DraftKings’ salaries are starting to get tighter as we limp into week five of the NFL season. The tighter salaries will force us to think things through while we create our lineups. There aren’t as many free squares for us to use this week. However, even though there aren’t’ as many discounts available there are still some cheap buys that we can toss in our lineups.
With that being said, let’s take a look at this week’s buys on DraftKings:
Matt Ryan, ATL ($5,900)
Ryan will be rolling into Houston to play the Texans who have one of the most explosive passing offenses in the league. Vegas has this game set with a 49-point over/under which is the highest on the 1:00pm slate. The game script should call for Ryan to throw the ball often, considering the Falcons are five-point underdogs in this game.
In a fantasy sense, Ryan has been fairly reliable, averaging 23.7 DK points per game. He is currently QB7 and has thrown for at least 300 yards in each of his four games this season. After a cataclysmic defeat to the Tennessee Titans last week where he was unable to reach the end zone, Ryan is looking to have a bounce-back game in a very fantasy-friendly matchup.
I have to admit, his price tag might make him a little bit chalky this week. It might be best to stack him with multiple players from this game to take advantage of any correlation plays that could boost the value of your overall lineup. The more players you add from this contest, the more contrarian your lineup will be, making it optimal for large GPP tournaments.
I provide an example above outlining how you could create a Falcons onslaught with multiple players from this game. Obviously you can mix and match with whatever you feel is best. Ryan’s value, however, will be maximized if you stack him with at least one player from this game. I’m going to mix and match multiple different lineups from both Houston and Atlanta. I’m a fan of building my lineups with different correlation strategies from high scoring matchups.
Joe Mixon, CIN ($6,100)
It’s not a secret: Mixon is running behind one of the worst offensive lines in the league. He is struggling to produce this year and it’s not entirely his fault. Injuries have also played a part in his lack of production. He’s currently RB37 on the season and according to Pro Football Focus, he is posting a mere 2.45 yards after contact.
If Mixon doesn’t produce this week against the Arizona Cardinals then it’s not going to happen. Pro Football Focus has the Cardinals graded as the fifth-worst run defense in the league. John Ross is injured and won’t be activated for this game. The void created by this injury could allow some extra targets to get funneled to Mixon.
This game has one of the highest over/unders this week at 47-points and Vegas has the Bengals favored by three points. The game script is expected to be tight which is optimal for Cincinnati’s rushing attack. Rostering Mixon is a sneaky play because due to recency bias a large portion of the field will pivot away from him, creating a low ownership rate.
We can’t ignore his usage in the passing game. He received five targets last week and in a game that could develop into a shootout, we could see him reach double-digit targets. Obviously, the Bengals are bad which means he’s a player you don’t want to overexpose yourself too. Sprinkle him in a few lineups just in case he manages to produce against Arizona’s weak defense on Sunday.
Courtland Sutton, DEN ($4,900)
The Broncos will be on the road against the Los Angeles Chargers. The Broncos are projected to be 6.5-point underdogs in this game. Joe Flacco will need to consistently pass the ball to keep the Broncos in contention. Sutton should see additional targets if the game script calls for extra volume in the passing game.
Sutton is one of Flacco’s favorite pass catchers. He has seen seven or more targets in each of his four games this season. His consistent workflow makes him a functional fantasy asset. Especially, when he’s playing against a favorable matchup. We could see him receive ten or more targets since the Broncos should be trailing during a large portion of this game.
Not only is he seeing a hefty amount of targets, but he’s also getting targeted downfield, which is a plus because all he has to do is convert one or two of those deep targets to create an added boost in the box score. Historically, even though he’s not the best quarterback, Flacco has a tendency to want to hit his receivers deep. His connection with Sutton appears to be a relationship that can fuel fantasy points.
At just $4,900, Sutton is a cheap addition to your lineup. You don’t have to pair him with Flacco to create the correlation play. His cheap price tag will allow you to jam higher-priced players at other positions. He is a player that you want to utilize in GPP formats due to his upside. The dark cloud that follows Flacco will certainly drive down Sutton’s ownership rate, making him a cheap contrarian option.
Zach Ertz, PHI ($6,000)
Salaries are tight this week and it’s very hard to find affordable options that won’t bottom out on your lineup. Therefore, I’m paying up for Ertz. He is listed at just $6,000 this week which I consider a decent discount due to his large target volume. Ertz will be playing against the hapless New York Jets at home. Even though the over/under is set at just 43.5 points and the Eagles are favored by 13.5 points, Ertz still has the potential to see a fair amount of targets and reach the end zone this week. He has zero touchdowns on the season which means he’s due to cross the goal line.
Typically, I want to pay down at tight end whenever possible. However, when salaries are tight the best option might be to pivot to the higher-priced tight ends in favorable matchups. Also, you don’t want to over expose yourself to any of the tight ends this week, because tight ends hold a lot of volatility from week to week.