Believe me. Odds are, none of these names are going to get you excited. But one of the keys to DFS success is ignoring flash, and going for value, every time you can. These four guys are as cost-effective as they get and are all set to put up some big numbers this weekend. So, as you figure out the best way to spend your $55,000 Fanball cap, keep this set of players in mind. They’ll give you the best shot to be counting your winnings at week’s end.
Best Value, QB: Alex Smith @ New Orleans – $6,600 – 12% of Cap
All the attention will go to Drew Brees in his quest to become the all-time passing leader. As has almost become his trademark, expect Alex Smith to quietly have a stout game, flying far below the radar, just how he likes it. Smith has been as consistent as it gets in his first season with Washington, throwing for at least 220 yards in every game he’s played. The problem? The famed “Gamer Manager” has yet to truly break out. Smith has yet to throw for either 300 yards nor three touchdowns, but Monday could finally be the night. The Saints have allowed the third-most fantasy points to opposing quarterback this year, allowing an astonishing average of 323 yards, 2.8 touchdowns, and only .3 interceptions per game. Brees will get all the love, but Smith will likely be the better DFS play.
Best Value, RB: T.J. Yeldon @ Kansas City – $5,700 – 10% of Cap
I’m just going to level with you. If you’re not including T.J. Yeldon on your DFS teams this week, you’re building your team wrong. This reaches far past the Leonard Fournette injury that grants Yeldon lead-back status. This is about an opponent that has gotten shredded week after week after week. The Chiefs are allowing over 100 yards rushing yards per game to opposing running backs, on a salivating 5.5 yards per carry. Yeldon already has 125 receiving yards on the season, and that number is bound to go up significantly, as Kansas City is by far the worst in the league at covering backs in the passing game, surrendering 96 yards per game. Spending 13 percent of your cap may still be worth it for Yeldon. Only using 10 percent on him is highway robbery.
Best Value, WR: Mohamed Sanu @ Pittsburgh – $5,000 – 9% of Cap
It’s another Atlanta Falcons game, and we’re inclined to believe this will be yet another shootout. Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley should obviously be monsters in this matchup, but Mohamed Sanu, at a $2500 dollar price reduction, makes the most sense for your lineup. Sanu has been overshadowed by Ridley’s recent breakout but has been playing pretty good football himself over their last two games, totaling 10 receptions, 147 yards, and one touchdown during that span. Pittsburgh has been only better than New Orleans at defending the wide receiver position this year. Through the first quarter of the season, the Steelers have surrendered an average of 221 yards per game, and 1.8 touchdowns to wideouts. Skip the flashier Falcons receivers, and get the best bang for your buck with Sanu.
Best Value, TE: Jared Cook @ Los Angeles (Chargers) – $6,200 – 11% of Cap
Yuck. I don’t particularly like any tight end this week. But since we’re forced to play one, I’m offering Jared Cook as the least of all the evils. Cook wasn’t even rostered in most season-long leagues entering the year. Now, he sits as the number one fantasy tight end in football, and so far shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon. Cook now has multiple games with over 100 yards receiving, and after not finding the end zone at all through their first three games, scored twice in the Raiders week four win. This weeks’ opponent just let George Kittle go for 125 yards and a touchdown a week ago. But other than him, number one tight ends haven’t done anything against Los Angeles, averaging 23 yards, and zero touchdowns. Cook is a fine play, but if your looking to spend big on an elite player, tight end may be the place to do it this week.
All game log information, and defense against specific position stats courtesy of fftoday.com
All DVOA statistics courtesy of footballoutsiders.com
Bradley Ylitalo (@BradleyYlitalo) is a freelance contributor for the SportsHub Games Network, Inc., Fanball’s parent company. Any advice or strategies provided by SportsHub contributors represent their personal opinions; they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of SportsHub Games Network and are not necessarily reflective of the strategies they may employ in their own lineups.
Each week, as we prepare to make some difficult lineup decisions, our team, which includes Rob Willette, Ryan McDowell, and Sal Leto, will bring you a few sleepers and landmines for each position. Our sleeper picks could be on your waiver wire or a low-priced DFS target or could simply be going overlooked this week. On the other hand, our landmine players are getting attention, too much attention. These are players we feel are being overvalued and overpriced and would avoid for this week.
Ryan Tannehill $5,400
There’s no denying that the Dolphins and QB Ryan Tannehill struggled in Week Four but this week, facing the Bengals should be a different story. Cincinnati has already allowed three top-12 fantasy performances from the QB position this season. They simply can’t stop opposing quarterbacks. Expect Tannehill and the Dolphins to return to their odd big play/low volume offense, mixed in with the floor Tannehill provides as a runner. – Ryan McDowell
Dak Prescott $6,300
Things have started to look up in the Cowboys offense and while it wasn’t riveting Dak is coming off of his best performance of 2018. He used a mix of RBs, WRs and the TE to lead the ‘Boys to victory. In this weeks battle of Texas you better believe Jerry Jones wants this win and is letting his players know about it. The Texans just gave up 464 pass yards and four touchdowns to a Colts team that ranks bottom five in explosive pass plays on the season. They allowed Eli Manning and the hapless Giants pass offense to post 297 and two touchdowns and they haven’t had an interception since week one. I expect a steady QB1 performance from Dak this week. – Sal Leto
Alex Smith $6,600
It has been a rather sleepy start for Alex Smith from a fantasy perspective. He’s totaled only four touchdowns in three games to go along with just over 250 passing yards per game, a rather tame number in today’s NFL. However, he has been an efficient passer overall, averaging just under eight yards per attempt and completing 68.8 percent of his passes. Despite being gifted a matchup with Eli Manning in Week 4, the New Orleans Saints have allowed the third-most passing yards in the league, and the defensive improvements they showed in 2017 have quickly given way to more shootouts in The Big Easy. Washington will need to score to keep pace with the Saints on the fast track indoors at the Superdome. This should be Smith’s best performance in his new home to-date. – Rob Willette
Andrew Luck $7,200
Things are certainly looking up for the Colts QB Andrew Luck after his huge game a week ago, brushing off questions about his arm strength to set new career-high marks for pass attempts and passing yards. This week, the Colts visit the Patriots on short rest and Luck will be without top pass-catchers WR TY Hilton and TE Jack Doyle, along with RB Marlon Mack. Luck is not a total avoid, but I won’t be expecting a repeat of last week. – Ryan McDowell
Baker Mayfield $6,100
I probably shouldn’t have to tell you this but I’ve seen some crazy hype in the shiny new toy type of way the last two weeks. I’ve been asked about dropping viable weekly fantasy position players for Mayfield. I say stop the madness. This is still a poorly coached Browns team. Sure he’s going to have moments and make plays that indicate the bright future but for the most part it will be inconsistent and tough to swallow. This week he will see the number two pass defense in the Baltimore Ravens who have allowed one passing touchdown total in three of their four games. Zero 300 yard passing games in a season that seemingly has half the league hitting that mark each week. The Ravens are confident coming of a prime time beating of the Steelers and not a place you want to start a rookie. – Sal Leto
Russell Wilson $6,600
For all of Russell Wilson’s greatness, he is not immune to being impacted by his supporting cast. The talent level in Seattle has atrophied over the past several seasons and we are seeing it hinder Wilson’s upside, highlighted by his 172 yards, no touchdown clunker this past Sunday at Arizona. While the Rams are extremely banged up in the secondary, they still pose a matchup issue for Wilson, as Wade Phillips’ defense are always well-equipped to limit passing games. Wilson is more name brand value than locked-in fantasy starter at this point, and there are much better plays on the Week 5 docket. – Rob Willette
Sal Leto (@LetoSal), Ryan McDowell (@RyanMc23), and Rob Willette (@RobWillette24) are freelance contributors for the SportsHub Games Network, Inc., Fanball’s parent company. Any advice or strategies provided by SportsHub contributors represent their personal opinions; they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of SportsHub Games Network and are not necessarily reflective of the strategies they may employ in their own lineups.