Editor’s Note: We’re going to be bringing you an unprecedented amount of content this year during the season, mostly dynasty related. However, seeing the explosion of DFS games, we’ll also be ramping up our Daily coverage, similar to last season. Even if you don’t play in DFS games, these articles can help you in making lineup decisions or judging current value of your dynasty assets.
Of all the weeks on the NFL schedule, week one is perhaps the best for FanDuel players. Not only does it finally give all of us what we’ve been craving for the last seven months, but due to prices being set so long ago, it presents the best opportunity for bargain hunters to find good deals.
Over the next 17 weeks (and into the post-season), I’ll be highlighting some of the best bargains on the best daily site in the industry, FanDuel.
Keep in mind that these suggestions are made for GPP (Guaranteed Prize Pool) tournaments with more than 50 participants 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.
Eli Manning, QB NYG ($7,200)
Eli Manning has an excellent price of just $7,200 which is just below prices of Jameis Winston ($7,500), Matthew Stafford ($7,400), Ryan Fitzpatrick ($7,300), and Philip Rivers ($7,300). The key here is that the Giants are playing a Dallas Cowboys defense that has either been decimated through suspension or released. On top of that, the Cowboys are going to try and control Odell Beckham and rookie Sterling Shepherd. Last season, Manning threw for 4,432 yards and 35 touchdowns. I don’t see any slowing down, especially in week one.
Others to Consider:
Brock Osweiler, QB HOU ($7,100)
The Texans are going to be home against the Bears and the over/under is set at 44 points, and Houston is a six-point favorite. They may be more of a running team now, but the Bears have a depleted secondary and Houston has weapons aplenty. Incomers from the NFL draft include Will Fuller, Braxton Miller and don’t forget free agent pick up Lamar Miller. Houston may go to the run more, but when the defensive backs can’t cover DeAndre Hopkins, look for Osweiler to go deep a few times.
Robert Griffin III, QB CLE ($6,900)
The biggest question remains is Robert Griffin III back to who he was or is he the same old quarterback who breaks easier than my K-Mart style sunglasses. What we do know is that the Eagles defense is not very good. The over/under is at 41, so the experts are not expecting fireworks, but RG III will add some bonus points with his legs, and I like the Hue Jackson offense. Cleveland has a solid offensive line and with Terrelle Pryor, Corey Coleman, and Gary Barnidge he has trusted weapons at the receiver position. Then there is the garbage duty that he will most likely face. Most of the second half could be all Griffin, as in see Griffin run, see Griffin pass, run-Griffin-pass.
Dak Prescott, QB DAL ($6,000)
Dak Prescott could be either the riskiest or smartest of picks. We all saw what Dak Prescott did over the preseason, and if you didn’t, he was awesome. Well, this is the NFL, and the preseason means little except to those trying to make the team or jockeying for position on the depth chart. Lucky for Prescott he faces a poor defense in the New York Giants. The over/under is at 46 which means points should be in play. The one thing to keep in mind is that Prescott can take off and run. He might not be a Russell Wilson, but he can get chunks of yards at the right time.
Latavius Murray, RB OAK ($6,600)
The Raiders are going to want to execute the run to slow down the Saints explosive offense, and give a breather to the Oakland defense. For Murray, that means he is going to be involved heavily. When you toss in an excellent offensive line and his ability to be a moderate pass catcher out the backfield he should perform very well. The Raiders are also going to want to take advantage of the always horrible Saints defense. The over/under of 51 points also look appetizing.
Danny Woodhead, RB SD ($5,800)
Danny Woodhead is the “Rudy” of the NFL and probably the Rodney Dangerfield of comedy as well. Lately, fans and fantasy owners have looked at him differently. His ability to catch the ball and his nose for the end zone makes him intriguing at this price. He will have to face a tough Kansas City Chiefs defense, and Melvin Gordon looks like he has improved in the preseason. Even so, the bonus points and the ability to put the ball in the end zone appears too tasty to pass up at his market value.
Others to Consider:
Ryan Mathews, RB PHI ($6,000)
The Philadelphia Eagles are going to go with Carson Wentz at quarterback which means they are going to hand off the ball a lot to Ryan Mathews. The Eagles will also be facing the weak Cleveland Browns defense. The over/under is at 41, but most of those will probably be taken up by Philadelphia. There is speculation that Darren Sproles will cut into some of Mathews workload, but that should only be on third downs, and in a pinch, Mathews can catch the ball. He is also the primary goal line back in this offense.
Spencer Ware, RB KCC ($5,400)
The situation with Jamaal Charles and weak defense in San Diego is why I have here. I don’t trust Charles injury situation at this point, and the Chiefs are going to want to run. Ware will get most of those situations. The Chiefs may change who gets the ball down the road, but I have Ware as the Chief you want in this matchup. The negative about wanting him is that it doesn’t play that much into most DFS GPP strategies. However, the Chiefs are 6.5 favorites at this point, and playing at home, which could mean clock management is going to be in place giving Ware extra opportunities running the ball.
Charles Sims, RB TB ($4,700)
These names have a higher price tag than Charles Sims. Tevin Coleman, Benny Cunningham, Mike Gillislee, Jordan Howard and Andre Ellington. I’d take Sims in a PPR situation over all these guys, so his market price makes it even sweeter. Dirk Koetter is going to go with more of a hurry-up offense this season, which means last year’s game average numbers of 9.9 touches and 68.1 yards from scrimmage per game should increase. I am also not buying the Doug Martin hype, and Sims is a defined flex option you will want in your lineup. The over/under is a solid 47.5, and there could be some garbage points against less talented Atlanta Falcons defense.
Donte Moncrief, WR IND ($6,200)
I went back and forth between T.Y. Hilton here and Moncrief, but his lower price is what sold me. While Hilton is going to stretch the field, Moncrief is going to be the one in the middle and the possession type receiver that Andrew Luck will want to get the ball to. Moncrief may be not the guy down near the goal line, but he should provide a good amount of points against a weak Detroit Lions secondary. The over/under is also at a high 50.5 points.
Golden Tate, WR DET ($6,900)
The Detroit Lions offense will change now that “Megatron” is dancing away on Dancing with the Stars. They will employ more of a no-huddle type of offense, and Matthew Stafford will be looking for shorter dumpoffs rather than going deep to Calvin Johnson on jump balls. Tate fits this perfectly, and he should see a lot of passes his way, and the Colts defense is weak.
The over/under is at 50.5 points
Sterling Shepherd, WR NYG ($5,600)
The rookie has looked pretty sharp in preseason, and I like the direction this offense is going. Eli Manning has been sharp in the new offense, and Odell Beckham should take off any serious coverage on Shepherd. It’s always difficult to judge how a rookie will do especially in his first game, but I think Manning will try to get him involved early against the Dallas Cowboys one of the worst secondaries in football. The over/under is at 46 points.
Others to consider
T.Y. Hilton, WR IND ($6,800)
Colts and Lions should provide plenty of fireworks, and Hilton will be explosive against a poor secondary of the Detroit Lions. Andrew Luck will look his way several times for the long ball and should hit at least once. Also, Hilton is more than just a deep threat, as he can run the intermediate routes as well. Make no mistake Hilton is Luck’s number one target, and with the Lions who ranked 16th in fantasy points allowed to enemy receivers in 2015, look for some nice action from T.Y.
Eric Decker, WR NYJ ($6,900)
This is more based on price and opportunity than matchup. The Bengals have one of the best secondaries in the NFL. The Jets, however, have an unyielding offense, and that shouldn’t change as most of the key players are back. Decker will be the downfield option, while Brandon Marshall will be more of the PPR target. Not only will Ryan Fitzpatrick throw him the deep ball but he will look for him in the red zone. Decker’s size and body type make him a reliable threat down low, and someone hard to cover in the end zone.
Willie Snead, WR NOS ($6,400)
The Oakland Raiders defense is no joke anymore, as they have significantly improved in almost all areas. That said, the Saints offense is pretty much unstoppable, and with the secondary concentrating on Brandin Cooks, Michael Thomas, and Coby Fleener look for Willie Snead to sneak deep and get a bomb or two from Drew Brees. They know how to maximize their mismatches and Snead should find himself matched on a linebacker or one-on-one with a defensive back.
Eli Rogers, WR PIT ($4,500)
Eli Rogers has played well in the preseason, and the Steelers need someone to step-up for the suspended Martavis Bryant. With Antonio Brown taking away coverage it should be a lot of single coverage on the undrafted free agent from two seasons ago. Rogers has established himself as a slot receiver for the Steelers which could lead to many PPR style points. Finding the end zone, however, may be an entirely different situation. Throw in an over/under of 50 points on Monday Night Football against the Washington Redskins and Rogers could give a lot for his market price.
Coby Fleener, TE NOS (5,400)
Coby Fleener is going to make Drew Brees jubilant. He now has a tight end that isn’t as old as he is and someone he can rely on to make all the catches. Fleener never lived up to his second-round draft choice status and for some reason couldn’t work out a constant chemistry with his college quarterback Andrew Luck. Brees will connect as the offense is too predicated on using the tight end. Keep in mind that the Saints have offensive talent everywhere, but at his market value, Fleener is too good to pass up.
Others to Consider
Julius Thomas, TE JAC ($5,800)
The Jacksonville Jaguars should be in come-from-behind mode mostly the whole game which could mean a hefty volume for Julius Thomas. The tight end should be able to work the middle of the field while Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns are taking pressure away from the defense. Thomas has always been good in the red zone, which should translate to some opportunities for him in the end zone.
Dwayne Allen, TE IND (5,500)
The Colts and Lions game will provide plenty of points and with a healthy Andrew Luck, he should be in the mood to pass as much as possible. Look for Dwayne Allen to be involved heavily in the offense especially in the zone where Allen is going to be. Both T.Y. Hilton and Donte Moncrief should move the defenses around to get the tight end in the best possible matchups. Allen has not always been the touchdown tight end in this offense, but with the departure of Coby Fleener that all could change.