Week 6 daily fantasy advice: Previewing the week in DFS
When playing daily fantasy, the players who ultimately end up in your lineups on Sunday are not always the players you first tinker with when exploring the salaries each week. But your DFS prep has to start somewhere, so to help you with that endeavor, we’re introducing a new DFS preview column to help get the ball rolling.
Each week, I’ll go through each position and will provide some quick-hit notes on players, salaries, matchups or anything else I find noteworthy from my initial pass through the players on DraftKings and FanDuel. This is how I usually start my prep for the week, and the hope is to give you a look into my early week notebook.
Note that this is not meant as a comprehensive, refined list of players I love, like or hate each week. These are the early-week musings from which I build.
With that said, things rarely change that much, and the hope is that this article gives you a good starting point each week. Just remember to keep an eye out for our more refined DFS thoughts in our weekly DFS articles regarding fades, locks, contrarian picks, optimal lineups, and more.
Now that we’ve laid the ground rules, let’s get to the notes.
(Note: I’m providing only DraftKings and FanDuel salaries as I live in Florida, where Yahoo does not operate.)
Overall, there seems to be a ton of value at the quarterback position once again, if you’re looking to pay down. But there’s also a ton of great matchups for the higher-priced quarterbacks. You can’t really go wrong at quarterback this week.
A concussed Cam Newton as the most expensive quarterback on DraftKings at $8,100 seems like too much. He hadn’t been over $7,900 any other week this season. If you’re looking to pay up for a quarterback, everyone from Aaron Rodgers ($7,300) to Drew Brees ($7,900) seems like a better play this week.
Russell Wilson is coming off a bye week and has underperformed this season, but he’s only $6,900 on DraftKings and is playing against the Atlanta Falcons, who rank 31st in pass defense this season. I’ll probably look to build some lineups around him this week.
Brian Hoyer is still severely underpriced on both FanDuel and DraftKings. He’s only $7,000 on FanDuel and $5,800 on DraftKings this week, despite the fact he has averaged 338 yards per game over his last three outings, with two touchdowns and no interceptions in each contest. He’s playing against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 6. Hoyer definitely needs to be considered in both cash and GPPs this week.
Andy Dalton still feels underpriced to me — on both sites. He’s $7,600 on FanDuel and only $5,500 (!) on DraftKings. He is averaging 300 yards per game, but his production has been suppressed due to a low touchdown rate. He’s tossed a touchdown on just 2.7 percent of his passes so far, which is 38 percent below league average. He is second in passing yards, however, and I’d expect his touchdown production to pick up sooner rather than later.
My first thought is that I might be tempted to pay up at running back this week. Le’Veon Bell, David Johnson, DeMarco Murray, LeSean McCoy, Lamar Miller and Jordan Howard all have great matchups. I figure to have a fair amount of exposure to all of those players. But there are some definite values as well. Here are a few.
Carlos Hyde at $5,100 on DraftKings as the 19th-most-expensive running back of the week is criminal. He’s $7,300 and the 11th-most-expensive running back on FanDuel, and that pricing makes a lot more sense. Hyde has topped 23 DraftKings points in three of five games this season. If he puts up 20-plus points again with a price tag of just $5,100, he’s returning 4x value. Buy, buy, buy!
Jordan Howard has, unfortunately, been appropriately priced on FanDuel ($7,700), but he’s still a little underpriced on DraftKings ($6,200). He’s the 10th-most-expensive running back on DraftKings and the seventh-most-expensive on FanDuel. Howard has recorded 45 touches for 295 total yards and a touchdown over the past two weeks. He played 88.7 percent of Chicago’s snaps in Week 4 and logged 92.6 percent of the snaps in Week 5. He’s their workhorse, and he is definitely worth inserting into more lineups in Week 6.
Jamaal Charles versus the Oakland Raiders is an interesting option. He’s an affordable $7,100 on FanDuel and an insanely cheap $5,100 on DraftKings. The Raiders have given up the sixth-most rushing yards per game, and they have given up the most passing yards per game. Translation: Charles could pick up a ton of yards both on the ground and through the air and should see a handful of scoring opportunities. If Charles receives good practice reports this week, he’s definitely going to be in my tournament lineups, particularly on DraftKings.
James White at $4,100 on DraftKings seems like a great bargain. With Tom Brady back under center for the Patriots in Week 5, White saw more playing time. He was in on 46.9 percent of New England’s snaps in Week 5, up from his season average of 35.9 percent. On the ground, White gained 26 yards on 5 attempts for a 5.2 YPC average, all of which were season highs. Through the air, White ran 26 pass routes, saw six targets and gained 63 yards, all of which were season highs. He’s currently gaining 2.09 yards per pass route run, which ranks third among running backs. In the full-point PPR format on DraftKings, White offers a decent floor with a great ceiling.
I’m a sucker for good wide receiver value, so that’s where I tend to look first. Plus, it’s boring if all we ever do is talk about how good Antonio Brown is. (Note: He’s good. Although this week he costs more than $1,000 more than any other receiver on DraftKings, and that’s a tough bill to swallow. See what I did there? Okay, I’ll end this parenthetical now.)
Plenty of people will be chasing his points this week, but Sammie Coates is still easily affordable on both DraftKings ($4,600) and FanDuel ($6,400). He has a reception of 40-plus yards in every game this season, and he has recorded six receptions in each of Pittsburgh’s last two games. He remains a viable GPP play.
Allen Robinson as the second-most-expensive wideout on FanDuel ($8,600) seems strange. For comparison, he’s the seventh-priciest receiver on DraftKings ($7,800), which feels much more accurate. It’s not that Robinson is bad (he’s not), but he hasn’t really done enough this season to warrant that high of a price tag. He hasn’t topped 75 receiving yards in a game yet, and while the matchup against the Bears is solid, I don’t see myself owning Robinson over Julio Jones, A.J. Green, Odell Beckham Jr., Jordy Nelson or DeAndre Hopkins, all of whom are cheaper on FanDuel this week. The only positive takeaway from that high tag is that Robinson will probably have light ownership in tournaments, so if you want to roll with Blake Bortles this week, stacking him with Robinson makes sense.
Amari Cooper had his first big game of the season in Week 5, but his price hasn’t changed much. He’s still only $7,500 on DraftKings after averaging a price of just under $7,500 from Week 1-5. He costs $7,100 on FanDuel, which is actually down from his $7,200 tag from last week. Cooper is going to be in a ton of my lineups in Week 6.
People will be chasing Cameron Meredith’s points this week, but you might find similar production from the cheaper Jeremy Kerley. Over the past two weeks, Kerley’s 23 targets rank second behind only Brandon Marshall. He has also scored a touchdown in each game, and he has the sixth-most receiving yards in that span. On the season as a whole, he has seen 45 targets, which ranks tied for seventh with Odell Beckham Jr. and Larry Fitzgerald. Kerley also played 100 percent of San Francisco’s snaps in Week 5, so it’s clear that the team trusts him. Kerley only costs $5,800 on FanDuel and a tantalizing $4,000 on DraftKings.
My initial pass through the tight ends this week has me thinking that I’m going to end up paying up for one of the top options in most of my lineups. Unless I pay down for a certain $3,500 option on DraftKings, whose name shall not be spoken (until I speak it four paragraphs from now).
Rob Gronkowski is back where he belongs as the most expensive tight on FanDuel ($8,400), but on DraftKings, he’s second behind Greg Olsen, with a price tag of $6,700. Never will people be entirely “off” of Gronkowski, but his ownership rates might be a bit lower this week because of the fact his teammate Martellus Bennett caught three touchdowns in Week 5, while Gronkowski was left scoreless. However, Gronkowski still recorded 109 yards on five receptions, so it’s not like he was a decoy again. Gronkowski’s relatively cheap tag on DraftKings makes him extremely intriguing this week.
Speaking of how well Bennett and Gronkowski did against the Browns last week, I’m definitely going to consider the next tight end to face Cleveland: Delanie Walker. Walker is priced at $5,500 on DraftKings and $6,700 on FanDuel, and he’s one of the five most expensive options on both sites, as he should be. Walker has recorded eight targets in each of his past two games after recording just 10 total over the first two games combined. And that comes despite the fact he’s been playing fewer snaps as he gets back to full health. Walker has the potential for a massive game in Week 6.
Why is Dwayne Allen ($5,800) still so expensive on FanDuel? Last week was about as good as it gets for Allen, as he recorded six receptions for 50 yards and a score, good for 14 FanDuel points. However, he also had a combined seven receptions for 80 yards and no touchdowns in the three previous games combined, good for 11.5 total FanDuel points. So his floor is extremely low, and his “good game” of 14 points only returns about 2.5x value on a $5,800 price tag. Even in a tournament, that’s not quite high enough of a ceiling (although Allen’s true ceiling involves a couple of touchdowns). Allen is probably going to be too expensive for me this week.
Coby Fleener at only $3,500 on DraftKings is tempting. Sure, he’s been mostly terrible this year, but he also showed his impressive ceiling with a seven-catch, 109-yard, one-touchdown game in Week 3, in which he recorded 26.9 DraftKings points. And given that the New Orleans-Carolina tilt is projected to be the highest-scoring game of the weekend (by far), it’s probably wise to invest in some of the passing options from that game. For all his faults, Fleener does rank in the top 10 among tight ends in targets so far this season. I’m thinking that the potential for a big game this week is probably worth the cheap $3,500 risk.