unless otherwise stated. Depending on how you construct your lineup their viability can change. The “options” for each position will have lower floors but also offer greater savings. Every play holds risk (until we invent that time machine.)
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Note: We used 4for4.com’s Adjusted Fantasy Points Allowed (aFPA) to determine defensive rankings and pro-football-reference.com to find raw stats.
Mo’s Pick: Josh McCown, NYJ ($6,800) vs. CLE
McCown is currently the QB26, with his Jets averaging just 18.8 points per game. However, New York has faced three teams in the top-10 for fewest points allowed this season, with their fourth opponent ranked 13th in points allowed. This week they face the Browns, who are gifting teams 26.8 ppg – worse than all but three NFL teams. McCown may not be the sexiest quarterback available, but against a squad who allowed Jacoby Brissett and Andy Dalton to have top-7 and top-5 days, respectively, he should be able to find pay-dirt early and often.
Peter’s Pick: Carson Palmer, ARI ($7,200) vs. PHI
Priced as the QB 16 this week, Palmer walks into a plus matchup against an Eagles secondary that has given up 708 passing yards and three touchdowns in the last two weeks. There is always concern around West Coast Teams traveling east. However, over the last three years, Palmer has averaged 275 yards and 2.25 touchdowns in similar east-travel games. There are some stinkers in there but the matchup is still tempting. Philadelphia is ranked fifth against the run and 16th against the pass, making them a positive pass funnel defense. Arizona also ranks about the same, having done better against the run then the pass in the first four weeks. There is shootout potential if Arizona can travel.
Mo’s other Option: Eli Manning ($7,000)
Peter’s other Options: Brian Hoyer ($6,500), Jacoby Brissett ($7,000)
Mo’s Pick: Elijah McGuire, NYJ ($5,200) @CLE
McGuire made the most of Matt Forte’s absence in Week 4, racking up 131 scrimmage yards and a touchdown. He’ll be back in the mix this week, as Forte spends another game on the sidelines. The Browns have ceded solid PPR days to Gio Bernard and Javorius Allen — two backs McGuire’s receiving ability stacks up well with. McGuire, however, is a better runner than those two and should again exceed the 100 total-yard mark on Sunday.
Mo’s Pick: Alex Collins, BAL ($5,700) @OAK
Collins continues to crank out impressive rushing averages for the Ravens, with two straight weeks putting up 83 yards on nine carries. Last week’s total came mostly on two big carries — a 50-yard rumble, and a 23-yard run. Collins’ issue has been ball security, which head coach John Harbaugh believes to be correctable. This statement of faith is HUGE, and should lead us to expect more opportunities for Collins rather than a benching. Staring down the unemployment line, we might also expect Collins to come up big against a Raiders’ team that’s likely to struggle sustaining drives without Derek Carr.
Peter’s Pick: Aaron Jones, GB ($5,900) @ DAL
The best value running back this week is Le’veon Bell, but since he’s the highest priced running back I wanted to mention someone else…
Jones is priced as the RB22 on Fanduel and is playing against the worst graded defense against the run through the first four weeks. The game has the highest total of the week and, what’s more, the confusion over whether Ty Montgomery will play (not to mention a few holdouts who’s till think Jamaal Williams can “take some touches” #passprotection) could push some people away. Coming off the bench last week, Jones managed 49 yards and a touchdown (a Red Zone rush attempt) on 13 rush attempts. He is a dynamic athlete who had more receiving production then a lot of rookie receivers in this year’s draft.
*Mo’s Other Option: Corey Clement, PHI ($4,500) vs. AZ
Wendell Smallwood is expected to miss this game, leaving only Clement and LeGarrette Blount to carry the rock for an Eagles’ team which has run the ball 81 TIMES for 407 YARDS the last two weeks.
Peter’s Other Options: Thomas Rawls/Eddie Lacy (if you think you can guess which one will lead in touches)
Mo’s Pick: Jaron Brown, ARI ($4,500) @ PHI
The 6’2″ Brown has seen 28 targets over the last three games, while John Brown and J.J. Nelson have missed time with injuries. Arizona faces a suspect Eagles’ secondary that’s given up big plays in every single game this season. In week three, Sterling Shepard broke a 77-yard touchdown on the Birds in the fourth quarter. Most recently, Philip Rivers tossed a 75-yard touchdown to Tyrell Williams, and a pair of 50-yarders to Keenan Allen in week four. Nelson and John Brown are probable for this game. However, they’re each dealing with lingering leg issues, leaving no guarantee they’re ready to play an entire game at full strength.
Mo’s Pick: JuJu Smith-Schuster, PIT ($5,400) vs. JAX
Slowly, but surely, Smith-Schuster is carving out a role in the Steelers’ offense. He has received 10 targets over the last two games, and scored his first receiving touchdown of the year last Sunday. An opportunity arises in Week 5 for JuJu, as Martavis Bryant is listed as questionable with an illness. Bryant may ultimately suit up, but if he’s less than 100%, we may see Smith-Schuster eat further into the snap count – he’s already logged 12 more plays than Bryant over the last two weeks. The Jags’ pass defense has been exemplary this season, yet they’re still giving up the fifth-most points in the league and will not be able to handle the full-spectrum of the Steelers’ offensive attack.
Mo’s Pick: Will Fuller, HOU ($5,700) vs. KC
The Chiefs’ defense is solid as a whole, but they’ve surrendered some decent receiving days to above-average wideouts. Speed, in particular, seems to give the Chiefs fits, as they’ve struggled to keep pace with players like Torrey Smith, Travis Benjamin, and Brandin Cooks — who could have each posted even bigger days if not for dropped passes. Fuller returned to duty last week and snagged two touchdowns from Deshaun Watson inside the redzone. Fuller’s name might not be the first that comes to mind when we think of the Texans’ best targets inside the 20. Yet, it’s a welcome development to see him getting those looks in his first game with the rookie quarterback.
Peter’s Pick: DeVante Parker, MIA ($6,100) vs. TEN
Last week wasn’t the best breakout of all time for Parker, but the the offense has been struggling for production in general, so we’ll take it. The team ranks first in points under expectation based on Vegas game totals – this should be the week that corrects. Parker has been the recipient of the majority of deep ball throws and while it’s hard to trust Cutler, Parker has proven consistent managing 85, 76 and 69 yards through weeks 2 to 4. Week 2’s massive target total for Jarvis Landry has skewed the generic target share. Through weeks 3 and 4, Parker had the same number of targets and an equal target share. He also leads the team in Red Zone passing attempts inside the ten. Up against the 29th ranked defenses against the pass, Parker has shown a solid floor and a has huge upside this week while priced as the WR26.
Mo’s Other Option: Robbie Anderson, NYJ ($5,400) Anderson has the speed to get lost in a Browns’ secondary which has allowed some strong games each of their opponents No.1 wideouts.
Peter’s Other Options: Jaron Brown, Rishard Matthews (if Mariota plays), Aldrick Robinson
Mo’s Pick: Evan Engram, NYG ($5,400) vs LAC
Engram is doing his best to buck the trend of rookie tight ends having little fantasy impact. He’s currently TE8 in PPR leagues and tied with Brandon Marshall for the second most targets on the team with 30. The Chargers have done well against opposing tight ends this season, but Zach Ertz had his way with L.A.’s defense last week. Engram’s athleticism should allow him to do the same. Throw in the fact the Bolts will likely be without their best linebacker in Jatavis Brown and Engram’s odds of posting a big day look even better.
Peter’s Pick: Austin Seferian-Jenkins, NYJ ($5,500) vs. CLE
Cleveland ranks dead last against the Tight End position through the first four weeks of the season. While ASJ has been “difficult to trust” in dynasty ( to say the least), he is probably the most talented (athletically and skill wise) receiver on the roster. With ten targets over the last two weeks, he has jumped to a 20% target share since coming back from his suspension.
Mo’s Other Option: Hunter Henry, LAC ($5,200) The Giants have given up the most touchdowns in the NFL to opposing tight ends with five on the year, as well as the third-highest yardage total surrendered to the position. With Tyrell Williams status in jeopardy due to a neck injury, Henry could find himself back in the mix… if Rivers remembers he exists.
Peter’s Other Option: Antonio Gates